Aunt Madelaine’s Answers To Everything
I’m in a bit of conundrum.
All my life, whatever I remember of it, I’ve seen myself shifting from one relationship to another, always settling, trying to find myself through the validating eyes of a partner. These relationships never worked out for me, of course. We weren’t the right fit, or it was either me who was too good for all of them. Fast forward to a time today, I’ve settled with someone in my life once again. Our families know. We know. He knows. I know. It’s pretty stable than the rest of the stuff I had involved myself with before. Maybe it’s something about me that’s just naturally evolved to this point in time now. Maybe I’m a better person. Maybe I’ve learnt from my own mistakes from a long time back and become good. Better. Better than what I was previously. Better enough to settle now with someone, with a little less problems that I’d bring to my relationships in the past.
One of the best qualities about me is that I own up to a unique kind of flexibility in my character. I own up to change. I own up to growing up, loving myself, finding myself, discovering a unique plethora of possibilities in my own hand-built future. But what I believe now is that, (something’s that taken me too long to realize) you can’t expect the same kind of understanding and bent-ness from people that you demand in and from your own self. Not everyone’s here to stay on the ground rules you try to set for your own self. I think I’ve settled too soon. I think my partner does not understand my need to connect with my own self first and foremost, before him. I want to be a free bird. But I don’t want to leave my mate either. I want him to know what it is that I go through. Unfortunately, he does not have the emotional capacity to understand what it is that he can possibly do, to keep me. He tests me with his need for more, his clingy behavior, his unconfidence, and his insecurities. It doesn’t stop. And I feel helpless. And, I don’t want anything to do with it anymore except for catering to my own needs before anything else. And, I am tired of teaching everyone else over and above my own self.
Please help me out.
I’m in awe of your ability to self reflect so accurately. It’s great you accept your previous behaviours and preferences, rather than try and hide behind what you would prefer to be. It sounds very much to me like this guy is annoying you, and pushing you to the limit. While you are pleased with the longevity of your relationship, and take that as a positive, it appears that maybe this relationship has worn out.
And that’s okay. Don’t see that as failure. In my own family and friend group, I know couples who were together twenty, thirty years and decided they were no longer happy together. Sometimes the greatest strength isn’t staying where you are, but having the faith and bravery to step into the unknown. If he is really frustrating you- it appears he is- you might have outgrown him. No one is the same person they were years ago, we all bend with the changes in our lives and hearts. No one is to blame: sometimes we grow apart. Are you still friends with people you liked at kindergarten? No, and not because they are bad people: we just grow up and change. It can be scary moving on but sometimes it can be such a breath of fresh air that it lifts us to new heights.
Feeling helpless isn’t good; you need to be proactive. Ask for a break- maybe a few weeks or so- to sort out your head and work out what you really want. Is it someone new? Maybe you know who that is? Or maybe you just need some time to explore your sexuality and identity. You, like me, sound like someone who had to grow up faster than they would have liked- it might simply be time to explore that side of you. Calmly explain to him that you are really having problems and while you like the stability and safety of your relationship, there are aspects you would like to reflect on alone. Even if you decide to go back to him, it can be very therapeutic to have had that space. Space doesn’t mean sleeping with another person: just having the freedom to think for ‘you’ and not as a ‘couple’.
I really wish you all the best. But if you ask me, honestly: I think the relationship has run its course and there is very little anyone can do to rekindle those feelings of love.
Hugs and kisses,