Supremely Cringy First Date Horror Stories

You probably swapped as many pretty awful first date horror stories with your friends as potential mates you’ve swiped left on Tinder. When it comes to horrible first dates, they’re no different than taxes or puberty: everyone hates them, but everyone’s gotta get through them. Thankfully, the very worst first dates often become hilarious stories in hindsight, though some remain, complete terrors, even years after the fact. Plus, many horrible first dates provide you excellent excuses to end a creepy-ass date before it goes too far. The people of Reddit shared their worst first dates and they definitely do not disappoint. You might have thought you had a date from Hell, but did you ever date somebody who claimed to know the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse? Didn’t think so.

“Eh?”
“He asks me out to dinner, but instead of a restaurant he pulls into an empty parking lot and pulls out his half flaccid dick. He looks at me with a shrug and goes ‘Eh!?’ I look him in the eye all stern like for a good minute before he zips up his pants and he drives me back home in complete silence. Only when we pull into my driveway he said ‘Your eyes are too big for your face…’ I just get out and start walking to my door, but he gets out too, I figure to apologize. But no, he tries to kiss me goodnight.”
“You Like Being Daddy’s Little Sl*t”

“So I matched with this dude who seemed nice, and we agree to meet up at a coffee shop. Talking is awkward, but from the get-go, he was giving me some neck-beardy vibes. Example: I complimented his American traditional style tattoo and his response was: ‘Huh I didn’t think girls would know anything about tattoos.’ Note that this was after me talking about the tattoos I have. He also tried to forcefully order for me, which I brushed off like ‘Lol no,’ figuring it was all whatever, he’s just nervous and trying to show off or some sh*t.

Everything was still going okay until he walked me to my car. We hugged, and he leaned in for a kiss. I think ‘Whatever, I don’t care, that’s fine.’ We were making out a little and I felt his hand moving up to my face, and I thought ‘Oh, okay, he’s just going to put his hand on the back of my neck or my chin or in my hair or whatever.

NOPE. I WAS WRONG. SO WRONG. This mother*cker decided it was a swell idea to start choking me. At this point, it would be pertinent to mention I’m a 5’8″ female of average size, and he was a 6’2″ stocky dude. I froze, because that’s my response to threatening situations, and he leaned over and whispered in my ear ‘Yeah, you like that? You like being daddy’s little sl*t.’ I was just sitting there waiting for him to let go of my neck because I am pinned against the car. I finally managed to stammer out a ‘Wuh-what’ and he proceeded to tighten his grip and repeat the question, to which my survival instincts are screaming “SAY WHAT YOU NEED TO” so I just managed to choke out ‘Yes sir’ and he let me go. I proceeded to get the f*ck out of there and chewed him out after the fact.”

Their Date “Knew” The Four Horseman Of The Apocalypse

“This was by far the most terrifying/hilarious date I had ever been on. Years ago, I was a junior in high school and he was in college. We had been texting casually for a few weeks. One weekend, he met my friend and me at a local concert. When it was over, the friend I got a ride from had to leave urgently, so this guy offered to drive me home. No big deal, I thought, I needed a ride. We went to dinner and it was very nice. Nothing weird nothing suspicious.

Then came the ride home. My house was about 45 minutes away through isolated freeways in the desert. (Accepting a ride was not my proudest moment, I admit) He talked the entire ride and it went from normal small talk to him saying that he has superpowers. He said that when he was in high school he went to an alternate dimension and couldn’t find his way back. The only way for him to find his way was to sell his soul to a merchant he found in this other dimension. When he got back to this dimension he had superpowers and could control people’s emotions. He then creepily leaned over and said ‘I can make you feel anything right now…’

He also said he knew the four horsemen of the apocalypse and that he was going to help me during the end of the world. At this point, I was convinced I was going to end up in a garbage bag on the side of the road. But I got home safe. Never talked to him again until he was my server at a restaurant years later and was extremely awkward.”

His Dead Cold Eyes

“A coworker who asked me out for a drink after work. He wasn’t really my usual type but always seemed sweet so I figured I’d give it a shot. We hit a bar, and all seems well until he apparently has one too many. He starts telling me stories about his past and how he was basically a knee-breaker/hitman for some crime organization out of Mexico. He gives me tons of details about methods and the going rates for XYZ. The stories get progressively worse and more graphic, but still, I’m not really believing any of this. I think he’s trying to (very weirdly) impress me.

