Boyfriend feeling down and has since been very distant
Hi everyone! this is my first post in this forum...
I've been with my boyfriend for over 3 years now. We are both 23. He lives in London and I'm 2 hours away so we only see each other every other weekend.
It's been a very rocky road, we broke up twice for 6 months. In June this year, he decided to get back with me. He was very sincere about it and apologised for all his faults in the past. It was all nice for the first 3 months we got back together, but I was really hurt from the past and everything he done before, and I started getting anxious and putting all past blames on him.(it was both of our faults so i should have taken responsibility as well) He handled it really well and was patient with me despite how crazy I got some times.
I gradually got over most things from the past, but three weeks ago he flipped out and said he couldn't take it anymore. He told me that I have made him feel like a horrible person, which I do understand and shouldn't have done.
He wanted to break up with me again because he couldn't take any more questioning or blaming. I had to beg and convince him to stay (bad idea i know), but he did in the end. And since then I have changed and stopped the questions and blames.
At the same time, he has been looking for a job for months now and hasn't found one. I know he feels very frustrated about that, and not having much money. His life hasn't been going right for him recently.
(he did partly blame me for not having a job because our arguments lasted hours and hours and he had to be there for me)
It has been 3 weeks since he flipped out on me, and since then he hasn't been attentive/loving/caring as he was before. I understand his circumstances but it has been really hard for me. Everyday is a battle for me to be patient and optimistic about our relationship.
I call him sometimes to see how he's doing, he still tells me he loves me, but he is very down about not having a job. These days he doesn't usually contact me unless i reach out.
We met up last weekend and he did tell me that he does want to be with me. So i do hope that he isn't unsure about our relationship.
I'm giving him alot of space right now, as I do understand that he prefers to deal with his problems himself. But it kills me inside because I don't know what is going to happen.
Should I just be patient and hope that when he gets a job things will fall into place? Or has our relationship run its course?
I feel so depressed and anxious everyday but I do try and focus on myself instead of thinking about this too much.
Thanks for reading!
Sorry to hear that you are going through so much trouble. Long distance can be hard but fortunately you two are not too far from another. I could understand why he's so stressed out about not having a job. Money is not everything but it does bring comfort. You should evaluate how much this relationship means to you. Does these relationship troubles affect your daily life? Is him being sad, also making you sad? Does he still make you happy? Do you still look forward to seeing him and vice versa? It's true that relationships will always have their ups and downs but the most important thing is still being able to be happy in it. Good luck, I hope everything works out
Why only every OTHER weekend? What is he doing on those alternate weekends?
Apologising for all his faults and blaming them on the past discord isn't the same as he and you sorting out why certain things happened, is it. Albeit in a positive fashion, it's just brushing things under the rug. For that reason, I'm not SURPRISED you weren't able to move on from it. And I'm also assuming he was the one who called things off, hence now you're left with that mound under the rug that keeps tripping you up AND a huge dent in your ability to trust he won't call it off a third time. So of COURSE HE can be 'fine with it'; he's not the one in YOUR shoes, is he!
To be fine about carrying on without you in his life for 6 months, I'm afraid, says a lot. Most of it worrying. Most couples in love wouldn't be able to manage 6 WEEKS. How does THAT work, then? And what about you back then? Did YOU manage happily enough all that time as well or were you struggling throughout it?
No, HE'S made him feel like a horrible person. Or rather, he's made YOU make him feel that way. Because of said loose ends/burying and ignoring. So what more evidence does he NEED about what gets buried being destined only to re-surface (and possibly bigger) at some later date?
He probably hasn't had time to join those two dots. So if I were you, I'd forget 'giving space' and lovingly, considerately suggest a couple of weeks' total, no-contact separation to give him time to think and get his working life in order (which will no doubt lift his spirits). If not, and he's not contacting you, don't be the one to chase him or you'll set a bad habit as well as draw a comparison whereby he'll get the inkling that you, not want but NEED this relationship far more than he does and, what with him lacking a sense of power/success right now, might (subconsciously) start abusing that power in order to feed his flailing ego.
"as I do understand that he prefers to deal with his problems himself."
TOUGH! He's now in a relationship which means he's a TEAM MATE. There's no I in team-mate. His problems are your problems/Your problems are his problems... because you're sharing lives and, predominantly, emotional states. Ain't rocket science.
It's impossible to tell whether he's moreover pee-ed off due to the lack of job and taking it out on the relationship, or whether vice versa or a combo, whilst the two deficits are running concurrently. It'd be like trying to work out if you had an allergy to a certain foodstuff whilst you were insisting on nightly applying some new skin cream. One of each would have to be cut out in-turn for a decent enough period to know which was the cause.. in which case, you're doing the (nearly) right thing in giving him (some) space, but need to make it a proper break-ette. As long as he doesn't see that space-giving as cause for worry or suspicion, which means you explaining all the sensible, future-heeding/-protecting reasons for why it's going to be happening, in positive, reassuring terms, it should give him the proper chance he needs to relax and 'regroup'.
