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Relationships and Dating Ask here for advice on dates, break-ups and other relationship concerns.

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  (#1 (permalink)) Old
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Giant mess with long distance - May 9th 2020, 02:20 AM

So I am in the military and just got out of boot camp a month ago or so. When I left I had started seeing a guy and I left under the impression we were gonna be a couple as he was saying he was going to wait for me and stuff.

Now that I'm out of boot camp and can talk to him again outside of the letters he wrote, things were going great. He's treated me the best anyone has every treated me and he's my best friend and my gut instinct is that I can see myself with him for a long time.

But my other instinct knew something was going on with him and his roommate who was his ex. I questioned it and he told me the truth. I didn't feel anything for her outside of friendship but as her family basically adopted him, he didn't want to al things off completely for fear of losing her family.

And I told him that he's got to figure it out because I don't want to be a side thing. But I also don't want to leave him because of these gut feelings that he's perfect for me. But its hard knowing that he's not 100% mine. I want to give him time to get it figured out but idk its a shit show and I'm not sure how to feel or what to do.


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Re: Giant mess with long distance - May 10th 2020, 09:00 AM

Hello there!

Thank you so much for reaching out to us here on TeenHelp. To be honest, this story reminds me of a movie or book I read long ago somewhere with a very similar plot

You did the right thing by telling him that he has to start thinking about his priorities, because you should never be a side thing for anybody. And neither should you feel like you are "sharing" a partner with someone. Now, when you say that his ex's family adopted him, did they adopt him and raise him since he was a child? In which case, his ex shouldn't be a romantic partner, because she is technically his sister.

Regardless, I think that as much as they adopted him, he is an individual of his own thoughts and preferences. He has the autonomy to date or be with whoever he wants. As much as he does not want to lose her family, if he is no longer romantically interested in his roommate, he shouldn't feel that he has to be bound to her, because that wouldn't be fair to him or you.

I would say that the ball is now in your boyfriend's court - it is important that he evaluate his priorities. But you can guide him through the following train of thought as it would be a confusing time for him.

If he wants to be with you, he will have to articulate that to his ex's family, telling them that he will always be grateful for their shelter and care, but as things would have it, he has found love, and that it did not work out with their daughter (his ex). Sometimes we tend to assume things and worry more than we need to - for example, he might be thinking that his ex's family will be mad at him if he is no longer her boyfriend, but that need not be the case - they could turn out to be really understanding. It's important that he gets his voice and thoughts heard rather than bottle them up and live less happily than he'd have liked to. He doesn't have to cut off relations with them - if they have a parent-child relationship, it doesn't have to be hindered by this. If they truly think of him as family, I'm sure they'll understand.

Feel free to PM me if you have any more questions!
   
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Re: Giant mess with long distance - May 11th 2020, 06:56 PM

Hi Mikayla! Long distance is tough-that isn't just you. My partner and I were long distance for six years, including early on in his military career. But we've been together coming up on 12 years, so it is possible to negotiate and have a happy relationship.

Assuming good intentions of him and that he's not wanting to just string you on, it can be very difficult after a breakup to completely sever a relationship with his ex and/or the family. Relationships are complex and this was a support system for him, and I appreciate that you acknowledge that. Many folks stay in touch with their ex and their family; my mother and her ex-husband are on great terms, so much that I knew him as an uncle growing up. However, from what you've insinuated, there is a chance that the relationship with him and his ex is more than platonic.

I think what's really important is that you need to communicate clear boundaries and expectations with him. I know it sucks to have the conversation "establishing the label," but in this case, it may be crucial to establish what your relationship is and what you expect in it. Do you expect monogamy in your relationship? Do you have boundaries in his relationship with his ex and her family i.e can they remain just friends, or would that make you uncomfortable? There is often miscommunication on these early in a relationship with a couple having two different expectations of what the relationship is.

I hope everything works out, especially since so much of your relationship seems to be going well and be incredibly fulfilling and healthy! Let us know if you need more advice.


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Re: Giant mess with long distance - May 17th 2020, 02:10 AM

Its been a couple weeks and hes been sweet and nice and still planning the future with me. But his ex is still posting about him and has her statuses on social media as in a relationship with him. Her family didn't legally adopted him, just took him in over 5 years ago. But he says that he can't just snap his fingers and change things. That he's been in the process of breaking things off with her for over 2 years. But if its been 2 years who says it won't be another 2 years. And he just wants me to wait. Which I'm the dumbass who would because I'm head over heals for him. But this has just been really getting to me lately and I don't know how to move past it. The ball is in his court and I. Terrified he'll never take the shot


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Re: Giant mess with long distance - May 17th 2020, 07:53 AM

Hi Mikayla,

Thanks for updating us! Hmm, this is a tough situation. And I can imagine his dilemma.

