balance is the key to a solid relationship

    Dear V,

    I really love my boyfriend. We’ve been together for a little over a year now. The problem is, I don’t know if I’m in love with him like I should be.

    For instance, he always wants to spend all of his free time with me, but I don’t want to spend all of my free time with him because, well, I don’t! I feel kind of weird, and I also feel like I am faking my relationship with him sometimes because I would rather spend time with other people.

    Is it right for me to want to spend more time with my friends than with my boyfriend?

    Real Love?

    Dear Reader,

    When you say that don’t know if you love him like you “should be” loving him, I am lead to believe that you are comparing your relationship to the ones in your circle of friends or to an idea of how you think you’re supposed to act while in a relationship.

    True, I think that it is healthy to have models for relationships (i.e your grandparents who have been together for 50 years) that act as guidelines as to what you are and what you’re not supposed to do (domestic violence, emotional manipulation-you get the picture) , but I think that it’s awfully difficult to ever compare the quality of your feelings for your beloved to the emotional dynamics of other relationships.

    Do you feel as if your feelings for your boyfriend aren’t legitimate just because you have failed to tattoo his name across your forehead like your best friend did with her boyfriend’s name last week?

    I think that what you are striving for here is a sense of balance. I personally don’t see anything wrong with wanting to spend a lot of your time with your friends; it is your time after all.

    Likewise, I think that a lot of couples end up doing serious harm to or even lose their friendships by spending all of their time as an exclusive duo, instead of socializing with others like people are meant to do.

    Just because you would rather spend your Saturday nights out with the girls as opposed to spending them on the couch with your boyfriend and watching a movie doesn’t really say much about the intensity or quality of your relationship at all.

    There is, I think, much confusion about whether or not co-dependency defines a romantic relationship, and, I’m sorry to say, it is quality, not quantity that matters.

    Best of Luck!

    Fact O’ the Day…When looking for a mate, women usually prefer men with dark eyes to men with light eyes because they associate darker eyes with more masculine qualities. Light eyes tend to be associated with more infantile qualities…

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