2 Months Later.. This Is Long, But I Need Advice

My fiance and I met in high school. I actually had a crush on one of his friends and we all hung out as a group a few times. We didn't even really exchange words, as far as I can remember. Fast forward.. 7 years later.. I had just graduated college and started working at a summer camp. He was working there too. I recognized him, but it took a solid month or two before we actually talked. It was me that broke the ice, and as soon as I did, he asked me to hang out that night and we spent most of the summer hanging out with each other. I had already had plans to move 14 hours away at the end of the summer.. we knew this all along. We had our first kiss and made our relationship official the night before I left. Sounds completely odd, but we made it through 2 years long distance, even in the beginning stages of a relationship. I ended up moving home after 2 years, we moved in together, he proposed on my birthday around year 3. He had a ring specially made for me using his grandmothers diamond. He rented a house on an island off the coast of our hometown that we spent a lot of time at every summer. He had gone and talked to my dad and gotten permission months before. He had also gone out to the island and the house with one of his friends the week before and put champagne in the refrigerator, had walked around and found the exact rock on the beach where he was going to propose. He put A LOT of effort into the whole thing. We were engaged for over a year (together over 4 years at this point). A few months ago, we decided to move into my families house to save money for the wedding and to buy our own house. I was really nervous about this, but he was all for it. He thought it was a perfect idea for us to be able to save up. I guess this is where things went downhill.. we kind of lost our routines we had. The home wasn't ours anymore.. it was hard. He has a really stressful job, (he works with mentally ill teenagers), and he would want to go out often to relieve some of that stress. I am in grad school and didn't really want to go out all that often, so that wasn't helping. There were a lot of things that were going wrong in other aspects of his life, not involving me. I came home one day, and he said he was going to go stay at his moms. (He was texting her while he was talking to me). I was devastated. Embarrassingly, I was on a heap in the floor, crying, screaming. I slept on the floor that entire week. I couldn't sleep in our bed. He sent me an email a few days later, saying that he was exhausted and he had nothing left. He said he loves me more than anything in this world, with all of his heart, and will for the rest of his life. He said he had played out many scenarios in his head but none of them would work for both of us (he never said what they were). We met a few days later and talked face-to-face. I poured my heart out to him. He kept saying "I love you, that isn't the problem". He said I had gotten stuck in my routines and wasn't making him a part of them anymore. He said he wanted to believe that things could get better but that he was scared if he came back we'd be back in the same spot in a few years again. He said he'd been talking to all his friends who are married (most of whom do not have healthy marriages) and they said nothing changes with marriage. We met again a couple days later and that was the last time. This was a couple of months ago. I asked him if I could ever see him again, and he said he didn't know. He hugged me and said "I love you" when I left. The next day while I was at work, he came to the house and took a few things; his clothes, tv, kayak, bike. Left everything else. He sent me a very formal email saying he would never ask me this but his mother wants the stone out of my ring (it has been in his family for 70 years). I get it, but why THE NEXT DAY? It took me weeks to even stop wearing the ring, and I still have it. I told her I would give it back when I am ready. I said I wouldn't sell it. They offered to have a different stone put in it for me (which is confusing to me).
I have tried very hard to do no contact. It absolutely kills me. It's like EVERYTHING I do reminds me of him. It seems like everyone around me is happy and getting engaged or married, and I am just alone. It's also Christmas, which isn't helping. The first couple weeks, I moved in with my dad. I couldn't stand being in our space that we lived in together. Then, I moved all the furniture around, got a new bed, etc and moved back to the house we lived in. I spent a couple weeks going out a lot with friends. The night before Thanksgiving, I was sitting at a bar, and I turned around and he was RIGHT next to me. Practically touching. I said "hi" and he said "hi", then I turned back away. I didn't freak out, which I half expected to. He was with a married couple that were supposed to be in the wedding. When I turned around, his friend was staring right at me smiling. It was really odd. My friend that I was with said he saw her when he walked in. I still don't know if he purposely went up to the bar right next to me or not, and why didn't he say anything? I just can't shake the look his friend was giving me. After that, he emailed me every day for a week asking about the stone in the ring again and asking why I hadn't change my facebook picture. If I didn't respond that same night, he'd write again and ask why I wasn't responding. (This was about 2 weeks ago, now).
One of the hardest things for me, is facebook. I keep stalking his page and it makes me CRAZY. I now know that he moved into an apartment with two random 22-yr-olds. (He is almost 29). And, I've convinced myself he's dating someone he works with (which is based on pretty much nothing). I have anxiety all the time. I feel like, even when I try to forget him, he is EVERYWHERE. (Example: yesterday I was at the grocery store, and there was a flyer with his picture on it hanging there from a competition he won last year. Seriously. His picture hanging in the grocery store). I guess I just am having a hard time wondering, why? Why do we keep getting brought back together randomly? Why did we make it this far to just act like we never existed to each other? Why is all his stuff still here? Why do his emails sound like he's a stranger? It's all so confusing.
neekster2007 neekster2007
2 Responses Dec 16, 2012

My dear, I feel your very pain. Mine was as painful as yours and I see him everywhere in my mind's eyes. I have done, No contact for 2 months now and it keeps getting better. Stay strong. Love him.. you will never stop, once it is pure but love him from a distance. What encourages me daily is the truth I tell myself, I don't want to be with anyone who doesn't want to be with me. Tell yourself that. Move on from that pain, take time to heal. Give him back his ring. He really shouldn't have asked but shame on him. Mine returned mine too. Change the FB pictures, take down all the ones you had together with him. Remove all the gifts he gave to you. Keep them in a box. Some men need time to grow. In time they will see what they have lost when they are stuck with someone else. Don't worry this too shall pass. You may be shocked that he'll come back someday and then you'll have the power to decide, now it hurts because it wasn't your decision but let it go. Let him go. Take care.

I understand. It is the pure pain of opening your life, heart, body to someone, and then losing it.

I had to stop Facebook altogether, guess that is why I am on EP now. I had to remove everything that reminded me of him, and stop talking about him to others..go cold turkey. It took about three month for the worst of it, but I still think of him, it is just not intense, and I hit acceptance somewhere along the way.

As far as the ring, it was he who made the choice to give it to you. It is really bad taste for him to bug you for it. However, only you can decide when you are ready to let go of it. Having it, might be continuing the pain of this love gone haywire.

It does sound like you are not sure what went wrong, and confusion like that prolongs the pain.

I am praying for your heart to heal. It is very hurtful to be so intimate with someone, then have them treat you coldly, or with indifferance. It is pure pain, and makes the heart bleed.

Every relationship is a lesson. Some of those lessons come with anguish. The best to hope for is to forgive him for his limitations, his flaws, failures, and with grace and dignity, politely give him the ring back, with genuine well wishes that he give that ring to a woman he wants to spend the rest of his life with.

It isn't giving any thing up, it is gaining your trust and acceptance of yourself back. He has to live with himself. No doubt he is in pain also. Pray for the highest best for him, regardless of how hurt and angry you might feel. This is a man you love enough to want to have given your life for. You can show him that now, by offering your forgiveness and accept that this is for the best.

I send you hugs and understanding, one woman to another. The love you gave, is the love you have, which even if it is not returned in the form you wish, strengths and blessed you.