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I want to end this

RockyRoads's picture

I want to end this relationship and don't know how. He was supposed to make an appointment with the therapist and didn't. I asked him today and he got defensive. He isn't going to call I am sure.  If he won't do this to save us then why should I.He believes all is good.  SS is becoming poor poor baby because his friends don't like him and baseball is ramping up. BM is now texting again non stop. I don't want a huge argument when I tell him I am leaving but I am a bigger person then just walking out. And we do have some financial things that would need figured out. 


Lillywy00's picture

Figure out the financial things first if possible bc once they get pissy and passive aggressive then you gotta hire heavy muscle (lawyers etc) to make them act right. 

If you feel compelled to tell him, wait until the absolute last minute so he has no time to retaliate. 

I agree with you, once they refuse to do counseling that's usually a signal that they're not concerned about at least trying to make positive change and they're cool with maintaining the status quo (no matter how dysfunctional and no matter if it ends the relationship)

Aniki-Moderator's picture

Lillywy00 recently left a bad situation.

If you're not married, that can be easier. Get your financials in order. Consult an attorney. Google the Grey Rock Method. Make yourself uninteresting to him.

If you're concerned about your safety and the situation escalating, tell someone. Set up a new email. Get a burner phone. Find a new place to live. Discreetly pack. Have someone there when you tell him and definitely have people there to help you move. If you feel unsafe at any time, call 911.

Lillywy00's picture

Yes I did leave about 2 months ago bc my former partner was an extreme Disneyland dad who had out-of-this-world expectations out of me but no expectation/no boundaries from his kids and exwife. 

Sometimes some of these men will treat you horribly and unfairly if they think you can't go anywhere 


I didn't tell him I was leaving bc I feared he would retaliate between the time I told him and the time I moved out. I did however tell him after he left work that I wasn't going to be there when he arrived to the house. 

1st3rd5thWEInHell's picture

I scheduled counseling more times than I can count when I was going through it with my OSS21. I asked my husband to come with me but he said I should go by myself to begin with and I did. Eventually he refused to come altogether and made many excuses for subsequent other counselors. He even used this during arguments to tell me I was the crazy one and I was the one going to counseling so I am the problem and him and his son were not needing any help or improvement. Eventually, I stopped all efforts on my end. Afterwards, my husband asked multiple times to go to counseling and i told him no or make his own appt. They use counseling against you in the end if you are the one suggesting it.

Nothing will change for you so either accept the status quo or walk away or find a benefit in all of this. Your situation wont change unless the main protagonists (husband, step, ex) make a change positively for you and want to do so. Most dont but sometimes it happens....on this board, a few have had their spouses open their eyes and do a full circle change but again....only a few....

Take your time to decide what is best for you and your finances and your future/old age

la_dulce_vida's picture

I just left a 4.5 year relationship.

My XBF and I had a rough year in 2023. You can read my posts to see what was going on for me and my family. He lost his mom in late July and she died within hours of us having a conflict. I am sure the two events are now linked for him and that caused him to act out towards me a week later - just words, no danger. He told me he couldn't be with someone as awful as me. M'kay, so I agreed that we should split. Within hours of me agreeing we should end it, he asked to put it "on ice." In other words, delay us breaking up at that time. I agreed to it because he was dealing with a lot, but I said that the only way we'd likely be able to make it is with counseling.

FFWD after his mom's memorial service in September. He was still harboring some anger for the conflict we had before his mom died and I had time to think about his lack of commitment and mixed messages about our future, I set some boundaries that I honestly thought he would never go for: attend therapy to improve communication and conflict resolution AND that if marriage wasn't on the table, we should end the relationship because I'd had enough of him being wishy washy on commitment. He said he was against marriage and he'd tried therapy once and it didn't work. M'kay, so I broke it off with him.

A few days later he reaches out to me and says he can't sleep, eat, breathe and is willing to seek counseling for himself and go to couple's counseling. M'kay, so I feel like I will give him a chance if he really wants to try it because I NEVER thought he'd agree to it.

After weeks of searching, he can't find a therapist, but I find us a couple's therapist. She recommends a 1:1 counselor for the XBF. He goes to one session and had all these reasons the guy was terrible (of course) and he stops going.

