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CounselorJules, Counselor
Category: Relationship
Satisfied Customers: 786
Experience:  Licensed Professional Counselor
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My boyfriend appears to not be as interested in me, how can

Customer Question

my boyfriend appears to not be as interested in me, how can I really tell?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Relationship
Expert:  CounselorJules replied 1 year ago.
Good morning. I am happy to help you today. Can you tell me a few more details about how you are recognizing that he appears to be distant? I will also send you some support on healthy conflict and making it help you to grow closer, and also information about how to meet each others' needs with success :)Thank you, Jules
Expert:  CounselorJules replied 1 year ago.
Recognizing that someone is pulling away can be signs of unmet needs. I will send you typical behaviors that we recognize in the clinic! Criticism, contempt, defensiveness, stonewalling (or no talking at all), lack of sexual touch, irritability, lack of interest, more time on the phone or computer, lots of blaming words, sarcasm, resentment, not following through with requests or promises, silent treatment, or just no longer enjoying any activities that you once did..... Hopeful that helps.I think that you can have the relationship that you want with him-- it is simply about attracting that into your life. Keep focusing on what you most want in the end--which is the healthy relationship. I think it is definitely achievable. You sound like a good partner....Focus on how you can appreciate him. Learn about his "love language" and if you guys have conflict, learn how to make that conflict turn into an opportunity for you both!I teach relationship skills in my clinic, but also about healthy conflict and using it to actually become closer. How a couple fights is important :) Not knowing his real feelings can lead to a great deal of insecurity.Insecurity can be really hard to overcome, but it doesn’t necessarily mean that this has to be a part of your future relationship. You can focus on how you can use your insecurity to create intimacy, but you have to do this through honesty and vulnerability, rather than focusing on your anger. Sometimes we are reactive when we feel insecure. We really want to understand, but instead we react. There is a difference in responding and reacting. I am going to send some tips on healthy conflict and how it can lead to you guys becoming closer.There is no need to fear fighting, it is healthy— it open communication and leads to resolution. Often conflict shows us where we can or need to grow.When fighting, focus on the issue— not the person. you cannot attack someone’s character or go after their past mistakes to make them feel bad. You have to remain open to their statements and how it can be solution focused. It’s enough to deal with the problem without adding the new problem of hurting each other’s feelings.Also, listen to the other person when they are communicating. Be aware of your body language and tone when communicating. Sometimes we don’t realize that we begin to assert ourselves loudly and that escalates the situation. So talk softly and make eye contact. Be honest and vulnerable. His own vulnerability with you leads me to recognize he truly trusts you....It is also easy to be defensive, and it would seem natural to want to justify your feelings. Try to be curious about what they are saying, but not with sarcasm. Be sincere.Fighting ends when cooperation begins. Ask for options, ask what you can do to adjust your role and show empathy? Offering alternatives of your own shows that you also are willing to try something different and work toward a collaboration with him.Take ownership of your role too, make concessions to him about your fears and feelings. If you give a little, it makes room for the other person to make concessions too. This isn’t about scorekeeping. It’s about finding a solution that is workable for both of you.Be vulnerable and remember that anger is a secondary emotion that protects us when we are hurting, disappointed or scared…. Try to be honest with him and recognize how much is your issue to address without blaming him.The love languages are really a cool tool for relationships. The Love languages are words of affirmation, gifts, physical touch, quality time, and acts of service. I will explain a bit of these. Words of affirmation are based on demonstrating appreciation, approval, recognizing efforts made by you or your partner- on the flip side if you recognize that you are sensitive to criticism or perceived criticism this can be a sign that your love language may be words of affirmation. Gifts are about little tokens or offerings that suggest that you are thinking of someone. It can be simple or elaborate, but it's the thought that counts. As far as acts of service, a quote comes to mind, ”Actions speak louder than words.” Acts of service may include mowing the yard, helping with laundry, starting the dishes, making the bed, helping load the car or unload the car of groceries. It could even be something that helps someone else in their career— anything that offers support someone through an action. Quality Time is based on providing undivided attention to your partner. Turning off the TV, making eye contact, turning toward them as they communicate with you— it is about focusing on your partner without allowing distractions to occur. Finally, physical touch, there is power in tenderness. This does not have to include sexual touch, but more or less, gentleness. It can be holding hands, a stroke of their hair, a massage, or a simple hug. There is encouragement in touch.....This can help you met your partner's needs, but also have yours met. Hope that addresses part of your question.I hope that this has been helpful and that you will accept the answer and provide positive feedback :) Let me know how else that I can support you! Jules
Expert:  CounselorJules replied 1 year ago.
I know it hasn't been long, but I wanted to follow up and see if you felt that the information was helpful. I can provide further assistance if necessary, but if you were satisfied please let me know! I don't want to inundate you with emails! Thank you! Jules