Nasty arguments with BF

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    Jul 31, 2007 8:18 PM GMT
    Hi all. I am writing this because I am having some pretty nasty arguments with my boyfriend. What complicates matters even more is that these are Internet arguments. At the moment he is in Budapest, Hungary and I am here in West Yorkshire, Great Britain. I think being apart exacerbates things because it is harder to communicate via the Internet than it is face-to-face.

    Anyway, we've been talking via Facebook. He's in Budapest on some Fencing training course in Budapest where he spends 10 days learning about the sport of Fencing and learning techniques. It is a programme which allows him to get special coaching which he says he needs because he wants to do really well in competitions. Which is another problem we have, I think he can get far too competitive at times. He seems obsessed with these Fencing competitions, like he must always go to every single competition and get even with his rival fencers. I like to fence myself, but I don't take it so seriously. I wish he wasn't so bloody competitive; he should take a break from these competitions and find something else to do.

    Anyway, he said something on Facebook which annoyed me. Right now I have a lot to worry about, so I told him how stressed out I was feeling about things (I have to worry about job hunting and chores and much more besides), and he responded by lecturing me about 'staying positive'. He was (in his own words) ''acting like his Dad''. Then, he told me that I would have to come to a bar with him when I came down to his house next week. I told him to find somewhere else because I am really not fond of bars. Yet my bf loves gay bars, but I detest them. I am not as outgoing as him, and that often creates friction between us. I am not a total hermit and I will go out, I just don't like bars and I don't believe in going out too often.

    So I ranted at him a bit and said things I shouldn't have. I don't think he's read the messages yet but when he does he'll want to kill me for sure! I can just see a massive online argument coming up (he won't take what I said easily, because I said some strong things).

    I realise I made some mistakes in ranting at him, but I couldn't help it. There's only so much I can take. Unfortunately we both have some emotional issues. I tend to lose my nerve and cool a bit too easily (sometimes) and he tends to get too emotional and upset too easily as well (on occasions).

    I am going to write him a message apologising for my behavious. I feel terrible because this argument could slightly spoil his fencing holiday (I still wish he wouldn't take it so damn seriously), but I had to get these things off my chest. He should be more sympathetic and listen instead of just lecturing me about how I should feel.

    Sorry if this is too long.
    Anyway, has anyone had any nasty arguments with their boyfriends over little issues (I realise the issues we face are petty, but why does it cause a massive argument)?
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    Aug 01, 2007 12:20 PM GMT
    Just a thought, but you say that the both of you have some emotional issues? Sometimes people find a way of dealing with this by finding a sport or hobby to channel all there frustration into, like maybe your boyfriend. Fencing to him might be a way of taking his angst and frustration and turning it into something productive and giving his mind something to focus on.

    Like you i'm finding it hard to find work, i've been searching for a year with yet no results. I know that its heartbreaking and soul destroying, but the only thing that has stopped me from going completely over the edge is the triathlon training i started in January. The endless hours on the road and in the pool give me a break from worrying about the next job interview or money issues. The other thing has been meeting a few friends off here who get to listen to my persistant moaning about not having work. You'll actually find that the only time i don't talk is when i'm training, because everything drifts away and for those few hours i'm free.

    And to be honest your bf is right about staying positive, it is the hardest thing to do, but its centre of being able to stay strong and accomplish your goals.

    On the bar front, do you think the two of you are just too different? what is it that attracts the 2 of you together? IF so maybe you should focus on why you like him rather than why you's are fighting.

    And unfortunatly yes your going to have to bite the bullet and live with the consequences of your nasty email. apologise and back off until he reacts. But theres nothing more that you can do.
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    Aug 01, 2007 12:48 PM GMT
    We had some nasty arguments like that. Sometime, a little insignificant thing can start an argument. I think that hide a more profond problem, an accumulation of frustations and a communication problem.

    Being apart is hard to manage. You need him to help you with problems and he's never there... frustration!

    He's got to concentrate on his training and you are trying to get his attention... frustration!

    Try to calm yourselves, both of you. When he comes back, spend some times together and most of all... TALK for Godsake !!!! If you go to a bar to please him then choose the next place to go. But TALK!!!! It's important if you love each other :-))

    Good luck to both of you. All my hopes.
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    Aug 01, 2007 12:53 PM GMT
    You may want to try asking instead of telling.

