Empty Promises

By Dr. Marie Hartwell-Walker

Q: When we first started dating I told him that I would never be with a guy that lied to me, couldn’t follow through with things that he promised to do. He has A.D.D. but sometimes I don’t feel like that is an excuse. He promised so much to me and kept saying I am doing this for you. I kept telling him it shouldn’t be for me it should be for you or it will never count or mean anything to you. All those things that he said he would do for me are all the things he has not done in our relationship. He also has a depression problem and he keeps saying that he will go and talk to a doctor but he never has. His mom and I have even said we would pay for it, but nothing works. He’s been lying to me and hiding things from me. He thinks I don’t know but I always find out. I don’t why he does these things. I’m afraid ten years will go by and he’ll finally get something done and he’ll be like why didn’t I do this years ago, I have wasted so much time. I love him dearly, and I try to support and encourage him but it feels like its never enough. It affects us and it hurts me. I just want us to move on with our lives, but I don’t want to get more serious and have children if he doesn’t have his life in order. But I don’t want to lose him either. What do I do?

A: If love always made sense, you would already know that you can’t lose what you don’t have. You are right to be asking these questions now, before investing any more time and energy in a relationship that is so one sided. You are doing the lion’s share of the work of this relationship; giving many, many chances, encouraging, understanding, sympathizing, even offering to help pay for the help he needs. What do you get in return? Besides his good looks, only empty promises and excuses. Your good sense tells you this is a losing situation. Unfortunately, the heart doesn’t always listen to the head.

I hope you don’t have to have your heart break before you pay attention to what you are already telling yourself. You are only 21. This is the time in life for you to be dating different people and finding out what kind of guy is the guy for you. Chalk this one up as an important learning experience and move on. Somewhere out there is a guy who will return the kind of love and loyalty you give.
I wish you well.
Dr. Marie

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Last reviewed: By John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on 3 Dec 2006

APA Reference
Hartwell-Walker, D. (2006). Empty Promises. Psych Central. Retrieved on October 24, 2014, from http://psychcentral.com/ask-the-therapist/2006/12/03/empty-promises/