Why Won’t He take Me Home

Question: Dear Luise: I’m wondering why my boyfriend won’t introduce me to his family. We have been going together for six months and we’re really close except for this. He is comfortable with my family but he always dodges the issue of taking me to meet his. How can I change this? Brenda

Answer: Dear Brenda: There are a lot of reasons that this might happen. It might help to think about a few so you can get more comprehensive overview.

You are probably afraid that you are not passing some kind of unknown test. Or wouldn’t, if you were taken to his home for a visit. But have you thought about the possibility that he feels they might not live up to your standards? Or maybe he has a terribly attractive brother who competes with him, an alcoholic parent who might embarrass him, or something else he doesn’t want to share…yet.

When I was still in college, I went with a guy that just loved my parents and my home. He had every kind of excuse possible for not taking me to meet his parents and brother. Eventually, I outmaneuvered him. It was pretty awful. I could see why he loved to be with us, and I finally realized that my home was the major attraction…not me. That was OK. We became wonderful friends and he stayed close to my parents for many years after we both married someone else. My home set a standard for him.

If you feel you aren’t headed in a serious direction with this guy, let it go. If the opposite is true and you think you may want to take it to another level, let him know that doing that will require some serious talks. Tell him that what he’s doing, regarding his family, is very obvious. Make it clear that trust is something you feel you are going to have to build together to support anything more between you. Tell him that you need to know what is bothering him and why, so that you can look at it together.

Relationships require a level of candid openness that isn’t easy for all of us. Be as gentle and understanding as you can about this. It does need to be discussed and faced. Maybe it’s something so simple as his thinking that taking you home would jinx things, or it may be a very serious problem. At a deeper level, the good and the bad will have to be shared. Blessings, Luise

52 Responses to Why Won’t He take Me Home

  1. Sheree July 18, 2006 at 2:34 pm #

    I’ve been with my boyfriend for one year, and he hasn’t introduced me to his parents because he says they are overbearing and that his parents want him to concentrate on building his business. He’s 27, and last night mentioned to our friends (during an unexpected and uncomfortable conversation) that he has thought of marrying me. That won’t happen until I meet his family – and I really want to meet them. But it’s not happening any time soon. Any advice?

  2. Luise July 29, 2006 at 4:51 pm #

    Answer: Dear Sheree: Well it sounds like you may need to work on your one-on-one communication skills if an “unexpected and uncomfortable” reference to marrying came via interacting with a third party. You seem to be working up to a stand-oof on something that should be a lovely experience…namely making a commitment. If you can’t do that without meeting his family, then so be it. Be sure, however. Blessings, Luise

  3. Charise August 19, 2006 at 6:59 pm #

    I been dating this guy for three years. His mother and I have been friends for 10 years. I met him through his mother. I have introduced him to some of my friends, but I have not met any of his friends. He talks about his friends all the time and shows me pictures of them. What does this mean?

  4. Luise August 20, 2006 at 8:10 pm #

    Dear Charise: There’s no time like the present to start doing some serious communicating with your guy. Three years is a long time to not be able to get down to the nitty-gritty…but then some couples never do. I wouldn’t advise it. Tell him you are puzzled by his sharing pictures but not people and would really like to meet the people you have heard so much about. If he tried to put him off let him know that you need to know why. Blessings, Luise

  5. J. August 30, 2008 at 12:16 pm #

    I am 40yrs old and I have been dating a 56yr old guy for the past 3 yrs. When we met,we both were married and decided we wanted to be together. We both are now separated. Four months ago this guy had some health problems, so his mom move across country to take care of him, (since he no longer had a woman in the house.) He says he can’t tell his mom that we have been dating because she will not accept him dating. He says he wants his mom to go back home so he can go on with his life. He is now in counseling and we don’t communicate like before. What is this guy’s deal. We now have a 3 year relationship that was so loving that is falling apart. J.

  6. Luise August 30, 2008 at 3:04 pm #

    Dear J. There can be some pretty strong chemistry between a mother and even a grown son but when she tells him that he can’t date, I’d call it pathology. There’s nothing you can do because it’s not about you. You are being treated shabbily and after all you have been through to be together, it’s a darn shame. I think I would tell him that I was choosing sanity and move on.
    Maybe, just maybe, he might make some much needed changes…but don’t count on it. Blessings, Luise

  7. C October 18, 2008 at 1:47 pm #

    I have been dating a guy for 2 years now. I have known him for 4. He is 13 years younger than me. He is black and I am white. When we started dating I was ending a 24 year marriage. I am only 44. He has never been married. He has never been to my house except to drive me home from the hospital when I was in a car accident. He has only met my sister once. He has never met my oldest son. I have never met any of his family. He says he loves me like he has never loved anyone before. Why won’t he let me meet his family? I have in truth never asked, but I didn’t think I needed to. People who know us, say that even when we are apart, they can tell that we are thinking about each other. When we are together, people say we ignore everyone else and we are alone in our own world. I want to me more to his than just the girl he sleeps with and his good night phone call. C.

