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Question
Posted by: Trapped | 2005/11/23

Trapped in A Relationship

Some 12 years ago I met a man 25 years older than me. At the time no one knew I was gay, I tried to leave the relationship but was to scared of the consequences if I did, I was afraid my partner would out me and cause endless problems. 12 years later I am still in the same relationship, He cares for me and has never abused me. He is however a very difficult man to live with and I fear him. We now work together and live together, My fear is If i leave it will ruin our business and so many of our employees will be unemployed. I cry many times at night about my situation, I just wish I could love him like he loves me, but my love for him is through fear and an emotional hold that he has on me, somedays I feel I wont make the next 5 years because I am so unhappy. I have loved another guy for more than three years, this other guy does not even know it, this other guy is the only guy that I have really have ever loved. I feel I cannot move on with my life, I feel so trapped, I am not even allowed to go to the gym alone, I am constantly monitored day and night, I feel uncomfortable going to my parents because he is always in a bad mood, he is dramatic mood swings. I am trapped because I Live in constant fear for more than 12 years, what can I do.

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Our expert says:
Expert ImageGay, lesbian and bisexual expert

Hi Trapped and welcome to our forum.

Your post raises many questions: You don't give any indication of why you were afraid to leave your relationship previously - you say you feared him outing you but you don't explain why you thought he could want to do that. You also don't inform us why you continue to fear your partner - are you still afraid that he may out you? You mention that he cares for you, and even loves you and that he has never abused you yet you intimate that he has threatened to out you - which would constitute emotional abuse. It sounds as if you are out now, as your partner accompanies you to visit your parents. You don't explain the "emotional hold" he has over you. You also don't explain why your partner "monitors" you so closely - does he feel insecure in your relationship?

Since your partner has never harmed or abused you in any way in the twelve years you've been together it is difficult to relate to your last sentence, saying that you've lived in "constant fear" for all this time.

Your scenario is only complicated by the other guy - forget about him for now, he merely diverts your attention from dealing with the confusing realities of your current relationship.

It sounds as if the writing's on the wall - you don't want to be in this relationship. I assume that you were relatively young when you met your partner and it is likely that you will have evolved and developed to the point that you may no longer be so emotionally dependent on him. You could have grown more materially dependent on the relationship, but your description of staying in the relationship because of employees losing their jobs sounds like an excuse not to act. You cannot be held hostage in a relationship because of this, and businesses are closing every day. This is a reality of life and there are legal processes that would come into play.

I know I've asked many questions but I won't be able to respond to your answers. The bottom line is that for many reasons you feel compelled to leave the relationship, but for some (vague, unexplained) reasons you feel unable to do so. I'm suggesting that it isn't your partner that's keeping you in the relationship - possibly it has more to do with yourself than with him. A counsellor could help you work through this.



The information provided does not constitute a diagnosis of your condition. You should consult a medical practitioner or other appropriate health care professional for a physical exmanication, diagnosis and formal advice. Health24 and the expert accept no responsibility or liability for any damage or personal harm you may suffer resulting from making use of this content.

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Our users say:
Posted by: Deeve | 2005/11/24

Trapped,
Councilling and LOTS of it at that, will do wonders for your self steem. There are also self esteem classes that you can attend. You seriously need to start taking charge of your life - you want to - thats why you wrote to us here...??!! Unfortunately, if you are told enough that you are useless, you soon believe that you are useless. Com'on, you deserve much better. Go out and do something about yourself - you may never need to change the home scenario in the end - he may change if he sees that he has someone playing him at his own game... food for thought...?
Best of luck

Reply to Deeve
Posted by: Trapped | 2005/11/24

Hi Greek & Deeva

Yes he was my first relationship. I accept that I am responsible for own life. Sometimes to answer the expert also more directly its as if my partner has a double personality somedays he is so caring and loving other days he wont talk to me, and when he does talk he shouts at me constantly If I dare raise my voice for days on end I will feel as if I want to die and just leave this place, it makes me so unahappy, when he is stressed with something at work (we work together) he blames me for everything thats wrong, I am not allowed to associate with people without his consent. My self esteem is non existent, I feel so worthless, yet I know deep down I have accomplished so much for my partner, everybody says to me that If it was not for me my partner would not have achived stability in his life (because I am the calm one). I fear when he gets angry because he takes days to get over it and then there just so many issues and more issues that he raises, thats why I block all problems from him because he takes it all out on me. I never say no to any of his requests. You dont know what its like to live with someone that you fear ( i fear is emotional reactions and anger) because it is so unpleasant and hurts me deeply, I wish I was a stronger emotionally, but its not in my makeup.

