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Dear Angela:

I’ve been with my current boyfriend for three years. I truly love him and care about his life, his future, his family, his ambitions … all of him. I’m also in my mid-30s, and I’ve never been much of a dater and in many ways I feel like this relationship is my best chance at marriage.

The hard truth is that I don’t think the two of us are compatible. I care about him, and we get along sometimes. But usually I get the feeling that he doesn’t like me. He’ll make comments like, “I wish I wasn’t emotionally connected to you.” Because it feels like we just can’t let each other go — instead of choosing to be together.

I’ve never been “in love” before, so I don’t have anything to compare my feelings to. I just know that he and I can’t go more than a few days without fighting, and it’s usually fighting about the same thing.

But I love him. Do I need to try harder? Or is this not working?

— In love

Dear In Love,

I think you’ve spelled out, very clearly, a relationship that is not working.

1. You feel he doesn’t like you

2. He wishes he wasn’t emotionally connected to you

3. You fight about the same things every few days

That’s a powerful and compelling list of reasons not to continue in a relationship. Two of those three things are totally out of your control — so if you tried harder, what would that even look like?

Still, I get it. It’s hard to end something where there is history, connection and hope involved. Don’t let fear of not getting married drive you to stay in a partnership that isn’t good for you.

I hope these thoughts are helpful.



Readers: How have you decided a relationship wasn’t working? How did you find the strength to end it?

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Angela Trusty gives advice about religion and relationships. Submit a topic to
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