  8. Luise October 18, 2008 at 3:03 pm #

    Dear C.: You ask me but you have never asked him? You just assumed it should be different? Please notice that you haven’t brought him into your family or life, either. There is much that is unspoken and unaddressed between you, isn’t there? Isn’t is possible that both of you are afraid that your families would be less than thrilled? If you want more, then you need to be courageous enough to directly address the age difference and the race difference with him and come to a mutual resolution. It looks to me like the two of you are skating around both issues. Blessings, Luise

  9. A. October 19, 2008 at 8:32 am #

    Hi Luise,

    I’ve been dating with this guy for almost 11 months and he is 6 years younger than me. He is 26 and I’m 32. He has a busy work schedule and sometimes I cannot tolerate that and sometimes I feel like I’m not important to him. -time degree course. For almost 4 months we haven’t seen each other in a physical way. Our house are just 10 minutes apart! But he has been texting me almost almost everyday. I need his attention. We have been secretly dating without telling our collegemates. He celebrated his birthday last week and brought me to his rented house. And he introduced me to his parents (they both came from another town to celebrate his birthday), brothers, sisters. He never asked about my family. Is he not serious? He just promoted to PA to his boss…and is now busy for the new resort opening. I love him so much but I feel like he not really taking me seriously. He always say ‘family came first’. What should I do? I’m tired of being ignored. A.

  10. Luise October 19, 2008 at 3:56 pm #

    Dear A. The need for attention may be something you will have to deal with if your guy is working and going to school. Or he may not be the right person for you if you can’t reconcile that need. This may not be a good time in his life to try to tend to a committed relationship if he is spread too thin, time-wise. When you can, talk it out. He’s not doing anything wrong, he’s just not very available. Let him know how you feel, which isn’t wrong either. You sound like a mis-match, to me. At least for now. Blessings, Luise

  11. D. December 28, 2008 at 7:26 pm #

    I have been with a guy for six mo. now. He is 15 years older then I am. We have a great relationship when we are together. However, I can only see him at the same time almost everyday. I usually see him six days a week but never on Sunday. He says he loves me but wont let me meet anyone (friends or family.) I asked him to meet my kids and he acted like he was wanting to but then he will avoid it when the time comes. No one at work can know about us. He is very busy. He works a lot, so I kinda understand why I cant see him all day. And I do get not letting people we work with know. I wouldn’t have a problem with all that if he would let me into the rest of his life. It took me five mo. just to see a pic. of his kids. He has never been married. His mom’s sick. He works a lot , and says he doesn’t have many friends. He cant trust anyone. He tells me he is crazy about me and hopes I will never leave him but he doesn’t show it. He wont talk about his feelings and he cant show them well. Do you have an idea why he is this way and what I can/should do?

  12. Luise December 28, 2008 at 8:03 pm #

    Dear D.: It is useless to ever try to figure out why other people do what they do or why they are they way they are. No matter how nice your guy is, he has a lot of problems and it looks to me like all of the adjusting and adapting is going to be up to you. To be able to do that and keep doing that, you need to enjoy the way things are. It doesn’t sound to me like you do. If that’s true, it’s simply not going to work for you. Don’t expect or hope for change. Someone telling you that are loved can never make you feel loved when there is such a hopeless, basic incompatibility. His life is lonely, limited and sad…is that what you want for yourself? Blessings, Luise

  13. J. March 22, 2009 at 4:12 pm #

    Dear Luise: I am a 40yr old female who has been separated for almost 2yrs and recently was awarded a divorce. I have been dating(for 6mos)a 41yr old man who has been divorced for 10yrs and has no children (I have 2- 18yr college student and 14yr). When we started dating we agreed we were not seeking a serious relationship but once a discussion about past experinces turned towards feelings we almost split because he said he didn’t know if he could ever have feelings for me. As we talked, we both agreed we weren’t looking for marriage and I told him I do believe people in an exclusive relationship should either have feelings for each other or end the relationship. Lately he has told me that he is not against marriage and I am not sure what his body language is saying. He always wants to spend time together on his days off from work. When just sitting on the couch watching TV he sits soo close,,,to the point I have to continue to readjust to be comfortable. He is very affectionate…hugs,kisses, hand holding . I will never bring up the subject of feelings again but I don’t understand so much affection from someone who said he didn’t know if he could have feelings for me. I haven’t introduced him to my children and I haven’t met any of his family but everyone knows that we are dating. I haven’t introduced him to my family because I want to be more sure about our relationship before bring the kids in the picture. He has made a couple of comments about me meeting his mom and brother but I never agree to go. Is this guy cold to serious relationships or just scared? Although, I don’t want marriage right now I would like to be in a relationship that has the possibility to grow into more…what ever it might be. J.

