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DazeGypsy
09-16-2013, 01:00 PM
Last night my boyfriend and I were talking about our relationship... this is something that doesn't come particularly easy for either of us. So these conversations are always awkward. We have been together 14 months. We don't live together. We actually live an hour away from each other and only see each other on the weekends.

This whole conversation started because people we know keep asking us why we haven't made plans to move in together. Right now living apart works well for us. I admit that sometimes I wish we lived together, but at times I'm also glad we don't. I have been thinking about moving to his city though, not just to be closer to him, but also for better job opportunities, etc. I have a few good friends who live there, and pretty much all my friends in this town have moved away, so I don't have much of a support system here anymore. We were talking about that last night too.

He told me it would be a big step just moving closer to each other.

I told him it's so hard to tell where I stand with him exactly, because he is so hard to read and emotionally guarded. He doesn't express himself at all. He told me he feels bad about keeping me in limbo.

I told him I loved him nine months in, he still has never said it back. For a while his big thing was "I was with my ex for three years and only told her I loved her like three times, and the first time was after over a year together." I could accept that. He just doesn't like saying it, fine.

But now that we've been together over a year and he still hasn't said it I have started to wonder.

But, we are really happy together. This is honestly the best relationship I've ever been in. I've been cheated on a lot, and controlled a lot. I've been dumped for other people a couple times... my history is awful. It's just been one heartache after another. Now I have someone who treats me like I want to be treated. Our sex life is great, we make each other laugh, we have a lot in common, etc.

So basically, last night I just decided to ask the question outright. "DO you love me?" I was pretty confident in a yes. Because I really thought he did and just didn't like saying it. HIs answer: "I don't know."

I keep trying to tell myself actions speak louder then words, and he certainly acts like a man in love. But I am honestly devastated that after over a year together he still doesn't know.

He went on to tell me that when him and his ex broke up he wasn't even that heartbroken about it, so after losing her he wondered if he ever even loved her in the first place. So now he said he has a "complex" about telling me he loves me and wants to be sure without a doubt before he says it. Ok... so I'm supposed to just hang around in limbo until he decides?

I am not sure what to do here. This is such a good relationship, and I don't want to end it over something as trivial as words. But at the same time I don't feel like it's fair to me to stay in it and wait around either.

Last night I started crying right in front of him after he told me this... He hugged me tight and comforted me. We laid on my bed and cuddled. He told me that he likes things between us and wants this to continue, which I can agree with. But at the same time it's so hard loving someone who doesn't even know if he loves me back.

I have no idea what to do... am I making too big a deal about it? I had a hard time sleeping last night over this... Now he is in my bed sleeping and I am out here typing this and crying my eyes out. This suck...


MauiKai
09-16-2013, 01:15 PM
No, you are NOT making too big a deal of this.

This man is emotionally unavailable, and will likely always be that way. Is that the life you want?

I can't tell you what to do, but if it were me I am 100% confident in what I would do. I would walk away. He sounds like a great friend, and a terrible SO. I would say I'm sorry, but I cannot waste my life on a maybe, I deserve so much more than that. I am worth more than "I don't know," more than "lets wait and see."

Honey, after a year if he can't say he loves you, he either doesn't love you, or can't love you. (Maybe he just can't love anyone.)

ETA: Also, since you mention that you have a weak support system, PLEASE do not fall into the idea that "having him is better than having no one." That is not true. And do not let yourself believe (like so many of us who are overweight do) that it'll be difficult or impossible to find a new love. You have value, and you are a prize. Seriously, read and reread that last sentence. You are a prize. There is a man out there who WILL love you, and will get up everyday thinking about how lucky he is to have you to love. Don't give that up for the luke warm uncommitted relationship you have now. It's not worth it.

DazeGypsy
09-16-2013, 02:15 PM
I wish I wouldn't have even asked the question... I only did because because based on how he acts and the time we've been together I was sure he would tell me yes, not I don't know.


MauiKai
09-16-2013, 02:22 PM
No, you did the right thing, only you waited too long to do it IMO. Now you know. "I don't know" is as good as "No."

