When the love of your life dies

  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Dec 27, 2008 4:16 AM GMT
    Recently, I began sharing a relationship I had with new and not so new friends, that began right out of high school and lasted 5 years. It ended tragically when he was hit by a drunk driver. Needless to say it was devastating in a "What Dreams May Come" kind of way. We were "soulmates" in every sense of the word. It's quite a story I hope to put in words or perhaps on film, but nonetheless worth writing about for at least for my circle :-)

    17 years have passed, and I have not been in a relationship since. I believe on some level, it's partly me, and then it also might simply be perhaps there just might be only one true love in life. I tend not to believe that, but, here I am 17 years later. I'm actually very happy and grounded. Yet since talking about it, the obvious notion occurs... why have I not been able to establish a relationship with someone amazing?

    I do seek a relationship, and while I have met many great and wonderful men, that spark... the night I met my guy, has not actually reproduced itself. At the same time, with many of my closest friends, that spark was there too... we hit it off well quickly and have remained close friends ever since (all of them straight by the way - go figure :-) You could call it love at first sight, sort of...

    With that said, I've let go of him many years ago and have moved on with life. My question is, since my experiences with close friends and my guy have always centered on an instant spark and hitting it off very well right away, with no drama or real issues to talk about ever... is there another way to realize an amazing person at a slower pace? In other words, over several days or weeks perhaps... or longer?

    Hope this makes sense, and thanks for taking the time to read and respond.

    J
  • leatherman05

    Posts: 44

    Dec 28, 2008 1:51 PM GMT
    dont want to trivialise your relationship but consider taking on a dog. i have centered my life for about 25 years on dogs. you get the full gamut of emotions - including spats where u dont talk to each other for a day!!! and sadly u suffer having to part with them. but despite the devastating pain that causes especcially where euthanasia is involved, i always open myself to another love. and they dont go on the net to arrange NSA meets behind your back!!!!
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    Dec 28, 2008 5:25 PM GMT
    My partner literally died in my arms from AIDS 5 years ago, soon after Christmas. I clearly went into some kind of shock, and wouldn't sleep in our bedroom, wouldn't go into any rooms but the home office where I now slept, and the kitchen for coffee and little else. I lived off the canned things I found in the cupboard, eaten in the office in which I spent virtually my entire day & night, seldom leaving it.

    I couldn't get through a day without breaking down in a crying fit at least once, screaming "I want my Bill back! I want my Bill!" over and over. The Christmas tree stayed up for months, and the kitchen still had unwashed dishes he had left there.

    Finally in April a friend decided to intervene. He came over and forced me to take down the tree and other decorations, while he cleaned the kitchen. After that I began to spend time again in the living room where the tree had been, and to go into the kitchen more often, which had always been Bill's domain. I even began to buy food and cook it.

    I realized I needed to force myself to break out of my withdrawal, but local gay friends & places only reminded me of Bill. So I made some online friendships in a city 250 miles away, and began spending weekends there with my new gay friends at their homes. Getting away from the house and seeing new people was really helpful.

    By July I had recovered enough that I was visiting the local gay nightclub again that we had both enjoyed. And I made a deliberate effort at dating, thinking of it as therapy, but only with someone I didn't know.

    I felt terribly remorseful the morning after taking my first guy home that summer, an act of betrayal of my late partner. But then I seemed to get a sign from him, the second since he had died (the first was very dramatic, a spooky story for another time).

    My "trick" (who's still a good friend, BTW) asked that morning if I played the piano he saw in the living room, that I had bought for Bill. I replied I rarely did, and not since Bill had died, but he wanted to hear something. So I opened a box of sheet music of mine, and found a collection of Baroque pieces I hadn't seen in many years. That alone surprised me, because I had looked for it many times, and now here it was, right on top.

    I choose a bourée I couldn't remember previously playing, and before I knew it I was improvising and morphing it into a church hymn. And in my head I heard matching lyrics as I played, a religious theme dealing with the gay rights struggle.

    Now you need to understand that my late Bill was an accomplished pianist, a composer, a lyricist and a singer, all things I am not. The best I can do is plunk out a simple tune from the sheet music. But here I was not only playing "cold" but improvising as well, something I never do, and creating lyrics at the same time. I knew it wasn't me doing it, because I simply couldn't, it was impossible, and I've never done it since.

    I later wrote down that composition, BTW, and made it a gift to a gay church in Bill's name, where they performed it. And I took that incident as a sign that Bill wasn't mad at me for having brought a guy home to our bed.

    I truly don't know whether Bill was really responsible for that "miracle" or not. But I choose to believe he was, letting me know I was free to move on and live my life.

