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My Boyfriend is going through an identity crises

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This topic contains 92 replies, has 3 voices, and was last updated by  anita 3 days, 15 hours ago.

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  • #212401

    anita
    Participant

    Dear Ladybug:

    It's been about a month and a week since this unusual break started.

    In your post before last you wrote: “I do think that this is just a faze“. In your previous thread you wrote: “He is very one track minded, and when he goes on self discovery fazes he shuts his emotions down and avoids vulnerability”. I didn't realize this before, the fazes history. If there is a history to this break when he “shuts his emotions down and avoids vulnerability” (which is what this break is about), then how long past fazes lasted and how did he come out of them is valuable information!

    You took his faze then as an opportunity for self growth, exercising a positive mindset, living more intentionally (thoughtfully choosing what movies to watch, playing motivational tapes, thoughtfully choosing the nature of your communication to him, acting positively with him and so on), and that is a good thing… and I hope this process of thoughtful choosing continues and is not a faze on your part. That it is not just a way to win him back but a way of living regardless.

    I think you are an excellent girlfriend to him and he is very fortunate. You are intelligent, loyal, loving, thoughtful, he is indeed very fortunate. He will be acting against his self interest if he ends this relationship or doesn't proceed to end this unusual break. But then people too often do act against their self interest.

    I am wondering about the history of his fazes which I mentioned in the first paragraph..?

    anita

    #212423

    Ladybug
    Participant

    He had previously asked for a break last year, the sudden request for a break came after he faced a loss in his career. he never showed signs that it was still affecting him. He and i even spent a weekend at my sisters place and he had a great time, but in that week he started being distant and cold and at that time he stayed quite a distance from me so we only communicated via text and saw each other once a week but he became very quite and “occupied” i obviously felt sad about the distance and we got into a small argument which led to him asked for a break and i couldn't understand why he needed a break when we barely see each other, so i broke down and sent him a million texts trying to gain clarity and what he had said felt like a stab straight to my heart. He told me he had been fantasizing about other women and that he needed to break free for a bit, he said that spending that weekend at my sisters freaked him out imagining being settled and with kids. He said he needed a week an if he doesn't make a move on anybody he will know his love for me is real. I went into depression, i was in so much pain and anxiety i couldn't eat, i barely slept, and i couldn't speak to anyone about what had happened so i locked myself in my room for days and barely came out. I sent him so many texts asking him to be there for me but he just said that i needed to let the time pass and that i must be strong. after the third day i wanted to take my life and i told him the pain is too much and that i felt sick. He then rushed to meet up with me, When we met up he admitted that he doesnt know whats wrong with him and that he knows it has something to do with his loss, he then admitted to lieing about desiring other women and said he didnt know how else to push me away. After our meetup i stopped texting him so much and tried to get out of my depression so i met up with friends and started getting out, he started texting and checking up on me but i didnt respond or if i did i responded very neutral. He then asked if i was moving on, and i told him that my friends suggest i speak to other guys to get him off my mind and suddenly he wanted to talk more and he started chatting to me and i could tell he was trying to get close again. he then asked to see me but i told him that its going to take time before i trust him again and he agreed and understood. He came to see me and he apologized and tried to get me to eat again. I kept my safe distance but he felt bad at the sight of the broken woman he loves and he grabbed and hugged me and started to cry. we both cried and eventually landed up making love. He had to do alot of fixing after that because i didn't trust him as  much. But a few months later we landed up moving in together and when living with his mom failed he invested a lot of his money into us moving out on our own which was a dream come true for us. And we'v been happy ever since….

    Until he lost that fight 2 months ago.. and i become overbearing and i told him im feeling uneasy because the last time he lost a fight he started acting a certain way then asked for a break. And he said he understood my fears and a month later he did exactly that… he asked for this current break.

    #212427

    anita
    Participant

    Dear Ladybug:

    As I see it at this point, there is good news and bad news:

    the bad news first: this is not a faze, on his part. He has an early established fear of closeness with a woman, based on his troubled relationship with  his mother during his formative years, when he was a child.

    This is not something that will go away. He will get closer when things are better in his career, then distant again when things are not going well. It is a pattern, not a singular faze.

    It is only through years (!) of healing, starting in psychotherapy, I believe, that this pattern can be broken while in a relationship with you.

    The good news as I see it this morning: you are the best girlfriend as you are now,  that he can have. There is no one better for him. No other woman that can withstand his .. fazes, who will understand him and not react the ways you used to and no longer do.

