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Bobby42's avatar

I am no longer attracted to my boyfriend, now what?

Asked by Bobby42 (102points) May 18th, 2010

My boyfriend and I have been together for over 2 years. When we first got together we were in highschool. We followed each other to college, but once there I felt we were headed in two different directions. We have always been very open to getting married after college, and we even got promise rings over a year ago. But recently I have felt unconnected from him, I am no longer sexually attracted to him, and there are very few times where I look at him and find him attractive. I have thought that it maybe because he doesn’t pull his weight in school, and it bothers me that he is not trying to better himself. I just don’t know. Regardless I need help- I have a history of cheating on my boyfriends but him I dont want to do that to. I have already turned down 3 different guys at my school, and that was a big deal for me considering my cheating history. Help me, please!

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29 Answers

Seaofclouds's avatar

If you are no longer attracted to him and are bothered by his actions, why stay with him? Do you hope that one day you will wake up and find him attractive again or that one day he will change and have more drive and ambition to do good in school? Have you talked to him about this at all? Does he know you are bothered by the fact that he isn’t trying to better himself? If you want this relationship to work out, you have to talk to him about how you are feeling. He has to know that you are bothered by his actions. He could be completely happy with the way things are going for him in college and not want to change anything. At that point, it’s up to you to decide if you want to continue a relationship with him.

CMaz's avatar

Life goes on. And so will you.

legenwaitforitdairy's avatar

It’s highly probable that you’re just in a slump. Relationships have a tendency of going up and down. Give yourself more time.

Coloma's avatar

This is an opportunity for you to learn one of the most important relationship lessons of life.

Never stay with someone beyond the natural course of the relationships shelf life.

I am not saying jump ship at the 1st little bump in the road because often there is much to be gained with patience and communication and honoring the natural cycles and rhythems of relationship, BUT..if, over a reasonable amount of time, say several months, the situation is at a stalemate, and/or inspite of your best efforts to communicate and resolve an issue your feelings have not changed, it’s time to go. Period.

Cheating is NOT an option….make this a rule with NO EXCUSES!

Take your leave with dignity and integrity.

Being unhappy in a relationship IS a good enough reason to go and the sad truth is many people waste years of their lives preserving the status quo when it would be in everyones best interest to move on.

Never wait for someone to ‘change’ will be waiting a long, long time, if ever.

This is the biggest relationship mistake people make.

My daughter is 22 and in her 1st serious relationship.

So far so good, but I have alway’s told her that if there is something you don’t like about another it will either stay the same or, often, get WORSE as time goes on.

The world is full of people that learn the hard way that you can never change another.

Good luck to you!

Primobabe's avatar

Kudos to you for behaving honorably. If this guy truly loves you and hopes to have a future with you, it would be very wrong to cheat on him while letting him believe that your relationship is strong.

Very few people end up spending their lives with high school sweethearts. As you say, you and your boyfriend are “headed in two different directions.” You’ve both grown and changed.

As long as the two of you attend the same college, it’ll be difficult for you to sort through your situation. Your boyfriend is nearby—physically and emotionally present—and you still have many good feelings about him. It’s not easy to break off a long-term relationship when it continues to permeate your everyday life. Some distance and time apart would be a very, very good thing.

lucillelucillelucille's avatar

Set him free…if he comes back to you,flee ;)

Blackberry's avatar

You move on. You are a human, we don’t stay with the same person for 60+ years unless you felt that was necessary.

marinelife's avatar

Break up with him. If you are no longer feeling the same way, just tell him so and move on. Give back the ring. Tell him your feelings have changed and wish him well.

ucme's avatar

Moving on up, we’re moving on out, got to break free, nothing can stop me.Sounds about right to me.

chamelopotamus's avatar

Something I’ve lived through that will definitely make you appreciate each other more: Take a break, for a week, 2, 3, 4. Youll start to miss having a companion and wont take each other for granted. And youll either get back together realizing he’s not that bad afterall, or realize you miss companionship and find someone more suited to you. You’ll also realize how much of your life was affected by his input (he’ll realize the same thing, how much of his life was affected by your input). Then in your time alone, you’ll automatically readjust to a way of living that is most comfortable with you. Then you’ll be able to approach each other gently, with a new understanding of yourselves and each other, with an open heart, and willing to listen.

Only you two know what you have together, only you two will miss it when its gone, and only you two will save it if you believe its worth saving. If you have that feeling of “I dont feel I have done everything I can to save this love that I love being a part of so much”, then it’s worth saving and you just need to try some new ways of reaching the love inside each other.

