I met Marcus a year ago and we’ve been dating for about 10 months of that year. I’ve fallen for him, but now he says he has to move.
He hinted at me coming too, but that’s just not an option due to family commitments and classes I’m taking at the local college.
I can’t transfer or leave my family behind right now and he knows it.
Plus, he says that his job requires him to move halfway across the country.
Here’s what I’m doing about it.
“My boyfriend is moving away without me” – 15 tips if this is you
This is my action plan, but it’s also a list of options.
Take what you want and leave the rest.
1) Take stock of this situation
Marcus cares more about his job than me. I fell for him fast and it’s taken until now for me to realize he only ever half fell for me.
It’s harsh and brutal to realize that, to really absorb it.
To take stock of the situation is vital for you to do.
You have to face why your boyfriend is moving away, but also what the deeper significance is.
There are times in life when something comes up or there really isn’t another option.
I believe my boyfriend didn’t look nearly hard enough for another option and is more or less using this as an excuse to break up.
Take stock of your own unique situation:
Why is he leaving?
Does he have a timeline for coming back?
Are you able or willing to move there with him?
2) Take care of yourself
My boyfriend is moving away without me and just the thought of it leaves me floored.
I thought we had something special, and maybe we really did.
But it honestly doesn’t matter now, because he’s set his sights on moving and it isn’t going to change.
I am not going to be in a position of trying to beg him to stay, either, something I will speak about a little further down here in point three.
It’s so important to take care of yourself and not only base your wellbeing on what’s going on.
I have been devastated ever since the news dropped that my bf is jetting.
Yet I have taken the time to look after myself psychologically and physically in any way I can.
3) Trying to convince him is a losing game
I’m not going to beg him. He knows I love him. I’ve said it.
I won’t play that part of the tearful girlfriend clinging to his pants leg while he packs his bag.
It’s just too humiliating and painful for me. If he’s going, he’s going.
I’ve made my position clear about how I feel for him and why I want him to stay.
I’ve made my position clear about why I can’t come with him right now or even in the next several years.
I’ve explained why I don’t want long distance and how trying it in the past was a complete disaster for me.
The thing about trying to convince someone of something is that you’re almost begging them to disagree.
In chasing after someone, you all too often cause them to get an instinct to run away.
If your situation has led to you wanting to get him back after you’ve broken up, there’s a right and a wrong way to go about it.
Don’t try to convince him to come back or change his decision based on practical reasoning.
It’s much more likely to backfire or cause him to feel resentment.
Instead, you need to change the way he feels and make him realize that you need to come before his other goals.
The way to do this is laid out here in this excellent short video, where relationship psychologist James Bauer gives you a step-by-step method for changing the way your ex feels about you.
He reveals the texts you can send and things you can say that will trigger something deep inside him.
Because once you paint a new picture about what your life together could be like, his emotional walls won’t stand a chance.
4) Avoid promises about the future
If you don’t want to break up right away but are still reeling from your boyfriend’s decision to move away, please avoid making promises about the future.
It’s only going to hurt you and him.
It can be very tempting to promise the world as a kind of anesthesia to put off the pain of the separation.
But the brutal truth is always better than a pretty lie, and the fact is that you won’t always be in a position to make promises.
Even if you are, be sure that you’re fully committed before actually pledging to visit him or accepting his promises to come back to you.
In my situation I have a sick family member and I can’t just tell him I’ll come at some set time.
It’s not going to happen, or at least the chances are very slim.
He has his goals, I have mine. I wish our love could survive, but it doesn’t look that way.
5) Drill down on your own goals
This relationship means a lot to me. I’ve fallen for him like I said.
But I do still have other goals as well.
Focusing on them has been a real advantage to me in being able to get through the past several months in the leadup to Marcus taking off.
Like I said, he’s going very far away and it won’t be possible to see him much more.
This is the natural finish to a relationship that I believed was actually just getting started.
I don’t want the relationship to be over.
However, what I want even less is to cling on and try to breathe life into a relationship that’s long distance and fading.
No matter how strong my feelings are for Marcus, and they are strong, I just won’t put myself through that again.
Been there, done that…
I also sort of do understand that sometimes we do have to put ourselves first and that this is one of those times for him.
I’m disappointed and heartbroken, but I’m not without resources and emotional resilience.
6) Impulsivity is a killer
I can be a very impulsive person.
That’s why I stay away from casinos and fully-stocked mini bars.
It’s a test I’ve failed before and I don’t want to have the opportunity to fail again.
