Author Topic: 7 year relationship. No sexual desire. She wants to get married. Any Counselors?  (Read 31639 times)

Mmm_Donuts

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I've been reading and lurking so far on this thread. OP I am in my 40s and if I went through something very similar in my 20s -- a long term relationship with someone with whom I was good friends but incompatible for many reasons. We too were severely codependent since we had only known what we had with each other, and it seemed pretty good overall, and we were scared of what might happen if we broke up. We stayed together for way too long and the breakup was hard, but now 20 years later I'm married to someone who I AM 100% excited to be spending my life with. We never had that sort of struggle. When we met, we had similar goals, there was a huge spark, and now we're best friends and I'm still excited to see him every day. I have learned that if there's a struggle to be together, then the relationship isn't meant to be. Thank god I am not with that person from my 20s -- looking back now, we were extremely bad for one another. It would have made my life miserable to have given in to the fear of that breakup, stuck in complacency of it just being OK, because I was used to it, comfortable with a constant struggle that went along with what I thought was love at the time.

Just do it. You are sexually incompatible and you both want different things. Why drag this painful breakup out any longer? Do HER a favour and end the relationship. You will be looking back at this one day wondering why it took you so long. She will be thankful that she has time to start a family. Why wait?

TVRodriguez

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I know it'd be easier to leave.

No.  It's easier to stay.  Hence, 7 years of a sexless roommate relationship.

zoochadookdook

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There are many things about this thread that drive me nuts, but this one can be fixed quite easily.

I did speak to the consoler about focusing on our individual needs in relationship therapy vs individual

That aside I'm seeking free individual consoling from my university.

coun∑sel∑ing
[ˈkouns(ə)liNG] NOUN
the provision of assistance and guidance in resolving personal, social, or psychological problems and difficulties, especially by a professional.

consoling
[kənˈsōliNG] ADJECTIVE
serving to comfort someone at a time of grief or disappointment.


Unless it's a Freudian slip?  In which case that should tell you something.

On a separate note, exactly how much of her bills do you pay for her?  You pay for the therapy and the house is yours.  Does she contribute a fair share towards rent, utilities, groceries, etc?  If not, part of her may also be afraid at how her life might change if you break up.

I KNOW-I just installed Grammarly. It's been driving me nutty as it depends on which browser I'm using that autocorrects.

I bought the house 3.5 years ago. We had lived together at her dads for a while and at some point, we just wanted to be out. I made considerably more and purchased it. She does pay for groceries, commodities around the house, her car/phone, pretty much all furniture and trash but I have never charged her rent or such. I prefer to keep finances separate anyways as it's easier for me to track and organize. She would more than likely move back with her parents on one side or the other which would suck-but she has no issue with either of them and they would take her in a second. She is looking to get a better full time job once her nanny position expires this fall and has a few teaching positions lined up that look great.  I'm sure to some degree the home we've shared is a factor (how couldn't it be), but she's never been the financially motivated type-much more emotionally motivated.

zoochadookdook

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I know it'd be easier to leave.

No.  It's easier to stay.  Hence, 7 years of a sexless roommate relationship.

You're right. On paper it looks like the easier thing to leave as you don't have to try. Emotionally it's easier to stay and ignore the issue.

Miss Piggy

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OP, your posts make me think of a book called "I Don't Know What I Want But I Know It's Not This."

Here's the amazon link: https://www.amazon.com/Dont-Know-What-Step-Step/dp/0143128515

The book is actually about jobs/careers, but I have to wonder if there may be some helpful information in it if you think about it in the context of a relationship. You work at a university? Maybe your library has a copy.

zoochadookdook

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I've been reading and lurking so far on this thread. OP I am in my 40s and if I went through something very similar in my 20s -- a long term relationship with someone with whom I was good friends but incompatible for many reasons. We too were severely codependent since we had only known what we had with each other, and it seemed pretty good overall, and we were scared of what might happen if we broke up. We stayed together for way too long and the breakup was hard, but now 20 years later I'm married to someone who I AM 100% excited to be spending my life with. We never had that sort of struggle. When we met, we had similar goals, there was a huge spark, and now we're best friends and I'm still excited to see him every day. I have learned that if there's a struggle to be together, then the relationship isn't meant to be. Thank god I am not with that person from my 20s -- looking back now, we were extremely bad for one another. It would have made my life miserable to have given in to the fear of that breakup, stuck in complacency of it just being OK, because I was used to it, comfortable with a constant struggle that went along with what I thought was love at the time.

Just do it. You are sexually incompatible and you both want different things. Why drag this painful breakup out any longer? Do HER a favour and end the relationship. You will be looking back at this one day wondering why it took you so long. She will be thankful that she has time to start a family. Why wait?

Why wait-that's a good question. I think it's a myriad of reasons but what it boils down to is letting her know what she wants to know before I do anything. Like i've told her weeks ago I want to work on this but through discovery, talking, consoling we've come to see there are deeper underlying differences than just the sex and i've been finding out a lot about myself and her through it. Part of it is time, it's not easy when you've been with this person almost daily for so long. Part of it is fear of the what if (she's been asking what I want-like do I want to be alone and will that make ME happy which from last time sucked so back we came back together a week later)-so i'm trying to make sure I squelch any doubt at all personally before I initiate actions I can't reverse.

So mind if I ask you what wasn't working in your relationship?

zoochadookdook

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OP, your posts make me think of a book called "I Don't Know What I Want But I Know It's Not This."

Here's the amazon link: https://www.amazon.com/Dont-Know-What-Step-Step/dp/0143128515

The book is actually about jobs/careers, but I have to wonder if there may be some helpful information in it if you think about it in the context of a relationship. You work at a university? Maybe your library has a copy.

It sounds silly like even to me. How can I not know what I want in life? I'm 26-27 in may. I should have an inkling of what career I'd like to pursue in the future, if having a family/marraige is a must have or a definitly not/a billion other things but I just really don't know.

limeandpepper

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Yeah; I don't expect a GOGOGO mentality from anyone forever really in that aspect(it's neigh impossible especially with time/life/age and changes); but having some sort of libido is a must vs none. I've been reading on asexuality/demi sexuality and relationships between them and standard libido partners a lot and it's been kind of nutty. I personally can't be in a relationship unless someone has a libido/a lot of people in those previously listed situations go outside the relationship on one side or the other but I wouldn't do that knowingly or unknowingly-if i'm with someone I'm with them.

Except you are and you have been for 6 years. Time to stop wasting more years away perhaps?

As for going outside the relationship, it can be pretty damn good when it's by mutual agreement and there isn't cheating involved.

former player

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You love your friend, but I'm getting no sense that either of you is "in love" with the other.

