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Thread: Am I being taken advantage of?

  1. #1
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    Am I being taken advantage of?

    So, long history with the woman I love. Been seeing her for 5 years, with the past 6 months being the roughest. She has told me that she feels hardly any emotional connection with me anymore and says that I focus too much on the physical connection. I told her I would like to focus on both, but she says "I can't even begin a physical connection until my emotional connection bank is full". I suggested that we take this week and focus only on the emotional connection (I won't pressure sex). I have also learned during a counseling session that emotional conversation is the most important to her. So, simple kisses, love notes, snuggling, smiles, winking, holding her hand, opening the car door, are all good, but don't do as much as emotional conversation. I'm struggling...when i try to have an emotional conversation (asking her questions about her day, about her kids, about upcoming vacation, what she did today that she enjoyed...etc), she replies with short answers and no connection is made. It feels like she wants me to lead the conversation and know what she wants to talk about, but I don't. And when I ask, she gets frustrated. It's almost like she doesn't know what she wants either....

    So, our counselor gave us an example called the "love bank". For every little thing we do for each other, it puts "money in the bank". For the past 5 days, she has begun saying things like "If someone gave me a massage, that would put $50 in my bank", and smiles. Needless to say, I do it. Another example, "if someone made me dinner, that would put $100 in my bank" and smiles. And I do it....and so on and so on.....This is the new pattern. Instead of this being an "us" relationship, it's starting to feel like the focus is on her. The conversations between us focus on me meeting her needs.

    I'm starting to have many concerns.....my love bank is giving so much, that my bank is slowly emptying trying to take care of her wants. I'm starting to feel "used", like she's enjoying my attention but has no interest in ever resuming the physical connection because of the new advantage she has. Unfortunately, in striving to get her emotional connection so that we can get to the physical connection, I'm starting to lose my emotional connection with her. In other words, I'm starting to feel like she does!!!

    Thoughts and suggestions are very welcomed.

  2. #2
    Gold Member SGH's Avatar
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    If it has only been a week where you are contributing to the relationship in a non-physical way, you may be jumping the gun by referring to yourself as "used". However, it is reasonable to want at least some equality in your relationship with your partner in terms of give and take.

    The tricky part about sex is that you really can't force her to want to have sex with you, and any verbal demands will just turn her off. Try setting aside some time when you are both relaxed and you are not feeling heavily resentful to gently let her know that you are trying very hard to meet her emotional needs in the relationship (and that you feel it has made your love stronger! Positive reinforcement can go a long way) but that you would like to keep working on having a strong physical connection with her as well. Don't make it all about sex. Try suggesting exchanging back rubs or a long cuddle session and go from there.

    Rushing and getting upset won't preserve the relationship, and once both people feel they are giving to their partner without getting anything in the return, the relationship is dead. If talking her to results in the a huge fight or you both end up blaming each other for general unhappiness, it may be time to admit you're incompatible and move on.

    Best of luck to you.

  3. #3
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    Dude, it has only been a week.

  4. #4
    Platinum Member lostandhurt's Avatar
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    I read your other threads about your gf before I responded here. (I suggest others do the same)

    You are doing all the heavy lifting here and giving in to all her demands and rules. Here is what I saw by reading your other posts.

    She moved out suddenly while you were out of town and then insisted on ground rules before she would come back. (Sounds like emotional blackmail to me.)

    She made you end all social media but her account stayed active and she was messaging some new single guy. (Suspicious timing?)

    She has been emotionally distant and after you accomplish all the things she wants you to do and bend over backwards to make her happy she still finds more reasons why she is distant. (I think she wants you to fail so she has an excuse)

    She has cheated on other partners in the past. (I see several signs of someone that is interested in someone else) Is she very protective of her phone?

    In the end you are jumping through each and every hoop she places in front of you and it seems like she is getting upset because you are trying so hard and succeeding. Why is that? You would think she would love you so much more because you have shown your devotion to her and the relationship and your willingness to try and make things better and better.

    I think there is way more going on her than her "love bank" or emotional needs. You need to keep your eyes wide open and start paying close attention to EVERYTHING!

