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Thread: New Relationship, Possible Big Changes

  1. #1
    Platinum Member maew's Avatar
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    New Relationship, Possible Big Changes

    BF (42) and I (47) have been together for close to 6 months. We are totally smitten with each other... the "I love yoooouuus" have been said, the mushy pictures have been posted, the adventures are being had, it's pretty wonderful.

    Here is what I am trying to process:

    My bf is a case support worker at a resource that helps (or tries to) youth that have addiction and mental health issues get off the street and on to their (hopefully) next stage of finding help.

    He recently found out that they were cutting funding in half for the resource and as a result also cutting a bunch of staff. Because of his seniority, he was last on the list for the choice of shifts he would get and ended up with a Friday to Monday PM shift (4pm to 12pm)

    He is fortunate in that he still has employment such as it is. He is planning to look for other work though as he doesn’t want to work a weekend shift like that... and has also been dissatisfied with his job as a lot of times it isn't very busy (which is likely why they have cut funding)

    Of course he is experiencing shock and dismay at having the choice taken away from him about when he will work. And anxiety and worry about what he will do going forward. I am being supportive in that I am listening and helping him process how he is feeling about this, showing love, all those things.

    I feel fear, sadness, anxiety about what will happen to us if he chooses to take this shift or if he has to because he can’t find other work. That we won’t be able to spend as much time together… I love spending time with him and vice versa… so I would be super sad if that option was taken away.

    The other thing that has been creeping into my mind is that it was always one of my relationship goals to be with someone that was “around” so to speak… where we could spend time together doing activities we both enjoy.

    In reality I don’t think any of this will happen as he will likely find other work… but I felt myself getting withdrawn and shut down with him the other day because this fear is there.

    I haven’t told him about this fear as I don’t want to seem selfish and self-centered, and he is already going through enough of his own feelings around this… part of me wonders if I should, the other part is saying “don’t make this about you and how you feel”… this was something that always caused problems in previous relationships so I don’t want to act out that same behavior in this one.

    I don’t know if I have a question as such but maybe this… if it were you would you bring it up and if so how would you do it?

  2. #2
    Platinum Member WithLove's Avatar
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    From how he feels and what you've posted, I would think that this is likely a bit of a temporary situation. He seems like he's willing to try to negotiate for another shift at work or even apply elsewhere, so hopefully this won't last too long.

    I'd say that if it does stretch for a while (and you'll have to ask yourself honestly how long you are willing to hang on with an unpleasant schedule), then you should talk to him about how you feel like you're losing a vital connection with him.

  3. #3
    Platinum Member Rose Mosse's Avatar
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    Take it easy and try not to feel overwhelmed all at once. I generally work 7 to 4 and my husband works a steady 1pm to 1am. We also have different days off but still make time for our family. We also met later in life and developed hobbies and long-standing recreations outside of the relationship and independent of each other. You'll have to be honest with yourself ultimately whether this is right for you. There's a lot of pressure generally from society to spend as much time together as possible and you'll want to do that innately. Your sense of panic is normal and it's okay to feel that way but you should also know that your life is exactly the way you wish to design it and you have a choice in everything.

    Take the sense of helplessness with a grain of salt and one day at a time. Trust in yourself and take the opportunity to develop areas of yourself with the newfound time. Don't be afraid of the future or independent self-development while still maintaining a loving relationship. You should trust in yourself more. Listen to your instincts, regardless of what others say (including me for example). Do what you feel is right and act in your best interests.

  4. #4
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    I would just wait for now and try to be as supportive as you can.
    Circumstances may change anytime and this shift may not even have place. So please be patient. Don't worry in advance.
    Even if he would have to start the shift, it will be certainly very temporary and spice things up between you two. You will miss each other more.
    In his job, there are many vacancies so your man will easily find another job. Maybe it was meant to be this way and the unpleasant shift will motivate him to look for a better workplace.
    I would say be patient. Do not shut down as this never helps. Please don't be worried just yet. Things can change for better.
    He is also crazy about you so believe me he won't be happy working these crazy shifts. I am sure he has the same concerns.
    Be there for him since he is down about the changes.
    Enjoy the time you have together and don't worry about it just yet .

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  6. #5
    Platinum Member bluecastle's Avatar
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    I agree with the general consensus here.

    Right now you're scared because...well, truth is you don't really know why, save the deep human fear of change and the unknown. You can spin into the worst case scenarios—no more weekends, forever—but that's really just a protective instinct to gain some control over the uncertainty, and never a productive one. No point withdrawing now to gird against a hypothetical, especially since all that is unlikely to happen or be anything more than a brief chapter in your storybook romance.

    So acknowledge these fears—hey guys, I see you!—and then acknowledge the other things that you know to be true: that he is a stud of a man who is crazy about you, and who you are crazy about, and who you would never have met or connected with if it wasn't for your own ability to look fear and uncertainty in the eye and give it the finger a million times over during your own individual journey.

    It's wild, this whole connecting to people later in life, isn't it? So many moving pieces! Fortunately, we're built some big muscles over time and we can handle them with a lot more grace than we once could—or some of us can, at least. From the little I know about you from your posts on here, it's clear you've got that mojo running through you in spades.

