I need to let go, but I am scared.

iVillage Member
Registered: 12-09-2011
I need to let go, but I am scared.
Sun, 10-20-2013 - 1:48am

I posted on the break up board about 16 months ago. My boyfriend of 2 years at that time had just dumped me and kicked me out while I was in the process of moving back in. I had found some messages to a "friend" he was refusing to cut ties with even though he would only contact her when he was mad at me. The messages were flirty and talked about her big chest and how much he missed it. Well I moved out and for the first time in many many break ups with him, we had no contact for exactly two months. I had been in counseling prior to our split but really stepped it up after. My counselor was so proud that I did finally walk away. She said she considered it a domestically violent relationship because he was so emotionally mean to me.

Well on my 60th day of being alone I was planning to take myself to a movie and celebrate. I was feeling strong and for the first time in my life really figuring out who I am. I was  43 at that time. I had been married three times prior to my engagement to this guy. On that day, when I was so proud of myself, he contacted me. He text then started calling obsessively. I finally agreed to see him a few days later. He begged for a few weeks and I stuck to my guns about being just friends, which we all know never works. So long story short...I live with him again and things are not as bad as they have been in the past but after a fight today, he again has kicked me out and broke up. I begged and cried and apologized and promised I would be better. Talk about having no dignity left. He said he would think about it but canceled a time share we bought together this week. Probably the smartest move ever but it hurt my feelings because it showed me there is not a future. As I sit alone tonight being ignored I wonder what happened to the girl that found herself during those 60 days, I know I need to get out. I mean our day to day life is very mello but we are just friends living together. We do not sleep in the same room. I do all the cooking and most of the cleaning even though he is not working right now. He is back to putting me down and making fun of my body. I just feel like he is a buddy and that is how he treats me unless he feels be stepping back. Then he tells me how much he loves me and jokes about us getting married some day.

At this time the way things stand, I am allowed to live here and he is thinking about whether or not he wants to be with me but he doesnt think so. I am scared to be out on my own again but after a nice pay raise a few months ago money is not a big issue anymore. My counselor told me if I got back with him there was nothing more she could do for me so I stopped seeing her. I am trying to convince myself that there is more out there and it is better than this even if it is alone. I feel lost but feel like I am standing on the edge of a cliff I know I can jump from and soar if I will just be brave enough to do it.

iVillage Member
Registered: 02-25-2013
Sun, 10-20-2013 - 10:07am

Yes, you need to get back into counseling. Clearly, your self esteem needs to improve or you will keep repeating the same behavior--choosing men who are toxic because you subconsciously think that's what you deserve. Make plans to move out ASAP. As soon as you do, don't tell him where you live. Change your phone number and e-mail address. Refuse to communicate with someone who is your past, where he belongs, since he belittles you and was never a good bf. Do not date until you get to a place of positive self esteem, which will probably take a long time. You need to feel at peace and be content being alone until you're at a place to share happiness with someone else. Besides coiunseing, get some books from the library on improving your self worth. When you're emotionally ready to date again, make a must haves and dealbreakers list. If a man lacks any must haves or possesses any dealbreakers, you need to cut him loose. That's the road to happiness. Keep cutting inappropriate men loose until you find a man who knows how to treat you right. You won't find him until you value yourself first. Good luck.

iVillage Member
Registered: 05-20-2009
Sun, 10-20-2013 - 2:53pm

The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again, and thinking THIS time it will be different!  Have you not figured out yet that the one constant in your relationships is you!  You have such horrible low (or lack of) self esteem, you might as well wear a sign on your forehead that says "I'm worthless, please abuse me".  You haven't got the proper filters that would tell you the FIRST time a man says something abusive to you, or puts his hands on you......you LEAVE immediately.  You keep going back to this horrible man, and you allow him to verbally, mentally, and probably physically abuse you.  You walked away once, and you have to walk away again, because he will continue to abuse you, and it will escalate! 

