He Left Me after 7 Years and Married Another Immediately

Visitor's Question from a 31-40 year old Female
We are not teenagers but both middle-aged but it seems to hurt more then. We were together for 7 years and shared some really good times and talked about everything except our real feelings (he always said he could not talk,I was scared to) I had problems that he would not divorce his wife (they had been separated before we met and lived apart) and I could just not bring the subject up; I felt that he would do it if he really wanted to. We had so many plans to spend the rest of our lives together etc and then he casually told me that he had met someone else and expected it to be all right by me. I was devastated and told him to go away which he did and a few months later married his new woman after divorcing quickly which really hurt again.

We did not have closure; we live in a small town and though I try to keep away from where I know he goes, I have met him in passing once or twice (we have been apart now for 18 months) and did not handle it well at all. I know I should act casually and pretend I am fine, but inside I am still so cut up, guilty and angry and sad all at once.

Sometimes I think I have not moved on at all. Intellectually, I know I am attractive, witty and usually fun to be with but my confidence is still very low.

How on earth do I move forward? Everything reminds me of what I have lost. Friends cannot understand what went wrong between us and many are sympathetic but I still feel so guilty and to blame. I wish he would move far away and allow me to get on with my life. Or at least I wish I could come to terms with all this and grow up.

RomanceClass.com Advice
You have every reason to be hurt and upset! It actually hurts much more if you're middle aged. First, you were together for 7 years, when most young love lasts only a few months. Next, young love *expects* to break up most of the time - that's what everone around you is doing, dating and breaking up. It's part of the trial-and-error system. But when you're older, you are putting in a serious amount of work to make things last because you are thinking long term, thinking about vacations and house plans and retirements.

It's bad enough he wouldn't talk, but many couples have trouble talking so that in itself isn't a stoning offense. The fact that he could *fall in love* with someone else without even telling you there was any problem at all in your relationship, the fact that he could just abandon you casually after 7 years of being together, and the fact that he could think that his 'new love rush' was in any way comprable to the mature love you guys had worked on, all indicate pretty strongly that this guy has some serious problems in the relationship department. Everybody knows that love is powerful when it just starts! How could he marry this other woman in the few months without even bothering to see if SHE was as good as you in the long term? Leaping into a commitment is always bad and a sign of not thinking things through. Breaking up with someone in such a callous way is even worse! So just about every step of what he did speaks about how ill suited he was to really holding up his end of a relationship.

If I had to be stuck in a small town with this guy for the rest of my life I would be very upset too. I suppose one consolation is that give his inability to talk about issues and be loyal and sensitive to his partner, the chances are that he'll cheat on his wife soon and they'll break up. But waiting years for that to happen is hardly productive.

I would find a therapist to talk with and help yourself really understand that he was a jerk and undeserving of you, and he didn't "win" in all of this. If anything he's now in a relationship that he jumped into without really thinking and probably heading towards misery, and heading towards more cheating. So it's actually very good that you are clear of that guy. You deserve someone who is honest, who you can trust, and who doesn't play those sorts of games with you. You had to be with a guy that had that spectre of an unresolved marriage hanging over his head the entire time - now you deserve a guy who is free and clear, who really likes you and is focussed on you 100%.

Talk with a therapist, realize how wonderful you are, what a jerk he was, and get out and have fun. Take care of yourself and enjoy your favorite hobbies. If you're just in an apartment I might even recommend moving to the next town - not far, but enough for a change of scenery. Move to be close to something you really love - a park to walk around, a ceramics studio to take lessons at, a horse farm to go riding at. Really have some fun in your life, and you'll be impressed with how wonderful life can be without that guy.

-- from Jenn
One of Your Friendly Advisors at RomanceClass.com

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