Look, the English language is bad about having words for love - all our English repression, I guess.  It only really has the one.  Greek does it much better: they have about 6 different words for "love".  "Eros" is the one everyone knows or can guess: it's the erotic love that you feel towards your life partner.  The other words relevant to you might be "philos" which is friendship love or "agape" (pronounced with three syllables "a - ga - pay" with a small emphasis on the last of these) which is brotherly/religious love.

It's the complete lack of "eros" love that either of you feels for the other which I think has everyone in this thread screaming at you that however friendly/brotherly the love between the two of you, there is not the kind of love between you that makes a marriage.  You might find some comfort in the fact that it is both of you who feel this way: it's much harder to manage if one feels that erotic love and the other doesn't.

Yes, some people do get married without feeling that erotic love.  They do it for good or bad reasons, and sometimes in the hope that the erotic love will come - and sometimes it does.  But for the two of you if it hasn't come after 7 years, realistically it's not going to.  And there are no outside reasons for the two of you to marry other than that you feel that erotic love towards each other and expect that love to last a lifetime of mutual fidelity.  Please, set each of you free to find that love.
« Last Edit: May 03, 2019, 08:40:44 AM by former player »

zoochadookdook

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Yeah; I don't expect a GOGOGO mentality from anyone forever really in that aspect(it's neigh impossible especially with time/life/age and changes); but having some sort of libido is a must vs none. I've been reading on asexuality/demi sexuality and relationships between them and standard libido partners a lot and it's been kind of nutty. I personally can't be in a relationship unless someone has a libido/a lot of people in those previously listed situations go outside the relationship on one side or the other but I wouldn't do that knowingly or unknowingly-if i'm with someone I'm with them.

Except you are and you have been for 6 years. Time to stop wasting more years away perhaps?

As for going outside the relationship, it can be pretty damn good when it's by mutual agreement and there isn't cheating involved.

At one point we spoke about it but it wasn't really an option we viewed as serious. I could always revisit it but I don't know if i'd feel morally sound/she wouldn't feel right either. I'm sure it works for some people ok but i think even agreement may sway one way or the other even unintentionally.

Miss Piggy

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OP, your posts make me think of a book called "I Don't Know What I Want But I Know It's Not This."

Here's the amazon link: https://www.amazon.com/Dont-Know-What-Step-Step/dp/0143128515

The book is actually about jobs/careers, but I have to wonder if there may be some helpful information in it if you think about it in the context of a relationship. You work at a university? Maybe your library has a copy.

It sounds silly like even to me. How can I not know what I want in life? I'm 26-27 in may. I should have an inkling of what career I'd like to pursue in the future, if having a family/marraige is a must have or a definitly not/a billion other things but I just really don't know.

I don't know...when I was your age, I was in a career that I knew wasn't my "forever gig" (if there is such a thing). I knew some things I liked to do, but I hadn't done a lot of exploring for new career possibilities. Then I ran into an acquaintance from my high school days when I was "home" for Christmas one year. He told me what he was doing professionally, and the light bulb went on for me - "THAT'S what I want to do!!!" I started working on a master's degree a few months after that, and 20 years later, I'm still doing that work. And I absolutely love it! (I don't care much for my day job right now because I'm not doing enough of the work I love, but I do the work I love as a consulting gig on the side.)

On a more personal note, when I was your age, I was also in a bad marriage that I knew in my heart of hearts I should not have gone into. But we had been together for a while, we were living together, people expected us to get married, and we had a wedding planned. I felt like I "couldn't get out of it" (the wedding), and I figured I would make the best of it. Well, the rest of your life is a long, long time. I ended up calling it quits on that marriage (no kids, thankfully), and today I am very happily married to husband #2. I got it right the second time, but by then, I no longer trusted myself to make the right decision about a marriage, so I saw a counselor to help me think it through. Divorce sucks in so many ways.

zoochadookdook

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You love your friend, but I'm getting no sense that either of you is "in love" with the other.

Look, the English language is bad about having words for love - all our English repression, I guess.  It only really has the one.  Greek does it much better: they have about 6 different words for "love".  "Eros" is the one everyone knows or can guess: it's the erotic love that you feel towards your life partner.  The other words relevant to you might be "philos" which is friendship love or "agape" which is brotherly/religious love.

It's the complete lack of "eros" love that either of you feels for the other which I think has everyone in this thread screaming at you that however friendly/brotherly the love between the two of you, there is not the kind of love between you that makes a marriage.  You might find some comfort in the fact that it is both of you who feel this way: it's much harder to manage if one feels that erotic love and the other doesn't.

Yes, some people do get married without feeling that erotic love.  They do it for good or bad reasons, and sometimes in the hope that the erotic love will come - and sometimes it does.  But for the two of you if it hasn't come after 7 years, realistically it's not going to.  And there are no outside reasons for the two of you to marry other than that you feel that erotic love towards each other and expect that love to last a lifetime of mutual fidelity.  Please, set each of you free to find that love.

The closest i've found to that is the 5 love languages group. Interesting though. I'm of the belief that people love to different degrees/amounts and types. In her case no "Eros" is fine from her standards in finding a life partner and living a content life. In my case it is not for the long term. It's perfectly fine for her to not require that but it is not for me.

Mmm_Donuts

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Part of it is time, it's not easy when you've been with this person almost daily for so long. Part of it is fear of the what if (she's been asking what I want-like do I want to be alone and will that make ME happy which from last time sucked so back we came back together a week later)-so i'm trying to make sure I squelch any doubt at all personally before I initiate actions I can't reverse.


A week alone?? That is nothing. OF course you will miss each other if you separate for a week. Your routine is broken, the silence in the house is deafening, there will be a huge void in your life. Have you heard the adage that it takes 30 days to change a habit? In some ways your relationship has become a habit. You've gotten used to the little rituals between you -- picking up ice cream, cuddling on the couch, talking about your days together, etc. And there will be a sense of grief and loss that goes with a breakup. Thus far you've both been envisioning a future together, a continuation of what you have now. So there's a sense of loss there when you have to let go of your vision of life together. All of this is undoubtedly painful.

But - it's also temporary. The pain of a breakup is intense but trust me, it is MUCH less painful to go through a short term loss than it is to go through a lifetime with someone who is not a good fit for you. It's not healthy to be going through the struggle you're going through right now. This is NOT a healthy relationship because fundamental aspects of it are mismatched. Come on, she wants marriage and kids right now, and she isn't interested in sex. You want sex, and aren't interested in kids or marriage. Wanting / needing sex isn't something you can control. As others have said, unless you're willing to sign up for a lifetime (if that's what marriage means to her) of sexless marriage, then you are being totally unfair to her by stringing her along like this. There is nothing to gain by waiting it out.

