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Boyfriend has become a hermit


kitty1984

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Hello all,

 

I need a bit of advice before my head explodes.

 

I have been with my partner for 2 years - officially living together for 6 months, but he pretty much lived at my old place for about a year before that.

 

Let me start by pointing out the good things - he's hilarious, gorgeous and takes care of our home really well.

 

Unfortunately I am finding it hard to think of too many good things right now. The main issue in our relationship is that my boyfriend is becoming a hermit and a bit of a recluse.

 

When we first started going out we were out almost every night, mostly in the same pubs around where I live. It was great fun but I couldn't go out that much again - my liver couldn't take it!

 

We have never been out for a meal, to the cinema or to the theatre before, and I can't even remember the last time we went out as a couple.

 

He leaves our flat only to go to work, and the occasional football match or beer with his brother. He stays on the sofa all weekend. He is starting to make me feel bad for having a social life, and I'm starting to make more excuses to be out of the house.

 

He has met only 2 of my friends at the beginning of our relationship, and refuses to come to any social engagements with me. My friends are baffled by the arrangement and I am running out of excuses.

 

It was my birthday last week - I had asked for a necklace I had seen months before (very inexpensive) - I woke up on my birthday and he'd bought me a teapot, which he then asked me to make tea in. I made my own birthday breakfast, sat around all day then went out for a meal with friends - he didn't attend.

 

I lost my job last month and have been incredibly bored at home all day. Luckily I was offered a job earlier this week which I accepted, and asked him if we could go out for a meal to celebrate. He said no and I had to buy us a takeaway. He is now not talking to me after I asked if we could go out tonight instead, and suggested I needed a 'night off' (I went out for 1 drink with an old friend last night. That's it).

 

I'm going out of my mind as I really don't know what to do. We work well most of the time, but it's always at home staring at the same 4 walls. I like having my independence and wouldn't dream of having him come out with me every time, but surely attending my birthday meal and the occasional date isn't too much to ask for?

 

I have tried to bring it up with him but he gets angry and an argument starts. I really don't know what to do.

 

Sorry it's so long

 

Thanks all x

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Well, he argues you whenever you approach the subject.

 

He sounds incredibly mundane and boring, possibly depressed.

 

Have you considered breaking up? I doubt much will change, although there is a chance. I think he did everything he could to get you, now he is complacent and no longer needs to try.

 

The teapot for your birthday and telling you to make tea? That just made me sad I'm sorry...

 

 

 

It sounds like you will get to the stage that you can't take it anymore and will move on. Don't you deserve a fun, spontaneous guy that will occasionally surprise you or at the very least come along with you here and there OR *gasp* invite you to go somewhere.

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Could he be depressed? i know i've suffered from it in the past and I started to withdraw from life, I just didn't have the energy to want to do anything. It must be frustrating for you. His behaviour is not really healthy for your relationship, you're a couple and you should be doing things as a couple. I take it from your post that you have talked to him about it but nothing changes. maybe it's time to tell him that if nothing changes and he doesn't at least make some effort to meet you half way, then you can't see the relationship lasting.

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Thanks BigKK - your message is true on so many levels.

 

The thing that makes me the most sad is that he is not boring - he is incredibly clever and funny, but it's really not enough right now, and not seen nearly enough. I am not a princess and don't expect to be doted on all the time but yes; a meal or a night out would make all the difference.

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Could he be depressed? i know i've suffered from it in the past and I started to withdraw from life, I just didn't have the energy to want to do anything. It must be frustrating for you. His behaviour is not really healthy for your relationship, you're a couple and you should be doing things as a couple. I take it from your post that you have talked to him about it but nothing changes. maybe it's time to tell him that if nothing changes and he doesn't at least make some effort to meet you half way, then you can't see the relationship lasting.

 

Thanks AL. No, nothing changes. When we agreed to move in together properly I told him that I really wanted him to at least meet my friends if we were going to do this, and he said he would. Obviously nothing has come of this.

