Blogs


Notices

Am I settling?

Old 08-02-2016, 11:14 AM
  # 1 (permalink)  
Member
Thread Starter
 
lizatola's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Posts: 2,349
Am I settling?

After all my years living with dysfunction and alcoholism, I sometimes don't always knows what's best for me. I hem and haw, waffle and bounce around constantly. Should I? Shouldn't I? Am I making the right decision here? I am slowly learning to trust my intuition and my gut. But insecurity and doubt cloud my thinking at times.

I love my new bf. We've been living together as blended families for 2.5 months now(he lived with me for 2 months prior to this, as well) and everything is great. The kids are good, we work well as a team together, we have a good physical relationship, and we honestly have fun together (as a couple and as a family). I really can't complain.

He's honest, very direct, driven, responsible, kind, respectful, generous with his time and his energy he devotes to making sure we have a relationship despite us both having kids and jobs, etc. I've recently just gotten a dozen roses....just because. I always 'feel' loved by him and by his actions. There is NO emotional abuse or gas lighting or crazy making behaviors.

Here's my dilemma. My bf is very honest. He's an introvert. He's a thinker and he processes EVERYTHING internally before he makes a decision. He doesn't trust emotions even if he has them; it's like he has to rationalize his feelings and think about them before he knows exactly what they are.

He struggles with the words "i love you". He told me that he's been very reserved since his divorce 3 years ago. He has told me that he loves me a few times but most times it's in response to me saying it and because I can tell he's uncomfortable I tend to only say it when I'm totally feeling it, instead of on a regular basis. He says falling in love is a process and he knows he's guarded. We talked a lot more and eventually I asked him if he felt we made the right decision moving in together, to which he said, "YES, yes...absolutely."

The man always talks about the future together. He wants to help me get out of debt and wants me to sell my car and will give me his older Audi to drive for a year or so until I get my debts cleared up. He has been nothing but consistent and supportive and loving all this time. We're both mid 40s, have kids, jobs, responsibilities that younger people may not have and I think we've done a good job of making things work.

So, what's my problem? I am so damn stuck on worrying that I'll always be more emotionally involved in the relationship than he is. That maybe I'm settling for a comfortable relationship when I may want more. That maybe his ex wife damaged his ability to truly trust and fully love another woman and I just get the crumbs and his broken heart. I knew to not get involved with a man who was recently divorced but my guy is pushing 4 years post divorce and had 2 other relationships before me so I wasn't his rebound.

And then I think that maybe I'm just impatient. He's been honest. He still shows he loves me: giving me a massage, making dinner for me last night even though he had to attend an event for the kids' school, brought me my tea this AM while I was doing my hair. I have a beautiful life today but I still struggle to just live for today. Old habits of thought die hard. I have come so far and yet I am finding it hard today to just be in acceptance, to love what is, and to just take life one day at a time. Recovery is certainly a lifelong process, isn't it?
lizatola is offline  
The Following 13 Users Say Thank You to lizatola For This Useful Post:
AdelineRose (08-02-2016), Adrian80 (08-03-2016), AnvilheadII (08-02-2016), atalose (08-02-2016), Bekindalways (08-02-2016), caretaker88 (08-03-2016), firebolt (08-02-2016), FireSprite (08-03-2016), honeypig (08-02-2016), LifeRecovery (08-02-2016), maia1234 (08-03-2016), MsGreenJeans (08-03-2016), theuncertainty (08-03-2016)
Old 08-02-2016, 11:21 AM
  # 2 (permalink)  
Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Posts: 196
lizatola - If this is your fear "That maybe I'm settling for a comfortable relationship when I may want more." What more do you think you might want? Do you have a gut feeling that you don't love him? How long were you dating before living together? From the way you describe your relationship, it sounds like this is a very considerate man.

I literally laughed out loud about this - "He's a thinker and he processes EVERYTHING internally before he makes a decision. He doesn't trust emotions even if he has them; it's like he has to rationalize his feelings and think about them before he knows exactly what they are." I completely understand that and it is foreign to me that everyone doesn't do that. Does that bother you? Why do you think you're more invested than he is?

