You can’t change another

QUESTION: Masters I recently started a relationship with a man whom I love very much. Last week, he ended it saying that although it’s going well, there are reasons why he doesn’t think it would work in the long term, and therefore we should end it now. He has agreed to discuss this more with me. One major stumbling block is that he says he is too old to have children (though he said before he would like to). I believe some of his issues are fears which we can work through, and that he has genuine feelings for me. Would you agree that this is worth pursuing, and we should give it more time? ~SG, UK

ANSWER: You have freedom of choice to make the decisions you need to in order to experience the things you need to learn. This gentleman is lacking in self-confidence, and sees mostly negative things in his future. He has fears about anything that he has not personally experienced. The unknown terrifies him. He is not ready to face discomfort; therefore he is not about to work through his fears.

You cannot get people to make any changes they do not seek to make. His feelings for you are connected with the fact that you feel like a safe harbor to him. He sees you as a nurturer. You are non-threatening and, in the past, have made no demands of him. When you got serious about the future, he panicked and wanted to run away rather than change to make a future with someone else having an input into his life.

You may talk him into giving it a try for a while longer, but he is not ready to change. He has such low self-esteem that he thinks you would be better off without him. He has a dream of what he thinks he might like that includes a family, but he cannot see himself taking care of anyone else. His energy is that of a child who relies upon his mother to keep the bogeyman away.

Nothing is right or wrong, so make your decision about what to do based upon your feelings. Knowing he isn’t ready to change, how hard do you want to try? How long do you want to hit your head against a brick wall? The choice is yours.