We Moved Too Quickly, Now We Need to Take it Slow

Visitor's Question from a 21-30 year old Female
I got together with my boyfriend 9 months ago. We totally clicked, were living together and engaged within a month. We started to argue over small things, I tended to nag, and he was selfish and lazy. The arguments got bad about 2 months ago. He was working long hours, and we were arguing all night, he had to get up early for work in the morning.

One day, he left for work. He didnt go. He went on holiday for a week, refusing to answer his phone. I had no idea why he'd left or where he'd gone, he ignored my answerphone messages. When I managed to speak to him on the phone, he screamed at me that he no longer loved me and I was to move my stuff out of our house as we were finished. He later agreed to talk and try to sort things out when he came back, but had no interest in talking when he got back. He said he'd agreed to stop me phoning him and still wanted to finish. He said he couldnt take any more arguing.

I moved out of the house, but a conversation we were having while I was moving my stuff in tears, resulted in him in floods of tears, apologising, saying he'd failed me and had been so horrible to me and he didnt deserve me. He even said he wanted to commit suicide, because he'd done me wrong, hated his job and hadn't been single since he was 17. (he's 26)

I told him I still loved him and he hadnt failed me. He has been under a LOT of stress lately , with the arguing, problems in work and debt. His previous girlfriend treated him very badly and was cheating on him with their lodger/friend in his house. We talked for ages, both in tears, he said he wanted some time on his own, without arguments for a while. I asked if he wanted to end the relationship for good or if we might sort it out. He said he did still love me and wanted to sort it out, but needed some time.

He calls often, wanting to spend time with me, and when we are together, he flirts with me and is very affectionate. We always end up sleeping together, but we are more like friends. Sometimes he blanks me totally, other times he'll rant and rave at me for no reason.

I do believe he loves me, I would do anything to help him feel better, and I want to get back together. He has been jealous when another man was ringing me, switched my phone off, so I know he does have feelings for me. Please help me, do I play hard to get, or let him know i'm there and love him?

RomanceClass.com Advice
It really sounds like you moved into this situation WAY too quickly, before either of you are ready. Of course you clicked at the beginning, that's what hormones do to you :) But the way relationships work is that you are incredibly happy at the beginning as sort of the 'glue' to hold you together - and then reality sets in and you have to learn to REALLY get along with each other.

Normally you do that slowly, with a 'safe home' to retreat to when you need to. But because you guys dove into living together and being engaged, you had no safe retreat. Your issues became magnified, you argued all the time, and he needed a safe retreat and took one. And how his home wasn't even safe any more, so he asked you to move out so he could have some quiet.

I would really take this slow and start all over again. There's no need to race into moving in! If this works out you'll be together for DECADES. That's a really long time :) Learn about each other all over again, and learn to DISCUSS without ARGUING. You should never be yelling at each other. If you feel like a yell is coming on, go for a walk or go home or take a break. After a while you'll learn to deal with those emotions better. After 4-5 months when you really are spending tons of time together and are *comfortable* with each other without being jealous or yelling, that would be the time to think about moving in again. But you need to be at that point where you are comfortable and calm with each other before you give up your 'safe retreat'.

-- from Jenn
One of Your Friendly Advisors at RomanceClass.com

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