Clearly he enjoys your company and you make good friends. He's not a bad person. He's just not relationship material. You've given this guy more than a year of your life. You've made your stand, you've put your all into building a relationship. It's not working. This is hurting you, as it would hurt most people. Life is so, so short. Do not waste more time on someone who can't love you the way you deserve. There really is someone out there looking for you right now, who will love you fully and in the way you deserve to be loved.

vintagecat
09-16-2013, 03:03 PM
Clearly he enjoys your company and you make good friends. He's not a bad person. He's just not relationship material. You've given this guy more than a year of your life. You've made your stand, you've put your all into building a relationship. It's not working. This is hurting you, as it would hurt most people. Life is so, so short. Do not waste more time on someone who can't love you the way you deserve. There really is someone out there looking for you right now, who will love you fully and in the way you deserve to be loved.

Truer words were never spoken. I've kissed a lot of frogs, even a few frogs that looked like princes over the years. When you find your prince, you will not have to ask if he loves you. I'm really sorry about your situation. No one here can tell you what to do. You will have to ask yourself whether what you have now is enough. I don't see things changing for you. If it's not enough, moving on sooner rather than later is a wise but scary choice. Hugs.

DazeGypsy
09-16-2013, 04:14 PM
In two weeks we are taking a trip out of state to a mutual friend's wedding. I'm thinking of telling him I want to take a break after that. Maybe some time apart might do us good... idk.

SarainMN
09-16-2013, 04:27 PM
on one hand he's being honest...would you rather have him say "I love you" and not really
on the other hand its been over a year and how long are you going to wait for that next step
just make sure if you move to HIS city you aren't just moving for him, because if you broke up you'd be stuck
its a toughy (((Hug)))

Munchy
09-16-2013, 04:33 PM
There is a lot of good advice here. I'm so sorry that happened. :hug:

MauiKai
09-16-2013, 04:47 PM
In two weeks we are taking a trip out of state to a mutual friend's wedding. I'm thinking of telling him I want to take a break after that. Maybe some time apart might do us good... idk.

That sounds an awful lot like pulling off the bandage slowly, but if that is what you need to do, then do it. The important thing is that you understand that there IS a better relationship out there for you, with someone who won't withhold love. You get to decide how long you wait to start down that path, no one else.

belovedspirit
09-16-2013, 06:20 PM
:hug:

EagleRiverDee
09-16-2013, 06:25 PM
I have no advice. I can give you two anecdotes.

Before I met my DH, I dated a guy for a year and a half. Our relationship felt perfect to me- we had tons in common, had lots of fun together, the bedroom scene was great, he had two kids I adored. I was in love with him. But- he told me up front he wasn't going to fall in love because he was military and would be going for training that would last over a year. I just assumed he was being cautious, and continued on with the relationship. Well, long story short, he never did fall in love. I won't say I wasted my time with him, because the relationship was valuable in other ways- I learned a lot- but it wasn't headed towards the white picket fence like I thought.

A friend of mine after her divorce started dating a guy that also told her he could not fall in love. Not would not, but could not. My red-flat-o-meter went into the danger zone, because it reminded me so much of what had happened to me with the aforementioned guy. Long story short, she dated the guy for 3 years. He never told her he loved her, and in the end he dropped her almost overnight because "he wasn't in a good place for a relationship".

Now you don't say that your BF ever said he couldn't or wouldn't fall in love. But it might not be a bad idea to ask him where he sees this going. And then LISTEN to him. I think guys are more honest than a lot of women assume. If I had simply listened to the guy that told me he would not fall in love, then I wouldn't have been so broken hearted when he didn't. And if my friend had only listened, she too would have saved herself a broken heart.

MauiKai
09-16-2013, 07:17 PM
But it might not be a bad idea to ask him where he sees this going. And then LISTEN to him. I think guys are more honest than a lot of women assume. If I had simply listened to the guy that told me he would not fall in love, then I wouldn't have been so broken hearted when he didn't. And if my friend had only listened, she too would have saved herself a broken heart.

