I Am Breaking Up a Good Relationship Because My Girlfriend Won’t Change Her Priorities

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I’m not looking for advice, but I just wanted to say that (as a man) you give solid advice to women. A good female friend of mine found her fiancé as a result of reading your advice. Your advice regarding women with unusual or difficult schedules is spot-on. Sadly, I’m going to have to end a fairly good relationship tomorrow with a smart, cute, funny woman. Why? Her priorities.

She’s been either in school or a high-powered job her entire life. As an achiever, those have been her focuses. She’s never made a man her focus. I’m OK with not being her #1, but between her many (and growing) friends, hobbies, and endeavors, I find it increasingly difficult to spend an acceptable amount of time with her.

If you have a boyfriend who only has one night a week for you, I would encourage you to dump him.

The last straw was when she decided to work at a year-long weekend festival both Saturday and Sunday mornings. She had been working Saturday when we met and I was okay with that. It’s not a money thing but more of a do-gooder thing to her. In any case, she took my understanding a little for-granted and added the second day before mentioning it to me. She would be far too “independent” to go back to one day a weekend, because she doesn’t “do things just for guys.”

It’s not unusual for her to tell me that “I have dinner with a friend Monday, an event on Tuesday, a soccer game on Thursday, a meeting on Friday, and the festival Saturday (and now) again on Sunday. Do you have Wednesday or sometime during the day on the weekends open?” Since, I’m also somewhat busy, the answer is often no. She’s exhausted most of the time when we do hang out.

The thing is she genuinely loves me and I know she will be hurt when she gets the news that this is just too hard for me. I’m a flexible, secure, giving man but I have my limits. Like I said, Evan, I never asked to be her #1, but being her #10 isn’t going to work. I don’t take it personally — this is how her past relationships have gone.

The sad part is that she really doesn’t perceive that her life is inaccessible for a man. I’m a tough guy but being made to feel like I’m the leftover backup plan, however unintentionally, is just not what I want in a partner.

It will be tough telling her that I’m out. I grew up with a mother who was so “involved” in the community and career that my Dad and me were just filler time. I feel the same dynamic with this lady and I don’t want that for me or my eventual kids. This woman has a severe fear of ending up old and alone, and yet it’s not enough to make her change her behavior. I have communicated my position and her enthusiastic promises to “chill out a bit” and “open up my calendar” haven’t been kept. Add in kids and I just don’t know whether I’d have an absentee mother on my hands.

Relationship needs are relationship needs and people who refuse to compromise — regardless of gender — can’t be too surprised when they find themselves alone.

Life is about choices and I feel like an increasing number of women are lying to themselves about that reality. When two things truly conflict you have to pick one, you just can’t have it all at the same time. Healthy things like “compromise” are now frowned upon by women’s advice-givers. The college lifestyle of being busy all the time is taken further and further into adulthood. It’s all just enough to push a good, progressive guy like me towards a more traditional woman, even if she’s not as degreed or professionally successful.

What I feel really bad about is that I won’t be single for more than a week or two, but she could be entering another year-long bout of men who never call after the first date.

Feel free to print this if you think your readers would find it helpful.

Cheers!

Austin

Thank you, Austin. It’s rare when I print anything that I didn’t write myself, but this is a valuable anecdote that is more powerful than anything I could have made up myself.

And for any woman who gets her hackles up that another woman is being told to compromise because she can’t “have it all”, let’s just say that nothing would change if the genders were reversed. If you have a boyfriend who only has one night a week for you, I would encourage you to dump him as well, no matter how much you loved him. Relationship needs are relationship needs and people who refuse to compromise — regardless of gender — can’t be too surprised when they find themselves alone.

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Comments:

  1. 81
    llol

    “I won’t be single for more than a week or two.”

    DING DING DING DING! RED FLAG! She’s better off without you.

  2. 82
    Mark

    Some very interesting comments on here. I am having a similar problem and came across this after a Google search. Hes doing the right thing. If you express to a person I want this to happen in our relationship and they don’t do it despite promises of yes then it’s adios time. Yes men can get relationships easier than women and women  can get sex easier.

  3. 83
    Jon M

    Wow, so many females viewed  his letter in a negative light. The guy is in the right, his girlfriend in the wrong, and now so many female readers are simply picking apart his words. What the heck! Can’t you all just see the simplicity of the problem at hand? Let me spell it out for you all. Austin is making himself available for his girlfriend. His girlfriend is making no time for him. He’s had enough. I see what many of you are doing, you’re coming to her rescue and trying to find something wrong with what he did or said.