He’s quiet for a minute, stares off into space, and then leans over to me and his eyes just go dead cold. He tells me that if someone paid him $5,000, he would cut off one of my hands. But since we’re friends, he would do it quick and clean at the wrist and put the hand on ice so I could possibly save it.

I start believing him then. I tell him I’m feeling sick and have to go home. I stayed ‘friendly’ with him at work until he eventually got fired for stealing from the bar – I was very concerned about the ramifications of no longer being on his good side.

I still don’t know if I believe his stories about being a hired killer, but I do believe that he fantasized about it deeply enough to scare the sh*t out of me. I’ve never been happier to see someone disappear.”

MJ In The House

“It was with a guy I worked with. He picked me up from my desk dressed up like Michael Jackson, including tape around his fingers and a surgical mask on his face. He was a plump, 5’6″ white guy with blond hair, making it somehow even weirder that he was trying to look like Michael Jackson.”

He Wanted Violence

“This one guy complained about how he resented that nobody would let him talk to them about the dark side of life, including violence. I mentioned that I have a hard time watching violence against animals on TV. (I meant reality TV shows that show stories of animals who have been abused.) His face perked up, and he asked which TV show had violence against animals. There was an eagerness in how he asked which creeped me the f*ck out. I left quickly.”

Seriously, Dude?

“I went to the cinema and I felt very uncomfortable with my date, so said I wanted to leave. He then proceeds to say, ‘Let me guess, nerves, overprotective parent, wanting to leave, have you been raped before?’ The date ended right there.”

Illuminati

“I have one that’s more ‘weird’ than it was terrible. It’s a doozy. When I was 19, I was working at a shop in a less-traveled part of downtown. It was wintertime, and my hometown is dead in the winter, so there was very little foot traffic. I was working alone on a Saturday night.

A cute backpacker guy came into the shop. At the time, I considered myself to have hippie leanings, so he was just my type (yeah, I had one long skirt and wore jewelry I bought from street vendors. That’s as far as that went. Totally pretentious and naive).

We got to chatting, and he said he’d just gotten into town and was looking for suggestions on ‘fun things to do.’ I directed him to the nearest nightclubs on the next block, and he left while I went about my business. He came back sometime later to tell me that the clubs weren’t really his scene, and invited me to hang out with him at his grandparents’ place, which was on lakefront property. I agreed to it, like an idiot, all excited and flattered that this hot scruffy guy had asked me ‘out,’ thinking it was romantic or some sh*t.

Well, I went there after I closed the shop down at 10 PM. I got to the address he had given me, and it looked like a nice enough place but there were no grandparents to be seen. I wondered briefly if he had just broken in to some random property, but he seemed familiar with a few key things. I stayed, and he made me Kraft Dinner, which was pretty cool.

Then, we sat inside and he began talking about all the occult/Illuminati symbols on the American dollar bill, that everything in the U.S. is a giant conspiracy run by them, etc., etc. At this point, I was feeling uncomfortable. He told me about some experience he had in Tofino (a small, hippie-ish town on Vancouver Island) where he was on the beach and apparently saw hippies come out of the forest, draw a big circle in the sand, and then dance and chant around it in the moon/candlelight (honestly, this one could have been true). He told me about some spooky supernatural experiences he had in Stanley Park in Vancouver that also cemented his belief in ghosts. Then – the kicker – he told me he could see auras. So far, all of this could be just some hippie/free-spirit guy talking about his beliefs, yes? But he said that he believed that he was descended from the wizard Merlin since Merlin had a grey aura and so did he. He believed he was a wizard and had some kind of powers and that’s why all these weird things kept happening to him.

I had to go.

I told him I had to work early. Then, I get outside and it was the first snowstorm of the year – hooray! I could barely get my car up the driveway but finally did (no way was I going back inside or considering staying the night). At the time, I thought he was weird but was more worried about driving in the snow or waking up my parents after being out so late. He texted me once or twice after that, but I kept telling him I was busy.

