On Friday I made a rather difficult decision, one that ended things with someone who has been special to me over many years. It was hard, because we have always been good friends and have enjoyed spending time together. The hard part is that he and I wanted or needed different things, and while he was content with the status quo, I was not fully content with it. I am one of those people who likes to touch/hold/cuddle or otherwise show physical affection to someone who I care about romantically, but he is not one of those people who need that much… nothing against either of us, just different styles of showing affection. However, after much soul-searching I realized it is something that I can’t do without.
My parents were always very warm and affectionate to each other, holding hands, giving each other hugs, kisses, etc. on a fairly regular basis. I grew up with the belief that people who love each other are physically affectionate with each other. I also grew up believing that an active sex life was a normal part of a healthy relationship. My whole family is one with a rather high drive towards showing physical affection either through simple touches or in more private ways. So, dating someone who came from a family that wasn’t that physically affectionate was a bit of an adjustment. This is not to say that he didn’t enjoy these things, he just didn’t need them or want them as much as I did. Truth be told while this was a little difficult for me, it didn’t really become a problem until I was stressed about some big changes at work…. and then my need to be cuddled/held/etc. really came out… at the same time, my penchant for venting also was there, and me talking about work every day was bothersome to him, and caused him to pull away a bit, which just made me more stressed – because now not only was I stressing about work, but I was also stressing about us.
I had tried talking to him about the problem on several occasions and finally sent him an email about everything on Friday morning…. He sent me one in reply, which I read after work. Between what I wrote and his reply it was apparent to me that we just didn’t look at relationships in the same way, and we just weren’t meant for a long-term romantic relationship. So then there was the hard part… telling him that. There really is no easy way to tell someone you care about (who also cares about you) that things won’t work and you don’t want to date them anymore. But I did it. He certainly seemed to be surprised at my decision and probably hurt by it… and that makes me sad, but I couldn’t see any other option. I will miss him terribly, but I know he won’t ever believe that.
Now I’m single again, and not looking to date anytime in the near future… actually not sure if I even want to try dating again…. One of my friends has said I will be back to dating before three weeks is up, but I’m not so sure. Anyone taking bets on how long it will be? Personally I think it will be a long time before I date anyone.