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Italian boyfriend


Liv368

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Hi I really need some help. I have a Sicilian boyfriend we have been together almost 1 year. I’m mid 20s he’s late 20s. We met working on the cruise ships, he’s an officer. We are thinking about hopefully settling down in the next year or so but we have ran into a few issues. He doesn’t want to leave Sicily, however I live in the U.K. so my family is here. He would still be working onboard the cruise ships and I’d be a home with a child . I don’t speak Italian fluently and I wouldn’t be able to work or drive over there plus I don’t actually know anyone and his parents don’t speak great English. He refuses to live in the U.K., so for long term this is a massive problem. I also understand employment rate is very bad over there so I’m not set on wanting a raise a child there. He’s doesn’t seem to want to meet me half way at all. Until now he really has been perfect. I went to visit Sicily for two weeks and I love it but I really can’t see myself living away from family. He’s loves fishing and goes every day when he’s home, it seems to be a family tradition. I hate the idea that Italians expect women not to work at all and be the housewife. I would like to do keep things in order but I would also like to have a little job, take my child to see the grandparents or the beach or park. That’s what I dream of. But he just thinks I am too set on working and can’t understand why I’m not so keen to change my whole entire life. He’s put it down to me not loving him enough :( I just feel he’s thinking what he wants in his life and trying to fit me in around it instead of figuring things out together. Unfortunately he’s very stubborn and can be controlling, o I just really need some advice.

Thanks!

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I don't think this is a case of meeting you halfway because in reality there is no halfway in this case. You could either live in the UK or Italy. There is no in-between (there is Switzerland but this is another case lol).

 

One of you has to compromise. If none of you want to change countries then the best solution is to break up. Don't rush to have a child, it would be a huge mistake.

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Ciao from Italia! (I live in Rome, though I'm not Italian-born or raised)

 

I don't think this relationship is going to work, OP. One of you would be resentful for compromising too much for the other, and you come from different worlds. It's not true that Italians in general nowadays just expect women to stay home and be a housewife, though it could indeed be true in his family and community. Sicily is known to be quite traditional, in some regards. You saw what he expects. You don't agree, and he doesn't agree with your worldview.

 

It doesn't appear you two are compatible enough on areas that are significant. I would strongly encourage you to re-evaluate the feasibility of taking this further.

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Sorry to hear this. Unfortunately you're at an impasse and incompatible. It seems if you go there you would fear isolation and him controlling you. Why bother hanging onto that?

 

Are you married or pregnant? What is the 'raising a child' concern about?

He doesn’t want to leave Sicily, however I live in the U.K. so my family is here. He refuses to live in the U.K. I’m not set on wanting a raise a child there. I hate the idea that Italians expect women not to work at all and be the housewife. take my child to see the grandparents Unfortunately he’s very stubborn and can be controlling
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For me I would feel like I would want to be able to take my child out in the car places, be able to take them to school, in Italy if I don’t drive there I won’t be able to do that. We did speak about me renting here in the U.K. and then taking the child to see him and stay in Italy for 2-3 months whilst he’s home. However I know this won’t work long term because the child will eventually start school and that would mean either here or there. It’s such a shame because we really are very good together and we are so similar in personalities and he’s very good with me. But here we have a lot of conflict. My family are a little concerned for me as they know that I may not stay very well in the future in Italy to live. It’s also very hard because I wouldn’t want t confuse my child with the situation of two countries and two languages. I really wish if he made a sacrifice to come here with me like my friend is doing and going over to visit in Italy when he’s home for a few weeks but I’m afraid he’s so stuck in his roosts.

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Oh that’s interesting, how do you find living there? Do you have to speak Italian to live in Italy? I do feel that I could make a compromise somehow but I feel it’s not reciprocated. He wants his ideas or nothing, I feel like I’m going to have to fit into someone else’s life.

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How old is your child? Is the child from this relationship? Are you pregnant with his child?

For me I would feel like I would want to be able to take my child out in the car places

then taking the child to see him and stay in Italy for 2-3 months whilst he’s home.

the child will eventually start school and that would mean either here or there.

I wouldn’t want t confuse my child with the situation of two countries and two languages.

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I’m not actually pregnant or have a child but I would like to in the future. For me it’s important to already be thinking about these kind of questions to prepare yourself for the future.

