We’ve all been there. It is too good to leave, but we knew we had to leave, but we couldn’t. Then it worked and we could see how it could work, then it didn’t work again, but it had promise. We tried to talk ourselves out of it then into it and each way seemed hard. Which pain did we want to endure? If we stay, we will hurt. If we leave, it will also hurt and there is no option where pain was avoided.
She told me the story, how much fun it was, larger than life and just pure enjoyment. He kept pushing her away and did not commit and she kept trying to convince him that he should commit. He could not seem to do it and could not seem honest about it consistently. He was intermittently monogamous.
“Other than the cheating and lying, it was perfect. Absolutely perfect,” she continued
“Do not let me go back.”
“Make me not go back. Talk me out of it if I am tempted.”
“This is not good for me. I must stay away. I would be insane to go back.”
“I’m going back. I cannot stay away. I know I could get hurt again and yet I must have unfinished business because the thought of staying away is excruciating.”
“I went back”
“It happened again. I knew it was going to happen. It really hurt. Why do I keep doing this? What am I supposed to learn from this?”
“I went back again.”
“This is so hard. I can’t stand it. I know this cannot be the person I need. I know it cannot work, but….” I can give a million reasons this will not work, but if it could…
“Okay, I am just going to stop resisting it. I will learn when I learn. I will have fun and shift my expectations and see if that helps. It is getting to be too much and I will back off.”
“I’m back again. It is so good when it is good. When it is bad, it is awful. I don’t want this long term, but this is so enjoyable short term. What would it take for me to give this up?”
The back and forth is so challenging and yet you can understand why someone would not want to give it up.
How do you make up your mind which way to go and then how to you stay firm in your decision? At what point do you choose either way and commit?
I know this is going to hurt in awful ways. I choose to stay with it as long as possible and go through it because living without this person is simply not an option. I feel like I am dying when we are apart. I love myself and have never felt this way before in my life. The thought of being without them is devastating.
I have to go. This is not healthy for me. I am a better person without them. I feel crazy when we go through this and it shows no sign of letting up.
What if the couple decided to slow it down. They are at a crossroads. There is no clearcut decision and clearly they love one another. There will be pain either way. There is not rush. Try to let it develop and not force it. Let is happen. Do the healing and manage the expectations and go from there. Slow it down even more and tune into what you truly need and want, your preferences. Realize that you will be okay whether or not you are together. It is not the end of the world. Let go of expectations for a little bit and let things settle down on their own.