Q: Dear Jacqui,
I've been seeing a man regularly for the past year. We get along great and the chemistry is there – lots of love on both sides. However, I feel growing anger. I've been waiting for him to ask me to live with him or get married. I've been giving him plenty of hints but it's not working. I think he likes it the way it is. I don't want to lose him but the stress of waiting really affects my feelings. Why can’t I get him to act? How long should I wait?
A: Dear Rita,
Hinting won't work. If the two of you are still not able talk openly, especially about your future, there is something fundamentally wrong with this relationship. Both of you have been married before. Both of you must know that no relationship can flourish if the communication between partners is veiled and misleading. I can understand that you are angry. However, I believe much of your anger is directed at yourself for not having the courage to speak up for yourself and face the consequences. Is there true love between you, as you say? If so, asking your partner to clarify his feelings and future plans will not break the relationship.
In the contrary, clarity is the foundation of any good relationship. Don't ask me, ask yourself, how long do you want to play this charade? Start talking openly and caringly. Tell him how much he means to you and that you are sure about making a lifetime commitment to him. It is quite possible that your man is not as ready as you are and he might have very good reasons to feel that way. Listen to what he has to say and then decide if you want to work things out together or move on and find another partner. Knowing is better than deferring the truth.
Quite possibly he is worried about some issues you can overcome and then move on to the next step. The holidays are approaching quickly. Give each other the gift of honesty and trust. That's what loving is about.