    So: inhale, exhale. Present tense. Buddha stuff. Kisses when you feel the urge to withdraw, a question when you feel the urge to unload—that's kind of my one-two combo. Not always easy to practice, but startlingly effective just about all the time.

  7. #6
    Platinum Member maew's Avatar
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    Awesome feedback all thank you! I’ve got this tendency to avoid or try and suppress feelings of fear and to just “soldier on” as my friends would say. It’s one of the reasons I get stuck in my head. I keep forgetting how important it is to acknowledge their existence and allow them to pass.... actually showing myself some love and compassion... this despite years of practice doing so and many reminders such as this 🤦🏻♀️

    Thank god I have people to remind me of what the right thing to do is.

  8. #7
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    So typically if you get involved with someone who has a career not just a job and who is passionate about what they do then inevitably there will be times their schedule is unpleasant or unpredictable or requires lots of travel etc. I’ve lived it in my own right and so has every guy I’ve been seriously involved with including my husband - and we married in our 40s.

    For certain people work means a job and the main reason for the work is to make ends meet and perhaps make extra $ besides. But if they possibly can their schedules will be predictable and allow them to pursue a consistent social life and or hobbies or leisure time or whatever. The last time I had a predictable full time job was in the late 1980s - because it was before I started grad school and my career.

    So decide on your priorities. Your bf seems passionate about his work and future and if you are with him you’re signing up for a level of flexibility you wouldn’t have to if he just had a job. When I started dating my husband for the second time I knew I’d have to be open to relocating and I knew he’d travel a lot and I loved that he’d found a career he was passionate about. And real life can be gritty and stressful because of if. One example - last month I realized I needed a tooth extracted because of concerning pain. That day. That day also involved my husband’s plane flight across the country for 3 days plus an important school event for my son that evening. Because of his work there was no way for him to change his plans. So at 2:30 I was done with my surgery and numb and sore and at 5:30 after a 2 mile walk I was at the event.

    Make the decision now whether you’re ok with wacky schedules and uncertainty about his job stability and funding and ok with being there for him - including giving him space - when he’s drained from what his work requires. Make it now so when you’re exhausted from solo parenting or whatever to accommodate his schedule or going solo to the theater because he got called into work or having to reschedule a vacation you’ll be annoyed but not at the level of resentment that is unfair to both of you.
    I get what you’re saying about managing the fear and negative thoughts but if you have the mindset and expectations consistent with being with a guy like him that will help the fear a great deal.
    Good luck !

  9. #8
    Platinum Member maew's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Batya33
    So typically if you get involved with someone who has a career not just a job and who is passionate about what they do then inevitably there will be times their schedule is unpleasant or unpredictable or requires lots of travel etc. I’ve lived it in my own right and so has every guy I’ve been seriously involved with including my husband - and we married in our 40s.

    For certain people work means a job and the main reason for the work is to make ends meet and perhaps make extra $ besides. But if they possibly can their schedules will be predictable and allow them to pursue a consistent social life and or hobbies or leisure time or whatever. The last time I had a predictable full time job was in the late 1980s - because it was before I started grad school and my career.

    So decide on your priorities. Your bf seems passionate about his work and future and if you are with him you’re signing up for a level of flexibility you wouldn’t have to if he just had a job. When I started dating my husband for the second time I knew I’d have to be open to relocating and I knew he’d travel a lot and I loved that he’d found a career he was passionate about. And real life can be gritty and stressful because of if. One example - last month I realized I needed a tooth extracted because of concerning pain. That day. That day also involved my husband’s plane flight across the country for 3 days plus an important school event for my son that evening. Because of his work there was no way for him to change his plans. So at 2:30 I was done with my surgery and numb and sore and at 5:30 after a 2 mile walk I was at the event.

    Make the decision now whether you’re ok with wacky schedules and uncertainty about his job stability and funding and ok with being there for him - including giving him space - when he’s drained from what his work requires. Make it now so when you’re exhausted from solo parenting or whatever to accommodate his schedule or going solo to the theater because he got called into work or having to reschedule a vacation you’ll be annoyed but not at the level of resentment that is unfair to both of you.
    I get what you’re saying about managing the fear and negative thoughts but if you have the mindset and expectations consistent with being with a guy like him that will help the fear a great deal.
    Good luck !
    All great food for thought! I want to support him in his journey, the relationship we have is definitely worth it. I don’t want my fear to stand in the way of that happening. Life is unpredictable and how I handle this will set the stage for future situations.

  10. #9
    Gold Member Gary Snyder's Avatar
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    I would not sweat it, it's not the end of the world, just a temporary situation. Don't make a mountain out of a molehill.

  11. #10
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    But is his dedication to his work something you admire or just tolerate ? Even though I admire my husband for his dedication to and passion about his work I still have to remind myself at those really challenging times why I signed up for this. If I didn’t respect and admire him as I do I can’t imagine being able to accept all the extra work and stress on me and our family

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