July 16, 2017 at 2:17 pm #158408
Hello everyone and especially Anita,
About 2 months ago I posted here since I was a bit lost with emotional regulation and we had a long discussion over psychotherapy and anxiety. https://tinybuddha.com/topic/being-in-a-loop/
You had suggested me to talk through anxiety, emotional regulation and interpersonal skills with my psychotherapist and in fact we are working on these skills at the moment. And in fact I was doing great the past weeks, read a lot of things, I relaxed a lot, I had really nice and spiritual moments that helped me a lot to feel more confident and to clearly see some development I did. So, I came to a moment where I realized that even though I am not where I want to be (to deal effectively with emotional stress) I feel way more relaxed and more conscious of what I need and how I would react in similar love-like situations.
Exactly a month ago, at the local gay pride, I met a girl that showed some interest in me. Few days later I ran into her at a bar and we started flirting, talking, dancing and eventually we kissed. I left the bar without saying anything but I added her on FB. Kept bumping into her on the street and there was a flirty mood around but we never said of going on a date or so. Last week I decided to message her and she invited me to go to that bar she was going too, so I did. It was really nice and ever since we have been texting a lot saying that we both would like to meet but due to tight planning (and not helpful communication means, watsapp/ messenger) we havent managed yet.
However, the difficult part came right now because I realized I like her and would actually really like to date her but all the thoughts and anxieties from the past are reviving. If she doesn’t respond immediately I get in panic mode and I get caught up with very negative thoughts. So, what I wanted to definitely avoid for the time being comes back to beat me over the head. I realize that I like her but I cant do this again to myself, start stressing over her possible thinking/ attitude or whatever because exactly I dont know her at all and I dont want to prioritize her but me.
In fact that was the main reason why I decided to break things off with the last partner, I was stressing too much and of course she couldnt-didnt give me what I wanted. This girl is very attractive and I am trying to express my interest as clearly as possible but of course I have multiple thoughts at the same time. Do you think I should give a chance and try in the meantime to practice psychotherapy in order to work on certain issues within such a context or is it better to take more time and come back to the game when I feel more self-confident? Thank you again for your time and advice!July 16, 2017 at 3:23 pm #158412
Is there anyway, you can send her a text message saying “is there anyway we can get past being pen pals?”. That will put the ball in her court.
I think alot of the anxiety and insecurity is that you mentioned you are texting each other alot or chatting via social media such as Facebook. For the time being, maybe not go on there, and try to have phone conversations with her. I think communicating that way is much more personalized then “texting”. Personally, I hate it when someone I start to get to know and like only texts me or communicates me via Facebook Messenger. Sometimes, there is a long “pause” after I write, and I am pretty sure they are writing to other women at the same time. So I stopped communicating this way. I figure if they **truly** like me, they will call me on the phone and ask me out. Try it with this woman, see if she will contact you any other way besides Facebook and texting. If she doesn’t, chances are, she is not emotionally available for any kind of relationship. Let me know your thoughts?July 17, 2017 at 8:03 am #158488
Glad you are back! I re-read your posts in the previous thread.
On this thread you asked if you should pursue/ avail yourself to a relationship with the woman you met, working on your anxiety about it in therapy OR “take more time and come back to the game when I feel more self-confident?”
I believe that no matter how hard and how long you work in therapy and otherwise on your anxiety as a single woman, not being involved in a relationship, the moment you get into a relationship, or a possibility of it (as recently happened), the anxiety will be back. It is impossible to work on relationship anxiety outside the context of a relationship.
If at this time you have to focus greatly on school/ job/career, and/ or immediate needs such as a place to live, then it is not a good time to consider a relationship because precious energy and time will be lost on the relationship and your school/job/ career/immediate needs will significantly suffer.
But, if your basic needs are met and your education or job/ career/immediate needs are met/ stable enough, allowing you the energy and time required for relationship work, then do avail yourself to a possible relationship and work in therapy to help you with it.
* A sentence in your previous thread caught my eye tday: “I can almost calculate or forsee his (your father’s) explosions of anger”- would you like to tell me more about those explosions and your reactions, as a child?
anitaJuly 17, 2017 at 9:33 am #158506
Dear Eliana and Anita again,
Thanks for sharing your thoughts with me!
1) Eliana, I really like the idea of not keeping exchanging messages through Social Media because in fact it is a really bad means of communication. Your idea about calling each other is brilliant but since I ve know her for less than a month and actually being in contact with her only the last week it is kind of weird to ask something like that. Maybe if I run into her again I can propose her “call me when you are free” or sth like it so I kick the ball in her court again right? 😉 Besides, as Jorge Bucay says, If we dont change our patterns what cant expect different things to come our way.
2)As for Anita, I clearly see your suggestion. That there is no point on just working on these issues without the field right? In fact there should be some stimulation and space to work in it let alone a girl I like and there is some mutual interest. For now I am trying to convince myself that there is no chance that I will get all the aswers now (she likes me? how much? what does she think? what’s she doing now?), instead future will show!
Him, being a very hotheaded and sassy person would disagree and express his anger under any circumastances. For example, if he would disagree on how I get dressed or put my makeup on he would start almost shouting at me in order to convince me to do his thing. Instead, me being very stubborn I would principally either lash out back , as if preparing to battle on even terms. Now our relationship has changed a lot. He now recognizes all my efforts to study abroad, work and do my thing, he supports and appreciates what I do- all his friends talk to me about the way he prides in me. We rarely disagree now, he just supports me and shows his love/ appreciation much more, but I guess this happens because I also live abroad now!July 17, 2017 at 10:54 am #158528
I am supposing your father shouting at you, at the time, scared you. I wonder how you tried to prevent him from disapproving of you and shouting at you…
You wrote: “there is no chance that I will get all the answers now (she likes me? how much? what does she think? what’s she doing now?), instead future will show!”- we look for our emotional security in what other people feel for us, thinks of us, how much of their time they are thinking of us and are they thinking only of us… correct?
It is walking on shaky ground when our sense of security is dependent on such intangible things as someone’s feelings and thoughts.
anitaJuly 17, 2017 at 11:15 am #158534
well, it was indeed scary. in order to prevent that I was either avoiding him or hiding stuff from my personal life (school performance or occasional things that would provoke his anger). But I always kept doing what I wanted to do no matter if he would agree or not. My mother was always there to intermediate and prevent any fight or argument.
In fact it is very mentally frustrating to depend our emotional balance on others’ approval and interest especially on people we hardly know. I recognize there is a link between this past (father) fear and the current (romantic) one. I am wondering though how can this be fixed now that the relationship with parents is different?July 17, 2017 at 12:20 pm #158542
The fact that your relationship with your father is different from what it was when you were a child does not fix the consequences of the relationship having been what it was. What it was scared you when your brain was forming those pathways in the rate of many thousands per day. The fear of him disapproving and shouting at you stuck to many pathways and is a big part of your anxiety, reads to me.
His improved behavior does not undo those pathways and cannot, unfortunately. Parents have great power over their children because their children are forming during those Formative Years of childhood. Once the adult child is formed, a positive changed behavior on the part of a parent is pleasant and desirable, but it doesn’t undo formed pathways.
How to fix it? Competent, quality psychotherapy would be a good start. And then, evaluating possible future partners and proceeding mindfully to form a loving relationship with a woman who is capable of that via mutual honest, loving communication, being gentle and patient with each other.