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A little background: My boyfriend is 20, and I am his second girlfriend. He was in a relationship with his first girlfriend for about a year and a half, and they were best friends before they dated. He got to (as far as I know) second base with her before they broke up, and that was nearing the end of their relationship. Their relationship was mostly platonic, and they weren't particular physical until the last half a year of their relationship.

I am turning 21 in about a month. He is my first boyfriend. Until I started dating him, I had absolutely zero relationship experience--no innocent preteen dating in middle school, no first kiss, no anything. Considering my age, having never dated was kind of... abnormal. So, despite the fact that my boyfriend didn't go TOO far with his ex, he still has a LOT more experience than I do.

When my boyfriend and I first started dating, I told him all of this, and how I was new to relationships, had no experience, and that the whole idea made me very nervous. He promised to take things slowly and to not pressure me into doing anything I didn't want to do.

It's been 7 months and the farthest we've gone is me giving him a handjob. (And please, spare me the comments about how I need to grow up and how, given our age, I'm a horrible girlfriend for making him wait this long and that most people would have had sex a long time ago. Please take my first-relationship anxieties into consideration.)

Let me go back a bit.

Every time we've "advanced" in our relationship (e.g. moving to first and second base) was always at my boyfriend's initiative, and every time we tried something new I never felt that I was completely ready for it and felt guilty afterward. It wasn't until we had done these things a few times before I started to feel comfortable and started to enjoy them.

When I explained to my boyfriend that I felt like he was pressuring me into things that I didn't think I was ready to do, his response was "I think the thing with you is that you're just not used to these things so the best way to get you comfortable is to just keep doing it. Relationships make you nervous so I don't think you're ever going to admit on your own that you're ready to try something different so I try to ease you into them without much pressure."

Thing is, I WANT to be to one who decides if I'm ready or not. I want my first time doing something to be enjoyable, not nerve-wracking and revolting.

My boyfriend is right that over time I grow more comfortable with these things, but still. The first time we made out, I felt guilty. The first time he felt me up, I felt guilty. The first time I gave him a handjob, I felt EXTREMELY guilty.

And the handjob thing? I'm still not completely comfortable with it. But, at the same time, it makes my boyfriend feel good, so that often outweighs the discomfort. So good, in fact, that he wants them all the time. The problem here? Despite the number of times I've done it, I haven't "gotten over it" like my boyfriend theorizes.

One night after feeling particularly guilty, I decided to talk to my boyfriend about it. He was devastated, and rolled over in bed, and told me how bad he felt. At the same time, he explained that he also felt guilty for "wanting this for a long time" and how he "thought I was ready." He then told me that before I started giving him handjobs, he was very bored with the physical aspect of our relationship. This hurt me, because, to be honest, I'm perfectly fine simply making out with him with no excessive touching and feeling in other areas (and this is probably explained by the fact that he's my first boyfriend and I'm new to the whole thing in general, while he got physical with his ex, and I guess doesn't find the more innocent things as exciting anymore.)

So right now, basically, I'm feeling horrible because the only thing my boyfriend particularly enjoys about the physical part of our relationship is something that I'm not comfortable doing, and now I feel like the only way to make him happy is to give in and just give these things to him. I don't want to think that he's being emotionally manipulative, but I just can't stand the thought of forcing him to do things that bore him. At the same time, I don't think it's fair that I should have to go farther than what makes me comfortable. At the same time, I feel horrible for not giving him enough, and that there's something wrong with me because, seriously, I'm 21 years old and I'm still a virgin.

I'm just sick of feeling like every time I suck it up and give him what he wants he's just going to want more about a week down the line and that the whole "I'm uncomfortable. Okay, well, let's just do it anyway and I'll get used to it," cycle starts all over again, only for my boyfriend to get bored by the time I AM comfortable.

And then there's the fact that I am wicked jealous of his relationship with his ex. He was more than willing to have a platonic relationship with her for almost a year, yet with me it's constant "Let's try this. Please? Okay... if you're not ready, that's cool... what we're doing right now doesn't interest me, though." And I understand that he's a guy and he's still a virgin and he gets these urges, but still, I wish he had the same patience with me that he did with her.

TL;DR: My boyfriend says he is bored with the physical parts of our relationship and feels guilty for wanting to go father. I, however, am perfectly content going slowly, and actually regret going as far as we have,

Any advice?
angel_259236102's avatar

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It isnt abnormal to have not dated or done something by 21. Nor are you a horrible person to have only gone as far as a handjob in 7 months. Yes some people have had sex by then...but there is also peopl who have had sex the first date so it isnt like there is a real guideline to when you should do what.

But I dont know if you are really good for eachother? Just as it isnt fair for him to push you too far, it also sounds like you are not ready for a serious relationship like he is in this way. First relationship or not, you are dragging your heels. You seem to be using this as an excuse to really not do anything. So it ends up being that he HAS to push you a bit too far because you dont seem to really be trying yourself to get used to things.

