Not sure what to do....What's your viewpoint?

southernrnMay 15, 2008

I'll try to be brief in setting the scene for this drama. I'm 31 years old, my BF is 33. We have been together for 8 months, and have lived together for the last 4- I know, I know...way too early for that...

However, living together this far has been wonderful. We coexist in perfect timing to an extent, and while I know the whole process is still "new", I couldn't imagine it going any better than it has been.

Fast forward to a few days ago. He talked to his mom (who I really admire) on the phone, and she once again expressed her feelings on us living together. Dont' get me wrong, she wants us to get married, and be together, but not cohabitate. She is a minister, and this viewpoint on cohabitation is totally what I expected.

When I got home from work Monday, he told me that he talked to his mom, and that he feels the right thing for us to do is for him to move out and get his own place. I have no doubt that he wants this relationship. He talked about getting married at the end of this year, so the time apart will be "just for a while", because he feel that it's the right thing. I feel it's just because his mom has pleaded with him about it. His brother gives his mom emotional stress all the time, and my BF doesn't want to add to that.

The place he's talking of moving to is about 1 hr 15 min away, so that's an issue also. It's the city where we were both planning on moving together after I get my current house sold.

My issue with this is #1, why are he and his mother making decisions about our relationship- as much as I love her, I will not be placed 2nd. #2, I feel like us living together is a commitment in itself, and that it's not fair for him to backtrack, and expect it not to damage our relationship?


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The difference between your being married and doing what you're doing is....what?

MIL's a minister? Did you think she would be saying otherwise to her son?

Your man. Your future family. The gauntlet's been tossed. Time to decide what's important and what's not. She WILL be your MIL. He WILL be your husband. Is he a mama's boy? Can't break away? Is this what you want? Or are they finding out who YOU are? Many ways to consider.

Seems to me the entree is on the table. Eat it or send it back.

    Bookmark   May 15, 2008 at 8:32PM
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Like Asolo said, he isn't mature enough to leave his mother - you probably need to re-think what your future with him would be like.

    Bookmark   May 15, 2008 at 8:59PM
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Gotta agree with KJ and asolo. Maybe during the time you are living apart will help you learn a little more about each other - especially your lifestyles and the things that are important to each of you. That's not to say that things will not turn out to be OK, it's just that while living together. It's just that while you have only been together for 8 mos and living together for half of it, there probably hasn't been enough time for much other than the two of you to consider. Only time will tell how much outside influences will affect your relationship. Use it for all it's worth - just to get a more realistic picture.

    Bookmark   May 16, 2008 at 12:07AM
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First off, you should not sell your house just yet.

Second, as you already expressed, "..., she wants us to get married, ..., but not cohabitate. She is a minister, and this viewpoint on cohabitation is totally what I expected." If your BF has been brought up in the church, then perhaps as his mother reminded him, living with someone apart from marriage is wrong in the eyes of the church. It doesn't necessarily mean he is a mama's boy, but just maybe his upbringing caught up and he realizes that his belief is stronger than you two playing house. I am not preaching to you, just hope you understand that sometimes one's beliefs is what we fall back on, even when we stray. There's not much info on your post about his personality, beliefs, etc., for us to really give you sound advice. If he really loves you, then I think you will find things will work out for you in the end. Just go slow as it seems you were going full speed with having him move in right away, and also discussed selling your home so you could both move elsewhere.

BTW, what is the reasoning for him to move over an hour away? Is that where he works; is that where he used to live before he moved in with you?

    Bookmark   May 16, 2008 at 9:24AM
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you really gotta listen to what is really going on here. your eyes are being blinded by your love for him. like i said in an earlier post, the first year of a relationship is always the best and you rushed into it as it is. You asked for our opinion, it is probably not what you want to hear because to you it's not positive, but it's advice gained through our own life experiences.

Let him move out and see how the relationship progresses..if it does. I hate to tell you this but a lot of people are cowardly and will not be honest about a lot of things. He may even want out of this relationship and is using his mother to do so while still filling your heart with hope at the idea of a future and a marriage with him.

I'm curious as to why he wants to move an hour and a half away also...that to me says a lot with out knowing the real reason.

Whatever you do dont put ultimatiums out there. Let things happen naturally as they are supposed to. As sad as it may be for this relationship to end, it's better that it happen before you invest a lot of years into it and bring children into it.