I should have known better. Way better. That was so, so dangerous. Nobody knew where I was, so I was extremely lucky that he was harmless. When I tell the story to friends, they laugh about my date with a wizard, but I shudder to think of how dumb I was – it’s more about that than about some kooky dude.”

Lick It Right Up

“When I was a senior in high school, I went out with this guy after school. We grabbed some smoothies, smoked a blunt, and were planning on doing the boop, until he picked a zit when he thought I wasn’t looking, and while his face bled he LICKED HIS FINGER. I thought I was going to puke”

Straight-Up Stabbed

“Got straight-up stabbed.’ Friends set me up on a blind date and swore I’d ‘totally love her.’ She was weird at the beginning of the date and just kept getting weirder – clingy and possessive, even though we’d just met, etc.

I excused myself to hit the restroom (the joys of beer) and she hauled to the back and stabbed me in the arm with her knife, claiming I was ‘totally running off on her to make out with the cute waitress.’

I got three stitches, she got an extensive psych hold.

There was no second date.”

Oh, Mario

“On a first date: ‘My great-grandfather’s name is Mario, my grandfather’s name is Mario, my dad’s Mario, I’m Mario, and if you don’t mind, I’ll be naming our child Mario.'”

Fingers Off

“He picked me up at my house and had flowers and a bottle of wine, which for me was way too formal and awkward (I was 18 and he was 27). Then we went to the movies and he would not stop trying to finger me. I finally got so fed up about that I had him drive me home mid-movie .”

Private Time But Not In Private

“The guy kept touching himself. He also ran across the street and didn’t wait for me.”

Just A Little Casual Racism

“‘You’re definitely Chinese. How are you not Chinese?!’

I’m 100% Irish and no matter how many times I stressed this, he would not give up.”

A Parting Gift

“Picked up girl.

Drove to dinner, nice place.

Asks if it’s cool if she smokes.

She pulls out a blunt.

I get pissed off.

She blows smoke in my face.

I kick her out.

She stuck a bloody tampon to my car.”

Meet The Parents

“Dude I matched with online. I was really bored and I like to drive.

He lived about 45 minutes away, but it was up in Big Bear which is really pretty, and did I mention I was bored? He said his truck was broken so I said what the hell, I’ll drive up.

I finally found the place and he meets me outside. He doesn’t have a plan, just says we can go out to the marina by the lake and look at the stars. Ok, I’m hungry, but whatever. Well, the part of the marina we went to was not pretty. It was the backside, the creepy side with construction going on and no one around. I was freaking out a bit but had my knife on me and thought to myself not everyone is bad.

We looked at the stars, talk a bit, and then went back to his place. We walked in the door and his freaking parents were standing at the back door in their underwear looking at raccoons on the back patio. He even introduced me to them and I shook his dad’s hand while he was in nothing but his boxers!

I am too polite of a person and can’t believe it, but I actually went up to the dude’s room. Then he fell asleep on me and I snuck out.

The next day he wouldn’t stop calling me and sending me dick picks at work.”

A Point And A Wink

“I went on a date with a guy I had met online. He wanted to meet for drinks, so I went to the pub and waited. He showed up 20 minutes late on his bicycle, proceeded to come into the bar and down two pints after giving me a point and a wink. I overheard him tell the waitress to “put it on his tab” and then he came over to the table with another beer.

He proceeded to tell me about his two boys (no mention of them in our previous conversation) and how his mom wanted to take them all to Disney World. He told her that would be too expensive, so he left his boys at home and he and his mom went to Disney World instead. Then he proceeded to tell me that he rode his bike everywhere because after his sixth DUI, “those dumb cops” took his license away. He mocked me for drinking water, then in his next breath told me that he could really see falling in love with me. In 20 minutes, I got about ten words out, and most of them were me telling him I had to go.

I later found out that he worked for a friend’s father, and that he was married.”

Mystery Dating

“Got a call from a friend of a friend who I thought I’d met once before asking if I wanted to go out tomorrow (Saturday) night. Sure. I went out to her place about 40 mins away. I realized upon arrival that I didn’t actually know her name. We had dinner, talked, made out a bit, talked about going out again, made out some more, called it a night at around 1 am. I tried several ways to get her to reveal her name, to no avail. I dropped her off at her place, drove home, went to bed.

