I can understand that he’s too young to be in a relationship and that he’s not ready. He also said he wanted to experience having sex with other girls on his “lads holiday”. I was the first girl he was properly involved with, first relationship, first girl he had sex with. On the other hand, I have experienced having sex with other boys before I was with him, this was also my first relationship.

I’ve been “hanging out” with this guy off and on for two years. Before meeting him I read books on this exact subject. I’ve been married and divorced twice so I wanted to make sure I knew what I was doing if I got involved with a man again. I’m very opened about my feels I always have been. I like that about myself but in the past I’ve also been pushy wanting things to happen right away. Now with this guy I’m “hanging out” with has pulled away a lot in the 2 yrs I’ve been seeing him, but he had always come back. I think it’s because I always gave him his space. Since being married and divorced twice taking things slow was fine with me. Just recently though, I couldn’t help myself and I told him that I loved him. I thought for sure he was going to pull away, but he didn’t not right away anyways. In fact, we talked about making it exclusive. I was so happy because it’s what I had been waiting patiently for two years for. Recently, we had a two year anniversary of when we met so being the person I am I gave him a card. I said a paragraph of very heartfelt things. I knew this would definitely make him pull away from me and I was right. Even though I know when it’s going to happen it still doesn’t make it easy to deal with. I love him and I want him to know this. I want him to know that I accept him for who he is. I feel the only way I’m going to get him to trust me is by letting him have his time away from me. When he comes back he’s different, for instance, he more loving sweeter. I believe him when he says he’s happy with me. He too has been in difficult relationships in the past that broke his heart. Love isn’t meant to go fast. Love takes time. I’m glad it’s going this way even though it’s hard because I came from abusive background and it’s why my marriages ended. This guy inspires me to grow and find myself. I’ve started back to school at 43 yrs old because of his encouragement. I don’t feel I have to be someone I’m not when I’m with him. I feel safe when I’m with him. I want him to feel the same when he’s with me. I feel that’s what true love is all about. I may love him but he’s not my whole world, he’s only part of it.
Hi Lauren, I have a question that is related in a big way, but not too related in others. You mentioned the concept of men doing the pursuing and women doing the recieving. I'm on my 4th Mars Venus book - Mars and Venus on a Date - and I noticed that this is a huge theme in the book. So my question is: What do you do if a guy gives you his number and says "call/text me"? When I first met my ex, I felt like I was pursuing him a bit because this is the way he approached me. We met working on a project, but to build off of our newfound friendship I attempted to flirt and create the opportunity for him to pursue me. We dated for about a year and I thought he could have been the one - until recently when we hit a wall in communicating that I felt I had to end it (since then I've been educating myself through therapy and Mars Venus books!). But, while at the time I never questioned the success/failure in me doing some reaching out, looking back now I'm wondering if that's something I could have done differently? The problem is, I wouldn't know how! It's a tricky situation. What happened was, like I said, he gave me his number (without me asking for it) and said to contact him. So I did and it went well! Then for our first date, from what I remember, I suggested that it would be nice to get to know eachother more. He told me to let him know when I wanted to go out. I pushed back this time and insisted that he should be the one asking me out, but he refused. To refrain from more back and forth, I planned the date. After that he became much more assertive and started asking me out and presenting me with ideas. But I'll be honest, I was a little turned off at his insecurity at first. He later told me he wanted to ask me out but was just very nervous, so I decided not to dwell on it and just appreciate that it worked out despite how it happened. But because I didn't want to do the pursuing, how would I have gotten him to do it?

