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I've reached an impass; myself vs intimacy/relationships

 
 
Reply Mon 26 Feb, 2018 03:58 am
To give a little background information I am 22 years old, female, and I have never been in a 'real' relationship.

I say a 'real' relationship the way I do because it has only been one, and it was not a good one. To sum it up, I had been friends with a guy for many years. We were both around 14-16 and we met online in a game, and were long distance. We had both experienced traumatic/unstable family problems and ended up bonding and becoming 'family' to each other. As years went on, I discovered we had different viewpoints/interests, but we enjoyed and embraced that about each other. we became more than friends and did things such as texting, video chat and sending gifts etc. But I discovered it was not as good as it seemed.

At times I was all he wanted, and he insisted he wouldn't survive without me....and other times he disappeared on me or had no interest. I appreciated him greatly and helped him through his hardest times despite it; he had been all I had for a long time. I loved/cherished him. Although he claimed he loved me back, and was the first to confess, I was never sure. I admit the relationship wasn't healthy.

He eventually told me toward the end, he could have seen me anytime he wanted, but just didn't; things were going quite well for him nowadays, and eventually I was merely a viable option in his life. He is trying to find himself, and has no interest in love/relationships right now. I decided last month that it was time to end it. He had basically told me he no longer had a need for my affection, but enjoyed me, said I was apart of his life, and really wanted to stay friends. I refused and insisted we just cut ties. It ended very peacefully.

I had been by myself this entire time anyway, so I didn't see the difference in letting him go. As a loaner/introvert who generally enjoys time alone, I had few friends, and never pursued or wanted a boyfriend. The guy online I just ended up falling in love with over the years, and he became an exception. I figured I could go back to the way I was without any issue, and although I missed him, he caused me more pain than I needed, and could do without him.

Toward the end of being with him, id say from October 2017 to now, I have ignored the feelings of wanting to be with someone. I generally have mistrust/dislike for most people due to my own family falling apart, and believe that not everyone needs to be in love or have a partner to be happy/content. However the feelings I believe are manifesting into dreams that keep me up at night; they all revolve around me loving men who are either a murder, a psycho, or a sadist, who tries to hurt me or others. Its never the same men, and I never recall a face. In my dreams I have been cut and stabbed by them and felt little to no pain, but the caresses or kisses had a very real feeling. I am not one who enjoys pain in reality, so I don't quite understand why I have these dreams so often, so intensely, and why despite the danger I end up longing for the man well after the dream has passed. I always seem to have them when I am thinking the LEAST about intimacy/relationships oddly enough. (If you are a person who does not believe dreams correlate to feelings/thoughts, just disregard the dream part in your advice)


I figured perhaps I just need to find someone. I suppose what I am looking for is stability and comfort, and someone I can cherish/make happy in return for it. but a lot of people my age are not looking for anything long term or anything dealing with responsibility/compromises. plus as I said I don't like most people, and have already tried plenty of times. I enjoy my own company, and understand myself...but clearly knowing myself isn't the answer here, because I keep feeling these feelings and having these dreams.

If anyone has any idea on what I should do I would greatly appreciate it.
 
View best answer, chosen by magicstormfrostfire
vikorr
 
  1  
Reply Mon 26 Feb, 2018 05:17 am
@magicstormfrostfire,
Hello. Your question isn't clear. Do in relation to what?
PUNKEY
 
  3  
Reply Mon 26 Feb, 2018 05:24 am
Are you dating right now?

You have spent an extraordinary amount of time with this on line relationship. Where was it supposed to go? Why no plans to meet or move it to the next step?

You have had a hurtful, unfulfilling experience. So it's no wonder you have dreams where the man hurts you and others! You were never helped or nurtured, affirmed or experienced growth from all that time and energy spent.

The good news is that you desire something more now.

I really suggest you get off all electronic devices and experience people in person. Good luck - it's going to be fun.
jespah
 
  3  
Reply Mon 26 Feb, 2018 07:01 am
@magicstormfrostfire,
First relationships rarely last. Teenaged relationships rarely last. Online relationships don't last if they're stuck in neutral and no one makes an effort to meet.

You had all three, plus this guy was flighty and kind of insincere and told you things which I suspect he thought you wanted to hear.

So he's a jerk and worse words.

He's out of your life.

