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Still feeling slight irritation over a conflict


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My bf and I have together for about 2 years now, and aside from a few issues here and there, it's been relatively smooth. Whenever we've had issues or disagreements, we've been able to work things out, and the good times we have are really wonderful. 

Over the past week however, I noticed that he's been more distant than usual. There would be moments where he would go quiet or not want to engage in conversation with me despite me trying my best to do so. He would appear as though he was lost in his thoughts or just seemed very closed off.

I noticed this yesterday more than I ever have before when we were out and about. I tried making conversation, but his body language seemed closed off, and he didn't try to continue conversations that I had started (replied with mostly one word answers). He didn't seem interested in anything that we were doing either, and generally seemed annoyed whenever I spoke. As the day went on, this only got worse. At one point, his disinterest turned into noticeable irritation. I thought he might need some time/space to himself, so I stopped talking and gave him that space. Once I did this however, he became even more irritated and even more closed off. By this time, it seemed like he didn't want to be anywhere near me. When I asked him what was wrong, he said that I was the one who was closed off and seemed distant - so I tried conversing with him again with no real success. 

On the walk back home, he stepped aside and broke down crying. He tried to hide it from me but I could see that he was very upset. I didn't say anything because I was so sure that I had done something wrong and was afraid to talk about it with him in that moment. When we got back home, he finally told me everything that was bothering him - apparently I had done several little things over the past two weeks that really bothered him, and I had no idea. He had kept everything bottled up for that long and it then made sense to me why he was so distant. 

Once we spoke, everything was back to normal again. He went back to being warm and affectionate as he normally is. It seems like he felt a lot better after speaking about it, and I felt much better as well in the moment - but today, I'm still feeling resentment over what happened yesterday. All the times he ignored and shut me down, didn't want to talk to me, etc. It was painful and hurtful and I'm finding it difficult to just move past this like nothing ever happened. I initially tried to brush it off, because he did lose a parent recently, and I know he's still processing the grief from that. 

He always tells me that he can't imagine a life without me and that he wants us to get married one day. We actually were planning to get engaged soon, and he said that once that happens, he'll be over the moon. But now I'm not so sure. I can't imagine a life without him either but I'm just feeling extremely sad and worried that this might happen again and I might have this feeling where I'm walking on eggshells. Am I being too sensitive or unreasonable? 

 

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4 minutes ago, primrose322 said:

  he finally told me everything that was bothering him - apparently I had done several little things over the past two weeks that really bothered him. he did lose a parent recently, and I know he's still processing the grief from that. 

Sorry this happened. It seems passive aggressive to stonewall you all day rather than telling you what's up. What exactly was so bothersome to him the last couple of weeks?  Unfortunately it seems like you have some valid concerns about the relationship. Is this the same man:

 

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I was a basket case when I lost my mother. We also lost my father in law that same year. And then I lost my uncle who was like a father to me. I was inconsolable after that and even though it's been several years I still don't feel right.

I don't know if you have ever lost someone close to you but it definitely isn't something you "get over" in a few months.

Please try to be compassionate. He has lost his sense of direction and may likely be like this for a while. If you can't be patient, maybe this isn't the relationship for you. 

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I think you need to be delicate about his feelings since he is grieving AND it's not a free pass to not deal with problems in life. 

I would find a time to talk to him calmly about how you feel and maybe circle it back to his bad feelings about what you did. and that you want both of you to work on talking about things that bother you, needs that aren't met, to avoid shutting each other out etc. 

Don't make it a huge, I'm not sure I can marry someone like you that acts this way.  Let it be a more casual, I love us and for us to be closer and able to share tough things at times is part of it. 

That's a more productive discussion... about solving a problem together. 

Pick a time when you're both relaxed, enjoying yourselves and then ask if he has a few minutes to listen and if this is a good time. 

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8 hours ago, primrose322 said:

Am I being too sensitive or unreasonable? 

In a way yes. Dont think his crying or even his irritation is about you. People who grieve are not really are a good candidates for dating in general. As you cant expect them to be their usual selfs in a moment where they are struck by grief. You would maybe want him to talk more or be more chearful about stuff. But his state of mind just doesnt allow him. He lost a parent. So he is more sensitive now and he would need time to get back to his usual self. Hence why crying or even getting irritated at you for some stuff.

On the other hand I dont condone him "stonewalling" you. I had an ex who did that. When we get out she would get irritated by something(usually very minor stuff), then let me talk for 15-20 minutes like nothing was wrong, then after I noticed that she is colder and not really responding well, she would then go off and make a big deal about it. It was a pain everytime and not a good and productive way of having conversation. But again, given his state of mind, I would cut him some slack.

Is he willing to do grief counseling? It might help him with the feelings he has now.

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