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» Scarleteen Boards: 2000 - 2014 (Archive) » SCARLETEEN CENTRAL » Relationships » issues arising

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Author Topic: issues arising
Destinee Carols
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Things are coming to a head at the worst time (6 papers in two weeks, not started), which doesn't help, of course.

My boyfriend and I don't feel like there's a lot of connection lately. Not enough communication, for one, not knowing how... We're also having issues of compatibility (our opinions on piercings I want...and then more importantly, having kids)...

How do compatibility issues like this work out? It's not just things like...differing opinions or religions or something (though the latter can be a huge deal). Something like one person wanting children and the other not... Is this already indicative of needing to end the relationship because it can't continue its course (in an end-it-now-rather-than-later sort of way)?

This is obviously not going to be the determining factor for my decisions, I just need to hash things out and get opinions, but my boyfriend and I will be talking, at a later time when school isn't all up in my face like it is. :/

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Heather
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Destinee, can you give me a little background on the history of this relationship and how it's gone in the past?

Also, have you had any incidences before of this person having issues with what you wanted to do with your own appearance, like the piercings, how you choose to dress, etc? I'd not say someone's own body and how they present it is really about compatibility, b/c that -- unlike say, sex -- isn't really something you do together, that's all yours.

With kid-having stuff, is this about now or the future or....?

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Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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Destinee Carols
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We've been together for sixteen months and have had some issues, nothing to this extent.

One of the largest was his perception that I was guilt-tripping him (and I was a bit), which he took very badly because his ex had done that to him. We resolved that, and this was quite a while ago.

He hasn't had issue with my physical appearance - I might ask him if he preferred hair straight or wavy (he like the latter) and I've sometimes done it accordingly, but that's very minor and of about no concern to me. He's expressed great dislike of facial piercings, which is all right to me since I don't know that I'd get them anyways. While I agree that a piercing is about my own body and not something like sex, it does become an issue when I like it and he finds it repulsive or a turn-off. I understand he doesn't mean to be shallow, but attraction is physical as well as emotional and mental, etc.

As far as having kids, that's future stuff - several years, at least. I realize we can both change our minds by then. What are you getting to by that?

And thank you very much for replying to this.

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Heather
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I'm just asking why you're saying issues around kids are creating compatibility issues? If that's a long ways off, I guess I'm feeling particularly lost about why it's posing issues for you now.

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Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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Destinee Carols
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Because I don't want to get down the road to end up marrying (because that's where we're looking) to find that this is going to crop up as an issue for us.
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Heather
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So, would you say that as of right now, one or both of you isn't interested in continuing this relationship unless it led to marriage? Is that were you, he, or both of you are at with it at this time?

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Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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Destinee Carols
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This has been our position on dating - that it's not casual, or however one might perceive it (this is colored by our perception of things and so I might be wording things in a subpar way). That is to say, our relationship was assumed to lead to marriage unless there were issues that arose (large/unresolved/unresolvable ones).

I'm not sure if that answered your question.

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Heather
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Well, the reason I ask is that if and when we find, in any developing relationship, we seem to be having some issues, the first thing we're always going to want to decide is if we want to try and resolve them.

In other words, we can, of course, always choose to walk away from/end or radically change the type of any given relationship when that happens.

But if we figure it's serious, and want to keep moving forward with it then it's obviously a different situation. And if we only want it as a relationship if it is or becomes only one very specific type of relationship, then we'll probably have some extra criteria. Like, for example, if, to you or him, you want to be in this and keep it going aiming for it to -- or even only -- lead to marriage, then you both might have some things you want and don't in a marriage. If any of whatever those things are aren't things the other also wants or is okay with, then it might not make much sense to try and resolve things.

I think you catch my drift.

So, would you say that with things like having trouble connecting, you both are putting effort into that, with an eye on continuing this? How's that going, and how about talks about it?

With things you think are or might not be a sound fit in a marriage, what do you each think about that? Do you want to -- either of you -- accept those differences and move forward with an eye towards marriage (even if that doesn't wind up being what happens), or move out of the relationship now, or, even talk about if this is something you want to continue to develop as-is that might NOT be ideal or what you each want in a marriage-relationship.

(I'm probably getting a little scattered, my apologogies: have a very stuffy head today!)

--------------------
Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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Destinee Carols
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Apologies, I'm equally scattered, but I think I know what you're talking about. Uh...

Yes. We do want to resolve them. No, I don't plan on just up and walking away from this, not just yet.

If our relationship continues, it is marriage that it is headed for. And again, yes, we plan to talk about this. As I said before, though, things only just came to a head right now...we only started talking about this yesterday, and at the moment I'm not emotionally and really only barely mentally available to deal with this proper, because of the overwhelming amount of work I have.

Our current situation is hashing out how much contact we want to have with each other in this period - discussing it properly will have to be postponed, a sad necessity.

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Heather
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Maybe in the interim, then, what you both possibly can do is each do your own work on this so that when you can talk together, you have a lot to bring to the table?

I'd say you both writing out some of your current concerns, and then also, a few creative ideas for ways of addressing them would be a good thing. It might also be helpful, when bringing up concerns, to talk about what's a concern for right now, and what's a concern for maybe-someday-in-the-future.

--------------------
Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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