Hello again Papabear,
This is a relationship question, which you have probably been buried in before and maybe still are. But I really need some advice. I have told you about my significant other and I feel like the relationship isn't working for me anymore. I feel like its very one sided for me. My SO lives 30+ miles away from me and he expects me to go visit him when he never comes to see me because he doesn't have a way to get done to see me and wants to see me every week. I say no most of the time because I don't want to drive that much and put the strain on my car and use gas that I don't have money readily available for. I feel like he's pressuring sex but I don't feel like I'm ready for an imitate relationship. I was talking with my friends about it and one of them said that he was using emotional blackmail to get me to do stuff for him. He says that he's not but I think he secretly is because when I give him a negative answer he starts getting emotionally on me and it makes me feel bad. This weekend he wants to spend all the weekend with me Friday to Sunday and he wants me to drive him to his birthday party at his aunts. That means he wants me to drive up to see him, drive him to his aunts, drive back to his apartment the same day as the party, than drive myself back home on Sunday. I feel like that's WAY too much driving for me to do for him. What do you think I should do?
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So, is this the same guy you wrote me about in this column: http://www.askpapabear.com/1/post/2013/04/high-maintenance-friend.html? Sounds like it is, since both that guy and this one live 30 minutes from you, so probably not a coincidence. In our last correspondence, I said it was up to you whether or not you wanted to put up with such a high-maintenance mate. Seems like you have chosen to put up with him. Therefore, it is really because of your own choice that you are in this situation now.
Now in this current situation you are clearly being taken advantage of. It would be different if he were paying for gas and just needed your help because he doesn’t have a car right now, but you are both supplying the car and fuel that you can ill afford. He is also emotionally manipulating you (the friend that clued you in on this is quite observant).
Papabear’s advice is this: tell him you can drive him, but only if he will pay for the gas because you can’t afford it. Then see what his reaction is. If he starts the tear ducts going and gives you a guilt trip, then you know you’re being manipulated. If he simply refuses to help with gas, then tell him you’re sorry but you simply can’t afford paying for gas as the past expenses have already hurt your wallet and you are not made of money. If he gets mad about your response, then, again, you know he is using you. On the other paw, this might be a wake-up call for him. He might not realize he’s using you and he might apologize and make amends after you tell him frankly what the deal is. I’m thinking that’s rather a long shot, though.
This guy is obviously making you uncomfortable, financially, emotionally, and also with his pressuring you for sex. Take it from a bear who has had the experience of being a tool before: stand up for yourself and don’t let a user take advantage of your good heart. A healthy relationship is one in which both parties contribute to each other’s happiness.
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