Have we got a future together

  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Jan 16, 2011 10:01 AM GMT
    I need some advice about a 'relationship' I am in. I have been going out with a lovely guy for about 18 months. I am about 12 years older (me 51 he 39) although visually the age difference is not that noticeable. We see each other almost every day, we eat together almost every evening, we spend holidays togther (seperate rooms). We do not live together. We are intimate in that we do sometimes kiss & cuddle passionately but he never seems to want / able to take it any further. There seems to be a barrier that he puts up when things get intimate and even the kissing is somewhat sporadic and he backs off completely. Recently almost all physical contact has disappeared. I would like to take it further and I am frustrated because I can't work out what he really wants. I summoned up the courage a couple of month or so ago to ask him why he didn't want it to; but from my perspective there were also some other factors like age difference and the fact that I used to be married, have kids etc which I felt might be sort of complicating things for him. It took me some time to pluck up the courage to ask him; as I think I was really scared what I might hear...i.e. 'its just a very good friendship' when in reality I want to have a much deeper relationship with him. I guess I was just plain scared of what I might have heard about issues with me! I know that sounds a bit selfish but thats how I felt!)

    I am pretty sure that he would like to have a partner as he told me some time ago. I want the same.

    After trying to find the right moment to ask him what was going on between us, a couple of months ago I plucked up the courage to explain how I felt about him (in a very detailed and deep way) and that I wanted a much closer relationship with him. He told me he found the conversation very 'complicated' and 'difficult' but he admitted that we needed to have such a conversation because he agreed that there was much more going on between us than just a friendship. He didn't exactly explain how he felt about me but we ended up in a passionate embrace. A night or two later I decided to follow up on the converstion in particular why he wouldn't let it / want it to develop into a deeper relationship. He was drunk and it was then that he told me he had been abused as a child and any attempt at intimacy in a relationship was very difficult for him. He has told me he gets flashbacks whenever he ties to be intimate. He also told me that he had had a purely platonic relationship with a previous 'partner'. I know that he has had numerous casual sexual relationships in the past (casual gay sex - quickies)) and he obviously enjoys the gratification but when it comes to intimacy /sex in a LTR he finds the act of touching / being close incredibly difficult and almost physically sickening so the idea of even cuddling up in bed is horrendous to him. When he told me about his childhood experience he got very emotional. He had some pyscho sexual counselling a few years ago but he didn't think that any of the counselling had helped in any way. The fact that he has shared this with me and never to anyone else suggests that he has enormous trust in me and that he values our 'relationship'. he has also asked me if I can try and help him find someone who can help him.

    What seems to be clear is that after the conversation we did seem to be quite a lot closer, although recently he has been more resistant to any form of intimacy again. And rcently he has even gone as far as saying he is not my boyfriend he is not my lover he is not my partner etc almost a complete denial.. I have a strong suspicion he said this because he knows he can't respond to me in the way he thinks he ought to or in the way that he knows I want.

    I am pretty sure from what he told me about his intimacy issues he would like our relationship to develop further but he has this terrible 'block'. I am still trying to work out what I should be doing to help our relationship flourish, which I think maybe it would, if he did not have this baggage from the past. I love him and I am pretty sure he loves me in a more limited way. I think that by sharing this with me he wants to break through this but it does sometime seem its in the the 'too hard to handle' category. It's obviously an incredibly difficult and debilitating thing for him to deal and a subject which he has kept hidden away in the recesses of his mind for years I'm really not sure what I should be doing. Any help guidance appreciated!
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    Jan 16, 2011 10:16 AM GMT
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  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Jan 16, 2011 2:34 PM GMT
    In my own life, I have dysfunctional childhood conditioning of a vastly milder sort that no amount of therapy or self-help techniques has been able to change, and all I can do is come to terms with who I am, as I am. It sounds to me like your friend's issues are an even harder nut to crack, so if your future together depends on there being physical intimacy, my hunch is that there is no future for that relationship.
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    Jan 16, 2011 2:47 PM GMT
    I've been in somewhat similar situations, and frankly I think you're wasting your time. He may otherwise be a nice guy, but emotionally he's damaged goods, and I doubt you have the skills to fix him.
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    Jan 16, 2011 2:58 PM GMT
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    LOL!! RUDE!!!

    actually, i didnt read it either. no pic, first post, and waaay too long.
  • Ironman4U

    Posts: 738

    Jan 16, 2011 3:21 PM GMT
    As much as you want to help him, you can't. He has to help himself. You can be there as a supportive friend, but you can't change him. He has to want to badly enough. As far as being a bf, I think you need to move on. You deserve a complete relationship and you won't get it with this guy.
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    Jan 16, 2011 3:27 PM GMT
    That was an exhausting read...

    the adage 'you can lead the horse to water but you can't make it drink' comes to mind. The ball is really in his court, you've already expressed what you want and your confusion... in anything a person has to be independent in their decisions. If he is ready to step out of what was a very traumatic experience and experience physical contact/intimacy again in a new way then he will... There isn't much more that you can do.

