Dating
Resources
Basic InformationMore InformationQuestions and Answers
Trust IssueLong Distance College Relationship Arranged MarriageTrust IssuesThe Breakup.Do You Think We Can Work This Out?How Much is TOO Much Therapy?Affection DeficitMy Boyfriend Still has his Ex-Girlfriend's PhotosI Have Been Rejected.Why my Emotional Relationships With Men Don't Last?What do you do When Your Partner Just Won't Understand or Change?Should I Stay With My Girlfriend of 4 Years?Lust or Love?Confusion From a College Long Distance RelationshipMissing My Ex-Boyfriend Terribly I Confuse Myself?Always the Friend Mom Disowning Me For Dating Another RaceSex Why Does He Lie?Why do You Think my Boyfriend Left Our Relationship in This Manner?I Feel Like he Won't Ever Love me Like he Loves herBipolar BoyfriendWhy do Men Not Find Me Attractive?RelationshipNever Been In a Serious RelationshipWhat to do?RelationshipDo you really ever 'Just Know' ? I'm always attracted to men who don't want me! What can I do?Anxiety In A RelationshipHow much guilt is normal?Torn between two lovers, and scared of what I'll doIs he crazy or am I?Should I try to salvage this relationship?Should I ask for closure 4 months after a break up? Long Distance Relationship TrialsHighly Intelligent but Socially Handicapped: The Psychology of the Nerdwas this a contolling relationship, and why would I put up with it? How can I stop getting into one-way relationships?Long distance relationshipJust looking?love rejectionLove but Different ReligionsNonexistent Lover'Selfish guitarist' wonders how to grow upNo Guy Will Be Interested In MeI have a hard time making friends with other guysShould I marry him ?Boyfriend starting to cope with adoption and abuseMy friend's new beauThere are no guarantees when it comes to loveI had become a reality to him and he cannot deal with it.Hold on LooselyHow can I open up and become my old self again?I compromised and gave inFeeling Really Alienated From My Sensitive Male SelfNever Had a RelationshipTired of this DepressionFriends With BenefitsKilling Myself In His KitchenFriend JoeAngry At Ex-BoyfriendWhen Will My Boyfriend Grow Up?26 Year Old VirginNever Had A BoyfriendVows Could Turn SourHe Stopped RespondingIn Love With A Married ManSarcastic And Wanting To ChangeA Moth Attracted To FlameConfused While Leaving An Abusive RelationshipPossessive Ex-GirlfriendPostponed Wedding DayHaving Trouble Being FaithfulI Am A LoserDepressed and Not DatingMoody BoyfriendWhy Did He Back Away?Absent BoyfriendAfraid of CommitmentPanicking BoyfriendIn Love With A Diagnosed SociopathLied About PornoEnmeshed With MumOn Becoming A PersonStruggling AlongWhat Abuse Looks Like #1What Abuse Looks Like #2Former Partner's NameFirst InfidelityIs This Abuse?Love At First SightUnhappily AttractiveDisclosure #1: Healing From RapeDisclosure #2: How Do I Tell My Boyfriend About My IllnessesGet Over Myself?Relationship With My Boss #1Relationship With My Boss #2Detached, But Loving GuyFightingGuiltyPERFECT RelationshipA Very Bad TemperHe Stopped Calling MeRelationship In TroubleScared He Will Leave MeAngry FriendDid My Parents Make Me Like This?A Wonderful ManIt's Hard To Trust AgainPickyHow To Explain Psychosis To A Boyfriend?Obsessive LoveUnlucky in LoveLack of IdentityMistake MakerNEED Him Not Want