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Living together, falling for someone else, not sure what to do :(


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A little background: I've been with my boyfriend for 3½+ years. We're both 27. We've been living together for 2+ years. The first 2 years together, we were absolutely crazy for each other. After the initial honeymoon period, we settled into our life together. To be honest, living together has been hard for me. I'm a clean freak compared to my boyfriend! I love our apartment, but the mess/clutter/dishes piling up/housework is a big issue for me. Also exacerbating my frustration is that he never cooks, but instead expects me to do all the housework and cooking (without saying it outright, of course). It just won't get done unless I do it, and if I ask him to, he sighs and mopes and does a crap job which irritates me to no end. I'm building up a lot of resentment because of these issues, and the times I've talked to him about it, he'll do the dishes for one day (while whining about it) but it all goes back to normal after that. There are still boxes and piles of crap he has from college that he won't go through or clean up that just sit around making our apartment look like a pit.


So it's been going on like this for a while.. me feeling resentment which makes it hard to fully enjoy my home life and relationship. There's been a nagging voice in the back of my head for the past few months that's been telling me, "this isn't what you want." I know the saying "what your partner is like now, they'll be 10 times worse once you're married" and it terrifies me. I do not want to be a working mom who has to come home to a husband drinking a beer on the couch while I cook and clean and take care of the baby all by myself. (Marriage and children aren't huge goals of mine, but I would like to think I may get married and/or have kids someday.) Regardless of this voice, our relationship has been fairly stable, and since I'm not counting down to marriage, I've been trying to make the best of it. We recently traveled to a family wedding (that my boyfriend initially refused to go to. It caused a huge fight but he eventually came around) where my mom pulled me aside and asked if my boyfriend and I were happy. My mom knows the reservations I've been having and could see it between us.


It was only recently that everything has come to a head. Unfortunately, someone new was hired at my job in the past few months and I have really fallen for this guy. I know it's wrong, but we have gone out to dinner and drinks, we text each other all day at work and at home, and he wants to be with me as much as I want to be with him. We seem compatible and I can definitely see him as a boyfriend; I know he shares the same view of me. I told him that I won't just break up with my boyfriend "for" him, as I don't want to transfer the feelings from my current relationship and jump right into a new one/rebound. If my current relationship ends, I will want to be alone for a few months (while hopefully keeping in contact with my new co-worker) until I am ready for a new relationship. (Regarding him being a co-worker, I am leaving for a new job soon.)


Even if my boyfriend became a clean freak tomorrow, our relationship wouldn't be perfect. He has such a negative outlook of the world, while I try to see the good/silver lining even in bad situations. When he's complaining and I try to point out why he doesn't have it so bad, he gets upset and says I'm not seeing his point of view. I feel that he never listens to me, and I'm constantly repeating myself (a HUGE pet peeve of mine). I know this is awful, but while I have been focused on eating right and working out, my boyfriend has gained 40-50 lbs since we've been together. For the longest time I thought there was something hormonally wrong with me as I never wanted to have sex (going so far as to book an appointment for an IUD, thinking it may be my birth control pill, but I chickened out), but unfortunately I can say my libido is still there, as this new guy turns me on incredibly just from us talking.


I want to be with my co-worker so badly, but yet I still love my boyfriend. We still get along and have good times together. I feel guilty when I get a text message because I feel disappointed that it's my boyfriend and not my co-worker. I cry all the time because I'm so confused and don't know which way to go. My mom tells me that I already know what to do (break up with my boyfriend), but besides having feelings for this new guy, I don't have a concrete, "dealbreaker" reason to leave. All my past breakups have been so necessary that though they hurt, I knew breaking up with the right thing to do, which made it a lot easier. This is my longest relationship, and we've woven our lives together so much so that I have no idea how to even untangle us. I do love my boyfriend and would hate to regret breaking up and wanting him back. I've never lived with a guy before and have no idea how to even approach a living-together breakup. My boyfriend would be completely blindsided by this, and I can see him getting very vengeful and making moving out and moving on very ugly (ESPECIALLY if he knew there was someone else).


Sorry for this being so long, but I am sick of crying and being sad over this all the time. Deep in my heart, I hate to admit it but I do think breaking up is the right thing to do, however I am definitely not sure (and don't know how to feel sure either way). But when I look over at my boyfriend while we're together, I do love him and I can't imagine my life without him. But I also know that people can't/don't/won't change, and I can't imagine doing all the housework for the rest of my life. I don't feel ready/strong enough to go through the hardship and heartbreak this breakup would bring. (I live far from my family and don't have many close friends for support.) I know this is no excuse, but I also don't want to "ruin" the upcoming holidays by doing this now. Any advice on:

-breaking up while living together (neither of us can afford to stay in the apartment without the other)

-knowing if a breakup if the right thing to do when you're not sure

-have I "fallen out of love"--how can I tell?