This is a good idea, and I'll add that you should remain calm and avoid tears because men will sometimes panic and start to lie when confronted with tears. They don't know how to handle it.

Mazzy
09-16-2013, 07:29 PM
Know yourself. Listen to yourself. Carefully. If you have to ask him the question, then you must already know the answer - even if you say you thought the answer was yes. You simply wanted to be wrong.

But you were right. Deep down, you're brilliant for knowing. Your radar was strong.

Personally, I want a man to be gaga over me. I want him to get excited to call me. I want him to drop everything to plan our time together. I AM worth that much. The sad thing is I never knew it until my husband had to show me. What a waste of so many years, not to mention embarrassment and shame, and a loss of friends as a result.

Take a good look at you. This isn't just about your relationship with him. It's a lot more about your relationship with you.

doingmybest
09-16-2013, 07:42 PM
I dated a guy like that. He wanted to go out with me but he kept himself emotionally at arms length. I paid close attention to the cues he was sending me and did not get emotionally or physically involved. I suspected that he was stringing me along until someone better was available for him. I was right.

After I broke up with him, I found out that he was seeing a few other
women at the same time. The next guy I dated turned out to be my DH. The way my DH treated me was 100% better. He and I absolutely connected. There was no game playing or holding back.

The first guy was "just not that into me". My DH is.

You deserve better and when you find it, you will know it.

I know this is hard so I am sending you big hugs. :hug:

Skittlez
09-16-2013, 08:03 PM
I agree with what everyone else has said. If a man loves you, you don't have to ask. And someone acting like they care about you is NOT the same as loving you. I had to beat my husband back with a stick when we first started dating. He was saying he loved me way before I was even ready to say it (it was only a few months in and I wanted to be a bit cautious, he's not the cautious type lol). You deserve a man who really loves you, who knows that he wants you, and that you don't have to wait years for him to decide how he feels about you (and to tell you about it!).

DazeGypsy
09-16-2013, 08:54 PM
I forgot to mention one thing he said last night that under the circumstances seemed a bit odd. I told him I'm afraid of losing him, and that I'm worried sometimes that I will scare him away. He said, "you haven't scared me away yet, so you're not going to.' So, here he is making it sound like he's so in this for the long hall... but doesn't know if he loves me or not? The ex who he also was unsure of if he loved her was his first serious girlfriend, and he considered proposing to her. Idk... having only been in two relationships yes he's inexperienced, but that's no an excuse in my opinion. And two weeks from now we are supposed to take this trip together... I have to go, I'm in the wedding. I'm not really sure how to handle that either...

AwShucks
09-16-2013, 09:52 PM
Wow! You've been given some really good advice here. Who needs counselors when you have 3fatchicks! :)

My best girlfriend told me something in college that I've never forgotten. "If it walks like a duck and talks like a duck, it's a duck. People will tell you who they are if you listen." I hate to be blunt, but this guy doesn't love you. He enjoys your company, the sex, etc. But, he doesn't love you, and he told you so.

If LOVE is important to you, then you should move on. I don't know how old you are, but life is too short to give all of your love and time to someone who doesn't love you back.

There's some good advice here. Read through it again, and do some heart searching. I think you know what to do.

PS If you break up before the wedding, you'll be all dressed up and on display and SINGLE -- give him an eyeful of what he missed out on!

MauiKai
09-16-2013, 10:18 PM
I forgot to mention one thing he said last night that under the circumstances seemed a bit odd. I told him I'm afraid of losing him, and that I'm worried sometimes that I will scare him away. He said, "you haven't scared me away yet, so you're not going to.' So, here he is making it sound like he's so in this for the long hall... but doesn't know if he loves me or not?

Now you're grasping at straws. No, this does not sound like he's in it for the long haul. This sound properly non-committal, and like an attempt to soothe you enough to get you to stop thinking about how the relationship isn't a good one.

