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My bf and I have been dating for almost 2 years. Our relationship is wonderful in general - we consider as close friends, have lots of laugher together, and we still have great sex life. The only problem is that he seems to go through a weird cycle from time to time...


This "cycle" usually happens few weeks after we've been very intimate and affectionate in front of his friends or family. When it starts, he becomes distant, gets emotionally withdrawn, starts spending more time away from me. If I ask him about what's going on, he says he loves me and he doesn't wanna break up, but just needs some space away from me to feel like a man. It's not my nature to control someone, so I give him his freedom and start doing my own things making myself busy. But then, when he goes out with his friends, he parties 'til morning drinking. If I happen to run into him on one of his night-out, he acts very differently and it almost feels like he wanna be seen as single. Naturally I become very unhappy and suspicious, but he doesn't really wanna talk about it except to say, "I love you and I'm not sleeping with anyone else". I get sick of it and just when I start caring less, he comes right back on strong, and does everything to win me all over. That's how this cycle ends and from a "not-so-nice boyfriend", he becomes a "wonderful" boyfriend again.


He seems to go through this every 4-6 months. He is 29 and I'm 32. He has been in 2 "serious" relationship in the past: 1 and 1/2 years, and 6 months, but both were long-distance, so I'm his first girlfriend in a real relationship in the same zip code. Marriage has never been a topic between us. That's b/c I don't bring it up. I'm not sure if I ever wanna marry someone due to my parents' painful divorce, although I do wanna have a life partner. He's very caring and sweet and I believe we are good match at least for now. He loves me very much and I believe so from his action. He makes me very happy when he's not in this "cycle" that I'm happy to stay just the way it is at least for another 1-2 years without thinking of where it might go.


Recently, the "cycle" seems to be starting agian, and this time, I start to wonder if I'm actually dealing with more serious problem than I view. I try to understand his needs to be on his own especially his big 30th birthday is coming up soon. There are still so much to learn about each other. Of course none can predict what may happen tomorrow, but I'm willing to take a risk to explor more on "us" as long as his intension is the same (that's what he say - he really wanna see what happens with "us"). But sometimes I feel like he's just a typical commitment phobic guy that we'll never have happy ending...


I probably get "you need to move on" sort of feedback, but I don't wanna just give up yet. I wanna find a way to work it out. Any suggestions and opinion would be appreciated.

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It seems this guy is generally a nice guy, but he is in some respects like you. He obviously doesn't like public affection because he's afraid it may send the wrong vibes to his single friends. I think you need to sit down and look at yourself first. You need to figure out what you want from him, and from life in general, because it sounds like you're a little confused at the moment.


Once you sit down and figure out what you want from him. Is it not best to tell him what you want? You need to raise the bar for yourself, and consequently, for your current relationship. If he chooses not to raise the bar to your level, that is to say, he doesn't feel ready to meet your goals, you should think about moving on. Honesty is always best. People may not like you for it, but they'll respect you.

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bzborow1> thax for your reply and also for raising a good point. I believe any relationship needs good communication, trust, and balanced space, and efforts to keep a healthy relationship must be equally shared and put in by two or else it will die no matter how wonderful it may feel at first.


Anyway, what I want from him "for now" is a companionship. I also want him to be consistant in his action. I value "us" as something special and something worth a try, and I only wanna be with him if he sees that way.


Of course, what I want from future is a life partnership. But though I'm hoping that he may be the one, I don't know that yet and I wanna give more time before thinking about the future.


I think what bothers me is that he breaks a natural flow for our relationship to grow. I can understand needing some space when things are not going well. I can also relate to needing some space when one person wants more in a relationship and the other doesn't. But that's not the case for us, and that's where my confusion comes from. He gets into this cycle after things are especially great and intimate, and we become so close...


By the way, would you pls elaborate on "he's afraid it may send the wrong vibes to his single friends" part? He can be affectionate when we are with his closest friends, but he's got a bunch of single friends who are always on look out and he acts funny when he's with them...

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