I'm asking those questions because I am trying to understand what exactly you are afraid of. Maybe there is more than what you have stated your fears are?
TimeForMe is offline  
The Following 6 Users Say Thank You to TimeForMe For This Useful Post:
atalose (08-02-2016), Bekindalways (08-02-2016), caretaker88 (08-03-2016), firebolt (08-02-2016), honeypig (08-02-2016), theuncertainty (08-03-2016)
Old 08-02-2016, 11:27 AM
  # 3 (permalink)  
Member
 
biminiblue's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2014
Posts: 21,872
But. But. But where's the dddrrrrraaaammmmmmaaaa?

I get you. Learning to be at peace isn't that easy, and some of us go kicking and screaming. If drama is what we are used to, the opposite is a bit unsettling! I think you are a lucky woman, and you are very smart and capable. It's just not what we codies are built to do. I burned myself out on drama and now I have zero tolerance. It's a balancing act, for sure.
biminiblue is offline  
The Following 17 Users Say Thank You to biminiblue For This Useful Post:
AnvilheadII (08-02-2016), Ariesagain (08-02-2016), atalose (08-02-2016), Bekindalways (08-02-2016), caretaker88 (08-03-2016), firebolt (08-02-2016), honeypig (08-02-2016), hopeful4 (08-03-2016), HopefulinFLA (08-05-2016), Lilro (08-03-2016), lizatola (08-04-2016), maia1234 (08-03-2016), MsGreenJeans (08-03-2016), NYCDoglvr (08-03-2016), SparkleKitty (08-02-2016), theuncertainty (08-03-2016), tomsteve (08-02-2016)
Old 08-02-2016, 11:29 AM
  # 4 (permalink)  
Member
 
firebolt's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2012
Posts: 3,699
Hmm

My XABF said he loved me - all the time. He told the world he loved me. He called me beautiful, and his soul mate.

His actions however, were the complete opposite, half of the time. He called me horrible names. He was inappropriate with women. He ditched me when I needed him. He was hateful when he didn't get his way.

So - actions, not words, Liz.

It is so hard to see the line between a healthy desire for our future, and expecting someone else to make us feel good about ourselves.

I sometimes don't always knows what's best for me. I hem and haw, waffle and bounce around constantly. Should I? Shouldn't I? Am I making the right decision here? I am slowly learning to trust my intuition and my gut. But insecurity and doubt cloud my thinking at times.
I struggle with this as well - so much.

If yesterday with him is good, and today is good, then you can probably expect tomorrow to be good as well.

If it is excitement and crazy passion you are missing, there are plenty of alcoholics out there

I found something similar in the book Conquering Codependency and Shame (great book btw)....and as a girl that loves some thrills..... this was a bit of an eye opener for me.

firebolt is offline  
The Following 14 Users Say Thank You to firebolt For This Useful Post:
AnvilheadII (08-02-2016), atalose (08-02-2016), Berrybean (08-02-2016), Butterfly (08-02-2016), caretaker88 (08-03-2016), FireSprite (08-03-2016), honeypig (08-02-2016), LifeRecovery (08-02-2016), lizatola (08-04-2016), maia1234 (08-03-2016), MsGreenJeans (08-03-2016), theuncertainty (08-03-2016), tomsteve (08-02-2016), Wisconsin (08-02-2016)
Old 08-02-2016, 11:29 AM
  # 5 (permalink)  
Member
 
AnvilheadII's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2013
Location: W Washington
Posts: 11,590
it sounds like you are getting a lot more than CRUMBS Liz.....

i wonder if it isn't all just too freaking NORMAL aka BORING from what you are used to? because there is no drama, no chaos, no extreme highs and lows. you don't have to fight for three minutes of attention. you are not being made to blame for everything. you are not made responsible for everything. there are no eggshells. you don't have to worry about which version of your partner you'll get when you open the door.

