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Your Turn: “Why Doesn’t He Drool Over Me Anymore?”

In a feature I call “Your Turn,” in which you, the readers, get to answer the question, I’m presenting the following letter without commentary from me:

My boyfriend and I just moved in together. He’s a great guy and fun to be around. At the beginning of the relationship, he couldn’t keep his hands off me and ALWAYS treated me like a lady. He would take me out to dinner and seem interested in me and my life. He would love to cuddle, go out, and just plain spend time with me. Now, I am in nursing school five days a week and he is in paramedic school ONCE a week.

When we first moved in together, we had sex every day, and good sex at that. Now, it is only once a week, which upsets me. He used to drool over me naked, but now I can walk around the house naked with him not even looking at me. It makes me really sad and self-conscious. Also, we are on a budget since we are both students. We don’t go out much, which I understand, but every time we do we split the bill. I’m fine with that, but the other night was special to me since we haven’t had an outing recently. I didn’t even bring my phone with me. We were at the restaurant and he got aggravated at me for some reason and then looked down at his phone the rest of dinner. This made me feel like he didn’t want to take me out or is not interested in treating me like I should be treated. Also, lately — and this REALLY bothers me — he gets so fucking aggravated and snappy when I don’t understand something. He seems annoyed by me. Whether it be about measuring something or cooking, he talks to me like an idiot. He rarely ever asks me anymore about how my day was, about my family, about how I’m feeling, or any of the things I ask him.

He tells me how much he loves me, but he doesn’t show it anymore. I understand that we are far past the honeymoon stage, but a man can never stop treating his woman, well, like a woman. That night at the restaurant made me feel like shit because all these other men were checking me out, but my boyfriend who “loves me” was looking at his phone and didn’t care to ask how my day was. Any other guy would like to treat me like a lady. Has he lost interest? Is he not attracted anymore? Am I doing something wrong? Is he cheating?

Please give me some advice because I have no close lady friends anymore because I moved. — Like a Lady

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

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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.

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{ 84 comments… add one }

avatar Mel October 10, 2012, 9:13 am

He’s probably grown comfortable. Although if you feel disrespected you could always, you know… tell him.

avatar Addie Pray October 10, 2012, 4:10 pm

WMW.

avatar Addie Pray October 10, 2012, 4:12 pm

*WMS. (oh for fuck’s sake)

CatsMeow CatsMeow October 10, 2012, 4:21 pm

You mean “FFS.”

avatar CSP October 10, 2012, 9:14 am

Things are getting comfortable. It happens. He used to watch everything he said and now he is relaxing. To keep the spark alive, it takes work. My husband and I will say, “its time to practice the art of conversation.” which means no phones, no tv. We have to work at it because the phone is always there. Sex is the same way. Time to spice it up. If you are doing the same moves in the same place. Try a nurse costume since you are a nurse. Also, watch sexy shows on TV before bed Like True Blood or Game of Thrones or Hung. Finally, I have to give my husband friendly reminders that I am his wife not his buddy. I can actually tell by the way he is laughing at something that I will find a story gross or annoying and tell him not to tell me. I hope these ideas are helpful.

JK JK October 10, 2012, 11:35 am

Yes to everything, but the nurse outfit. SInce BF is in the same field it probably isn´t too sexy for him (my husband and I are also in the health field, he said he´d NEVER want me to dress up as a nurse haha).

avatar CSP October 10, 2012, 12:37 pm

Ha, my girlfriends and I all joke that our guys have all asked for the nurse thing. I thought that was a surefire thing.

avatar Christy October 10, 2012, 9:30 am

Honestly, I walk around my gf’s apartment naked all the time, and she doesn’t constantly check me out. Me walking around naked is kinda the status quo–I hate clothes. No clothes=/=sexy. If you walking around naked is normal, then he’s gonna treat it as normal and not as the pre-sex woohoo! that it used to be.

Could you take turns paying when you go out? 1. It’s easier to deal with and 2. It’s more romantic, at least to me. It means that one of you always gets to treat the other.

How long have you been dating? How long have you been living together? Why did you move in together? These questions all matter.

Also you have to communicate these things! Otherwise how will he know you’re upset?

avatar Christy October 10, 2012, 9:35 am

Related to “Otherwise how will he know you’re upset?”:

I’ve flat-out told my gf that the frequency with which I wash the dishes relates to my stress and happiness levels. I also told her that sometimes I stress clean. So when I’m not doing the dishes (she cooks, I wash) regularly or when I’m super-on-top-of-it, she checks in with me to see if it’s because I’m stressed or worried about something. This is something that I really appreciate. I’m also very up-front about the fact that when I feel really bad anxiety I get clingy, and that sometimes I want to deal with that anxiety alone and not cling, and sometimes I just want to cuddle ALL THE TIME.

Do other people do this? I know it works for me to articulate things like these, but am I just the weird lesbian who over-processes?

avatar aredheadsguide October 10, 2012, 9:48 am

I totally cling when I get anxious. Like stage five clinger. And then sometimes I just want to be left the eff alone when I’m anxious. You’re totally not alone on that!

iwannatalktosampson iwannatalktosampson October 10, 2012, 9:52 am

I want to date a girl. :( She sounds really considerate and awesome.

avatar Anna October 10, 2012, 10:09 am

Yeah, that sounds like a pretty awesome relationship. Unfortunately, this annoying body of mine likes men. :(

avatar Christy October 10, 2012, 11:09 am

She is :D

avatar Nikki October 10, 2012, 1:26 pm

I get REALLY clingy, too!

avatar MJ October 10, 2012, 9:30 am

Sometimes when you’re around someone for longer periods of time, like living together, little things start to irritate you and you get snippy and short. I do this, and I don’t like it about myself, but it happens. I need alone time. And if I move in with someone, and that disappears, it’s going to make me very irritated from time to time.

So I have a couple of pieces of advice:
1) Call him on it. I’m not sure if your desire to be a lady means you think you shouldn’t speak up, but it doesn’t. You have to say, bluntly, “yo, jackass, stop taking me for granted and being a dick.” He can’t read your mind. If he doesn’t respond to your sincere attempts to express your needs, that’s not a good sign for your relationship’s future.