If nothing works with this guy, then thats when you know you two dont know how to reach the love inside each other. However it’s worked already, so it can work again. Except this time you both have to reach deeper. You guys didnt reach deep enough the first time and you got bored. If you reach deeper you definitely wont be bored. Thats what I think you want to save, that possibility. Its there, you just have to learn how to access it. You both know whats missing, by how you feel. Spend some time alone so it becomes very clear, and so you can fully accept what you want without any resistence, then…Communicate.

Primobabe's avatar

@marinelife “Break up with him. If you are no longer feeling the same way, just tell him so and move on.” It seems simple but, unfortunately, it isn’t quite that easy. Bobby42 and her boyfriend attend the same college. I’m sure that they have mutual friends, share a common social life, and see each other constantly. It’s very difficult to filter through all of that. As long as they go to school together, a clean break might be impossible.

I met my college sweetheart during my first few months at school. He was a year ahead of me. Over time, I realized that I wasn’t in love with him; I wasn’t physically attracted to him, and I had no romantic feelings for him. But, we stayed together for 3 years (until he graduated). I did like the guy (like a brother or best friend), and we had fun together, so it was too difficult to break up while he was so entangled in my life. I tried, many times, to end the relationship, but we always got back together again. After he’d graduated, I felt free and relieved. I regretted that I hadn’t transferred to another college two years earlier.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

Relationships don’t have to be forever especially early on in life – think of it as a chain made up of links – he’s one of the links until you get to the end of the chain, to the person with whom you will never lose love for.

aprilsimnel's avatar

You’re what, ~20? Let him go. You’re too young to hold yourself to promises you made as a teenager. He probably senses that something’s wrong and would be relieved if things ended.

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marinelife's avatar

@Primobabe It does not make any sense to me that you would rather have transferred schools than broken up with someone.

evandad's avatar

You’re just putting off the inevitable. Send him on his way and play the field for awhile.

zenele's avatar

Post a few questions here, answer in a few threads. Then read a book.

ItalianPrincess1217's avatar

This could go a couple different ways. You could leave him and cut off all ties forever. Move on with your life, date other people, and hopefully find a guy who you’ll always be 100% attracted to even when your old and wrinkled. Or you could take a break from the relationship and see how you feel without him in your life. Time apart sometimes opens your eyes and makes you experience feelings that have been hiding.

Primobabe's avatar

@marinelife I’ve known people who actually move to a different city, and start over again, because it’s too difficult to leave a long-term relationship. These situations usually aren’t black and white. Even if someone knows that there’s no real future, he/she truly likes the other person and enjoys the companionship. Breaking up is a grieving process, and it’s too easy to stop the pain by returning to something comfortable and familiar.

“So we beat on, boasts against the current, borne back ceaselessly into the past.”

perspicacious's avatar

Be respectful of both yourself and your boyfriend. Be honest with him and leave. Cheating cheapens you yourself and is a horrible thing to do to your partner. Don’t do that. Please don’t do that.

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SamIAm's avatar

talk to him and see if he feels the same way. maybe it’s time for a little break… which could be totally healthy, especially if it would help prevent cheating.

Disc2021's avatar

@chamelopotamus Highly, highly agreed.

I hope no one takes offense from this (I really dont mean it in such a way) but it’s no wonder divorce rates are what they are when so many people have adopted the “Bored? Get rid of it” mentality.

Primobabe's avatar

@chamelopotamus ”[I]t’s no wonder divorce rates are what they are when so many people have adopted the “Bored? Get rid of it” mentality.”

First, these people aren’t married; they’re college students, and they’re dating. That’s the time of life when people should be evolving, maturing, and changing from the children that they were into the adults that they’ll become. Divorce is sad and unfortunate, but it doesn’t even enter into the equation that this young woman presents.

Second, it’s my opinion that many divorces occur because people don’t listen when their instincts tell them to end a relationship. Feelings are conflicting and often extremely confusing. Or, people believe that the grown-up and honorable thing to do is make a commitment—even if it’s wrong—and follow through. Sometimes, weddings go forward simply because the caterer’s been paid, the invitations are in the mail, and it would be too embarrassing and painful to back out.

