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When you are in a dating relationship all kinds of questions come up, especially at the beginning. I get asked a lot of questions about this and so today I have some new relationship advice to offer.


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If your partner keeps your relationship as private as their "Close Friends" list, it can be hard to find a balance in how open you are about your relationship. Whether they've always been on the shyer side or just prefer to keep things low-key, your SO may not be one for PDA or giant group gatherings.

However, if you've been seeing someone for a while and still haven't met any of their friends and family, you may start to wonder if your partner is keeping your relationship a secret. After a few months of dating or a few years, like Marianne and Connell on Hulu's Normal Peopleyou may start to wonder why you haven't been invited out with your partner's friends or to their weekly family dinner.

But even if your sister or best friend may have met their partner's friends two weeks into dating, Dr. Joshua KlapowPh. Klapow tells Bustle. According to Dr. Klapow, there's no magic or set rulebook on when you're "supposed" to meet the people in your partner's life.

Like all "next steps" in a relationship, you get to make your own timeline, based on whatever you're feeling. Of course, if you're upset or annoyed that you haven't met your partner's friends, Dr. Klapow says it's time to check in.

Klapow, there could be many reasons why your boo is keeping your relationship on the down-low. Maybe they've been through some messy breakups and are extra cautious about who they let in on their love life. Perhaps they have super nosy friends and like to ease in when it comes to introducing new people.

They might be worried that their roommates will make a tactless joke or embarrassed about their family's political or cultural beliefs. On the other hand, they may also be feeling a little nervous about your relationship or not really sure what they want moving forward. Regardless, there's no way to know why your partner hasn't introduced you to people until you flat-out ask them about it.

Klapow says. While it can feel intimidating to confront your boo, it's important to openly address your feelings.

When you try to "play it cool" or act like something doesn't bother you, you'll likely end up feeling resentful and more confused. Klpaow says.

If you're unsure how to start the convo, Dr. Klapow suggests asking your partner what their concerns or holdups are. Whether they're nervous that you won't like their friends or feeling unsure about where your relationship is headed, being transparent about your needs is the only way to guarantee that you and your boo are on the same.

Joshua Klapow Ph. By Griffin Wynne.