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nyxjord
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16 Jul 2014, 10:13 am

So I have been with my boyfriend for four years and we just got engaged two days ago. Now, before I make the plunge, I want to know that I am doing it with the right person. So I guess my question is.. I know that it is normal for the "fire" or whatnot of the new relationship to ebb a bit after the first few years... So I am just wondering what it feels like after 5 years of being with someone? I have never been with someone this long and just want to know how it felt for other couples, at this point. I would say that I (at least) am at "Re-evaluation" stage that this link refers to: http://relationship-institute.com/freea ... D=153.html


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cathylynn
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16 Jul 2014, 10:51 am

my husband and i had our fifth anniversary in may. the best way i can describe my side of the relationship is "comfortable." he says he's still madly in love, which worries me; one day he'll awake to reality.

i read your article on stages. i'd warn about the stage you're in not to do anything you'll have cause to regret. do your re-evaluation on your own or with a close, non-romantic friend. don't run your partner down or cheat on them. if you feel the need for another romantic interest, break up with your partner first.



nyxjord
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16 Jul 2014, 11:08 am

I would say that I don't really feel like cheating (I don't feel like having him find out and me ending up homeless)... I just want to know whether I am "comfortable" or have disconnected from the relationship. Like, I am not really looking at other guys at all... When I imagine us breaking up, I think about getting my own place and just being alone (which I feel like I would love)... but I've never actually made any moves to start my own life.. if that makes sense. I guess what I am just reevaluating is his bad habits, for example. Like, he never takes out the trash, he never mows the lawn, he never cleans up after himself, he is absolutely the most discouraging person I have ever met, he invalidates damn near everything I say... so I guess I am just reevaluating whether or not I can accept those flaws that he has or whether they will end up being deal breakers... I mean at this point in the relationship (4 years), he obviously is not going to change. Plus, he thinks that since he is at a 10 hour job everyday and I "just" go to school, that he should not be the main one to take care of the house (I can get him to unload the dishwasher etc after I bug him awhile, but I am the main one to clean).


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cathylynn
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16 Jul 2014, 11:30 am

i could live with the lack of cleaning help, but the disparagement would be a deal-breaker for me. i find it hard to believe that someone who loves you would treat you that way. unless you have a really thick skin and it doesn't bother you, use whatever excuse to put off the marriage and make plans to escape. finish your degree and get a job and get your own place.

there are guys who help out and are supportive and you may well find one. i cook. my husband cleans. he is my best friend. don't get stuck in an abusive situation. it will affect your physical as well as mental health.



nyxjord
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16 Jul 2014, 11:38 am

Hmmm maybe I should explain a little bit. He is not abusive or mean (I know that sounds like denial, but it's not.) Let me give you an example... like I will tell him that I think something is broken and that I tried to fix it. He will not believe me and have to go try to fix it, himself. Obviously, it still won't work. Or.. I will tell him that something is bothering me and he will say that something is not as bad as it is etc .... Like.. he just invalidates me so much.. it is so frustrating. I know that if I want encouragement, I either have to find it in myself or get it from some other person. I never tell him my feelings or deep thoughts... nothing deeper than the kids or about plans. I specifically try to support and validate him. And it is not that he does this to me personally. He is the same way with his kids and family. He does not know how to be encouraging, I guess.


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cathylynn
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16 Jul 2014, 11:53 am

couples counseling?



nyxjord
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16 Jul 2014, 11:57 am

We've done that before (when I first moved in) because of his crazy ex-wife and two kids that he has with her. Most of those issues have been settled. Now I just wish he was more encouraging/ supportive and helped out a bit more around the house.


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cathylynn
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16 Jul 2014, 12:14 pm

that's a tough decision.



Adamantium
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16 Jul 2014, 12:42 pm

In the abstract, I think you should enter into such a relationship as if you were going to have that long term relationship with the person as they are now, not as you hope they might become.

If it should happen that the person changes for the better, that will be wonderful. If they remain the person you love and want to be with, that will be wonderful. What seems not ever to work is to get into a committed relationship with the person in your imagination who you think they might become if they would just change certain aspects of themselves. That seems always to lead to disappointment and bitterness.

Of course real life is not abstract an emotion has a way of bypassing logic.

I wish you a happy future no matter how it works out.



Roobot
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16 Jul 2014, 1:24 pm

"Let us be lovers we'll marry our fortunes together"


The common misconception about formal marriage is that it signifies some change in the relationship. I would say your fortunes are already "married" and that marriage itself is only a formalising of the relationship.

You've already been sharing your life with him for a good while. We all only have a limited amount of interactions with people and for you he's one of the ones that regardless of the future you have already spent a good portion of your life on.

So I don't know. Formalising and saying that he was one of the big ones of your life isn't such a big deal. It doesn't have to be forever these days but for the good amount of time you've already spent on him it wouldn't be a bad idea to just recognise it. Call it making the most of something you already have.

Just always remember it's not the end if you don't want to be. Just try to live for now more and leave the decision for whether it's the right relationship for another day when the decision is made for you by the circumstances of that time.

And by that I mean, trust yourself that if one day the relationship needs ending you will be able to do it, and until then don't worry about it.



Rishikesh
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18 Jul 2014, 5:26 am

If he were the right one for you, you would not ask this question at all.

I have been in 3 long term relationships (4 years, 4 years, and current one 7 years).
The first two relationship I asked myself the same thing, since I had no idea if there was someone 'perfect for me' in this world.
I could live with those partners, perhaps that was enough, I thought. What's there more?

Thank god those relationships didn't work out.

When I have met the right partner I understood it right away.
We decided to marry in a week after we met each other. We both had no doubts about it at all.
7 years has passed. We have had our lot of difficulties but still have no doubts.

I wish you to have no doubts too.