This is a long story, so please be patient as I try to explain everything.
I was in a long-term, long-distance relationship. Early June made four years, but at the end of June we decided to “take a break.”
He lives in Canada (let’s call him John) and I’m in the United States (I’ll call myself Jeff). About a year ago we had a discussion and decided that he would try to find a job and move to be with me in the U.S. This was at about the three-year mark of the relationship and I remember saying at the time, both to myself and to John, that I didn’t have another year left in me. The long-distance was getting to me — the driving, the not being together, the only seeing each other for a day or two — everything about it. And it only became worse over the course of the last year.
Luckily, the two cities that we live in are close enough to each other so that we only had a 5–6 hour drive to see each other. I know 5–6 hours seems like a lot to some, but for a long-distance relationship it’s not too bad. We used to see each other every couple of weeks but a little less than year ago we had to change that. We were still seeing each other at regular intervals but there was more time in between each visit.
At first, things didn’t go anywhere in terms of the job hunting. He didn’t seem like he was putting a lot of effort into looking for a job and it started to bother me. We had a conversation about it and I told him that I had started to lose hope for the relationship and lose some feelings for him because it didn’t seem like the relationship was going to work out if he wasn’t able to move and be there with me. (We also originally discussed me moving there to be with him, but it wasn’t a good option for both of us at the time. Also, marriage wasn’t an option to allow him to move to be with me because of several reasons.) After the conversation he put A LOT of effort into finding a job and he got some interviews, but nothing worked out. After that conversation I could feel myself growing more and more distant, and I’m sure he did too.
Several months ago I began chatting with someone new online. I frequently chat with people as I don’t have many friends or a large social circle, so it’s a way for me to connect with new people, even if only for a while. I never hid these chat sessions from my boyfriend either; it’s something that he knew of since the first day of the relationship. This new guy (let’s call him James) also lives in Canada but probably about 2–3 hours further away than John does. I felt such a strong connection to James, and still do. I have never felt such an intense connection to someone, either in-person or online. At first it was only friendly conversation but eventually James and I started developing feelings for each other. We realized that even though it would hurt, we had to cut back on chatting because I was already in a relationship. So we decided to just be friends and stop acting like boyfriends. However, because I was already losing feelings for John, and felt such a connection to James, my feelings for James only made me feel more distant from John.
I felt trapped. I didn’t want to end my relationship because there was still some (small) hope that he would move to be with me and I wanted to hold on to that hope, but at the same time I knew that I had lost feelings for John. The other side of feeling trapped was that I had strong feelings for James but that it would be another long-distance relationship with so many other unknowns as well. I eventually confessed to John that I was losing even more hope of the relationship and about my feelings for someone else. I didn’t think it was fair for me to tell John how strong my feelings were for James or where James lived, so I kept those things to myself.
I began to feel depressed. Some days I would wake up crying. Some days I would cry just before falling asleep. Some days I would want to (or did) cry during the day. Most days it was a combination of all three crying sessions. After I began feeling this way I went back to seeing my therapist who I had seen several years earlier (for issues with my previous relationship). I was crying so much and feeling so down that I started to feel like I was going insane. Many nights while crying before bed I just wished that I wouldn’t wake up the next day. That way I wouldn’t have to deal with any of the hurt anymore — of not knowing about what to do with either relationship; the trapped feeling.
As I wrote, at the end of June John and I talked and decided to “take a break” from the relationship. It was a painful conversation but it was clear that it was what needed to be done because I needed some time alone (not in the relationship) to figure things out. The relationship was the biggest source of stress for me and so I needed to be out of it in order to think clearly.
I have to admit that the sadness that I initially felt from the break was only about how I hurt John and not about how I missed him or any of the normal feeling one would expect someone to have. Even now as I write this, knowing that I hurt John is was causes most of the sadness that I feel from the break. The other part of what I feel is that I’ve been trying to connect with James but he is being distant. He has a lot going on in his life right now so it could be that I’m reading too much into his responses to me, but I do feel like he’s being somewhat cold. I was actually feeling good and not crying for about a week and feeling like I was overcoming my depression. Part of the good feeling was coming from me thinking about connecting with James again. But now yesterday and today with me thinking that he’s pushing me away has reawakened those crying sessions.
I feel so incredibly down now. I feel like the person that I have feelings for is pushing me away and it will never work out. I feel like the person that still has feelings for me (John), I’ve done nothing but hurt. I feel so alone because of these two things and because I don’t have many friends that I can turn to to talk about everything. I am a person that has a good job and is financially secure with everything; I have all of the things that someone would like to have but yet I feel like I have so little.
And that brings me to the tired of life part. I’m tired of crying. I’m tired of wanting something that I probably will never have. I’m tired of knowing that I’m hurting someone. I’m tired of feeling alone. I’m tired of thinking that I have so much, but don’t have the one thing that I really want — a loving man that lives in the same city as I do. The past couple of days have been filled with a lot of crying and have just made those feeling of not wanting to wake up even stronger. I’ve been thinking a lot today of wanting to die. I haven’t thought of actually hurting myself, but rather it’s just a feeling of not wanting to deal with everything anymore.
Searching the internet brought me to this site and so I decided to try to write about all that I’ve been feeling. I was wondering about others that may have been through some similar situations or feelings — do you have any advice or coping mechanisms?