I realized the following morning that she had never spoken my name either, not on the phone or in person. I further realized that I didn’t have her phone number and called the mutual friend to ask for her number. A mutual friend had no idea who I was talking about. I gave him the address of the girl. He said he didn’t know anyone from that town and the address wasn’t familiar.

Never heard from her again.”

The Cats Out Of The Bag

“Date was dinner and a movie with a girl. We got the movie time wrong so went to dinner first. After ordering she starts looking at her phone a lot and has this weird look on her face. I ask what’s wrong she says her cat has gone missing. She goes outside to make a phone call and comes back 5 minutes later saying we have to go.

I get our food boxed and pay the bill. I drive her back to her dorm and she runs inside with no goodbye. I shrug it off and go eat my boxed cold dinner. Later that night I check Facebook and see her on a date with another guy. I send her a message asking how her cat is.”

Takeout To Take Her Out

“The girl asked if I could buy her something for takeout, mainly because her boyfriend only lets her see other people if he can get a meal out of it when she gets back home.”

https://www.theabsolutedater.com/

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The Brutal Reason Why You’re Addicted to Dating Emotionally Unavailable Men

The toxic effect of chasing men who won’t give you what you want

When you crave romantic love, you can’t live without it. But, when you’re addicted to chasing emotionally unavailable men, love becomes intoxicating.

These men can drip feed you with bits of affection, which keeps you hanging on for more, even though they do not want a relationship. You can’t get enough of them, whereby you end up addicted to wanting someone who’s not that into you — a toxic love addiction or unrequited love.

Like a drug addiction, it all feels good at the beginning. Relationships can seem distorted through an altered perspective when you’re hanging out for it.

It all feels good until the intoxicating effects of the relationship start wearing off. After the rush and excitement, it all comes crashing down, until you want more to feel the same high.

You’ve become hooked on the relationship. But, what happens when the other person doesn’t want more? You can’t get enough of them, chasing them, and waiting for the next feel-good moment.

You can look towards men to make yourself feel good when you don’t feel good enough. You can project them to be everything you ever wanted. So, you end up getting hooked into feeling good about yourself, through the lens that you see them.

You can end up on a high from chasing someone who doesn’t want a relationship, due to the intoxicating feeling. The anticipation of seeing them excites you and overrides your sense of reality.

You may feel the urge for more and they don’t want it. Somehow, you get drawn to a person who is emotionally unavailable to you. You’re addicted to the excitement of chasing them. When you pine over them, you want them more, so you can feel good again.

When you are craving romantic love, you might ignore the signs that you are not loved back. Having a love addiction can distort your perspective when you hold onto the hope or the fantasy of obtaining unmet and one-sided love.

As a relationship therapist, I hear the agony of unrequited love from those who feel stuck chasing men who don’t love them.

You must be honest with yourself and face the brutal truth when you are in love with someone who is not that into you. Otherwise, you can become blind-sighted and in denial about the actual relationship.

So, why do you have a love addiction for men who are unobtainable in some way?

It is easy to stay attached because it feels better than accepting the reality that the relationship could be over.

Love is an addiction and it can feel good, even if it’s not good for you.

You do not want to acknowledge the actual truth, because you do not want to be alone, so you’ve created this fantasy that you are loved. You can project your hopes and fantasies onto them, feeling intense passion, that is one-sided. You see them as whatever you want them to be, to fulfill your unmet needs.

You can look to others to feel good about yourself when you feel not good enough. So, you end up getting hooked into feeling good about yourself, through the lens that you see them

You ignore the signs that love is one-sided because you cannot stop yourself from holding on. You can end up chasing them and put effort into a dead-end relationship. They may even tell you the relationship is over, but you do not believe them.

You may even be misguided to think that if you fight for the relationship, you will convince them to love you back. Like an addict, you’ll do whatever it takes to get that high.

Having an addiction to unavailable men means you hold onto those who do not love you because it feels better than getting over them.

It can feel worse to go without — temporally.

The toxic effects of the addiction to pursuing unavailable men diminishes your self-worth and self-esteem, so you feel worse about yourself. This can cause many to put more effort into a dead-end relationship that goes nowhere.

