Hey GT. So, I’ve been offered a job in another city. A great opportunity doing something I’m really freakin’ good at, with great pay and benefits, in a city that I love. My brother, aka my best friend in the world, recently moved there with his wife (who I also adore); I still have a smattering of friends there from my previous stints in the city. So I wouldn’t be starting completely from scratch. I have until COB tomorrow to accept.

The problem, though, is that taking this job means leaving Mr. Chip, someone I have loved and lived with for the better part of the past 3 years. He can’t come with me because he has kids up here in NYC, and he needs to be with them. I love him so dearly, and so deeply, that the very thought of leaving him is filling me with so much anxiety I haven’t been able to eat since Wednesday when the job offer came in.

But the whole situation is complicated by the fact that Mr. Chip and I may not be compatible in the long-term—I want kids of my own, and to travel, and to maybe move to the suburbs where those kids can have a yard to play in—all things that are precluded because Mr. Chip doesn’t want any more kids and, even with our combined incomes, we don’t have the money to travel or indulge in much luxury (because every spare penny he has goes towards making sure his existing children have a good life, and rightly so!). I don’t have a particularly strong relationship with the current children for a number of reasons, and I’ve never really bonded with New York as a home, finding the place overwhelmingly huge and cripplingly lonely. I don’t have good friends here aside from Mr. Chip.

But I’m still scared. I’m scared that I’m leaving a great love because I can’t or won’t be flexible in the kind of future I envision for myself. I’m afraid that the loneliness won’t go away if I move and that I won’t foster close friendships again. I’m afraid that I won’t find that chance to travel, have kids, move to a nice little house in the suburbs with a yard and maybe an above-ground pool. I’m afraid I’ll never love like this again.

How do you unravel this kind of knot? How do you know if you’re making the right choice? Our relationship now is imperfect, but we’re happy together in this moment. But I know 2, 3, 4 years down the line, I probably won’t be so happy, thinking about the things I’ll have to sacrifice to stay with him. Do you wait until you reach that tipping point, or do you cut your losses?

And if you cut your losses, how do you cope with breaking your own heart so badly? What do you do if you regret it? How do you cope with the guilt of hurting someone else like this?

(Sorry for the sadness, dramatics and maybe-typos. This has been typed through a haze of Klonopin and tears, and I don’t really have many people to talk to about this in my real life.)

ETA: Thank you all for the kind words. It’s like I have a huge gaggle of Sugars cheering me on. I know I haven’t been as present here as I used to be, but it’s nice to see that the community is as wonderful as ever. :)