As others have also said, codependency really clogs up your vision. There is no way for you to wait out this birth control thing and have a clear view on what's happening. From what you've said here you are both afraid of being alone, so it seems like you will always be reaching for an excuse to make these issues a future problem to solve. It seems like BC is one of these convenient excuses.

If you do break up now, she goes off BC, you regain your sense of selves by being alone for a significant amount of time, even start dating other people eventually, you will discover whether or not you are right for one another (i.e. that her libido comes back, and you want marriage and kids.) There is no way to make these decisions clearly when you are bogged down in the mire of codependency.

So mind if I ask you what wasn't working in your relationship?

We were extremely codependent for one -- I have just learned from that time that codependent relationships are really unhealthy. We were both manipulative. We argued a lot (alongside a lot of really great times, too). It was intense and we thought that meant we were in love. I thought I couldn't live without him. We were both incredibly insecure. That sort of insecurity damages a relationship. I had to mature and be alone for a while in order to be in a healthy relationship, or even know what that was.

Basically I learned (just through figuring out what NOT to do) that while love takes some effort and communication, it shouldn't be a struggle. I have never had a second of doubt that my husband was the right one for me. We just never struggled with the sort of questions you're struggling with (should we get married? should we be together?) We just knew, from the start, and still know. We don't manipulate each other to get what we want. We aren't codependent - we are two separate individuals whose lives work well together. We are on the same page 90% of the time. When we're not, we have a lot of discussions, and we listen to each other. That sort of thing.

DeepEllumStache

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OP, your posts make me think of a book called "I Don't Know What I Want But I Know It's Not This."

Here's the amazon link: https://www.amazon.com/Dont-Know-What-Step-Step/dp/0143128515

The book is actually about jobs/careers, but I have to wonder if there may be some helpful information in it if you think about it in the context of a relationship. You work at a university? Maybe your library has a copy.

It sounds silly like even to me. How can I not know what I want in life? I'm 26-27 in may. I should have an inkling of what career I'd like to pursue in the future, if having a family/marraige is a must have or a definitly not/a billion other things but I just really don't know.

I'm going to let you in on a secret. You will have these moments of "what do I want in life" many times over the course of your life. And what you want will change over time. What I wanted at 16 was very different from what I wanted at 26 and now what I want at 36. And what I will want at 46. We constantly redefine and grow into ourselves. Don't be afraid to ask yourself what you want out of life and consider what course changes you need to get there. 

Kris

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OP, your posts make me think of a book called "I Don't Know What I Want But I Know It's Not This."

Here's the amazon link: https://www.amazon.com/Dont-Know-What-Step-Step/dp/0143128515

The book is actually about jobs/careers, but I have to wonder if there may be some helpful information in it if you think about it in the context of a relationship. You work at a university? Maybe your library has a copy.

It sounds silly like even to me. How can I not know what I want in life? I'm 26-27 in may. I should have an inkling of what career I'd like to pursue in the future, if having a family/marraige is a must have or a definitly not/a billion other things but I just really don't know.

I don't know...when I was your age, I was in a career that I knew wasn't my "forever gig" (if there is such a thing). I knew some things I liked to do, but I hadn't done a lot of exploring for new career possibilities. Then I ran into an acquaintance from my high school days when I was "home" for Christmas one year. He told me what he was doing professionally, and the light bulb went on for me - "THAT'S what I want to do!!!" I started working on a master's degree a few months after that, and 20 years later, I'm still doing that work. And I absolutely love it! (I don't care much for my day job right now because I'm not doing enough of the work I love, but I do the work I love as a consulting gig on the side.)

On a more personal note, when I was your age, I was also in a bad marriage that I knew in my heart of hearts I should not have gone into. But we had been together for a while, we were living together, people expected us to get married, and we had a wedding planned. I felt like I "couldn't get out of it" (the wedding), and I figured I would make the best of it. Well, the rest of your life is a long, long time. I ended up calling it quits on that marriage (no kids, thankfully), and today I am very happily married to husband #2. I got it right the second time, but by then, I no longer trusted myself to make the right decision about a marriage, so I saw a counselor to help me think it through. Divorce sucks in so many ways.

Yeah, me, too. At 26-27, I was just getting out of an extremely unhealthy, abusive relationship and in the middle of an existential crisis about my future career plans in academia. I was in a really tough, bad place. I think it's very easy when you're in your late twenties to start feeling like you're supposed to have figured everything out and settled into your "life" as in some sort of finished product. This is especially true if you have friends and family around you of that age who have already gotten married and are starting families.

But as older people can tell you, in your late twenties you are still very young, and likely still figuring a lot of things out. I say all the time that if I had married any of the people I dated in my twenties, I would have ended up either divorced or miserable. One of the really great things about life -- and something that is hard to see at 27 -- is that you have many, many years to grow and change. When you're in your twenties, it can feel like you've "wasted" time if you've spent a few years in a relationship that ends up not working out. But the fact is, the only wasted time is the time you spend staying in it once you realize it's not the relationship for you.

Looking back on my life, there are a few relationships I held on to past their expiration date, because I felt like I had "invested" time in the relationship. But in fact, I was just afraid of change. Someone up-thread said that the EASY thing to do is stay, and the HARD thing to do is leave, and that's true. And taking the easy path right now will lead to a lot more difficulty and sadness and regret later.

Because the fact is, it's pretty likely you're going to have to leave this relationship eventually. You can do it now -- and give yourself the gift of time, healing, and looking forward to the future -- of you can do it years from now, after trying desperately to make this square peg of a relationship fit in the round hole your friend wants it to be.

Omy

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If you could go back in time (knowing what you know now), would you start a relationship with her?

zoochadookdook

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If you could go back in time (knowing what you know now), would you start a relationship with her?

If I could go back in time my dumbass wouldn't have cheated on her. I have no idea if we'd have been together or not but we could have not defined an important part in such a negative way.

zoochadookdook

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OP, your posts make me think of a book called "I Don't Know What I Want But I Know It's Not This."

Here's the amazon link: https://www.amazon.com/Dont-Know-What-Step-Step/dp/0143128515

The book is actually about jobs/careers, but I have to wonder if there may be some helpful information in it if you think about it in the context of a relationship. You work at a university? Maybe your library has a copy.

It sounds silly like even to me. How can I not know what I want in life? I'm 26-27 in may. I should have an inkling of what career I'd like to pursue in the future, if having a family/marraige is a must have or a definitly not/a billion other things but I just really don't know.

I'm going to let you in on a secret. You will have these moments of "what do I want in life" many times over the course of your life. And what you want will change over time. What I wanted at 16 was very different from what I wanted at 26 and now what I want at 36. And what I will want at 46. We constantly redefine and grow into ourselves. Don't be afraid to ask yourself what you want out of life and consider what course changes you need to get there.