    Lost

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  6. #5
    Gold Member maew's Avatar
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    I think I would be more concerned about the fact that you get no joy out of making her happy unless you get something out of the deal... your response to her being happy and smiling is "what about me?!" instead of "wow look how happy she is that makes me feel good!" Women know when they are being played generally speaking and if she senses you aren't being authentic, she isn't going to want to connect with you, physically or emotionally... that trust will take time to rebuild.

    It may be that you two aren't compatible... and you need to find someone that more highly values physical connection and doesn't care as much about the emotional connection.

    Edited after reading lost's update: if you have been trying this hard for this long, letting this relationship go and finding a more compatible partner is something to seriously consider.

  7. #6
    Platinum Member DancingFool's Avatar
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    After reading the summary background by lost..... You've been a doormat clinging on to an unhealthy relationship and an unhealthy dynamic for way too long. Time to consider that enough is enough and get out of this mess. Time to also think long and hard why you cling on and do this to yourself. What do you actually enjoy about this kind of a dynamic?

  8. #7
    Platinum Member Wiseman2's Avatar
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    Sorry to hear this. This is when it ended. Moving out and ceasing sexual activity means it's over. Agree with Lost, stop jumping through hoops.
    Originally Posted by Chadwick00
    while I was out of town, she contacted me and said she was moving out and did so while I was gone.
    Date exclusively.
    Wants marriage and will not live with me again until so.
    Once a day phone call.
    Church together every Sunday.
    And no social media (Facebook...etc)..

  9. #8
    Gold Member thisisrichey's Avatar
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    Hmmm..... tricky situation.
    1) I can completely understand that men are very direct/physical and that's what they see as "love" while females see it more thru the subtle, emotional things. (What's funny is she's saying she wants "emotional connection" and then requests a bunch of physical activity from you - kinda strange).
    2) It sounds like she wants to feel taken care of, pampered.. or that her partner can be capable of pampering her. So this is what she's asking of you.
    3) At the same time this is a relationship, not a dictatorship. A relationship means BOTH people should be willing and happy to PAMPER EACH OTHER. If she is not willing to reciprocate to pamper you back - HUGE WARNING SIGNS.

    For now, pamper her. Sometimes it takes winning their trust that you will truly pamper them and they don't have to ask to "open them up". Women can be a bit more guarded abotu opening up until they see something that reassures them. So do the pampering.. get her to smile and feel good about how she's being pampered... THEN PAY CLOSE ATTENTION if she starts pampering back or not. If it's ALWAYS about her - run away. If it is just what she needed to feel reassured in this relationship and starts to pamper back - then it should be good going forward.

    Good luck.

  10. #9
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    Originally Posted by thisisrichey
    Hmmm..... tricky situation.
    1) I can completely understand that men are very direct/physical and that's what they see as "love" while females see it more thru the subtle, emotional things. (What's funny is she's saying she wants "emotional connection" and then requests a bunch of physical activity from you - kinda strange).
    2) It sounds like she wants to feel taken care of, pampered.. or that her partner can be capable of pampering her. So this is what she's asking of you.
    3) At the same time this is a relationship, not a dictatorship. A relationship means BOTH people should be willing and happy to PAMPER EACH OTHER. If she is not willing to reciprocate to pamper you back - HUGE WARNING SIGNS.

    For now, pamper her. Sometimes it takes winning their trust that you will truly pamper them and they don't have to ask to "open them up". Women can be a bit more guarded abotu opening up until they see something that reassures them. So do the pampering.. get her to smile and feel good about how she's being pampered... THEN PAY CLOSE ATTENTION if she starts pampering back or not. If it's ALWAYS about her - run away. If it is just what she needed to feel reassured in this relationship and starts to pamper back - then it should be good going forward.

    Good luck.
    Gotta read his posting history. She has been acting shady and manipulating him for MONTHS.

  11. #10
    Gold Member thisisrichey's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by boltnrun
    Gotta read his posting history. She has been acting shady and manipulating him for MONTHS.
    Yeah i'm getting that picture now from the rest of you and you all are probably right.
    There's also something to "no regrets" and doing what you need to so that you never question or "what if.." it in the future. I think the OP is still at the point if he just up and left he'd think back and "what if.." this.
    So.. appeasing her just a little longer and knowing he did what he could and what she asked and if she continues to be unreasonable - it's pretty clear-cut at that point. It probably SHOULD be clear but at this point. But the only thing that matters is when it becomes clear-cut to the OP, not you and me.

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