moving in together is a BIG deal. and i'm glad that your "thinker" is still operational, taking the temperature to check that all is well. you are not entering into this blind. but you are on the lookout for storm clouds on the horizon. that's not a bad thing. unless that becomes your full time job!!!!

can you clearly identify what it is you think is MISSING?
AnvilheadII is offline  
The Following 11 Users Say Thank You to AnvilheadII For This Useful Post:
atalose (08-02-2016), caretaker88 (08-03-2016), CentralOhioDad (08-02-2016), firebolt (08-02-2016), honeypig (08-02-2016), hopeful4 (08-03-2016), Lilro (08-03-2016), lizatola (08-02-2016), maia1234 (08-03-2016), theuncertainty (08-03-2016), tomsteve (08-02-2016)
Old 08-02-2016, 11:51 AM
  # 6 (permalink)  
Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: Wisconsin
Posts: 1,571
Giiiirrrrrlllll! I feel you. I really, really do.

As I've mentioned ad nauseam here, I have two failed marriages behind me. My first husband (and father of my daughters) is a good and kind man, and he treated me well. We had other issues in our relationship and at the end of the day I just did not see him as an equal. For reasons totally different than the reasons it happens with an addict, I felt like I was his parent, not his partner. And yes, my own dysfunction and issues played a big part in that. While I respected (and still respect) him as a human being and as a father to our daughters, I did not respect him as a life partner and I did not love him the way a person should love a spouse.

My second husband (my STBXAH and father of my son) treated me well for the first year of our relationship, and it was all downhill from there (coinciding, of course, with his relapse into active alcoholism). After that, he was abusive and manipulative. Same story...at the end of it all, I just did not respect him. The lack of respect invaded a lot more areas of our lives than with my first husband, but to me it became clear. For me, anyway, I simply cannot have a healthy, fulfilling romantic relationship with someone I do not RESPECT.

It is obvious you have a lot of respect for your BF. I know that you love him very much. I also know that we will all carry our particular brand of crazy with us for the rest of our lives--that's why recovery is a journey and a process, not a destination. For me, it's grounded in deep insecurity and my occasional, irrational fear that the other shoe is going to drop sooner or later, even though absolutely NOTHING in the daily life of my (totally awesome) relationship gives credence to that fear. But I know that this is my crazy. I own it, and I work through it as best I can. And I get better about it over the long term, even if I backslide sometimes for a day or two.

I do not think that ANYBODY has a long-term, monogamous relationship with another person that meets every single need, 100% of the time. I think that when we look for that in a relationship, it's a sign of some of those "unhealthy love" patterns from firebolt's post above peeking through. On the other hand, we all express love (and want love expressed to us) in the ways we relate to the most. Isn't there a book out there called "Love Languages"? Anyway, I think that if you and your BF have different love languages (or, in other words, if you are each most responsive to different kinds of expression and validation), you could be interpreting that as being unfulfilled. Because based on what you have described about your relationship and your BF's behavior, you guys have a great thing going. It truly just sounds like different love/communication styles, which is ABSOLUTELY something that thoughtful, invested partners can work on together.

Liz, I have known you for many years now. You are intelligent, you are thoughtful, and you have worked VERY hard in your recovery. You are one of the most self-aware people here, and I know you feel that at least some of this is tied up in your own residual issues. It definitely sounds that while your BF may not talk the talk as much as you would like, he walks the walk every. single. day. And man...I would trade a talker for a walker any day of the week.

Love you, my friend!
Wisconsin is offline  
The Following 14 Users Say Thank You to Wisconsin For This Useful Post:
atalose (08-02-2016), caretaker88 (08-03-2016), CentralOhioDad (08-03-2016), firebolt (08-02-2016), FireSprite (08-03-2016), honeypig (08-02-2016), hopeful4 (08-03-2016), HopefulinFLA (08-05-2016), LifeRecovery (08-02-2016), Lilro (08-03-2016), lizatola (08-02-2016), maia1234 (08-03-2016), MsGreenJeans (08-03-2016), theuncertainty (08-03-2016)
Old 08-02-2016, 12:01 PM
  # 7 (permalink)  
Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2011
Location: Right here, right now!
Posts: 3,365
Originally Posted by lizatola View Post
After all my years living with dysfunction and alcoholism, I sometimes don't always knows what's best for me. I hem and haw, waffle and bounce around constantly. Should I? Shouldn't I? Am I making the right decision here? I am slowly learning to trust my intuition and my gut. But insecurity and doubt cloud my thinking at times.

