“I’m 21 & My Boyfriend Is 25 & He Wants To Settle Down But I’m Unsure”

Written by Terrance Dean on May 2, 2011 1:45 pm

You’ve got questions? He’s got answers! Need advice?

Send your questions to Terrance:

Dear Gay Best Friend,

I’m 21 and in my first serious relationship ever. I saved myself for my BF and we’ve been dating almost 2 years and intimate for most of that time. Sorta. And that’s why I’m contacting you.

Over the past 6 months, he’s been working harder and dealing with some of his personal relationships with family, leaving little time for us to spend together. He had moved in with his parents to get back on his feet. His roommate got fired, so he covered the rent he could barely afford and this left him unable to afford the down payment on a new lease after it expired. His parents are mentally and emotionally abusive and unfortunately, we’re both survivors a childhood abuse. The living arrangement with his parents ended in about 5 months and he moved in with another friend for a little while. He was still working weekends and spent a considerable chunk of time out of his day commuting. We’ve been talking seriously about engagement and in October we discussed living together as a trial period. In November, he moved in with my family. (We have more than enough space), and we set a date in next December to decide if we’ll split ways or continue. I really feel like I have my bases covered.

1.) He moved in after he was completely stable. For relationship reasons, not economics.

2.) We had a smooth move in and came up with an exit plan.

3.) We’re looking at long term compatibility instead of ‘just seeing what happens.’

4.) Open communication means we’re aware of each others’ expectations in this arrangement (rent, chores, etc).

5.) No bills mean less stress than it would normally be for to be living together in our own apartment. He only pays rent and I pay nothing for food, electricity, water, gas, nothing.

What I didn’t expect is what has recently popped up. My BF and I live together now, but we aren’t shacking up. He has his room and I have my room on another floor. We aren’t playing house, in fact, it’s more like he has to integrate himself into my family. We aren’t acting married and we’re not planning a family, thank God. No ‘oopsy babies’ here. He’s been busy with hours at work and comes home tired a lot. So we aren’t even really having sex, or sleeping together, and it’s bothering me (he just passes out on my shoulder on the couch after dinner, boooo). He’s out the door by 6am (before I’m up) and doesn’t get home till 6:35pm. I’m talking sex once every 3 or so weeks. I thought that not being 3 cities away would change that sketchy frequency, but it hasn’t. When we do it’s great, the chemistry hasn’t changed. He simply doesn’t have time or motivation to cheat on me so I’m not worried about that. We’ve never had a fight, and that also bothers me. And finally, some repressed issues have come up lately for both of us and I’m having cold feet when it comes to taking the time to work through them. Right now I’m afraid of being trapped, and now that half the glitter has washed off my glitter t-shirt it’s not as attractive to me. <—–(metaphor)

When I’ve talked to my mom about this (she’s an ordained minister and is monitoring our courtship), she’s suggested that my relationship is normal, that things don’t always go as expected and that I’m still facing the fears and anxieties from my abusive experience. She also said it’s normal to be scared and that I should work to maintain my relationship. What do you think? I love the man, we have a lot in common (maybe too much). We’ve been able to go on more dates and spend the weekends he’s not working together but I still feel needy. One last thing, he’s my first and I’m 21 but at 25 he wants me to be his last and settle down. He’s expressed to both me and my family that he wants to get engaged and married when we can afford a nice wedding and children. I want this relationship and I want to get married and have kids. But now that I’m facing the reality of it happening within the next year or so, I’m unsure of myself. I could really use a third party opinion on this one. Please, help? – Conflicted With Cold Feet

“I Went On Facebook And Found The Girl He’s Cheating, But I’m Pregnant”

Dear Ms. Conflicted With Cold Feet,

See, this is what I don’t understand. You got a good man who is going above and beyond, working hard, faithful, and doing right by you, and because of unresolved issues in your life you’re going to mess it all up. SMDH!

But, don’t worry, keep acting a fool if you want and push that man away, some other woman will gladly come along and take him off your hands. She will be more than happy to have him in her life, and she will run a bath for him when he comes home, wash his back and chest, rub his feet and head, cook him a good hot meal, and put it on him something severely in the bed. Keep on complaining, hear!