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I’m afraid he’s so stuck in his roosts.

That's not a fair statement, he could say the same for you.

 

It's a shame but realistically it is not going to work and you know it. Enjoy the relationship while it lasts.

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Stop talking about things that don't exist as an arguing point. If you can't decide where to live and dislike his culture and find him "stubborn and controlling", the point is moot. There have not even been talks of living together or even living in the same country, being a couple or getting married.

I’m not actually pregnant or have a child but I would like to in the future. For me it’s important to already be thinking about these kind of questions to prepare yourself for the future.
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Liv.

 

You yourself say: "I really can’t see myself living away from family. ". So, in reality you are also rooted in family. It is not just him.

 

You also remark:

 

"I just feel he’s thinking what he wants in his life and trying to fit me in around it instead of figuring things out together. Unfortunately he’s very stubborn and can be controlling"

 

So, how are you similar in personalities? As Wiseman correctly says: you are incompatible.

 

It is actually quite simple, Liv. If you do not wish to live in another country (in this case a European country) then surely it is best that you meet and marry someone in your own country. Some people are just not cut out for living elsewhere. They are unable to fit in with the customs and ways. I am a little puzzled at your mention that he "goes fishing every day". That is just a leisure activity like many others. There are folks who, for example, play gold every day!

 

I feel you need to think this through with great clarity (not with opinions of friends and/or family).

 

Even in a best case scenario where this man is not "controlling" or wanting you to be a "stay-at-home", what job had you envisaged for yourself in Italy? And in passing, what job had you in mind for yourself back in the U.K.?

 

In reality it is quite clear cut, Liv. Neither of you wish to live in (or maybe are not suited for) each other's country.

 

 

 

Take care

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Obviously he's attractive and fun, but when choosing a lifetime partner, ALL of your must-haves should be taken into account for longterm happiness. The cons you speak of are egregious. You would be sacrificing quite a lot when you cater to all of his wants and needs. That's part of the big problem with dating someone from another country and culture. One of you won't live near relatives. The cultural differences are out of your comfort level. And living long periods apart is not ideal. You don't have a partner present to help you with daily parenting. I was a Navy wife in my younger years. Constantly having to get used to each other's presence all over again is psychologically taxing. After the first few days of honeymoon happiness, it then transforms to arguments, since you've been used to doing things your way, and it's like an intruder coming in and toppling your apple cart.

 

You can meet men you have chemistry with wherever you are. That happened in your work, but as you can see, neither of you probably thought of the downside of your differences until things became serious. In your shoes, I would break up, since I'd be giving up too much on my end, and I'd avoid dating guys outside of my hometown in the future. You've learned what's important in a family life. Don't settle.

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We have spoken about those things thank-you. For me it has been quite confusing because there are a lot of things to consider. I guess I have seen friends of mine make things work with their Italian boyfriends, with them living in the U.K. and visiting Italy and I thought maybe that this could be achievable for us. I related to the fishing because it’s something he can’t live without and is another thing keeping him holding onto wanting to live in Italy. For me I am an adaptable person, I would compromise to some extent. E.g- working from home, visiting Sicily to stay for 2-3 months but it is only recently he has suggested he would never live in the U.K. which has brought all this up. But for me it is important whilst he’s going to be working on board to have the support of my family which I won’t have if I am living over there. I guess it’s a bit daunting.

You may not agree, but for me personally it is important to speak about these things because it’s something I see in my future. I’m not making an arguing point, but these are factors I have to consider personally. I’m not asking for you to agree, I’m asking you to respect my opinion.

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Thankyou Andrina that has been very helpful. I am only in my mid 20’s but I do have a brain that overthinks and likes to be as organised as possible. I mean we are similar within our relationship as in human beings, but apparently not on some of our ideas.

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I have family in Sicily and have visited regularly my whole life. You're not living there without learning Italian. The Sicilian brand of it, at that. Expats tend toward the mainland, so it'd be a pretty lonely life if you're half as stubborn as you portray.

 

Look, the problem is you turned would should have been a nice lay on a cruise into an unattainable dream. What possible "compromise" could there be? France? Either he wants to live in the UK or you want to live in Italy. That's really that. I don't mean to sound like an ass, but I had to read back to make sure this was someone in their 20s writing rather than someone who's got the bad excuse of a "ticking clock," so to speak. There are ~4 billion men in the world. It stands to reason that a whole lot of them would be a great match for you if it weren't for the fact they live in Italy, China, India, the US, etc. You pretty consciously went for one of those exact guys.

