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For over a decade, David Tian, Ph.D. — a uniquely qualified therapist, life coach, and former university professor — has coached tens of thousands of people from over 87 countries to achieve happiness and success in their relationships, dating, psychology, and lifestyle.
Dr. Tian has been featured in international media, as well as co-hosting a radio show on national radio and a weekly dating advice column in a national newspaper in Singapore.
The show, “Man Up: Masculinity for the Intelligent Man” (https://www.davidtianphd.com/blog/), is David’s way of helping as many people as possible enjoy empowering and fulfilling lives, while contributing to the global understanding of masculinity in modern times. In the show, he takes your questions posed in the Man Up private Facebook group (https://www.facebook.com/groups/manupcommunity/) and answers based on his experience coaching tens of thousands of students around the world for over a decade.
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Why Did She Leave You?
- David Tian Ph.D. emphasizes the need for us to understand psychology.
- David Tian Ph.D. explains why we need to understand people more and how we can do it.
- In this Man Up episode, David Tian Ph.D. shares the lesson we can learn from this situation, lessons from making bad choices.
David Tian: Boom! Stop. In Episode 104, I address the question of: Why did she leave you?
Masculinity for the intelligent man. I’m David Tian, Ph.D. and this is Man Up!
Hey! This is David Tian, Ph.D. And for the past ten years, I’ve been helping tens of thousands of people in over 87 countries attain success in dating and relationships so that they can find love and fulfillment. And here I am in Shanghai, at Tianzifang, and it’s pretty nice here. Nice little door here. Looking right into the sun, so I’m going to try not to squint as I do this.
I’ve learned from yesterday not to just hold the phone while I do it because my arms are going to get tired. So, I got this nice little thing and I’ll just rest my hand on it. Okay, cool. So, Facebook group question from Tommy. Tommy’s question. We’re going to answer Tommy’s question. I asked for clarification on it. Well, it’s a basic question. “How do you deal with a breakup when the person’s not giving you an honest reason? Not only that, but she projects her own unhappiness towards you?”
And then he’s got two questions, and then I asked for clarification on them. The first question is, “Is it because she’s afraid of a reaction, or she just doesn’t know herself, why she loves you but is just not in love with you anymore?” Okay, so basically it’s like, “Is she afraid to tell you the real reason, or is it just that she’s not in love with you anymore?” That’s question one. Question two, “Why do women feel the need to explore when they have a good, passionate, and stable relationship?” Okay, two fair questions.
Asking for clarification, and it was nine different comments to get the clarification. And a really long comment that was very illuminating. I’m just going to read out the most important parts. So, why do you think she’s not giving you an honest reason, I asked, and he replied. He invited her for a coffee a few days after the break up, so we could talk about it. She says that she misses the times where she can just wake up and go on a road trip or a bike ride, stopping wherever she felt like. And he says, “I was always open for new adventures. She’s the one who’s always busy, tired, depressed and stressed out with life.” He says he has a lot of free time, was planning on a few trips, and was just waiting for her to go through her school rush.
She said she thinks she’s not ready for a stable life. She wanted a dog and wanted to buy a house in the countryside, but now she thinks she’s not ready for that. She says she finds it hard to be with someone who doesn’t have the same interests in being adventurous and open-minded, experiencing new things. But he says he is open and willing to discover her interests. So, you get this. It’s like back and forth. The words are relatively irrelevant in relationships, especially near the end of this break up time. No one even knows why the fuck they’re not interested anymore. One of the most important things about psychology, all you need to learn, so not just Tommy but everyone, is you got to respect psychology.
So, most of the world is really stupid about psychology. You can be really smart with computers, with numbers, with whatever the fuck gets your money, right? But most of the world has never had education in the human mind, in why people think things, why people feel things. They don’t understand people. They know how to work with – that’s going by, okay. They know how to work with inanimate objects. They know how to program shit that’s not human, right? But in actually dealing with human beings, your schools have let you down. Your school have never taught you this. Your fucking society has never taught you this. So, you have to take it upon yourself if you want to kill it in life. Figure out people, figure out psychology, it can respect emotions.
So in other words, here’s what people are going to do. They’re going to sit across from another human being, a flesh and blood human being, and expect them to act like computers; like to be able to reveal the code that is causing the behavior. We’re not even able to access our own fucking code, okay? So, self-awareness itself is a huge thing. And most people don’t have it, most people don’t know why they feel something. Most people don’t know why they think something. So they’re just reacting to their environment or to their past, especially. So, you’re expecting this girl, right now, to tell you exactly why she’s not interested in you anymore.
The thing is, she doesn’t even know why herself. So, it’s not even that she’s lying to you, it’s just that she doesn’t know. And you don’t know. You don’t know what’s going on either, and you’re waiting for words to solve the issue. So now, you’re just giving us back and forth arguments. She says, “I want to be adventurous.” You say, “I am adventurous.” She says, “I want to be adventurous.” You say, “I am adventurous.” And you go nowhere with that. And all of this is just excuses, excuses. As you reveal, you know in your heart of hearts, you know it already as you reveal in the further down.