2) You say you don’t have any girlfriends. Are you guys spending too much time together? Get out of the house. Alone. Go do things that are fun for you, then come home and tell him about what you did. This will help your peace of mind and give you both something else to focus on. You’ll be away and out of his hair and he’ll be ready to greet you more enthusiastically when you come home. Plus it shows him that you have your own life.

3) Take some initiative! You don’t have to wait for him to jump you. What do you want, sexually? Go after it! That will surprise him and probably bring some spark back into your sex life.

These are hard things to do, especially if you’ve bought into the cultural crap about Ladies and what they are and aren’t supposed to do. But relationships take work, and two people bringing their all to the table. Do what you can, see if he responds, instead of always waiting to be the respondee.

Amybelle Amybelle October 10, 2012, 9:39 am

ITA, especially the getting out of the house part. Also it should be pretty easy to make some new friends in nursing school, maybe join or start a study group or invite someone to go for coffee and talk shop.

avatar j2 October 10, 2012, 9:33 am

This sounds like he has disengaged from you and your relationship, or is in the process.

I’m not saying there is another woman, but the “looked down at his phone” part is a red flag to me. He has more free time than you and (if I interpreted it correctly) you do not know it and the money he is saving going “Dutch” with you is being spent.

avatar Lindsay October 10, 2012, 12:08 pm

I agree that he may have disengaged, but I don’t know that there’s much evidence of him cheating. From what I gathered, he was looking at his phone to avoid talking to her/to piss her off because he was annoyed, not surreptitiously. And there is a lot of stuff to occupy a person on a phone these days. I was confused by the comment on when they’re in school. Surely he’s doing something other than that once-a-week class? Like work? If not, I can totally see why he’s not picking up the check (though I generally go dutch with guys after the first few dates).

avatar SuzyQ October 10, 2012, 1:55 pm

I agree with this. Disengagement is exactly what is described. Yep. Yep. Yep. And not good for the prognosis of the relationship. So sorry.

avatar SuzyQ October 10, 2012, 9:40 am

I have some questions. Are you happy in this relationship? Do you feel like your boyfriend loves you? You say that you moved in together, but do you know where this relationship is going? You are clearly not happy with the sexual side of your relationship and you are too young to give up on what you really want It is possible that you and your boyfriend simply have different libidos. That can be a deal breaker, so you need to decide what you want for your life, what you want out of this relationship, and whether this is right for you. Best of luck!

avatar milli October 10, 2012, 9:40 am

LW:”all these other men were checking me out”
How many of them?

avatar kerrycontrary October 10, 2012, 9:45 am

I don’t even notice if other men look at me while I’m out to dinner. I’m too busy picking out what to eat, eating, and making funny faces at the person across from me.

iwannatalktosampson iwannatalktosampson October 10, 2012, 9:58 am

I’m kind of with you except if the person I’m having dinner with was playing with their phone I would start people watching – which would make it more obvious if someone is giving you the hey hubba hubba look.

EscapeHatches EscapeHatches October 10, 2012, 12:23 pm

Same here. I am… amply endowed… in the chest. My husband will periodically comment that someone was staring at my chest – and I’m always oblivious.

KKZ KKZ October 10, 2012, 2:02 pm

I’ve had the same thing happen – my husband has to tell me when other guys are checking me out (including my own amply endowed chest), otherwise I’m completely oblivious to it! Unless they’re giving me a really obvious up-and-down or make some sort of comment or gesture, I don’t even know what “checking out” looks like.

Fabelle Fabelle October 10, 2012, 9:40 am

Okay…so, first: here are some observations I have based on your letter.

It sounds like you weren’t in this relationship very long before moving in together. You also sound somewhat young. And– I’m sorry if this is harsh– but you definitely have some kind of princess syndrome going on. So please, cut that out right now. Stop thinking you needed to be treated like a special flower just because you’re a woman. A REAL relationship isn’t always about the guy fawning over you 24/7.

You do seem to know this, intellectually. But you manage to slip in so many statements of entitlement throughout your letter. “This made me feel like he…is not interested in treating me like I should be treated.” How do you think you should be treated? Yes, he should treat you with respect, consideration, and love. But you aren’t really saying that– you’re making some hollow, blanket statement about the ~special~ way guys “should” treat their girlfriends.

“…a man can never stop treating his woman, well, like a woman.” Huh? What the fuck does that even mean? And, of course, this: “Any other guy would like to treat me like a lady.” I hope you don’t make these thoughts known to your boyfriend, because if you do, then I kind of understand why he keeps getting aggravated with you? Again, I’m sorry for being harsh, but since you admit that you have no close friends where you are, maybe you need a bit of a reality check.

Your boyfriend isn’t off the hook, though! No, a man DOESN’T need to constantly lavish his girlfriend with attention & praise–but he also shouldn’t be getting annoyed with you or acting as if you’re dumb over little things like, I don’t know, measuring flour. And nobody’s cell phone should be a third guest out at dinner, no matter how upset they are at their restaurant partner. If you really do ask him how his day was, etc., then he should return the favor & at least act interested in your life.

However, all of these things– your frustration & his annoyance– seem to be symptoms of a relationship gone bad. I don’t think you guys are communicating very well. You’re burying your dissatisfaction under immature testimonies of how you boyfriend should treat you “like a lady” & he’s kind of shutting down. I can’t answer the why– maybe it’s because of your attitude, maybe he has other shit going on. But regardless, you need to think about your own feelings & change your attitude. Thinking your live-in partner should be drooling every time you walk around naked isn’t going to fly in any relationship.

avatar kerrycontrary October 10, 2012, 9:42 am

WFS. I agree that a lot of women think they “deserve” to be obsessed over when that’s just not reality.

avatar bethany October 10, 2012, 9:54 am

WFS, 100%

You said that nicer than I was going to :)

avatar MMcG October 10, 2012, 12:58 pm

WFS and WBS!!