Yes, that hurt. But it shouldn't hurt you forever. It's been about 5 months and this is still affecting you. While there are no hard and fast timetables, that's kind of long, particularly seeing as you were disengaging at the end there, too. You may not have consciously seen it coming but something in your head was telling you things weren't right.

You need to look past this. Like Punkey said, you've spent an inordinate amount of time on a relationship which wasn't going anywhere.

If you cannot move on, not necessarily to date others but to get out and socialize and not give this failed relationship any more serious thought, then talk to a counselor.

You are more than allowed to stop thinking about this. You are more than allowed to stop allowing it to affect you. If you want permission to change your focus and put it on yourself, your life, your friends, your work or education or anything else, then consider it granted.
neptuneblue
 
  2  
Reply Mon 26 Feb, 2018 07:43 am
Have you ever watched a movie called "Yes Man" starring Jim Carrey? It's about a man in depression from divorce. His friends urge him to get out and do things, maybe even date again. He can't, just mopes along until one day, a friend suggests going to a seminar for self empowerment.

The seminar focuses on how people close themselves off, not taking opportunities and generally letting Life pass them by. He makes a covenant to himself to not say "NO!" to anything. Giving a ride to a homeless guy? YES! Guitar lessons? YES! Korean language lessons? YES! Pretty funny movie.

My point is, you've closed yourself off to the "real" world by saying no to anything that isn't solitary. You have to go outside your comfort zone, do things you might not normally do, experience things just for the hell of it. No more disengaging from your life. It's time to get up and DO.

Meetup.com is a website that brings people together with a shared interest. Learn to cook, hike, book club, photography. Pick an activity and try it three times. There's people of all ages and backgrounds. Don't focus on finding a boyfriend, focus on making friends.

Don't read so much into your dreams. I dream I was the Queen of England but not ONCE has anybody bowed and kissed my hand. I'm still hoping though...
magicstormfrostfire
 
  1  
Reply Mon 26 Feb, 2018 08:08 am
@vikorr,
Ah, what should I do to ease or deal with these feelings is what I was asking I suppose; sorry I didn't make it clear :')
0 Replies
 
magicstormfrostfire
 
  1  
Reply Mon 26 Feb, 2018 08:14 am
@PUNKEY,
I...kind of am dating right now? Ive been on a few with very unsuccessful results.
He and I certianly DID have plans to meet once we were able to do so. However as time went on, his life got better, so he had felt less urgency to meet. I never went where he was because, well, if someone doesnt want you to come someplace then you really shouldn't haha.

So yeah I have been on a few dates hoping to find someone I have interest in and always going into it with optimism. They haven't been that great (most wanted to move quickly into the sexual area) so as of late I've stopped dating actively.
0 Replies
 
magicstormfrostfire
 
  1  
Reply Mon 26 Feb, 2018 08:27 am
@jespah,
Ah sorry I realize that I lost some stuff when i edited, but i didn't break up with him until last month ( i started feeling this way significantly before breaking it off with him is what i meant)
You are correct when you say I saw it coming; I just assumed if I put more work in I'd show him theres nothing to be wishy washy over. I wasn't surprised, just disappointed.


I have tried dating and getting out of my shell a little bit by going places with friends, or meeting someone for coffee. Going places with friends has helped me feel better for a while afterwards.

However the dating thing, I keep running into guys who are looking for a quick hookup, or just to not-be by themselves; a lot more than I was expecting. It keeps deterring me from the whole thing, especially since it takes a lot of effort for me to be social more often.

I know dating is basically finding a diamond in the rough, but...How do you deal with the gamble, and how does it not make you want to just take a step away from it?
magicstormfrostfire
 
  1  
Reply Mon 26 Feb, 2018 08:48 am
@neptuneblue,
Funnily enough i actually HAVE tried meetup.com recently. I didnt go to most things, but a couple of them I did, and invited a friend of mine to go another time I went. While it was refreshing, (moreso the time I went alone to a library meet) I admit I didn't talk to anyone in depth beyond casual passing conversation. (I know I should have but I was uncomfortable speaking extensively, even though I had a nice time.)

I guess its just I know what I want and have already spent so much energy trying to get it that I have had no interest in spending more time in adventure and much as I have stability. Which isn't a good way to be given that that's all the people around me my age want to do is discover themselves and explore.

