Dear Dr. Archer,
I have been involved with my boyfriend for three years and together we have a 2 year old daughter. He told me he needed some space, and that it wasn't me. He said he needed to find himself. He says he's at the point where he can't love anything or anyone. He says he cares for me deeply, that he's not just saying that but that he needs time.
This is very difficult for me. I call him and he gets grumpy and very cold. Even if I wanted to let him go, he's not making it easy for me because he calls me for the baby's sake. I wish he could leave me alone. I do call him whenever I need something for the baby. What can I do?
It's time to grow up. You described a situation where you want it both ways, but that's impossible; you can't have it both ways. You chose to have a child and now you must do everything in your power to make sure your daughter's life is well balanced and secure.
You want your boyfriend to leave you alone, yet you call him when you need something for your daughter? It doesn't work that way, Portia, and it shouldn't. I commend your boyfriend for helping out and remaining in his daughter's life. That tells me he has a sense of responsibility and knows his obligations. You should be very thankful for that. As Earvin Magic Johnson said, "All kids need is a little help, a little hope and somebody who believes in them." How fortunate for your daughter to have two.
I realize things between you and your boyfriend can be uncomfortable, but time will make it better. The fact remains that your daughter has every right to know her father and vice versa. The best thing you can do, Portia, is be civil to each other and concentrate of what's best for your little girl. Give him his space to decide what he wants out of life, and I suggest you use this time for the same purpose. Feel free to date and see other guys -- who knows? Maybe you’ll find someone that is a fit for you and your life.