So applying that to relationships-how should you ever expect to find a life partner if people change what they want? Is it the willingness to accept change or just the magnitude of the actual change by either partner (aka is it luck or do people make it work?)

LadyMuMu

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OK,

Sounds like you had a very productive couples counseling session. You say that you've made compromises and that happens in all relationships. I would push back on that statement. You can't legitimately make sacrifices/compromises unless you are making an ACTIVE choice. If you don't know what you want, how can you actively choose something else? You can't.

Do you think it's more accurate to say that you haven't been making sacrifices/compromises as much as just going with the flow? Accepting what comes? Taking the path of least resistance/least emotional pain? If that's the case, of course you two haven't fought much. Can you see how not fighting isn't necessarily a sign of a good relationship? It could be the sign that at least one person is just going along to get along.

Yay for you for seeking out an individual counselor! Discover who you really are, what your hopes and dreams are, and figure out what you need to change to accomplish that. For example, if you really want to build your body into a competition-worthy endeavor, what would it take to do it? If you want to travel--where? What needs to change to make that happen? Money? Time?

Doing this takes courage and inner strength to make ACTIVE choices. Do I hang out at home and watch Netflix (which I love) or lift heavy things for another hour? Do I run through the drive through because I'm starving or eat the leftovers in the fridge to save money for my travel fund?

I dare say, you may need to be the one to make the strong, courageous, ACTIVE choice eventually when it comes to  this relationship. I suspect you're closer to breaking up than you admit. It is a noble and courageous thing to end a relationship knowing it will cause emotional pain but will be best for both in the long run. Doing the right thing isn't rewarded with a lack of emotional pain or comfort -- otherwise it wouldn't be courageous.




LifeHappens

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So applying that to relationships-how should you ever expect to find a life partner if people change what they want? Is it the willingness to accept change or just the magnitude of the actual change by either partner (aka is it luck or do people make it work?)
You find a life partner who will grow with you and/or support you in your growth and change journey. There are people on this forum who have supported partners through career changes, sexual orientation changes and even gender transitions. Sometimes the relationship survives and sometimes it doesn't. The common thread is a good partner wants what's best for the other person, even if that means letting them go.

zoochadookdook

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OK,

Sounds like you had a very productive couples counseling session. You say that you've made compromises and that happens in all relationships. I would push back on that statement. You can't legitimately make sacrifices/compromises unless you are making an ACTIVE choice. If you don't know what you want, how can you actively choose something else? You can't.

Do you think it's more accurate to say that you haven't been making sacrifices/compromises as much as just going with the flow? Accepting what comes? Taking the path of least resistance/least emotional pain? If that's the case, of course you two haven't fought much. Can you see how not fighting isn't necessarily a sign of a good relationship? It could be the sign that at least one person is just going along to get along.

Yay for you for seeking out an individual counselor! Discover who you really are, what your hopes and dreams are, and figure out what you need to change to accomplish that. For example, if you really want to build your body into a competition-worthy endeavor, what would it take to do it? If you want to travel--where? What needs to change to make that happen? Money? Time?

Doing this takes courage and inner strength to make ACTIVE choices. Do I hang out at home and watch Netflix (which I love) or lift heavy things for another hour? Do I run through the drive through because I'm starving or eat the leftovers in the fridge to save money for my travel fund?

I dare say, you may need to be the one to make the strong, courageous, ACTIVE choice eventually when it comes to  this relationship. I suspect you're closer to breaking up than you admit. It is a noble and courageous thing to end a relationship knowing it will cause emotional pain but will be best for both in the long run. Doing the right thing isn't rewarded with a lack of emotional pain or comfort -- otherwise it wouldn't be courageous.

That's a good point. I'm not actively sacrificing wants and such and hating myself for it, but I have become comfortable and routine set. There's nothing wrong with that but I didn't mean to make her feel like she's the one stopping me directly from doing things I want to do-only i'm doing that.

She texted me saying she's been crying all day and doesn't feel like going to work so i'm going to give her a call on lunch and just have a sit down scheduled for tonight. I really liked what those greek terms for love stated in terms of categorizing these things. I'd love for her to read this forum but there isn't much of a filter on much of it.

zoochadookdook

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So applying that to relationships-how should you ever expect to find a life partner if people change what they want? Is it the willingness to accept change or just the magnitude of the actual change by either partner (aka is it luck or do people make it work?)
You find a life partner who will grow with you and/or support you in your growth and change journey. There are people on this forum who have supported partners through career changes, sexual orientation changes and even gender transitions. Sometimes the relationship survives and sometimes it doesn't. The common thread is a good partner wants what's best for the other person, even if that means letting them go.

Hm. I mean I haven't ever felt like I don't want her in my life. Just not in terms of marriage-but that's not just her. That's anyone.

Captain FIRE

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Why wait-that's a good question. I think it's a myriad of reasons but what it boils down to is letting her know what she wants to know before I do anything. Like i've told her weeks ago I want to work on this but through discovery, talking, consoling we've come to see there are deeper underlying differences than just the sex and i've been finding out a lot about myself and her through it. Part of it is time, it's not easy when you've been with this person almost daily for so long. Part of it is fear of the what if (she's been asking what I want-like do I want to be alone and will that make ME happy which from last time sucked so back we came back together a week later)-so i'm trying to make sure I squelch any doubt at all personally before I initiate actions I can't reverse.

Are you waiting in hopes that she'll be the one to pull the trigger and end the relationship?  That way:
- She gets to make a choice rather than have you make it
- It can be after she's gotten the information she needs/closure she needs
- You don't have to worry about backsliding and wanting to get back together after just a week

It seems that may be what you are doing subconsciously to me.  I suggest you reconsider that approach, but if you continue in it, at least own it and tell her that you're not going to break up, she'll need to do that (if she wants to get married to someone (else)).

Mmm_Donuts

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Why wait-that's a good question. I think it's a myriad of reasons but what it boils down to is letting her know what she wants to know before I do anything. Like i've told her weeks ago I want to work on this but through discovery, talking, consoling we've come to see there are deeper underlying differences than just the sex and i've been finding out a lot about myself and her through it. Part of it is time, it's not easy when you've been with this person almost daily for so long. Part of it is fear of the what if (she's been asking what I want-like do I want to be alone and will that make ME happy which from last time sucked so back we came back together a week later)-so i'm trying to make sure I squelch any doubt at all personally before I initiate actions I can't reverse.