We attended 5 therapy sessions with the couple's counselor. He's charming and it goes well until things get more intense. Our last session was emotional and quite raw - during the session we both said we wanted to break up. The therapist calmed us down and as our time had run out, suggested he and I talk after the session. I said I didn't feel safe doing that. She asked if I felt I was in danger. I said, "Absolutely not! I'm only talking about emotionally safe. I have no concerns for my physical safety."

So, we talked and it actually helped a lot, but after the XBF had some time to think he decided that going to therapy with me was a risk for him because I could say, "I don't feel safe" and he could be reported for domestic violence. I told him I could see his concern but the misunderstanding was addressed immediately and he was never in danger. He disagreed and said he wouldn't do counseling again. M'kay.

By then I knew I had to be done with him - that we had no future. So, I hired a moving van and moved all of my stuff out of his house last Thursday and I ended our relationship on the spot.

It stings that he's out on dating sites immediately, but that's just a sign of his weakness as a person. He takes no time for self reflection or to make sure he's in a good headspace for a new person.

The point of my post is that detaching and exiting a relationship can take many months. It is sometimes a series of fits and starts.

When he told me he couldn't be with someone like me back in July, I immediately started protecting myself financially. I gradually started moving my things to my house. I canceled the Comcast service that was in my name. I forwarded my mail to my house. I had already removed my stuff from the master bedroom and started packing my other things. I stopped when he said he wanted to put things on ice and then when he said he wanted to do counseling, but I never unpacked my things and I never moved my stuff back into the master bedroom.

I don't know your situation. Is there any fear of him being spiteful with your things or your finances? If so, I recommend you move anything of sentimental value out of the house and start gathering any financial documents you can. Maybe even separate finances and speak to an attorney about how to best start disentangling your lives.

My 2nd marriage was a disaster (the guy before my XBF) and my ex was volatile, spiteful, angry and scary. After I made the decision to leave him, I moved into the guest bedroom and started the process of buying my own house. I told him I was buying my own house and leaving the house we owned, but he didn't REALLY believe me until I had taken the day off work and hired PODS and movers to take all of my stuff out of his house while he was at work. He went ballistic that night and went through the house piling up anything I had brought into it. Thankfully, it was only 2 weeks later that I settled on my own house and moved out. He had gone to therapy with me, too - 2 separate counselors. He's definitely a covert narcissist and they are nearly impossible to treat, so counseling went nowhere.

Please take steps to plan a way out and understand it may take some time and planning.

RockyRoads's picture

I am not afraid of him hurting my physical or doing anything financially.  It will be all mental. Him saying mean things about me and then trying to telll me he has done so much changing and so on. Then he will end up crying. I just don't want the song and dance. We can never have grown up conversations. 

la_dulce_vida's picture

I can 100% relate to what you're saying. While part of me is relieved to be done with my XBF, I still love him and dread the inevitable reaching out that might occur in the coming months. I know he's looking for someone new right now to distract from our breakup, but I have a feeling that when it doesn't go as smoothly as he's hoping, he'll reach out in a pitiful way.

I am emotionally exhausted from giving my XBF all the chances, so I can understand how the drama is something you're not looking forward to.

Are you two married?

RockyRoads's picture

We are not married. I didn't know if I wanted to be married again . But I have an issues with that too. I have lived with him for almost three years. I would have thought in that amount of time he would have at least tried to get engaged to me. He has deep issues with himself and his past for sure. That is why I wanted the therapy. I do love him and even though I don't think him and I can work I honestly hoped he could find some help for himself. 

la_dulce_vida's picture

Then we have a LOT in common. I love my XBF dearly. He is in denial about his childhood trauma and how it makes him avoidant.

I believe he carries a lot of guilt and shame, for some reason. Specifically, I don't think he was a terrific husband to his late wife. I see a lot of behaviors from him that might considered "honoring her" but he didn't do enough honoring while she was alive. Instead, he honors her now, after she's gone. And in the process, his honoring has interfered with his ability to connect with me and be a better partner to me. I think he actively avoids being a good partner to me because he wasn't a good partner to his "beloved wife." Talk about repeating the same dumb mistakes.

At least my XBF was a good father and set good boundaries with his daughter. On a day to day basis, our life, living together for 18 months was pretty nice.