But that's just my opinion and you know what they say about that! :-)

    Bookmark   May 16, 2008 at 10:06AM
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I agree with eloise... you gotta take into consideration that he's the son of a minister. Have you ever watched "7th Heaven"? He, himself, may really feel a little wrong about playing house with you. If he were having an affair with a married woman and his mother talked to him about it and he quit having the affair, would you thik he was just following his mother and being a momma's boy or would you think maybe his mom reminded him of his values? Living together really is considered a sin for some people.

On top of that, he may really be losing respect for you by living with you before marriage. You may be becoming the type of girl he doesn't want to marry. I know it may be hard to understand if you don't have the same beliefs, but it really is probably good he is moving out if his belief system dictates that living together before marriage is so wrong.

I too wonder why he has to move an hour and a half away. I really don't want to throw a monkey wrench into everything, and I know things are wonderful, but sometimes we see what we want to; could he be trying to break up with you slowly?

    Bookmark   May 16, 2008 at 10:20AM
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First of all, I want to thank everybody for all of your input and opinions. I think I got some really good advice on here, and I've really taken a lot of it to heart.

To clarify why he's moving to a city that's a little over an hour away... I recently (in Feb) changed jobs because a great opportunity came up. This is a job I would have taken whether I was single, or in a relationship. The new job is about an hour away from where I/we currently live. His current job is in the same area as my new one, so the new location is somewhere we would have both ended up anyway, because of proximity and convenience to work. This is a detail that just happened to work out well for both of us-as far as both having jobs in the same area-

The house selling would also happen whether I was single or in a relationship, because I have absolutely zero interest in commuting 2 hours a day. If I can get my current house sold, and move to the area that I've had my eye on, he and I will only be about 10-15 minutes apart. He knows I plan to move to Nashville as soon as I can, and he works there, and that's why he's moving to Nashville now, even though it's a little far away from where I still will be living for a while.

We sat down and talked for about 2 hours last night. I think that his conversations with his mom more or less brought him to the conclusion that our current living situation probably isn't the best thing for our relationship in the long run. I think that within himself, he felt like we should either get married or that he should get a place for now, and let our relationship progress at a more normal pace. Too get married right now would be wrong for more reasons than one- firstly, we've only been together 8 months, and I think it's too soon. Secondly, I don't want him to feel like there's any pressure on him to rush into that. I think you are right, that's it's not necessarily a case of being a "mama's boy", it just a case of being reminded to truly consider what route would be the best for our relationship in a long term scheme of things.

He is a very genuine kind of guy. He's 33, never been married, and I'm the first female he's ever lived with, and I think since everything moved at such a fast pace, added to the fact that he has conflicts with the living situation, he just needs some space and time to "regroup", more or less. I've tried to imagine myself being a 33 year old guy, never having lived with a woman, and then how I might react if I was in the same situation. Committing to being with someone every day, living together, etc, is a big change for anyone, especially if you're 33 yrs old and its a new experience, and especially if it's moving at lightening speed.

Carla, I pray that I'm not being naive, but I really believe that if he didn't have long term visions of our relationship that he would tell me. I don't think he's a "break up slowly" kind of guy. He says that he knows how valuable our relationship is, and he can't envision us not sharing and home and a life together, he just wants to feel that we went about it the right way, with no hastiness, and with a clear perspective of what we're doing. And even though I guess every girl would like to think that her guy's love for her would be too strong for him to ever want be separated, I think this just might be a case of him making every effort not to just let his heart do the thinking...he's trying to use his head and do the best thing for both of us.

I think where I ran into difficulty is that I looked at it as him discarding the commitment that was made when we moved in together. I think perhaps I was wrong about that. Is he just really doing what he think is best for us in the long run? And what he thinks will lead our relationship down the best path to where we want it to be, in not only his mother's eyes, but also his own? My biggest fear is that I've fallen in love with one of those guys who has been single for so long that he won't reach the point of wanting to take the relationship to the level that I do. But you know what, he says he does want that, that he can't imagine us not having that, he just wants us to take a step back, and let our relationship, in my words, "catch up with itself".

Even though it's going to be hard, I guess I have to admit that the thinking process is a rational one, and that in all honesty this probably is going to be the best thing for us in the long run. If for whatever reason it doesn't work, then it was never supposed to.

So do you think I'm just in some distorted state of denial and can't see that he really just wants the hell out and likes living alone, or can you see the sincere logic behind what he's said?

    Bookmark   May 16, 2008 at 11:31AM
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In reality, it doesn't matter WHAT WE THINK - what does your gut tell you?

