Dear Wendy
Dear Wendy

“Am I Rushing Things?”

I have been dating my boyfriend for seven months. We are both 29 and met online. At first it was a long-distance relationship (he lived almost two hours away) but, wanting to be closer, I moved. He owns a business and I am nurse, so the move was easier for me to make. However, when I moved, I believed that he would be moving in sooner rather than later. It’s been four months and still no progress has been made on the moving-in stage of the relationship. From the beginning of our relationship, we knew we wanted to spend the rest of our lives together. We have talked about marriage and kids, which are both things we want. I keep nudging him and asking him when is the time, but he never really gives me a timeline. He has even said that he is hesitant to move in because it didn’t work out with his ex when they moved in together. He thinks we won’t like each other as much or that it will harm our relationship. He lives with his mom and sister, and they are extremely tight-knit. I’m afraid he doesn’t want to leave the security of his family. It’s been nagging me ever since I moved. I made a huge change in my life and moved away from my family and my best friend because I want to be with him and start our life together. I know most people will think seven months is really not that long, but I never believed in “soulmates” until I met him. Am I rushing things? I’m afraid I’m pushing him away because of it. I find it hard to talk to him at times of my feelings because I don’t want him to feel pressured into doing anything, I want him to want to. Gah! Help please! — Believing in Soulmates

Yes, you are rushing things. Yes, you are probably pushing him away because of it. It’s been seven months! You only lived two hours away, so I don’t understand picking up and leaving your family and friends and job for someone you’d known for three months and apparently hadn’t even discussed longterm plans with. At a distance of two measly hours, you could have stayed where you were and easily enjoyed weekly weekend visits with each other, while getting to know each other.

You probably didn’t believe in “soulmates” before because it’s a silly phrase that doesn’t really mean much. Like, you really think you and your boyfriend’s souls are mated for all of eternity and you happened to find the one and only match for you on a dating site, and he happened to live just two hours away? I mean, ok, if you believe that, but it seems pretty unlikely to me that all of us have this one soulmate and, out of the billions of people on earth, so many of us are lucky enough to find that one soulmate usually pretty close to us, often in the same town where we live. What are the odds? More likely, there are lots of people on earth we could potentially love deeply and it’s up to right times and right places and a little luck that we meet one we can build a life with. When you look at it that way, it feels like a less desperate search.

I think you may have convinced yourself this guy was IT — the one and only, the SOULMATE you are meant to be with, and you worried that you’d lose your one chance at forever love, so you latched on quickly. Too quickly. So quickly, that you may be sabotaging this relationship. Please slow down. Get to know this person a little better. Enjoy what you have now without all this pressure of moving in together and planning your future. If you aren’t able to simply enjoy what you have now, what makes you think you’ll enjoy a potential future with him? If you haven’t built a foundation yet — and it doesn’t sound like you have — whatever future you try to build with this guy will collapse. Build the foundation. Focus on that right now. And if you can’t or that isn’t exciting to you or your boyfriend is hesitant to even do that, then maybe he’s not a good match for you and you should consider going home, where you probably should have stayed for a while until you and your boyfriend were on the same page about moving forward together.

***************

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If you have a relationship/dating question I can help answer, you can send me your letters at wendy@dearwendy.com.

26 comments… add one
  • avatar

    artsygirl February 27, 2017, 10:23 am

    LW – Your boyfriend has made it abundantly clear that he is not ready to move in with you and has no clear timeline regarding marriage and children. You need to decide if this is a deal breaker for you – are you willing and able to pump the breaks and take the next steps in your relationship slower or are you so fired up to be married and have babies that waiting a year, two, or even more is unbearable.

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  • avatar

    juliecatharine February 27, 2017, 10:26 am

    WWS. LW, sloooow your roll. I have a feeling that at 29 you are feeling the pressure of turning 30 and all the ingrained bs baggage that brings, particularly for unmarried women. Your 30s are nothing to fear–they are a time when you figure out what actually makes you happy, gain confidence, and all sorts of pretty amazing stuff. Relax, focus on figuring out if you and your boyfriend are truly compatible in day-to-day life because after only 7 months you haven’t really had time to know that yet. You two obviously have a connection which is wonderful but not all connections stand the test of life and time. Like Wendy said, enjoy what you have right now and see if it is truly what you want to build the next 50 years of your life around.

