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    Hi. So I’ve been rereading this blog a lot recently trying to find answers to what’s been happening in my head; which I know a lot of you understand as well. I’ve never had a boyfriend, but I’ve definitely had crushes. I very much have an idea in my head of what attraction and love are supposed to feel like, based on movies. I dream of the relationships we see in Rom Coms; I want the kiss in the rain, the spontaneous picnic, the cuddles. I’ve always identified as straight. I never had crushes on girls or fantasized sexually about them. Don’t get me wrong, women are very attractive, but I’ve never been attracted to them. The thought of anything physical makes me cringe and I don’t want to marry or have a family with a woman. I officially got diagnosed with Generalized Anxiety Disorder in September of this year due to excessive panic attacks regarding sexuality while I was away at school to the point where my roommate had to force feed me and I needed to call my parents to help me sit up in bed. I was terrified. I didn’t understand the obsession and I didn’t know how to help myself. I ended up going to the hospital and going to classes became really difficult for a bit. I became hyper aware of the girls around me, how I was dressing and sitting, what others thought about me in terms of sexuality, and even the pitch I would talk in. I still do this and it’s December. I’m on medication now for anxiety so there aren’t panic attacks as much any more but I experience depressive moments constantly. This question of sexuality is on my mind all the time and I’ve become extremely quiet, anti social, physically uncomfortable, and restless. I have trouble sleeping and getting up in the morning, I constantly need to stretch because my muscles ache, I’m always on my phone and computer now while doing other things because I can’t just sit cause then my mind starts to race again. It’s gotten to a point where I keep trying and trying and trying to understand what’s going on with me and nothing makes this go away so I assume that these thoughts have to be true; and that terrifies me and makes me extremely uncomfortable.

    For some context, in 5th grade I dealt with anxiety for the first time and had to be homeschooled for 5 months due to intense panic attacks. I was bullied in 3rd or 4th grade and I don’t remember anything in regards to the bullying but my parents tell me that I became very isolated, my friends wouldn’t talk to me, and people made fun of me for having a crush on this guy I liked at the time. During those 5 months, I went to therapy, taught myself all the material, ran away, didn’t fully eat that much, and I remember feeling so alone. This eventually got easier and I went through middle school and most of high school feeling back to myself. However, I dealt severely with body image issues and low self-esteem from Junior Year-On, but this was prevalent when I was little as well. I ended up obsessively counting calories, constantly considering purging, restricting all day and binging at night, weighing myself three to four times a day, measuring my arms, etc. I became obsessed with being skinnier and my appearance became the only thing that mattered to me. When quarantine hit, I dealt with the loss of my senior year and seeing any friends, not getting to do my final musical, college rejections, and this potential eating disorder. I cried constantly. This continued, but got easier through summer and my first semester of College but then returned through the holiday season due to gaining a bit of weight. That’s when I started therapy, in regards to the eating and body image issues but anxiety became the bigger topic. I never got diagnosed, but I’m the type of person who always thinks their friends hate them, who gets jealous of their friends’ friends, who stalks the pretty, skinny people on instagram because they want to look like them, who needs everything to be perfect and organized, who needs to follow their routine or the day is screwed up, who romanticizes everything.

    I’ve had two major crushes in my life, one being a family friend who always has seen me as a sister. Him and I made out on vacation once and I immediately jumped to wanting a relationship despite long distance and the age difference. It didn’t work out and that’s totally okay, but I always hoped it would. He has a girl friend who is in another country which proved my belief that it was a relationship with me he didn’t want, not the relationship aspect itself. The other major crush was worse. I met him my freshman year. Because of the pandemic, it was only freshman on campus and we ended up becoming really close really quickly. He very much was into me and I wasn’t completely sure, but an attachment was growing. By the end of the semester, we both liked each other intensely and felt a huge attachment to one another, but he wasn’t in a relationship headspace and I was waiting till we got back second semester to bring it up. He was the first guy that I felt I could actually be with. It was so easy and he made me feel so safe and loved and beautiful, something I don’t feel often at all. When second semester came, something changed and he was a completely different person. Moral of the story is he wanted friends with benefits and would make physical moves knowing how I felt about him and how much I liked him and would put pressure on me to decide if we could have sex or be all over each other. Of course I wanted to, so badly. But I was so attached to him emotionally that I never did. He would apologize for putting me in that position, and then do it again and again and again. I was always honest with him about how I felt, always telling him that I needed him to be honest about how he felt towards me and if it was just physical; to which he’d only reply saying it wasn’t just that. It took him four 2 hour conversations to say he didn’t want a relationship with me ever. This being after I slept over and he held me in his arms the entire night and told me he wanted to be selfish and kiss me but he knows I can’t and he needs to “protect me”. Fast forward a month or two and he assumed I spread a rumor about him, called me at 2am to yell at me and hasn’t talked to me since. 7 months. He never gave me a chance to even get closure. I never spread a rumor about him ever and he knows that now but I found out later on that he was frustrated that I kept getting hope about something more with him and he made the decision to give me space. He walks by me now as if we never met and my heart breaks every time. I was crying every day and constantly thinking about him. This past semester when the panic attacks and sexuality doubts came up, right before I found out he had a girlfriend and the other guy was celebrating his one year anniversary with his girlfriend. Than it all started.

    Its all I think about now, except for when I think about the guy from college. I only feel validated when I think of him or hope he comes back and tells me he wants me and needs me. Except for that, I constantly ask myself “Are you bi or gay? Would you do something with her? Have you ever even liked any of the guys in your life? Did you actually feel attracted?” I’m in therapy and we’ve talked about how this seems like a way for me to hold on to this hope I still have about this guy where if I doubt who I want to love and be with instead of actively trying to get over this guy, than I never have to get over him. We’ve talked about how I believe I’m unlovable and I can’t validate myself enough to even trust myself anymore. However, these thoughts keep returning and spiraling and I’m so tired. I’m tired of testing and looking up stuff and analyzing every move I make or have made in the past. I just want to know what to do. Is this HOCD? I meet every symptom on the checklist. This is killing me and I just want it to stop and I want to feel like me again and trust myself and others again. Please give any advice you can. Thank you

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