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Evaluating long term prospects

(50 Posts)
WhyIsIt Thu 26-Mar-20 10:11:16

NC for this. Long term poster and lurker on Mumsnet

Last year I met someone after being single a long time. It was better and healthier than my other relationships and moved fast emotionally from both sides. We both have children but we have not moved them fast into our relationship as well by the way. Mine are nearly adults so have met him. I have not been introduced to his which is fine and I have no issue with that decision for now. We live 20 miles apart.

I am a worrier and planner and he is opposite in that he is very laid back. I have not been at all used to having someone in my life for a long long time. Sometimes I get stressed about things although we are good at talking these things through calmly and he eventually will work our what I am trying to say. Usually it is that he doesn’t know what to say or do if I need support and so he will just do nothing at all.

He’s become very comfortable and once he initiated that we are in a relationship (which was so romantic and sweet at the time) we pretty much stopped dating and a lot of the nice cute things he used to express to me like saying I miss you also stopped.

I try very hard not to be unreasonable or demanding but I think the current situation has made I have started to have major concerns about whether I am wasting my time on something that has no future. I don’t want more children and there is no need to rush, equally life is short and why waste it with someone who doesn’t want the same as you? I don’t want to miss someone who never misses me. He would say he did if I asked but I don’t want to have to ask.

We have talked and he says he wants the same as me long term. Something in my gut feels like it doesn’t add up. I have been up front that if I go into a relationship I want it to be a committed one that has a future. I don’t want anything casual and he said he wanted the same.

We were apart before the official lockdown happened and it wasn’t even a discussion as he decided for both of us there was zero option to do it together. Now I feel like he calls me every day out of duty to keep me from complaining not because he really wants to talk to me. He would happily go a day or 2 with just a few odd texts to keep in touch. I wish I could be ok with that too and it makes me feel needy and I don’t like that.

Prior to lockdown he said he was considering me meeting his DC in May but he would have to ask his ex first which is on hold understandably.

When I try to make any plans with him, even an upcoming weekend he says I am pressuring him and over thinking and need to relax. I have explained that just because he doesn’t plan much doesn’t mean other people don’t. It feels like a lot of things are on his terms to fit in with HIS life and I am waiting for him to decide what he wants to do. He does lots of things last minute and I end up feeling disappointed and let down.

I’m more afraid of wasting my time than I am of being alone but I don’t know if I am being demanding and thinking too far ahead?

BertiesLanding Thu 26-Mar-20 11:04:59

It seems obvious to me that it's not for you. Trust your gut.

baileys6904 Thu 26-Mar-20 17:05:25

Sorry but it seems to me you are o rethinking things and the more you worry, the more of a self fulfilling prophecy it'll be.
You seem to be wishing or at least waiting for him to prove you right?

SonEtLumiere Thu 26-Mar-20 17:08:09

I agree with Bailey, all these little hoops for him to jump through. Prove this prove that, so fucking exhausting

category12 Thu 26-Mar-20 17:17:52

You don't seem a good match. As you say, he's got complacent and doesn't make an effort any more - why no dates any more? I don't think you should lower your expectations to match his effort levels - you're not wanting anything excessive.

And his refusal to plan anything isn't fair on you - it's all very well him deciding to do stuff on the spur of the moment, but presumably you have ended up hanging on and not arranging things with friends or whatnot because of this. He treats you as an option, basically, and you're letting him.

OhIsIt Thu 26-Mar-20 17:31:07

I hope I am not making him hoops to jump though. I don’t want to do that. I just want to know if he truly wants the same as I do.

initially I was happy to go along with his laid back flow and see what happens but when the romance and dating ground to a halt at the same time we agreed to be in a committed relationship it has made me question everything

He pursued me and I was the held back one. I didn’t want to get hurt.

He does actually make me very happy when he is engaging with me and we have great times, fun, laughing and I can see he is trying. Then sometimes he barely makes any effort at all and it can feel a bit like when someone shuts a door in your face. Yes I am left hanging on waiting for him to finish whatever thing he has chosen to do instead. When we dated he was never late and never messed me about. Now we are a couple I think he’s just got so complacent so quickly it is a bit of a slap in the face. He’s complacent about a lot of things and that seems to be the kind of person he is.

category12 Thu 26-Mar-20 17:37:47

Well, when normal life resumes, you need to stop being at his disposal like that and go do stuff without him. But tbh it seems a bit crap and doesn't bode well for your happiness long term. Imagine if you were married, he'd probably treat you like a piece of the furniture.

