the hardest thing i've ever done/to be so in love with you and so alone
August 23, 2007 9:44 AM Subscribe
I have an extremely complicated relationship with a person I consider the love of my life. We failed miserably at our most recent (and 4th) try at making it work, so we're trying to do post-break up things differently this time -- in hopes we can get closure FOR REAL. There are more details inside, but my questions are: Is talking/keeping in touch post-breakup the stupidest idea ever? How do you accept the fact that you're in-love and always will be, but that you can't be together? How do you accept the failures/incompatiblities and move on without thinking things like, "oh the circumstances sucked and we just didn't get a fair shot"? And perhaps most importantly, how do you work to remain close without secretly praying it will eventually work out? I'm posting this because I need advice from people who have experienced similar situations, but I would also love any suggestions on relatable books or films.
posted by bienbiensuper to Human Relations (41 answers total) 12 users marked this as a favorite
While we are appallingly incompatible in a few very big ways, both of us know without-a-doubt that we're still in-love with each other, have been since day-one (even during devastating circumstances), and have accepted that we always will be. We've dated four separate times over 4.5 years. In the time we've known each other, we've experienced the most intense love interactions I could ever imagine two people sharing (hours in bed staring at each other without speaking; pages and pages of love letters while apart; catching shivers of his smell and presence from yards away). But just like the love, we hurt each other on an equally intense level - hurt and pain that is (seemingly) insurmountable.
Reconnecting/Rehurting each other over and over is as painful as you can possibly imagine and just isn't an option anymore. So this time, we're trying the novel, post-breakup approach of staying in touch by talking once or twice a week (he just moved to another city, so it's mostly phone-talking) in hopes that we can keep perspective on things without pining and reminiscing separately, which in the past has only made us come back to each other. It's definitely not always sweet, calm conversations and there's a lot of past talk. We both get emotional and upset during some conversations (me more than him), but none of our interactions have ended on a terrible note by screaming or hanging up. Mostly, I feel really positive about these talks, even when I spend a lot of time crying.
Is it totally crazy to try this tactic of keeping in touch/talking it through post-breakup? It certainly seems weird, but we've tried all the other 'typical' post-breakup things in the past - not speaking or seeing each other at all for 4+ months (didn't work); being purposefully cruel to the other person so that they can just hate for a while in order to move on (didn't work); one of us moving to Europe for a year (didn't work); trying to date/connect with new people (didn't work). I could go on and on.
The plus side is that he is a very strong person, even when I'm most sad and weak (one of my favorite things about him), and he seems to have finally 100% convinced himself and accepted that we just can't make it work, despite the most intense love for each other. A big part of me wants to convince myself of the same - and sometimes I'm able to for a few days, but I still have a lot of what-ifs (we're both from realllllly effed up, unstable families and have zero clue how to manage a proper relationship - i'm convinced therapy would've helped), and I find myself regularly fantasizing about a future with him still. The strong, logical, 'move-on-with-your-life' side of me longs for REAL closure, however. And this same part of me wants to work to a point where I can see potential in new mates (something I haven't seen in ANYONE since I met him).
Any and all personal advice/anecdotes are appreciated! Book and film suggestions are definitely good, too.