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Thread: How much time to spend together/apart in a relationship

  1. #11
    Platinum Member Andrina's Avatar
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    Spending time with girlfriends is a totally different experience when your bf tags along. The conversation is different, of course, and you have to alternate your attention back and forth between each of the important people in your life.

    What would he say if you said you like your one-on-one together time with a gf without anyone else present? When he starts on his spiel that you should always be together for every activity, you can say that upsets you, and show him articles and/or books that totally negates that opinion.

    Do your opinions matter? What if you told him you like to have fun with your girlfriend, and that you find it rude to be interrupting your time with her by having to answer a ringing cell phone when there is no emergency.

    And what if you told him you enjoy at least one alone day per week to recharge and that yes, this alone time is vital for you. Otherwise, you feel irritated.

    If he's unreasonable and doesn't care about your needs or opinions, why do you want to be with someone who thinks "My way or the highway."

    Perhaps he will listen to a professional. If you foresee him as a lifetime partner, why not suggest counseling to see if there can be any improvement to his smothering behavior. Good luck and let us know how it goes.

  2. #12
    Platinum Member bluecastle's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by citrusgreen
    There is no hypocrisy in what he asks for. He invites me to everything. He would never go to a party, or a dinner, or a work event, a family gathering, or even dinner with his daughters, without inviting me and making me feel welcome. His feeling is that the natural course of life separates us sometimes anyways (for instance when he travels for work, or has a super early dinner with his daughters), but that we should spend the rest of our time together.
    Here is the section that jumped out at me the most. Because, I'm sorry, there is a dash of hypocrisy here. Or at least some very old school male thinking.

    His feeling, in other words, is that it's okay if the "natural course" of his life separates you two a bit (kids, work trips), but if the natural course of yours (needing alone time, gf time) does the same it is not okay. That would bother me, big time, because it's him putting greater value on this life outside the relationship than he does your own. He gets to prioritize (a) himself and (b) the relationship, while you were supposed to prioritize, well, himself and the relationship.

    The risk of that is that youóthat fierce, unique, mysterious thing that no one but you can possessócan end up feeling a little lost in the shuffle.

    I'm not saying he's a monsteróhardly. He sounds lovely enough, clearly you guys have a nice connection, and I hope this can be worked out. Still, this needs to be addressed. The subtext of your post is that you're beginning to feel a touch "bad" for, well, being youóa woman with an independent streak who likes to kick back with her gfs, decompress alone, whatever.

    Not cool. All that should not only be respected by a partner, but celebrated, appreciated. You shouldn't need to fight too hard to be seen, nor should you need to hide yourself in order to, well, feel seen.

    Sorry if I sound a little harsh. I just detect a slightly apologetic tone to your postóso considerate of him and his ways, but at the expense of yourself, of being seen and heard. Which happens in relationships.

    He sounds, frankly, a touch insecureóthat little edge of jealousy and possessiveness. Maybe it was hot, even soothing, in ways, early on. Tarzan-Jane stuff. But don't let it become suffocating. There are other ways to maintain and express love. You've gone outside your comfort zone to accommodate him; it's time that he shows you that he can do the same for you.

    So I'd have a talk. I'd clearly state that you need more you timeóthat it's not a verdict on him and what you have, all of which you cherish, but simply about you, who you also cherish. If he can't see and understand thatówell, then you have a problem.

  3. #13
    Platinum Member Wiseman2's Avatar
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    You don't need to be text-tethered or explain yourself when he's in his other location. When he's there do not isolate yourself. Continue your normal social activities. All this is up to you, not him. It's that simple.

    Simply do this:
    Originally Posted by citrusgreen
    sometimes I just want to go out and have dinner with a girlfriend without him. I want to work late and then go to a late exercise class, and chill out by myself before seeing him. he gets upset if donít text him back quickly enough.

  4. #14
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    Just because he invites you to his things doesnít mean you need to invite you to yours. Did you talk to him about this? What does he think is happening during these girls nights out? Does he just want to be invited to show you want him there or does he actually want to go?

    The way you described him in past posts, he seems to have quite a busy life and does quite a lot of work and socializing when he is away at work. So youíd think heíd want rest/quiet time for himself when he got back home.

    Tell him youíll miss and appreciate him more if you both spend some time apart. Hopefully that will make him think of this from a different perspective.

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  6. #15
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    citrus, I have been following your threads about this man for literally years.

    It's been one thing after the other!!

    Apologies if this sounds harsh, but it's getting a bit ridiculous don't you think?

    This is not what a healthy balanced functional dynamic/relationship looks like or is.

    And no he is not "lovely" -- agree with Holly, he's manipulating and controlling in every sense.

    Not just about this, but about everything. Isn't it obvious? His way or the highway!