Marcus moving away has led me to a decision about our relationship, which I’ll get to down here.
But this decision didn’t come about easily, nor quickly. I mulled on it for months and talked it over with him one-on-one.
I heard out his point of view and feelings fully before really settling on what I had decided and hearing what he wanted.
Impulsivity is really dangerous and you need to beware of it especially in this kind of scenario.
When somebody tells you an upsetting piece of news such as that they will move away, your instinct may be to protest, lash out at them, fight, cry or even “shut off” and just stop communicating.
All of these are what I would call impulsive reactions.
They take your initial reaction and proceed directly to manifesting that reaction.
What you need is a tiny space in between what you feel and how you choose to visibly react.
You can’t help feeling upset, angry, confused or sad when you hear that your boyfriend wants to move away without you.
But you can help how you visibly respond. Think about it. Tell him you understand and will need some time to think about it.
Take your time. Respect your emotions and your process.
This kind of situation isn’t easy for anybody, trust me!
7) Stay away from rebounds
This is the part where we need to get into the tricky issues of rebounds.
They’re quite common, especially after a serious relationship goes south.
However, I strongly warn against rebounds or getting wrapped up in them too easily.
They can be an addictive cycle of empty sex, but they can also obscure how you really feel and deal with your boyfriend leaving.
It’s like slapping a bunch of bandaids on your ankle after spraining it.
You may feel temporarily psychologically comforted by the idea you’re at least doing “something,” but the bandaids won’t actually be healing your sprained ankle in any real way.
It’s the same with rebounds.
Sure dating someone a bit or having sex a few times might give you some temporary relief.
But you’ll be just as empty afterwards…
What’s worse is that your real feelings for your boyfriend who has left may be festering and building into an even deeper trauma and unresolved issue.
8) Call an expert and see what they say
Next up I advise calling an expert and explaining the situation to them.
I had a friend who went through a really rough breakup and he ended up getting help from the love coaches at Relationship Hero.
This website has accredited coaches who know their way around all the kinds of situations that crop up in a relationship and can help you navigate them.
My experience with Relationship Hero has been outstanding.
They helped me stick up for myself, express my feelings clearly to my boyfriend and become resolute about my perspective and its importance for me.
It wasn’t so much that they changed my mind as that the coaches listened to what I said and really made the effort to see the nuances in it.
They understood immediately that my situation wasn’t black and white.
But that’s exactly what they’re skilled at dealing with and resolving.
In just a few minutes you can connect with a certified relationship coach and get tailor-made advice for your situation.
9) Don’t bother with ultimatums
A strategy that I’ve seen suggested on some sites is to give an ultimatum and ask your boyfriend to choose you or leaving.
The problem is that this is immature and also it doesn’t work.
Even if he chooses you, he’s always going to resent that.
Any problems which come up in the future are going to be your fault and he’ll use that time when you backed him in a corner against you.
The sad reality is that ultimatums will only bring you down and make a crisis out of a disappointment.
Asking him sincerely to stay and explaining your experience and perspective is very much recommended.
But begging or giving an ultimatum is not the way to go. It will just backfire and leave the relationship on even shakier ground.
Avoid the temptation to put an ultimatum. In particular, if he’s already
10) Build your own self-esteem
When the rug is being pulled out from under you there are two main responses.
The first is to chase after what you want, bow down and beg, plead, threaten and cry.
The second is to stand resolutely and accept what you can’t change and change what you can.
What you can change, to be blunt, is yourself and your actions.
You can try your best to sway your boyfriend in your direction, but you can’t force him.
Like I’ve said, that’s up to him.
What’s up to you is explaining your position and then doing what you can in the aftermath.
If he’s leaving without you, you need to focus on your own improvement and empowerment.
This can involve learning new skills.
11) Play devil’s advocate
Imagine you were the one who wanted to leave to another place and your boyfriend was the one who couldn’t or wouldn’t come along.
How would you feel?
What would be your thought process?
If you really loved someone, what would be enough to make you leave them behind without a firm return date?
This process can be very helpful, as it puts you in their shoes and shows you a mirror.
It may lead you to feel more understanding of your boyfriend’s position and wanting to wait for him…
Or it may lead you to realizing that he doesn’t love you as much as you love him.
Whatever road this leads down, it will be illuminating for you and help you realize what’s best.
12) Get out in nature and reconnect
Learning that Marcus was leaving left me in the lurch. I wanted answers and resolutions, but all I had was a vague sense of dread.
Getting out into nature and reconnecting with the great outdoors and with myself was a key part of healing the turmoil I felt inside.