Weak men look for weak women......because they know they can treat them horribly and they will stay for more.  They're weak, they wouldn't last 5 minutes with a woman that respected herself, and had self confidence in herself.  They're afraid of women like that, and won't even go near them.  You did well in therapy for two months, and then he contacted you again, and you lost all you'd gained in therapy. 

I wonder where you live between visits with him?  Do you have your own home, or do you live with family?  Do you have any personal belongings that you carry back and forth to his place?  Now he will ALLOW you to stay there while he decides whether or not he wants to be with you?  Can you look at him and tell him you don't want to be with HIM?  You say money isn't an issue.....great.  Then GET OUT and change your phone number, your media information, and make it impossible for him to find you or contact you!  Find yourself a new counselor, or maybe your old one will take you back if you get him out of your life.  You need to look in a mirror.......and tell yourself "I am a good person!  I am a loveable person!  I can be happy alone until I learn to love myself!  I will never allow a man to abuse me again!  My happiness is up to me, I can't get it from another person!  Being alone is wonderful!  I can do what I want, when I want, and with whomever I want!  I don't have to explain my behavior or decisions to ANYONE!"

It's time you start thinking for yourself.  You're sitting there waiting for him to decide if he wants to be with you?  Why don't you start loving yourself enough to decide what YOU WANT, why do you care what HE wants?  It's not his life, it is YOUR LIFE, and you need to decide where it's going!  Tell him you don't CARE what he wants, you're going to do what YOU want....and that means leaving him behind forever!!!  And not getting involved with anyone else until you fix yourself!  You know you can do it if you want to.

iVillage Member
Registered: 06-06-2006
Mon, 10-21-2013 - 7:34am

Hey Fissatore

I do agree with what you are saying .. (of course i do, what is there to disagree???)  up to "you need to look in a mirror".. What i generally disagree with and cringe when i see it is all this "love yourself" stuff. All this "dont get involved with anyone untill you learn to love yourself/untill you fix yourself/whatever else "yourself". Fissatore there are people, who will never truely "love themselves". I am one of them. I have a wonderful 16 years old r-ship, a man who loves me and does everything for me, i love him and fancy him still after all these years, i have a great job and a comfortable life  - noone is abusing me in any way shape or form, and never had - and still i do not, and will never "love myself". On a good day OR when i am a bit intoxicated ha..ha.. i feel "ok" with myself, not more.  I am also the best example that sometimes life is the OPPOSITE of  "you cant love anyone before you love yourself". All these years ago, when i met my  life partner of 16 years, everything in my life was a "deep dark hole", and i was SO "unfixed" and SO DIDNT love myself.. And yet, i met the love of my life..

Same about self-esteem.. It can be high and it can be not so high.. which absolutely does NOT mean we as women should let any b-rd of a man treat us like dirty worn out doormats..

Well enough of "me me me",  just wanted to say that people ARE different and you cant - what YOU, Fissatore, in my opinion, very often do  - just "dump everyone into one heap"  without distinction, and in a very very BRUTAL way.. 

Mickeyp - PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE leave this b-rd NOW, this MINUTE (especially since as you said you ARE capable of caring for yourself financially??) - and start from there. Dont feel FORCED to "learn to love yourself" - just make sure you manage to leave him, NOW, maybe with the help of your or any other good therapist, AND make sure to NOT fall into the hands of a similar b-rd 3 months later out of loneliness.. All the rest will come with time.. ANY "alone-ness" is million times better than what you describe.. (i am 43 too by the way..)

iVillage Member
Registered: 11-28-1999
Mon, 10-21-2013 - 8:13pm

Well you did it once, you can do it again.  Think of it like quitting smoking or going on a diet.  People have setbacks but it doesn't mean that if someone quit smoking for 60 days and then had a cigarette (or more) that they couldn't start the process over.  Since you have money, the first thing you need to do is look for a new place to live.  Don't tell him about it or he'll start convincing you to stay--he doesn't mean anything bad, you'll be together, etc.  Do that ASAP and when you've finally gotten the place, just move your things out.  It's really important not to give him a way to contac you again.  And really being alone isn't that bad.  I'm 56 & got divorced from 2nd DH about 5 yrs ago and I haven't had a BF since but I'm having a lot more fun being single than I did when I was in an emotionally abusive marriage.  I can come home after work and relax & not wonder if someone is going to be in a bad mood & start an argument over some stupid thing.  I have made a bunch of friends so I always have something to do on weekends.  It takes effort but you can do that too.

