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Putting effort into seeing each other in a relationship? AIBU?

12 replies

Disinterestedx · 05/10/2022 12:33

Hi everyone,

Just a few details about my situation:

  • Me and my boyfriend have a 15 year age gap, I’m in my early 20s and he’s in his late 30s
  • We live 90 mins away from one another
  • I work full time and he has a small business
  • I have a dog and live alone
  • I don’t currently drive, but am currently learning
  • I have depression and find that routine, exercise, early nights etc. keep me stable


Now, throughout most of our relationship, my boyfriend has always been the one to travel to see me, because he drives. However, every few months I’ll get the train to see him — however this involves taking myself and my dog on a bus, a tram and then a train, because I live fairly rurally, so it’s a real ball ache. Recently, things have also been tight financially because of the way that I’ve been paid and also an expensive weekend away that I had for my degree graduation, and I don’t think I’ll actually be able to afford train tickets at this rate. My mood has also been a bit all over the place as I’m trying to come off an anti-depressant, and I’m being really strict with getting enough sleep and getting lots of exercise in order to keep myself stable, and I’m really panicking about disrupted routine when I go and see my boyfriend.

Now, I originally said I’d come down during the week to see him for his birthday, but I literally don’t have enough money for the transport costs and so now I asked whether I could come down the following weekend after I’ve been paid; this also means I won’t have to take all my work laptop and stuff down. He now seems upset - which I understand - because I think he feels I don’t put enough effort into the relationship. Am I being unreasonable?

I have also tried to explain to him on other occasions that I find disrupted routines really hard (an NHS psychiatrist diagnosed with adjustment disorder following a suicide attempt), but I still do feel like I’m being selfish. I think added into the mix is a real anxiety about sex as well because, after taking sertraline, my sex drive is completely non-existent.

I feel like an awful person and very selfish 😭but I’m really struggling
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Am I being unreasonable?

AIBU

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AccountDeactivated · 05/10/2022 12:37

A man that age has no business dating a woman in early twenties, I say that as one of his peers. Why not date a bloke from your generation? Dating is meant to be fun, no need to make your life harder than it needs to be.

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Disinterestedx · 05/10/2022 12:39

@AccountDeactivated Why do you say that? We’ve been going out for 2.5 years.

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girlboss94 · 05/10/2022 12:44

@Disinterestedx could he pick you up halfway?

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EfficientDynamics · 05/10/2022 12:50

AccountDeactivated · 05/10/2022 12:37

A man that age has no business dating a woman in early twenties, I say that as one of his peers. Why not date a bloke from your generation? Dating is meant to be fun, no need to make your life harder than it needs to be.

Both are consenting adults

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AccountDeactivated · 05/10/2022 12:52

Obviously OP is vulnerable and the inherent power imbalance with a male his age dating a young, vulnerable woman is disturbing.

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ChicCroissant · 05/10/2022 13:03

Are you reducing your meds on medical advice, OP?

I will say that this sounds very like something my relative with mental health difficulties would do - any time there is something going on like a birthday for someone else, they have a crisis. Did you visit him last year on his birthday?

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strawberry2017 · 05/10/2022 13:06

Could you invite him to yours for his birthday weekend and then visit him the following weekend?
Could he loan you the money to go to his and you pay it back the following week,
I would like to think that after 2.5 years together that would be something I could ask.

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concernedalot · 05/10/2022 13:12

You sound vulnerable i'm sorry OP. Maybe it would do you good to take a break from dating and get yourself in a better headspace - and ultimately find someone who is easier to date who is nearer where you live. It all sounds like too much hassle to me

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beonmywaythen · 05/10/2022 17:30

YANBU. But...

I agree the age gap is big. I know you think 23/24 is very mature but it isn't! I would say I only really knew myself at age 30.

Focus on yourself and what makes you happy and learn more about yourself.

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Sunnyqueen · 05/10/2022 17:47

It does sound like you aren't prioritising the relationship yeah. But I think this is where the age gap is coming in to play unfortunately. You are young so don't see it as a big deal but he will.
It's not that you are being unreasonable it just seems that you are perhaps at a point in your life where you aren't ready for a committed relationship, especially one with distance as a factor too.

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Ohsugarhoneyicetea · 05/10/2022 21:03

You shouldn't be 'prioritising a relationship' at the expense of your mental and financial health. And a person who truly cares for you and values you would understand that. Don't go, and don't feel bad about it. If he doesn't understand what it could cost you then he is not a partner worth having. You don't compromise on your loved ones mental health because its your birthday, that is ridiculously childish. You sound like you know exactly what you need to do to stay on course, focus on that, a good partner would never expect you not to.

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mountainsunsets · 05/10/2022 21:15

I don't mean to be harsh but I see his point.

He does the vast majority of the travel and pays all the associated fuel costs, but when it's his birthday and you've promised to do the trip for once, you let him down.

I think you're not mentally in the right place for this relationship. He wants commitment and someone who makes equal effort and you can't do that right now.

Focus on your mental health and worry about relationships when you're stronger and feeling better.

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