AN ABSOLUTE GEM: I split with my then-boyfriend after a drawn out 6 months of knowing how we both felt, but not having the guts to end an 8 year relationship. During the end of that relationship, I was in love with another man I worked with. What followed was sadly, a painful, powerful and messy relationship - I was annoying fragile after the break-up, he was upset with me, I lost my way. What followed were two people going down swinging. I was a mess at the beginning of 'us' and I have apologised for this a number of times but it never could undo the hurt. As such, he was unkind to me on several occasions and he has said some things to me that have caused a long of long-term pain.