My long-distance boyfriend is ignoring me.

My boyfriend and I are doing a long-distance thing for a few months while I take care of some things I need to in my hometown. We’ve been together for over a year and have strong relationship, but one thing seems a little off to me. He’s been going to work, spending all day with his friends (until midnight+) and then calling me right before going to bed (which gives our conversations a 15-ish minute time limit because he’s so exhausted). I guess I’m just bothered that his life over there comes first to him and I come second, and I don’t seem to factor into a schedule because I’m not physically there. Like the thought never occurred to him that maybe we could talk after work and his friends could wait half an hour? Should I be bothered by this or does his schedule make sense to you?

On the surface, sure. His schedule makes sense. He’s on his own, he’s busy, his friends are around, he doesn’t really want to listen to you talk for 45 minutes every night about how you had salad for lunch and then your friend wore the same top as you to the gym which was annoying because she knew you were going to wear the blue top today and on and on etc. Just like you don’t want to hear about how he got six points at his basketball game but should have had eight but Jim from accounting bumped him on the elbow and didn’t get called for a foul and then on the way home he heard three AC/DC songs on the radio on three different stations isn’t that amazing, etc.

Those minutiae calls are excruciating.

What is bothersome is that it seems like we have one of two situations going on here:

1. You’ve told him how much these last-minute, late-night calls are troublesome to you, and he keeps making them anyway.

2. You haven’t told them how much they bug you because you’re afraid of starting a fight or making him mad or seeming too clingy.

If it’s the first, then I’m sorry, but he’s being a dick. Nice boyfriends in strong relationships don’t ignore their girlfriends’ pleas for connection and courtesy, especially during a period when you’re apart from each other. Before you move to wherever he is, think really hard about your entire relationship…maybe he’s being an asshole, but maybe he’s just really bad at talking on the phone. I don’t know the answer to this, but you do.

If it’s the second, then I urge you to speak up. It’s astonishing how many people suffer through weeks and months of mental torture, plummeting self-esteem, and pent-up resentment simply because it doesn’t occur to them to have an open, honest, calm, and loving conversation with their partner about what’s bothering them. Why does it make you so uncomfortable to bring it up? Can’t you just say, “Hey, can we talk every night after work instead of before bed?”


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3 responses to “My long-distance boyfriend is ignoring me.

  1. OP

    It was definitely situation number 2. I wanted to make sure I wasn’t just being totally irrational before bringing it up. I talked to him and all’s well. Thank you!

  2. Emily

    Hi, so I live in DC and my boyfriend moved to Japan over the summer. We had only been daring for three months before that, but we’ve continued to date since he left, and things have been really well, except recently. He’s coming to visit me and his parents for Easter, which is an expensive trip. He’s stated numerous times that his main reason for coming back is me, and that he loves me. But now, just in this last week, he’s told me that his parents have planned all sorts of activities for them to do with him while he’s here, and he’s not even certain he’s going to see me when he’s here. What’s up?

  3. Chea

    What’s up is that if someone wants to see you, and it’s a priority for him, he will make time. You barely dated before he left, and he didn’t just visit Japan. He moved there. Break it off. Find someone else. Sorry.

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