He Was The One

Everyone has that person in their past who was The One That Got Away. Mine recently reappeared in my life and I am still reeling from it.

PB and I dated for 3 years off and on in the early 90's. He was charming, witty, charismatic and extremely intelligent. We had the most mind-blowing sex. We had a very fun and passionate relationship but there were definite downsides. He was very manipulative and he could always get away with stuff because of his charisma. He developed a problem with drugs that actually put him in the hospital at one point. Ultimately he moved out of state and I ended the relationship ... long distance was too much and at that point I could no longer deal with his flakiness.

After our split I moved across the state and lost all contact with him. But for some reason it was impossible for me to think badly about him. Most of the problems we had were due to his drug use, nothing else. I sensed that underneath it all was a really good person. And if was impossible not to remember the incredible physical connection we had. The sex was amazing and I never found another partner that even came close to the chemistry we had.

I eventually settled down, married, and had a child. But I never forgot about PB. In the very early days of social media (Friendster, Tribe, MySpace) I would occasionally search for him. He was always so interested in computers and I found it puzzling that I couldn't find him online. It occurred to me that maybe he was dead, or in jail, or in the hospital. It was a logical conclusion because of the drug use.

My marriage started to stagnate. I began to realize that I was married to a man who I liked very much as a friend, nothing more. I found myself thinking about starting an affair with someone. I have always been 100% loyal to my partner, and this made me feel very guilty, but I was so frustrated with the lack of sex. And I am an attractive woman who gets a lot of attention from men, so that just made it worse.

Then one day on Facebook I found PB. I was bored and did a search for him and there he was! No photo, but I knew his birthday and where he want to college. It was him. I immediately friended him and sent him a message asking "Is this THE PB?"

A few days passed ... then one day I got a brief message ... yes it was him, he was back in our hometown. We started a correspondence. I knew he was married with 2 kids, and I told him about my husband and daughter. I didn't really have any expectations ... since he was married ... and to be honest I was just so happy to see that he was alive, drug free, had a good job, and seemed to have a happy life.

Eventually though it became obvious that there was still an attraction between us. He revealed that he, too was unhappy in his marriage. We started planning a rendezvous and our texts and phone conversations became very intense and romantic. I can't describe the amazing sensation I had when I saw him in person for the first time in 20 years. Everything was literally in slow motion.

And the 20 years had made him so much better than before. He was a drug free, responsible ADULT. In a way we needed the time in between to grow up as people, and when we finally had sex it was truly incredible, better than it was before. This was the man who could give me what I truly needed ... and it made it even more painfully obvious how unsuitable my husband was.

I have never been unfaithful to any partner. This was a new thing for me. I was so totally swept away and so was he. After that first meeting we both broke it to our spouses that we were leaving. Since PB had just started a really great new job, the plan was for me to eventually move to be with him. We would share a home with our 3 kids. How wonderful it was going to be to wake up next to each other in OUR home!

We continued a passionate relationship while our personal lives fell apart. We lived in separate cities so could only see each other every few weeks.
Due to financial pressures and kids, we weren't able to move out of the homes we shared with our spouses, so we were limited to mainly texting with the occasional phone call. We lived for the weekends when we would be able to break away and be together.

Eventually the reality of the situation started to wear us down. I had a pre-divorce meeting with my husband and a mediator and it was made clear to me that I would not be allowed to move from the area to be with PB. I was very upset and called PB with the news. We vowed that we would find a solution to be together. After 20 years apart we could wait just a little longer.

Shortly after that conversation PB fell silent. Where he had once texted me all day, starting at "good morning" and ending at bedtime, contact became sporadic and when he did text it was mainly "hi, how are you".

I had a really strong feeling that something was wrong. It started eating at me. I didn't want to bother him and seem like a nag, so I tried to hold back. I started to feel very depressed and anxious. I started turning off my phone for long stretches because I was so distraught about not hearing from him. In the meantime my home life was increasingly fraught. My husband was devastated by the impending divorce and tension was high whenever we were together. It was really hard to keep up appearances for the sake of our daughter, but somehow we managed.

