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Am I being unfair to not support her when she needs me?



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  • Am I being unfair to not support her when she needs me?

    I would be so grateful for advice.

    I'm in a difficult position where the person I love has asked for my support. I feel so cruel to say no. But I don't know how to be there.

    I met a girl from North America a few years ago while living in abroad. I'm from the UK. We have a great relationship and, enduring some spells of long distance, I got the courage to propose to her recently. She was staying with me in England at the time and I'm happy to say she said yes. Unfortunately the honeymoon period didn't last long as her tourist visa meant another spell apart whilst we save for a wedding.

    The back-story to this is that my girlfriend, from very early in the relationship, told me that she had a heart problem which would eventually need surgery. She was naturally scared to undergo the surgery having already been operated on before as a young girl. I think I did a good job whenever the subject came up to comfort and support her. I also declared a number of times that I'd be there for her surgery and recovery.

    I work in London which is a notoriously expensive city to live and unfortunately, through tuition fees, long-haul flights, and other things I have slowly got into more debt. I have a job that I really enjoy and it pays just enough to get through the month. Though in supporting my girlfriend for 5 months this year, whilst we lived together, I was really struggling by August when she left.
    After August she flew home and decided to go for a hospital check-up. Sooner than we expected a date was set for her surgery. The start of September. She called me on Skype with the news, and asked if I could be there urgently for a week or two during the surgery. I of course said yes. I had to work fast and got a (fairly large) overdraft from my bank to pay for my return flights the next week. I called my boss and explained I needed to take leave for 10 days immediately. I arrived in her hometown a couple of days later and gave blood for her operation. I could see that being there was a great help. We stayed with her family and the build-up to the surgery was emotional but it brought the two of us even closer.

    The operation went very well. The moment I saw she was healthy was one of the best moments of my life. And after 4 days in the hospital (where I also slept), my girlfriend was allowed to return home and rest. I helped take care of her as she couldn't move around or lift anything. I would do anything for her! But too soon it came the time I had to fly home. My girlfriend was just managing to walk at this point but still feeling fragile. On the day I was due to fly home she asked that I stay longer.

    This might be something I'll always regret, because I said I couldn't. I couldn't contact my office (being on a Sunday) to ask for more time away. I couldn't afford another flight, nor losing my job. I couldn't even afford more unpaid leave. She told me it was okay, but deep inside I know she hoped for me to do something crazy and spontaneous. That I'd say "screw the job, I'll find a way". She nicknames me the 'raincloud' because I'm the realist in the relationship and she is the dreamer.

    So this 'raincloud' went back to London where I continued to work and also started applying for second jobs in the night or weekends to try to get out of debt as soon as possible and then save for our wedding. But the calls I've had with my girlfriend since have become more and more testing. It breaks my heart to hear her sobbing on the phone that I didn't stay. When she says "I need you here now" I get tearful myself. Sometimes we also argue - I tell her that she only asked me to be there for a couple of weeks, then she responds that "you promised more than that for the past years". When I explain that I can't leave my job without giving notice, she responds "you care to meet the demands of your job but not the person you want to marry".

    I just cannot leave my job, flat, commitments and debt with the ease and speed that she demands. She is very uncompromising. At the same time she is the love of my life and she is simply asking for my help at a difficult point in her life - who could be mad at a girl like that?
    I just don't know how to manage this. I want her to be happy. At the moment I'm hindering her recovery because she feels abandoned. And I'm enormously stressed at both my inability to be there and also the prospect that if I did decide to drop everything I'm not sure how I would manage in the future. I'm not allowed to work in America on a tourist visa so it's not that I can see a solution that way. It seems like my two possibilities are both the stupidest thing I'll ever do.

    ​​​​​​​ C.

  • #2
    Your story is really pathetic, reading it almost made tears come out of my eyes. You see, you have really done so much for her and that shows you are caring. I also know how she is feeling at the moment, but I don't think there is anything you can do now. However, I will suggest you let her know you don't have enough money and if she can provide the money, then you are willing to come over. This will solve the issue at the moment.


    • #3
      After reading all that you have written, I can conclude that you have be very supportive even if she doesn't acknowledge it. So, I won't advice you do anything drastic just to make her happy. You might end up regretting any silly action you take now for the rest of your life.

      The best you can do for her now is to regularly be in contact with her. Make it a point to call her every 2 hours just to find out how she is doing. Constantly being in contact with her won't make her feel neglected.


      • #4
        I won't advice you to make yourself a living sacrifice just to please her. She is suppose to understand, and if she can't understand then she is being selfish. I don't think she should feel abandoned because her family members are always there to help her.

        You have done the best you can do, so stop feeling guilty about not been there for her when she needed you most. The fact is that you were actually there for her when she needed you most, and that was during the surgery at the hospital.


        • #5
          That woman would be too demanding for me. She seems to be really selfish, sorry. And that is just the beginning. She is very possessive and she is going to take over more and more. Just be a man about it and tell her the truth. She isn't hearthsick anymore, isn't she? Perhaps you should think the whole thing over. Love is overestimated.