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psychlady, Counselor
Category: Relationship
Satisfied Customers: 6893
Experience:  I have over 16 years experience in treating adults presenting with a variety of relationship issues
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I found my 1st butterfly crush on Facebook late Aug. 09. I

Customer Question

I found my 1st butterfly crush on Facebook late Aug. 09. I live NJ and he in FL We never got the chance to date when we were younger. We r both 43 yrs old. We then started talking, texting & emailing on a regular basis. He was upfront with me & told me that he was going through a divorce but still lived in the same house with his wife, mother-in-law and 2 kids. He said d house would be sold after d divorce when the economy got better. He divorced his wife b'cause she cheated on him & isn't 2 involved with d kids. He also told me that he made a mistake by getting involved with his ex 15 yrs. ago that he knew better & now it's his mess to clean up. As each day passed, he confided more & more to me about how he has to do everything for the children. I felt that we established a nice friendship.
He told me that he was in love with me shortly before he finalized his divorce in Oct. 09.
I went to FL to see him for 4 days during my b'day in Nov. He didn't want me to stay in a hotel instead to stay at his mother's house I did. I met his mother, sister and spent some time with them as well. He told me that he would have liked me to meet the kids but it was 2 soon after the divorce. I agreed. Had a wonderful birthday with him. He gave me a beautiful necklace (the open heart from the Jane Seymour Collection), a single red rose, a love card (he wrote in d card & thanked me for coming back into his life that it couldn't of happened at a better time. 2 days later after I boarded d plane, I sent him a text asking if it would be ok to go back home & if asked I can say that he was my boyfriend. He replied via 2 text messages back to back. 1st stating to bear with him cause it's all new to him and the 2nd "sure". I apologized to him and said that I was sorry to text him that question. I explained to him that it was b'cause in my past relationships men were always my boyfriend b'fore I was intimate with them. A few days later I sent him a love letter and basically told him that I would never hurt him.
He visited me in Dec. for a few days. During that time, he took me to his sister's and brother's houses & to his family's get a way cabin in PA. He even agreed and met my family and friends. A nice time we had. The night before he left I asked him if we had a relationship. He replied "right now I am focusing on my relationship with the kids". Then I said "Well, do we have some kind of relationship and he said "yes". He then asked me "When was the last time you had a relationship?" I advised him a few yrs. back I thought I did then to discover that my fiancee was cheating. He replied by saying that "he hasn't had a relationship in 23 yrs."   23 yrs. prior he enlisted in the army. He advised me around xmas time that his mother in law was going away for a month and things would probably be harder on him with the kids since she helps out a little. He said that the kids are now blaming themselves. He has become so frustrated with his living conditions that he knows he has to move on and sacrafice by spending $ to get an apt. b'cause he can't deal with it anymore. He also stated that he's going to offer his ex and mother in law to buy him out on d house when the mother in law comes back from her vacation mid Jan.
I am so confused. He stopped texting me goodnight almost a week after I visited him in Florida although he continued to call me almost every day after. He apologized twice last month for being distant. I told him that "its OK, I know your going through alot". I've been tellin him that no matter what I will always be here for him to lean on. For the last 2 weeks, he calls at least every other day. He last called on Mon. telling me that he finally closed d joint bank acct., etc. The last 3 days its been real short text messages between us saying hello and to have a nice day via text.
