situation / advice

  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Dec 03, 2011 7:31 PM GMT
    I've been stuck in my own head for the past two months and would really like another gay dude's opinion about what's going on.

    I've had four relationships - the first three ending because either I or the other guy was leaving to study abroad / go to grad school / move across country, so there was always a natural, mutual end to it that I liked. I'm not the type of guy to get dramatic or cause tension or lose friends, so the fact that I'm still on speaking terms with all these guys is important to me.

    Anyway, this last one went on for five months, and ended in late September. I'm relatively new to SF, and started dating a locally-grown guy whose whole life (family, friends, college, job) is based in the Bay Area. He's a climber, and rock climbing takes up 90% of his free time. This would be lame if it wasn't for the fact that he's so good at it, and for him to stop climbing would be like for Picasso to have stopped painting. It's just not going to happen, nor should it.

    I let down my guard with this guy. We said things to each other that, in my opinion, took us to a level of intimacy where we each then had a certain amount of responsibility for the other. What's more, I knew I was so into him that I would hold back on being totally emotionally vulnerable, whereas he would be the one championing all the moments that made me think we really had a shot at some kind of future - probably not forever, but for at least longer than it went.

    So what happened is that I am still figuring myself out in terms of a career and my place in this city, which is probably making me needier than I ever was up in Oregon, and he wants to climb, climb, climb with his great climbing friends. They all live in a sort of fantastic climbing bubble where everyone is gay and happy and in great shape. He ended our relationship because I'm not a climber, and as such he just couldn't keep making time in his life to hang out with me outside of the rock gym. For the record, I am starting to enjoy the sport - it's way more fun/challenging than lifting - but it would have taken years to be even close to his skill level.

    Writing this out, I know it sounds stupid. I know I need to get over it. I mean hell, it's already been two months. Normally I don't get hung up on things. But this guy, I care for him so much, and I feel like we have so much to learn from each other. If he's left to his own devices, he is going to be out of luck fifteen years from now in terms of his ability to have any real roots in life outside of climbing. I want to be there for him, and I want him there for me. I just can't let go of all the times he'd hug me and tell me to never leave him.

    But then there would be the times that he'd tell me about how he freaks out after four months of a relationship and uses climbing as an "out" to break away. He's a year younger than me, and probably has a lot to learn, just like I do.

    There's a lot, lot more. I feel like I'm giving the basics and it's already too long, though. I think what I need are a few guys just being totally level with me and telling me to get over it, or something. Whatever advice you experienced ones have would be appreciated. Thanks.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Dec 03, 2011 9:11 PM GMT
    Best advice I ever received on relationships: You always have time for things you want to do.

    If it wasn't "climbing" it was going to be something else. You were obviously on two different wavelengths about how important the relationship was and how you felt about one another. I've been in that position: my last boyfriend made up some bullshit excuse for breaking up with me as well. My advice is twofold. 1) Forget about him if you can: he's not that into you. 2) Really examine yourself and find out the reasons you feel the way you feel about him. It obviously has nothing to do with him, because the feelings aren't reciprocated, so there is something in you that craves something that he represents. I'd look into myself to find out what that is.
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    Dec 03, 2011 9:22 PM GMT
    My two cents for what it's worth. Is he fucking crazy? To find a man that would truly be supportive and loving for something you do that does not directly involve them is as rare as having an intelligent conversation in the middle of Wal-mart. It will be his lost.
    That being said was he slamming a wall up because he was scared? Was he an asshole and emotionally playing house with no furniture with you to experience what it would feel like? Or maybe he got grossed out because he saw you picking your toenails on the couch?
    Who knows? The point is your gonna drive yourself crazy trying to figure it out. He is not there. You have to mourne and go on. You are of the age to set house. He was probably playing house. Big difference. If he comes back, this time both hands open and don't give him everything up front. It is our natures to have to hunt our prey. That which is offered upfront usually loses value quickly with guys. Sure, we will sleep with a person but that is not the same as taken them home to mommy. If a guy lives a conscious life then they don't usually play such games. Most guys aren't and they do play the game subconsciously. Bottom line though, unless there is something not being said about you and how you act in a relationship, it is not you. You seem to be a really nice guy with a good heart. Everyone says they want your type and they do.
    But there is a big difference between someone that wants to be treated good and thinks they deserve to be treated good. Most only want it and fuck up the relationship with the guy who is good and end up with the guy that physically or emotionally throws them down a flight of stairs. Be patient, the right one will come.
  • dancedancekj

    Posts: 1761

    Dec 03, 2011 9:37 PM GMT
    Agreed that it wasn't really the climbing. If it were really the rock climbing, he would have been getting you to join him, no matter how inept you were at it, OR he would have chosen to spend less time rock climbing and spend it with you.

    He sounds as if he's using the rock climbing as a convenient excuse to avoid dealing with something more. Whether that's an inability to commit, conflicting feelings or what, it ends in the same result of him not being with you.