 

When I bring this up he gets very defensive and says that he has met my friends - he met my best friend, who is like my sister, 3 days after we first got together. He has met another friend several times and said he doesn't like her. That's pretty much it.

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Thanks BigKK - your message is true on so many levels.

 

The thing that makes me the most sad is that he is not boring - he is incredibly clever and funny, but it's really not enough right now, and not seen nearly enough. I am not a princess and don't expect to be doted on all the time but yes; a meal or a night out would make all the difference.

 

I can unfortunately relate to your boyfriend. I became very complacencent in my last relationship to a degree. I would describe myself as clever and funny, but it came to a point that it wasn't enough for my ex. Furthermore, we always did the same things and everything began to bore me, although I was going through a depression. My ex on the other hand never spoke a word of this until she was completely done and one day I asked why she was acting mean, and then we broke up.

 

Normally I was (and am) a very fun, active, spontaneous person...unfortunately that's not who I was at the time. Also in hindsight I will add that I think deep down I knew she wasn't Mrs. Right, so perhaps it was a form of self-sabotage. It's much easier to look at your own relationship months later in hindsight without emotions clouding your judgement.

 

So from my own experience, I can advise you that more than likely very little will motivate him to change. If you do break up, he will go into emergency mode to try to salvage his comfort with you but I wouldn't allow yourself to be fooled...he will go back to his ways as soon as he is comfortable you're not leaving again. So I would say don't try any ultimatums or anything...if you really love him and think you two will get married, talk to him about how much it hurts you. Say that the money is not the issue, you want to go out doing something that doesn't cost much (a picnic). Say that his lack of effort makes you feel like he doesn't care. If he keeps giving you excuses...then you will have your answer and no doubt nor regret.

 

Thanks AL. No, nothing changes. When we agreed to move in together properly I told him that I really wanted him to at least meet my friends if we were going to do this, and he said he would. Obviously nothing has come of this.

 

When I bring this up he gets very defensive and says that he has met my friends - he met my best friend, who is like my sister, 3 days after we first got together. He has met another friend several times and said he doesn't like her. That's pretty much it.

 

This part is really weird to me, not meeting your friends? Do you know if he is anti-social with others? I find this odd and possibly a redflag that he can't meet your close friends, I am always excited to meet a partner's friends since it gives me more insight into who they are.

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the teapot ....omg ...

 

I can just imagine how you must of felt waking up to a teapot ..I am laughing ..but not because it's funny ..its one of those ouch moments for sure .

 

I mean like the rest I thought depression as well ...simply because it is without a doubt a huge sign ...you withdraw and find it harder and harder to actually be part of this world .

I am actually very glad for you both that he works .... so he has to interact with this word to some degree .

 

it may be that he is just comfortable .. familiarity breeds contempt ..

 

he has you , he has the sofa and the tv , he has his home and food , he gets in , just wants to chill ....somewhere along the way he has forgotten about your needs .

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I agree BigKK. He has very few friends though - while I have a large and fun social circle, I'm not very close to my family, where is he is the exact opposite. Red flags is the right way to look at it, there are certainly loads of them going off at the moment

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does laying around on the couch always involve drinking? (as in, he's an alcoholic and just retreating and drinking). If that it the cases, then he needs to get a grip on that.

 

But many people are more introverts/homebodies, but this has transitioned to the point he won't even go out for a meal with you, that is true laziness on his part. He's probably perfectly happy set up in the basement drinking beer and watching TV, but you are not.

 

So you need to be very honest with him. This just isn't cutting it. And if you get married and have kids, he most likely will expect to continue in that pattern, where you run yourself ragged with the kids while he continues with the TV watching/beer drinking pattern.

 

So you need to confront this now and be honest. There are women who are also couch potatos and reclusive, so perhaps he needs one of those rather than you. But if that's not you, then you need to confront this and ask that he meet you halfway and have at least one out of house 'date' with you a week, and if he won't even do that, then it's a lost cause.

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What's wrong with a teapot? He didn't buy you the exact thing you mentioned, but that's ok.

