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Ryan LCSW, Relationships
Category: Relationship
Satisfied Customers: 872
Experience:  Professional therapist
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I have been in a serious relationship for 2 1/2 years. We are

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I have been in a serious relationship for 2 1/2 years. We are both in our late 50s and live in separate homes. He is working extra hours and assisting with an elderly parent. My question is does it sound like he wants to break up when he told me Monday night he needed space but still loves me? He hasn't called or stopped by since then.
Thanks for your question. My name is XXXXX XXXXX I'd like to help you out.

I'm sorry to hear about what you're going through in your relationship, and I can certainly understand why you would be concerned about this being a sign that you may break up. In general a lot usually depends on the reason that he feels like he needs space. If he is just overwhelmed because of the extra working hours and assisting his parent, it's possible that the space is more about him just taking care of these things in his life right now, rather than it being reflective of a problem in your relationship.

Even if you do get the impression that there are some issues in your relationship that has caused this, there are many situations where a couple takes some space, resolves these issues, and ends up stronger in the long run for it. From what you described I would say that unless this is a direct result of a situation or problem that you've been having in your relationship, then it's certainly possible that this really is more about him being overwhelmed and needing space to deal with that, rather than him trying to end your relationship.

If this continues to go on indefinitely, then at some point you do have a right to know what's going on. As of now it seems like you've been handling this appropriately in trying to be respectful of what he is asking for, and the hope is that he will appreciate that when he is in a better frame of mind to work on your relationship. I definitely wish you the best with all of this, and if there's anything else I can do to help please let me know.

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Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Should I not contact him at all or do you think it will hurt? I thought about sending a text to say I love him.

It really depends on what his definition of "space" is. If he meant no contact for now, then you probably said everything you needed to say this morning. However if he gave you the impression that some communication is ok, then there's nothing wrong with sending him a text. I would just be cautious if the communication becomes too one sided and you aren't getting anything in response from him. That's usually the point where you can start to tell that he still needs some space and it would be better to hold off on contacting him.

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