HimAbusive BoyfriendRocky Relationships and AddictionOnce Burned, Twice ShyUncommunicative BoyfriendParttime Bipolar GirlfriendA Lack Of Self-LoveAll The People I've Been WithAlways Something I Don't Know AboutMy Father Dislikes HimUntrusting BoyfriendCulture ClashPsychotic Ex-BoyfriendSweet But Aloof BoyfriendAffair After-effectsDumped Ten TimesArgumentativeRespectFreshman in LoveHate Ex-BoyfriendThe First Time Not Ready For CommitmentAdulterer's LamentDepressed BoyfriendHow Do I Leave?Lying BoyfriendThe Professor and MaryanneTrust IssuesThe Sober House LessonWhy Won't They Stay With Me?Why Won't He Speak With Me?Broken HeartUnpaid ServantBoyfriend Doesn't Give GiftsLove On The RocksCompulsive LyingCheatersInternet RelationshipPrivate DancerThe OldUnexpressive PartnerAn Alcoholic's LamentCan't Trust AnymoreRestlessAffairHow Long Does It Take To Fall In Love?Insecure BoyfriendEx-Girlfriend?Friendship after Love?Long Distance RelationshipOffice CasanovaBroken Hearted ManRejection?Troubled EngagementConfused?Immature?Love or Obsession?Shy GuyValentine's Day Present?Am I In Love?Some Short Ones First:Am I The Girlfriend And A DangerousDistant BoyfriendMy Boyfriend The TyrantUntrustworthy FiancéeFinding HerselfLusty BossPlayboy Viewing BoyfriendThe Other WomanShould I Stay or Should I Go?Boyfriend Won't CommitIntimacy IssuesAbusive GirlfriendIs This Love?Temper ProblemsHaving Cake and Eating It TooLove TriangleWhat is love, anyway?Frustrated by Emotional DistanceWaiting for LoveFalse PromisesMy Boyfriend, The Selfish MonsterWhere Do I Stand?Ruining the Best RelationshipsRocky DatingStruggling to Trust HimBeing Supportive Without Being a BurdenLearn to Trust Each OtherIrritated With Each OtherDating a WomanizerIs She Cheating on Me?Uncomfortable Around My BoyfriendAnnoying BoyfriendLying LoverI Can't Say No To My AffairI've Never Really Loved HimHis Mother is Ruining Our RelationshipDazed and ConfusedJealous of Her Male Friends...Empty and Alone...Getting Over My ExHe's Going Back to SchoolAn Affair in the WorkplaceDisappointedHow Do I Forgive Him?Inspiring Self-ConfindenceDoes He or Doesn't He Want a Family?Managing PrioritiesJust Friends?Long Distance RelationshipWhat Does He Really Want?...Am I Good Enough?He's Married...How Can I Tell It's Love?She's Gone...Am I Wasting Her Time?Could He Fall In Love with Me?How Can I Help My Fiance?Are They More Than Friends?When Will He Warm Up?I Want Out!She Wants to Have an AffairHe Just Wants to Be Friends...I Can't Let GoLearning Intimacy...He Won't Tell Me Why...My Flirtatious BeauHe's Shutting Me OutHe's Unpredictable...He's Worried about Her Ex...LonelyOver-Protective MotherDepression Affecting My RelationshipLonesomeAbortion Disclosure?Comparing FeelingsToo Young?Waiting for LoveA Second Chance?I Could Be Happier...Learning to Love?Can We Be Friends?Jealousy or Fear?My Boyfriend's Baby...Love AddictionSecret RendezvousSomeone Else's LoveAn Identity CrisisIn Love with My Best FriendDifferent ReligionsIn Love with a Married ManHe Dumped My FriendOutta Sight, Outta Mind?Scared of Hurting Him...Dating My WifeShe Needs Time...An Older ManLoving too MuchMy Boyfriend Is DepressedDiana writes:Meridian writes:T-Wayne writes:Terry writes:Vidyadhar writes:L.D. writes:Anonymous writes:
LinksBook Reviews
Related Topics

