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“I Never Expected to be One of Those Guys Whose Girlfriend Ruled His Life”…

Rob's personal dating story Rob's personal dating story

Note from Alex: Here’s an article from my friend Rob who has been so kind as to share a personal story about relationships, sex, drama and all that it is over and in between. With that said, Rob, they’re all yours…

Hello Just Keep the Change, my name is Rob. I never expected to be one of those guys whose girlfriend ruled his life.

Heck, I remember talking with my buddies about a friend or two of ours back in college and how “that would never happen to me”. But a demanding, manipulative girlfriend can sneak up on you when you’re busy living life, and the next thing you know you’re in a relationship from hell. That’s why happened to me.

Kelli With an “I”

I met Kelli at work, like so many people do, I guess. She was a supervisor in a different department and, I have to admit, that kind of appealed to me. Things were great at first. We kept work in the workplace and there was no reason for our work status to matter. Heck, Kelli’s job was a big plus, because she introduced me to other managers and we got along. If anything, our relationship was helping me make friends at the workplace, and I was a young guy fresh out of college looking to move up.

Love and Romance

Like I said, things were great for the first year. We dated. We had our circle of friends, sort of a different circle of friends from what I was used to. Maybe I was looking for something a little different and more adult. Kelli was a few years my senior, but the age difference wasn’t that big of a deal. We had similar hobbies, similar interests. Even our lives were some pretty parallel: both from suburbia, both from broken homes, both from the same part of the country. We had reasons to relate.

Things were even casual at first. We dated off and on for about 4 or 5 months. I continued to see other people, but nothing much to speak about. Kelli was married to her career. We got along.

ex gf relationship

Things Take a Turn For the Worst

About five months in, though, we started to get more serious. It all started on Kelli’s 29th birthday. I made sure we had a romantic night. We made love. Maybe she was feeling her age, because we talked seriously about our relationship for the first time. After that, Kelli and I were in a committed relationship. It was something I wanted, too. We clicked.

Even then, things were good for the next half year. Then we started talking engagement and marriage. In hindsight, I realise Kelli was on a time table. Something in her needed to have a fiance, needed to be planning the future, needed to be talking kids and a family life and good schools. Me, I was still in a different place than Kelli, and that’s when I started to pull away. It was subtle at first.

Kelli Changes

That’s when Kelli started to show her other side: demanding, jealous, spiteful. I realized that Kelli was used to getting her way and that she didn’t like being told “no”. I guess being a supervisor does that to you.

Me? I had my doubts, but I also had a year together that was playing tricks with my mind. Kelli and I had had an amazing year together – in many ways, the best year of my dating life. We had been equals in a relationship for most of that year and I was content. Even now, I wanted to remain in the romance: it’s just that Kelli was wanting to go faster than I was. Well, that’s what I thought at the time.

My friends saw it differently. Moving into a new circle of friends, I guess I had lost touch for weeks and sometimes even months on end. When the engagement came about, I naturally wanted Kelli to meet my friends. They weren’t impressed, on either side of the equation. It’s always crazy when two worlds collide, but my friends were astounded I was with what they saw as a bossy, over-critical biyatch. Frankly, they were amazed I put up with Kelli’s act.

A Dramatic Argument

In one dramatic scene, one of my oldest, closest friends (Dustin) took me out for drinks and told me he thought we were co-dependent. I told Dustin my engagement wasn’t any of his damn business. Things got heated. I told him I should come over the table for the way he talked about Kelli. Dustin shot back with “Die tryin'” and walked out of the place.

We didn’t talk for a while. It put a real strain on our friendship. Frankly, I didn’t even know what codependent was, but Dustin got me to thinking. After considering what my buddy had to say, I decided he was right. Something was wrong. I wasn’t in the kind of relationship I wanted to be in.

So there I was, engaged to a woman who was a superior at work, who was friends (or so I thought) with half of my direct managers at work, and who was starting to put all kinds of crazy demands on my time and loyalties. Anytime were were apart for more than an hour, she was calling my Blackberry. She was demanding I “check in” with her at all hours of the night. She didn’t want me seeing my friends, sometimes even my family. Suddenly, seemingly out of nowhere, I was in a crazy romance.

ex gf relationship

The Breakup

So we end up going to a party at my sister’s one night. Kelli was never very happy about these kind of get-togethers, but Kelli’s had gutted it out a few times, because my sister would obviously be her sister-in-law soon. My sister, for her part, likes to have a good time at her parties, so she didn’t like to see Kelli coming, because she had made a scene at the previous event.

