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Can I save the relationship?


Helpalways

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My boyfriend (32M) and I (29F) have been together for 3 1/2 years. He is currently in grad school and will graduate in May 2021.

 

I will be the first to admit that I have been insecure about our relationship and the commitment. I have brought up marriage 5-6 times in the past year, because I wanted to know where he stood. I dealt with serious doubt and insecurity over whether or not he wants to be with me.

 

His family is very traditional and doesn’t believe in spending the night or living together until marriage. He still lives at home with his parents, so he follows their rules. So the only next step for us would be marriage. I think that’s part of what made me feel insecure and uncertain - without marriage, we can’t move forward.

 

A few days ago, he said he needed a break. We got into a stupid argument and it hurt him. I apologized and I thought we both got over it. But a couple of days later, he said he needed a break. He said that he has been borderline depressed and that his cup was empty. He blamed it on me - telling me that my jealousy and insecurity gave him pause about moving forward. He said that he never brought it up before because he didn’t want to cause arguments. I told him that I wish he had told me when it was happening so that we could address it.

 

As far as the jealousy goes - I would get upset over stupid things (him liking acquaintances “pretty selfie” pics on Instagram, etc.) I know this is silly and I am now working on it.

 

Now I feel so lost. I love this man, and I want this break to turn into us getting back together and being stronger, not breaking up.

 

I know the insecurity and jealousy issue is something that I can work on and that we can work through. But I just want him to give me a chance to. Part of me also wonders if his fear of commitment is contributing to this break/breakup, since the insecurity issues doesn’t seem like a deal breaker to me.

 

I can’t eat, I can’t sleep, all I can think of is him.

 

What advice do you all have? Should I reach out and apologize, should I keep going no contact for a while, etc? I still want to marry this man. I love him so much.

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It doesn't sound like he's ready for marriage or more commitment. Dial it back and don't bring these up anymore. You have to start making decisions for yourself without depending on him for answers as it's not working out that way.

 

The scenario is very clear. He's happy with things the way they are without your comments about his choices. You need to make a decision with whether you're happy with that and the way he is as a man (what type of man he is). I would not date someone with an instagram account liking acquaintances' selfie pics. If you need someone more mature in your life, call a spade a spade.

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What is his graduate degree in -and is this why he lives with his parents at his age? Are you insecure because he is advancing in his studies/career? Do you have a full life? Are you following your dreams and goals? He doesn't make you feel anything -you choose how to react. How are you working on your reactions?

I think he probably has been feeling uncertain for awhile and this was a last straw. I didn't live with my husband until after we married but we each lived on our own and we did spend many nights together. I don't think sharing physical space before marriage is important but at your ages if you never spend the night together -don't you go away on holidays?? - that would concern me unless you were both equally religious for example.

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Ok, not to be too judge-y, but he is 32 and still living at home with parents? What is your living situation? Do your beliefs fall in line with his & his family as far as spending the night as an unmarried couple?

 

What does he say when you bring up marriage? AKA why did you have to bring it up so many times? Did you not get a straight answer?

 

I can relate to the feelings of jealousy and insecurity even when you KNOW you're being silly. You are wanting commitment and he is not offering it to your standard right now, so that will open the door to these feelings. It's so important to feel safe and secure in your relationship, and confident in yourself otherwise these feelings can creep in.

 

I just think you two are on different levels right now. In my opinion, at your age, after 3 1/2 years it's time to start talking about the future. Have you two ever spent a night together? Been intimate? I'm just trying to understand this whole situation. It doesn't seem like you are getting what you need out of this relationship and it's causing these problems. Don't beat yourself up so much.

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I have a graduate degree and am more settled in my career.

 

As far as the reactions go, I really have been working to repair myself these past few days and try to gain a deeper understanding of why I react to things with such insecurity. It is a work in progress!

 

We have been on holiday together once and it was so nice! But no, we don’t spend other nights together as he doesn’t want to upset his family.

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Sorry to hear this. Are you from different faith, cultures or countries? Unfortunately he was hemming and hawing all this time because eventually he will marry someone from his own background, who his family approves of.

 

You need to end it. Delete and block him and all his people from all your social media and messaging apps. He was stringing you along.

