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What is my problem?

Just MiMi

New member
Many of you know I dated a YM while in Iraq for over 4 years. We had plans to marry and thankfully I found out he was already married before I either ruined my daughter's wedding or worse. We were to have a double ceremony. I really loved this man or who I thought he was. There are memories I still reflect on. If he were to call, I would not answer the phone. Why can't I move on?

I've had three dates with a gentleman who is kind. He is spiritual and shares experiences much the same as me. He is not judgemental. I do enjoy his company. However, the though of being with anyone other than the young man who was married makes me shudder. Is it possible to give your heart away and never be able to recover?

The gentleman whom I'm seeing tried to kiss me and I almost shuddered. I have been in Iraq for 7 years and have been by myself. I don't think I have any sort of PTSD even though I've seen some terrible things. I have not been able to delete my YM's e-mail for over 4 years. Never have I read such beautiful words.

Thanks for any suggestions. I'm considering counseling as I don't know how to move on. MiMi


New member
Counseling would be a huge help. I know when I left my ex, I went to a divorce recovery group and it was a huge help to be with other women who had the same thing. Some of them had been married but it was their relationship with another person they were recovering from. I found alot of answers in that group I was looking for.

Baggage reclaim.com has some good stuff on it that will help you but the main thing is maybe you just don't have chemistry with this guy.


I think that counselling will be good for you. You have to analyze exactly what part of that relationship you are hanging on to. In the meantime, keep making friends, keep having good moments in your life, and if you must, read his emails over and over until you realize, not with your mind, but with your heart, that those words do not belong to the physical man who wrote them, but to a fictional character from a story that you grew to love. This character is who you love, but reality is a married man who wrote beautiful words, a married man who was an actor in a play that gave you wonderful times.

I hope time brings you wisdom and peace.



17 Year Age Difference
Counseling and time. Those are my suggestions. It's very hard to love again, but what I DO know is that it is possible and that every love is diffrent. I think your expectations are set high because what you thought you had was nearly perfect. But it seems like you need to realize that what you "thought" you had and what you actually had, was never really real anyway. So, it seems you have fallen in love with the idea of the person you were with. Breaking THAT and letting go of the perfect love in your mind is what is going to be hard... Just remember noone is perfect, no guy, no relationship (even the one you had) ... and most importantly try and build a strong solid friendship with guys first before getting intimate in anyway.. Sometimes intimacy can turn us the other way if it's to soon. Good luck!


I know how hard it can be after extreme betrayal like you have endured. I actually think you're still shell shocked by the betrayal and need closure you will never get from him and that is why you can't move on. Been there. For years.

"Fake it til you make it" might be a good way to get back into the dating game- maybe not with this current gentleman but with other men. I also don't believe that chemistry is instant. I believe chemistry can grow with shared values and trust. It sounds like your current gentleman friend might be the kind of guy who would wait for a kiss. Why not tell him you'd like to continue seeing him but you're just not ready for anything physical and see if more feelings develop through shared activities/trust building?If you appreciate a man for his qualities but don't have "the hots" for him, it could develop over time. You don't have to date this nice gentleman anymore but you don't want to allow your past to destroy your future by getting stuck in the "he's the only one I could ever love/lust," type of thinking. He was married. He lied. He's not THE ONE for you. You know this so stop romanticizing him.
You ex was a scoundrel of the worst kind. Be grateful you are free of him and that he was not free to marry you. Hate to say this but he probably would have been cheating on you by now. You should definitely delete all his emails. He was a married liar. Poetry can not mask that disgusting truth. I am not judging you. I am empathizing. Deleting emails would be very symbolic, like throwing an engagement ring into the ocean. Shred his photos or throw them into a fire. DO IT!!! It was all a lie anyway. Why hang on to lies?

I have not met a man I could be in a LTR with since my husband left 11.5 months ago but I have had sex a few times and it's a band aid that can be fabulous and also heartbreaking at the same time. Just go slow but keep moving on.

