break up and break out

iVillage Member
Registered: 12-03-2006
break up and break out
Mon, 08-19-2013 - 11:44pm

My bf broke up with me two weeks ago.  It happened over something I didn't think too much of but this is his pattern. Anyway, I was at his house and brought him dinner. We watched a movie that I wanted to watch. After that I told him about another movie of the same genre and that he could just see the trailer to see if he liked it.  Instead he surfed around. I don't remember the exact sequences but he told me

"I spent 1 1/2 hours watching a movie with you and now you don't want to watch this with me (or something like that).

I said I've spent countless hours watching movies, video games, etc... with you (for some strange reason, it's really important for him that I watched these things with him. In return he would go pretty much where I wanted to go and eat where I wanted to eat) 

He said "that's what a woman is supposed to do"

I said "what if I told you you don't do what a man is supposed to do?"

He: then why do you stay with me then. Leave.

So I got up and left. Because I didn't want him to always be the boss. Either I agree, I apologize or I go. He's not willing to talk/discuss anything anymore. While I was in the car, he called and said "let's break up once and for all, time to move on and find someone more compatible". I said "OK" and that was that. 

This is the bf that I've had an rocky R/S with since May 2009. His main problem is finances. And the worse thing is we can't even talk about it. He's 61 now, works as an attorney in solo practice. My best guesstimate of his takehome income hovers around 80K/year on average. That is without any benefits and practically no holidays and he's not able to put anything aside at all for retirement and no cash reserve. The only thing he has is his house which has a 20 yr mortgage on it. 

I, OTOH, am a doctor, 46 yo, never married no kids, and while not rich, on track financially (no kids, no ex-husband, good income allow for this to happen)

Since very early on in our R/S this was a redflag but I was lonely and I've always been grateful to someone who is kind to me so I kept an open mind and went along with it. I was hoping that his finacial setbacks (two prior marriages that ended badly and left him in bankruptcy the first time and debts the second time and having to support a son all these years - he was responsible and pretty much shelled out whatever the 1st ex-wife wanted for his son).

His son is in medical school now and able to get full financial aid (loans to cover everything) so hopefully he won't have spend too much on him moving forward. But since we broke up a few times and each time, I couldn't stand the loneliness, would come back to him. Each time I came back, I had even less leverage. In recent times, we stop talking about his finances so I have no idea if he's able to save anything for his retirement and what his debt situation is. He didn't have more than $1000 cash and $900 of it was spent on having the trees cut in his yard recently.

We stopped communicating about other things as well b/c he would always shut me up with the attitude that there's nothing wrong with him and I was too sensitive. Overall though despite his disagreement with me, I noticed he slowly over time stopped doing things that annoyed me. But the biggest elephant in the room, the finances, was untouched. I pretty much gave up on it and felt quite hopeless about our future together. Along with the hopelessness, I lost all sexual attraction for him as well. So we were basically companions in the last 7 months or so since we got back together again after broken up for 8 months.

I find it hard to move on. I keep asking myself do I want too much? Is having a good man good enough? I've heard of women who have men who leech off of them, who cheat them, not attracted to them. Here I have someone who accepts me for who I am. My depression doesn't make me the best person to be around either and many times he had to cheer me up and get me out.  And yet when we were together, I felt hopeless about us and resentful for not being able to communicate.

But why doesn't he see that I'm a good woman and try to work things out?

Anyway, I'm so tired and pretty much given up. I saw what some of you said about giving people a chance and breaking out of the mode. I put  a profile on OLD site OKcupid today and got my first email w/i minutes. The guy is average looking, a cop, but the profile sounds like a cool person. But I thought I give it a try so I emaled him back.

there's also another dr. an acquantance at work who appeared somewhat intersted but never asked me out so I don't know. My friend said maybe not intersted enough. There was another man that was intersted ( subordinate to me in position), and asked me to come to his house in front of the clerk. I was not attracted to him althugh he seems nice. I got weirded out that he asked me within hearing distance of the clerk. Never took him up on his offer.

Don't know how to feel what to think/do anymore. I've been praying for insight. Any thoughts?







Avatar for xxxs
Community Leader
Registered: 01-25-2010
Tue, 08-20-2013 - 1:32am

 Why do you think you need a man?  Why are you even looking at men who on the face of it are not a good match.  Take some time for yourself.  if you need find a Booty Call or FWB to tide you over while figuring yourself out.  Sometimes it is skin time that may be what is needed.  From your writing it is difficult to see that anything is wrong except it seems you are hard on yourself.  Yes, money can be very hard.  It seems that this has an importance for you.   Think of this;  when I am with some one who is not financially comfortable I feel.....


