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Feeling like my world is falling apart

Discussion in 'LGBT Later in Life' started by Wren87, Jan 9, 2020.

  1. Wren87

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    Hi everyone,
    I'm new here, although I have been lurking for the past couple of weeks and I must say, it is comforting to see how many people are struggling with similar issues.
    So, where to begin? I am a bisexual woman who has, up until now, only dated men, and I've been in a committed relationship with a man for the past two years. I have always been open to my boyfriend about my bisexuality right from the beginning, and he always knew it was something I struggled with, but he was not aware to the extent to which I struggled with it. While I love and care about my boyfriend deeply, I'm beginning to accept that I am much more attracted to women and would likely be happier with a woman.
    A few months ago I gave up my apartment to move in with him. Around this time, he made a comment about his Uncle who recently came out as gay in his late fifties, after being married to a woman most of his life. My boyfriend said he is happy for his Uncle, but can't help but think how resentful and bitter his wife must be after he "wasted her life". This comment seemed to "trigger" me, and deeply shook something within me. All I could think was, what if that is me some years down the line? What if we get married, have kids, and then I end up leaving you to be with women? Will you be bitter and resentful to me too?
    Since then, I've pretty much been having a meltdown. I have extremely high anxiety (I have generalized anxiety disorder) and am having a lot of trouble eating. I was often vomiting in the morning from anxiety. I thought I was having a nervous breakdown.
    I was honest with my boyfriend during this whole time, so he was trying to think of ways to make the relationship work, such as counselling, and also "opening up the relationship", but I have no interest in dating women on the side or having a threesome. I am a very monogamous, so I just don't feel comfortable with this.

    A few days ago, I made the very difficult decision to leave him. We talked for quite a bit and there were lots of tears, but when I realized the conversation was going in circles, I simply had to leave the apartment. I went to my parents house in another city. I was very lucky and able to take some time off work to get my emotions in order.

    I have never been in such a dark place before. Despite having lots of support from family and friends, I just feel so alone and scared and like my entire world is falling apart. I just feel like there are so many "moving parts" to this situation:

    1) I am grieving a relationship to someone I loved and had many good times with and, at one time, thought I was going to build a life with
    2) I am dealing with the guilt of causing him pain, and the fallout of some pretty emotionally manipulative things he said to me in his pain and anger on the night I left him
    3) I am considering leaving everything I've ever known (the heterosexual world) to jump into a community I've never been a part of. On top of this I feel like I've always been intimidated by other women and haven't always had the easiest time making female friends.
    4) I am worried about coming out. I am out to some family and friends and am not particularly worried about negative reactions because Canada is a pretty accepting country, but I'm still nervous about it.
    5) Unfortunately, although I have a very supportive family and friends, none of them actually live in my city. It would take me over an hour to get to any of my loved ones. Other than my coworkers and a few friendly acquaintances, I have NO ONE in my area to give me any kind of day to day support or even just companionship. I know my day-to-day life will be profoundly lonely, and this terrifies me.

    I'm not sure I have any questions for you guys. Just looking for support, I guess. Or reassurance. Does this look as messy and hopeless a situation to you as it does to me?

    Thank you so much for listening. I wish you all peace.

    Wren
     
  2. LostJedi

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    I'm sure things seem pretty hopeless. There are a lot of things happening at once, and you've done a good job in listing them. The fact that you can clearly identify all of these suggests that you are strong and self-aware. While things are in turmoil, they certainly are not hopeless.

    Any one of the things you list creates anxiety. One on top of the other increases that stress exponentially.

    If you don't feel that you have friends or family close by (geographically or virtually) that you can learn on, you might want to find a therapist that you can talk to. I would suggest that you find one who has some background in LGBT+. Talking (and writing) in a very honest way can help you unpack and make sense of all that you are going through.

    If you live in a city, there are probably some LGBT+ groups and supports you can call on (and they may be able to offer suggestions for counselling).

    And I entirely understand the reservations about being thrust into a community you have no experience in. It can be scary and unsettling. But I found that others in the bi community (and I'd suggest it isn't unusual across the LGBT) have felt lost, scared, and alone at some point because of their sexuality, and perhaps as a result, they are very warm, gentle, and welcoming.

    You aren't alone. And you are valid.
     
  3. Shorthaul

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    I have to agree with everything Lostjedi said in his post above. You just need a moment to catch your breath and then you can start moving forwards again. Living in a more populated area does give you access to a wider support network with groups and therapists that can help you.

    Things tend to look a little worse when you are standing right in the middle of it. So just take things in little parts and slowly work your way thru them. Lots of people have gone thru the same kind of thing.
     
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  4. silverhalo

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    Hey welcome to EC we are glad you decided to join. Dealing with these kind of situations is never easy so I think you should be nice to yourself it sounds like you are doing a great job.

    1) it is difficult to be brace and leave a relationship that isn't awful because as you say, leaving is painful but I think this will put you on a path to better things.

    2) try not to be too hard on yourself, you never got into the relationship knowing that this would be the ending so none of this was intentional. As soon as you realised that for you it wasn't working you actually acted very quickly and therefor caused him as little pain as possible.
    I'm sure the things he said during his pain that night he didn't actual mean so try not to take them to heart although I am sure that is easier said than done.

    3) nothing wrong with jumping into the LGBT community, I mean if you identify as bisexual you have always been a part of it, just not actively. It sounds like it would probably be a good idea as getting into another heterosexual relationship before at least experiencing what it is like to be with a woman could land you up in a similar situation to the one you have just left.
    It could be that women have made you feel intimidated because of you underlying feeling for them (not that I'm saying you have feeling for every woman you meet). I think sometimes because of our feelings it can mean that relationships with women, even just friendships can have a lot of importance attached to them and this can make them harder.

    4) coming out is terrifying sometimes but totally worth it and I promise it gets easier.

    5) That is tough but hopefully it will help you build new friendships. For the moment you have EC. We are always here for support. Not the same as having face to face friends but not a bad replacement whilst you build some new friendships. Maybe you can search for some LGBT meetups or something in the area and start from there.

    Be kind to yourself.
     
  5. Rade

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    Hello
    Please follow what you feel in your heart. I left at 20 year marriage at 42. I find it hard making friends as a man with straight guys. I too wondered if I was chucking everything away?
    But since I've dated bi and gay guys it was right to leave.
    I can feel your pain right now and you need to give yourself time to find who you really are.
    Sending you big hugs
    Jon X X X
     
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  6. LostInDaydreams

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    Welcome to EC. :slight_smile:

    As @Shorthaul said, things tend to feel the worst when you’re caught up in it. The process of leaving my heterosexual relationship took around six months and it was a really tough time. What you’ve done is really brave, and whilst it might not feel like it now, you should be proud of yourself. Much better to honest and open now, than stay in the relationship for another 5 or 10 years.

    I agree with @LostJedi that a therapist can be incredibly helpful. I didn’t have anyone to talk to in real life, due to living away from family and friends, and it really helped to have somebody to express my emotions to and to gain another perspective.

    Take care and keep posting. :slight_smile:
     
  7. NotTooLoud

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    Jon,
    You are awesome an your comment is right on! We have to be who we are. And, most of spouses knew it anyway (mine did!).
     
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