AwShucks
09-16-2013, 10:28 PM
Amen, MauiKai. You've given some great advice here. Do you have sisters and daughters? I hope so, because they have a wonderful resource at hand! I'm going to remember that you're so savvy about relationships -- just for future reference! ;)

MauiKai
09-16-2013, 10:45 PM
Amen, MauiKai. You've given some great advice here. Do you have sisters and daughters? I hope so, because they have a wonderful resource at hand! I'm going to remember that you're so savvy about relationships -- just for future reference! ;)

Ha, then perhaps I should start my own advice column "Dear Maui" :dizzy:

DazeGypsy
09-16-2013, 11:05 PM
I wasn't trying to grasp for straws. I wasn't clinging to that comment for assurance. I just thought it was a weird thing to say in that context.

MauiKai
09-16-2013, 11:21 PM
I wasn't trying to grasp for straws. I wasn't clinging to that comment for assurance. I just thought it was a weird thing to say in that context.

Honestly, I think it was just a stop loss. Men often use these vague one liners to avoid a deeper/more unpleasant/emotional event from occurring. I just mean for you to understand that it doesn't necessarily mean he's thinking long term. I'd hate to see you use this as "hope" only to have him say to you, like he did the last girl, that after it was all over he "didn't really feel anything" after all.

AwShucks
09-16-2013, 11:30 PM
I forgot to mention one thing he said last night that under the circumstances seemed a bit odd. I told him I'm afraid of losing him, and that I'm worried sometimes that I will scare him away. He said, "you haven't scared me away yet, so you're not going to.' So, here he is making it sound like he's so in this for the long hall... but doesn't know if he loves me or not? The ex who he also was unsure of if he loved her was his first serious girlfriend, and he considered proposing to her. Idk... having only been in two relationships yes he's inexperienced, but that's no an excuse in my opinion. And two weeks from now we are supposed to take this trip together... I have to go, I'm in the wedding. I'm not really sure how to handle that either...

This sounds to me like he's afraid of losing you -- that he might scare you off. So, he told you what he thought you wanted to hear...that he's not scared, that he's not going anywhere. I think he meant to reassure you because he could feel that you might be the one getting scared.

Also, why would you think you'd scare him off? That you'd love him too much? I don't think you could love someone who loved you back too much.

Sleep on this. You really need some emotional distance from how you're feeling right now to see this clearly. Of course, only you know the real situation, but from what you have said, I know I wouldn't be happy in this relationship.

patns
09-16-2013, 11:56 PM
You could do as you mentioned earlier. Go on the trip for the wedding and if things still seem to be the same tell him you need time apart so you both can decide if this is what you want long term.

MauiKai
09-17-2013, 12:20 AM
You could do as you mentioned earlier. Go on the trip for the wedding and if things still seem to be the same tell him you need time apart so you both can decide if this is what you want long term.

At this point, probably the best option. If he does, by some chance, actually love you, losing you for awhile might kick him in the pants to do something about it.

DazeGypsy
09-17-2013, 02:21 PM
So... last night as soon as I got home I called him on Skype. I really wish this conversation could have been face to face, but I had to make due with what was available.

I had all day at work to think about this... (it sucks having a "thinking job" sometimes. But it gave me all this time to process things...

I gave him fair warning also, I texted him about an hour before I got home and asked if we could skype later. He told me that would be fine, and I told him I was digesting a lot of what he said the night before and we had to talk.

So... this conversation lasted about 4 hours. A lot of tears were shed on both sides. I started out by telling him I feel hurt and angry and scared and confused over the fact that after over a year together he still doesn't know if he loves me or not. I said that puts me in a really unfair place and makes me feel like I've just been used and strung along for the last year and two months. I said if all he wanted was a f buddy he could have just said that in the beginning and we could have just been that. I said I feel like all I am to him is a weekend activity partner and a f buddy. And I finished by saying all day long I've been considering breaking up with him. (All this was true.)

There was a long awkward silence after that. I kind of expected that... I mean, I had all day to rehearse what I was going to say, he had no real time to prepare.

He finally told me he was scared. I asked him what of. He said he was scared of breaking up, and scared of hurting me any more then he already has, but mostly scared of telling me how he really feels about me because once he told his ex how he felt about her the relationship pretty much went sour after that. He said it was like once she knew he was in love with her she knew she could pretty much get away with anything, so she just started treating him like crap and he just took it, until she finally dumped him to sleep with someone else.

