Thanks for the last coaching thoughts, I found them very helpful.
I have been seeing R since April of 2017 (LDR, 1.5 hours, I do 95% of the driving). He is 11 years younger than me. We have broken up three times. Once for two weeks two years ago (he told me he slept with 2 women). Once for two months a year ago in the fall (he told me he slept with 2-3 women). He also started over-drinking at this time, when he does this he periodically says things that I find very upsetting. Our most recent breakup was on January 30 (he told me he slept with 2 women between that time) and February 24th when I started seeing him again. When he was drinking (before we broke up recently) he told me he has slept with 8 women since we started seeing each other, and later told me he was lying.
I have a strong preference for a monogamous relationship. He has told me he is not committed to me over the long term because I don’t want children and I am underearning. Our breakup was about me not spending enough time with him, and an argument about home renovations/my resentments about doing chores and work at his home. I’ve seen him three times since our last breakup, and it seems that he wants to keep seeing me, but I am not sure on what terms. We have both said ‘I love you’ since the break-up. My brain tells me I am emotionally attached to him.
“Being emotionally attached to this person is a choice you both are making… Ask yourself why am I emotionally attached to (R)?”
I have a sexual bond with him. I miss him when I don’t see him for a while. I think about him and spend energy wondering how he is doing. I have invested time in the relationship. I want his approval (though I’m not totally clear why). I enjoy talking to him and spending time with him when we are not arguing. I enjoy having sex with him. I have become accustomed to him and his habits. He does things to care for me like snuggling, listening to my feelings and concerns, taking me out to lunch, and cooking for me. I have a habit of becoming emotionally attached to whomever I am sleeping with. Humans form bonds when they spend time together. He has told me he intentionally does things to get me to do what he wants or punish me when I’m not doing what he wants. I have a habit of putting others’ needs and desires before my own, and that is easy to do in this relationship. He wants my time and attention which makes it easier for me to spend time and attention on him.
“Notice that you are very aware of what he wants and what he is aiming for in a relationship with which you disagree with. The question for you is what do you, scholar, really want in a relationship? Does this person have a want match with you?”
I want a partner who I love and who loves me. (Want match: yes/probably.)
I want a relationship that is physically safe and mutually respectful. (Some improvement needed.)
I want a relationship where we are sexually compatible. (Want match: Yes.)
I want a relationship where I am respected and I can express myself fully. (Improvement needed.)
I want a relationship where I can grow emotionally, spiritually, financially, and professionally. (Some improvement needed.)
I want a relationship with someone who gets along with my family. (Improvement needed.)
I want a monogamous relationship with someone who is loyal to me. (Want match: No.)
I want a relationship where I can travel, go to events on my own, and be independent. (Want match: No.)
I want a relationship that is part of a larger community of supportive friends and coworkers. (Want match: No.)
I want a partner who doesn’t over-drink. (Want match: No.)
I want a partner who is motivated, has a great career, and is focused on self-improvement. (Want match: Yes for me/No for him on my career lately.)
I want a partner who is financially stable and responsible. (Want match: Yes for me/No for him.)
I want a partner who takes equal responsibility for the relationship and shared tasks. (Improvement needed.)
I am planning to make time to talk to R about our relationship the next few times we see each other. But I think I probably have enough information now to know that we have some pretty significant differences that may be difficult to resolve. Any further steps/coaching is appreciated. Thank you!