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21 minutes ago, boltnrun said:

My husband and I went through a couple of episodes like this. He had been acting "meh" toward me. So I sat him down and told him I felt he wasn't in love with me anymore and it was making me question our marriage. He responded by hugging me and saying he didn't want to lose me and he would do whatever it took to improve our marriage.

That was good enough for me. We both made efforts for a year. Then the same old thing started happening again only worse. So I sat him down again. His response that time was that he wasn't going to do anything to try to fix things and if I wanted out he wasn't going to try to stop me. Big difference this time. He just seemed checked out and completely disinterested in improving our marriage. So I too checked out and we eventually divorced.

His first response was spot on. The second time, not so much.

I see two things as possibilities; she doesn't "feel" loved by you and possibly her mother is pressuring her about having kids. 

I would call if I were you. If it's true, tell her you love her, you don't want to lose her, and you want to talk about what the both of you can do to fix the relationship. If you're "meh" about her, however, then don't bother.

Thank you for sharing your story. It sounds similar.

I’ve never told her that “I’m willing to do whatever it takes” simply because it’s easy to say and is easy to take as just saying what she wants to hear regardless of the truth behind it.

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2 minutes ago, Wiseman2 said:

Has she moved in/out before?

She stayed with me for some time during quarantine and has stayed with me for a few weeks at a time here and there. 

her most recent lease she negotiated to be only 5 months with the intention of moving in permanently after that. 

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2 hours ago, bsim627 said:

She went off about "I feel like we're just friends, and that I'm just a person that's around, and you can't tell me why you love me and it's just because I make it so you're not alone, and we've never had an actual conversation about what our relationship is." 

This stuck out to me.

She feels like you two are just friends?  Not actually a couple?  Is this for reasons?

Or is this what she wants now?

What kind of conversation is needed re: what your relationship is?

Sounds to me like something's really lacking here 😕 .

And as someone mentioned.. sounds like she's giving up.

Yeah, do not go there on her moving in.... But, IF she's giving in, she needs to at least admit to it.

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16 minutes ago, bsim627 said:

Thank you for sharing your story. It sounds similar.

I’ve never told her that “I’m willing to do whatever it takes” simply because it’s easy to say and is easy to take as just saying what she wants to hear regardless of the truth behind it.

Maybe she'd like to hear you say it.

And I don't mean empty words. Follow through with actions. Ask her to tell you what she feels is lacking. And you too, tell her what you'd like to see her do.

But this not speaking? That can't happen in a relationship or marriage.

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Honestly, when I read this it's like I'm reading myself years ago. I was just like her: I was out of touch with my feelings, didn't know why I was making plans that didn't include my ex, easily influenced, and my communication was poor. But, I was 22.

Anyways, these things might mean she doesn't feel special enough, or that you are not affectionate with her. There's something missing in the "sauce", and so she's checking out. I would personally say, let her go. I also broke up with my ex over it, then came back to him and then broke up with him. I now see I had needs that weren't meet in the relationship, but didn't know how to assert myself/express them. And when I did, just like @boltnrun, the man tried- but it catches up. He is what he is. I shouldn't have accepted that he become something else for me- and he did get back to his regular unaffectionate self later on. You can't be who you aren't.

She might feel similar to what I did(although at her age, it's weird she hasn't figured this/herself out, but you live and learn). So, my sincere advice is: don't get caught up in this. Don't accept silent treatments. Let her go. No begging or pleading. Value yourself and your time. Somebody who loves you wouldn't have you go through all this.

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"touching" in front of parents -- it doesn't mean you have to tongue kiss, but there are little ways to touch someone that makes it obvious you are smitten - holding hands, or when you are talking to them, your finger brushes their elbow, etc, walking at a pace that matches hers vs walking 10 feet ahead, you offer your hand if she is wearing high heels and you are going up or down stairs, etc -- so many ways to touch where someone wouldn't say 'get a room!' but its obvious that there is respect and affection.   They wanted to see a guy who OBVIOUSLY clicks with their daughter .

