Thanks very much for your thoughtful reply. You're right, long distance relationships are hard. Some of the things I can't shake: when we were able to be together, she treated me soooo well. We were on-again-off-again for 5 years. Within the first couple years, there were 3 instances where I felt it in my gut, in my soul to propose but my anxiety (Generalized Anxiety Disorder) and rumination ocd (have been diagnosed with both), got in the way. Plus, now at age 56 never married and not lots of close intimate romantic experience, my relationship level/growth was stunted.
I think, in your response, you were referring to pheromones. She is of a different ethnicity, something new for me and I do think our pheromones were different. But what I'm learning is what's really important in a relationship and it's: essence-to-essence... do you have the same values, core beliefs, some common interests. I let "little things" get in the way too much. I was too critical (rumination ocd) and shallow.
You are also right that it does take 2 to make things work. We both admit that we made mistakes but mine were more impactful: I should have treated her as much more of a priority and I did not know how to best communicate. So, quite candidly, though at one point she loved me very much, objectively speaking I can't blame her for leaving.
I used to be married to the job, then took my foot off the gas pedal to focus or try to balance with the relationship - went on medication, into therapy, and went into 24/7 rumination about
the relationship. It affected my job performance... I was not fired though some colleagues, in writing, complained to the boss... the letters were very hurtful and I negotiated an exit with the company (i.e. I could no longer work with such people). So now, I have no relationship and no job (though did get a good severance package). I used to be passionate about
my job/field - now not only am I depressed about
the field, I don't have any interests in my former interests. Why? In significant part because if I were do to them I would go to them and back from them alone. I used to covet my alone time, but I don't anymore. I now firmly believe life is best shared with a significant other. My ex gf knew my whole family. Since, my father has passed, 2 aunts, 1 first cousin. Anyone I may meet now will not know any of those people and family is huge to me. I'm not saying that is a reason to marry someone, but I just feel I really blew it. I had emotional stunted development which I am very ashamed of at my age.
Thanks for sharing the link on self-compassion. I don't feel I deserve it because I hurt her/emotionally. I know one cannot go back in time and turn the clock back etc... but to be honest, I don't feel I deserve self-compassion, happiness, joy, or to be loved by another woman (ever).
I don't feel strong. I feel weak, lazy, unproductive, immature, irresponsible. I am in therapy and have been for years, especially since the relationship. I applied to enter a treatment program for the issues/disorders I have - I'll find out Tuesday if I'm accepted - though part of me feels, I'm just running to another place for more talk therapy.
The irony? She teaches yoga (part-time) including mindfulness, meditation etc... Just what the doctor and God ordered for me, and what did I do? Stay on the dock and just watch the ship sail on by - how Stupid is that?
Again, thank you for taking time to reply. If you have any other words of wisdom.... I'm all ears.
With deep appreciation,
Post Edited (Brian56) : 2/3/2019 11:44:09 AM (GMT-7)