I stopped eating. I wanted to sleep all the time. My head ached and I felt literal pain. I finally managed to get from PB that he was upset by our situation and was trying to figure out a solution, but then he disappeared again and stopped contact.

So now here I am, devastated, depressed, and hopeless. I messaged him today telling him that at this point I can only assume that he has ended things with me, and that if he has any respect for me at all the least he could do is just tell me instead of leaving me hanging. I don't know what else to do. I still love him and want to be with him, but this situation is utterly intolerable and I deserve better.

I don't know whether I should just try to pick up the pieces with my husband, or move on alone. I feel like an idiot. Falling in love with a married man and wanting him to rescue me from my unhappy marriage was such a cliche, and I fell for it.

VogonPoetry VogonPoetry
31-35, F
10 Responses Oct 13, 2012

He was the one. He wasn't the one. I have been there. At 19 he was the one. At 45, he's still sexy as hell...

I know it hurts. But it does get better. Let him go. Just keep that phone off. Don't answer it. Don't text. Instead, decide what needs to be done at home. You seemed to be on your way out the door. Now that he is not going to play a role, are you changing your mind?

My heart aches for you.

Your relationship with this 'other guy' seems to be based on sex and the connectedness you felt during that time. In this case, it may not work out for you guys. It's infatuation that you have. It's different than true and complete love. Read this literature about different love styles when you have some leisure time:


The literature at the link provided is about Robert Sterberg's "triangular theory of love" and its very interesting!

That's how he SEEMED to be. Obviously I was wrong.

Wow that is all straight from the heart, thankyou so much for sharing

Sometimes the past should remain a memory. Best wishes & good luck on your future.!!!

Wow, you are dealing with a lot of **** right now. There are a lot of questions you need to answer for yourself before you can even begin to make decisions. Is your husband able to "forgive AND forget" that you stepped out? Why did you really step out? Was it to satisfy your wants, or your needs? If it truly was for your needs, what changes to your life together will your husband accept to satisfy those needs? Those are probably only the tip of the iceberg.

One piece of advice I can give you, speaking as a male of the species. Do not settle for the flake. He will only hurt you over and over again. Once a guy thinks he can get away with it, it is only a matter of time before it happens again. Trust me, even those of us who think we are not capable, do it.

Thank you for sharing your story. It has helped me think through some things that are similar in my own situation. I wish you the best. Please let me know how things go. And don't worry if you choose the alone path. I can guarantee you won't be alone forever.

"Love" is a verb. You can choose to love your husband, while the two of you make the effort to heal the relationship. Or you can choose not to, in which case you owe it to him to leave. When the early sparks die down, the work of loving begins. That is, falling in love can lead to loving. But both have to commit to the verb.

I too think that you need to sort out your head. In your post, you said your spouse was more your friend than you lover. and so are you just scared, and now wanting to settle? Yes, you were looking for sexual excitement with a former lover, but you did that for a reason. It wasn't just out of the blue. You were in a dull marriage. So take your time to sort out your life. I also think that if you do decide to stay, your marriage obviously is in trouble, and some sort of counseling is needed.
If you do go for counseling, how are you going to handle the information about the affair?I am not a fan of confessing, of telling all. I think it causes more harm than good. i don't think a marriage is really trustworthy after that. So you also need to think that out. Where you are with that? I wish you a calm heart and clear head, and hopefully you will make decisions that are in your best interest.

At this point all I really want is closure. I am so exhausted, drained and upset that I need some time just to recover from this. I need to decide what I want to do. I have asked my husband to please be patient. I don't want to take any more action on the divorce until I can think with a clear head.

That sounds wise to me. I hope closure for you too. I know how painful it can be to go without it, I really do.

I personally think that ending a marriage FOR someone is a really bad idea. I think a lot of women our age end up at this stagnant stage in marriage, and escaping seems like the best solution. I think many marriages can be saved with hard work and soul-searching. Falling in love with someone else makes things very confusing, and it's even harder to stay in the marriage and drudge through the work and counseling and self-improvement. However, it's important to know that the "falling in love" feeling is ALWAYS temporary. Always. It will go away eventually, and you will be left to do the hard work with that guy too, if you are meant to be together for a lifetime.

True love is a choice, true love is hard, true love can be counted on when things are at their worst.