The First Post-Breakup Conversation

It started out awkwardly as you can guess.  What do we share, what do we say, what’s right or wrong and how do we not hurt the other?

Then his voice goes through me like a bullet because I’m in love with this man.

Interestingly enough, I left the conversation certain I have made the right decision.  I felt the depth of longing when I heard his voice, tears fell during some of his words, but his absence of certainty about his future remained and that’s what’s keeping me grounded this time.  I can love him and he can love as much as we want, but the situation must change for that love to have legs.

For the first time, he apologized to me. I could hear the sorrow in his voice and it meant something to me – I heard something I didn’t know I needed to hear.  His apology meant the world to me for reasons I haven’t yet uncovered. He said he was sorry he got us both here, to a place where he causes so much hurt and pain.  He said he was careless with my heart.  He said for all the love I have given to him that he has returned it the worst way possible.

He admitted he can’t change.  He called himself a coward.

Maybe I just needed to hear that he understood his responsibility in all of this.  I can hear the anguish in his voice when he finally admitted to how debilitated and broken he has been the past 5 days (and oh how I know exactly what he’s talking about).  He couldn’t describe his feelings except to say it was like the worst grief he ever experienced.  I had a hard time hearing some of that because I recall that pain, and maybe even felt some guilt that I won’t allow myself to go there again with him.  But I know, I know what he’s feeling.

I’m not saying I don’t feel it too…the conversation unleashed what was sitting dormant for 5 days and I felt my heart breaking within my chest.  Ah, there it is, that familiar heartbreaking pain from last year. It sucks.  It’s awful.  It’s like a massive hole opens within me.

I think I needed to hear the words from him.   I am a Words of Affirmation person (despite the Christmas gift debacle!) and these words let me hear “I mattered” and “I made a difference” and “no matter what happens, I will always love you.”    I remember trying to pull these words from Bobby and I couldn’t get them.  And I recall how much of hurt me to think I was irrelevant or dreamed up the love we shared.  Bennett’s affirmation resonated with me.

He said many good things and I still hear “I don’t know what I can do”.  He didn’t attempt to pull me back or make any promises.  He acknowledged that he is living without me until he makes a change.  He still said he has no life without me and he can’t go on this way.  At that point I reminded him that the power is his.  He knows.

He asked me if speaking to him hurt me any more or less and while it doesn’t hurt, I explained that as much I want to hear how he loves and misses me, it’s only keeping us both in a place we cannot stay.

He will respect my wishes.

How can I explain that as much as I need him to stop contact, I do want to know he misses me and loves me.  It’s unbalanced, a dichotomy, I know.  But that’s probably no more than the head and heart battling it out.  We both know the right thing is no contact.  I can’t penalize him for reaching out because I reached right back.  But I am not sliding back into communication or relationship with him, I will not.

The conversation was a good one.  I realize I will talk to him again at some point, but I don’t know when.  I also see how the desire to talk to him will fade with no ultimate resolution and the last thing I want to do is create the frustration I created with Bobby at the end.  Bobby was very patient and kind trying to make me let go while he went back to his marriage and I refused to listen to him.   This time I am listening to Bennett say he doesn’t know what, if anything, he can do.    As much as I love talking to him, I don’t need the small talk.

It was harder to say goodbye the second time.  Of course I looked for any “in” any break in his pattern that indicated there should be hope, but he didn’t give me any other than to reaffirm his love for me and how I have changed his life.  He has a thousand reasons to stay and only one to leave, and I know he will always choose to stay and take care of his responsibility.  Much like ASV, I feel bad for his wife, having no idea or not caring that her (married) life is a staged show on his behalf.

Lucky for me my friends have kept me full and busy and banded around me. Between the girls and work, I don’t have down time.  But today finally took its toll and I needed to stay home from work and just be broken.  I need to cry, I need to absorb it and stop pushing the feelings down.  The only way I am going to move on is to accept it.

 

Sidenote: he mentioned he stopped following me on Insta because it creates too much pain.  Clearly he is smarter than many of us where his emotional well-being is concerned.

 

In My Head: The Days That Follow A Breakup

I truly am having a hard time writing about this breakup.  The words flowed so easily after Dan (R) and Bobby. The emotions gushed like a geyser from the depths of heartbreak, but not this time.  This time is something very different, I feel cold, sort of mean, and maybe more angry?  It seems like all my feelings are out of order and I can’t actually gather my thoughts.

