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forgetmenots12

Boyfriend broke up with me- his dad has cancer

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I am a senior in high school. Peter and I knew each other through mutual friends throughout all of middle and high school, but we had never been very close. This past October however, we began talking and immediately hit it off. Our relationship progressed and everything felt very mature from the start, I had never had feelings for someone quite like I do for him. We became very comfortable with each other and weren't afraid to be ourselves and act goofy. We both have spent time with each of our families together and both of our parents began to love us being together. My parents are in love with Peter and are shocked by how much I like him already. 

Everything was great, until one week in January he began to distance himself and push me away. He would bail on planned hangouts, reply with one word to my texts, and shy away from seeing me at school. One day I finally just told him that I can see something is wrong, and his response was to not worry about it until we talked in person. I drove over to Peter's house and he got into my parked car to talk. As he began talking, he started to cry. I already knew about his dad having cancer, but he told me that it had progressed greatly and the doctors weren't sure if he was going to make it. 

I began to say that I was extremely sorry and that I would be there for him in whatever way he needed. He told me that he may feel like him and I need to take a break in the future. Throughout his conversation he told me that being together with me was adding on more stress to his situation. He felt like he wasn't able to treat me right while this was going on with his family and that he didn't want to hurt me by not being able to talk to me much. I replied that I am very low maintenance, and that I don't need constant attention to be happy, I just want him to do what is best for him to feel less stress. He told me that he knew this, but that he would still feel guilty.

A couple days pass, and I really tried to be there for him. I would stay up at night to make sure he got home safe when he felt like he just needed to escape from everything and go on late night drives. I would ask him if he had eaten dinner yet because I know how hard it is to take care of yourself when things are going on with someone you love. But then he asked me to talk again. This time, right when he got into the car he told me that he could not be in a relationship right now. He told me that he wanted to continue to be friends though, because he says he needs me in his life.

The week following, he would text me nonstop about everything he was doing. We then hung out at his house for the first time as friends, and I felt so weird and awkward because I couldn't act like his girlfriend. I didn't know how to act around him. I messed up and I texted him about how this situation is really hard for me and that this past week I have been hurting. I let him know that I want to be there for him, but it is difficult for me to step back from him and not act like his girlfriend. He then told me that this added onto his stress and that he was really sorry and felt terrible about the situation. I feel horrible for being so selfish and telling Peter these things, but I felt like I needed to tell him.

He previously told me that maybe in the future we could get back together, but I am really having a hard time. I feel selfish for hurting so much, I truly want to be there for him, but at what cost for my own feelings? I know he is going through a very difficult time, but when my past family members were sick, the one thing I wanted was to draw near to the people I care about the most, not push them away. But then again, I might not fully understand because I have never lost my dad. I want Peter to be with his family as much as he can, but it is also hurtful seeing him go off and hang out with friends after he told me while we were dating that he couldn't see me because he was only with his family. 

I know I am just a senior in high school and that I am very young, but I have never cared for someone as much as Peter and his family. I want to be there for him in whatever way I can, even if that means me being hurt. I see myself falling deeply in love with Peter. I am so confused by this situation so if anyone has any advice...... please help.

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20 hours ago, forgetmenots12 said:

I feel horrible for being so selfish and telling Peter these things, but I felt like I needed to tell him.

You are NOT selfish!  You are caring and understanding, but we can't self-sacrifice so much that we don't attend to our own feelings and needs.  This goes against every grain in your body.  By him doing what is best for himself, it is hurting YOU and that cannot be ignored.  No contact is best under the circumstances as it will give you a chance to heal and restore some clarity.  I hope you will read through some of the threads in this section because this is a scenario that is very common.  

20 hours ago, forgetmenots12 said:

but at what cost for my own feelings?

This is something to not ignore, but pay attention to.  Your feelings are valid and you not only have a right to listen to them but a duty to.  You and he have different ways of dealing with things, and they do not coincide.  It is guaranteed that troubles will come in life, we will lose people to death, things happen...how would it feel to go through life knowing that your partner could toss you aside at any given moment through no fault of your own?  THIS IS A VERY REAL CONSIDERATION which l hope you will pay attention to, it's a red flag screaming at you.

I'm so sorry for all you are going through.  Please step back and attend to yourself, focus on your family/friends and let Peter deal with himself.  It will hurt for a time but it will heal if you let it.

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