    Stop justifying, shuffling under the rug, walking on eggshells!

    What will it take for you to realize this?

    Aren't you exhausted from it all?

    Edit: And jmo but what's more disturbing about all this, all your threads, is that you don't feel comfortable discussing all these issues with him, your own bf.

    It alomst seems like you are afraid of him in a sense. Afraid of how he might respond. That he might get angry and leave you.

    This is not healthy citrus, I hope someday you will realize this.
    Last edited by katrina1980; 01-30-2019 at 11:46 AM.

  7. #16
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    To add, in thinking about this and all your threads, your relationship sounds a bit like dom/sub.

    No judgment from me if it is, problem is you are not happy or comfortable with this dynamic.

    You're adapting and tolerating but NOT happy.

    And again, you're too fearful to even discuss this with him. Afraid to "rock the boat."

    I mean sticking you in coach, while he enjoys the comforts of first class? The topic of one of your previous threads.

    I know you've justified/accepted and moved past this, but then it's something else.

    I don't really know how to advise you anymore, cause even if we advise you about this, it's only a matter of time before something else pops up, cause the bottom line is you have a very unhealthy and unbalanced dynamic.

    I'm sorry and best of luck.

  8. #17
    Platinum Member bluecastle's Avatar
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    Okay, so I just took a little trip through your past posts, per Katrina's comments above.

    Citrus? I have to say I fear this relationship has got you twisted into a shape that is really far from your authentic self. If there's a theme it's that you regularly feel on edge and minimizedówhile going to great lengths, even here, to minimize those very feelings.

    You begin this post with "This isn't a major problem at present..." Another with "This isn't a crisis or anything..." It's a bit like you're on eggshells with us, which I suspect are an extension of the eggshells you're walking with himóappeasing, keeping the boat from rocking, and so on.

    BF is dynamic and interesting and rich, I get it. Very appealing. Wouldn't mind some of that myself in a gf! But not if the price of admission is feeling reduced to a shape slightly smaller than my true self.

    You write about yourself, and your interior world, with moxie. You self-identify as independent, suspect of being too reliant on a man, on making a man the nucleus around which you orbitówhich is, to these male ears, some hot stuff. But does he see this in you? Does he celebrate it?

    Katrina's sub/dom comparison is interesting. Rather than focus on this issue (together/apart time) I would take a moment to look at this dynamic a bit more deeply. Could be that what you're discovering is that you like a bit of dominance, and the rub here, in these posts, is that you're kind of adapting to discovering this new side of yourself. But it could also be, like Katrina said, that you don't much like it, but are kind of going along with it.

    Regardless, patterns are patterns, and I think it's worth seeing these issues as part of a larger quilt as opposed to a few individual threads.

  9. #18
    Platinum Member j.man's Avatar
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    Wait, did he actually tell you that he should be invited to every social event and girls night you go to? Or is this what you're inferring due to the fact it's what he does? Two very different things, but if the former, that's incredibly concerning.

  10. #19
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    Originally Posted by katrina1980
    To add, in thinking about this and all your threads, your relationship sounds a bit like dom/sub.

    No judgment from me if it is, problem is you are not happy or comfortable with this dynamic.

    You're adapting and tolerating but NOT happy.

    And again, you're too fearful to even discuss this with him. Afraid to "rock the boat."

    I mean sticking you in coach, while he enjoys the comforts of first class? The topic of one of your previous threads.

    I know you've justified/accepted and moved past this, but then it's something else.

    I don't really know how to advise you anymore, cause even if we advise you about this, it's only a matter of time before something else pops up, cause the bottom line is you have a very unhealthy and unbalanced dynamic.

    I'm sorry and best of luck.
    The "first-class" {seat} problem too is the one that stuck with me as well, I think because I was so insulted for you, and it was something that I would not have tolerated. Maybe he has a hard time trusting you to be off on your own because of his past indiscretion with that one woman? Sometimes people that cheat have a hard time trusting others or go back and accuse others of cheating. (Not that Iím saying he is going to accuse you, Iím just saying that that could contribute to his trust/insecurity factor.)

    Katrina, what is dom/sub? (Iím bad with acronyms/nicknames!)

    But yes, overall, youíve seem to be walking on eggshells around this guy. For example, this situation, the fight sounds like it was started by him because heís the one whose upset that youíre not inviting him. What are you afraid of?

  11. #20
    Platinum Member bluecastle's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by DaisyMayPorter
    Katrina, what is dom/sub? (Iím bad with acronyms/nicknames!)
    Dominant/submissive.

    Can be a sex thing, can be a lifestyle thing. But in both it's a willing pact, where the "sub" and "dom" are closing these roles because they like them, not bending themselves to accommodate.

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