Honestly, I feel dead inside, which is way worse than feeling the pain of heartbreak.  Every day that passes it feels like something is closer to snapping and breaking for good.

Friday

He wouldn’t say goodbye, he says he can’t live without me.  I was crying and said I would miss him.

I drank myself to sleep through periods of heavy tears but had no desire to reach out to him.   I found that to be interesting that I didn’t feel that kind of desperation, just overwhelming sadness.

Saturday (day 1)

I was surprised / not surprised there was no goodnight or good morning text. He said he understood I needed to say goodbye, and I see he understood my request for no contact.

I was so tired and depressed I could barely get out of bed. But I did. Had my hair done and met a friend for dinner.

I got so drunk, really drunk. But we didn’t even talk about him all night. I told the story and we moved on.  I was surprised I didn’t need to dwell on it.

Getting that drunk was a massive mistake because I made myself sick. Not a fun night.  But, good to get out for so many hours today.  Thank goodness the day passed so quickly.

Sunday (day 2)

Friends checked on me which was nice. Other than being sick most of the morning I was doing ok. I found a series to binge watch and that kept me engaged all day in a dark living room.

I occasionally wondered if the ping in the phone was him but found my heart didn’t  drop as I expected when it wasn’t him either. I guess I don’t really expect to hear from him?

I’m sort of surprised he hasn’t contacted me by now. I think?  I’m not really sure what I feel. This absence is weird. Almost 7 months of speaking to him more than any other person in my life and now silence.  It’s so strange.  I sincerely feel like I am missing a limb right now.

I’m also more mad than I had been. All those words and declarations of love, all meaningless ultimately.  I do believe that if he loved me the way he said he did, then he would be able to find a way to be with me.  And if he doesn’t, he must not be the man I thought he was.  I am questioning everything right now.

Still some periods of tears.  Not terrible. A clear understanding that I am much better coping through this breakup. Knowing I will come of it stronger does somehow help…not sure I could understand that last year.  My belief that he truly believed how much he loved me helps.  I know he believes we can be together one day, but he won’t change and he will convince himself that it’s all just too difficult to change his life.

I imagine his life just going on as normal, maybe more than mine. He is clearly better at compartmentalizing than I am.  That sort of makes me mad too.  It’s not a real mad, I’m still too sad to be angry.

Actually, to be honest, I’m going to bed more baffled than anything else.  Did I expect he truly meant he couldn’t live without me?  Ha. Imagine that. Maybe I do allow myself more hope than I should. Everything just feels off kilter without him connected to me every minute of my day.

Monday (day 3)

Still off kilter and feeling empty, plus my period made an unexpected early appearance this morning and made a mess.  Just feeling disconnected and lethargic.  Found and app to download our text so I can save them and get them off my phone so I don’t go down the path of looking back too frequently.  Still a bit in disbelief he hasn’t contacted me at all.

Rightly or wrongly it really makes me wonder if he is hurting being apart from me as much as he said he would.

I wonder most about  all the things he said about me, about us, about being in love and I am trying to reconcile those things to his absence.  That’s the worst, knowing it’s gone, he’s gone.  He gave me so much peace deep inside, I never felt such a depth of love from anyone since I was 17 years old (and what do you know of true love then?)  When I was anxious or worried, he calmed me and I fear having to be without him.

I’m not afraid of being alone, now I am afraid of being without him.  That seems significantly different to me.

Why don’t I feel the need to reach out like I have in the past?

I also slept through the nightly relatively soundly.  What scares me most about this absence of emotion is that it’s so different from my past experiences….I do worry that I am burying something deep down.

I worry I am simply a simmering volcano.

Do I believe that somewhere, deep down, he will call, send a song, tell me how miserable he is without me?  Or am I too afraid not to know how he feels in order to reinforce my own feelings?

Tuesday (day 4)

Happy to be heading back to work and a very busy work week ahead.  I made dinner plans for every single night this week to ensure my mind is off of him as much as possible and I have no reason to be reaching out to him.

I woke up confused that it’s been 4 days since I’ve heard from him.  I can’t knock the feeling of literally losing a piece of myself. I’m miserable, but able to function.   One step at a time I keep telling myself.

My friends who know say I’m strangely accepting and calm, but think it’s a weird kid if calm. I agree. I feel weird.

I’m too busy at work to think let alone be emotional. I have a lot of work, more than I can handle and it’s no joke to find every ounce of strength to prioritize.  I look for text from him but don’t have time to dwell.

