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New partner needing 'time'

(952 Posts)
confusedisitme Sun 19-May-13 15:54:37

I've recently started seeing someone - it's been under a month officially but we were very close before that for about 6 months.

He seems to come across as quite intense in his 'feelings' - always saying things like how he's broken, doesn't wan to lose me (said in that breathless, urgent way you'd imagine someone to say it in a cheesy american movie!) and the first week we were together he kept saying how strong his feelings were, felt like we'd been together a lot longer and all that stuff.

However, because he'd recently split up with someone and because of the fact I don't get on with a family member of his (I knew this family member before I knew him and we've never got along), he's been reluctant to tell anyone he's seeing me - he wanted to wait until the summer and then he felt like he'd be able to tell his close family members (including this person that hates me).
This caused issues between us, because I felt like we couldn't go out anywhere - he'd come and visit me at home, stay over etc and we have been out a few times out of town, but I want to just be able to go to the local restaurant or something in town and not worry that he'll be looking over his shoulder. He says I want everything 'now' and it's not because of this we argue - not full on rows, but niggly sort of things where usually one of us says we can't cope with it, and it's all up in the air again.

We were due to go out last night together, in town for a meal.

It'd been planned for 2 weeks, I had got my mum to have my three children overnight so we could go out (which meant me buying air beds and a travel cot so they could sleep at her house), and then Friday morning I had asked him to come over that night because we had been arguing and I wanted to try and fix us before I could go out with him the next night...eventually he agreed, we had a slight niggle but the rest of the night was fine, he said he couldn't lose me, the next morning he was very loving and we left on a good note - although he hadn't gone to sleep when I told him to that night, instead he kept trying it on for 90 minutes so we ended up only having about 4 hours' sleep sad

It got to 5pm on Saturday, the kids had already gone to my mum's and he text saying he was very tired, hadn't had a chance to sleep and would have to stay home - then didn't seem to understand why I was pissed off. I asked him to stick to the arrangements, he said he needed sleep and it spiralled into this massive argument and him refusing to even come over and see me, but stay in the house with me and not go out...which annoyed me further.

Eventually at 9pm he agreed to come over but sleep on the sofa, but said it would be finished for good if I "made him" come he turned up, was very cold (I'd hoped I could win him round a bit but it didn't happen) and eventually left again after saying he couldn't handle this, and I should've let him stay at home.

He's now saying we need to "work on positive texts and see how we go" - we can't see each other now until the weekend after next as we both have commitments, so he wants me to basically just send him chatty, random texts through the next couple of weeks, effectively covering up how hurt I am and not talking about 'us' until he decides whether he misses me and wants to try again or not.

I understand that all this arguing has got him down; it has me too, but on Friday night he said he can't lose me with that sense of urgency and passion that made it seem like he loved me...then last night he said his feelings had significantly reduced over the past week or so and he wants to se if he can get them back - to me, I don't want to wait around to see if his feelings reappear; if they went in the first place (mine haven't, despite the arguing) then it feels like I'd be losing the self respect I still have left by taking him back if he decided he wanted to.

Does that make sense at all?

Apologies for the essay...I suppose I'm just wondering if he's being unreasonable in what he's asking of me now, or I am.

PS - he did text me last night saying that he can't see how he can be with me, but the thought of not being with me hurts him like crazy; and that he just needs a bit of space from the arguing, and just positive texting for a week or so, and see if it helps his feelings reappear.

confusedisitme Sun 19-May-13 16:16:26

He does keep on saying "I'm broken" (meaning he is, not me) and when I asked why, he said something about how he was just trying to get me to understand why he is the way he is, and hoping I'd fix him.

That was a pretty big red flag, but I chose to ignore it at the time sad

Trouble is, he seems a lot like my ex; who had no empathy along with all the controlling shit - so when I see this guy seemingly wanting things on his terms and not understanding my point of view/compromising, I get really panicky that he's a controlling shit like my ex was and we argue.

For the purposes of balance though; there have been times when I've messed him around - although not intentionally...

There was one time I asked him to come round but then by the time he got here I'd fallen asleep (it was only 9pm but I was exhausted), woke up to him knocking the door but as I was in bed I was too tired to go downstairs, so I ended up texting him to go home...then he got round the corner and I regretted it, so to be fair to him, he did come back.

There was another time after an argument when he stormed out and I asked him to come back in - and again, he did.

