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Our relationship is disintegrating, and I don’t know what to do!

Tagged as: Breaking up, Faded love, Health, Troubled relationships<< Previous question   Next question >>
Question - (30 June 2018) 2 Answers - (Newest, 30 June 2018)
A female United Kingdom age 26-29, anonymous writes:

So basically me and my partner have been together for almost 3 years now. We live together. Recently there are more and more days where I am doubting our relationship. We have never had sex, we have done other things at the beginning of our relationship but he said back then he wasn’t ready for sex. As time went on the less intimate we became and now it must have been about 1 year since we have been intimate. I have lost all sexual confidence and wouldn’t even know how to come on to someone without feeling like an idiot, I also feel like it’s almost too late for intimacy without feeling really awkward about it because it’s been so long. He has also never told me he loves me except once in a card. I also feel like we want different things like I am saving my money for a deposit for a house but he has no interest in buying a house so I’m doing it alone. He doesn’t make enough money to save and is always short on cash to the point we can hardly spend any time outside the house doing things together.. I have a car to pay for and as I’m saving a lot of money for a house I don’t have much left to spend on us both. I’m feeling like I’m sturggling what to do as I don’t think I could bear his hurt if I were to break up with him he has no where else to go and has never had a flat on his own, he moved in with me from his mums. He doesn’t help himself in that he has been working a job he hates for about 10 years which is minimum wage when I tell him all the time he can do so much better... I feel his confidence is already low which makes it so much more difficult! He was dumped in a previous relationship and her reasoning was that he was basically a lazy layabout who wasn’t going anywhere which is obviously not a constructive way to dump someone but even then after that he doesn’t pick himself up and value himself. I have no idea what to do!!

View related questions: confidence, money, moved in, ready for sex

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A female reader, Youcannotbeserious United Kingdom + , writes (30 June 2018):

Youcannotbeserious agony auntIf nothing has changed in 3 years of your relationship, and nothing has changed for him in 10 years of a job he does not enjoy, then nothing IS going to change unless something drastic happens.

Have you asked him why he doesn't want sex? Did he have sex with the ex who dumped him? Has he EVER had sex? Is it that he lacks confidence and has no idea where to start? Or that he had a bad experience which now leaves him scared to try again? Or that he is not interested in sex at all? Or that he is depressed?

So many things could be happening here. That said, unless he is willing to talk and/or get help, without wanting to sound brutal, they are not YOUR problems and he is not YOUR responsibility. It is YOUR choice to stay in this platonic relationship, constantly hoping something will change. He is an adult who either needs to shape up and start living his life, or needs to get outside help to overcome whatever his issues may be.

The only thing that can change in this scenario is YOUR attitude. Unless you actually WANT to spend more years in this relationship, hoping for what you are unlikely to ever get, you need to spell it out to him that you are not prepared to keep existing like this. It is not YOUR problem if he has never lived anywhere else. It is not YOUR problem if he doesn't know how to look after himself. In your shoes I would give him a set time to find somewhere else, either going back to his mother's or even help him find a house share, then help him move out and leave him to sink or swim. He is obviously used to the women in his life taking responsibility for him. That is not YOUR problem.

Deep breath, bite the bullet and move on with your life with someone you are happy with.

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A female reader, Honeypie United States + , writes (30 June 2018):

Honeypie agony auntIt sounds like the two of you are room mates, not a young couple in their 20's!

You are dating him out of pity, or so it seems. You don't want to be YET another girl to dump him and I get that but WHAT are you getting out of this relationship? It seems like no intimacy, not much as far as shared experiences or adventures. So WHAT are you really getting out of this? You get to be his mother in a sense. Someone ELSE to take care of him. Is that how you see your future?

You sound like you have tried to encourage him but he either doesn't have the drive of confidence in setting some loftier goals for himself. And that you CAN NOT do for him. He has to WANT to improve and he HAS to be the one doing the work.

This is WHO he is. Can you see a future with this AS HE IS right now?

You are in your 20's but living like you are either an a-sexual couple (which, IF you BOTH are is TOTALLY OK) or a 90 year old couple that does nothing any more.

What are YOUR goals - hopes and dreams? (besides owning you own house at some point)?

Is he helping or hindering you from going for these goals?

I get that you don't want to HURT the guy but does that mean you have to keep living in this zombie limbo? So HIS feeling won't get hurt?

What about your feelings?

While I get that he OBVIOUSLY have issues with sex and intimacy this (again) is not something YOU can fix. I am wondering if he was molested as a child, to be honest. Or if he is simply asexual and doesn't really know what that means.

You two have been together for 3 years and he STILL isn't ready for sex, that may NEVER change. So are you OK with just NOT having sex or any real intimacy?

If you two had been married for 50 years... then MAYBE I can see a couple living in a sort of harmony without sex but a couple in their 20's after 3 years?

I'm sorry to say this, but HE will not improve, your relationship will NOT improve - THIS is IT! Is that what you want?

Personally, I'd rip that plaster/band aid off and end it. You aren't looking for a room mate for a partner.

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