Now, I think it would now depend on you. There are some people who'll be like, "Hey, can't he just get his act straight and dump her already?" While others might prefer to wait. There's no right or wrong - it's dependent on the kind of person you are. Personally you're really admirable to be so understanding of him and think of waiting for him. Sometimes we have to wait for the right timing, especially when it comes to relationships. And especially when we truly love someone, some sacrifice on our part is inevitable - it's just part and parcel of loving someone!

Perhaps the best thing you could do right now is to define some limits - for example, how long do you want to "wait" before bringing up the topic again? If you feel that even after 4-6 months things aren't changing between him and his ex, and that he doesn't seem to be putting an effort in getting things moving, then you might want to talk to him about this. Because no matter how patient you're being and how much you love him, you are a person too with your own emotions and hopes for the relationship.

I'm sure that if he is just as into your relationship as you are, he will do his part in sorting things out. It seems that the situation is quite tricky on his hand and he needs to make some very careful moves especially since it concerns his adoptive family. So no doubt he needs some time.

Let's wait and watch, and hope for the best! Since you really love him, don't let this deter you from staying by his side, so he knows that you are a shoulder for him to lean on, and guide him through all of this, and that you're worth fighting for

Take care, and feel free to DM me if you have any questions!
   
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Re: Giant mess with long distance - May 23rd 2020, 02:48 PM

Update except this one is about my stupidity. I went to my friends house where she lives with this guy as her roommate and had her boyfriend over as well and I got a little drunk and ended up making out with the roommate guy and now its the next day and I'm hating myself.

She was telling me how I shouldn't put my life on hold for him and how he said we couldn't be exclusive and how he was sleeping with his ex/current girlfriend while I was in boot camp (which is true) and how I should explore my options.

And for some reason she got into my head and now I feel terrible because I've never done anything like that in my life and I was thinking about C (my kinda man) the whole time and I just don't know what to do. Im hating myself so much and its overwhelming


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Re: Giant mess with long distance - May 23rd 2020, 08:20 PM

First of all, I hope you aren't too hard on yourself. You're certainly not the first person to make a drunken mistake and you won't be the last. Beating yourself up over it isn't really going to help. I have found, personally, that shame is not the best motivational tool. Too often it just turns us into berating ourselves over and over and that's not productive. My hope is that you can come to forgive yourself for what happened. You don't deserve to put yourself through hell for it.

Only you can decide if you agree with your friend. It may be a bit biased of me but I am inclined to agree with her, speaking from the outside. You've made very clear that you love this person, and I assume want exclusivity with them, yet they continually put you on hold. If you really love them and want to wait for them to sort things out with their ex that's fine; you have to make the choice that empowers you and makes you happiest. But I have found a truth in life, which is that people show you what they want with their actions, not their words. Again, may be being biased here, but I believe if your boyfriend wanted to be with you, truly, he would've made it happen by now. It seems he's just finding excuses to not make the full commitment.

I know this is a sucky situation, and I am sorry it is hurting you. I hope you find resolution soon one way or another. Please feel free to PM me if you need anything. Take care.



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Re: Giant mess with long distance - May 26th 2020, 01:41 PM

Hi Mikayla,

It's okay - don't beat yourself up for it. We're human and things just get the better of us sometimes. Plus, you weren't sober, so you couldn't help it.

The way I look at it, you boyfriend slept with his ex while you were at bootcamp... this is just my opinion, but I think that's a lot more unfair to you than you making out with that guy would be to him. Especially because you love your boyfriend so much and you're even waiting for him to get things resolved with his ex and her family.

So I'd suggest that you forget about what happened at your friend's place, and instead focus on clarifying things with your boyfriend.

One thing I've learnt from personal experience is that if a guy really wants you, he will do everything in his means to chase after you. In other words, if a guy is really interested in you, it will show clearly. If he's not making an effort, unfortunately, it is a reflection of how he really feels, no matter the kind of excuses he might come up with.

Your boyfriend had said he wanted time to resolve stuff, but like Jordan said, actions do speak louder than words. In my opinion, sleeping with his ex while he was writing letters to you while you were away at camp is NOT an indication of real love. So I think you might have to have a serious discussion with him about his priorities.

Take care, and do let us know about how things go!


   
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