So maybe it's both of us?

joblot Sun 19-May-13 16:16:30

What's this positive texting business? Is he a teenager? Sounds all too intense and inappropriate. I second the hill running suggestions

Booyhoo Sun 19-May-13 16:16:32

dump him.

too much effort. no fun at all. far too serious. he's blowing hot and cold. the way you feel now is the way you will feel for as long as you are seeing him. your call but it sounds shit to me. it should be fun 1 month in.

BreakOutTheKaraoke Sun 19-May-13 16:19:36

Can I ask why you're thinking of introducing kids to a guy you had been seeing for a WEEK? That's mad! Have they met him yet? Has he been staying over while they've been home?

AttilaTheMeerkat Sun 19-May-13 16:19:43

You could make bunting out of all the red flags here in this dysfunctional mess of a so called relationship.

Dump him before you become further enmeshed in his power plays and mindgames. Such men too can really do an awful lot of harm to self esteem and worth.

confusedisitme Sun 19-May-13 16:20:52

Leverette Ok I'm going to say it, although now everyone will remember my previous thread sad

He works in a school, the same school my children go to. His sister is the Headteacher and this is the family member that has issues with me (not major issues, she is just very stuck up, I'm a non catholic at a catholic school and she doesn't like that, etc).

He went out with a dinnerlady at the school (who also had kids there) and as far as I know that didn't cause any issues, apart form his sister making comments as she didn't like her brother's choice of partner, but his reasoning is as he was all set to move countries to be with his partner (who dumped him after he started having doubts about moving, according to him), it's too soon to start dating someone else - he says he's worried what everyone will think of him; plus the issues with the school and his sister are worrying both of us.

I can sort of see his point, but also feel like it's not giving us a fair chance because anyone else he dates, he'd get to go out with and risk being seen.


akaWisey Sun 19-May-13 16:22:54

You're spot on with him lacking in empathy. All his emotions will be superficial and they'll all be about him and his needs.

You're only a few weeks in to this and already you're confused about what's going on. Give it another 6 months and you'll feel like you never said goodbye to the last twunt to mess with your head.

Perhaps that's why you're rationalising the situation by suggesting it's both of you to 'blame', perhaps not, but either way it doesn't sound like fun at all.

AttilaTheMeerkat Sun 19-May-13 16:23:46

Hi confuseditisme,

Re your comment:-
"He does keep on saying "I'm broken" (meaning he is, not me) and when I asked why, he said something about how he was just trying to get me to understand why he is the way he is, and hoping I'd fix him.

That was a pretty big red flag, but I chose to ignore it at the time"

Now why did you choose to ignore such a flag?. That is something you really need to ask yourself here. You have to look at your role here in all this as well.

Also if your ex was controlling as well, it seems that your relationship radar has become well and truly skewed along with your boundaries.

I would ditch this person pronto and enrol yourself on the Womens Aid Freedom Programme. As it is you are ripe for being targeted by such low lifes because of your past relationship experience that need now to be unlearnt for your sake as well as any children you have.

confusedisitme Sun 19-May-13 16:24:28

BreakOutTheKaraoke yes - they know him from school (he's a teaching assistant in Yr6, my eldest is only in the first year) and he has met them once here; usually he stays over but leaves before they wake up, but this one time (during our "it's love" idiot moment in the first week), he came down and had a coffee with us at breakfast time.

The kids reacted ok, haven't acted any differently towards him in school or asked about him since, so I think I may have just got away with that one - but obviously wish I hadn't been so stupid!

Erm...cant remember who said the thing about self esteem now, but this is where I thought he was different - my ex was very much always putting me down, whereas this guy is always telling me how beautiful I am, the good bits are great etc and it's just the arguing he can't cope with...

CalamityKate Sun 19-May-13 16:26:50

Oh FFSdo you really need anyone to tell you that this bloke is a needy drama queen?

Just the thought of him breathlessly gasping endearments like a bad 80s movie is making me itch to slap him hmm

confusedisitme Sun 19-May-13 16:26:55

Guess I was just hoping that I was misreading things, and he had a genuine point.

Can I ask again though, just so I understand for the future - if he felt this 'arguing' had got him down, but wanted to be with me - what would have been the best/most usual way for him to handle it?

