This week I got an email from my friend Naomi:
It’s just not working… I’m gutted, but just don’t know what to do.
I feel like he’s lost interest in me, he doesn’t care what I say or want to have a conversation with me anymore. Then, he says that he doesn’t know if he can give me what I want or need.
We used to talk and make each other laugh, but now it just seems forced and if we don’t talk in “baby voices” (sorry, sick, I know!) it’s assumed that one is mad at the other..
Then, yesterday, I had to leave for work early and he wasn’t awake yet, so I left without saying goodbye. I didn’t text him all day, which isn’t like me, so when I got home he asked what’s wrong and I just snapped.
I ended up asking him “Are you happy? Am I still what you want? As I feel like I’m not”
I feel like my best friend has just gone off me.
That he doesn’t actually like me anymore and I’m not sure what to do…
Firstly, I really feel for Naomi. There’s nothing worse than falling out with someone you love, whether it’s a boyfriend, friend, family member.
When it comes to Naomi’s dilemma, I can’t pretend to be a dating guru, as my experience in this area is limited at best. But, I do know that Joe and Naomi are an awesome couple and that I wouldn’t want their fairy-tale to end here.
So, as any friend would, I’m going to try to give the best advice I can.
Correct me if I’m wrong, but I believe this is quite a common relationship scenario.
When you first start dating someone you really like you have that amazing feeling - that you’re the very best version of yourself. You can do anything and everything together.
But, when the honeymoon period ends, you start to panic.
You dig around trying to find a memory of the person you were when you first fell in love, and come to think of it, where did he go? What has happened to the feeling of endless possibilities? Where is the couple who wanted to take on the world?
Naomi and Joe have been together for well over a year now, so the honeymoon is coming to an end. Consequently, there are a few reasons why things are getting a little down-and-out.
For a start, you’re probably now really comfortable with each other so you can say what you want. This is good because it shows your relationship has moved up a gear, but also bad; because you’re not afraid to say when the other person is doing something you don’t like.
Secondly, and more importantly, you have forgotten how to be happy without the rollercoaster of excitement you get when you first meet someone, without the ‘baby voices’, the daily texts, the lovey-dovey moments.
For some reason, I’m not sure why, but all girls crave reassurance in order to be happy. Unfortunately, boys think differently. They don’t need the same reassurance we need. Asking him if “he’s happy” or “am I still what you want?” is perfectly natural from a girls perspective, because you’re looking for reassurance.
But truthfully, deep down, you’re only asking for your own gratification, to resolve our biggest insecurities as women. You want to know how he feels about you as a mental safety net, so you can brace yourself for the worst.
Realistically, Joe probably hasn’t even thought about if he’s happy, because he doesn’t need the same reassurance women need. It’s not that he doesn’t care, but he’s a man and they focus on what-it-is, not where-it’s-going.
Men just live in the moment and women like to plan ahead.
So, am I saying Naomi should have kept her mouth shut?
No, it’s only natural for her to crave reassurance; we’re women, that’s what we do!
But ask yourself why you’re asking those questions. Is it because he’s being an idiot or because deep down you have lost the person you were at the beginning of the relationship? You’ve forgotten how to be truly happy when the relationship is no longer sky rocketing, but just cruising at a high altitude.
I could be completely wrong, this is just a suggestion, but maybe if you want to get the old you back, stop focussing so much on the ‘we’ and start looking at ‘me’.
Start by reminding yourself of all the reasons you fell in love with Joe.
Then, without asking him, write a list of all the things you think Joe fell in love with you for.
This is just a guess but it’s probably because; your funny, bubbly, chatty, cute, caring, interesting, you’re not afraid to be yourself, you have lots of friends, your determined, hardworking and clever….. the list is endless J
My point is…. when you’re a girl, it’s dangerously easy to lose the ‘you’’ in relationships.
If you want to go back to how you felt at the start of your relationship, then try doing things that get the girl that he fell in love with back. And don’t do it for him, but do it for yourself because that’s the girl you really are, not the person who is worried about the fact you didn’t text him all day.
Remembering why you fell in love, and the person YOU were when you first got together
Focussing on how to get the old you back will help YOU feel better, more confident and good about yourself….. And that is something all men (including Joe) can’t resist. He’ll soon come running.
Write a list of things to do that get the happy bubbly Naomi back
(I’m not saying spend less time with Joe, I’m just saying do more happy things)
So let’s look at why Joe fell for you:
- Funny and bubbly: arrange a meeting with friend / friends that bring out the fun and bubbly in you.
- Chatty: ring your mum for a long chinwag, or send a long email to that friend who is travelling around the world.
- Cute: go buy a new cute outfit. It’ll always make you feel better…. hello Westfield
- Interesting: do something you’ve always wanted to do, but haven’t found the time yet. Visit a museum or a park.
- Be yourself: go back home for a weekend. It’s the best way to remember your roots.
- Lots of friends: arrange a girl’s night out… any excuse for a cocktail!
- Determined: there’s nothing more self-satisfying then setting yourself a goal and then achieving it. Sign up to a 10k charity run, do the garden ready for summer, make some new cushion covers from scratch. Job done, boom.
- Hardworking: Plan 3 things you want to achieve in the work place in the next month – once you’ve achieved them treat yourself to a massage or relaxing spa day.
- Clever: find a good book or a few to get through, or learn something new.
And do all the above (you can amend the list to suit you better) because those are the things that really made you feel good before Joe was even on the scene
I honestly believe that if you put yourself in a position where you truly feel good about yourself, then the people around you feel good too.
Just don’t tell Joe you are doing this to try and win him over, do it for YOU not for him….. that’s what made you attractive in the first place!
Stop relying on a man to make you happy and remember that real happiness comes from within.
Don’t worry, just be happy