Jessica - it appears that none of us believe you are asking too much. It depends upon what you believe you deserve, what you want, what you are willing to settle for, etc.
I thank God every day that I wake up that I decided not to settle for having no relationship with my ex. He was nice enough. After some time, he became very frustrated. He was a foreigner - although "culture shock" didn't really count as his dad was a diplomat, he'd travelled Europe (he was an India-Indian, born in Africa), grew up in France and spoke four languages fluently. But he had trouble finding work - and finally found a job in a wine store. So he made friends there, and unlike me, who expressed my dissatisfaction with working all the time - he ended up becoming an alcoholic. I kept the house, did the dishes, kept him fed, provided the bulk of our income (paid alimony when we got divorced), paid for his college education, his computer, his computer games, his Nintendo, his wine.
If we went out together sometimes I might not have become dissatisfied enough to do anything.
If he didn't do his computer thing all the time, I might not have minded cleaning up after he got so piss drunk he'd pee in the plant instead of the bathroom.
Obviously it isn't this bad for you or you would have mentioned some of it.
But what is and is not acceptable is up to you. What do you want from a relationship? I wanted total commitment. I wanted someone who loved me and enjoyed being with me. I wanted to be married to someone I enjoyed being with.
I moved out.
I moved back in two weeks later. I didn't know what to do with myself. I didn't know how to live alone any more. I missed him.
Several years later, I "forced" us into marriange counseling. As I mentioned before, we had no relationship. There was nothing to save.
In fact, I had no relationship with myself. So that's where I had to start. I had to focus on me. That wasn't selfish. There has to be a self first! If you have no self, there's nothing to love. I had to learn that there is a BIG difference between being self-ish and self-ful. You have to be full of yourself or there is nothing there to have a relationship with. There is no person to love being with. I spend a lot of time being self-ful, and I don't know anyone who would think of me as selfish. I like things, I don't like things, I want things, I don't want things, I am giving and helpful - and that's what I wanted and needed in the person I share my love with. I wanted to be with someone to share things with. I wanted to be with someone who wanted to love WITH me. It wasn't so much about loving each other as loving with each other. Sharing things. Sharing time. Sharing our selves. With each other. With other people together (and I don't mean sexually. I mean helping someone cross the street. Participating in Meals on Wheels. Giving money to a beggar. Working with Save A Wish Foundation. Whatever it is. Sharing our "selves" with other people together).
Anyway - back at the time, he was a non-threatening warm body, so I went to work on having a relationship with myself. I stopped caring about my relationship with him. I tried. I wasn't willing to settle for that. In the end, I didn't love him. And I wasn't willing to settle for that. It took about a year and half before I was ready to move out for good. And I was happy then. Yes, it was lonely at first. But I was ready for it that time.
It is up to you.
Have you ever seen Groundhog Day? I know it sounds silly, but when I saw Groundhog Day (a Bill Murray movie), I really wished it had been out three or four years earlier. It might have helped me save a lot of time being miserable! (And then I'd have been saving cats years earlier!)
In it, Bill Murray is a weatherman for a small Pittsburgh station - of course he's an ass, and dreams of being a big shot at a Network. His assignment is to cover Groundhog Day in a small town in Western PA. He goes with the new producer (Andie McDowell), who, of course, Bill Murray falls in love with. But he wakes up in hell. His hell. Every day is the same day, over and over again. It's groundhog day. And he's stuck in a small town in PA. He had to live that day over and over and over again - until he got it right. Until he let go of the hate and the anger and the contempt. Until he stopped worrying about everyone else and worried about who he was. How he was. Until he cared. Until he enjoyed living and cared about being alive. And then, of course, that last day when he got everything just right, he woke up the next morning and his love is next to him. All is right in his world.
I really think life can be like that. It's just when we get stuck, we have to get desperate enough to do something about it. Looking back on it now, I see it as a blessing that that happened.
I'm now married to someone that I spend almost 24/7 with. For nine years come December 26. I agree with Ghyslaine - it's not healthy. But it just worked out that way. I certainly spend time with myself, staying in touch with me. He spends time on his own, being him. We both insist upon it. It just so happens that we generally do that with him sitting over there in his chair on his computer and me over here in the couch on mine. (We live in an R.V., so we've done this for 8 1/2 years in 210 square feet of space!) But my friends don't live here, so I can't go out with them anyway. We e-mail and use the phone. I have "me" time. He has "he" time.
I mention this part of it not to flaunt my happiness in your face. No. I just can TOTALLY relate to feeling alone in a relationship. If you feel as alone in your relationship as I felt in mine, you are alone and there is no relationship as such. For me, it had been so long I had let myself "die." I was incapable of really having much of a relationship with someone because I didn't have much of relationship with myself. Asking if you're asking too much sounds like a warning bell to me, but I don't know. All I can do is share my experience, thoughts and feelings with you and hope it helps you. I put a lot of work into "me" before leaving my ex. It was convenient being married to someone while I got to know myself again. When I was ready, I moved on.
And I got lucky. Or I am blessed. But I truly feel like "I got it right." The week I moved out, my old high school sweetheart called. We talked for two months, I flew to Seattle, and we got married two days later. It took him eight days to pack his stuff and drive to New York. I gave my notice at work, and six months later we were on the road in our R.V., on our honeymoon and building our own business. It's not like we don't fight. We definitely disagree. A lot. But our love radiates, and I am blessed, every day. And now a man who hated cats helps me rescue them.
You may well be in love with Brian, and able to work things out. How wonderful that would be! But you have to decide to make it happen. For me, it just turns out that at the time I wasn't married to the right person. You may be lucky enough for that not to be the case! It depends upon what you want out of life, and what you're willing to give to it.
But please do not mistake the purpose of my writing. I write not to make you jealous - I write to show you the possibilities. I was alone and unhappy. I couldn't remember when I'd been happy. I took pleasure from nothing. I'd become frigid. I was constantly tired. I had bad or disturbing dreams almost every night. I let that go on for years.
You don't need to stay stuck there. But it is not up to Brian, nor is it up to his behaviour. It is up to you.