My boyfriend asked for "space right now", should I be worried?

My boyfriend doesn't handle emotions well. Everything was okay Monday and Tuesday. Weds-Fri I didn't hear from him. Early Friday, like 1am, I texted him to let him know what time I'd be there (our weekend visit). He texted me back that he 'doesn't think I should and its a bad weekend with a lot going on'. I was a little shocked and hurt at first because he's never done that but I just said okay. I called his brother the next day to see what was going on and he said that work was picking up and everyone was stressed. Texted him on Sunday to let him know I was thinking about him, no response. His brother calls me at 4am and says that he got drunk and said he was thinking about ending our relationship because he felt he wasn't "good enough" for me but he "loves me too much to let me go". I just put it down to stress from work and the drinking. I know he has his dark moments and thinks about breaking up but it's never been verbalized that I knew about. Now he usually withdraws without saying anything (Weds-Fri) and I cling a little bit (Fri/Sun) until I directly asks him if everything is okay (I did this yesterday, Monday.) I said I was confused and asked if he needed space from me to just let me know and I'd respect that. 8hrs later he replies that "Honestly, I need some space right now" so I said I respected that and went to sleep.

We've been through this before, always when things start to get really busy at work, but we bounce back after a few days or a week of no contact. His brother doesn't think he'll actually leaves me, neither do I. He's a very straight forward person and when he's done, he's done and he'll let you know too. So I'm taking it as a good sign that he said he only needed space for 'right now' (meaning he'll come back later?) and didn't mention anything about a breakup (he doesn't know his brother told me, I've been acting as normal as possible). But what do you guys think? Should I be worried? Or just give him the space he needs right now?

-We've been together for 15 months.
-I'm a few weeks shy of 20, he just turned 27.
-He doesn't handle emotions well but when he thinks we have a serious problem he'll break down and say I'm "his world/his everything", "I love you more than anything", "I don't want to lose you or ever neglect your feelings".
-I feel like I would be handling this better if his brother hadn't told me that it was a thought.
-His mother thinks he's feeling sorry for himself and I should let him work things out
My boyfriend sent me a text and said he was sorry for being so distant and things with work were stressing him out but that he loved me and would call me soon. He called about an hour and a half later and he apologized again and told me why he was so distant last week (someone quit and he had to pick up the hours, then his manager's father died so he had to pick up those hours too)

So his normal reason for withdrawal, stress and work, and now he's back to normal :)


Have an opinion?

What Guys Said 1

  • asking space = near breakup

    • But usually he asks for space when he's stressed or in a dark place. Once he comes out of it, we're golden.

    • asking space indicates interest lost

What Girls Said 2

  • Just let him go. That would be the right thing to do. He cannot handle a relationship right now, and this stress is not good for his health. Whatever problems you two had before this, you just going to have to stop trying to fix it. Most of the time men saying that they need 'space' is very serious. And it depends on HOW it was said. If you sense something is wrong, your right. Because it means he's near his end with this. I'm sorry, but you have to break this off for his and your sake. He wants to break up, but doesn't because he knows it will hurt you. But now he feels he's at fault and its tearing him apart, besides the workload of the family business I take it.

    I wouldn't have worked out, even if his brother had told you that. He would have just ended it eventually if not just yet. What matters is that you know what he's REALLY thinking. So you either end it, or wait for it to happen. Because if he doesn't sort this out, your relationship is already crumbling. So both of you need to come together, talk about what each other needs to do, and just do it. The way how I'm seeing this, is that you two need to break up. Because this will continue on, and you will just get hurt every time he does this or doesn't speak you. If you don't, the relationship will end on its own. Just being honest with you now. Time is running out for this relationship.

    • Update:

      Very nerve wrecking to hear. I too just lost another family member recently. However you need to hold him responsible regardless, so that proper communication is strictly set.

      Let him this, and try to work this out.

    • That's the plan! He never been good at communicating effectively. I learned why when I watched his interactions with his own family. It's one of his flaws that I hate about him, but have to love about him as well.

  • That's interesting. Communication is the key. Think about what you want. I know being single can be daunting but treat dating like job hunting. Out some effort in finding a good man. Not a guy. Not a boy. Not someone who wants to "hang out" or employ the silent treatment:

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