My ex did that -- walked feet away from me, etc, - if you saw us as a group with my parents, you would definitely not know we were a couple.  It upset my parents that it almost seemed he didn't even want to share the experience of what we were doing with me.  It didn't look like two couples (us and my parents) but me and my parents and he wasn't part of the group. My mom's heart broke for me.

At 37, if she wants babies, the wrong response is to ask her to move in with you. The right response is to decide if she is the one or not. If she is, then plan to marry. If she is not, then don't waste her time by moving in to try things out, put off things because you want to fix up your house and break up so she ca find someone who loves her.

At 37, she needs to already be checking with her OB and Reproductive Endocrinoligist getting herself checked out - to see if its feasible with her ovarian reserve and levels to get pregnant naturally or if she will need help.  Babies don't just happen. if you "start" it  might take 6 months, a year, or she could be 40 and nothing happens yet.

People rent out their house and move out of state all the time when something happens - a great job offer after unemployment, meeting someone you want to marry and have a family with and they have to move near parents because of their health. 

If the house is good enough for her to "live with you in" its good enough to start the next part of your lives.

It seems that you have been sending messages to her that you feel Meh about and her parents confirmed it.

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BTW, i don't think mom is pressuring her on kids.

Its a reality that if she wants kids, the older she starts to try, the more expensive or less of a chance she will have. I want to go back in time to my younger self and tell myself that.

But if you see your child with someone they are dating and you don't see any chemistry at all - like zip, its concerning. My BIL was not all over my sister when i met him, but you could totally tell that these two people meshed really well with eachother personality wise and they were obviously well matched - he was excited for her about things she was proud of doing, etc, as well.  They have been married 15 years now.   This sister can sometimes not be everyone's taste and he really "gets" her and it was apparent that they already had inside jokes.  But even the little things and the care that he showed her at the table in making sure she was taken care of, etc, was very sweet.  They are still the same way with eachother and still in love and going strong.

Everyone wants their daughter, sister, niece to be with a guy that feels they are so fortunate to have her. And that's what everyone deserves

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@abitbroken thanks. I appreciate both of your responses. Her and I talked about the touching in front of parents thing… moving forward that would never be an issue again (I’ve never actually met her dad her parents are divorced and live in different states, neither of which are this state). What she said to me actually sounds a lot like what you said about your ex.

My house is not really sellable or rentable as is. Not without losing 10s of thousands of dollars. She knows that. But she will flip between saying things like making the house a certain way that she likes it so that she is comfortable living here then “just get it to a point to sell it”… or wanting to buy a home together here… to buying a home in a different state… to never wanting to own a home… to maybe renting in a different state for a few months before coming back here… to wanting to get rid of everything and travel to a bunch of different countries for several months at a time.

I do love her and want a family with her and I’m ready to marry her (well I was… now I feel like we’ve moved back several spaces again.)… but she also needs to settle some of those thoughts because they are all very different lifestyles.

I don’t know if mom is pressuring her on kids… but I do know that her mom told one of her exes “*** or get off the pot” which promptly ended the relationship… so I wouldn’t be surprised if something similar is happening between them and she’s just keeping it from getting all the way to me. 

Anyway, thank you again I appreciate the real life examples and I will talk to her about all of these things… in this case I don’t think any of it requires difficult adjustments from me. Just simply misunderstood expectations. 

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18 minutes ago, DarkCh0c0 said:

@bsim627 you don't reach out to her. The ball

 is in her court now. So, it's up to her to reach out and not you. That should be your next critical step.

This is ultimately what I’m trying to get out of this post… I certainly felt like I put the ball in her court and was just respecting her space. I assumed I would hear from her the next day or two. But after 4 or 5 days it didn’t seem right any more.

After 2-3 months or less of dating somebody or if it was explicitly stated that we were ending the relationship I could easily have the “either I hear from her or I don’t” attitude… but after 1.5 years it doesn’t seem like the BEST approach to just wait indefinitely… and from my perspective the relationship hasn’t ended. 

