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LAgirl81 02-06-2008 07:17 PM

Trying to make sense of a shocking break-up...advice needed! (LONG! Sorry!)

I need some objective feedback and input as to my strange situation regarding my recent breakup with my boyfriend. It's a complicated, ugly situation so I will try to be as succinct as possible. I also know it's hard for you all to give some feedback as you don't know me, my ex, or the details, but I just to hear some more opinions.

My ex and I had been together for a year and a half before he moved to NY this past August for a medical residency, which was only supposed to be 14 months long. I was hesitant to embark on this long-distance relationship but my ex coaxed me into going along with it and feeling confident in our relationship and the future we had, I agreed to do it. Despite our relatively smooth relationship, we had a couple of bumps along the way. A couple of times I found topless pics of his exes on his computer and he made some lame excuse saying that they sent them to him without asking. Then things got bad and I almost broke up with him a year ago when I discovered text messages from an ex that was sexually flirtatious and he reciprocated-- basically they attempted to arrange and meet for sex and though they never did, I found the messages and flipped out on him. After his sobbing, begging, groveling, etc, my ex convinced me stay with him b/c it was one mistake (albeit a huge one) and according to him, it was impulsive drunk-talk that was never going to take place. I forgave him, took him back, and we worked on it and we didn't run into any trust issues after that. But overall in the year and a half before he left for NY, he never truly did anything else to my knowledge that crossed the line-- he always seemed sincere, loving, caring, affectionate, etc...all those great qualities you'd want in a partner.

The only other thing that was strange about our relationship was the sex. Towards the beginning of the relationship, everything seemed great chemistry-wise -- but not long after we became a couple, he seemed to less interested in initiating sex. He wouldn't even seem interested in making out as often as a young couple in their late 20s would! Frustrated, I would ask him repeatedly what was going on and that he made me feel undesired. He would always respond with a valid excuse-- he was in an intensive medical program, long hours in the hospital, his mom's ailing health was weighing on his mind, etc. Basically, he DID have a lot of crap going on in his life so I could see it would be conceivable that stress affected his libido. Looking back now, though, I see it as bizarre that he acted this way sexually with me since we only saw each other on weekends. After a long stressful week in grad school, I was always ready to jump his bones on friday nights, but some of the time he seemed quite reserved and we'd end up watching a movie and he'd fall asleep leaving me feeling frustrated and rejected. We're both attractive people so I felt it odd that a young man in his late 20s wouldn't be all over his girlfriend after not having seen her for 5 days.

So he leaves for NY and we do the long-distance thing and everything seems fine. The only thing we'd argue a lot about was our uncertain future-- it was possible that we couldn't live in the same city after his residency and I made it clear to him that I couldn't take more years of long-distance and that that would be the only reason to possibly break up. Despite our rough patches on the phone we'd always make up and agree we wanted to make things work with us.

Last month, he comes out to CA and we spend a great 3 weeks together since he had a month's vacation then. Two days after we say goodbye, I get a message from a girl asking me if i'm still seeing my boyfriend and she was confused because he'd insisted to her that he was single. Naturally the email crushed me and all those emotions you feel when you've been betrayed. I gave her my # so we talked, civily and calmy, about how we'd both been led along by this guy. She stated they got together SOON after he left me in CA and how he repeatedly stated that he was single or "on a break", though we NEVER decided that! She did admit that they were never official and he mentioned he still had feelings for me (hah! since we were still together) but he would say affectionate things to her and they had a semi-relationship, essentially. All the while, he was talking to me and keeping me as his long-distance girlfriend.

Ugh. The whole situation was disgusting and atrocious and of course when confronted, he denied everything and said this girl was a colleague who was psycho and who wanted to be with him. Then he finally admitted to their "friendship" and that he crossed the line (never has admitted to how long their relationship lasted, he adamantly denies that they got together so soon). I know he's full of sh*t and I dumped him of course, but I was so side-swepped by the whole thing. After almost 2 years together, he never exhibited anything in his character that would show that he could be so evil and malicious, which is FRIGHTENING! He always was so caring, affectionate, polite, well-mannered, etc. The other girl said he was like that with her too.

The reason I'm asking you all for your feedback is concerning this: obviously this guy is bad news and not worth any type of consideration, but since I consider myself a perceptive person, I can't believe I didn't see this coming. It scares me to think someone can appear one way and be so different inside. My brain is trying to rationalize and make sense of what happened. He hid and lied SO well, I'm worried that he may be a pathological liar.

BUT what is SO WEIRD about this is the following: when I talked to the girl, I told her sorry that he was just using her as a consistent booty call in NY while he was out there. But then she informed me of a SIMILAR libido problem he had with her!!! He would also rarely initiate sex with her and though he could definitely have sex, their relationsihp was NOT about the sex, which is what most affairs are about, esp if you're a young guy in your late 20s!