Princess syndrome… love it. And it should not exist in grown adult women (only girls, perhaps under a certain age, carrying their Disney backpacks ;)

avatar MJ October 10, 2012, 10:02 am

Thanks for calling this out. It irked me, but I tried to be kind. All this stuff needed to be said. You are not entitled to have men fawning all over you simply because you’re an attractive woman.

avatar Anna October 10, 2012, 10:16 am

I agree with you completely but I can understand the LW’s point of view too. They just moved in together! They should still be at that stage where they’re so excited about being in close proximity that they’re ripping clothes off all day long. And texting someone else when you’re at dinner with your SO is just unbelievably rude. It sounds like the relationship has run its course and he’s bored. I won’t be surprised if we get an update later that he was already dating whoever he was texting at dinner and attempting to juggle them both.

CatsMeow CatsMeow October 10, 2012, 10:37 am

THANK YOU. You said everything I was going to say. WTF does it mean to be treated “like a lady”? And why does he have to pay for everything when you go out? Seriously? This is a partnership. It’s a 2-way street. How often do you, LW, initiate sex or pay for dinner or tell him how hot he is when he walks around naked or do things to show you appreciate him? Jeez. I’d be annoyed with you too. Like Fabelle said, this princess syndrome/sense of entitlement needs to go.

(That said, I would also be annoyed by the phone at dinner. That’s bogus. You should have said something, though. You should communicate about all the things that are bothering you. He’s not a mind reader).

Kate B. Kate B. October 10, 2012, 10:43 am

Thank you. I was trying to figure out how to kindly express the same thing, and you nailed it.

FireStar FireStar October 10, 2012, 10:45 am

Agree! There was a lot of what he doesn’t do for me in the letter – not so much on the what I do for him other than ask about his day – and quite frankly – he may not even care about that. I know my husband doesn’t care to be asked – at all. The night that was special to you – did you tell him that? Because the only reason I saw that it was special was because it has been a while – but that applies to both of you equally, no? What was the “some reason” he got aggravated with you? Is retreating how he normally deals with aggravation? You are going to need to address your “some reason” before you can address his phone use – because it sounds both of you didn’t behave properly.

You say you know you are past the honeymoon phase but it sounds like you still want those rules to apply. I read somewhere once about the stages of a relationship – and after the honeymoon phase – came the resentment stage – typically when a couple moves in together and you realize that your once dreamy and perfect boyfriend leaves wet towels on the bed…and that the goddess you were dating can’t boil water to save her life – and it is not cute. All couples navigate this to some extent. So start navigating! Being in a grown-up relationship means you communicate your needs to your partner. Even if he met them before but stopped after the honeymoon phase – tell him you need him to do ‘x’. Tell him you need to have date nights – you will take turns planning and paying. You can easily date on a budget. As for the frequency of sex…you didn’t say you were initiating and being rejected. So..um.. initiate. Beyond being naked. Sweetie – step away from the gender roles. You two are in this thing together – so embrace that and start sharing the responsibility for the strength of your relationship.

KKZ KKZ October 10, 2012, 10:59 am

WFS! This is how to reality-check someone without being a dick about it.

SixtyFour SixtyFour October 10, 2012, 11:53 am

Totally my thoughts too. I need to take a page out of Fabelle’s page and learn!

SixtyFour SixtyFour October 10, 2012, 11:56 am

Book. Argh. Typing faster than I think.

SarahKat SarahKat October 10, 2012, 12:53 pm

THIS X A BAJILLION.

avatar kerrycontrary October 10, 2012, 9:40 am

There’s a lot to address here. First, the not having sex as often and not drooling over you is just him getting comfortable. That’s totally normal in a relationship. If you want sex more often, tell him. And of course he drooled over you when he first saw you naked, you were a new woman’s body that he was allowed to touch! When you live together he’s going to see you naked a lot, so its not as new or shocking anymore. I wouldn’t take offense to it.

Second, he may feel more comfortable talking to you/snapping at you because you are in a committed relationship. He knows you aren’t going to leave at the first sign of improper behavior like you might in the first couple of months. My sister explains this as “the filter is gone and politeness goes out the window”. So sometimes he’s going to say things that come out wrong, tell him! This may result in fights, but that’s OK. Him treating you like an idiot? No OK in most situations. Address that with him.

Lastly…the dinner thing. Did you tell him that you felt like it was a special night? Did you ask him to put his phone away? Did you ask him what was wrong when he got agitated? Maybe something is up with him that he’s not telling you. Trouble at work, family issues, etc…

And here’s what also concerns me. I feel like you get your validation from men being attracted to you. Your boyfriend isn’t drooling over you and you feel sad and self-conscious. You include how other men are checking you out at the restaurant but your boyfriend is distracted. Feel sexy because you are sexy, not because some man thinks you are. You have a lot to talk about with your boyfriend but you also have a lot to talk about with yourself.

avatar Anna October 10, 2012, 10:18 am

WKCS!! A woman’s sexiness should never come from a man being attracted to her. Love it!

theattack the attack October 10, 2012, 9:43 am

You don’t sound very okay with splitting the bill, first off. Your needs aren’t being met here. Moa and take with you a lesson learned about what your relationship needs are. Your self perception and reality are mismatched.

avatar EricaSwagger October 10, 2012, 9:48 am

Your concern isn’t all that crazy, but the way you’re portraying your relationship really irks me.

The whole letter screams self-centered.
You have no female friends (make some or call your old ones).
You expect people to drool over your naked body (you’re in a long term relationship… your boyfriend isn’t always going to stop everything to tell you how perfect and sexy you are, so get over it).
You notice “all these other men” checking you out (a fact that didn’t really need to be mentioned in your letter, yet… it was mentioned).
You think your long term boyfriend should still be paying for everything (holy high-maintenance).
Etc, etc.

From what I can tell, you have a pretty good relationship. So what if he gets irritated with you once in a while? So what if your sex life has fizzled a little bit lately. I don’t get the impression that you’ve had any sort of discussion with him about any of this, and that should have been your first step.

You didn’t write this due to a concern for your relationship. It’s concern for yourself. You’re just not getting the attention you think you deserve.

