Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Q & A: "cut off relations with him and tell him 'friends' don't have sex?"

Q: My boyfriend of 2 ½ years just told me that he needs space. He won't tell me why, he just said that it has nothing to do with me, and that he needs time to hang around his friends. I tried to make him talk to me but that just seems to make things worse. The only thing that happens is that we end up in a fight because I am pushing him to talk to me. One day he says he misses me, the next day he says he is confused. I have asked him if he wants to end it and he doesn't want to, but I can't take the push and pull. He has been asking for this space for 2 weeks and I keep calling him trying to get him to talk to me and he won't. All he keeps asking for is " when are you going to give me my space?" I will make things up to talk about and that makes it worse because we really have nothing to talk about. I am so lost and would like some advice.-Confused in LA

Dear Confused in LA,
If you can't take the push and pull, then stop it. He's only pulling away because you're pushing at him. What happens when you run after a cat? It runs away. And when you stop chasing it and stand still, it comes back to you.

There is nothing more difficult in the world than when a man asks for some space. Immediately, almost everyone woman on the planet (except the confident and secure women) goes ballistic when she hears those four awful words, "give me my space."

He's made a request. If you care about him and the relationship, then you will honor his request. Stop calling him. He doesn't want to talk to you right now, that's why he wants some space. The more you push the more you're going to drive him away.

His needing space is not about you. It's about him and his needs. But you think it's about you. And you want to make it about you. Stop it. I know this is painful and hurting your heart, but unless you want to employ Gestapo tactics to make him talk, leave him alone. He'll talk to you when he's ready.

Have some self-respect. Show some self-love. Be the wonderful, confident, Queen Bee that he fell in love with 2 ½ years ago and whom he has shared his life with these last two years. Stop calling him. Stop running after him. Be unavailable. At times like this you need your girlfriends. Let them take care of you and nurture you. That's what girlfriends are for. Back off completely. Let him pursue you.


Q: I have been "friends" with a guy for one year and 3 months. We see each other, are best friends, and sleep together. He told me up front that he did not want a commitment and that he valued our "friendship." He said that relationships ruin everything. We have both been hurt a lot in the past. His words say one thing while his actions say something else. He is very attentive and protective of me. He is jealous and does not like to hear about other guys. He tells me he doesn't date anyone except me. He buys me things, does a lot for me and is very generous with his time. What should I believe? The words or the actions? I care for him very much. He is smart, funny sensitive and cute. I want more from the relationship but I don't want to lose him. Should I draw a line in the sand and ask for a commitment or should I cut off relations with him and tell him "friends" don't have sex?-Not Just Friends

Dear Not Just Friends,
It seems to me that he is committed to you in many ways and that you have a "relationship", but because of his relationship history he is terrified of calling it a "relationship" and making a commitment. Unless you've faithfully taken your ESP pills for at least 20 years, don't make an assumption. Use your mouth and ask him what he thinks there is between you.

This is what I think. If it looks like a duck, quacks like a duck and acts like a duck, then it must be a duck. Feel free to use this analogy. "A rose by any other name…" Once you've both established the fact and agreed that you're in a relationship, and then you can discuss taking it to the next level. To easy his commitment fears, play show and tell. Go over the last 15 months and show him how different, for both of you, this relationship has been.

Be vulnerable, not defensive. When you're vulnerable, open and sensitive, you give him permission and the opportunity to open his heart, take off his hero armor, be vulnerable with you and talk about his fears. Just as you can't push the river, you can't push a man. It won't work, so you might as well not even try.

As far as using sex as a weapon to get him off the fence, do you really want to force him into a commitment? I don't think so. You're better than that, aren't you? Do you want him to commit willingly or do you want that commitment any way you can get it? Get very clear before you have the conversation with him. If I were you, I would come from a loving space and not from a fearful place. I would come from the place that you're talking with your lover and best friend, and know that you are both really playing on the same team and, want to same results. If you don't want the same results, then one of you needs to be traded to another team. Let me know how it turns out.


Q: I am gay, first of all. About 3 years ago, I met a guy who became my roommate for 5 months. We had a blast living together. He then got back together with a previous boyfriend and it was at that time that I realized that I had fallen for him. I came clean and told him this. He was fine with it for a while, although he admitted that he didn't have those feelings for me. And then he abruptly told me about 2 weeks after my confession that he didn't want to be my friend anymore and moved out. I have not really seen him since.

About 2 years have gone by and I still think about him all the time. I have definitely moved on with my life, but he is still so strongly in my heart. Last night I saw his car at an event that I went to and my heart just sank. It hurt. I was almost in physical pain it hurt so much. I could feel my heart beating and my hands shaking. My question is: Will I ever be over him? What do I have to do to rid him from my memory? I hate the fact that every time I see a car like his, I automatically look at the license plate to see if it is his car. After two years it still hurts.

What do I need to do to get past this? I have definitely moved on with my life. I have a new roommate now. I am working in a successful career. I have a ton of friends. I date occasionally. I am happy in other aspects of my life, but this one never seems to get any easier. -Still Hurting


Dear Still Hurting,
You say you have moved on with your life, but I don't think so. You're still obsessing over a relationship that ended two years ago. Your preoccupation with him is preventing you from living today. Feel your feelings but don't let them rule you. You can feel bad but you don't have to park there. It will take work but you can do it.

I know how horrible you feel, I've been there. We've all been there. There is nothing worse than loving someone and not having those feelings returned. But, you don't have to continue torturing yourself - that's a conscious choice.

Remember one of my cardinal rules. You only love those who love you.

Start loving yourself and begin making self-respect deposits in your internal bank. Once your start loving yourself, you'll come to realize that you don't really want someone who doesn't love you back. You'll realize that it's a waste of time, energy and your life.

I know this isn't what you want to hear, but you did write to me for advice and I'm always honest. So here goes. Two years of living in misery is long enough. Stop looking for his car. Stop looking for ways to make yourself miserable. Start finding ways to make yourself happy and enjoy life. Let it go. Let go of the dream. He has already moved on with his life. Don't you think you should do the same?

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