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Saving Relationship with an Unhappy Partner

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I desperately want to save our relationship, but my girlfriend is on the verge of giving up. We’ve had a great, strong relationship and moved in together about 6 months ago. However, these last few months we’ve lost the spark and it seems like the dynamic of our relationship is more like roommates. 

We rarely have sex, we don’t have much quality time together, and on top of that, she has a full plate of other things to worry about going in her life. She’s finishing up school but still does not know what to do in life. She has lost a majority of her friends over the past couple years. Overall she’s unhappy. 

I hadn’t realized how drastic our relationship has fallen to the point where it has become stagnant. But now that I know, I believe I can work on saving this relationship. She has brought up that she plans on moving out in a few weeks and when I asked if she’s willing to trust in our relationship, she hasn’t given a solid answer. What can I do to get a chance to show her that this relationship can still keep going?

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Sorry about all this. 

I think the thing to understand right now—and a very hard thing—is that relationships only really work if both people want them to. They can never be "saved" by the actions of one person. 

With that in mind? I think you do what you're doing—making it clear to her that you believe in her, in what you two have, and that this hard moment is one you want to work through, together. If she can't meet you there—if she remains murky and unclear—then it's on you to decide how long you can stand in the same place. Being honest, the fact that she has already decided to move out does not bode well. 

You said you hadn't realized how bad things had gotten, but I'm curious: Were you content to rarely have sex for six months? Do you get the sense that she is handling her own unhappiness in a productive manner? I ask these questions to encourage you to reflect on the big picture here.

It's natural, when we feel someone pulling away, to respond by trying to pull them closer. But the motivation to be with someone has to be more than fear of losing them. What is it about her, and your dynamic, that makes you think you two work well together? 

Can I ask how old you guys are and how long you'd been together before moving in?

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Thank you for your thoughtful input @bluecastle  

We both are not content with the lack of sex. With our schedules, most of the time sleep took place instead of sex. We’ve been together for a year and seven months. Our relationship normally felt like we were connected as one person. It’s as if we fit perfect together like puzzle pieces.

From the beginning of our relationship we spent a lot of time together to where spend the majority of the time at her place. We moved in together in a house after a year. These past few months, I have gotten comfortable and lazy. Our dynamic used to be where every aspect of our life and how we lived was to help grow as a couple. We used to put so much effort into each other. However now, the dynamic feels like we are two separate people on a mundane relationship. I can admit that the chores around the house have been one sided and I had just gotten too comfortable.

I’ve realized that I’ve become stagnant in growth as far as putting the extra effort in our future. But I’m scared it’s too late. I am 28 and she is 24. She’s currently full time student and I have a stable career. 

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1 hour ago, Bri78512 said:

She has brought up that she plans on moving out in a few weeks

Unfortunately this may be the best solution, since moving in is when the problems started.

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3 hours ago, Bri78512 said:

What can I do to get a chance to show her that this relationship can still keep going?


She feels a lot of pressure from how I see it.. then she needs to feel less of the burdens around her.  You two have lived together short term- and moved in together after only a year?

Now you are being challenged.  So, you have to prove you are there for her.  She needs to feel you do care and will try.

Then how about you step up?  Get up & start showing her you mean business... clean up, make a nice meal.

Can you two get out for a walk on occasion?  Just cuddle together & watch a movie?  You need some real quality time together...

There is a difference, with someone saying they care and actually showing it.


IF it's too late and she is just giving up, nothing more you can do... sadly 😞 

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I think you are overcompensating for her confusion about her career and nothing in the world that you do will relieve the stress that she has to work through figuring that out on her own. 

You are 28 with a stable career.. It's good to re-evaluate what you want out of a relationship because this age gap might not work, nor your difference in life stages or maturity. 


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Stress is a big contributor. If you don't have an outlet to relieve stress like enjoying friend's company, play sports, hobbies, finding activities with each other and outside the relationship, it's gonna fall apart pretty fast.  it's like hitting a brick wall.

I say let her go because she definitely needs some breathing room to sort herself out and her life. She's in a rut and needs to get out of it. Is this the end? who knows. Sometimes space gives one perspective that becomes a positive one, and be willing to give things a second chance. Only time will tell. Keep positive, focus on yourself, and go forward.

Edited by smackie9
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I would do the opposite of trying to keep an unhappy person in place with me.

I'd be kind, but I'd be firm about confirming that, yes, she must go.

I'd consider it to be the only shot I've got at any potential future together, because if she doesn't ever voluntarily decide that she wants to come back--without my influence--then there's no way that I'd want to sentence myself to a future of waiting for her to finally leave.

Either she takes the time she needs to reach her own higher ground where I can move forward and meet her someday, or she caves to my pressure to stick around and fake being un-miserable.

That would be a no-brainer for me, I'd want out.

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