This was a little bit relieving... but it also made me pretty mad too. Why should I be punished for what his ex did to him? I shouldn't, and I told him that. He worshiped the ground she walked on, he was even considering proposing to her, and she treated him really bad. I would never treat him that way, but I'm the one suffering over what she did to him. That pisses me off.

He always talks about how he is so good at empathizing with other people and seeing things from the other perspective. Last night I told him he should use some of those empathy skills and try seeing this from my perspective. I used the analogy of my cheating ex. I asked him how he would feel if I constantly accused him of cheating on me and my only reason was "Well, my ex did, so you will too."

He started crying... he told me that looking at it from my perspective he would be devastated and he is mad at himself for doing this to me.

He said he doesn't want to end the relationship, but he also doesn't want to hurt me anymore because the thought of me being in pain is "gut wrenching" and he can't handle that.

So... in the end, we decided we are going to try to work things out. It seems to me like he may really love me and is just afraid of saying it because he doesn't want to jinx things. I don't know... I am still pretty shaken up and have been crying a lot today. I didn't really sleep well last night either.

So, that's what happened...

MauiKai
09-17-2013, 03:42 PM
I really hope it works out for you both. I sincerely hope he makes some big changes so that you get the treatment you deserve.

EagleRiverDee
09-17-2013, 04:18 PM
I forgot to mention one thing he said last night that under the circumstances seemed a bit odd. I told him I'm afraid of losing him, and that I'm worried sometimes that I will scare him away. He said, "you haven't scared me away yet, so you're not going to.' So, here he is making it sound like he's so in this for the long hall... but doesn't know if he loves me or not?

That doesn't mean he's in this for the long haul. If he doesn't love you, then he's not in it for the long haul. And if he loved you, he'd know it. When someone says they don't know if they love you, it means they don't but don't want to sound mean. This is just his way of saying if he leaves it will be on his own terms and for his own reasons and not just because you cried or something.

Mazzy
09-18-2013, 04:28 PM
DazeGypsy...I really hope it works out for you.

I have to be honest - my radar is going off even more at this point, after your conversation with him. Take care of yourself. Focus on yourself and trust yourself.

What would happen if you decided to take a break from him for a while so that he could sort through his feelings alone? The time away could help him see you through a distant lens and help him to realize what he really wants. Only fear could keep you both from trying this option, and fear should not be the motivating factor in keeping a relationship together.

Just my 2 cents. Hope you both work everything out. :-)

vintagecat
09-18-2013, 05:06 PM
I have to be honest - my radar is going off even more at this point, after your conversation with him. Take care of yourself. Focus on yourself and trust yourself.

Yes, mine is too, but to be fair we weren't there either. Gypsy, that last sentence is key. Trust yourself. If at any time you are not getting what you need in your relationship, be sure to ask for it and be ready to move on or be able to live with it if it looks like he can't or won't deliver. Best of luck to you. Hugs.

MauiKai
09-18-2013, 05:14 PM
DazeGypsy...I really hope it works out for you.

I have to be honest - my radar is going off even more at this point, after your conversation with him.

I have to be honest - my radar is going off even more at this point, after your conversation with him. Take care of yourself. Focus on yourself and trust yourself.

Yes, mine is too, but to be fair we weren't there either.

Agreed. Hoping things end up happy though.

ShyHeather
09-18-2013, 05:32 PM
:hug:

A lot of good advice here, and it really makes me sad to read your post. I saw a red flag in your post, and I think part of him is still confused about his emotions over his ex, and he is so comfortable with things being stalled. He wants a relationship, but doesn't. If that makes sense?? He likes the idea of you, and him together, but there is no 'zing' no sense of, 'I don't know what I would do if I lost you.' type zing. :hug:

Good luck on getting to the point of taking a break. I think that could be best so that he can spend a while thinking about the relationship, and his feelings. If he loves you and wants you to be a permanent part of his life, then he will chase after you and declare his feelings. If not, there are other men out there who are ready for a good, loving relationship.