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It's been years & I still can't let her go.

January 14, 2023

I've dated. I've hooked up. Even had another relationship, after taking what I thought was enough time to allow myself to heal. & despite her having been married, divorced & kids with other men- a part of me still misses her. I know it's the idea of her. The memories of her & the good times we had together. I know full well that it was a toxic relationship for both of us. Yet after all these years I still cling. My self esteem has been shot, i feel like im experiencing the dark night of the soul- just utterly lost my sense of self...

I'm rambling now. Hoping for some catharsis to help get through this. At any rate, thanks for letting me share.

Happy Friday bruvs. 🍻

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Post Information
Title It's been years & I still can't let her go.
Author Anon_Anon462
Upvotes 26
Comments 15
Date January 14, 2023 2:28 AM UTC (10 months ago)
Subreddit /r/MenSupportMen
Archive Link
Original Link

[–][deleted] 10 points11 points  (0 children) | Copy Link

In the same boat as you are bro, hang in there. I hope this catharsis has helped you and I wish the best of luck to you. Hope you’ll find that peace within you ❤️

[–]lebonroidagobert 7 points8 points  (0 children) | Copy Link

Damn man I’m sorry. Time will help. Try and keep your head up and know there is better coming your way.

[–]Merebankguy 4 points5 points  (0 children) | Copy Link

I feel you brother. I dated my first gf from 2011 till 2015 . Since then I have had 1 long term relationship and 2 short ones and i am not over her till this day. She in a relationship and has now for a few years and I know that I will probably never speak to her again or see her in person again but I still think about her daily. It's hard , but you aren't the only 1

[–]Onemoretime536 2 points3 points  (0 children) | Copy Link

Best you can do is try and move on and find someone else who you feel the same way about.

[–]Nightwynd 2 points3 points  (0 children) | Copy Link

I feel you. It's not that you can't let her go, or the idea (good that you see that) of her... You don't want to. It might not hurt to find yourself a therapist and get a professional to take a look under the hood. Zero shame in it, we all need a pro sometimes.

[–]Breadtrickery 2 points3 points  (3 children) | Copy Link

I'm 40, I have a badass wife and a fireball of a daughter, but I think most men deal with "the one that got away"

I can only speak from my own experience, however i know many that have similar. I dated a girl in my early 20s (19?it was an absolute whirlwind. The sex was fantastic, my friend group was solid at the time, and we had this energy that I felt was unexplainable at the time. It lasted about 1.5years and then fell apart, trust issues. I will call her "D"

It took a looooong time, and a few things that I've realized over 20 years, many relationships since, and now from a parents point of view on love. I was a miserable person for maybe 3 years, and it was not so much a gradual change, but a deliberate act, to get over it and rewire my brain away from it.

First and foremost, I had to realize that D wasn't "better" then anyone else, it's easy to put someone who is not there on a pedestal. It's easy to look back on a very good time in your life, and put all of your happiness on that girl, but there was a lot more good in my life then, and I tried to crystallize that whole time in life into D.

Then I had to realize that I had a dependency problem in relationships, I didn't have a relationship with myself beyond "that was stupid" "why didn't you XXX" etc running through my head. I wasn't what anyone was looking for in a significant other, I wasn't even what I was looking for in myself.

Then I had to reevaluate what the word love means. I realized that I'm not sure if D and I were in love. We "needed" each other, like a drug. We didn't make each other better humans, we just fed on each.

I met my wife when I was 26, we were not "in love". It started quietly, we dated casually for a few months, I honestly didn't get serious about it until there was a night where this smoking hot girl and I were on the beach. My wife and I weren't "steady" yet, and this hot 20 year old girl is resting her hand on the inside of my thigh and leaning in close... and I got up and left. I realized how much pain it would have caused my wife. Granted we were in an open relationship, but I knew it would still hurt her, and I had that realization that this was love. And I do, love my wife with all I have. Our love was forged over many years, not in the course of a few months, or xx number of dates. She became my family.

Now I have a 3 year old daughter who has again made me reevaluate what love is. The relationship between a daughter and her dad is something I cant begin to explain. But I can say that the depth of it makes every relationship I've ever had, seem a little insignificant.

