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Karin Samms
Karin Samms, Counselor
Category: Relationship
Satisfied Customers: 299
Experience:  with over 15 years experience offering support with relationship, mental health & addiction issues
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Hi there, Ive been seeing a guy who I met on the internet.

Customer Question

Hi there,
I've been seeing a guy who I met on the internet. We've got really close very quickly.

His wife died of breast cancer approximately 14 months ago and they had been together for 22 years. After his wife's death he did have a physical relationship with a friend and regretted doing so....That's when he decided he wanted to start dating again! I'm the first person he has been romantically involved with and when our relationship started to get physical the more flashbacks he has had to his time with his late wife. He said these flash backs were 'derailing' him and taking him back to memories he doesn't want to dwell in any more. He says he doesn't know if I am accidentally triggering this stuff or any woman he chose to see this way would remind him of his late wife. Although he says I'm not physically like his late wife, I remind him of her in lots of good ways such as warmth, friendly, easy going, great company (desirable, too).

He said to me he would like to put a hold on seeing each other romantically and be friends. He goes on to say he would hate not to see me ever again just because he's a bit screwed up. He's left it to me to have a think about and see how I feel.

But in the mean time he has resumed internet dating which blows me away which I don't understand as I would have thought he needed more time before he moved on. He has made it clear he doesn't want to be alone.....so I don't know if he is testing the waters to see if he has the same reaction with others???

I'm having a hard time understanding what's going on with him!
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Relationship
Expert:  Karin Samms replied 1 year ago.
Hi there, welcome to Just Answer. I will try and help you with your question.

I'm sorry that he has reacted in this way and has decided to continue with the online dating. Has he given any reason for this decision? It doesn't come across as very sincere, particularly if he wants to be with you? It may well be as you said, that he's trying to understand if he has a similar response from interacting with other women. One could argue that it is only normal to try and want to understand his feelings and why these thoughts of his late wife still flood him like this. I believe it is normal for him to be experiencing this level of memory, it was not really that long ago that he lost her and he hasn't been with anyone - at that level of intimacy to date (until he began seeing you), and now he seems as though he's lost his nerve and perhaps his confidence to 'be' with someone else.

He's also left this with you, which again, says he doesn't and cannot make a decision about this. The compliments he has given you seem genuine and honest but you may well need to ask why the sudden continuance of online dating?
You could express to him that this has confused you and his feelings for you. You need to work out whether he wants an exclusive relationship or whether he simply is, as mentioned earlier, testing his emotions and reactions out through engaging with other people online.

Another way I invite you to look at this is that because you do remind him of his late wife (all those wonderful traits), he cannot seem to manage the flashbacks as easily. He would need to start to let go of his late wife and the only way to do this is through talking - either with a professional who is specialised in bereavement counselling or perhaps go and speak with a GP who could suggest their in house counselor. This is by no means your doing, these are triggers and flashbacks that he will eventually need to deal with and begin to let go and move on. He sounds very lost and confused about his own actions at present and may need some guidance through professional channels.

Here are a couple of links that might help (if you were to talk to him about this and perhaps for your own understanding too):

(Website with a register of counsellors who will have training in bereavement issues locally to him):
BACP: http://www.itsgoodtotalk.org.uk/therapists/

(Bereavement support services website, providing support all over UK):
CRUSE: http://www.crusebereavementcare.org.uk/AboutGrief.html

I hope this is helping, please do come back to me for further assistance and support if you need it, I'd rather support you as much as possible and receive a positive rating and I'd be more than happy to continue supporting you until you feel satisfied.
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Kindest Regards, Karin
Karin Samms, Counselor
Category: Relationship
Satisfied Customers: 299
Experience: with over 15 years experience offering support with relationship, mental health & addiction issues
Karin Samms and other Relationship Specialists are ready to help you
Expert:  Karin Samms replied 1 year ago.
Thank you for rating my service, it is very appreciated.

Please do let me know if I can be of further help in the future. If you have new questions and would like to return to me, please open a new page and ask your question, please be sure you add "For Karin" at the start of your question and I will do my very best to help and support you.

Best of luck to you,
Karin :)

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