Him losing his mom has thrust him back into a very poor headspace and this has brought up all the weaknesses in our relationship. Without counseling for him to address his childhood traumas and grief over losing his late wife and his mother, we can't be together.

I require the people in my life to be loving, empathetic and supportive. Most of the people in my life would wrap their arms around me if they saw I was in distress. They would encourage me and remind me of my qualities when I'm feeling insecure or down on myself. They would listen and validate my feelings and experience.

My XBF seems to have some anger towards me due to the conflict we had the night before his mom died. I don't think he can think about her death, and how he showed up late to the hospital and didn't get to see her before she died, without thinking about the conflict the night before and projecting his guilt onto me. He says he's forgiven me and moved on from it..............but he hasn't. It kept coming up.

I really do wish him all good things even if right now I'm mad about him jumping right on the dating sites. I do think his problems will follow him, sadly. But he will keep doing what he's doing until it is not sustainable.

Yesterdays's picture

I think that you are right. He is going to cry and he is going to beg and say a lot of things

It makes me think of an ex boyfriend I broke up with. He cried and begged. I blocked him on stuff and he kept persisting.. Sending me emails saying how great we could have been and how much he loved me.. Etc 

I would speak to a lawyer first off. But when you do decide to leave I would try to have it all planned in advance as best as possible, (without him knowing) so that you don't have to deal with his pleading while you are trying to get out.

You'll have to think of things such as do you have joint accounts etc to consider 

Rags's picture

Take it all, clean out the house, and leave.  Have your attorney deal with divisition of whatever financial considerations remain.

Leave while he is away on a Baseball tournament trip. 

You do not owe him a face to face or prior notice that you are done and leaving.  He has not earned it.  He worships his failed family progeny and can't make an effective break from his X.  That... is on him and the failure of this relationship is on him.

Take care of you.

Yesterdays's picture

If you did happen to clean out the house while the kids are at a baseball tournament I would kind of revel in the irony of that fact... 

If you decide to leave though do know that you really did your best. Think of it this way, the fact that you came to this forum week after week trying to come up with solutions in a strong effort to make your relationship better. Your SO, he did try some things but ultimately reverted back to the same ol... Soulessly driving his unappreciative  kids around to sports to the detriment of everything  really, and not ever finding a nice balance.

Anyhow back to this forum.. Talking it out on here, going to counselling...  It is a concrete attestment to the fact that you tried to improve things in your relationship. In the end your relationship may not have worked out but that is ok and somewhere down the line you might meet someone with interests and lifestyle more in line with what you want. 

RockyRoads's picture

SO is scrambling to make the appointment for the therapist now. It is because I told him this life isn't for me. He of course isn't understanding it. I said I don't want this life. I let him know there is nothing he can do to change it. I point blank told him I don't want someone with kids and and ex in their lives. I said I don't expect you to give up your children I want out. I told him it isn't even all about that major dysfunction it is that he has extreme OCD. I told him I don't want his stress anymore. It went on and on and he doesn't get it. There at least was no yelling and fighting. I  will let him have his appointment and then when have the couples counseling I will tell him in front of a third party that his life is not for me. 

ESMOD's picture

I seem to recall that you did counseling at one point.. and the therapist told him to not go to you for venting or opinions on kids.. but he could not stop doing that.. 

I would tell new therapist that.. that you tried therapy.. that the problem here can't be fixed.. because you and he want fundamentally different lives.  you are incompatible.

RockyRoads's picture

Yea. That was over a year ago I think.  He went with me once. He can't stop himself but he can't see it.He can't agree that we don't want the same things .  And is is very obvious. I am being straight forward. 

hereiam's picture

He can't agree that we don't want the same things .  

He doesn't want to see it, doesn't want it to be true. But, he needs to man up and let you go, if that's what you want.  This is not fair to you and him making it harder and trying to get you to stay is not fair.

Therapy is a moot point, at this point.

Thumper's picture


I know it hurts. (((HUGS))) 

You are making a wise decision for YOU and that is what matters. Hang in there. 




Rags's picture

No, it isn't easy.

However, regurgitating the same steps while hoping for some major epiphany and change is aligned with the unofficial definition of insanity. Doing the same things repeatedly while expecting a different result.

You have made a diligent effort, He isn't.

