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Stale Relationship or Normal Slump?
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Stale Relationship or Normal Slump?

Hello all :)

Here is my situation --

I have been dating my boyfriend for over 3 years now (24 years old both of us). Met in college, had a great time, had our minor ups and downs, have spent time apart (geographically), and also some time living together. Right now we live in the same town (I live alone, he lives with his parents) where I work and he goes to school. We have spoken about marriage before but not too seriously, there's still things we both want to do first. I get along very well with his family, and he mine.

Recently I went to visit friends out of town and had a great time. I met a guy who I felt like I had a real connection with. He was very attentive to me and thought I was attractive; we talked the whole night. Meeting this guy brought some relationship issues to my eyes -- I feel like my boyfriend ignores me sometimes and takes for granted the fact that I live nearby now. That he takes advantage of us being together and doesn't try to impress me anymore. We playfully put each other down now and then also -- but we've talked briefly about that and he said he will work on it; we both will. I feel like he's lazy in regards to our relationship, and I feel like I'm looking into the future and the situation won't change for the better.

Now however it's all I can think about. This other guy who I hit it off with, and whether the relationship is over. I can't really speak to him about what I've been thinking right now because he's taking final exams, but I do plan to have a sit-down with him after that time and hash it out.

What I'm struggling with the most is whether:
1) This new guy was meant to show me what's missing from my relationship, that I should stay with my bf, and it's just a slump that we'll get out of after trying to address the issues or

2) That the relationship is stale and we've stuck together out of comfortability, and there's a chance for a fun nice thing with the other guy (whom despite a night of talking, I of course don't know that well).

My (guy) friend says giving up 3 years worth of time invested for a random guy isn't worth it, but I'm afraid I'll always ask what if.

Thoughts? Thanks for reading.
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7 Comments Post a Comment
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177641_tn?1189759437
If you can't handle the boredom and comfort that come with a long-term relationship, chances are you'll always going to be asking "what if" because you simply can't see what you have here and now. Your complaints about your current relationship aren't that big compared to what other people put up with. Men and women both have this problem. I've known of people who leave a relationship because they "hit it off" with someone who doesn't know them well at all, only to find that losing their ex wasn't worth satisfying the restless boredom.

The "new factor" of any relationship is always invigorating, but it will ALWAYS fade. I have a strong hunch that if you left your boyfriend, you'd end up regretting it and wanting him back. You'll be happy with the new guy for a couple months, then realize you made a mistake, realize the damage is irreversible, and regret.

This random guy was not meant to show you anything - don't put the encounter on a pedastel. If you've realized that your current relationship could use some improvement, then work on it and tell your boyfriend that you need to spice things up a little, because things are getting stale. That's a far more mature way to handle a relationship slump than moving on to someone new. Good luck!
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13167_tn?1327197724
I don't get the impression your "boyfriend" is the one for you.

What is the deal with young people these days?  (Meant sarcastically,  kind of ;D  )  I see a lot of this,  couples who aren't really couples at all.  You've kind of been in and out of this relationship,  one or both of you moved away,  you're working,  he's living with his parents at the age of 24 . . . this isn't what "couples" look like to me.

They have passion and can't wait to be together,  and they don't kind of go in and out of a vanilla relationship.  Three years is WAY TOO EARLY to find each other kind of boring.

Best wishes with your decision.
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Avatar_f_tn
Where you are in your life and your relationship is completely normal. It is also normal to feel like other men are attractive. New relationships always are exciting. It does sound like your current bf is willing to work on things in your relationship with him and given that you work and he is at school, it is probably difficult for him to continuously show affection towards you like he did in the beginning...it sounds like you both are very busy. Give it a few more months with your bf--see if you two can get the spark back. And..don't expect that your current bf will do all the work either--surprise him, lavish him with gifts--do the things that you desire so much too--maybe he too is missing the attention and affection. Then...after a few months, if you still feel this way and that you are bored, move on. Give it a good effort first because then when you move on, it will be without guilt or what ifs (about keeping the relationship). I know of someone who gave up their comfortable relationship for someone else and almost instantly regretted it but it was too late...he still longs for the girl he left and probably always will...she moved on and married someone else so he could never get her back now even if he wanted to. If the other guy turns out to be the right one, he still will be available if you give it a shot with your current bf and if it doesn't work out. Anyway, I would try and spice it up a bit myself and see how that goes....all the best...
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Avatar_n_tn
Thanks for your comments, I appreciate all of them.

What may seem like us not being a couple in the way you state RockRose are really changes we've made together based on situations we've been dealt, in my opinion -- being physically together at certain points, and separate at others (I spent time doing research out of country, he spent time in various states for military training, etc). We have stayed together in a lot of different circumstances, which I don't think is a bad thing. I've just never questioned it like I am now, which is what I'm struggling with.

We certainly did have passion, couldn't stay apart, that feeling where you stay up all night together and you're not even tired the next day because all you're doing is thinking about that person. That has gradually ceded, and seems to have ebbed and flowed at a lower level for awhile.

Come next month we will be separated (about an hour away) due to military duties for him. This may give us a chance to get back that feeling of missing each other and appreciate our connection more?

I definitely agree that it's something to work on before jumping to any conclusions/decisions.
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Avatar_n_tn
I'd just like to add something here...you are still very, very young and entered this relationship at an even younger stage of your life.  Keep that in mind.  I do agree that it is something worth working on, but when people usually reach the "bored" stage they have also matured TOGETHER and often times feel closer even though they are bored and miss the spark.  It is possible that you have outgrown each other.  Please do not fall into the trap of believing that you must commit to the rest of your life (several decades at least!) to someone because you shared some fun times in your early twenties.  You're both good people without the "typical" relationship problems.  Okay, so that means you have to spend the rest of your life with him?  I just don't agree with that.  It's okay to move on, and there is the saying that when you meet "the one" you will know it, and the boredom won't bother or worry you because you'll have a different, yet fulfilling, sense of comfort.  Find out first if you can have that with your current boyfriend since these feelings are new for you.  If not, do not tie yourself up in knots over others telling you "don't expect that fulfilling feeling from anyone and just settle for him."  It's not THEM who will be sleeping next to him every night, it is YOU.  Please just keep that in mind.
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Avatar_f_tn
There will be plenty of guys coming in and out of your life who you might find attractive, even after you get married.  That doesn't necessarily mean that you should drop the relationship you're currently in and run to the other person.  Commitment means working at the relationship.  I've known my husband for only 4 years and there are times when he irritates me with his "laziness" as you put it.  They do get comfortable with you and don't feel the need to romance you (I must admit, I feel the same sometimes).  It's tough with an 8 month old but I try to put together a romantic dinner once in a while or do something romantic to rekindle those feelings (he tries his best, too).  Go away with him, just the two of you and you'll see that he's still the same guy you feel in love with.  Good luck to you.
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Avatar_f_tn

You know I believe everything happens for a reason. Now that these issues have come to light, you are going to have to decide what to do with this new information. There is no right or wrong answer.... just handle it appropriately and keep your head up high.

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