 

There's nothing to "repair". He's just a cowardly slime who wants to blame the breakup on you, when in fact marriage, commitment, etc. was never in the cards. You never had a chance given his "traditional" beliefs and family.

His family is very traditional and doesn’t believe in spending the night or living together until marriage. He still lives at home with his parents, so he follows their rules. So the only next step for us would be marriage.

 

He said that he has been borderline depressed and that his cup was empty. He blamed it on me

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I have a graduate degree and am more settled in my career.

 

As far as the reactions go, I really have been working to repair myself these past few days and try to gain a deeper understanding of why I react to things with such insecurity. It is a work in progress!

 

We have been on holiday together once and it was so nice! But no, we don’t spend other nights together as he doesn’t want to upset his family.

 

When you are in an insecure situation, it's normal to feel insecure.

 

What you are doing is the equivalent of eating food that makes you sick and instead of getting rid of that food, you are sitting there telling yourself that if you only can find a way to develop immunity to the bacteria in that food dish, you can keep eating it and it will OK. Do you see how absurd that is? You are doing exactly this in this relationship. You know deep down that this guy is wrong for you, but instead of dumping him and finding a guy who is on the same page as you, someone who is mature, and wants the life that you crave, you keep wasting your time on someone who is none of those things.

 

OP, what you see is what you get. This is a grown man who is living with his parents, by their rules because that suits him. It's not about upsetting his parents, it's about him and what he does and doesn't want. Keeping his life the way it is is keeping you and relationships at bay on purpose. Dude has issues and you are missing red flags the size of China.

 

If you want marriage and a family, then I can't urge you enough to dump him and start looking seriously for a man, not a man child, who is ready, willing, and able to go forward with the life goals that you have and want. Basically, someone who is actually on the same page as you. Once you find him I'd bet money that you'll feel safe and confident in your relationship instead of jittery. Right now what you are feeling is your gut screaming at you as loudly as it can trying to warn you that you are wasting your life on a wrong choice.

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we don’t spend other nights together as he doesn’t want to upset his family If you actually did get married, you should assume any decision you two are trying to make will be overruled by him being concerned if his family will be upset.

 

And after 3 years together, at your ages, he should know if he sees you as a lifetime partner or not. There should have been a mutual discussion on this issue, and instead, you were the only one bringing up that topic.

 

If he cared enough, he would've asked you to work on problems to fix the relationship. Instead, he chose to run away from the problem until he let it eat away at him like a cancer, killing any love he had for you.

 

And no, you shouldn't get used to your significant other having female acquaintances on his social media in order to "like" their photos. There is something called relationship boundaries. Next time choose a man who is on the same page as you in the boundaries dept. Otherwise, you will live a life of being upset.

 

There is being "ridiculously jealous" like if the female cashier smiles at your man, versus reasonable jealously, when your man blatantly flirts with another. If you are reasonably jealous, get a man who doesn't conjure that in you. If your jealousy is unwarranted, work on yourself or you will drive away any decent man who comes along in the future.

 

Just because you think of him every second of the day, with time and distance, you will eventually stop mourning and heal. Don't cling like a barnacle onto a cold rock that wants the wave to wash you off.

 

I dealt with serious doubt and insecurity over whether or not he wants to be with me.

The right man will leave no doubt that he wants you as a lifetime partner. Be free so one day you can find him.

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He was just a little vague on the timeline of things. It would always be “next year,” but then there didn’t seem to be any forward progress o it. For instance, telling me he doesn’t have enough money for a ring, but then also telling me all the cool gadgets and stuff he wants to buy when he gets paid.

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This was hard to read because it summed up a lot of my fears.... that he chose to not rock the boat with his family and ended up making me feel insecure in the process. And I feel like I am getting a lot of the blame for the insecurity. I do take partial ownership of the insecurity issue, but I don’t think it’s just me.

 

It’s just so hard to give up on him. We get on together so well. We laugh, have so much in common, and I really do care for him and his family very deeply. I don’t want to give up if it’s at all fixable.

 

Just don’t know how to “fix” it if he wants a break and is not sure that we can work long term. :(

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I wouldn’t call myself ridiculously jealous - just didn’t like him like acquaintances selfies. And didn’t like him bringing up things about his exes, or them commenting on his social media posts.