Bobby42's avatar

You talk about “these people” as if they have no life experience, and are stupid. But in fact they have had 2 decades of life experience. I have been through 3 divorces in my life time- now granted they weren’t my divorces but I was directly involved, so I know what divorce is like. It sucks and each time it destroys a little bit more of the people involved. But you are right, in my situation I (thank god) don’t even have that added crap. You are also right that college is a time for change, and growth- which is why I am having these problems. I suspect he hasn’t changed, that he is the same person I loved back in highschool, but I know I have changed.
Now everyone here except I think one person has said break up with him- but I know everyone who said that knows that there is more to breaking up then JUST breaking up. So, with that being said why don’t we come up with better solutions, relationship tips, advice, I don’t know but for awhile lets take the whole break up thing out of the picture.
And thanks everyone for responding- I am new to fluthering and still learning how to use it. : )

aprilsimnel's avatar

I reckon that if you don’t care about someone anymore, then it’s unfair to that person to be in a relationship with them when someone else out there might truly love him or her. What if it isn’t about being bored? What if they’ve dated for a while, and she discovered that their values don’t mesh or some other deal-breaker has come up? There has to be a reason for the change in feelings other than boredom. There is always something underneath going on. Every man I’ve ended up breaking it off with has shown some major dealbreaking issue, like not supporting me when I needed their support but expecting me to always be there for them, too emotionally enmeshed with their mothers, or shown some abusive behaviour toward me. I should’ve stayed with such men? No, of course not. Now that I’m older, know myself better and have let go of a lot of things I was taught or “learned” when I was younger that were wrong, I have a better chance of being in a relationship realistically. People change from 0–20 by leaps and bounds, and further still between 20–30 and 40. Young people aren’t usually as mature as all that to know what their deepest values are at 19 or 20, unless they’re preternaturally mature.

So, sure, she should figure out what it is is that keeps her from having loving feelings towards her boyfriend, but it would be wrong for her to keep him in a relationship with her if she honestly doesn’t want him anymore. Let him go to find someone who would want him, is all we’re saying. It hurts to be with someone who doesn’t love you.

Primobabe's avatar

But recently I have felt unconnected from him, I am no longer sexually attracted to him, and there are very few times where I look at him and find him attractive.

The above quote is from your original question, and you’re surprised that people might suggest a breakup? You say that you’re no longer connected to your boyfriend, that he doesn’t appeal to you sexually, and that you don’t even find him physically attractive. Yet, you’re looking for magic tips and advice to fix your relationship? Sorry, but it doesn’t work that way.

Breakups are painful and difficult, especially if you once cared so deeply for someone. Lovers often cling together, just to hold on to whatever love still remains between them.

It sounds as if you and your boyfriend have grown apart, something that happens to most high school sweethearts. Do you truly believe that trying to fall back in love with this man, and convincing yourself that he’s the one for you, will really work out for either of you?

Primobabe's avatar

It’s obvious that you still have strong feelings for your boyfriend, but it’s not clear what those feelings are.

It’s so difficult to be objective about your own romantic relationship. You and your boyfriend are a couple. Short of a breakup and the passage of time, it’s a real challenge to “step outside” of a relationship and base your decisions on facts and reality rather than personal hopes, emotions, bias, and history.

Despite all of that, maybe you could try to consider the following:

Do you still love his man yet no longer like him? Your lives have been interwined for many years, and love is something that’s deep-rooted and struggles to endure. You wrote about how he isn’t achieving in college, which you don’t respect or condone. Is it possible that you have residual feelings of love for him, but that the two of you have simply changed and become incompatible?

Alternatively, do you love and like him, but as a best friend or brother rather than a romantic partner? You’ve already stated that you don’t desire him; you find him unattractive, you don’t want to be physically intimate with him, and you’re tempted to cheat on him. But, do you continue to enjoy his company and have fun spending time with him? Sometimes, people really are better suited to be friends rather than lovers.

Draw a vertical line down the middle of a blank piece of paper. On one side, write everything that’s good about your relationship and the reasons why you’d want to fight for it. Try to avoid looking back at all the good things you’ve shared in the past, which will only distract you. It’s better to focus on today and the future. On the other side of the paper, write the reasons why you might want to break up and move on. Is one list much longer than the other? Does one side have more compelling and convincing reasons? (Then, destroy the piece of paper. Tear it into a hundred little pieces. That sort of thing can be very damaging if anyone else reads it.)

Flip a coin—heads, we stay together; tails, we break up. No, I’m not suggesting that you base a major life choice on a coin toss!!! But, flipping a coin can often get to the bottom of how you really feel. If the result makes you relieved or disappointed, you’ve found some guidance.

Primobabe's avatar

@aprilsimnel I reckon that if you don’t care about someone anymore, then it’s unfair to that person to be in a relationship

I get the sense that Bobby42 cares very much, which is why she’s so conflicted.

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