My boyfriend has higher expectations of me, then he does for himself. As a whole this man is very kind, had great values, very effectionate and many more very fine qualities. However, It's like what is good for me and what is good for him, is 2 different things. When he needs help with something such as banking, cleaning, renovations, painting, moving etc he expects me to step up to the plate and help regardless of what else I have to do and "get it done. And in the past I gladly help. But when I needed him to return the favor recently on several occassions, he is slow to step up. Very similar to my teenagers, but he is middle aged. I do not think you should have to badger someone to get a helping hand. There is a side of me that wants to not help him when he needs it again, but I hate that type of behavior, 2 wrongs do not make a right. I would like to think I have more character and am above that. But not sure how to get the point across. He knows how I feel about people that do not do their fair share, regardless of the situation. But he hardly ever applies this to himself.
As you described, your character is above the 'tit for tat' or 2 wrongs don't make 1 right. In the same token there is such a thing as reciprocity and boundaries(personal). You should value and respect yourself and your life, not just his. Continuing the status quo can and more than likely be setting yourself up for a very unhealthy relationship. I suggest you research Narcisissm/Narcisisst/NPD. In the mean time, start setting personal boundaries like if you are doing something or have plans for something, tell him so and that you'd be happy to assist him when you are through. Stick to it. Healthy relationships are not one-sided or one way streets.
Darlyn makes a great point. One other thought, you mentioned you have talked to him about "others" not pulling their weight. I am sure he understands your position on the matter, but perhaps in his mind, he thinks he actually is pulling his weight. Have you specifically talked to him about this subject, in regards to his actions...or lack thereof?
As a guy, I'd love to say that I understand what women are thinking...if that were the case id be a millionaire. But the truth is we interpret situations completely differently. We think differently and we comprehend differently. A woman can ask a guy to do something, with the most clear directions/instructions and odds are he will screw it up, my half assing something.
Timzticking, This is definitely a frustrating situation. It is the kind of thing that, over time, can break a relationship. Many people find that the best way to address such problems is by directly stating what actions are upsettting them and how they make them feel (e.g. sad, hurt, angry). Then it is also important to follow up with how your feelings would be different if he changed his behavior and helped (e.g. closer, more loving). It's best to do this at a time when you are both calm and open to such a serious discussion. If you choose to try this, please let us know how it goes.
It is good to use ' I' statements when discussing sensitive topics. Start out something like ' I feel (hurt, disrespected, etc) when you (don't help out, are condescending, etc). I would feel better if (fill in the blank).' There are some good books on communication and probably some things online too.
I know how you feel. Only, I was in his shoes. It took a long time for me to realize just how much my wife loved me by doing more for me that what I did for her. The last few years I've been able to make it up to her but not nearly enough. You see, she passed away last March of gallbladder cancer. We were married for 41 years, the first 10 years were terrible for her. I even divorced her. But I came to my senses and realized I didn't want to grow old alone and I didn't want our son to grow up without a father in the home. I asked her if she would have me back. She did. The next 15 years were much better. But the last 16 were the best. I never felt I was able to give back to here as much as she gave to me. So, my prayer is that you can keep giving and the love of your life will someday recognize how much you love him and he too will correct the imbalance in the giving scale. Just remember Jesus said it is better to give than to receive. Love (Agape) and Prayers, Mi?hael, Raresense
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