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My partner of almost 2 years feels more like a best friend than a boyfriend...


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Hi all, 

I've been in a relationship with my current boyfriend for almost two years, and I can confidently say that this partnership is the best relationship I've been in so far. As someone who's been in multiple toxic relationships where both partners couldn't stop arguing, my boyfriend and I get along very well. This isn't to say we don't argue at all, but we have pretty good conflict management and can resolve our issues quickly. We live together and share a lot of common hobbies. He's not only a great roommate, but someone I'm comfortable with seeing and living with every day. 

The only problem is that I'm starting to feel like he's more of my best friend than my boyfriend. Ever since the pandemic, we haven't been going on dates, which is understandable - but now that restrictions are starting to lift, I feel like there is definitely an opportunity for him to plan stuff for us to do together.

Also, he's not really the romantic, masculine type. He doesn't like taking photos (he says he only likes "candid" photos, not ones where everyone is smiling/posing), he doesn't use social media (so he doesn't post about us), he doesn't compliment me often, etc. All in all, he's not the type to outwardly show affection in any way. The most he'll do is surprise me with snacks from time to time when he goes grocery shopping. 

And the thing that concerns me the most is that we don't really have sex anymore. When we first started dating, we'd have sex at least 2-3 times a week, but it started to dwindle down because we didn't get a lot of sleep during this time. To clarify, we were each other's first real sexual experience. I've been sexually intimate with other guys before, but never had full-on sex with any of them - but I know what I like. On the other hand, my current partner has had 0 sexual experience, so he doesn't really know what he's doing. I've been quite patient with him but we've had a lot of trouble figuring out what works for us. He's the type to want to finish and be done, rather than enjoying the act if that makes sense. For me, I like the build up and foreplay - and I like my man to be a little bit more dominant. We've had a discussion about this before, but he said he doesn't want to be dominant because he feels like he's objectifying me - even with my consent. 
 

We've had talks about all of these topics before, but he just tells me to ride it out because these issues might be a result of the pandemic. I'm willing to wait and see how things turn out, but I'm starting to get a little nervous that this relationship is more of a platonic thing. While I get along with my partner very well in most areas of life, there are a couple of things that I could see becoming a problem if not resolved in the long run.

Sometimes I wonder if I'm settling?

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"Sometimes I wonder if I'm settling?"  -  I would agree with that.

I see no major problem with him not liking photos, or using any social media (I hate it too), and not complimenting much etc, BUT the big issue here is the lack of sex, his lack of even wanting to try and please you, his lack of listening to what you have asked for and showing lack of interest.  Here you two are incompatible (imo).

Maybe time to rethink the relationship.  NEVER settle. Ever.

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According to Sternberg, 3 components of love are passion, intimacy and commitment. You lack passion component so that qualifies you for

Quote

 

Companionate Love

Companionate love is an intimate, but non-passionate sort of love. It includes the intimacy or liking component and the commitment component of the triangle. It is stronger than friendship, because there is a long-term commitment, but there is minimal or no sexual desire. 

This type of love is often found in marriages where the passion has died, but the couple continues to have deep affection or a strong bond together. This may also be viewed as the love between very close friends and family members.

 

so no wonder you feel like a best friend and not a girlfriend. So, if you are having a problem with that and you are unable to work on it, you should rethink it. 

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You are his first.. Is there a reason you moved in with him so quickly? ( without even know if you're truly compatible...).

Now.. as time goes on, you're realizing some issue's.

As for the 'dating' thing you enjoy, he's lacking there.. But, I know many who don't always feel they need to go out all the time.  Just being together is fine. ( but, another difference, you want more than this).

Sexually, seems you are not aligned there either.. as he's lacking. (and you're not).

Yeah, I can see this dwindling down for you 😕 .

Maybe is time you admitted to him this doesn't feel right for you.

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Sounds like the “honeymoon phase” of the relationship is over after 2 years.

It’s great he still treats you nicely and is not toxic.

