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Lovingyou.com > Love Advice & Tips > Ask A Male > My New Boyfriend Won't Show Affection
My New Boyfriend Won't Show Affection Question posted: 05/21/06 at 10:08 PM

alla38  [more]
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I've been dating a very nice guy for 1 month now. He's 48 and never married. He's also very sweet, sensitive, generous and I love his company. But there's an issue that's troubling me. I'm a demonstrative person and want to show my affection to the man I care for. Kissing and hugging is important to me. But my boyfriend, in the 4 weeks we've been together, only gives me little pecks on the cheek or lips and short hugs when we say 'Hi' and 'Goodbye'. Not once has he held my hand or put his arm around me. I'm dying for him to do it but have not told him so.

I suppose my bf is a cautious, conservative guy when it comes to relationships. Maybe he's been badly hurt by women in the past and doesn't want to show the depth of his feelings for me yet? Maybe he isn't comfy with physical affection at all? He told me last night at dinner that he didn't grow up in a demonstrative family. Or maybe he just wants to be friends and not lovers? Or maybe he's waiting for me to give him a signal to get affectionate with me?

Guys, I confused, bewildered and don't know what to do. Should I be more patient with my bf and give him more time to show his affection for me, or should I sit him down and talk with him about this? I really do want to tell him that I care for him and want to share physical affection with him. But I also don't want to pressure him into behaving in a way that he's not ready for and scare him away. I don't want to lose him. Please give me some advice. Thanks!

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"You pierce my soul!"

Frederick Wentworth to Anne Elliot in Jane Austen's novel "Persuasion"

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posted: 05/22/06 at 1:44 AM
MWD  [more]
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Each possibility you pose is a valid one. There are plenty of other valid possibilities, too. I think you will mine the most gold by each of you talking about your exes and about what you all learned from those relationships. Listen closely to what he says whenever it's his turn, and above all watch what his eyes do while he is saying it.

Regarding "pressuring" him for more-concrete displays, that is not an all-or-nothing proposition. You can provide all manner of subtle hints, and not one of them has to be verbal.

Wide differences in how two people naturally and freely display their affection for each other can be a real compatibility problem, but that's the case only after the two people have become comfortable with each other and have dropped all their preliminary defenses. Though it will be something to watch out for over the next few months with this man, you are not at the point yet where you can discount causes that are irrelevant to his nature, and therefore I would park this concern for a while, until you have more evidence. Now... in this vein, what makes it a bit more complex is that some men have a stratospheric gentleman factor (let's call it "SGF") which can be misinterpreted as disinterest or trepidation or maladjustment. Hopefully -- if the former (i.e. SGF) is the case with him -- that will slowly come out as you get to know him better over the next few weeks, and if SGF does turn out to be the case, you may take it as a compliment, notwithstanding the short-term frustration it may cause you.

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posted: 05/22/06 at 4:38 PM

qhm  [more]
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The way you describe his actions -- minus your reaction to it -- seems to describe a gentleman more than a person who doesn't show his feelings.

It's only been 4 weeks. That's hardly enough time to already be doing the "he doesn't show his affection" dance.

If you plant seeds today, it's not going to come into full bloom tomorrow. It needs time to develop enough to bear fruit. It takes a little patience if you want it to last.

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井の中の蛙大海を知らず。

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