Its a a bit difficult to see things differently than I do now and not be exhausted/deterred by the trial and error of these things. How do you keep moving forward?
neptuneblue
  Selected Answer
 
  3  
Reply Mon 26 Feb, 2018 09:55 am
@magicstormfrostfire,
What you're asking is, how do you make change happen if you don't want to change?

The simple answer is resolve. Either you want change and take steps to make it happen or...you don't. Take stock in your strengths and weaknesses.

It seems to me you're a bit shy so a public speaking event would force you to come out of your shell. You can take a college class or sign up for a political cause to make you use your voice. Try speed dating, not with an aim to land a date, but practice speaking to people you don't know. Or volunteer at a nursing home and talk to the residents about idk, fashion in the 1940's-50's. Get a part time gig being one of those sample give away people at the grocery store. Join a card playing game at your local VFW. (Spades, cribbage, backgammon)

The hardest part about putting yourself out there, is putting yourself out there. Resolve to do at least one thing a week outside your comfort zone. Nobody can make you do anything, you have to do it yourself. It doesn't matter how old you are to want to explore and discover new things. It matters if you do it.

So, how much do you want to see change? The answer is up to you.
0 Replies
 
ehBeth
 
  1  
Reply Mon 26 Feb, 2018 10:03 am
@magicstormfrostfire,
magicstormfrostfire wrote:
getting out of my shell a little bit by going places with friends, or meeting someone for coffee. Going places with friends


do a lot more of this

get out, go places, join clubs, attend conventions, get involved politically

do real life things - that's where real life people are

don't worry too much about dating or relationships right now - get used to hanging out, being with friends and people with similar interests


0 Replies
 
jespah
 
  3  
Reply Mon 26 Feb, 2018 11:05 am
@magicstormfrostfire,
magicstormfrostfire wrote:

....How do you deal with the gamble, and how does it not make you want to just take a step away from it?
Patience, maybe.

Consider it a numbers game. If you were selling Girl Scout cookies (never mind if you were never a scout, hear me out), if you knock on just one door, then your chances are 50/50 that you'll make a sale. But you've got tons of boxes of cookies. One house won't buy them all. Even a marijuana dispensary probably wouldn't buy them all.

Knocking on the door of that first house is hard but you can get through it, and then knock on another door, and another. Some people say no, some say yes. And you sell your cookies (please sell me all of your Thin Mints Very Happy ).

If you have few relationships, then the chances of success are lower. And as you've seen, not everyone is on the same page as you. So you need to put yourself out there more.

BTW, I didn't meet my husband until I was 26 and he was 23. We're married over 25 years now. You do kiss some frogs before you find the prince. But that's not so bad, long as you learn from all that amphibian-kissing.

PS I really do want those Thin Mints Wink
0 Replies
 
magicstormfrostfire
 
  2  
Reply Mon 26 Feb, 2018 01:16 pm
@magicstormfrostfire,
Quote:
The hardest part about putting yourself out there, is putting yourself out there.

Possibly one of the truest quotes I have ever heard.

I guess I do see the problem; handling an issue such as this isnt something that will just go away by sitting by myself and hoping that it fades on its own. I do have friends and people with common interests I see on occasion that have denied spending an extensive amount of time with, but maybe that's exactly what I need to do to find the inner peace I'm looking for, and the rest will come later.

I thank everyone for the advice, and I will be sure to be more open to doing things; my friends want me to go to a convention this spring with them, so maybe I should go after all!
ehBeth
 
  2  
Reply Mon 26 Feb, 2018 01:21 pm
@magicstormfrostfire,
magicstormfrostfire wrote:
and I will be sure to be more open to doing things; my friends want me to go to a convention this spring with them, so maybe I should go after all!


an acquaintance of mine has 'being open to doing things' as one of her new year's resolutions

she's in/famous for saying yes to everything and showing up at nothing

consider going to the con with your friends - and do try to go out to more things - set goals for yourself like one get-together a week (coffee with a friend counts)
0 Replies
 
ekename
 
  2  
Reply Tue 27 Feb, 2018 07:19 pm
Be.

visceral
 
  0  
Reply Tue 27 Feb, 2018 10:16 pm
@ekename,
maybe you need a shrink
0 Replies
 
 

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