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You Asked: My Boyfriend is Insensitive

Dear Sugar--

I had a fight with my boyfriend yesterday and wanted to ask your advice.

We both had just come back from a weekend apart and were really happy to see each other. While we were unpacking, my mom called (I had just spent a few days with her) to make sure that I had arrived ok, and we chatted a bit. She told me about the counseling session she went to that morning. I could tell that she was very upset by it (she was talking about some horrible things that happened to her when she was younger that I had never heard about). So I offered some moral support and we talked for a while.

When I put down the phone after 20 minutes, I was very emotional and my boyfriend asked what had happened. I told him that my mom was having a hard time dealing with some stuff and started seeing a counselor to try to work through some of her issues. He replied in a way that seemed insensitive to me, saying that he did not understand why so many people overreact and turn to therapy. At this point he was already really annoyed because he said my mom's phone call ruined our evening, and because I felt attacked by this remark, the conversation got rather harsh.

I was really upset - if he had acted a little bit more understanding than we never would have gotten into this fight. And this happens a lot. Do you understand this kind of behavior? Or am I seeing it all wrong?

--Emotional Emma

To hear DEARSUGAR's answer

Dear Emotional Emma--

If your boyfriend acts annoyed with you when you get emotional, (which I'm sure makes you feel even worse than you did in the first place) then something needs to change because he clearly isn't respecting you or your feelings. While it's true that men tend to be less emotional than women, being insensitive is just not acceptable towards the people you love.

Relationships are all about supporting each other through the good times and bad times. Life is full of ups and downs, and it sounds like you can't count on this guy one bit for emotional support when the going gets tough. You need to see this as a huge red flag. Talk to him, let him know how upset you are by his insensitivity and if nothing changes, it's time to find someone who is there for you no matter what. Good luck to you Emma.


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