This is a very specific question. I apologize for how long and over-detailed it is, but I'm trying to make this as clear as possible.
On January 31st 2020 I arrived in Sweden to stay with my now-fiancee. I am an American citizen, so no visa necessary. It was my first time ever traveling to Europe. Of course, by March, COVID had started to really hit hard and my flights home were cancelled. I applied for a temporary visitor's residence permit on grounds of COVID difficulty with Migrationsverket before my 90 days expired in late April.
It took MV 3 months to get back to me. By mid August, they had made a decision on my case and sent a letter to my fiancee's house stating that I needed to attend a meeting on September 14th with them. I never received a decision in the mail stating whether I had been denied or accepted.
At the meeting, I was told that my application had been rejected and that I had to leave within 2 weeks, as it was now possible for me to return home. I left Sweden within the 2 week window and confirmed my departure with Migrationsverket afterwards. There is no entry ban on me. I have been in the US since then and have remained out of the Schengen zone for nearly 4 months now. During this time, I have applied for a residence permit based on serious relationship with a Swedish citizen. My fiancee and I have contacted Migrationsverket several times hoping to gain some clarification on when I can return, and they have been relatively unclear.
They have said that the time I spent waiting for the permit DOES NOT count as time that I was "there" in the Schengen area, but they cannot provide guidance on when anyone can return, they are only referring to the Schengen rule which apparently sees my stay as having been valid. I cannot really consult the 90/180 day rule, because I was in the Schengen area for longer than 180 days including my 90 days visa-free time. Migrationsverket has also said that if I had been granted the temporary visitor's permit, I would have had to wait outside the country for longer, like 6 months instead of 3. However, I can't find any resources that are specific to my situation and corroborate that information, and I do not want to end up in trouble if I return to Sweden in late February (5 months out by that point.)
Migrationsverket can be obtuse and confusing sometimes, and I am not sure what applies here, and I need to make sure that I'm not violating any sort of rule by returning after 5/6 months. I am wondering if anyone can provide guidance or can share similar experiences.