    1. 83.1
      Professor X

      Yep…women and men look for the excuse to justify their personal view.   Ambitious women and men will discount other people despite doing charities, benefits, fun runs…meanwhile they blow off those close to them.   Some people don’t want a relationship, they want an admirer or even sometimes a person to rescue.   It’s all ego whether good or bad, you’re just another check box on the list of accomplishments for that person.   Yep I been there, great person but she was narcissistic, helpful, cruel, intelligent, quick-tempered, sexy, unforgiving, friendly, but friendless and not liked by other women of all ages.   It’s not bipolar or psychopathic, but definitely about their world and you fitting a need in  their collection of Amazing Person of the Year.   Painful breakup, but once she started advertising her greatness on Facebook again despite people not liking her personally, plus having spoke to a few of her ex boyfriends that were decent people and seeing the pattern…I knew I dodged a bullet.

      They’re not bad people, they just live in their own world and use our world superficially to grow their identity of self worth.

  4. 84
    Francis

    Is she an Aquarius? Sorry to be so Zodiac stereotypical. I am in the midst of a breakup with a girl who is hard wired to do road trips… appease random friends with favors in her social group… and chase whatever waterfall that might come her way. She randomly asks me if “I am busy Tuesday” and then suddenly… unless I open up that day then I am totally a ** out on seeing her. In other words I am not her priority #1 or 2 but more like 10. Exception is when she came down for her birthday. But I almost feel as if she did that to show off to her family that she was still with me (because in some ways they like and respect me more than she does). Well the last straw for me came when I found out only a week before that she planned a trip out of state for three days. She keeps insisting it’s just “a work type thing she doesn’t even want to do.” But that is a bunch of convoluted garbage designed to excuse her from her paltry communication skills and total disregard for my feelings. She is going to see some really close friends of hers and go snowboarding. She has a past trauma, so she avoided telling me out of fear. At first I did my best not to blow up. But eventually I did, and I tried to get her to see the self fulfilling prophecies that have plagued our relationship stemming from her fear. Of course my eventual getting angry sent the entire thing into a relapse, whereby both of us became upset and a lot of finger pointing ensued.

     

    What eventual did it for me though was what I perceive to be a repeating cycle of the “victimization” behavior. She continually tells me she is “trying so hard” and that I am discounting her feelings and it hurts her. Whenever I bring up issues that are sensitive to me, she simply responds with issues that are sensitive to her and makes excuses for her behaviors or excuses for reasons why I see the relationship is stagnant (me always having to accommodate her and not the other way around).

     

    This is how jaded she is. She once invited me to her friend’s wedding about an 8 hour drive out of state. I dutifully and responsibly got the time off work and created the space so that I can go.   I respectfully considered her schedule and did my best to make it happen. Well to this day, when I tell her that I feel neglected, she says “if I didn’t love you I wouldn’t invite you to meet all my friends.” So to her, just by inviting me, I should feel totally grateful. Amazing. Sure. Yes I am glad she trusts me to invite me. But how about appreciating that not only do I show up, I show up with my shoes polished and my best foot forward and I knock every opportunity out of the park? How about her doing the same? She says, “when you invite me, you don’t sound enthusiastic enough, so it makes me not want to go.” Again. Just excuses and this is passive finger pointing. Again she is not responsible for anything.

     

    I can own up to the times I have honestly messed up. Being thick headed or absent minded to her needs. At the start of the relationship I admit I was a bit nervous and anxious. Then again she was dating another man and I didn’t find out about it until I had slept with her for the 3rd time. Again my anxieties always come up in arguments, my clingy behavior at the time comes up, but never the triggers for them.

     

    At first I thought it would be hard to leave this girl. She’s cute. She’s outspoken and has a ton of charisma. But the more time goes on the more I see how shallow and deeply wounded she is. How her great show stopping personality lives for the lime light and how her ideal man is one with no life or ambitions but just gleefully accompanies her and bends at her every whim. This is her dilemma. She wants a token boyfriend / husband to look good, have a good career, and to elevate her status. Yet she doesn’t want to do much to keep him. She doesn’t realize that these kind of men don’t stick around and put up with crap.

