Whenever I asked my boyfriend what he was thinking and he responded “Nothing,” I didn’t believe him.
In retrospect, it was probably true.
To me, dinner and a movie meant “I wonder if we are going to spend the rest of our lives together. He has such blue eyes. I bet we’d make cute babies — just kidding.”
I was always thinking things like: “Do I look fat in this dress? Does he really like me? Does he ever think about marriage? When will he say he loves me?”
To my boyfriend, it was all the same. Dinner and a movie just meant dinner and a movie. This misunderstanding caused the relationship to slow down to a crawl in my eyes.
A solution was necessary to get the relationship moving along more quickly. Spoiler alert: I never did find the solution. Even a tortoise on fire is still just a tortoise, and my boyfriend — he was a tortoise.
I wanted him to be a hare.
If you find yourself in a relationship that is moving slower than a tortoise through molasses, remind yourself that at least you are in a relationship. If it’s still moving in a straight line, that’s a bonus.
Some men drive their relationships like they are Ferraris. Some drive them like they are golf carts. Their maximum speed may be painfully slow, but they will get where they are going eventually. My boyfriend’s relationship speed was in the golf cart class, to begin with. Then he lost control of the wheel.
Our relationship started slowly and eventually veered off the paved road and off the side of a cliff. That part was faster — much faster. Once we started hurtling down that precipice, we got to the bottom in no time flat.
There’s one thing I wish I had told him during our relationship:
If I’m not happy — and I most certainly am not happy — then you’re not going to be happy either.
How did it all fall apart?
I felt like I was constantly on-call.
If your boyfriend expects you to answer the phone every time he calls, you can start to feel obligated every time the phone rings. Don’t answer the phone if you are busy unless you really want to answer it.
If you feel like he is writing a book chronicling your constant whereabouts, then it’s probably too much. If it’s an emergency, he can call 911. Otherwise, let him leave a message that you can answer at your leisure.
I knew so much about his ex-girlfriends that I could write a screenplay about them.
It was nice that he wanted to share his dating history with me, but too much oversharing became poison. Years later, I could still create a detailed spreadsheet of all his former flames — from memory.
If this happens to you, you can kindly ask him to cease and desist. If he does not, you have two choices. Learn to live with it or move on to the next grand adventure.
He expected me to know why he was in a bad mood.
While it was flattering to know that he thought I could read minds, I should have let him know that I was not the Amazing Kreskin.
When he was in a bad mood, I had the following options: Avoid his company until he was feeling better, kill him (not literally, of course) with kindness, or insist on knowing what’s wrong and then gently walk him through his crisis.
I did none of these three things.
He was jealous, even though I was innocent of any wrong-doing.
Constant jealousy can cause cracks in even the best relationship that cannot be repaired with Elmer’s glue.
He called me by another girl’s name.
Oh, the horror! Oh, the ensuing drama!
If this has ever happened to you, then you probably wondered whether it meant he was still in love with her. Ask yourself these questions: Do you have any ex-boyfriends? Have you ever thought about any of them, even once, while with your current beau?
If you’re anything like me, the answer is yes.
Realize that every couple will experience relationship problems to varying degrees.
Solutions range from taking control of your own actions to using love and kindness to overcome obstacles. No matter what the problem, you should attempt a calm and rational solution. It’s an absolute guarantee that unkind words, shouting, and fighting will lead to disaster.
Isn’t your relationship worth more than that?
Mine wasn’t, but your results may vary.