Widowed and dating
Boy is dating new to me. I'm 56 years old. Been married twice. First marriage to my high school sweetheart ended in divorce because he cheated. My second husband, who I had know for years before dating him, passed away after a long illness. Both were over 17 year relationships.
Boyfriend and I are both happy living alone. Not looking to move in together. Because he always tells and shows me he loves me it hit me that I need to be more caring and reciprocate. So when in a quiet moment I told him "you know some days when we haven't seen each other I feel like part of me is missing." He jumped all over me and said "you are an independent woman don't say that!". I didn't get what he meant, he told me he previously had trouble with commitment, he likes his alone time and likes dating me because I feel the same way. He realized I was getting quiet. I was only saying that I miss him when we are apart. He started saying things to soften the blow. He even called after I got home to make small talk. He knew I was hurt.
What the hell was that all about? Did he think my comment meant I wanted more? All I know is that his comments hurt my feelings. It wasn't what he said it was how he said it. A pleasant, thanks I miss you sometimes too would have been sufficient don't you think? Then he texted me the other day to go ahead with my girlfriend and go to dinner he was bowing out and to have a nice girls day out. We had dinner I went to her place then came home to finish a project and before I could call or text him before going to bed he texted, wanting to know if I was mad at him because I hadn't called or texted him. I'm confused I thought he liked his alone time. I thought based on his comment he didn't expect to be interacting with me that night.
Where is the middle ground here. Does he or does he not want daily interaction. What the hell does "alone time" mean to him. Do I come right out and ask him or let things seek their own level and not over react? He told me the next day he really thought I was angry and maybe dumping him. I told him he would surely know if I was and it wouldn't be by text. I've told him many times that it takes a lot to get me angry. I reminded him he told me to have a nice girls day out. Hmmmmmmmm
Then after an outing with my grandson and his nephews. I had to bring grandson home. Boyfriend insisted I take his truck. While out I saw he needed gas. I put some in it. When I got back and before I left I told him I had put gas in it. Holy crap....you would have thought I killed someone. He was very upset that I had done that. He yelled "don't you ever do that" while pointing a finger at me. A thank you would have been enough! Again he hurt my feelings with the way he said it. I told him it's what you do in a relationship, within a family. You reciprocate.
Is this some kind of macho bull crap? Am I not supposed to be upset? I can't tell him how I feel? I can't do my share without being yelled at?
When his cousins wife died he had no problem when I offered for all of us including his parents to take my new 2015 SUV on a six hour round trip to the services, and we did. It was full of gas when we left and he put some back in it before we got home. I didn't go all crazy when he put gas in it. Then yesterday when he called in the morning he insisted we drive his truck an hour away so I could pick up an order. I offered to put gas in his truck and he again refused telling me he told his mom about the gas thing and she agreed that I shouldn't feel I have to do that. His truck uses a hell of a lot more gas than my SUV. They all know I'm comfortable financially. So it's not that they think I can't afford to do my share. He also made a comment one day a while back saying "you always want to be in control don't you". His tone was not sarcastic or mean. My reply was, "well yea, doesn't everyone want control of their life?"
Input would be appreciated. He was only married a brief time over twenty years ago and only had one other long term relationship. Is he feeling things out for fear of getting too close? He has no problem doing dinner together most nights. Either at his place or mine or eating out. He is usually point blank when he says things. This anger over me pitching in and helping out is weird as is telling me to have a great day with my friend and then being afraid I was angry at him when we I didn't contact him. Wow, I'm confused. This is a pretty solid relationship, after a few months we are at a point that it seems no time has elapsed since we were kids. We have talked about that and how we need to never take each other for granted. So these may only be bumps in the road I suppose. I just don't want to screw this up by doing something wrong.
Yeah, people who have to walk on eggshells usually DO "screw things up" because it's so darn hard navigating around, isn't it?
Look, this guy talks out of both sides of his mouth. First, it's "Dont' tell me you miss me because I want you to be independent and not rely on me," THEN it's "Don't put gas in my car because that emasculates me and I want you to depend on me all the time."
What's a gal supposed to do?
1) Laugh it off and tell him to lighten up, knowing that you, too, will have to lighten things up, since intimacy and commitment clearly threaten him.
2) Let this Rhett Butler tell you what and where and how things are going to be run. (Batt your eyelashes and carry a fan for this role.)
3) Drop him 'cause he's too hard to figure out and those eggshells tend to shred your feet after a while.
Good luck. At 56, do you REALLY want to spend your time in a state of confusion?