How do I get my boyfriend to stop ignoring me?

Dear Edahn,

 I was wondering what to do about my situation with my boyfriend (he's 22 and I'm 18). We have been together for around 4 months now and he's a great bf. The only issue I have is that whenever I drive to see him he will be playing his video games and hardly if at all acknowledge me. Recently I came over to his house to spend a few nights and that's when the video games and ignoring start. He also will ditch me to go to his friends house or even when we have decided or made a plan (just the two of us) he will cancel it or bring his friend along.

I'm not sure what to do at this point either. I told him how I felt about it and he kinda felt bad but he does this all day. He plays video games instead of looking for a job (we have a baby on the way and I already have college and two jobs to boot). 

AW MAN, WELL, LET me start with the good news. Actually, it's all gonna be good news. The good news is that he feels bad. That's actually great news. It means he's able to reflect on his actions, see your perspective, and feel healthy guilt. If you didn't have that--if he just argued or shut down--then you'd have a real problem. 

So he feels bad, but what happens? Sounds like nothing much is happening. That's expected from someone with an addiction; they keep falling back into bad habits.

What I suggest you do is take a page out of behavioral psychology. Do you watch the Dog Whisperer? He uses a lot of behavioral psychology and you could learn a lot just by watching a few of his videos. Basically, he makes a change in attitude and then keeps an eye on the subject (le dog) to make sure it stays on track. Same idea for your BF. Talk to him again. Tell him that you have a baby coming and that it's time for you guys to sit down and get serious. Ask him what kind of marriage he wants to have, and tell him what kind of marriage you want to have. Together, ask yourselves whether both of your actions are leading to that ideal relationship and what could be done to improve things. Of course, it's cool if he plays video games, but it needs to be budget his time better and he needs to keep his commitments to you. This is a good time for him to speak up about things that bother him. You might have some things about yourself that YOU have to change, too. (Be prepared!) 

You can even extend this into a conversation about what you both want out of life in general. Do you want to see a change in the world? Contribute to a cause? Start a cause? Be good people? Develop a skill to perfect? Addictions will fuck up any plan simply because you need to dedicate time to meet those goals. 

Now comes the behavioral part. Come up with a few simple ways to get your relationship on track towards that ideal vision. Come up with things that are easy to follow and remember. For example: "hang out ourselves, once a week, no video games" would be a good one. Another one would be "limit game-playing to 1.5 hours a day." Another one is "hang out as a group at least once a week." Try and work together rather than against each other, and try to be reasonable and flexible. These are big steps for him.

The important thing is that you guys stick to the rules you create and remind each other when a rule is broken without penalty (without it turning into a fight). You'll slip up here and there, but if you guys keep your focus and positivity and work to help each other and yourselves, I think you'll be just fine. Let me know how it goes, ok?

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