Okay, so she agreed but never made that much of an effort to help me understand. It doesn’t matter, really. All of these are red herrings. They’re not the real reasons. “One day she tells me she’s thinking about someone else, obsessing really, and she says it made her realize she wasn’t in love with me anymore.” Okay, and then you say – the sad thing is, you say, “When I did everything that I could to maintain the attraction and happiness of the relationship, I never had any signs that things weren’t working out between us.” And that’s just an ignorance around psychology. You’re looking for these logical, rational signs, and you’re not going to get them ever.
So, here’s the deal, right? She just fell out of love with you because that’s how people are. They’re looking for this feeling. This feeling. They’re like fucking drug addicts, right? They need the feeling. If the feeling’s not there, they fucking give up. So, love is like – if you call love just purely a feeling, then you’re always going to fail. It’s always going to be bad. Why? Because emotions and feelings, by their very nature, are transient, they’re ephemeral, they don’t last by their fucking nature.
So, you got to realize that you have to commit to it, otherwise you’re never going to have a lasting relationship. This girl obviously is not ready for a relationship, just as most people in the world are not. But it’s unfortunate that you’re the one down in this relationship. So, she felt the feelings go away before you did. Based on what you’re saying here, it could’ve been the other way around as well. I mean, if the feelings aren’t there, that’s a great reason to break up based on feelings. That’s not a real reason. I’m being a sarcastic there, in case you didn’t pick that up.
So, she falls in love with someone else, obsesses over him. You know that’s actually the symptom, right? So, all of this other stuff is just to make you not feel bad. Because you know, I totally believe you’re ready to go out and explore the world and have adventures and all this stuff, and that’s just an example of her own rationalizations so that she doesn’t feel so guilty in her conscience for dumping you for someone else. Especially after five years, you said you were together for five years, and then she feels like she’s more into somebody else. Yeah, that’s normal. That’s the rest of the world.
And here’s the other thing: it’s not specifically to Tommy, but I see this a lot going on in the group. And in other groups on dating that I’m in, guys like saying, “Oh, the world sucks because people are fat.” Like, “Girls are fat.” So, there goes my life – girls are into their emotions, they fall out of love. Yeah. I mean, it’s hard. It’s as hard to get into Harvard, too. So, what the fuck are you whining about? It’s hard to be a billionaire, dude, stop fucking whining, get into work.
Stop whining about how the world isn’t for you and the fact that you have to put work in, and that it’s hard to get the good stuff. The very fact that it’s a point one percent… If you one to get into the one percent, expect it to be hard. Expect it to be fucking hard. If you want to find a one percent person to partner with, it’ll take you a fucking long time. Expect that. Why would it be easy? Why kind of world or universe do you live in, easy? I mean, if it were easy, it wouldn’t be one percent, would it? I don’t know, it’s just common sense to me.
Okay, and then you follow it up with the sentence, “That’s why I think she’s projecting her unhappiness towards me, because she said…” Yeah, she’s not happy. But look, she’s happy with this other dude. It’s not like she’s suicidally depressed in life or something. She’s happy with this other dude. And then after that, guess what? After three or four years, she’ll be happy with another dude. Actually, I suspect that if she met this other dude while she’s with you, it won’t last more than six months. The highest percentage is on that, being a short-term one.
Like, it’s a fling, what do you call those, like rebound; so just feeling freedom, right? And then when she has it, it’s not so special anymore. She’s probably going to dump that guy. And then maybe a year later, she’ll find a guy she might stick with, like you, for three, four, five years. She’ll dump that guy too, because relationships don’t- based on feelings, passion can’t last by its very nature, right?
So, Google ‘companionate attraction.’ That’s the crucial transition anybody needs to make in order to have a relationship work past three to five years. So, five year mark. That’s already pretty good for a young, modern person. Actually, you said you’re in your mid-30s and she’s in the early-30s. You guys aren’t really that young anymore, but that’s how the world is. No one taught you about love, no one fucking knows about it. So, don’t beat yourself up for it. No one else fucking knows what they’re doing. So, it’s a good thing you joined this group and that you asked me. I can tell you about it.
I go into depth in this in my course called Limitless. So, there’s a little plug for my course. So, get on the waiting list for that for when it re-opens. Otherwise, there’s a lot of wisdom out there on this. Nathaniel Branden’s book “The Psychology of Romantic Love”. It’s pretty deep. A little bit too new age-y for me, but it tells the truth. And that’ll get you started, Nathaniel Branden’s a good start. Esther Perel, anything by Esther Perel’s pretty good.
