How I Trained My Lazy, Non-Committal Boyfriend Into Being The Perfect Husband

Although the saying goes that you can't teach an old dog new tricks, I managed to teach my commitment-phobic boyfriend a new skill. I achieved this by breaking up with him when he was acting like I would wait for him forever, and as a result, he learned how to "roll over" and commit.

1. I was done hoping things would work themselves out

Our on-again-off-again relationship was exhausting. Just when things seemed to be improving, they would fall apart again, leaving me back at square one. Despite his repeated apologies and empty promises, I had finally had enough. To make him realize the impact of his behavior, I had to take a different approach and walk away.

2. Being direct about what I wanted had gotten us nowhere

Despite my clear communication about my desires for our relationship, my partner shut them down or ignored them. In response, I stopped dropping hints and asking for attention. Instead, I observed and remained silent. Surprisingly, my lack of feedback made him realize that my silence was a reaction. As a result, he finally gave me the attention I had been asking for all along. It's surprising how not asking for something can sometimes lead to getting it.

3. I gave up trying to fix the things I hadn't broken in the first place

Despite my multiple attempts to repair the relationship, nothing seemed to work. Finally, I proposed starting from scratch. Miraculously, once we hit the reset button, my partner transformed into the person I had been trying to persuade him to be all along: kinder, more supportive, passionate, and understanding. It was as if he put in more effort now that there were no expectations. I was thrilled to see the change and finally relieved that I didn't have to keep pushing him to change.

4. I set boundaries and insisted we were just friends

In past breakups, I always worked hard to win him back, continuing to do relationship-related things as if nothing had happened. But this time, I stopped helping him altogether. It was tough since we co-owned a farm and had a toddler son, but the change made him recognize and value my presence more. We became friends and co-workers, with our relationship limited to co-parenting. This boundary allowed him to reflect on his true feelings for me.

5. I was no longer his doormat

My partner used to blame me for everything that angered or upset him since I was the only outlet for his frustration. However, when I distanced myself from him, he altered his communication and behavior towards me. He began to appreciate our time together and reflect on his conduct instead of merely lashing out. By removing myself as his emotional punching bag, he became a better person to be around.

6. I made myself emotionally and physically unavailable

Following our breakup, I purposely delayed responding to my ex's messages or missed calls, even when I had nothing else to do. There was no makeup sex this time, and he couldn't expect immediate forgiveness with just an apology. For once, I prioritized my own life and created a sense of longing within him that he had never experienced before. He began to show me that he would never let me go again if given the chance to win me back, and this made a significant difference.

7. I let him live like a single man

Although it hurt to see him go out with his single friends sometimes, I made a conscious effort not to dwell on it. I recognized that I needed to allow him space to be himself and appreciate what I could offer him. The novelty of the single life soon wore off, and he returned as a grateful and appreciative man who has been that way every day since.

8. That crap about letting the thing you love go to see if it comes back is true

I frequently experienced a gut-wrenching feeling, believing that it was impossible to fix our damaged relationship. I refused to be the only one making an effort since I deserved better, and that's precisely what I did. When he realized I was serious, he began to change. It appeared that my efforts were making him disinterested in the relationship. But, once I began to act indifferent, he was the one who took every opportunity to assure me that he wasn't going anywhere. When I let go, he found ways to hold on.

9. He finally realized the grass wasn't greener on the other side

Following everything that happened, he became a transformed individual. It was as if he had matured overnight and now understood what he wanted and the necessary behavior required to maintain it. He no longer took me for granted or mistreated me; in fact, he has transformed into the best husband ever!