Question: Dear Luise: I’ve been dating a guy for 4 months. Nothing big I know and everything is good. Well, the past 2 or 3 weeks he’s been working late. He’s a technician and works a lot, so he’s gone most of the day. We talk on the phone if we can’t see each other. Well, one Sunday I got to see him and when I left he told me to call Monday. I did and he didn’t answer so I figured he was working. Wednesday he finally answers and tells me we need to talk. Well, Friday he says he wants to go back to being friends because he’s stressed out right now with work. He can’t find time to see me and he’s stressing about finding time and just when we can see each other. But I’ve wanted to be with him since I was a freshman in high school. When he chose another girl over me and we didn’t speak for like 3 years. Then we started dating after seeing each other over the summer. I’m scared of losing him again and I’ve never had feelings for anyone like I do for him. I’m not saying I love him but I think in the future I could. Do I say yes and just stay friends or say yes and kind of ignore him with a call every now and then to let him know I’m still there? He’s 20 and I’m 18 and I don’t think age is the problem or could cause one. What do I do? I want to get him back and I’m not sure how to. Any suggestions of ways to try? Any reasons as to why he would do this? I mean he tells me and his friends that he loves me and wants to be with me but if you like someone that much and want things to work, why would you just drop them? Wouldn’t you work for it if you want it to work? Help please!! J.
Answer: Dear J.: There is usually something seriously the matter when one person tells another how it’s going to be. A relationship is a partnership and both people need to communicate about what’s going on and why. Then they decide, together, what to do about it.
How can you possibly guess? Is he really stressed or is there someone else? Is he tired of you or is he in some kind of trouble? How could you know? I doubt that there is anything you can do. He’s made up his mind and you are totally in the dark. That seems really unkind to me.
I would turn toward other interests no matter how hard that is to do. Not as a “tactic” but as a practical way for you to get on with your life. If he wants to get back together, I would think long and hard about that. The kind of closeness you describe should have come with loyalty and consideration. He’s being unkind and thoughtless. That’s often where abuse starts.
You aren’t just some inconsequential person to be picked up and then dropped. This is one of those situations where your self-respect matters…a lot. Blessings, Luise