I think you’re focusing WAY too much on him and what he’s feeling. You’re focusing on the fear you have of losing him rather than focusing on your happiness. You have to ask yourself how you feel about yourself in this relationship as is. Do you feel your confidence, or do you feel insecure? No man is worth being with if you feel insecure. And if you do feel it, you have to change your dynamic and approach so you can get that confidence back. A man LOVES a confident woman, and you’ll feel better about yourself being confident, anyway. The way to get confident and attract him or any other man to you is by focusing on YOURSELF. You need to make sure you’re happy on your own before you can be happy with a man. This doesn’t mean you need to be single to get happy—just have a fulfilling life for yourself outside of a man. Don’t let him be the ONLY valuable thing or person you have in your life. You need to be excited about more in your day than your bf. You have to have other things going for you that make you happy. Once you can sustain happiness without the need of a man, you’ll have your confidence and this will be attractive to other men (and possibly your ex). The key is to not lose the focus on YOU even when you do get into a relationship or the relationship deepens. NEVER lose sight of your happiness. You need to continue having a fulfilling life outside of HIM. Once you start losing that grasp on yourself and get more caught up within the relationship, you’ll start to depend on him for your happiness—and he’ll withdraw again. Even if he withdrew for other reasons, chasing after him as if you can’t live without him will only push him away further. If he is a good man who is emotionally available and TRULY wants you, I promise he will come back. You don’t chase him, you don’t contact him. Let him contact you. Give him the chance to miss you. This can take anywhere from a couple weeks to a year or more. It’s however long it takes him to miss you, IF he truly wants you (took my guy 8 months). In the meantime, you don’t wait on him. You focus on yourself and getting your happiness and confidence. Fill your life with people and hobbies you love. Try new things you haven’t tried before. Change jobs if the one you have makes you miserable. Do what you need to do to give yourself a fulfilling life. Make sure you have your days full of plans so you don’t give yourself the chance to sit and mope about your breakup. That’s not going to help you. You need to show yourself how great life can be, even if he’s not in it. If he never reaches out, then he doesn’t truly want you—and why would you want someone who doesn’t want you as much as you want them? Don’t wait around for him. Focus on you. He will come back if he truly wants you, and you have to continue to focus on yourself even if he does. If he doesn’t come back, you’re going to be fine because you’re nurturing your happiness and confidence. PLEASE don’t lose sight of yourself, ever. It’s your golden ticket to happiness and to a great man who will love and respect you.
He broke up with me a week ago over the phone. We were together for 7 months and had a deep connection. I have not contacted him since. Yesterday I received a text from him explaining why he did it and apology. Pretty much he is not over his divorce, has health issues, dealing with work problems, trying to work on a relationship with his kids and now is not a good time and not fair to me to continue the relationship. Should I respond or keep no contact for 30 days? Or should I acknowledge the text and respond?

I am dating a guy in a distance relationship for about three months, at the beggining we felt unbelievable connection soulmate like, he said he wants to marry and have children, he was caring and sweet (flowers, gifts, lots of time together). However I know he cheated on me at the very beginning of dating (I forgived him because that was very fresh relation).
And should even these small steps seem too overwhelming to take within the relationship, try building up your skills and confidence in easier environs. If, for example, you are trying to be more positive or more open or more assertive, road-test these behaviors with friends, strangers or coworkers where there are fewer emotional triggers to derail you. Once you get your sea legs there you can move on to the heavies like your partner or parents. 
I met my BF six months ago. I thought things were going great. If he needs me to do things for him I do if I can. Usually because of our work schedules we only see each other on the weekends so I am not crowding him. We have never had a bad argument although he has made me mad before I get over things quickly. Then out of the blue he stopped calling and returning my calls. Was he hurt or dead? I drove to his house and knocked. No answer although his truck was there. I left a note but haven’t heard back. It’s been two weeks. I’m very hurt and confused. I feel like I could be okay with giving him space if he had said he needed space. At least then I wouldn’t have to speculate. I had told him I loved him and maybe he freaked out. But I believe if you feel it. Should say it because tomorrow is not promised and I don’t want to regret not saying it. FYI my BF is twice divorced. Maybe that’s why he’s freaked.

I’m in a casual relationship with the grounds of monogamous, enjoy yourself, no lies or withholding information and if feelings change tell the other with my ex. When I mentioned that I feel like it seems like it’s just for sex and I’ll be left in the dust in future, he always reassures me that it’s not just for sex. His view on this type of relationship was “i’m not saying I just want a fwb/booty call. The way I see it a casual relationship is the middle ground between the two (fwb and serious).” And that there was potential of getting back together but no guarantee. Do you think that this is slowly on track to us getting back together or am I just setting myself up for hurt in the long run? He broke up with me and I also found out later on he started ‘kinda’ dating my ‘friend’ who I always confided about the relationship and knew everything. Prior to breakup it felt as they had an emotional affair. They’re broken up and they both tell me they haven’t talked since, this interaction with my ex is kept down low and secretive as we just want to chill back for awhile after all that has happened. I understand that we’re not ready to jump back into how things were but I like the feeling of commitment and security (?) one has with the label of girlfriend and boyfriend. Do you have any advice to offer me? I asked him if he trusted me he said there isn’t anything not to trust me with and he knows that I’m still building trust with him but I’m taking the chance of slowly trying.