My mind has been racing cause now its 3 days since I last spoke to him. I don't know what to think or what to do for I do love him. I never been in a situation like this. It's only been 3 days since I last spoke to him. I am now battling with myself mentally asking myself: Is it me or the situation he is in? Does he love me? I think if he wasn't interested in me then he wouldn't call or text at all. I don't know whether to back off or 2 keep texting him once a day to tell him either Have a good day, thinking about you and ending it with Luv ya as I usually do. I want to be here for him to lean on since we did become friends. On the other hand, I have feelings to. Don't know if I am wasting my time or not n I don't want to push him away by acting needy. I can't figure this out. HELP!
Submitted: 6 years ago.
Category: Relationship
Expert:  psychlady replied 6 years ago.
He has said you are in a relationship so there's no harm in keeping in contacting which lets him know that you are being supportive. You are right about him having a lot going on so contact him regularly to let him know you are there for him. I wouldn't make it more than once a day but let him know you care and are on his side. If he had given ou no answer or a negative answer to your questions then I would say back off but he didn't say that. Sometimes when we are going through things, time can sort of go by without realizing that this is happening. It 's wonderful that he can find a relationship in you after a long time so be comforted by that. You will be to be flexible in your expectations of him right now, but ultimately it probably will pay off. The fact that you have interacted with people he knows is very encouraging. Offer your understanding through communication and be patient with his situation
Customer: replied 6 years ago.
OK but what do you think about him not texting as much as he used to and not calling as often? What do you mean by it being "encouraging" that I've interacted with people he knows? Do you think he is still in love with me since he is not calling or texting as much? I also know he isolates because he told me so. I know that feeling and I back off when he does. But I do try to tell him that's not healthy b'cause I've been there. Can you clarify part of your response when you say "You will be to be flexible in your expectations of him right now ....?
Expert:  psychlady replied 6 years ago.
I think people's frequencies change according to what they are going through. However I understand your concerns that he is more out of love. But don't jump to that conclusion on your own. You can always ask him this directly but make sure you are clear that you really need the contact. Not needy just direct. What I mean be encouraging is that guys usually don't introduce you to others especially family or close friends unless they are saying - this is my girlfriend and she's going to be around.
Sometimes when couples are struggling because on or the other is going through something have to adapt to that problem. For example, if he facing serious occupational problems, then you may have to expect less contact from him because of this. So especially in long term or serious relationships, our expectations have to change in light of problems that a partner is experiencing.
So try to be understanding but not too understanding.
Customer: replied 6 years ago.
Relist: Incomplete answer.
Had to follow-up to my first question. I don't think she originally ready her response to me b'cause there was a sentence which was not understandable at all. I feel that the occupational example should not have been used instead what I'm going through.
Expert:  psychlady replied 6 years ago.
I meant that people's expectations change when their life situations change. Sometimes these circumstances can lead to a change in communication and contact depending on the situation. So his being less willing to contact you could just be life circumstances especially in light of what he is going through. This doesn't mean he is thinking less of you or thinking of you less often. The reference to occupational problems was just an example to illustrate my point. You can consider his emotional stress right now and find that it interferes with his regular communication. When his life stabilizes, you will be better able to understand his feelings and how he expresses them
Customer: replied 6 years ago.

