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Dr. Paige
Dr. Paige, Psychologist
Category: Relationship
Satisfied Customers: 1427
Experience:  Ph.D. Licensed Psychologist
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My boyfriend of 7.5 years is my best friend and I love him

Resolved Question:

My boyfriend of 7.5 years is my best friend and I love him dearly. Unfortunately, I feel that there are some things I can't talk to him about for fear of being 'pushy' or demanding.
1. I want to know that he sees us being together forever. While all of my friends are getting engaged, married and pregnant, our relationship is standing still. All I can take from this is that he still doesn't know if I'm 'the one'. In the meantime, I feel like I can't ask him about this as, if he does then propose, I'll always wonder if did it just to please me.

2. I have very little appetite for sex. I love cuddling and holding hands, I just find it very hard to get turned on. I know this is often the case in long term relationships, and I can tell it upsets my boyfriend, but I have no idea what we can do about it.

These two things weigh on my mind constantly. I sometimes get close to discussing them with him, but then I clam up and can't do it. Ultimately I'm terrified that discussing them openly will snowball into a break up, or will plant the seed of doubt in his head about our relationship. He is 2 years younger than me (he is 27 and I'm 29).
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Relationship
Expert:  Dr. Paige replied 3 years ago.
Hello. A person you want to spend the rest of your life with, should never be feared. If you are afraid to speak to him about the most important things in your lives, how is it possible that you want to be with him forever? These two thing can't go together in a healthy relationship.
If discussing this openly will turn into a break up, that will tell you that the relationship is so fragile and would never last anyway.
The botXXXXX XXXXXne here is you are going to have to have this discussion. There is no other answer.
As far as the sexual part...while common in long term relationships, it doesn't have to be and shouldn't be. Again, the signs of a healthy relationship must include physical expression of love. There may be many reasons for your reluctance including mental or physical problems. You may have a hormonal imbalance causing this. It certainly is not a small matter that you can ignore or continue with and not address in some way. Again, in any healthy relationship, this should be a discussion.
I'm concerned that you have been with him for this long and cannot have these discussions with him. It's not a good sign of your overall relationship. Walking on eggshells or avoiding the hard stuff will not work in a long term, marriage scenario. In my opinion, you need to solidify your foundation before you can even consider marriage. Discuss all things with him, including the intimacy issue. If he leaves you because of this, there is no way a marriage would work with him even if you never discussed it at all. If you think about it, you have no other answer to your question. Find the confidence and have "the talk". His reaction will show you the true nature of your relationship.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Thank you so much for your answer. I think I knew that I needed to have this conversation all along but just needed to hear it from someone else.


 


Do you have any suggestions for how I can approach these subjects with him? I think it would help me to overcome my fear if I can plan how to start the conversation.


 


 

Expert:  Dr. Paige replied 3 years ago.
The timing and atmosphere will be a big factor. Also, his personality. If he is someone with a sense of humor who can joke around, you can make a few comments about marriage to see his reaction. You need to go with your gut and find the right moment. It might help you to write some things down to plan it a little and make sure you don't miss some key points which you want to address. If you completely fall apart with speaking to him, giving him the letter is an option, but a last resort option, as face to face is much better.
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