Skip Nav
DIY
27 Easy Costume Ideas For You and Your Best Friend
Halloween
38 Paranormal Romance Books That Are Spookily Sexy
Relationships
The 1 Sleeping Tip That Will Make Your Relationship Better

Ask E. Jean for DearSugar: Am I an Over-Analyzer?

Dear E. Jean--

I'm 31, never been married and have no children. I’ve been in several serious, long relationships. One issue about myself came up in my last relationship: I question things. I was described as an over-analyzer of problems. And people say I jump the gun when calling it quits (after several years mind you) if I feel that down the road the problem(s) will continue or spur other issues. I agree with these comments. Why can’t I let a problem simply be just a problem without looking down the road at the possible future and all it may imply?

I don't want to be the woman that can’t see the forest for the trees, you know? I’m not an uptight, stuffy person; but this quality of over-scrutinizing everything is causing me to reconsider my thought processes in my current relationship. I want this one to work. He’s a wonderful man. We've been dating exclusively for 6 months now and one issue keeps rearing its ugly head:

When he goes out drinking with his buddies, as he has on four separate occasions, he’s forgotten to call when he says he will. Also he has not come over when he says he will. This is really our main cause for turmoil. We've talked a lot about a life together and marriage but with the issues that are brewing, it's bringing out that over-analyzing side of me again! Am I being realistic by evaluating our current situation and thinking about the possible future problems or am I sabotaging myself?

To see E. Jean's answer

Honey, Honey, Honey:

Just reading your letter sucked the energy right out of old E. Jean, and knocked the spectacles off DearSugar. You’ve got yourself a fully primed chap there -- a “wonderful man” -- and you’re botoxing your brain because he didn’t phone? Gah!

You call that having “issues?” You think that's “ugly?” That's what’s causing your “turmoil?”

Men are supposed to forget to call when they’re out having beers with their buddies. Come on. Let the lad alone, for gawd’s sakes! This is not about you “over-analyzing.” This is about you being wretched the rest of your life unless you lighten-up and stop trying to control boyfriends you can’t control.

P.S. Send me a note when you’ve gone one full week without expecting the poor fellow to be perfect, and I’ll take you out for pineapple martinis. We’ll have a good laugh when you forget to phone him.

