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Am I doing the right thing by leaving him?

Tagged as: Breaking up, Three is a crowd, Troubled relationships, Trust issues<< Previous question   Next question >>
Question - (21 July 2010) 5 Answers - (Newest, 22 July 2010)
A female Antarctica age 26-29, anonymous writes:

Hey all

My boyfriend is a great guy, but he recently had a secret friendship with a girl that, when I found out, broke my heart, as it felt so deceptive and I have always been honest and straight-up with him and expected the same.

We've been plodding along in this relationship for nearly 10 years now and there's been no progression and no further commitment from him - despite me talking about how I feel we need to move forward somehow.

I'm getting to the point where I feel like I'm losing my mind! It's the same ol every night. I get home from work, he comes and sees me, sits with me and we talk about our day.. then he goes home to his parents place and I stay living with mine.. waiting in vain.

When do you decide it's time to say, "See ya!" I really love this man, but I'm convinced this is all it's ever going to be.. and having been recently hurt and feeling vulnerable, I expected when we made a mense that he would be willing to see things grow between us.

I've had it. But I still love this man with all my heart and it's going to be so hard to walk away.

Do you know enough from my post to have an opinion about whether I'm doing the right thing, leaving? And, for those of you who have had to walk out of a relationship.. and yet still end things civally.. and the love was still there.. how did it end for you? Did you go back to them? Did you meet someone else you felt more for?

I'd like to hear your stories. Thanks

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A female reader, chigirl Norway + , writes (22 July 2010):

chigirl agony auntBefore I answer, I need to ask you something. Im wondering if you have even thought about this yourself, since from your post it doesn't look like it.

You want to "move forward". What does that mean? What do you want exactly? Do you want to have sex with him? Do you want to move on with your life? Do you feel he is holding you back from something? Do you want to marry him? Do you want to move in together with him? Exactly what is it you want.

Figure that out first. Then maybe you should just ask him to do one of the above and make that move. If you are expecting him to do the "moving forward" while you just get a free ride... then you are basically accepting the stagnation. What have YOU done to make things move forward? And what are you doing about your own life, aside from your relationship? Do you feel stuck there too?

Anyway, if you feel that you are tired of this relationship, well after 10 years who can blame you. People grow, you and you might have grown apart. You still love him, I mean you'd have to in order to be together 10 years. But love alone is never enough.

I don't think the secret friendship in itself is an issue here. He didn't do anything other than.. well not tell you he has a friend who is a girl. But, this incident functions as a catalyst, and makes you take a second look at your relationship, and you don't like what you in general see.

So, think about what it is that you want. Where do you want to move forward? Or do you just need fresh blood and to be alone with yourself for a while?

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A reader, anonymous, writes (21 July 2010):

Only you can decide if you made the right choice. Why was he keeping this "friendship" a secret? It comes across as though he had something to hide from you. It's always hard to walk away from someone you truly love, but if you have tried to make it work over the course of 10 years and the relationship has not progressed, then you probably did make the right choice. You don't want to waste time and miss out on a great guy fooling around with this current boyfriend who is carrying on friendships with other women behind your back. When "the one" comes along, you will look back on this situation and laugh your heart out believe me!

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A reader, anonymous, writes (21 July 2010):

I'm less concerned that you've been dating ten years and he hasn't proposed than I am concerned about this "secret friendship" with a woman. According to your post, you're between the ages of 22 and 25, which means you still have plenty of time to get married, even though ten years of dating seems quite a long time.

Anyway, this secret friendship is definitely something you should learn more about and let us know. It seems to me that if he felt the need to hide a friendship with a woman from you, there might be more to it than that. If it was a totally innocent, platonic thing, what's the point in hiding it? After all, I'm sure you have male friends who he knows. That's the first thing to be addressed here, and knowing for sure exactly what was up will probably help you make up your mind -- the straw that broke the camel's back, so to speak.

Now, if you've been together ten years and are both adults, it really sounds like it's high time for him to help move your relationship to a higher level. You mentioned you talked to him about it. What did he say? Did he agree? Did he blow it off? His reaction is pretty important in this situation. For example, my boyfriend told me that if he was going to propose, it would be a total secret from me, that I would be surprised when he did. That said, perhaps your boyfriend doesn't want to propose to you if you keep pushing it and making it something you expect. Conversely, maybe he just doesn't want to propose because he's not ready or just doesn't want to. This is also something to ask him.

In the end, only you can decide if you want to stick with him and if he's the right man for you. It seems to me that having a heart-to-heart chat with him would help you figure things out.

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A reader, anonymous, writes (21 July 2010):

p.s. Antartica? that can only hinder things too!! - strangely enough I have been there!!!!- and if its Rothera you are based, well can't be too difficult to find a new fella if needs be!! ;)

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A reader, anonymous, writes (21 July 2010):

Hey there. I now exactly how you feel sweetheart. I was in a similar situation. I was completely in love but I couldnt see a future. Its funny you talking about the routine becasue in the end that's what nailed the coffin shut on the relationship for me. He was a dogmatic unadventuorous person and I knew I needed more from life. I met someone else (a very lovely unpredictable guy) very soon after splitting up- its taken best part of two years to put myself back together and realise I did the right thing for both of us. Its been a real struggle- It always is when you make a choice to leave someone you still love....but my advice to you is if things don't feel quite right and you are longing for something more, dont put your life on hold. You will meet someone else and it will all make sense.

BUT if its not that you are bored of him as a person, just the situation then you need to shake things up...because he is unlikely to. It might not be possible but sometimes just upping sticks and moving soemwehere new together can bring you closer? Its difficult to advise in that direction without knowing more but certinaly being together for 10 years and still living apart must be an awful strain.

As for the deception, well- I suppose you need to ask yourself what he was getting from the 'secret chats' that he feels is missing from your relationship- or better ask him!! Was it innocent- as in just someone to talk to- or more than that? the problem is if things are rocky to begin with its so diffcult to get over things like that and trust again.

My feeling is you definately should at least take some time on your own and think about things. It sounds like you need a break and some 'me' time. If he loves you as much as you love him- this will hopefully kick him up the ass to try to fix things. Good luck.

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