    Is he actually making an effort to step outside of himself? If not why would you press for a more intimate relationship? he's obviously not in the right 'place' to be in one right now. I would like to also echo a sentiment of a previous post, being that helping him might be something a bit outside of your reach. It's a complex situation that I think requires a willingness and proper council from someone who is qualified.

    A thought that also occurred to me is that this might be a cop out. This could all just be an excuse in order to let you down more easily? Is that a possibility? Maybe he's not interested in you sexually? So either way yo cut it he's not ready right now for something more intimate, keep it as friends and let things evolve naturally... don't project what you want on him. That's my advice!
  • coolarmydude

    Posts: 9190

    Jan 16, 2011 3:27 PM GMT
    Simply put, you cannot change those who do not wish to change or cannot change. You have to make the determination on how much you're willing to emotionally tolerate in this relationship. You also need to communicate that you can only handle so much if he is too stubborn or ashamed to continue seeking help. Try not to sound like it's an ultimatum, but let him know that a relationship takes two to work at it.

    An old proverb comes to mind: You can bring a horse to the river, but you cannot make him drink.
  • coolarmydude

    Posts: 9190

    Jan 16, 2011 3:30 PM GMT
    COSTAKI said
    the adage 'you can lead the horse to water but you can't make it drink' comes to mind.



    DUDE!! You read my mind!!! LOL!!
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    Jan 16, 2011 3:43 PM GMT
    coolarmydude said
    COSTAKI said
    the adage 'you can lead the horse to water but you can't make it drink' comes to mind.



    DUDE!! You read my mind!!! LOL!!


    haha icon_biggrin.gif *bows*....
  • thait3n

    Posts: 7

    Jan 16, 2011 3:53 PM GMT
    You've definitely made the big step by voicing out how you feel and all. In my honest opinion, if hes worth it - stick around and help him break that wall down. It won't be easy. Especially how be denies you as a boyfriend etc, that raises a red flag. However, if he's really that special person to you - dive in and go for it.

    Best of luck.
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    Jan 16, 2011 3:54 PM GMT
    Bradley while I can understand your "love interest" position ( pardon me for quoting it as such) because honestly I don't see him as a boyfriend nor you in a relationship for that matter! he is in many ways manipulating and using your kind heart, in other words he is a emotional vampire! BEWARE!

    The guy is obviously dealing with a lot of deep rooted emotional issues that only HE can resolve and NOT you, and I bet he knows it too! my last boyfriend had much of the same issues like yours with the exception that he was a bit more aware and somewhat accepting of his sexual identity? nonetheless to me to a certain extend he was still pretty much in the closet and somewhat resisting to open up to his family about our sexual relationship.

    In my own personal experience dealing with this kind of situations, no matter the level of love or emotion connection you think to share or have with someone who suffers from deep rooted emotional scars? or even if he is still in the closet? people like that should be avoided at all cost because they are a huge waste of time and emotionally draining to one's self to say the least.

    I f you are out and totally comfortable with your sexuality? you are wasting your time with this dude!


    Leandro ♥
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Jan 16, 2011 4:16 PM GMT
    Long post...short answer...No. No, you don't.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Jan 16, 2011 5:43 PM GMT
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    Could anything be anymore camp?
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Jan 16, 2011 5:44 PM GMT
    To the OP: I think you had best be his friend for teh time being.. he seems simply unready to have a relationship, he would require some therapy for that to be possible
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    Jan 16, 2011 5:46 PM GMT
    He's just not into you.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Jan 16, 2011 6:11 PM GMT
    amar_m saidTo the OP: I think you had best be his friend for teh time being.. he seems simply unready to have a relationship, he would require some therapy for that to be possible



    This. In most cases a person with unattended childhood traumas need a professional rather then a regular person as their confident to help them live normal lives!


    Leandro ♥