    In a perfect world where there is an endless supply of emotionally healthy men (and women), I would say: end this relationship and be with a man who is emotionally stable, reliable. But we don't live in such a world. If you accept him the way he is, his fear of closeness coupled with his strong need of closeness, and if you function well in your  life, in context of this situation, then continue.

    But accept it, not as a faze but a lifetime thing, most likely.

    anita

    • This reply was modified 1 month ago by  anita.
    #212437

    Ladybug
    Participant

    Thank you, Yes i guess i will have to face the reality that hes on and off fazes are deeper routed than i thought. I hate seeing him struggle with life and his career because i absolutely love and adore him. As a good girlfriend i am willing to wait for him to come around but once he is back to his senses we will have to have a chat about these deep routed issues, i wont force anything.. but id like him to start by at least recognizing this life destructive pattern. I love him and something about our relationship is irreplaceable. I love him down to his soul and i always want whats best for him. I will not rush him and i will allow him his space to heal. I will do my best at being a positive influence not only for him but for myself, i cant allow his hot and cold moods get to me too much during this break. He reads a book called “How to unfuck yourself” and he seem to get great relief from the knowledge he gains in the book. He is obsessed with his career so our schedule is based around his training and thats okay because i love supporting him and watching him do what he loves. His diet has to be clean during his fight camp and i keep the house tidy to minimize his responsibilities when hes focusing leading up to a fight. He sucks at doing house hold chores and im a much better cook than he is so he loves me fore balancing out his lack of skill in certain areas. He barely has time for friends or family because of his training hours, having a girlfriend is the most ideal situation he can be in for the path of his focus and career. He isnt able to see the great value i bring right now but thats okay because i know im an amazing selfless woman.

    #212439

    anita
    Participant

    Dear Ladybug:

    It is a good thing that he “barely has time for.. family”, specifically for his mother. His troubles are rooted in the relationship with her. Healing is not congruent with continuing this relationship. As the good girlfriend that you are, I believe, it is not loving of you to encourage him in any way to be in that relationship. Not your place to discourage it, but it is your place to not encourage it.

    You wrote: “I will allow him his space to heal”. Like I wrote before, healing will take years, starting with psychotherapy. I don't think reading a book is healing. It can only be a beginning. If he does get into the process of healing, you will know about it because he will be talking with you about it, there will be conversations.

    Yes, I agree, you are an amazing woman, an amazing girlfriend. But selfless… that is not sustainable. Got to take care of yourself, your well being has to be a part of the equation. This relationship has to operate for your well being, not against it.

    You know that he needs you, that he appreciates you because when you are away from him he wants you back. And you can hear his baby voice, the kid in him needing you, wanting you. Loyalty is very important to you, not only yours but his. For as long as he is loyal to you, that is, for as long as it is you he is looking for when he needs closeness, then fine. He will be crossing the line, your line, I am thinking, if it is another woman that he looked for when he needed closeness.

    I hope this will not be the case, doesn't read to me that this is the case. But I am thinking that would be a game changer for you.

    anita

    • This reply was modified 1 month ago by  anita.
    #212445

    Ladybug
    Participant

    He currently has a wall up towards his mother but he still seeks to visit his family and when she shows any narcissistic signs he just glances at me and laughs or smiles. she is the type of woman that loves to play the victim or loves to be the centre of attentions and loves to feel pitied but in return she throws horrible passive aggressive comments like daggers and suger coats it with a smile or laugh. so we dont entertain her too much. Hes mother divorced his father when he was 7 and his father was very religious and strict… But eventually his father also faded out of his life and still today he barely has a connection with his dad. His mother has kicked him out of the house many times due to her mental problems. She is diagnosed and she isnt able to work anymore because of her mental issues. She for years was accusing her mother of sending demons to haunt her and they have been moving from house to house every time his mother has a mental break down and blames demons haunting her and making her sick. So for a young boy he has moved to 7 different schools and about 20 different homes. His mother has significantly caused inconsistency in his life. although for the most part he functions very well as a evolved being and he is an amazing person but it seems his upbringing imbalances comes out when he fails. He always told me that his mother use to shout and swear when he got homework wrong. She use to scream with so much anger that the saliva would come from her mouth. He clearly fears failure and he has been programmed by his mothers aggression at a young age that theres horrible repricutions to failing. And now he doesn't even accept failure from himself.  The funniest part is that today he went to go see a movie with his mom. She pretents to be caring and giving but its only her amo to later use against you.

