shall i leave her?

Dear Suzie,
I have been with my Girlfriend for over two years and I am deeply in love with her. She has never had a lesbian relationship before and feels very stressed about coming out. I understood her feeling this way to begin with but after two years, I’m starting to take it personally. I feel like I am in a dead end relationship…my ideal life would involve marriage or its civil equivalent, a house and maybe some kids. She has no interest in any of these things. I have always convinced myself in the past that she would eventually change and want at least some of the same things as me. The situation seems to getting worse instead of better. Another reason that our relationship is a bit strained at the moment is that she has gone back to uni to do her masters. She is self involved normally but this has added fuel to the fire. Everything I do is insignificant and I am expected to be at her beckon call. She takes a lot and gives me nothing. The obvious answer is to break up but I love her. I can’t walk away. Is there any way that I can make a clean break without breaking my heart?


Sorry – I’m really sorry – but loss always results in pain. The only thing you can do is minimise and manage it, not do away with it. And I don’t think you should ever seek to banish pain. The hurt of losing love may sting but it shows you’re alive and capable of feeling. If you could stop hurting you’d also stop being able to love – one goes with the other.

What I do think you need to do is look carefully at what you have and what you’re doing to keep it. It sounds as if part of you is saying you’ve already lost something in this relationship. She cares for herself more than you, she demands and doesn’t give, she won’t acknowledge your relationship, she doesn’t share your dreams. In a sense, she’s already left you, or never was there for you as you were for her. Breaking up would hurt but it may in the long run hurt a lot less than staying. I can’t think of anything worse than living with and loving someone who denigrates, minimises, uses and abuses you.

I would give her a chance to stop being so self centred and maybe face up to her own fears and anxieties of coming out, which may be what all this is about. It might help to suggest seeing a Relate or other counsellor to explore what is going on and why, and how you both might address it.

She may not have realised how much you have been hurt by this and once you put your concerns and say you are considering leaving she may put some effort into talking it over with you. But if she refuses and doesn’t take your concerns or feelings seriously, I think you have your answer. You and your feelings are every bit as important as hers, no matter what she is doing at the moment. If she can’t acknowledge and act on that, what hope is there for your partnership?

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