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Is serial grumpiness a warning sign or just a stress reliever?

Tagged as: Age differences, Breaking up, Faded love, Troubled relationships<< Previous question   Next question >>
Question - (15 May 2018) 3 Answers - (Newest, 17 May 2018)
A female United Kingdom age 26-29, anonymous writes:

This is probably going to be a long one.

Past: Was with my teenage sweetheart. Dated at 15, engaged at 20, moved abroad for originally 2 years...he failed at his exams and so i said i'd stay 1 more year since he had to study alot and he was ok with that...we broke up a year later as he hadn't got anywhere. Kept in touch, was with me when i went through a series of horrible boyfriends, he even took a flight to cheer me up with one of them. I moved back to the UK. Got back together with him but he was still living with his parents...same friends, no hobbies, same job (working for mum), no exams passed, uni drop out twice....it just always was a problem, like i outgrew him or rather was miles ahead of him. But other than that he was my soul mate but i couldn't get past the fact he failed everything he did.

I got my new job...and i had a huge crush on my boss. Kind of looked like my boyfriend but he was at least knowing what he wanted in life and he was adventurous and had done the things i really want to do...I am also doing a masters and my boyfriend at the time just didn't understand and he was getting upset i couldn't see him all the time. After contemplating for ages he got me at my most stressed state in a library of all places and i just broke up with him. It was devastating...10 years on and off. But i got tired of waiting. I was engaged 4 years and nothing happened...i never lived with him..he failed at everything...his life never changed at all.

A month later the boss - who was now just a colleague as i got a new job at his level, asked me out and now is my boyfriend for the last 6 months. I think everything is fine...well maybe not because i am here...his mum died 3 months in and he was a carer for her running up to this. a month later he completely ruptured his ACL knee ligament and so is in a lot of pain at the moment. He gets really grumpy...to the point he can be mean (never physical) but i put it to all the stress he is under and has been through. I am 27 and he is 39. He has told me he wants kids, marriage with me and has asked me to move in with him. When i told him i wanted to stay with my girlfirends until my contract ends next year (by then it would just be over a year i have dated him) he went a bit grumpy on me again. He does put me down quite a bit but he says thats just the way he vents and me just to ignore it...he does say sorry later.

I don't even know what my question is. Maybe it is is it normal to need to put up with grumpyness and snappyness when your boyfriend is stressed and pained? i am trying to be really supportive but when someone takes their pain out on you it is difficult. I knew my ex when i was 11 and i am scared i will never have that bond with anyone else. i miss that connection, not necessarily my ex but i guess i am holding on to this relationship despite the warning signs because i just want to be loved and be loved back whilst able to have a life together...i haven't had the most normal of relationships so i don't know if grumpiness is a man thing or not...my ex was like having a gay best friend/girlfriend/boyfriend all in one...my boyfriend now is a essex man who...well isn't my ex.

should i run?

View related questions: best friend, broke up, crush, crush on my boss, engaged, got back together, his ex, my boss, my ex, soulmate

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A male reader, WiseOwlE United States + , writes (17 May 2018):

Comparing everyone following your exes is a common problem with too many people. Gender doesn't matter. Both men and women do it!

You have to judge and deal with people as individuals; and based on their own merit. Allow some variety into your love-life and educate yourself on how to deal with various personality-types. If one type doesn't workout, try another. That's why we date! It's inline with natural-selection, and a weeding-process!

Be real. Trying to match feelings you had when you were a kid is impossible. Don't search for replacements. Don't back-peddle; that's how you repeat mistakes!

You were attracted to the similarities you found in your 2nd -guy, trying to recapture your teenage-romance. Your first is always a simpler relationship. You didn't know any better, because you were kids. Thus you outgrew him. Regressing to childhood doesn't make life easier or better; it just comes across as immature. It's giving-up in defeat.

Some people find predictable and ordinary comfortable. Less challenging. Like that slacker you first fell for. Your old ex was predictable and ordinary. Lovable perhaps; but he had to keep-up!

You are confusing the sentiments of when you were just a kid in a teenage relationship with being in an adult-relationship. Adult-relationships are much more complicated and confusing. If you don't handle them like an adult, they will surely fall apart.

The two relationships should not, and will never, be alike. You're a full-grown woman; as opposed to being a schoolgirl. Your schoolgirl-romance was more fantasy-based than reality.