So if you and him cannot be on the same page as to what is okay physically, it isnt just that you have to get over it, or he has to get over it...you may just find that you guys shouldnt be together. You shouldnt HAVE to give in and do things that bother you.
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you have a bad bf because he only wants sex.
/sigh...

It sounds like he's manipulating you. I haven't been in a real relationship but I have been in an extremely uncomfortable situation like that. :/

Perhaps that level of intimacy is too much for you... I'm just saying this because I've been through almost the same thing... except! I've never, EVER done anything sexual. (Just kissed) and that was by the person's initiation. I still felt gross and guilty and disgusting... sort of traumatizing, really. You should be with a person who understands your needs... he's being a bit selfish. :/
Neko Namida Ame's avatar

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/sigh...

It sounds like he's manipulating you. I haven't been in a real relationship but I have been in an extremely uncomfortable situation like that. :/

Perhaps that level of intimacy is too much for you... I'm just saying this because I've been through almost the same thing... except! I've never, EVER done anything sexual. (Just kissed) and that was by the person's initiation. I still felt gross and guilty and disgusting... sort of traumatizing, really. You should be with a person who understands your needs... he's being a bit selfish. :/

Don't you think it's normal for people in their early twenties to want physical intimacy with people they care about? Just because he wants it doesn't mean he's manipulating her at all and it's not like he's constantly pressuring her in to just going all the way.

I agree with what Angel said. Maybe this isn't the best time for you if you're not willing to put in the effort to getting use to these things and it's not fair to him if he's ready for a serious relationship with physical intimacy and you're not.
Firstly, you're not weird. And don't panic about the fact you're not ready to do certain things because everyone has their own pace.

Now to this 'getting bored' thing - how in depth have you and your boyfriend talked about this? Has it only been that one time, because if so you probably ought to get to talk this out. I'd say that part of it is probably he is getting impatient - he did nothing with his ex, and so I guess there is some element of just feeling like he's wondering when he's gonna catch a break.

Now wait! I'm not saying this is any justification for you going any faster or further than you're comfortable with. I'm in a similar situation to you actually, and honestly you won't be ready until you are. I think you need to clearly state that you're not ready for things though, because you can't expect control if you don't say anything. If he whines about it, tell him he has to get used to it, or you two just aren't compatible because the pace is always set by the slower person.
No. It may not be manipulation but he is being inconsiderate and no... it's not normal for her and I; as far as intimacy goes. o.o It's not -just- about him. She has the feelings. As it is your first relationship... I'm almost positive people have a stage like this but you should never do something until you're ready. :c

Another thing... this is between you and I... as "late bloomers." Finding someone at a later age doesn't make you abnormal. We just can get a better idea for what we want in a partner... plus.~ There are many people you can become interested in, within the span of your life. o_o

/korean point-of-view

I hope everything goes alright, dear.
Noodlepuss's avatar

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I honestly feel like you two are just not compatible with each other.

Some people, like your boyfriend, need physical aspects in their relationship. It's perfectly normal for someone his age who is or has just discovered these things to want to continue doing them and advance... It's natural and I don't think he should be forced to feel bad for wanting to be intimate with you. However, there is something wrong with him pushing to go further when you've already said you don't feel comfortable.
I'm like your boyfriend in the sense that I require physical reassurence and intimacy in a relationship to feel fulfilled. I think it's fine for your boyfriend to feel "bored" with the relationship if it lacks something he requires to feel fulfilled.

You're both at completely different ends of the spectrum and if your boyfriend continues to push you to do things you're not comfortable with, I think it's time for you to just move on.
It sounds like he wasn't happy with his first relationship either though. They did break up, after all. He probably feels that because he didn't make physically intimacy a goal in his first relationship, they went almost two years without it. He doesn't want to repeat that.

It really doesn't sound like the two of you are compatible. There is nothing wrong, at all, with not being ready to be sexual. There is also nothing wrong with desiring sex. But if you two are sexually incompatible, this is going to be a reoccurring issue. He'll want physically intimacy, feel bad you don't, you'll want to go slow, feel bad that he doesn't. You both sound unhappy in this situation, and one of you is going to be hurt whether you cut down the sexual part of your relationship or continue escalating it. Neither of you want what the other wants.

There's nothing wrong with dating late or losing your virginity late (: You're not abnormal. Everyone should go at their own pace and what is comfortable to them.
It's not that I haven't been making the effort to get used to things. Not wanting to make the effort would just be not trying anything at all, no questions asked. Which, I guess I'll admit, I was kind of suggesting that I'd rather not try anything if I didn't feel like I was ready for it. But I did give these things a shot, and up to a certain point, I'm becoming more comfortable with it.

The issue of us being on different pages has come up a lot. We both care very much about each other and don't want to break up. My boyfriend insists that I'm not the problem and that he's just too demanding, and I insist that I'm being selfish. But the reality might just be that we're not compatible because we want different things. : It's a sad realization.

