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need advice on how to proceed with my current relationship

I am a 34 year old white male, I am in love with a wonderful 24 year old black female. I was married previously for 5 years until spouse decided recreational drugs, and party life were more important than our commitment to each other. After my divorce I was fortunate to find an excellent counselor who helped me work through my issues.fortunately we did not have any children, so a clean break was a lot easier than some divorces turn out to be. My girlfriend is in her last year of nursing school, has never been married, and also has no children.
This wonderful lady carries some very deep wounds from her past with regards to men as well as relationships. Her mother married and divorced twice and she has never met her real father. I am not exactly sure how many times she has had her heart broken ? but I would be willing to bet its been more than once. I have attempted to get her to open up and talk to me about her past, not to pyre, but to make sure that I can always avoid doing anything that might remind her of past experiences that were hurtful. She refuses to discuss her past with me in detail, random bits and pieces thus far are all I have been allowed to know. From the little that she has shared with me I gather that she has had plenty of first hand experience with men who have attempted to control her every move, know her whereabouts at all times.
We have dated for over eight months, we are wonderful together, but during the last month it seems that that she has gone into shut down mode to some extent. I have no doubt in my mind that I have met the women I hope to spend the rest of my life with. However, I am in no rush to get to the alter, but there are some concerns that I am starting to have that cause me to sometimes wonder if I should ignore and let time hopefully take care of everything? Or is it possible that the woman I love has issues that are so deep seated that all the patience, love,assurance and waiting in the world will not help?
I strive to do my best to be an open book for her. I am honest about anything she wishes to know about my past, and I also always make sure she knows what I am doing with my time when we are not together. However, for her, she can be babysitting her brother’s children on a Friday night and all the information I receive is that she has plans. It’s pretty obvious to me that her maintaining her privacy is of the upmost importance to her. I think she also wants to see if I will attempt to control her like some of her previous boyfriends? Thus far I have yet to object to the way she handles evenings away from me but I would also like to know is there not a point where she should realize I have no intention of attempting to control her in any way and her relax a little ?
When I tell her I love her its brings mixed results, she has shared with me that it is very important to her that I do indeed love her but when I verbalize such to her it makes her feel uncomfortable. Lol, I am always wondering if ? Or when ? I should or should not share my affection for her in a verbal manner?
After eight months of serious dating my lady has told me on numerous occasions that I am the only man in her life, the only man she desires or wants in her life, that I treat her better, with more respect, and that I understand her needs far better than any man she has ever known or dated. However, she also refuses to term what we have together as being in “a relationship” or that we are a “couple”
Up until the last month she has told me, via text, that she loved me several times. However, on two occasions, when I asked her in person or on the phone to verbalize what she texted me, both times she has refused? What’s up with her being this way ?
I am the patient type in many ways,some times,too much so for my own good. My point is that thus far I have felt that I just continue to love and support her that at some point everything will fall into place. However,I do sometimes wonder if the fact that she does not wish to acknowledge what we have is real,are her fears and past hurts too serious that merely allowing time and love to be the only remedy ? Any and all advice will be greatly appreciated. Thanks for listening.
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replied October 18th, 2009
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As a woman with a battered past... just let her come to you. When she feels that she can trust you enough with all of her wounds.. she will tell you!
If you love this woman and she loves you then don't push her and don't give up.
Her fears will subside once she can see for herself you are not her past. Its typical with women who have been hurt before. It may take some time, but I think if you stay with her and continue to show support.. she will open up to you. 8 months is a good amount of time, just don't let the relationship get sour. After a certain amount of time... things get boring. Make sure you show her enough attention and romance to make her feel wanted.
A woman needs to feel loved and wanted in order to give trust.
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Users who thank angel507ny for this post: jgab 

replied October 19th, 2009
you make some excellent points and thank you so much for responding.sometimes i sense that we could someday be the happiest,closest,most perfect couple on the planet in her mind as long as we avoid giving official names or having a ceremony.
i am glad you mentioned that i should keep on showing her attention and romance because it almost impossible for me to go 24 hours without trying to find something i can do for her. doing for her makes me feel very good inside and i have also thought that sooner or later if i do enough it will become apparent to her how much i truely care.
although i have been tempted to back away a little and let her come to me as you suggested. unless i am wrong,i beleive the best way to handle such is to just keep on loving her,giving her attention,but to refrain from questions about her past until she,as you say,comes to me.
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replied October 19th, 2009
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YES! that in my opinion is the best solution.
Continue to show her attention and love and support but just wait til she lets it out. One day she will, she just needs to build up the trust level and make sure your not one of the guys from her past.
Im glad I helped!
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