So, what's my problem? I am so damn stuck on worrying that I'll always be more emotionally involved in the relationship than he is.
Lizatola-

It seems by what you write, especially how you start out your share that you are struggling with your emotions around your relationship, rather than the relationship itself? I imagine with the work that you have been doing on yourself that this would be a fine line to walk in such a different relationship from your marriage. I feel like your opening paragraph nicely sums up how I have been challenged in this ongoing recovery process.....

The second part is this. You probably WILL be more verbally emotional in the relationship, because of who you are. I read your share as not that he is not emotional, but that he is not verbally expressive.

Do you think your words of sharing "I love you," upset him somehow? Do they upset you that he is not able to share them back?

I am curious how your learning will grow with this.

Wisconsin cross posted. The book she talks about is The Five Love Languages and I also wondered if your love languages might be different.
LifeRecovery is offline  
The Following 8 Users Say Thank You to LifeRecovery For This Useful Post:
atalose (08-02-2016), caretaker88 (08-03-2016), firebolt (08-02-2016), FireSprite (08-03-2016), honeypig (08-02-2016), lizatola (08-02-2016), tomsteve (08-02-2016), Wisconsin (08-02-2016)
Old 08-02-2016, 12:32 PM
  # 8 (permalink)  
Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2015
Posts: 23
I was just talking to a friend about this the other day. She was in a completely toxic relationship for years and now she's in a healthy one. I asked her if she felt "as in love" with the new guy as the one before.

As we talked it out we realized that the "highs" of a toxic relationships will never be reached in a healthy one. But that the bad times are never as low as they were before.

I don't know if this helps you but it helped me frame the idea that I'll never love someone the way I loved my ex. Which is a good thing because that was no way to live.

We are told to watch their actions and I think this guy is actively showing you just how much he does care about.
mcm19 is offline  
The Following 8 Users Say Thank You to mcm19 For This Useful Post:
atalose (08-02-2016), caretaker88 (08-03-2016), firebolt (08-02-2016), honeypig (08-02-2016), hopeful4 (08-03-2016), lizatola (08-02-2016), theuncertainty (08-03-2016), tomsteve (08-02-2016)
Old 08-02-2016, 12:42 PM
  # 9 (permalink)  
Member
 
dandylion's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2011
Posts: 15,556
Liz...I have a simple, practical idea: Sometimes, we have to TELL other people what we want/need from them. With men...I think that sometimes, we might want them to be mind readers....but they really aren't.
I wonder that if you really let him know in what ways you like for him to be more spontaneous with his expressions of love....if he loves you, he would make an effort to try to make you happy, in that way.....
I think that, sometimes, couples have to "teach" each other. None of us come completely aware and "programed" to another person's needs.
It might even be possible that he never had the role m odel of a married couple
openly exchanging sweet intimacies, like that.....

dandylion
dandylion is offline  
The Following 7 Users Say Thank You to dandylion For This Useful Post:
atalose (08-02-2016), caretaker88 (08-03-2016), firebolt (08-02-2016), honeypig (08-02-2016), Lilro (08-03-2016), lizatola (08-02-2016), theuncertainty (08-03-2016)
Old 08-02-2016, 12:55 PM
  # 10 (permalink)  
Member
 
AdelineRose's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2016
Location: NC
Posts: 662
Blog Entries: 1
I think we get so used to dealing with drama, fighting, regrets, extreme lows but extreme highs- if you re-read your post you love this man, this man treats you wonderfully, he thinks before he just says things that he may not truly mean (worth a lot more then someone just promising you the world but not showing it through actions) he cares about your RELATIONSHIP, your children, your debt, your life together. I think you might think everything is going to smoothly so you are telling yourself that he is great for x,y,z, BUT he doesn't say I love you enough despite a lot of actions that speak otherwise.