Your mother is absolutely right when she told you that it’s normal to be scared and that you have to work to maintain your relationship. Having a relationship takes a lot of work. They are not easy and it takes two people to make them work in a synchronized manner. Meaning – if you want to have peace, joy, happiness, and success in your relationship then you can’t rely on the other person to make those things happen for you. You have to bring those things to the table as well. No one can make you happy, fulfilled, or feel loved. You have to be happy, fulfilled, and love yourself.

I commend your boyfriend on working two jobs especially during this recession. Hell, he doesn’t have the time to cheat, and if he did he would be too tired to even make it in the door. The man is a stand up guy. He’s devoted to you and wants to marry you and create a family. Please let me know if I am missing something here? I know the common sense gene is not common anymore, and many people lack having it. (Clears throat and points at you!)

Girl, I tell you, you folks with your unresolved issues that prevent you from moving forward. I was just talking with a friend yesterday about how many people can be abused, taken advantage of, and hurt by people in their life from things that happened in THE PAST! They grow older and carry those issues around with them and hope someone will come along and love it all away, or carry the burden of their problems for them. Chile, miss me. I wish I might get in a relationship with someone with unresolved issues. I am not a therapist, psychiatrist, or psychotherapist. You better get you some counseling and let that stuff go. But, also, here is the thing. People will act as if they have moved on and put those issues behind them, but if you notice, like you, they are always talking about how so-and-so did them wrong, or how their daddy wasn’t in their life, and I was hurt, abused, or taken advantage. They love living in their pity parties of being the victim. Eventually, that rhetoric gets tired fast. Real tired. Folks don’t want to hear that –ish all the time. They can’t stand to see you coming, or avoid your calls because the conversation always turns to you and your problems. Honey, you call me with that mess all the time, I will cut you off mid-sentence. CLICK! (You can talk to the dial tone.) LMBAO!

I like the fact that you two had a plan when he moved in, i.e., what he was going to do moving forward, where the relationship was going, and if it will work. There was some clear communication of what your expectations were, and what to do afterward, but did you discuss or have a plan as far as what to do in the meantime while living together, like getting some counseling for your unresolved issues? I’ll wait.

Look, Ms. Conflicted With Cold Feet, life has its ups and downs. There are going to be challenges and rough spots in your relationships, but you’ve got to work through them. If you can’t handle them now, then surely when you two get married, and especially once you add kids to the mix, it is going to be even more difficult. So, perhaps, you are not cut out for this. Maybe this is not something you need to worry about, and instead, you need some therapy, and I’m talking about someone who is a professional, someone with a license and who has a degree in working with folks with mental and emotional issues. And, I’m not talking about going to your good girlfriend, Keisha. She is not going to be able to give you the right advice you need. Chile, she is just as messed up as you are. The blind monkey leading another blind monkey. Also, why aren’t you two going to church? You both need some Jesus in your life. A firm spiritual foundation to help get you grounded. And, if your mom is an ordained minister, and is monitoring your courtship, SMDH, I wish I would let my daughter shack up in my house with her boyfriend, but I digress, shouldn’t your mother be helping you as a woman and your development from a young lady to a responsible woman? Shouldn’t she be helping you with spiritual counseling? Chile, she must have been ordained at Bishop Eddie Long’s church. I hear he is just laying hands on folks and ordaining them. LOL! Let me stop. And, your hot ass complaining about getting sex ever 3 or so weeks. Your ill na-na is just steaming, ain’t it? But, you talk about y’all are not playing house, or shacking up, acting married, and no babies. But, uhm, sweetie, I hate to break this to you, but you are shacking up. You are playing house, and acting married. You just don’t have the kids yet. And, you can call it whatever you want – a trial period, a getting to know one another time, or whatever, but if it quacks like a duck, then guess what? It’s a duck! BOOM! BAM! POW! – Straight From Your Gay Best Friend

You can follow Terrance Dean on Twitter, HERE!

Make sure to get your copy of my new book, STRAIGHT FROM YOUR GAY BEST FRIEND – The Straight Up Truth About Relationships, Work, and Having A Fabulous Life (Agate/Bolden – October 2010; $15). It is available in bookstores everywhere, and on Amazon, HERE!

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