    #212449

    anita
    Participant

    Dear Ladybug:

    “when she shows any narcissistic signs” and “he just glances at me and laughs or smiles”, it does not mean he is over his mother's terrible input in his life. And when he went with her to the movies today, it means he is still trying to get her love. He sees and he doesn't see who she is. Healing would be him seeing her clearly.

    A boy does not overcome his mother's saliva spitting anger. So he tried to distant himself emotionally from her, to not need her, to not get hurt. But then, he still reaches out to her. Just like he does with you, distancing himself and reaching out.

    anita

     

    #212539

    Ladybug
    Participant

    He very much has come to grips with the affect his mother has had on his life and he doesnt give her enough amo to feel good as a mother even when she takes him to see a movie. She thinks her kids are her property and for that he will never respect her personality. He keeps his distance and doesnt seek for validation or approval from anyone let alone her. He is a very conscious being and this destructive pattern has only been recognized now. When he was 18 he got into his first real relationship and she was a manipulative liar but also a very bad influence in his life, for the most part she was fun and was an awesome girl. After like 3 years on and off he just felt the need to break free and go back to being single. She at that point was faking pregnancies(he only found out it was fake after they broke up) She kept the lies up well but all ended in “miss carriage” so anyway they broke up because he felt he needed more growing to do and he asked her for space and she completely turned into a psycho. She would cause drama everywhere he went and use sex to try rope him back in. Since then he has matured and grown dramatically. Hes friends are amazed at how he is with me and how perfect our relationship is. They all have been talking about us getting married and although he and i arent at that point yet i felt happy knowing that everyone sees that kind future for us and even he would call me his wife and talk about what his kids would be like. I never spoke of kids or marriage because i know that scares alot of men so he was always the one to give these subtle hints that he sees that future with me. So for a man feeling like he found the One and not doing well in his passion and career and struggling to provide it must be a anxious weight to carry. He did lose his spark as a man and for man who's always been an alpha in life, hes became comfortable and settled and he feels that he cant be that comfortable because he hasnt achieved his goals yet. Last night when he came home i was just laying in bed reading and he was very much in the mood to chat, i was very occupied in my reading and he was just trying really hard to get my attention saying ” why you ignoring me? i want to speak to you” and he just continued to share his day and asked if i want to assist him in writing his Bio (its for that woman who he now works with) i made a joke and declined helping him saying a bio is something he need to do on his own. He then starting goofing around saying ” Oh so we do things by ourselves around here… okay” and i just laughed and said yeah thats how it works and he continued to goof about us doing things on our own. We then watched a movie, a very romantic sweet movie that we both could relate to and when sad parts came he just looked at me and later he asked how close to crying was i? After the movie he just wanted to make out…

     

    I miss calling him babe or by the nick name we call eachother, i miss holding his hand and hugging him. I miss playfully kissing him and telling him I love him and hearing him say it back. Im sure once he gets a grip on his emotions and life he will feel more comfortable doing all those things again but i know its going to take time and i miss being loved and cherished.

    #212545

    anita
    Participant

    Dear Ladybug:

    I read your recent post and have thoughts about some of the things you shared. But I want to focus on the break in your relationship, what you refer to as a break.

    Until now I thought of it as a break simply because you refer to it as a break. Reading the nature of this break, I thought of it as a very unusual break but now I think of it as not a break at all, but something else.

    I am focusing on three elements of this supposed break:

    1. no one outside the two of you know about it (the two of you still live together, share the same bed, so even if someone visited the two of you, there is no sign of a break, no separate sleeping arrangements).

    2. (his initiative, his requirement) the two of you have sex but avoid eye contact during that activity, keeping it purely physical.

    3. His recent comment: “Oh so we do things by ourselves around here… okay”, when having a break in a relationship means exactly that, doing things separately. Doing things together is the opposite of a break. There are other comments and emotions that he said and expressed that are in this category of being the opposite of a break.

    If this is not a break, then what is it, I ask myself. I ask you, regarding #1 above: whose idea was it to not share about this break and why is it not shared, was there a conversation about not telling anyone about this?

    anita

    #212555

    Ladybug
    Participant

    He and i both agreed to not tell anyone, theres many males within our social circle that he gyms with that has interest in me and he also is aware that many guys have interest whether its social media or in public so our social media, families and social acquaintances still see that we are in a relationship. In the beginning he wanted to be friends with benefits then he called us room mates but all of a sudden he seeks to be close to me, wants to do activities with me, shares all his ideas and gets bothered when im not paying too much attention to him, theres many things he says and does that gives me mixed signals. I even saw him watching an adorable video of the 2 of us. The password on hes computer is still our mutual nick name, he still has all our photos and memories on his phone, Our photo frames still hang on the wall in the house. He asks my opinion and advice all the time. But he still goes into his neutral un-attentive state and he tries at times not to look into my eyes. We dont hold hands, and kiss affectionately. He doesnt look at me the same, he doesnt communicate via text the same.  The affection when we alone at home seems to be gradually growing so i do see a positive sign. He even tries to be playful, he tickels me and tries to make me laugh.

