Should I stay?

iVillage Member
Registered: 12-11-2012
Should I stay?
Tue, 12-11-2012 - 11:52am



iVillage Member
Registered: 12-05-2006
Tue, 12-11-2012 - 12:31pm

Genuine love entails equitable giving. You have tossed that out the window by being the significantly higher giver. At this point, he knows that he can not rise to equal you because he lacks motivation due to the guilt, shame, and obligation factor of him not being 'enough' for you (since you have so enlarged the gap). Especially with a man... we like the pride involved with earning what we have. Also, at the current exchange rate he knows that you can do better than him so this is not a secure relationship for him. Hence, he can do better than you since security is one of the most vital aspects of a SO relationship.

If you want to save this relationship, drop your giving to match his then raise the bar one small step at a time so that he can remain motivated with a goal that is acheivable.

Best wishes.

iVillage Member
Registered: 11-28-1999
Tue, 12-11-2012 - 1:01pm

I am the mother of a 23 yr old DD (and I'm a lawyer too).  My advice is the opp. of Glen's--I'd say break up with this guy now.  Why do you settle for such bad treatment from a man?  It's pretty obvious that he doesn't care about you--when you are in a long term relationship with someone, the norm is to spend at least part of the weekend together, not that people can never go out w/ friends--but your guy actually prefers not being with you on weekends--what do you think he's doing while he's out in bars w/ his friends?  Probably picking up other girls, I'd suspect.  Not to mention that he calls you names, won't help you when you're sick, has to be begged to go to your place.  what's that saying?  Don't make someone your priority when he makes you an option!

I think you should really spend some time examining why you would put up with this kind of bad treatment for so long.  do you feel that afraid that you would never find someone else?  I mean, you're young--it's not like there aren't plenty of available men in their 20's.  And as long as you stick with this guy, you won't find someone who will treat you the way you, and anyone in a relationship, deserves to be treated.

I do think there is some point to what Glen said about the guy being uncomfortable because you are doing too much.  Why are you cooking for him?  You aren't his mom--stop acting like it.  You shouldn't be writing his papers, also because he's supposed to be a grown up and he isn't actually learning if someone else is doing his work for him.  I can see proofreading or something like that, but you are just being an enabler.  And as far as him calling you to make sure he got home from a bar safely, again, you're not his mom.  I know this sounds a little sexist, but he's the man--he should be looking out for you.  does he ever ask you to call him to show that YOU got home safely from an event?  When I was dating my 2nd DH, I would sometimes be driving home late from his house since he had a DD at home to watch and he would always want me to call him to make sure I was home safe.  I would never think of asking him to do that because he was the man & I figured he could protect himself (maybe if it was a big snow storm or something it would be different).  It wasn't my job to protect him.  No wonder he wont' check in--it's embarrassing and emasculating--could you imagine how his friends would make fun of him?

I would really suggest going to your school's counseling center to get some help with this if you feel that you can't break up with him. As a female lawyer, you have to learn to stand up for yourself with the condesending men who are going to try to bully you just because you're a woman.  So start practicing now, and don't settle for someone who has no respect for you.

iVillage Member
Registered: 12-05-2006
Tue, 12-11-2012 - 1:21pm

I wasn't recommending that she try to save the relationship only that if she wanted to, how to go about it. The idea of raising the bar in small increments is to see where your partner will eventually max out, unless you max out first as there is only so much time and energy available to dedicate to a SO relationship before it becomes obsessive and unhealthy. Then, if ones partner stalls with a level of equitable giving that is still too low for you, move on.

However, if this woman jumps into her future relationships with this type of a running start, she will be hard pressed to find a guy to match her before she enlarges the gap too wide to recover from so even if she moves on, I think this principle is vital to understand for future success. Lasty, I would recommend seeing this as a cooperation with nature and the distinct ways that men and women see the world and not a male vs. female situation - both can win.