As a couples therapist, I can strongly state that at days end, if your spouse/partner returns to you then you need not worry. I have met many couples who have stayed together for well over 20 years. Me and my husband Neil have made 35 years together. My husband has his own set of friends and I, my own. I do not know all of his and he doesn not know all of mine, We each have our separate moments apart. The moral is to not question nor accuse. Their are certain issues spouses do not share with each other. Certain that they do. I have noticed social networking sites becoming reasons for younger couples to grow distant. Know that your spouse or partner is with you, use communication. Trust and believe that it is not a matter of worry if a certain thing was kept away. It is a matter of believing in your spouse/partner and balancing each other. You both can establish certain limits or rules for each other. It is about growing and learning together.
Hello, me and my ex boyfriend recently broke up about a month ago. Currently I am trying the no contact rule, but it's impossible for me not to see him due to the fact we attend the same workplace. Also we share the same close friends, so sometimes when out with friends he's there and at parties, but we never speak at all during them. A few days after the break up, I wrote him a letter appolising and asking if we could be friends (I think this was a bad idea to do this and I got no reply or anything from him). Also I wrote in the letter that I was okay with his decision to break up, but I wasn't. In a few weeks I want to try and contact him and speak as friends. I would prefer to do this via text as he ignores every call, and as soon as he sees me in person he gets as far away as possible. I just don't know want to say to him after this no contact period, or how to get him to want to talk to me. Could you please help me or give me any advice at all. I would really really appreciate it and be really grateful. I would be so so thankful if anyone could help at all. My email is c779912@gmail.com...

Even though every relationship has its ups and downs, successful couples have learned how to manage the bumps and keep their love life going, says marriage and family therapist Mitch Temple, author of The Marriage Turnaround. They hang in there, tackle problems, and learn how to work through the complex issues of everyday life. Many do this by reading self-help books and articles, attending seminars, going to counseling, observing other successful couples, or simply using trial and error.
It is important to take time after breaking up and before trying to get your ex back to examine your own emotions and decide if you truly should be with that person. Rekindled relationships often suffer from a lack of trust and can be more likely to cycle on-again-off-again with repeated breakups. If you're not 100% sure that you want to be with this person in the long-term, avoid further pain by doing your best to get over your ex instead of pursuing him or her again.[2]
The day we broke up, we went out fishing with two friends and it was really cool, and we went to see some of his friends play handball ( which is a very important part of his liife, but i have never played, so don’t really care, but I wanted to make the effort for him and to be with him). I was doing so good until he decided to go play ball with his friends during half time, leaving me alone on my chair, while I had come to be with him. There were two people I had talked to before close by ( which was his excuse to leave me) but they were talking the foreign language and imagine how hard it is to engage in the conversation when you don’t know what it,s about and you need to switch language… So i got mad at him and told him it wasn’t cool to leave me on my own.

So my ex boyfriend and I were together for a year and 4 months. Honestly he was obsessed and so was I but i became too comfortable. He was my world and I never thought he would leave me. He would always chase after me and showering me with love and it made me the happiest person alive. One day he got tired of fighting with me and he dumped. told me he didnt want me anymore. I looked like a fool, i begged i cried i ran after him but he just walked away with his head up. it was so painfully. he blocked me on everything so i dont have contact but if i text him he will usually unblock to read my messages. it hurts so bad and as messed up as it is i still want him. I want him back so badly it kills.

I’m on the other side of the coin. I’ve been dating a woman for three years and she is a raging workaholic. We rarely spend time together, if we do she falls asleep, or we have time to do nothing because she always has to be AT WORK. Living together would solve some of the problems but she always has an excuse as to why she works all the time or some martyr-ific After two years, I’ve finally gotten tired of trying to communicate my feelings and am taking time for myself. It’s hard to talk when you feel that someone is not listening.
my boyfriend and I have been dating for almost 6 years ,almost evrytime i visit him, hes always playing games with his phone and when i tell him that its wrong and i dont like it ,he will stop and the following day he does the same thing playing games again in my presence. i recently told him again and he said we need space because i was angry and shouting at him .its been two weeks now ,we not talking to each other .so i just want to know what should i do in this regard?
Instead of focusing on how much time he calls, spends time with you etc. Pay more attention at the QUALITY of your phone calls or time together. Is it good? Or are you in a rut? Or is he losing interest because you have nothing to talk about? When a relationship is in trouble, the first sign is the quality of the friendship and connection. Pay more attention to that, instead of the numbers. Trust me, if the connection is strong and the love is there, he will bounce back. But if the connection is lost over time, you need to figure out how to get it back instead of just “moving on” — that is YOU pulling away from this, too. Oh yeah, women can pull away too, basically by shunning the guy.
My boyfriend is negative, accuses me of things, tells me things like “can’t make a hoe a housewife”. He never admits he’s wrong. He can’t accept the fact that I don’t talk to people I used to like. The ones I do talk to are not a threat. Only recently has there been one – and this is after him accusing and accusing me of things from lying to always hiding shit from him. And for these reasons.. I no longer want him in my life. I am done with it.