And anybody who has to ask questions about how to measure something… Well honestly, I’d be frustrated with you, too.

avatar MMcG October 10, 2012, 1:03 pm

“You didn’t write this due to a concern for your relationship. It’s concern for yourself. You’re just not getting the attention you think you deserve.” –AMEN!!

and can I add that I have a really hard time figuring out the age of the LW?? Her tone and make me feel special attitude makes me think early 20s, and then the ladyisms and what’s proper and how special women are makes me think the LW is 85 and would be really comfy in a 1950s style relationship with clear gender roles. Not that the 1950s didn’t work for some people, and if that is a role you are comfortable with feel free, but it’s like she wants to be a modern woman and still get taken care of like the delicate lady of the house. =does not compute

avatar Leah October 10, 2012, 9:49 am

I wish I could go through your letter and cross everything out except for this part: “He seems annoyed by me…. He talks to me like an idiot. He rarely ever asks me anymore about how my day was, about my family, about how I’m feeling, or any of the things I ask him.”

Everything else in the letter could be chalked up to the honeymoon period being over, or stresses outside your relationship affecting your time together. But those couple of sentences speak to a larger issue and you need to talk to him about it pronto. This isn’t about some preconceived notion of how to treat a “lady”. Honestly, you treat a woman like a “lady”, paying for meals, drooling over her body, competing with other men for your attention, during the courtship period of a relationship. Those are all things that men do to impress women while you’re getting to know each other, and it’s natural for those behaviors to drop off as you settle into a comfortable relationship.

The problem is that he doesn’t seem to be treating you with respect, or even much interest. Maybe he’s super stressed about working. Even at one day a week, being a paramedic is one of the most stressful, high intensity jobs there are and maybe he’s not dealing with it very well. Maybe something is wrong with the relationship or he’s just not feeling it anymore. Either way, you need to talk to him, and I wouldn’t muddy the waters by complaining about his iPhone or having to split the bill.

avatar Christy October 10, 2012, 11:12 am

This is a great response–I think it cuts through the extra in the letter and drills down to the value of the relationship itself.

avatar MMcG October 10, 2012, 1:06 pm

Agreed, though you could smell the contemptment about the work schedules through the computer…

“I am in nursing school five days a week and he is in paramedic school ONCE a week.” reads to me like she is expecting things from him because he doesn’t work as much/hard and resents him for it…

avatar Lucy October 10, 2012, 9:52 am

Being constantly aggravated and snappish with you sounds like contempt, which has been described as one of the Four Horsemen of the Relationship Apocalypse by someone cleverer than I. So that shit needs to be nipped in the bud. Since you just moved in together it could be overfamiliarity, and even annoyance, due to being around each other too much. Perhaps in the wake of moving and feeling like you have no more close friends, you are clinging to him a little bit. Try spending less time together: get out and about, join some activities on your own, and MAKE SOME FRIENDS. And when he acts that way with you, tell him in no uncertain terms, right then, that it’s not acceptable.

avatar Kristen October 10, 2012, 9:57 am

The part that’s most concerning to me is that he’s getting irritated with you and treating you like you’re stupid over little things. In my experience, that isn’t a good sign. If he starts to feel like it’s a burden to explain things to you or watch you do things that he thinks he can do faster/better, he probably isn’t as in love with you as he says he is. Everyone gets annoyed with their partner sometimes, but talking to them like they’re an idiot shouldn’t go hand-in-hand with that. To me, that means he’s less than enthralled with the relationship and is starting to question whether you’re right for him.

But even if he is, maybe you should do the same. There’s a difference between phasing out of the honeymoon stage and not even bothering to care how your day was. I’ve been with my husband for almost 10 years and we still make a point to ask each other how work was, what the best part of the other person’s day was, what they’re looking forward to this weekend, etc. It means we’re still interested in each other and want to be informed about how the other one is doing. That’s a normal thing to expect from someone who loves you. If you’re not getting that, it’s okay to realize the relationship is working out. You don’t deserve to be treated like a princess, but you do deserve to be treated with respect and date someone who is genuinely interested in you as a person.

avatar Bossy Italian Wife October 10, 2012, 10:30 am

I agree that in a relationship you should always try and make the other person feel special, but communication is a HUGE thing in that process, and it sounds like you aren’t communicating well enough. In a relationship you have to talk to one another and that is just what you need to do with your boyfriend.

My husband and I have been together for 9 years, and every relationship, I can tell you, ebbs and flows. But by keeping an open book with one another, you can power through some of these things you are complaining about. Make an effort to have more sex. Talk to your boyfriend about the fact that you would like him to make you feel special–that he can feel comfortable in a relationship without making you feel like he has “given up.”

There is a catch in all of this, though, and one you need to seriously consider. Once you have spoken your piece, voiced your needs and made clear that you are committed to strengthening the relationship, he’s got to meet you in the middle. This will be a clear test of the longevity and strength of your overall relationship… because you need to be able to ask and he needs to be able to rise to the occasion. Also, you need to be able to ask yourself what your boyfriend might say once you bring these things up. In other words, how can you contribute to the overall balance of the relationship.

Keep in mind that moving in together is an adjustment. It’s a learning experience and it doesn’t always work out. If you find that things have changed and he’s not being receptive to your needs, consider moving out.

CatsMeow CatsMeow October 10, 2012, 10:54 am

I’m sorry, LW, but you sound like a spoiled brat to me. I’m not sure what exactly it is that you expect your boyfriend to be doing. The fact that he acts irritated with you and ignores you at dinner is problematic, yes. But have you TALKED to him about it? Have you had a discussion about your expectations in this relationship?

I imagine you silently sulking and keeping score whenever he does something you don’t like and then passive-aggressively taking it out on him later. I imagine you walking around naked to try and get his attention when he’s busy doing something else and then pouting when he doesn’t stop everything to tell you how hot you are. I imagine you falling asleep resenting him for not having sex with you instead of just initiating it! I imagine you expecting him to plan elaborate romantic dates and PAYING for them instead of suggesting things to do or taking initiative and planning something yourself.

And why? Because you want to be treated “like a lady.” Fuck that. What does that even mean? I suspect it means different things to different people, but I gather that for YOU it means you want to be worshipped. All the time.

Well, news flash. You’re in a partnership. It’s a two-way street. Yes, he should do things to show how much he appreciates you. Yes, he should make an effort to keep the romance alive. But YOU need to do these things too!

