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I need advice. I'm a 25-year-old woman in love with a man who I've been sleeping with for nine years. We've never had a monogamous committed relationship but we talk every day for the most part. I want so badly to look at him and be able to tell him how much I love him but I'm terrified to ruin what we have. It emotionally pains me to hold my feelings in and continue sleeping with him but I'm also not fond of the idea of cutting him out of my life. Years ago, back in high school, I told him how I felt but we haven't talked about feelings since. I find myself not giving others a fair chance or sabotaging any new relationship I attempt to enter because of him. I can't seem to let him go, even when there is distance. Where do I go from here?

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Frequently Entering Emotionally Lost Space

You tell him how you feel, you demand to know how he feels. You tell him what you want, you demand to know what he wants. After nine years of fucking him and nine years of talking with him every day and nine years of uncertainty, FEELS, you're within your rights to make some demands.

And if he doesn't feel/want what you feel/want, FEELS, then you're going to have to end whatever it is you two have. Because if he doesn't feel the same way you do after nine years, he's never going to feel the same way you do; if he doesn't want the same things you you want after nine years, he'll never want the same things you want. So no more fucking him, no more talking to him. It—whatever it was—is over. And, yes, that does mean you'll "ruin what [you] have," FEELS, but all you have is an ill-defined, open-ended relationship that's causing you more emotional pain the longer you let it drag on and preventing you from forming a lasting, better-defined attachment to someone else.

And, hey, you never know—he could feel the same way you feel and want the same things you want and is too shy to broach the subject(s). He may have interpreted your silence about feelings since that one conversation in high school to mean you don't have deeper feelings for him and he didn't want to risk ruining things by overwhelming you with the depth of his feelings for you. I'd say the chances of that are slim, FEELS, but there's a chance.

Either way—he doesn't want/feel what you do, he does want/feel what you do—at least you'll have some clarity.


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