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He doesn't love me yet - feel anxious

(43 Posts)
anotherdayanothernamechange2 Fri 11-Nov-16 09:31:22

I'm not sure if this is my currently poor mental health speaking or a real issue. I've been seeing someone for about 6 months and he is great. He was a friend before he was a partner and he is kind, caring, fun, generous and supportive. We have a great time together.

I fell for him very quickly (indeed, before we got together).

He has previously said (again, before we were together) that he isn't sure he is capable of love. Or not sure what it is. And now the lack of him saying it is starting to worry me. I don't think I can live in a relationship without it, but I am not sure how long to give it. We had a brief discussion a few weeks ago in which he said "I can say I care about you very much"....which just seemed to have this glaring but at the end of it. I told him then that love was important to me.

He treats me much better than my previous relationships. He says lots of lovely things. He tells me he has previously felt trapped in relationships and forced to say "I love you" when he didn't necessarily feel it.

Are loving actions enough? I FEEL loved but he hasn't said it. And is it all too soon to be worrying at 6 months in?

The anxiety is making me feel sick and panicky - the backdrop is that I am currently going through a bit of a depression and recovering from the death of someone very close.

bluebell9 Fri 11-Nov-16 09:55:59

His previous relationship may put him off saying the words.

But his actions are far more important. Would you rather be with someone who said I love you but didn't make you feel loved or this man, who might not say it, but makes you feel it.

Would you want him to say it just to keep you happy? Give him time. As long as you are happy together, I would try and be calmer about it.

Have you had any counselling for your loss? They might be able to help with the anxiety too.

ocelot7 Fri 11-Nov-16 10:04:26

Actions are more important than words - people can say those 3 words without thought or really meaning it...
My bf of about 6 months is kind & generous and looks at me like he loves me smile but i would be a bit spooked if he actually said it!

LuckyBitches Fri 11-Nov-16 10:07:19

If you feel love, then it sounds like you're getting it! That's surely the most important thing? I do understand where you're coming from OP - it sounds like he might have a bit of an issue here, but don't we all?

hellsbellsmelons Fri 11-Nov-16 10:07:27

Actions ALWAYS speak louder than words!
If it's nice and you are enjoying it please try not to get too anxious about it all. They are only words.
Relax and enjoy it.

uhoh2016 Fri 11-Nov-16 10:13:58

He could say I love you and treat you like crap or he could just not say anything and treat you lovingly- I know what I'd rather have. He must have some genuine feelings towards you if he's caring kind and supportive of you

TheNaze73 Fri 11-Nov-16 10:23:44

Saying those 3 words are a massive deal for some people & I wouldn't dream of it after 6 months, when most people are still in the lust bubble. How can you know after just 6 months??
His actions speak far louder, than the words. I've had it said to me after 2/3 months & it's a massive red flag to me.
Enjoy the moment op

Crystal15 Fri 11-Nov-16 10:24:41

He sounds confused about what real love is. I used to be, I mean the fact he thinks it's a feeling. Sure it can make you feel things, but feelings come and go. My belief is real healthy love comes over time. Caring, feeling like you never want to live without the other person and gratitude for all they do for you. I guess the media sells it as Infatuation and that's confusing!

Simonneilsbeard Fri 11-Nov-16 10:34:43

I'd be concerned that he feels he's incapable of feeling love. That would definitely make me keep my guard up.
As others have said it's early days still but something about that statement wouldn't sit well with me.

AnotherEmma Fri 11-Nov-16 10:36:06

Sorry for your loss flowers Have you had any bereavement counselling? I suggest you talk to your GP and/or Cruse if you haven't already.

As for your boyfriend, I'm going to go against the grain a bit. I think this is a bit worrying: "he isn't sure he is capable of love. Or not sure what it is."
I would want to know more about what's behind this - is it because of painful experiences in childhood and/or past relationships? If he has issues with emotional intimacy and commitment I would be wary. Of course those issues could be fixable but only if he's willing to work on them.

In a relationship, opening yourself up to all the associated emotions is pretty scary but also pretty damn essential. Obviously 6 months is relatively early days but it's long enough to ask yourself whether this is a serious relationship with potential to be long term. I wouldn't want to entrust my heart to someone who is emotionally cold or constipated, and not willing to do anything about it. So in your position I would revisit the "not capable of love" discussion, dig a bit deeper and try and get a sense of his attitude towards working on it.

AnotherEmma Fri 11-Nov-16 10:37:45

Cross post with Simon. Good to see I'm not the only one who thinks that!

MorrisZapp Fri 11-Nov-16 10:43:08

DP and I broke up over this. He realised the error of his ways and we got back together to his tearful relief, but it still took a further two weeks before he said those words (as he left for work one morning).

It's hard but try to look at actions. Thinking about ie my dad, he loves me more than life itself and demonstrates this all the time. But I can't remember him ever saying the three words. It seems irrelevant really, like it doesn't need to be said.

AnotherEmma Fri 11-Nov-16 10:45:32

I do think people are missing the point slightly - it's not just that he won't say he loves her, he actually doesn't feel that he loves her.

I could probably be in a relationship with someone who was 100% sure they loved me but never said the words (as long as they showed it in other ways).

But I couldn't be in a relationship with someone who wasn't sure they loved me.