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  • bagge72

    bagge72 February 27, 2017, 10:33 am

    Geez man! Can’t you just be in a relationship for a bit, and enjoy the experience? Are there a lot of people your age getting married and you feel you need to rush this, because of the imaginary competition people put themselves in with their friends? Dropping you friends, family, and job for a 3 month relationship is more than rushing it. Just slow down and give it time.

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  • juliecatharine

    Juliecatharine February 27, 2017, 10:36 am

    WWS. OP, I’m going to go out on a limb and guess that you’re falling prey to the ‘you HAVE to get married by 30’ idea that gets shoved down the throats of single women pretty much since birth. Don’t fear your 30s! They are a time of tremendous growth that you will shortchange if you focus only on ‘getting the guy’. 7 months is not long enough to know that your boyfriend is the one you want to build the next 50 years of your life with. Clearly you have a connection, but you will ruin it if all you focus on is rushing forward. Give yourselves time to really enjoy each other and see how you two overcome obstacles. Relax, if the two of you are the real deal you will get there but not if you ignore the building phase of your relationship.

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    • avatar

      MissDre February 27, 2017, 10:57 am

      This comment speaks to me so much. Turning 30 this year was so hard for me, because all my life I thought I’d be married with children by 30. I still have this FEAR that my ovaries are going to dry up and I’ll be infertile by the time I find somebody to settle down with. It’s hard, but I’m trying hard to focus on other things (like my new job!) rather than rushing a relationship.

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      • avatar

        Ashley February 27, 2017, 3:04 pm

        I have to say, my mother had me at 38 and my sister had her first kid at 37, so you know, there is time.

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      • avatar

        RedRoverRedRover February 27, 2017, 6:10 pm

        I was 40 when I had my second baby. She’s a healthy little chub.

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      • Dear Wendy

        Dear Wendy February 27, 2017, 6:29 pm

        I was two months shy of 39. I have a friend who is seven months pregnant with her second. She’ll be 47 when the baby’s born.

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      • avatar

        dinoceros February 27, 2017, 8:34 pm

        My mom was 37 when I was born. And I was even an accident!

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      • Portia

        Portia February 27, 2017, 11:03 pm

        Bassanio’s mom was either 40 or 41 when she had him.
        .
        I didn’t really have an idea of what I wanted my life to be like at 30, but I still felt conflicted about turning 30 this past year. To me, it felt like the first real mile marker measuring adulthood.

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    • avatar

      RedRoverRedRover February 27, 2017, 6:53 pm

      Also this just reminded me, with my first I was 37 and when I was at the obgyn’s office I made a joke about how I was an “old mom”. My obgyn told me that actually the averge age they were seeing at that clinic was 38. I was below average age! Of course that’s a clinic downtown in a major city, so probably many professional women who put off having kids. But still, I couldn’t believe it!

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  • avatar

    Essie February 27, 2017, 10:58 am

    Holy cow, I feel suffocated just reading your letter. I can’t imagine how your boyfriend feels.

    Relax. You have him. You have the relationship. You won. Breathe. A relationship is not a race, and you don’t have to move in together to “start your life together.” You’ve already started. You’re living it now. Stop leaping ahead to the next step, and enjoy what you have. Enjoy each other. Learn about each other.

    I agree with Wendy, the whole soulmates thing is silliness. A lot of people in new relationships feel exactly like you do – “wow, he’s the one, this is it, I’ve never felt like this before” – until they don’t. Most of the relationships that feel like “soulmates” at the beginning sure don’t end up that way.

    Stop pushing. Stop pressuring. You will drive him away if you keep it up. If it’s right, if he really is the guy you’ll spend the rest of your life with, a year or two won’t change anything.

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  • avatar

    Ale February 27, 2017, 11:02 am

    Hell yes, you’re rushing. And frankly, I don’t understand why your boyfriend is still around and not on the run as far as he can.
    7 months and rushing things is not that wrong if BOTH people want it. But he has specifically said that he is not ready. He still doesn’t want it. So, in this case you need to slow down if you still want to be with him or move on is waiting is not what you want.
    I honestly can’t imagine someone moving two hours away after only three months dating.