Words are just utterances - actions are what tell the story. IMESHO, the proof is in the pudding - after he moves out, continue to keep your eyes open and your mouth shut - you can learn a lot doing that.

As my mother taught me, just observe what's going on with any given situation - time will tell the real story.

I wish you the best of luck in life - you seem to be a mature young lady who listens - now, open your eyes and observe for awhile!

    Bookmark   May 16, 2008 at 12:56PM
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Hi southernrn, can you please resend the email you sent me. Sorry, but I deleted it thinking it was spam; I did that prior to getting here to GW. In answer to your last paragraph, no, no, no, I don't think this could be the case!

    Bookmark   May 16, 2008 at 12:56PM
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At 31 and 33 I wouldn't expect these evaluations and decisions to come so hard to either of you. In particular, I would expect your man to have had a very clear picture of his minister-mother's opinions of things from the beginning. That part isn't new for him. So why, after four months, has he chosen this time to act on it...essentially regressing? Looks like cold feet plus apron-string syndrome to me.

    Bookmark   May 16, 2008 at 5:38PM
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Asolo, that's what I was trying to convey, too.

    Bookmark   May 16, 2008 at 6:17PM
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I do agree that he should have made these considerations prior to us moving in together, and that it is, in a sense, a regression.

However, sometimes people make hasty decisions based purely on emotion and not logic. I did that in my previous relationship, and can't tell you how much I regret it. I do feel that perhaps our relationship/future is important enough to him to want to try to establish that level of intimacy in a more aware manner. He did put the cart before the horse, and he knows that. I think he just feels strongly enough about this that he doesn't want marriage to be another rapid event that occurs in our relationship just because it's the next logical step after living together. I can't argue with that.

The bottom line of it is, I do believe he has the same destination for this relationship that I do. And I want him to feel as good about reaching that destination as I do, and if it means that we need to slow things down and go about this in a little more traditional manner, then that's what we'll do. I don't have to understand it, or feel that it's the same decision I would make, but if I love him, and I do, then I feel like maybe I should give him my support, and have faith in the fact that he's not misrepresenting his intentions.

    Bookmark   May 16, 2008 at 7:17PM
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I think your mind was made up before you posted. Hope it turns out for the best. Your life; your choice. Feels good while it's going right, though, doesn't it?

    Bookmark   May 16, 2008 at 7:40PM
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I think that you know what is going on and you are just looking for people to validate your feelings.

YES, guys hold their mother's in high regard and his mother helped him prioritize his values.

YES, it is a good idea for him to move there.
--Not only will you two have some time apart to reflect and slow things down, but it should strengthen or break your relationship.
--Remember that you are not a "couple" so keep your stuff separate (should break vise strengthen occur).

He needs to understand that when you marry you come before mother.

Mother needs to understand that when you marry you come before mother.

You need to remember that he will always want his mommy!!!!

Keep your eyes, ears, and mind opened and your mouth closed... Think about what you see and hear and think before you speak.

Based upon what you said both times you know what is going on and don't get confused between what is in your soul and what is in your heart. Love can get you through the field but denial and lust can make you step in all of the cow patties in the field...


    Bookmark   May 16, 2008 at 7:41PM
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No, my mind was absolutely not made up before I posted. I posted before he and I sat down and talked for almost 3 hours last night. Just talked. No crying, yelling. I listened to him, he listened to me. He didn't try to convince me to agree with him, but I did gain an understanding of his thought process on this..

So asolo, you would just chalk it up to a mama's boy getting cold feet and walk away?

Highcenter, thank you for your post also. I know that in my previous serious relationship, I did participate in that little thing called denial, quite a bit, and much to my detriment. There's no guarantee that this is not the case here, but I truly believe that he is sincere about this.

When I made the original post, I truly didn't have any idea where to go with this. But I think that you are also right in saying that perhaps I'm looking for a little validation. It's not realistic to expect anyone on a forum like this to be able to have enough insight into the actual relationship to truly know what the best thing for us might be. But a little validation is what I think I was looking for, even though I know that ultimately the decision can only be made by me. It's just scary, ya know?

    Bookmark   May 16, 2008 at 7:53PM
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Yo highcenter...brilliant...needed saying.

"He needs to understand that when you marry you come before mother. Mother needs to understand that when you marry you come before mother."

    Bookmark   May 16, 2008 at 7:54PM
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"So asolo, you would just chalk it up to a mama's boy getting cold feet and walk away?"

