My boyfriend never loved me

Martin and I met at a bar. He spoke to me and immediately aroused my interest. Over a glass of wine, we quickly got into the conversation and kissed passionately the same evening. From the very beginning, he conveyed to me that he wanted a partnership and I was not averse to it either. On the second date we slept together and discovered that we also harmonized well in bed. We decided on a relationship very quickly and I was able to quickly fall for him. I found the first few months together to be fantastic. We enjoyed the sex with each other, were both very eager to experiment and made plans for a summer for two.

Since Martin is about 30 years older than me, it was clear from the beginning that our relationship would not be a partnership in the classical sense. Nevertheless, it was something special for me. Never before had I felt such a (sexual) attraction to a human being. However, I wanted not only sexual experiences, but also romantic experiences. Unfortunately, my boyfriend did not share this need and I was soon unsure if he was interested in me beyond a sexual level.

He had no interest in meeting my family
After three months, the first quarrels arose. It hurt me that Martin had no interest in getting to know my family and friends and didn’t want to introduce me to anyone important to him. I could not understand that he did not feel any curiosity about my surroundings. Nevertheless, I accepted this, because due to our age difference, he could assume that our families would be skeptical about our relationship. However, the fact that he did not want to introduce me to at least a few acquaintances gave me the impression that our relationship was not serious to him. And he was ashamed of me.

The fact that he did not stand for our relationship also showed me that he claimed to be single in all social networks. On Instagram, he preferred to like the pictures of (semi-)naked women. Of course, the partner is not the only person you find attractive, but I can’t understand why you publicly express your interest in other women in this way. When I described my doubts to Martin, he accused me of stalking and felt constricted. While I wanted to discuss conflicts in a timely manner, he felt that this was unnecessary. He said that he had already had such conversations with ex-girlfriends, he could understand my point of view, but he no longer wanted discussions and stress. Apparently, I was not important enough to him (unlike his ex-girlfriends) for serious discussions. His goal was simply to restore lightness in bed after arguments.

When a friend of mine suggested that my boyfriend and I could visit her and I showed him a picture of her, he was immediately thrilled. He understood or wanted to understand the proposal in such a way that she was interested in him and imagined a “threesome”. I tried to make it clear to my friend that this was out of the question neither for my girlfriend nor for me. She’s just curious about the person I love. Nevertheless, he repeatedly inquired about my “sexy girlfriend” in the next few weeks. He stressed that a meeting would bring tension back into our love life and started again and again with the topic of “threesomes”. From my friend I learned that he looked at her Instagram profile for weeks. She advised me to break up and his interest in her hurt me extremely.

I felt more and more strongly that I was not a dream woman for my boyfriend, but only an emergency solution. Perhaps I automatically assumed that I was the “stronger” in the relationship, because my circle of friends conveyed to me that my partner was lucky to have found a friend years younger with me who honestly loves him. Little by little, however, I realized painfully that I would never be enough for him. He also complained at some point that the sex was always the same anyway and the lightness was missing.

After all, we saw each other less and less often. When he said that he had known from the beginning that he could not develop feelings for me and did not feel the same as I did, it hurt me infinitely. Every moment of happiness seemed wrong to me. At night I suffered from panic attacks, felt used and worthless and doubted that I could ever be loved. Little by little, I realized that my joint plans and dreams with my boyfriend would never come true, and sex was the only thing that united us.

Separation as the only option?
When I also found Martin repeatedly on dating portals, a separation seemed to be the only option. Even after the relationship ended, however, we kept the possibility open to have sex with each other again from time to time. In order to distract myself from my pain, I decided to try my luck at online dating and look for distraction. However, I was not yet ready to get involved in a new relationship, so I was looking for a loose connection. The man I finally met was immediately sympathetic to me and after a short acquaintance, it quickly came to sex. Although there were no emotions in the game, the experiences gave me new self-confidence and the longed-for feeling of being desired. To Martin, I first suggested an open relationship. Eventually, however, I ended my sex adventure. We deleted our dating profiles and returned to a monogamous relationship.

I love my boyfriend and still enjoy the (physical) closeness. However, the conflicts have left deep scars. I tell myself that it doesn’t matter that he doesn’t love me, because we don’t have a future together anyway. But I know that I am lying to myself and it makes little sense to be with a person who does not reciprocate my feelings. I certainly wish for a long–term partner who is curious about my life and my environment, someone who has common goals and dreams, who is proud of me and loves me honestly, but I can’t let go of my friend – not now.

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