Are you waiting in hopes that she'll be the one to pull the trigger and end the relationship?  That way:
- She gets to make a choice rather than have you make it
- It can be after she's gotten the information she needs/closure she needs
- You don't have to worry about backsliding and wanting to get back together after just a week

It seems that may be what you are doing subconsciously to me.  I suggest you reconsider that approach, but if you continue in it, at least own it and tell her that you're not going to break up, she'll need to do that (if she wants to get married to someone (else)).

That just described the most passive aggressive approach to breaking up. Make the other person's life miserable until it's the only option. Torture her by not wanting to marry her while she tortures you by not wanting sex. Wait to see who gives in first. Man.

Captain FIRE

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Why wait-that's a good question. I think it's a myriad of reasons but what it boils down to is letting her know what she wants to know before I do anything. Like i've told her weeks ago I want to work on this but through discovery, talking, consoling we've come to see there are deeper underlying differences than just the sex and i've been finding out a lot about myself and her through it. Part of it is time, it's not easy when you've been with this person almost daily for so long. Part of it is fear of the what if (she's been asking what I want-like do I want to be alone and will that make ME happy which from last time sucked so back we came back together a week later)-so i'm trying to make sure I squelch any doubt at all personally before I initiate actions I can't reverse.

Are you waiting in hopes that she'll be the one to pull the trigger and end the relationship?  That way:
- She gets to make a choice rather than have you make it
- It can be after she's gotten the information she needs/closure she needs
- You don't have to worry about backsliding and wanting to get back together after just a week

It seems that may be what you are doing subconsciously to me.  I suggest you reconsider that approach, but if you continue in it, at least own it and tell her that you're not going to break up, she'll need to do that (if she wants to get married to someone (else)).

That just described the most passive aggressive approach to breaking up. Make the other person's life miserable until it's the only option. Torture her by not wanting to marry her while she tortures you by not wanting sex. Wait to see who gives in first. Man.

Well, yes, that is kind of my point and why I suggest he reconsiders it. 
But at the very least if he's not going to do that, to at least be honest with her - and himself - that's what he's doing.

I certainly am not advocating for it...

DeepEllumStache

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So applying that to relationships-how should you ever expect to find a life partner if people change what they want? Is it the willingness to accept change or just the magnitude of the actual change by either partner (aka is it luck or do people make it work?)
You find a life partner who will grow with you and/or support you in your growth and change journey. There are people on this forum who have supported partners through career changes, sexual orientation changes and even gender transitions. Sometimes the relationship survives and sometimes it doesn't. The common thread is a good partner wants what's best for the other person, even if that means letting them go.

Hm. I mean I haven't ever felt like I don't want her in my life. Just not in terms of marriage-but that's not just her. That's anyone.

Exactly. The two of you are in completely different places in life.

I used to call them fatal flaws when dating. When there was something, regardless of how wonderful everything else was, that would sink our long-term viability. Typically it was something that neither person could or should change. It doesn't mean that the relationship wasn't good, it just meant that we weren't going to be able to be good for each other long-term. We wouldn't be able to grow and change together. It was hard to walk away when the relationship was 95% good, but it wasn't fair to hold each other back.

The two of you have some serious fatal flaws. The differing physical intimacy needs. The completely different needs/potential timelines for marriage. The desire for kids.

tyort1

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There's also a sort of unstated rule that men ought to want to get married and ought to want kids and if they don't then that's a problem that can be "worked on".  So it puts men in a defensive position where they are somehow made to feel something is wrong with them and that they need to fix it. 

Of course that's all utter BS.  Not wanting kids or wanting to get married is perfectly valid and needs no justification at all.  If it's how you feel, it's how you feel.  No apology or justification needed.

zoochadookdook

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There's also a sort of unstated rule that men ought to want to get married and ought to want kids and if they don't then that's a problem that can be "worked on".  So it puts men in a defensive position where they are somehow made to feel something is wrong with them and that they need to fix it. 

Of course that's all utter BS.  Not wanting kids or wanting to get married is perfectly valid and needs no justification at all.  If it's how you feel, it's how you feel.  No apology or justification needed.

Sure, It's my right to feel however. The reason I've been trying  to see if I want them is because: 1) Probably should actually know at some point or no regardless of where i'm at and 2) I see how much it means to her. Not being on board with them means we can't end up together because she wants kids to be happy.

zoochadookdook

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So applying that to relationships-how should you ever expect to find a life partner if people change what they want? Is it the willingness to accept change or just the magnitude of the actual change by either partner (aka is it luck or do people make it work?)
You find a life partner who will grow with you and/or support you in your growth and change journey. There are people on this forum who have supported partners through career changes, sexual orientation changes and even gender transitions. Sometimes the relationship survives and sometimes it doesn't. The common thread is a good partner wants what's best for the other person, even if that means letting them go.

Hm. I mean I haven't ever felt like I don't want her in my life. Just not in terms of marriage-but that's not just her. That's anyone.

Exactly. The two of you are in completely different places in life.

I used to call them fatal flaws when dating. When there was something, regardless of how wonderful everything else was, that would sink our long-term viability. Typically it was something that neither person could or should change. It doesn't mean that the relationship wasn't good, it just meant that we weren't going to be able to be good for each other long-term. We wouldn't be able to grow and change together. It was hard to walk away when the relationship was 95% good, but it wasn't fair to hold each other back.

The two of you have some serious fatal flaws. The differing physical intimacy needs. The completely different needs/potential timelines for marriage. The desire for kids.

I don't think either of us considered breaking up as an option. Walking away in both our minds is considered quitting (don't you want to try/relationships are work etc) and ours has definitely had its share of workthrough. We both just figured we were going through life together and things would change if enough time passed.

BeanCounter

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So applying that to relationships-how should you ever expect to find a life partner if people change what they want? Is it the willingness to accept change or just the magnitude of the actual change by either partner (aka is it luck or do people make it work?)
You find a life partner who will grow with you and/or support you in your growth and change journey. There are people on this forum who have supported partners through career changes, sexual orientation changes and even gender transitions. Sometimes the relationship survives and sometimes it doesn't. The common thread is a good partner wants what's best for the other person, even if that means letting them go.

Hm. I mean I haven't ever felt like I don't want her in my life. Just not in terms of marriage-but that's not just her. That's anyone.

Exactly. The two of you are in completely different places in life.

I used to call them fatal flaws when dating. When there was something, regardless of how wonderful everything else was, that would sink our long-term viability. Typically it was something that neither person could or should change. It doesn't mean that the relationship wasn't good, it just meant that we weren't going to be able to be good for each other long-term. We wouldn't be able to grow and change together. It was hard to walk away when the relationship was 95% good, but it wasn't fair to hold each other back.

The two of you have some serious fatal flaws. The differing physical intimacy needs. The completely different needs/potential timelines for marriage. The desire for kids.

