Relationship advice... is it just me?!

hbunting86 Posts: 952 Member
Hi all

I'm usually the most reluctant person in the world to ask for any sort of guidance about relationships and stuff - but I'm at that point that I could really use objective opinions on a situation I have. I know people will probably think 'I don't know this person, how could I comment' - but that's exactly what I'm after... gut reactions and total objectivity.

Basically I live in New Zealand. I've lived here for the past 14 months doing my PhD. Initially, I set out to travel for a year after losing my dad and needed headspace and out of the UK. In the UK I was (and still am) in a relationship with my boyfriend. It wasn't the easiest relationship anyway, as he is quite a bit older than me (twenty plus years) - so we had to keep things quiet. I was with him for 2 years in the UK before I left to come over here for a while.

Anyway, you'd think the being away part is the hardest - but although we're far away from each other, we talk daily. I didn't realise he had an issue with this. Recently he's been saying that he feels like he HAS to call me - and that he likes his own space and doesn't necessarily want to reply to my messages (e.g. I'll text him to say good morning.. nothing major!). So now I feel like I shouldn't text him, or if he calls its because he is doing what he thinks I want him to do, not necessarily that he wants to talk to me. I feel a bit hurt by this as I don't want him to call me purely because he feels obligated.... and have told him as much.

I feel like although I'm here, everything is on his terms - is it just me being needy or would other people be upset by those comments.

I've totally lost all objectivity with this - it's my first 'real' relationship... maybe he's been there and done it all before, so isn't so bothered?

Tearing my hair out over this one! :(


  • LilacDreamer
    LilacDreamer Posts: 1,368 Member
    that's really messed up. i would be devastated and then i'd probably dump him. he clearly is not that invested in your relationship and you deserve way better.
  • blondejillie
    blondejillie Posts: 305 Member
    I can't abide someone trying to direct my life. That said, I am alone currently, by choice....Advice in this situation is difficult. At the end of the day, follow your heart.
  • skygoddess86
    skygoddess86 Posts: 487 Member
    Sorry to be blunt but when they start making reference to their own space it's a pretty good sign they're just not into it anymore.
  • ninyagwa
    ninyagwa Posts: 328 Member
    It sounds like you genuinely want something different than what he is willing to put in. To me that means you two are growing apart, and maybe it's time to end the relationship. You should not have to adjust your expectations to have what you feel is a loving and happy relationship, don't change your standards, change your man. That is my gut reaction.
  • Bahet
    Bahet Posts: 1,254 Member
    OK, you don't see each other. You don't spend time together. Yet he "needs space". I think that says it all right there. You are beautiful and obviously intelligent. Find someone who wants to be with you instead of someone who feels smothered because you dare to text him to say "Good morning".
  • I'll be honest here, while everyone here has a good point, I've been in a long distance relationship for two years and while it may not be nice to hear, I can get where he's coming from. After so long of making sure you text a person every day and call them and make time to have long conversations, it can get tedious. Maybe he shouldn't have said it like that, but he may just be being honest with you.

    That being said, I would be offended. Maybe talk about it, take a few days where you don't talk several times a day. Give him some digital space. See if he cools off.
  • ash190489
    ash190489 Posts: 587 Member
    Hey there,

    That doesn't sound too good at all. I don't know how long you two have been together, but if he feels he 'has' to call you and it's a nuisance to him & needs space when you two don't see each other at all then I personally would do the whole silent treatment lol so mature :laugh: I wouldn't text or call him. I would leave him hanging for a few days - even if he calls you. Then casually answer after a couple of days and say "I was just trying to give you some space like you asked for & I don't want you to feel like you HAVE to call me, I want you to WANT to call me. I just miss you very much blah blah blah". But if he's not missing you & needing space when you're how many miles away I would give it all away to find someone who loves and appreciates you much more.

    I don't know if this helps etc. but good luck with it all. I don't think you deserve this.
  • billsica
    billsica Posts: 4,742 Member
    ok. well stop messaging him so much if he doesn't want it.

    A. your in New Zealand, Have fun!

    B. Guys like girls who are hard to get, sometimes

    C. your in NZ, stop worrying so much.
  • tmoyer1209
    tmoyer1209 Posts: 215 Member
    I can see where it would stress you out! I, like you, love to communicate with my sweetie regularly. I am not sure if you would want to, but were you one of my best girl friends I would suggest that maybe you talk to him less for a week or so to see what his reaction is. He may think that he is doing it because it is what you want, when in reality he may miss it if it tapers off a little. I certainly don't know you very well, but are you wanting a permanent part-time relationship? If he enjoys his space and feels like he would prefer less contact, where do you see the future of the relationship two years from now? I am sure this is a hard decision to make, especially since you lost your father not too long ago (my sincere regrets and condolences!). Just know that we are all here for you, health questions, relationship, or whatever.
  • MaximalLife
    MaximalLife Posts: 2,447 Member
    You bf is my age.
    Forget it.
    I would be much too crotchety for any 26 year old, young woman.
    Your needs would bore me; it'd be like trying to relate to one of my kids or something.
    Gut reaction?
    End it, and once you reach your fitness goals, start dating guys closer to your age.

