So basically I met this wonderful guy over the summer. I’m a graduating senior at college and he’s in his second year of a three year grad program at the same university.
Background on me- I had 2 relationships in high school. They were long term and pretty intense. I was completely in love and I have just had experience with love and relationships. 1st two years of college I was super single, did not even have a sex drive. Junior year I started using TINDER and BUMBLE and all that good stuff and I was hooking up with a couple of guys and just exploring my sexuality. Also I’m a short Latina, as nerdy as they come.
Background on him- He has tons of childhood trauma and a complex relationship with his mom, mental health, friends, girls who hurt him, etc. Like he flat out told me he doesn’t know what love is and believes he never will know. He has a stutter so his insecurities follow him every minute. He was also a jock in high school and a frat boy in college, so he’s the tall cool athlete antithesis to me. lol.
So in summer we sort of clicked and within 2-3 weeks of talking, we started hooking up. I knew that he was different than the other guys I had hooked up with. We really met each other at an intellectual kind of level. On the surface it didn’t seem like we had much in common, but here we were, still going back to each other. He made it clear that he didn’t want a relationship or anything, so I mentally knew I wouldn’t be to him all that I might one day want.
So Fall starts, the school year starts, and we keep talking, seeing each other, going on dates, staying over his place, etc. Mid semester he brings up wanting to be exclusive, but a few days later he kinda freaks out and we agree to just keep going like we were. By the way, throughout this whole time, neither one of us was seeing other people. We talked everyday and saw each other regularly. For his birthday in late October I surprise him with a camping/cabin weekend (I rented a car and everything) and we just have an amazing time travelling with one another. After that he says he really wants to be my boyfriend and we’re both so happy to kind of admit to each other that we really like each other and want to be with another. Highs and lows happen, but the lows always bring us closer together.
In December, he came to Miami (my hometown) to visit me for New Years. He met my friends and family and even though it was all pretty scary, we kept being solid. By this point I know that I’m falling in love with him but I am just enjoying that process. While on the beach, he asks me to be his date to his brothers wedding in March, and I feel so good to start the semester with that since we both felt confident in our relationship.
Fast forward to now. The wedding was tons of fun and it was nice to formally meet all of his family from his dad’s side. We’re pretty steady and just incredibly happy. We both express gratitude and care to one another constantly and it’s such an incredibly solid and healthy relationship.
The thing is that I am absolutely fucking in love with him. I know myself. I have fine tuned my intuition. Even my best friends sees how in love I am. Half of me has this great hope that this is it, and we will keep being happy and grow together and half of me is terrified of how crushed I’ll be when I inevitably lose him.
The other thing is that he has expressed being so traumatized with the concept of love that I am certain that if I tell him, even if he feels strong feelings for me, he’ll freak out and go into a crisis, push me away mode. I don’t know how to explain how I know that, but I really do. Maybe he’ll need space for awhile and I’m fairly certain he’ll come back to me eventually after that, but I don’t know if I can handle someone reacting that way when I tell them I’m in love with them.
The other thing is that I am graduating, so in his mind he has always kept this in mind and made it kind of like a mental expiration date. I have told him many times that I want to stay here in Boston after I graduate (love you Florida but nah no thanks) and I am applying to jobs here, but I understand how he is still defensive about that, and wants to keep those walls up just in case I do leave.
So I do think that he is trying to keep his walls up to protect himself and that he is trying his best to not fall for me (he is also big on control and freaks out when he’s not in control, especially of his feelings). I totally get that and respect that. So I do think that if I were to accept a job here and start looking for apartments, etc, he would start to address those walls and maybe take them down. I think he’s absolutely worth the wait. I try to be patient for him because I know that his trauma and his mental health often just makes all this stuff harder for him to handle.
But my mental health is now at stake. I can’t listen to music without breaking down, I have to cry and sit with my emotions everyday at night before going to bed, because being in love with him and keeping that inside and having to suppress that all the time is literally the hardest thing I’ve ever been through. It’s so overwhelming I can’t concentrate on my work. I know he would never want me to suffer silently when just telling him would bring me relief but I keep wanting to put him first and wait until he’s ready.
Should I wait until I find a job, apartment, etc here in Boston and reassure to him that I will be here and I want to keep being with him, or should I tell him now?
Stuck In Limbo