    1. 84.1
      Karl R

      Francis,

      It sounds like you’re trying very hard to convince us that you’re completely justified in breaking up with your girlfriend.

      Relax. You don’t feel like a priority (regardless of whether you are). You’re not happy. That’s all the justification you need.

       

      You’re making a common mistake. You’re trying to say that the breakup is all your girlfriend’s fault (directly or indirectly). It doesn’t have to be her fault. It could be entirely your fault, and you would still be justified in breaking up with her.

      If you stop trying to make it her fault, your breakup will be less contentious. Furthermore, you won’t stick around as long in future  dead-end relationships (because you won’t feel obliged to wait for an incident that makes it her fault).

  5. 85
    Megan

    I did this to my boyfriend, definitely. Prioritizing is really important, and how you prioritize reveals what you want most.

  6. 86
    Al

    I broke up recently with my missis . we were fire together . I met her in teenage , when I was broke as anything and living in shared house . I remember she invited me out one of nights but I just knew I could of not afforded it and had to blank it . Next day I sold my PlayStation as hunger for her was more than anything ever and guess what ? it was best choice I made . As the honeymoon got craizy & no sec , min , hour wanted to spent apart I started looking for flat/houses. She was abit difficult in her way and hurt in past so I wanted to give her all by starting as simple as flowers every day ! Year after I found sweet 2 bed house , which we just about was able to support so we went for it . As time went and money was all time short I started falling far stress as I wanted to give best but could not afford again . Months later I started to trade motors , which gave me pretty good income on side 70-80 cars first year . I still had time but little   , we had chance to go see her family , my family & fly aboard . All was brilliant but I started to fall for MONEY . Year later I had little savings from cars so I started trying small products for resell till one product kicked off , That’s when I lost it ! 200 week to 5-10k week . well . I can truly say , I missed all birthdays , anniversary’s and together sittings. That’s when arguments started , I tried explaining her   . Thing is it never was for money , I wanted to give her best restaurants , holidays & Big house   when yet i did forget that only flowers were required to put that biggest smile on her. But I fell into deep long term dream while loosing it in really short term . Last year there was no day we didn’t argue , a lot will wonder why so long , why a lot . we not stupid . we both knew exactly what was happening but we believed , we really did . Most of time I couldn’t finish talks or arguments in way would calm her down and get to know better so I can do better as MY F Phone always was going off , hours would cost me  £1000″s . I NEVER WANTED TO LEAVE HOUSE   , I always wanted to stay and say enough of all but I didn’t know what I would do , can I even ever do anything else ? I would always drive off and she would stay and cry . I feel guilty for it all and always did as was going through it . 5 Months prior break up I would only see her 6 am when wake up and 0000-01:00am when she sleep . I always said to her it wont stay this way , I had numbers in my head to hit before I wanted to stop . I started fixing up , and finding more time . You know why ? because I lost all interest for money ! I had enough   , everyday pockets full . I just saw it as normal paper   . I started falling for her again and followed more again . Things ofcourse were not still right .our   anniversary was coming and I got her maaaasssive bundle of flowers and all sort of bits with massive human sized teddy bear   . That day I picked her up and we drove home . she had second bedroom ,for herself to do make-up and all you woman do   . She went up & I stayed down stairs as I was waiting for that smile + run 🙂 waiting waiting waiting   . so I went . She was sitting next to gifts and crying , so I got really stressed and asked whats up   , all be alright only for better . She said , I didn’t get you anything . Which was fully fine with me as I did do same year before so I played it out well and calmed it down. Week later , was Friday , one of busiest days so I said to her I be busy and back late , lets catch pizza. She was ignoring a lot of my messages then as I say I was trying because I knew it was close to end . As day went on I had to grab something from home quick. When I got home , she was in kitchen sitting . I walked in rush in as approaching her asked : so we on pizza tonight ? she said : we need to talk . But I was in such rush I fully ran out , saying   : I be back soon we grab pizza and then but fully ignoring as I though I’m doing better and last weeks I been on top . That day she left me . I Came home with Wine , Flowers & Pizza but Lights were off & only Memories left on kitchens table .

  7. 87
    Clare

    I am glad that Austin has the clarity to see that he is not getting what he wants out of this relationship and to break it off.

    I have lost count of the number of friends who have come to me for advice, being in a variation of this situation, and up till recently, I’ve been in the situation myself several times without knowing how to handle it. Mostly, they stick around far too long waiting for the other person to make them a priority. They are essentially reduced to waiting to be tossed biscuit crumbs. Just this afternoon, one of my guy friends texted me about a girl he is interested in who has declined his invitation for the umpteenth time, always seeming to have something better to do.