I imagine many other folks on here would say delete the emails. Should we make a poll? Wishing you healing and love. I have been exactly where you are.
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I agree with the counseling! If you were in Iraq and saw horrible things, you need it just for that alone. So now you have TWO reasons to seek counseling. My Joe goes to a counselor regularly, and that's probably why he's as well adjusted as he is.

I would say to delete the emails. Holding on to those typed words is as unhealthy as sleeping in his unwashed t-shirt (just an example of what I have done in the past!) Every time you read the words, it's like you tore open a wound that was trying to heal.

In the mean time...... :bighug:


New member
You didn't love this man, you didn't even KNOW him. What you loved, and what you're heartbroken over, is the idea of him. And four years is a very long time.

Counseling is a good idea. It can help you get past this, and also figure out just why you feel the way you do. Memories are ok. Especially good memories. But if you cannot look fondly at some of the good memories you have with him without being overcome by angst, and possibly grief, over the life you thought you would have with him, you need therapy. It sounds like you might have some "stuck emotions." Find someone who knows NET (Neuro-Emotional Technique) Therapies who can help you "unstick" some of these emotions.

You say you ignore any current contact from this man, but you still read his old emails? Why? All you're doing is torturing yourself. Really, your YM didn't even write them. It was just a character he was playing. They are just words. Unless there are some business info or something like that in there, I agree with gorillagirl that you should delete them. It will be cleansing for you, and it will help you cut the mental ties that you still have for him.


First of all, I am sorry for the pain you are experiencing. I can understand that extreme life circumstances would heighten your perception and make you be more sensitive to someone's manipulation.

No matter if this is a dream man in your head and not the actual man you were with, you have lost that dream man and that fantasy, therefore there is pain, though partly self -inflicted.

I would think that counselling geared towards people who share your same circumstances to be appropriate, and I would also encourage hypnotherapy.

Whether this man is a fantasy or not, you have him under your skin and you need to extract him out.

4 years is a long time and you are depriving yourself of the chance to find love again. Trust that someone else will find the words and mean them and act upon them.

What this man did is just wrong! He is the problem!

Do what you can and don't beat yourself on the head if you relapse into fantasy as long as you bring awareness to what you are doing. YOu need to build new healthier habits. I am an intense person with a tendency to obsess over romance and people's motivations, I understand where you are coming from.


New member
I think the emotions were super charged because of where you were. you were on a adrenalin high/relationship.

I also think you are remembering the good times and forgetting the times he hurt you. I remember those times I was on the site then. I also think you are a remarkable person and very unselfish.

I think this new man just does not have the fermones or whatever its called that makes attraction. Keep him as a friend tho it does sound he wants more.

You guys. (military) Live beyond what is expected from civilians, you deal with more than civilians can imagine, it makes you unique but it does not mean you are invincible. Maybe it is time to talk it out with a councelor. PTSD..... possibly. I would not rule it out and people recover, but it takes time and reconnection to life outside the military.

Love does not come around just cause we want it, It sucks but its kinda true....... Having wonderful memories is a big plus because many people dont even have that, just dont rule it out, love comes in all kinds of packages, ages, shapes, colors...... it is kinda remarkable how some of us got together.

So I am putting it out there......bring love your way, in good time and the right time. Be well....... romantic memories can be lovely, we all have pasts and futures!

Just MiMi

New member

Thank you all for your suggestions. My first session with my counselor was today and I found it helpful. I must find work in the next 90 days. I've had numerious health issues, home repairs, etc. It is amazing how fast savings go. Everything is so HIGH!

As for the YM I dated. I would not even answer an e-mail or phone call. Perhaps, it was the danger that allowed me to bond so intensely with him. What I miss is the fun and companionship. Someone who thinks you make their life better. He was an exceptional liar. His words were beautiful and I've not had many written to me. It's not him, I reflect on as much as the beauty of his thoughts. I liken it to purchasing a painting and finding out it is a copy. It still is perty! I'm deleting a few at a time.

The man I was dating is not right for me. I'm listening to that inner voice. He says he is a Christian; but some of his actions don't support it. I wrote in the pet section he told me to get rid of Maggie, my English Mastiff, as he has owned his dog longer.

