Should I go back to dating? Have I made a mistake?


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This topic contains 8 replies, has 1 voice, and was last updated by  Jennifer 1 week, 4 days ago.

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  • #759978 Reply

    Jennifer

    I’ve been dating this guy for a year… I’ve had crushes and puppy love before, but this guy is my first boyfriend, my first relationship, first man I ever slept with, first guy I passionately kissed etc. Before then, there had been no one else, just one guy that I had a platonic summer romance with, and a handful of flirtatious close encounters and infatuations.
    I lost my virginity to this guy in my late 20s, before then I was not a stranger to sex, and I was in touch with my sexuality and wanted to have that kind of encounter with a guy. Even though I’d never got deep enough into a flirtation or a bond to have that kind of exchange, I knew what it was and wasn’t afraid of it. Needless to say, I guess I was headstrong and naive. I though I knew what dating would be like, I thought that after one date if a connection was strong enough that meant we were exclusive (lmfao now, how naive).

    So, this guy and I met up, had our first kiss on our second date, slept together on our second, and fell really quickly into an exclusive relationship. Things have been going well for the most part, although we’ve had some big ups and downs. We seem fairly settled now, even though we’ve only been seeing each other a year.

    I feel that in the beginning it was my anxiety and lack of experience that really brought us to a point of exclusivity. Did I put pressure on things? should I have been more relaxed? Why did I get in so deep so soon?
    It’s only been a year or so, so I guess I can’t really expect anything and I should be worried if things were moving any faster, but we don’t talk about the future. Looking back, I never dated anyone else, and I’m starting to think that I should have dated more men, tried out different connections… Because although me and my BF get on fine, theres a definite lack of romance and affection and I have all these doubts. I’m the one who travels to be with him all the time. He still lives with his parents. He’s never even met mine. Whenever I try to have a conversation with him about where we are at, he feebly, lazily declines.

    Day by day, I’m getting this feeling that there were/are other men out there who might actually want to commit to me, who might buy me flowers and tell me they are really happy that they met me. I know, romance and affection, what every girl wants but we have no right to expect in this day and age right?

    I’m confused and sad. I think I love this guy, but we’ve never said that we love each other. Sometimes when I try to show him affection, he gives me the cold shoulder. Is that normal, in a relationship thats going anywhere?
    Or maybe I am too sensitive. Maybe I need to accept the reality of relationships, as opposed to the beautiful fantasy so many women hold out for…

    I’m getting this urge to turn away from my bf and date other men.
    should I try to talk to him about how I feel, or will that potentially destroy us?

    #759982 Reply

    Omg

    After a year the guy hasn’t even said he loves you. That’s your answer.

    #759987 Reply

    Jennifer

    Yea, I hear you.
    But I’m so inexperienced I wouldn’t have any clue. Like generally when do people know they love each other, and when do they tell each other?? Is there like some kind of milestone or is it different for every couple?

    #759996 Reply

    mama

    Jennifer,
    This site actually has some really good articles about dating. And (not ironically) eHarmony has really good articles about relationships and how healthy ones develop and unfold. You can read those articles even if you’re not a member. I suggest going to take a look.

    As for your man and when the right time to say Ilove you … well I think that’s for you to decide. If you feel it, you should say it. But most of us commenters will say it’s not a good sign that you aren’t using that phrase after a year. I am with a man who says it alllllll day long. Texts it to me at least 3 times a day — and we are old! (in our 50s). I’ve also been married to a man who said it maybe once or twice a week. I like somewhere in the middle — at least once a day, looking into my eye and saying it with sincerity.

    But I wouldn’t have known that without having lived my experience. Part of me thinks maybe you’re just looking for greener grass but you know that saying. ;) But then again, if you are in your late 20s and wondering what else is out there, you may be going through some sort of personal awakening.

    If I were you, I wouldn’t just move on from this man — maybe tell him your needs, your worries, etc. give it some good honest effort to communicate with him and let him understand that if you guys can’t talk about things, you may have to move on. And then do that if he doesn’t take it seriously. But I honestly think you should try to get the stuff you are worried about out in the open. It’s been a year. And this is good adulting practice — to have hard conversations. :)

    I know you don’t really have anything else to base it on but most people in healthy relationships that want to move forward with traditional expectations in a relationship have **at the very least** said ‘I love you’ within 3-6 months.

    Be a grownup, have the talk. Make sure you are clear of your own expectations and desires from your relationship because your clarity will help in your discussion.

    Good luck!

    #760010 Reply

    Jennifer

    Mama,
    Thank you for your sound and warm advice. I feel encouraged to take a step forward and to try and talk about this with him. I suppose the reason why I haven’t already done that is because I’m scared of the outcome… I don’t want to scare him off by seeming pushy, needy, demanding commitment, certainly not demanding love…At the same time, every week I’m left with this feeling of frustration, confusion and yearning for communication. In my heart, I love him. But it’s as if I’m starting to see things as they are as opposed to what I keep hoping they are. All of the above said, I believe we have a good relationship. We talk deeply, when we are together we have such lovely times, we hold each other as we go to sleep, we are able to be playful and laugh together, we have a lot in common and we show each other care and support (love) in many gestures… So I ask myself what exactly do I want and expect? Why am I anxious about where we’re at? Am I being unreasonable, and insecure?

    #760016 Reply

    mama

    You are not being unreasonable at all. LIke I said, you have nothing to compare this to — that’s sort of terrifying AND freeing all in the same. You are learning what you want from a man — to show you love, and you have specific ideas of how that happens. You are anxious and that’s ok to be anxious. It’s been a YEAR! And it’s GREAT to ask yourself what you want and expect before talking to him. Clarity helps a ton when going into difficult conversations. Now it’s time to work with your man.

    Just remember though — his reaction will give you loads of information about who he is in the long run. Is he willing to discuss and talk about these things? Are you willing to hear what he has to say? Does he react defensively or negatively? Do you feel heard, respected and cared for? Are those things important to you? When you talk, are you happy with the resolution?

    Good luck dear!There are others on this forum that will give you much better advice than I about the kind of conversation to have, but this is a good start. :)

    #760058 Reply

    Anderson

    @mama Deary me your words and disposition are a breath of fresh air. Can you be my life coach? Hahaha. This forum, nay, this world is a better place with lovely people like you =)

    @Jennifer there’s not much I can add except that you have my confidence too in making that talk. You said that you two talk deeply, but it’s not truly if you can’t voice your needs and concerns with your partner. Showing and receiving affection, emotional transparency, and various languages of love are a big deal for many others, so you’re not alone.

    #760129 Reply

    Jennifer

    @mama you are indeed a breath of fresh air, thank you so much for your support & uplifting advice! I will mind what you have said closely as it all rings true. I truly appreciate your guidance and shining a warm light on the whole situation, I don’t feel as anxious now :) xx

    #760130 Reply

    Jennifer

    @Anderson thank you for your support and kind words. I will pluck up the courage to make this talk happen, whatever the result. It seems that this is a part of our talking that he struggles with. Maybe its down to men and women differences haha?

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