WhyIsIt Sat 28-Mar-20 20:44:32

Name change fail lol

I came back to post yesterday but didn’t post it

After a long chat he confessed he was feeling pressured and re-evaluating his life he had decided to see me less so he doesn’t ‘end up resenting me’ over time. And we had moved too fast too soon. I only see him twice a week and it’s clearly me who is more into this than him. I don’t want or need more space. Twice a week was fine.

I was reluctant to go into a relationship initially worried about getting hurt and giving up my independence but he completely overwhelmed me with talk of the future and how happy I made him. Now I am not sure I make him very happy at all I feel like I make him feel stressed out. I’ve backed right off but he’s called me 3 or 4 times today and I am running out of things I want to say to him. I don’t know what he wants from me. And I don’t think I can express my needs or wants without looking clingy.

He also said he sees a future with me, and wants to get to know my children better and me get to know his, but if this thing is being relegated to once a week sleepover I am not sure I want to go down that path. Is this throwing me a crumb? I am so unsure where I stand now

category12 Sat 28-Mar-20 20:49:16

I think he wants you as a shag once a week and he's saying just enough to keep you hanging on for that purpose. I think you should dump.

TripleTroubleTime Sat 28-Mar-20 20:49:40

It sounds like he got a bit carried away and for him the honeymood period has worn off and he wants to get a bit of his life back.

Make him miss you a bit, dont be so available.

However...
You have every right to have the relationship YOU want, and you feel as he has withdrawn too far, bin him off.

WhyIsIt Sat 28-Mar-20 20:53:39

This feels absolutely horrible as I know I deserve better

I have been 100% upfront with him from day 1 that I was very happy being single and by myself and that I would only consider changing that for someone who wanted commitment and a future. I had a previous partner who kept me hanging on for nearly 2 years with ambiguity and he knows this.

I think he doesn’t want to hurt/lose me but he is trying to undo what he rushed me into. It is just very painful - I am angry at myself

WhyIsIt Sat 28-Mar-20 21:10:09

I don’t want to do anything rash in this lockdown period. That is my worry.

He always tells me I am an over thinker and when I have asked outright if I am making him unhappy and given him a very clear chance to walk away no hard feelings, he has begged me to stay with him. He told me he loved me pretty early on and I didn’t say it back for a while. Now I obviously have strong and deep feelings for him and I don’t know if I am just being insecure. Its like he gives with one hand... and takes with the other. Does this make sense? He was very keen for us to book a holiday for later in the year. But now wants more time away from me. It doesn’t make sense and feels awful.

If I tell him I feel awful he seems to take this as if I am emotionally blackmailing him or something. I don’t know what kind of girlfriend I am or what I should do. Am I still in the assessment period of whether I am worthy of being given a future? I’m not much of a party type and although I have friends and my own interests (and a job house and kids) I do not go out a great deal out of choice

category12 Sat 28-Mar-20 21:19:17

I think he's doing the push & pull - it's really confusing, it causes insecurity and it's bad news.

Have your previous relationships been abusive?

HollowTalk Sat 28-Mar-20 21:27:18

When I try to make any plans with him, even an upcoming weekend he says I am pressuring him and over thinking and need to relax.

Tell him to bugger off. If he can't cope with planning an upcoming weekend then he isn't worth bothering with.

As @category12 says, he's playing Push and Pull. This isolation's going to go on for ages - I wouldn't hang on to him in the hope he'll change. You have nothing to talk about anyway so let him loose (and wait for him to try to pull you back in again.)

WhyIsIt Sat 28-Mar-20 21:41:40

I have had an abusive relationship with my children’s father but I did leave it and it was a very long time ago. I have tried some relationships but they have not worked out for me so I have been living just with my children for many years. They will leave soon and I wanted to meet someone to build a new life with as it’s the right time.

I have great friends a lovely family and a nice life generally. I never wanted a hook up or anything casual, seems pointless and brings nothing to my life in my opinion.

I was honest with him or and he wanted the same as me and we got on so well so it seemed like it made sense to give it a shot. We both agreed this.

I haven’t been in a push pull like this before and it is so confusing. I don’t know who to be or what makes him happy. I feel like I don’t truly make him happy but he doesn’t like being single? If I said this to him he would come across as very hurt and try to talk me around.

HollowTalk Sat 28-Mar-20 21:51:11

I remember when I was young there was a Durex advert that used to be on at the cinema. A girl and boy were in the back seat of a car, about to have sex. The girl says, "If I get pregnant, you'll marry me, won't you?" and the boy says, "Course I will, love." The audience used to burst out laughing (though it wasn't funny) because everyone knew he would say whatever it took to have sex with her.

This situation reminds me of that advert. He is saying what you want to hear but actually his heart isn't in it.

category12 Sat 28-Mar-20 21:52:17

He's quite manipulative.

He behaves one way and when you call him on it, he tells you your perceptions are wrong. This is gas-lighting.