Avatar for xxxs
Community Leader
Registered: 01-25-2010
Tue, 12-11-2012 - 2:34pm


    Im my opinion you are doing yourself a great disservice.  Your emotions read like a 15 year old.  In the real world the law firm is not going to care about your "love" life.  You may work 70 hrs and have to attend weekend social functions.  You need to get yourself centered.  This boy is right in doing as he sees fit.  You on the other hand are hurting yourself.

   You really are acting like a mother rather than an adult woman.  No adult likes checking in.  He is right you do not need to know where he is and what he is doing. 

   I suggest that you get a therapist and work this out.  Also understand that you will be a independent career woman.  "Love" as you are describing it sound a lot like infatuation.  Your emotional self needs your attention.


iVillage Member
Registered: 04-16-2008
Tue, 12-11-2012 - 2:59pm

Sounds like you're doing all the giving and he's doing all the taking. I think you could find someone that would make a lot more effort to spend time with YOU rather than making time with his buddies his priority. Sorry but it sounds like he treats you like you really don't matter much in his life right now..Maybe things will change after he gets his law degree but for now it sounds like he's taking advantage of you.

iVillage Member
Registered: 12-11-2012
Tue, 12-11-2012 - 3:24pm

I certainly understand where everyone is coming from. This relationship used to be two-sided and that's why I'm struggling so much with it now. I used to be a priority in his life, but his new mindset seems to be that is in indifferent towards remaining in a relationship with me. What's worse is he has this general arrogance that I will always be there.

And no, I don't act like I'm his mother and I don't need to know where he is all the time or need him to check in with me. With that being said, I know how drunk he gets when he goes out, and have received many phone calls at 2am with him being so beligerent I can't even understand him. Therefore, it is nice for my own peace of mind that he sends me a text saying he is home, so I know he hasn't put himself in a bad position, which he has many times. Also, I don't even understand why my future career is being discussed. I'm a perfectly strong-minded and indepedent individual and I have been living on my own and working in the legal field since I was 17. Just because I act one way in a romantic relationship does not, in any way, mean I cannot hold my own in my professional life.

iVillage Member
Registered: 04-16-2008
Tue, 12-11-2012 - 5:38pm

Personally, I would not want to be with someone who calls me all drunk and beligerent at 2am. and gets himself in situations I would have to worry about and always feel the need to check if he's okay. And who knows what he's doing and with who when he's drunk and out with the guys. Maybe you've outgrown this relationship and should find someone more responsible. I think as you said he's taking it for granted that he can do whatever he wants and you will always be there for him. I think you're settling for much less than you should and should find someone who at least acts like he cares.

iVillage Member
Registered: 09-29-2010
Wed, 12-12-2012 - 3:33am

Should you stay? No. What should you do? Break it off with him and move forward with your life. "I just don't know how much longer I can deal with feeling like I'm worthless to my own boyfriend." Don't deal with it for any longer, kick him to the curb.

You already recognize that the relationship is unhealthy. You make all of the effort and give all of the love. In return he calls you names and disregards your requests. To an impartial third party, it sounds like this guy is using you. He lets you help write his papers, cook for him, and presumably provide sex. And probably makes it seem like he's doing you a favor. When its time to reciprocate he refuses and tries to make you feel bad for asking.

What about him do you love? What are his good traits? I wonder if you love who he "used to be" or the relationship that you used to have? Right now he sounds selfish and immature, and not like someone who wants to be in a committed relationship. He's choosing to drink with the guys over being with his gf, on a regular basis. His priorities seem pretty clear. My guess is that he doesn't want to be the cad who breaks up with you so he's treating you like dirt so you will be the one to end the relationship.

