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Love at first sight?

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  • #361922
    Angel
    Participant

    kDear Readers,

    I recently got into my first relationship. When I first met him, he was nervous but very respectful and our dated ended abruptly because I had to go somewhere for an urgent commitment. I would say the date was going nicely and so, I called him later to apologize and set up another date. We talked about a lot of different things and I would say that I definitely wanted to go for a 3rd date. At the end of our second date, he said he was in love with me. I was astounded that he would claim this so early on in the relationship. Being completely honest, I do like him as well but since it is my first relationship I don’t know exactly what my feelings are. When he confessed those feelings to me, I asked him why he thinks this and he explained that since he has already been in a long relationship before (2 years) he knows what love feels like and that what he felt with me is a lot stronger than anything he’s ever felt before. Since I am the type of person who will keep everyone at arms length until I am certain I can trust them, I told him that I will be a lot more careful with my feelings and I genuinely don’t like revealing or allowing people into my heart because I’ve been hurt by letting people in too fast. I also explained that one of my flaws is that I can be too loyal so much so that I overlook any flaws. When I explained this to him, he advised me to take my time and that he has no expectations of me returning his feelings. He continues to tell me how amazed he is that someone like me is with him and that he’s still afraid that I will just leave him after getting bored.

    At first I thought that he might have motivations to become more physical. But he has been nothing but respectful and careful with how we far go. Furthermore, he recently told me that he didn’t want a physical relationship too fast because he was afraid I would leave after. On one of our dates, I confronted him with my own feelings and explained that I felt like everything was moving too fast and I was liking him too fast. He calmly and patiently told me that I don’t need to worry about any expectations from his side and he encourages me to keep my feelings protected because he knows how much it hurts. He also comforted by saying that the speed of this relationship would be entirely decided by me.

    <span style=”text-align: right;”>He goes out of his way to make plans with me and is mindful of how my time is being used since I am currently studying for a major exam. He is done schooling and is working a job he really enjoys and loves to tell me about it. From our conversations, I also gauged that he has been used by people for his money before and that is a concern his family has for anyone he dates.</span>

    Overall, I think I do enjoy being with him but the concerns that I think I am noticing revolve around his nature to please the people he loves. On a drunken night, he called me and explained how is culture and family limit him from doing things he enjoys and he has ended up sacrificing his happiness for them. He doesn’t remember this call so I’m not sure if I should bring this up with him. Something that really concerns me about this is that I think his culture and his family have a a lot of control over what his life looks like and they have a much more conservative and traditional view of life. Coming from a very liberal family, I am concerned that if this relationship were to progress further, not only would there be concerns about me as a “good person” but also he would caught between pleasing “two sides” and I’m not confident I would be happy with the outcome. I don’t even think I want to be a part of that situation.

    I truly love the conversations I have with him and he has a liberal mindset, unlike his family. I also value how he purposefully makes time to meet me. But some things about him irritate me because sometimes I feel as though he can be so involved in his own stories (he has a really sharp memory so he remembers everything) that I almost feel like I don’t get to talk. To be fair, I enjoy listening and I like to keep my opinions and stories to myself until I am very comfortable with other people, so I wasn’t eager to share my own life experiences. But at this point, I am amazed that he doesn’t ask me questions as often.

    Overall, I am happy with relationship and I noticed our dates are never boring or repetitive. I guess I’m just afraid that this is all moving too fast and being my first relationship, I don’t know what I’m feeling.

    So far, we’ve been dating for a little over 1 month.

    #361944
    Angel
    Participant

    Dear readers,

    Meeting him again today!

    Would appreciate some insight!

     

    Love,

    Angel

    #361946
    anita
    Participant

    Dear Angel:

    You are currently studying for a major exam and you are experiencing your first, month long relationship with a man who is done with his schooling and has a job that he enjoys.

    Your first date with him was nice but cut short because you had to attend something urgent. You set a second date. At the end of the second date, he told you that he was in love with you. He explained to you that he had a two years relationship before, that he knows what love feels like, and that what he felt with you was “a lot stronger than anything he’s ever felt before”.

