How I interact in group conversations
My boyfriend and I are in a long distance relationship, but everything goes very well. (Except the usual loneliness and missing of course). And I visited him just recently and everything was great for the most part but I could tell there was something wrong. When we visited his sister, I had asked what was wrong and he said nothing was. Then everything seemed fine again, and then on our way back from NYC after visiting some of my sorta friends (don't know them very well, but my family wanted me to see them) it seemed there was something wrong again. So I asked again and finally I got an answer.
He said that while I was at his sisters -- I would be typically talking to her husband and ignoring everyone else. I would ask him questions first before asking his sister. He gave examples and as I think back I realize I really was. It definitely wasn't my intention. My boyfriend continued to say when we were hanging out with his friends, I would be mostly looking at Erin (which I actually disagree with. I felt that I was looking mostly at his girlfriend Nicole who is a much closer friend to my boyfriend.) Then he continued to say (which just recently happened) that when we were visiting my sorta friends that I would be just "staring and talking" to this one guy (I don't even recall his name, he was friends with my friends). His major was in environmental engineering and I am majoring in environmental microbiology so there was a mutual interest in the environment. And before we talked about majors, I was telling about how my boyfriend and I met and are success in a long distance relationship. And my boyfriend is aware of my feelings towards him -- it just makes him uncomfortable how I interact in group discussion.
I definitely agree and feel horrible about how I was typically talking to his sister's husband then to his sister. I don't know really why I did that. He sister is more on the introverted side while her husband is on the extroverted side. But at the same time, I could have asked more questions to his sister to get her talking more. And thinking back, I realize I didn't talk to my bf very much during the conversations either.
... I don't actually have a lot of female friends. I have two best friends that are female, and then everyone else are males. And a lot of the females I have tried befriending turn out to be bitches or not interested in talking so maybe I subconsciously feel more comfortable looking at males? But again thinking back, I am very certain I was looking at Nicole more then Erin but I cannot be sure.
And for the last situation -- I agree I could have been more inclusive. Once I started talking about the environment, I didn't include my boyfriend. It lasted maybe ten minutes and afterwards, I said to my boyfriend that we should probably head out since we had plans in NJ. So I said goodbye to my friends and we headed out...
I don't really know how I appear to him in these conversations... When he was telling me all this I did try to defend myself. I mentioned how when his friend Lez was visiting us, that the two of them were having fun talking about past crazy parties they have been to. I wasn't there and also any party I have been to was with an exbf of mine and it wasn't a positive experience so obviously I wasn't going to mention that (mood killer), but neither of them asked about my party experiences anyway. I did try to contribute to the conversation by asking questions but mostly it was just them two talking. But he defended himself saying that he was looking at me and such, which I don't really remember so I couldn't deny. When Lez and us all were talking--- I was eventually able to change the subject to something we could all talk about and that was better. But I think even then I might have focused more on Lez in the conversation then my bf (but of course my boyfriend doesn't mind that). It seems to be a habit of mine to ignore my boyfriend in new conversations.
I guess I know the solution to my own problem. I just need to make a conscious effort to include my boyfriend in the conversation. And to not single out just one person in a group but talk to everyone. But do any of you have anything to add, suggest, or anything?
You guys are LDR and you value your time together when you get to be together. Your BF is, going by your post, a bit insecure. You have every right to speak with people who share your interests be it career or personal.
If your BF has no interest, then he should be able to stand/sit beside you while you converse with someone and if you touch your BF occasionally while doing so, you will be indicating to other person that there are two of you. Likewise, you are not responsible for your BF's actions when he converses with someone else about a subject which basically leaves you out. It's good manners to look at someone when you speak to them just as it's good manners to include your other half even if it means just hanging onto them to 'include' them.
God forbid if you have to change your habits just to suit your BF, because he should be accepting all of you and this goes both ways.