  14. Luise March 22, 2009 at 4:43 pm #

    Answer: Dear J.: Probably fear is what’s behind all of this. You are going to have to improve on the communication that you are having and not having. By that I mean he may say cold things but he is showing you warmth and caring. Both of you may be gun shy but guessing is a very poor way to continue in your relationship. To create a mature interaction, you both need to be able to be open with each other and feel safe. Perhaps you can suggest that. Blessings, Luise

  15. J. April 17, 2009 at 10:24 pm #

    Dear Luise: What a nice attractive website! I have been with my boyfriend for 4 years and he still won’t tell his family about me. I think it is ridiculous at this point. There is a large age difference and I think that is part of it but his workmates and boss have all met me and they have no idea how old I am. His snotty tell it like it is workmate who is his age, guessed me to be 14 years younger than I am. So why doesn’t he just tell his family about me? It is not like he has to broadcast my age first thing. I do find it hurtful and disrespectful. Cheers, J.

    • Luise April 17, 2009 at 10:37 pm #

      Dear J.: What a nice compliment. Thank you. Age differences bother some people and they don’t bother others. Traditionally an older man and a younger woman is cause for congratulations. When the woman is older, the “trophy concept” doesn’t seem to be transferable. There isn’t much you can do about his values. If you’ve been together four years…he values you…but he may never be able to take what he seems to think his family would dish out. Obviously he also values their approval and feels he wouldn’t get it. I married a man ten years younger than I was and it worked for eighteen years. Then he traded me in on a younger model. My guess is that your guy doesn’t want to be hurtful of disrespectful, he’s just afraid to face what he thinks might come down. If you’re going to stay with him, you may have to let this go. Blessings, Luise

  16. M. June 19, 2009 at 2:23 am #

    I’ve been dating this guy for three years now. we are both in the military and both in our early 40’s. During the time that we have been together, we have both been deployed at different times but we have always maintained great communication through email, phone and webcam. we are both stationed near same place at the moment. I am divorced and he’s been divorced twice and we both have children that are teenagers. He frequently drives the nine hours down to spend time with them through out the year. He’s a very good father, very attentive. The problem is this, recently in the last few months, I’ve asked about when he goes home, would I be able to drive down with him so that I could meet his family and children (he been around mine and has met my parents). At first he said that we would have to see how both of our schedule were going to be. Then around memorial day weekend(that was when I thought it would be a good time and I had brought it up the month before) I mentioned it about a week before the holiday and I asked if he was going to take me with him. His answer was, he hadn’t had any intentions of bringing me home when he went. I was upset. this has become a thorn in my side because other than this, he’s attentive, I talk to him everyday, call to say good morning, calls to check on me during the day at work, and calls to tell me goodnight, he comes down every weekend and spends the weekend with me. He’ll come over and do yard work, fix things around the house, cudddle, etc. we’ll go out for dinner, the movies but, when it comes down to going home with him, he pretty much has shut that idea down. initially in the relationship early on, I could understand him wanting to go home and spend his time with his children and I never brought it up but, after three years of being to together and yes, after a year of dating he did tell me that he loved me, he still feels that the time that he goes home and spends with his family (i.e. mother, father relatives and children) he doesn’t feel the need to include me in. he claimed that he brought home someone that he was dating one time and he said that he children felt like they were being neglected so he said from now on, he wouldn’t ever do that to them…again. I don’t have a problem with him spending time with them but, I feel that after being together in a serious relationship (and he feels that this is serious)that this should come naturally…..that is if I am important enough for him too bring home. I wondered if his family knew about me and he said yes, he’s told his mother but as a mother myself, I think I would be asking the question of when am I going to meet this person that is so important in my son’s life. When I asked if his kids knew about me he told me that he’s told them that he is seeing someone!! He’s had two other relationships prior to mine and were shorter (one lasted less than a year and the other six months)and they ended up breaking up due to the same issue that I am having now (of course I knew about one of then ending over this and I guess she started to have trust issues as well)but I understood since it had only been a short time of being together, so when I do get upset over it, it’s like he will go out of his way after, to try and smooth things over with me and make things better so that I’m not upset with him anymore. Today, he going to pick his children up and bring them home for a two week visit and he kind of made a comment after I had said “well I guess I wont see you for a while.” and he said yeah maybe the first week or so in July! I asked him if he was going to bring his kids here to visit and his comment was “I’m going to spend my two weeks with my children”. which translated to “you won’t see me until after they are gone”.!!! I’m hurt. Very hurt. He has no problem spending time with me and my children but not vice versa. He know’s I’m hurt and I’m sure that he’ll try and do everything to keep me from being upset with him (in his mind!!!) Also I think he gets concerned that I might break up with him and start seeing someone else. I had moment last year when I wanted a break and he basically didn’t honor it, he called everyday still like clock work to check on me would leave messages telling me that he loved me and that he wanted to get things fixed between us and that he would work on the issues that I had a problem with. Do I have a legitimate reason for being upset with him? M.

