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Cher, Relationship Enthusiast
Category: Relationship
Satisfied Customers: 21380
Experience:  Extensive experience as Educator/Teacher, M.A., Counselor, Spouse, Parent, Psychic Advisor
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Hi, Me and my boy friend of 5 years are both 24 and having

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Hi, Me and my boy friend of 5 years are both 24 and having some issues. I kindof feel like he has no idea how serious it is. I could really use some advice on what I could to do get him to better understand what is going on. I have an e-mail I'd like you to read if you can that might help you beter understand what I mean and you will be getting both sides honestly. I have tried to leave him at least 4 times in the past 5 years and we did split for almost a year but then we got back togather b/c I thought we had things ironed out. Its just normal stuff. Im just at my witts end. Im not sure if Im really ready to let go but i feel like I am at the same time b/c we are on a hamster wheel.

I'd like to try to help. If you could copy and paste the emails in your reply, it will help me to see what's going on with the two of you and your relationship. Then, I can give you the best advice.

Do you live together?

Can you outline some of the issues for me?

Customer: replied 8 years ago.
Dear Cher,

Yes we do live together and have for about 3 years of our relationship. The issues I seem to be facing are feeling like we are no longer in a relationship, its like we live together and that's it. He is a "gamer" ( meaning he plays video games in all his spare time) and that takes a toll on things for us, I even tried to play with him but it didnt help, I still dont understand the infatuation. We have no children but we have two dogs that are like our kids and he only helps me out with them when he has to. I also have to ask him to do things that one should know need to be done like feed the dogs, pick up after your self, or help me pack so we can move. Right now Im in Maine trying to find a job and us a place to live and he is in NC finishing his two weeks at work, then we will be moving. He hasn't looked for a job yet, hadn't helped me with any of the packing and has not even tried to help me with the arrangements of moving home, and maybe its my fault b/c I didnt ask, but I didnt think I should have to. I dont like being his mother. Things like this were much worse two years ago, and they have gotten better, but Im just not sure I can be ok with it in the long run. I wanna have kids and so does he but I dont think I wanna have kids with him if this is how he is now, I dont want to raise them on my own that is the whole point in having a spouse and that is very important to me. I dont know the more I talk about it the more I feel like I have nothing to be concerned about, but when I think about it I feel like we shouldnt be together and when I think about us not being together it kills me. My mother says Im damned if I do and damned if I dont. I'd like to exhaust all possibilities before I call it quits.

From me:


You know I will try and do anything if I know it will make you happy,but Im not sure what to do any more.I dont even really know you any more.
We dont really talk,Yes I know we talk about our day but thats its,Nothing more.
I feel so distant from you its not even funny.I haven't been comming home right after work b/c I dont have any reason to come home.Im much happier at work with people who talk to me.I dont really feel like you are into me any more. I also dont feel into you any more it hurts to say im not but its the truth.
I feel like I keep saying "well if you'd do this more it would be better" But they dont and things dont change and its always u and thats not fair I hate that i say u,u,u,u.It also makes me sad when I can't seem to give a good response about you to anyone.Such as "So is Matt getting the house ready to move?"and I say" No, he is just taking it easy right now,work has him stressed."I want to be proud when I talk about you and most of the time I just dont talk about b/c I dont have anything good to say. There have been a few times I have wonderful things to say about you,but they are so far between that all the shitty stuff fills the gaps and I lose the good.I know I have a fairy tail image of how I think a relationship should be and Im working on that,and I know I seem to tally up shit, like "you did the dishes last night but I do them every night..." and I just realized I was doing that,workin in that 2. I'm also going to try and stop pre-arranging the out come in my head of what I want to happen next. Maybe we can make things work but im not sure and the fact that I have doubts makes me wonder more.

I want a guy who can tell me he loves me just by looking at me
who will just do something because they want to or just b/c they know I want it and enjoy what ever it is.
I want a guy who can go with the flow and not let little snafoos ruin the moment,
I want a guy who can stand alone and do things for himself, yet lets me do them sometime b/c he knows i like to.
I want a guy who will plan something for me/us for once
I want a guy to sweep me off my feet.
I want a guy who doesn't let it be all about me and uses time for himself in a non-selfish way,
I want a guy who is willing to compromise and stick to it,
I want a guy who know what I want by the way I look at him or talk to him.
I want a guy who wants to be around family and would do anything for them,
I want a guy who is on the ball and wants to go places with his life and has ambition,
I want a guy who just does it b/c it needs to be done,
I want a guy who can forgive me for two week outta the month
I want a guy that I can collapse into
I want a guy that know when to ask if im ok and listen and when to just wrap his arms around me and stay quite
I want a guy who will just do "it", what ever "it" is, if they think "it" needs to be done they just make it happen.

