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  • Stuck in a Rut! REALLY BADLY!!

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    Old 06-05-2005, 06:45 AM   #1
    Ant2005
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    Stuck in a Rut! REALLY BADLY!!

    My girlfriend and i have been dating for 18 months, im 21 and she is 20, we were friends for a few years before hand and are close and get on great. One HUGE problem exists though, she is VERY VERY stubborn, in the 18 months i think she has apologised maybe two or three times about things. Whenever i do something wrong she milks it and we end up not spending the day together and starting over the next day. I always like to talk about things but she likes space.
    It becomes hard because whenever she does something wrong she wont say sorry and she will turn it round. So that im the bad guy, or if she cant turn it round then im stupid for bringing it up etc. I Have talked to her about her stubborness, and ive told her that they are MY feelings, not hers, and asked for her to listen, She will listen and then turn it round. I feel really upset about this because she is ALWAYS RIGHT and are relationship is suffering because of it. She is SO independant that her solution to my suffering is always "well just break up with me then" or "we can stay friends" or even "were not meant to be together". I hate this because the first solution should be to try right? but she wont. I ask if she loves me and she says im her rock! and i know she wants to be close and friends forever so i dont question that. i just feel im maybe too bothered by things. I need some advice that isnt too unrealistic. i know i need to stick up for myself more and be stubborn too. be please give me your suggestions assuming that you too would not win an argument with this girl EVER!!! she is the king of independance and stubborness. HELP ME PLEASE!!! i love her so much!!

     
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    Old 06-05-2005, 07:57 AM   #2
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    Re: Stuck in a Rut! REALLY BADLY!!

    To start I should say that my advice is probably influenced by the fact that my personality sounds quite similar to your GF's. I'm fiercely independent, very strong-willed, impatient, especially when it comes to needing to reassure someone or if someone is acting clingy, and pretty stubborn. I've never longed for a boyfriend or more friends when I didn't have one, as I'm perfectly happy, sometimes even happier, enjoying my own company than being around other people. I'm about as close to the opposite of needy as anyone I know, and prone to argue more than I should, so I tend to react like your girlfriend to conflicts (i.e. saying, well, I'd be just fine without you, I don't need you, so why don't you just leave if you don't like it). I'd like to think I do a better job than your GF at admitting when I'm wrong and apologizing for my mistakes, but I know I still have a lot of room for improvement in that regard.

    OK, so since I have a pretty good idea where she's coming from, hopefully my advice will help at least a little. First, I think she, not you, is primarily responsible for the problems you describe, but there are definitely things you can do to improve the situation or at the very least, improve how you respond to her behavior. Like me, your GF is probably someone who operates according to logic and intellect rather than instincts and emotions, so I'd bet she has little patience or respect for people she sees as oversensitive and whining about their feelings. With that in mind, keep bringing up actions that disturb you, but try to get through to her rational side by being specific and keeping your complaints grounded in factual details rather than speaking in terms of vague feelings and emotions.

    Also, try to be upbeat and rephrase complaints as requests for her to do you a favor and help you out--that way she can go along with what you say without having to admit that she was wrong. When you want to bring up an issue that concerns you or request that she modify a particular behavior (she'll definitely respond better if you deal with specifics rather than generalities), try to say something like, "I'd really like if you wouldn't mind helping me with dishes tonight" rather than "You don't ever help me around the kitchen!" One of the more disturbing things you describe, which I hope I don't do, is that she turns everything around on you when you bring up something that bothers you...that is the issue I would try to deal with first using the kind of positive, upbeat approach I outlined above. If you phrased a concern of yours to her as a complaint (instead of a neutral request in which you appeal to her pride and empower her to compromise without feeling like she's lost a battle), she is likely to feel attacked and put on the defensive...so rather than considering your request, she'll end up ignoring your comments in her instinctive urge to lash out in response to feeling attacked.

