Author's Note: *Deep breath* This is my first Big Bang Theory story and my first multi-chapter story. Please be kind and review.

Chapter One - Amy

"Bye, Sheldon."

Amy closed her laptop and let out a long, shuddering breath, barely believing she had the strength to tell him what she did. Sheldon was so upbeat when he Skyped her but she could see that he was stunned when she finished talking.

Oh, she didn't want to hurt him! She loved him so much but… over the last year or so she began to realize that her loving him was not enough. She couldn't hold up both sides of their relationship anymore. It was exhausting… and sad… and painful… and frustrating. But… they had such fun together! Playing Counterfactuals and conducting experiments on their social group, finding errors in published research, and laughing at lecturers. Or just sitting together drinking tea, talking for hours. But… when they did talk for hours, it was always about something that interested him. HIS work, HIS interests, HIS concerns. He could never be bothered to show an interest in the things that were important to her and always poo-pooed her emotional concerns as "uterus stuff". She was so proud of his intelligence and how he was leading the way in his field. She could have burst with pride when Sheldon and Leonard were honored for their joint paper. But… when her research had been published and she made the cover of "Neuron", he was more excited about how many followers he had on Twitter. She praised him for his research successes but… he constantly belittled her field of study, believing it was not worth talking about because it was just icky, squishy stuff. He was so handsome and he had been making an effort to dress nicer and more maturely on their date nights. She always complimented him and let him know how attractive she found him. But… the only time he would even notice a change in her appearance was to let her know that he didn't like it. He had been working harder at holding hands without complaining, even taking her hand spontaneously sometimes. And they had been kissing more and those things thrilled her heart. But... she had to negotiate for hand holding and kissing to be part of the Relationship Agreement and Sheldon was contractually obligated to do those things. And if she dared to express a desire for more intimate contact, he always treated her like some over-sexed pervert for even entertaining such an off-putting and ridiculous notion. Sometimes he would surprise her by doing or saying something sweet and looking at her with those beautiful blue eyes and his adorable smile, making her heart swell with love for him. But… just as suddenly, he would do something thoughtless, or even cruel, and it would just cut her to the quick. She was constantly off balance and afraid of doing or saying something that would upset him. It was exhausting.

As she had done countless times since she left his apartment on their anniversary, Amy started to cry. She mechanically went through her routine of getting ready for bed. She laid down and tried to relax but sleep eluded her as her mind kept going back and forth, back and forth, back and forth. "I love him so much but I don't think I can do this anymore. What am I going to do?" she thought, as she cried herself to sleep.