    You then explained to him, as I understand it, that you were hurt before by letting people in too fast, having been too loyal to people to the point of overlooking their flaws, and therefore, you will be careful with your feelings in regard to him. He told you that he has no expectations that you will return his feelings, advised you to take your time, told you how amazed he is that someone like you is with him, and that he is afraid that you “will just leave him after getting bored”. He told you later that “he didn’t want a physical relationship too fast because he was afraid” that you would leave him after.

    He has been “nothing but respectful and careful” with you, calm and patient, goes out of his way to make plans for the two of you, being considerate of your time as you are currently studying for a major exam, he encourages you to keep your feelings protected “because he knows how much it hurts”, and he told you that you will be the one deciding the speed of the relationship.

    One night he called you when he was drunk and told you that “culture and family limit him from doing things he enjoys and he has ended up sacrificing his happiness for them”. You also figured from his stories that “he has been used by people for his money before and that is a concern his family has for anyone he dates”. You are concerned that “his culture and his family have a lot of control over what his life looks like and they have a much more conservative and traditional view of life” than you and your family, and that being so motivated to please his family, if the relationship progresses, he “would be caught between pleasing ‘two sides'”, and you don’t know if you want to be a part of such a situation.

    You were cautious about sharing your life stores with him and he was comfortable sharing his, being very involved in the stories he tells you, but now you are irritated that he talks so much that you don’t get a chance  to talk. Also, you are concerned that he doesn’t ask you questions often.

    My input:

    1. He reads like a good guy, considerate, respectful, accommodating, generous.

    2. Maybe he talks so much because he thinks you don’t like to talk, because of your cautious nature. If you tell him that you want to talk as well, that you want to share your stores, but don’t get a chance, I am guessing that he will be more than willing to accommodate you.

    3. Your concern regarding his emotional and financial investment in his family members/ others is valid. Considering a lifetime relationship, a marriage, you want a man who will be emotionally and financially invested in you, as you are in him. You want  a husband whose first priority is his chosen family, you and the children you may choose to have. If this is indeed very important to you (as it would be to me, if I was in your place), then get to  know more about his mindset on the matter. Ask him questions but not in a way that will alarm him. You want honest answers from him, not answers that he may give you because he is afraid that you will leave him.

    It is a form of art, to ask a man you are involved in questions designed for information only, not questions designed to influence him or negotiate with him.

    What he told you when he was drunk is very meaningful, and it is not a good thing. I imagine he is resentful for having sacrificed his happiness for others and being limited as a result.

    Because this relationship is new, only a month old, I wonder if you can adopt the attitude of taking it very slowly with him, thinking of it as long term: no reason to rush, nowhere to rush to, no reason to figure out everything right now. Get to know him patiently, experiment (ex. tell him that you want to talk too, and then do  so, see how it feels and how he responds to your stories), and focus on your exam- which needs to be your number 1 priority at this point.

    Is my input helpful to you?

    anita

    #361947
    Angel
    Participant

    Hi Anita,

    Thank you so much for your feedback. I really appreciate it and I definitely find it helpful. You mentioned some things that I was not thinking of!

    In regards to your suggestion to ask questions about marriage and long term commitments, I actually have asked him questions. I think he may have already gotten an idea of my concerns and may in fact be giving answers that he thinks will appease me.

    For example, because of his religion there are certain dietary restrictions that he is supposed to follow but does not because he doesn’t believe in them. However, his family does and although he says that they either know or have an idea of his choices, he hides it in front of them and in his home when they visit. He claims he does this because he wants them to stay happy with the idea they have and that he is happy with his situation. So I asked him, how he would deal with a situation where his partner would not be okay with hiding this and he replied that he would not stop his partner but he would also not join her either. I am not sure what to make of this because he is in his mid-twenties and I think that maybe this response is not appropriate.

     

    Thank you!

    Angel

    #361951
    anita
    Participant

    Dear Angel:

    You are welcome. Regarding your example of the dietary restriction, it is a shame that he feels that he has to lie regarding what he eats outside in his own home. It is respectful that if they visit his home (for a short period of time),  he doesn’t put on the table/ anywhere visible foods that offend his parents. But it is not respectful to himself and to his future wife to lie about what he/ his wife eats, and to pretend to follow their dietary guidelines. It is not his parents’ business to choose what he eats, or what his wife eats.