I know I’m harsh today, but the tone of your letter irritated me. And if you act the way I’m assuming around your boyfriend, then I can kinda see why he’s annoyed with you too. Hopefully none of my assumptions are true.

Moving in together is a big deal and it can be tough to transition from just dating to living together. Maybe your growing pains are a sign that you two are not “meant to be” – living together can bring out aspects of your partner that you may not have noticed before. Maybe they’re dealbreakers, maybe not. Or, maybe your growing pains are just normal growing pains. You can’t know until you talk about it.

JK JK October 10, 2012, 11:38 am

What, you mean silently sulking ISN´T the best way to fix relationship issues? :)

Seriously, WCMS.
WHat is with all the LWs saying they deserve to be treated as a princess, or a lady, or whatever???

SarahKat SarahKat October 10, 2012, 12:54 pm

“I imagine you silently sulking and keeping score whenever he does something you don’t like and then passive-aggressively taking it out on him later. I imagine you walking around naked to try and get his attention when he’s busy doing something else and then pouting when he doesn’t stop everything to tell you how hot you are. I imagine you falling asleep resenting him for not having sex with you instead of just initiating it! I imagine you expecting him to plan elaborate romantic dates and PAYING for them instead of suggesting things to do or taking initiative and planning something yourself.”

This is just what I was thinking, but couldn’t find the right words.

CatsMeow CatsMeow October 10, 2012, 1:06 pm

You found better words. :) I looooove your comment.

avatar 6Napkinburger October 10, 2012, 7:35 pm

You and I tend to be on the same page but I don’t think she sounds bratty. I understand feeling crappy when it seems he isn’t as attracted to youand you’re putting it all out there for him to oggle (maybe its not PC and I know it’s totally normal, but it doesn’t feel great at the time). I even get the paying part — it’s not the money, it’s the “date-i-ness” of it. My ex and I even shared a credit card account and when we went out on “Dates” he’d always “pay with the card” — and it felt way nicer than when we used to split the bill. And occassionally he’d pay on his own credit card, and it felt especially special — like we weren’t old farts but like we were “Dating” again. I get that. It isn’t about being entitled — it’s about feeling special.

And what’s up with people thinking that getting treated “like a woman/lady” is always immature and entitled? I damn well think I should be treated like a lady — I have sufficient respect for myself that he should have it too. That Doesn’t mean that he always must open doors or pay but ‘m ok with being gendered. I like being a girl, being a woman. I see nothing immature about expecting and demanding (in that you wouldn’t accept otherwise) being treated like one. That doesn’t mean I’m a pretty pretty princess and he has to bend to my whim. But it does mean that I like when he offers his arm when I’m wearing heels. I like when my BF orders for me at restaurants (after I tell him exactly what I want, and usually clarify it to the waiter). I like when the guys pays at the beginning of a relationship or as a way to indicate that it is a special night. I like getting flowers. I want a guy who can handle those types of things without it carrying over into expectations of education, career and family. . We can be equal while being gendered. Yes, I want it both ways and I’m ok with that — I’ll find a man who wants to same.

And I’ll treat him like a man. Whatever that means to him and me. There is nothing inherent in wanting to be treated “like a woman” that means that you are entitled or bratty. Of course there’s a mutuality to it. You could just as easily declare that you want to be treated “like a person” but no one would assume you had no intention of reciprocating. I buy presents for him and pay half of a dumb cable package for sports that i don’t care about and go see dumb movies, and let him order the wine even though right before hand he always asks me what we should get because I know more about it. It’s a balance of traditional roles that make us feel good and modern views about equality and mutuality.

Wanting to be treated like a woman doesn’t necessarily mean wanting to be treated like a bratty little princess.

avatar 6Napkinburger October 11, 2012, 9:18 am

I meant “pay” with the card (not quotes on the whole thing)– as in, even though we were splitting the bill eventually, it felt like he was paying/treating.

avatar lemongrass October 10, 2012, 11:12 am

It sounds like there is something going on inside his head. Maybe he’s struggling at work/ with family, etc. and his girlfriend hasn’t bothered to ask him whats wrong.

The sex in a relationship is never the same frequency all the time. I certainly can’t say that my husband and I do it X number of times a month because it changes all the time due to stress, time constraints, whatever. To expect it to is expecting way too much of your partner. He gets to say no the same as you do, although it sounds like you haven’t even tried to ask him.

Your self esteem should not come from whether or not your boyfriend (or other men) “drool” over you. Maybe try covering up your cleavage and impressing him with your brain, it is the biggest sex organ.

You need to start talking to him. Ask him if anything is bothering him. Tell him something cool you learned that day at your new pottery class/yoga class/social meet up. Ask a girl in your class out to coffee or to study sometime. But for god’s sake don’t strut around naked expecting him to drop everything to have sex with you or look around at other men instead of voicing your opinion. No wonder he talks to you like an idiot- you’re acting like one.

SixtyFour SixtyFour October 10, 2012, 11:19 am

Both you and your boyfriend need to have a serious “come to jesus” conversation about the state of your relationship. You are not happy with how the relationship is going, and if he is constantly snappy, rude, and disinterested in you, it’s pretty clear that he is not happy either. Maybe he’s frustrated that you want to always be treated like a princess. Maybe he’s frustrated that he’s only working one day a week and feels like a loser sitting at home all the time and is lonely. Maybe he just doesn’t like you anymore. Maybe he’s a cheating, lieing, dbag. I have no idea. But he can tell you, or the way in which he acts when you have a serious talk should be an indication.

the_optimist the_optimist October 10, 2012, 11:24 am

Okay, I don’t know if this “like a lady” stuff is clouding your judgment about other things. I can’t be certain, because you seem to have impossibly high standards, and I’ve often found a correlation between people with crazy standards and people who exaggerate. Could you possibly be doing this?

Either way, treating your significant other like an idiot is completely inexcusable.You need to talk to him if you don’t feel you’re being treated the way you deserve. And by “deserve” I mean being treated the way any other human being deserves to be treated– with basic respect. Not like a princess or a lady or whatever else you’ve read, but like the person–PERSON– your boyfriend loves and cares for and moved in with.

