I was thinking about you last night, and also about my niece and the other relative, and some more...An update: I officially "broke up" with him. He straight up admitted he had no plans for the future. And it was heart-breaking/I'm still very upset (just happened a few days ago.) But a lot of people who replied were right; I'm way too present-minded, and crave affection way too much for this sort of thing. So I'm gonna keep trying to do me.
Thank you to everyone who took the time to chime in. Everyone here is so giving. Means a lot.
My niece especially was in the forefront as she had a really rough start--I was instrumental in her being given up for adoption, pushing the issue as she was in foster care too long, getting older, at that age where 'cute' is about to end and fewer perspective parents would be willing to adopt her. (Good call on my part; she was made a ward of the state and within the year adopted, which made a huge, positive difference in her life.)
My niece is so intelligent, so curious, so talented, and I forgot to mention--I think I did, that she is an ESFP.
She had trouble in relationships in the beginning, for many years, but her marriage now (she married this man when she was nearing 30) is working out, and she has two children, two dogs, owns her house, gardens, sews, swims like a fish--dives off boats, loves to attend ball games, helps out her friends, e.g. putting in flooring, stuff like that. She enjoys nature walks and hikes, cold weather: snowball fights, and is a lover of all kinds of music (her adopted father was a composer; her adopted mother a former Catholic nun).
She does have a constant craving for affection, reassurance, and we ended up not having a close relationship because with my temperament and my own mental disorder (PTSD being the main one that comes to mind) and her borderline issues, well, I couldn't give her what she needed, and she couldn't give me what I needed.
She's grateful I stepped in and up, got her away from the neglectful, abusive situation and she therefore had the chance for a richer life, or hell, any kind of life, but it ends there as she is what others used to call 'high maintenance' and I had to do too much of that growing up: Help my parents maintain anything akin to structure in an otherwise chaotic environment, so I'm tapped out for giving constant reassurance and being careful about how I word things so I don't trigger her anxiety, et cetera.
But what stood out for me last night was your being as ESFP and her being one... So you can improve on self-care, and learn to throw yourself into life as so many ESFPs are good to great at doing.
And when the right man comes along, you'll have so much to offer and not as much need.
I'm not saying you can become a different person. I will always have PTSD to deal with, but you can be more loving to yourself, addressing more of your own needs, I trust that, you.
I'm glad that you got it out on the table and made the decision best for you. Obviously, just being friends was not going to work.
I'm happy for you too (as I get happy for myself, any others) for seeing that getting stuck in the present isn't the same thing as the more positive 'living in the moment.'
I am future-oriented but I am also working on--and getting better at--enjoying here/now things.
Thanks for checking back in and updating this. As you know, many OPs drop out of sight after getting what they wanted, leaving anyone who contributed including those of us who were concerned wondering "Is she (or he) okay?"
Good for you. Remember that:
You're doing fine because you're growing. ٩(˘◡˘۶