I can’t live without him (her)

Do you feel so in love that you can’t imagine your life without your partner (or ex partner)? Love is a powerful emotion, but if you’re convinced you can’t be happy if you don’t have them in your life – maybe you are not in love at all, but mixing up love with something closer to addiction.

There is nothing wrong with being sad when someone leaves, regret that it happened, and want them back. But you should still be feeling that once you get on the other side of that grief, you’ll be able to be happy again, on your own – or with someone new. Otherwise you’re probably more needy and insecure than in love.

How to tell the difference between love and addiction? Find out from my new video blog.


Have you ever been so in love that you thought you can’t live without your partner?

Was it a good feeling? Is it still a good feeling?

Please share your experience in the comments! Thank you.

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22 Responses

  1. Hi. Just out of curiosity, what motivated the switch to video blogs? I’m thinking of doing my first one. As far as the article, good thinking. People observe/ tell me I’m in love with my boyfriend. He’s great. I’m resilient though and will always make a way in life (hopefully with him).

    • Petra says:

      Hi there! Good to hear from you. I didn’t switch to video but mix written and video blogs. I find video blogs easier to make (faster too!), also sometimes much easier to get the message through. I was also trying to see how my visitors will react and seems they like it. It adds a personal note. Plus you can have a youtube channel and expand your audience. I think that’s about it 🙂 Thank you for commenting!

  2. You may know that special someone all your natural married love life .. but they can change on a instant . Mine did .. I was surprised after 12 years of marriage .. 3 months after my anniversary I got injured from my 17 year old job that I loved doing . And at the hospital .. months later I was diagnosed with severe tension migraines and I won’t be able to keep my job much longer even any small temporary jobs . My wife heard this and exploded on scene … fingers at me and the doctor ! Saying she will not live like this no .. my mother escorted her out to cool her down .. she walks in hearing I should benefit from disability payments .. I’ve worked long enough . And then she announced a divorce then and there .. it’s 2 years later . I’m divorced and on disability too .. I won my case in court . A large sum from what I missed out from work and a government disability issued check every month . She didn’t want that ! I’m still fighting bad migraines .. and try to date . But not 1 true lady will except this .. I get oh I’m sorry or I feel your pain .. I’m alone . No I’m not .. I have family .. faith in god .. and hope . Someday … someone ? A real lady .. will see me and not my disability ! Or a guy useless without a job or not driving because he’s a liability . It hurts hearing this from a judge .. my doctors .. let alone women and younger lady’s I try to date . I’ll find someone … just don’t give up .. and know who they really are ? Know true love .. accept the challenges in life . Grow together .. and grow old happy . This is Rodney Mckee .. and I approve that any and all who take my little life lesson . And share among others .. God is there . He will bless me .. and your not .. ever .. alone ! Share your message . I did . thanks

    • Petra says:

      Thank you for sharing Rodney. I am really sorry that you had such a bad experience. But I am also really happy you are being positive about the future. It’s great you have that support from family and friends. Things will get better! You are indeed not alone. Take care.

      • Hey Petra .. life is good . Donating my time and efforts to the community and god ! It has kept me active to a point but I still live with my severe tension migraines as my disability . Having a regular life outside of living at my mothers home is a plus .. I’m still praying for myself to receive the proper help to boost me to my feet .. to be on my own soon . That will be a most difficult time .. true alone . The hurdle most dread after the big break up ? I know god’s in my corner . And I’ll keep sharing and asking questions as they appear more difficult at that stage .. in that time ! Now .. I’m ok . When and if it will happen we shall see ?

        • Petra says:

          Seems like lots of things went bad for you at the same time. I really wish you to find your happy place again.

  3. Casey says:

    my friends all have someone special, my friendships with them are not on the same plane as their relationships with their significant others. That’s the nature of significant others.

  4. Joshua says:

    Hi Petra, just wanna thank you for your collection of write-ups! they really have helped me during this difficult time. i’m glad i stumbled on your site. i hope you keep writing and helping people.
    wishing you personal happiness,
    with much thanks.

