#AskAlex: My Boyfriend Claims We Are Just Friends....

Dear Alex, I admire you a lot. Thanks for always sharing your wisdom and your experience. And I have learned so much from reading your blog articles. But I'm so depressed right now and I need your opinion about something. I have been dating my man for 3 years, cooking, washing and sexing him. When we are together, he usually mentions that he loves me but when we are in public and his friends or anyone asks if I'm his girlfriend, he says no, we are just good friends. And it hurts me every time. He says he likes being private about his life, but I'm just confused. Do you think he really loves me cos I don't know what to think. I recently just found out I'm 8 weeks pregnant and was hoping that he will pop the marriage question, but he says he wants a child conceived in marriage, not outside wedlock. That we can always try again when things get serious. What do I do? I'm confused. Leila.

Hello Leila,  I am so tempted to scream right now....But the truth is I shouldn't be surprised because once again I have sort of experienced something a little similar and men are so complex than they actually believe. You can read one of my rant and rave posts (WHAT DO MEN WANT).

My first instinct is to ask if he's married because you didn't mention that (but since you are expecting him to pop the marriage question). I'll assume he's a single available man.

First things first,  I can't stop reiterating that LOVE is a choice, a decision, not a feeling....And because it is a decision, it becomes an ACTION. In other words if we agree that love is a (verb) an action, then love doesn't HIDE because actions don't hide. If someone truly loves you, then their love will always be VISIBLE for all to see because love can not be bottled up or contained. The moment you start doubting if someone truly loves you is the moment they are doing things wrong (why?). Because apparently, their actions don't match their words. (Notice I didn't say feelings, because feelings are conditional and change with time but love isn't.... And it remains true and consistent over time). Of course the love-giver might control their 'feelings' but you can still see love written all over their actions. That's why it is way easier for someone outside of your relationship, to tell you whether your partner loves you or not....because they can base their opinions logically on how your partner behaves around you, with you or behind you....and it will have nothing to do with how many butterflies flutter in their stomach, or how much of Shakespearean English he or she uses to communicate their feelings. But the hard core visible facts proven over time, not fleeting intangible rhetoric. Let me put this in context.

a) If your man works hard and buys a Ferrari, will he lock it up in the garage or tell his friends that it belongs to his neighbour.....Or will he invite everyone he knows to take a quick drive in his brand new sleek ride?

b) If You got a pair of the Newest Swarovski Diamonds you have been dying to acquire. Will you lock it up and never wear it or will you wear your new love to the biggest party you can garner attention and tell everyone who admires it that it belongs to your sister....or will you own it and be grateful that everyone admires your beautiful jewellery?!

That's how love is. You want to show it off. You want the entire world to know that you are happy because you have found the right companion and someone you are proud to have in your life. No matter how private one is.

For an example: When my ex husband got re-married, I kept getting calls from journalists and reporters who wanted my comments....(Actually, they pretty much wanted juice for their newspapers). So I avoided doing interviews and stepping out in public because I didn't want to talk about anything pertaining to my divorce because I consider it my personal business and I wanted to deal with the issues privately. But If I eventually went out somewhere and someone asked me how my marriage was doing....I would nicely say, "I am presently single and I don't want to talk about the details...." NOW that's me being 'private'. But if I say "No comment" (that me being DISCREET and leaving people to fly with their own hypothesis)  or if I say "My Marriage is doing okay" (That's me out rightly lying). So if he says "Yes we are seeing each other or Yes, we like each other a lot and we are spending time together" and leaves it at that, then he's being private but when he says you are just friends even if he has no intentions of being committed or FAITHFUL to you, he is still out rightly lying because you are MORE than just good friends, you are lovers and you both are involved in an intimate relationship like every other couple, whether it is just a sexual relationship or a love one. If he claims to love you privately and then publicly rejects you, That's not love....And it's time you re-evaluate things.

#1) Don't Be A Secret: 

If a person is ashamed to show you off publicly, then you should be ashamed to give them your heart privately. Its that simple. If you haven't met his family, friends, colleagues after 6 months of being together (Which is pretty much the honeymoon stage of any love liaison) ....He definitely doesn't have any long term goals that includes you. And that also goes for the constant denials as well. Please read "WHEN, FOR THY COMMITMENT SAKE?" it may give you insights on whether your man is commitment-phobic.

#2) Don't Give Him Extra Benefits:

This one I learned the hard way. Being very domesticated and growing up as the first daughter with five (5) biological younger siblings and cousins to care for, in a very large family. I'm the avid NUTURER. I want to cook, clean and care for everyone including the man in my life....but err, that's where we get it all wrong. So he thinks you are just friends but yet you give him the benefits reserved for a lover and a husband....and expect he'll want more from you? Hahahah. That's impossible. I made that mistake with Tiger before. I shopped for him, constantly offered to do his laundry, take over cooked meals, gave him little gifts, shared my activities with him, stepped in whenever he needed me, and tried to make sure his apartment was in order whenever I could....And oh! I gave him great SEX too. (All these in a bid to prove my love and solidify my stance with him, despite my insecurity with the truth staring me in the face) Yet he wanted other women, the elusive ones, after all he had conquered me. I was no longer an interesting catch. What was there to look forward to? But I don't blame him, After all he had a good friend who was a standby Vagina, A maid and The perfect Back pocket Girl....(ME)....Lol. And I didn't know I was stabbing myself in the heart, cos I was doing things all wrong.  My point is, you have no business catering to a man who just wants to be a good friend....or do you shop, cook, clean and screw all your good friends? Exactly!!! 

