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Thread: Career v. Relationship {Need Men Perspectives, All Are Welcome}

  1. #1
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    Career v. Relationship {Need Men Perspectives, All Are Welcome}

    Hi ENA Group:

    This question is mostly directed at men, who are career driven or business owners. I also welcome the advice of others as well, but because men and women donít think alike, I wanted to get some opinions. I thank you in advance.

    My BF and I were dating a little over a year. We had an intense connection and talked to each other all of the time (hours upon hours). He is a small business owner and has been working on it. The business is new and is not profitable. I know that he is struggling financially just by things that he has said and things I have seen. He has told me that I am ďthe one.Ē

    He told me that he has to fully concentrate on his ďissuesĒ and right now he canít focus on a relationship. I am willing to stand by him and really donít want the relationship to end. But, Iíve decided to respect his decision. Itís hard. Iíve decided to go full NC (no contact).

    I donít understand why men wonít let the woman be there for them through tough times. Do you think he will miss me and eventually contact me? I wonít wait forever but I do love him. Why is it so hard to do a career and relationship. Please help.

  2. #2
    Platinum Member IAmFCA's Avatar
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    Being in a relationship with you requires a significant amount of his energy and time, willingly given as evidenced by the hours of conversation.

    If he thought he could maintain contact with you, without disappointing you and without making any real investment, then he would. He either doesn't want to treat you that way or doesn't think you would tolerate it.

    Imagine being in a relationship with someone who isn't available until last minute, and only to eat and sleep, and who, when he does want to see you, has no idea what movies are out or is in the news, and has no desire to talk about what is going on his life. He wants an escape -- maybe a meal - that you make, maybe sex, maybe sleep, and that's it, without much advance notice nor promise of when it will happen again. Is that what you want?

    Didn't this so.

  3. #3
    Bronze Member SongCoyote's Avatar
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    Not everyone moves at the same pace, or sees relationships the same way. He may be struggling with feeling competent, or be in too deep in the business and feeling overwhelmed, or any number of things. Life is complicated to begin with, and getting a business going has a LOT of complications. Balancing all that with a new relationship can be even harder.

    If you want to maintain this connection and be supportive, you can do so without going NC and without pushing for "a relationship". You can be present and show that you care without giving any pressure about long-term goals between you. Be open about what you want if asked, but take care when asking for things, as he has set boundaries, and it's okay for him to do that.

    If you're not willing to wait, put in the effort, and support him even if he's not "dating" you, then reconsider how you really feel. I know it's hard to desire to be with someone whose priorities aren't focused on you, but sometimes even in a long-term relationship you'll need to set your own priorities aside to support someone.

    In short: if you think this person is worth effort and patience, put them in. Communicate, be compassionate for him and yourself, and don't take a heartfelt "not now" as "go away" :)

    Light and laughter,
    SongCoyote

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    Originally Posted by MeiLa
    I donít understand why men wonít let the woman be there for them through tough times. Do you think he will miss me and eventually contact me? I wonít wait forever but I do love him. Why is it so hard to do a career and relationship. Please help.
    Speaking as a man, it's most likely not about not wanting someone to be there during tough times.
    He realizes that his business needs his attention in order to meet the financial goals he established when starting it. That means less attention for you, which he may feel isn't fair to you. Also, as there will most likely be plenty of stressful days, he might not want to make the mistake of taking out his frustrations on you.

    If he's admitted that you are "the one", that is a good sign. Definately give him room to get his business on better footing, but after a week or so, send a very light message asking how he's making out... just to make sure you stay on his radar.

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    Thank you! I really appreciate the response. I am taking it personally. But, the reason that I said going NC is because I want to respect his wishes and also his boundaries.

  7. #6
    Platinum Member j.man's Avatar
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    It's really not a "men" thing, but an emotional independence and preference for compartmentalization thing. A lot of people will internalize and hone in on whatever issue is going on. Other matters and other people do tend to get put on the periphery. The difference between that person and someone who genuinely can't let others in and actually suffers more for it is how they act when you do actually afford them that space. It may never come in the form of confiding with you or crying on your shoulder, but if you're giving them that space, they should at some point be saying, "Man, hanging out with so-and-so would be nice right now."

    My fiancee and I both operate very similarly in that we both physically and emotionally retreat a bit if we're going through a particularly stressful period. That doesn't mean we're in our own rooms for weeks at a time or anything, but that we trust each other to handle something ourselves or to come to one another for support as needed. I don't ever interject on behalf of her own emotional well-being and I'm very glad that she doesn't for me, either. As a consequence, if I'm going through such a rough patch, I end up pretty often coming to her just to enjoy her presence. But it'd be a very different story if I felt as though I weren't entitled the space I needed.

    But that's all speaking generally and without knowing the exact details of your situation. Some people genuinely are workaholics. I don't know to what extent, if any, you were imposing yourself onto his coping mechanisms and the space he needed. I don't know how much space he expected. I don't know what your emotional demands were. It could be that he, quite simply, is too busy to be in a relationship while his business is still in the red. Despite what many posters on here will tell you, it is very possible to just not have the time or energy even with the best of matches. All of it's worth reflecting on yourself.

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    Originally Posted by TrueBlue631
    Speaking as a man, it's most likely not about not wanting someone to be there during tough times.
    He realizes that his business needs his attention in order to meet the financial goals he established when starting it. That means less attention for you, which he may feel isn't fair to you. Also, as there will most likely be plenty of stressful days, he might not want to make the mistake of taking out his frustrations on you.

    If he's admitted that you are "the one", that is a good sign. Definately give him room to get his business on better footing, but after a week or so, send a very light message asking how he's making out... just to make sure you stay on his radar.
    THANK YOU! Yes, he was clear that he needed to ďfocusĒ right now. You are right maybe I am being selfish only thinking of my needs and wants/

  9. #8
    Platinum Member DancingFool's Avatar
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    Sounds like the nature and dynamics of your relationship were such that he can't sustain it, namely intense and talking for hours and hours. He needs to invest that energy and those hours into his business. It's not that you can't have a relationship and be working on your business or career full time at the same time, it's that the relationship dynamics need to support that instead of taking away from it. In your case, your dynamics were taking away from his time and concentration on what he needs to concentrate on. So he ended things because from his perspective, the relationship wasn't a support but a drain on his resources, a distraction.

    If you really believe that your connection was mutually shared and that he only ended things because of the dynamic not being conducive to business, then you could actually request to sit down and talk about things and change the dynamic so it works as a support rather than a drain. That's assuming that he isn't just giving you a bs line and isn't simply ending things because he wants out. The other factor too is that if he needs that intensity in the relationship, then he will always be that guy who runs hot and then runs away when life gets busy because he can't handle things in balance. That part you can't fix.

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    I donít think itís a BS excuse. Itís not like I was demanding that much of his time, it is something we both wanted, but I agree that it comes a time that you have to invest that energy into your business. Financially, I know he is struggling and itís do or die for him. If I didnít have the first hand information, Iíd call BS.

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    Platinum Member catfeeder's Avatar
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    Most people who take a big risk and go out on a financial limb prefer to sink or swim without an audience. If he ever gets his business on track someday he may look back on you fondly and contact you, but I wouldn't wait for that. If you're available at that time, great, but if you're not, then that would mean that you've found someone who makes this guy irrelevant. Either way, you win by not hanging on.

    Head high.

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