Ask Ciiku: I want a clearly defined relationship

Hi Ciiku,

I’ve been seeing this guy for about 3 months now and everything has been going great. I recently brought up that I would like to initiate a relationship in the near future thinking we are on the same page, when he revealed that he isn’t sure of what he wants, generally, and by extension, whether he wants to be with me. What makes this incredibly confusing is that he says he loves me, and expects that we be exclusive. On the one hand his actions are affirming and make me feel secure in what we have at the moment- up until this moment he had not given me any reason to doubt his intentions/ actions. On the other hand it feels like he is comfortable with things as they are and doesn’t intend on moving things along but wants to keep me at arm’s length. (I want a clearly defined relationship and not this hanging-in-the-balance business, he knows that) Am I being irrational for feeling all this discomfort and anxiety around his inability to declare *any* kind of intention for us/me? He says he needs time and this would be perfectly okay for me if he had any idea of what he wanted, but he doesn’t and it bothers me. Should I give him the benefit of doubt and give him the time he requires to think this through? Is 3 months too fast too soon or should I give us more time?

Help!

Anon.

Dear Anon,

Before I give you my thoughts on the entire situation, I have to mention that 3 months isn’t too fast or too slow. Different people deal differently with defining relationships and what matters is that the two people in the relationship are on the same page regarding whether they want to define what they have and what they see for the future of the relationships. Some even one day is enough.

Secondly, I think feeling uncomfortable is quite a valid response in this situation.

I am curious and therefore I must ask: Did he explicitly say that he doesn’t want to be with you? Because you say “when he revealed that he isn’t sure of what he wants, generally, and by extension, whether he wants to be with me.” I want to understand whether this was a conclusion you made based on what he said. Because if it is something he explicitly said, then what you must do is obvious.

Have you ever had the conversation of why you are in the relationship? Beyond the fact that you have positive vibes for each other and attraction? Because it is an important conversation to have. Being on the same page regarding why you are in a relationship and having a conversation about it reduces room for unrealistic expectations, hurt and the like.

Time could give the fellow an idea of what he wants. One would hope that in that time, he chooses your relationship. But a couple of things: you seem to believe that he doesn’t know what he wants. Why is that? Do you genuinely believe to know his answer to this question you are asking? And secondly, if you give him time and he says he doesn’t want a relationship, what do you do? What if in three months he wants to define the relationship?

There is no one way to look at this thing Anon. You have to have a meeting with yourself and decide what it is you want. Trust yourself.

You also must continue to have these conversations with your partner without filling in any blanks for yourself. I firmly believe that better decisions can be this way.

Go where you are wanted.

Ciiku

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