Sorry I have not been on the computer in a few days and just received your reply. Can you clarify being direct with him about the relationship to ask him direct and make sure I am clear about the contact. I really don't know what to say. How do I say it?

Also, can you tell me what you think when he answered me that we do have a relationship. How am I supposed to take that for I really don't understand what kind of relationship we have since he only answered "yes" when I asked him if we have any kind of a relationship. Thank you.

Expert:  psychlady replied 6 years ago.

By being direct I mean getting to the bottom of things once and for all. When people are in a relationship and one wants more than the other it can lead to hurt feelings and a lot of speculation. Try - I am not trying to pressure you, but I really need to know where we stand. (Don't say i need to know where this is going - that will turn him off.) I will be there to stand by you but I don't want to feel that I am investing too much in this and you are not ready to do the same. I am not asking about marriage I just want to know I am not wasting my time.


I agree also that just answering "yes" is not very encouraging. It was a positive response but that could mean almost anything. That to has to ve clarified - I know you said that we have a relationship but what kind? I would suggest that you ask first about above ; that will tell you what you need to know. If he still says his children are his focus that's great. But children don't need all your attention. The part of your heart that needs romantic love has nothing to do with your children.

Customer: replied 6 years ago.

I am starting to realize what you are saying. As I stated in my original question to you above. He enlisted in the army 23 years ago and he also said that he hasnt had a relationship since then. Do you think this may have a bearing on our situation as well?

Expert:  psychlady replied 6 years ago.
Very much so. As people go without a relationship for such a long time certain things happen: they get set in their ways and less willing to compromise early in a relationship; they grow more cautious about approaching a relationship; and they do not always see how the way they present themselves to others is accurate. He may be unaware that he is sending mixed messages when he has not focused on a woman's needs for some time

I am Psychlady
Customer: replied 6 years ago.

Sorry for not responding sooner. When you say that he may be unaware that he is sending mixed messages when he has not been focused on a woman's needs for some time. Can you define that. He was married for the last 15 yrs. but says he really hasn't been in a real relationship in 23 yrs. when he enlisted in the army. Lastly, Do you think it's possible that he could have been on an emotional rollercoaster when he reconnected with me and really didn't mean to tell me that he was in love with me. For I haven't received a text nor a phone call in almost a week.

Expert:  psychlady replied 6 years ago.
Sometimes when someone is not in a relationship they have is their own needs to worry about. This can lead to a tunnel vision effect where they don't really focus on the needs of a partner. Their own interests, wants and desires become their focus, and it may be a transition to have to respond to the likes and dislikes of another person. This may also explain the erratic contact. He may care but it may take awhile for him to be in couple-mode. The roller coaster effect may also be a factor which makes the transition harder. It just takes some patience and avoid putting a lot of demands on him right now. Let him transition. If he is in love with you, and guys don't take saying that lightly, then help him make this transition by being kind and directive (what you expect) but not pushy
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Customer: replied 6 years ago.

Now I haven't heard from him since January 12th. I sent him a message last night that read "Hey, I havent' heard from you. Guessing that your not ok. I'm starting to worry. I just want to remind you that I do care and am concerned. I am still here for you.


He has not responded. Very upset!!!!!!

Expert:  psychlady replied 6 years ago.
That sounds like you are reaching out and need verbal contact. It's sweet and not pushy! I think his lack of communication however is inconsiderate and does not promote a good relationship. Relationships take nurturing. You will continue to have to lay out your expectations but be prepared if he doesn't follow them. He may need less contact to have you on his mind than you. This doesn't mean it can't work but it does mean you will be sacrificing some of your happiness to remain in the relationship. When the time comes to make a true commitment you may not be on the same page. All that you can do with different expectations is to continue to express them and hope he tries harder
Customer: replied 6 years ago.

What next?? I need to know where I stand? Do you think that is his way of saying goodbye to me. This is the first time that he never responded to a text message from me. I think I need some closure.



Expert:  psychlady replied 6 years ago.
The only way to have closure is to make a decision and go with it. Don't play the game. Send any messages that you want but if you are not happy then you need to make a decision based on what really is over what could be. If he calls once a month and that doesn't make you happy, then you have a decision to make if you are not to settle. Women base decisions sometimes on what they want over what they have. If this suits you, then you are content to be on and off again.
Customer: replied 6 years ago.
I am so frustrated because I was reaching out to him as a friend and his non-response has really hurt my feelings. I really don't know what kind of relationship we had as I stated in my earlier questions to you. As I also stated to you, I was solely focusing on him and his children. Hardly mentioned him and I. I just feel my heart was torn out since he couldn't even reply via text that he was not OK or was OK but just didn't feel like talking right now. I have heard a friend of his say that "he's the most honest guy I know".
Expert:  psychlady replied 6 years ago.
I agree that his lack of communication makes things very confusing. We don't know though if other circumstances has made his communication so infrequent. You are not going to get more communication without getting out of the friend zone though. We don't have the same obligations to our friends. So if you want to talk with him seriously about what you think would be more fair and talk about your relationship (what you would like it to be) then make that happen. Otherwise we really do contact our friends more sporadically. You have to be up front to get what you want.

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