    You sound very sweet, thoughtful, and rational, so I do not think it is you either. It sounds like you care very deeply for him, and I was very touched that you wanted to look after him when he no longer can climb. However, know that you can't fix every broken home you come across, and that it is his problem, and not yours to deal with. He must accept the consequences of withholding his effection and hyperfocusing on climbing later in life.
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    Dec 03, 2011 10:10 PM GMT
    Hey guys,

    Thanks for all that. I know if he was really into the relationship then he wouldn't have ended it. In his defense, he did try hard to make as much time for me as he could. He would show up at my place exhausted after work (works at a rock gym), he'd get up early and leave for work, and he did try to include me in climbing, to an extent.

    It's still so hard, though, because other than his climbing fixation and his inability to compromise, he embodied all the values in a guy I could want. I think if I was to take Larkin's advice and look at myself to find the answer to this fixation, it would be that I am just so inspired and humbled by his character, and I want to be more like that myself.

    Also, he just felt so good in my arms. And the way he would look at me was so full of care. I guess I don't understand how we both very equally experienced something so intimate (he wasn't bullshitting me all that time), yet he's fine moving on as if it didn't happen while I'm unable to let go. I can see how guys get hardened over time, if experiences like this repeatedly demonstrate why you shouldn't fully open up to someone. Maybe it's just part of growing up.
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    Dec 03, 2011 11:07 PM GMT
    I'm sorry guy. Love is an irrational emotion, especially when it hurts. It's important to recognize and learn from your feelings, but don't forget to find a way to move forward.
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    Dec 03, 2011 11:21 PM GMT
    It's all a part of learning relationships and how they vary with different people. Larkin had some good points/advice. You're in the meca of the gay world and there are a ton of really nice guys out there. Even though letting go is hard, you learned what's important to you and the next guy you fall for will have even better qualities. Don't be discouraged, the City is full of guys who would die for someone that cared and wanted to be there for them to do what they enjoy and still make time for you. Go forth and conquer. Good luck.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Dec 03, 2011 11:42 PM GMT
    You all have some great points. This has definitely been a learning experience.

    At some moments I'm embarrassed to have let my emotions make me so irrational (aka, creating a whole post on RJ about it), but most of the time I'm actually proud for not denying anything and being honest with myself about what I'm feeling.

    Suppressing it would only have stretched this out much longer.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Dec 03, 2011 11:53 PM GMT
    happytomd saidas rare as having an intelligent conversation in the middle of Wal-mart.


    I really like this analogy icon_biggrin.gif
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Dec 03, 2011 11:55 PM GMT
    You are a romantic and you fell for a free-spirited, adventurer. I could never work out. Find another romantic.
  • tuffguyndc

    Posts: 4437

    Dec 04, 2011 12:57 AM GMT
    Listen, you do need to get over him but do it at your own pace. Dude, are young and you have plenty of growing and learning to do. The one thing I would say is to find things to distract you. I mean find a few social clubs to join. Find some things that you really like and start doing them. Hell go on a few dates. That always seems to help get over someone else
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    Dec 04, 2011 1:23 AM GMT
    oregonboardr said He's a climber, and rock climbing takes up 90% of his free time.... he wants to climb, climb, climb with his great climbing friends. They all live in a sort of fantastic climbing bubble where everyone is gay and happy and in great shape. He ended our relationship because I'm not a climber, and as such he just couldn't keep making time in his life to hang out with me outside of the rock gym. ...
    he'd tell me about how he freaks out after four months of a relationship and uses climbing as an "out" to break away.


    There's your answer.
    He designs his whole life around one thing and that one thing isn't you.

    If someone tells you he isn't emotionally available, believe him. If he shows he's unavailable by everything he does, believe that even more.
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    Dec 04, 2011 2:50 AM GMT
    "Best advice I ever received on relationships: You always have time for things you want to do."

    I think this a great truth.

    There are also other RJ schools of thought. One is that lovers come and go but friends last etc.( I don't agree with it, but there it is). In this respect he's got his circle of rock gym guys all doing what they love best.

    There is one thing that comes to mind; this part of your post.

    "What's more, I knew I was so into him that I would hold back on being totally emotionally vulnerable, whereas he would be the one championing all the moments that made me think we really had a shot at some kind of future - probably not forever, but for at least longer than it went."


    If he didn't know how deeply you felt.........


    Conversely, there's this, "But then there would be the times that he'd tell me about how he freaks out after four months of a relationship and uses climbing as an "out" to break away."

    So small wonder you felt the need to hold back.

    warmly,

    -Doug
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    Dec 07, 2011 9:50 AM GMT
    Yeah. I think he probably wasn't being honest with me. He's now on OK Cupid, and if he actually ended things with me for the reasons he claimed, some other guy from online wouldn't be any more beneficial for him. I think there had to have been something about me that he didn't like and wasn't willing to articulate. Otherwise, I don't have an explanation for why he'd be looking for someone else.

    I still love the kid.
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    Dec 07, 2011 11:18 AM GMT
    Thank you soo much for this post ...I feel I relate to you completely and I'm going through the same emotions as you are ...

    Ive been broken apart from my ex for 6months now and still cannot get over the guy and I still say the same things ."it felt so right in his arms ,, he told me he loved me , ..we shared such a connection.."

    But at the end of the day what we need to realize that in life we may find people that will love us more than we do them ..and vice versa ..

