I guess I can change my FetLife profile back to “single”.
Tony failed to show any significant signs of communications improvement in the last 72 hours. This afternoon he said on the phone he would “do his best” to come to my place tonight, after Liam fell asleep.
Of course, it didn’t happen. That phone call was at 2pm. There was no text, no doorbell ring, or phone call, until 9pm. He called to tell me he was in the zone with work and it was much better for him to get his stuff done so when he did see me, he would be far more fun.
Our conversation started off with just work talk, and other niceties. But then, we turned it serious. I’m not exactly sure how it all went down, but I laid out how the small broken promises had added up in the last three days. Saying he will text or call and not doing it, over and over again. He responded that he was sick, etcetera, and I retorted there is always something. There is always a nap, or illness, or thing with his kid, or work, or time with a friend (rare), but there’s always some reason he can’t text or call or see me.
He joked I was an orchid not a cactus, and I – now kind of pissed off – said that I had reduced my desires and hopes to something that amounted to 10 minutes of effort a day. Hardly orchid-like. A few words and occasional phone call were all I ask for between the times we see each other. To me, it seems like a crack in the sidewalk, yet it seems like I’m asking him to jump across the Grand Canyon.
I also raised the issue that I had with finding out he had been dating someone else while saying he was exclusive. It felt like he was splitting the facts so finely that he could say he was telling me the truth, when in fact he lied to me over and over. I asked him to please at least admit that it was true he had lied – and he said it was.
I asked him: what would have happened if you’d had a connection with her? And he had no answer.
It spurred me to say there was so much I wanted to tell him about my own journey, especially the place I was in a year ago, because while I know it will make no difference to how he treats me or what we do next, that at the very least I want him to know that I understand. That he could have told me he wasn’t ready, and we could have dealt with it. That I broke someone’s heart because I wasn’t ready to have anybody – even someone I loved – dictate what I shouldn’t or shouldn’t do.
I can’t take a 40 minute conversation and recount it all here, but we covered a lot of topics.
He said he’s terrible communicating with everyone; it’s not just me. He hates to text (they are all work related) and pick up the phone because it’s always stressful. I explained if I thought it was just me then I wouldn’t have continued to give him all the chances I have; I knew he was a bad texter when he went silent for three days after we had three amazing dates our first week. While I know he’s like that with everyone, it doesn’t make it better.
I told him I felt like I was on a roller coaster: with every text or call I receive the sun is shining and the birds are singing, and then when he breaks a communication promise or fails to respond, I’m flung back into a pit of despair. I said I was tired of being frustrated with him and banging my head against a wall all the time.
He – of course – said he didn’t want me to be frustrated with him. Doesn’t want me upset all the time.
I conceded that I also didn’t want to be constantly reminding him that he was letting me down – that it wasn’t fun for either of us.
I asked him whether all the things he said to me were true, or if he was telling me what I wanted to hear. Perhaps it’s a dumb question, but for what it’s worth, he said he felt all those things.
I asked him whether there has been anyone else he’s been involved with (I added snarkily “because I know asking you if you’ve had sex with anyone else is the wrong question”) and he said “no”.
He said he wasn’t ready for something this serious. That it scares him when I say I adore him (I said it scared me too because here I am, despite all attempts to avoid it, having fallen in love with someone who can’t give me what I need when he’s not physically present). He has shit he has to sort out.
I told him I was getting angry and resentful and even if I continued to try to be okay with what he could give, resentment is not a good foundation for moving forward.
He finally said “perhaps we need to take some time apart”. I agreed.
I said I’d never been in a situation before when I let someone go who I loved, when I didn’t want to let them go. It’s the same for him, obviously. We agreed it doesn’t feel good and it’s scary. I told him if either of us meet someone during that time that is a better fit, then we would never have worked out anyway.
I asked him how long he wanted. He said I should decide and I calmly explained that he is the one that needs the time. We landed on the end of August. Chuckling, I told him it meant he would have to respond to my text or phone call when I reached out to him.
I also said – and again, I know it’s dumb – of course he could always give me a call. This isn’t about saying goodbye because I don’t like him. And of course, I had to ask him just once more if he really wanted this to be a “goodbye for now” instead of a “goodbye”.
So. I finally did it.
I will miss him. I’m going to get back online to help with that – probably within 24 hours. It’s the only way I can possibly avoid obsessing about what and how he’s doing. I know it will fade over time, no matter what.
What I won’t miss is the frustration and pain which has been a recurring presence since the end of December. Thanks to everyone for sticking with me even though I know I was a broken record.