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» Scarleteen Boards: 2000 - 2014 (Archive) » SCARLETEEN CENTRAL » Relationships » Mixed Emotions.

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Author Topic: Mixed Emotions.
Roxie102
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I was reading another post, and it seemed very similar to what I'm going through. Anyway, as you may know, my first boyfriend broke up with me a few weeks ago. We had a little contact since, and he seemed in good spirits. Last week, I called him because he'd originally said I could call him whenever I needed to. He sounded very irritated upon answering and soon told me he would call me back some other time. He called me tonight, and we didn't talk long. I wanted some closure because his reasons for the breakup were vague, stuff like "I think it's time to move on." I guess that's a good enough reason to breakup, but I wanted to know a deeper reason. I knew it probably stemmed from me going to college while he wasn't, and so I asked him. He got really emotional and aggravated and avoided the question. Soon he basically said, "yeah, that's part of it." He said he didn't know why I was bringing this up again and that he was "pushing it" by even talking to me. (I don't know what "it" is.) Then, he hung up, and I started bawling.
I'm scaring myself by the way my feelings are dampening for him. I first was so in love and so heartbroken, but now I find myself barely even caring. I want to care. I want to sometime in the future get back with him, but the way he's acting is pushing me away and making me feel negatively towards him. I even regret asking him those questions even though I so badly wanted to know the answers. I don't know if he's acting out on purpose, but my guess is that he's hurting inside a lot and doesn't feel ready to talk about it. At first I was so set on talking regularly with him, but after this, I barely care if I ever talk to him again, at least, that's how I feel right now. I feel so confused. I don't think we should talk until our emotions have settled down, and I don't know how long that'll be. If I start feeling better, I know I'll want to contact him, but obviously he doesn't really want to talk to me. That hurts, but at the same time, I don't really care. I feel like dating other people even though that feels so daunting and frightening. Too, I don't want to move on. I don't want him to move on. Deep inside, I somehow want things to be okay again, but I know they probably won't, at least not for a long time. I know losing contact for a while won't ruin our chances at friendship, but it feels so scary to do that. I know the way I'm acting will make it worse, but I find myself not really willing to do what I should.

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Robin Lee
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HI Roxie,

Sounds like his reaction to you calling, and to your questions, really hurt your feelings. You were hoping to get a clearer picture of why the two of you broke up. Was there anything else you were hoping for?

Would it be accurate to say that you feel guilty for being annoyed with him and for not feeling the same loving feelings you felt before?

Healing is a funny thing. Sometimes it starts happening no matter how much we passively or actively resist it. It's also hard, for some folks, to maintain feelings when they're not reciprocated; I think that's just self-preservation at work.

How are you feeling today? Still conflicted? As you said, any decision that you make now isn't permanent, though it generally doesn't work for anyone to maintain contact with someone who doesn't want to maintain contact.

What would help you find some peace with this?

--------------------
Robin

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Roxie102
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When we originally broke up, he made it sound like we would still be friendly with each other, and we have been. Me pushing him to talk about what I guess he didn't want to talk about made him act out, and yes, that made me feel bad. I guess I just wanted to know that he'd be there for me and would talk about difficult issues, but now I know he's not. I don't know if he's intentionally pushing me away or if he himself is hurting and that's his way of coping. Basically, I really would like to know if he still cares.

Yes I do feel guilty for feeling the way I do, but I also don't understand how my feelings for him could diminish so quickly. My feelings toward him were so strong and I loved him so much. I kinda think that if they're already going away, then they weren't as deep as I thought they were.

Also I feel like if I throw myself into these negative feelings then I'll move on and let go and not care about him anymore. I don't want him out of my life and I think that by letting go, I'd be forcing myself to lose him. At the same time, I know if I don't get over him, I'll not feel better.

Too, I don't know now if he'd still be up to maintaining casual contact. I also know I can't ask him now...

Today I got upset because I started thinking about the last month of our relationship. He said during that time he knew he would breakup with me but I knew nothing of it. The things we did together and the things he said, in retrospect, I think he led me on. That made me feel even worse towards him. I feel stuck between craving contact with him and
knowing I shouldn't because of the way we're both feeling.

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Robin Lee
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I'm a little confused as to why you can't contact him at all. Yes, you had a really emotional, unpleasant conversation. It also sounds, though, like you have a question for him; does he still want to maintain casual contact as the two of you had discussed before? Certainly, it sounds like you need some time before initiating the contact to ask that question, and you're also allowed to decide whether you yourself want contact with him. That is, while obviously if he doesn't want contact then there won't be contact, you are allowed to have feelings and opinions about that and to express them.

It generally doesn't work well to process feelings with an ex-partner. I'm sure there are some folks out there who've done it successfully, but they're likely few and far between. So, do you have other people you can talk to who will just listen to you bounce thoughts and ideas around?

I totally get why reconstructing that last little bit of your relationship, given what you now know, would hurt, and feel like a betrayal. Sometimes there's no way out of these conflicting emotions except for through, and it's a balancing act to honour and process those feelings without getting mired in the could-have-beens.

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Robin

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Heather
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With your last bit, unfortunately, the way most people do relationships, what usually happens is that one person thinking about a split doesn't share it with the other until they take action to split up.

It doesn't have to be that way, for sure, but it often is, especially when people are just l;earning how to "do" relationships, or for people who never really learn, honestly.

And for sure, the other person in that situation will always feel a big secret has been kept from them, because, of course, it has been.

I find that sometimes when we're hurting, one of the best things we can do to process it and move forward is just to own and recognize those feelings, rather than trying to influence them. In other words, we can be hurting and still move forward: they aren't mutually exclusive, and we don't have to try and go artificially negative or positive to do that, you know?

It can also help to let yourself have the range of feelings you have. Our feelings changing won't make things that earnestly were important unimportant. Same goes with taking time and space.

--------------------
Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
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Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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Roxie102
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Well the contact thing, I COULD contact him, but I'm afraid to because I feel like if I contact him too soon or too often, he'll pull away even further. I'm scared that I'll make things worse. I'm going to try to work through my feelings without him and avoid him for a few weeks. Maybe after that it'll be better.

And Heather, thanks, that all makes sense. I guess I just feel so conflicted because I've never dealt with this kind of thing before and I don't know how these things go or how I need to feel.

[ 07-10-2012, 02:57 PM: Message edited by: Roxie102 ]

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Heather
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There's no "need" with your feelings: they are whatever they are, and you can't make yourself feel ways you don't. You're just going to feel how you feel, and there aren't rights or wrongs here. Just your own unique experiences.

--------------------
Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me • Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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Roxie102
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I think I get that, but is it okay for me to feel so angry towards him? I guess I kinda think that if I feel this way about him now that I'll never feel love towards him again, and I want to love him. Too, when you're "in love" does that make it easier to idolize someone rather than notice their shortcomings? It seems like now all I can see are his negative aspects, and it makes me wonder how I ever did love him.

And is it true that some people deal with being hurt by getting more aggressive, easily offended, and uptight? He was originally sad about the breakup himself, but now I can't tell if he's still hurting inside or trying to hurt me by being rude and mean, because really, he's never acted like this towards me before.

[ 07-11-2012, 01:26 PM: Message edited by: Roxie102 ]

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