End of story. Never repeat these mistakes again in you own life.  

Get on with your best life. Living well is what we owe ourselves.

So... get out of your own head, stop embracing guilt, and get on with the commitment of a new life adventure for yourself.

Get on with it and leave this shit show behind.

RockyRoads's picture

SO appointment is made but still two weeks away. At that point it will be almost two months since I saw her. If she didn't take good notes she won't remember me and he might be able to manipulate her. Whatever I suppose..  BM is texting every single day again because of SS having no friends.  Yesterday was I dropped him off at the batting cage you can pick him up.  SO was working late so all he said was I am still working.  If he weren't working he would have gladly picked him up . To make her happy and to be disrespected by SS for 10 minutes.If he was any kind of asap his answer would have been I am not going to run everytime you ask me so I would appreciate if you stop with this and that SS knows he can text me and I have told him I need advance notice. I get he can't "make" BM stop texting but he can be blunt about it. He never will and it is so unattractive.

Rumplestiltskin's picture

"BM is texting every single day again because of SS having no friends."

What is she wanting from your DH? Emotional support? If DH can't stop being her emotional support person, he is not fully available to be in a relationship with you. 

RockyRoads's picture

SO is on his I hate work kick again. He had to work late two nights. This is what his job is he has done it for 30 years. He is getting anxiety over it and I know it is because he can't make all of SS games.  

Yesterdays's picture

He's burning the candle at both ends. He has to work all these hours to pay for the bills and the competitive sports however working that much doesn't allow extra time to watch the sports but he has to pay for it...

He's doing too much. On both ends. He's going to burn out, eventually.

It seems like he's also passing on this trait to his son. To fill the void of every second of each day with activities with no rest or downtime. That's wearing the kid out too, I imagine, being over scheduled. 

Winterglow's picture

I do hope he isn't fishing for you to get a second job so that he can "take care of his son"? 

RockyRoads's picture

I would never do it.  He just tried to call me because he was leaving work at 3 no matter what today to see SS play. I cringed and didn't even answer. I don't need to hear it. I guess I am old school and think that a parent will go to games only if work allows you to have that time. If not it is your primary responsibility to provide for your child and you have to do what work says.

NotMeAnymore's picture

I cringe too when my SO takes off from work to attend to my two SS19s not urgent needs. What an example are the Disney parents setting? Taking off from work at any time and prioritizing non-urgent children matters sends them the wrong messaging. So much so that nowadays one of the SS19 does not understand why does he have to get to work on time, or why does he have to go to work on his scheduled days; he has actually lost 2 jobs because of tardiness. And, then he and SO blame SSs boss!!!!!!

Maybe I am too old school for these modern times, but there are a lot of small details regarding punctuality, responsibilities and priorities that irk me when my SO throws all that away to satisfy the SSs wants and dumb needs.

RockyRoads's picture

Yes. This is not teaching anything about priorities. This is just another regular basketball game that SS plays a few minutes of and doesn't even do a good job at it. SO has made so many games . But you hear it in movies etc. when parents tell their kids , I will never miss one of your games, I will always be there. 

RockyRoads's picture

I am going to rant but no one has to read it I just have to put it somewhere. So did the call me  at 3 and I ignored it because I didn't want to hear what I already knew he was doing then he called at 4:30 when the game would have ended. I didn't answer again. Remember I am also at work when he is calling.  He text a few minutes later saying he tried to call. I text that is was busy and getting ready to leave work. He called again and i didn't answer because I was getting in my car and the Bluetooth is just a pain when that happens I mean I know he was calling to tell me he was waiting for SS to get back from the other school so he could drive him to BMs. He called again and I picked up. He said exactly what I know he was going  to say and then wanted to go on about the bus being late. I said okay i am home see you when you get here, no nasty tone . He then called right back and said why did you get off the phone so quick. I said I need to go in and walk the dog. Another point of contention with me because it is his dog and it must be walked in order for it to do it business. Yes you will say let him do it. I don't want poop and or pee in the house so I have made the choice I have to. But what is weird I am okay with doing it if he is working but if he is running that child around it pisses me off. SO says sorry you have to do that are you mad at me for something .  I said in a nice tone no I just need to get in the house and get stuff done.  I just want to scream and say I don't give a rats arze about you and your a.hole kid. I don't know if I can hold out until we can do the couples therapy. I told him I would give him at least that opportunity but it is relentless. I know that people will say disengage but how can you disengage from that kind of a person. Ugh. Sorry 