I don't think he's being manipulative, at least not intentionally. I know his heart is in the right place, but like someone else said, he's probably getting impatient and sexually frustrated.

About my lack of experience, I just worry that I still have the mentality of a middle schooler who's not ready for a serious, sexual relationship. At my age, not sure how easy it is to find someone with the same mindset.

Edit: It's also not that I don't want a physical relationship. I do. I enjoy being physical with him, and kissing him, and touching him. It's just the guilt. My boyfriend always tells me how confused I make him when I say "That felt good, but I feel bad." I'm not sure if there's some underlying psychological problem here, but it's not a lack of sexual attraction to him, or sexual desires in general. Because I /do/ have them.
Red Coathanger

About my lack of experience, I just worry that I still have the mentality of a middle schooler who's not ready for a serious, sexual relationship. At my age, not sure how easy it is to find someone with the same mindset.

I didn't start dating around until I was 18, and I didn't have my first serious relationship until 20 (: There's not need to get super serious right away. Have fun! Date around, find out what you like. In a couple years you may feel ready for a serious sexual relationship. Or sooner. Whatever you feel is right.
Red Coathanger
-snip-
I don't think he's being manipulative, at least not intentionally. I know his heart is in the right place, but like someone else said, he's probably getting impatient and sexually frustrated.

About my lack of experience, I just worry that I still have the mentality of a middle schooler who's not ready for a serious, sexual relationship. At my age, not sure how easy it is to find someone with the same mindset.

Edit: It's also not that I don't want a physical relationship. I do. I enjoy being physical with him, and kissing him, and touching him. It's just the guilt. My boyfriend always tells me how confused I make him when I say "That felt good, but I feel bad." I'm not sure if there's some underlying psychological problem here, but it's not a lack of sexual attraction to him, or sexual desires in general. Because I /do/ have them.


OK I'm just gonna go over this paragraph by paragraph:

1. I agree with this, but maybe it might be worth mentioning it to him directly if you haven't already. I'm still not entirely sure he's 100% clear on how much he's pressuring you, but if he is, then he is manipulating you with intention, and you need to tell him to quit now.

2. Stop putting yourself down. Saying you're a middle schooler isn't gonna help you and it's not true - you are simply running at a different pace, and one is no better than the other. And trust me, you can find someone with the same mindset.

3. I wasn't planning on replying actually until I saw this edit. Again, stop putting yourself down. There is a very low chance there is something actually wrong with you, you need time to adjust to being physical. Why do I say this? Because I'm the same pretty much. Yes, it is likely to be frustrating to him, but if he's willing to actually try and be more patient, then good. But if not, it's just a case you two aren't compatible - and neither of you are wrong for wanting what you want.
When it comes down to it, some people just aren't ready to have sex. It's not weird or strange to not be ready to do things when it's only your first relationship. I don't think anybody is truly ready to move so quickly in their first relationship.

While I feel like your boyfriend does love you dearly, at the same time, he sounds like he's trying to put you through a guilt trip until eventually you give in. Unfortunately, you're doing exactly what he wants you to. gonk

Don't do anything you're uncomfortable with. Don't feel guilt for something normal. When he tries that whole "Oh I feel so guilty" mess, just tell him you're sorry, but you just aren't ready yet, and leave it at that.
Neko Namida Ame's avatar

Shirtless Raider

Red Coathanger
It's not that I haven't been making the effort to get used to things. Not wanting to make the effort would just be not trying anything at all, no questions asked. Which, I guess I'll admit, I was kind of suggesting that I'd rather not try anything if I didn't feel like I was ready for it. But I did give these things a shot, and up to a certain point, I'm becoming more comfortable with it.

The issue of us being on different pages has come up a lot. We both care very much about each other and don't want to break up. My boyfriend insists that I'm not the problem and that he's just too demanding, and I insist that I'm being selfish. But the reality might just be that we're not compatible because we want different things. : It's a sad realization.

I don't think he's being manipulative, at least not intentionally. I know his heart is in the right place, but like someone else said, he's probably getting impatient and sexually frustrated.

About my lack of experience, I just worry that I still have the mentality of a middle schooler who's not ready for a serious, sexual relationship. At my age, not sure how easy it is to find someone with the same mindset.

Edit: It's also not that I don't want a physical relationship. I do. I enjoy being physical with him, and kissing him, and touching him. It's just the guilt. My boyfriend always tells me how confused I make him when I say "That felt good, but I feel bad." I'm not sure if there's some underlying psychological problem here, but it's not a lack of sexual attraction to him, or sexual desires in general. Because I /do/ have them.
Is there a particular reason why you feel so guilty? Sex and intimacy are not things you should feel guilty about. If you're not ready, that's one thing but if you think you are, go through with it, and then feel guilty, that's very different.
Compromise. Otherwise there is a conflict of interests.

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