Community Leader
Registered: 07-16-2001
Tue, 08-20-2013 - 8:25am

Become okay with being lonely. That seems to be your motivation for going back to him or looking for someone new. We all get lonely. It's what you do with it that matters. I find that when I've been the loneliest is when I've made some of the best changes in my life, and they never involved men. 

iVillage Member
Registered: 02-25-2013
Tue, 08-20-2013 - 9:12am

After a five year relationship, you need a minimum of 6 months to a year to be alone to grieve the relationship and to learn to enjoy your own company for a while. Use this time to reconnect with girlfriends. Take up a a new hobby--cooking, dance lessons, beading, scrapbooking. Do volunteer work. Don't seek out a man for happiness. Build a world of happiness for yourself, and then you may be emotionally ready to share your happiness with someone. When you are ready, try It's a lot less painless than OLD.

iVillage Member
Registered: 04-17-2008
Tue, 08-20-2013 - 9:58am

Please take a break from men.  Really.  Most of us feel the worst when we are trying too hard to manufacture something. And though I don't want to be negative, it is far from guaranteed that we will all find someone, through no fault of our own.  You have to be enough for you.  If the right guy comes along, great,  otherwise, it is not meant to be.  Beats banging your head against the wall.

iVillage Member
Registered: 11-28-1999
Tue, 08-20-2013 - 11:53am

I think that over time, everybody here has told you before that this guy is not a good match for you.  You recognize it yourself but you are only with him because he's the man of last resort.  What kind of a relationship is that?  Any guy who said to me "the woman should do" whatever would not be lasting long with me.  And you know pretty much that his financial situation is not going to change and it seems to be important to you.  I mean the guy is 61--how much longer do you think he's going to work?  It's not like he's making minimum wage-- a lot of people would like to have a job that makes $80,000/yr but your earning potential is greater.  so unless you can accept the fact that at some point you'd probably be supporting him, which might happen if he was a great partner in other ways, forget him.  And you're not even attracted to him.  so forget about him being your boyfriend--maybe you can just be companions who do things together some times, if that would be ok with both of you. 

the question shouldn't be why can't the guy see that you're a good woman--I think the question should be why can't you see that you're a good woman who deserves more than this half hearted relationship?  I do agree with the others.  I think most of us here aren't that satisfied with being single & we'd all like to find someone great.  but in the meantime, you have to figure out some way to be happy in your life w/o having a man.  I haven't had a BF in 5 yrs and have had very few, mostly unsatisfying dates.  But it's a lot better than being w/ my ex in an emotionaly abusive relationship.  And I realize that in these years I've grown because I'm not willing to go out with just anyone just to have a man.  I posted a little while ago about how a man I dated a couple of years ago called me out of the blue and I didn't call him back.  On the few dates we had, I was trying to convince myself to like him since I wasn't dating anyone else and there was nothing glaringly wrong with him--he's actually a nice guy but with space, I realize he was kind of boring and there wasn't much physical attraction.  So I'm not willing to be with someone who is just so-so.  I'm really having much more fun going out with my friends than being on boring dates and especially being in a relationship with someone that you have to convince yourself is not so bad.

Avatar for floridagirl52
iVillage Member
Registered: 10-16-2006
Tue, 08-20-2013 - 6:33pm

All good advice so far.

I just wanted to add: money has been a bone of contention for you with this man from the start. As Musiclover says, at 61, how much longer is he realistically going to work? And even if he made big bucks for the next 4 years, I doubt he will ever catch up to you.

But even more than the money--it just sounds like you aren't very into each other to begin with. It sounds like a better-than-nothing relationship. 

I know you were alone a really long time before you met this guy, and believe me--I get it. But for better or worse, I think it's better to go it alone and leave a space for someone to come along who would be the right partner for you. My theory is that when you're in a subpar relationship, it blocks a good one from coming into your life. 

And I agree with the others: maybe take a break from men for a while. 

iVillage Member
Registered: 12-03-2006
Tue, 08-20-2013 - 8:21pm

I have regrets when I'm alone and yet I'm not happy when I was with him. I think back about all the men I passed up in the past (can barely count them since I've never been a men's magnet), all of whom had more than my last bf. But I was immature and a bit of a prima dona. So whatever it is I can get at the time is less than what I want. I wonder if that's just self-sabotaging behavior. That's why I'm afraid if I pass this one up, I won't be able to meet anyone better b/c time is not on my side.