    • Luise June 20, 2009 at 8:08 am #

      Dear M.: The question is…a legitimate reason for being upset according to who? You, your guy, his mom? Everyone may have a different answer…based on different experiences, different values and different belief systems. He can’t mix the old with the new or the past with the present. The sooner you get that, the sooner you can either leave the relationship or move on with it.

      There is no right or wrong here that I can see. Yous guy is probably doing his best not to repeat what happened before. In all probability, that may be to protect you and the relationship you have built. Remember, he doesn’t see that much of his kids due to his divorce and his occupation. When they do get together, they may be either insecure or demanding…maybe both. He may be seeking peace and balance…not always easy in his situation. Can you “suck it up and back him up?”

      Right now, you are adding to the pressure he is under by asking what is pretty reasonable but, to him, not do-able. To move forward you will need to accept his decision on this and support it. If you stand on principle, you may soon be standing alone. Blessings, Luise

  17. S. June 25, 2009 at 8:43 pm #

    I have been dating a guy for 3 1/2 years. He is everything that I have been looking for. There is a huge problem with the relationship…he will not tell his mother about me and the fact that I am black. I didn’t know until recently that she did not know that I exist. He and his family do not live close to each other so I didn’t really think about the fact that I have not met anyone. My family has welcomed him with open arms and my children love him. Four of his best friends are my cousins. I have thought of ending the relationship, but I have serious hopes that he will tell her. I don’t know how we can truly move forward without him being honest with his family. S.

    • Luise June 25, 2009 at 9:29 pm #

      Dear S.: Your guy probably knows it’s a no-go with his mom but you are still going to have to talk about it, in depth. Head-in-sand doesn’t cut it.

      Sometimes the kind of opposition you are probably up against cements a relationship and sometimes it tears it apart. Coming between Mr. Right and his family is something you would never want to do, but didn’t you suspect something was off after 3 1/2 years?

      People can get past such issues but the personal loss of a serious family split can be huge. And often later on, when things get tough, and they always do at times, there’s that impasse between you.

      Communicate. Get it out in the open and see how you both feel and if you agree on how to address the issue. It’s time for solidarity, not procrastination. Blessings, Luise

  18. L. September 19, 2009 at 9:31 pm #

    I have a boyfriend of well over a month but we were friends for a few years and he’s liked me for a long time. Its sorta serious as he wants to me to meet his parents and he’s introduced me to his friends but when he asks about me meeting my parents I’m a bit reluctant because my mom is set against me dating before I finish college, how do I make him see that I’m just as serious about the relationship as he is without introducing him to my family? L.

    • Luise September 20, 2009 at 8:18 am #

      Thank your mother for all of the support and direction she has offered you and tell her that socializing is one of the most important subjects in college. Tell her you are dating an old friend and you want to know if she would like to meet him. Tell her that dating is balancing out your life and is a healthy and normal part of entering adulthood. Tell her that she made her own decisions when she was your age and your have to do the same thing. (She may have made some poor choices that she is trying to protect you from making, who knows.) Tell her if she was not allowed to do that, you are sorry. Tell her, with all due respect (but not obedience), that you are moving forward where your guy is concerned. Let her know that you are willing to discuss it further should she wish, in fact you would love to share it with her in more detail, but discussing it will not alter the direction your friendship is taking. And tell your guy everything you are telling your mom. Put it in writing so that it is very clear and you can’t be accused later of not having told her any of that.

      Parents have to “control to protect” when their kids are young. It isn’t easy for some parents to see that control isn’t appropriate (or even possible) beyond a certain point. Your mother probably still sees you as a dependent since you are still in school and not fully responsible for yourself, financially and otherwise. Or if you have taken on full responsibility and are putting yourself through college, she may not be ready to relinquish her concept of authority.

      The sooner you take this stance the better. There are mothers who can’t seem to let go and want to maintain control even beyond college and into their children’s marriages and experience of parenthood. Better nip this in the bud.