I don't think either of us considered breaking up as an option. Walking away in both our minds is considered quitting (don't you want to try/relationships are work etc) and ours has definitely had its share of workthrough. We both just figured we were going through life together and things would change if enough time passed.
I don't think relationships in your twenties should be work. If you agree on the fundamentals in life and you decided to make a commitment together then as you grow older things will come up that you have to work through. But then you have the total commitment to each other and the memories of when everything was easy and fun to help you get through the tough spots.

PoutineLover

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Do you guys have any couple friends in happy relationships? Are your parents happily married? If not, was the divorce traumatic for either of you? The way you talk about your relationship makes me think you might not have positive examples of good relationships to look to. Also the fact that your friend is reluctant to discuss the relationship even with close friends or family is a bit strange, even for a rather private person. Relationships aren't supposed to be so hard, and leaving one that isn't working isn't quitting. Its a mature move that shows introspection and contemplation and a tough decision made. Media skews people's views of relationships terribly, but talking with real people you know and respect might bring some perspective to the situation.

fuzzy math

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So applying that to relationships-how should you ever expect to find a life partner if people change what they want? Is it the willingness to accept change or just the magnitude of the actual change by either partner (aka is it luck or do people make it work?)
You find a life partner who will grow with you and/or support you in your growth and change journey. There are people on this forum who have supported partners through career changes, sexual orientation changes and even gender transitions. Sometimes the relationship survives and sometimes it doesn't. The common thread is a good partner wants what's best for the other person, even if that means letting them go.

Hm. I mean I haven't ever felt like I don't want her in my life. Just not in terms of marriage-but that's not just her. That's anyone.

You want her in your life in a way that is selfish (for your own comfort and benefit). It will always make her unsatisfied and unhappy. Please do not tell her that you want her in your life before telling her all the reasons she's unlikely to be in your life. It just provides false hope and confusion... She either can't see or can't admit that she sees what is going on. You are giving her an ultimatum (sex, no marriage) and she is giving you a different ultimatum (marriage, then maybe sex). Generally the presence of 1 ultimatum is enough to kill a relationship or is a sign that that relationship is already dead. You have 2 diametrically opposed ultimatums going on here.

I agree with previous posters that regardless of your conscious intent you are forcing her to initiate the breakup. Do you have an expiration date for if / when that does not happen? You are both wasting times moving on in your individual lives if you're ultimately going to break up.

EDIT: I see you are going to talk tonight. I hope you are tough enough to do the right thing. Her being willing to discuss not making it is really the first step towards acceptance. She may still need help though to get over the hurdle of saying it out loud and having it become real.
« Last Edit: May 03, 2019, 01:09:19 PM by fuzzy math »

zoochadookdook

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So applying that to relationships-how should you ever expect to find a life partner if people change what they want? Is it the willingness to accept change or just the magnitude of the actual change by either partner (aka is it luck or do people make it work?)
You find a life partner who will grow with you and/or support you in your growth and change journey. There are people on this forum who have supported partners through career changes, sexual orientation changes and even gender transitions. Sometimes the relationship survives and sometimes it doesn't. The common thread is a good partner wants what's best for the other person, even if that means letting them go.

Hm. I mean I haven't ever felt like I don't want her in my life. Just not in terms of marriage-but that's not just her. That's anyone.

You want her in your life in a way that is selfish (for your own comfort and benefit). It will always make her unsatisfied and unhappy. Please do not tell her that you want her in your life before telling her all the reasons she's unlikely to be in your life. It just provides false hope and confusion... She either can't see or can't admit that she sees what is going on. You are giving her an ultimatum (sex, no marriage) and she is giving you a different ultimatum (marriage, then maybe sex). Generally the presence of 1 ultimatum is enough to kill a relationship or is a sign that that relationship is already dead. You have 2 diametrically opposed ultimatums going on here.

I agree with previous posters that regardless of your conscious intent you are forcing her to initiate the breakup. Do you have an expiration date for if / when that does not happen? You are both wasting times moving on in your individual lives if you're ultimately going to break up.

She's been super upset since last night so we're having a talk that hopefully clears up so important points tonight.
I know it's selfish and unreasonable to want her in my life for comfort and I kind of made it clear last night. The root isn't even no sex no marraige at this point-it's I don't want to get married/know if I want kids right now vs she had a future planned out. We're on 2 different timelines and asking her to wait around while I figure out what I want in life is ridiculous; which is what came out in counseling last night.

zoochadookdook

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Do you guys have any couple friends in happy relationships? Are your parents happily married? If not, was the divorce traumatic for either of you? The way you talk about your relationship makes me think you might not have positive examples of good relationships to look to. Also the fact that your friend is reluctant to discuss the relationship even with close friends or family is a bit strange, even for a rather private person. Relationships aren't supposed to be so hard, and leaving one that isn't working isn't quitting. Its a mature move that shows introspection and contemplation and a tough decision made. Media skews people's views of relationships terribly, but talking with real people you know and respect might bring some perspective to the situation.

Both of our parents are divorced (mine several years ago, hers many years ago). We're at the age where many of our friends are marrying and arranging for marraige. I know her parents divorce was harder than mine was.

LadyMuMu

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Do you guys have any couple friends in happy relationships? Are your parents happily married? If not, was the divorce traumatic for either of you? The way you talk about your relationship makes me think you might not have positive examples of good relationships to look to. Also the fact that your friend is reluctant to discuss the relationship even with close friends or family is a bit strange, even for a rather private person. Relationships aren't supposed to be so hard, and leaving one that isn't working isn't quitting. Its a mature move that shows introspection and contemplation and a tough decision made. Media skews people's views of relationships terribly, but talking with real people you know and respect might bring some perspective to the situation.

Both of our parents are divorced (mine several years ago, hers many years ago). We're at the age where many of our friends are marrying and arranging for marraige. I know her parents divorce was harder than mine was.

Given this information the fact that you two have remained in an unsatisfying relationship (while living together!) for several years seems to make sense. Is it possible that you are both simply trying to avoid breaking up EVER? Honestly, she should have left you when you cheated -- someone who isn't faithful in the first throes of a relationship is not good long-term material. But if not breaking up was the primary goal, then staying together makes sense.

Then, when sex was off the table AND YOU DIDN"T DISCUSS IT FOR MONTHS (much less years), it would have been time to accept that the relationship had fizzled and it was time to break up and move on.  But if not breaking up was the primary goal, then staying together makes sense.

Now despite both of you seeing that you want very different things in this moment (her: kids marriage, you: not so much), it is a good time to part as friends and move on.  But if not breaking up was the primary goal, then staying together makes sense.

