There are few factors involved in this situation.
1. My girlfriend’s father passed over a year ago in an unfortunate and unexpected manner.
2. The loss of her father halted her academic career. The subsequent depression and anxiety that followed forced her to take several college terms off. But she is expected to graduate by the end by the end of 2021.
3. We have lived together for close to a year and our lease will need to be renewed soon.
4. We have been together for over three years.
I’m not unfamiliar with the grieving process. I know that it can take years potentially to get back to “normal” for some people. I’ve loved and lost and I know the pain.
But COVID, school and the loss of her father has compounded several problems in our relationship.
She is not the same person I loved before. Anxiety and depression has changed her.
I have become her care taker in some sense. Cleaning, cooking and looking after her. I do 95% of the work around the house.
At first, I took this on because I knew she’d do the same for me. But a year later, I’m still more of a “butler” than a romantic partner.
Our sex life is awful. Truly. Which is in part because I don’t find her as attractive as before. She’s gained weight and in general doesn’t take care of herself, which I understand, I’ve been there before in periods of severe depression. It’s also in part because of a dramatically decreased sex drive on her part. Which is likely a result of the depression medication and grief in general. I don’t want to say this is the primary issue, but it’s a big one for me. I’m HUGE on physical intimacy. I feel more like her roommate than her *boyfriend*. And I hate it.
And I openly discuss these things with her. Our sex life, my growing resentment of being her “caretaker” and her not taking her own mental health seriously. She hasn’t pursued options to help herself, at all. Which again, I understand can be difficult when you’re in a hole.
I love her. I don’t want to break up with her. But I just feel like, every time we have these conversations and I explain to her that these are major obstacles that we both need to work on together, she commits to making changes and then gives up on it within a week.
The lease on our home is coming up, and I just don’t know if I want to do this for another year. If you could tell me that the woman I loved before would be back by the end of next year, I’d wait. But I see no improvement and I’m wondering how long I have to put *my* mental health and happiness on hold as well?
Finally, I know this makes me an asshole, probably of a giant proportion. I want her to be better. I want her to be happier. And I know if I broke up with her, she’d be back with her mother, and she’d also take the breakup extremely harsh, and her academic career would also suffer *again*. College is a big source of stress for her, and I just want her to be able to move past it. Should I wait until she’s graduated or potentially ruin her academic career?
I don’t know if I can keep doing this. The lack of attraction, the lack of sex, the lack of concern on her part for own well being and for the future of our relationship. I want my girlfriend back. But I don’t want to be with the woman that grief replaced her with. I just feel like I’m too young to just accept that the best of my years of my life will be spent in a sex-less and love-less relationship for the next potentially few years until she’s back to some level of ‘normal’.
TLDR: Should I break up with my still-grieving girlfriend because the break up will likely ruin her academic career or continue this progressively deteriorating relationship that is slowly eating me a way inside?