I did need a break at lunch so quickly stepped out with a friend and was able to talk through it with her. She doesn’t think it’s over. She’s met Bennett and thinks he is waiting for me to reach out first.

Dinner with a Long lost friend and lots of alcohol gets me through the rest of the night. The laughter was wonderful and there was no trace of discussion about him.

Tomorrow is another massive day at work and I like the utter exhaustion right now.

Work doesn’t allow me much reprieve and  is a massive help for me.  My only concern is my exhaustion: from a heavy period and restlessness related to him.  I still feel numb and empty…not much else. I keep turning over in my head “how could you say all those things to me?”  But saying and acting, we know, are two different things.

He said that maybe this was the kick in the ass he needed.

 

Wednesday (day 5)

I recall when I could barely get through the days of no contact, and not that these are slipping by all that quickly, but I’m not drowning in sorrow because I have so much work in my head there’s little room for anything else.  I am forcing myself to take a mental break to write.

I suppose I wonder more than anything what’s going through his head.  Does he feel the pain of absence?  Is he distracted?  Is it obvious or is he able to manage easily enough?  Or is it just relief, knowing he wasn’t going to do what he promised me in any case?

Some friends think he’s waiting me out, to see who buckles first.  I’m trying to stay overwhelmingly busy this week but it’s taking it’s toll on me since I’m no spring chicken any more! lol.  I am really tired, my period is excessively heavy and I can feel exhaustion creeping into my bones.

I take the time to think about how I would feel if I heard his voice right now, or held his hand, or kissed him and the emotion is unidentifiable.  What’s the point if nothing can change?

And…..just like that the phone rings and he leaves a message.  And then later, another.  I wasn’t around to answer either call at work but I did text him to let him know I received them.   

So, 5 days of no contact and while I admit my heart jumped at the Sound of his voice, my resolve hasn’t changed. 

I think I’ve come a long way.  

 

50 Ways to Leave Your Lover

I recognized at some point during the week that I was creating arguments where there should have been none. I was imagining scenarios in my head that just didn’t exist.  I was mad at Bennett for anything and everything.

I knew a few things for sure:

There was no way I could continue like this.  I was constantly angry for no good reason. It was making me unsettled.

It wasn’t fair to him.

I believed he wasn’t ready for change.

We had planned his overnight two weeks ago.  He had gotten some gummies we would try then we would have the entire day together until he head home at a normal after work time.

Little things were turning into big things when we were apart.  I was doing it and I knew it. Maybe, if I was a different kind of person, I could have lasted the month. But I would have crushed us.

The fact that we couldn’t resolve the gift giving issue really disturbs me. Probably more so since I wasn’t compromising with a long-term plan in mind.  I knew deep down the end was coming and I wanted that issue resolved. But the gifts sit in the corner of my room. Unopened. Wasted.

I know I am becoming resentful and that’s not worth my energy. That feeling doesn’t do anyone any good.  I was getting mad he was making plans for his family (kids/brother)  as far out as April but never once mentioned rescheduling our small vacation.  I realized there wasn’t even a point in saying these things to him anymore.  It was like stabbing both of us in the eye over and over and you know how good I can get at self-inflicted pain.  I finally felt that if he wasn’t thinking of it why should I be?

And the only way I could stop this torment is to break it off with him.

I had made the decision over the weekend prior.  He knew I was acting funny and when he kept pressing me for the reason I eventually brought up the gifts as a way to deflect my real reason.

I already knew if I told him it was our “last night” he would never agree to it. I also knew that it’s what I needed, so screw him.  I made the call.  We would be together as planned, have our fun night, and I would come clean the next day when we were quiet and sober and able to have a sincere discussion.

So that’s what we did. We had a great night.  Went to one of our favorite restaurants and laughed and kissed the entire evening.  Came home and tried the gummies and spent the next few hours frolicking in bed.  We were told to take one of these Tiki Killers each and it was way to much for me and I didn’t like the experience when the full high hit. Not for me, won’t be doing that again, but glad I tried with him and home. The night had its ridiculous moments and we had lots of laughs over it the next day.

I love sleeping with Bennett. We rarely part and we just sort of fit together really well.  It’s really something I will miss.

The next morning we had a lovely late breakfast and then hopped back to bed

After a session or ten, we took a break and I started to talk. I asked if he had plans to speak to his wife this month and when there was no answer, or none that was clear, I said it needed to end.