I met this guy just 2 weeks ago and he was my dream come through….He is everything I needed In a man,he calls 5:30am everyday for the first week,and changed after we both had sex after our second date,now I will call him to tell him he has changed he keeps on saying he is busy…..Although he is the busy type ,but am just a little bit confused,was it the sex we had that got him pulled away, or his he really busy?each time I call him he will tell me he is going through some hard times now that we will talk wen things gets settled?should I stop calling him or still continue to call him?


In the dating world, I often see that one of the most common reasons men pull away is that they find the woman to be challenging, and she gives in because she likes him. She starts settling and making excuses for his lazy or inappropriate behavior. There are many times I see a woman dating a man, and he shows all the signs that he is not ready for a relationship with his behavior and his words. Instead of pushing yourself towards him in the hopes of changing his mind, I believe the right thing to do in this situation is to dig deep into your feelings. If you can control your feelings by maintaining a friendship, then go for it. (And I’m not talking about being “friends with benefits.”)
And so I got ready while he was checking his email on the computer, pretending that I was going out and he ask if I'm going some where and I said yes. And then I tease him a bit about his hair since he havnt. After that he said I looked happy and I said I am, that stuff got shift these pass weeks. And when he came out the gate walking on the road he said it again that I looked happy and I said I am. And so since he doesn't have FB I texted him suggesting he get a fb account and add me, personally it would have been good if he saw some stuff I posted. Anyway he respond and said ''U look happy and like u trying to take care of yourself that's good. And no thanks i don't like fb. I forgot to ask does my friend mother still have that place for rent?" "I hate being by the apartment feel like a kid there. i just need a place and some time to myself to let out my rage and sadness the way i want I've been holding back since they in the house all the time " I did something stupid, so my cousin and been searching net and she found something called the Second chance letter and so I wrote one and gave him when he came to pick up some of his clothing. I wrote it just as explained, saw a sample and did it that way, In the beginning I put that I accepted the break up and then apologize that I didn't showed that I appreciated him and then the part stating that good things been happening and someday would like to tell him about it but right now we both still needing space. The next day in the morning, he texted and said he read it and doesn't mind sitting down and talking someday. Then in the night he sent a text asking me if he can ask me something and I said okay sure. "Why do u want me back? What is it about me that u love so much? and he feels like he wasn't doesn't his best as a partner as well. I respond to him that it would be best to talk in person about it when he is ready and then I g...
All anyone really wants is to feel OK, and most of us don’t. When a woman worries and needs constant reassurance, it comes from feeling from “I am not OK” and the feeling beneath that is fear. What makes it so destructive is that it’s not an overwhelming, gripping fear; it’s a vague feeling of unease. It’s so quiet and subtle you may not even realize it’s there. You know how sometimes you’ll go to take a sip of water and you literally can’t stop chugging? You didn’t even realize you were thirsty, it’s only when you begin to quench the silent thirst that you realize how potent it was. That’s kind of what’s at play here.
It is best to look at response time as a gauge of how interested the other party is in what you are saying (just like word count.) For example, in my book, I give an example where I was texting a girl and I responded to her texts every few hours. Based on that you can assume that I am not very interested in what she is saying. However, if I was texting a girl that I was very interested in and I responded to her texts every few minutes then I am definitely engaged in what she is saying.
As a couples therapist, I can strongly state that at days end, if your spouse/partner returns to you then you need not worry. I have met many couples who have stayed together for well over 20 years. Me and my husband Neil have made 35 years together. My husband has his own set of friends and I, my own. I do not know all of his and he doesn not know all of mine, We each have our separate moments apart. The moral is to not question nor accuse. Their are certain issues spouses do not share with each other. Certain that they do. I have noticed social networking sites becoming reasons for younger couples to grow distant. Know that your spouse or partner is with you, use communication. Trust and believe that it is not a matter of worry if a certain thing was kept away. It is a matter of believing in your spouse/partner and balancing each other. You both can establish certain limits or rules for each other. It is about growing and learning together.
Some arguing is normal in a relationship. You may go through phases of fighting due to outside factors, which is also normal. The important thing is how you argue, how you deal with arguments after, how you heal together, and the way you communicate. The best way to avoid a fight getting out of control is to walk out of the room and not escalate the situation.
my boyfriend and I have been together for 4 yrs. we had our ups and downs but one day things fell extremely out of place. I was at home when I received a call from his closest friend. I learned that my boyfriend was seen with another woman. I asked his friend to see what happens and a few minutes later I received a picture. I was completely shocked and broken. I knew that females were constantly on his social media I wondered if 4 years of being with me had been relevant to my boyfriend. I was hurt and asked his friend to keep an eye on him. The outings became frequent. I was fuming on the inside but I did not show it, nor did I ask him. I decided to confront my boyfriend about these events. I asked him if he felt like he should have told me. Out of my anger I told him he could go with the other woman. It took me a while to hear what he had wanted to say. My boyfriend worked part time as a waiter and so did the girl. I showed him the pictures and waited for an answer. He explained to me that they had gone out only to eat. I believed him but I didn’t quite understand why the outings were so frequent. He expressed his feeling of not telling me sooner and making me jump to conclusions. They had gone out to grab lunch and he explained the girl knew he was in a relationship. After a few weeks, the girl had left the job to work in a different restaurant. I felt angry at myself for yelling and misunderstanding him. He had apologized for not telling me sooner and creating a big problem. We have now established rules for our relationship. We had to communicate with each other and if an even had occurred whatever it may be, we will always talk about it. Communication and forgiveness is key. Know your partner. Me and my boyfriend have since grown closer. He and his friend do not talk as much, that loss has made me and him realize that a relationship is truly meant for 2 and their can never be a third person. To everyone who is in or was in a situation like ours I hope our experience has helped you grow near. Communicate always and be happy!
This is essentially the difference between a healthy relationship and a toxic relationship. A healthy relationship is one where two people feel fulfilled by their individual lives and let that joy and sense of fullness spill into their relationship. They each bring something to the table and can comfortably give and receive. A dysfunctional relationship is when one or both people believes the other person can “give them” something or that there’s something to “get” from the other person.