  5. Milly says:

    Addiction is like an obsession. In terms of loving someone, one you love that person truly and they leave out of circumstances that were unforseen and you can’t live without them doesn’t mean that you are not in love.
    Yes you can be happy again, but not one not even a next man or woman who may be so great in every way will be able to fill that void. Only the person you truly love will be able to do that. One may go through life and be happy about a new job, car, home but the person that they truly love will always be on their mind.

    • Petra says:

      You can love someone and let them go. Ultimately, if one person isn’t happy in a relationship – the other can’t be happy either. Sometimes we love people we can’t be with, because we are simply not a good match, and that’s OK too. Understanding this is liberating – and saves us a lot of drama and suffering. Because there is always someone out there we can love, and be with, and be happy with. Always.

  6. Charles Bailey says:

    Husband here. Almost a 3 decade relationship. Wife comes from a critical family, I was raised by a narcissist to be codependent, I basically moved from one mom to another without being an independent man. She has used hurtful words on every level of my life from business to pleasure and in between. I don’t see her the same. I have worked on my codependency.we have had countless therapists and seminars and classes as well as church and it just gets worse. The more I improve myself the worse our relationship gets. I don’t think I can get past all the hurtful words. She is manipulative and even makes threats. Rarely apologizes but never changes even when she has admitted her behavior. I feel no return on my emotional investment, And noting is ever good enough, Even when the task is accomplished she complains. And there are about 5 standard complaints. And as far as the home she goes to work, comes home and I am left from morning till night doing just about everything. It’s as if we are separated and she does something on that level of seeing the kids interaction but she actually lives here still. I work from home and have been the caregiver for 14 years and make just as much if not more money. Drop kids off pick them up and take care of them when they are sick. Lately it’s as if I am training to be alone with my sons. No appreciation nor respect. Sure every once in a while something positive comes out. But I find that when I fall for it and open up then comes the emotional sabotage. She has complained about me to friends and family even in front of me. And I know I am still here for several reasons. But I also know it’s just getting worse and my sons are suffering and just want out. They have been clear that they want to be with me and are tired of this environment. They have both stated that Mom just doesn’t change and doesn’t practice what she preaches, I need the mental balance to take the next step. Or maybe it’s just taking the next step and the mental balance will come. But it has been a clear case of verbal and emotional abuse from her, Nothing is ever good enough and there is always an excuse for her behavior. If I am staying together for sake of family and it is destroying my sons then what is the real goal here. I’ve never known independence. I moved from my mom to my wife. I don’t know autonomy. Maybe that has alot to do with it. At some point I need to face facts. Emotions are so powerful though my intellect tells me other wise. I really need some help.

  7. Ben says:

    2 years ago I met this woman while working at the same place temporarily employed abroad. We started as friends, we went on trips together, slowly I was the one special person to help her out in different problems. Soon I realized that I felt more for her than friendship, and was open about my feelings and we went on few dates. She gave me mixed signals, on the one hand she pushed to be with me on the other hand she did some things that really hurt me. We spend one evening chatting and drinking with friends and when we got home she kissed me and we ended sleeping with each other. It followed two – for me – very special weeks together until I had to fly home for 3 weeks to get surgery. When I came back, she avoided me and finally told me that she couldn’t be with me. My world fell apart, since we were working and living at the same place, I decided to abandon my employment and return home. I couldn’t imagine living without her and stupidly asked her to stay friends. At that time I couldn’t handle the thought to loose her completely. So we are staying in sporadic contact, but to read how she goes on with her life, hurts more than anything else. As you see from my description, it wasn’t that long-term super love or the ideal match, but still I cannot get over it. I know all the good advices, that I see something in her that isn’t real, that if we were meant to be together we would be, that staying friends doesn’t work, that I need to find purpose and joy in my own life first, etc. I miss a partner or sex, but I am not attracted to any women around me. It’s not that I am (consciously) comparing them to her, it’s like a mental blockade. Only the thought to approach them disgusts me. And than I just need to come across a picture of her and I can still smell her odor after 15 months as if she was standing in front of me. Most of the time I am doing fine, forcing myself not to think of her, focusing on my new job and hobbies. I am trying to build up my life as a happy, independent single guy. But from time to time I have my break-downs. Than I just feel overwhelmed by my feelings, I know that I would need to go to the gym or meet friends to feel better but I just cannot get out of the house. What do you advice for these situations?

