My boyfriend of three months and I recently booked a weekend trip to Miami for Memorial Day Weekend. (He paid for the tickets.) Over the weekend he sent me an email telling me that he didn’t feel we were ready to travel together and that he wanted some time to think about things. This came on so suddenly that I didn’t know how to respond. I already took the days off work to accommodate this trip. How could he do this so last minute and by email? How should I respond? Should I call him? I’m so shell shocked I don’t know what I would say. What do you think I should do?
Okay. First, breathe. I don’t blame you for being upset at this. In your mind, you were blindsided. But before you react, let’s break this whole thing down.
First, let’s address the “my boyfriend” thing. I’m not privy to the details or conversations where you two agreed to be “boyfriend” and “girlfriend.” I do know that women tend to take the “my boyfriend” ball and run with it. Men let them because it’s easier than having some drawn out conversation. The words boyfriend and girlfriend really should be erased from the dictionary at this point, as they mean nothing. They are juvenile terminology we use to help us clarify and identify a relationship. What matters is whether or not the two people involved in the relationship have a) sacrificed something for the other person and b)expressed or pledged and explicit desire to be exclusive. (Even then there’s no guarantee, but for the purpose of this conversation let’s assume there is.) Sacrifice is key. Does this person give something up for you? Do they relinquish a level of power or sense of security to you? If not, then this is a faux-lationship with an expiration date.
Now, let’s go on the presumption that he did these things for you. There is nothing written that says someone is required to invest a certain amount of time in or on a relationship once they have committed. He tried it and it wasn’t shaping up to what he wanted or thought it could be. He’s allowed to do that, as are you. He thought you two were ready to go to the next level and now he’s reconsidering. The why’s are inconsequential. He’s not there yet and he may never be. You can not speed up the process. Is the timing awful? Yes. But such is life. Sadly, we do not get to schedule or choose when we are dumped. For him to do something like this should tell you just how apprehensive he was. Which brings us to the next point.
Things like this rarely happen out of the blue. There were signs. We ignored them. They don’t have to be glaring red flags either. They could be as tiny as a hesitation to answer certain questions or have conversations. Many times they are obvious. Like when he says he wants to get to know you better before committing. But signs or no signs, he’s not ready or not interested. Period. Do not pass Go.
As for the way in which he did this, I’m torn. The bottom line is that he told you. There are people out there who never get that explanation. I think 3 months is enough time where a phone call is warranted. But that’s me, and that’s you. That’s not everybody. People are split down the middle in regards to the appropriate and effective ways we communicate. He knew you’d be hurt and would probably want to talk it out. He didn’t want to fight or talk. He felt guilty enough. (Maybe.) Or maybe he always knew this was coming. I have no idea. He won’t give you the real answer, either. He wanted to cancel that trip. You can call him cowardly or lazy all you like. It doesn’t change the fact that this appears to be over. Trying to piece it all together will make you crazy.
You can reply to him and express your confusion and hurt. Just don’t expect him to come running back. If he wanted to speak on the phone with you, he’d have called. He will ignore your calls. So don’t bother trying.
As hard as it sounds, you need to try and put this out of your mind. It’s possible you’ll get an answer in a few weeks. Be prepared to never get a resolution. If you do, it’s a bonus.