I think my boyfriend is passively manipulating me. He is bad with his "time management", and we have constant fights about. I am extremely flexible. I know he is very busy at work, and I have lots of things I can do. However, when he says he is free to do something with me, something always comes up and he has to go and do it. He says he is "working so hard for us" but I don't buy that. I simply ask that he keep his committments for me. He would for his clients, but not for me? Besides, he does not support me, and we are not married. He takes me out occassionally and does pay for it (I do not require fancy restaurants or such, but I do appreicate him being a gentleman). However, I feel manipulated if he is now using that against me to not keep his commitments. It is like he wants me at his house waiting for him to walk through that door (late at night)and for me to jump on him! what to do???
It sounds like he is not making you as much of a priority in his life as you would like him to. I think you realize that you can't expect him to be at your beck-and-call, but it's not unreasonable to expect him to keep his promises to you. Canceling once in a while is normal, but too often is not.
You have to do some thinking and decide if this is something you can live with. If you were to get married in the future and have kids, would his behavior change? Probably not. If he isn't willing to make time for you now, why would you expect him to do so for you when you are married or for your children. Work may always be on the top of his priority list.
Also, are you sure that he is canceling because of work? Or might there be something else going on?
You have to decide for yourself if this is a deal-breaker. Yes, you love him, but is that enough? There are plenty of guys out there who would make you their #1 priority. The question remains: is he one of them? Or will you always come after himself and his work?
Yes, I told him keeping your promises is just basic courtesy. He thinks just because in his free time he prioritizes me, that he can come up with his free time anytime he wants and I am expected to oblige. It is obvious to me that he likes people waiting for him; if he is always "busy" and rushing to "appointments" it somehow makes him feel important. I find that disrespectful and an indirect way to draw attention. I just feel bad that so many guys I date I dismiss almost immediately. This is because I know you can't change anyone. Is this something someone can honestly change? I don't want to wait around and find out he can't, then get hurt.
Jenna, My advice to you would be to not allow yourself to be so available to him. Start making him wait for you once in awhile. If he wants to make plans tell him something else came up and you will have to plan another night. Most people don't change their ways, but this is the only way you are going to find out if he really wants to be with you. I'm a strong believer that if a man wants to be with a woman, he will find the time. If he doesn't come around and get his act together once you start making yourself less available, then you will know he is not the one for you. I know this won't be easy because you probably love spending time with him, but you do sound like a smart woman and I think you already know that this is not right. Good-luck! Let us know how it works out for you.
Jenna I don't think he's all that nefarious. Anytime one partner in a relationship has more time constraints than the other someone is bound to feel that they are waiting around like an on-call girlfirend or boyfriend. His field of work may not give him the ability to be flexible for you. He may feel that what you feel is a very reasonable request could be a jeapardy in his career. Taking care of his clients is taking care of you. You may not need or even want the money he spends on you but it is important to him as a man to be that guy who takes you out for nice dinners or buys you nice gifts. It is his way of expressing his love. The hard work he does enables him to be the man he wants to be for you.
When You got togather with your boyfriend you took a whole package, including his work. It's not reasonable to expect him to change because it no longer suits you. If you need a man who is available to you reliably then end your relationship and go find him.
jenna heres a comment from a males perspective, If this man is truely in love with you he will turn the world up side down for you, he will not be able to find enough time to spend with you & if he has enough self respect he would not treat you badly & with arogance. In the 18 yrs that my wife & i have been togeather we have had 5 houses, persued carreers of different types payed our debts & had our own individual interests, but we have never spent on day where we haven't each put the other one first. This has been the secret of our harmonious existance, if each person takes care of the others needs then there is no selfishness & comparisons instead love & kindness flourishes. I believe if we all apply this to our lives not only with our partners but with all the world would be a better place.
Jena honey- I guess I am looking at this from a different angle..I know you probably think he isn't attentive enough..But I see it as he is working hard at giving you a life that he wants to give to you..He does not see this as being selfish or self important..Frankly I don't either..I see a man who is working hard to give you all the material things he can..Use the time constraints you have for all the physical things..
My husband is retired military so I took what time I got with him and loved him for every moment I could..It was his job..He was self absorbed at times as his job was extremely stressful as he could get a call at any moment to report and be gone without being able to say where..
You have to decide--Can you live and marry a man who gives you all he can? Will it be enough? Will those moments each day even when he gets in late-will it be enough?If not then you need to move on to someone who can give more of what you need..You wouldn't want to get married, have a child then decide..No sense in making a child hurt for your mistake..At this point it would be your mistake if you continue and it is something deep down you can not live with.
Couples must except each other wholy-our mate is not there for us to change..The subtle changes come in time to an extent as we grow closer together..Changes I speak of is more respect, deeper love..
my boyfriend travels and i knew this when we first met two years ago. his job requires a lot of him. so i can relate to some things that your saying.
if you suspect that he is cheating and standing you up. i would tell you to dump him, but if he is a really busy man that is a different story.
it's something for you to think about.......Are you able to deal with this.
when he comes back home were all over each other. it keeps the new-ness in the relationship.
i have been so understanding with him, his job pays him well, and if his job is stressing him out...i dont want to also.
I agree with the posters here but you have to remember that everyone is different and every relationship is different.
I can relate to having a manipulative boyfriend who is now my EX boyfriend, he would just do everything to make things difficult, he disrespected a lot of my views and wishes eg: not coming to my home when he's been drinking, still asking for money when he knows I don't have it etc and he was also abusive, the EX boyfriend before him was also a manipulator with lying, exaggerating, complaining about EVERYTHING, whinging in general and being vindictive, he in the end left me for a equally similar woman who he's still with now and possible married to..two peas in a pod I say.
Have you spoken to your boyfriend about his behaviour?? because I think communication is the key here and I feel that you need to either strengthen or set the boundaries so you do gain some kind of respect of him, if that doesn't work..it's simple end the relationship, nobody wants to be with some who disrespects and manipulates them and you deserve better than to be with some self absorbed creep to put it plainly!