    Count to 500 before you start saying whatever you're going to say to him. Chances are you just won't say it and you'll both be better of for it.

    Support his fencing instead of wishing he wouldn't take it so seriously.

    Try to remember what made you guys fall in love in the first place and that is

    1) you like each other
    2) you both have penises
    3) you both have (presumably some) facial hair
    4) you're both gay
    5) you both have penises
    6) you both have penises
    7) nothing you've touched on matches the power of the penis.

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    Aug 01, 2007 2:56 PM GMT
    Phew, sounds like a bit of a drama to me, and you should, as McGay says, step back a bit from these sort of long distance arguments and think before you write in a rage (counting to 500 is a great idea, mine would be to sleep on it, maybe write and not send, and then review the next day, strange how a bit of time lets you see things with less passion).

    You and him don't sound that suited though, if he likes going out socialising and you don't. Maybe you need to concentrate on getting a job you like and letting messy stuff like relationships take a back seat.

    Overall, just chill a little, and try to see life with less drama as a preferable one.

    Good Luck Lozx
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    Aug 01, 2007 6:01 PM GMT
    Besides the importance of the penis as mcgay says, it always helps to meet half way. Unfortunately, men tend to 'compete' in relationships so it takes some extra work to realize that it's not a competition. Asking him to support you a little isn't a bad thing - that's one of the main reasons for being in a relationship! As for going to a bar, go but tell him you want to do something else as well. That 'meet me half way' thing. Good luck!
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    Aug 01, 2007 6:15 PM GMT
    The computer is not the best way to communicate when dealing with issues such as yours. Also, knee jerk reactions are never good. But since you sent your rant, it was a good idea to send off a speedy apology email.

    I think you should support his passion for fencing. Jusy because you're not as passionate about it doesn't mean that you shouldn't support him.

    In general, it is also good to have an understanding between each other regarding limitationss and preferences when communicating with each other. As an example, my partner and I have agreed that we will not raise our voices toward one another when having a discussion. I know that you guys are communicating via email, but I'm just saying that even though you may disagree sometimes, you should still treat each other with respect.

    Sexy Mr. McGay, (sorry, couldn't help myself) suggested counting to 500 before responding. His idea of taking time to calm down before responding is great advice.

    People have suggested that you guys may not be suited for each other because you are very different. I don't agree. It's how you choose to handle the differences that makes/breaks a realtionship. Being social and liking to go to bars isn't a bad thing, it's just something you don't like to do. Being in a relationship sometimes requires you to be willing to compromise. It will make you a better person and your relationship will be stronger for it too. My partner and I are complete opposites with every sense of the word. But we respect each other's differences and support each other's interests.

    Anyway, it's all in how you communicate with each other. You sending off a speedy apology was very smart. Sounds like you both are dealing with a lot of things right now. Being apart cannot be easy either. Just know that he misses you as much as you miss him. Make the best of you being separated by being positive/supportive with each other. Good luck. - Jorel
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    Aug 01, 2007 6:25 PM GMT
    Yeah, my initial reaction reading your post was, wow, you sure do seem to want to change him a lot. I bristle when you complain about his fencing, because I've been with people who complained about my particular passions, whether it was biking too much or spending too much time in the wood shop or whatever. It's easy to act all self-righteous, like the other person "has a problem" -- phrases like "obsessed", "far too competitive", "bloody competitive", "he should take a break," etc. make it abundantly clear what you really think, but consider that a bunch of the people on this site exercise an amount that many other people would consider obsessive, and yet for them, it's just a lifestyle choice and something they enjoy doing.

    There's nothing wrong with your boyfriend's fencing. It's not like he's a crack addict. It's not destroying his life. From his perspective, it is fine. The problem is only from your perspective.

    You're screwed the moment you start viewing his hobbies as your opponents, competing with you for his time. If he's anything like me, he'll pick up on it quickly (it's hard to hide your disdain for his fencing, I bet) at which point he might feel like you are forcing him to choose between you and the other things he loves doing.

    How about finding some synergy? Have him teach you a little fencing. Find the time, and at least pretend to be interested.