    • Petra says:

      You’ll have to get to the bottom of why she stuck in your mind and heart, what is it about her that is so special? It doesn’t sound from her behaviour (the way she treated you) that she is worth it – so there must be something else, you need to figure it out and ask yourself why you think whatever you felt with her is not possible with someone else. Sometimes people we spend very little time with leave a huge mark and that’s fine, and it’s the beauty of life that we can touch each other’s hearts so deeply – but, still that doesn’t mean that should keep you stuck with her forever. It means you are capable of deep connection – and that is a great thing to know, because you will be able to experience it with someone else too. Maybe you never felt this way before, that’s why you keep lingering? I can help you get to the bottom of this, so do get in touch if you’d like that.

      • Ben says:

        Thank you for your answer! You are right, she was the first person I fell in love with at first sight. You know what’s funny? I am back for two week at our shared workplace so I saw her and we went out for a drink. Well I saw a person who looked, talked and smiled like the woman I cannot forget but it wasn’t her. At the meeting I didn’t feel anything and I have actually no desire to see this person again. The memories are still stuck in my mind and heart but I cannot conciliate them with the actual living person. I felt uncomfortable around her, trying to rekindle the connection we had and unable to talk freely about me. So I basically keep my life centered around a memory. I don’t want to be with someone else because that means I could be hurt again. I just want to learn not to be overwhelmed by my emotions but to control them.

