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Busy chef, gf wants to break up over lack of intimate time


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Hello everyone, I apologize if I start to rant but this situation has been giving me a lot of stress. 

 

To give some context I’m in a relationship with my middle school sweetheart. We’ve been dating for 6+ years, and have had our share of big ups and way downs but we always pull through healthier and better than before. This past year I’ve recently earned my dream job as a chef. It’s long stressful hours that begin early in the day and end past midnight. With only one day off it’s taken a great toll on our relationship. My gf states that I do not spend enough time with her, nor do I make any effort to do so, and that I don’t care about our relationship anymore. I can understand why she feels that way but it just isn’t true. I’m more than in love with her and I can’t imagine a life without my best friend. I tried putting in effort where it’s possible. I make my way over to hers after my shift ends and then go to work from hers. I tried taking off work to spend time with her. I call and text her constantly even during my work hours but still she acts angry towards me. Now she wants to break things off completely and tells me that I don’t care. I just want her to recognize that I’m working hard and trying to achieve my goals for us and for our future. What can I do in this situation? She isn’t willing to listen to me or allow me to fix things. 

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3 minutes ago, FrankieG said:

I just want her to recognize that I’m working hard and trying to achieve my goals for us and for our future. 

You're doing a lot of the right things. It's great you got your dream job. 

However she wants to talk about the future not how your job will contribute to that. In other words the "future" is now.

That means get engaged, move in together and make more of a commitment to her, not just your job.

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Does seem a bit strange that after 6+ years you haven't already moved in together which would allow you to spend more time together.

But if this is your dream job she either has the chance to support that and accept that you won't have as much time for her or to break up with you and find someone who has a normal job with regular time and a lot more hours for you. She is being childish complaining and getting angry with you all the time. 

Also you are trying too hard. Why would you call and text constantly and spend every available moment of your free time with someone who just gets angry with you? You are letting her punish you and coming back for more punishment. 

And it is also unprofessional to text and call so much during working hours and even during your breaks you should be bonding with your colleagues or taking some time to yourself to decompress. 

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My husband has always worked long, unpredictable hours and I did for 15 years and after that when we had our son I worked at being a full time parent and now also work part time.  My husband has his dream career.  It's in a field related to mine so I get it.  I knew what I was signing up for many years ago as did he.  But your girlfriend might talk the talk but she doesn't walk the walk. 

She's not getting how this is your dream job and your priority right now.  When you prove yourself then you may be able to have better hours, etc but right now it's nose to the grindstone time.  I had a number of men bow out after they said "how cool" etc my job was - until they saw that unless it was a weekend (and even then) I couldn't make plans other than tentative -"work permitting".  So I focused on men in the same/related intense fields who "got it".  My husband gets it.  

I don't think there's a reason to live together if you don't feel like it, before marriage.  And that time together likely will be you feeling exhausted and just wanting a shower and bed.  If she isn't willing to see less of you so you can pursue your dream job and dream career that's fine -but it means she's not on the same wavelength as you.  Does she have a dream career she is pursuing -does she have ambition and drive? Sounds like maybe no.  I'm sorry.

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How long will the current workload continue?

if there’s an end date in sight maybe you can stress that to her and ask if she can weather the coming months of low contact. 
 

If this is your life now going forward indefinitely it doesn’t some to me like you have time to maintain any relationships romantic or platonic. It might be making hard choices time. There’s not enough hours in the day to work a job with this many hours and sustain your existing relationship (potential future relationship with person who’s happy seeing you once a week is still a possibility).

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3 hours ago, FrankieG said:

What can I do in this situation? She isn’t willing to listen to me or allow me to fix things. 

Unfortunately nothing. She cant understand the importance of your job. Is already at the door and blames you for not having time for her even though you try. Relationship is based on a mutual understandings of some stuff. Like those that partner sometimes will not have the most time for you due to professional obligations. She has none for you. Doesnt even recognize that you try. So, you would have to let her go. She can go find somebody that will give her the ammount of attention she wants, and you can find somebody who would be OK with your professional workload. I know its hard and that you cant probably accept that. But I dont see you being able to fix this. As she doesnt even listen to you.

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11 hours ago, Wiseman2 said:

You're doing a lot of the right things. It's great you got your dream job. 

However she wants to talk about the future not how your job will contribute to that. In other words the "future" is now.

That means get engaged, move in together and make more of a commitment to her, not just your job.

I second wiseman.

Why aren't you living together?

How was the relationship before you became a chef?

Anyways, she's not satisfied and is done waiting around. She also doesn't understand the importance of this job to you. Let her break it off. It'll be for the best.

But keep the below in mind...

8 hours ago, 1a1a said:

If this is your life now going forward indefinitely it doesn’t some to me like you have time to maintain any relationships romantic or platonic. It might be making hard choices time. There’s not enough hours in the day to work a job with this many hours and sustain your existing relationship (potential future relationship with person who’s happy seeing you once a week is still a possibility

 

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10 hours ago, 1a1a said:

How long will the current workload continue?

if there’s an end date in sight maybe you can stress that to her and ask if she can weather the coming months of low contact. 
 

If this is your life now going forward indefinitely it doesn’t some to me like you have time to maintain any relationships romantic or platonic. It might be making hard choices time. There’s not enough hours in the day to work a job with this many hours and sustain your existing relationship (potential future relationship with person who’s happy seeing you once a week is still a possibility).

I did.  My husband did.  We made it work.  We didn't need to live together to make it work - we simply did lots of sleepovers.  I'm glad we didn't live together as it would have raised unrealistic expectations.  When we moved in together officially we were married.  A few months later we welcomed our son into or then 550 square foot apartment.  Nothing like living together as two people without an infant and his stuff so we weren't influenced much by how it was "before".

Many of our friends did the same with their work schedules/grad school -pursuing dream careers, promotions, academia..  My parents did in the 1950s being long distance for their 4 year engagement so my dad could go to grad school -they saw each other once a month. Married 62 years. We had even worse hours often because it was last minute/unpredictable.  For me it was over 15 years from age 28-42-ish (not including grueling grad school before that).  But it has to be with a partner who gets it. 

Sometimes it was a quick dinner on a break at work at the office, other times it was days spent together working side by side (yes i get that chef is different -so is a surgeon, so are many many other awesome careers that are hands on -all sorts of artists, etc).  

I did stop when I became a full time mom -which was a grueling schedule too of course! - but worth it.  You make it work.  He's making it work it's just not enough for her and I suspect it's not enough because she lacks the drive and ambition he has for a dream career. Her drive may be for other things for sure but she doesn't get it.

Edited by Batya33
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Living together will exacerbate any issues you both have together. It may seem like a logical choice but it isn’t. I’d take a step back and reevaluate what you both need out of quality time together because even though you cohabitate you may never see much of each other with your different work schedules. 

You need to continue on with your dreams of being a chef but realize that it has sacrifices. Be true to yourself and end the relationship if she’s not treating you well either.

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The relationship has changed for her...less time with you which she didn't sign up for. You both need to sit down and figure out expectations...a REAL discussion. Possible expectation of more commitment (engagement, etc). Not all the effort should come from you, this should be a partnership and work at it together. 

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