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  • avatar

    Ron February 27, 2017, 11:03 am

    LW —
    This is crazy and you need to slow WAY the heck down, if not consider moving back to your family and best friend. You both KNEW from the beginning of your relationship that you were going to marry and spend the rest of your lives together. As you posted, that was a time when the two of you were LD, so the bulk of your content was internet, which means you were fantasizing and turning him into the perfect guy, rather than dealing with the real him. You moved 2 hours away from your personal infrastructure and changed jobs after JUST 3 months of LD and not even reaching agreement about living together after you moved.

    I’m not saying this to insult you, but your letter suggests that you are EXTREMELY desperate to be married and more than a little naive and foolish. It is clear that your bf hasn’t fantasized you into the perfect woman he can’t live without and has no intention of moving in together. Perhaps he really isn’t very into you — the LD fantasy romance faded and he doesn’t like the real you as much as the on-line, rarely-seen-in-person you? Perhaps he truly does know from his prior relationship that he is a slob who is used to having his mother and sister do everything for him and is quite certain that to live with him for a few months is to want to be gone.

    In any case, he is in no hurry to live with you. He likely isn’t your soulmate or the guy you are going to marry. If he were, he’d be a lot more into your relationship than he seems to be with his inability to plan the moving forward of your relationship. Seven months, three of them LD, is REALLY fast for a guy you met on a dating site. I’m not really sure he is even truly interested in a long-term relationship. That spiel is easy when you are living two hours apart and eager to get laid. It’s harder when the woman moves almost next door. Now he’s got nothing to say on the living together, marriage, soulmate thing.

    If your lease permits you to do so, I really would see if I could get my old job back and move back home. There is nothing in his town for you. He is sorry that you moved.

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  • Kate B.

    Kate B. February 27, 2017, 11:23 am

    Two things: If you have to ask if you’re rushing things, you probably are; and two hours away is long distance? Not in my area.

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  • Skyblossom

    Skyblossom February 27, 2017, 11:37 am

    If it is a relationship that will last a lifetime it will last a few years while you get to know each other. You don’t have to move in together to move your relationship forward. You do need to spend some time together getting to know each other better and better but that doesn’t mean you need to live together.

    You’ve already discovered that you want to live together now and he doesn’t. Given more time you’ll probably find more differences and then you have to decide whether any of the differences are dealbreakers.

    Did both of you talk about you moving to live near him or was it more from you? Did he help you move? Was he enthusiastic about it? How often do you see him? I’m with Ron in that your boyfriend doesn’t seem very enthusiastic about your relationship.

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  • avatar

    girltuesday February 27, 2017, 12:11 pm

    WWS, WWS, WWS.

    I speak from experience here, LW. Me and my SO are around your age, and we lived about an hour away from each other in the beginning. We didn’t move in together until 1.5 years. Yeah, it sucked having to drive back and forth, but it’s better than moving in with someone you barely know. (Yes, you barely know him. As Wendy says sometimes – I have underwear that’s older than your relationship).

    I think if I would have been pressuring him at 7 months, he would have told me to pump the breaks. Relax, enjoy this time together, and move in when it’s the right time. Do you want to be the one that forces him to move in with you, or marry you? No, you definitely don’t want that because it will always be in the back of your head. Good luck, LW!

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  • Diablo

    Diablo February 27, 2017, 12:15 pm

    What!? NO!!! Wendy! All of you!!!! There is only ONE SOULMATE! For each of us! And of course they live close to you! Because you are destined to be together! The only people whose soulmates live far away are people who are going to be travelling to meet their soulmates! Because DESTINY!!! Sheesh! Have you guys ever seen a movie? It doesn’t matter if they are already married to someone else! Or if you engage in apparently ill-advised FWB scenarios! Age, geography, finances and hilarious misunderstandings regarding likely unfaithfulness don’t matter! Because by the fourth reel, your soulmate will allasudden realize that they are your soulmate! That is what SOULMATE MEANS! EXCLAMATION POINTS!!!!

    PS – Grown adult men who live with their moms and sisters are not always soulmate material. Except in this case of course.

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    • avatar

      TheHizzy February 27, 2017, 1:36 pm

      THIS!!!!!