  8. Bell says:

    Hi Petra,
    2.5 years ago, the same week I found out my mother’s cancer had returned I met a man, Within 3 mths he said he was falling in love with me, he was doing things to help me and my mum, he would drive the 4 hour trip to see me avery 2 weeks and stay for almost a week or 2. He was the perfect partner, intuitive, helpful, supportive, kind, concerned, generous, loving, sweet.
    As my mum was very ill, we were always with mum, helping her, there was one day she was in bed and I was listening to her talk to her friend and frustratedly he insisted we go on a bike ride which i had promised earlier, but seeing my mum talking I wanted every memory of my mum. I went because I felt bad that our relationship had so far been so one sided but I saw the look on my mums face at the childish way he demanded like she saw something there.
    He was still so kind, generous, always helping but when family issues started coming to head he started giving me advice and if I did not take it he would get angry, say I didnt listen to him and he knows these things he has a calculative mind and can predict problems etc. One of these things was asking about ensuring my mum had a will. I found this unsettling at the time and I put it down to his concern for me as he said he loved me and cared for me. I never could bring myself to ask but it did turn out family issues arose as he said they would. 3 months in, my mum found out she had 2 weeks to live (on my birthday). She lived 2 months. He was there and got me through it. I think he took 3 months off work for me to be by my side. He loved me through it.
    There were lots of issues with my family, lots of ongoing stress, the things he went through for me trying to protect me from my family most wouldnt, couldnt. My extreme depression and anxiety after my mum died meant it was not safe for me to make the 4 hour drive to see him he would cry and throw tantrums asking didnt I love him saying All his friends cant believe he has a girlfriend that wont drive to see him. Grief was an excuse. Why didnt I want him? He begged me to let him take me away from my family, but I was not ready to leave where my mum had lived. He then bought a house where he lived on a weekend we didnt speak…I thought that was a bad sign of his non comittment but he insisted hadnt he already sacrificed enough to prove he loved me? As I started getting better we argued more as I questioned more than when I did in the fog of my mum being ill and dying. His neighbour had told him to break up with me or marry me. I begged him it was because of all we had been through we were not doing well and not to give up…..that we did not have a honeymoon period. He said he wanted to have kids with me and a future but I needed to “pull my finger out”. I thought to myself, I love this man, I really love this man, all of the things he has done to try and make me happy and get me through I need to put him first now. I tried to snap out of my depression..I did things that made me happy since we could not move in together yet because of the distance created with his choice of house he was building…I bought some pets, concentrated on my garden, painted. He would get upset and tell me I was wasting time and throwing away our chance to have kids doing these activities when I should have been helping him with the house 4 hours away. I had a job 4 days a week but just could not physically make the trip every weekend. He stopped coming down as much as his house took all his energy/time. He said it was for us and our future, he was doing it all for us. I made train trips (but he would get angry if I asked him to pick me up from the station saying it was still him making the effort, I booked hotels and trips, concerts but nothing seemed good enough. He was still loving kind caring but stopped saying he loved me. . He also started picking on my weight as I had put on weight in grief. He had mentioned two exes…one who was a fit stripper and one a body builder. However, 2 months before we broke up he started behaving strangely….our arguments seemed worse, he would react so badly over virtually nothing, running out of phone credit, calling me later and later if at all, being angrier. I kept trying and failing, resting on the moment that he would have the house finished and we could have children or at least move in together to see if it could work.I sensed something intuitively but not cognitively. He asked for space. I got upset, he ended it via text. I tried to get him back and prove I loved him, he kept insisting I had not loved him all that time and it was too late but I had found he had been communicating with the body builder ex and even arranged to meet with her.
    He left me to go through xmas, new years, and the anniversary of my mums death alone. Then a month later I got a message saying that breaking up with me was the hardest thing he has ever done, he wishes he loved me as much but by the time he reaslised I did actually love him his heart had closed. He then said sorry he cant be there for me and he wishes he could be and if I need anything I have permission to email. He then hinted that he had out of the blue met up with her (when i know this is untrue and he organised it). He has been asking her to move in with him after only one month since I last slept with him, using my terminology and words to her….
    I am confused and devastated. This kind caring man who helped me through my darkest moments has shut me out for someone who had broken his heart previously. He is all loved up in the honeymoon stage. I am sad as I walk around my house and see the memories of life we shared for 2 years. I am still dealing with my family and due to the will that will go on. I was searching for a reason to go on and came home to find a pet of mine had died on what is her birthday so she is probably getting romanced when I am digging yet another hole in the ground for the few things in this world that love me.
    He made me happier than I have been with anyone, and I know I should be able to go on but I cant forget him. I am really struggling with the fact that I am 35 years old. I dont have time to build a life when I just spent almost 2.5 years thinking that is what I was doing. I have no family to turn to and friends do not understand. I dont want to be happy on my own. I have spent 33 years being happy on my own. I thought finally the universe was rewarding me with the love I deserve….I thought if he would go through all of that with me then he would not leave…..in the end his excuse was a chicken coop I had bought and left at his parents home (I disrespected them) I do not see there is hope for a future. They say go out and do the things that will make you happy…..well for me that is having the love I had with him and creating a family. I cant do that now, I am too damaged, I have no time. I love him. I am still here, still functioning, still living but everything is still empty. Why did he give up just when we had the chance? We were finally free to progress, to move in together and he gave up after everything! I would never have hurt him like she did, but he says I hurt him more because I would not listen to him, I want a submissive man, I didnt want him and there are plenty of women who would want what he has to offer that I didnt. He is so wrong….I dont understand and am drowning.
    Please help me.

    • Petra says:

      Hi there. I am sorry, I only saw your comment today – it ended up in spam, probably because it was so long. I am charging for advice (and what you are asking qualifies as that), so if that’s acceptable to you please book my email advice session here: http://petralovecoach.com/contact-me/ and I will respond to you shortly. No need to retype this info, I have it.

  9. J says:


    My boyfriend and I have been together less than a year. I really thought he was “the one”. And I built it up in my mind as such.

    It was all going fine for awhile, then within a month he seemingly flipped a switch. He was given the option to move, and he made it clear he wasn’t sure about me going with him.

    This broke my heart… Being that I imagined my life with him. Now I’m in the spot where I’m likely going to have to break up with him. And it hurts me so deeply, I really can’t imagine my life without him! Don’t know what I’m going to do with my time. He didn’t even treat me all that well… And he isn’t making me important in his life… But I still feel this way.

    I need to find a way to end my co dependency and move on, but I don’t know how.

    • Petra says:

      Hey. I can help you with this – moving on, getting your head and heart to a good place. But we’d have to talk and do some sessions. If you’d like to explore that, get in touch via email (Contact or Coaching page). Take care.

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