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Should I [46/m] wait for my ex [30/f] to figure it out?
So here’s the backstory. Last year I started dating a woman that I work with. We worked together for 2 years but I was married and then she was married so nothing really happened other than friendly conversation. Eventually I got divorced and not long afterwards she did too. We started flirting a bit and seeing each other outside of work in social situations. I eventually asked her out and she said no because we did work together a little too closely – she did occasional administrative duties for me. Well, her situation changed and we didn’t work together anymore. A couple months later, we were dating.
Things progressed pretty quickly and we moved from casual dating into a relationship. Things were great. We had a ton in common. We never fought. We spent a lot of time together – basically anytime I didn’t have my kids we were together. We took a vacation camping at the beach in which we both agreed was the best vacation either of us had had – including honeymoons. She started hanging out with me and my kids. We spent Thanksgiving with each other’s families. We talked of long term plans. Things were perfect. So much that I thought of asking her to marry me this summer. I’ve never felt a connection with someone as I had with her. I never believed in soulmates until her. She said similar things like she hasn’t been happier since she was kid. 3 months later, I started having some issues with depression for various reasons and instead of being there for me, I felt she was pulling away. Instead of being there for me like you would expect a girlfriend to be, she seemed distant.
One night she came over and I got a little emotional and asked her about it. Out of the blue, she said she didn’t want to be in a relationship and she didn’t love me the way I loved her. Then she left. She texted me later and said she needed time to think. I told her to take as much time as she needed. It was 3 weeks later and I got a letter she had put in my mailbox. It said that she had some of the best times in her life with me. I had done everything she wanted a guy to do and had treated her better than anyone has. I was everything she was looking for in a guy so she tried to be in the relationship but she couldn’t because she was empty on the inside. She doesn’t have anything to give to anyone because she isn’t happy with herself and hasn’t been for a long time. She was choosing to be single to make herself happy. She said she took that long to contact me because she didn’t want to regret her decision . So that’s the story. It’s been 2 month now and I’m still devastated. I know there’s nothing I could have done or nothing I can do now. I don’t know how many times I’ve wanted to reach out to her and tell her that I’m her for her. That we can make this work. I miss her so fucking much and it hurts. It’s even harder since we work for the same company and we see each other occasionally.
I know that I should move on but there’s a big part of me that is holding on thinking that she’ll get “better” and want to get back together. So I have these stupid thoughts/plans about trying to keep in contact and be friends again so we can try it again.
I know that time will help with some of these feelings but not if I continue to hold on to hope that she’ll come back. Occasionally I’m good with the fact it’s over and want to move on but for the most part I’m miserable and just want to drink whiskey until I pass out.
You were still in the honeymoon phase with her when your depression hit. Although the honeymoon phase is quite passion-filled, it's experienced through rose colored glasses. You focus on the good parts and ignore the rest. The problem is that this phase burns out quickly and based more on hormonal impulse than real love/commitment. There's definitely nothing wrong going through this phase, and normally transitions into a more solid relationship. However, it cannot withstand many bumps in the road, especially big ones like depression.