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How does one move on from a break up and improve their choice in partners?

Published on February 18, 2013 by rain_check_

I was dumped four months ago from a three year relationship and am having a very difficult time letting go and moving on with my life. The relationship ended badly because 1.) it was conducted over the phone (this was a partial LDR); 2.) I was in the middle of final exams for grad school and I also had two state exams; 3.) I was being tested for cancer; and 4.) I was presented every cliche line possible in the break-up ( versions of "it's not you, it's me," "I'm not good enough for you," "I care for you but like a friend"). The ex didn't know about the cancer because I decided not to burden him with it, since he was far away and it wasn't that bad. I yelled at first but then handled myself with dignity: saying the time we spent taught me a lot and I will always love him as a person and hope we can be friends. He was shocked by my behavior (he had experience with very bad break-ups, which is why, even then, I was trying to spare his feelings) and promised to "keep things classy and mature" as I asked. However, he deleted me from every social media outlet and disappeared completely because he said he was looking at my pages "too much." I am so hurt because I realize he was only avoiding confrontation by saying he truly wanted to be my friend and just literally erased me, although his other exes remain on his social media pages, exes which had longer relationships than us. Why did he have to cut me out in such a way, when he said he just didn't love me anymore? How would seeing my page harm him in the absence of love? This person carried out a LOT of contradictory behavior, which includes the break-up lines. This is the first time I do not understand why a relationship ended. He broke up one month after having come to visit me and tell me he loved me more than anything. On this trip, he also talked about marriage and having children. All these things were his ideas. I am suffering the most intense pain I ever have in my life, partially because I gave up so much to be with this person (changing careers or moving and being in a foreign country where I didn't speak the language, to name a few), it was the first relationship I had sex in (although I am in grad school, I waited very long for what I thought was "the one"), and the terrible way he handled the break-up. I moved in with family for grad school after I came back from the foreign country where that person lives, I had given up my flat and everything. My family situation is not good and I live in a remote area that I did not grow up in. This means I do not have a single friend and the closest therapist was 40 minutes away. I was suffering so much I made the voyage to see the therapist but once and the entire trip was very expensive. The therapist told me, "I know I am supposed to be biased but this person is an asshole" when I went into detail about many things. I was too hurt at that time to hear anything bad about him, but I knew the therapist was right. In my heart, despite this pain that even made me consider harming myself, I knew I shouldn't ever seek him out or want him back. But what I lost more than anything is my innocence and confidence. I dated that person because I thought they were kind. That was my first criterion. Not looks, not success, but kindness. I really trusted this person. I am trying so hard to cope with this without friends to talk about it (as I live away from them) and am just a student so I cannot afford to pay the fees at the closest therapist, even if it was on a sliding scale of $40. I've gotten so desperate I even pray (not religious) to maintain my sanity. I even failed one of the state exams because it was literally the week I was dumped. I have bee living in a state of inertia, taking a semester off from school because I didn't pass my state exam and could not move on in the program. The economy here is so bad, I cannot even find a full-time job even though I applied to more than 100 positions. I am a very introspective person, analytical to a fault, so I just feel so defeated. I am worried that I will continue on this path of choosing the wrong person or, what's worse, giving up everything and not knowing how to have confidence in myself and have boundaries. I tried reading books, meditation, and just thinking about my faults to break any harmful habits I cannot see (to the point where I blame this entire relationship failure on myself even though upon breaking up the ex claimed I wasn't at fault and the therapist said I worked very hard at it in a respectable way). But I guess my question is, how can I get through this and how can I be a more confident person? My health, career, finances, and personal life aren't doing well and all the resources I've sought are not helping me. I feel that had I had self-confidence none of this would have happened. My heart is in agony and there is no one to discuss this with, so any help would make me very grateful.

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