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You Asked: This Can't Be Love

You Asked: This Can't Be Love

Dear Sugar,

I've been with my boyfriend for two and a half years, one year living together. Things were great at first. He made me feel like I was walking on clouds, and the most important thing in his life. He made me so many promises and talked about having a life together. He has never hurt me on purpose, but that was then, now it's like every other day, we argue and fight, but what hurts the most is he doesn’t show me that he cares anymore.

He gets mad at me for stuff that has nothing to do with me. I understand he has stress and when I tell him how I feel, he tells me things will change but they haven't. I’m so confused and I don’t know what to do anymore. He says he still loves me, but I don’t understand how he can hurt me and still love me. I know that I love him, but my self-esteem has been so knocked down by him that I feel helpless, I’m even scared to say anything anymore. Please help! — Where Did the Love Go Laurie

To see DearSugar's answer

Dear Where Did the Love Go Laurie,

I am so sorry you are feeling lost, I am glad you came to me. It sounds as though your boyfriend is carrying a bunch of anger and he is taking it out on you. We all have stresses, but that is never an excuse to verbally mistreat anyone, especially loved ones. I am glad you are standing up to him and voicing your feelings, but if he is not making any adjustments to his behavior, it's time for you to make a change.

All couples go through a down cycle, but his abusive tendencies need to stop. Most of the time people never mean to hurt others, but unless they experience some sort of consequence, they won't stop their behavior.

You deserve to be treated with respect, especially in your own home, so perhaps a break is in order. He needs to feel how his behavior is driving you away, possibly forever. Have you considered couples counseling? You need to put yourself first and while you love this man, you need to love yourself more. Stay strong Laurie and follow your gut instincts with this relationship.

Join The Conversation
frieddumpling frieddumpling 9 years
You deserve better and it seems like he doesn't appreciate you anymore. It may be very very difficult to be a part in the beginning but a break will do you both good. It'll give him a way to figure other anger releasing outlets and not blow up on you. It'll also give you a chance to see life without him and perhaps you are truly better off without him. After all, I can't see someone being happy in a relationship where they are not appreciated and being blamed for things that are not their fault. You won't be able to stand it in the long-run unless he is willing the change. (Also, behaviour like this tends to escalate as well especially he doesn't see the need to change and in your case, it doesn't appear he is making any sort of effort.) If he does not make the change, you need to be strong and leave because the longer you stay with him, the harder it is to leave this bad relationship.
bringmeup bringmeup 10 years
You should never be scared to say something to a person who is supposed to love you. Fear has no place in a relationship. And communication is one of the most important things in a relationship. It seems to me that you need to take a step back from this guy for awhile. You cannot stay with someone who makes you feel so insecure and helpless. You deserve better, more respect. He isn't being considerate of your feelings. So you need to be.
sunrisesmile09 sunrisesmile09 10 years
I just went through the same situation and I can tell you this- Dont waste your breath talking. You wont be saying anything to him that he hasn't already heard. Here is a painful truth that I had to face- If you mean anything to him, then he will do WHATEVER it takes to have you, and keep you in his life. If you mean nothing, he will do nothing. It is wonderful in the beginning when everything is new and yet to be explored, but when the honeymoon is over you realize that instead of LOVE, you were in LUST. Love endures forever, lust is about a good two year run. Go on with your life while he makes the needed changes to make you happy. If he changes ( and believe me- it will not happen within 6 months) great. If not, you would have moved on by then anyways. Its the win-win.
Realblonde Realblonde 10 years
Sounds like a typical relationship to me! All guys are nice in the begging and then they show their true colours.
simplybe1 simplybe1 10 years
i think all this advice is very good. and if taking a break isn't really what you want, why not try just putting a little distance between you. do you have a friend or parents that you can stay with while you try to work things out? sometimes, all you need is a little space to sort out your feelings (and his). and while you're improving your own situation, talk about/try to improve his. if you really want to make this work, identifying and eliminating his source of stress may be a good step. good luck!
junebrug junebrug 10 years
Everyone is right. Men do not respond to words, they were trained to ignore them. They respond to actions. Back off. Taking a break is perfect. If he loves you, he'll apologize and want to work it out. Pop is right, if you don't stand up for yourself, he'll know he can get away with anything with you and you'll be dealing with bad treatment forever. If he doesn't object to the "break" and never contacts you again, not to worry, that's what he wanted all along. Men sometimes are too big of a wimp to break up, so they act like asses so we'll do the job for them. If your situation is untenable and it sounds like it is, make a change. He'll approach you again as a loving boyfriend, or he won't. And if he doesn't, was that someone you really wanted to be with anyway?
pinupsweetheart pinupsweetheart 10 years
I agree with DearSugar. There could be something under all this anger that you are just the closest person he can vent to. And I am not saying that is allowed. You need to talk to him - see what else is going on in his life that you may not be aware of. I am sure he still loves you, but there seems to be a big deal of stress on his life. Remember you do not need to be treated this way.
PrissyLilBadAss PrissyLilBadAss 10 years
Set time aside to talk to him about this, maybe make dinner plans for later on in the week. And pre-plan what you're going to say. If you plan ahead to have this talk, it will help avoid an outburst of emotion that might suddenly occur after he's said something that will make you snap! Good luck hun!
andaman andaman 10 years
Yes popgoestheworld is right about the honeymoon period is over. I would say leave him even. If it's meant to be you two will work things out but as it stands you are very unhappy and is it worth it? How old are you? If you are young, honey there are plenty of fish in the sea and let this be a lesson of how things can change. Next time take it slow.
popgoestheworld popgoestheworld 10 years
This is an example of how after the honeymoon is over, reality sets in, and the reality is nothing like what you thought it would be when you were over the moon about each other. You need to stand up for yourself, of be prepared to spend the rest of your life like this.
summer-roberts summer-roberts 10 years
I would set up a time to talk to him calmly. Before that sit down, I would write my feelings about the relationship down on paper. One column for the things that make you stay and one for the things that make you want to leave. This is just for you, I suggest shredding it after you read through it and make your decision to stay or go. He should never find this. Puttting things in black and white always helps me to sort through my thoughts and feelings. You need to take care of you. I am not sure how many serious relationships you have had, but this is not something you should put up with.
Marci Marci 10 years
I agree with everything everyone has said. The key thing they say that I would emphasize is putting yourself first. Take care of you. I kind of think that two and half years is a little early in the game for things to be so dramatically different, so something is up. You don't ever need to put up with someone abusing you, and that's what he's doing. Good luck. I hope you find your path.
auddie auddie 10 years
I just went through a breakup that was pretty much the same situation. Instead of coming out and just telling me the issue in the relationship, he did exactly what your boyfriend is doing until it pushed me so far I just broke it all off. Focus on yourself, not him. You will not be able to change him, it's up to him to do it. A break might really help put things into perspective. If he really loves you, he will fight to make it work just as much as you do.
Trixie6 Trixie6 10 years
"You need to put yourself first" is exactly right. I have a friend who is going through a very similar situation and I tell her all the time that she needs to put herself first and love herself enough to realize that she's not being treated well. It's so hard, but you deserve to be happy and comfortable in your relationship. Good luck & God bless.
fab4 fab4 10 years
I agree with sugar's advice...but also you will be amazed at how independence will fix problems. Maybe one of you should try living somewhere else for a period. the time apart may rekindle the spark, and maybe he'll realize what a great gal he has!!
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