Sometimes, it’s hard to be honest with the situation. Your hopes and dreams can cause you to believe whatever you want, rather than see the truth.

You’ve become addicted to something that is toxic for you and became dependent on a relationship that doesn’t really exist.

You end up attracting men who do not want a relationship while sacrificing your chances of finding real love.

The only way to recover is to withdraw from the relationship and learn how to move on from the toxic love.

The truth is, you’ve become addicted when you get hit with the intoxicating feelings so that you end up wanting more. It can be hard to give up something that feels good but is not good for you.

So you settle for someone to escape the empty void within yourself, of feeling not good enough from unmet love. When you stop looking externally to feel good about yourself, and look within yourself, you can heal the addiction of loving someone who doesn’t love you back.

Nancy Carbone is a relationship therapist. If you notice you’re addicted to chasing emotionally unavailable men, you can schedule an appointment by contacting Nancy on her website at Counselling Service Melbourne or follow her on social media for more tips and advice.

 

The Absolute Dater – Making Online Dating Easy Again

Thank you for reading my blog. Please read, like, comment, and most of all follow Phicklephilly. I publish every day.

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5 Reasons Physical Attraction Alone Isn’t The Most Important Thing In Your Relationship

Looks fade, but the emotional connection is everlasting.

Looks may be what initially attracts you to your significant other, but physical attraction alone is not enough to sustain a relationship. Connections made based on personality are, in fact, what keeps relationships alive.

To get into a relationship based just on looks isn’t wise. Physical attractiveness only allows you to see who the person is on the outside, not where it matters most.

That’s why looks alone are not the best indicator of long-term success in relationships.

Whenever we think of a couple’s likelihood to last, we think of how well they get along and their chemistry. Their collective attractiveness is what we tend to look at first, but not the main reason we think they’ll last.

There’s nothing great about having an attractive boyfriend if you don’t connect on an emotional level. You need to be able to feel comfortable enough to be your authentic self with your partner, and that means being able to laugh, cry, and eat chicken wings around them without worry.

Thankfully, long-lasting relationships aren’t solely built on looks because we don’t control our looks. Our genetics do, so how we look is completely out of our hands. Also, what we find attractive is sometimes subconscious.

Having binge-watching the reality series, Love Is Blind, on Netflix, it got me wondering whether this show was on to something. Is love truly blind? Can you really fall in love with someone based solely on the conversations you’ve shared with one another?

The answer to both questions is yes, but you do have to be attracted to your partner on a physical degree.

Although small, physical attraction does play a role in the success of the relationship, it’s still not the most important aspect.

Everyone should find their partner attractive enough to be able to enjoy the physical aspects of a relationship. When we get in relationships, we all want our needs to be met, so not finding your partner physically attractive could easily end the relationship, like not having an emotional connection.

When you’re choosing your next partner, be sure to keep in mind that physical attraction isn’t the only thing you need for a happy and healthy relationship.

1. Just because he’s physically attractive, it doesn’t mean he’ll have character.

Him being attractive doesn’t tell you anything about how he’ll treat you. You can think of quite a few boys who were extremely hot and complete f***boys and jerks. Just because he’s hot, that doesn’t mean he’ll treat you in the manner you deserve to be treated.

After the novelty effect of your partner’s looks wears off, you’ll be left with who he really is. That’s when the importance of personality and character will really hit you.

2. And it doesn’t mean he’ll be smart.

There’s nothing wrong with being a pretty boy. But in this day and age of girl bosses, intelligence is more important than ever.

Women want men who can have deep conversations ranging from business topics all the way to personal tragedies. And men who don’t have the intellectual capability of holding a conversation isn’t exactly your cup of tea.

3. His appearance doesn’t mean he’ll be loyal.

Not all men are cheaters. Some men are very upfront and transparent in that regard.

But it’s undeniable that the more attractive a man is, the more women will be interested in him. When you have more options to choose from, it makes it easier to cheat.
4. Physical attractiveness doesn’t equate to financial stability.

Financial stability is really important in relationships, especially if you’re at the stage of moving in together. But being attractive doesn’t mean he’s knowledgeable about budgeting.

Unfortunately, being attractive doesn’t pay the bills… unless he’s a male model or influencer, of course.