    Unfortunately, whether or not she responds positively to these kinds of changes and efforts on your part is out of your control. The only thing you can change is your behavior and your responses to her behavior, and so I hope you will get some helpful advice in that regard on this thread. It does sound like you might be more clingy and/or needy than she would like, going by her comments about possibly breaking up whenever you disagree. I'm actually a little concerned that she wants out of the relationship but doesn't have the nerve to come right out and say it. When I've been in those situations in the past, I haven't had enough nerve either, so I usually moved on to another guy without formally breaking up with the last one or just started being a pain and hoped my BF eventually lost interest and left me alone. Now that I have more experience and maturity, I know it's a lot easier, more respectable, and more considerate to be honest and upfront when you want to end a relationship, but many people still have trouble cutting things off, so they try to find ways to drive their partners to leave or break up with them.

    In response to your last few questions and statements in the above post, I really wouldn't worry about winning arguments with her (in fact, you'd be better off trying to minimize or eliminate arguments), but it sounds like you could definitely benefit by being a little thicker-skinned, less dependent on her and your relationship, and also more independent and assertive. I hope I'm wrong about her losing interest and possibly wanting out of the relationship, but if that is the case, it is most likely because she doesn't think you have the strong will necessary to successfully stand up to her personality and not be completely steamrolled. Women like she and I have such strong personalities that not every man can handle, challenge, satisfy, and sufficiently intrigue us...some men are better off with more traditional, deferent, and adaptable women, though they may not see that at the time they're infatuated with a fiery, strong-willed woman who's increasingly dominating them. Independent and assertive women want a man who shares their qualities, and I for one have never found guys who are too easygoing, too eager to please, or too much of a pushover to be appealing. I want a strong, confident man who is secure enough with himself and content enough being independent and on his own that he doesn't need me and never becomes clingy or overly dependent on me.

    It's never a bad idea for anyone to try to become more comfortable with themselves, more secure and confident in their views and opinions, more sure of themselves and less willing to bend over backwards to please others. Most importantly, I think everyone would benefit from learning to prize and cherish their independence and enjoy their own company so that the idea of being alone is appealing, rather than scary. Therefore when you commit to a partner, you're doing it because you want to, although you feel your life is content and complete on your own, and not because you feel like you need someone to make your life complete and/or are scared and miserable about facing life without a partner. The former attitude is an outstanding foundation for a marriage, but people who go into marriage because they hate being alone and were eager to settle down ASAP tend to have more difficulties down the line. It's really crucial to be happy and confident with yourself and your life as an independent person before you will be able to be a good partner to someone else. Anyone who needs someone else's support and validation in order to feel that their life is fulfilling will likely end up in one bad relatoinship after another people who prey on and take advantage of their desperate efforts to avoid being alone. Happiness really has to come from the inside out if you are to have a chance of finding and building a stable, long-term partnership...and even if you don't find someone right away, increased confidence and independence will make you much more desirable to the opposite sex as well as much less likely to put up with anything less than the kind, respectful, and caring treatment you deserve from a lover.

     
    Old 06-05-2005, 08:45 AM   #3
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    Re: Stuck in a Rut! REALLY BADLY!!

    Ant2005, its sounds like you are involved in a classic case where you are doing all the "giving" and she is doing all the "taking" and giving nothing in return. Doesn't it seem funny that no matter what you do she's never happy with you? Why is that? This goes far beyond just stubborness though...this girl seems to have a very negative, self-centered, selfish, man-hating attitude. The thing here is you seem to be very willing to put forth effort and try to make things work and she is just being childish and cut-throat about it. When she feels that she is always right and won't even pay any mind to what you tell her about your side of the story, we have a big problem...That problem is that the lines of communication have broken down and you are constantly apologizing for something you didn't do.

    Listen, I can tell you really like this girl and you want to make things work between you two, but is that really what SHE wants? I doubt she's into this half as much as you are. Her making statements like "just breakup with me" and "we can stay friends" are a big enough problem all on their own and its down right ridiculous really. She trying to push you as far as she can to see how much control she can have over you and how much butt kissing you will do to keep her happy...Don't do it!!! You have to stand your ground!! Enough is enough!!