Reading the post I think you have found an amazing man, but you are the one in the relationship and there is always a lot more going on then anyone can write, describe portray- How about writing out what your ideal relationship would seem like and then look at how your relationship it- I think you will most likely find that you are just feeling anzy without having to live in crisis mode.
AdelineRose is offline  
The Following 5 Users Say Thank You to AdelineRose For This Useful Post:
atalose (08-02-2016), caretaker88 (08-03-2016), firebolt (08-02-2016), honeypig (08-02-2016), theuncertainty (08-03-2016)
Old 08-02-2016, 01:33 PM
  # 11 (permalink)  
Member
Thread Starter
 
lizatola's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Posts: 2,349
Originally Posted by AnvilheadII View Post
it sounds like you are getting a lot more than CRUMBS Liz.....

i wonder if it isn't all just too freaking NORMAL aka BORING from what you are used to? because there is no drama, no chaos, no extreme highs and lows. you don't have to fight for three minutes of attention. you are not being made to blame for everything. you are not made responsible for everything. there are no eggshells. you don't have to worry about which version of your partner you'll get when you open the door.

moving in together is a BIG deal. and i'm glad that your "thinker" is still operational, taking the temperature to check that all is well. you are not entering into this blind. but you are on the lookout for storm clouds on the horizon. that's not a bad thing. unless that becomes your full time job!!!!

can you clearly identify what it is you think is MISSING?
I read everyone's responses but just wanted to come on and respond to most questions. I'm not really sure what I need except that I know my need comes from my own fears of being not good enough, not perfect enough, etc. All fears from my relationship with my dad and with my XAH.
I know that I'd like to hear him say he loves me with a bit more sentiment than the falling asleep half awake, "love you." I know he's not verbally expressive but he has emotions. He told me he just doesn't wear his emotions on his sleeves and that he's cautious about who he opens up to and who he lets in to his inner circle, some of that is the introverted side of him and some of it is self protection from being burned by his ex wife.

I think I got upset when we were having a really great talk the other night and all I felt was love for the guy and I gushed it out with more emotion than usual and his response was, "You do? So, tell me why, lol...." I laughed but I realized he was uncomfortable with that level of intensity.

The next day I actually asked him, "Does it make you uncomfortable when I tell you I love you?" And, that's what opened up his defense about how it takes him longer to fall in love, how he wasn't always this reserved in relationships until after his divorce.

He's being honest and direct about the fact that he needs more time to solidify how he feels about me. I don't ever feel unloved by him if I base it on his actions. He didn't come out and say that he doesn't love me, he just told me he's more reserved than he's been in the past. I guess I kinda feel like the 'crumbs' I'm talking about is that every girl before me got him as a more verbally expressive guy and I get the one who's been hurt, has a wall up around his heart (and probably for good reason), and who is taking his time falling in love.

As for the love languages we check in with each other on this one and words of affirmation is actually not at the top of my list. Our lists are identical to each other. I don' t need to hear I love you every single day and I am uncomfortable with a lot of gushy lovey dovey stuff. My concern with us is that I hope I'm not settling for a situation where it's unrequited love, where I just have deeper feelings for the man than he'll have for me which makes me feel uncomfortable and awkward. I don't want to ever feel like I have to convince someone to love me, I don't want to ever force those words out of anybody's mouth. You either love me, like, me, or you don't. It's that simple.

He and I also discuss the book, 'His Needs, Her Needs' on a regular basis. We try to make sure we're both working well with each other. He actually takes this stuff quite seriously. He internalizes everything.
lizatola is offline  
The Following 6 Users Say Thank You to lizatola For This Useful Post:
atalose (08-02-2016), caretaker88 (08-03-2016), firebolt (08-02-2016), FireSprite (08-03-2016), honeypig (08-02-2016), LifeRecovery (08-02-2016)
Old 08-02-2016, 01:44 PM
  # 12 (permalink)  
Member
 
firebolt's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2012
Posts: 3,699
I think that in every relationship one person is into it more than the other. We are individuals after all, and that is OK!