And it's quite worrying that you say "I don't know who to be". He's supposed to love you as you are, not be trying to mould you or you having to twist yourself in knots to please him.

WhyIsIt Sat 28-Mar-20 21:55:55

Problem I have now is I am constantly looking for reassurance and clarity and I am annoying him. So I will check plans with him multiple times and give him an opt out early on just in case. Then he gets cross with me for checking and assuming he won’t come. But it is because he sometimes does let me down. I’ve told him that being flakey is causing me to question plans all the time. I end up feeling grateful he does eventually turn up to something.

With our holiday that he got me to agree to, I don’t want to pay anymore money in if we aren’t going. So I asked him what he was doing about paying this month and he isn’t paying it this month so my brain tells me he is hedging his bets with me.

He called me earlier and I said to him if ‘I don’t speak to you tomorrow have a great day with your children’. He got cross because he said ‘well I will speak to you tomorrow won’t I of course I will’. I was meaning ‘no pressure to call me if you are busy’ and now he sees this as a dig that I assume he won’t call me

category12 Sat 28-Mar-20 21:59:35

He's deliberately picking fights and taking offence at nothing. You're not allowed to be sensitive but he'll give you grief over imagined slights. hmm

Listen, it's supposed to be easier than this.

WhyIsIt Sat 28-Mar-20 21:59:35

He is saying what you want to hear but actually his heart isn't in it.

I can hear this and feel this in everything he does and says now. We are annoying each other and I am too insecure now. I know it’s going to be over. He has lost all interest in me because I was strong independent and ballsy and he liked that but all the pushing and pulling has completely confused me into someone I don’t want to be

BackseatCookers Sat 28-Mar-20 22:35:51

How long have you been seeing him?

He sounds like a headfuck.

rvby Sat 28-Mar-20 23:04:03

I'm reading your posts and what's jumping out at me is that you want to "be sure", you "dont want to waste time", etc.

You do know that it's not possible to "be sure", right? He can't be sure and neither can you... are you aware of this?

If you have a delusion that you are able to "be sure" that a relationship will continue until one of you dies, then by your very nature, you'll be someone who commits too quickly and who projects fantasies onto men you meet... who is eternally annoying these men by asking them questions they can't answer.

He is just some bloke. Of course he isnt sure about the relationship. No one is ever totally sure about a relationship, not if they're honest with themselves. People who are "sure" about relationships are kidding themselves, 100% of the time.

The only way to get to know someone well enough to be anywhere near "sure" of them, is to spend a good 2-3 years potentially "wasting your time" on them. You can't bypass that bit, unless by pure luck where you meet a guy, decide that they fit your fantasies, and then by pure chance years later you are lucky enough to uncover that they are close to what your fantasy was initially.

Until you embrace uncertainty and stop looking for security, you are just going to end up with a succession of men who disappoint you once you get to know them. You need to learn to compassionately hold back your fantasies and actually look at the person in front of you, without asking yourself what they ought to be doing. Instead just getting to know them for them. It takes discipline and patience. It means "wasting" an awful lot of time, waiting for the other person to unfold over time. It also means being brave enough to end things as soon as you know the other person isn't for you.

This guy has already proven not to be for you, so bin him off. But work on yourself before the next one.

Brookeinabook Sat 28-Mar-20 23:37:38

It sounds to me like this man makes you anxious. Other than that, it seems you have life pretty much sorted, and well done you on raising your kids and building a life for yourself.

Trust your gut. It doesn't stack up for you and it doesn't sound like this man is really making you feel good about yourself. I'd get rid and use this time for self care.

WhyIsIt Sun 29-Mar-20 06:38:37

Being ‘sure’ to me means

Feeling secure with someone not anxious (knowing where you stand)
That you are moving forward with life plans together
That you are both have the same concept of what your RS is
That you respect each other

I know it’s a gamble, everything is. But the kind of RS I want is one where you take a gamble together and you do what’s best for you and the other person, not just for yourself all the time

Also I’ve been foolish as he was so ‘sure’ I was the one for him as we clicked so well and couldn’t believe I would waste my time on him as if I was out of his league.

I want to ask him to clarify what he means by less time together as I didn’t get the chance to, and whether this is a short or long term thing and what it is going to mean. As then I will have a clearer idea of what I am going to say next that it doesn’t work for me

NoMoreDickheads Sun 29-Mar-20 08:58:21

*he had decided to see me less so he doesn’t ‘end up resenting me’ over time^

Like you, I would be questioning to myself what future he sees in the relationship, if he wants to see you less.

A lot of the power to decide how things are going to go seems to be in his hands. This is a really unpleasant situation to be in.

You might well be more relaxed and happy on your own.

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