Will my man ever come home?

04:18, Aug 15 2012

They were together for three years, but job pressures meant he left her behind to "chase the money" in Australia. Is he ever coming back, or just stringing her along?

Send your questions to lifeandstyle@stuff.co.nz, and remember to include a nickname if you don't want to be identified. 

I had an amazing three-year relationship with a man, but he lost his job and moved to Australia to "chase the money". I have a child with another man, so I couldn't follow him. I was literally left in a position where I had to choose between my child or this man and for obvious reasons I chose my child and set my man free.

We tried the long distance relationship for a while but he broke it off, saying it was too hard to make a go of things over there when he had such a big commitment back here making him want to come home.

He has an amazing job earning big money, so I understand why he won't want to come home yet. We talk very often, about every second day, and it's always him calling, not the other way around.

My main question is, should I live in hope of him one day returning, or should I move on? He's been gone for five months now. I know he has absolutely no interest in coming home any time soon and he's even said he wants to go to Thailand and Bali before he comes back to New Zealand for a holiday, so I really do not know when I'm going to see my beautiful man again.

Advertisement

Thanks, Hayley

What a tough situation to have been in.  On the one hand you want to give your relationship the best chance, and on the other hand you have your commitment to your child.  It is really heartwarming to hear you prioritise your child's need for the involvement of both  parents - research certainly shows that children do well when their parents maintain safe supportive relationships with their children post-separation.

In terms of the relationship you may want to really stop and think about what you are wanting from it and how many goals and values you share.  Maybe you both are ready to  acknowledge the separation hasn't worked and you are actually still in a relationship  - long distance relationships can work, but they take a lot of compromise and creativity to sustain them and you may need to factor in more regular visits and an agreed end time to living separately.

On the other hand, you haven't mentioned any longterm commitment from your man and it does seem a little surprising he would be prioritising a visit to Thailand and Bali before he comes back to visit you.  You don't mention the option of you travelling to meet him for a holiday so I assume this is not financially viable for you (maybe something to discuss with him if he is making 'really big money').

Is it possible the regular phone calls are enough for him to stay connected and be happy with the state of the relationship?  Do you think you are the only one holding out hope for a longterm future together?  Unless you are clear about these answers you may find it difficult to move on.

At the end of the day you need to be clear about your own bottom lines and what you are willing to wait for.  Picture yourself in another 12 months still having calls every second day but with no future plans to be together - notice your emotions, your thoughts and what wise advice you would have for yourself in that moment.

For more advice and information on counselling, visit Relationships Aotearoa online or join them on Facebook.

We'd love to hear your take on this week's issue. Before you comment below, though, remember that this is a real-life situation. This reader has bravely shared their personal life with you; please show them respect by refraining from hurtful or abusive comments.

 

Stuff