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November 21, 2017 - Welcome Guest!

Advice » Love

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Should I stay or should I go?

Question:

I have been living with someone for the past four years. I get very confused as to where our relationship is going. Oh, Ron is very good to me. I quit my job back in Feb.97 and he has supported me since then with no complaints. My problem is he can not tell me he loves me and is not one to take me out in public. Our sex life is almost non existent any more. Some times it's a month or more in between. He says it is because his sinuses are bothering him. I am starting to doubt him. He is only gone away once a month to Guards. Other than that we are together every day. He is home on time every night. So he really has no time to mess around on me unless it is when he is out of town on Guard duty.

My question is, Is this relationship worth staying in and trying to keep it together?

45 year-old woman

Answer:

I believe you are wise to question this relationship. From your comments it appears that your boyfriend is emotionally unavailable to you. It concerns me that you have been in a relationship for four years without your needs being addressed. That is, your need to feel loved and wanted. You didn't mention your relationships with your own family but I'm wondering if you grew up in a family in which your emotional needs were also not met. If so, it's not uncommon for a person brought up in such an environment to be drawn to someone with whom they can recreate the emotionally deprived climate of their growing up years.

When our childhood experiences are particularly painful, we are often unconsciously compelled to recreate similar situations throughout our lives, in an attempt to gain mastery over them. For example, if you needed a parent who did not respond to you, you could become involved with a similar person, or a series of them, in adulthood in an attempt to "win" the old struggle to be loved. Because you were never able to change your parent(s) into the warm, loving parent(s) you longed for, you respond deeply to the familiar type of emotionally unavailable man whom you can again try to change, through your love.

Unfortunately no matter how hard you try, you can't change the other person. You can only change yourself. If your boyfriend agrees to it, you could try couples counseling to help clarify all the issues you are dealing with. You state that your boyfriend is good to you because he supports you economically. You need to decide if this economic support outweighs your emotional needs. Ultimately I believe you'll be much happier in your relationships if you give priority to your emotional needs.

This question was answered by Stuart Klein MA, LPCC. Stuart Klein is a licensed professional clinical counselor and has been practicing psychotherapy since 1974 including 12 years as the Clinical Director of two mental health centers. He is the founder of "Tele-Therapist", a convenient and confidential way to receive professional psychotherapy on the phone.

For more information visit the site or contact information page on QueenDom.

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