We get to the party and are having a good time for about an hour. It’s at that point that I see Rachel, a woman I had known through my sister for a couple of years. Rachel and I had had chemistry from the start and I had asked her out when we first met. She was serious with a guy at the time, but had since broken up. Rachel and I would talk at these parties, but we had become friendly acquaintances and I didn’t feel any kind of romantic chemistry.

Kelli didn’t see it that way. She saw me talking with this hottie and I guess she didn’t like the way Rachel looked at me. From what happened later, maybe she sensed something in the way I acted, though there was nothing conscious on my part. Whatever the case, Kelli came over to the two of us and started up her act. She was snotty to Rachel and controlling towards me, trying to put me down or put me in my place or whatever. Rachel isn’t the kind of person to listen to that kind of stuff about someone she likes, so she told Kelli to calm down and stop being a bitch.

The next thing you know, Kelli is leaving the party and telling me to come along. We go outside to her car and have a huge fight. I had had enough. I grew a set and told Kelli our relationship had spiraled out of control. I told her she had changed. She told me she realized she didn’t know me. I replied, “I think it’s obvious we neither one knew one another like we thought.” Then I called off the engagement. Enraged, Kelli spun out down the road.

A First Kiss

So there I was, having made a big scene at the party with my fiance. As they say, the wedding was off. You can imagine walking back into that party (I had no ride) and having to answer all those questions. My sister and her friends wanted to know what had happened, then I had to listen to all my over-served friends tell their Kelli horror stories. Even at that moment, I didn’t want to hear that. Dustin told them they were stupid for saying all those things, since we’d be back together the next day. I told Dustin he was one to talk, but we grinned at each other and knew we were good again.

I went to apologize to Rachel for having to see all that and put up with my controlling ex-fiance. She was real cool about it. We found a quiet place away from everyone and sat and talked for a while. I told Rachel my troubles and she told me she’d been through something similar.

Rachel told me she was “out of there” and offered to drop me off. I accepted. Before I got out of the car, Rachel asked me out sometime, “if I was really through with that girl”. I replied, “I was about to ask you the same question.” Rachel told me that she was definitely through with Kelli. We laughed, then we kissed.

Rob and Rachel Sitting in a Tree

Kelli and I talked a few times about reconciliation, but it was a formality at that point. We both knew it was through. I was afraid I would see repercussions at work, but I eventually realized that Kelli’s personality had rubbed more than me the wrong way. We’re in different parts of the business, which is really good.

Rachel and I eventually started seeing one another. Rachel has some of the same traits I liked about Kelli – she speaks her mind, she’s easy to talk to, she’s gorgeous – without the negative traits. We make a good pair, because we’re equal parts of a couple. Right now, it’s just casual, but I can see it going somewhere eventually. There’s a lot of potential there.

With Rachel, I feel like I traded up.

Happily Yours,
Rob

Note from Alex: Thanks Rob. Now, it might be appropriate to write about what you could learn from the story… But instead, I want to ask you, what’s the lesson? Tell me in the comments! :-)

This guest post was provided by Dating Online, a website offering exclusive reviews of today’s popular dating websites. Dating Online also operates the blog: Dating Zen.

Image one, two and three.

18 thoughts on ““I Never Expected to be One of Those Guys Whose Girlfriend Ruled His Life”…

  1. Yavor

    Hey good for Rob! Sometimes we sense the little things in others and we are quick to brush them off. But they are signs of great personal differences that eventually lead to failed relationships.

    At least Rob traded up :)

    Cheers,

    Yavor

    Reply
  2. JCZ

    Thanks for this post! It was a pleasure to read – both because of what you share with us and because it’s written well.

    As to Alex’ question: I find this difficult to answer. What I’d learn? Well, for starters: to stay who you are and to keep hanging on to your own ideals!

    Reply
  3. Michael

    Thanks Alex and Rob!

    Two ideas for a great follow-up: as Alex suggests, a post from Rob outlining what he feels he could do differently next time, and where he feels he might have made specific mistakes (one I see right off: choosing to adopt his girlfriend’s life instead of merging hers with the life he already had).

    Or maybe a post from Kelli’s perspective (whether written by her or even Alex): I would find that hugely informative.

    Cheers to both of you!

    Reply
  4. Alex

    Jason, thanks for your comment man. To hang onto our own ideals is an ideal we should all live up to… Wait, can you even say that?
    Fuck it’ :-) I just did.

    And Michael, those are some very good ideas. And I see that mistake, too. Guys make it all the time…

    Cheers!