Thank you all so much for reading.

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When is your lease up?


And yes, listen to your Mom. You two should definitely break up!


It's more painful when your live together; I've been there. It sucks, but I would suggest moving out especially since you're the one who wants to end things. He can get a roommate to help with the rent. Bonus for you will be that you won't have to stay and see constant reminders of your life together in happier days..


You're frustrated with your boyfriend, hold resentment over a number of issues, and are no longer attracted to him. Those are solid reasons to end it. Now all that's left is handling the practical steps.


You already know what to do. You can do this, OP. Change is scary but freeing yourself from a relationship that is no longer working is worth it. Best of luck!

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My view on being close to a person with a negative outlook: that outlook always rubs off you and even though you are positive, it brings you down.


Feels a lot like you live with a lazy person from how you describe it. And seems like you're the only one who make compromises in the relationship.

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Break up with your boyfriend. You don't love him and you are not happy with him and that is as valid as it gets for a reason to break up. Period.


As for the rest, this is only your side of the story. He may be untidy and have let himself go (saddly lots of people make that mistake) but I find it hard to believe that you stayed on for so long if you weren't getting something out of the relationship. Make sure that at some point you recognise your role in the whole mess. Because it always takes two. If nothing else, you two failed to establish honest communication patterns and boundaries and that is as much your doing as it is his.


If you can find a book called 'uncoupling' I recommend that you read it.


As for the other person, you are already rebounding. If he knew you were on a relationship and still went ahead, then that says something about his character. Good luck with that. I feel sorry for your boyfriend. Basically, you kept him on the backburner until you found a replacement. You emotionally cheated on him. Nobody deserves that.


Stop wasting his time. Break up with him and if you ever find yourself in a similar position ever again make sure you don't let things get to this point. Blindsiding people like that is a huge kick in the #$%s and nobody deserves that.

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I personally don't believe in 'playing house' with someone you aren't really sure you intend to marry in the near term for exactly these reasons.


So you fall into this kind of situation where you haven't really committed to him fully, but you're co-mingling your lives and finances in a way that gets messy if you need to break up.


I think he is just one of those guys who expects a partner to be a mother/maid and take care of him and the unpleasant realities of life like housekeeping etc. If you have enough money, you can get around this problem by hiring a maid, but if hiring a 'maid for life' isn't reasonable in your circumstances, then you'll be the maid if you continue with this. I think if you have tried to really resolve this and he refuses to change no matter what you do, then it is time to throw in the towel.


re: breaking up, there is no easy way to do that. My suggestion is that you both look for shared housing with other people (i.e., each get your own roommates in another apt. or house share with other people). One or the other can move out and get a roommate to finish out the lease.


One caution though... I hope you are not planning on leaving this relationship just because you have an exciting new infatuation. Perhaps the new guy isn't a slob, but he may be a cheater or a liar or any number of other issues that you don't know about because you don't really know him. So you should not compare your settled in long term relationship with a shiny new guy you hardly know because in the end you might well end up with neither guy, or regret you left a 'familiar' BF to chase someone new that didn't work out.


I think at this point you either need to get brutally honest with the BF and tell him exactly what your doubts are, and that if certain other things don't change, and change NOW, then you can't live your life this way and the two of you need to start planning to move out and break up.


But before you make that offer to him, are you really sure that the ONLY thing wrong is the cleaning up? Let's say he started cleaning up perfectly tomorrow. Would that mean you'd be perfectly happy to stay with him forever? If not, then there are deeper problems and you need to probably break up regardless.


and recognize that 'shopping' for a new BF while living with someone else is really a deep betrayal of him even if you didn't sleep with the guy, You need to come clean with your BF about this emotional affair you are having with the new guy, and see if your BF is even willing to stay with you after that. He deserves to know what you did, and decide for himself whether staying with someone who has emotional affairs is something he wants to do. You really need to stop that and never do it again or no relationship you have will ever work because you will always have one eye on the guy you're with, and another eye shopping around looking for someone 'better' every time your partner irritates you.

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btw, the last thing in the world you should do is stay with your BF sharing the apt. for a while sneaking around wining and dining with the new guy, then moving straight out from your BF's apt. to the new guy's apt. That is such a total betrayal of your BF and a huge defect in your character, that you need to stop and think about that and make sure that is NOT an option. If you do that, the new BF will never ever trust you either because he'll be wondering what other guys you're wining and dining while coming home and crawling into bed with him and lying about it. In fact, he may already wonder that, and it may have already doomed your new potential relationship before it even begins. He may be infatuated with you now, but once it settles down, he'll wonder if you're out 'dating' other guys and having emotional affairs just like you've already done with him.

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