I’m a 23-year-old male in a four-year relationship with a female, 22. We were both each other’s firsts (for sex) and care deeply for each other.
However, we’ve had four break-ups for several days to a week.
I was unable to handle her extreme jealousy, and constant anger towards me.
She cries often, over mundane things, like if an attractive woman’s on TV when we’re watching together.
She insists I believe that only she is pretty, and said she can no longer be with me if I found other women attractive.
Then I’d revert to lying because I didn’t want to lose her.
She knows I’d never cheat, but that’s not enough for her. She’s easily angered if I talk to another woman and insults me if I mention another female.
We moved in together, but due to issues with the house, we have to move out by March 1.
I feel I cannot handle the constant jealousy. I’ve advised her to see a therapist but she refuses.
She has a very poor self-image, which I think fuels her insecurities.
We’re undecided whether to move into a new place together, or end our relationship and move separately.
And we still love each other!
Stay Together or Live Without?
A relationship begun in late teens, and moving together, requires huge adjustments on both sides.
Add in the emotional tie of sexual “firsts” and it’s a set-up for a turbulent relationship, especially if one partner has a poor self-image.
This is the reality of being young, in love, and lacking life experience.
Some couples make it through, but many don’t. You two need professional help to give it a better chance.
Consider March 1st as an opportunity instead of a deadline. Move apart for a while, while each of you gets counselling separately.
She needs to learn ways to boost her self-confidence, and not depend entirely on you for self-esteem and security.
So far, she feels helpless at holding onto you on her own merit.
It has little to do with whatever you say or do. These self-doubts come from her own life and whatever happened in her past.
You need to assess whether you’ve become her “rescuer” – a role you’re already finding difficult.
Or, whether your love for her can last if she becomes more comfortable in her own skin.
This will be hard to explain, she’ll take it all as rejection. But it’s your best shot at whether young love can grow into mature partnership.
I really loved my girlfriend; it was devastating for me when she ended our relationship two years ago.
I’ve received counselling and recognize that this relationship didn’t meet both of our needs.
But I was my best self with her, and I don't know how to be that vulnerable and brave again.
I don't have anything left to give a new relationship. I want to be happy but I don't know how.
Read the above question and response. No two relationships are exactly the same, but the pattern of self-doubt and co-dependency rings similarly.
Your “best self” is within yourself, not in another person. Your counselling should’ve helped you see what your own needs are, and also insights to ways to get them met on your own, or in a next relationship.
But you only wanted to hear how to stay with “her.”
Reflect on what didn’t work and if needed, get back to counselling. You can and must move forward.
My husband and I are early 40's, with a daughter, age six. He recently started playing an online video game which he constantly has on.
This has caused many fights between us.
I want him to give me and our daughter his undivided attention.
He thinks he can spend quality time with us while playing the game.
His obsession is creating more harm than he realizes. So is your battling with him, obscuring the real issue of family life.
Also, your daughter’s getting a too-early role model of distraction, when she needs to be involved with close people.
Say how needed he is in her life and yours. The emotional bonds of love and trust can only come from sharing communication and concentrated time together.
Make this a need for his presence, not a win over the game.
When she’s asleep, he can play the game as a hobby instead of an escape.
Tip of the day:
When a relationship’s stuck in negativity, take a break to learn other ways to connect.