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Looking back forces me to ask myself if every relationship is different.

Tagged as: Dating, The ex-factor, Troubled relationships, Trust issues<< Previous question   Next question >>
Question - (12 April 2019) 2 Answers - (Newest, 13 April 2019)
A female United States age 30-35, anonymous writes:

I was going through old files and found a video of me singing with my ex... Yeah I know I can already see the "bad idea! Bad idea!!" red flags going up haha

I'm long since over it. Today it's like a painful lesson that has taught me more empathy and also who my friends are.

I usually don't re-visit the past. Once in a while though... I decided to give the little video a watch. I saw the way we looked at each other in the video. The way they looked at me was so genuine. Nearly two years after that video was shot, they turned emotionally abusive overnight for at the time seemingly no reason. You'd never expect someone who looks at you with such admiration and tenderness and even humility to turn so abusive and manipulative, especially out of nowhere. Turns out they had their own demons, and years later I forgave them, especially after they came forward and gave me the closure I needed, but before that I was so deeply hurt and broken hearted that I didn't date, or want to let anyone in for *years* after what they put me through. I turned down a lot of people, for fear of falling victim to the they're-crazy-about-you-until-for-some-reason-they're-not cycle again.

.....Ten years later, I am now engaged to someone that I truly do care about. I have never once told this man the three words I once said to the ex on a daily basis. And watching that video I just realized that, though I am engaged to someone I consider my best friend, I've never let myself get as emotionally involved with him as I was with the ex. We're engaged, we've had so many adventures together and I look forward to so many more. I love him but I've never told him that with words. I love him but I've never let myself fall into that happy little rose tinted world that I once was in. It even feels weird typing that out but I still know it's true.

I just don't know if this is a good thing. Or is every relationship different?

View related questions: best friend, emotionally abusive, engaged, my ex

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A male reader, N91 United Kingdom + , writes (13 April 2019):

N91 agony auntI have to agree with honeypie. This is really unfair treatment of your Fiance. Your ex hurt you so now your current partner has to bare the brunt of it? Why?

If you love him, tell him! If you did, surely you’d be able to say it. You really need to think about whether this man is the one for you if you can’t vocalise your feelings. He doesn’t deserve a half hearted wife to be! How devastated would he be to find this information out? Would you be okay with finding out your partner doesn’t want to fully let you into his life and is restricting his true feelings for you? I highly doubt it.

If you do truly love him, let him know it, work through your issues and get over the past or else you need to let him go. He deserves someone who’s 100% committed, not someone who’s there for a comfortable life.

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A female reader, Honeypie United States + , writes (13 April 2019):

Honeypie agony auntI think it's kind of sad and unfair that you hold your FIANCE "emotionally hostage" because an ex-BF hurt you in the past.

HE is NOT your EX-BF.

And you can not TREAT every man like he could potentially turn out to BE your like your EX-BF.

Imagine your FIANCE treating you with a arm's length approach because someone hurt him in his past. DO you really think that is healthy? Do you think you DESERVE that?

My guess is no and no... YET, you do that to your FIANCE. THE man who you PLAN to marry?

ACCEPT That your EX-BF had issues, that he treated you in a way you didn't deserve and that YOU didn't MAKE him be abusive. YOU ARE NOT responsible for HIS actions.

Before you MARRY your fiance, I'd suggest you work through that past experience, which seems to have left a huge scar that you still "nurse" in a way. At some point in time you are going to HAVE to let the past go and focus on the here and now.

He deserves all of you.

Withholding affirmation (saying I love you) is unfair. It won't prevent you from ever getting hurt either, or from having an abusive partner.

You have a partner that you are willing enough to marry, doesn't he DESERVE to know in WORDS and deeds that you love him?

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