Seeing a couples counselor has allowed you to keep that primary goal feasible. As long as you discuss and try to make each other understand instead of just facing facts, you are indeed NOT BREAKING UP.

I would suggest that "not breaking up" is a pitiful substitute for a lifelong vibrant fulfilling marriage full of laughter, joy, toe-curling sex, shared goals, achieved visions for one another (whatever happened to her speech path goal or your body building?).

zoochadookdook

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Do you guys have any couple friends in happy relationships? Are your parents happily married? If not, was the divorce traumatic for either of you? The way you talk about your relationship makes me think you might not have positive examples of good relationships to look to. Also the fact that your friend is reluctant to discuss the relationship even with close friends or family is a bit strange, even for a rather private person. Relationships aren't supposed to be so hard, and leaving one that isn't working isn't quitting. Its a mature move that shows introspection and contemplation and a tough decision made. Media skews people's views of relationships terribly, but talking with real people you know and respect might bring some perspective to the situation.

Both of our parents are divorced (mine several years ago, hers many years ago). We're at the age where many of our friends are marrying and arranging for marraige. I know her parents divorce was harder than mine was.

Given this information the fact that you two have remained in an unsatisfying relationship (while living together!) for several years seems to make sense. Is it possible that you are both simply trying to avoid breaking up EVER? Honestly, she should have left you when you cheated -- someone who isn't faithful in the first throes of a relationship is not good long-term material. But if not breaking up was the primary goal, then staying together makes sense.

Then, when sex was off the table AND YOU DIDN"T DISCUSS IT FOR MONTHS (much less years), it would have been time to accept that the relationship had fizzled and it was time to break up and move on.  But if not breaking up was the primary goal, then staying together makes sense.

Now despite both of you seeing that you want very different things in this moment (her: kids marriage, you: not so much), it is a good time to part as friends and move on.  But if not breaking up was the primary goal, then staying together makes sense.

Seeing a couples counselor has allowed you to keep that primary goal feasible. As long as you discuss and try to make each other understand instead of just facing facts, you are indeed NOT BREAKING UP.

I would suggest that "not breaking up" is a pitiful substitute for a lifelong vibrant fulfilling marriage full of laughter, joy, toe-curling sex, shared goals, achieved visions for one another (whatever happened to her speech path goal or your body building?).

Interesting perspective. I don't think we consciously decided we were NEVER going to break up-I think it was just something that followed with our attachment and codependency. Putting my feelings towards sex to the side was something I did as I was raised to never think I was entitled to things from someone else. It's something I expected my feelings would be able to deal with or at least accept.

Individually I guess we haven't focused on ourselves as a priority. She saw speech path as too pricey/didn't want to go away. I teach grappling nights on occasion still but haven't found the time to compete like i would due to the travel requirements and commitment out of the house

sol

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Every single day that this relationship continues is just making it worse for both of you.  Yank off the band-aid, and let the healing begin.  You'll both be happier with someone else.

zoochadookdook

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She's going out to dinner with some of her work girlfriends and I'm headed to the gym. We chatted a bit in between and she was basically just like " I feel like I need to get out of the way for you to figure out what you want because I know what I want". We plan on having a real talk later this evening.

ysette9

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She's going out to dinner with some of her work girlfriends and I'm headed to the gym. We chatted a bit in between and she was basically just like " I feel like I need to get out of the way for you to figure out what you want because I know what I want". We plan on having a real talk later this evening.
That sounds like a step in the next direction. I think we all here think that her moving out would be the right move for both of you, if ripping bandaid off tonight isnít Plan A.

sol

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"I feel like I need to get out of the way for you to figure out what you want because I know what I want". We plan on having a real talk later this evening.

It sounds to me like what she wants is for you to end the relationship that she knows is doomed, so that she doesn't have to bear any of the responsibility of making the hard decisions.  It's much easier to play victim, even in cases where you secretly know it has to end, because it requires more courage to be the dumper than to be the dumpee. 

Of course, mature adults would just agree to amicably separate for everyone's best interests, but it doesn't sound like that's going to be one of your available options.  I suspect that she wants to be able to say "I tried everything to save our relationship but he wasn't having it."  Regardless of the fact that it is her behavior that doomed it to begin with.

Dating is hard.  I'm glad I'm married.

partgypsy

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I'm glad you stated that you love her. And it seems like she loves you. But again, I do not think love, or even comfortableness in the relationship is "enough". You both want different things. You want a relationship with sex, and most likely a relationship that is NOT a marriage. You are not interested in kids. You may never be interested in kids. In turn, she is uninterested in sex in the relationship, it is not a concern that sex is a regular fulfilling bonding aspect of your relationship, which it would be for you. She wants to be married. She knows she wants to have kids.

Can you see why, even if you do love each other as people, you two are not meant to be? It's just sad because you have both wasted years of each other's lives on something that ultimately wasn't going to work for either of you.  If you had two good friends who confided in you, this particular situation, what would you advise them? To stay together regardless? That wouldn't be a good friend.

What is baffling is that all it takes for one person's needs or goals not to be met in a relationship to realize it, and end it. Here BOTH people are not having fundamental needs yet but BOTH people don't want to break it off! You even said that breaking up would be a failure. No, it's just acknowledging the truth of the situation. You love each other, but have different goals and relationship needs. To stay is a bigger failure because she can't find a guy she is attracted in that way, and possibly a marriage with children as long as she's with you.  Maybe you need to take one for the team, and be the "jerk" in the situation where you break up and she cries with her girlfriends, they hate you and you both move on. You are both young, and you both will get over this, if you let yourself. Don't be the bigger jerk by stringing her along, which is what you are doing at this point.   
« Last Edit: May 03, 2019, 06:11:08 PM by partgypsy »

zoochadookdook

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Before we left we had a slightly more aggressive talk. She keeps saying I cant see her in my future so why would she even want to work on intamcy  and if I did want to try and make a future happen I should tell her. It makes me feel like she's saying im not as commited to the future as she is. Maybe we just view marraige as completely different definitions. Anyways she says she feels like I'm only giving her one option. We're having a big chat later when she gets home. Sigh.

iluvzbeach

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A friend of mine was in a long-term relationship with a guy who didnít know what he wanted in life. She knew what she wanted, marriage and kids. They broke up and four months later he was engaged to someone else. It ended up that while he didnít know what he wanted, he knew he didnít want a future with my friend. He just didnít realize it until heíd gotten out of the relationship. Both he and my friend got married to other people, had children with their respective spouses and remain happy nearly 20 years later. It is definitely hard to leave a long-term relationship but wouldnít you rather work on carving out a path toward a happy & healthy future?