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3 hours ago, bsim627 said:

She is divorced and has had some other bad relationships in the past. I’m sure that it plays into the cold feet. I know she doesn’t think I’m anything like the past guys… but maybe thinks I have some warning signs that I could end up that way. Or leave her feeling the same.

That is why I asked. At 37 she should know what she wants. Marriage, kids etc. And have emotional maturity to get that and follow through. Getting "cold feet" is fine, that happens. But to handle it like a 20 year old girl is not. Making full drama out of it, perhaps expecting you to stop and chase her, not even contacting somebody that you should live together for 10 days? That is high school drama level, not somebody who is 37 year old. That suggest severe lack of emotional maturity either through past bad experience or lack of that experience. And the desire to fast track things due to age and pressure from parents but not follow through. Because she cant handle it due to emotional maturity or lack there of. In the long run its not really something I would follow through. But you need to at least have a talk and see where you stand. 

About fast track, its not that bad if you know what you want and get along. Friend got engaged and started living together recently with the girl of the same age as yours after year-year and a half. She is a country girl, he is more of a city boy but they do get along. She even managed to get him to make an effort(something his ex fiance never could for example) so now he walks with her frequently and goes sight seeing in different cities by weekend. So after short time he decided its time, they chose a ring and he moved her in with him. What I am trying to say is, its OK to fast track if you get along. But in a year and a half you guys managed to break up once and now you didnt see or hear her in 10 days. You need to consider that when you make a call.

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28 minutes ago, bsim627 said:

I could easily have the “either I hear from her or I don’t” attitude… but after 1.5 years it doesn’t seem like the BEST approach to just wait indefinitely… and from my perspective the relationship hasn’t ended. 

Unfortunately this may be one of those fade out situations, where she was "meh" about moving in, you were "meh" about fulfilling whatever she stated her needs are.

It's safe to say moving in would be a mistake and stepping away to free yourself  for someone you're more enthused about would be  the best option.

 

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5 hours ago, bsim627 said:
6 hours ago, DancingFool said:

Does it occur to that she may be projecting to you how she actually feels? Meaning that she is accusing you of what she is actually doing to you, like only dating you for lack of better options or because she is lonely at the moment......

Yes it did actually feel like projection in the moment. Specifically the “because I make it so you’re not lonely” claim. I’m not trying to completely suppress that though, but I’m trying to suppress it enough that I don’t blurt it out as an accusation in the middle of a serious conversation. 

Yeah, these are such odd things to accuse somebody of:

8 hours ago, bsim627 said:

"I feel like we're just friends, and that I'm just a person that's around, and you can't tell me why you love me and it's just because I make it so you're not alone, and we've never had an actual conversation about what our relationship is."

 

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Dude, you are asking her to move in with you. You are actively looking to build toward marriage and kids and a future together and are supporting that with actions. Meanwhile, she is accusing you of being just pals and just in it because you are lonely and bored. Does that make any sense to you?

Looking in from the outside and without a pony in this race, this woman seems to have some very serious psychological/emotional issues. Nothing that you can fix or help her with and something that, I'm afraid, you are rather oblivious to and dangerously so. This is not a relationship you cling to or the kind of a woman you choose to have a family with. This is the kind of a person where you pay attention to the red flags slapping you in the face and walk away from....or rather run for the hills as fast as you can.

In your own way, you seem stubbornly...and rather ironically, given her accusations....fixated on the future you want which is marriage and kids....but really, you need to step back and think who it is you want that with. This woman has some serious issues. Think about it....she is 37 years old, but her mother has this much influence and say in her life and relationships that the fact you weren't pawing her ends the relationship? Does that sound sane to you? Hint: looking from the outside it is nuts.

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You've already seen a pattern. As Dr. Phil says, "The best predictor of future behavior is past behavior. If you think she'll magically change to someone who sticks around forever just because you marry and have kids, you're naive.

IMO, when one or both take breaks instead of working together on issues, there isn't enough love there. You have to know that walking away might mean forever, and if a person is willing to risk that, he/she plain doesn't care enough.

 

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Just wanted to thank everybody for their contributions.

