How To Maintain A Relationship With A Boyfriend Who Pays Little Attention To You

I think I should preface this with some background on what said boyfriend is like.  I will use my boyfriend as an example because I think he is the ultimate definition of apathetic laid-back boyfriends.

Jared is a typical busy tech guy who’s at the early stage of starting a company. Fortunately for me, he is quite organized and has awesome time-management skills.  He makes time for work, girlfriend, friends, family, puppy, and whatever else he does in solo-jared time.  However, if I were to create a pie chart of his time allocation, I would not say girlfriend time is a very big slice of that pie.  This is not intentional.  Since I’m almost always at his place, my presence alone counts as girlfriend-time in his mind.  Understandable for a responsible ambitious young man with many commitments in his life? At least I try tell myself so.  Sadly when I’m in a bad mood and need affirmation that I am loved, it’s more apparent that my slice is the smallest in the JaredPie.  Then I start bugging him with the following annoying questions:

  • Why don’t you like me?
  • Do you have a new girlfriend?
  • Should I get a new boyfriend?
  • Why don’t you go anywhere with me?
  • Why do you like so and so better?
  • Why are you abandoning me?
  • Do you think we should break up?

I ask these so often that they come out like rhetorical mindless “hey, how are yous”.  I usually already know the answers, but I just like hearing his responses.  Bonus points if he’s creative with his answers.

That’s if I’m having a decent day and feeling silly.

If I’m in a bad mood, I would just be passive aggressive and give him the silent treatment by going into a corner and ignoring him.  Usually, he’s not aware of it until hours later when he sees no signs of me (and we’re in the same 900 square foot apartment).  Ya, he’s that disengaged.

Anyways, now that you have an idea of what Jared is like, you will take either of the following sides:

  1. Jared is a mature man who has his own interests and hobbies.  This girl is a whiny bitch and she needs to find something to do to not be affected by his lack of attention.
  2. This poor girl deserves better.  There are many guys who would love to spend their time with her.

I am leaning towards the former, hence why I’m still dating him.  I see that there’s a possibility of me being emotionally clingy and relying on him for entertainment when I’m bored.  However, I would not say that I have no interests and got nothing else to do aside from vying for his attention.  I mean, there is the internet and who doesn’t love the internet, right? But sometimes I just find spending quality time with him more interesting than browsing the internet or watching TV, especially when I’ve spent the entire day at work not talking to him.   Who’s to decide what I should or shouldn’t feel like doing?

That’s not to say that I think I could find someone better.  Most normal guys are probably like Jared—love playing games for hours and keeping girlfriend in line of vision.  And Jared does exclaim random affirmations when I whine and bug him about it enough.

With that said, I should suggest a couple ideas of how to deal with these sort of independent-minded boyfriends.  Can’t vouch that they are effective since I’m obviously still not content with the attention I’m not receiving.  But here’s to positive thinking:

Hug him from behind and demand that he gives you quality time immediately.  This usually results in a smile and a 10 second hug before he goes back to whatever he’s doing.  But don’t worry, just repeat every 10 minutes and you’ll get approximately 60 seconds or 1 minute of affection in an hour.  Side note: Only do this if he’s not working.  Otherwise, it’d be more annoying than it already is.

Tell him that his puppy wants to play with him.  That makes the puppy the needy one, not you.  You’re too good for that.  You’re just trying to foster the relationship between him and his pet.

Come up to him and ask if you could read the internet together.  This works well if he’s already doing that by himself.  If he’s not already reading it, tell him there’s a zombie invasion coverage on CNN that you guys must read about together at once.

Talk to him incessantly while he’s trying to kill some mythical monster until he dies.  This timing is critical.  The minute his screen turns red (or black depending on whatever game he’s playing), you must yell “OH NOES YOU’RE DEAD. LETS DO SOMETHING TOGETHER WHILE YOU RECOVER EMOTIONALLY” before he has a chance to restart his battle.  He has no excuse to deny you since he’s dead.

Link him this post to interrupt whatever he’s doing. It’s a great piece to jumpstart a discussion about feelings and all that good stuff guys love talking about.

If none of the above worked, simply tell him you’re going to leave to play with your friends since he seems to be occupied.  Then pack your stuff, jingle your keys, and pause for his guilt-ridden response.  You’re not needy, you just love too much.  Is that a crime? Sheesh. Thought Catalog Logo Mark

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