Boyfriend Of 4+ Months Stopped Talking To Me...

Question

Asked by Melisann

Boyfriend Of 4+ Months Stopped Talking To Me...

A little background: I've been dating a guy that I have known basically my whole life and we are from the same small town/area. Our families have also been friends since our grandparents' were young. He just turned 43 last week, I will be 38. I have liked him since I was 15 but we never dated back then due to our 5 year age difference and then I moved away, but I always thought about him and wondered what he was doing and wished that we had gotten together. Now I am back living in the area and we reconnected last fall with each other and started dating. Everything was going great until around Christmas when he found out the company he was working for was closing their doors and he was going to lose his job after the new year. In addition to that, he and his family were all really missing his father (who had died a year prior to that). He and his father were best friends. Anyway, my boyfriend started distancing himself from me a little (before he called me 3+ times a day and we saw each other everyday). After all this bad stuff happened, we still talked to each other every day or so (he called me) and we would see each other about once a week (his idea to see each other). One day he would be very sweet like before, then the next he would become very distant, almost like shutting down. He started sleeping a lot and his family and friends were also getting worried about him, but he still talked to them but started avoiding me. His sister-in-law and him never talk about personal issues, but a few weeks ago she was upset with him for not talking to me for a few days (she had been listening to me be sad about it). She actually told him personally that she hopes "he knows that he has someone very special in his life and that he better remember that I am very good for him". He replied to her something like "I know she is, but doesn't anyone realize what I'm going through right now in my life?! I don't have a good job, my house is messed up and I need to fix it, I feel like I can't give her what she needs, and I want more for her than that". Anyway, I have talked to him some since that conversation when he told her that. But then 3 weeks ago, he completely stopped calling me. I called him, left him voicemail messages, he hasn't returned my calls. I then wrote a letter after about a week of him not replying to me that basically said that he is hurting me by not talking to me, that I know he has been going through a lot of bad stuff lately but that I am here for him and want him, not a job or whatever else he may have or don't have. I told him that I love him but that I need to step back from him and his life and while I can't promise that I won't find anyone else in the future, for now I am here for him if he wants to talk or try again. I haven't heard back from him. I have talked to his family and friends and they say that he won't talk to them about it at all, and they also swear to me that there is no one else in the picture. His mother told me that he hasn't really said anything to her about it, except that she does know that people have told him that I am crazy about him and love him, and she suspects that he may have gotten scared and feels like he's not worthy of me right now and because its an ego/pride thing, he can't verbalize that to me because that makes him look weaker. Anyway, I am devastated because I truly love him. I feel like he is the love of my life, I have always wanted to be with him and now that we got together, I feel like it has been snatched away. I have decided that since I have said my piece to him, the ball is now in his court and I can't stop my life for him. However I also feel like someday he may come back to me. I've talked to many different people and they say that for men especially, the loss of a job is devastating and on top of the loss of his father, he probably became very depressed. I know about depression (I deal with it myself) but I've also heard that depression in men is even harder sometimes to see because they are normally not open with their emotions and completely shut off. Also that they sometimes push away relationship because they can only handle their problems. Am I being stupid for feeling this way (that he may come back to me and that he and I could still have a chance)? I need advice and encouragement I guess. Is there a chance for he and I still? I hope so...I love him more than I've ever loved anyone...

Answer

Hi, there. This is a tough thing to go through, but I think you have done all the right things and that your assumptions about men and depression are correct. It's a pride thing. Is he getting any help at all with it? If not, I think you need to be realistic and start thinking about the possibility that things may not work out, not put your life on hold while waiting for him to come around - nobody knows how long that will take. It might help you to see a therapist yourself and get some support and insight into what is going on, especially if you are depressed yourself. I'm not saying that there's no chance he'll come back, it's just that you deserve a life, too. If he's not getting help, it could return at some later time and then you'll be dealing with this again. This could be a glimpse of what life could be like with an untreated depressed person. I'm not trying to make you feel bad, but sometimes things just don't work out, no matter how badly we want them to. A relationship is a two-way street, not one person making all the concessions and efforts to maintain it.

I wish you all the best and hope that things will turn out well for you.