    #212557

    anita
    Participant

    Dear Ladybug:

    Did the two of you talk before or during this ..break about resuming holding hands, kissing affectionately, texting the same way as before .. about maybe getting married in the future (I don't remember if you shared that)? Was this break discussed as something temporary, or maybe temporary?

    anita

    #212567

    Ladybug
    Participant

    We never discussed marriage, the last time he mentioned marriage was last year, Where he said us living together is a big step and this is where he sees if he wants to marry me, and since then we moved into our own place and away from his mom. The break came out of nowhere and he was the one who requested the break, he said he wanted to recreate himself etc. He said he feels that he allowed love to make him soft, and he doesnt know how long this break is going to be. Looking back at the relationship we both are aware of the silly mistakes we made and from my side i want to recreate a better US.. but ill have to wait and see what he decides. I hate letting him have his cake and eating it but its the best shot i have at getting back together with him. We both have invested everything into this relationship and because theres nothing majorly wrong with our life together its not as easy to just walk away.

    #212571

    anita
    Participant

    Dear Ladybug:

    I re-read all your posts in the two threads. I tried to see the basics of the situation, trying to peel off from your posts your interpretations and assumptions, your hopes, your emotional investment…and see the bare reality of his state of mind and the state of the relationship. Here is what I see:

    1. The financial situation, quotes from what you shared: “He and I share bills so neither of us can move out… he still is battling with financial problems and I am the only one who has a steady income… I work all day so he stays at home and currently has a knee injury… when living with his mom failed he invested a lot of his money into us moving out on our own”-

    Using logic, lack of money and steady income on his part is a motivation he has to be living with you. I didn't say it is his only motivation but a motivation nonetheless. One reason he is living with you is that he doesn't have the option of moving out, or the option of you moving out.

    2. His anger. You didn't talk/type about his anger but it is there. You mentioned a few times that the two of you argued. Anger fuels arguments. And then his “cold and emotionless” behavior toward you, repeatedly occurring, there is anger there. I don't think that he told you that he is angry at you. He told you other things but not that he is angry at you.

    You wrote: “he was very cold and emotionless towards me when I was going through my depression” – he was cold and emotionless and angry.

    His mother has been powerful in creating his state of mind. Look at her anger: “she throws horrible passive aggressive comments like daggers and sugar coats it with a smile or laugh”. Dishonest on her part, isn't it. People often are not honest about their anger. I don't think he is.

    I have more thoughts but need to read what you think so far about my input on this post.

    anita

     

    #212575

    Ladybug
    Participant

    I agree, he is hiding whats going through his head and heart. I can tell by his cold nature that he does feel some sort of negative feelings towards me ( might be because of the arguing and hes lack of freedom before the break) Thats one of the reasons i have had motivation to grow and not be the needy/nagging type which i never was in the past. I became like this when he became emotionally withdrawn and lazy. I feel that our relationship dynamic just became too much and we created way too many complications and restrictions for ourselves. I want us to recreate a much healthier relationship and not get caught up in the unnecessary things but i dont know how to address this with him. I dont just want to be a convenient sex partner or just a friend he can rely on. He isnt fulfilling my needs as a partner should, and it does hurt. Hes hot and cold treatment makes me feel like im being used. I know he cares about me and he might still have love for me but it may not be strong enough at this point to win him back. Ive already spoken to him and have taking responsibility for all that i did that was not good for our relationship and i even gave him my solutions.. But only time can fix how he feels, and i can only focus on myself.

    #212579

    Ladybug
    Participant

    I dont get treated like a girlfriend publicly anymore, i dont feel special or appreciated, but he asks for my gentle touch, plays around with me at home and we cuddle every night. Theres times he craves my company and when im not around he barely texts me. Hes bothered when i ignore him but he always seems absent minded when im seeking the attention from him. So everything about our current break is confusing and some things gives me the impression hes trying to rekindle our relationship and love and then sometimes it seems he wants space. He wants us to do stuff together that we spoke about doing as a couple and he tries to include me in whats happening in his life.

Viewing 15 posts - 16 through 30 (of 93 total)

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