Direct Answers - Low Standards
June 3, 2021
My boyfriend of nine years and his two kids moved miles away today. He left because I asked him to. But now that he is gone, I feel lonely and confused.
I want to live my life not having to explain to anyone what I do every minute of the day. I am getting what I asked for, yet I feel bad. I wonder if I’m scared because I worry about making it on my own financially.
I don’t want to answer to anyone anymore. I’m an adult. I shouldn’t have to ask to visit my friends. I shouldn’t have to ask to visit my family. But yet I think he is a nice guy because he is not physically abusive.
But he can’t be all that good because he is so controlling.
I love him and care for him, but I am not in love with him. Is there such a thing, for me to feel this way? When we are together, I don’t want to be affectionate in any way and have no desire. So I thought to let him go. But I hate seeing him in pain and knowing I am the one causing all his hurt.
I think that is why I feel so depressed right now.
He left in hopes to come back in a few weeks, but I don’t think I want that. I’ve felt this way for three years, and I am barely realizing that I can’t always be responsible for the way he feels. Not anymore. Please tell me what you think.
Taylor, a saltine cracker looks different to a starving woman than it does to a woman who is not starving
In the same way, people starving in relationships find odd things to be grateful for. You are grateful your boyfriend is not physically abusive, as if that is a positive aspect of his character. But when most people think of character, they think of things like honesty, loyalty, and compassion.
No statement in your letter shows a genuine connection to him. You’re tempted to call it love because you have to call the last nine years something, but the only thing you miss about him is the money.
If you feel trapped with him because of money, he’s not the answer. Money is. If you stay together, the wheel will come full circle and you will be back where you started—once again asking him to leave.
You ended a nine-year relationship. Of course there is some emotional residue. People are sad when relationships fail, even bad relationships. But now you have the chance for something new to begin.
Be the adult you say you are. Go to family and friends. In the next few weeks, enlist the help of people who care about you. Find a solution, because once the financial issue is solved, there will be no reason to look back.
People who are givers have a hard time saying no. When they are forced to say it, they feel bad. They think the pain of others is more important than their own pain.
What you feel is what givers feel, and like all givers, you have a hard time telling anyone what you need or want. Perhaps that’s how he captured you, but there is no reason to place his feelings above your own.
You did the first hard step. When you stand on your own two feet, your options will be vast. But for now you need the support of your family and friends. Don’t stay with him and make him feel better by making yourself feel worse.
He’s a saltine cracker. His only appeal is to a woman who is starving.
Wayne & Tamara
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