Dear Annie: I am a confused and stressed-out 28-year-old pregnant woman. I have been with my boyfriend for almost a year. Although we have an awesome relationship, since my pregnancy, he hasn't told me he loves me or even insinuated that he does.
"Ryan" has a 7-year-old daughter with another woman, and their relationship isn't very good. A month ago, he called her house to talk to his kid and his ex answered and made a comment that she "will always love him." I have two children from a previous relationship and understand her feelings, but what bothered me is that after that conversation, Ryan acted nervous. It really bugged me.
I worry that Ryan still loves her. I don't know whether I should stay. Would it be better for me to walk out, hoping it will help him decide how he truly feels? I don't want to add stress to my pregnancy, but it's hard to keep the thoughts away.
- Confused and Pregnant
Dear Michigan: We think Ryan is afraid of the responsibility of babies and that's why he has trouble staying with women who have them. Your pregnancy makes him feel trapped, and the seductive enticements of his ex, with a 7-year-old, seem to offer an easier path.
You can't force Ryan to love you, but walking out lets him off the hook. Tell him you've noticed he seems less invested in the relationship and that although you understand he is a bit skittish, you expect him to live up to his responsibilities as a father. That includes financial support and regular contact with his child, whether he lives with you or not.