Recently out of a three year relationship, lived together, engaged. Late 40’s, had been married and divorced prior to meeting ex fiancé. When I left my marriage I felt empowered, I was excited to be on my own again, was learning new things, taking classes, traveling on my own. I didn’t think I was looking for a anything, thought I was on the dating apps for fun. I met my ex fiancé and it was like “boom,” thought I met the one (my ex husband was never the one). I thought I had my love story. Three years and a gut wrenching heartbreak later, I realize from doing a lot of work and therapy that I led with my emotions and not my brain, I romanticized him instead of seeing him for who he really was. I diminished myself, my needs, my accomplishments, my strengths to make myself fit something that wasn’t right for me. He was very affectionate, very calm and patient, not a cheater. He was also very lazy, emotionally unavailable, horrible communication and wasn’t honest about his issues ever, took no responsibility for anything, was not kind or generous, did the bare minimum to be a nice guy, realize from reading he was not a good man but a people pleaser/manipulator, and was an all around LVM.
I found this subreddit by chance, and I’m incredibly grateful I did. I’ve been reading the handbook and honestly, violated every rule, boundary, standard in that relationship. Everything it says not to do, I did. My whole goal was to be as effortless as possible for him, because of what I felt and because he was a “nice guy.” I’m embarrassed to be honest, at all I gave of myself and did to have someone who is completely beneath me be happy with me. I’m in a healing phase right now, getting myself together and regrouping. I’m too old to have done this and too old to have wasted that much time on someone. But I’m learning, and this site is showing me so many areas I need to grow and strengthen. Never again am I going to diminish myself in order to be “loved.” I’m glad I found this site and looking forward to learning from everyone.