My boyfriend of 3 yrs broke up with me via Skype while he was texting someone else and told me he didn’t want to be with me anymore because this relationship was too toxic for him. He then proceeded to give me the silent treatment for 2 weeks before he agreed to talk in person, and even then, he would only meet in public. This all happened when I asked him about his feelings regarding moving in together and marriage and he dropped the “bombshell” of he’s been having doubts and he has issues with me being “manipulative” “controlling” and “abusive.” He didn’t give me examples of each, and then proceeded to site my struggles with finding a new job and the stress i have been under as a cause as well. The thing is, he never in the 3 yrs we were together brought these issues up for discussion. He claims he did, but I do not recall. I can count the disagreements we’ve had in one hand. I was always open with him and invited him to be honest with me. Perhaps I didn’t make him feel comfortable enough to open up, but I do not understand why he wouldn’t want to work on these issues together and instead he just quits and leaves? He says he needs therapy and needs to work on his issues outside of this relationship and without communication with me, which i still don’t understand. What am i missing and what can I do, I am pretty devastated.

A: Thank you for writing. It sounds to me as if he wasn’t ready to increase the intimacy — and this was enough for him to back away. While this is devastating, it is also good that it happened now. If he had doubts, wasn’t talking to you about his concerns, and didn’t even have the guts to talk to you about it in person, then you are better off knowing this about him now. You don’t want to find out about his characer after you’re married.

Since he can’t give you any details about your behavior in this and only points to the normal stresses of life for the reasons he is breaking up, consider yourself lucky. You deserve to have someone who can talk about their concerns with you all along the way rather than escape the relationship.

During this transition time treat yourself well. Self-care is the most important thing as you recover from this loss. If he had this capacity to treat you this way at the end of the relationship (Skype? Really?) It is better, much better, for you not to be with him. You may also want some brief individual therapy as you move through this. Click the “Find Help” tab at the top of this page to locate someone in your area.

Wishing you patience and peace,
Dr. Dan
Proof Positive Blog @ PsychCentral