    And now I have another partner, but Bill is still in my heart, as my new partner keeps a place for his own late lover who also died of AIDS. We both do HIV/AIDS work in their names.

    I had never loved a person in my life as much as my Bill. His death devastated me, but I forced myself to move on, though not without help from dear friends. I didn't try for a Bill replacement, because that would have been impossible. Instead I found a guy who is wonderful in his own way, and we are totally happy.

    Perhaps my story will have some elements to which you can relate. If nothing else, be assured it's possible that great love can come into our lives more than once. To find it you must believe in it.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Dec 28, 2008 5:51 PM GMT
    justinono saidRecently, I began sharing a relationship I had with new and not so new friends, that began right out of high school and lasted 5 years. It ended tragically when he was hit by a drunk driver. Needless to say it was devastating in a "What Dreams May Come" kind of way. We were "soulmates" in every sense of the word. It's quite a story I hope to put in words or perhaps on film, but nonetheless worth writing about for at least for my circle :-)
    .....
    My question is, since my experiences with close friends and my guy have always centered on an instant spark and hitting it off very well right away, with no drama or real issues to talk about ever... is there another way to realize an amazing person at a slower pace? In other words, over several days or weeks perhaps... or longer?

    Hope this makes sense, and thanks for taking the time to read and respond.

    J


    Hi J,

    I know where you are coming from. My first real love died 6 months after we started our relationship. I'm sure you had built more, but I know the devastation feeling and still wonder if he will be my only real true love. I have attempted other relationships, the longest lasting 8 months (I switched "positions" to see if that would help, I gave it TOO MUCH time), but so far no luck. I too have realized that I need to take things slow. I recently fell for someone and, while I don't think taking things too fast was the real problem, I have realized I do need to do so to create something solid. That's a mess, but I've moved on for my sanity and have gone on a couple dates with someone recently. I really don't think he's the one, but he's a nice guy who I want to give a chance and I need to do this for once. SO, you asked if there is another way....YES! For me, dating and self-awareness is the key. Everyone talks about the instant spark, and moving in after a month, and it lasting for years. That's great, but I have a sensitive heart and have realized that I just need to figure people out instead of assuming they are the best person in the world just because there is chemistry. If anything, I'll end up with good friendships. SO, just step outside of your box and into unusual dating habits, and more reason with less excitement controlling your moves.

    Jason
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    Dec 28, 2008 6:35 PM GMT
    I think we each have our own M.O. - I can be attracted to someone at first sight, of course, but I don't trust it. I do trust my ability to evaluate a person over time - and I trust the feelings I develop that way.

    This is not a better way, in fact it has its drawbacks - such as growing to want a relationship with a friend. And when I meet someone new, he might "fall for" me while I'm just beginning to develop deep feelings. But I don't fight myself over it. We have our own peculiar mechanisms. You seem, justinono, to know your way, and it seems to have worked OK. But if you want to give another way a try, to potentially discover something you've missed, do it.

    Maybe take a second and third look at guys who didn't quite turn your cheeks pink on first meeting icon_wink.gif
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    Jan 01, 2009 5:06 PM GMT
    Hi justinono,

    and Happy 2009!! We both hope it brings surprises of the human heart kind, and that perhaps by looking deep into your own heart, where the sweetness of your partner-that-was-and-yet-is dwells you'll discover the depth may become a height where you can stand and feel an elation unique to the truly loved, which I somehow truly feel you are. (This embarrasses me but I learned awhile ago to accept the odd emotional/cognizant synesthaesia I appear to have and no longer question it.)

    Apologies for waxing so emotionally eloquent. This is a subject that has caused us significant distress from time to time as we know when one of us crosses over, the separation will be gigantic; next to discovering each other, the biggest event in our lives...

    I've told Bill this; when I go to please make sure he opens his heart to new love. He was sad and partly horrified at the discussion. I said,

    "Bill, I'll be on another side and it will kill me over and over to know or sense your heartache and even more to know your loneliness and despair. Please don't do that to me. I'm afraid of my bitterness over my leaving and the fear for your unhappiness. The veil that separates us will be a wall of anguish"

    Bill's eyes got large and unblinking.


    I tell him, "If I understand, wherever I am, that you'll fall in love with another after we part I'll be as happy as you can possibly imagine. Always remember that. It'll be different, it'll be new; those two things are important and what I'm hoping will get you through life. If it happens, I want you and desperately need you to know that I'll be not only approving but ecstatic, and that way I'll still be a part of your life, because as long as there's love in it, so will I be." As usual what happens with these talks is the two of us sit quietly, not crying but contemplating the sensation of each other's presence with very wet faces.