"I just can't let go of him though." Like someone else suggested, get counseling to help get through this, and to learn why you would let him treat you like this for so many months already.

iVillage Member
Registered: 12-18-2009
Wed, 12-12-2012 - 4:45am
You know him in/out --- quite a bit but what are not being able to see is that he probably doesnt want to continue the relationship with you.You could still be very much in love with him but it seems that he isnt now. I wouldnt want to stay with a person who didnt love me and took me for granted. There are people who take marriage partners also for granted and the marriage then fails . It will help you to look from a pov where how he behaved early on and how he is now. How he is now, is the real him -- take him if you like it, leave if you dont.
Avatar for Kendahke1
iVillage Member
Registered: 08-09-2012
Wed, 12-12-2012 - 7:44am

palecashmere wrote:
<p>I have been dating my boyfriend for about two years, although we did break up for three months back in February. I am currently in my first year of law school while he is finishing his senior year of undergrad. We currently live about 30 minutes apart.</p><p>I am really starting to feel like I am not in a healthy relationship. I see my boyfriend 1-2 times a week due to our hectic schedules. However, I pretty much have to beg my boyfriend to see me, and when we do hang out 90 percent of the time, I am driving to him. He almost always refuses to come to my apartment. If I ask him to see me more than twice a week he tells me I am being needy and that I refuse to share him with his friends. This is very offensive to me considering a) we used to live together and see each other every day, b) I never complain about the amount of alone time we spend together or the amount of time he spends with his friends (which is at least 5 nights a week), and c) when he is with his friends, I never contact him so he can enjoy his time with them. The only thing I ask out of him is that he text me before he leaves for the bar and to text me when he gets home for the night, so I know he is safe. This never happens though, and when I tell him it upsets me that he can't text me, he tells me that I need to stop forcing him to be clingy. </p><p>I am so in love with him, and I do everything in the world for him. I help him write his papers, even though I do at least 8 hours a day of my own studying, I make him meals for the week when I do see him, I drive to see him no questions asked whenever he needs me, etc. And I never put it in his face that I do all of these things for him, I just do it because I love him. But if I have a bad day and ask him to call me, he usually tells me no that he is with his friends. If I ask him to come to my apartment because I am sick, he usually says no. If I ever try and communicate with him about how his behavior makes me upset, he is so quick to turn himself into the victim and has no problem belitting me. If I get upset that he randomly stops answering his phone for an entire day he has no problem telling me I am nuts, a psycho, "bat-sh*t crazy", needy, clingy, etc. If I ever call him crying he tells me he can't deal with me and I'm "too much" and will just hang up the phone. </p><p>I spend most of my weekend nights alone, because he would rather get drunk with his friends at the bar than see me. I just don't know how much longer I can deal with feeling like I'm worthless to my own boyfriend. It has pretty much gotten to the point that I can't expect anything at all out of him, or I just end up disappointed or sad. I just can't let go of him though. The three months we were broken up were the most miserable three months. I am absolutely 100 percent in love with him and could never imagine feeling this way about anyone else. What should I do?</p>

I"m sorry, but I fail to see any good reason to keep dealing with him.  He's basically telling you to go kick rocks.

YOu say you are 100 % in lov e with him, etc., but my question to you is: how much do you love yourself?  How much do you love the person you have to become in order to have this guy in your life?  Do you like being discarded when you're sick?  Do you like being belittled?  Do you like feeling as if you are inconvenient and in the way?  Because that's not what love is about at. all.

He's checked out of your relationship and you're so far adrift from yourself that you cannot see the shore.  You need to spend your time retrieving your self from the open sea into which his disregard has launched you.  All that energy you spend on him needs to be spent on you--you need to be way more selfish and not so selfless.  All that has gotten and will continue to get you is getting kicked. 

Whatever you thought your future with him was going to be has drastically changed since you moved and went to law school.  He is a free man in all senses and purposes as far as he's concerned. He's not going to give that up anytime soon for you--and it doesn't matter what you two had in the past.  For him, his friends are now more important than a relationship with you.  You need to take that cue and get on with your own life.  You've got a lot of work to do and money riding on this investment in your education you've made to let it sink over cad who will turn his back on you when you're sick.