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Am I just 'settling' in my relationship?(13 Posts)
Any thoughts and pearls of wisdom would be greatly appreciated :-)
I have been with my OH for just over two years.
Prior to him, I have had many relationships. Many abusive ones sadly and then also the other extreme, where the person I was with wasn't right for me; intellectually, physically, etc and just didn't 'do it for me', if you know what I mean. So I would leave to seach for 'love'.
I suffer from anxiety which I have had for many years but I try very hard to do all I can to make my life better (which doesn't always work, but I won't give up).
So here I am with a really nice man. The first year was good; I loved his intelligence, his sensitivity and I can recall really loving moments. He has routines and a kind of OCD personality that I struggled with but still wanted to be with him.
The second year, I have had problems with hormonal changes, being really run down, ibs...increased anxiety but with all this, I have found myself almost bored of him :-( My libido has dropped a lot. The first year, I was always trying to find ways to tempt him, but this year...I could go without quite easily!
He is very much a non confrontational type of man and this I find a turn off. I hear stories of what his first wife got away with (she basically took everything from him because he just allowed her to and now he has worked all his life for nothing) and I keep thinking how weak he is. Then I feel so bad at just thinking like this. I almost feel angry at him. He would never ever speak his mind. He has been a doormat.
At the beginning, I didn't exactly fancy him if I am honest. I thought he was attractive and different to other men I had known and as time went by, I found myself psychologically drawn to him, as opposed to physically.
Despite all my 'issues', I am a strong minded, feisty woman, very animated I suppose but very sensitive myself. I like strong men, who speak their minds, with ambition and goals and passion. He isn't like this. He would be happy to just retire to a country cottage and live out his life. While I like the idea of a country cottage, I still want to make a difference in the world :-)
We all have fantasies of the perfect man for us and for my 'ideal' man, he kind of falls short. But then, I have never found the right man for me in my life.
I do love him and care for him but I don't feel the passion. I am not attracted to anyone else.
I am 45 years old. I have known a lot of bastards basically and I think, well if I was brave enough to leave him and go through all that heartache for him and me, I could find myself with another bastard at my time of life! I just want to feel 'in love'. And I did at the beginning but now it has just faded and I find myself, instead, focusing on all my problems.
You don't fancy him, you don't respect him, the 'novelty' of psychological attraction has waned: there's nothing left and if you really are strong and feisty and all that jazz you'll be true to yourself and leave. You just need to be a bit brave.
Thanks Handywoman, well it's not that I don't fancy him at all. I do still find him attractive, just not as much as at the beginning. And it isn't that I don't respect him at all. Sometimes I admire him for not reacting to situations that I react stressfully to! We have a very close and caring relationship, so it isn't that there is nothing left either. Just that sometimes I wish for 'more' then feel guilty as when you read what you do here about relationships, I would be considered as lucky!
Are you perhaps entering relationships to "rescue" your partner?
I thought if that after you said:
I found myself psychologically drawn to him, as opposed to physically.
Antimatter, could be. Never thought of it like that. When we first met, he spoke about his ex...a lot! And I felt sorry for all he had been through. Wanted to make him happy and stand by him. I am a compassionate person, have a 'calling' to make a difference. And I embarrassingly sob at films :-( I have been through a lot in my life and I think that is why I am the way I am. I hate anyone in distress and want to help.
Wanted to make him happy and stand by him. I am a compassionate person, have a 'calling' to make a difference.
I think you perhaps need to do some soul searchibg and a good counsellor will help you to understand why do you think you are in a mission.
You csn't build partnership on pittying someone.
You love them fow who they are not what they may become.
That's why you feel this relationship feels it is losing its appeal.
You seem to be more friends than lovers.
You think about how 'weak' he is and that he's been a bit of a 'doormat' and you feel guilty about feeling this way: I'm sorry but you don't respect him! Not fundamentally for who he is, even though you admire him in some circumstances when he can remain calmer than you. You also describe the way he is as 'a bit of a turn off'. You surely wouldn't be posting this stuff on here if he was someone you wanted to spend the rest of your life with? Your reply sounds as though you are making 'excuses' to stay. Probably for fear of never finding 'the one'. But that's not a good enough reason to stay, no siree.
Sometimes you can strangely create the 'right relationship' (close and caring) with the 'wrong man'. I did this very same thing this year, OP! Splitting was hard and painful (had to lose the emotional intimacy and support and friendship) but it was not wrong.
Antimatter, I don't pity him in the way you mean. I think we are all responsible for our actions but that sometimes bad things happen to good people. I do love him for how he is; that he is sensitive, caring, thoughtful and intelligent and loving. Just that something has changed in me, almost as if I focus on the negatives.
Handywoman, I do respect him. Yes, he has been a doormat but he has worked hard all his life, he has treated people well, he is an amazing listener and has empathy and compassion. He puts me before himself. I respect him a lot for all those qualities. Just that it is hard to ignore the 'other' qualities. Many women come here because they are confused as to whether they are with the right man which is why people post stuff like this, otherwise we would all be writing here saying we are happy and the relationship part of mumsnet wouldn't exist! I agree that you can create the right relationship with the wrong man, definitely agree. But I have had a lot of relationships before and many were abusive. I don't know how old you are Handywoman, but I'm certainly not getting any younger ;-) And I know what a struggle it is to find a decent man. It is indeed fear of being alone but also fear of losing a great man because my feelings are not as much as what they were.
If you are used to drama in your relationships it may be a novelty to you that there can be peace and no emotional rollecoasters.
It's horrible to lose a great man. Maybe you are deeply afraid of facing a loss like that. It sounds like you would be best placed to unpick all this (the history of unhealthy relationships, past losses, the sense of 'calling') with a counsellor before you can address what to do about this relationship. It almost sounds like something is 'holding you back' from a decision.
It's OK to be single, you know, OP. The options aren't this guy or another guy, it's this guy or being on your own for a bit. If you have a track record of poor relationships then being on your own for a bit would probably be the most emotionally healthy thing to do.
Yes, that could be it, antimatter. I need to find peace in no emotional rollercoasters. And thank you Handywoman, your thoughts have greatly helped me. Lots to untangle I think.
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