I hear you. It seems like a hard choice, although I probably would have made it the same way you did (just with less conscoius awareness of what I was doing).
One question I have for you: you say you are not looking for advice, but it's not clear to me what you are looking for. Are you just curious how other people have felt about similar situations? Are you wondering how other people did deal with it or would have dealt with it? What are you hoping to get out of this discussion?