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Ask Rev.Dr. August Abbott Your Own Question
Rev.Dr. August Abbott
Rev.Dr. August Abbott, Clergy
Category: Relationship
Satisfied Customers: 7608
Experience:  Ordained minister: Counselor (spiritual/life)
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Im 28, he is 36. both divorced.. no children. Been together

Customer Question

Im 28, he is 36. both divorced.. no children. Been together 7 months. For the first 5 months everything was great... love notes, silly things, he was really interested. 6 months hits, and he starts acting weird. I had alot on my plate, family death etc. and being that he seemed to push me away - I said I would give him some space- and he explained that he needed some bc I "broke him" emotionally with all that was going on. SO, I give him space- no calls etc... he calls me and we have long talk where I stand etc. He did tell me all the time he loves me- then during this discussion he says " I know I really like you, but I dont love you".... hurt, yes.. but I decided to stick around. Well its now 7 months and since that talk a month ago he is still acting distant. He is love on me etc.. but doesnt say things, no notes, nothing. He doesnt want any pressure of any in the "future." So I pretty much keep my mouth shut, just smile and it seems like friends to me. I used to go OUT of my way to do things for him and now I just think its pointless... we would hang out everyday.. to 3 times a day.. to the weekends... and now its Saturday night and I left his house to come home and now on this computer.   How can someone be one way and then go back to a blank slate.. but not putting in effort. He also says " I do love you and care for you.... BUT then will not ever say anything of the sort to me. I have been just staying busy and I have to "act like I dont have a boyfriend" to get my through this emotionally. BUT now when we get together and he just sits on the couch and gives attention now and then- it makes me not want to be there... its sad. I have strong feelings for him but I need more ...Last night he asked what was wrong...I said nothing and then I said " well I feel really distance from you... do you feel that way?" and he said " yeah".... So I responded.." I dont ike it , what should we do?..... and he just sat there.      I offer to do things ALOT...but get no response.     Help?
Submitted: 6 years ago.
Category: Relationship
Expert:  Rev.Dr. August Abbott replied 6 years ago.
First of all, you did not "break him" emotionally. It appears he was ill equipped to be a big boy and handle big boy things that happen in life. We don't get to go through this world being silly, happy and carefree all of the time. You know that because you were and are the one handling the realities such as family issues, deaths and other unpleasant happenings.


I'm not going to address what this grown man's problems are in that he is either unable to draw upon the tools necessary to aid himself and those he supposedly loves when the going gets tough, or he's simply not interested in stepping up and as they say, "manning up".

What I will address is the question as to why you feel this is a good person to have in your life. Why don't you deserve someone who will be a partner, ready, willing and able to take up the slack when you need the help and support?

Why do you feel it's your responsibility to make this person happy and keep life light and airy for him? Even as a parent it's our job to teach our children how life throws curveballs now and then and how they need to accept that bad things happen. That disappointments occur and yet life goes on, feelings mend and what's important is that we work together as a family for each other.

We start teaching our children these lessons from the time they're toddlers. Or at least we should. If we don't, if we shelter them constantly and assume responsibility for making their life all sunshine and joy every day, we end up raising what turns out to be adults incapable of having real 'grown up' lives and relationships.

You see?

So though this all seems very complicated and futile to you, from an unbiased view and professional opinion, what I see is a woman who is allowing herself to be in a "mother-child " relationship with someone who should be as supportive, caring and invested in the partnership as she is.

Partnership. A couple working together toward the same goals in life. Priorities of a good home, setting a good example and role models for the children to learn from and living to deepen the partnership/relationship over time to be the rock you each can depend on to see you through your old age and golden years... that is the aim you both should have.

What I strongly recommend that you do is find a professional counselor for yourself. Find out why you are under-valuing yourself and learn how to modify your own tool box for life.

If you don't have the medical coverage options, call around to local churches (you shouldn't have to be a member in many cases), ask your local hospitals for lists of options - there are places that you can go to fit your needs and get you back on track.

You're a strong, smart woman (or you wouldn't be asking this question) and you already sense that something's not right. You can do this.