This part she revealed to me really surprised me. I thought maybe he was just a pathological liar who sought the thrill of a double life and was using this other girl for sex. I thought maybe he was a huge ******* and hid it so well for so long! But there's something more deeply wrong with this guy! I'm even now considering whether he has sexuality issues he's grappling with (bisexual or homosexual) and is in constant need of being around women to reaffirm his heterosexuality as to keep him distracted from perhaps what he truly wants (since he got together with her SO quickly). Another part that can go with that theory is last month I was using his computer and I saw in his search history "gay black men", like a search for support groups almost! For a split second I considered it but there were never any other signs to indicate he was questioning his sexuality-- but since this has all happened, anything's possible! Either way he has severe emotional and psychological issues BUT the scariest part of all this is that he seems like such a well-adjusted, stable, sweet, caring, genuine kind of man.

I'm sorry this post is SO long. there's so many parts to this story I had to get out. I swear I feel like I'm in some horrible TV movie! The guy is out of my life and I know he did an atrocious thing, but I suppose for myself, I need to be able to make sense of a nonsensical situation. But perhaps there is no way to explain what he did. he himself seems to believe his own lies, even though he's admitting more and more to me the more time passes. he has seemed apologetic and remorseful and seems devastated and claims he "crossed the line" with his colleague because he lost hope when I said I didn't want to do more long distance if we couldn't be in the same city. Perhaps he had an irrational fear of being alone?? We had many discussions of going on a break while he was in NY but he never wanted to! So as a logical woman, none of this makes any sense. I can "understand" how cheating happens with a random hookup but that's usually about sex!

I know it's hard to psychoanalyze someone you don't know, but in all the stories of cheating I've ever heard, this is the most bizarre! All my friends and family NEVER saw this coming-- everyone's jaw dropped when they found out. Sure, cheating with some hot woman in a bar is a possible occurance in a LDR, but carrying on a months-long relationship with a colleague and not have it be about sex?? SO ODD!

Any feedback? I'm so thankful I found out now rather than later but can I just chalk this up to severe emotional/psychological issues that NEVER came forth till recently? Sorry for this MUCH TOO LONG post! Thank you! :)

bender20 02-07-2008 02:05 AM

Re: Trying to make sense of a shocking break-up...advice needed! (LONG! Sorry!)
okay, i swear i responded to this but the message isn't showing up so i guess i'll just try to rehash what i said before. maybe it will be better worded this time. hopefully the other one won't show up randomly after i've posted this and make me look like a goon.

first off, it's probably not good to dwell so much on the hows and whys of this.. this guy sounds like such a mess that it's difficult to dissect any of it. i think his own honest revelations would be necessary for any kind of adequate analysis and uh... he sounds sorta dishonest.

i did think that maybe it was possible that he was in love with both of you, and just tried to see both, but the resulting guilt slaughtered his libido. that doesn't really seem in line with a lot of the other stuff you said, though, and it's probably just the niceset explanation you could offer for someone who's probably just a psychotic sleazebag.

i'm not sure homosexuality makes sense, either, to be honest. you said you guys had a healthy sex life initially, right? just seems weird. also, i myself might have even searched for the words "gay black men" at one point in my life, and i'm definitely a straight white singular woman. so i dont know... it seems possible though.

i think you're right about how scary this is, though. it is deeply unsettling to think of someone being so compassionate and loving on one side, but so slimy and deceptive on the other. it's like you can't have a safe relationship with someone unless you've known them your whole life or something. it makes me really cherish the idea of the boy next door. of course, even that's no promise. very, very scary.

truly disturbing stuff. sorry you had to go through it. :(

LAgirl81 02-07-2008 02:26 AM

Re: Trying to make sense of a shocking break-up...advice needed! (LONG! Sorry!)
hi bender!

thanks for replying to my message. :) yeah this story sounds like some awful soap opera, doesn't it? you're definitely right in that there's no point in dwelling on the how or why of the situation since it's such a shocking, horrible experience. but i suppose i am trying to figure out how i could've been such a poor judge of character since i'm a pretty level-headed person and i don't put up with crap from men. so i guess it just shows the extent of his psych problems and how well he hid them from me for almost 2 years! THAT is the scariest part of it all-- i feel like you can never truly know someone. although i know that my ex is probably a rarety (i hope!!!) and that he is the exception to the norm.

the only reason i think it could be a repressed sexuality urge is because he is the only child in a single-parent home and his mom is a VERY conservative, christian woman who has voiced her disapproval of homosexuals. his friends, too, have exhibited homophobic tendencies in their comments, etc. so he grew up in this kind of antipathy for homosexuals. also, he's a black american so there's all kinds of expectations and norms and that's why his google search of "gay black men" seems to contribute to this possible explanation and disinterest in sex with me. and also, if he started dating another girl right away, it could possibly explain that he is in constant need of female attention/approval to reaffirm his heterosexuality. this is all speculation, of course, but considering how he does NOT seem like a malicious, spiteful man, it makes more sense than him being a straight pathological liar who wants to maintain 2 relationships simultaneously but not have the relationship with the other woman be about sex. hmmm.

