Well…he asked me to move in..I did………I must admit I overlooked the stuff the dog did because I was concentrating on the two of us getting to know one another. Now…I’m there….Dog pees in the foyer…poops in the foyer….pukes wherever. Dog sleeps in his bed…is allowed to get up on furniture….The bitch? The major bitch? Well….we cannot sleep together for a night. Dog cries, sobs, whines, howls, scratches, etc., etc. Can’t put the dog outside…it continues..and we hear it. Doesn’t matter if he has a fenced yard…dog still goes berserk!Point To Be Made: Dog has been spoiled. Dog is 8 yrs old.I told him I was’gone’…unless he did something…Bought a cage for the dog…used twice maybe..dog cried all night..he couldn’t stand it…Anyway…I’ve only been there 3 months, but…he sleeps in his bedroom with his dog and I sleep in the’spare’ bedroom. At least I can sleep when dog is not here, but I’d much rather have him with me. i love him, hate dog, want him with me at night…guess dog comes first, huh? Guess I should give up a relationship with him, huh?
If you love this man, don’t be so quick to dump him.I know you are feeling second classed, hurt, rejected and even angry. And, with all these feelings, the natural instinct is to hit the road. Part of the problem is that you are personalizing his behavior. In other words, you are thinking that he doesn’t love you enough or loves the animal more than you. You need to understand that his behavior has nothing to do with him, and an internal problem he is struggling with.When your wounded feelings subside, you will be freer to understand his problem and deal with your boyfriend in a healing way. Dealing with him in a different way (which I will show you) will enable him to grow past his doggie attachment and open his heart fully to you.O.K. At this point, you feel cheated on, like this dog is the ‘other woman.’ Many people create distance between themselves and their partners (working excessively or having an affair.) Your friend uses his a pile of dog puke to create distance. Let’s understand why.Many people fear that too much closeness will cause them to fall apart, disappear, lose themselves, etc. Search my Advice Archives under fear of intimacy for more on this. In any case, this man is scared dog-poopless. And, his dog obsession is just a symptom of this fear of being devoured by closeness.I know you gave him a threat, lose the bitch or I’m outta here, but have you told him how you feel–distanced by the dog, or forced out of his life. Telling him how you feel is a very different communication than a threat–Do x,y or z or I’m outta here. Threats tend to get the receiver’s back up, and, in your friend’s case, a threat would make him even more terrified of being close to you. He would think, if I want to be with my girlfriend, I have to do what she demands or else–meaning lose myself or else. A guy who is afraid of losing his own ground, would become more stubborn or distant under a threat.Keep in mind that even if you simply tell your friend how you feel about the dog, without threats, he will probably respond with defensiveness, make excuses and tell you you’re making a big deal out of nothing. This defensive reaction would arise because you are challenging his protective mechanism. Kids always fight when asked to give up their security blankets. A kid needs to be helped to grow so that he or she can give up his blankie willingly. That’s what we need to do with this man.Since threats don’t work, and describing your feelings probably won’t work, how can we help him to grow closer to you? First, send him the message that he is safe with you. You won’t devour him and you won’t demand that he give up his security blanket–you will accept him blankie and all.You may be thinking, I want a boyfriend not a child. When we get done with him, he will have grown past this problem. For now, you simply need to be a bit patient. If he turns out to be beyond hope, you can always leave him down the road. But, since you love him, it would be unwise to give up on him before offering him the opportunity to heal.Back to how to heal him.Using a technique called Extension Joining, you will help him grow. To join him, go along with the dog bit, and even encourage it. Put the dog between you both, call the dog in the room. When you take on his symptom (the dog attachment is a symptom of his fear of closeness) and exaggerate it, the mind soon feels safe enough to let the symptom go. In other words, by going along with his symptom, you send the message that you are safe and willing to give him the room he needs. Experiencing you as safe will allow your lover to come in closer.This will be a real challenge for you. You sound like a cut and Dr. kind of woman–Do this or I’m outta here. Having a relationship often requires patience and a softer, almost motherly touch. If you stretch yourself and do what I say, with a loving heart and without resentment or sarcasm, he will heal and come around.If you love him, then he’s worth the time and the investment of energy.Let me know how you make out.