    Reply
  5. Pingback: “I Never Expected to be One of Those Guys Whose Girlfriend Ruled … | Problems Resolved

  6. Scott D

    Rob,

    Thanks for the story man. As a matter of fact, I recently was just dumped by a girl very similar to Kelli. Of course I’m still upset about it but reading stuff like this always gives me hope for my own future. You should definitely keep us updated on your status with Rachel. She sounds like an awesome girl.

    Reply
  7. Victor

    Rob, i have to be honest in that I completely disapprove of this article being on the front page. I would think it belongs more in the ex girlfriend part of our forum here as it is essentially a breakup story with Rachel being your lucky break at the end. That lucky break is something that’s not going to happen to the majority of those in similar situations with demanding girlfriends, which is where the difficulty comes in relating to it, or taking it as advice.

    I have some questions I’d like you to answer:
    -What main point did you learn from this experience?

    -If Rachel hadn’t been there as a rebound, how would you have taken the engagement being called off?

    -Why did you allow Kelli’s behaviour when it was obvious that she was becoming a burden to your other relationships?

    -What made you stick around for as long as you did?

    …Hopefully, with these questions, we gain some better insight.

    Reply
  8. Alex

    Scott, I’m glad you gained something from this little write-up!

    And Victor, let me start out by saying: thank you! It’s always a fresh breath of air when someone is brutally honest with you. It’s appreciated, really.

    I am not sure at the moment that Rob will stand in to answer the questions, and regarding that, publishing this story maybe wasn’t the smartest move on my part (at least not when taking everybody’s feelings and thoughts into consideration)

    This is where the waters are divided. Is it unrealistic and might make someone getting over their ex sad? Yes. But can it also bring some hope? Clearly so, pointing at my man Scott.

    Victor I promise you that I will do everything I can to make Rob come over here and reply to a question or three. I have also offered him to chat over the phone with me if it’s easier.

    Time will tell.

    Once again thanks for the honesty.
    Alex

    Reply
  9. Rob

    For Michael:

    In response to: “Where he feels he might have made specific mistakes (one I see right off: choosing to adopt his girlfriend’s life instead of merging hers with the life he already had)”

    That’s a great point, Michael. You’ve got to maintain your support system, maintain your bearings. They always tell you to “be yourself”. Trying to reinvent your life too quickly isn’t honest and it isn’t healthy. Your history always catches up to you.

    My biggest mistake was taking the relationship to another level. Kelli wanted to and I agreed, so that’s my mistake. I wasn’t ready for engagement and marriage, but I fooled myself into thinking the time was right. It’s so obvious now that I wasn’t ready, but it’s harder to see that in the midst of things.

    As they say, I got carried away. That’s my biggest regret from the whole thing, because I wasted her time. I had deep feelings for Kelli (just not deep enough) and, once I was committed, I knew it would hurt her to uncommit (if that’s a word). I never should have committed in the first place because, at that point, there’s no taking it back without a whole lot of hurt.

    To your other comment, I don’t think Kelli’s ever posted anything on a website. She would probably see that as a waste of her time, so I don’t expect her to respond. Alex, I’d love to see you make a post from Kelli’s perspective, though I’m afraid I’d get slammed.

    Reply
  10. Rob

    For Victor:

    “What main point did you learn from this experience?”

    One lesson I learned was to avoid making a commitment in the heat of the moment. We had a great night on Kelli’s 29th birthday and suddenly I was in an engagement I hadn’t thought through. That’s something I regret, because I clearly hadn’t thought through the relationship the way I should have.

    I definitely don’t want to paint Kelli as a villain and me as a hero. I made big mistakes and I regret those mistakes hurt Kelli. She was controlling, but there’s no law against that. Her behavior changed, but I think she’s a naturally jealous person and that’s going to make people behave in unattractive ways.

    “If Rachel hadn’t been there as a rebound, how would you have taken the engagement being called off?”

    I wish I could say I would have had the resolve to fall back into a bad relationship, but I think there’s a much better chance I would have made the same mistake again and tried to reconcile. While it’s not essential to have another woman in the wings to get out of a relationship, I guess it’s nice having options.

    I tend to get over relationships okay. I probably would have been a basket case for two months and my friends would have gotten sick of seeing me, then I would have found somebody I liked and moved on. That’s my track record, at least.

    In my experience, the first month to six weeks or maybe two months are a little strange, because you’re getting used to a new lifestyle. But then I always rebound. I try to stay active socially and I’ve always enjoyed meeting new people, even when I’m coming out of a breakup. I would recommend anyone coming out of a breakup to stay social. Don’t close yourself off.