    Alright I have a wet face and so will Bill when he reads this.

    justinono, Red Vespa and to the others here that have experienced this severing, my hat is not only off to you; today I'm crying for you guys too.

    Ok wait..

    Better, sorry.

    I guess what I'm trying to say here is that you guys have the power to make your gone-on-befores happy. That's power, that's huge and fantastical power that gives me goosebumps. You can show them how much you still love them by loving another. The houses of your hearts have many rooms.

    Bill said this to me, "I'd never want you sentenced to a life of grief, waiting to die to be with me again. Love and I'll live" This guy says in a sentence what takes me a paragraph! gulp, heheh.


    sincerely, Doug of meninlove

  • joeindallas

    Posts: 484

    Jan 01, 2009 5:21 PM GMT
    17 years is a long time to grieve.

    I do not want to sound like Dr Phil but here goes. I am quoting "Love Story" when Ryan O'Neils dying wife asks him to find somebody and be happy.

    I know that will be hard since this man was a soul mate, but you must move on. You might not find perfection but you could find somebody who is close. Everybody needs a sounding board a person who you can bitch to any never be judged. OK if s/he calls you crazy you know it was done lovingly. GET back into the pool not the deep end at first but in the kiddie side, just get back there.

    DO NOT think that lust is a vital part of a relationship, critical but not vital, so do not place al the onus on that at first.

    Hope in 2009 you find the Ying to your Yang!!
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    Jan 01, 2009 5:39 PM GMT

    Hi Jason of looknrnd. Just wanted to add that Bill read your post and was particularly touched by it, as he says he can see himself going though the same and in the same way.

    THANK YOU!

    -Doug
  • myklet1

    Posts: 345

    Feb 20, 2010 12:48 AM GMT
    One of my partners died from suicide and I never thought I would go on. I did, and my next partner died of illness. I took a long break from relationships after that, but time does heal and I have met someone I have never been happier with. I will always have a special place in my heart for the ones that have gone. I still have a hard time with their death anniversaries. I have to say that my life has changed so much from the time of my relationships with the others, but when I met the guy I am with now (and I wasn't looking) I knew instantly that he was the one for me. A lot of people do not believe in love at first sight, but for me, I can tell after talking with someone for 10 min. whether they are full of themselves or shit. But that's just me. You can't go out and find that spark.......it just happens.
  • Shiv66

    Posts: 55

    Feb 20, 2010 1:12 AM GMT
    My first love died of an accident when we were still in high school. I didn't smile for two years. I was in such shock that I never cried about it until I visited his grave for the first time three years later. (I was in another country on holiday with my family when he died far from where we lived and was buried near there.)

    The experience of romantic love was a shock for me as a teenager; I was severely "limerent" over him, and when he died my soul was scarred for life.

    Over the years, I've dreamed about Oliver occasionally. He still teases me the way he always did, then disappears into a crowd, where I can't find him. Often, because he died far away from me, the dreams take on the form of a conspiracy, that he is still alive someplace, that he was running from my love for some reason. The more paranoid dreams have abated in recent years. One odd thing about the dreams: he has grown into a handsome middle-aged man with me, inside me. And, regardless of the teasing, we are still in love after all this time.

    I have had many relationships since then. I enjoy being in love, I'm not afraid of it, I am lucky to experience it and have it reciprocated. There have been short-term romances, and longer term ones. But all of them remind me in some way of Oliver.
  • westdave

    Posts: 212

    Feb 20, 2010 1:23 AM GMT
    My partner died three years ago TODAY (02/20)....I sent him a dozen roses for Valentines Day (he was in another part of the country...long story) at the hospital he was staying at.. He was being transferred from hospital to hospital...finally he received the flowers on 02/20... the day he died!....
    .....in ways...one has to move on....though it's difficult...I have not been in a relationship since Mike died...dated a few times...etc...sex is very rare and not enjoyable...I hope to one day to find a man to love again as I did Mike...

    I feel for my brothers who have been in my situation....Amen!

    Dave
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    Feb 20, 2010 8:40 PM GMT
    I Have been blessed to of had only two men in my life over the past 20 years. My Russian love my soul mate was taken away from me just before Christmas last year via a terrorist act in Russia. He had done nothing to contribute to his death, other than being at the right place at the wrong time, embracing life, and living it to the fullest.

    Life goes on,as he would of told me and it does. I have no need to let another in y life, as I found my one. yet I'm blessed to stll have my life long companion in my life too.
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    Feb 21, 2010 12:07 AM GMT
    Oh, lord. I need to get out of this thread before I cry. I'm coming close.