What’s wrong with this picture?


I've been in a relationship for 9 months now with a man who treats me like gold. He's thoughtful, responsible, and caring. He's pretty much the whole package, but yet I have this plaguing feeling that something is missing. I can't even quite figure out what "it" is but it's enough to make me wonder if I should stay in the relationship long term. I often feel sad and cry about this feeling but feel as though it's unfair of me to make him feel like he's continually doing something wrong when that's simply not the case. I should mention that this is my first serious relationship so perhaps I am just expecting too much of him? Is it possible that one single relationship cannot provide you with everything but that you may need to get certain things out of other relationships such as friends? Or is there someone out there who could fulfill all aspects and I'm selling myself short by sticking with this relationship?
I should also mention he has had three long-term relationships before me. I often wonder how I am any different than the other girls he's dated or if he loves me because he hasn't said those three words yet. At times he makes me feel amazing and then before I know it I'm haunted by the same thoughts again and again. Please help!

–Confused Newbie, Edmonton

It sounds like it's time to end it, CN. You're sending serious mixed signals (to him and to me), but the big issue is that you're not happy, whether it's with him or yourself.
After nine months, you should be psyched about this relationship. Maybe a little giddy. You should be having a lot of fun. Instead, you're confused and in tears. Maybe this relationship is lacking. Maybe you're just not ready for a big commitment. Maybe you need more time to set up the rest of your life before you jump into a serious relationship. Regardless, this isn't working. You're allowed to trust your gut and make decisions about your relationship even if you can't quite explain why you feel the way you do.
For the record, no one person can be the center of your universe. You absolutely need friends in your life. It always helps to be somewhat whole before you bring in a partner. Maybe it's time to focus on yourself so that you can figure out what's really missing and give this relationship a bit more context.
Readers? Should she end this? Is it fair to stay in the relationship? Is the jealousy normal? What's missing? Help.

– Meredith