  19. L. October 4, 2009 at 7:09 am #

    I have been dating a guy for a year and a half. We are of the same age, but different races. We both have families living in the area, but we go to my mom’s house for dinner every Sunday and I don’t know his family hardly at all. I’ve met his mom in passing-by meetings twice and she’s very friendly, but I’ve never met his father. He’s said he wants to take me, but they never are able to meet for dinner. I don’t know if it’s a racial issue or if they just don’t care about knowing me for some other reason. We’re very serious; we’ve been talking about moving to a different city together. I just am afraid to take such a big plunge when I feel like he might actually be the one putting on the brakes with his family. I’ve asked him and he always blows off the situation like it’s not a big deal that he has such a great relationship with my family and I have none with his. Am I justified, or perhaps am I reading too much in to the situation? L.

    • Luise October 5, 2009 at 8:56 am #

      Dear L.: There just no way to know what’s really going on, if anything. Every new relationship is a risk and when there are issues like you face, they probably increase…but I would just follow my heart. Many couples that have support on both sides flounder and yet there are couples with no support that thrive. All you can do is give it your best. Blessings, Luise

  20. I. October 18, 2009 at 3:46 pm #

    I have been dating a guy 10 yrs. younger than me. I’m 45 and he is 35. I feel that he loves me but he works too much. We live 6 hrs. apart from each other and are able to see each other at least every other week. We spend the weekends together and share the bill. He says he loves me but I am not sure. He tells me to trust him, but when he tells me he have other friends who are women, i get jealous and we have fights over this. What can I do. I dont know if to continue with this relationship. I.

    • Luise October 19, 2009 at 8:45 am #

      Dear I. The long distanc/twice a month thing can sometimes work for well established couples but the cost is high. For couples who are building a foundation for something permanent, I doubt that it is a wise investment of your time and emotions.

      The odds are really high that the guy is telling you what you want to hear and is enjoying a twice a month affair. Relationships and affairs are not the same thing and they never will be. Blessings, Luise

  21. D. May 15, 2010 at 10:56 pm #

    I have been dating my boyfriend for 7months. I have introduced him to my family and my mom loves him. i have spoken to one of his sisters but i have not met or spoken to his parents. Every time I bring up the issue he tells me that he wants to but he just wants to know that if am comfortable with it and he wants to make out the best time for me to meet them. Ever since then he still hasn’t brought it up unless i do and up till today i still haven’t met his parents. It bothers me. He tells me he want us to last and he wants to marry me but not meeting his parents stills bothers me. What should i do? D.

  22. Sheri May 18, 2010 at 11:05 am #

    Hi, i have a boyfriend and he have been coming to my house often and we hardly go out because my mom says that we cant go out ahe is making a big deal in it. HELP!!!!!

    • Luise May 22, 2010 at 9:15 am #

      Your mother is probably afraid that you will get in trouble. And she doesn’t know any other way to protect you. She love you and doesn’t know that restricting you isn’t the answer. The answer is to give you her best counseling and support and pray that you will listen and follow her advice. (She knows that many kids don’t.) Keep trying to connect with her. She’s terrified that you and your boyfriend will get carried away and you will ruin your life.

  23. M. May 25, 2010 at 8:21 am #

    Hi Luise, My boyfriend and I have been together for 1 1/2 yrs. We have had many issues relating to his inability to get close to me. He is great about keeping in touch and we see eachother 3-4 times a week. He says he loves me, and I believe he does, but the only time I really feel it is when we are intimate with eachother. He is very distant, and keeps me at arms length for the most part. When he leaves at the end of the evening he says things like “adios”, or “have a good one”…never good night baby or I love you. The only time he says he loves me is when we are initimate. I have a 7 year old daughter that I adopted as a single parent from Columbia, and he makes no attempt to have a relationship with her at all and it infuriates me. We broke up 6 months ago for about a month, and this was one of the major reasons for the break up. He wants me around when he wants me, but when it comes to family functions, my daughter and I are not included..and it hurts me so badly. I feel used, and angry. We have not spoken in 4 days because this past week end he excluded us again from another family party….and I plan on talking to him tonight about it. Any suggestions? One thing is for sure, I could never ever stay with a man that did’nt love my daughter as well as me. Oh, I should mention that since we resumed our relationship I have only allowed my daughter to see him a handful of times, as I want to see what steps he’s willing to take to assure me that he wants to have a loving relationship with my daughter. (like inviting us to family events, and letting everyone know that he cares about us.) I dont want her to feel that I am with someone who does’nt want her around. As I’m writing this, I realize how insane this sounds….it is what it is, I guess I’m just wishing it was different, but deep down I think I know what I need to do. Thanks for your help. M.

