He doesn't know if he loves me

iVillage Member
Registered: 06-08-2011
He doesn't know if he loves me
18
Sun, 12-30-2012 - 1:06pm

My boyfriend of two years says he doesn't know if he loves me or not. In the past few months I have told him that I love him but he either ignores me or mumbles it back very awkwardly.  I don't know what to do, however, it does hurt my feelings that he would be with me for this long and not know.  I told him that I think two years is long enough to know if you love someone.  We are both in our late 40's and have been married before.  I told him that one day I'd like to be remarried and plan the rest of my life with someone.  He said he doesn't want to get married, again.  I guess I move on, however, not really sure what to do.  Any advice?

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iVillage Member
Registered: 09-29-2010
Sun, 12-30-2012 - 6:42pm

You are right, you move on. He doesn't want to get married, and he's not in love with you. It is too bad that he didn't figure it out and admit it sooner (seems like he kind of led you on?) but it was probably comfortable to have somebody there...and he might have hoped that would be enough for both of you. Since you want a loving and permanent relationship you should break it off now, take some time to get over this relationship, then resume dating and look for someone who has the same hopes for remarriage.

iVillage Member
Registered: 11-28-1999
Sun, 12-30-2012 - 10:51pm

I think he is saying that he doesn't know if he loves you because he doesn't want to say that he doesn't love you.  You are right--it shouldn't take 2 yrs to figure out if you do love someone.  But the fact that you do want to get married again & he doesn't means that you are with the wrong person anyway.  It's hard but you have to break up unless you just want to keep this status quo forever.

iVillage Member
Registered: 09-09-2008
Mon, 12-31-2012 - 2:19am

I think if a live-in boyfriend of 2 long years is still saying he does not want to get married again - you need to believe him.  I think plenty of people change their minds how they feel about marriage, esp. if the first ended badly or messed with their heads.  I wouldn't get married again, I guarantee it, just don't have it in me to try all over again.  He may well love you but still isn't up for another marriage.  It's an uncomfortable situation you're in and I think you already know what would be best.  If only things were simple....

 

Avatar for Kendahke1
iVillage Member
Registered: 08-09-2012
Mon, 12-31-2012 - 1:03pm

has it always been his party line that he does not want to marry you ever or is this a conversation that sprung up after you push the issue with him?  when you first begin dating him, did he ever say he wanted or felt more from/for you?

iVillage Member
Registered: 06-08-2011
Mon, 12-31-2012 - 2:21pm

I can't really say that it has always been his party line that he does not want to marry me ever.  Our story is.....we dated for about 6 months when HE told me he loved me.  About two months after that he started pulling away and then eventually told me he needed his "me time."  We were apart for a few weeks and then back together for a few months. 

Then, it started happening again so I ended things.  We were apart for about 4 months, with absolutely no contact, and then we found our way back together and have been for the past seven months.   Last month I told him that I loved him and hoped that he saw me in his future.  He was receptive to this and told me he loved me back, however, it was under his breath and he seemed awkward.  For hte past seven months he has showered me with attention, presents and doing things for me around my house.  I felt he loved me but was thinking he just couldn't say it.  Recently we've had a couple of conversations about the status of our relationship.  He has told me that we're exclusive, that he only has eyes for me, that he doesn't want anyone else, etc.     He spent Christmas eve with my family and son and right after Christmas eve (in fact the next day) I could tell that his mood was changing.  It was like someone turning on/off a light switch.  Two days ago, I pushed the issue and asked again about our relationship status and told him that I hoped he saw me in his future and eventually I wanted to get married.  That is when he told me that he didn't even know if he loved me and that he didn't want to get married.  The not knowing that if he loved me was a bigger shock then not wanting to get married.  Like I said before, I felt loved by him through his actions, not his words.