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  • avatar

    dinoceros February 27, 2017, 1:08 pm

    Yes, you’re rushing things. A lot of people don’t understand that feeling like someone is your soulmate doesn’t actually mean they are your soulmate. It’s a feeling a lot of people feel when they are infatuated or in love or whatever. Many people who feel they have found their soulmate are probably just as likely to have the relationship end at some point as anyone else. You’re letting your emotions take over in a way that doesn’t allow you to also think about things logically and practically.

    It sounds like you moved to be near him three months in? Way too soon. It’s not unreasonable at all for him to not want to move in with someone he’s only known for 7 months. However, in normal relationships, people can just enjoy dating, you’ve already uprooted your whole life based on the assumption that you will in fact be together forever, without actually being in a place where you both can/want to commit to that.

    The issue here is that it’s not clear to us or to you whether he’s saying he doesn’t want to move in because he thinks it’s too soon and he’ll be ready later, or if he doesn’t want to move in at all. The excuse that it didn’t work out with his ex, so he thinks it will harm your relationship is concerning because it has nothing to do with timing. If he thinks moving in is what hurts a relationship, what is he saying? That you can’t ever move in together?

    Don’t go this quickly next time.

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  • avatar

    Janelle February 27, 2017, 1:41 pm

    I agree with Wendy. Moving after three months when you don’t really even live that far apart is a bit nutty. On top of that seven months is even too soon to move to his city let alone in with him. You for SURE are pushing him away. You should not have even considered moving there without a clear cut plan for the future, like “I’ll sign a 6 month lease and see if once it is up we are ready to move in together yet”.

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  • FireStar

    Firestar February 27, 2017, 1:52 pm

    Yes you moved too quick. Can you salvage it? Maybe. Maybe not. Build your own life. Outside of him. With friends/family /volunteering/classes whatever. . It would freak me out if someone moved for me after 3 months. Talking about marriage etc. doesn’t mean anything that early on. It’s just talk. That’s all it’s supposed to be 3 months in. It isn’t destiny. Forget slowing down. Stop. Reassess. It isn’t enough not to talk to him about this. Change your mindset so there is nothing to talk about. Just date for the love of Pete.
    And we have all felt the infatuation in the beginning of a relationship. It’s not finding a soul mate. It’s finding someone with potential. If that potential works out – great. If not, then you find that potential with someone else. He isn’t the only man on the planet for you. And he sure as hell wasn’t after only 3 months.

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  • avatar

    SpaceySteph February 27, 2017, 2:52 pm

    As Wendy points out, I think you are being a little over-dramatic about your *big move for loooove* when you only moved 2 hours away (unless you’re talking about a 2 hour flight by your private concorde, then maybe). I would kill to live 2 hours from my parents and best friend.
    I doubt your boyfriend sees your move as that big a deal. Lay off the nagging and focus instead on enjoying the stage of the relationship you’re currently in.

    I will say though, since we get plenty of letters about it… pay some extra attention to the mother/son dynamic. Does he have healthy boundaries with mom, or does she still fold his underwear and cut his meat? Living with his mom is not in itself a red flag, but it could lead to you finding a trove of them.

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  • avatar

    Ashley February 27, 2017, 3:08 pm

    I know you may feel foolish about moving back, but it’s better to admit a mistake than forcing something that’s not there. Also, you moved for this guy but are you trying to build a life for yourself in this new town? Even saying that things work out you still need to have your own life. Who knows, maybe you will actually like it there and want to stay, whether or not you and this guy work out. Maybe you have the romantic comedy switch and you’ll think you moved for this guy, but are going to fall for his business partner instead. Hijinks will ensue.

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  • avatar

    Cyndi February 27, 2017, 8:22 pm

    Good god woman – date the guy first. After 7 months – you don’t know him & he doesn’t know you. I married my hubby after 8 years of dating & still sometimes wonder about him. We did not live together. Get to know the guy

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  • meadowphoenix

    meadowphoenix February 28, 2017, 9:12 am

    I don’t understand the reasoning that if someone is your soulmate, you have to move quickly. If they’re your ~soulmate, then the pace of the relationship should be irrelevant and you should be comfortable moving normally.

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