Based on his actions, your situation seems far from unrequited love.

You being more outward about your feelings in no way means that his don't run deep. It takes me a long, long time to be "all in" with love - but the feelings are there far before I openly agree (for lack of a better word) to being in love - if that makes any sense. Sure, it's a defense mechanism...we all have them.

So far, is he worth it to you to wait for it?
firebolt is offline  
The Following 5 Users Say Thank You to firebolt For This Useful Post:
atalose (08-02-2016), caretaker88 (08-03-2016), FireSprite (08-03-2016), honeypig (08-06-2016), lizatola (08-03-2016)
Old 08-02-2016, 02:04 PM
  # 13 (permalink)  
Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2011
Location: Right here, right now!
Posts: 3,365
Lizatola-

Thanks for the second post. Your worries, fears and concerns make so much sense after reading that.

Thanks for asking us to be on this journey and learn with you.
LifeRecovery is offline  
The Following 6 Users Say Thank You to LifeRecovery For This Useful Post:
atalose (08-02-2016), caretaker88 (08-03-2016), FireSprite (08-03-2016), honeypig (08-06-2016), hopeful4 (08-03-2016), lizatola (08-03-2016)
Old 08-03-2016, 04:27 AM
  # 14 (permalink)  
Member
 
CentralOhioDad's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: Central O-H-I-O
Posts: 1,689
Hi Liz!! Okay, male introvert chiming in!!

I see both sides, especially his. Not discounting yours, because my AW is more like you, but I see his side because I am more like him.

One thing that we 'push' on newcomers when they are waffling because they tell us, "My A said 'XXX', but then they did 'YYY' - which is bad!". Our response - "It's actions, not words, that really count." And we beat this into them.

I know of your past issues, I understand. But I'm like your BF, and I say if he's knocking himself out SHOWING you his love, his caring, his support, then that's what you need to accept - for now. He may come around, in time, or he may not. As long as the actions are there, and you know they are genuine, then I'd be doing cartwheels and enjoying what you haven't had for so long - a sense of belonging, and strong (albeit quiet) love.

Just my .02

COD
CentralOhioDad is offline  
The Following 5 Users Say Thank You to CentralOhioDad For This Useful Post:
caretaker88 (08-03-2016), FireSprite (08-03-2016), honeypig (08-06-2016), hopeful4 (08-03-2016), lizatola (08-03-2016)
Old 08-03-2016, 04:51 AM
  # 15 (permalink)  
A work in progress
 
LexieCat's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: South Jersey
Posts: 16,633
One other thought here. I think when we say stuff like "Oh, I love you so much," we are making ourselves very vulnerable. Think about it. He's been hurt, himself. And if he was more demonstrative before, he may have felt even more wounded when he had opened himself up the way he did.

So it might not be that he isn't FEELING the same way, just that he's been burned and it's hard to lay yourself open like that. He may not be as upfront about his insecurities as you are, but everyone has them. It might feel like he's jinxing himself or inviting disaster if he lays it all out there.

Sounds to me as if you are overthinking it a bit. I understand--I do the same thing. Still, I agree with Wisconsin. Nobody can, realistically, meet the other person's "needs" all of the time. The illusion of a "perfect match" is what gets so many of us hooked into relationships that FEEL that way on the surface, but don't stand the test of time and the STUFF that life brings.
LexieCat is offline  
The Following 6 Users Say Thank You to LexieCat For This Useful Post:
caretaker88 (08-03-2016), firebolt (08-03-2016), FireSprite (08-03-2016), honeypig (08-06-2016), hopeful4 (08-03-2016), lizatola (08-03-2016)
Old 08-03-2016, 06:16 AM
  # 16 (permalink)  
Member
Thread Starter
 
lizatola's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Posts: 2,349
Originally Posted by LexieCat View Post
One other thought here. I think when we say stuff like "Oh, I love you so much," we are making ourselves very vulnerable. Think about it. He's been hurt, himself. And if he was more demonstrative before, he may have felt even more wounded when he had opened himself up the way he did.