And if you’re looking for him to put his phone away or pay a little extra attention or ogle or whatever you need to pipe up. Sit him down and just speak to him.

KKZ KKZ October 10, 2012, 12:04 pm

Best Gravatar Ever. Please keep coming back and commenting so I can have a daily dose of Gizmo. :)

the_optimist the_optimist October 10, 2012, 12:14 pm

Ha! Glad I’m not the only Gremlins-kind-of-obsessed commenter! :)

KKZ KKZ October 10, 2012, 12:55 pm

I had a small stuffed toy Gizmo growing up. It was given to me when I was really young and had no idea about the movie, but someone had obviously told me he was a gremlin because I called him Gremli. So not only is he cute as hell, I get all sorts of childhood warm-fuzzies when I see him. :)

avatar Recovering Lurker October 10, 2012, 11:38 am

LW, you seem to have built up a huge fantasy of what living with someone and romance is supposed to be like. But that’s just it – a fantasy. Relationships change over time, it’s not going to exactly the same as when you first started going out a few years later. Although that’s not a reason to ignore you that much, it could count to some of the dissonance between your thoughts and reality.

You say you haven’t got any lady friends anymore, i’d say talk to some of the ladies on your course if there are any. Your boyfriend might be resenting you for pinning everything on him. It seems like you get all of your confidence and self worth by how much he’s drooling over you / giving attention to you and friends would help to build your confidence again after moving away from your friends.

Last thing – communicate! If your feeling neglected, tell him. If it was a special occasion, how was he supposed to know if you don’t tell him. He might have some problems with you as well, since you moved in that have been have getting in the way of things that he might have been keeping to himself because you seem like you wouldn’t take criticism well.

JK JK October 10, 2012, 12:39 pm

With the attitude LW seems to have, I´m guessing having moved isn´t the only reason she doesn´t have any friends.

bagge72 bagge72 October 10, 2012, 11:41 am

LW, it seems like you two might have moved in with each other very early in the relationship, and you really didn’t know each other well enough, so now that you have had some time together, he is finding things out about you that he thinks is annoying, and being a dick about handling it, and he has also gotten comfortable really quick with the living situation, and you are more of just roommate to him now. You need to talk to him about what’s bothering you, but you have to word it in a much better way than in your letter, you have to not make it all about how a lady is suppose to be treated blah blah blah, but really let him know how you are feeling, and how you loved it the way things were at first, and give him a chance to explain what might be going on with him.

avatar rachel October 10, 2012, 12:08 pm

WBS – nice succinct summary

bagge72 bagge72 October 10, 2012, 3:52 pm

So close to IBS!

SarahKat SarahKat October 10, 2012, 12:27 pm

So many issues with this letter. So first off, you changed your relationship by moving in together….and you’re upset that your relationship changed by moving in together. Erm….what did you think would happen?

You live together! Of course he’s not going to jump you every time you’re naked, because if you’re like a lot of couples, you see each other naked A LOT. Do you have any idea how many times sex would have to happen in day if had to happen every time someone was naked? No one would have jobs or hobbies or get groceries, they would just be too busy jumping each other. Also, remember that episode of Seinfeld where Jerry’s girlfriend kept staying naked and it went from “sexy naked” to “not sexy naked”? Living together does that kind of. My boyfriend saw me shovel frosted mini wheats in my mouth straight from the box this morning half naked (which half is for YOU to decide!). Is that hot LW? Should he have sexed me because I was inhaling mini wheats like mini wheats would never ever exist again?

Also this, “I understand that we are far past the honeymoon stage, but a man can never stop treating his woman, well, like a woman.” bugs me sooooooooooooooooo hard. Please please please please do not call a man paying for meals and getting horny eyes “treating you like HIS woman”. No no no no no. Do not pass go, do not complain about him not opening the door for you with a rose in his teeth anymore, do not collect $200. Do not put that label on women. Your version of being “treated like a woman” could be VERY different from mine. I personally, do not like men to pay for my meals and, instead of begrudgingly accepting to split meals with my boyfriend, I actually prefer it. I also don’t like to be referred as “HIS woman” unless we’re doing a caveman/cavewoman themed couple’s costume for a Halloween party (which is a moot example because I would totally want to be a whoolly mammoth if we’re going with that anyway).” Does this mean my vagina fell off? Or do I have to give it back to some vagina supervisor?

So, not only that, I’ve noticed a theme here:

“We were at the restaurant and HE GOT aggravated at me for some reason…”

“This made me feel like HE DIDN’T want to take me out ..”

“HE GET’S so fucking aggravated and snappy when I don’t ….”

“HE TALKS to me like an idiot.”

“HE RARELY ever asks me anymore.”

“but HE DOESN’T show it anymore.”

…Do you know what this letter is missing? Personal accountability. It’s all “HE DID this TO ME”. My favorite is “He got aggravated at me for some reason”. LOL. I do have to admire how you side stepped that so hard. For some reason? You had no part in it? You were just there staring deeply into his eyes, cherishing his presence and this date and he, unprovoked, became frustrated with you? You have to actively take part in repairing your relationship with this guy, and the first step of that is taking personal responsibility.

The other part is having a reasoned and logical discussion about it. There is a lot of repressed frustration in this letter (he is in paramedic school ONCE a week, and this REALLY bothers me, etc) and I feel like you are either not communicating it to him, or not communicating it to him effectively. Now, I do think a guy should never treat a woman like she’s an idiot (kind of like a woman should never treat a man like he’s a romance novel hero, but does he know that’s how that makes you feel? If he hurts your feelings when he talks to you a certain way and with what he talks about, tell him how you would prefer to be talked to. Make it about what you need. Do you wish he would initiate sex more? Ask him to. Do you wish he would pay more attention to you? Tell him that’s what you need. DO NOT say to him “Any other guy would like to treat me like a lady”. If you start comparing him to other men, or just wishing that he would turn into a different man, it wont work.

Now if you do ask for these things in a calm manner without resentment and he still doesn’t do them, then yeah, he’s a jerk that you should move on from. But you wont know that unless you communicate effectively, without comparisons and without unrealistic expectations.