D showed up a couple years ago (hadn't seen or spoken to her in over a decade) in my cafe. She seemed desperate to be someone important, and to have my approval. Honestly I didn't care. I didn't shave, change into better clothes, nothing. I sat and talked to her for about an hour and introduced my wife and daughter. We mostly talked about our old friends from that time. She wasnt the person that was in my head, and not only that, I wasn't attracted to the woman in front of me, she was obviously stuck in her 20s. That was the final nail in the coffin of obsession.

I dont know what I'm trying to say, but I hoped it helped. Also your 20s suck. I know The media and all that make out your 20s to be the best time, but honestly my 30s were amazing, and even though the economy and everything doesn't look great for my 40s, I am smarter, more shrewd, more patient and tolerant. Work on yourself, and the rest of the world can be yours.

Good luck man.

[–]Anon_Anon462[S] 1 point2 points  (2 children) | Copy Link

Hey man, sorry I didn't get back to you sooner- but I wanted to say thank you for your comment. I really appreciate that you took the time sharing your experience hoping to be there for some random on the net. I'd say that I'm currently at the point you were, with not being what someone would be looking for, but more importantly, not being what you want in & of yourself. It's reassuring to hear that this can be overcome, hopefully as I round out my 20s here I'll start off the next chapter of life stronger/better than ever.

Thanks again for your time, best regards to you & yours. 🍻

[–]Breadtrickery 1 point2 points  (0 children) | Copy Link

Cheers mate.

[–]No-Communication1490 1 point2 points  (0 children) | Copy Link

I don’t know exactly what you were dealing with, but here’s what I can say from my experience. Hopefully it’s helpful:

I was going to say toxic relationships are like an addiction too. For a lot of reasons. When you like something/someone that’s bad for you. Especially if you can’t help but staying with them, or thinking about them long after the breakup:

This is just like drug addiction. It’s normal and understandable behavior when you’re addicted to something unhealthy. Try your best not to beat yourself up when you catch yourself missing her. It’s totally normal.

But also try not to get lost in it. Instead, acknowledge that you miss her in the moment, remind yourself why you still miss her and that it doesn’t mean it’s because she was “the one”. Then try to let it go and do something else, distract with something healthy. Just do that anytime it comes up, and the thoughts will become less frequent, you won’t get lost ruminating for long periods of time, and you’ll have a more healthy perspective on it.

Good luck man, hang in there.

[–]runningpunk 1 point2 points  (2 children) | Copy Link

I feel you man. What are the parts of your past self you've lost connection with?

[–]Anon_Anon462[S] 0 points1 point  (1 child) | Copy Link

Confidence, identity. Having something I was passionate about, identified as, turn into a mockery. I.e I used to play music/in a band, I identified as "drummer". For the past few years, i struggle with the music I loved being a trigger for stupid shit I did in the past. Pretty jaded with some other things with a Nihilistic indifference.

I have clinical depression so I know that plays apart into all this doom & gloom. I acknowledge that I'm also a recovering alcoholic. I've been hitting the gym on weekends instead of the bars, which helps, however I cut ties with the people from the band/boozing days & don't really have friends irl/near by just to chill with.

Just a part of the ride I guess.

[–]ferahm 1 point2 points  (0 children) | Copy Link

I'm a lot younger but I feel the same way as you.

I had the best 4 months of my life with someone I thought would be my life partner. We both had similar hobbies, basically inseperable but she ended breaking up with me a day before Valentine's Day suddenly.

I've dated and hooked up with other girls since then but still the pain lingers. It's been 4 years since then.

[–]Xfanboi 1 point2 points  (0 children) | Copy Link

Stay strong G, I promise you’ll be able to work through it

[–]FrostieTheSnowman 1 point2 points  (0 children) | Copy Link

I feel you. My first girlfriend was the sweetest woman I've been with. No one kisses as well as her. No one makes me feel like a man as much as she did. I fucked that up, and while I try not to talk or think about it often, I regret what I did every time it comes up in my mind. I take small comfort in the fact that I was young and stupid, and that I knew no better. But she has no reason to believe that, and she moved on years ago.

I've been desperately hanging on to the hope that she's not the only one who could make me feel like that without hurting me as deeply as all the others. It's hard, because so far I haven't found anyone else like that. Part of me hopes that I haven't found another love because I still need to grow to be worthy of such a relationship. But that's life.

[–]EXandRR 0 points1 point  (0 children) | Copy Link

Me too man. Me too

You can kill a man, but you can't kill an idea.

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