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My boyfriend says he "loves" me, but he's not "in love with" me!

Tagged as: Long distance, Troubled relationships<< Previous question   Next question >>
Question - (30 June 2005) 23 Answers - (Newest, 10 November 2011)
A female , anonymous writes:

I have been with my boyfriend for a year and 10 months. Two and half of these months has been long distance. Were about 5 hours apart. It has been hard but I believe in him so much and love him so much that I'm willing to do this long distance thing.

I've known for almost our entire relationship that he would be moving. He stuck aroung longer because of me but finally made the move. About 5 months ago I told him I was in love in a letter. He finally responded to the letter about month later with a letter. He said he really cared about me but basically did not feel the same. That he loved me but was not in love with me. This hurt me a lot!

He has been everything I've wanted. We have the same goals, we get along so well. I never thought I would be able to be myself completely with a guy and have him except me. My family and friends love him. I trust him, which is absolutly amazing for me. He has explained to me that he wants to be with me but is not ready for me to move to where he is. Which is hard to understand.

Keep in mind he has a crazy job that keeps him 7 days a week and then he's off 7 days week and so on. My question is do I continue this relationship? Sincerely, sad

View related questions: long distance

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A male reader, crosss129 United States +, writes (10 November 2011):

To me it sounds like he is being cautious, which I agree with him on that. Even though a year and 10 months can seem like a lifetime, especially if there was a big chunk of the time on the "honeymoon" stage, but in reality it isnt alot of time, and the reality is you both never spent alot of time together when you did live closer. So while he may have feelings for you, he doesnt know enough about you as a person on a 24/7 basis to say, yes come move in with me full time. Its pertty likely that even if you did do that right now, you would end up breaking up, because living with someone is much different than being in a relationship with them. That being said, it seems as though you fell for him faster than he has for you, but that does not mean that it wont happen. There is still a chance that he will fall all the way in love with you as you have for him, it just may take some time. I would say to spend the time in the long distance rltnshp, showing him your loyalty. Its prob a good chance that he will respect it , and see that he has something good. And if he doenst, then it will sting and hurt for a while, but you will move forward that much stronger, and still be in your own home, where you live now and have a life, and not 5 hours away where you wont have anything but an ex bf. Good luck

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (6 April 2011):

well i personaly think no, because if he says he is not ready for you to move in with him, then how long will it take him to be ready?

If it takes too long then he can forget about you and go on with his life with someone else......and if you really love him then you will show him that he still has a chance to be in love with you and surprise him and if you think your relationship isnt worth it then try and move on and say“hey dude thats cool but just to let you know you had your chance and blew it and you only had one shot and now your chance is blown”.......thats my opinion but thats up to you.....good luck

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A male reader, anonymous, writes (27 March 2011):

He is just wanting to have his cake and the frosting too. He is not in love with you because he thinks you need to make him happy. He should be happy on his own. Stop wasting your time with this guy. You deserve someone who is crazy about you.

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A female reader, Babycaker2 United States +, writes (24 March 2011):

You say he has been everything you've wanted, you have the same goals, and get along so well. If this were true, he would not tell you he loves you but is not "in love" with you. That is a cop-out. It is a way for him to keep you on the string without ever having to commit to a permanent relationship. He has explained to you that he wants to be with you but is not ready for you to move to where he is. This is hard for you to understand because he is making a fool of you. He has the best of both worlds. By not having you move where he is, he can keep his options open. He is thinking that somebody better might come along, so he keeps you at bay (knowing you're so in love with him, he has nothing to worry about). So, my answer to you is that No, you should not continue this relationship. You deserve to be happy, not sad, just like him. Break things off. If he really cares anything about you, he'll come begging to see you and know what is going on. If not, then you will not that he really was not into you. Stop wasting your time on this player.

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A reader, anonymous, writes (11 August 2010):

Could you tell me what happened now with both of you?! because I have the same problem, I were with my bf for 10 months, then he told me that he is "not in love" and loves me, I gave him a chance and tried to change his feelings, but it was hurting me more, so I broke up, before three days... and we're not talking right now...

I don't know what to do, I am confused and hurt a lot! :(

and he is working 8 hours every day, and we're 3 hours far away!

PLEASE! let me know, i'll be very greatfull!

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A female reader, neelie snikwah United Kingdom +, writes (31 July 2010):

The path to true love was never a smooth one.

Here's another slant on your predicament, do you ever wonder wether, if he gave you all his unconditional love you would still love him the same, or is it a case of 'treat em mean to keep em keen?

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (23 February 2008):

I am sorry to say but if you have read the book hes just not that into you then your answer is there. If he is not in love with you after 10 months then he never will be.

Dont get me wrong he probably thinks the world of you but if the feelings are not there then it will neve work.why would you waste your time on someone who is never going to give you what you want and deserve.