Yesterdays's picture

I think that you actually did​​​​ disengage. Because you didn't get drawn into whatever the heck he was trying to draw you in for on the phone. You disengaged and just did your thing. He sounds super frustrating like he's always going to do something super annoying and then find fault with you​​​​... How you handled the annoying thing he did as if you were the problem.. If you were sweet and he says why are you so sweet.. What is wrong. You say nothing he says I can tell something is wrong. You give him heck and he days oh you are mad, you are always mad.. He can't tell that he's the problem?

Rumplestiltskin's picture

He is trying to bait you into an argument. I deal with this, too. I repeat in my head "Fix your face, don't respond!" "Are you upset about something?" He knows damn well what you are upset about. 

Yesterdays's picture

Yes it's a bait then he'll be mad at you being annoyed by his actions and then he'll defend what he did even stronger 

RockyRoads's picture

Yes I always have to tell myself to not respond but my personality is that if I am directly asked something I answer and answer truthfully .Even though I hate conflict . I would this rather not be asked anything. I want to mind my own business.But my SO is so relentless that it makes it almost impossible to disengage.  He didn't stop with the SS and the basketball game when he got home. I tried to keep changing the subject and he then said I want to tell you about the game. SS played bad and the whole team did blah blah blah. I said oh that sucks. He is like is that all.Just at me for more.  I said these boys try out and make the team if that is all this district has that is it. I tried to avoid anything negative about SS. I then changed the subject again. I mean I have straight told SO I don't want to discuss his kids like this. That I am tied of hearing him complain about them and not understanding what he expects from me. Like I said I have been straight up honest.  But I can't keep it up because everything leads to an argument. 

Yesterdays's picture

I think it probably depends on if you want to work through things with him or if you plan on leaving. If you want to work at the relationship my advice would be to speak up about his kids stuff and how it bothers you and how you don't like how things are. If you plan on leaving anyhow I would probably keep giving neutral answers.

Idk I just feel like being in a long term relationship where you hold things inside and don't express how you feel is going to cause damage because it will all build up inside and cause some big time resentment, also nothing will ever get solved so you'll sit there in ongoing miserable silence about all of the matters. 

RockyRoads's picture

I am planning on leaving. But I did tell him I would see what happens in therapy. I have told him numerous times exactly what bothers me. He says I don't understand how he has to be to keep his kids in his life.  So I am just trying to avoid any major arguments with him until we can be in front of a third person .  I want him to see that we are not compatible but he doesn't understand when I say it so when we go together and I say it in front of someone else maybe he can just let me go.I know people would say just screw it and walk out but I made a promise I would go to therapy with him. I don't want to be in a relationship with someone who doesn't parent and lets an ex and kids run his life.  I don't want to be with someone who does sports with his kid everyday.  Even if I am not going it interferes with my life.  I want my life not his.  I am not saying that a dad wanting to be in their kids life is wrong. It is not for me. And all of his OCD is too much for me. I am by no means a slob but if I don't want to put laundry away immediately or empty the dishwasher as soon as it is done I am an adult and should be able to do what I want. He follows rules made by his ex and his kids and I am upset with that but then I follow his rules so I am also sucker.  It needs to stop. 

Yesterdays's picture

I think that your plan of going to the therapist is a well thought out one. Your feelings are all very valid. 

la_dulce_vida's picture

I completely understand and support anyone giving their partner the CHANCE to do couple's counseling. That kept my relationship going for a few months. You'll find out soon enough, like I did, whether or not he actually wants to grow as a person. My XBF does not.

Rumplestiltskin's picture

"He says I don't understand how he has to be to keep his kids in his life."

That may be true, that this is how he has to be. It's the hole he's dug himself into. Doesn't mean you have to put up with it, though. 

RockyRoads's picture

Exactly. He has chosen never to parent and give and give. That is on him. I do understand and that is why I don't want to be part of it. 

RockyRoads's picture

Yes it is absurd to me too. I am sure some people other then him think he is doing the best he can for his kids.  But he is a wreck over all of it but insists on not changing.