Have Relationship Questions? Ask a Counsellor for Answers ASAP
Hello, I'm Rafael. Thanks for asking your question. I'm here to support you. I'm carefully reviewing your question now and will respond ASAP.
Hello. I am very sorry to know about this very painful reality you have been facing.
It is never easy to come to terms with the fact your affection, hopes and commitment are not reciprocated, but when that's the case, denying it would just cause further pain and destructive conflict within and around you.
No doubt you care about this person and her kids, but your situation could not remain the same since you are not working anymore as a couple focused on supporting each other to build a long-term life together.
Thus your decision on how to approach it needs to be based on your core values, beliefs, needs and expectations. If for example, you still long for and need to find the right person for you, to work on developing a truly mutual, healthy, fulfilling and meaningful relationship, staying with this person would not help most of the time, unless she happens to fully respect your independence and you feel comfortable living under the same roof too while she does her own thing, while both continue to raise her children.
Otherwise, it would not be realistic nor healthy to stay close to each other...
So if she is setting that clear boundary right there, her expectation is for you to leave, right?
And the only aspect you would have to work on, as long as she is open to it, would be about if you want and can afford to stay close to her children, because of the bonding you already have, and what you expect for your relationship with them in the long run.
People are different, some feel like they can keep playing a parental role without affecting their own healing and building of a new romantic relationship, while others find it too difficult and triggering their own wounding/loss. You would find people all over the spectrum about how sensitive they feel about this scenario, and what is the best for one could be the worst for another. So please be totally truthful with yourself, and congruent doing what you really believe and feel would work for you, and ensure the best for your own well-being and for your impact in these children's lives.
If by you calling her causes distress to her because of her pride, then for sure, you would have to stop doing that out of respect, caring and support to her needs and choices. use all the insight you have about her from past experiences in order to make decisions affecting you/them in the present and future, fully respecting her boundaries.
Then fully respect her space and needs to rebuild her personal life, and limit your interaction to her children as long as she feels fine with that, also respecting her limits on what would be acceptable for you to share or not with them.
Does it make sense?
You're very welcome. Please feel free to contact me if you have any further questions or to follow up, since I am here willing and ready to support you as much as possible. Please remember to rate my service by using the 5 stars scale at the top of the screen.
You can contact me using this direct link to my profile https://www.justanswer.com/mental-health/expert-rafael-therapist/, you could bookmark it for easy access, and just make sure you state "For Rafael only" in your request, for other experts to know you want me to reply, and I will respond in less than an hour most of the time. Also know that I do provide confidential counseling support via Premium Services, which is implemented via Skype or phone call, in case you feel comfortable with me and would like to discuss your core needs and expectations, as well as the best therapeutic approach to work on your situation.
Thank you for your trust. Take gentle care and consistent action,