Dear Sybersue; My Boyfriend of 10 Months is Showing Signs of Freezing me Out!

roses of love

Dear Sybersue;
My Boyfriend of 10 Months is Showing Signs of Freezing me Out!

I am a 30 yr old, well employed, very socially active and independent woman. My boyfriend of 10 months is showing signs of freezing me out. This concerns me since it is right before a one year marker in our relationship which many guys feel the pressure of these days.

I’ll include a bit about our pasts to help your response. 

Andrew is 10 years older than I am but our time spent together is never stressed by the age difference.  He took care of his sick mother since he was a child and also starting working at 15 to help pay the household bills.  He later became a police officer & but recently retired & now receives a pension. He is currently working at a construction job.

A short time ago he told me he doesn’t believe in marriage.  Please note that he was hurt badly by some evil woman that continually pestered him about marriage. They eventually got engaged and shortly after found out she was pregnant. He soon discovered she had been unfaithful and slept with someone else.  She ending up having an abortion without ever knowing whose child it was or giving Andrew any choice in the matter.  He was pretty crushed knowing it could have been his son/daughter.

Back to us…we spend almost every weekend together when we are not working. I’m fine doing nothing at all and just enjoying a meal at his place. (He cooks for me often.)  I’m happy joining him for outdoor trips and he enjoys going out dancing with me. He introduced me to his entire family after 4 months of us dating & I’ve also met his best friends. Everyone tells us they love us together!

Where I am feeling this “relationship freeze” the most is with our sex life.  Andrew has been very removed & is less interested sexually these past few months.  I started to think maybe he was interested in another woman! I have expressed my concerns to him & questioned his fidelity.  His response was he is not happy with his position in life and financially he doesn’t have his future secured.

He stated because he knows I love him and I deserve so much, he has not wanted sex! He says women get that “in love feeling” from sex, and he doesn’t want me to expect that from him!

We don’t go out on date nights anymore, but we still spend weekends together. He is still very sweet to me but the sex has been restricted to once a week or less now. I’m in no rush to get married but I do love him and I’d be really happy if we did tie the knot one day. Many of his friends have mentioned that they thought Andrew was hurt and bitter from his past relationship breakup but what if he really does have ice in his heart and there is irreparable damage?

Should I just stick it out? He told me if I want to leave he wishes me the best and that I am a wonderful woman.

Reading this over it does seem obvious that if I did break up with him he would not put up a fight to keep me in his life.  Do you think he is freezing me out slowly so I will be the one to leave? Do you think he is testing me to see how long I’d stick with him without a ring? Please help!!

Thank you, Kim

Dear Kim,

Your boyfriend has a few demons in his closet which probably stems from being a fatherless child that had to nurture his mother, rather than having his mother nurture him. I don’t know anything about his dad as you didn’t mention it, but Andrew may also be dealing with some abandonment issues. He was also cheated on and dumped by a girl that he was engaged to, and who shut him out of making any decisions regarding her pregnancy. This was just another heart break scenario in his long list of past emotions haunting him.

(Also, many policemen learn to shut down their feelings due to all the trauma they witness on the job. It can be very difficult for some of them to open up.)

You are absolutely right that he is removing himself of any major commitment with you. This is a common scenario with some men who have a fear of love and long term relationships. The problem is they start out really sincere showing they are into a partnership by introducing you to their family & friends, and then start pulling away after the 6 month mark because they freak themselves out!  I think for the most part they are initially into trying to make it work but then those rooted doubts come back once again to make them pull away. It can be a vicious circle until they realize what they are doing and get some professional help.

When a man tells a woman something that he is feeling, she needs to really listen to what he is saying rather than trying to read between the lines with her own version. He is losing interest in sex which is not a good situation if the relationship is healthy. Of course women put sex and love into the same scenario when they are in a relationship and the fact that he said he doesn’t want sex due to that reason should be a relationship deal breaker. That is a pretty loud statement & very hurtful. He also told you that he understands if you want to leave, as he knows you want more than he is able to give you. Has he told you he loves you?

I am not sure why money is an issue if he is getting a pension & working at a construction job too? Could this be an excuse? I think you really know the answer to your own question here Kim, and I know how hurtful it is to realize your relationship could be over soon. He really needs to talk to someone as he sounds a bit depressed and that he has given up on having love in his life.

My advice to you would be; if he is willing to seek professional help you give it a few more months, but if he refuses, then it is time for you to find happiness somewhere else. You deserve a “Loving” partnership, not a one sided “companion” without love and limited sex.  Don’t ever settle for someone, always respect yourself first!

If this is meant to be, he will realize it by not letting you go. Right now you are making it easy for him because you are the one making all the sacrifices.  Is that what you really want long term? I don’t think you do or you wouldn’t be writing me. You know what is important to you and you can have it by believing you deserve it.

Sending you hugs, Sybersue


Dear Sybersue,

Thanks for your reply. Well he has said he loves me “once,” but he tells me he cares for me all the time. When this issue was first brought up he asked me “don’t I show you that I love you by my actions?” Sadly perhaps you’re correct, he may be making excuses. I wish I knew a way to convince him to talk to a professional. We communicate and share so much but I do believe he uses me as a therapist at times.

His father was a drunk, very abusive and in fact the main reason his mother is not well! This also was the reason Andrew became a provider at such a young age.

I feel because I love him I want to fix him. I want him to know that there are people out there like me that won’t abandon or hurt him. He acknowledges he has some problems. When he says he’s fine with me leaving due to these issues, it seems like a cop out to just give up again.

I’m not perfect; I’ve been hurt, abandoned, and yes broken hearted. I did in fact see a therapist for 2 yrs but I still have no clue how to sell a grown man to go in that direction.

Thank you again Sue! I can’t say I’m ready to jump out of this relationship but your insight has clarified my doubts of “what if.”

Sincerely, Kim

Dear Kim,

Thanks for writing back. Wow you both have been through a lot. This is probably the reason you found each other. “Like attracts like.” I think you nailed it when you said you want to “fix it” because this is what many women do! We are natural nurturers. The fact that you had some professional help for your own past is wonderful & because you know how helpful it was, makes you want to help fix him all the more!

Your BF has problems with loving people because there has been so much hurt in his life. Unfortunately it’s not unlike helping an alcoholic; they have to be ready to change. I wish I could give you more hope and better news but I think in this case the only way things will improve with you both, is if he gets some counseling.

Staying in this situation really gives you the short end of the stick. You sound like a very loving & caring woman who deserves more than this type of partnership. Ask yourself what you are getting out of it and be honest with yourself. Sometimes we hold on just because we think it is easier than starting over with someone else. He may be a test from the Universe to see if you have learned some things from your therapy.

You deserve someone who tells & shows you they love you every day. Once in 10 months is not enough. Why did he tell you he loved you if he doesn’t want you to have those reciprocated “in love” feelings? He is contradicting himself and sending you mixed messages. The first 2 years is supposed to be the best part of your relationship. Your 10 months together has been a teeter totter ride with you making all the compromises.

Wishing you clarity & love always.

 xo Sybersue

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