in any case, i guess i'd be more "sympathetic" (as much as i could be by someone who betrayed me in the most horrible way) if it came out later that he truly was gay and had been suppressing those urges by constantly being with women. ugh i just can't believe this happened and everyone of my friends and family who met him and saw us cannot believe that it happened. we're all pretty smart, rational, perceptive people and nobody saw this coming! wow people and their issues, huh? i guess the only positive thing to take from this is that it's better i found out now about his emotional/psych issues rather than later, since he was very, VERY good at hiding his issues.

thanks for your feedback! :)

bender20 02-07-2008 02:38 AM

Re: Trying to make sense of a shocking break-up...advice needed! (LONG! Sorry!)
the homosexuality theory does seem pretty sound, now that you explain more. and, yes, although it would still be heinous, at least you could understand him then as somebody who had some severe struggles with perfeclty normal issues instead of some sort of icy demented sociopath.

i really feel you on your comments concerning how some people can slip beneath the radar of those with usually keen acumen and character insight. i've always considered myself of pretty astute judgment and sometimes i feel the same way about my current bf, even though other times i feel convinced that he's genuine - so i'm not sure which parts of my gut to follow, ha.

either way, really glad you jettisoned the guy and are moving on with your life. and thanks for some very levelheaded and valuable advice towards my first post... it kind of reiterated things i already thought but probably needed to hear from someone else!

take care

LAgirl81 02-07-2008 02:44 AM

Re: Trying to make sense of a shocking break-up...advice needed! (LONG! Sorry!)
no thank YOU! your words and objectivity have really helped me. :) i know it's hard to get over a relationship but knowing that his problems are really beyond my control make it easier to deal with. hmm are there any good guys out there? haha!

regarding your gut, i know what you mean about being conflicted. it's SO hard to think rationally when you're so emotionally ensconsed in the situation. but you must listen to your own objections to your situation and realize that there was a reason for you to come here and ask for advice--- perhaps this public, anonymous validation is necessary for you to make the appropriate next step for your relationship? whether you work things and stay the course or whether you decide it's not for you and end things. i know it's a tough spot to be in! best of luck to you, i hope it all turns out well for you whatever you decide :)

Seraph 02-07-2008 03:23 AM

Re: Trying to make sense of a shocking break-up...advice needed! (LONG! Sorry!)
I really resonated to this story, because my son is going through a similar revelation. He got sick, and this affected his speech and balance. Within a couple of weeks, his wife of seven years announced that either he left or she would, taking their 3 children. She totally does not want to hear anything about his condition or feelings, she has now met somebody else (total elapsed time: 10 weeks) and is now moving in with him. The point is that until this happened, they had a really happy loving marriage, not much friction, just the usual money and energy problems. I get that some people cannot handle illness, etc, but she is now saying that she has been unhappy for years. This goes so much against his memory of their time together, that he has almost gone crazy trying to make sense of it. I get that in your post, too. It was as if a switch was turned and a stranger appeared in place of his wife. I feel for you because you really cannot tell everything about some people, and when you run up against one of these, your own reality seems to be on the line. At bottom, though, there is probably no answer, no reason, and that is another awful thing - knowing that whatever you do, IT MAKES NO DIFFERENCE. Friends are really important now. in my son's case, he is gradually being reassured that he hasn't turned into the demented headcase that she almost convinced him that he was. Talk it out with anyone who will listen, and you will gradually get back your centre of self. Sera

LAgirl81 02-07-2008 12:55 PM

Re: Trying to make sense of a shocking break-up...advice needed! (LONG! Sorry!)
Hi Seraph,

Thanks for your response! Yes luckily for me, i have a great support system of wonderful friends and family so cutting this guy loose is not too hard. The hardest part to acknowledge is that I never saw this coming in him. So yeah, wow I truly feel for you and your son...that is a most despicable thing! Not only does he have his health to worry about, he has the mental and emotional stress of going through a separation from his wife. But honestly this woman is something else-- it's obvious she can't handle the stress of his illness but to turn that around and make up some story of her being unhappy for years? If that were the case, why didn't she let your son know before his illness? I guess people's true colors come out through some kind of a crisis-- very, very selfish and self-centered. I hope your son gets through this ok! I'm sure good karma will work its way back to him. It's sad that there are kids involved in this, though-- ugh what a mess! :(

So I do know what your son is going through, to some degree. I'm just so thankful this happened now with my ex before things got more serious with scary! It's hard to believe there are some people out there who can repress or hide who they truly are for YEARS. Obviously your son's wife and my ex are in dire need of psych help and have severe emotional issues. Ugh. I hope your son's health improves! Good things will come our way after having gone through such crap. Take care!

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