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Recent Letter to the ElderWisdomCircle™

Letter #: 389774
Category: Dating/Relationship

Original Letter

Hi, I met my ex the day after the funeral of my best friend of 12 years. We moved in together after a little more than a year because I had nowhere else to go at the time. We had split and gotten back together twice before we moved in together. We were making a go of our relationship, things weren't perfect by any means, but they weren't as horrible as they are now. We moved a bunch of times because he is very impulsive, and always thinks bigger and more expensive is better. In February of 2015, we had just moved into a townhouse, and he left....and left me with absolutely nothing - not a couch to sit on or a bed to sleep in. I managed to get into my own place and was living on my own but still in regular contact with him. 

We ended up back together off and on and finally in Feb of this year, we were back together which both of us had said was the last time we were doing this. It always ended up him needing some space away from me doing his own thing and then he would end up missing me and start talking to me again. I moved back in with him under the understanding that he would not be able to just kick me out - well he did. I, plus other people that know him think that he is scared of his feelings for me because he's never felt this way about anybody before - and he always runs away and then comes back. 

This time feels much more permanent, but even with as much crap as this guy has put me through, I've never felt this way about anyone either, and I truly believe that we belong together. I just need some guidance on how to get him to open his heart and mind to me and to get him to understand that I love him with all his flaws and faults as well as the good qualities he has. I see a great potential (even when others cannot) in who he could be and who he and I could be if we are together.

Elder Response

Yes, Katie, you're right. THIS is a MESSED up situation!  Good news, though, is that you are in control of how to change this. You can change how you react to his messed up behavior by not allowing him to treat you as he does.   I think you first have to ask yourself WHY you have tolerated this behavior for so long.  I understand that you see a great potential in him and you love him flaws, faults and all, but how long will you wait for him to show you how much he loves you?  His behavior, when it comes to your relationship, does not scream love!  Perhaps it's because, as your friends say, he is scared of his feelings for you because he never felt this way about anybody before.  IF that's true, shouldn't he be celebrating your love rather than pushing you away?  I get that sometimes people don't understand their feelings and they run, but can you be sure this is what's going on with your ex? If he's running from you because he's afraid,does that mean he just doesn't care about you anymore?  How does he justify leaving you with nothing and nowhere to go?

Frankly Katie, I'm having a difficult time understanding why you want him back.  Sometimes doors are closed for us when we can't bring ourselves to close them.  I understand that you love him and feel that the two of you belong together, but it seems he is broken and needs professional help to understand why he does the things he does.  You should encourage him ( or INSIST) that he gets help before you will allow him back into your life.Make him understand that you will not tolerate his emotionally abusive behavior any longer. There has been no physical abuse, right?  I hope you're not afraid that this may happen in the future if you say no to reconnecting with him.There's no way you deserve to be treated this way.  Perhaps you will consider joining him in therapy so you can share your feelings about your long-term on again, off again relationship.  You can be there to support him in his quest to understand his behavior. You may also learn some things about yourself in the process. That's always a good thing when we get a better understanding of ourselves through counseling/therapy. It can be life-changing.

Please keep in mind you want a loving long-term relationship with your ex. This will be difficult if you also want to be his therapist to "FIX" him. Not sure how that would work out. You can't fix him.  I hope I've given you some positive thoughts to consider,Katie.  Good luck to you.

Best Regards,



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