    • Luise June 7, 2010 at 9:36 am #

      Often writing it down takes up through a process to the truth. And of course the truth is that you and your daughter deserve so much more. Blessings, Luise

  24. A. June 22, 2010 at 2:02 am #

    So i have been dating my boyfriend for well over a year and I have yet to meet any of his friends or family. He has met my good friends, my brother, and recently my parents. We are 23, and 24 years old and I see no reasons why I haven’t met the most important people in his life.
    I have spoken to him about this countless times, some really intense. And he just keeps telling me that “he’s not ready, and he’s not close with his parents, and that I’ll meet his friends soon”. And i just feel like there has to be something wrong with me, or we can’t be that close if he doesn’t want me to meet the people in his life that he loves. What can I do to make him see what a big deal this is to me and how to just take the risk and get through it. A.

    • Luise June 27, 2010 at 3:14 pm #

      You can’t make him do anything. And I don’t think there is anything wrong with you. There is something wrong with him and/or his family. If he wont tell you what it is, you are probably not as close as you think.

  25. S. July 6, 2010 at 8:35 am #

    Hi Luise –
    You have such a compassionate and loving nature…and I need your guidance please.
    My boyfriend and I have been dating, exclusively, for 14 months now. We are very much in love and love to spend time together. My problem is that he won’t show me where he lives and I can’t get him to introduce me to his children (17 and 15). He had a serious problem with his ex-wife several years ago when he introduced his kids to a woman he was dating (his ex made it difficult for him to see his kids for a while). He has met my son (17) and comes to our home every Wednesday for dinner. They have a good relationship.

    My question is how long do I have to be patient? Any time I bring up the subject of seeing where he lives, he blows it off, but when I bring up meeting the kids, he becomes distant and physically moves away from me (maybe by only a couple of inches, but it’s there nonetheless). What can I do? Love and light. S.

    • Luise July 8, 2010 at 11:08 am #

      I understand about the kids…and it’s his call. And if they live with him you aren’t gong to see his house. If you can live with that and it’s worth it…continue. If not, it’s pretty much a “no-go.” Blessings, Luise

  26. A. July 16, 2010 at 9:00 am #

    Hi Luise: I’ve been dating a great guy for a little over a year but I have yet to meet his family or friends. Everything started out really great – we saw each other often, went on vacation to Hawaii last summer and we have lots of things in common. For the past year, he’s called me everyday even during the times I was out of the country for work. Close to Memorial Day, I felt like things were getting distant. We had plans to attend a concert but his mother (he’s an only child) had to have an outpatient surgery so he told me to take a girlfriend. I expressed to him that I felt like there was distance and that I needed to know if he saw the relationship having a future. He told me that he did so I asked when did he plan to introduce me to his family and friends. He said that he did plan on doing so. Fast forward to 4 wks ago, he stopped answering my calls or texts. I was really worried about him especially when his voicemail got full. I even thought this was how he planned to end the relationship. I waited outside his house 2 wks ago to confront him. He looked really shaken up and distraught. I told him that I felt really hurt and disrespected and that if he wanted to stop dating me, he should have said so when I asked him weeks ago. He said that his friend was murdered and that paired with other strees caused him to shut down – hence the full voicemail. This is a friend from his past that he used to be involved with some not-so-great activities. He asked me how could we move forward (I was so upset I told him I came over intending to end things) and was I open to talking about it. I said I’d listen and he told me we’d talk when he got back in town after the weekend. It’s been 2 weeks and he hasn’t called. I’m begining to connect the dots and I think that he may be involved in some illegal activities or a secret life of sorts. He used to be involved in some bad things when he was younger but turned himself around and went off to college. It’s not in his character to do the things he’s done. We talked about his job once because I felt like it was getting in the way of us spending time – he owns a real estate company. He kept saying “You don’t understand.” I told him to explain it to me and he just got silent. I have no idea what to do but my gut is telling me this isn’t just a simple case of him wanting to just break up. What do I do? A.

    • Luise July 17, 2010 at 2:03 pm #

      I would end it. What he says and what he does are two different things. He seems to have no consideration regarding what he is putting you through…which is a lot. You and I both know there’s a lot more to the story and the fact that you haven’t been let into his world and his life says a lot.

      I’d let him go. There is a lot of stress and pressure and there may even be some danger. You have no way of knowing. It’s time to pass on this guy and move on. Blessings, Luise

  27. W. September 11, 2010 at 12:17 pm #


    I’ve been dating my boyfriend for 11 months now and we are approaching our 1 year anniversary. I am 26 years old and he is 30, so there’s not a huge age gap. However, I am a full-time student in graduate school and he is working and has older friends. I have only met his roommate and one of his friends briefly at a charity event. His family lives 2 hours away in another state, so it’s not like I can randomly meet them without being invited first. He had met all of my friends in the area and my parents. His guy constantly tells me he loves me and wants to marry me. But, I feel insecure sometimes because I haven’t meet his close friends or parents. When I asked him about meeting his friends, he said he doesn’t have a lot of super close friends but just guys he likes to hang out with. And he thinks when they hang out together at a bar or something I wouldn’t enjoy that or get bored. I don’t feel like this is normal though since I’ve let him hang out with just me and my girlfriends before so I don’t see the big deal with me hanging out with his guy friends. As for meeting his family, I don’t really want to push that too much and would appreciate it if he invited me to his house. I don’t really feel accepted as his girlfriend without meeting his parents approval first. Our relationship is very serious and great except for this problem. How do I bring out this issue with him without seeming too clingy?

