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Dr. Mark
Dr. Mark, Psychotherapist
Category: Relationship
Satisfied Customers: 5096
Experience:  Dr. Mark is a PhD in psychology helping with relationships
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my 7 year relationship just ended. we did have plans to marry

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my 7 year relationship just ended. we did have plans to marry next year, he called my house his home. but lived with his parents while he raised his kids, spent more time with me lately but blames me for everything that seems to go wrong, or that he has any guilt for. his kids are now adults.. but he tried to run my houshold and kids, but his kids were not brought to my home much.. ect.. but we broke up 3 days ago.. and i was slightly supprised that he has not contacted me at all... kinda makes me feel like i never mattered
Submitted: 11 months ago.
Category: Relationship
Expert:  Dr. Mark replied 11 months ago.

Hi! I'll be glad to be of help with this issue.

I can imagine how difficult this situation must be for you. You are experiencing what many people experience when they've left a relationship that was more of a "one way" relationship. That refers to the situation where the other person tended toward being self referencing, expecting things to fit his needs and not expecting things to be more an equal give and take. You, then, tended toward pushing aside your emotional needs and your needs to receive because your focus became more on adjusting to his needs and requirements. And it is so painful when no matter what you try, it's not good enough and when it's over, it's as if he just moves on. That is so very painful and after 3 days it must be very distressing, I know.

But you described the relationship as a one-way relationship at its core and this is the way one-way relationships often end: you're the one left hurt and sort of stuck in the pain of it. It sounds as though you're emerging from this relationship. Again, three days is right in the painful feelings part of it, so accept that this is painful. But also accept that you are now able to see things more clearly and focus on living a more equal-based life.

Many people (it is not always the woman in this position, though much more frequently in my experience, it is the woman) report that they feel like "they can finally breathe". And it is a great feeling. But it is not the only feeling the person feels. But it will take you a while to feel this, so let yourself grieve for the relationship even if he doesn't seem to need to do so. This was a real part of your life and you need to grieve for it.


But I'm most concerned for you about the sadness and the depression that can lurk behind the scenes. What do I mean?

If you think about the one way relationship, it meant that you were focused continually about giving. The problem was not in your giving; it was in that your giving was not reciprocated evenly over time. It was mostly one way. But giving is still a human need. And it is why you're a good person: because you do feel that human need to give fully. Well, now you're on your own and that need to give still exists within you, but there is a vacuum, so to speak.

So, you do need to go through the grieving. But, my concern for you is that you make social contacts, new friends, go to programs and classes. And eventually, to even meet other men who might be more aware of the equalness of relationships. You don't need to be looking right away for new commitments, but forming relationships, friendships and social relationships, that are two way relationships and are satisfying will help both with the grieving and with the sadness.

Okay, I wish you the very best!

My goal is for you to feel like you've gotten Great Service from me and the site. If we need to continue the discussion for that to happen, then please feel free to reply and we'll continue working on this. If the answer has given you the help you need, please remember to give a rating of 5 (Great Service) or 4 (Informative and helpful), or even 3 (Got the job done) button. This will make sure that I am credited for the answer and you are not charged anything more than the deposit you already made by pressing any of these buttons. Bonuses are always appreciated! If I can be of further help with any issue now or in the future, just put "For Dr. Mark" in the front of your new question, and I'll be the one to answer it. All the best, XXXXX XXXXX

Customer: replied 11 months ago.


i am not really that depressed, he has broken up with me many times in the past.. but ihave seen more of that he wanted to claim my house i purchased during the relationship as his, even though he would only travel back and forth with a duffle bag, but when i was not home and he was would do unnessesary projects of construction on my home and when we argued would say that he made an executive decision. he felt he should have say in my home and with my kids, but his were not my consern, he had habits of wating to bring his mother to things, he even said about taking his family on our honeymoon.. that was were i had enough.. also i went through surgery and cancer treatments last year and he wasnt the best support.. i felt with him living at home with his parents and his kids now grown, that it was more my house he wanted than me. my family said that he just liked to play house, and then when things got rough he took his bag and whent home, to which his family thinks i am nuts.

Expert:  Dr. Mark replied 11 months ago.

You know, I was concerned from what you wrote originally that you were writing only the tip of the iceberg! I've worked with enough people in therapy that I sensed there was perhaps more narcissistic qualities there than you were writing of. And your response now seems to confirm that. I'm really very glad you finally said enough. That is so important. To get out of the orbit of someone who is so self referencing is a crucial first step. That's great then, that you're moving on. Therefore, I want to really now, focus on the future. Get you focusing on your future. Let's, then, talk about finding Mr. Right. Because there really is a Mr. Right out there.

