Is it time to call it a day?

Dear Suzie, I’ve been in my current relationship for a year now and I’m wondering whether it’ s time to call it a day. At first things were exciting and optimistic and I adored my boyfriend’s sincere and genuine character. Even though a year has gone, this relationship hasn’t progressed, due to my boyfriends lack of commitment. He prioritizes his friends over me, and I feel totally unimportant to him, as he only sees me when he wants. I feel like the bit on the side, I want more out of this relationship than he’s giving. My boyfriend suggests we take it to the next level and sleep together, but I’m not sure if he’s doing this for the right reasons. I’m unsure whether sleeping with him will benefit our relationship together and make us stronger, or if it’ s just an excuse for him to get his leg over. His behaviour has changed gradually over the months, as he’s become cocky and immature, being influenced by his childish friends. He’s changed so much that he is quite disrespectful to me and doesn’t treat me like the gentleman that he once was, and the constant name-calling is annoying me. Is this the right time to break up with him, or should I patiently wait for this childish phase to run its course? I’m really confused on what to do as my feelings have grown very strong for this guy and I can’t bear the thought of being alone, but I’m not satisfied with the state of the relationship, what do you suggest I do?

Woah! You’re thinking of sleeping with a man who, in your own words, only sees you when he wants, prioritises his friends over you, is disrespectful and calls you names and is cocky and immature. Put like that, is there any question? Do you think having sex is going to make him suddenly mature, caring, respectful and committed. I think not.

 I don’t necessarily think it’s because the relationship has run its course. It sounds to me as if, as is so often the case, you as a girl are several years ahead of him as a boy. You see this as a relationship – something that deepens and develops. He seems to be at an emotional age when it just stays as it is – you’re going out and so what. Oh – but he’d like a bit of sex. Boys can separate sex from emotion – it’s a nice sensation and that’s that. For women, and mature men, sex comes as part of a committed association. It’s something we do because it feels nice, but more important it’s something we do with someone we love, to show that love.

 If he cleans up his act and chose to prioritise you ahead of friends, to spend time with you, to show love and care and respect for you, then maybe you’d see sex between you as a natural progression. Doing it in the hope that it would make him be nicer is a one way ticket to humiliation and hurt.

 What worries me about him is that it wasn’t that you got to know him when he was ‘childish’ and so were you. You got to know him when he acted decently, and it’s only lately he’s begun to act like this. That speaks to me of someone who either takes you nastily for granted, or someone who has ceased to care. Either way I don’t think it’s something to wait out. As a general lesson in life, I’d say don’t ever, ever make excuses for anyone who treats you badly and don’t ever, ever hang around hoping it will get better. If a friend treats you with a lack of respect, drop them. You deserve better.

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