I broke up with a boy recently - broke his heart, to be precise. Badly, unfairly, selfishly. For reasons that, while I recognize as illogical to outside parties, are entirely unavoidable for me. I wouldn't change my decision. I won't reveal all details. But he attempted suicide over this, and I've been feeling nonstop nausea thinking about this situation. I can't stop blaming myself for driving someone to this degree of... brokenness.
posted by anonymous to Human Relations (54 answers total) 8 users marked this as a favorite
We were together for nearly a year, and I've known him for several. Mostly long distance, but we managed to spend a lot of time together, face-to-face. Weeks upon weeks, over the course of our relationship. Originally I wanted to take things one step at a time, just going day-to-day without making huge plans for our futures. Over time, that failed - we grew closer together and formed grandiose visions of what our lives would end up being, how entwined the branches would grow. We made promises, swore we were each others' whole world, and never took a step back, never tried to gain perspective.
I was happy. Truly, honestly happy. And that's why in part, doing this made no sense to him. It didn't click that recently, whether consciously or unconsciously, I took that step back and became scared of what I saw. It would make no sense if you're still running, looking forward. I didn't want to be the center of someone's universe anymore, I didn't want promises weighing me down. I don't know why this is part of the explanation - I don't want to be justifying anything. I'm not a victim here, as he told me.
But his suicide attempt was extremely real. He's in therapy now, in a "crazy house" as he described it. He had no family and no close friends other than me, which made the break all the more unbearable, and makes me feel all the more guilty for ruining his life after building it up so high. He gave me a call to explain where he now is, but also mentioned that he still sees no reason to live, and may very well make future attempts again. I'm devastated, physically sick, and I ask him to be careful, to take care of himself - he asks me dismissively, "Just so you don't have a suicide on your conscience, right?" And I think, he's right, what a selfish reason...
This post needs to go somewhere. I'm sorry. I have a small group of people close to me that I've been talking to about this, to keep my head above water, but every time I do I just think about him being alone right now and I want to break down. I can't take him back; I'm in no position to start a relationship again, especially with someone who requires that much attentive care at this moment. And that makes me feel guilty too.
How do I deal with this? How do I not have this weigh on my conscience if I receive terrible news in the future of him accomplishing something stupid? After all, I praised him - I called him my everything - and then I took it away "just" because I was scared of that pressure. Is that even excusable..? I'm worried about getting close to other people now, in the case that they become similarly attached and then so horribly devastated if we part.
My mind is a mess, and parts of me keep repeating almost as a mantra, "This is nothing compared to what he's going through. You have no right to complain." And yet... this is driving me insane. Any words of advice, anything, would be highly appreciated.