Feel­ing guilty over telling on co-worker I dated

Toronto Star - - LIFE - Ellie

On my first date with a co-worker, he said that he loved me, which I felt was too fast too soon. That month, he said that he wanted to have a baby with me. When I said things are mov­ing too fast, he thought that I wasn’t in­ter­ested in the re­la­tion­ship.

He’d con­stantly text me at work. He bought me a $78 box of makeup and said I look good in makeup, though pre­vi­ously he’d said he liked me with­out it. He then wanted to marry me on my birth­day. I said again that it’s mov­ing way too fast for me.

I even­tu­ally had to com­plain about him at work be­cause I of­ten felt pres­sured and stressed out.

He said that it’s ei­ther mu­tual love or mu­tual leave.

I’m hav­ing a hard time deal­ing with hurt and con­fu­sion, and see­ing him at work.

I was be­gin­ning to feel that he did love me.

How can I deal with this re­la­tion­ship hav­ing gone bad and for­get about him? I feel guilty for telling on him. Hurt and Con­fused

You’ve been bom­barded by a ma­nip­u­la­tive con­troller. You’re well rid of him for your men­tal health.

Feel no guilt. Feel re­lief in­stead, be­cause a long-term re­la­tion­ship with him would have you far more stressed out, al­ways try­ing to sat­isfy his lat­est wish.

Ev­ery­thing he did/said was de­signed to have you jump­ing to his lat­est com­mand: Love im­me­di­ately, wear no makeup, then start us­ing makeup, marry when I de­cide, etc., etc.

No won­der you reached out for help with your com­plaint. That was your in­stinct to save your­self from fur­ther ha­rass­ment.

Ma­nip­u­la­tive peo­ple draw you into their plans for them­selves, by try­ing to con­trol you. He loved him­self more than he loved you. I re­cently bumped into a man I once dated half a dozen times. He called me daily and even met me for lunch sev­eral times. Af­ter be­ing away a week with friends, he came to my home. He was ob­vi­ously want­ing to be in­ti­mate, and I thought there was enough in­ter­est and af­fec­tion between us to start a sex­ual re­la­tion­ship. The sex was OK, though brief. Then he was gone. No con­tact for a week. I guess it was a form of “ghost­ing.”

I fi­nally called him and asked if that one sex act was his sole goal. He mum­bled that he didn’t think we were go­ing to have a fu­ture, but gave no rea­sons why. When I saw him again — seven years later, me hap­pily mar­ried — I could barely look at him and was very cold.

I don’t un­der­stand why. I wouldn’t want to spend an­other minute with him, so why did I care enough to turn away? Long Ago Hurt

Back then, you felt hu­mil­i­ated and used. He han­dled the in­ci­dent badly with­out any sen­si­tiv­ity.

Time to shed any re­ac­tion, he’s mean­ing­less in your cur­rent life.

BUT you don’t have to be pleas­ant or chatty with him. He cut you cold, you’ve now done the same. It’s even, and over.

FEED­BACK: Re­gard­ing the brother’s feud over one’s daugh­ter not hav­ing been asked to be a flower girl at the other’s wed­ding (Sept. 22):

Reader: “No one is win­ning in this feud. As much as it hurts that one’s child wasn’t a flower girl, just for­get it and let it be. “When my son got mar­ried, my daugh­ter was not in­vited to the bride’s girl-only party. It was very hurt­ful. The excuse given: ‘I for­got.’ There were many other hurt­ful ex­am­ples.”

Feel no guilt. Feel re­lief in­stead, be­cause a long-term re­la­tion­ship with him would have you far more stressed out, al­ways try­ing to sat­isfy his lat­est wish

Tip of the day When pres­sured ro­man­ti­cally by a ma­nip­u­la­tor, know that he/she is seek­ing to con­trol you. Read Ellie Mon­day to Satur­day. Email ellie@thes­tar.ca or visit her web­site, el­liead­vice.com. Fol­low @el­liead­vice.

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