5. All that attention based on his looks might make him self-centered.

Being attractive can really cause some people to become cocky and feel entitled. No one wants to date a guy who’s self-centered because he thinks the whole world revolves around him!

Within a relationship, it’ll become very evident that he views himself as superior to his significant other.

The Absolute Dater – Making Online Dating Easy Again

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How Long It Actually Takes To Feel Like Yourself Again After A Breakup

You won’t feel this way forever — as long as you do something about it.

While you’re still figuring how to get over a breakup, low self-esteem is inevitable and you can’t help but wonder if you’ll ever learn to love yourself again.

Let’s face it, breakups stink! Getting over someone you loved is difficult.

Right now, you’re probably wondering how long it takes to get over a breakup, and how long your low self-esteem and lack of self-confidence will stick around.

Even if you are the one to initiate the split, you are still likely to experience a complicated range of emotions — sadness, confusion, self-doubt, and anger. You’ll ask yourself, at some point, “How long am I going to feel this way?”

The end of a relationship not only initiates lowered self-esteem but it can also be the onset of depression.

On the positive side, it can also provide a powerful learning experience that may benefit your future relationships.

But while you are waiting to “feel” that great learning opportunity, you are probably more likely to start feeling bad about yourself and wondering how long your low self-esteem will last while you’re going through the heartbreak.

While six to eight weeks is the average length of time spent getting over a breakup and recovering, according to licensed clinical psychologist Ramani Durvasula, Ph.D., author of Should I Stay or Should I Go? a variety of factors will play a role in just how long it takes for you.

I used to know someone who actually mourned the loss of his wife for over 5 years and still hasn’t recovered. The last two years of their marriage had zero intimacy, and she ended up leaving him. He was too busy blowing thousands of dollars in strip joints every night. He’s an addict and a pathological liar, so she did the right thing to leave this incredible bore. She immediately hooked up with some other guy, got pregnant, and had a baby.

She has a good job and plenty of wealth she’s earned, so good for her. She was smart enough to move forward with her life and get away from this loser. Sadly, her ex is still circling the drain and I assume will soon clog it before going down it sooner than later.

Anyway, let’s move on. 6 to 8 weeks to mourn is plenty.

Researchers at the University of Berkeley say that the brain in love is the same as the brain wired for reward (in this case, interaction with your ex).

Your brain still wants the reward (your ex, not necessarily “love”), so the symptoms of a breakup are essentially the symptoms of withdrawal.

There are 3 major factors that influence how long it takes to get over a breakup:

  • What you tell yourself about the breakup
  • What you tell yourself about your future
  • What you tell yourself about yourself

And what you tell yourself about each and all of these topics will reflect both how you feel about yourself and the speed with which you recover from low self-esteem after a breakup.

Playing the victim will always make getting over your breakup take longer. Instead of indulging all-or-nothing negative thoughts about your ex, take ownership of your own role in the breakup.

It always takes two and healthy relationships don’t just end suddenly. A realistic assessment of your relationship can actually be a source of empowerment for you.

Low self-esteem after a breakup is naturally going to rear its ugly head and tell you that you will never find love or be loved again.

But, you will learn how to get over someone and love yourself again as long as you do something about it.

Instead of believing that you will never find someone (or someone as good as your ex), empower yourself with the belief that you are on a path of learning how to love better.

The wounded, post-breakup heart tends to process painful statements and dynamics from the severed relationship: “The person who I thought knew me best and loved me the most now thinks I’m worthless, so it must be true.”

Self-loathing, however natural, doesn’t help you with building self-esteem again.

The time it takes to heal a lowered self-esteem when you’re learning how to deal with a breakup will be predicated, in large part, on your ability to realize that you are not the negative things your ex said about you or the negative things you think about yourself.

Even if it seems awkward, take time every day to engage in the practice of self-love — meditation, sleep, nutrition, exercise, socializing, getting a change of scenery, having a good cry…and getting off social media!

Take heart in the fact that extreme emotions, both good and bad, don’t linger.

We couldn’t survive if we lived 24/7 in the extreme highs and lows of the emotional gamut.

