Is it just baggage, or is he playing my kindness as weakness?

I started seeing a guy recently that comes with a boatload of baggage: a dad who was not emotionally present and physically abusive with a drinking problem, a mom who was absent a lot because she was the breadwinner, the aunt who did most of raising of him died of cancer when he was a teen, two younger brothers he tried to parent, combat vet, PTSD, divorced, recently relocated away from friends and back with his family to help them financially. That being said, it started as a physical thing. We had sex, and when we were sleeping he started having a nightmare. I pulled him close to me and held him, in the morning we talked about some of his issues, and it became more emotional from there. We started making plans; every week he would come and pick me up for whatever outing, and come in to shake my dad's hand and chat with my mom. He's expressed a lot of interest in meeting my extended family. But, he doesn't want to introduce me to his. He doesn't want us to sleep with other people, but he doesn't want to commit. Why? Because he wants to go back in the Air Force in two years, and he "doesn't want to hurt me". Then, he'll get wishy-washy. He'll randomly blurt out things like "I want you to be my second wife", "I don't care if I have a timeline, I want you to be mine", etcetc, and blame it on conflicted emotions or drinking or the PTSD. Finally, I had an outburst and I told him I couldn't take that shit anymore, and he needs to stop playing both sides. Like you can't have emotional and physical, and us not see other people, but not commit. It isn't fair. The conversation kind of petered out, with him admitting I was right and saying he didn't want this to stop, but asking to come back to the conversation at a later date. I've been replaying all the relevant details: my question is, is this buyable? Or is he just pulling some shit and using my sympathy to play me really hard?
Also, it's probably important to note we don't sleep together during every outting. A lot of the time we just go out like a normal couple, and he's actually the one to suggest it.


Most Helpful Girl

  • First of all, I don't think he's playing you. I don't have direct experience, but am going through something similar. His history plays a really large part. Obviously, I don't know him, so I don't have a right to judge. But, it seems that he may have emotionally invested into things multiple times in the past, but they have all turned on him (a lot of it probably family). So, as of now, it scares him to be in a relationship with you.

    He probably is mentally aware the he can trust you, but there's an intuitive feeling telling him to not do it. I think he truly cares for you and wants you to have the best in life. He wants you to be happy and wants to be the man to make it happen, but feels like he can't. He's fully aware of his history and problems. Most likely, he doesn't want you to be brought into his "dark side."

    This guy is really sensitive and needs committment. It's up to you whether you want to be the rock for him and invest your emotions/time. I think he needs reassurance that you'll be there and that his feelings won't be betrayed. Don't get me wrong, I think you reacted naturally with his indecisiveness and that you guys should talk. I think he cares about you so much, but can't express it due to his own insecurities.


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  • No I don't think he's playing you. He has issues that he needs to work on. When you become a couple his issues become your issues also. I get you want a label on the relationship, but it seems like he is committed to you.

  • Ah I actually think he might be playing you.


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