Avatar for xxxs
Community Leader
Registered: 01-25-2010
Mon, 12-31-2012 - 3:09pm

  Believe him when he says he does not want to get married again.  Many men are strapped with the cost after their divorce.  "love" is not something that is a universal defination.  We think we know but what one may see as love another maynot.  Before making a decision ask why he does not want to be married again?  Think of a prenup too.  There are many newer laws that have become in vogue latley it would also be wise to have a knowledge of them.  There are somtimes nasty suprises.  For instance is he paying child support?   In the state of the divorce(which has jurisdiction) what happens if he remarries?  Some states attach the new spouses income into the pot.  Remember It is the state of the divorce that has jurisdiction that makes the rules. 

dragowoman

Community Leader
Registered: 01-03-2004
Mon, 12-31-2012 - 10:16pm

Hi,

Resolve in 2013 not to "settle" for someone so shallow and to raise the bar for yourself. Oh, and you can tell alot about a guy if you refuse to live with him without a ring and a date. He's got the cow so why buy the milk? Think better of yourself.

iVillage Member
Registered: 06-08-2011
Tue, 01-01-2013 - 11:53am
FYI....we do not live together.
Avatar for Kendahke1
iVillage Member
Registered: 08-09-2012
Tue, 01-01-2013 - 5:04pm

justme2011 wrote:
<p>I can't really say that it has always been his party line that he does not want to marry me ever.  Our story is.....we dated for about 6 months when HE told me he loved me.  About two months after that he started pulling away and then eventually told me he needed his "me time."  We were apart for a few weeks and then back together for a few months. </p><p>Then, it started happening again so I ended things.  We were apart for about 4 months, with absolutely no contact, and then we found our way back together and have been for the past seven months.   Last month I told him that I loved him and hoped that he saw me in his future.  He was receptive to this and told me he loved me back, however, it was under his breath and he seemed awkward.  For hte past seven months he has showered me with attention, presents and doing things for me around my house.  I felt he loved me but was thinking he just couldn't say it.  Recently we've had a couple of conversations about the status of our relationship.  He has told me that we're exclusive, that he only has eyes for me, that he doesn't want anyone else, etc.     He spent Christmas eve with my family and son and right after Christmas eve (in fact the next day) I could tell that his mood was changing.  It was like someone turning on/off a light switch.  Two days ago, I pushed the issue and asked again about our relationship status and told him that I hoped he saw me in his future and eventually I wanted to get married.  That is when he told me that he didn't even know if he loved me and that he didn't want to get married.  The not knowing that if he loved me was a bigger shock then not wanting to get married.  Like I said before, I felt loved by him through his actions, not his words.</p>

I'm quite sure it was a shock.. considering he was the one who said it first.  Someone doesn't do all of the things that you mentioned he did and then turn around and say he didn't know if he loved you... then what was all of that effort about, you know?  An exercise in how well he can hoodwink?  That's pretty deceptive and calculating if so.  That would be enough for me to break off all contact with him and block him from being able to reach me. 

It seems, from what you've written, that there is a pattern that sets up with him, where for whatever reason floating around in his head, he becomes overwhelmed with the idea of what being with you constitutes (telling you he loves you then backing off; you telling him you love him and he backs off; spending time with your son and family, then he backs off).  There is something on the emotional level that seems to send him into a panic --and if it stems from his divorce, then he owes it to himself to go talk to someone and pull the mess out by the roots... or if he doesn't, then to just stay by himself, alone, and not pester any more women.  Very, very few women, after a certain age, date aimlessly and endlessly. You dont' appear to be one of those kinds of women--and you do deserve to be loved and to love.

iVillage Member
Registered: 08-08-2012
Wed, 01-02-2013 - 5:16pm

Wow, first off I want to say sorry for the shock you received. Next, would he go to couples counseling to see if there is a deep seated reason, maybe his last marriage, why he is so opposed to marrying again, and if he is saying he doesn't love you to avoid it?

Is marriage a relationship breaker in this situation? You mentioned you have broken up and gotten back together at least twice. Do you see this as a future pattern?

Since he says there is no one else but you, then in my opinion, he seems to only want you, but is afraid to commit further than what you already have.

Sounds like a bit of a bumpy road ahead if you decide to keep on it, and only you can decide if the trip will be worth it.

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