 

How about if you plan something out (and go!) and invite him to join you? Lead the way. You two may have different social styles, and trying to make him match yours, if it's not his natural style, might not work. If you want to celebrate something, celebrate it on your dime, and invite him to join you. You don't need to ask permission.

 

...Is this about money?

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I just saw this...

The thing that makes me the most sad is that he is not boring - he is incredibly clever and funny, but it's really not enough right now, and not seen nearly enough. I am not a princess and don't expect to be doted on all the time but yes; a meal or a night out would make all the difference.

 

I think it's a good thing, in a relationship, to diversify yourself, not expect your partner to be your all, or perfect in all ways. If you really like a meal out, DO it, take him out, or take a friend out, but do the activity, and maybe he'll join you some times, but nurture your joy yourself. And enjoy what you love about him.

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Thank you journey. I do invite him out with me when appropriate - I obviously wouldn't invite him to girls nights or anything like that, but it's met with the same disdain. He hasn'r come to 3 different weddings with me which was very embarrasing and upset me.

 

I do appreciate having my independence and my own time and wouldn't change that for the world - I'm just sad of feeling like I'm single most of the time.

 

It's not about money - we don't have much as it is and I don't want us to break the bank on treats like this. We live in Central London so there are always free / very cheap, exciting things to do.

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What's wrong with a teapot? He didn't buy you the exact thing you mentioned, but that's ok.

 

How about if you plan something out (and go!) and invite him to join you? Lead the way. You two may have different social styles, and trying to make him match yours, if it's not his natural style, might not work. If you want to celebrate something, celebrate it on your dime, and invite him to join you. You don't need to ask permission.

 

...Is this about money?

 

Nothing is wrong with the teapot, but I would equate it to getting a vacuum and saying something like "good, now vacuum the carpet" It's almost like a backhanded gift.

 

I just saw this...

 

 

I think it's a good thing, in a relationship, to diversify yourself, not expect your partner to be your all, or perfect in all ways. If you really like a meal out, DO it, take him out, or take a friend out, but do the activity, and maybe he'll join you some times, but nurture your joy yourself. And enjoy what you love about him.

 

The problem is he is not joining her, no matter what. Not meeting any of her friends. From the sounds of it she is not expecting her partner to be her all. She wants SOMETHING...anything. I would guess he is just overly comfortable and after he "won" her, he stopped trying. She wants the man she fell for (the one that would join her occasionally) they had some compatibility but it sounds like this guy has given up on being an active member of the relationship.

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I guess I wasn't focused and didn't catch all the details and perhaps misinterpreted. Does he have a social phobia? Something that wasn't as evident in the beginning at pubs?

 

As gifts go, I see nothing at all wrong with giving something useful. People have different gift giving styles. I personally love getting things I will use.

 

Perhaps you are socially and materially incompatible, even though you enjoy his other qualities?

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I would break up with him. I was gonna offer suggestions and advice until i saw that he refused to go to 3 weddings with you. Single people complain that they wish they had a partner so they dont have to go to these things alone but your still on your own-even after 2 years together.. do you wana spend the rest of your life with a coach potato?

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Maybe you could lure him out of the house by going to something that HE would really like? Maybe a certain concert, convention, movie, theater, museum, survival thing or... whatever it is that he could be enthousiastic about?

 

Then getting him out for something you both enjoy, could be step 2.

 

I do have to say that I tried this with my EX husband... clearly it failed for me... but hey... maybe it could work for you?

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Upset over NOT going out with you for YOUR b-day dinner? I agree....

I CAN understand not always going out- like you enjoy- but c'mon! That sounds a bit 'selfish'.... Unless.. he is being affected by something?

Like he's just not 'into it anymore'? Like he's got some kind of 'anxiety' abt going out now?

 

I wouldn't try to bring it up, continously.. BUT I would sit down and ask him for a heart to heart talk about this 'issue'.

He shld at least agree to some communication and explain that you were a little hurt over the fact that he wouldn't even go out for your b-day dinner.

Explain that you understand him not wanting to go out ALL the time.. but why not that time? Ask IF there is something bothering him.. about your relation or something else?

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