Putting in effort to have fun romantic dates once a week should help. You even mentioned this was missing.

Why not suggest going to a nice restaurant this weekend? 

 

 

 

 

 

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6 hours ago, petrichors said:

I'm starting to get a little nervous that this relationship is more of a platonic thing. 

How long have you been living together? 

Living together can become routine,  boring and complacent,which seems to be part of the problem.

Why aren't you planning dates? You need to participate in your own happiness, not expect him to be a rom-com character.

For example posting candid social media pics is nonsense to whine about.

As far as sexuality goes, again you're too passive and not participating in your own satisfaction.

You're not "settling", you just expect someone else to do everything.

 

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I'm sorry to hear this. Sounds like he's taking you for granted and you're both settling.

A man who loves you would constantly find a way to get intimate/show you he cares, at least every now and then.

I would either talk to him about it (see his motives/spice it up), or leave. There's more into a healthy relationship than not arguing. So, simply say you're not feeling it, and if he says he'll change- don't accept/settle for that neither. He is what he is.

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I have several friends who brag about their spouses incessantly and post photos on social media.  And they or their spouses have confided in me how dysfunctional the relationship is.  I find the quiet types who don’t need to shout from the rooftops are often the happier ones.  
I think you two lack chemistry.  Unless you’re very particular about sexual positions or have a fetish that you have to have him get better at it shouldn’t be this much work.  I get the sleep part but typically that’s more of a parents with young kids thing or a parent who is a caregiver for an elderly parent who needs help firing the night.  

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Before totally throwing in the towel, try some of these things first: Tell him you'll be planning this week's date night, and the next week it will be his turn, and it'll make you happy to keep this routine.

Go on Cosmopolitan magazine online which has particular positions to try in bed and point out a few you'd like to try. Give him a choice of which role playing scenario you've come up with: give him 2 or 3 ideas. If possible, dress or the occasion. Take a trip to a couples store and pick up some products and toys. If he balks or makes excuses, explain that you two need to work at keeping your intimacy time exciting. You could also tell him you want to extend the session to forty-five minutes or whatever is your goal.

You can also ask for what you need. As long as you phrase it in "i" sentences instead of "you never," who can argue with that? You could say, "I'd love it if we can hold hands while out shopping." "Can you rub my back? Oh, that feels wonderful. You have magic hands." 

Funnily enough, you train people just like you do with animals. Positive reinforcement when they do something to please you, even if you've asked for it. Smiles. Words of praise. And perhaps he will start doing things to please you without you asking.

If you've asked for reasonable things and a person doesn't care, he will do nothing to improve. You can then say you tried everything before totally giving up and can walk away more easily, knowing you, at least, put in effort before making that final decision. Good luck and let us know how it goes.

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There's nothing wrong with you and there is nothing wrong with him. This relationship has run it's course. That's it. There doesn't have to have issues...people just lose interest naturally. That's why we date. To see if they have it for a life partner. Those things you pointed out are important to have a relationship last for the long haul.

if you want change and stick it out with him, you will have to discuss all these things you expect from him. maybe he got a little lazy, who knows. It's up to you in what direction you want to take.

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Back in August of 2017 you were saving yourself for marriage.  What was it about this guy that changed your mind?  I am curious as to what you saw in him that changed your mind.  Did you see him as the one?

As for the lack of intimacy (full on intercourse or other) it is a big issue.  Intimacy is more than penetration, it is a closeness, a willingness to be vulnerable, a bonding experience.  Without it what do you have other than a friendship.

  From the outside it looks like what you want and what he wants are two different things.  He is okay with the way it is and you are not.  You have tried to discuss it with him with no improvement.  What else is there?  You went from having lack luster sex 2-3 times a week to nothing in 2 years.  What will it be like in 4 years?

  Sometimes people check a lot of the boxes but if the important ones are empty it is time to call it quits and keep looking.

I am sorry, I know it sucks to get so close and then realize they aren't the one for you.

Lost

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