 

I am trying to hear your advice because I know you may be right. But god, I wish it would work out. I love him so much, and I am willing to wait it out on the marriage thing if only he would give me the chance to try. :(

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He may have told them he was staying with 'a friend'. Is he a different faith, culture or religion than you? Do not be a free bed and breakfast for him to sow his wild oats before he marries someone from his own faith, culture, religion. He seems to have poor integrity.

We have been intimate. He did talk to him family about spending the night sometimes earlier this year. I think it was very hard conversation and it ended up with him being able to stay one every two weeks or once a month overnight.
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He was just a little vague on the timeline of things. It would always be “next year,” but then there didn’t seem to be any forward progress o it. For instance, telling me he doesn’t have enough money for a ring, but then also telling me all the cool gadgets and stuff he wants to buy when he gets paid.

 

Money for a ring has almost nothing to do with wanting to get married. If you want to get married you get married and if money is an issue you tell your intended exactly what the plan is. And I mean money as in being able to pay rent and for other basic needs. Not money for a ring. Not money for a party to celebrate the wedding ceremony. You seem rather passive in this whole thing - so ask yourself -is it easier for you to be with someone who is basically unavailable to marry -who lives with his parents and who has not proposed or set a wedding date? Put aside the 'but I love him" -are you sure you want to be in an adult, serious relationship with marriage in the near future?

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I think you are settling. You can do better. That's not what you want to hear because you're in love with him but you don't sound remotely on the same wavelength or maturity level. This person just isn't it.

 

His reactions may be out of exhaustion, not having the strength or endurance to last in a long term relationship or grasp the brevity of living together or marriage or he just doesn't see himself with you but is afraid to say that to you. If he's never lived on his own, you're already at a disadvantage jumping into living with or playing house with someone who has never managed himself or a household. That's the reality of things as they stand in the best of scenarios.

 

To add to that challenge, he seems emotionally unstable and unhappy with you.

 

What about this situation is at all appealing? Are you able to take a step back and look at the whole picture?

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This was hard to hear but probably good to hear. :(

 

He seemed happy with me and was always sweet and supportive, but maybe he wasn’t.

 

I know my heart and head may be wanting different things - but my heart longs for him. I’ve never wanted anything more than I want a future with him. I love him with all that I am. And I would be willing to wait on everything else if he would just tell me he wants to be with me.

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We have been intimate. He did talk to him family about spending the night sometimes earlier this year. I think it was very hard conversation and it ended up with him being able to stay one every two weeks or once a month overnight.

 

Oh goodness, he is a in his 30's and to ask for permission to stay overnight. OP, c'mon, you need to lose this guy. This is ridiculous.

 

Don't waste prime years on this guy. You should NEVER expect people to change. This guy sounds like a man child.

 

Please hit reply to quote, as we have no idea who you are responding to.

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If you are completely honest, is it him you want OR the potential of who he could be if only......

 

You are talking about a 32 year old adult who is asking his parents' permission to go out once a week..... I don't care what culture or religion you are from, that's pretty messed up and I can't even imagine what relationship you can have like that. I suspect that you are stuck on the idea that marriage would lift all obstacles, fix everything and you'll live happily ever after. In reality, you'd be signing up for a complete manchild who has never lived independently and with a family who will rule and control your daily life. I'm afraid that you are being very blind to some major major issues here.

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Oh goodness, he is a in his 30's and to ask for permission to stay overnight. OP, c'mon, you need to lose this guy. This is ridiculous.

 

Please hit reply to quote, as we have no idea who you are responding to.

 

Sorry!! New to the sight so wasn’t sure how to respond to each person - hopefully this is the right way now!

 

But yes... it’s been very hard to deal with him not being able to spend the night.

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When you are in an insecure situation, it's normal to feel insecure.

 

What you are doing is the equivalent of eating food that makes you sick and instead of getting rid of that food, you are sitting there telling yourself that if you only can find a way to develop immunity to the bacteria in that food dish, you can keep eating it and it will OK. Do you see how absurd that is? You are doing exactly this in this relationship. You know deep down that this guy is wrong for you, but instead of dumping him and finding a guy who is on the same page as you, someone who is mature, and wants the life that you crave, you keep wasting your time on someone who is none of those things.