 

Granted I've never been big on cruise ships, but I've done my share of traveling and mingling with locals. If you can appreciate it simply for the shared novelty, then it's a blast. You're gonna torture yourself trying to force romance outside of that, though.

 

I wish there were a more diplomatic way to put it, but it really is that simple. This ain't happening.

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Liv. Of course communication is most important! Vitally important to speak up and discuss these matters within any relationship. No one here would disagree with that.

 

In your OP you said:

 

" I just really need some advice."

 

We can only give points of view, based on what you say and describe about him, you and the situation in general. But the ultimate decision lies with you. Move to Italy, or remain in the U.K.

 

I can only agree with what Andrina said:

 

"In your shoes, I would break up, since I'd be giving up too much on my end, and I'd avoid dating guys outside of my hometown in the future. You've learned what's important in a family life. Don't settle."

 

 

 

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He's not being stubborn or controlling...you both just want different things.

 

MY friend, she ditched her life here, and moved to Quebec City, learned French, and became integrated into that society. It was very tough for her. She talked about leaving a few times, the struggles she had with the language, and his family....but she wanted to be with the man she loves. She sucked it up, worked hard at it, and they are still together with two children. In other words if you really see a future with this man, you will suck it up and go for it.

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One of my former coworkers and his wife and kids divide their time between Japan and the US. His kids are not at all confused, in fact they have benefitted from being bilingual and having dual citizenship. They currently live in Japan but prior to that spent part of the year in the US and part in Japan.

 

If you can't agree on some kind of compromise then living together, marriage and children just aren't going to work.

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He might have been a fun fling while you were working, but outside of that, you are two are fundamentally different in major ways. Not just about where you want to live, but how you both envision marital life and the latter is how marriages fall apart fast. He envisions a house wife who cooks, cleans, and darns his sock while he is off doing his own thing. You want a more equal life where you both work and share responsibilities. There is no middle ground here OP. He is telling you who he is and it's clashing completely with your personal values.

 

Agree with jmann that you are still very young and there are soooo many good men out there. No reason to get hung up on one who really doesn't live on the same planet as you when it comes to certain critical relationship values. Please don't look at friends or listen to stories on how so and so made it work. So and so isn't you and you aren't them. This is your life to live and no reason to sign up for misery. Love doesn't conquer all and quite frankly him telling you that you refusing to totally change who you are for him means you don't love him enough is manipulative af.....think on that...big red flag.....

 

Listen to your reason and your instincts. If it feels like he is just trying to cram you into his vision of his life like some convenient tool....it's because that's exactly what he is doing. I realize this is hard to explain online or in writing, but I've certainly met men where I've felt like that as well. I ran and that's my advice to you as well. Run. Don't try to force a square peg into a round hole. It doesn't work and doesn't lead to happiness.

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Let's consider another cultural difference. For example, living with him in Sicily may mean that his family will, most likely, be very involved in your life. Are you up for that? All these things are relevant, in my opinion, when looking for a partner.

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When you are looking at the future and marriage, you need to look for a partner who is walking on the same road as you, looking in the same exact direction.

 

Meaning that you have to both see eye to eye on major big things - like where and how you want to live, life goals, jobs, children, religion, lifestyle, extended family relationships, etc. In addition, you need to see eye to eye on smaller every day things - how you divide chores, childcare, finances, jobs, etc. These things might not be very fun or romantic, but these nitty gritty things is what either makes or breaks every single marriage. Too many people focus on "we have a lot in common" and what they mean is fun and hobbies, but these things are superficial and almost meaningless in the long run.

 

Every long term marriage that I know, it's not hobbies that they share that makes the marriage happy, it's a shared vision of how to live life together, shared goals. He might be fishing, she might get seasick on the dock. However, when it comes to jobs, lifestyle, where to live and how, future plans, what kind of a life they want to live - they are on the same page and seeing eye to eye. That is what is critical. Life is hard enough as it is and for the relationship to ride out the storms, you need that natural harmony where it really counts. Without that glue, it's a quick road to misery, resentment, and divorce.

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