I still felt it, but I was able to accept the current chaos instead of fighting it and resisting with all my might.
This was my present reality…
Like a nightmare coming true, my boyfriend was leaving.
I wanted badly for it not to be this way, but it was.
So I walked, ran, biked and even kayaked.
I began getting serious about fitness, and also joined a drop-in volleyball club.
Marcus leaving was still on my mind and weighing me down, but by moving and becoming more in my body I was able to escape the full obsessive cycle that had been making the situation even worse.
13) Breathe through it
I’d never thought much about breathing.
I get out of breath when I jog and I know I enjoy breathing in fresh outdoor air, but the idea of actually using my breath as a way to heal and process emotions wasn’t something I thought of.
However, coming across the concept of breathwork, I was intrigued.
I was introduced to an unusual free breathwork video created by the shaman, Rudá Iandê, which focuses on processing energy blockages and beginning to repair the disconnect between our conscious and unconscious mind.
As Rudá explains in this free breathwork video, we often end up blocking ourselves into self-defeating mental and emotional patterns, especially in terms of worrying about things like losing love and life disappointments.
We end up tying ourselves in a pretzel and trying to wriggle our way out but only end up getting more stuck.
Like Rudá says, our breath is the one thing that can be automatic but also be conscious when we choose.
It is kind of like a bridge between our conscious and subconscious in this way and can end up healing a lot of overthinking that we do.
This is definitely something I’d recommend trying out, as it shows a way that you can begin to boost your own sense of wellbeing and inner peace even when the outer parts of your life like your boyfriend are falling apart on you.
14) If you stay together, do it for real
Sometimes you may have a plan to get back together that’s really specific and you believe in it.
You have both committed to stay together, and even though your boyfriend is moving away without you, you have mutually decided that it is not the end and will not be the end.
That is outstanding and I’m truly happy for you if this is where your relationship is at.
My only caution for you here is that if you’re staying together, do it for real.
Far too many couples try to deal with this kind of crisis by making promises they have no intention of keeping.
Like hitting the snooze button on your alarm, this can give the illusion that everything will be fine and you can go back to coasting.
But a couple months go by and you’re talking less and less and eventually the breakup and frustrations come.
If you’re going to do long-distance, really do it.
You both need to be all in on this and commit to at least several times a week to talk and chat and have video calls if possible.
Don’t let things slide, or before you know it the love of your life can easily become your ex.
15) Make peace with this painful present reality
It’s crucial to make peace with the painful present reality.
When I say peace, I don’t mean that you say everything is fine or that you’re feeling good.
Why would you be feeling good if the person you love is moving away without you?
You’d feel like crap. I do.
However, making peace with the present reality is all about accepting the limits of your control.
Working on your own objectives and priorities is the key, but also doing breathwork and the other practices I’ve recommended here.
Making peace still leaves open all the possibilities that exist.
Maybe one day you will be together again, maybe not.
Maybe you’ll meet someone you love even more.
I’m skeptical, but I avoid over-analyzing it. So many things in life are simply unknown or come as a surprise.
Surrender to the ride and focus on what’s in your control, because that’s what’s going to empower and energize you in the end.
Take it for what it is
My boyfriend moving away is a breakup. That’s what it is. I hate that, I hate it so much.
But as much as he says that he has to move for work I can think of a hundred ways he could try to work around this.
Him being unwilling to do so really says it all for me.
I’ve walked outside, met new friends and really thought this over deeply.
I’ve also been really helped out by the relationship coaches at Relationship Hero.
They helped me realize so much about the reality of what’s happening here.
I’m planning to break up with Marcus in the next few weeks once I can get my thoughts in order.
Your decision is really up to you.
But keep in mind that your boyfriend moving away without you is his choice, and that you are not responsible for his decisions.
I don’t want long distance and I will break up for that reason. You need to decide what is best for you and that’s that.
Can a relationship coach help you too?
If you want specific advice on your situation, it can be very helpful to speak to a relationship coach.
I know this from personal experience…
A few months ago, I reached out to Relationship Hero when I was going through a tough patch in my relationship. After being lost in my thoughts for so long, they gave me a unique insight into the dynamics of my relationship and how to get it back on track.
If you haven’t heard of Relationship Hero before, it’s a site where highly trained relationship coaches help people through complicated and difficult love situations.
In just a few minutes you can connect with a certified relationship coach and get tailor-made advice for your situation.
I was blown away by how kind, empathetic, and genuinely helpful my coach was.