I really love my girlfriend but need my space too

MY GIRLFRIEND is 26 years old and I am 28. We have been together for two years and have been living together for six months.

We really do love each other, but the problem is that I have a lot of friends and pastimes, while she has very few friends and her life is planned around me.

At times I would like to be with my friends or do my own thing, but when I suggest this, she sulks. And she can seriously sulk.

I honestly don't know what to do when she behaves like this. I am not a person who will cheat and I in any case absolutely love her. How do I tell her that I need some space without hurting her?

Need space, Leondale

DUDU REPLIES:

This is a very common problem in many relationships.

There is no doubt that for a relationship to work well, both people need friends and interests apart from each other. The fact that you need space is no reflection on your love for her. She needs to be encouraged to stay in contact with her friends and to develop interests of her own.

If she stifles you, it will hurt your relationship. You will eventually become resentful of her and that would probably be the beginning of the end. Sulking is her way of manipulating you. It is about control - either you do what I want or I will sulk.

Don't entertain this behavior, don't apologise for things you didn't do or keep trying to shake her out of it. Totally ignore her when she sulks. Perhaps when things are going well you should tell her that her sulking is destructive and in future when she sulks you will leave her to get on with it.

Tell her that it is childish and she would get better results if she discussed her problems with you.

Your living arrangement is fairly new and there is a lot of adjustment on both sides. If you talk to each other and explain your needs honestly, your life together will be happier.

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