Instead of focusing on the physical manifestation of your ex, which likely stirs up feelings of negativity and anger, you can choose to focus on the positive feelings you had about them.

While that may seem counterintuitive, this practice will remind you that you had the opportunity to experience your own selflessness and capacity to love.

It will also help you to silence your inner critic and to process your emotions in an appropriate way — two important steps in mending lowered self-esteem and self-worth.

Valuing your own ability to love will empower and strengthen you to move on, low self-esteem after a breakup can disappear by reminding you that you are the only one who gets to define you.

 

The Absolute Dater – Making Online Dating Easy Again

Thank you for reading my blog. Please read, like, comment, and most of all follow Phicklephilly. I publish every day.

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Breakups When You’ve Been Together For 10 Years Or More Affect You Differently — Here’s How

It’s tough to part ways with a partner at any stage of a relationship, even in the early days. But if you go through a breakup after ten years together, it can come with a new set of difficulties. First of all, “a breakup after having been together for around a decade is a substantial change,” Lauren Cook, MMFT, a clinician practicing emotionally-focused therapy, tells us. “Not only is it a loss of a romantic relationship, but a friendship, partnership, and general sense of comfortability.”

By the ten-year mark, you’re way past the honeymoon stage, which Cook says can last for up to two years, and well into the committed, companionship stage. You aren’t just dating anymore, but have truly become a solid part of each other’s lives — with a shared routine and shared goals for the future — making it more difficult to adjust to a new life.

There’s also the fact that the longer you’re in a relationship, the closer and more interconnected you become as partners, Dr. Carla Marie Manly, clinical psychologist, and relationship expert, tells us. “On an emotional level, one key factor is that couples who are together longer are more likely to have experienced significant life events together — whether it be job changes, moving, illnesses, family issues, etc.”

Going through these things together forms bonds that become key elements within your psyches and the relationship itself, Manly says. You don’t just know each other, you really know each other, so the idea of no longer having that connection can be incredibly painful and disorienting.

young sad woman sit beside window with vintage filter effect

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To add to this, there’s all the growing you did as individuals, as well as a couple during this time. You’ve not only gone through a lot together but are entirely different people from who you were when you first met. “Even more so than five years, a decade is a transformative period of time,” Cook says. “Chances are, your life looks considerably different than it did 10 years ago and if you have a partner who has seen you through all of those seasons, it is a tremendous change.”

Maybe you grew up together, and went through a lot of firsts, like new jobs and big moves. Or maybe you helped each other overcome obstacles, in order to learn more about yourselves. While all of that is still true, and it still happened, it can be tough to look back on the time spent together. In many ways, when a breakup occurs, it might even feel like you’re losing all your memories, Manly says, and all that history.

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To untangle your lives at this point can also be tough logistically. “Often, your finances have become merged, you may have shared a living situation, and your other relationships with friends and family are intermingled even more so than in a shorter-term relationship,” Cook says. “Rewiring all of this takes time and processing.” It may be a while before you settle into a groove again, or figure out how to move through life without each other.

Of course, it’s always possible to amicably part ways and feels ready to move on, no matter how long you’ve been together. But many times, “recovering from a breakup of a long-term relationship can take quite a lot of time, particularly if the breakup was sudden,” Manly says. “If one or both partners are resistant to the breakup or shocked by a toxic issue (e.g., infidelity), the adjustment and healing time may be significant.”

Whatever the case may be, if your relationship is ending after ten years, it’s possible to make it easier on yourself, usually by quite literally taking it easy. “Part of the recovery process includes adjusting to a new normal, which means knowing that things will not feel normal for quite some time,” Cook says. “The important thing is to engage in self-care strategies, including spending time with family and friends, picking up a hobby, and getting enough sleep, exercise, and proper nutrition.”

It may even help to chat with a therapist, as they can be “incredibly helpful in addressing underlying issues such as anger, sadness, and grief,” Manly says. You can also talk with friends and mentors about your emotions and progress, she says, and any sense of “stuckness” you may be feeling.

Breaking up after only a few years together can be extremely difficult, but make it to that ten-year mark and you may find that it’s even trickier to part ways, and find your footing again. Since the process will likely be different, be sure to take your time, talk about it, process your feelings, and you will eventually be able to adjust.

 

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