    It really doesn’t matter what the other person’s reasons or excuses are; in its early stages, a relationship is about the results you are getting. When there is a proper commitment, like marriage, there is leeway for partners to be a lot more understanding and accommodating, but there is no earthly reason to put up with not being made a priority when just dating. It’s so important to have boundaries for oneself – it helps one to respect oneself, and it helps other people to respect you. The other person’s reasons or other priorities are only half of the equation – the other half is what you want out of a relationship. I think it’s important to set boundaries around what you will accept from other people, that allow for a little bit of flexibility and benefit of the doubt, but that respect yourself. For instance, I once dated a guy who was chronically late. I forgave it the first three times he did it, whilst expressing my unhappiness with it. On the third time, I told him that in future if he was more than twenty minutes late for a date, I would go home. I was perfectly serious, and he knew it, and though he protested, he was never late again.

     

    If I were in Austin’s situation, I’d probably accommodate to her schedule two or three times, but then, if she were unwilling to accommodate to my schedule in return, I’d simply stop budging on availability, and if we saw each other less and less, the relationship would simply never get off the ground. (That brings me to an interesting question: I wonder how long Austin has been putting up with this? Was she pretty selfish with her time from the get-go and he just went along with it?)

  8. 88
    Yuki

    Generally speaking, sexism and personal experiences aside, I think that both of them have different priorities and goals in life. Maybe it’s a wrong timing, or maybe it’s a wrong person. But ultimately, they just want different things. So, if they couldn’t compromise/work it out, the most logical decision is to break up. After all, a relationship involves the efforts of two individuals.

    It’s possible that the girlfriend didn’t want to spend her youth on just love itself. She had filled up her day with meeting friends, participating in activities and events. It seemed to me that she was trying to live the best of her life. There wasn’t anything wrong to pursue what she really wanted to do. We live our own life. But if that’s the case, maybe she shouldn’t have entered a relationship in the first place.

    Because that’s unfair to Austin, whose one of his priority I believed, was love.

    It’s not wrong for the girlfriend to not wanting to compromise/give up her hobbies/interests/work for love. But it’s also not wrong for Austin to feel upset that they are not spending enough time together. I would say nobody is at fault. They just want different things. That’s all.

  9. 89
    aj

    You guys sound crazy. No disrespect but the poster has some abandonment issues leftover from his mom that he needs to deal with on his own or he will find him seld repeatedly attracing the same type of woman. Also, instead of complaining about how busy she is, find an activity she likes and make a date out of it.

     

    Also get some friends/hobbies

  10. 90
    Scourned

    If you dont want a serious relationship then be straight forward. Relationships are suppose to be side by side not one in front of the other, if money your faimly or anything else other than God comes before your significant other they are something missing. They are choices in life abd sometimes one or the other has to get hurt.

  11. 91
    Ryan

    Having dated a woman who “wanted to do it all” and “answered to no one”, I put up with trying to manage my expectations and accept her flaws while she did nothing to try to improve the relationship unless I brought up the topic of breaking up. Not to mention that she was still sleeping with an ex nearly 4 months into our 2 yr “relationship”, the writing was on the wall I suppose but I’m more wiser and experienced from that. Though my already dwindling trust for most women is slowly disintegrating along with my hope for some healthy relationship at all.

    I learned that no matter how much someone professes that they “like” you but refuses to actually DO something about it unless ultimatums are brought into the conversation, then it will be a constant battle for that partner’s time and effort. Their motives are clearly demonstrated through their actions, if those actions don’t include you then do yourself a favor and remove yourself from their life cause it ain’t getting any better.

    Regarding the comments about the original post from Austin: There are a lot of salty people in here… put yourself in his shoes for a minute. If someone is maintaining a status-quo of being “barely available” to you how do you think you’ll act? How long will you put up with being someone’s last resort/backburner, with the your significant other keeping things just luke-warm enough so that you don’t leave. Don’t you think your overall well-being would be affected? If they’re always putting their job and friends first and all you get is the occasional kiss goodnight, don’t you think you would be wasting your time? I think that answer is very clear. Take care and be well.

  12. 92
    Kate

    Hey, Austin, maybe she’s just not that into you.

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