You and your guy have been together for a while. You’ve met each other’s friends, you’ve spent holidays together, and even traveled together.
Yet, he isn’t moving the relationship forward.
How long should you wait for him to figure out what he really wants? Whether he wants a relationship with you — a serious one.
The truth is you’re asking the wrong question.
The question you want to ask is: “Is he worth waiting for?”
Sure, you like him and find him attractive, but are you ever going to get what you really want?
Long-lasting, soul-satisfying love doesn’t just show up because you’re willing to wait to see if his behavior will change. If he wants a relationship with you, there will be signs. Even if the relationship he wants is a little ways away.
You don’t know if or when this man is going to step up for you. But you don’t have to remain in the dark.
Seven Q’s to ask yourself determine if he wants a relationship (& is worth the wait)
1. How does he utilize resources?
You can always tell what and who is important to a man by how he spends his resources. Everyone is limited by time, money, and energy.
So, if he is spending most of his resources on other people in his life, but not you, that can be a big warning sign.
You may have made the relationship super convenient for him in the beginning. You teach people how to treat you.
From the moment you met your boyfriend you showed him what was and wasn’t acceptable behavior. It could be that he was looking for some companionship and you went along with his desires leaving your needs and wants unfulfilled.
If your boyfriend is spending most of his time, his money, and his energy on something other than you, you may want to cut your losses and move on so you can find a man who is a much better match for you.
2. Does he make plans for the future with you?
In your current relationship if you’re wondering, “How long should I wait for him,” you’ll want to take note of how your boyfriend communicates about the future with you.
Does he share what your life together will be like when there is a deeper commitment between you? Does he make plans for the future with you, like a vacation, a concert, or tickets to the theatre?
A man who wants to claim you and take you off the market will ask for exclusivity. He will show you his intentions by discussing future aspirations with you and making plans for the future with you.
These discussions have to lead to execution so that after a couple of years in the relationship you ought to have a treasure trove of memories and photographs of the two of you and your lives together.
If he is all talk without follow-through, you may be with a man who thinks you’ll settle for the hope of a future without actually creating one with you.
3. Does he include you in his life?
Has he introduced you to his friends, his co-workers, and family? Are there photographs of you in his home? Does he spend Valentine’s Day, Christmas, and your birthday with you?
A man in love wants to show off the object of his desire. He’ll introduce you to the people in his life that are important to him.
If you are segregated to only spending time alone with him and not with the other people close to him, then your concerns are warranted and it’s time for you to think about moving on.
4. Does he honor his word?
As you consider whether to stay or go and wonder how long should you wait for him, you’ll want to pay close attention to whether or not he honors his word with you.
Does he show up at your place to take you out on time? Does he follow through on the dates he arranges for the two of you? When he makes an agreement with you does he honor it?
If he is constantly making excuses for why he cannot follow through, or he is always asking that you be understanding and take a backseat to all his other commitments, it’s time for you to evaluate whether you are a priority for him.
5. Do you share goals and values?
You can wait for him to step up, but if the two of you aren’t on the same page about what you want from life, then your wait isn’t going to be worth it. Long-lasting relationships don’t just happen.
Life will inevitably bring you challenges, and it is so much easier to navigate those challenges when the two of you are on the same page.
Are you clear about what is important to you? Do his actions show you that he shares those values?
It’s great that you feel good when you are with him, that you feel loved by him, and that the two of you are compatible. The problem with feelings is that they change.
The Romance Stage of a relationship inevitably leads to the Power Struggle Stage. You can’t avoid it.
But you can navigate through it more easily when the two of you are committed to putting the relationship first.
Look over your past together and see if he has shown you through his actions that he wants the same life that you want.
If you find that his actions haven’t given you a clear indication that he wants what you want, then you should consider moving on.
6. Are your needs met?
This is really the lynchpin because only you can tell if you’ve gone into sacrifice. By asking yourself, “How long should I wait for him,” it’s possible you’re feeling angry and resentful which is a key signal that you’ve given up your needs for too long.
It’s likely that your needs have gone unmet for so long that it feels par for the course at this point. Have you tolerated the situation for so long that you’ve made it very convenient for him?
Your needs are not a long laundry list of everything you desire in a relationship. Instead, separate your needs from your wants because needs are not negotiable.
However, wants are. It’s very important for you to know the difference so that you’re able to make requests and ask for what you need and cannot do without.
Communicating with your boyfriend authentically will allow you to see how he responds to your request for things to change.
If he can make the changes you require, great! You should consider staying in a relationship with him.
However, if he is incapable or unwilling to make the changes you desire it might be time to throw in the towel.
7. Does the cost seem to outweigh the benefit?
The sunk cost fallacy is when you continue doing what you’ve been doing because of a previous investment of resources (time, energy, or money) even though the cost outweighs the benefit. Simply stated, just because you’ve invested time and energy into this relationship doesn’t mean that you should continue to do so if it is not meeting your needs.
You may dread having to end the relationship and start dating again, but that discomfort doesn’t outweigh the fact that the relationship doesn’t appear to be going anywhere. He’s not suddenly going to wake up and realize that he should start showing you how important you are to him.
He’s showing you who he is and what is important to him by his behavior. Instead of worrying about how long you should wait for him to get his act together, start asking for what you desire and see if he can deliver it to you.
There is nothing lonelier than being in a relationship that isn’t working for you. Ultimately, only you can make the decision to stay or go.
Just make sure you aren’t sticking with your current boyfriend because of the time you’ve spent together.
How long is too long to wait?
Love isn’t a mystery. When you like someone and you want to be in a committed relationship, you don’t have to make things complicated.
There is a natural flow to a relationship that happens when the two of you are clear about what you want and able to communicate about the relationship.
Things get complicated when one or both of you aren’t sure what you want. It’s perfectly okay to take time at the beginning of the dating process to discover who someone is and if you want to make a deeper commitment.
Going slowly at the beginning allows you to discover if you two are a good match before committing your heart too deeply.
Approaching your relationships in a more conscious way is more likely to get you the type of relationship you truly desire.
Once the two of you make a commitment of exclusivity the relationship should move forward toward a deeper level of commitment.
If it doesn’t, then maybe you both don’t want the same things out of life and the relationship itself.
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