Two different perspectives on a relationship

I give up.

Steve and I had a beer tonight. We had not really seen each other since coming back from Canada–Steve going directly into a four-day, music festival; me preparing for a big, annual meeting at work. Tomorrow, my mother and I fly to the motherland for two weeks. This has been a busy week.

I sent Steve an article I read online related to our issue a few days ago and asked if he’d read it. He’d scanned it.

“When are we going to talk about our relationship?
Are you ever going to bring it up?” I asked.
“I don’t know,” Steve shrugged.

I know that shrug. It’s a change-the-subject shrug.

Steve is never going to bring up our relationship. I realize this now. All of these years I have been so afraid of having a conversation with Steve for fear it will lead to us breaking up or me hurting his feelings. And at long last, I have grown the courage to have honest conversations with my partner, and it doesn’t make a difference.

I am problem solving alone. As far as talking about problems in our relationship and coming to a solution or tackling them together, I am in this alone. I imagine one could say Steve and I were “working on” our relationship in January and through March when I first brought up our physical relationship and my lack of satisfaction, but we never talked about it while we worked on it. We only increased our frequency while “working on it”. I don’t believe you can solve problems without talking, and I am the only one talking.

Meanwhile, I am looking at Steve like he has three eyes on his head. He mentions planning for me to visit his son next summer for graduation and making plans for next month. I don’t understand. Did you not hear me at this month month when I said this is a problem we have to resolve or we need to break up? Am I the only one suffering here over the pain of potentially breaking up? I feel that way.

I looked at Steve tonight thinking, what am I getting out of this?
Steve is getting a lot. And he already has children. He can continue in this relationship stasis forever. But for me, what am I getting, and what am I giving up? Maybe the chance to have a family with someone. Definitely the chance to be physically intimate and actualized as a woman in this way; something that maybe I could have with Steve, but sure as heck not, if he won’t even talk about our issues.

Steve talked about how wonderful our trip to Canada was. I can only think about how anxious I was. I went into that trip thinking it was a trip Steve and I had planned to go on together, and it could be our last travel together. When I brought up our relationship before we left for Canada, Steve changed the subject and said, “let’s just enjoy our trip to Quebec.” Now I believe my boyfriend never had the intention of bringing up our relationship. Not then, not now. He is not going to work with me solve problems in our relationship. I suspect I know why–maybe he thinks our physical problems are not solvable. No matter the reason, the end result is the same.

I had a hard time writing a letter to Steve this week to clarify my thoughts. But I believe I can write it now.


One thought on “Two different perspectives on a relationship

  1. dddish says:

    I just read your post for the first time now. While I realize this was a painful revelation you are now seeing things clearly. Steve is happy so he doesn’t feel the need to talk about it or work on it. You deserve more my friend. XO

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