I suggest 3-6 weeks. That's plenty of time to concentrate on throwing out a good number of job applications.
Thank you so much for your replies.
I've considered breaking it off completely but then part of me does not believe in leaving someone at their worst.
SOULMATE: You're right, i do have a huge dent in my ability to trust that he won't break up with me for the third time. And thank you for your suggestion, it's what I've started doing since the last couple of days.
Oh, I see, you're just CALLING it 'giving you some space' but really are creating distance and giving him (and yourself) a chance to adapt (and him get a new job) before cutting the cord completely?
Fairenoughski. I mean, it's not exactly honest, but then... what with the way he's been behaving, it's not like he deserves transparency, is it.
Oh, what a tangled web he's woven...
Your soulmate (or better/best grade of soulmate), whereby the chemistry is super-strong *AND* you both behave yourselves and work well together - which for all you know is the very next bloke - won't do that kind of head-**ck to you (which actually is just insecurity waving hello). Maybe call the whole relationship off the ONCE - as a knee-jerk mistake in the heat or immediate aftermath of a humdinger argument - but... "Fool me once, shame on you; fool me TWICE, shame on ME":
Twice or more is not only unnecessarily cruel, but a symptom, when, as I say, the whole POINT when you and a partner are right together, to the extent of 'destined', is that you CAN'T cope with being separated from one another for weeks on-end. Only if you have to, i.e. circumstances beyond either of your control. And even then you tend to writhe around in agony, the pair of you. Hence neither of you DARE do it wantonly-deliberately. Because it's not just playing with fire, it's playing with your very destiny and one, true shot at future happiness.
And that includes not avoiding being called to account by basically running off every time, and nor avoiding putting any problems to proper rest... actually killing them, rather than burying them alive only to see them digging their way out X months later. Problems are 'der enemy', you don't- you CAN'T allow them to stick around, presenting an ongoing threat. So you don't.
But apparently your 'boyfriend' does. So either HE'S that simple *or*..*or-or-OR!*... he's happy not to kill problems because he doesn't intend to be around for long enough for them TO keep re-surfacing and bothering you both. By which I mean this: you're GOOD (for him).. but he thinks he can do even better....maybe find someone out there with everything you've got but (one example) lives nearer(?)... hence he breaks it off and immediately starts trying to sample other potential replacements (via the web, no doubt). That little expedition proves fruitless... and so back he comes, begging or readily letting your own begging work, perfectly (and strangely) willing to just say, 'Yeah, it was all me, don't fret about it, forget it, there IS no actual problem', etcetera...all the while KNOWING that the minute he gets some further promising candidate cropping up all over again - BAM! - he finds some OTHER, NEW, tenuous reason (e.g. 'I *could* hack it but now suddenly I can't') why he has to end the relationship..................and repeat.
In short, he WAS your boyfriend. But then he secretly decided you weren't his long-term cup of tea (or you were and he's just a giant commitmentphobe)... since which, you've been being used as a stop-gap safety-net. And I say that because this sort of on-off pattern/set of patterns is a very common, highly characteristic one.
Some people choose long-distance because they don't have a choice / you can't choose who you fall in love with. Some, on the other hand, see it as a convenient way to stop their round-objects turning Blue and, meanwhile, keep you enough at arm's length to allow them to keep trawling, completely behind your back and out of your awareness zone.
Twice for 6 long months.
These days he doesn't usually contact me unless i reach out. (No. Because he's so incredibly busy with his oh-so-full life, isn't he - selling all those stocks and shares, etc. - pfff!)
He 'can't take it any more' - the result of the mess he himself caused! - because it's not worth his while. 'Handle it', as in manage it - yes. DEAL with it once-and-for-all - NO. Only 'rest of my days' makes that amount of work feel like worth their while.
Things are NOT your fault too or you 'going crazy' if all you're doing is basically going, 'Owwwww, it still huuuurts', because the person with the tweezers not only refuses to remove the latest thorns that they themselves put in your side despite - shock-horror - it still hurts, but actually pushes those thorns in DEEPER.
Got it now, Little Miss Far-Too-Nice? You SURE-sure-sure you want to say a long, drawn-out goodbye instead of cut that cord in-one?
Sorry. :-( I could be wrong....... but not usually. The good news on that score, however, is, if you finish it with him and MEAN IT, whereby he can TELL you do, that might be the huge kick up the jacksie he (possibly solely and merely) needs.... make him grow up a bit. If not, you've lost nothing as well as found out just how little you and this relationship nearly all along meant to him. (Actions!) ... in which case you're free and available, and what's more - MENTALLY available - for spotting that gorgeous hunk giving you the eye, rather than you looking like a wet weekend with eyes turned inwards, inspecting and trying to solve the mystery of why you and he have for too long been going nowhere but round in circles.