Not sure who I should be with

By Dr. Marie Hartwell-Walker

am currently with a guy who i’ve been pretty serious with for the past three years. He is my best friend and we are very close. I can’t imagine not having him in my life. I’ve never loved anyone like i love him. The only problem is that we fight all the time. He literally drives me crazy and we are hardly ever happy anymore. We broke up for a short while a few months back and during this time i had sex with a guy who i sort of had a thing with several years back but it was never serious. The entire time me and my boyfriend dated this guy had tried to get back with me and i always secretly wanted to be with him but i knew he wasn’t really the relationship type of guy as he would often go days or even weeks without calling. Anyway, I contracted genital herpes from this guy and even after telling my boyfriend about it he still took me back which proves to me that he really does love me, even if he doesn’t always show it. Even though me and my boyfriend got back together I still hang out with the other guy occasionally and for some reason he makes me so much happier than my boyfriend. Me and him never fight and he talks to me with so much more respect and makes me feel so much more loved than my boyfriend does. He can make me feel ways that i never feel around my boyfriend and i don’t know why. I’m afraid to let go of my boyfriend to be with him though when i don’t think he’ll stick around and i don’t want to cheat anymore. I have tried to just not talk to either one and find someone else but i just can’t like anyone else as much as i try. So how do i know who to choose, the one i have a strong bond with and love and know loves me but is mean to me and starts fights with me all the time or the guy who is always sweet to me and makes me happy but isn’t always around and won’t be serious with me?

A: I can understand why all these conflicting emotions are confusing. But you know what? I think you need to be single for awhile. You’ve been with your guy since you were only 16. You’ve both changed a lot during the past 3 years. That’s probably why you two are fighting all the time and driving each other crazy. The other guy gave you herpes and disrespects your relationship. Neither one sounds like a good bet to me.

I worry that you are so convinced that you need somebody that you think you can’t be solo for awhile. But frankly, your problem isn’t which of these guys to choose. Your problem is that you aren’t ready to be in a committed relationship. You haven’t figured yourself out yet, much less what you want from a relationship. My advice is that you hang out with friends, both male and female, and avoid rushing into being a couple with someone. Take the time to know yourself better, to become more secure and mature, and to figure out what you are looking for in a life partner. You – and the guys you meet – deserve that.

I wish you well.
Dr. Marie

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Last reviewed: By John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on 17 Jan 2011

APA Reference
Hartwell-Walker, D. (2011). Not sure who I should be with. Psych Central. Retrieved on November 28, 2014, from http://psychcentral.com/ask-the-therapist/2011/01/17/not-sure-who-i-should-be-with/