I've lowered my standards quite a bit b/c for the past 5-6 years, I live in hick country and along with advancing age, meeting educated people is hard. Before relocating out here, I would never in a million years go out with  a cop.  This one is kinda short (5'8), 50 something, chubby, and looks very average. But in the profile sounds like a down to earth, well-rounded guy. I thought about various posts here that reccommend going out with people who you don't have an initial attraction to to see if you're compatable. So, I wrote back.

another thing that kinda pushed me a bit was a friend announced she's engaged to a guy she met on OKcupid. She told me in the past this was a good free site. Anyhoo, OLD has been disappointing for me. But it's one way to meet men.

I'm not that keen on meeting men right now but like eating sometime you need something good to whet your appetite. But maybe just give it up already. Not in the mood and my bad attitude will just show through. Not fair to myself nor the man.  


iVillage Member
Registered: 11-28-1999
Tue, 08-20-2013 - 9:01pm

I think your last paragraph says it all--you really need to be in a good frame of mind to do OLD because it's more likely you'll meet guys who you don't like or vice versa.  You need to be able to deal with that & take a lot of rejection in stride.  I also think that when you are down on yourself, that's when you attract the worst kind of men.  When you are happy & full of life, then you'll attract similar kinds of men.

iVillage Member
Registered: 12-03-2006
Tue, 08-20-2013 - 10:46pm

Thank you MusicLover, you're such a nice person to always be there for us online broken hearted.

I have some thought about the dynamics of my love choices. I seem to always settle for the nice but dysfunctional men. You see I grew up very poor. As the oldest child and a strong-willed one at that suffered the brunt of my caregiver's frustration and struggle to make ends meet. Along with it, maybe a biological vulnerablity for depression, it runs in the family, I developed depression and hopelessness around age 20 or so but never got treated until 20 yrs later. This has a big impact on me. Naturally I'm a saver anyway, but coupled with the poverty growing up, I have always placed great importance on financial security. It's so hard-wired in me that I can't let go of it.

Anyway, what attracted me to my ex bf was his confidence and his intellects. He would be considered the aceademic type that can't tie his shoes. But confident he is despite the fact that he's penniless. I consider his financial sense and choice of women lower-class mentality. Live hand to mouth, picking women who that flatter his ego and equate that with real love. I see now why it didn't work out with women like me. Women that are caplable and independent would not be kowtowing to a naive man. I was not good at catering to his sense of importance, of being coddled. Complex dynamics. I don't need someone rich. I've given up that desire since rich men are usually jerks and probalby wouldn't go for my type anyway, just someone who's on track. I was already OK with where he was b/c I loved him but I wanted him to get back on track and be willing to work together with someone that's going to share his life with him and would stand to suffer b/c of his problems. Either he didn't think it was important enough, or there's nothing anyone could do to change his finances. I guess is that he thinks he knows what his problem is and he's working on it and didn't need my interference. Just flat refusal to allow me to be involved is very unsettling to me and forver be a thorn on my side.

I value kindness so my problem with my major romantic relationships is not being with abusive men but kind men who have poor financial skill, poor communication skill, poor judgement, poor capacity for self-knowledge, nacissism, are just as bad, I'm afraid.

iVillage Member
Registered: 01-02-2008
Wed, 08-21-2013 - 10:29am

Well first let me say that your ex is 61 . I am 59 and not going to be starting over and finding more money or a career or whatever.. Those days are over and what is ahead is social security and surviving if one is not rich.. Guess what?? I aint rich just like your ex... (LOL)

He is fine where he is in life and so are you.. You two just are not on the same page as they say.. You are trying to fit a round peg in a square hole because you dont want to be alone.. Yes.. I get that.. None of us here want to be alone but some of us are... Its just what it is... Yes it sucks for sure but if you keep on a yo yo relationship  you will get more of the same and instead of being 40 something and more dateable now you will be 50 something and older and less dateable.. KWIM???

So do yourself a favor and love yourself first and find out who you are and what you want.. Then put your intentions out there and see what happens.. In the meantime have fun and do fun things and date .. You dont have to look at every guy as a potential partner but just have some fun in the dating world.... Just go out and find out who and where people stand these days and find out their values.. Its not the money your ex doesnt have but his values and your's are not the same as his.. Find people with same values as you.. If that means hanging out with rich crowd then do it..There are some nice rich wine bars or cigar bars or martini places where rich hang out.. Go there and see what you find.. You never know...and it doesnt make you shallow or anything but will make you more specific about what you want...Just saying....