Boyfriend afraid of commitment


Boyfriend afraid of commitment


your avatar   Tifa, 18-year-old woman

I really like this guy that I have been seeing, but he broke it off with me because he doesn't want a commitment yet. The problem is that I really like him still and we are friends, but every time I see him I want to be with him more. I want to get some advice on how I should deal with this.

What can I do, besides wait? I think he still likes me too, and I am beginning to think we just started moving too fast for him and he got scared...what should I do?


    Tony Schirtzinger,

Hi Tifa!

You don't say what kind of commitment he isn't willing to make yet, or what was "going too fast" that he got scared, or why you believe he still likes you... These are very important questions for you to consider.

About the commitment issue... I assume you wanted him to be exclusive with you but he wanted to be free to see others. The most important consideration here is sex. If you are being sexual, there is the threat of a sexually transmitted disease, of course. For this reason alone you will need to know the degree of risk involved before you can take full responsibility for your choices. Otherwise, if you are not being sexual together, you may want to make it clear to him that it's OK with you if he sees others, and that you will also be looking at other men as possibilities. (You do have to respect his unwillingness to be exclusive, if that's the case.)

About "going too fast"... This usually means either that someone was "pushing" for more than the other person was ready to give (the commitment?) or that someone was shocked by their own degree of passion. These are, of course, two totally different matters.

If you were pushing for the commitment and now regret it, just tell him so....

If you were shocked by your own passion, you will need to "own" your own passion. (And don't think that it is only this strong with this specific person. It's YOUR passion that you are learning to enjoy and, in general, it can be just as strong with someone else as it has been so far with him.) My concern here is that many people kind of fall in love with their own sexuality early in life but they think that this great passion is kind of "owned" by their partner - that he, and only he, "brings it out" in them! This isn't so. The passion is yours, and You decide whether to express it at all, how to express it, etc...

About why you believe he still likes you.... remember that you only "believe" this and that you aren't sure. You would usually KNOW something this important about someone, so you may need to ask yourself why you aren't sure of this and whether you might be kidding yourself. (By the way, he probably does "like" you and find you attractive, otherwise he wouldn't have been close to you already. That's not the question. The question is whether he loves you or wants to continue to let his relationship with you grow. That's a much bigger question, for him and for you.)

One final thought. In situations like this the person on your end might get their "ego" too invested in the other person, and confuse this with love. It's actually quite likely that the degree of desire you have for him is pretty close to the degree he has for you. So you need to ask yourself if YOU actually want him as much as you think you do - or if, maybe, you just don't want to feel "temporarily crushed" by the fact that you couldn't "keep" him. (If you find yourself wishing that you were the one to break it off with him instead of the other way around, you may be confusing your ego with your love for him!)

Thanks for a good question!

Tony Schirtzinger, ACSW

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