    That attitude bleeds through in your comment about gay bars. Instead of arguing about going out to one, how about saying, "You like going to bars, so let's do that, and then the next day let's do this other thing I really love!" And when you do things with him that he likes that aren't necessarily your favorite, work to genuinely enjoy them. Nothing'll ruin your good intentions faster than having it look obviously like a chore. If he's a halfway-decent guy, he'll really appreciate you being a good sport.

    When he lectures you, try explaining that it's not an approach you find useful, and suggest other things he could do that you would find more supportive. Even if it's telling him, "You don't have to say anything, I just want to vent," if he's going to put the energy into trying to help you, you ought to give him direction on how to actually make it worthwhile.
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    Aug 01, 2007 6:53 PM GMT
    I agree with atxclimber and McGay :-).

    But I will add...please drop having arguments or saying anything negative via email. Even a relatively innocuous criticism can come off sounding like an awful insult via email. That's because you can't soften it with facial expressions and body language.

    You also can't immediately follow up with a statement made on the basis of what you observe HIS body language suggests.

    But, I have to tell you, I can't tell you how much people annoy me who try to control my running or working out by belittling it, or suggesting it's too competitive, or suggesting that it's too obsessive.

    First, it's none of most people's business, even a boyfriend's, unless you are suggesting he's cheating on you.

    Second, when people say these things to me, I often recognize that they are attempting to control me, or make me into different person. Ultimately, that's destructive.
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    Aug 01, 2007 9:34 PM GMT
    I wouldn't leave my partner for getting fat, but if he tried to control my passions and time, I'd be out the door quickly.

    One of the great things about a good relationship is being supported in your crazy interests. It's nice to come home to someone after you've spent three weeks in Spain watching flamenco performances 3 times a day. My partner recently spent a week with Brokeback Mountain fanatics in Canada -- you know, walking and doing God knows what where Jack and Ennis discovered sodomy.

    I think it's weird as shit he'd want to do that, but I wouldn't dream of discouraging him.
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    Aug 01, 2007 9:49 PM GMT
    The suggestion that it's important to try to avoid having these inflammatory discussions via email sounds good to me. I also think you two could probably benefit from some professional intervention. Is there any chance you could seek some couples counseling with someone experienced with gay relationships?
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    Aug 01, 2007 10:16 PM GMT
    Step back, don't email or chat until you have calmed down and figured out what you want to say next.

    If you are sorry for what you said, tell him so. I tend to shoot of my mouth before I think enough about what is coming out, and if you are like that your boyfriend probably knows it and probably knows you did not mean to write so harshly.

    My partner is competitive too and I am not. I am not big on games, he is. You don't have to like the same things, but one should tolerate the other's likes and dislikes and even his failings, as he should tolerate yours. If you stay together very long you will probably appreciate that you don't have to do everything together. We all need our space.

    Years ago a friend quoted me the line,
    "A work once spoken can never be retracted."
    I try to keep that in mind every day.

    The quote, which I know is not exact, is from "Princess de Cleves" by Madame de LaFayette, a 17th c. French novel.

    Warm wishes for success!
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    Aug 02, 2007 5:49 AM GMT
    Sorry to hear what happened between you two. It is very normal for people getting into arguments(doesn't matter how serious it is) even just with strangers. We just have this nature of assuming people will accept or understand what we think is right or what we think is good for them naturally. And we also have to let them know how we feel about it because they are not the boss of our body. May be your boyfriend thinks his advice is just the best advice you need at the moment and it is great that you let him know how you feel. Well, these are just some of my thoughts.
    On the other hand, I am really glad that you can get lots of advices from here and there is only one thing I wanted to mention. I think it is very nice of you that you want to write him an apologetic letter, may be you already did and I highly support that. In my opinion, if you really think you need to say sorry, you should just say it and be very honest and sincere about it. And if you really care about him, you should let all the unnecessary stuff go away from your mind. Because in the end, doesn't it matter who is right or who should win in the argument. It is the pure love between you two that matters in the relationship and keeps you guys together. Sometimes people just so afraid to apologize to the other person because of their pride after an argument. Anyway, don't be afraid to say lots of sorry and remember what matter the most. He will forgive you and understand you if he really loves you. Best wishes.