iVillage Member
Registered: 05-20-2009
Thu, 10-24-2013 - 12:53am

I don't mean it the way you're taking it.  It doesn't mean you go around saying "I'm so wonderful and I'm so beautiful, and anyone would be lucky to be with me".  It's telling yourself that you're WORTH more than what you're settling for!  It means feeling that you deserve better than you're getting.  I"ve been there.  I didn't have the greatest confidence in myself, and I married a man who seemed to be quiet and shy, and a little "controlling" in small things.  He didn't drink or smoke, so he wouldn't go anywhere that drinking or smoking was happening.  All of MY friends liked to dance, so naturally, there was also drinking and smoking going on....(this was many years ago).  But as time went on, he became verbally abusive......took every opportunity to call me stupid, refused to associate with any of my friends, and he had very few friends himself.  I was underweight all my life, and suddenly I was being called bushel bucket, fat a$$.  By the time I was 30, I was being told I was OLD.......That's called brainwashing!  In the beginning, I knew what he was doing, and I resisted, but eventually I started believing it.  It got worse and worse, we had 3 sons and he was doing the same to them......and that's when I said to myself "ENOUGH"!  It's bad enough what he's done to me, I will not let him do it to my sons!  I divorced him just after our 20th anniversary.  All the while we were married, he cheated on me, brought home diseases, I had women calling me to tell me they loved him, and I'd tell them TAKE him......but he wouldn't go!  He was extremely jealous for NO reason.  I finally figured out, he was a WEAK man....thru no fault of his own really.  His mother told him he was stupid, she told him he was a PIA, she told him his older brother was a saint, and on and on.  It wasn't until after he passed away that I realized he was also dyslexic, which reinforced (in his mind) that he was stupid.  (Dyslexia wasn't even defined until sometime in the 1970's or 80's).  When I finally decided I was better than all that, and so were my sons, I filed for divorce.......THEN I got "I love you, don't leave me"!  When a man is weak, as he was......he lives in fear of being deserted, so he uses name calling, jealousy, mental and physical abuse, whatever he can, to keep a weak woman in line.  A woman who has strength is a woman who loves herself enough to get out of a bad situation.  That's what I mean by "love yourself"!  

iVillage Member
Registered: 09-16-2002
Fri, 10-25-2013 - 12:49pm

You've been married three times, and now are involved with a man who clearly has no intentions of having a relationship with you other than maid and cook.  What, exactly, are you so scared of if you leave this situation?  What was so bad about the two months on your own, not worrying about who he was talking to and how things were not working out? 

My SIL is exactly like this, she can not be alone, and because of that she is unable to choose someone to share her life who would improve it.  Her previous bf was a womanizer and drug addict, the man she eventually married cannot keep a job and no one in the family likes him because of his arrogance and sense of entitlement. 

You post to boards and get therapy but until you are truly sick and tired of being treated like a second class citizen, who settles for a relationship that is "not that bad", you are going to be on that same treadmill. 

Too many women have been raised to believe they are nothing without a man, hence the women who stay with their abusers, turn a blind eye to affairs, alcohol or drug addiction, etc.  I've been alone and I've been in relationships, I've left relationships that I knew were going no where, and I found new ones.  I am now happily married to a man who not only loves me, but respects me and my opinions.  I would not have been able to find him without making room for him in my life, which means, I had to let go of the old relationships and be open to new ones.  I also took my time getting to know him, we dated long distance for a year, and I moved in only when we were officially engaged.  There were difficult times, but because we were both on the same page regarding our relationship, we worked through them.

One last question, is this relationship truly better than nothing?

Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.

.  -Albert Einstein