Reply to Trapped
Posted by: Greek | 2005/11/23

I see you basically got a raw deal, Inlove with a straight guy as well. Geesh! I feel for you man.

I wish I could have been of more use. So the only aspect that glues you to this relationship is the business and as you said the emotional hold.

I sense that you are incredibly insecure. Maybe through teh years your self esteem has been chipped away and now you feel trapped. I think you should work on your low self esteem.

I am sure you are capable of much more than you think and you dont realise it.

12 years involved and still very young? was he your first?

Regards

Greek

Reply to Greek
Posted by: Deeve | 2005/11/23

Trapped,
This is hard for me to say, but you have just got to get the hell out of there. No one should be a prisoner. Life is WAY too short. Yes I know that there are lots of issues - money/ you being scared of him etc. BUT! and thats where it all ends - this is up to you. If you want to stay chained to this miserable affair for the rest of your life - then go for it! If not, then slowly but surely, work a plan - save money, ensure your own well being (councilling if necessary)etc etc, until you have a strong enough escape route - and then take your bags and run. You cannot give up your whole existance to please someone else - you don't even appear to love the fellow. No man - this is not on. Have I read this all wrong or is this not emotional abuse...?
Best of Luck!

Reply to Deeve
Posted by: Trapped | 2005/11/23

HI Greek

Yes I am still young, starting a business of my own would be difficult because I would be financially ruined.

Reply to Trapped
Posted by: Trapped | 2005/11/23

Hi Greek

My friend is involved and with a girl. He knows I care about him alot but not to the extend of loving him

Reply to Trapped
Posted by: Greek | 2005/11/23

How difficult would it be for you to start a new business of your own.

From the sound of it, you still very young, possibly in your mid to late thirties.

Your friend with whom you are inlove with is he involved? Married? Gay straight?

If he is still single then you have yet another emotional battle to fight when he tells you one day that he is involved.

If I were you I would work towards making myself truely happy.
Keep this friend as close as possible and when the time is right break it off and start a new life with this guy.

If you truely love someone then any struggle with this person wouldnt feel like one.

How sure are you that this friend of yours doesnt know how you feeling?

Regards

Greek

Reply to Greek
Posted by: Trapped | 2005/11/23

Hi Greek, we are 50% partners in the business, If I were to break it the business would close no question trust me and many people would loose their jobs and investors would loose plenty.

Reply to Trapped
Posted by: Greek | 2005/11/23

One more question,

You said that you are afraid that people would be unemployed, are you certain about this and what kind of a business would dissolve if a relationship ends?

I would just like to understand your situation better.

Regards

Greek

Reply to Greek
Posted by: Greek | 2005/11/23

Hi Trapped,

I feel for you my friend, Many relationships evolve and it seems that this relationship is ready for teh next step. Isnt there a way where you could sit and talk about your dilemma. No one should feel this way within a relationship. This other guy, are you friends?

It must be extremely complicated living and working together.

I wish you all the best my friend.

Greek

Reply to Greek
Posted by: Ross | 2005/11/23

My friend - only YOU have the power to change your life
if you are that unhappy - change it - the sooner the better
You seem to know exactly what you want so set out a plan for yourself and stick to it. let NO_ONE tell you different - you can control your life - and it takes a lot of courage
The whole point is - no-one will die because of what you decide - so just do it and make yourself happy - in the end it is only YOU and yourself that really matters
Good luck
Ross

Reply to Ross

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