You need to cut your losses and move on you will find what our looking for when you least expect it but it will happen I know. Life is too short dont waste your precious time with him any more he will be on the look out for other girls dont let him hurt you any more then he has already.

Your time will come just not with him and when you look back you will be glad it wasnt him as you are more than that.

Deep down you already know the answer otherwise you would not be questioning it.

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (19 February 2008):

The chemistry is not right. Leave him asap. You are only gong to get hurt over and over again. His true feelings can only show after you dump him.

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (31 January 2008):

I think you deserve to be with a guy who will love u and be in love with you. I was with my Bf for almost 2 years, but I think its now over. He did not tell me, but it is in the things he does not do, and the things he says and the way he sometimes treats me that shows how not in love with me he is. I doubt he is feeling love for me. I love him, and was in love with him, but this is not a mutual feeling. He has been rude to me and accused me of been jealous because I got angry that he was quite affectionately playful with his female friend, since he almost never shows me affection in public and does not even like me to touch him in private, nor can i seem to get to touch him. I think he no longer or never desired me and perhaps was never in love with me.

Rather take heed to the red lights and flags he has put out. You will hurt more in teh long run

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (21 January 2008):

Hi i feel for you i have been in a relationship for a year now.....and i told my boyfriend i was in love with him and he said "i love you but im not in love with you".....i was so upset...so i know exactly how you feel but he lives an hour away so not as bad as you.....

but in your case i think if you love him and he treats you right when your together...hang it out a bit longer....and if you still feel alone and confused...talk to him and be honest....do what you feel is best.... you have to make yourself happy as well.

Kind Regards

P.s do you mimd me asking how old you are....

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A female reader, Omerta United Kingdom +, writes (4 January 2008):

Omerta agony auntYep, i'm going through something very similar at the moment with my boyfriend of almost 3 years...Last Oct, he wrote me a long letter saying that he loved and cared for me a lot but was just not "in love" with me and that it would be best if we just remained friends. Well only a few months later, he wanted me back and said he had missed me etc but now he is moving to Australia and has said he's not ready for me to go with him so now i'm really confused and just feel like such an idiot :(

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (10 December 2007):

I know how you feel I went through the same thing with my boyfriend and the only reason I didn't leave him was that I was so in love with him. He did fall in love with me. The only reason he held back was because he was afraid of being hurt. Lot's of women had hurt him in the past. we are now very happy.

Maybe it's the same with your guy he's afraid of being hurt. Maybe he's stringing you along...Pray about it, talk openly and honestly with him about it and remember love is an action not a feeling.

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A female reader, orgirlic United States +, writes (18 July 2007):

Actually I am having the same problem but in reverse! My boyfriend is completely in love with me but I'm not really feeling all the same things he is. I've felt really "in love" with someone before, but not with him. It's not that he's a bad guy; he's the sweetest guy there could ever be. He treats me with so much love, tenderness and respect that I can't understand why I don't fall in love with him. I do love him; I care about him and tell him that I love him, just like he tells me he loves me. But I don't have that euphoric feeling lovers should have. I can see myself being married to him though, so I know I have feelings for him even if they are subdued.

As far as your boyfriend, I would say do what I hope my boyfriend will continue to do for me...be patient. We've only been together 5 months, so I believe my feelings are still young. I don't know if I'll ever get those lovey feelings for my boyfriend, and it scares me a little to think I won't because I'd hate to break his heart. But I'm willing to give it a try and I think your boyfriend is too. He may be being cautious like I am being and doesn't want to do anything rash with his heart. If you get to where you just can't take the waiting anymore, break it off and stop beating a dead horse. I am personally hoping if I never get the strong emotions for my bf that he'll have the self-respect to cut ties with me and move on.

You both have to focus on what is best for you more than trying to please the other person. I am constantly trying to keep my feelings in perspective so that his immense love is not just "guilting" me into staying with him. Hopefully he is doing the same and his hesitation is just a sign of him weighing the options. He may already love you and may come to have those passionate feelings for you in time. The main thing is, don't grovel or make too many demands on him; causing him to lose respect for you will not gain you any ground.

Good Luck.

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (7 June 2007):

it sounds to me like he wants his cake and to eat it all.. i dont think you should carry on with him you can do loads better babe.

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (17 April 2007):

I see that you wrote this questions a couple of years ago and was wondering if you could offer me advice because you have been through a very similar situation except I have been with him for 3 half years. Did it work out for you? Did you stay with him and did he fall "in love" with you? Its very weird. He works 7 days on and 7 days off too? Also, lives 5 hours a way.

Please let me know!!

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (6 July 2006):

you should keep him he loves you dont he? and if he is not in love with you then wate till he is then things will start to clear up but in the mean time show him that you are one of a kind and that no other girl could love him as much as you do then he will realize how much you mean to him

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (10 November 2005):

I'am sorry to say, he just is not that into you. Move on. It is better to hurt for a little while and get over it then to hurt all the time being in it. He is telling you how it is. Please accept that.