I know how I would've handled things if I were him, but just need to know what 'normal people' would do if they had been him smile

akaWisey Sun 19-May-13 16:26:55

Using his family as an excuse not to be seen in public with you = immature and irresponsible fuckwit, probably a liar, commitment-shy, selfish and bad for any woman who's self esteem isn't great.

Are you one of those women?

akaWisey Sun 19-May-13 16:30:34

He uses the 'getting me down' as a way of controlling you. It's really simple. If he can't handle a normal part of relationships (arguments) then he can't handle a relationship full stop. So he uses the threat that if you dare step out of line he'll leave.

Why bother?

fackinell Sun 19-May-13 16:31:51

Sounds to me like he's either married or in a committed relationship!! It sounds all too familiar to me as after 2yrs I found out my ex was leading a double life!! (He worked away a lot.) maybe the fact he doesn't want his sister to know is because he shouldn't be dating. Have you been to his home?

aroomofherown Sun 19-May-13 16:33:11

Sorry - coming from someone who has dated her fair share of dicks - get out now. This is just drama, no real respect or fun.

confusedisitme Sun 19-May-13 16:33:34

Yes and no akaWisey I think I'm a nice person, have a lot of good points, I'm not the prettiest but not the worst either looks-wise, have a good body for having had three children, my kids are amazing and I feel like I've done a great job bringing them up single-handed for the past 4 years...but I do doubt myself when it comes to reading people and their intentions.

My ex is one of those that believes his own lies, even managed to get the policewoman that arrested him for strangling me, to say how nice he came across, once sad (she was taking a statement off me and said "he does come across as a very likeable man, though" - I mean wtf?!).

So it's hard for me to tell when someone is lying.

As for the commitment-shy bit; well I have no idea how true it is, but he says needing affection is because he spent 25 years with his ex wife and she never wanted to touch him; no hugs, sex was doing her wifely duty and it got him down, he only stayed for the kids and then she had an affair, so he left once the kids were teens. He says he never wants to be with someone who doesn't want him, so needs me/whoever he's with to show their affection as much as he does.

He also told me that after a year, he starts having doubts about the relationship (sometimes even if it's going well) and usually when he vocalises those doubts, the partner concerned ends up leaving him.
I'm surprised he was shocked by them doing that, tbh :/

akaWisey Sun 19-May-13 16:34:42

Asking MN how best for him to handle things won't translate into action on his part btw.

This is who he is. You either accept it or you ditch.

Alliwantisaroomsomewhere Sun 19-May-13 16:36:13

Dump him.

confusedisitme Sun 19-May-13 16:36:38

fackinell - nope, not yet.

He has stayed over a lot though; in the first week it was pretty much every night, since then it's been always a Monday, thurs or fri and a Saturday, the other days he has martial arts training from 8pm-10pm.

When he added me as a friend on his facebook (I realise how silly that sounds, but he did it to 'prove' he wasn't ashamed of me - as usually school staff adding parents on facebook isn't really approved of at our school), it did say he was single.
And as his most recent ex is still a friend of his on there, I'd imagine she wouldn't have liked it much if he had changed his status to single but they were actually still together.

confusedisitme Sun 19-May-13 16:37:52

No I know akaWisey, I'm just trying to understand what is the usual/normal way to handle things.

If I understand how most people would have handled the situation if they were him, then I understand people better, simple as that.

That's why i'd like to know smile

akaWisey Sun 19-May-13 16:38:09

A BIG clue that someone is lying -

coming on to you with the big, dramatic lovey 'there's no-one else for me but you' speech within a few days of getting together.

There's a lie right there. Surely you can see that?

CalamityKate Sun 19-May-13 16:38:42

I'd stop trying to analyse him and his actions if I were you.

It's probably exactly what he wants. I bet he's got an image of himself as fascinating/complicated/wounded and the thought that you're spending all this time and energy trying to work out how to fix him tickles him no end -hmm

Really, he's not fascinating, complicated or wounded. He's a dull, self obsessed twat. Don't give him head space. He's not worth it.

akaWisey Sun 19-May-13 16:39:59

Most people if they were your bloke would handle it in the same way as him.

He's not unique in that respect because all controlling, manipulative, scheming, lying and needy people do similar things to make themselves feel better even at the expense of how other's feel about it.

CalamityKate Sun 19-May-13 16:40:55

akaWisey I totally agree.

People who are very intense ridiculously early on in relationships tend to go cold just as quickly.

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