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Thread: Is there still hope for us?

  1. #1

    Is there still hope for us?

    So, my girlfriend and I (both 29) have been together for two and a half years but we've been having a few issues (pretty much the same things that keep being mentioned).

    This is my first real relationship and I absolutely love her and I'm very sure that I'm still IN love with her but lately I've been finding myself a little more irritated when she brings up problems with me/our relationship. We have also started arguing a lot more too. It has got to the point where I'm considering taking a bit of time out just to clear my head.

    Most of the time we're really happy together - laughing at the same things, enjoying the same movies but then communication problems arise.

    Issues that she has brought up a few times:

    - I don't communicate my feelings/emotions that well to her. This is something I have always been aware of and I have been working at it and trying to express when I have an issue with something but I feel like I'm just not as affected by things as much as she is (I've always been pretty chill). She has said that I am getting better at communicating but I feel like it's still not good enough.

    - Her not feeling like I enjoy spending time with her as much as I enjoy spending time with my friends. I love spending time with her but my work hours can be pretty hectic (I may not get home until 10pm at night at times - we don't live together) so I can feel quite tired by the time the weekend comes and just want to relax. Again, this is something I am trying to work at and I'll suggest going out for dinner, a movie something more chilled.

    - Not going out as much as we used to. When we first started dating we would go out drinking a fair bit when we would see each other at weekends but I feel like I'm growing out of this. I'm not really a drinker anymore and I think this is bothering her a little (she's not a huge drinker herself and has actually cut back since I cut back) as it also been we don't go "out, out" as much. I think I'm also less affectionate when I'm not drinking (I've never been a PDA kinda person) and I know that this worries her.

    - Lack of intimacy. I think this is becoming a big one. Over the last few months, my sex drive has started to wane a little (maybe it's working long hours and stress, I don't know) but hers hasn't and I have only recently opened up to her about this. She took it well but I know this is bothering her.

    I've always been the type of person who is able to let things go and they generally don't bother me for too long so I haven't really felt like I've had any real issues with her but I've been thinking a lot more lately and I am finding myself annoyed/irritated by a few things she does.

    My issues:
    - Her complaining about not spending as much time with her and overstating how much time I spend with my friends. I do go out with my friends occasionally (and I do go to the gym a bit), probably every other weekend or so. I'm starting to think that part of the reason why she has an issue with this is because she doesn't go out with her friends so much. Before we got together, she would hang out with her best friend at the time and maybe a few others but during our time together she has slowly cut them out so she doesn't really see anyone else. She has a few friends she talks to on the phone but doesn't see them. She has become friends with some of my friends (as 90% of the time I go out, I invite her out with me) but doesn't spend time alone with them. I feel like if she had a few of her own friends to socialise with sometimes, she wouldn't mind as much about me having fun with mine.

    - She doesn't have any hobbies either (apart from watching tv I guess) so I sometimes find it hard to talk to her about stuff she's doing. I've also recently started to feel like her conversation starters are complaints about people and life which gets to me sometimes.

    - I really don't want to write this one but feel like it may be having a small effect. She has gained a bit of weight since we started dating, and yes, I'm still very attracted to her but I think I did prefer her a little smaller. She knows she has gained a bit of weight but blames it on the medication she's taking (I want to suggest that it could be because she doesn't work out but I know she'll take it the wrong way).

    - I have suggested going on holiday/moving in together and she says she really wants to but it's always me looking for places and makes me feel like she's not really interested. She then gets upset when I bring up going somewhere on holiday or looking at houses when we are on dates as she feels it's all we talk about. I've now just stopped looking altogether.

    I haven't told her how I feel as I get scared of upsetting her (I also hate confrontation).

    Over the last year both of us have had to deal with depression and anxiety but to varying degrees. She is on medication, started therapy but stopped after a few sessions. I haven't been on medication but went to therapy (at her suggestion) and completed it and feel like I'm back to my old self and I'm generally feeling good. I also work out regularly. She's coping really well though and is absolutely amazing at her job (very successful) but I worry that the medication could be playing with her mood.

    Should we take a break? Or do we (mainly me) just really need to work on communication? Any advice would be greatly appreciated

  2. #2
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    Sounds like she has become very dependent on you for her happiness. By the way sheís cut off friends and all her focus is just on you.

    Thatís a major problem in relationships I see. Two individuals need to have their own interests and hobbies and friends. When one partner is lacking in that area you become their everything.

    You mentioned medication and yes that can affect moods a bit but it should be mainly improving her moods and depression.

    It can be you two have nothing more in common so thatís why your conversations have gone stale.

    Youíve been together long enough to know youíre well out of the honeymoon phase. She is what you get. If sheís starting now to annoy you and your seeing her quirks as irritating you need to re-evaluate. Meaning maybe re thinking if those quirks you can put up with long term.

    We go into relationships hoping that person will be long term possibly forever. But we have to realize that isnít always going to be the case. We are constantly evolving in our minds.

