First ever relationship, need advice
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« on: June 25, 2015, 07:54:11 pm »

Hi,

I am 27 and I've only been out for a year. I am also in a long distance relationship with a man five years younger than me, and we've been dating for the past six months. It's also our first relationship ever so we're both new to all of this. I just recently visited him for two weeks and everything was fine while I was there with the occasional bump.

Anyways, my boyfriend runs an audio production company which I also work for, which I guess complicates things? Well that's not the issue.

The issue is that he's very dedicated to his work and sometimes it feels like he's too dedicated. Like I always feel like I'm his second priority. How? Like sometimes when he's busy with a project, our interactions via text is only one word answers and when we arrange a time to talk by phone, he forgets and we end up not having the call.

I really want us to work out but I don't know what to do. I asked him that I need to talk to him tonight and it's urgent, because I want to get all of this out so we can work through it together, but I'm also really bitter about how he'd been treating me the past week so how should I go about this as to not antagonize him but at the same time have him understand how I feel?

I would really appreciate any advice given to me. Thanks!
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« Reply #1 on: June 28, 2015, 06:19:15 am »

I would say go easy on him.  I am probably a lot like your boyfriend when it comes to relationships.  I have trouble putting anything as a higher priority than work.  Work is what makes my world go around and allows me to be happy and enjoy life.  Work is what provides the money to live my life the way that I choose, and I let nothing interfere with that.

However, when I am in a relationship, it is hard to balance the two (work/relationship).  Sometimes the needs of the relationship must come first.  With him being only 22, he's probably super focused on work, as it is likely one of his few jobs he's had in life, and you mentioned that he is very dedicated to his work, so he probably enjoys it, too.  At 22, he has not learned when to shift priorities in life.  I'm 41, and still don't manage that well when in relationships.

My advice, is to be up front and honest with him.  Tell him exactly what you wrote here: That his dedication to his work makes you feel as if you aren't ever a first priority in your relationship.  Let him hear that from you and let him think about it.  Tell him how it makes you feel.  Suggest the little things that he probably takes for granted that would help the problem, such as remembering arranged calls, and making time for the two of you.

To fix this problem, he has to first realize that there is a problem and own up to it.  Once that is done, action can be taken.

But a word of advice.  Even in the best relationship, one can't expect to be the first priority all the time.  It really is a balancing act.  Two people in the exact opposite situation as you: Both making each other and their relationship the first priority, while being homeless, poor, and miserable, would likely say that their relationship isn't the greatest either. 

It is tricky.  You have to work on that balance.  If it is truly out of balance, you have to communicate that to one another, acknowledge it, and work to change it so that you both have your needs met.
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« Reply #2 on: July 04, 2015, 05:44:23 am »

You mentioned he runs an audio production company that you also work for? I'm going to take a guess that you're both artists, or maybe one of you is. Artists are different types of creatures and I mean that in a good way. By nature, they are usually extremely focused when creating but also extremely sensitive. When the creative sparks are flowing (or a project deadline is near), whether in songwriting, producing or even engineering an artist can get so wrapped up into that moment, they lose sight of everything else.. including bathing, time, and eating!!!  Crazy? That doesn't mean he doesn't care about you, that's just the nature of an artist, or anyone really focused and driven. On the other side, if you're an artist, you could be extra extra sensitive to how he works and take it personally.

Like 36605domtop suggested, communicate with him how you feel. I would do it from a place of love and concern and see how it goes.

Good luck!!!
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