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Crisis mode - but his ultimatim is so shallow!


may55
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Hi everyone,

 

Have not been on the board recently. I got into aserious relationship about 9 months ago. I was really excited to find someone who challenged me and who i was so interested in. It's been great overall, except our communication is often off. He has adult ADD and grew up in such a way that makes him generally self centered in his speaking and actions. He does have a very genrous heart however and when pointed out to him he often modifies his behavior.

 

The problem is that I have been blowing my fuse with him non stop. He went away on travel for quite some time and ever since he's gotten back I've been feeling rejected and neglected by him and this turns into anger. Anyway yesterday he had it. He for the first time blew up at me and boy was he angry! He almost dumped me right there and then.

 

He told me I do not listen to him and that I get so caught up in my own dissatsfaction with him that I end up not listening to him. It is true. I know my behavior needs to change, but my problem is what he asked of me.

 

He told me that he's been asking for certain things in our relationship and I have not been giving him these things. He basically gave me an ultimatum, I give him these things or it is over. The problem I have with this is that these things are rather superficial to me. I was expecting him to ask me to deal better with my anger and instead I get this list! I don't get it!

 

1. Be naked more

2. Not criticize my body ever (he hates it)

3. Get my finances in order (ok this one is valid)

4. Go to sex parties with him

5. Take showers before seeing him so that I am clean (not that I don't take one every day, but he gets obsessed with any type of odor)

6. Use my key to his place (he gave me a set, but I still just ring the bell first)

 

I can give him the above things, that is fine, but it bewilders me that this is his list. It seems so shallow. I dunno.

 

What do I do? I need help not yelling at him so much, but isn't that the problem and not this ultimatim list? Are men just like this? And if i do these things will he feel loved by me? Maybe the same way if he cuddles me in bed I feel loved?

 

I don't get it.

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Thanks for responding so quickly. Yeah I can do all these things for him. The sex parties is just public sex, not sex with other people, so I can do it.

 

OK so these are important to him. I get it. Just seems so shallow. Like if he really loved me he would want other things, not sex related things. How do I get over that? I guess I need some help wrapping my head around it.

 

And yeah he comes accross as very vain and arrgant, but he is very insecure inside about his attractiveness to females.

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If you love him and want to be with him then maybe it is a good thing that what he wants you to do are things you are ok doing.

 

Maybe you only think they are shallow because you can do them and so they don't seem important to you.

 

But how would you feel if he wanted you to do things you could not do and thereforeeee had to break-up with him?

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1,2,3,5 are very narcissisitic type requests. Narcissists tend to have very superficial relationships and the relationships they do have need to revolve almost exclusively around their needs.

 

That may sound extreme but it is a strange list and to me it says narcissism or extreme immaturity. Number 2 is probably the one that makes me lean toward a level of narcissism.

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I took it that #2 was that he doesn't like to hear you criticise your own body - did I get that wrong?

 

Yeah, I tend to focus on my flaws sometimes, I know i am pretty but still I do it. He HATES it, but mainly because he says he'll start seeing my flaws too. Like my not so toned rear. Only thing is that he is not exactly in shape himself.

 

Also, I don't think he is a narcissit per say, he defintely tends to be selfish, but it is more immaturity in relationships. He thinks of others and tries to do nice things for them all the time. Just sometimes he does not think before speaking and sometimes he is a bit misguided.

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I would run, run now, and do not look back. He is trying to see how far he can push your boundaries and how much power he has over you vs. how important your values are to you. Would you treat a friend like this? Why not instead evaluate what you get out of this relationship that is positive and I hope you put this "list" on the "con" side of the balance sheet.

 

My prediction is if you do these things for him - the sex-related, etc he will lose respect for you.

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the sex-related, etc he will lose respect for you.

 

The only sex-related thing seems to be "sex parties" which the Op says is sex in public, a pretty common and mild fetish/fantasy. Why would he lose respect for her if she did something he requested of her (assuming she is OK with doing it)?

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Since you don't have a problem with doing anything on the list.. Why not just do them?

 

Sometimes I have a hard time verbalizing what I mean or what I want. In fact, most of the time I do. Sometimes it is easier for me to write things down. I am one to write letters, especially since my boyfriend has an easier time processing things this way as well...

 

Since your main concern is the list itself and not the items on the list is it possible that for him writing is just easier too? Could you accept this?

 

I agree with you, that the items do seem to be a little bit... shallow. But I've always heard that sex is about 10% unless somebody is not satisfied... Then it becomes 90%. He is telling you what he needs.. Either you accept or you don't and the choice is up to you.

 

Also.. About the ones that weren't sex related.. Same applies.. It's what he needs but it is your choice.

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I would run, run now, and do not look back. He is trying to see how far he can push your boundaries and how much power he has over you vs. how important your values are to you. Would you treat a friend like this? Why not instead evaluate what you get out of this relationship that is positive and I hope you put this "list" on the "con" side of the balance sheet.

 

My prediction is if you do these things for him - the sex-related, etc he will lose respect for you.