    • Luise September 21, 2010 at 5:26 pm #

      His family may approved of you and they may not. It isn’t always a positive experience. I would work on the relationship…pass o his buddies and focus on starting a new unit…just the two of you. I had this happen me ages and ages ago and when I did meet the family I understood why. Take him on his own merits.

  28. J. October 23, 2010 at 7:06 pm #

    Hi Luise,

    I read a lot of your advice and thought maybe…just maybe you could help me. I am a 20 year old black college student and I have a on and off again white bf of two years who is 18 years older than me and lives four hours away. I love him dearly and would give anything in the world for him. ALthough this is true, I can’t deny that he’s hurt me more than i’ve ever been hurt before. About every four months or so i notice that he starts getting distanced and eventually he breaks it off with me. I am just so confused by him. He tells me that he has fallen for me and that i’m the one he wants to be with one moment and in the same conversation he’ll tell me but eventually i think i need to be with someone my own age! I don’t understand….i want to hold out hope and hang on to this man that i care so much about, but i’m no longer sure he feels the same. J.

    • Luise October 23, 2010 at 8:22 pm #

      I think it’s no go. You deserve so much better than that. Even when a person is 100% committed…it can be a rocky road but when you are faced with ambivalence to start with, it is usually best to move on. It may not be about age or even race but it’s about something. Not only is it not getting resolved, it’s abusive. Blessings, Luise

  29. S. November 22, 2010 at 8:35 pm #

    I have been dating my boyfriend for a little over 4 months, everything is going great! He extremely thoughtful and caring. We are both work-aholics so we only get to see each other about once a week. He is very upfront and speaks his mind even if what he says hurts so i believe with all my being that he would be upfront with me..but i think he is ashamed for some reason about me meeting his family? Please Help! We are both 25. He lives about an hour and 15 min. from me. He has met my family and spends some time visiting at my house but he hasn’t took me to his home yet or introduced me to his family? We had a conversation about an ex of his who wanted an open relationship but he didn’t so i was like well i hope you don’t consider our relationship to be open and he says NO sternly! He always makes comments about them and talks about them but that’s it… His brother and brothers wife and kid whom are on drugs live with him and he is only home long enough to get 5 hours of sleep most nights.. he says they are slobs and wont clean up the house and the house is extremely run-down and part of it has no floor due to water damage.. then his mom live about 5 miles from him and his sister lives next to their mom. he seems to be semi-associated with them and close to his sister. oddly he will brush off birthdays and holidays with them to spend time with me and that makes me feel bad because i want him to spend time with them. i will joke sometimes and say “yeah like i’m ever gonna come to your house or be introduced to your family and he says he doesn’t want to introduce me to them becasue they are insulting and overbearing and that it’s for my own protection? Then made the comment about 3 min. after that seeming a bit bothered by my asking “why do we have to bring family into this”……….I am soooooo confused and i don’t want to bring it up anymore not even in a joking mannor because of his comment? I Need advice! S.

    • Luise November 24, 2010 at 8:21 pm #

      I would back off and leave it alone. He may be right and they might mess up your relationship. Let him decide. Blessings, Luise

  30. M February 3, 2011 at 4:40 pm #

    Hi! I’m been dating for 6 mo. with a guy who is 6 years older than me, anyway, he knows all my friends and family, but otherwise, I know just his closest friend; his family doesn’t know about me, but all his co-workers, other friends does… and he wants to move in together!…. I really don’t understand what’s happening! I need advice!! M.

    • Luise February 6, 2011 at 10:27 am #

      There are a lot of reasons this could happen. Some people are ashamed of their families or of a family member. In some cases they are married and lying. He has a right not to take you home…but you have a right to know why. If you are close enough to move in together you are close enough to not have secrets. Tell him you know it is his choice, but you need to know why. If he is ashamed of you, it’s a no-go. Blessings, Luise

  31. T. March 3, 2011 at 3:53 pm #

    I have been seeing this guy for almost 2 years and i have never met any of his family members or any of his friends. He lives at home with his mother, brother but i have never been to his house. He has met some of my friends and has met my son and knows him well and stays over at my home sometimes, we went on holiday recently and he told his family that he went away on his own. I know i’m probably asking a dumb question but what is going on? T.