So leave the benefits for only the man who is willing to acknowledge and appreciate you publicly (someone who can't stop gushing about you to those who truly matter to him). So lay a requirement from the on set and ask him what he wants from you or with you.... You can read Steve Harvey's guide book "Act Like A Lady, Think Like A Man...." one of the chapters talks about Men respecting Standards and The questions a woman must always ask a man before she gets deep. You can also buy Sherry Argov's "Why Men Marry Bitches" I would have offered to ship you my hard copy as I don't have this particular E-book but I think my sister mischievously nicked my hard copy or should I say borrowed it. Lol. But you must let a man define the relationship he has with you. (I always thought that was being desperate) But no, that is just being clear. Until he clearly admits you are his woman, perhaps it is safe to see yourself as just his friend and act as such, nothing more. 

#3) Identify And Understand What Real Love Is:

One of my favourite songs by "Musiq Soulchild" is the song titled "LOVE" and a line in the chorus says that so many people use the name of love in vain and even those who have faith in love sometimes go astray. And that is so true. They want a favour, they claim they love you. They want your booty, they claim they love you. They want your money or a trophy companion, they will claim they love you. But we don't realise that the Grace and Sacrifice in love is what makes love TRUE. Please read (THAT FREE LOVE) and (THE ACTS OF LOVE) you will understand people who haven't experienced what love really is and don't understand it, will definitely abuse it. There is nothing selfish about love....and someone who considers their privacy more important than a person to be loved or the happiness of the person they claim to love as a lesser priority to their own needs can never show love. 

Recently, I went to an event and spent the night at Tiger's (Not his real name) apartment. I couldn't go home cos it was a little late to drive (even though honestly I just wanted to spend some time with him). He probably wasn't expecting me to stay initially and whatever food he had left as a single bachelor, already had his name on it. Tiger had offered me the only plate of food left....and though I was damn hungry enough to eat two extra portions, I had to be CONSIDERATE and decided to split that one plate with him. What am I saying? Just the thought that a grown man was willing to SACRIFICE the only food he had left without my asking for it, is a sign of love, even if he never verbally expresses his feelings. And the fact that I refused to be 'selfish' and eat the food alone despite my incredible hunger, is also a sign of love on my part. Now if I were ever to identify and choose a deeper act of love between a man who is wealthy and buys me a brand new Range Rover..... Or a man who sacrificed his only meal for me and took the time to run me a hot water bath....Who do you think I would choose? I would choose the man who gave me his food, because love is about the small mundane things that have value in purpose. And a person with the right quality of character adds value to that purpose of love....You can read my post (WHAT HAS CHARACTER GOT TO DO WITH THE COOCHIE). It will help you decide if your man has the depth or Strength of Character.

#4) Don't Fall Prey To Sexipidity

Sexipidity is a name I have coined for "sex stupidity" and men do know how to drag us down that lane along with them. I am so pissed off that your man thinks he is so smart without realising the foolishness of the statements he makes (forgive me). He only wants a child conceived in marriage but he is having pre marital sex with his good friend of 3 years, yet he's surprised a baby happened. Okay, what a wise man!!! But in this instant, he's neither a good partner, nor a good friend....Because good friends don't take advantage of those they supposedly care about. And he should be supporting you and holding your hands like a real man. Please read (ALL SOLID MEN PLEASE STAND UP).

But here's a basic rule about SEX we all forget..... 
a) Don't have sex with someone you are not willing to have a child with. (it doesn't matter whether you are both using protection, pulling out or going raw.....none of it is 100% fool proof) if he can't imagine you as the mother of his child or him as the father of your child...or you can't imagine your child having the genes of your sex mate, then you have no business frolicking with that person. SIMPLE.
b) If one is man or woman enough to have sex, then one should be man or woman enough to accept the CONSEQUENCES of one's actions and deal with it responsibly. (Hence the reason I think your man is acting quite the jerk right now).

And I know how you must feel, for your character to be questioned, your love to be tested and your patience to be tried. Remember, I have been there before. 

I honestly can't  tell you what to do even though I would love for you to just shove your bra down his throat....so he can choke on it. Hahahah. But my joke aside, this is a serious situation that requires a lot of thinking and deliberate action. I would like you to know though, that a child is a wonderful BLESSING from God and you don't come into your own until you are raising one (even if you are not the biological parent). I must have had a good life before Ray (My son) was born, but I don't remember much of it because once he came, he crept into my life with a NEW awakening that truly changed my life for BETTER (despite the challenges). So with or without this man, you'll be just fine because the strength you really need to go through this tough period, is inside of you and the source of God's genuine love and grace surrounds you.

Do let me know what you decide. Hope my post helps you to make the right decisions.....You can also read my Love and Naked Reality post (MY CRACK ON THE RELATIONSHIP CODE). It may help put things about your relationship in better perspective. Do take care dear and remember, you are not alone. Xoxo.

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