Should I walk away?

babyemilie asks:

I’ve been dating this person for going on 8 months. Our personalities are well matched I’m very attracted to him. Here’s the catch: after dating this long, meeting each other’s families, and letting myself be vulnerable around him, he doesn’t want to put any kind of title or parameters on our relationship. We’ve talked about it twice and it just ends with me in tears feeling stupid and needy. I don’t know what to do, I’ve let myself get all these feelings for him over time. We’ve met each others friends and families and shared secrets, but never even said I love you. I know he’s like this because he had a bad experience with his ex. I keep wanting him and hoping for him to want to stop bring afraid of being together but also feeling extremely angry and unimportant to him.

I guess what I’m asking is do I just give up? Should I walk away and see if he comes back? I almost wish he would do outwardly mean things so I felt better about just ending the relationship. I need some advice on this one, I probably sound like a crazy person and I feel like one but I need some stranger’s advice on this.

Demetrius says:

This is a great question and it really makes me want to pose some questions to you. Here’s what I want to ask you:

  • Are you in love with him?
  • Is having a title important to you?
  • Do you want to, at some point in your future, ever get married?
  • Do you think in another 8 months that you’d be okay not having a title?

You don’t have to tell me your answers, because trust me, I think I know what your answers are. If I had to guess, I would say that you’re probably in love with him, the title is important to you, you probably want to get married at some point, and you wont be okay with not having a title in another 8 months,. If I’m right, it’s time to move on! If you’re not in love, the title isn’t important, you never plan on getting married, and are okay with the no title thing into perpetuity, stick with it. I’m going to go with my first guess being right. These things clearly matter to you, so it’s time to move on.

On multiple occasions I’ve dated this type of person, and I’ve also been this person. Speaking from my own experiences, the people who refuse to use titles are afraid of commitment. Whether it’s because of past trauma, a fear of losing independence, or just wanting to keep their options open, this behavior is the behavior of someone who wants to know where the FIRE EXIT sign in their relationship is at all times. You might be thinking “But he introduced me to friends and family and shared secrets” which is cool and all but trust me, it’s not a big deal to him. When he ends things with you which he most assuredly will, because you weren’t ever in a relationship he’ll be able to brush off people’s comments about your breakup by saying “Oh yeah, we weren’t ever boyfriend and girlfriend though, so no big deal it’s not even a real breakup”. Because he’s never flat-out said this is my partner, in his head leaving you wont have much of an impact. He’s clearly the “past trauma” type of noncommittal/afraid-of-commitment type so being able to dismiss you eventually leaving him will be easy because he was never committed to you. Meeting friends and family holds relative value to people so while you might think “this is a big deal” for him it definitely is not a big deal.I know it’s not a big deal to him because most people have a “No one meets the family besides someone I’m in a relationship with” and you are not in a relationship, so meeting his family clearly wasn’t a big deal to him. You are friends who sleep together, spend a lot of time together, meet each other’s friends and family, and are not boyfriend and girlfriend. That is a clear distinction.

Your answer was right there in front of you the whole time. If someone makes you cry, or makes you feel stupid, or makes you feel needy because of something you want out of the relationship, that is not someone worth sticking around with. What you are asking for is validation beyond being his frequent sex friend, he refuses to give you that, so there really isn’t much more to say to you besides: LEAVE. Relationships at their core are two people choosing to be together. That choice, whether you realize it or not, happens on a daily basis and that choice should be based on a simple question: “Am I getting what I want and need out of this relationship?”. Think of a relationship like any monthly service you pay for, like Netflix. Imagine you were paying for Netflix expecting to be able to stream something like cooking shows, then 8 months in you realize that they’re not offering streaming cooking shows and will never offer cooking shows. You LOVE cooking shows, Netflix doesn’t offer them streaming, but you realize that another streaming service out there does offer cooking shows. Wouldn’t you stop paying for Netflix and switch to a different streaming service? Of course you would!  You pay for a relationship with time, your most precious resource, and in doing so you hope that you’ll be able to get what you want. It’s why people call it “wasting time” because it’s a resource you can spend or waste. Right now you’re wasting time, so you need to drop this guy.

You might have some hesitance because you’ve invested 8 months into this guy, but you have to remember that he has invested exactly 0 months into you. After 8 months, you’ve grown attached to him, you want him to give you a title and a relationship, and right now he wants things to be exactly what they were when you first started seeing each other. You’re losing nothing by dropping him except a poor investment of your time.

Good Luck Out There.

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