    You either grow together or you donít.

    It doesnít sound like youíre on the same page anymore.

    Also the lack of physical intimacy sounds like more deep rooted issues then simply not feeling like it. Like the problems you just mentioned. If youíre constantly annoyed by her youíre going to be turned off by her.

    Love shouldnít be this hard. I agree you go through good and bad times in every relationship. But what youíre talking about sounds like itís her, herself.

    You have to decide if youíre still into all of her or not. If not set her free.

  3. #3
    Platinum Member Wiseman2's Avatar
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    Are either of you interested in kids? Do you have any of the same values and goals including how you handle money, careers, friends, family, etc.? It sounds like you both would prefer it to be more like dating.

    It's unclear why you are looking at houses when you haven't sorted past basic incompatibilities. Unfortunately it sounds like a vicious circle. With neither of you able to provide the other with the type of intimacy you seek.

    "Taking a break" is for breaking up, not fixing things. Basically it sounds like she's not your type mentally, emotionally or physically and you are just limping along in limbo.
    Originally Posted by jester1234
    So, my girlfriend and I both 29 have been together for two and a half years
    Should we take a break? Or do we (mainly me) just really need to work on communication? Any advice would be greatly appreciated

  4. #4
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    Yeah, what you described is a fairly typical scenario. She's probably insecure, you said she's depressed, and she's trying to use a passive-aggressive approach to try to control you and isolate you and keep you to herself. She doesn't realize that this winds up driving people away from her, just like it's starting to drive you away, and this feeds her depression even more by pushing you to have constant arguments with her, stirring up even more negative feelings, and making her (and your) depression worse.

    The relationship is becoming toxic and you can see it's getting worse. She's making demands on you that you just can't meet because you have to work and have other obligations. She doesn't really care about that. You not only have to spend all your time with her, but you also have to take her out when you're not feeling up to it. As limichelle wrote, she's dependent on you for her happiness. The problem is, what are you getting out of the deal? Some sex but a lot of headaches.

    Part of this is that she is trying to get into your head by accusing you of various things, such as not being communicative enough. What she's actually looking for is for you to be constantly propping up her ego by complimenting her, telling her you love her, etc. There's probably nothing wrong with your communication skills since the average girl doesn't need constant reassurance of your love.

    These things are also having an effect on your libido. You're subconsciously pushing her away by not wanting to have sex with her as often. Your body is telling you something that your mind doesn't want to accept yet. That the relationship is wearing thin.

    On top of this are some of the other disturbing things you wrote about. She has no interests or hobbies other than controlling you. She doesn't want to do anything and she's happy to have you do it everything. You have very little to talk about with her. This is not a good relationship.

    Perhaps the worse thing you wrote was about being scared to confront her about your feelings. When someone says they feel like they're "walking on eggshells" around their partner, the relationship has become emotionally abusive. It's really time to consider breaking up.

    A relationship should not have to involve constant conflict and negative energy. You want to feel happy, and loved, and safe and secure. You want a partner who will put into a relationship as much as you do. You're two years in on this relationship. Where do you see it heading in a year or two or three? You just feeling more miserable? Your girlfriend running your life? You not having a moment to yourself to just breathe?

    I think it's time to bail out of this relationship. She's just going to pull you down. You will not like the person you will become if you continue on this path. You might not want to do it now, but you should think about it and decide soon.

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  6. #5
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    It sounds like very fixable things to me, as I've come across so many cases exactly like yours. If you put in the work then I think you could be okay.
    The fixes being 1) Read into love languages so you can see each other's way of initiating affection/communication and learning about self-reflection to realize how exactly you're responding. A lot of the time, the most common problem is not what the issue is, but how you go about communicating those issues. Do you communicate constructively? Or do the issues get brought up in a way that comes across as blaming, complaining, or involve stonewalling? Knowing your communication strategies is important.
    2) As much as it is scary for her to go out into the world without you more often (rendering her more afraid that space would do the opposite of make the heart grow fonder for you), it is not only more healthy for herself solely as an individual, but for your relationship as well. Sometimes people need a gentle nudge to make it happen. I was at this point once early on in my relationship - years ago once the honeymoon phase was over and life started to get more serious. It passed though because I put in the work to feel secure with myself.

    She sounds afraid of the changes that your relationship is going through (you evolving and changing as a person, having a decreasing libido, and wanting to spend more time with friends). In her mind, this reinforces the thought that she's not good enough for you when it has nothing to do with her at all. Afraid people usually instinctively react with anger, or putting up a wall as a defense mechanism, effectively making their partner feel uncomfortable bringing up issues. Thus, both people become mentally exhausted. I've found that when both parties have been able to really talk through the issues and they no longer feel afraid, they (a lot of the time) loosen their grips and don't feel the need to be so needy and hold on so tightly.

    I highly recommend The Art and Science of Love DVD seminar. Your relationship sounds like the perfect example of the type of relationship they refer to, so I think your relationship could really benefit from it!


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