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I think I'm with someone who is incapable of unconditional love


Pretzel
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I see now you also included spring cleaning. So when you're in a relationship it's fine to take 3 days apart, 3 weeks, etc. But even if every year you do all your spring cleaning and clothes switching at once consider that given how much you ask of him as far as time together, and time together when you want the time (i.e. you want to talk when he implies he needs alone time) - consider that you all of a sudden needing 3 days to "clean" came across as unusual, odd and perhaps concerning. I would have divided up the cleaning into smaller steps and had times where he could be in the apartment while you cleaned -you take breaks, right?

 

AGREE

I think taking three days to do it was really sticking it to him.

If you can't deal with time alone, spring cleaning is the perfect thing to do in chunks when you are alone - an hour or two here and there when you are alone.

I don't think he should be there while you clean around him - why not just go on dates instead of having to rush over to his place when he gets home or he yours?

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Have you asked him what his preference would in regards to how much time he'd like to spend with you vs him having some time to himself.

It's a tricky question. At least it has been for me. My experience is people aren't entirely honest about this.

They either aren't honest with themselves of they tend to tell you what you want to hear.

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Have you asked him what his preference would in regards to how much time he'd like to spend with you vs him having some time to himself.

It's a tricky question. At least it has been for me. My experience is people aren't entirely honest about this.

They either aren't honest with themselves of they tend to tell you what you want to hear.

 

I think that it would come across as too much like a "talk" - sometimes people don't really know themselves how much they need either to be able to tell someone that fact. I would just start going on dates with him and not tumbling on over to his house to be there when he gets home from being out with friends. I would let him initiate plans a little bit more as well. Let him ask you out or invite you over a little more than you do now. And when the plans are done, you plan in your mind ahead of time that you are going home - that plan can change, but gear yourself for that automatically for that possibility. Absence without any passive aggressiveness or flouncing makes the heart grow fonder. its better if you are not smothering and he asks to see you more vs smothering him and he asks for space.

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Anyway, when I was upset about this and tried to talk to him, he had no patience at all. And yes, he immediately calls it a fight and demands it to be taken off the table, before even spending 10 minutes to talk to me without getting defensive.

And this makes me so frustrated, that in the middle of such conflict it just feels like an impossible situation. The ideal compromise for me would be that instead of him taking off, and giving up entirely, would be to spend 10 minutes showing he cares and actually listening to what made me feel offended by his actions/speech in the first place, and show some understanding. His default response however is to become extremely defensive and to threaten to walk out of the door if I don't drop it. He acts as if I am attacking him, somehow, if I ever have a grievance or discuss something - something MINOR. And it really really isn't supposed to be attack. I don't know how to talk to him without him interpreting it as an attack. I have not cracked that.

 

What is the benefit of being with someone who can't have a conversation without becoming upset?

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He is a product of his upbringing and I suspect that without therapy to help him come to terms with how his alcoholic father has shaped him, he will never change... as much as he may want to, he will need professional guidance with that.

 

You? Well you would do well to get your own therapy to figure out how to accept him for who he is (if he won't get therapy) or leave and find someone who is willing and able to accommodate your (to what appears to be) an extreme emotional reaction. What was Your childhood like?

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