Hello, I am Rafael. Thanks for asking your question - I'm here to support you. (Information posted here is not private or confidential but public).
I am sorry to know about this sad and frustrating situation.
Unhappily it seems from the very beginning how he was always reluctant to truly commit to the relationship, literally sabotaging it whenever he felt it was getting too close for him.
He was never fully honest nor open towards you, his inconsistencies led the relationship to fail, and no matter how hard a person may try, if the other one is not being real, honest and focused on building a healthy and fulfilling relationship, it would never work, and his behavior after all this years shows this inconsistent pattern leading to the frustrating and sad present situation.
I am sorry, but I think for him to state such a thing is very abusive and could become traumatic,since it shows lack of sensitivity, caring, even respect towards you, your feelings and what you have tried to build for so many years.
Perhaps because you have deeply attached to him, like having a dependency on him, after so many years together and longing for a real and fulfilling life together, I believe you could have attached even more to yor expectations and longings about having a happy and lasting relationship, and coming to terms with the fact it was not happening could have been too overwhelming for you, turning into fueling more hope about it, his changes.
Many times we could end enabling neglect or abuse out of fear, becoming too attached and not recognizing the serious issues when they happen. He may have felt empowered to keep this abusive pattern for this long since aware you were going to stay there for him, while he would not take full responsibility for his own choices, actions and the way the relationship evolved.
His behavior shows lack of enough assertiveness, maturity and caring as an adult, very poor accountability, and it could easily lead a person in your shoes to fall into this dysfunctional cycle after so many years in the relationship.
Codependency could be at the core of this very painful situation, fueling the pain, exposing yourself more and more to it, regardless the evidence you got about how poorly he deserved you and how neglectful and even abusive he could get disregarding your feelings and the commitment he created with you along the years.
I am sorry to know things have evolved this way, and that he could get this manipulative and expect to keep close to you regardless of how destructive and unhealthy he has become in your life. Please, seriously consider getting professional counseling support, for you to work on your healing process from this overwhelming pain, and to rehabilitate from it, to eradicate any codependency pattern and to grow stronger and wiser from it. Your support system, namely those members of your family and close friends who happen to be assertive and supportive, should play an active role helping you during this process.
You are totally right about your fear, it could become a real addictive pattern, that's why I mentioned codependency; but there is hope for sure as long as you commit to work on yourself, to make necessary changes to take better care of yourself, so you would set healthy and clear boundaries in relationships, and never allow anybody to use, abuse or neglect you at all.
It's believe that as any other addiction, there is no cure, but rehabilitation is possible as long as we acknowledge reality and the core issues, and commit to work on ourselves, on making necessary changes, taking full responsibility for our own feelings, choices and actions with necessary support. Most times a combination of individual psychotherapy and group therapy or a group support do offer the best results, allowing the person to prevent ad effectively cope with relapses, to truly make changes and get stronger from it.
Sure, things could never be the same if approached in more assertive ways, but speculating or spending too much time on what could have been would not help. It is necessary to understand what happened here for you to learn from it, but that's it, you would need to work on healing and growing from it in order not to expose to nor enable anything similar.
He manipulated you since he knew about your affection, fears and vulnerability, he used them against you, that's why codependency could be the very core fueling this chronic dysfunction.
You're very welcome. Thank you for your trust. Please take gentle care and consistent action getting the professional support you need and deserve to rehabilitate and grow from this painful reality.
If you want to consider online professional counseling, I am also willign to support you that way through the new etherapy service offered here:
I belevee it could be possible, since his own personal issues and fears could play a big role in this situation, what would never justify his manipulation and unacceptable behaviors for this long.
Unless he tales responsibility for his choices and actions, including his feelings and everything he did about this relationship from the very beginning, he would not be able to learn from it, and would perpetuate similar pattern with other people.
(please remember, on justanswer.com, your information is NOT confidential, but is public. On pearl.etherapi.com, we can speak confidentially, over a secure network).
You're very welcome. Please tale gentle care and consistent action to work on your rehabilitation. It'd not be easy at all, but it is necessary and absolutely worthy. It would allow you to literally build the well-being and fulfillment you deserve.