ClopySow Fri 11-Nov-16 11:00:55

That "i'm not sure if i'm capable of love" would have me walking away. If someone is willing to say something like that about themself, you should really pay attention. It becomes an excuse for poor treatment as time goes on.

Simonneilsbeard Fri 11-Nov-16 11:11:28

What clopysow said
That would be my main concern.
I'm not suggesting you should end the relationship by any means but just be on your guard. That would be my advice.

anotherdayanothernamechange2 Fri 11-Nov-16 11:13:11

Well it's nice to hear that people hold both the opinions that I do:

Sometimes I think it's a massive problem and sometimes I think I just need to be patient.

He is having counselling, as am I. Mine for anxiety and grief. His for not being in touch with his emotions.

It's the best relationship I have been in (honestly) and I feel very cared for.

He's definitely not emotionally cold. He's warm and very tactile and communicates with me when we're not together. This morning he woke up, hugged me tight and said "I really like you". Which felt lovely but just sent me into "but what if it doesn't turn into something more?" thoughts.

So I'm still feeling polarised about this.

AnotherEmma Fri 11-Nov-16 11:19:51

Well, if he's having counselling that's a good sign. If he's warm and loving that's another good sign. It does sound fixable. My advice would be not to make any big decisions while you're still grieving and battling anxiety/depression. Be kind to yourself and give it a bit more time. flowers

WhatsGoingOnEh Fri 11-Nov-16 11:28:59

Shagging him senseless and having sleepovers, etc, isn't going to make him realise he loves you. The only way he'll realise his true feelings is when you're not around. I'd start backing off. Six months is a big chunk of life to waste on someone who doesn't know how they feel about you. This could go on for years!

My first DH was someone who didn't say ILY till 7 months. The reason it took him that long was that he never really loved me. It was so obvious the whole way through our relationship and marriage, but I didn't want to admit it because I was absolutely head-over-heels about him. I ended up having to go on anti-depressants, because my mind was constantly whirling with thoughts like, "Well, it he didn't love me, he wouldn't have done X... But then, if he did love me, he wouldn't have done Y..."

I asked everyone's opinion. I wish someone had had the strength to say, "What's, he's really just not that into you. Ditch it." Instead, all my friends were blandly noncommittal, and I ended up marrying him (I gave an ultimatum) and having two kids! I wasted 10 years on him. I could seriously slap myself. smile

If you want to be with a man who loves you as much as you love them, you will have to accept that this relationship doesn't meet those criteria.

anotherdayanothernamechange2 Fri 11-Nov-16 11:30:04

I am currently fixating on it like the anxiety won't be resolved until this issue is. I know from experience that when I go through a period of anxiety this is what I do - find a reason for it and obsess about it.

I'll just try focusing on myself for a little bit and let things bumble along.

hotwater Fri 11-Nov-16 11:37:03

I think he has made this into a barrier for himself and 'I really like you' is his working on getting past it. Just let youself be happy and give him time. Even if it takes him years to say it, if you feel loved what does it matter? Relax and enjoy each other smile

SandyY2K Fri 11-Nov-16 11:55:22

I asked everyone's opinion. I wish someone had had the strength to say, "What's, he's really just not that into you. Ditch it." Instead, all my friends were blandly noncommittal, and I ended up marrying him

This caught my eye.^^^^^^^^^

But they weren't in the relationship with you. How would they know if you were with him and didn't know. Usually even when your friends tell you .. People don't listen because they're in love and are hell bent on staying with the guy unless he dumps her.

OP - I don't know how old you are, but for me, that would determine how much time I was prepared to hang around waiting for him to love me.

Time is one thing you never get back. I agree with the poster who said to back off and let him miss you. Start busying yourself with friends and other interests.

anotherdayanothernamechange2 Fri 11-Nov-16 12:02:02

SandyY2K I'm 31. No kids. Want some.

I will give it more time. I don't want to risk losing him if it is just time, but equally I can't wait too long and end up wasting my time!

Secretspillernamechange Fri 11-Nov-16 12:03:10

It took my OH a year, and even then he wrote it in a card rather than saying it. 5 years on we own a house together, have a lovely life and are getting married next year.

Luckily we have a mutual friend who knew that it'd take him a while and reassured me that he just wanted to be sure.

Only you know your OH. I agree with the 'actions rather than words' posters, and you can also look at the other things he says. Previous bfs have said the 'L' word after a few weeks but freak out planning holidays, christmases or other longer-term plans. If he's happy to chat about any of these things it's a really strong sign that you have absolutely nothing to worry about.

WannaBe Fri 11-Nov-16 12:13:24

After six months I would expect someone to know how they felt. Not necessarily where they saw the future,but to know what their feelings were, now, at this point in time.

He knows how he feels. He Likes you. He dOesn't *love you.

Telling someone they don't know whether they could love them after six months when he presumably knows how the OP feels is bloody hurtful, and I disagree that actions speak louder than words. YOu. Need both, and he's unable to give them to you.

Personally I would walk away now because IMO he's never likely to change his mind while you're prepared to accept the "I like you" crumbs.

anotherdayanothernamechange2 Fri 11-Nov-16 12:15:13

Secretspillernamechange that's reassuring. We do have a great time together. And we can talk about future term stuff (not that we really think about it right now)

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