    “Why did you allow Kelli’s behaviour when it was obvious that she was becoming a burden to your other relationships?”

    The mind (or your heart, whatever you want to call it) can play tricks on you at times. It’s easy to think you’re in love and put up with some unpleasantness when you find fulfillment in the relationship. That’s what people are supposed to do, right? Thick and thin, all that stuff. It’s easy to rationalize the bad things, when the good things do something for you.

    I guess I was a little naive or charmed by dating a slightly older woman. Looking back, that probably played a role. I had been in several “serious” or semi-serious relationships before, but most of those were in college. I felt like this was the first after-college, real world adult relationship, so my expectations lacked perspective, or seemed to (I realize I was just fooling myself now).

    I came from a broken home where I didn’t know my mother the way I would have liked, so maybe having a woman boss me around didn’t seem so bad at first. It was real subtle, too, because Kelli wasn’t like that at first – at least very often. I guess when she got comfortable that she had me, the real Kelli came out. I’m guessing there.

    Whatever, at a point, dating someone I saw as a little more worldly and a bit of an authority figure who was introducing me to a new world and was kind of bossy was appealing to me, and then it got old. Novelty wears off, I guess.

    Also, I kind of isolated myself in a different relationship, so for a time, I didn’t bring a whole lot of perspective into my life with Kelli. I don’t want to give the impression it was all bad with Kelli. For a long time, the good outweighed the bad, I guess.

    “What made you stick around for as long as you did?”

    There’s a natural cycle to relationships sometimes. In this case, I think the newness wore off. Kelli’s world was entirely different than what I was used to, so I was drawn into that. As the months went by, it wasn’t as new anymore, and her habits were starting to get old.

    Reply
  11. Rob

    I want to thank everyone for their comments. I don’t feel like I’m a pushover or easily controlled, so I hope all the guys (or girls) out there in a similar relationship can understand that control issues happen subtly sometimes.

    You can wake up one day and find yourself in a bad place. Relationships require you to give something, but that doesn’t mean you have to let yourself be run over. A relationship is a partnership and, in the best ones, neither one should be totally “in control”.

    And if you realize you don’t have it in you to give like you should, get out immediately. That’s the kindest thing you can do in an unkind situation.

    Reply
  12. Victor

    Rob, I’m very glad I asked you those questions. The best thing to do from any broken relationship is to learn as much as you can from it, which is something that you’ve obviously done here and I believe that there isn’t a single person who cannot learn something from this. It helped me understand your situation a lot better. You sticking around through “thick and thin” would have been exactly my course of action so this will help me (as well as others) not make the mistake of giving 100% to a relationship thats obviously set for a breakup. It’s hard not to turn a blind eye to the faults of someone you care about though, because like you said, thats what people do right?


    A relationship is a partnership and, in the best ones, neither one should be totally “in control”.

    …That is what I’m looking for right now. :)

    Reply
  13. Victor

    Alex, thank you by the way. I’m not always that outspoken in person, but I am striving to be honest all the time because that would be a slice of freedom.

    I have noticed that when I am at my most confident, with an attractive girl in front of me, that this is the persona that comes out. At this moment, I have no issue addressing mistakes or annoying habits about a girl, which is something they seem to find attractive. So far, it seems that the attractive girls appreciate this, it’s probably a breath of fresh air compare to guys being nice to them all the time.

    Reply
  14. Lee

    I recently came across this phrase when reading a book, “I could go down in flames watching her”. That’s how powerful some women are: they keep destroying a guy, but instead of running away he keeps worshiping her and kissing her feet.

    Reply
  15. Bruce

    I want to thank everyone for their comments. I don’t feel like I’m a pushover or easily controlled, so I hope all the guys (or girls) out there in a similar relationship can understand that control issues happen subtly sometimes.

    You can wake up one day and find yourself in a bad place. Relationships require you to give something, but that doesn’t mean you have to let yourself be run over. A relationship is a partnership and, in the best ones, neither one should be totally “in control”.

    And if you realize you don’t have it in you to give like you should, get out immediately. That’s the kindest thing you can do in an unkind situation.

    Reply
  16. Tyler

    This one is for Rob:

    Did you find yourself having any regrets after leaving Kelli? I know probably not right away after reading this. But sometimes this creeps up on us down the road.

    I only ask because I have been through a similar situation and I had to break it off with the girl, for very simillar issues of her being controling and jealous.. I felt great afterwards. It was all over and I could be happy again. But now it has been close to a month and I am finding myself starting to think about her again. And missing spending time with her.

    Please coment

    Reply