I decided not to reach out to her.  I won't minimize the contributions that I know I made to this situation, but at the end of the day I'm happy with the effort that I made towards saving and advancing our relationship during "round 2" for these past few months.

However, there is something deeply disturbing about ghosting out of a 1.5 year relationship and the time I've had to reflect on things has inserted a few big question marks and red flags.  At this point I suspect that she packed up her apartment and left the state, something she's been doing her whole life and very similar to the way she came into mine.

Unfortunately it doesn't seem like I am going to get any closure out of this so I'll be going one day at a time.

Thanks again!

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On 7/26/2021 at 10:39 AM, bsim627 said:

She went off about "I feel like we're just friends, and that I'm just a person that's around, and you can't tell me why you love me and it's just because I make it so you're not alone, and we've never had an actual conversation about what our relationship is." 

This happened once before for similar reasons and we actually broke up for a bit. 

This isn't ghosting. She was clear and frank about why she gave up and ended things.

You act like you don't care about her, it was on/off and for the same reasons.

The relationship wasn't going anywhere and neither of you were happy or resolving anything.

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37 minutes ago, Wiseman2 said:

This isn't ghosting. She was clear and frank about why she gave up and ended things.

You act like you don't care about her, it was on/off and for the same reasons.

The relationship wasn't going anywhere and neither of you were happy or resolving anything.

That's how the conversation started.  There was a lot of conversation after that.  She asked "what would it mean to you if I moved in?" I answered and said "but I also don't want you to move in if you're not ready just because of this conversation." She said she was going to go think about some things.  She was clear and frank about her concerns, I agree, but the relationship was never explicitly ended and I was expecting to hear from her.

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1 hour ago, bsim627 said:

That's how the conversation started.  There was a lot of conversation after that.  She asked "what would it mean to you if I moved in?" I answered and said "but I also don't want you to move in if you're not ready just because of this conversation." She said she was going to go think about some things.  She was clear and frank about her concerns, I agree, but the relationship was never explicitly ended and I was expecting to hear from her.

You've been more than reasonable and clear about your intentions. She has been the one who is off and yes, she did ghost you. Even if she does reach out eventually, I'd not bother with her anymore, let alone take her back. She has demonstrated to you that she is not normal or mentally/emotionally stable.

If there is one hard lesson to take away from this experience is that you need to pay careful attention to a person's past relationships and judge that and walk away faster when you see big red flags. If someone has numerous relationships that were all bad, ended badly, the men were all bad or abusive, etc., consider that she is the common denominator in all of that mess and that you are not going to be the guy who saves her, but rather just another guy she will badmouth to someone else. Don't sign up for that going forward and instead, when you hear that run for the hills.

 

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1 hour ago, bsim627 said:

She was clear and frank about her concerns, I agree, but the relationship was never explicitly ended and I was expecting to hear from her.

Given the on/off and dancing around, you don't need a thunderbolt to the head to know there's a thunderstorm. Why hash, rehash, then rehash again?

It's been dying you both knew that and she explicitly stated very often how unhappy she was but on deaf ears, last time and again this time. So why talk about it again and again?

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I'm not sure why anyone would agree to move in with someone else unless they're marrying that person with the intention to have children or build or blend families. The logical step would be to produce a ring and propose to her. 

Anything else(live in situation) would be a roommate situation with no tangible means of progressing anything forwards in terms of commitment. My read on this is she sensed there would be no marriage any time soon or engagement and made alternate plans. I'm sorry about this. 

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I lived with my ex and had no intention or desire to marry him or blend families (I have kids, he does not. But my kids were adults).

However, in the OP's situation the complete and total lack of any communication would spell the end for me. Silence is no way to deal with conflicts in a relationship.

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5 hours ago, bsim627 said:

She was clear and frank about her concerns, I agree, but the relationship was never explicitly ended and I was expecting to hear from her.

Well, that just sucks. 

I would have called. But you did say that you were happy with your level of effort, so I'll take your word that you made a big effort. 

It just doesn't sound like you guys communicated very much.

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