 

OP, what you see is what you get. This is a grown man who is living with his parents, by their rules because that suits him. It's not about upsetting his parents, it's about him and what he does and doesn't want. Keeping his life the way it is is keeping you and relationships at bay on purpose. Dude has issues and you are missing red flags the size of China.

 

If you want marriage and a family, then I can't urge you enough to dump him and start looking seriously for a man, not a man child, who is ready, willing, and able to go forward with the life goals that you have and want. Basically, someone who is actually on the same page as you. Once you find him I'd bet money that you'll feel safe and confident in your relationship instead of jittery. Right now what you are feeling is your gut screaming at you as loudly as it can trying to warn you that you are wasting your life on a wrong choice.

 

This was hard to read because it summed up a lot of my fears.... that he chose to not rock the boat with his family and ended up making me feel insecure in the process. And I feel like I am getting a lot of the blame for the insecurity. I do take partial ownership of the insecurity issue, but I don’t think it’s just me.

 

It’s just so hard to give up on him. We get on together so well. We laugh, have so much in common, and I really do care for him and his family very deeply. I don’t want to give up if it’s at all fixable.

 

Just don’t know how to “fix” it if he wants a break and is not sure that we can work long term. :(

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If you are completely honest, is it him you want OR the potential of who he could be if only......

 

You are talking about a 32 year old adult who is asking his parents' permission to go out once a week..... I don't care what culture or religion you are from, that's pretty messed up and I can't even imagine what relationship you can have like that. I suspect that you are stuck on the idea that marriage would lift all obstacles, fix everything and you'll live happily ever after. In reality, you'd be signing up for a complete manchild who has never lived independently and with a family who will rule and control your daily life. I'm afraid that you are being very blind to some major major issues here.

 

I hope this isn’t true, but it could be. I really am hopefully that he is almost to the finish line in his schooling and is ready for a serious future. But who knows... he could have no plans on being more mature anytime soon.

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This was hard to read because it summed up a lot of my fears.... that he chose to not rock the boat with his family and ended up making me feel insecure in the process. And I feel like I am getting a lot of the blame for the insecurity. I do take partial ownership of the insecurity issue, but I don’t think it’s just me.

 

It’s just so hard to give up on him. We get on together so well. We laugh, have so much in common, and I really do care for him and his family very deeply. I don’t want to give up if it’s at all fixable.

 

Just don’t know how to “fix” it if he wants a break and is not sure that we can work long term. :(

 

we don’t spend other nights together as he doesn’t want to upset his family If you actually did get married, you should assume any decision you two are trying to make will be overruled by him being concerned if his family will be upset.

 

And after 3 years together, at your ages, he should know if he sees you as a lifetime partner or not. There should have been a mutual discussion on this issue, and instead, you were the only one bringing up that topic.

 

If he cared enough, he would've asked you to work on problems to fix the relationship. Instead, he chose to run away from the problem until he let it eat away at him like a cancer, killing any love he had for you.

 

And no, you shouldn't get used to your significant other having female acquaintances on his social media in order to "like" their photos. There is something called relationship boundaries. Next time choose a man who is on the same page as you in the boundaries dept. Otherwise, you will live a life of being upset.

 

There is being "ridiculously jealous" like if the female cashier smiles at your man, versus reasonable jealously, when your man blatantly flirts with another. If you are reasonably jealous, get a man who doesn't conjure that in you. If your jealousy is unwarranted, work on yourself or you will drive away any decent man who comes along in the future.

 

Just because you think of him every second of the day, with time and distance, you will eventually stop mourning and heal. Don't cling like a barnacle onto a cold rock that wants the wave to wash you off.

 

I dealt with serious doubt and insecurity over whether or not he wants to be with me.

The right man will leave no doubt that he wants you as a lifetime partner. Be free so one day you can find him.

 

 

wouldn’t call myself ridiculously jealous - just didn’t like him like acquaintances selfies. And didn’t like him bringing up things about his exes, or them commenting on his social media posts.

 

I am trying to hear your advice because I know you may be right. But god, I wish it would work out. I love him so much, and I am willing to wait it out on the marriage thing if only he would give me the chance to try. :(

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