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GF Broke up with me 4 months after her dad passed away

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I have read many of these stories and they are very eye-opening.

My girlfriend and I dated for about a year and a half.  Everything was great and then in early March her father died and COVID hit.  Since then, we have drifted apart but still maintained a pretty good relationship.  Unfortunately, she just broke up with me last week and said it had to do with her needing to focus on her grief and the fact we had drifted apart during COVID.  She hasn't yet had a funeral for her father (it's supposed to be in July). 

My heart is breaking for her but she completely shut me out.  She won't return texts or emails and just said she needs space and no longer wants "a romantic relationship" with me.  She did email me that she hopes we can remain friends and that I am important to her. She also emailed that she is sorry to hurt me but she needs to be "selfish" at this time. 

I feel so helpless because there's nothing to do and she cut all communication.  I love her but I guess I have to try aned deal with the helplessness and hopelessness on my end. 


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This is classic, you've already seen how it goes...not with everyone who loses a parent, but with everyone who breaks up with their SO during such a loss.  There seems to be a certain % that can't handle doing a relationship at the same time as grieving.  Grieving has a beginning but not necessarily an ending, but it does evolve, it doesn't stay in the same level of intensity as in the early days/months/years.  It can take quite a while to process one's grief and adjust to the changes such a loss means to one's life.  Unfortunately, I just don't see anyone seeking to get back together with their SO afterwards...why I haven't figured out.  My own fiance broke up with me when his mom was dying.  He never tried to reconcile.  We had a no contact period of a few months and after he resumed contact he literally was yanking me around emotionally until I figured out he didn't know his own mind and couldn't be counted on for anything...I put a guard around my heart so whatever he said wouldn't hurt me and we resumed...as friends.  It can only work as friends if you aren't expecting/hoping for something else, otherwise it's too easy to fall into trying to get the other back, which is a form of manipulation when they're not wanting that or ready for that.  Ten years later...he has been living with his XW, not exactly as a couple, but they do everything together.  He's doing to her what he would have to me had I allowed it...no real commitment.  Now he has health issues he's struggling to deal with and it's almost as if he traded the grief issues for the health issues and has nothing within himself to give a relationship.  I'm glad I figured that out long ago, I would not have wanted to be toyed with all these years!  We barely have a friendship anymore.  Most prefer not to have a friendship after breakup and in most cases I don't think they could make that work satisfactorily.  With me, I value him as a person, can talk to him, and he has a terrific sense of humor, and that's enough, but I'm glad things ended up as they did, even though ten years ago he totally broke my heart and I couldn't see anything good about it!  I cried for months.

The most important advice I can give you is to look after yourself, you can be sure she is looking after HERself.  Spend time with family/friends (as much as COVID will allow right now), keep busy, move on with your life.  The one as you knew it is no longer.  She is right, grief does require us "being selfish" and putting those needs ahead of all others, it's incredibly consuming.  I think maybe the one thing about it that might cause someone to break off a relationship is perhaps they weren't entirely happy with the relationship, although they hadn't voiced or fully recognized it.  This was the straw that broke the camel's back.  Jim (my "friend") says things would have turned out differently had his mom not died...me, I'm not so sure.  He also has Asperger's which makes it hard for him to focus on more than one thing at a time, so it's not surprising in light of that how he responded to grief.  It's just he blindsided me, just as I'm sure you felt blindsided when it happened with you.

I'm very sorry you find yourself in this situation, I know it hurts, and I sure wish people didn't have to go through this.

Here is my story, the whole bit, all of my shock, struggles, coming to terms with our breakup...


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