For this week’s #WhatTheHellHappened we caught up with Elizabeth, who originally wrote us, because she couldn’t decide whether or not to dump her boyfriend of four years before moving to Berlin. The boyfriend was ready to move across the world to be with her, but she was having doubts. At the same time, she had nothing but respect and fondness for the guy and the idea of hurting him felt crushing for Elizabeth. She asked us for advice, and my mom had some thoughts: “Honey, you know what you want to do. Rip off the band aid and dump his clingy ass! Get back on the sperminator train and find yourself some nice European Manmeat!” I thought she should think very carefully about whether breaking up was what she actually wanted, or if it was just a reaction to a lull in their relationship.
So, #WhatTheHellHappened? Here’s a refresher on Elizabeth and an update from her below!
“Hi Mom & Spawn. I’m 25 and have been with my boyfriend, Brian, for 4 years and long distance for most of those years (he’s on the West Coast, and I am on the East Coast). We have had a wonderful, committed relationship, and he is truly a fantastic person. My problem is that as we have gotten older and more serious, we have started to make future plans that I am now realizing I am not comfortable with. My job is requiring me to move to Berlin next fall, and my boyfriend has already decided that he will quit his job and come with me, despite knowing no one over there and not having any career plans lined up. As this has all been happening, I have realized that for the past year or so, that I have felt us moving apart, while he definitely does not feel the same way. He routinely talks about marriage while I find myself unable to see that in our future. I have tried to explain how I am feeling multiple times, but he redoubles his efforts to be a “good boyfriend” whenever I express my feelings, and I feel terrible that I am making him feel like he has to put in any extra effort, when the problem really is me. I want to be independent and to focus on my career for a while and I feel selfish for thinking this as I have someone who is a wonderful, caring person and committed. I genuinely care for my boyfriend and I will always love him, but I keep feeling that I need to be on my own. The problem is that I am nauseated by the thought of hurting him by breaking up. He would not see the break up coming and would be devastated. I helped him through a lot of tough times in our relationship and he did the same for me. We have been each other’s best friends for 4 years now and I don’t know how to inflict this kind of hurt on someone I care for this deeply. I feel selfish for even considering breaking up, but I know my heart is no longer in this relationship as strongly as his is. Please help me.” – Elizabeth
So, #WhatTheHellHappened to her?
Hi Mom & Spawn, Since last writing to you, I followed your advice and broke up with my long-term boyfriend. He was and is a wonderful person, and at one point in time we were very compatible with each other. But, as our relationship progressed, we changed and I was holding on to a relationship that was no longer growing as we grew individually. The breakup in the moment was so tough and I felt horribly guilty for hurting him as it was happening. But since then, we both have found happiness. He started a grad school that he otherwise would not have attended if he moved with me. I moved for my job and I love my career and the challenges it brings me. I spent a few months adjusting to my new city, relearning how to be single, and focusing on my career. A few months after moving, I met my now-boyfriend. He is driven, smart and keeps me laughing, but most importantly, he feels like a partner that I can grow with and that has the same goals as me. In summary, you were right that I only had one life to live and although big changes are scary and can hurt, they are sometimes necessary in order to find happiness (as cheesy as that sounds!) -Liz
@CrazyJewishMom: Good for you, Liz!
@KateFriedmanSiegel: I’m so glad it worked out and everyone is now happy! Breakups always suck, but it sounds like it was the right thing for both of you!
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