Yesterday's multimedia Celtics advice was much fun -- but now it's time to get back to basics. This person doesn't want to break up. Because breaking up is hard to do.
Q: My girlfriend of two years broke up with me upon our return from a week long vacation. I'm 27 and she is 22 and about to graduate college. She used the line, "I love you but I’m not in love with you anymore."
It really hit me hard because I had no inclination that something like this would happen. We both have admitted that our vacation was great but she says that she came to a realization while we were away that we were best friends. I personally feel that she is so busy and has so much going on in her life right now with graduation, what she is doing next year, where she is living, that she panicked and for whatever reason decided that I was the expendable part in her life. There was no reason or example given which I really wish I had. She gave me the story of how I’m a great guy, I treated her like a like a princess and that’s all a girl can ever ask for. I recently received a promotion at work and have to travel 2-4 days/week. We have both admitted that this changed the dynamic of our "everyday" relationship. We are both very mature and she would never tell me not to pursue my career seeing as we are both so young.
What I struggle with most is how complete I thought our relationship was. I was very close with her family, her brothers who are my age and her parents. We had a very open relationship where we discussed everything and trust was never and issue. The first time that we didn't have a conversation about a topic was when she decided that we were better off as best friends, that she reached the decision and didn’t want to be convinced of it otherwise. I'm really torn because I told her that I wouldn't be able to be friends because my head and heart was still very much into the relationship. I feel like she gave up on our relationship too easily and has yet to realize just how great our relationship was. As much as it hurts do I just let her walk away? My heart says no but my head says I need move on and if it’s meant to be it will be.
Please....I need advice!
-- Dave, Boston
A: Hearts and heads. It would be nice if they could just get along.
Dave, I believe that your (ex)girlfriend cares about you. I believe that you’re both mature. I believe that love and maturity fueled her decision to end the romantic relationship.
She's undercooked when it comes to life experience. You’re busy, traveling, and pushing 30. Your relationship was about as complete as it could have been – but the timing stinks.
What also stinks is that you have no control over the situation. This wasn’t a choice you made together. Break-ups are even harder to get over when they’re up to someone else. You pretty much have to let her walk away – she hasn’t given you any other option.
I don’t think she sees you as “expendable.” She just sees herself as 22.
You’ve told her you don’t want her to go. You’ve told her you love her. You’ve done your part. Now all you can do is take care of your heart. Hang out with friends. Try to have fun on these trips. Prioritize yourself (meaning, if a friendship with her feels bad, don’t do it).
And maybe try schmoozing with some 27-year-olds. It might feel good.
Readers? Help Dave’s heart. Share your advice here. Submit a letter to the right.