    • Luise March 6, 2011 at 10:04 am #

      Your guess is as good as mine…but something is going on and you have a right to know what it is. I had that happen once and it turned out that the guy’s mom was a TERRIBLE housekeeper and He was ashamed to take me there. If he won’t tell you what it is, I would move on…because trust in a relationship is absolutely necessary. To date, he doesn’t trust you with the answer regarding what he is up against and why you are off limits. You need to know.

  32. E. January 3, 2012 at 9:13 am #

    Hi luise,

    I have been dating my bf for past 6 years n never nice hw invites me to family events or social gathering. In early stage of our relationship, I did ask why hw never bring me to his Place. He answered his family is not most presentable. I hv met only his younger brother only becoz we bump into him. I met his sister whom he is close with at an event at his business event n I am again not introduced. I was let in to join a meeting with a business associate but onky once. I hv never been invited to friends parties, family get together or company event. Recently, he kept saying his mum is tough to handle but it wasn’t like trying to explain to me but it’s just his venting. I hv been using what he told me to excuse him for all these while but deep down I felt sad as if am not good enof to be presented to his world.I felt like a kept woman n my family welcomed him warmly but he is so Luke warm with them. Ever since his surgery, he no linger intimate with me n infact had told me a few times to look for someone who willlove me more. Each time I said ok to move on, he would turn up the next day as if nothing happened. I cherish him so much I let each time slide n kept holding empty hope we will get bk to before. We are close but I realize all he wanted is by his way, his timing n his terms..there is no commitment no dreams no future. But u kept finding hard to let go. It’s as I’d I hv so little self worth n zero confidence I could find anyone who cld understand me or cone to care abt me like he does. I felt zero control over this relationship as if he us at upperhand on me all the time. Why do i allow him to inflict his terms on me? Hope to get yr kind views on my situation. Thanks very much.E.

    • Luise Volta January 14, 2012 at 12:56 pm #

      E. Something is not necessarily better than nothing. Let the guy go and start to work on your own issues. His are complex and for him to work on. Please consider coming over to my Web-forum: http://www.WiseWomenUnite.com where a community of women help each other through these tough issues. Blessings, Luise

  33. A. March 14, 2012 at 9:13 am #

    I have been going out with this guy for six months and he tells me that he loves me..He suffers with social anxiety and has a hard time because he has never been in a real relationship with a woman..He told me I’m his very first girlfriend..He is in his early 30’s and still lives at home..I used to live at home but just moved out with my aunt to be closer to him and I was not getting along with my mom as she did not want my boyfriend to sleep over because we had no where to stay..We were sleeping in the car just so we can be with each other..My boyfriend does have a job ,but he has to give half of his money to his mom.Because they are stuggling financally..He has other brothers but they also live at home and help out with the parents.He does not have a car so I have to drive..I drive everyday to see him after work and when he has his days off I see him on two days out of his three days off.I like to get a hotel and be with him..I’m the one that pays for it because he is short of money..He does pay for all the food when we go out..I do pay for gas too..He text me everyday and calls me on his break on sunday and saturday…He is very nice to me and never calls me names and is very affectionate when we are together ..He is spiritual and we share the same beliefs..I just worried because I don’t know his family he met my family but my family still does not know him very well..He is very shy and does not talk..He can be quite with me,but I talk alot and bring him out of his anxieties..I asked him why he does not introduce me to his family and he tells me that he feels social anxiety about me meeting them..He feel shy and awkward..He also tells me that he does not believe in marriage ,but he wants to spend his life with me..He says the marriage thing is tied into his anxiety too…I know he loves me but is so tied into the fear and his social anxiety..I just don’t know what to do and I feel so anxious myself as I suffer with panic disorder and social anxiety,but I’m slowly breaking out ..I feel he is too now that he has a job and is in this relationship with me…We both don’t have any friends..I’m have one person that I just met that I’m becoming friends with..Right now I get SSI…I feel so inlove with this man and want to be with him all the time,that I will go to great l leaths to be with him.I cannot image my life without him. He is very positive with my unlike the rest of my family. A.

    • Luise Volta March 17, 2012 at 5:27 pm #

      A. – You both have a lot to cope with in creating a relationship. You can’t do anything about his limitations…only your own. My take: You need your own place and he needs to contribute to that and live there if he wants a life. His problems can make things really hard but they can also become an excuse. I would have a really hard time telling the difference if I were in your shoes. To move forward, I think you are going to have put together a plan you both agree on and are willing to work toward. You are carrying too much of the financial burden and that puts him in a position of becoming your dependent. That just won’t work. The other side of the coin is that other people have gotten together against great odds and have made a go of it. You could too. Blessings, Luise

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