So, it’s time to get educated on this, in this area. Okay, Tommy, talking to you again. The next comment you made was – well, the comments after that… Okay, one big red flag, dude, is you said “She’s 32 and I have no idea how many long-term relationships she has had.” But you’ve been together for five years. That means you guys didn’t actually have a deep connection. You said, “She’d never shared that information with me and I never asked. I respected her past life and the fact that she never spoke about it.”
Look, the fact that you were five years together, you don’t even know that about her… Here’s something else, Google: “36 Questions New York Times” and then Google “John Gottman”. And while you’re at it, just fucking read the Malcolm Gladwell book that everybody has already read called “Blink”. There’s a chapter on that, in that book on Gottman. So, go and read that. It’s got a lot about what you need to know about connection, deep connections. Gottman’s the famous guy who can within ten minutes watching a couple interact, have a 90 percent prediction rate, accuracy rate, on predicting whether the couple will still be together ten years later.
The numbers aren’t exactly right, but anyway, Gladwell talks about it but you can go straight to Gottman.
Okay, so then that’s a big red flag. And here’s another red flag. “She had a tendency of making drastic emotional decisions, like just leaving her family and friends to go to Vancouver. Then she comes back to Montreal and buys a brand new Jeep with all of her financial assets, and then I come along.” Yeah, this is a girl who is emotionally unstable, emotionally unreliable, not… I mean at 32 and still like this? I can understand that coming from a 21 year old, maybe a 23 year old, still looking for herself and shit, but she’s 32.
I bet she’s educated, actually, she’s just not emotionally mature. So, there’s nothing you can do. I mean, you got to let her grow up. You picked wrong. That’s what you got to learn. The comment after that is very good. From Tommy, he says, “I’m thankful it happened now in a way, because I believe she’s still a child.” Hey Tommy, there you go, man. You know it. You digged deep down your heart. You had to just write fucking long comments to get there.
“Meaning she hasn’t found herself and doesn’t know what she wants with her life. That’s what kills me because I feel that was an emotional decision.” Dude, all decisions from this girl, 99 percent of them are emotional. “Because it was an emotional decision rather than a rational decision.” Getting together with you, her getting together with you was an emotional decision, okay dude? These are emotional decisions. You can’t expect a girl like this – a girl… I mean, she’s 32. We’re calling her a girl, but she’s doing girlish behavior. A girl like this to act like a mature woman.
So of course, she’s going to make an emotional decision, and she still will continue to. And when you guys got together, she was making an emotional decision. “Resulting in losing a good thing.” Yeah. “She hasn’t found herself.” Yeah. So, here’s a lesson for you. You picked wrong. You picked badly. You picked poorly. That’s a really important lesson. That’s a really good lesson. Now, it’s time to educate yourself on psychology, on the psychology of love, what it is. You really should read up on love and commitment and what makes a long-term relationship work.
I mean a lot of people – I’m going to talk to everyone else out there. You think that the hard work is getting the partner, getting the girlfriend, getting the boyfriend. And then like you get married and then it’s easy. The hard part starts when you get the girlfriend. Getting the partner is the easy part. So, fuck you all for thinking that you’re only coming to me to find that mate. That’s like the first step out of a hundred steps, so fucking respect the psychology, man. You haven’t read Branden, you haven’t read Gottman, you haven’t done your homework.
It’s like talking to a first grader in math when doing calculus, right? Bone up on the shit you should’ve learned. And it’s not your fault, it’s not your fault, it’s not your fault that society and your school system let you down. But if you want to succeed and find happiness in relationships, you have to take responsibility for yourself and go out and educate yourself. There are a lot of resources on it. It’s just that none of your friends will have read it. So, give you some examples of starting points. Go to Gottman, go to Branden, Nathaniel Branden. Go to Esther Perel. Those are good places to start. You can even start with their TED Talks.
I don’t know if Gottman did one. Esther Perel has done one. You can also go to Tony Robbins. Man, you just got to get educated. And then a plug for my own program. You can get Limitless, and I cover it there, but it’s in one of the modules, one of ten modules. It’s time to learn about this. And at some point soon ,maybe in the next year or so, I’ll be putting out relationship programs but still got a lot to learn before I feel confident and comfortable putting out a full 50-hour program on that.
So, most of it will be borrowed from other research. That’s one of my strengths, is to collate research from other sources, the top research finding, the best sources in research, and then distilling it into applicable information that’s relevant to you right away and showing you how to use it right away. So, anyway, that’s a plug for a future product. Tommy, thank you for the question. I feel your pain. Your biggest lesson is that you chose wrong, and you need to choose more wisely, more carefully in the future as well as preparing yourself. Education, education, my man, in learning about love and relationships.
Alright, and here I am from Shanghai. The sun’s setting over an hour. Oh yeah, join the private Facebook group. Join the private Facebook group. I’ll see you inside there. Until next time, Man Up!