He Told Me He Wanted To Move In With Me, Then He Broke Up With Me

We’d been dating for almost a year when he suggested moving in together. I was ecstatic. But then days later, he stopped taking my calls. Weird. After practically stalking the guy, I was dealt with a “Sorry, but I think we should split up.” Um, what?

  1. Things had moved too fast. It might not seem like moving in together after eight months is moving too fast, but we had been moving fast emotionally from the beginning of our relationship. There had been no pacing ourselves. We’d hit relationship milestones in record time, so perhaps we’d run out of steam.
  2. It’s not that he wasn’t ready. I wanted to punch him when he said he probably “wasn’t ready” for cohabitation when I demanded reasons for the breakup. Um, really? When he’d been the one suggesting it? No, he was using that as a lame excuse. The real problem was that he wasn’t sure that he wanted me.
  3. There had been some shady signs. Looking back, there had been signs that he wasn’t 100 percent into the relationship. For instance, he had spoken negatively about his best friend getting married, and sometimes he didn’t really speak of the future with me in it. But they weren’t obvious red flags, so I’d overlooked them for the bigger picture: he was with me and we were happy. But clearly those signs had meant more than I’d been willing to admit.
  4. Commitment sometimes comes before a fall. It was so screwed up to think that he was taking a huge step in our relationship by suggesting we move in together, only to throw me for a loop with a breakup. How does that make sense? But I realize now that he was trying to overcompensate, perhaps attempting to convince himself that moving in with me was what he wanted. Commitment should come naturally and easily when there’s love involved — it shouldn’t be forced.
  5. He wanted a way out. It’s not like we had a huge fight or fallout — he did everything himself. It left me stunned, but maybe he was hoping for a way out of the relationship, and he knew that if he didn’t make his move and break up with me, we’d move in together and he’d miss his chance.
  6. My self-esteem hit the rocks. Even though he was the one with the issues, it still hurt like hell to think that he’d done this to me. I couldn’t help blaming myself. I looked back over our relationship with a fine-toothed comb, sifting through everything, picking out anything I might have done to make him change his mind about me. It was ridiculous self-punishment that I didn’t deserve.
  7. I hated him for what he made me feel. I tried to understand why he’d done such a thing to me, but honestly it just made me hate him even more. What kind of an jerk does that to someone?! He was a total coward and he proved himself not worthy of being in my life.
  8. But he did me a huge favor. Although I cried for days on end and felt like crap for a long time, I know that in a weird way, he did me a huge favor. Imagine if things had gone ahead and we’d started living together, or perhaps even got married. Sooner or later he would’ve pulled a stunt like this on me and it would’ve been even more traumatic. Good riddance.
  9. I learned to spot some commitmentphobe signs. I made a note of the little signs that showed me he’d been afraid of commitment so that if I saw them in a future boyfriend, I’d GTFO of the relationship instead of waiting around. I also kept my eyes peeled for other signs that a guy wasn’t going to commit, such as mixed messages. No matter how much in love with me a guy seems to be, if those signs are there, then there’s a problem. What appear to be small commitment hesitations become massive obstacles in time. There really can’t be genuine love without commitment.
  10. I cut him out of my life. He wanted to remain friends, but this was the worst thing we could do. How could we be friends if he’d been so unreliable and unfair to me? I knew that if he stayed in my life, he’d always remind me of what had happened. I had to move on with a clean break. I had to face up to the reality of what he was, not what he could be. I had given him enough of my trust and love. He didn’t deserve any more.
  11. A guy who is worthy of me will be different. This guy wasn’t the kind of guy I needed in my life. He was exactly what I wanted to avoid. I deserve the kind of guy who sees my worth and makes me feel secure, not someone who has one finger hovering over the “escape” button all the time.
Giulia Simolo is a writer from Johannesburg, South Africa with a degree in English Language and Literature. She has been working as a journalist for more than a decade, writing for sites including AskMen, Native Interiors, and Live Eco. You can find out more about her on Facebook and LinkedIn, or follow her on Twitter @GiuliaSimolo.