These men who pull away have an avoidant attachment style. Read ‘Attached’ by Amir Levine and Rachel Heller and ‘avoidant, bad boyfriends’ by Jeb Kinnison. After reading these I realised that I’d been unhappily married for over twenty years to an avoidant man. I’ve since met someone with a secure attachment style and the difference is night and day. Unfortunately most secure men pair off youngish so the dating pool is disproportionately full of avoidant men. DO NOT MARRY one you will be miserable.
After a breakup, it can be hard to move on. In fact, simply breaking up will not make the feelings you have towards your partner go away. On the contrary, quite the opposite tends to happen; your attraction to your partner becomes stronger and stronger. Thus, winning back the one you love soon becomes your primary objective. In order reclaim your joie de vivre, you feel like you need their presence, and you’re wondering if your can text your ex back into your arms…
Lauren, I believe your advice about giving the ex space is on point and I wish I had given mine a lot of space. I broke up with a man who suddenly dumped me with a phone message when he knew I was not home. Friends of ours told me to give him space, and I did not; big mistake on my part. He is with a woman he and his parents know, she is old enough to be his mother. He sometimes chats when he sees me in the area. I began to feel like I'm sitting on the back burner and decided to just greet him and not chat unless he wants to chat. A good male friend told me to give him six months, it has been three months, so I'll see what develops....
10. Think effort, not outcome. There is an inspirational saying that you see in the hallways of businesses: Good decisions come from experience and experience comes from making bad decisions. Mastering life and relationships is a long process of experimentation. Life isn’t Ready, Aim, Fire; it’s Ready, Fire, Aim. Try something – with mindfulness, clear intentions and a good heart – see what happens, adjust, and try again. That’s always the best you can do, and don't waste your time and energy with internal scolding or heavy-hearted regret. On any given day you're always doing the best you can.
So an update, my boyfriend came back. It was a mix of everything that had piled up slowly in the last 6months that he didn’t deal with effectively. This isn’t such a surprise as he spoke about it a week before such as physical and mental long work hours, debts and family issues which he felt affected the quality of our relationship. He retreated to become calm and gain clarity. Mind you, this was a 2 week retreat with only 2 ‘I’ll contact you soon’ texts so I kept my distance. When he came back I was supportive and he opened up to me. So now he just needs some support and a clear path. The last thing I’d ever do is blame him for his absence while he is going through a vulnerable time.
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