I saw some signs of depression and things happened to make it worse such as him losing his job, gaining weight, and isolating himself from friends. I try to support him and make him feel better, but I also try to gently let him know that I cannot fix him. I am also very busy with my job, so he guilts me that he feels lonely. He says things like how I am the only good thing in his life, and I make him feel like less of a loser. I think to him these remarks are romantic, but they scare me.
I love him and want to make him happy, but I know that the insecurities he has are not things I can fix, even if I was the world’s greatest girlfriend. When I tell him that if there is something he doesn’t like in his life, he is young and healthy and can change it (i.e., go to school, exercise, job hunt), he gets upset and snaps that he knows it’s his fault and me reminding him doesn’t help. So, my attempts to kind of give a pep talk and empower him backfire. I am turned off by the victim mentality and it’s becoming frustrating, but I don’t want to seem cold.
In addition, we got into a fight because an ex liked one of my pictures on Facebook. It was of a cupcake. Just typing this is embarrassing. I am 24 years old and feel too old to be having a fight about FB relationship drama. He overreacted and said that my ex liking my picture was an offense to him and was like asking, “How does my di*k taste?” I am becoming increasingly embarrassed as I type this. He has never talked like this before, and I told him he sounds controlling and paranoid, and, yes, I called him crazy.
He can be so funny and goofy and fun when we are together, but this person I fought with was such a turn-off. My gut is telling me to flee. I love him and he loves me, but I am not 16 and know love is not enough when something feels wrong. I want a confident, kind, good man. And while my boyfriend is a good man to me, (until this fb fight), I am turned off.
My friends have told me that I can be dismissive of others’ feelings and my first instincts in the past have always been to flee. This time, I really love this man, so I am ignoring my instincts to flee. Is that the right move? — Cooling Off Girlfriend
These are some pretty big red flags you’re talking about: behaving like a depressed person; blaming you for his feeling lonely; depending on you way too much after only six months of dating; and going ballistic over some some ex-boyfriend liking a cupcake picture on Facebook? If you’d been together, say, a couple of years and this kind of behavior was new, then I’d suggest sticking it out for a while. Certainly, if you were married or otherwise committed to each other in a longterm relationship, I’d advise supporting him through whatever it is he’s going through.
But the truth is that, after only six months together, you can’t say that this behavior is unlike him because you’re still getting to know him (especially considering that you met online as opposed to meeting through mutual friends or another way that might give you some added insight into his life). It sounds like he could potentially have some mental issues, perhaps even something he might need medication for — or, at the very least, some talk/behavior therapy to treat. And if that’s the case, no amount of love and support on your end is going to “fix” him if he’s not being proactive about seeking treatment.
Even if it’s just general, run-of-the-mill blues he’s dealing with, he needs to be proactive in making himself feel better. It’s not fair of him to put the onus of responsibility on his girlfriend of six months. It’s not your job to make him happy. And it’s not fair for you to bend over backwards making him feel confident in his relationship with you. If he’s afraid of losing you to an ex-boyfriend, he needs to stop acting like a nut-job.
My advice? Stick it out a few more weeks and if he doesn’t show signs of getting it together, MOA. And if he does get it together but reverts backs to these random acts of weirdness again, apply the “three strikes and he’s out” rule with the whole Facebook debacle being strike one. Two more strikes before your first anniversary and you need to MOA.
If you have a relationship/dating question I can help answer, you can send me your letters at [email protected].