Shit I dont want much do I. I can say it finally feels good to know what I want. Im not saying you dont do some of those things I was just venting. I would really like for you to e-mail me back, what you want in a Woman, and any response you have to what I said above.

From Matt:

Hey Hun, I know that i have been distant lately, the whole
leaving my work thing and the moving just has me feeling
some anxiety ( Which im beginning to come to terms with). You
know i like to think about things alot ( too much some
times) and it does make me a little stressed out sometimes.
The bad part is when i get stressed i keep to myself, which
in turn leaves you feeling like i dont talk to you or
i'm not paying you any attention. That is something i
need to work on, its just that sometimes i dont feel like i
cant talk to you about it. I dont want you to think that im
bitching, being negative, or just cant deal with it, which
is why i normally choose to just handle it on my own. I need
to feel like i can lean on you so to speak, that i can come
to you with things and you wont do anything but listen.
Some times i dont need an opinion, or for you to take any
reaction to it at all, just like you need from me some times
- just a listener. I do miss not spend as much time with you, not just being in the same room, but actually you having my attention and me having yours. As for the negativity, you do have some good
reason to not have good things to say. After looking over
the house 2 days ago and actually seeing all you had done to
pack i really felt kinda useless. I thought to myself
"god, what the hell was i doing while she did all this".
And for that i truely apologize. At the same time, sometimes
your not going to have great things or happy things to say
and thats ok. People arent always happy or doing great and
thats just part of life, so i hope you realize that , no,
your not Always gonna have great things to say.As for a list
of what i want in a girl, here it goes ( may seem short)
- i want a girl that loves me, ME, not what i can give or do for her
- i want a girl thats understanding, knows that even tho she may not like the way i handle certain things, she excepts it
- i want a girl that i feel i can go to/ lean on, without fear of judgement
- i want a girl who thinks about us , and not just herself and knows that sometimes being in a relationship means compromise
- i want a girl with ideas and opinions
- i want a girl with dreams, goals
- i want a girl who shows appreciation for things
- i want a girl who's not afraid to tell you she wants something / speak her mind
Thats all i can really get off the top of my head, i'm not really
good at listing things like that cause i try not to expect
anything.I love you and miss you hunny, im really looking
forward to holding you next week.

PS I know is seems like we have good communication, but if you really read what he wrote he never really addresses anything. He seems completely oblivious to the fact Im thinking about leaving him.
Hi again, and thanks for sending me those emails and filling in some important information about your relationship with Matt.

What I'm hearing from these emails is that you both basically want the same thing, and I think there has been a breakdown in communication, so you're either not talking when you should be, or when you talk, you're pussyfooting around the major issues.

It's not unusual for men, more than women, to keep things inside and not let their emotions out or not want to talk when something is on their minds. Women, for the most part, are better at this.

You need to sit down with him, under calm circumstances, and tell him exactly what you're thinking and what you said here, re: wanting a secure future, involving kids, etc., but you have no desire to be a 'single parent', and the way things are going, that's what you feel you might end up being. Ask him, if he barely helps with the dogs, housework, packing, taking care of 'business' at home, now, why you shouldn't think he will exhibit the same behavior if/when you have kids. Tell him that you don't want him to 'be' someone else for you; you fell in love with him, for all good reasons, but even though he feels stress/anxiety from his final days at work and this upcoming move, he didn't 'just' start acting this way, he's never pulled his weight at home, and you want an 'equal partnership' in this relationship, not 'I'll do everything, you do nothing, while you relax/relieve your tensions by 'escaping' with the video games.

