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Angela, Counselor
Category: Relationship
Satisfied Customers: 681
Experience:  n/a
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Been dating a man for 2 1/2 years. I am 45 and he is 15 years

Customer Question

Been dating a man for 2 1/2 years. I am 45 and he is 15 years older than me. Recently, he has brought up our age difference and that he's been thinking about it a lot lately. He says he loves me - although it feels like he's trying to make me go away. He's been cancelling plans - not calling quite as much, not e-mailing hardly ever and rarely anything personal. Am I to take all these signs that I should break it off?
Submitted: 7 years ago.
Category: Relationship
Expert:  Angela replied 7 years ago.
Hello my name is Angela.
I am more than happy to assist you with your questions by giving you my honest and respectful opinion.

I don't think that you should take it as a sign to break things off without first sitting down and talking to him about it first. I recommend scheduling a time to talk with him in person and share the above things with him that you have shared with me and tell him that you want him to be honest with you and to tell you why he has changed his behavior towards you. When you schedule a time to talk with him, try to do so by going to the park for a picnic or by doing some other outdoor event when the two of you can be alone and in a peaceful environment so that you can have this conversation. Since you have 2.5 years invested in your relationship, I think it's well worth discussing the above things with him and then decide if you should break off your relationship after your discussion with him.
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Customer: replied 7 years ago.
I would love to talk things over with him. But it is extremely complicated - he doesn't open easily and I can't seem to find the right words to get him comfortable talking - he seems to always change the subject. We have a week long trip planned in July and I'm starting to feel really uncomfortable about going. I brought this up the other day and he just groaned. We live about 40 minutes apart. He has let me know he intends on being in town this weekend (his parents live here too - so it doesn't mean he's coming to stay with me), he did mention bringing with him an item I had left at his house, but he has not made any mention of us seeing each other or having any plans. I'm really confused as to what is going on and I feel very taken advantage of. I don't know how to put a stop to this. Any advice on what to do?
Expert:  Angela replied 7 years ago.
I think you should follow your instincts about the trip in July, right now you feel uncomfortable about going based on his behavior. Therefore, if his behavior does not change you will continue to feel uncomfortable going on the trip and therefore you should not go with him. The best way to put a stop to it (-and I know it is not easy) is to sit down with him and talk to him. Even if he doesn't open up to you, he needs to know the serious condition that your relationship is in because you should not continue on in a relationship with a person who chooses not to value and respect you by simply listening to your concerns and then responding to them. When he meets with you to give you the item, take that opportunity to talk to him whether he likes it or not and make him understand by telling him how you feel confused and taken advantage of by his behavior along with the other issues. Tell him that you would like to work through all of this, but you cannot continue on in this relationship without the two of you talking about these issues in a respectful manner. If he chooses to not discuss these issues with you, then I think at that point you should end the relationship because it is impossible to have a healthy and fulfilling relationship when you are the only one working on it and trying to make it better.