It could be an ordinary Tuesday evening. There’re 2 hours left to the end of your working day. You take a sip of coffee and feel absolutely inspired to arrange a romantic evening in the middle of the work week. Then you’re full of excitement and you go and buy his favorite bottle of Prosecco and hurry up to cook him a medium-rare steak. Ok, it’s time to calm down. Everything is ready: the candles, the atmosphere and even the steaks are perfect. You have roses in your cheeks and look so gorgeous to meet him. The 15 minutes passed, then the 25 and finally in an hour you received a message: ’Sorry, babe, have too much work to do. Can’t stand this dead-line. Hope you’ll understand. XOXO’.
Sounds upbeat? Bet you feel the full range of this emotions from this SMS. Don’t break any dishes! Don’t eat both steaks and all of the dessert by yourself. Don’t scream and cry (because I know you’ve already experienced it before). Don’t cuss him out, don’t get out of control; take a deep breath and realize that this might be the wake up call you’ve needed to critically analyze whether his job is more important than you and so maybe need to shake hands and go your separate ways. Here’s some tips that can help you survive and discover if you stay in the relationship or not.
1. He is closed and angry
You always want to intensify your conversations. Ask him a lot of questions that really make sense for you. Show him that you’re interested in the results of his meetings and briefings. You show concern about how good his lunch was or if he had a bad day in general. But all you get is ‘Everything is ok. I’m too tired to discuss it. It was an ordinary day. Let’s go to bed’.
2. ‘I miss you too’ phrase
You don’t remember the last time he said to you ‘I love you’ or ‘ I miss you’ first. Every single time you start saying these lovey-dovey phrases and you receive a quick ‘Me too’. Maybe it seems that his response is terse and really just too short and sweet. More often you hear ‘There are a lot of people around and I can’t talk to you as sweet as you want. Let’s talk at home’. What happens at home see above. You can only take so much of this ‘non-communication’ and you come to realize there is something amiss in the relationship.
3. ‘OFFline, What?’
He is in love with hid gadgets. He sleeps with his iPhone on the pillow. His tablet and laptop are always next to him. He has no unread emails and moreover thinks he can’t afford it. He never puts his phone on silent mode. He doesn’t hesitate to pick up a business call during love-making. How tacky! He will never miss any incoming information even if an earthquake happens. You realize that his job tasks are his main priority. If you’re not the priority during his time at home then you need to find someone who will make you feel like the center of the Universe. What’s going on is simply not right.
4. No plans. No guaranties.
He always put his career plans before your private ones. If the two of you start to discuss the nearest future plans the first thing he does is check his work schedule. He willingly travels for his job and he’s always seems inspired to plan and discuss them. But when it comes to your romantic vacations tons of do’s and don’ts seem to crop up and kill the excitement of the two of you just getting away. There are no doubts or problem with his work plans/trips, but there always seems to be a laundry list of complaints about your private ones. He’s not above going back on his promise to take you to your favorite ski resort that you’ve had booked weeks before or to even cancel the flight for that long weekend in the country of your dreams. At worst he absolutely feels no guilt for it. No promises, no responsibility.
5. The small things don’t really matter
He leaves the family get-together to check out his job projects or to attend one of the informal job meetings because it’s ‘useful for us and our future’. He doesn’t want to hear that there is more to life than just work. As a rule he skips the BD parties of your closest friends and homies being limited to send his best wishes and a present. He never remembers important dates like your anniversary and maybe even spaces out your birthday…Ouch!
6. Mr. ‘Time-is-Money’
He doesn’t want to waste his time spending it without achieving results or scoring a successful performance. Just walking and talking? Eating ice-cream and shop a little? Forget it! You’re dealing with a workaholic. Each life moment he estimates like an opportunity to brainstorm and earn more money or how to achieve ultimate decisiveness. All your arguments about how the two of you should spend your free time gets the answer: ‘Are you kidding me? I’m the source of our income. So let me just do what I should do’
7. Your intimate life have no intimacy
Remember his phone is his priority? Just know his boss and his staff are always under the sheets in your bedroom. He doesn’t worry about foreplay or any kind of special atmosphere. His schedule isn’t elastic and his intimate time with you is always limited. Having sex for this guy is like attending another meeting – it’s scheduled and of course you must keep to the schedule! He becomes aggressive when things go wrong and requires more time. Your attempts at real intimacy become fewer and fewer with more time in between. Achieving a ‘Real-O’ becomes a very rare occurrence. Perhaps you are forgetting what it’s like to be fulfilled and satisfied sexually? His ‘Real-o’ happens when his boss gives him another ‘Thatta Boy’ or the bonus at the end of the month is bigger.
8. No keeping you in
Most men who are in a strong relationship don’t want to see their wife or GF clubbing or hitting the party scene. They always take care of your free time and people you communicate with. As a rule they want to see their lover at home or close to them – safe and sound and ultimately content in the relationship. If he’s so busy that he can’t give you a quick call, ask you how you are and who you’re hanging with, then he probably doesn’t really care that much. His work project make more sense and have more relevance for him.
9. Your opinion is not considered relevant or important
You can’t connect. He doesn’t need your advice. He is not interested in your point of view. Even if you spent several months or even years supporting him at his career building and thought you knew everything about his profession he paid no heed to your comments. Let’s be honest sometimes we know even more than we show but still try to be wise and maybe we keep our mouth shut when we should speak up. Unfortunately our ideas go unnoticed and under-valued. He thinks your aren’t qualified enough to find the correct way of solving his problems or just to give him some useful advice.
10. ‘Take my money and have fun’
He cancels the date or just tells you that he is too busy to meet or come home in time. If he does it at this very moment, be prepared to hear ‘Oh honey, just take my card\cash and go shopping with your girl friends. Buy something really extravagant and luxurious or just everything you would like to’. This is the most common trick of workaholic BFs/husbands. They still think they can buy you a happy time with a new dress or shoes. They are dared to give you as much money as you need just to avoid these conversations about his permanent absence and stirring life style. They use this old-school trick to put you off your guard; and shut the disputes out. such actions tend to shut you out of his life and shut you at the same time! Have I built a sufficiently outrageous picture here?
There really is no silver bullet to solve this dilemma. You’re going to have to face the reality that maybe for your own happiness and sanity you need to be out of this relationship. Life can play jokes on us. The workaholic syndrome is a hard one to break; it’s not impossible but it is difficult to change someone’s behavior who lives this kind of existence. Be honest and objective for your own good and your sanity! Look closely whether he loves his work or loves you more. Also look closely at your real needs – can you put up with a workaholic
BF/husband. Workaholics need love too but just in different ways and on their schedule; can you deliver in those different ways for your guy or do you need to fine a more traditional, doting/giving man who can really forget about work and focus on you sometimes. Good luck in finding out the real answer for your well being.