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My girlfriend and I have been together for many years (we started dating when we were both just 15, we're 21 now - we had a 2 year period during that time when we were just 'friends'), and we both love each other very deeply. However, two months ago she expressed that recently her sexual desire for me had not been as strong as it was before, and that perhaps we should take a break from each other. But fearing losing my companionship, she agreed to stay with me and try to figure things out. When I realized this was a bad idea, I proposed the idea of a temporary open relationship, which she seemed to think was a perfect idea. But I recently came around to the mindset that, both for us as individuals and as a couple, that wasn't the right move, and so I told my girlfriend that we needed to make a clean break from each other, for at least a while.

There are many reasons I decided this was the right move:

1 - I had become too dependent on her, too much of a doormat to her. I need time apart from her to find myself as an individual. Doing so will be good for me no matter what, and will likely also make her feel more attracted to me (Girls like independent-natured men, not clingy boys who they feel are dependent on them). She has expressed that part of the issue right now is that I am a bit too 'boyish' and that she wants someone a bit more 'manish'. Although time will certainly help that issue out, it's not just an issue of time and it's more about making steps to take control of my life and grow into my adult self (sometimes men tend to take a few years longer than women in this regard). I do believe that I have shown her a certain level of maturity and independence by telling her that I don't need her right now, which I think will be a jolt to her system.
2 - Absence makes the heart grow fonder. Although absence can also make people simply forget about each other, in this case we love each other so deeply that is not going to happen anytime soon.
3 - I believe I will hold up well under comparison. She will not find someone else as incredibly caring and devoted to her as I was. She knows this objectively, but it's hard for people to truly appreciate what they've had until they've lost it.
4 - Jealously is a powerful tool. When I start seeing another girl or girls, she could very well begin to fear losing me and make a play at getting me back. This actually might have been what happened the first time we got back together, as I had recently begun seeing another girl just before that happened.
5 - Marriage is far away for both of us. We have essentially been dating for 5 and a half years. And neither of us plans on getting married for another 7 years or so. It's unrealistic to expect to date for over a dozen years before getting married without the road to getting there being a little bit bumpy. In the meanwhile, we both need to get a better sense of what we want, and a more complete "life experience". If it's true love, which I believe it is, we'll be together again.

A couple of very important side notes:

1 - One of the main issues about her loss of sexual desire for me may be related to problems in the bedroom that are not my fault but may be getting perceived by her as at least partly my fault. She has never been able to have pain-free sex. We tried on many occasions but she could never overcome the pain, which made sex joyless for her. We substituted it with oral sex, which we both loved for a long time, but I think I wanted it more often than her and would therefore ask for it even when she wasn't in the mood, which began to annoy her and made oral sex seem like a chore for her at times. Ultimately her issue put a serious strain on our sex life, and this could be a huge factor in why she began to lose some sexual desire for me. The good thing for me, in a way, is that she is going to have the same issue with any other guy she might end up sleeping with, and that might make her think about our sexual problems a bit differently (in the long run, I hope to be able to guide her through this problem).
2 - She says that right now she may not be looking for such a committed, dedicated relationship in the way we had it. She is a very career-oriented, type-A personality, and I think that as much as she may want to have random hook-ups with different guys right now, and maybe even date, she isn't looking for anything too serious, that would take up too much of her time at this point in her life. Even though she was willing to continue to be dedicated to me, that's really how she feels right now about all guys.

When I gave her the news that I think we should make a clean break, it hurt her a great deal. She cried hysterically for a very long time, but I tried to comfort her. She was particularly hurt that I said that we shouldn't have any contact for an indeterminable period of time, as she just doesn't want to lose me. But we ended things on really great terms. We smiled, laughed and cried talking about all of the wonderful memories we've had together. And she kept saying over and over again how she wants to be with me in the end - and she wants to have the most amazing, passionate sex with me in the future. She kept saying how much she loved me, over and over and over again. We kissed and cuddled. It was quite a unique way to 'break up'.

And now she has no idea when I'm ever going to call her again. And that's EXACTLY how I want it. Right now I am thinking that it is going to be at least 1 college semester - and that when I'm back home for the summer (about 4 months from now), especially if neither of us happen to be dating other people at that time, I am going to give her a call.

So... to rephrase the subject question... is making a clean break from my relationship with this girl, for at least a while, possibly just what is needed to fix it?

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