Good luck
Rev.Dr. August Abbott and other Relationship Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 6 years ago.
Thank you for your advice... I actually saw a counselor for a year (due to car accident) and we touched on how early childhood was hard blah blah you know lol... My mother was abused etc. in her relationships.. I was always the caretaker.. the roles were reversed when I was 15. So I guess I have her habits of sticking around.

I do however, KNOW and should act on what I am feeling. I guess I needed someone outside of the box to give me a strength. He admitted to not being able to "handle" my "neediness." BUT why did he stop the process and want to start over like the 5 months before didnt exist? I asked him.. how can you tell someone for 5 months that you love them... and then stop one day and say whoa too much, I want to "go with the flow" and see what happens. I asked " Do you even see a future with me? and his response is always " you worry too much about things that havent happened.. I cant tell you that because I dont know." "Please stop pushing me." Keep in mind I HAVE not pushed him but wanted to know I was with someone who wanted to build on our relationship... his answer is always " I dont know what to tell you, I dont know." So, thank you for the support. I cant keep walking on eggshells around him, hoping not to trigger his "emotions." He always would tell me in an argument which has only been 3- that he doesnt want drama and just wants a smooth relationship with no fighting... I responded with " goodluck finding a robot to love you." I guess I need to figure out what I need to say this, which my heart thinks he will not give me the response I need. He will probably say " this is what I can offer and obviously it isnt enough for you" he is an egomantic. thanks again .. wish me luck!
Expert:  Rev.Dr. August Abbott replied 6 years ago.
-- You know he'll say something like that (take me or leave me) and he knows what your reaction will be (you'll take it). So why should he grow up?

And leaving him or saying you will, etc. won't matter because this type of person knows one of two things will happen: You'll cave in before he does; or he shrugs you off and finds another mommy.

No relationship is smooth, no dissention or arguements - such is life.

And your neediness? YOURS? Because you want a grown up and partner ?

I don't wish you "luck", I want you to respect yourself, honor yourself and value yourself. There's no luck involved.

You know how you got here. The life that led you to how you are and the role you play, but with that awareness is the power to change it. When our eyes are open and we can see the reality, we can change that reality for ourselves.

We cannot change anyone else. We need to accept that and remind ourselves that the only one we can do anything about is ourselves. The only one we are truly responsible for is the person there in the mirror.

I know it's scary. "The devil you know is better than the devil you don't" - absolutely not true. You need to trust that every move you make with the right motivation, purity of heart and determination to be better (not the same) will end up moving you forward.

Even when it doesn't seem like it.

Even when it feels like your heart is breaking. Being born isn't the most pleasant experience in the world for the baby, but once that part's over, it's time to start living and growing and achieving .

Sounds like it's time for a new you to be born, doesn't it?

Time to start your own living, growing and achieving. I know you can. You reached out here. You know you can't keep doing the same thing over and over, expecting a different outcome.

Customer: replied 6 years ago.
I understand... may I ask your opinion on this? Yesterday we were out and I had to find a dress for HIS formal military event.. he is an officer. Well I finally found a dress and when I went to pay for it (i am tight on cash) he said " I got it".... so he paid. Here I am saying thank you and that was sweet etc. And we get in the car and he implies that I will have to pay him back! ?? So I thought it was a gift but I guess not? wth? Ive been ignoring him since our last conversation last night and he sent me a text asking if I would like to go out to eat tonight.... I think he might be catching on to the fact Im pretty much not interested in putting in any more effort. I will bring it up tonight and see what happens. I deserve the best and nothing short of it. Thanks again :)
Expert:  Rev.Dr. August Abbott replied 6 years ago.
-- "I got it" means he's paying, it's a gift. Changing the rules shortly afterward is (again) childish and manipulative.

-- He asks you to dinner. IF you accept, tell him you want it in writing that he's paying and not expecting any sort of pay back.

You have to start treating yourself better than this. You truly do. Not "later", not "someday", but right now.

No one can take advantage of us without our permission. No one can treat us badly without our invitation.

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