Remember also, that men of the same age, are typically less mature than women, so it can take him a while to 'catch up' to the level of maturity you're showing now, which I think is VERY mature. You've undertaken a big move, and have single-handedly packed up the house, while also caring for the dogs, and doing your 'everyday' stuff, which he has taken for granted. Part of the problem is, that you are doing things for him or in the household, which he doesn't realize need doing, because you're so efficient. Now, I know it can be hard to 'leave' things undone, until he decides to do them or realizes they need doing, but sometimes, this is how he will learn.

If your relationship is in such great flux, why are you making this move together at this time? Are there more opportunities for work for you both, in Maine? Are you moving to be near your family? If you're busy looking for a job there and a place to live, he should have been sending out resumes or looking in local papers, to find himself a job or at least know what's out there, BEFORE the move, too. I wouldn't want to see you working and him staying home all day playing video games. He KNOWS you need two incomes, right?

Right now, because of all the transitions, I don't think it's a good time to have a major discussion; however, once things are more settled, you're back together, in the same State, and hopefully youu are both working and setting up your new home, you can have this serious discussion with him about how he acts and about your future. No, I don't think he has any inkling that you may be thinking of leaving him, either. He sounds like a basically nice guy who is just in some need of guidance; I realize you don't want to act like his mother, and you are very right to think that way, but not all men, especially of this age, are mature enough to 'know' to do things on their, if you 'remind' him to do something, but don't 'nag', and/or if you set up some sort of understanding as to who is to do what, in the house, re: the dogs, etc., he will know more specifically what his responsibilities are and what jobs are expected of him, at home. A curb MUST be put on this gaming. I know it's like an 'addiction', and it's perfectly fine to play it as a form of 'escapism' from the daily stresses and realities, but it should be a 'reward', AFTER he's done his part around the house and spent quality time with you. Instead of reading a book or watching tv to relax, he's allow to play his video game, while you do something YOU enjoy and do, to relax. Unfortunately, you WILL have to treat him like a child, in this way (without him knowing it), and only allow him to do his gaming after his chores are done. If you try to maneuver the situation in this direction, without saying anything to him about it, it might just work.

I think he might realize, as he becomes more mature, that you do require more help and you do require him to do/say things without being 'prompted', but keep one very important thing in mind: a tiger never changes his stripes! If you hope against hope that he will suddenly change and start acting more like you would like him to act, this won't happen. I'm not saying he's not capable of change, to a degree, but his personality is already ingrained in his being, and this is who he is. So, if you would like to give your relationship another try and see how things go, once you move and get settled in Maine, try to be a little more patient with the things he does now, which bug you, and ask him to be a little more patient with you, regarding the same things. We all know nobody's perfect and I'm sure there are things about you which he wishes you wouldn't do, but as I said before, communication is the key to a happy relationship, and if it comes to it, marriage. If you don't know what's bugging the other one, how can you 'modify' it? I'm very glad you had the opportunity to exchange these e-mails, while you're apart, because sometimes, it's much more difficult to say these things in person, face to face. You both got out important thoughts and messages for each other to be aware of, re: your feelings, and that's a very good first step.

It sounds like he definitely does appreciate you, as evidenced by him saying, he looked around the house and couldn't believe everything you organized for the move, etc. At least he recognized what you did. Yes, he should have helped more, but don't be afraid to ask for help, and don't make it 'nebulous' (unclear)--ask him to do something 'specific', and I think he'll react more favorably to that and it will get done. For example: 'Honey, can you please wrap those glasses in newspaper and pack them in that box?' Instead of: 'pack the glasses'. Some men need this--give him the box, newspaper, and glasses and he'll do the job. Don't be afraid to be more specific with him, to get him to help or do things around the house. Also, put a time limit on his gaming. Say it with a laugh: oh, honey, you you did such a good job with the packing (unpacking), you deserve a break, go play your game and I'll call you for dinner in an hour, or something like that. ASK him to do things. If he knows how to cook certain simple dishes, ask him to make something for dinner or a lunch or a breakfast. Make him feel more like 'part' of your 'partnership.

Of course I can't tell you what to do regarding a decision to stay together or to leave him; only you can make that decision, but weigh all things carefully, give him another chance, once you move, if you'd like to do that, and see how it goes. He most likely will never turn into the type of man you fantasize you'd like to be with, and maybe there IS someone more 'attuned' to you, out there, but if you decide that this relationship is worth 'trying' to save, give it a go, and take it from there.

I wish you both much good luck!

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