I did experience some scary moments while in Iraq. However, I'm more frightened of my neighborhood than Iraq. Most likely, a mortar won't hit you. There are three prisons now in my little town. I can spot new releases often. The parole office has had a total renovation. My home has lost value. I've counted five empty homes on my block which looked to be foreclosed. I had a glock in Iraq!

Finding work is my main priority and my search isn't going well. Blessings! MiMi


Finding work is my main priority and my search isn't going well. Blessings! MiMi
I will be rooting for you.
Don´t forget to look for work in unusual places like the Internet (online medical billing, online call centers, medical transcriptions)
House sitting, opening a small business that requires little cash up front.
Best of luck!

Just MiMi

New member
Any suggestions?

Thank you SheLikesKitties! I'm so concerned with internet offers. I've replied to two that were phishing scams.

Which companies have you checked out? I'm considering moving to Houston to be near my sons and doing the house sitting, elder care, etc. There aren't any homes to sit in my area! I've had many health problems since I've returned from Iraq. I'm stronger; but not able to stand for any length of time. I've a physician's appointment 06March2012.

Blessings! MiMi


His words were beautiful and I've not had many written to me. It's not him, I reflect on as much as the beauty of his thoughts.

JustMimi, most possibly the words he said are truth from a liar. Maybe it's life's twisted wisdom to deliver the most beautiful words you deserve through a man that doesn't deserve you. Maybe he was just the messenger. You inspired the words. Choose to believe that the beauty of his writing and the thoughts expressed are just the tip of the iceberg of the beautiful things that await you in love.

As far as the job search, I understand where you are coming from, as I have to find a job within 2 weeks or less, my contract ending soon. I wish I had 90 days! Went for a 3 hours assessment with 22 years old, fighting for a paid summer internship! Didn't get the internship. I'm sick of chronic unemployment and being underemployed. I read somewhere that the best way to get noticed is to send an actual letter. Thought I'd share the tip.

Just MiMi

New member
Employment saga

My last seven years have been working in Security. I was promoted to management and have numerous letters of recommendation from the military and my company. Yet....the prisons in my town have lost my application three different times! They have 19 year old kids from BK working there.

I called the H.R. manager and said, "If I bring #4 and place it in your hand, do you think you file it where you can find it should an opening present itself? My daughter says they will burn it!

Thank you for your beautiful words, Moonbeam. You will be in my prayers for work also.


Some assembly required
Hmmm... I think something seems to be trying to tell you that prison work is not the job for you.

MiMi, you have a lot of important issues to discuss with your new counselor. I hope this is someone who will help clear the path for you to come to your own insights about your situation. I hope your counselor is not the type who tells you what you should or shouldn't do. That's what my last therapist did, and I had to fire him. I believe that deep down we know what's right for us and our gut instincts are good, but there's often a lot of other junk cluttering up the view. A good counselor will help clear away the clutter.

On the issue of deleting old emails... as you know, I did this myself starting a bit over a year ago with almost 10,000 messages from my ex-YM. You will probably find, as I did, that a lot of them are NOT beautiful deathless poetry and you can let them go. Some are clearly out-and-out lies, and you can let go of those, too. A few will shine forth as keepers, obviously inspired by true feelings. Those will be worth saving IF (and only IF) they still bring a warm feeling to your heart and no trace of sadness or regret.

xo ~ Faith


New member
Delete them you will feel better. I kept a bunch from an ldr awhile ago until it got seirous with my current bf and I felt kinda free after.

I would not date anybody who told me to get rid of my dog and we were just dating. Thats more of a hey we are moving in together, what are we going to do type of thing and can out two dogs get along? He needed to go, he was too bossy.

Therapy will do you a world of good in letting go. It took me almost two years of it to acknowledge that I needed away from my ex but when I walked out the door, I was in a good place and I am in a much better place now.

Its also very hard to love again and not question everything which is what I have been working on especially when you have been cheated on and abused. It can be hard to separate your past from the present.


Happy Birthday!

Wishing you the most wonderful day, and blessings to come your way in the year ahead of you.

Warm thoughts and good vibes your way!