    You guys were not on the same level ..if he really had the feelings he would take time out of climbing for a few special moments with you ...all I can say is it will take time ..be strong and try not check on ok Cupid to see what's going on with hi ..only you will be able to get over him when u ready ..heck it's 6month and I'm not over mine ..
    Be strong and patient mr
  • LuckyGuyKC

    Posts: 2080

    Dec 07, 2011 11:52 AM GMT
    I'm glad you found climbing through this guy - it's a gift you have from this guy.

    Now take that great memory and find a guy that is ready for more than a work out buddy.

    In the end it is more than likely be the other guy that has the regrets. You've already grown and realized it's not you.
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    Dec 07, 2011 12:00 PM GMT
    There's no advice from any of us that will soften the blow. You'll forge ahead when you're good and ready. Keep your chin up, and know that even though this guy is only a year younger than you, he's acting like a child.

    He will fall (figuratively speaking, of course). I wonder how he'll feel when there's nobody there to catch him.

  • HndsmKansan

    Posts: 16311

    Dec 07, 2011 12:50 PM GMT
    The fact he doesn't have a balanced approach in his life would be a major red flag for me. While I think "rock climbing" is an awesome activity, I think it should be one of a number that you both could share as a part of getting to know each other.

    He needs to adjust his focus and base it on some degree of reality. "Rock climbing" isn't his future.... it should include someone like you and a variety of healthy activities and goals for his future. Does he even have any?

    My recommendation would be to divorce yourself from him emotionally. If you want to retain him as a friend (only), it's your business, but it sounds like he isn't much of a friend either. My suggestion is for you to move on rather quickly. Someday he might wake up and realize what he lost.
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    Dec 07, 2011 1:52 PM GMT
    Him telling you that he freaks out after four months and uses climbing as an out was him telling you he was prepared to move on from you already and had no intention to extend the relationship. Not sure why, but it reminds of the Friends episode where Chandler tells Janice that he's moving to Yemen.
    Makes you wonder how many other guys he's already pulled that on.

    It's going to be a tough road, but, yes, you need to move on. Clearly this guy is not in it for a long term relationship unless you came equipped with climbing shoes, climbing rope, and a rock wall.

    If there's one lesson that I've learned from relationships: you can't force someone to love/like you.



  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Dec 07, 2011 2:59 PM GMT
    [quote][cite]

    If there's one lesson that I've learned from relationships: you can't force someone to love/like you.



    [/quote]

    Agreed
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    Dec 08, 2011 12:04 AM GMT
    Wow. I really couldn't have asked for more support than what I've received in this forum. You guys are all great. Thank you so much for your wisdom and your advice. I need to appreciate what happened for the memories, the lesson learned, and the introduction to climbing. As much as I don't want to leave him to his issues, that's what he's asking for. It still hurts to do that to someone I care so much about, but you guys are right.

    The next time my thoughts start to slip his direction, I'm going to focus on your words instead. Thanks again.

    Over and out.
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    Dec 08, 2011 12:21 AM GMT
    This is vaguely the direction that my second, and more intense relationship, went. He even admitted after that he loved me... but it simply wasn't meant to be. We dated for about 3 months, though he refused to ever use the word "boyfriend." We had amazing chemistry (and amazing sex)... but he would send mixed signals. He would pull this little stunts and stage these tantrums to PROVE we were not boyfriends or "a thing." One night he pushed away too hard, and I decided I'd had enough. Told him I was done.

    In the fallout, he said he wasn't even sure he believed in the concept of long-term relationships. Imagine my surprise when not two weeks later I happened to see his relationship status change to "in a relationship" on FB (I had forgotten to take him off). That ripped me apart.

    He was forthright and honest about his lack of desire to be with me though, which is the only reason we're still friends. He didn't lead me on TOO badly. We didn't speak for several months. It took me a year to get over him. I still like and care for him deeply. I don't love him in that way anymore, though.

    I suggest cutting yourself off from contact with him for a while. I really don't believe rebounds help you get over anything, but simply enjoying what life has to offer will slowly help you remember only the good, and forget the bad, and stop wanting him that way.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Dec 08, 2011 12:23 AM GMT
    But karma is a bitch: the new boy turned out to be a loon who faked having prostate cancer, to the point of shaving his head and wearing hospital gowns.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Dec 08, 2011 1:07 AM GMT
    You were really in love with him, but unfortunately things didn't work out.

    Don't waste more time on trying to get back together, indulging what-if scenarios, going over every interaction between the 2 of you, etc. The longer you indulge that, the longer your recovery will take.

    Don't think about him or his being on another dating site already. Maybe he wasn't in love with you or maybe he just gets over these things faster (Everyone has to do these things at their own pace, d'oh). This is about you, you finally have an excuse to be an egoist and only think about you, what you need to do to move on, how to meet new people in SF, how to make friends, where to meet them.

  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Dec 08, 2011 1:31 AM GMT
    All of the guys who have previously posted have said some great things and so I offer only the facetious and frivolous.

    The best advice I've gotten about relationships came from my kung fu instructor's wife: The best way to get over an ex-boyfriend is to get under a new one.