The actual words I used, which are entirely strange: “We need to call it quits, buddy.”  I have no idea why I used my kids nick name, just weird.

Other than asking me if I knew all week that I wanted to break up (I told the truth) and saying he understood, we didn’t actually speak very much about it which also just seemed strange. But we covered all of this ground before so I also think there really wasn’t any more to say anyway.

When I told him I would miss him, he refused to answer me. He told me he couldn’t live without me and that he’s fully addicted to me…..he said he knows this isn’t our last time together.  He said he would never be able to say goodbye to me but he understood why I needed to do what I was doing.  He said the only things he was sure of in his life were his love for me and how he felt while when he was with me.  He didn’t make any promises.  He really said very little.

We made love once more before he left and I held on a little and cried.  I breathed him in. I can only say he looked stricken and pale as he was leaving.

I felt mostly numb and little else.  I napped as soon as he left for at least an hour.

I still can’t believe I did it. That I believed in myself enough to do what’s best for me even if, at this moment, losing someone I love so dearly doesn’t feel very good to me.

I tried to write with as much emotion as I can muster, but it seems my well is dry.  Our time together was wonderful and I simply feel numb and empty right now.  Wondering what the hell just happened to finally give me the courage I needed to stand up for myself and not to feel the desperate draw to contact him.

Notes To Self

I wrote this for myself one night when I probably had a few drinks too many and was just pondering the situation with Bennett.

When I read it the next day, I wasn’t exactly sure how I felt about it. The depth of emotion seems to be much stronger than I actually seem to feel, or at least that I’m aware of. Maybe the alcohol loosened something deeper within.

I suppose I continue to try and convince myself that the only way ahead is out, and I can’t fully embrace the thought of letting him go.

…………………….

Notes to self:
How do you let go of something you have longed for and finally found? The man who loves you for everything you are and all the things you can be.

The one who won’t be afraid of your bad days and will be there to hold you tight when you are scared? Be the one who will worship you? Care for you? Protect you? Hold your pedestal so you can shine?

The one who, when you look in his eyes, you know you have found him? That one.

Somehow, the one you were not looking for and would have overlooked, in fact, is that one.

Not the most handsome, or every ideal you set for yourself…but magnetic to you in a way that is, frankly, inexplicable.

That one, the one who could have been “the one” long ago. But not now. You keep telling yourself that.

You have to let go because he’s not yours and cannot be. He is tethered elsewhere in this world. Although he dreams of being with you, even he knows, deep down, this cannot be. It cannot be specifically because of the man he is. The man he is stays and fulfills the obligations he has created. No matter how much this man dreams of loving you to the end of time, he ultimately will not make that choice. He will choose his family first.

This is why you love him. (Is this love?)

The man he is is one to admire. His qualities only make you long for more of him. But he will not choose you.
And you know, deep down, that’s not what you want.

The base desire for you is to find the one who will forsake everything for you. You want to be the pinnacle, the ultimate everything, to that one.

While he believes he needs you, you know what you need and he can’t give it to you. You need to be the only one. The first one. The priority. He cannot do that because of the man he is. He will not forsake anything in his life for you. He has built a perfect shell of a life and he must live it. He made his path long ago and he will not leave it. He must fulfill what he considers his destiny.

As much as we want to convince him that our love is intertwined in his destiny, we will not. He needs to make these determinations for himself. But he won’t. He will let go first. He will not fight or chase or cry for you. He just won’t.

He has already shown you this more than once. He is not going to fight for you. He WILL let you go. When push comes to shove, he will let go.

You feel shame again because you do not feel this way about your life. When you find the one, you will sacrifice everything to be with that one. You already know you will do this.

But you need to release not only the shame but that old dream. The dream of finding the one. This one. Somehow he stumbled into our path, and he probably wasn’t meant to.

He cannot be the one now. You cannot make him. He will not make that choice and you will ultimately lose. His choice will be his family. Not you.

You must find the one who is going to choose you.

He is not the one. He will not choose you.

You must remember that.

Or else, you are in for a world of hurt worse than the last time.

The tears today will be nothing compared to the tears if you give yourself to him completely. He cannot change his situation. His dreams are of his children, not a life with you, no matter how much this seems like his desire….it will not happen

You must remember this.

Put yourself first. Do not give yourself to someone who cannot truly, be yours.

Ever.