New Relationship Has Hit a Wall

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    Hello all,

    I have been in a new relationship now for about 8 months. I fell head over heels for her and it seemed she was the same. Spent lots of time together and we got along great. About 4 months in I sensed a change in her. She seemed to keep me at arms length and was shutting down towards me. Her affection faded away and I was confused as to what was going on. So I asked her directly how she felt about our relationship and the answer was that she wasn’t sure and that she was scared about opening up to me. So I dug a little deeper and she admitted that the hurt that she still feels from her husband abruptly walking out on her 4 years ago has put walls around her heart to protect her from the possibility of it happening again. I thanked for her honesty and I said it does explain a lot about her change toward me. But she did say that she believes with time that she will be able to lower her walls and be more vulnerable towards me. Since then we have got somewhat closer but I still feel she is keeping me at a safe distance from her heart. I am starting to wondering if she will be able to heal her hurt while in a relationship? I want to move forward with her but I fear that it may be a hard road. Any advice would be a big help.


    Dear Gsemech:

    She entered the relationship with you 3-4 years after the breakup of her marriage and four months into the relationship with you she withdrew. When you asked her she explained her distancing from you as her reaction to her husband walking out on her. But why wasn’t she as scared (or even more scared) the first four months?

    I am thinking there are other factors. As you dug deeper she came up with only one factor, the one easiest to disclose to you, the one in the category of: “it’s not you; it’s me”

    I am thinking that there are things about you and the relationship with you that she has become displeased with. If only she expressed those to you, she could feel closer to you. Who knows, it could be a thing as simple as her not liking your haircut (a crazy example), and she is too afraid to hurt your feelings. If she told you respectfully: I don’t like your haircut. I know it is your right to have your hair any way you want it, but I dislike it. Will you consider having a different haircut?

    You may be only too glad to accommodate her.

    Dig deeper, tell her it is okay to tell you what it is that bothers her, that you are willing to do the same with her, that as long as it is done respectfully, the two of you can figure what would be a reasonable accommodation to the other, and what would not.



    It sounds like from your words that things may have gone extremely fast too quickly. Maybe she needs more space and time, but doesn’t know how to articulate that?

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