She loves him, but not his lack of drive

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Amy Dickinson, Ask Amy Ask Amy

Amy Dickinson is a general advice columnist.

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DEAR AMY: I am a 21-year-old female and I've been dating my 25-year-old boyfriend for over a year. It's a very healthy relationship. We get along very well. We haven't discussed marriage or children because we both feel we're too young. My parents raised me to be an extremely hard worker. They taught me to set goals and to achieve them. My parents taught me that I could do anything I wanted to, as long as I worked hard enough. With that mindset, I'm extremely successful. My parents are proud of me, my boyfriend is proud of me, and I am proud of me. My boyfriend is not as goal-oriented as I am. He does not care to work hard to achieve his goals. In fact, he no longer sets goals. I've tried to talk to him about setting goals and achieving them, but he seems to think his goals will not be met, and so he doesn't set them. I truly love him. However, his lack of drive is something that will be an issue if we decide to stay together. I can't change my views on working hard because it is extremely important to me. Amy, do you think this issue can be mended?Worried

DEAR WORRIED: This can be mended, but only if you change. There is nothing "wrong" with operating as your boyfriend does.

Not everyone is driven, a goal setter and achievement-oriented.

You and your guy have very different temperaments. You two might be perfect complements to each other just as you are, except for the fact that you don't want him to be the way he is. You want him to be the way you (and your parents) are.

The way to mend this would be for you to respect your differences. Even though ultimately this might be very good for you as a person, you declare that you can't do this (nor do you want to), so, for long-term success, you'll probably have to find someone else who is more like you.