Dating at Midlife/Intimacy


My boyfriend of 3 years is not demonstrative about his feelings for me. I like getting the occasional text or phone call, especially when I am ill or he knows I am having a tough time.

I have tried calmly telling him how I feel. That intimacy to me is really important for me to feel sexy towards him. To want to even be in a relationship with him but as the years have progressed I actually get less of his time and attention. He is a good boyfriend when we are alone but I feel when he leaves our home it is as if I don't exist.

He says it is because he is busy but he used to email me and text me regularly. I am not asking for every day but it would be nice to know he is thinking of me sometimes.

He never brings me flowers or little presents either. I am starting to feel less love for him. If you tell your lover what you need and they don't even make an effort to hear you is it time to leave? Or is it, as he says, normal for couples to treat each other with less concern as the years go on. He still wants sex everyday.

Your concern is not new.
Here are the lyrics to a famous old song:
"You Don't Bring Me Flowers"

You don't bring me flowers
You don't sing me love songs
You hardly talk to me anymore
When you come through the door
At the end of the day

I remember when
You couldn't wait to love me
Used to hate to leave me

Now after lovin' me late at night
When it's good for you
And you're feeling alright
Well, you just roll over
And you turn out the light

You don't bring me flowers anymore

It used to be so natural
To talk about forever
But 'used to be's' don't count anymore
They just lay on the floor
'Til we sweep them away

And baby, I remember
All the things you taught me
I learned how to laugh
And I learned how to cry
Well I learned how to love
Even learned how to lie

You'd think I could learn
How to tell you goodbye
'Cause you don't bring me flowers

Well, you'd think I could learn
How to tell you goodbye
'Cause you don't bring me flowers


But what to do. That is question...

the situation is not clear to me.
You say " he used to email me and text me regularly. I am not asking for every day but it would be nice to know he is thinking of me sometimes."
and so it seems that he disappears on you and then you also say
"He still wants sex everyday."
and that makes it sound like he is very steady.

What happens? What happens to you?

Because of the confusion in your question I get the sense that sometimes
you get very nervous and worry about whether he will disappear.
Is that it?
What do you do?
What does he say?
Can you explain more?

And also, this part is important,
how is this relationship different from previous ones? Better? Worse?


Philip Alan Belove, Ed.D.

Dating at Midlife

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Philip Belove, Ed.D.


Hi. I`m Philip Belove (that is my name, really). I`m 71 and I`ve been a psychologist all my midlife, the past 35 years. My specialty has been counseling and coaching other midlife adults.  I think we all figure things out as we go along, but even more so at midlife. Being between 40-ish and 60-ish and single is like being a stranger in a strange land. I`ve learned which questions help people find their own way. I created this category, I publish a blog at and I write articles for various web sites. My commitment is to help people 1) understand and improve how they deal with others, 2) understand the forces that rule the relationships they are in, and 3) make the decisions which will shape, or create, or end those relationships  so they achieve the goal of midlife development  to finally live with personal satisfaction. I`ve been divorced twice myself. I`m in a satisfying relationship with a fine person. I`m very interested in learning about your challenges and in offering what I can.


Professionally: Licensed Psychologist. Marriage and Family Therapist. Coach.Author. University Lecturer. Personally: I'm 71. I've probably made all the big mistakes, er, learned the big lessons.I've forgiven myself and made many apologies and I've made it into a good, stable, sweet relationship. I now have a perspective on midlife.

Please check out my book, Rabbis in Love, at Also my blog at The Rabbi book was done as part of a research project. My collaborator, Marilyn Bronstein, and I wanted to interview couples with very successful marriage and also we wanted to talk to people who cared as much about their spirituality as love. Maybe being able to love and be spiritual were one and same, we thought. So we found a rabbi couple and the interview was so astounding that we interviewed nine more rabbi couples. One dropped. They'd revealed too much. It's a fascinating book and, Jewish or not, religious or not, these couples do a lot of things right and there is a lot to learn from them.

Masters in Counseling Psychology, Alfred Adler Institute Doctorate in Consulting Psychology, focus on family therapy, University of Massachusetts at Amherst

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