I've been with bf two yrs now. He is 34 and I'm 42. I have a 17 yr son.
He lives a 40 min drive away. Due to work commitments we often see each other Wednesday eve for a few hours and Fri to Sunday. I always drive up there and back.
My son goes with the flow but has no relationship as such with my bf. Due to the small size of my house my son has kind of taken over the living room as his room is very small.
Anyhow I am very concerned and scared as to where our relship is going.
He is a very calm quiet and emotionally closed person but has a great sense of humor and we laugh non stop.
The thing is though..he NEVER EVER initiates any conversation that involves us as a couple that reflects his hopes or plans or feelings for us. He never really says anything to do with feelings with regards to us, his family, friends, sadness, compassion, empathy etc etc.
The only time it seems anything like that is present, is when I bring it up or I'm upset and he calculates that it needs some kind words. The responses are verbally caring but physically there is rarely any obvious emotion from a sad situation to a happy one.
When I on occasion, out of sheer desperation, have brought up issues that need at least an understanding, affirming, caring or a from the heart response, there is...nothing...nothing but a sullen, vague, blank or frustrated look..no words..no hug..no hand. There is a heck of a lot of silence though and if I do manage to coax out some words they are...I don't know, haven't thought about it, I take each day at a time, why do you have to upset this lovely day we had with this. ...etc etc.
He says he loves me and I'm his best friend and he does look after me when I'm with him. We joke about and make up funny games do crazy stuff together but....get serious on him and it's like I've just asked him something outrageous.
He never shouts, is never mean, is very loyal, but basically doesn't get out of his zone for no one unless maybe the house is on fire.
I'm often hinting at how hard it's becoming for me to continually drive up there..the petrol..the wear and tear on the car..the goodbyes when I leave..
He says shall I pay towards petrol? Seriously? ! Does he not see it..
He has nothing in his town except his job..no links whatsoever. Where I live is where I work, where all my friends live and my aging parents and my sons college AND his parents and brother and grandad and aunts and uncles are in the same area as mine..like a mile down the road! It's totally impractical for us to move. He's aware of this..
He's not overly affectionate either. I've often bear hugged him and his arms would stay right where they are..by his side. He hates french kissing. I'm not joking. He's not into displays of public affection and I'm talking hugs and hand holding. .not unless he's had a pint or two.
He's become better at hugging me but I think I've also accepted his ways to some extent.
He still says he loves me... I love him to bits and have never been with such a kind loyal and patient person.
Have you any thoughts Jane?
I'm just so desperate for him to at least mention something about us having a future but I'm feeling so much like the weekend hobby. ...:'(.
Please help me....xxx
I so hear your pain.
It’s never easy when you see it so clearly from where you are, and when everyone else can see it too, but the one person you so want to see it, doesn't. It doesn't make sense on so many levels – to you.
But the reality is, people do what they do for a reason. Whether they realize it or not. This is working for him. It’s comfortable for him.
Whether he’s aware of it or not – and usually they aren't because they don’t give these things the same kind of thought that we do – it’s what he’s comfortable with. Yes, he’s farther away than he really needs to be, but he’s quite content to stay where he is. He doesn't give you more because what he’s giving you is as much as he’s wanting to give.
There’re so many reasons why, but the only one that matters is that none of this has anything to do with you, Caz.
This is all about him and his choices and his issues. And as much as you've tried talking to him about what you want to see different, about what you need from him, his response confirms how he feels and where he’s at - and how much he’s content with the way things are.
When you've told him how you feel, and you've asked for him to do something different, when you've given him both the subtle hints you have and direct ones he can’t ignore as well, you can know that he knows where you’re coming from.
The next part is up to you.
You've seen by his actions where he stands. You've heard from his words how he feels about all this. The ways he responds to what you say, and the behaviors you get or don’t get from him all reveal the same thing – this is who he is, these are his terms for your relationship, and this is where he’s at.
Believe him. Hear him.
And most of all, accept him and where he’s at. That’s how you find your own peace. See him for who he is and what he has to offer you. Can you live with his terms? Can you live with him the way he is? It comes down to you, Caz, and what he’s worth to you, and what having him in your life on his terms is worth to you versus not having him in your life at all.
You’re not going to change him. You can only change yourself.
If you can live with what he offers and he’s worth it to you, then accept that. But if you can’t, if you want more than he’s offering you, then accept that, too.
And make your decision based on the reality of what is, of what he’s told you and what you see in his actions, and not on the fantasy of what you know it could be like “if only” he could do this or that.
You’re not here to change him, it’s not your role to change anyone or convince them of why they should want to commit to you on a deeper level. It has to come from him. He has to want it, too.
If you’re content to live your own life and fill it with the people and things that make you happy and fill your own cup independent of him, then what he does or doesn't do won’t matter as much and you can adjust your expectations of him. But you have to be honest with yourself on whether you can truly live like that or you’ll only be looking for more from him than what he’s capable of giving you.
And that’s a tough way to live.
There isn't anything wrong with what you want from him, Caz; there isn't anything wrong with where he’s at. But if you’re both on different pages, if you’re both looking for something different, then you need to decide just how compatible you truly are.
Choose you first, Caz, and then choose to do with him and this relationship whatever brings you the greatest amount of peace and calm and leaves you with the least amount of regrets.
Trust yourself to know, trust your heart, your gut instincts. You’re with him, you know him, and you know you. The only person you answer to is yourself.
What do you think? Do you have any words of advice or encouragement for our dear friend Caz? Share them with us in the comments.