Life Advice



Ask Amy: Conflict aversion leads to tough breakup

Amy Dickinson, Tribune Content Agency on

Dear Amy: I recently broke up with my boyfriend of over four years.

Although we love and complement each other well, the relationship was not progressing.

When we started dating, we were on the same page about wanting to get married someday.

I have two children from a previous marriage. Several times over the last two years I’ve suggested he spend more time with them. He knows this is important to me. However, he is not interested in doing this.

When I asked if he enjoyed the interactions with my children, he said that he didn't and that he only spent time with them so that I wouldn't get mad at him.

Whenever I tried to discuss any future plans, such as moving in together, he said "I don't want to talk about it."


He claims that he feels discouraged about our future because of minor disagreements we've had in the past.

I've done everything I can to learn and grow from those moments.

All couples have disagreements, but he says he doesn't like any conflict. Whenever I raise an issue, he takes it as a personal insult, which derails any resolution.

Obviously, communication is very challenging. I felt that he was sabotaging the relationship.


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