That second very lengthy (but odd)on/off relationship you mentioned sounds like an act of desperation. Most confusing in-deed! Engaged four years?!! Some marriages don't last that long!

The chronology of your boyfriends is very convoluted and confusing.

Case in point; you grew-up, came-back, and your first was the same as you left him. As if time stood still; only he was an older-version of the hot mess you used to know.

You now have experience, you're more mature, and you're well-educated. Therefore; your tastes and standards should reflect your level of maturity and sophistication. You must upgrade. Stash the past in your archive-folder.

I'm not saying you should choose your partners based on how much they earn or superficial things. I mean you have to be well-matched and on even-footing; so you relate on different levels, and share more in-common. It's okay to earn more than your man; but it's not okay to have to support him, because he can't support himself. It's best when you support each other. You're not supposed to his punching-bag when he's out of sorts.

We all miss the good-ole days; but don't let the loser from the past represent all that you knew and appreciated from your younger years. Please keep X-#1 a fond, but distant, memory! You can do bad all by yourself!

Now about boss-guy boyfriend, Mr. Grumps! Allow for a reasonable amount of grumpiness; because there are times of the month, when ladies are not quite themselves. You may be a little grumpy or snippy; but otherwise, you're a sweet and lovable creature. A delight to be with. Husbands and boyfriends must be understanding and patient during these few days. So it's give and take.

Nagging pain turns men into beasts. When women can withstand the pain of childbirth! During which times in the throws of labor-pains, you may call your boyfriend or husband everything but a child of God!

Tolerate only a measured-amount of grumpiness. It should subside with the pain. Insist on an apology each and every-time you are on the receiving-end of his grouchiness.

You're not the source of his pain; so you don't deserve to be bullied or snapped-at!!! Set boundaries.

Personally, I have had a bout with sciatica that was so severe; I could have wrestled a grizzly bear to the ground, if he got in my way! Everything got on my nerves! I prefer to be alone when I'm like that. I'm sweet to my nursemaids (i.e. friends, or boyfriend); but they all know when it's time to leave me be! Too much fussing over me annoys me! That is, if I'm in pain! Sometimes you can be too helpful!

When my boyfriend is sick with the flu, or a cold; he's a pisser of a grouch! I've threatened to smother him in his sleep with his pillow!!! He's always very apologetic afterwards! Maybe he thinks I would...Maybe!

Grumpiness is a everybody-thing, but abuse is abuse! If he consistently hurts your feelings and goes for the jugular; move-out and stay with your girlfriends until he heals, and stop-in to take care of him until he's back on his feet.

Let no man make you his whipping-post. There is no excuse for abuse! Even a series of tiny prickly comments will wear on you, and eventually eat-away at your nerves like drops of acid.

Never tolerate anyone's toxicity; just be compassionate when it is appropriate, and put your foot down when you should!

Set your threshold or tolerance-level. Enough is enough. Modify his behavior. Let him know when he's pushing the envelope with "grumpiness!"

Based on your description; I'd also ditch present boss-boyfriend, Mr. Grumps. He's no longer your boss!

In the interim, please don't get all sappy and start missing your loser "first-love." That's usually when you'll go on Facebook, dig-up his corpse, and open a fresh can of worms.

While staying with your girlfriends, make a smart decision.

You said he wants kids and marriage; but he may not show enough maturity or patience to do all that. At least not with you. You've admitted you've got some reservations about him. Why else would you rather stay with your girlfriends and start reminiscing about your first-love? Did I say stay away from that guy?

Start from a clean slate.

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A male reader, devont United Kingdom +, writes (16 May 2018):

devont agony auntI think you want to end it, or else you wouldn't be here. He clearly isn't right for you and he shouldn't take his pain or stress or anything out on you.

You've got a lot going for you - well educated, good job, probably lots more, kick this one to the curb and find someone that treats you better.

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A male reader, N91 United Kingdom + , writes (16 May 2018):

N91 agony auntDon’t EVER excuse someone’s shitty behaviour.

He is a dick with you because he is a dick. I bet there’s tons of people out there who are in and out of hospital regularly and are undergoing treatments that don’t treat their other half and loved ones poorly.

I don’t think either of these men are right for you. You miss the familiarity with your ex and how comfortable you felt, but your current BF just sounds like a sulky teenager, he doesn’t sound like he’s almost 40 that’s for sure.

You have plenty of time to find the right person. I’d keep searching if I were you.

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