It’s been a little more than a month since I went through a… well, I wouldn’t call it a breakup since we weren’t officially together…but let’s just say it was a broken heart, because that’s what it feels like. Every time something like this happens, I’m reminded just how much it sucks. Big time.
My last official relationship was almost four years ago. It took me two years after our breakup to even go on a date. That date resulted in many dates; it was a guy I really liked, but it didn’t work out. I sniffled a little when he sent the text: “Now is just not a good time for me.”
Then, I did the exact same thing I do every time this happens. I deleted his number, texts, any pictures, and trashed any mementos. I’ve done this so many times, and it doesn’t hurt any less each time.
This last time, I’d be lying if I said I didn’t think there was major potential there. And I’m certain that’s why I’ve been dragging around for the past few weeks. I did what I always do, and perhaps added a new ritual of deleting and blocking his number. I figured I should finally stop wishing he’d contact me, because now he can’t.
The end was solidified with a pretty nasty fight – I know I’ve never yelled at someone like I did with him – and while it’s nothing I’m proud of, I know I was devastated to lose this one.
I’m not a person that has a lot of self-esteem, and I’m sure that’s why I get myself into these disasters in the first place. When breakups happen, it takes me F O R E V E R to feel like I’m really better off without that person. No matter how bad they treated me.
So, I’ve been thinking a lot about my future (I do this a lot), and what I really want out of life. Do I want to be in a relationship? Because if I do, I’m going to have to make some changes in order to get there. But first, I need to figure out what the hell is getting me in these positions in the first place. Here are my theories.
Fear of Intimacy
I mentioned last week that I kind of think I have a fear of intimacy. I seem to be really attracted to guys who are unavailable; whether it’s emotional unavailability or they live far away (like, states away), or they are too busy with work and/or life to really date me. Those are the types of guys I go after. Of course, I don’t do it on purpose; I’m pretty sure it’s subconscious.
Ultimately, I think I’m attracted to these guys because when the relationship ends, I can just blame it on the guy, or his job, or the distance – basically anything but me. I think I don’t want to get really close to someone, because if they discover the real me and then dump me, then they really are dumping me for me; not for any other reason. Sounds super fucked up, but right now this is the theory I believe to be the most true.
Mirror: Attracting What I Reflect
I was telling one of my girlfriends about what recently went down with my dating situation. I told her about the possibility that I have a fear of intimacy, and she wasn’t having it. “You didn’t really know this guy was unavailable,” she said.
Instead, she suggested her theory: that we are all mirrors and we attract what we reflect. “Maybe there’s a part of you that feels unattainable.” Hmmm… interesting! I don’t know if I necessarily think of myself as unattainable, but I do think that I am a really good girlfriend when given the chance. I am very loyal, thoughtful, and kind – perhaps too kind. Because my past relationships have been so hurtful, I do associate dating with pain, and I often feel like I have to give up a lot of my life in order to date. We’ll talk more about this in a minute.
Fate, Soulmates, & Timing
Sometimes I wonder if I was just never meant to be with someone. Maybe it is my fate to be single until the end of my days. Perhaps, I was meant to experience the bad stuff so I can write about it and warn others about life’s ugly truths!
Then there’s the whole soulmate thing. I have never really been sure about soulmates: do they exist or not? I don’t know. It seems kind of nuts to think that there is only one, or perhaps two, or even a dozen people meant for one person. If soulmates are real, then I guess I just haven’t met mine yet (okay, John Mayer, let’s get this show on the road!).
Finally, there’s timing. Everyone says dating is all about timing, and that the timing has to be right for both people. I kind of understand this, but at the same time, when is the timing EVER going to be right? I feel like this is just an excuse people use to not date.
I am well-aware that my online image is not necessarily a positive one, in two ways. For one, it probably doesn’t make men excited to date someone who is essentially the Taylor Swift of blogging. And I get that, I do. But, this entire blog isn’t about my dating past – I feel like most of it is just about my life, and dating has become less a part of my life in the last five years.
Then there’s the whole online dating thing, which I have tried. However, I think I didn’t put my best foot forward when I did try. I probably could have done a better job on my profile, and perhaps if I represented myself better, I could attract decent men. I kind of wonder if I self-sabotaged myself on purpose (coming full circle to the fear of intimacy thing). I’m not against online dating, and maybe it’s something I’ll try again in the future.
Being Single is Okay
I hate it when people say that companionship doesn’t have to come from a man. They’re right, it doesn’t, but let me tell you this. I’ve been single for a long time. I’ve actually never had a “real boyfriend” – I’ve never had someone take me on regular dates, or have a relationship with my friends and family. I’ve never had a guy to count on.
Because of this, I have learned to do a lot of things alone. Hell, especially recently. I’ve gone to movies, dinners, sing-a-longs, hockey games, concerts, vacations, and parties, alone. And there are definitely perks to doing things alone, but what’s so wrong with wishing I had someone by my side?
After a bad breakup I had in college, I did a “Breakup Challenge” that lasted 30 days and was supposed to help participants get over their recent ex. One of the challenges was to get a massage to show us that physical touch didn’t have to come from a man. And sure, it doesn’t, but getting massages doesn’t replace having sex. I’m not saying I love sex or that I have to have it (most of the time, it’s not even that great), but I’m also not going to lie to myself and act like I can just get a massage once a month and feel sexually fulfilled.
While I like being single, for the most part, I don’t want to be single forever. Right now, I still think the fear of intimacy is my biggest problem. But who knows… maybe I’m just terrible at dating and I’ve yet to figure things out. As they say, only time will tell.