So it might not be that he isn't FEELING the same way, just that he's been burned and it's hard to lay yourself open like that. He may not be as upfront about his insecurities as you are, but everyone has them. It might feel like he's jinxing himself or inviting disaster if he lays it all out there.

Sounds to me as if you are overthinking it a bit. I understand--I do the same thing. Still, I agree with Wisconsin. Nobody can, realistically, meet the other person's "needs" all of the time. The illusion of a "perfect match" is what gets so many of us hooked into relationships that FEEL that way on the surface, but don't stand the test of time and the STUFF that life brings.
Overthinking? Who? Me?
lizatola is offline  
The Following 8 Users Say Thank You to lizatola For This Useful Post:
caretaker88 (08-03-2016), CentralOhioDad (08-03-2016), firebolt (08-03-2016), FireSprite (08-03-2016), honeypig (08-06-2016), hopeful4 (08-03-2016), LexieCat (08-03-2016), SparkleKitty (08-03-2016)
Old 08-03-2016, 06:21 AM
  # 17 (permalink)  
A work in progress
 
LexieCat's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: South Jersey
Posts: 16,633
Originally Posted by lizatola View Post
Overthinking? Who? Me?
LOL, I hope he appreciates your sense of humor.
LexieCat is offline  
The Following 4 Users Say Thank You to LexieCat For This Useful Post:
caretaker88 (08-03-2016), firebolt (08-03-2016), honeypig (08-06-2016), lizatola (08-04-2016)
Old 08-03-2016, 06:26 AM
  # 18 (permalink)  
Member
 
dandylion's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2011
Posts: 15,556
Liz.....going back to the example that you gave----you told him "I love you".....and, he replied "..."You do? so, tell me why".
What I hear him )possibly) saying is...." I am craving to luxuriate in how I am the apple of your eye. I want to hear how I am adored. Please allow me that emotional pleasure. Stroke me where I need to be stroked".
I see that as a normal human response wish/need in an intimate relationship.
Isn't that the same thing you wanted, also, when you wanted to hear him say "I love you. too". back?
I think it might be possible that he has the same degree of insecurities that you have about how "safe" his tender, vulnerable, underbelly (his heart) is in the relationship.
In a relationship...I think it is a natural flow of things for it to be one person's turn at one time...and the other persons turn at another time. Sometimes, I give you the "gift"...and, sometimes, you give me the "gift".
One rule that I learned that helped me about giving to another---if you ever give a gift with the expectation that they will give you something in return for that particular gift--it is more of a manipulation than a true gift. A pure gift is to give with no expectation of anything else in return. (yes, a return might feel nice...but is not necessary).
I am going to use my imagination, here--and say that I have done the same thing with my wonderful husband. I can remember him hugging me and saying "I love you, my mouse" (he nicknamed me mouse--long story).,,,,and I, in a very coy way, asked "Ohm yeah? Please count the ways"....and, you know what?.....he did. And, I loved it!! It warmed my heart to see myself reflected back in his eyes. Good, normal, human stuff...in my opinion.
I imagine that, maybe, your BF did not get a lot of this kind of feedback, growing up. Maybe, never saw it in his parents. Might be new stuff to him.
(I want to say that I am, naturally, verbally expressive...and did my share of laying praise and expressions of love on my husband. There were the times that I gushed things, like..."You are so wonderful!"....and he didn't reply in kind...he just got a warm feeling of satisfaction inside (I am sure).....
My husband wasn't raised in a household of "gushy stuff", either.
Men are taught, generally, to keep a damper on their tender emotions by society, in general.
I truly believe that they may have to "learn" to be safer in expressing these feelings, openly. this may be done, for the first time, in their intima
te relationships, in adulthood.....
this brings me back to something that I said before....we have to be willing to tell out intimates what we NEED....as they may not be mind readers.
You have told us what you are needing.....have you told him, exactly...?

