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Thread: What does he want from me?

  1. #1

    What does he want from me?

    Hi, I have just found this forum and I am desperate for advice please.

    I have been in a relationship with an older guy (I am 33 he is 49) for about 18 months now. In the time I have known him, I have helped him through alot from homelessness, addiction and problems caused by his alcoholism.

    He has broken up with me twice previously but soon weeded his way back in. He ended the relationship at Christmas, he said he had met somebody else but that I was his best friend and he didn't want to lose me. He actually cried when I told him to take care of himself and have a good life. We remained friends, meeting occasionally then the meet ups became daily always acting like we were in a relationship . I actually had to ask him three months down the line what I was to him and he replied girlfriend, seeking shocked I had to ask!

    Then about six weeks ago he ended the relationship again. I must say everytime he does this it breaks me, to the point of not eating, sleeping etc. This time he said he couldn't be in a relationship at the moment, it wasn't fair due to his issues with alcohol and lack of job. Broken but accepting this I let it be. Within a week he was messaging me again, asking me to meet up. I would go round his and I will be honest we did hook up a few times. Then we started meeting without sex, just meeting and spending time together but he would always make a point of keeping it friendly until he was drunk, then he would be telling me that he misses me, loves me, he would be all huggy and kissy. The last two weeks we have barely been apart but I'm so confused as to what is going on in his head? He called himself my boyfriend a few days ago he had had a drink but wasn't drunk, but now he won't even touch me, i feel like a leper. He is pretty much living at my house but going home at night. One day all loving the next day it is like a switch has flicked and we are nothing more than friends? It is really hurting as it feels so good when he is loving but when he goes distant and cold I don't know what I have done? I mean why spend so much time with me if I mean nothing to him?

    I know I should ask him outright but he is very emotionally shut off and I would get nowhere.

    I am sorry for the long first post, there is alot more I could put in but have kept it as brief as I could. Thank you to anyone who may have some advice as to what I should do or what you think he may be feeling.

  2. #2
    Platinum Member Wiseman2's Avatar
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    Dating is not social work. You are not a homeless shelter or a rehab facility. Those are places he belongs. He simply has too many problems to date.

    Do you use drugs that he can obtain? Why are you with someone like this? Where did you meet him? The best thing to do is ask him to leave, pack up his stuff and give him the name/number of some shelters and rehab places. He will drag you down and possibly expose you to legal or health problems.
    Originally Posted by Hannahsmith
    I am 33 he is 49 for about 18 months now. In the time I have known him, I have helped him through alot from homelessness, addiction and problems caused by his alcoholism.

    He is pretty much living at my house but going home at night.

  3. #3
    Thank you for your answer, I appreciate it. As for the question of drugs and alcohol, that is the confusing thing, he is clean from drugs, the alcohol is still an issue but I never give him money or alcohol and he never asks me for it. I don't drink myself so don't have any in the house. I met him at work, he was a regular customer in the shop I work at and he came in and asked for my number. At that time he was working and managing his drinking as he had the distraction of work. It was shortly after we met that he lost his job and his life spiralled. Must add he has his own place to live now, he just seems to prefer being where ever I am.
    Last edited by Hannahsmith; 09-17-2019 at 12:30 PM. Reason: Extra information

  4. #4
    Platinum Member bluecastle's Avatar
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    Date a mess of a person and we end up feeling like a mess ourselves. That, in a nutshell, seems to be the story here, to put it in stark terms. He's a 49-year-old dude who can barely get through the day. You know this. It's not mysterious. What's mysterious is why you want to be the torch that lights the way for him, at the expense of your own well-being.

    Anytime we're asking questions about what someone wants from us, or what someone's feeling, it's because we already know the answer: basically, that we're invested in someone who makes us feel terrible while being really invested in the hope that they can also somehow magically make "terrible" morph into "great."

    In your shoes, I'd start turning the lens away from him and focus on yourself. For some reason, you were drawn to someone in dire straights, building a romantic foundation on helping through homelessness and addiction. Trouble is, it seems you wanted a specific reward for that: a secure romantic partner. Doesn't work that way. You use certain phrases—like him "weeding his way back in"—that make it sound like you have no agency in this. You do. He's not doing any weeding, but just waking through the door you're keeping open.

    Rather than try to figure out what's in his head and heart, I'd try figuring out why you're so keen to keep the door open to a man like this.

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  6. #5
    Platinum Member smackie9's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Wiseman2
    Dating is not social work. You are not a homeless shelter or a rehab facility. Those are places he belongs. He simply has too many problems to date.

    Do you use drugs that he can obtain? Why are you with someone like this? Where did you meet him? The best thing to do is ask him to leave, pack up his stuff and give him the name/number of some shelters and rehab places. He will drag you down and possibly expose you to legal or health problems.
    I have to agree with this. You shouldn't be a social worker/therapist/rescuer. He's 49 not 19. He will always be in trouble with his life. You are still young, and life is way too short to living in constant turmoil and worry because you are spending all your energy keeping his head above water. I'm very familiar with alcoholism and addiction. They have to take ownership, and stand on their own two feet to get help. The fact you keep rescuing him, only enables his issues.

  7. #6
    Thank you for the time you took to answer. You are right, I did leave the door open and I always do! I think the reason I keep the door open is because I still remember the man I first met, before he fell so hard, he was kind, strong, independent and I think he still is somewhere.

  8. #7
    Thank you for answering, I am grateful for all of the insights. I should add that at the moment he is clean of all drugs, has permanent, stable housing and I never provide him with money or alcohol. I could understand his willingness to keep in such close contact with me if that was the case, which is why I am finding the situation so confusing.

  9. #8
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    Thank you for the time you took to answer. You are right, I did leave the door open and I always do! I think the reason I keep the door open is because I still remember the man I first met, before he fell so hard, he was kind, strong, independent and I think he still is somewhere.

  10. #9
    Platinum Member Rose Mosse's Avatar
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    I feel he's using you as an emotional crutch. He does have to work with his alcohol addiction and stop drinking. Don't be involved with him anymore. People do change and, sometimes, it's not for the better. You've been kind to him. I think it's time to be kind to yourself a bit more.

  11. #10
    Platinum Member Cherylyn's Avatar
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    You need to cut this guy loose. He's too messed up, unstable and needs to sort his own life out. You need to move on.

    He continues to waffle all the time and you're enabling his indecisive, shaky behavior.

    He's taking advantage of you because you cave all the time.

    It's time to go your separate ways.

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