She’s Uncomfortable With His PDA
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This guy is immature and territorial and he acts as if they are in the beginning months of a relationship. You can spot couples like this at restaurants- they are the couples who sit side by side when every other couple sits across from each other. New couples just want to constantly touch each other, or more so, it’s the male who constantly wants to touch the female. What’s strange is that the couple in this story are not new to each other, they are husband and wife. My guess is they are still very young, maybe even 19 years old and already married. (My day job is a high school teacher, and one year I had a 17 year old student who was already married to a 19 year old guy who would pick her up from school. While most parents would wait in their cars to pick up their kids, this girl’s husband would always get out of his car and stand in front of the school to greet her when the 3:30 bell rang. He would greet her with a hug and longer-than-necessary kiss. No one saw this and thought “awww how cute.” It was more like, “ewww gross, they are so immature- and who the f*** consented to her marrying this guy?”)
Sadly, I have been this guy before. Even when Jessica and I were first dating, I would take her out to eat at Dave & Busters and I just HAD to sit by her. I wanted my arm around her or my hand on her leg and I wanted to kiss her constantly. She was like a drug that I couldn’t get enough of. I was in a daze when I was around her. “Holy sh*t,” I thought, “she is so perfect. And nobody’s perfect. But she is. Wtf?!” Over time, things just seemed to normalize on their own. We now sit across from each other when we go out to eat, I don’t need to hold her hand when we’re walking in public, and I don’t feel the need to whisper “I love you” to her when she’s checking out at Kohl’s. These days, I whisper “I love you” to her in the morning before I head to work, right after I kiss her on the forehead.
So my verdict for the above couple is just mature a little. The woman is not communicating to the guy how she feels about his behavior. Go ahead and hurt his feelings. He’ll get over it and he’ll even change how he acts because you were up front about it. This guy is head over heels for you and he’ll be butthurt for a day when you tell him to stop his immature behavior, but he’ll get over it and eventually start treating you in public the way you want to be treated.
How embarrassing for her to be put on the spot like this in front of the waiter. Sure, you could argue that if she loves him it wouldn’t matter where they were or who they were around, and for some people this mindset is perfectly ok. They don’t care. But, you and your partner need to be on the same page or it’s not going to work. If you are in a relationship where you both already feel this way then great! Not everyone shares this same mindset.
The truth is, we all have different ways that we would like to receive love. There’s physical like holding hands, hugging, and kissing; there’s verbal like saying “I love you” or “thank you for cooking, hunny”; there’s gifts like flowers or a box of chocolates; there’s spending time together like going on trips or even hanging out at home watching a show you both enjoy; and there’s doing things for one another like mowing the lawn, folding laundry, or changing dirty diapers.
In this case, in his mind, he may be thinking “I’m going tell her that I love her, that will make her feel loved, and she will say it back”, but she’s not receiving it that way. Verbal may not be the primary way that she receives love. She prefers physical, holding hands. And maybe she would say I love you back if it wasn’t in front of the waiter.
That’s a very awkward and uncomfortable moment to say “I love you” right in front of the waiter. For him to do that makes me think of three things, either;
1. he needs to feel secure by essentially letting the waiter know that “she is mine”. Some guys are insecure with themselves and get super jealous around other guys, even a waiter;
2. he knows that she doesn’t like PDA and is trying to embarrass her, which is not appropriate, and is only going to upset her; or
3. he’s totally oblivious to how she feels and is completely missing the mark. His only concern in this case is getting his needs met.
In any of these cases I feel really sorry for her.
He needs to listen to her and respect how she feels. He may be getting the kind of love language that he needs, but she is not. If he doesn’t start listening to her needs then she is only going to resent him and possibly leave. Both partners in a relationship need to feel loved in order for it to work.
The ultimate intent here is to project and receive love. That’s what holding hands and saying “I love you” means. But, the only thing that he’s projecting to her is “tell me what I want to hear when I want to hear it.”
Does she need to say “I love you” back to him right then and there? No. Does that mean that she doesn’t love him? No. He did not need to say “I love you” right as they were sitting in a shop and the waiter is standing next to them. There are other times, and more appropriate times to help her feel more comfortable, when he could be saying this.
And, like I said, verbal may not be her primary love language. She likes to hold hands. If he was more willing to hold hands with her she may feel more like saying “I love you” back to him, even at a time that is uncomfortable to her. He can’t be the only one getting his love needs met. He needs to think of her.