Hayden and I had our phone discussion last night. It was enlightening. I feel so much better and wish I’d thought to ask these questions on the night of our breakup. It would have saved a lot of heartache.
Knowing what I know now, I also wish he’d approached the breakup differently.
After wishing him a happy birthday and some small chit-chat about what he’d done to celebrate, I asked Hayden these 3 questions:
- What about our life stage differences bothered him?
- Did he know he was coming to my house to break up with me?
- How did he become homeless?
Life stage differences: He was having a hard time vocalizing his thoughts, but it eventually boiled down to him realizing that he did indeed want to have his own kids someday. I am the only person he’d ever dated who had kids and he didn’t have much experience being around kids prior to that, but that spending time with us and seeing me and my kids interact really touched him. He said it’s obvious how much I love them and that I would do anything for them. He said I’m a great mom.
He said he wants to experience the same one day.
This was a revelation to me and gave me the closure I desperately needed. This wasn’t about him being dissatisfied with the relationship. In fact, he says he was very happy with our relationship.
By the time he’s ready for a family, my window for conceiving a baby would be closed. However, even if I was 10 years younger, I’m 95% sure I wouldn’t want another child, anyway.
Had he led the discussion with his desire to someday have kids, I would have understood the reason for the breakup. I can relate to that. His vagueness and inability to explain our “life stage differences” was baffling and confusing. I don’t fault him for it, though. He was emotional and nervous.
Breakup timing: He said he came over that night knowing that he was going to break up with me. He didn’t want to tell me beforehand because he didn’t want to worry me. He apologized for dropping such a large bomb without giving any indication beforehand; he acknowledged that it was undoubtedly confusing for me. I asked him why he’d agreed to increasing our weekend time together just one week prior. He said he’d agreed because he truly did want to spend more time with me. He was struggling with the idea of continuing a good, solid relationship that ultimately couldn’t provide what he wanted.
I thanked him for his honesty with me and with himself. I appreciate that he told me when he did and not several months down the road when we were all attached even more. I can’t even imagine how painful that would have been when it’s is so emotionally devastating now.
Homelessness: It won’t surprise some of you to learn that it was due to alcohol abuse. He didn’t get treatment for it but instead gradually decreased consumption over time. We all know he still drinks – and it’s possible he’s simply now a high-functioning alcoholic – but he says it’s under control now. It isn’t adversely affecting his life. He says he keeps his place clean and goes to work every day. I believe him when he says he doesn’t drink every night. When I spoke with him last night at 7 :30 pm, I could tell he hadn’t been drinking even though it was his birthday.
He spoke more about his homelessness and some of the financial details. He said he got food stamps plus $70 per month, which he used for booze. He said I’d be surprised at how much crappy alcohol you can buy for $70.
He said he’d still like to see me and the kids. I was relieved to hear it but wondered aloud how the logistics would work. I asked him when and how often because I wasn’t sure how to extend an invitation. He said for now he’d like to come over on Mondays to watch The Bachelor with us. I happily agreed.
Then he said he’d like to call me again this Thursday just to chat. I happily agreed to that, too.
I feel so much better. Relieved. Calm. I love and admire Hayden and am thrilled we had an amicable breakup and can remain friends