Homosexuality & Bisexuality
Relationship Problems

Ask Anne: Relationship AdviceAsk Anne:
Relationship Questions

How much guilt is normal?

Tue, Oct 21st 2008

Dear Anne, I was in a relationship with a girl for 14 years. She, madam X, was very controlling and a perfectionist. At the time that we met, I was needy and didn’t realize either of our issues. I grew dependent on her, and allowed her to take over many things in my life that I shouldn’t have. There were many fights where she would say degrading words, threats of ending the relationship and making me think I was always wrong. It took me a long time to become independent and realize that this wasn’t a healthy relationship and she wasn’t going to change as I had. So after 14 years we ended it.

In the mean time, I had a friend, Madam Y, who was also in a very long term relationship of 16 years. It appeared that they were a happy couple, traveled a lot, got along well – it seemed anyway. Madam Y is a similar type of person that I am: giving, a peace maker, positive, forgiving and a musician. I had known her for 3 years at the time of my breakup and knew I liked her as a friend, found her attractive both physically and mentally, funny and I just knew that I liked to be around her, but that’s as far as it went. I never pursued anything because I was with someone and so was she.

About a month after my relationship ended, she started making comments that made me think that she felt something for me, mind you though these comments were made when she had drank a little too much. After another month of this we were out and again she had drank too much and told me she loved me. So the next day, when we were both sober, we talked on the phone about this. We both agreed that it didn’t matter what we were feeling due to her being in a relationship, but at the same time agreed to meet after work to talk about it some more. She was having big issues with how this could have happened to her, how she could have fallen in love with someone else when she was in a relationship. So we went on this way for about another month, her trying to figure things out, not wanting to destroy a 16 year relationship, but not wanting to let me go either. During this time, the only physical contact we had was a few kisses and hugs, it was mostly all emotional. Before she found the courage to talk to her partner, who turns out to be a lot like my ex, we were found out. Her partner then wanted her to stop seeing me, but Madam Y refused. So she left her house and has been waiting for her soon to be ex to move out of her house. In the mean time she has been seeing me and we have taken our relationship to another level.

She is slowly realizing that her relationship had some big issues like communication and would have never been fixed due to her partner’s personality. However, she feels horrible, lots of sadness, blames herself and lots of guilt about hurting her partner. She talks about it all the time. It seems like when we are together she forgets for a while and we have a good time together but the next day she feels so much guilt that she make excuses not to see me for days, even though we talk on the phone daily, but I hear it in her voice.

I know we are trying to take it slow, but I feel like this guilt and bad feelings of what has happened will get in the way of us if it doesn’t stop. It is beginning to hurt me when she talks about this, about how sad she is that her relationship has ended, how bad she feels that she hurt her partner. I feel like I am being put on a back burner because she doesn’t want us to be seen in public in case her soon to be ex partner might run into us, She says this is only until their financial matters have been taken care of and she gets her house back, but it’s starting to bother me. I feel like she is thinking more of her soon to be ex partner’s feelings than she is mine. Is this normal? Am I over reacting? I do realize she should feel some guilt and bad feelings, but for how long and how much?

THE ANSWER TO THIS QUESTION WILL NOT BE DISPLAYED UNTIL YOU HAVE INDICATED YOUR AGREEMENT WITH THE DISCLAIMER PRINTED JUST BELOW. CLICK THE 'I AGREE' BUTTON TO AGREE TO THESE TERMS AND SEE THE RESPONSE.

Disclaimer

  • 'Anne' is the pseudonym for the individual who writes this relationship advice column.
  • 'Anne' bases her responses on her personal experiences and not on professional training or study. She does not represent herself to be a psychologist, therapist, counselor or professional helper of any sort. Her responses are offered from the perspective of a friend or mentor only.
  • Anne intends her responses to provide general information to the readership of this website; answers should not be understood to be specific advice intended for any particular individual(s).
  • Questions submitted to this column are not guaranteed to receive responses.
  • No correspondence takes place.
  • No ongoing relationship of any sort (including but not limited to any form of professional relationship) is implied or offered by 'Anne' to people submitting questions.
  • 'Anne', Mental Help Net and CenterSite, LLC make no warranties, express or implied, about the information presented in this column. 'Anne' and Mental Help Net disclaim any and all merchantability or warranty of fitness for a particular purpose or liability in connection with the use or misuse of this service.
  • Always consult with your psychotherapist, physician, or psychiatrist first before changing any aspect of your treatment regimen. Do not stop your medication or change the dose of your medication without first consulting with your physician.