To see more advice from E. Jean visit Elle Magazine and AskEJean.com

Around The Web
Join The Conversation
popgoestheworld popgoestheworld 9 years
Aw, I'm sorry to hear it. It sounds like the timing just wasn't right and there isn't usually a cure for that. You can't sit around waiting for him to grow up for 5 years. That said, you don't want to be with someone who says things to you like that he wants to marry you, have babies with you etc. without meaning it. That's horrible. I know people say these things in the throes of being "in love" but with the right one they won't be idle remarks that turn out to be untrue. Someone will come around who has the ACTIONS to back up the words! And you deserve that person.I am sure it's hard, but you will definitely get over this in time.
popgoestheworld popgoestheworld 9 years
Aw, I'm sorry to hear it. It sounds like the timing just wasn't right and there isn't usually a cure for that. You can't sit around waiting for him to grow up for 5 years. That said, you don't want to be with someone who says things to you like that he wants to marry you, have babies with you etc. without meaning it. That's horrible. I know people say these things in the throes of being "in love" but with the right one they won't be idle remarks that turn out to be untrue. Someone will come around who has the ACTIONS to back up the words! And you deserve that person. I am sure it's hard, but you will definitely get over this in time.
Daddisgrl Daddisgrl 9 years
You need a vacation. Go sit in a hot tub and lay on the beach. You also need to try to move forward or this will suck the life out of you. IMO, you were right to question things (maybe I'm an over analyzer?) because little things eventually turn to big things. It's very hard to live with the problems you had.. as I said, I know. We've come close to splitting a few times. How old is he?
Daddisgrl Daddisgrl 9 years
You need a vacation. Go sit in a hot tub and lay on the beach. You also need to try to move forward or this will suck the life out of you. IMO, you were right to question things (maybe I'm an over analyzer?) because little things eventually turn to big things. It's very hard to live with the problems you had.. as I said, I know. We've come close to splitting a few times.How old is he?
mandy31 mandy31 9 years
well, an update about the situation: we actually ended it yesterday due to the fact that he's too young to settle down and feels like he didnt take a break after 1)ending the relationship with his X that he lived with 2)graduating from college. we met in such an unual circumstance that neither one of us was looking for anything, but found instead that we really liked each other and decided to go for it. Despite the age difference and "time to heal from the X". Things went along fine and then he ends it out of the blue. Just days before there was flowers, poetry, loving words and affection. I dont know what happened so quickly to change things but he said it wasn't anything i did. it was his need to be himself and experience life. He kept saying "i wish i had met you 5 years later" any advice now? im devistated to say the least. i mean, this guy said he wanted to marry me, have children with me and that he had found everything that he ever wanted in me. how can that be true if he can walk away from me?? he said it was hard on him as well, but we all know its a hell of a lot easier on the one doing the breaking up. any advice would help
VixenMJ VixenMJ 9 years
Agreed. Men are supposed to forget to call. And women are supposed nag them to remember. It's the birds and the bees, my dear. That's just how it works.
Brittney Brittney 9 years
Four times in six months! The lad is no Lindsay Lohan. E. Jean is right on!
missmaddie missmaddie 9 years
Eloquent and oh-so-true... I can only imagine how terrible my relationship with Mr. Maddie would be if he threw a fit over phone calls... I <b>abhore</b> the phone!
missmaddie missmaddie 9 years
Eloquent and oh-so-true... I can only imagine how terrible my relationship with Mr. Maddie would be if he threw a fit over phone calls... I abhore the phone!
mandy31 mandy31 9 years
Thank you so much for all your help you guys! I have since decided to lighten up, and specify the "nights out with the guys" as just that. A night out with the guys. I dont expect to see him on those nights and it has helped clear up alot of those issues. If I DO see him great, but its not expected. I also need to clarify that he has asked me to attend all of these outtings and for some reason or another I havent been able to go to most. But he always invites me. Things have been great since Ive given him some room and he's been the one bringing up our future, as in, marriage and kids. He wants to support me, and raise a family with me. He really is a wonderful man. Oh, and I dont know if this had any bearing on the situation, but Ive been going out too. Im not sitting at home waiting for a call (which I never was in the first place, but when you are expecting a call and it doesn't come you may as well be no matter if you are out with friends or not) I just wanted to express my thanks for everyone who has let me and my problems into your lives and have so graciously offered advice. You've all really helped me! Muah!!
Eternity Eternity 9 years
I want to address the over-analyzing thing, because that is really the problem she is worried about, not so much the catalyst of his drunken forgetfulness (which is typical in my opinion). Over analyzing WILL cause problems. Think about why you do it. It is born of a fear mechanism. The more you fear a certain outcome and then try to analyze everything to get the probability of it coming to that end, the more you are actually creating the reality you don't want. When I read your letter it struck a chord with me because we are so much alike in this situation currently. My best advice to you is to just let go, be in love, and TRUST the world to give you what you need. Que Sera Sera :)
Eternity Eternity 9 years
I want to address the over-analyzing thing, because that is really the problem she is worried about, not so much the catalyst of his drunken forgetfulness (which is typical in my opinion).Over analyzing WILL cause problems. Think about why you do it. It is born of a fear mechanism. The more you fear a certain outcome and then try to analyze everything to get the probability of it coming to that end, the more you are actually creating the reality you don't want. When I read your letter it struck a chord with me because we are so much alike in this situation currently. My best advice to you is to just let go, be in love, and TRUST the world to give you what you need. Que Sera Sera :)
partysugar partysugar 9 years
Pineapple martinis sounds like a fabulous idea E.Jean!
nessabum nessabum 9 years
the phoning part--yeesh, things happen. i mean, i boil up inside when my guy doesn't, but he always has a really good reason not to.and the not coming over part--what??i don't think that all the details are there for me to say anything else, really.
nessabum nessabum 9 years
the phoning part--yeesh, things happen. i mean, i boil up inside when my guy doesn't, but he always has a really good reason not to. and the not coming over part--what?? i don't think that all the details are there for me to say anything else, really.
Muirnea Muirnea 9 years
ohh and to add a little to my last one, if talking about it like I said doesn't work, then I agree with pop and I think you should find someone that really wants to help your realtionship grow and tries to also understand where you are coming from.
Muirnea Muirnea 9 years
