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Drowning: afraid I'll never trust a man again. Is it me that makes them change?

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I'll try to keep this as short as I can

I've been with my boyfriend for 4 years. We are both in our late 20's. I'm having a a strong feeling that his feelings have either changed or he's up to something sneaky. I notice a change is in behavior towards me but his close friend also passed away 6 months ago. He use to always want to see me, now he could care less. We have and still only see each other On weekends during all 4 years.

Part of this distance/weekend thing is my fault if not all my fault : I was in an abusive marriage before him And my husband commited suicide when I moved out on him. Very shortly after I became involved with my current boyfriend. I had strong feelings towards him but was very afraid of getting hurt again and kept my walls up high And strong. Pretended not to Care as much as I truly did and purposely only wanted to see him on weekends to stop myself from becoming attached to him. I would also
Blow him off sometimes on our dates last minute and would say " let's just go out with our friends and hang after ". We have mutual friends so instead of a date and bonding time I use to prefer all hang in a bar then we'd go home and have sex. I treated myself like an object. Did I want that, NO. Was that me before with my husband- NO. I lost my virginity after we get married. I changed and terrified to be in love again. My current boyfriend chased and chased me. Dealt with my melt downs. I give him a lot of credit. He have bee devoted for a solid three years when I was a mess and scared of trusting him then I started therapy.

I've been seeing a therapist for a year now and she has helped me break my walls down and to learn to be more vulnerable. Now I'm being more open and trying to have more of a relationship. In return - he doesn't seem to care about me as much, doesnt initiate to see me anymore. I'm doing all of the work/ effort. Part of me is afraid he liked when I was the way before and it's heartbreaking to me. I love him and want to be in love with him and want more. Not sure if it's all in my head because im scared of being betrayed eventually and treated like door mat because of the past or if he's really sick of me or grieving a friend

What I love about him :

Sensitive, kind, generous , protective, hilarious - always makes me laugh. Love when im with him

What I don't like:

No ambition, doesn't have a job (plays cards), sleeps all Day and plays all night , doesn't communicate.

Drowning: afraid I'll never trust a man again. Is it me that makes them change?

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What differences do you notice in his behaviour that *couldn't* be attributable to his grief over his good friend's passing? Or are you mainly noticing the lack of progress/promotion when compared to the 'new' tenure, despite the relationship is still getting maintained as ever in terms of the basics?

And do you think your prior behaviour has now 'come home to roost' in terms of your ephiphany being too little too late, now that he's been forced by the shock of his friend's death to get real and stay real, i.e. made to take stock and sit back dissatisfied and finally demoralised? Or do you think he was equally as commitment-shy but showed it in a different way, i.e., was happy enough to be CHASING a relationship with you because chasing after something means you don't yet have it ergo don't have to start building on it?

Surely, then, the solution is obvious: to cease chasing/doing all the work and see whether that makes a difference and, if so, what that must mean in terms of the bigger picture and, from there, what to do about it? For example, could he, from lacking upward routes in other arenas, including the work one, have been trying to compensate by taking on a huge challenge in the romantic arena (you)?...which challenge has now lost its allure because you're suddenly like the gazelle who walks up to the lion and says, 'Eat me'?

Men love challenge. And a man who feels like a giant failure from having so far failed at his career/in the job market AND his prior relationship, has that much more he feels he needs to prove - to himself and to others (i.e. through others). No challenge = no point in continuing to chase.

You could start 'running away' again in order to trigger him back into the chase, I'm sure. But what good is an aeroplane that, despite its acceleration up the runway, might never actually take off? Isn't that less a flight and more just a ride?

Again, isn't that 'love of the perpetual chase' of his the exact same etiology as your own past 'affliction', just expressed/symptomatised differently?

Are you prepared to accept that, possibly, you and he were never meant to be each other's final destinations, just mutual stepping stones on the way to it or the penultimate step, and take heart in that giant positive?

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