"I'm Social, He's Not, Are We Doomed?"

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Conflicting social schedules can be remedied through compromise.

Q: I’m a classic extrovert. I have tons of friends and an exploding social calendar. My boyfriend, on the other hand, is a dedicated homebody. I want to spend our weekends out and about, while he’d prefer to stay in watching movies, reading, or working on his (never-ending) novel. We’ve been together for two years and I love him, but I’m extremely frustrated by our conflicting extracurricular preferences. Should I consider leaving him?

A: This is a classic case of "opposites attract. Couples that complement each other’s strengths and weaknesses often have an advantage when navigating life together. However, when a couple differs dramatically in their social interests and aspirations, it can be difficult to stay together for the long haul. But don’t worry. Success is possible if the two of you compromise and develop a mutually acceptable social schedule. For example: Friday nights, snuggle in together for a quiet night at home; Saturday nights, go out with friends while he stays home with his novel; and Sundays, plan to spend time with another couple. Another option is to continue living separate social lives, much as you are now, and accept that it just is the way it is—without resentment or frustration.

While you and your boyfriend work on creating an acceptable social compromise, remember why you fell in love with each other in the first place. You can have lots of friends, but it’s impossible to have intimate relationships with more than a few. The wonderful thing about having a romantic partner is that he may provide refuge for you, fostering a connection that you don’t have with anybody else. And your energy and enthusiasm is probably a welcome change for him, too. 

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