 

I get a lot out of this relationship actually. Our main conflict is that he is a late bloomer in relationships with women and he often does and says things that anger me, and rightfully so. He is like a 30 something teenager - and yeah a little narcassitic in his behavior, but not inside his heart. I decided to stay in theis relationshp. And I need to find a better way to respond to him. When my response is constructive he has changed.

 

And I guess this is where I am bewildered. I would think he would be asking for this and instead he feels I never listen to his needs and comes out of left field with these requests. These are his needs?

 

Honestly the sex stuff does not bother me, it's no big deal, I like that stuff and trust me that is not a boundry issue. What my problem was with is his demands on what his needs are. They seem so silly! Do you think he is just grasping for shallow things because the deep stuff is too hard to ask for?

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Maybe there is no deep stuff. Or maybe what is shallow to you is deep for him. Beware of projecting what you think is important onto him - he is his own person.

 

People have a tendency to do that - we think about how we would react or think in a set of circumstances and assume others would feel the same way and are surprised when they don't.

 

He may think any issues you have are equally shallow. But the most important thing is that you take each others issues seriously and don't dismiss them as unimportant.

 

For instance - you may think him wanting you to be naked is just about sex. But for him it may be a deeper thing and have more to do with intimacy than it appears. The fact that you will do that despite the fact you may have issues about your body could be a sign to him that you trust him with things that you are insecure about. And he may not even realise that himself.

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Do you think he is just grasping for shallow things because the deep stuff is too hard to ask for?

 

Could be. That would be the immaturity coming out, not quite confident about really exposing himself that way. probably something you should push a bit if you can because this list could also be camouflage for those deeper issues. And sometimes guys just expect you to be able to see through that and respond to those deeper issues without being told what they are.

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Hmmm "never listen" - that's a pretty drastic statement, particularly after nine months.

 

It sounds like you have accepted his immaturity and narcissism and his justifying poor treatment of you with the "late bloomer" theory. Against that backdrop, this list should be no problem for you - it is consistent with everything you already know about him and that you have accepted up to this point. I would say even if you think his needs are silly, definitely go along with it because his immaturity hasn't bothered you in the past. As is probably obvious from my post I am having a hard time responding because it doesn't sound like a healthy or respectful relationship in any sense of the word but that is precisely why your questions might be better answered just by you - values, standards, self-esteem, what makes you happy - are all such personal things.

 

I will add that although you said you "get a lot" out of this relationship you didn't mention one specific thing. All the specifics you mentioned were the negatives.

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For instance - you may think him wanting you to be naked is just about sex. But for him it may be a deeper thing and have more to do with intimacy than it appears. The fact that you will do that despite the fact you may have issues about your body could be a sign to him that you trust him with things that you are insecure about.

 

DN makes some good points. This is a good example of the potential camouflage I was talking about. Men often have a hard time verbalising their emotional needs and will put it into a practical package that you are supposed to decipher.

 

And he may not even realise that himself.

 

This is also a point well made. Men often know something is not working, not quite right but they don't know what it is. They can't pinpoint it.

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I should add that it is really important that you don't let him know that you think these things are shallow. Because if you do don't expect him to open up about his needs or emotions again. People who have a hard time verbalising their emotions or desires don't need much discouragement to shut up shop permanently.

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I wonder what happens when he starts requesting more. It may seem like innocent things right now, but often times it escalates. Hey! If you have no problem with the stuff and it's not making you uncomfortable, that's fine. But what happens if he starts demanding more and more? Just be careful with this guy!

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Two of those struck me as particularly odd...

 

Sex parties? OMG, I definitely wasn't expecting that after reading the opening paragraphs of your post. The fact that he had to include that on his list of demands per the ultimatum indicates that it was something that you'd previously either refused to do, or had expressed some tentativity or uneasiness in doing. If there is a core value clash there, then you must rid yourself of someone like that now. I personally don't see open, public sex parties as being too far removed from a swinging lifestyle which I find to be terribly sleazy. Any woman requesting, let alone demanding, that I participated in that with her would be kicked to the curb in two seconds flat!

 

And showering before you see him, even though you shower daily anyway? I suppose a 4 hour window between your shower and your date with him is somehow unacceptable. Either one of two things is happening here: 1) you have some rare glandular condition that has you excreting some seriously putrid fluids or 2) he is an obsessive compulsive and probably neurotic to the point of washing hands 100 times a day and demanding the same from those he is intimate with.

 

Strange stuff here, lady. Your choice should be rather obvious. Take care.

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1. Be naked more

2. Not criticize my body ever (he hates it)

3. Get my finances in order (ok this one is valid)

4. Go to sex parties with him

5. Take showers before seeing him so that I am clean (not that I don't take one every day, but he gets obsessed with any type of odor)

6. Use my key to his place (he gave me a set, but I still just ring the bell first)

.

 

Whaaaaaaaaaat? Are you serious? SEX PARTIES? Uh uhhhhhhh. The point of relationships is to be exclusive. So why does he feel your relationship would benefit from attending sex parties?

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