Dear Doc Lovelace,
I’ve recently started seeing this guy, well, I guess we’ve been kinda seeing each other for 4 months but we’ve been more official the past month or so. I think he’s a nice guy, but I can’t help but feel that others view me as the man in the relationship. I’m 5 inches taller than him, he’s more sensitive, he likes to sew, he expresses himself through art, and he likes to talk more about his feelings than I do. I grew up with three brothers and I was a total tomboy, and all of the other guys that I’ve dated have been more manly than the current guy I’m with (by a lot). At first, I didn’t think much of it, but as time goes by and he’s meeting more of my friends and family, a lot of them are saying the same thing. I don’t necessarily want a meathead type, but I feel like with him that I have to take on the position of being the guy. On top of all that, he doesn’t really have a clear plan for his future other than his art and I don’t know where that’ll go, whereas I’m in a nursing program and I already have my BA. Then the other day, a friend of his jokingly called him a little b**ch. The friend meant it as a joke, but I could tell the guy I’m with really let it affect him and he got a little teary-eyed. Am I overthinking it? Or is my boyfriend kind of an emotional baby?
Firstly, I’m wondering what happened that makes you now “more official” in the last month or so?
I’m also wondering if you are really tall or he is really short, and why it would make a difference? Your “feeling” about how others view you could be 100% wrong.
Do you look like a man? Are you still stuck in your tomboy ways? What difference would it make if you are? When you say that you have dated guys that are more “manly,” what does that mean? Were they lumberjacks? If not, would they be viewed by a lumberjack as not “manly” enough? Were they Hells Angels, Mutai warriors, Jetfighter pilots?
Or were they just taller than you? Down the road had you been with one of your more manly dudes, what would happen if they lost their hair, got a pot belly, and took up poetry reading? People change.
I think the fact that he is an artist has you a bit confused. He may not have the idea or ego that would cause him to work on being “manly.” Keep in mind big guys don’t fit well in cockpits or Ferraris.
Ponder this: What matters is how much do you respect him? How much does he respect you? Is he kind, understanding, and a good listener? Does he care about other people? Does he like children and dogs? Could you love him? Could he love you?
Stop worrying about what other people might be thinking or saying. Think about what you yourself are thinking and saying. Think about what he, himself is saying.
Think positive! Choose happiness! Have fun!