I agree with pop. I think I am the same way (an over analyzer), even about tiny little things with my bf. What happens to me is I get upset about something, am in a bad mood, and when I finally talk to my bf about the problem, we end up getting in a fight. In some cases though, he agrees that I am right, and he tries not to do that thing that upset me in that case. Rather than just talking to him about the individual problems though, I finally told him that I thought I have a problem over analyzing things and he said that in some cases he agreed, so we had a huge conversation about it and we agreed that he will help me stop over analying things, and he asked me to help him notice when he does or doesn't do one of the little things that bothers me and to just make sure I tell him about it, just so he knows. So pretty much, instead of discussing the individual problems every time one of them comes up, we are getting to the root of the problems and the great part is, that we both understand that we are not perfect and have our problems and we are both trying to help each other get better. It just made me feel so much better to know that he understands that I am also not perfect (although he insists I am sometimes, lol :-P) and that he will help me. So although I love this website soooooooooo much and it is so helpful, I think that instead of only talking to your bf about how you wish he would call, also tell him everything that you told us on here, that way maybe both of you will understand better and be able to help each other with your problems.
Vdogg Vdogg 9 years
4 separate occasions?? That's the one that sticks out most in my mind.. 4 times is nothing!!! over the course of 6 months. That means within the 6 months you've been together he's been out with his friends 4 times?Think about it this way.. his buddies are probably teasing him about this new homebody lifestyle he's taken on.. & so when he's with them he doesn't wanna be the guy who's constantly on the phone with his gf or leaving his friends early because he told you too if they're still partying. If he stops seeing his friends, then he won't have any. Which would make it hard on you too, because you'd feel guilty going out with yours when you know he's sitting at home!I think that if you want to have a social life, you need to let him have his own. If you ask him to drop his friends: A) it won't happen, & B) it'll only drive a wedge between you two It's perfectly normal to forget things when you're drinking.. especailly when you have months of catching up to do like your boyfriend does every time he sees his friends!
Vdogg Vdogg 9 years
4 separate occasions?? That's the one that sticks out most in my mind.. 4 times is nothing!!! over the course of 6 months. That means within the 6 months you've been together he's been out with his friends 4 times? Think about it this way.. his buddies are probably teasing him about this new homebody lifestyle he's taken on.. & so when he's with them he doesn't wanna be the guy who's constantly on the phone with his gf or leaving his friends early because he told you too if they're still partying. If he stops seeing his friends, then he won't have any. Which would make it hard on you too, because you'd feel guilty going out with yours when you know he's sitting at home! I think that if you want to have a social life, you need to let him have his own. If you ask him to drop his friends: A) it won't happen, & B) it'll only drive a wedge between you two It's perfectly normal to forget things when you're drinking.. especailly when you have months of catching up to do like your boyfriend does every time he sees his friends!
vanyvrgs vanyvrgs 9 years
I agree with pop and lickety. If you do not like it that is your prerogative. I do not know about just 4 times but am more concerned about him saying he is coming over and not showing up. What is his excuse? How many times? When a guy does that to me and we have plans, I automatically kick him to the curb. It shows disrespect and disregard for the other person. Maybe this is what really upsets you and the calls are just a symptom of the disregard for your feelings.
lickety-split lickety-split 9 years
if it's a problem for YOU it doesn't matter what other people think about "mr wonderful". what if you never get married; so what? better single than married to someone who has habits that you know going into the marriage REALLY bother you. single does not mean alone, it just means not married; that's it. all the things you want to do it life you can do with out being married. i think you need to get over the idea of "needing" a man or a relationship. relationships are work and the other person is going to do things you don't like, but going in you need to be confident that they are capable of being the person you need them to be. if they aren't why commit to a lifetime of that? 31 isn't old to be single. if you want to put it in those terms (which i don't really like doing) i would say 41 is old to be single. and then only if the person wanted to have biological children. and btw, when a person tells me they are going to do something i think it's reasonable to expect them to do it (like calling).
lickety-split lickety-split 9 years
if it's a problem for YOU it doesn't matter what other people think about "mr wonderful". what if you never get married; so what? better single than married to someone who has habits that you know going into the marriage REALLY bother you. single does not mean alone, it just means not married; that's it. all the things you want to do it life you can do with out being married. i think you need to get over the idea of "needing" a man or a relationship. relationships are work and the other person is going to do things you don't like, but going in you need to be confident that they are capable of being the person you need them to be. if they aren't why commit to a lifetime of that? 31 isn't old to be single. if you want to put it in those terms (which i don't really like doing) i would say 41 is old to be single. and then only if the person wanted to have biological children. and btw, when a person tells me they are going to do something i think it's reasonable to expect them to do it (like calling).
Marci Marci 9 years
I disagree with E. Jean here. She never even addressed the issue of the guy not coming over when he says he will. I think the combination of that and the not calling are symptoms that he's not as into the relationship as you are or you think/hope he is. The habit of not doing what one says they will isn't behavior I want in a lifetime partner.
Daddisgrl Daddisgrl 9 years
If pop is right and there is that big of an age gap, I think you might need to realize he's not mature enough...I don't buy the teasing bit. At my age we don't tease about people calling their spouse or GF / BF, it stops some time in the 20's from what I remember.
Daddisgrl Daddisgrl 9 years
If pop is right and there is that big of an age gap, I think you might need to realize he's not mature enough... I don't buy the teasing bit. At my age we don't tease about people calling their spouse or GF / BF, it stops some time in the 20's from what I remember.
Things I Wish I Knew Before Getting a Divorce
Jillian Harris on Boyfriend Justin Pasutto
How to Be a Happy Couple
Places on a Woman's Body to Avoid
How to Stop a Panic Attack
How to 69
Things to Do Instead of Spending Money

POPSUGAR, the #1 independent media and technology company for women. Where more than 75 million women go for original, inspirational content that feeds their passions and interests.

From Our Partners
Latest Love
X