    You need the excitement, passion and romance that only youth can provide.
    Just an opinion.
  • that's really messed up. i would be devastated and then i'd probably dump him. he clearly is not that invested in your relationship and you deserve way better.
    This may seem harsh, but you seem much more into him than he is into you... I've been there and it doesn't work out well. On the flipside I've been in his position as well and.... it just doesn't work out well. I wish I had something more positive to say, but relationships are so much better when nobody has the upper hand and it kinda looks like that is not the case here.
  • Switty_Kitty
    Switty_Kitty Posts: 582 Member
    Heres my take....Ive been in a long distance relationship with my now, fiance for 2.5 years. Even when he was doing a tour of duty in Afghanistan for 7 months...we spoke daily! Thats actually the time where we really got to know each other. He would get up extra early so that we would have even just an hour online together. In the past 2.5 years, there have been only a handful of evenings we haven;t "spent" together...even if it is via a web cam. We only get to see each other about every 6 weeks for a few days at a time. Its hard, but we make it work. He has NEVER said anything like that to me. Also, we text all day long....Im always woke with a "good morning sweetness....." text and the last thing at night...even after 3 hours online is "Love you xoxox good night".

    Now.....I don't know if this is what every man in love would be like...but thats how mine is. I hope you're able to figure things out. You sound like a very nice lady and perhaps you should find someone who is more appreciative of your time and heart. :flowerforyou:
  • Usually people ask questions they already have an answer too. If you are feeling hurt by his comments its because the comments were hurtful. NO ONE needs to validate your feelings because only you know how it used to be. Meaning how he couldn't. Wait to hear your voice or how you both would get lost in eachothers conversation. The best advice Ive ever received. Was this: You can't. Begin a new chapter re reading the last one. I hope everything work outs.. MsRonima
  • How much more space does he need?

    I'm sorry, but I really think you're wasting your time here. I don't mean to be harsh or hurtful. A person you're in a relationship with, near or far, should be looking forward to communicating with you. Bottom line.

    Good luck!
  • Mom2rh
    Mom2rh Posts: 612
    Couple of things.

    1. Had to hide relationship. Meh. Not a good basis.
    2. 14 months into long distance and he's changing the parameters in a passive aggressive way. Long distance is tough. But he's making you feel bad for expecting what you guys have been doing for over a year. Meh.
    3. It's not important what we all say, what our gut says. What I think you should do is embrace how you feel...bugged about how he's changed the rules...and work on standing up for yourself even if it means you kick him to the curb.

    Good luck. You are beautiful.
  • ahavoc
    ahavoc Posts: 464 Member
    I think you need to go out with some other guys. You've got to find the person who is the right fit. You shouldn't have to text or talk to someone every day. That's a sign of an insecure relationship. You need to find someone who is your best friend. Go out, talk to people, meet people, see who's out there.

    Go for a week without calling the guy in the UK. Maybe he'll call you, and maybe you'll answer, and maybe you won't, but it's something you should find out.
  • hi.....relationships are hard sometimes but i think deep down you know if something is worth fighting for and as hard as it is to leave something that is consistant in your life maybe think what am i getting out of this and if you dont have many answers then maybe take the first step yourself and be in charge of your life. I had a relationship where my partner dictated to me, put me down, and did what he liked but i wasnt allowed the end i left with nothing after 7 years but i made the decision not him and that gave me the power to move on :O) good luck
  • Newf77
    Newf77 Posts: 802 Member
    You have been apart almost as long as you were together. IMO if they are twenty years older than you {you are twenty-six per your profile}, they are most likely looking for a more interactive relationship then digital. You are still fairly young and have many years ahead of you; they are in their late forties. Although I believe they still have many years ahead of them, they want to get on with them and are looking for that person to share them with. You need to speak with them and ask what they want and be ready to accept the fact that maybe it is time to move on and find another horse in the pasture.
  • hbunting86
    hbunting86 Posts: 952 Member
    Thanks for the advice/comments - I kind of figured that would be the direction, and you're right I'd sort of got the answer in my head but sometimes weirdly it's easier and clearer hearing it from others.

    Yes, I guess the parameters have changed. The plan was I finish my PhD then go back home and live with him and work there but more and more I'm seeing that that is not going to be fair on either of us. I could understand if I text him multiple times per day, or long messages but it's genuinely not - and constantly re-iterate that if he's busy or out or doesn't want to talk that's fine... I don't get upset about it - I'm not emotionally needy in that respect. What winds me up is being MADE to look needy just by expecting the very basic things in a relationship. What kind of put the nail in harder was that I've had two birthdays here and never even had a card from him. I think I'm flogging a dead horse and going to have to be the more mature one in this, ironically.
  • artickb22
    artickb22 Posts: 411 Member
    Well, perhaps I"m not one to talk as I'm on my thrid marriage. To my defense the first one is in prison now, the second turned out to be a pedophile so I honestly was not at fault in those situations. My third is amazing. The first was VERY controlling, I was in an "open" marriage with the second one, and am now in a realtionship with a wonderful easy going yet commited man. All that being said I'd have to say your best bet (from what I've learned over the years) is to be very direct with him. Simply tell him how his comments made you feel and that your ok with the two of you not texting and calling so much if his issue with it is as simple as he says, but give him the freedom to be honest with you as well. It's a very hard thing to do but much more rewarding to yourself in the long run if you give someone the freedom of honesty with you. What he says may hurt, perhaps he does want to end the relationship and you need to prepare yourself to be ok with that, but then again, perhaps he really does just want a little space. I am a very independent person and at times my husband can be a bit needy in my opinion. We have worked out a really great system where he understands that when I tell him I need some "kristen" time he's ok with it. Sometimes I just need a day or two where I can be completly alone and read, meditate, jam out, or just stare at the tv with a bottle of wine. At first he was a bit hesitant and confused thinking that it meant I didnt' want to spend time with him but over time he has learnt that I do love him with all my heart but I just sometimes need some "me" time. This very well could be the same issue with your man as well. Just be open and honest, even if he dose want to end the relationship, try to look at that from a good point of veiw. You got to spend a good time of your life in a good relationship and now your moving onto another journey. It will only hurt for a small bit in the scheme of things. I wish you the best.