    When you asked him how he would deal with the situation, he “replied that he would not stop his partner but he would also not join her”- was he referring to a scenario where he is married, his parents visit, his wife eats the “forbidden food” and he doesn’t join her, or did he mean that his wife will tell them that she eats the “forbidden food” but he will not join you telling the truth?

    anita

     

    #361954
    Angel
    Participant

    I agree Anita, I don’t think it’s very fair to him that he needs to hide these things. It also concerns me about what he would do on bigger decisions in life that matter a lot to me. I think that the conservative views also include things like upbringing of children. I don’t know if I’m being unreasonable in thinking about these things so early on but these just seem like really big red flags to me and I don’t know if I should be careful or if I should even bother continuing?
    <p style=”text-align: left;”>He meant that he would not join his wife in eating with her when they’re visiting. This seems like it would be a very awkard situation for me and I can see myself being made to feel bad for eating as you said the “forbidden food”. Or even just having a bad relationship overall with his family over things like thise. Ofcourse I know that this is just one example and maybe it wouldn’t even be a big issue but I know that my family would also be affected by this situation and that troubles me further.</p>
     

    Love,

    Angel

    #361956
    anita
    Participant

    Dear Angel:

    “I don’t know if I’m being unreasonable in thinking about these things so early on but these just seem like really big red flags to me and I don’t know if I should be careful or if I should even bother continuing”-

    – I think that you are being reasonable to be thinking about these things. Lots of young women don’t think much and they pay a high price for it later. If they continue to have children with men they are not compatible with, the children will pay a high price as well.

    This man is a nice guy, so I understand the attraction. Problem is that to be compatible with him, as he is, you will have to be as submissive as he is to his parents, meaning you will have to be okay with allowing his parents to set the rules for your life and the lives of your children.

    Because you have the tendency you mentioned, to be too loyal to people and overlook their flaws, better you .. remove yourself now from the relationship, before you get in too deep, is my thinking at this point.

    anita

    #361973
    Angel
    Participant

    Dear Anita,

    As I was reading your post, I understand what your wrote because my gut feeling says the same. However, I am saddened to let go of this relationship because I do truly enjoy his company and I’ve been wanting a relationship like this for quite some time. I wonder if I explain my fears and concerns to him, if he would be able to address them and show me what he could do. As much as I am willing to give in to others, I am also very strong on my own core morals and values, something that I have made clear to him and he has told me that he very much values that about me and he would not expect me to change that about myself. It’s his encouragement and his loving words that continue to draw me in. Do you think I am being too naive?

     

    Love,

    Angel

    #361977
    anita
    Participant

    Dear Angel:

    No, I don’t think that you are being naïve. I think you are being cautious and optimistic, and that’s a good combination. He does have good qualities, and maybe he will rise up to the occasion- the occasion being, as I see it, that he really does have a high quality young woman in front of him. I suggest that you proceed with these two qualities: being cautious and optimistic.

    When you explain your fears and concerns to him, make it as simple as possible, not too much at one time, so to give him the opportunity to truly understand what you are saying.

    I hope you post an update regarding the conversation you are planning to have with him. Anytime you post, I will be glad to read from you and reply.

    anita

    #362024
    Inky
    Participant

    Hi Angel,

    My first instinct? TAKE IT SLOW WITH THIS ONE! I don’t like where this could be headed. At the end of the day he will keep you and your secular life together a dirty little secret. Or you will be pressured to marry him to convert to his religion.

    I also don’t like how he fell in love with you instantly.

    Please date other people. Yes, even at the same time.

    Best,

    Inky

    #362061
    McCloud Antonov
    Participant

    Dear Angel,

    Thou you are in dilemma of how you will handle this young man who was once in relationship with others of which he stated he knows very well thatrelationships are hurtful in humans life.  Reduce your speed,  go slowly,,,,  take your time first. Put him also on a simple exams not written exam but you just have to test him to see how serious he is.

    On other hand,  God knows where you will go and who will marry you when you finish your studies. You are a green woman about where you will go in future. Treat him with total cares. Don’t let be curse. He is too serious with you now. Make him important too that will define him the role you are doing.

    My advice is,  don’t leave your amazing boyfriend,,,,,  go for him and stay together in future. Also seek God for more blessings in this generation we are in. Sometimes we are too confused.

    I wish to see you happy.

    Gregory.

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