After separating from my husband, I started dating again at the end of last year. It took so much to put myself out there and trust someone new after nine years of marriage but I was very lucky in that I met someone almost straight away. We got on amazingly and dated for about a month, before I was rather insensitively let down on Valentines Day.
We had several conversations during which he gave me various different reasons why we couldn’t be together. Then he told me he was getting back with his ex, and I couldn’t quite figure out the timeline of everything that had happened. Had he been seeing us at the same time? Who had approached who about getting back together?
Ever since then I’ve spent a lot of time thinking about what actually happened. And I must admit I really missed him too, despite the way he treated me. I haven’t been able to get him off my mind. I don’t think lockdown helped. I live on my own, and with all that time to think I realised how much I want someone special in my life.
Then three weeks ago I sent him a drunken email (I had deleted his number already) asking what the hell had gone on. I got a reply yesterday. Apparently I had the same qualities as his ex, which made him realise how much he missed her. I feel so angry and used, but at the same time I still miss him. We got on so well and it really felt like we had known each other for ever – he even said so himself on one of our dates.
I know he is not worth a minute of my time, but I am still finding it hard to move on. I’ve tried going on dating apps, but when I start talking to someone I keep comparing them to him. And between him and my ex-husband, I’m at the point I feel I can never trust men again, even though I really want to find someone. I’m in my mid-30s now, so it’s not like I have time to waste, but with the way I’m feeling now I honestly don’t know if I will ever be brave enough to let someone that close to me again.
So Donna, how do I get over a guy and move on during lockdown. I need all the help I can get!
I will start this very simply; you will get over this. When you are introverted into a situation, it can feel like the most dominant factor in your life, but as time passes it will pale into insignificance.
You mention that you met this man very soon after your nine year marriage. This was an instant red flag to me. I do not know the details of your divorce, however as somebody who has been married for the majority of my adult life (similarly to you) I know that there is very little chance you can fully get over your marriage so soon. Even if you feel that you have completely fallen out of love with your ex husband, there will inevitably be subconscious attachment to the habit of being married/in a long-term relationship.
Therefore, my first bit of advice to you is to get to know yourself as a single woman. I have known women who have found themselves in parallel situations to yours: they were single for the first time in their life and the thought of being alone scared them. But all of these women, without exception had to be single before they found the love of their lives… and I promise you that all of them did find the one they were meant to be with.
The tone of your email suggests that there is a slight lack of self confidence here. This is completely understandable, but in turn needs addressing before you can be in a positive position to be in a relationship. Ask yourself what things you dreamed of doing but were unable to do whilst you had prior commitments, go and do them now! Try new things and push yourself out of your comfort zone to find out what you like and dislike. This could be in the form of a new hobby, joining a club you could never of imagined yourself being part of, taking a trip and doing all of the things you want to do without having to consider what your partner would like to be doing. By all means make the most of your friendships and drag your girls along with you if doing it alone feels too nerve wracking. As long as you are enjoying yourself, that is the main thing.
I am going to give you a little slap on the wrist for stating that because you are in your mid-thirties that you don’t have ‘time to waste’. You have all the time you need. The clock is not ticking! Whether you are thinking that you are against the clock because of biological reasons or you simply think that all the good guys will be gone if you don’t act quick, I want you to realise that rushing is not going to lead to a life time of happiness. It’s 2020, you have a world of options at your finger tips. Do not buy into this ideology that everything needs to be completed by the time you hit forty. Just enjoy your life and take it as it comes because you cannot control the chronology of your life.
You will be incredibly lucky if you go on a handful of dates then meet ‘the one’. Don’t go into every date wondering if this will be the guy you’ll be spending your life with. Have some bad dates, have some good dates, have some promising dates and have the sort of dates you cannot wait to discuss in the group chat later. In this process, if you do meet somebody then he will know you as you, not as somebody who does not want to be single.
In reference to your drunken email, we have all been there! I hope that this will have taught you a lesson that seeking closure does not actually always bring us the peace of mind or the satisfaction we covet. Understandably, you wanted answers to the questions in your head but the answers you got did not make you happy. This buzzword ‘closure’ is banded about carelessly in our parlance, so much so that it has led us to believe that we cannot move on without achieving it. However, if your situation has taught you anything, it is that letting go will be much more satisfying and constructive than seeking closure. If in the future you are left disappointed or let down again by a man you have been dating, try your very best not to torment yourself with the need to know what went wrong. Often, it is just that you are not the one for them. It does not mean that anything is wrong or lacking with you. You will find that there are some guys who on paper are great, but you are just not feeling it. This does not mean that they did something terrible on the date, they were just not the one for you. Try to remember this if ever you feel disheartened.
I hope this helps. Have fun!!