Dear Miss Emily:

Hi.  My boyfriend and I have been dating for 10 months now.  He admits that he is afraid of commitment.  He has told me that in private, and even jokes about it with other people.  I think a lot of it stems from a past relationship that he was in for 8 months in which he received pressure to get married from his girlfriend.  However, his 'commitment-phobia' is so bad that he does not like to even plan ahead (it can be anything from the plans for the next weekend to planning a trip with my friends this summer).  Don't get me wrong - he has introduced me to his family, friends, etc. It's just gotten to the point where I don't know how to invite him to do anything...(from dinner w/ friends in a few days to a wedding in a few weeks) without him thinking that I want to marry him!  Please help!

--------------------Miss Emily's advice----------------

There are two kinds of commitment-phobes:  One is afraid of commitment, period.  The other is afraid of commitment until he/she meet the right person.  I am sure he falls into the former category, because I know you would be a real catch, right?  Apparently, to him, commitment phobia is an excuse for being rude and selfish.  It seems to me, he's got you exactly where he wants you -- afraid to even ask for the slightest consideration and respect.  If he's fun to be with, taking into account the egg shell dance you perform around him, continue the status quo, without any expectations. I would make it clear to him that marriage isn't on your mind, either (unless, of course, it is), because the way he handles his relationship with you is a sign he may be emotionally damaged in other areas of which you are not aware.  Reword that if you think it too harsh. But any statement to that affect could (???) toy with his inflated ego and, therefore, put him in the postion to want to prove you wrong.