Hello and thank you for your question.
In order to give you my opinion/insight into this, I need some clarification. What does he mean be being with another woman? Does he mean have the space and time to explore dating and another possible relationship, or does he mean sexually or what exactly?
I think that his doubts are often the kinds of doubts many people have, when thinking about engagement and marriage. They wonder if they are ready to be with just one person for a lifetime, what that commitment really means, etc. However, many people decide that commitment means just that, to one person, and they understand that those doubts are normal, and can still move forward with the engagement etc. The fact that your boyfriend is actually voicing the concerns, doubts and wondering about them in a very serious way, means that they are more than doubts. At the same time, the fact that you are his first girlfriend means he is feeling like he doesn't have that experience of compare and contrast to help him feel at ease. That being said, a sexual encounter with another woman is not really going to answer that question for him. Meaning sex is one thing, and a loving relationship with a woman is a completely different thing, so he won't even be able to compare and contrast in any kind of meaningful way. I would not get engaged until he feels comfortable that he has this figured out within himself. You risk being caught in a loop here though, as he is saying he doesn't want to really date anyone else, and yet he doesn't want to commit because of that as well. So it becomes a roadblock, and you don't want to become stagnant. It could be a way of stalling a true commitment. I would advise that you tell him that if he really feels this way, that it would be best for the two of you to take some time apart so that he can be free to do what he needs to do. That you cannot guarantee what will happen (noone can) but that you feel like if he is with you, he will not have that opportunity to fulfill what he is feeling, and you don't want it to creep up later either. If you two are together while he is exploring other options or remaining open to them, you really risk getting hurt and damaging the relationship. But how you do this, is ultimately up to you two and what you feel comfortable with. You may also want to explore this with a premarital or couples counselor to help you both achieve some clarity on this. It doesn't have to be a deal breaker, but you two will eventually have to be on the same page, for this relationship to continue to evolve. Please click ACCEPT, if satisfied. Or ask for more info. Thank you!
Thanks for you response but there are a few points i would like to clarify
1) we are not getting engaged now. i am not ready. it has only been 2yrs and a half. i would say more at the 4yr mark is when we ll know where things are going. i mean to each couple their time, i just feel that this is mine
we are just living together now and frankly happily.
i have had a couple of bfs before but only for a few months so i am learning as well how to be in a relationship
2) He is not the party type or the going out a lot type and he really dislikes picking up at bars. But i know that he puts peer pressure on himself to compare to other males who talk about their adventures (which are invented most time but whatever that is their world). He told me once, i have no stories to tell. Now maybe because i am a girl i m like SO...i dont have one night stand stories either!!! but boys feel different i supposed.
I feel that is too bad but i cant fix that for him. and i get your point about having sex with another will not answer the relationship question. from what i understood he does not want to answer if he is in the right relationship...he wants to get rid of a craving if i may say it that way. Yes indeed sex is not the same as a loving relationship which is why part of me understands he needs to get rid of a craving. But i dunno how i will react to it if it happens. i may leave and he knows that. but right now i do not know how i will feel. he is also conscious that nothing may happen but it is just putting it out there so i am not betrayed i suppose.
3) I also keep my eyes open and i also have my doubts because my biggest fear is to end up with the wrong person. i always meet and talk to ppl and who knows what might come along the way. i dont need sex to know or feel better about a relationship. i have my ways. and i did tell him that and i find these doubts acceptable before you settle
4) last winter my bf got into a sort of a depression partly because of the rough canadian winter and partly because of that issue. I had a lot of activities for me to pass the winter. he on the other hand isolated himself and his friends got fed up. I
t took a toll on us and he panicked because we hit the 2yr mark. as he panicked i panicked and i asked him to leave for a month. so we separated for a month and i told him to do whatever he wants and me too. if he comes back it is because he decided that this is where he should be and that we are on the right path (who knows what the future holds) but at least we are working towards smth. If he doesn`t feel that way, then don`t come back.
he did come back and we talked and all was smooth since then (i mean we all have the doubts that creep in and out...i am not worried about those) but now that winter is coming a panicked a bit so i figured i would ask. Many things were rectified. he now has his activities and i have mine. we have our activities in common as well. i mean overall it is very healthy
So any extra feedback is great. We love each other i can see it but i just have to make sure i am not being stupid
okay so with this additional information, I would say that he agreed to take time apart to sort things out. If he came back to you, it should be with the agreement that things are now sorted out. The question is this: what will it take for him to get rid of this craving? More time? more experience? Are you going to spend more years like this, just to have him say he still has this craving? This is more than just doubts..it's a lingering block that needs to be remedied. Or you can just continue being together and hope that in time, he just overcomes this feeling with more maturity. It is a bit of a maturity issue as well.
He needs to come to the realization (on his own) that what he does have with you, outweighs any need for more sexual adventures. That is something only he can do. If this continues to be an issue, I would again ask for space and tell him only to come back this time, if he is completely over this lingering issue. Otherwise, what is the point of coming back together again. He is telling you this and open with you, so that you can decide for yourself if it's something that is a deal breaker, or not. That is something only you can decide...and it sounds like for you (at this point) anyhow, that you are mixed. Maybe in time and after you see how this Winter goes for him and for the two of you, you will have more direction around this. Please click ACCEPT, otherwise I'm not credited for my assistance. Thank you!