Now for your life. Why do I say your life? Because you are not going to find Mr. Right by just looking for "a guy". You've got to treat finding Mr. Right as part of living YOUR life. You are clearly a woman with values. You are not looking simply for sexual gratification. You are looking for a human being who wants to share his life with you and who values who you are.

That's why we're going to focus on goals, strategies, and plans. I want you to take a sheet of paper or on the computer if you prefer and on that paper write your Healthy Relationship Goals. Examples: make 3 close friends in the next 3 months; or go on dates with interesting men at least 4 times in the next 3 months, etc. So you see they don't need to even be goals for just relationships with men, but can be social relationships. Because the more social you are, the more you build your ability to express yourself socially instead of just career wise, the more you will feel comfortable expressing yourself to Mr. Right on a date. You need to feel comfortable sharing your inner self with other people on lots of different levels: acquaintances, friends, confidantes, and dates.

Next, I need you to take another sheet or underneath the goals in the same sheet write Strategies for my Healthy Relationship Goals. For each of the Goals, I want you to write strategies. For example, if your goal is to go out 4 times in 3 months, strategies might be: I want to identify the type of interests men you'd be interested in would have. Then I want to ask yourself where would they go to fulfill those interests. For example, if an interesting man needs to be someone who is into fitness, then he would be a member of a fitness club. If he needs to like art, then he would be a member of the Art Museum and go to gallery openings. If he needs to be spiritually oriented, then he might need to be attending church or a meditation class.

Then, you need to write on a separate piece of paper or underneath each Goal and Strategy: Plans for how to succeed with your strategies. So to continue the example above, you might write: my plan is to go to the 6 most popular fitness studios and check them out to see what their membership looks like and what kind of activities are there. Or for art, I plan to join the Art Museum and to go to an art opening at a gallery at least twice per month and maybe 3 times. Or if you are interested in religion, checking out 3 congregations for active ones that have social events.

These are examples of strategies and plans. I'm trying to focus you on your life interests. What do you want to do to further your having a meaningful life? Remember, Mr. Right needs to fit into what's meaningful to you, so look for him in activities that bring out what's meaningful in your life.

Clearly, all of this may not quite be for now after only 3 days. So I hope you will accept that I'm recommending you move on and be very, very glad you are out.

Okay, I wish you the very best!

My goal is for you to feel like you've gotten Great Service from me and the site. If we need to continue the discussion for that to happen, then please feel free to reply and we'll continue working on this. If the answer has given you the help you need, please remember to give a rating of 5 (Great Service) or 4 (Informative and helpful), or even 3 (Got the job done) button. This will make sure that I am credited for the answer and you are not charged anything more than the deposit you already made by pressing any of these buttons. Bonuses are always appreciated! If I can be of further help with any issue now or in the future, just put "For Dr. Mark" in the front of your new question, and I'll be the one to answer it. All the best, XXXXX XXXXX

Customer: replied 11 months ago.


i stayed in the relationship 1 because i was lonely and 2 he made pomises that never came to pass as it would be close to it happening he would change things or say thats not what he said.. there is tons more and obsticles and people sticking their nose in.. i just saw no future that would be happy for me. and weither good or bad i still spent 7 years with this man and he wanted to marry me next year finally, but yet, I honestly thought he would try and contact, so the lack of just makes me feel that i even more so waisted these years on someone who didnt really seem to care about me, just themself.

Expert:  Dr. Mark replied 11 months ago.
Yes, there is indeed going to be anger. When you're out of a one way relationship, the anger is a necessary stage to get through: you invested a lot into the relationship and you got little return and when it ended, he seems to be able to move on casually.



It's almost never, maybe actually never, that the other person in a one-way relationship gets the last word or the satisfaction of having the other person feel worse about it. That just doesn't happen. And so the anger is a part of the leaving process and the freeing yourself. That's why I'm not trying at all to get you to not be angry. You have things to be angry about and you have to be angry about them. I understand. It's also very frustrating.


But, this is the way one-way guys are like. And you're not going to get him to see things any different. That's just how they have tuned in to life. So, you have to move forward even as you're angry. Moving forward is the key because he will not get it that he didn't act as well as he should have.


I wish you the very best!

My goal is for you to feel like you've gotten Great Service from me and the site. If we need to continue the discussion for that to happen, then please feel free to reply and we'll continue working on this. If the answer has given you the help you need, please remember to give a rating of 5 (Great Service) or 4 (Informative and helpful), or even 3 (Got the job done) button. This will make sure that I am credited for the answer and you are not charged anything more than the deposit you already made by pressing any of these buttons. Bonuses are always appreciated! If I can be of further help with any issue now or in the future, just put "For Dr. Mark" in the front of your new question, and I'll be the one to answer it. All the best, XXXXX XXXXX

Dr. Mark, Psychotherapist
Category: Relationship
Satisfied Customers: 5096
Experience: Dr. Mark is a PhD in psychology helping with relationships
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