CatsMeow CatsMeow October 10, 2012, 12:31 pm

WSKS! WSKS!!! This is so perfect.

Moneypenny Moneypenny October 10, 2012, 1:03 pm

Yes yes yes. Could not have said it better!

avatar Eagle Eye October 10, 2012, 1:04 pm

First of all, amazing response!

Secondly, this reminds of my boyfriend watching me put on clothes after my shower and generally getting ready for the day (not sexily, nothing happens sexily before coffee)…and saying, kind of dazed that when he was 15 years old, the idea of living with a girl, one who he could see naked almost all of the time would have been an unbelievably fantasy for him, but after having lived with me for over a year, it just really wasn’t that exciting anymore, just kind of meh.

It’s also kind of freeing that sometimes you two can decide that you’re going to remember that you’re lovers and that sometimes you can decide to screw that and just wolf down a burrito.

avatar Addie Pray October 10, 2012, 4:15 pm

Damn, woman. You are on fire. I call dibs on being SK’s No. 1 fan (and lover/stalker)!

SarahKat SarahKat October 10, 2012, 7:17 pm

Ok, but watch out before the stalkER becomes the stalkEE…

Every breath you take
And every move you make
Every bond you break
Every step you take
Ill be watching you

Every single day
And every word you say
Every game you play
Every night you stay
Ill be watching you

Oh, cant you see
You belong to me
Now my poor heart aches
With every step you take

Every move you make
Every vow you break
Every smile you fake
Every claim you stake
Ill be watching you

Since youve gone, Ive been lost without a trace
I dream at night, I can only see your face
I look around but its you I cant replace
I feel so cold and I long for your embrace
I keep crying baby, baby please

Oh, cant you see
You belong to me
Now my poor heart aches
Every step you take

Every move you make
Every vow you break
Every smile you fake
Every claim you stake
Ill be watching you

Every move you make
Every step you take
Ill be watching you
Ill be watching you

Every breath you take
Every move you make
Every bond you break
Every step you take
(Ill be watching you)

Every single day
Every word you say
Every game you play
Every night you stay
(Ill be watching you)

Every move you make
Every vow you break
Every smile you fake
Every claim you stake
(Ill be watching you)

Every single day
Every word you say
Every game you play
Every night you stay
(Ill be watching you)

Every breath you take
Every move you make
Every bond you break
Every step you take
(Ill be watching you)

Every single day
Every word you say
Every game you play
Every night

Ok…that is a much longer song than I thought it was.

avatar demoiselle October 10, 2012, 12:30 pm

The BFs behavior with the phone and talking to the LW like she is stupid sounds contemptuous. Anytime contempt begins to enter a relationship, it is in trouble (IMHO). I think counseling is in order.

Kate B. Kate B. October 10, 2012, 12:46 pm

Believe me, I love a gentleman. I love it when a man treats me well and gives me respect. I also love it when he opens doors and holds my chair. Is this what you mean by being treated like a lady? But, if you want a man to pull out his courtly manners, you must be worthy of it. I’m curious, how did you respond when these other men “checked you out” at dinner? My idea of being a lady is to ignore the stares of other men while you are out with yours. When you make yourself worthy of respect, you will receive it. Having said that, though, he is also at fault. Focusing his attention on his cell phone during dinner is just rude. Snapping at you and treating you like an idiot is not acceptable. But this may tie in to a lack of respect on his part. You need to figure that out, and the only way to do that is to talk to him.

Now, I have some more questions: When was the last time you did something solely for him, just because he would enjoy it? Told him that you appreciate him for no reason except to have him hear you say it? Teach him how you want to be treated, and if he doesn’t step up, well, then he is not the man for you. No one likes to be with a taker. Maybe if you give a little more, you will get a little more.

avatar GatorGirl October 10, 2012, 6:58 pm

Yes!

avatar SweetPeaG October 10, 2012, 12:53 pm

While many of the comments have called the LW a spoiled brat/princess, I do have to give her some of the benefit of the doubt. She is hurt, confused, and probably young. I (for one) do not always present myself in the greatest of lights when I’m worried or upset.

I think *some* of this can be traced back to that whole “languages of love” theory. It sounds like the LW needs to be told she is attractive and desired on a regular basis. I once told my fiance that “men fall in love with their eyes and women with their ears”. I know that this is not neccessarily true for everyone- but it has always been true for me. I like to hear nice things… I can’t help it. Thankfully, he listens well and has always complimented me. We’ve been together for about a year and a half (I guess we are still technically in the honeymoon stage?)… but he still tells me that I’m hot on a regular basis. He still notices when I wear something nice. He still tells me I’m an amazing cook, that I’m sweet, and that I’m funny. He makes me feel great when I’ve gotten a raise at work or stuck to a work out routine. He builds me up… and it’s awesome! The LW may just need to be verbally told that she’s appreciated and desired!

Granted, she is going about it all wrong. LW, sometimes you have to GIVE to GET! Do you ever tell your boyfriend that he’s handsome? Do you make him feel good for accomplishments in his life? Do you ever initiate sexy time? Do you ever cook him a really nice meal or offer to take him out to his favorite restaurant? He may be feeling just as under appreciated as you. Relationships need to work both ways! While I understand that you want to feel valued… guess what, he does too!

However, there is no excuse for some of the disrespectful behavior he is showing… such as phone during dinner out or talking to you like you’re an idiot. You do need to find a way to call him out on it. Maybe he doesn’t know he’s doing it. If he’s open to making some changes, that’s a great sign.

