Are you feeling a little taken for granted in your relationship? Almost like you put in most of the effort and he’s happy to just go along for the ride? Or worse, do you feel like your attempts to spend time with him are being subtly rejected, cut short, or even worse, ignored? Unfortunately girls, you really only have ONE option; talk to him about it and you’ll probably soon see that this kind of thing can often be a case of crossed wires.
Scenario: You want to meet up and he says he can see you some time after eight, although you know he’s just sitting around his place all day. Why the restricted scheduling? Yes, yes, we’re all for our own space, but it doesn’t feel great when you think like you can only be ‘received’ at a certain time.
Reasons: He could be hungover, in a bad mood or washing his jocks, and he doesn’t want to inflict his beer breath, sad face or stanking laundry pile on you. HE thinks he’s doing the right thing, YOU feel like a burden.
Solution: You need to tell him that not every occasion has to be a lovey-dovey date night and you’re happy to hang out even if he’s not in the best of humour. A few minutes with you and he’ll be in flying form, anyway, right? You want him to feel comfortable enough with you that even at his worst, time spent together can be really worthwhile.
Scenario: When you’re invited out by his friends, you go. It doesn’t really matter what it is, you’ll go because it’s lovely that his friends are so eager to see you, it’s lovely that he wants to show you off and It’s lovely that you love him. So, why is he absent from so many of YOUR friend’s group shots?
Reasons: Consider the dynamic. Maybe his friends are more of a mixed bunch? Would you be as willing to go out with them if there wasn’t such a large female contingent in his crew, generally made up of girl mates and other girlfriends? Your group on the other hand is a little more Sex and the City and a little less Happy Endings. He could feel uncomfortable being the only guy at an all-girl dinner every second weekend. YOU feel foolish, HE feels intimidated.
Solution: Tell him you want HIM to get to know YOUR friends as well as YOU know HIS. That's probably all he needs to hear to realise he’s been dragging his feet in this regard. Merge both your groups on nights out. It doesn’t have to be one or the other, so decide on something that both gangs would enjoy (We’re Irish. A pub? OK, sorted.) and bask in your new extended buddy group.
Scenario: You decide on the location, date and activity and he just complies and offers no alternative. Does he even CARE what you do together anymore?
Reasons: While it might seem like he doesn't bother making an effort, maybe it's a case that he doesn't care what the pair of you do as long as you're doing it together. HE think he's doing the right thing by letting you choose what makes you happy, YOU feel like he's placating you and isn't interested so you end up trailing around the shops AGAIN.
Solution: Be completely clear when you attempt to communicate this issue. Suggest you know he thinks he's making you happy and you genuinely appreciate his approach, but it would be nice to drop the reigns for a while and have him do the organising.
The key to issues like this is communication, communication, communication. We all know that many of our problems grow legs when we bottle them up and stew over them, so you need to speak up! The poor lad probably has no idea you feel like you do, so give him the opportunity to sort it out!
But girls, if you do attempt to hash them out and it's falling on deaf ears or you're left feeling like a drama queen, then maybe the issues go far deeper than him just needing some time in his man-cave, girl-free. If he's as into the relationship as you are, then there's no reason why addressing them should cause problems. If not, then maybe it's time to heave-ho?