Haven't a clue. Only know what you've posted. Responded to that. Don't know him or you.

    Bookmark   May 16, 2008 at 7:58PM
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The only reason I asked is because each post you made seemed to be progressively more negative. I do appreciate you taking the time to respond.

And I definately agree that what highcenter said is true.

    Bookmark   May 16, 2008 at 8:03PM
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Well, "negativity" almost always depends on where one is seated. In my view, many postings here seem hung up on "support" and "reinforcement" and other pat-on-the-head gibberish. I try to pat where it appears to me patting's worthwhile and deserved and kick-in-the-giblets where it appears to me that's what would be most beneficial. Accordingly, my opinion-opponents are numerous.

In any event, I assure you I am most interested in the best outcome for the situation in which you find yourself. Such as I know -- or think I may have an inkling about -- I offer. Thought that's what everyone was doing.

I do wish you the best. However, I think you're both a little old for this degree of indecision.

    Bookmark   May 16, 2008 at 8:30PM
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this is a great thread!

Asolo, for the past year plus, everyday I come on this forum and lurk about just looking for your responses because i find you very intriquing. you have quite a way with words.

and highcenter, i've read a few good ones from you too!

girlfriend, you've gotten some great advice on this thread, i hope it doesnt make your head spin. just take your time and live your life as it comes to you and it'll all fall into place.

    Bookmark   May 17, 2008 at 12:23AM
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It appears to me that you took my comments in the spirit that they were meant. If we listen to them our gut feelings are normally correct; however, I find that sometimes we let other parts of our bodies speak louder than our "guts" and therefore don't do what we should.

Hoping that you are able to make the right choice. It sounds like you two are doing a lot of talking and thinking so I am sure that you will do what you should do...

Best of luck to you!!!

    Bookmark   May 18, 2008 at 7:48PM
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You've told us you admire his mother, and I believe you. Because of this I would ask for an eyeball talk with her to try and determine whether BF is using her as an excuse. If so, he may not want to hurt you by telling you he is having second thoughts here(you did move in together very quickly. If he is not using her as an excuse, and she really has that much influence over him at his age, I'd be wondering about his ability to make important decisions on his own.

    Bookmark   May 19, 2008 at 2:51PM
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man folks --- I used to try to get involved in this forum years ago --- but it was just so darn S-L-O-W. Now I just sense a bit more "attitude" than I anticipated. I certainly didn't expect to sense the antagonistic (not the right word, but close) replies. I'll admit, at first I thought southernrn might be a sappy young girl looking for the "right" answers but, when I read her second post/reply, I was amazed at the maturity and insight to her own situation. Kudos to you southernrn. I too felt a slight move towards the negativity...

My only comment to the OP is that I wouldn't consider this move a regression. But more a "regroup" as you stated. Not necessarily a negative - definately not something that should lead you to start pre-maturely worrying about what status you will gain in your boyfriend's life (vs his mother). I think it's way to early to worry about that - using this single incident as a factor.

    Bookmark   May 19, 2008 at 3:06PM
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"I too felt a slight move towards the negativity... "

In the title to this post, southernrn asked, "What is your viewpoint?" When I responded, I purposesly did so without reading the viewpoints of everyone else, then went back and read them. Not surprisingly, I discovered that most of us said pretty much the same things. That doesn't mean we are all correct, but neither do I think we were being decidedly "negative" -- only honest in how we see the situation. We may all be way off base. I hope it works out for you southernrn. It is a difficult place to be when you think you are on one road and discover that you may be going in a different direction without having realized it. Do keep us posted, ok?

    Bookmark   May 19, 2008 at 5:55PM
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I totally agree about taking things slow and possibly not moving in together prior to marriage. But i completely disagree about moving out and still planning on having a relationship because mommy says so. It does sound like fear of commitment.

And in fact it is offensive. Poeple live together, then one of them moves out because his mommy says so. I would be offended. I would be OK with he guy taking things slow and not moving together right away but not when he moves OUT. If his mom dissaproved, he would know about it 4 months ago.

And he is not a teenager anymore. At age 33 a man should be his own person. he needs to respect his mother but she should not be running his life. Unless of course he uses her as an excuse and what he really wants is to be on his own.

    Bookmark   May 19, 2008 at 7:06PM
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I hadn't thought of it as offensive, fine, but you make a good point. He probably would have stayed if he had really wanted to unless Mommy has a hold on him that is too too strong for a 33-year-old.

    Bookmark   May 21, 2008 at 10:35AM
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