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (15 October 2005):

By the time you've become close enough to someone to truly love them, you may not recognize the feeling of being "in love" because the relationship has grown so gradually. Perhaps this is the healthiest way to love. Sometimes we should re-assess the stereotype of a hollywood romance as being "in love".

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A reader, becky05 +, writes (30 June 2005):

Maybe he works 7 days but he's off 7 days too. If he really wanted a future in this relationship after nearly 2 years he would be spending more time with you. Also he wouldn't want to hurt your feelings by saying he wasnt 'in love' with you if he really loved you. I think it's time for you to move on.

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A reader, schlottjl United States +, writes (30 June 2005):

schlottjl agony auntThis may hurt a bit but I would be very cautious if I were you. First, major problem is that he does not think you should move up to be with him. Just like human girls, human boys feel an excitement and an urgency to be together when they are in love or lust.

Your feelings are definately stronger than his and if he lets this go on, he is taking advantage of the situation. From what you say he seems to be doing the right thing, which makes me feel for you- his is a compassionate person and that is rare.

Still, you have the right to be in a passionate and present relationship. Just by virture of his distance, and his inclination to keep it that way, you should see red lights.

You should also try to look into why everything you ever wanted would be a guy who says he doesn't love you and will not be close to you. It could be you are idealizing him or it could be that you are the one that is afraid of intimacy. A rush of emotions, good or bad is not what I meant when I said a passionate relationship.

If he calls or writes, call him back (even if you are available,) and wait a week or so before you write him back.

Then when you do act as if you are so busy and really meant to get back to him but, you know, you have to say that your sooooo busy with friend... fun... dating, what ever it is that you just could not find the time right now.

See if that feels good. It probably won't because you are really into him, but if you want to see where he stands in the shortest amount of time, that is the way.

Do not call him or write him first. If he does not call or write, you can in say 6-8 weeks. Then when you do act like it was no big deal and you are just a friend checking in. Set your timer and talk no longer than 10 minutes. Make life seem great and tell him you hope his is too.

By that time you might have decided to move on. If you have or even feel much better, double the amount of time.

Only when you sould carefree and happy will you have a chance with this guy. He is not a jerk for sure. He told you the truth. That was the right thing to do. Now please believe him and as the new famous book on how men act if they are into you says, "don't waste the pretty"!

In time he may decide you are one truely cool chick. But for that to happen you will have to actually be cool. So breath deeply and while you wait keep going out. You can do this and you will definately make him stop and question his decision even if it is for only a moment.

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A reader, Joe Mamma +, writes (30 June 2005):

You're not gonna like this, but here goes.

I think he wants to be single. I know it hurts, but relationships don't always last forever. It could be that he has met someone new in his new town and has realized that he wants to go out with her. Maybe when you two got together, he considered it to be a temporary relationship because he knew he was eventually going to move. I know he told you that he wants to be with you, but he's not ready for you to move there. It could be for a number of reasons. A)He wants to string you along in case he later looks into his heart and realizes he wants to be with you. B)He wants to string you along in case it doesn't work out with anyone else. C)He is himself very confused as to what he wants.

If he is honest as you say, consider asking him straight up if there is someone new in his life, or if he is thinking of looking for somemone new. I hate to be such a downer, but I think it's a serious possibility.

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A reader, Rebecca Batchelor +, writes (30 June 2005):

Rebecca Batchelor agony auntWell, it sounds to me as if he is being quite cautious. He is taking things slowly and he is being honest with you which is certainly a good thing. At least you aren't being led up the garden path.

There is a possibility that he will be 'in love' with you as time passes but no one can predict the future and this is what makes it so hard. As I said, he could just be being cautious and a little apprehensive of a fully committed relationship.

The other, somewhat down side is that he may never fall properly in love with you. You have been together a fair amount of time to have a good idea what you feel for each other.

I think you will have to weigh up the pros and cons. You could split with him, thinking he may never be really in love with you and try to find someone who can return your affections. Consider the implications of this and how you would feel.

The other option is to remain with him and enjoy the relationship that you have. Living in hope of something more, though, isn't necessarily healthy but these are the choices available to you.

You have to think carefully about what you really want. Ask him, if you can, if he will ever be ready for a fully committed relationship whereby you move to where he is. This may give you an idea as to the future.

Do remember that although you feel he is the ideal man for you, there are others around that may be just as ideal but more prepared to committ and love you (it just doesn't always feel that way, I know).

Talk to him to get more of an idea of where you stand.

Good luck.

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A reader, becky05 +, writes (30 June 2005):

if the relationship makes you happy, then continue it. If you are not happy with the way things are, end it as it sounds like you will have to make all the compromises in your relationship....do you really want to live like that.? It sounds like this fellow cares for you but he doesnt see a long term future for the both of you, although remember, this may change with time. good luck!

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