Best of luck! I hope you can take some of the crticism on here as CONSTRUCTIVE criticism and work to change things for the better.

avatar Meredith October 10, 2012, 8:48 pm

You sound like you’re sitting on one big giant mound of resentment right now. An outsider looking in on your relationship would see this: GF pouting, sulking and keeping score of wrongs. BF whipping out his phone while rolling his eyes thinking to himself “Great, she’s acting bitchy, what did I do this time” And it seems like there’s zero communication.
Girl, relationships are not all fun and games. I wish. I’ve been with my husband for 7 yrs and you can bet your ass he’s not drooling over my naked body when I get out of the shower and jumping my bones every second I get. And when I’m not 8 months pregnant like I am right now, guys check me out a lot too. But who cares. So you’re pretty, big deal. Those guys checking us out don’t have to put up with our asses day in and day out. Your bf and my husband deserve kudos bc they DO put up with us every day. Our bad moods, our ugly days, our whiny rants, our weird quirks. After the honeymoon phase is over, shit gets real. And the couples who make it are the ones who push through and decide to treat each other with the definition of love: Love is patient, love is kind, love does not BOAST (guys are always checking me out, Im in school 5 days a wk, him only one, etc) love does not envy, love doesn’t keep record of wrong doing (basically your whole letter is all one big scoreboard of all the shit he’s done wrong since moving in together), it isn’t self seeking (I deserve to be treated well bc I’m a lady and he’s my man), It isn’t easily angered (could you be any more angry & resentful toward him?), love always trusts (is he cheating on me?)’ always persevered, always hopes….
Obviously i was paraphrasing but hopefully you can see what my intent was in comparing the definition of love toward what you are currently offering your bf and what your thoughts are toward him. I understand you feel hurt and rejected by your bf. But instead of blaming him for everything and making him out to be the bad guy, please take the time to really understand the role you’ve played in this. Honestly it sounds like he’s shut down and has shut you out emotionally in response to the negative vibes you’re putting out there. Believe me, you can’t have all this resentment floating around in your head toward him and him not sense it. So put your pride to the side and talk to him. Sit him down and explain that you’ve been feeling hurt and rejected and it’s making you feel angry and you can sense anger and frustration on his part. Then tell him you love him and you want to make a conscious effort to be kind, patient, considerate to him, because he deserves it. Tell him you’re sorry for the part you’ve played in creating the tension in your house. Yes, that’s right. Be the bigger person, extend the olive branch. There is no room for stupid pride when it comes to love: GIVE HIM the type of love you wish to receive. I promise you, if you put the effort in (and real effort, not effort for a couple hours that vanishes at the first sign grouchiness from him or whatever) then he will respond in kind. He will chase you around the house because you show him your inner beauty and not just the outer. Real love is really hard, so be willing to put in the hard work to get it where you want it to be. Stop playing the blame game. If you guys keep up this non communicating, “it’s your fault not mine” stuff up, your relationship is doomed. Good luck!!

bittergaymark bittergaymark October 10, 2012, 10:04 pm

Bah. Now wonder more and more men are going gay all the time… Seriously… Wah Wah Wah. I’m so special. Wah wah wah. Everybody wants to bang me… Wah Wah Wah. We always split the check.

Ladies. News-fucking-flash. You want equal rights and equal pay? Then start picking up the blasted tab more often without constantly whining about it. I hear this petty bullshit from so many foolish women in my life who are always just “baffled” as to why are constantly dumped… Far too many people like this LW seemingly want the perks of being a man — but none of the drawbacks. Seriously. Get over yourself. Enough with the constant need to be validated materially for your looks. News-fucking-flash… the best way to to do that is to fucking move to Vegas and just be a fullblown whore.

PS: The line: “he got aggravated at me for some reason” is so transparent. It’s code for: “I totally said something to set him off — and it would make me look bad to say what it is, so I’m going to be deliberately vague here and hope no one notices…” God knows if he was completely in the wrong here, we’d have heard all about it…

End of Rant. (Shitty week here, two shoots got pushed together so I worked 32 hours straight on two different sets and just about had a breakdown… Goodnews? Madonna goes on at 10 and I have tickets!!)

SweetsAndBeats SweetsAndBeats October 11, 2012, 1:32 am

I still maintain my theory that you are actually Madonna’s awesome alter ego.

And ranting aside, I do agree with your main points here: Obviously LW’s idea of what a relationship should be is no longer what’s happening in reality. It’s up to her to change the circumstances, be that via talking to her boyfriend (to deal with the fighting), trying out a new flavor of spice in her relationship (to remedy the sex issue), and/or moving on from the relationship. And your P.S.? Completely agree on that point. Time to take some responsibility for where you and your relationship have ended up, LW. Takes two to tango.

avatar EricaSwagger October 11, 2012, 11:18 pm

Actually BGM brings up an excellent point.
I’ll definitely take 73 cents to the dollar if men will always pay for my food and outings, and always drive. Has anyone put this together before? If you think about it, demanding equal pay AND free dinners is like really terrible of us. Men of the world, I apologize for my gender.
To clarify, this is not sarcasm.

Dear Wendy Wendy October 12, 2012, 5:28 am

Um, not every woman is interested in dating a man (or interested in having him pay for everything).

avatar laxhaxtax October 11, 2012, 8:13 am

He’s cheating or about to do so. I read an article about how cheaters make excuses for their behavior. They start arguments over nothing, constantly on texts, phone or computer, lose interest is sex etc. He is interested in someone else and you are in the way because you live with him. I think maybe a peek at his phone will give you some idea. If anyone on this site says looking at each other’s emails, texts etc is wrong they aren’t in a healthy relationship. I have a facebook page that my husband can see anytime he wants (he says there is too much garbage on facebook and has no interest in being on) and we share an email account. I know where he is every day and the same for him. We don’t spend every minute together but we don’t hide from each other either. Something is definitely fishy here.

avatar Kelly L. December 1, 2012, 12:50 pm

“If anyone on this site says looking at each other’s emails, texts etc is wrong they aren’t in a healthy relationship.”

This is one of the wackiest things I’ve ever read and I keep hoping it’s a double negative mistake or something.

avatar MiMi October 11, 2012, 8:14 am

Not sure why folks are jumping all over the LW here. Wanting a partner who adores you is not reprehensible, and it sounds like this guy was delivering *before they moved in together*.
LW, it’s hard to tell the time frames for what you’ve presented, but it seems quite short. In your letter you didn’t mention anything that remains a common ground or excellent connection between the two of you. I think if it’s stinky this soon, then it’s not going to work. Getting comfortable doesn’t mean disrespecting your partner’s feelings or acting like a prick. It sounds like your guy’s in the process of checking out of the relationship already. Sucks, but I think you should move back out and move on.

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