    I'm not gonna lie to you and tell you that if you stand up to her and stop taking her bullcrap that she is going to be ok with it and you'll live happy ever after...actually, the opposite is probably true. Since she seems to only be half-hearted about this relationship anyway, she will probably just use your standing up to her as yet another thing to complain about. See the games women can play when they want to get rid of you? But seriously, if she decided to walk out on you because you showed some assertiveness towards her, then JUST LET HER GO! Do you really want to spend the rest of your days constantly trying to please someone that doesn't want to be pleased? Stand your ground, be a man, and she will just have to live with you getting some respect for a change or she can just walk out...if she leaves then its her loss and she's actually doing you a favor. Then you can go meet someone with a more positive and caring personality.

    Remember...You want to be with Miss Right...not Miss ALWAYS Right...Beauty fades but NEGATIVE ATTITUDES LAST FOREVER!

     
    Old 06-05-2005, 10:15 AM   #4
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    Re: Stuck in a Rut! REALLY BADLY!!

    She doesn't sound to be very serious about you; I wouldn't even try if I were you, full stop !

    ... & I love what lamotta said: - Beauty fades but NEGATIVE ATTITUDES LAST FOREVER!

    Good words.

     
    Old 06-05-2005, 10:24 AM   #5
    Ant2005
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    Re: Stuck in a Rut! REALLY BADLY!!

    thanks for the posts, firstly we have talked about breaking up before, i have even done something which i find hard and left her alone for a few days, texts calls everything. she never wants to actually break up. she is just so independant her life is complete with OR without me and i dont take a very high priority. her dad killed himself when she was 12, she is now 20 and she has a mother who is very protective and gives her daughter anything and everything. i believe (know) she does love me in her own way, but she has had several boyfriends before and she has left all of them. i think maybe she fears getting close, i honestly dont believe she wants out, we've been there but end up wanting to try again. the arguments arent frequent. its just the stubborness of always being right. some might not think this is a big problem and its not huge, but im constantly getting trapped with my own feelings and its pushing me towards other people for comfort, i kinda feel bad coz i want to be will other girls now. yet i still DO love my girlfriend and dont want to hurt her. weird i know. just want her to open her heart once in a while. maybe she is scared of someone leaving her again? like her dad, so she puts on a hard front and puts up an emotional wall? im guessing, please help

     
    Old 06-05-2005, 04:59 PM   #6
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    Re: Stuck in a Rut! REALLY BADLY!!

    Ant2005, I understand that there are probably some very serious reasons why she acts the way she does with you and men in general...I'm more than certain that what happened to her dad caused a lot of trauma for her...its quite a shame actually that she had to go through something like that. Her mom isn't helping things much by spoiling her all this time either. I have to say that there can be a million and one reasons why someone acts the way they do, but here is where you have to draw the line. You feel like you want to be her Superman and come save her from all that, but the reality is you cannot.

    First thing, you are NOT responsible for what happened to her and shouldn't stand for being mistreated because of it. Your role, really, is to be compassionate and understanding yet demanding of a mutual respect. You are her boyfriend, not her psychiatrist or her punching bag. It's not really your place to try and help her sort out the problems of her past. If you try to change her, you will only make things worse. That's why you gotta remember that when you meet someone, they are who they are...that's it...you should expect no more than that.

    I think maybe she has a lot of issues she needs to deal with before she can fully appreciate and respect someone like you and a mutual relationship. If she hasn't already, she should probably seek therapy to help with this...I would suggest this a couple of times to her, but if she seems resistant to the idea then just drop it. Accept the fact that SHE has to be willing to get help and you have to support her in her decisions. Unfortunately, thats about all you can do. If she doesn't want help then you will have to decide for yourself if you can continue on this way.

     
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