After a year and a half of dating, my boyfriend and I moved to a new city together in the middle of the pandemic (we’d planned the move beforehand). It was difficult to suddenly adjust to working from home together in a one-bedroom apartment, but despite some rough patches, we made it work. But lately he’s been getting more controlling, and I’m not sure if I can keep chalking it up to pandemic-related anxiety. We’re in Canada, and our city has gradually lifted some restrictions since we have almost no new COVID cases. I’ve been hoping to meet some friends outdoors for a socially distanced drink, but my boyfriend basically forbade it (even if it was just the two of us, and it was otherwise empty). He’s also freaked out when I want to go on a bike ride or to take a walk on the beach by myself, or even gets mad or pouts when I haven’t made dinner yet. I’m 28, and he’s 38, and we’re both men, so I don’t think it’s a gendered thing. He says he’s scared about the virus, but I wear a mask, stay away from others, and wash my hands thoroughly.
One night we took a walk together, and he wanted to turn back and play video games—then said he’d break up with me if I didn’t accompany him right away. I told him the next day that was unacceptable and planned to leave for my parents’ house to cool off. But he said we’d planned to see his mother in a few weeks, and that she wouldn’t let him see her if she knew I had “broken the bubble” by seeing other people within the last two weeks. I know he and his mom are scared, but it’s frustrating because I think their fear goes beyond reasonable medical advice. I can’t help but think that him threatening to break up with me is a red flag. Am I being selfish by wanting to take modest risks in a relatively safe city?