Liz, I am rambling on about this...lol....I hope that some of it is of value to you...

dandylion
dandylion is offline  
The Following 4 Users Say Thank You to dandylion For This Useful Post:
caretaker88 (08-03-2016), firebolt (08-03-2016), honeypig (08-06-2016), lizatola (08-04-2016)
Old 08-03-2016, 06:28 AM
  # 19 (permalink)  
Community Greeter
 
hopeful4's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2010
Location: USA
Posts: 13,566
Blog Entries: 10
Liz....as we all say here, look at the actions, not the words. This man SHOWS you he loves you. He treats you well, he is honest with you. I think those qualities are the ones who show who he is and how he feels. Remember, anyone who has been in a bad relationship, including you, pack some baggage that is taken with them, for a long time. It's your actions through trust and honesty that will eventually help him put that guard down in time, just like his honesty and trustworthiness will do that for you.

Until then, I would keep looking at his actions and judging by them what sort of man he is.

Hugs to you.
hopeful4 is offline  
The Following 4 Users Say Thank You to hopeful4 For This Useful Post:
caretaker88 (08-03-2016), firebolt (08-03-2016), FireSprite (08-03-2016), honeypig (08-06-2016)
Old 08-03-2016, 08:05 AM
  # 20 (permalink)  
Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2014
Posts: 667
OK. So I'm one of these guys. Let me help you.

We take longer to fall in love. Its a big deal to be in love. There is an emotional shift that we have to commit ourselves to. We also don't fall out of love very quickly. As a result if we love you, we tend to stay with you through thick and thin. That is why it is not an easy emotion to jump to. It isn't about fear of commitment or all those cliches that women try and place on us. We can and do love and we can express it. But we show we love you by the things we do and the integrity by which we do things. ie. He has been honest, even if you don't like it sometimes. He cooks you dinner. He helps you get out of debt, etc etc. There is a long list you can refer to just in your post, and I'm sure more you didn't post.

Here is the rub. Many women see love as the Romance Novel love. They want it to be stars and sunsets and flocks of lovebirds hovering overhead. Men like me, see it more from the reality of, you build a life around the reality of what that will be. You have imperfections. You have financial issues, You have etc etc etc. All will be loved and dealt with. That isn't Romance Novel stuff. But that is the reality of life more times than not.

The men that fall in love easy are usually the ones that have a string of bad past relationships and don't care to see that they need to examine that in themselves. As soon as one fails, they are already in the next one, before the boxes are unpacked from the move.

Remember we came from a place where the person that said they loved you often used it as way to placate you. My ex said she loved me so much, it got kind of suspicious. And in the end I discovered that she loved me "verbally" every time she was up to something bad. (Drinking, cheating etc.). So those words are not meaningless to us, but we prefer to see and do actions.

Analyzing.
Women decide on emotion more than logic, men the opposite. I would rather over analyze than under analyze. The result, I have had far fewer bad things happen to me in my life than many others. I find that most females like the idea that I can think through all aspects and plan for as many outcomes as possible ahead of time. I do know that there is such a thing as too much analyzing if you are the other party. So let me do it on my time, I'll get back to you when I'm done. Nothing personal meant there. We are actually looking out for the common interest of us all as well as the individual ones. Love and relationships aren't simple. There are a lot of moving parts.

If he is older, he has learned more. Therefore more things to consider.

Look at your life and its place. Look at his life and its place. If ya'll are in a different place, then ya'll got there from different actions. If you are happy with your place, then send him along and keep looking. If you like his place better, then see what he does that's different. You may be experiencing that first hand and just aren't used to it.
Hangnbyathread is offline  
The Following 10 Users Say Thank You to Hangnbyathread For This Useful Post:
caretaker88 (08-04-2016), CentralOhioDad (08-03-2016), desertgirl (08-03-2016), FeelingGreat (08-06-2016), firebolt (08-03-2016), FireSprite (08-03-2016), honeypig (08-06-2016), hopeful4 (08-03-2016), LexieCat (08-03-2016), lizatola (08-03-2016)

Currently Active Users Viewing this Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are Off




All times are GMT -7. The time now is 10:19 AM.