Malkynn

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Before we left we had a slightly more aggressive talk.She keeps saying I cant see her in my future so why would she even want to work on intamcy  and if I did want to try and make a future happen I should tell her. It makes me feel like she's saying im not as commited to the future as she is. Maybe we just view marraige as completely different definitions. Anyways she says she feels like I'm only giving her one option. We're having a big chat later when she gets home. Sigh.

She's got a point.
And she should break up with you because of it, but she won't because she's not strong enough.
You have to do it.

Kris

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A friend of mine was in a long-term relationship with a guy who didnít know what he wanted in life. She knew what she wanted, marriage and kids. They broke up and four months later he was engaged to someone else. It ended up that while he didnít know what he wanted, he knew he didnít want a future with my friend. He just didnít realize it until heíd gotten out of the relationship. Both he and my friend got married to other people, had children with their respective spouses and remain happy nearly 20 years later. It is definitely hard to leave a long-term relationship but wouldnít you rather work on carving out a path toward a happy & healthy future?

I know a couple of people with similar stories.

OP, sometimes ďnot knowing what you wantĒ is your brain riding the brakes because deep down in your subconscious, you know this isnít what you want but youíre not quite willing to admit it yet.

Then after you break off the stagnant relationship, you meet the one you do want. And itís night and day.

Malkynn

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A friend of mine was in a long-term relationship with a guy who didnít know what he wanted in life. She knew what she wanted, marriage and kids. They broke up and four months later he was engaged to someone else. It ended up that while he didnít know what he wanted, he knew he didnít want a future with my friend. He just didnít realize it until heíd gotten out of the relationship. Both he and my friend got married to other people, had children with their respective spouses and remain happy nearly 20 years later. It is definitely hard to leave a long-term relationship but wouldnít you rather work on carving out a path toward a happy & healthy future?

I know a couple of people with similar stories.

OP, sometimes ďnot knowing what you wantĒ is your brain riding the brakes because deep down in your subconscious, you know this isnít what you want but youíre not quite willing to admit it yet.

Then after you break off the stagnant relationship, you meet the one you do want. And itís night and day.

It's completely normal to have no idea what you want.
In fact, decisive certainty is so rare that the people who have it often are typically whackos with impulse control problems. They feel overly certain about things and lack the normal, constant doubt that mentally healthy people have.

If you are a normal, mentally healthy person with a constant stream of doubt and uncertainty in your brain, then those rare moments of certainty are profound, impactful, and life changing.

Just don't expect them often.

Your uncertainty in your relationship is far more healthy and normal than her certainty. Her certainty is not at all healthy. How can she possibly be maturely certain that she wants to marry you and have children with you when she doesn't even feel certain that you are solidly committed to her.

Her certainty isn't rational. Your UNcertainty is.
Your uncertainty makes perfect sense in a relationship that has a lot of good and some very serious bad. OF COURSE you aren't sure what to do because no option feels obviously right.

THAT'S NORMAL. Lean into it.

There are certain things you should wait to feel certain about
1: marriage
2: kids
3: elective surgery

Beyond that, everything else is a matter of managing uncertainty and making the most reasonable decisions within a cloud of confusion.
That's called being an adult.

Mature, responsible people learn to not get too bogged down in the uncertainty. They learn that holding out for an obvious answer is a surefire path to wasting A LOT of time and energy and that often not making a decision is the *exact same* as making a TERRIBLE decision.

When it comes to relationships, it's very very difficult to know when it's truly wrong, but it's absolutely unambiguous when it's right. So if it's not obviously, overwhelmingly right...well...it's not going to be, and you are probably wasting both party's time.

iluvzbeach

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A friend of mine was in a long-term relationship with a guy who didnít know what he wanted in life. She knew what she wanted, marriage and kids. They broke up and four months later he was engaged to someone else. It ended up that while he didnít know what he wanted, he knew he didnít want a future with my friend. He just didnít realize it until heíd gotten out of the relationship. Both he and my friend got married to other people, had children with their respective spouses and remain happy nearly 20 years later. It is definitely hard to leave a long-term relationship but wouldnít you rather work on carving out a path toward a happy & healthy future?

I know a couple of people with similar stories.

OP, sometimes ďnot knowing what you wantĒ is your brain riding the brakes because deep down in your subconscious, you know this isnít what you want but youíre not quite willing to admit it yet.

Then after you break off the stagnant relationship, you meet the one you do want. And itís night and day.

It's completely normal to have no idea what you want.
In fact, decisive certainty is so rare that the people who have it often are typically whackos with impulse control problems. They feel overly certain about things and lack the normal, constant doubt that mentally healthy people have.

If you are a normal, mentally healthy person with a constant stream of doubt and uncertainty in your brain, then those rare moments of certainty are profound, impactful, and life changing.

Just don't expect them often.

Your uncertainty in your relationship is far more healthy and normal than her certainty. Her certainty is not at all healthy. How can she possibly be maturely certain that she wants to marry you and have children with you when she doesn't even feel certain that you are solidly committed to her.

Her certainty isn't rational. Your UNcertainty is.
Your uncertainty makes perfect sense in a relationship that has a lot of good and some very serious bad. OF COURSE you aren't sure what to do because no option feels obviously right.

THAT'S NORMAL. Lean into it.

There are certain things you should wait to feel certain about
1: marriage
2: kids
3: elective surgery

Beyond that, everything else is a matter of managing uncertainty and making the most reasonable decisions within a cloud of confusion.
That's called being an adult.

Mature, responsible people learn to not get too bogged down in the uncertainty. They learn that holding out for an obvious answer is a surefire path to wasting A LOT of time and energy and that often not making a decision is the *exact same* as making a TERRIBLE decision.

When it comes to relationships, it's very very difficult to know when it's truly wrong, but it's absolutely unambiguous when it's right. So if it's not obviously, overwhelmingly right...well...it's not going to be, and you are probably wasting both party's time.

@Malkynn You are so damn wise and articulate. I really love reading your insights and what youíve written above really makes sense.

Edited to correct placement of response.

« Last Edit: May 04, 2019, 08:42:49 AM by iluvzbeach »

Malkynn

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@Malkynn You are so damn wise and articulate. I really love reading your insights and what youíve written above really makes sense.

Edited to correct placement of response.

Life really isn't that complicated once you stop expecting it to make sense.

zoochadookdook

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Well she's at work today. I'm currently focusing on the talk tonight and if I want to leave a door open to getting back together in the future.

Hula Hoop

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Well she's at work today. I'm currently focusing on the talk tonight and if I want to leave a door open to getting back together in the future.

Good luck for the talk.  It's not going to be easy but it has to be done.

I agree with Malkynn about meeting the right person.  It should be 100% clear after a relatively short period of dating if you've met the person you should marry.  Obviously, no one is perfect, but this kind of doubt is a 'fatal flaw'.