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Rship – growth, anxiety and learning to move on

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  • #348894
    Genie
    Participant

    <p style=”text-align: left;”>Hi Chicks,</p>
    Decided to make a new thread because I didn’t feel like I should post on the previous thread anymore, I miss talking to you chicks, I like bouncing off others when I’m anxious and reading your progress. Anyone’s welcome to post.

     

    @sammy @michelle @adelaide how are you doing?

    @adelaide I haven’t heard from you in ages, how are things in quarantine?

    I hope to hear from you on here soon!

     

     

    #348896
    Genie
    Participant

    @Adelaide1 I had to go back to the other thread to make sure I tagged you right!

    #348898
    Genie
    Participant

    @Michelle fudge sticks I tagged you wrong too. I hope you come back on tiny buddha I miss you!

    #348952
    Michelle
    Participant

    Hey Genie 🙂

    I still didn’t get tagged but hey, I’ve found your new thread anyway so all good. I’m glad you started one to stay in touch.  I also wanted to thank you for your words back to Shelby – they were much appreciated by me for sure and a lot of truth in there I thought.

    Happy Easter! A strange one for sure this year. How’re you doing? Sorted out that movie ‘date’ with Jay yet? 😉  All’s good here – we’re lucky enough we have a garden and quiet lanes round our house so i’s easy enough to get out and enjoy the sunshine. It’s actually funny how many more people we now see out doing their daily exercising – loads more than pre lockdown days. A lot of people making the most of the enforced changes, best way really.

    Likewise, hope to hear from the others if/when they’d like to stay part. Regardless, I’ll be here, no worries. Take care all.

    #348968
    Adelaide1
    Participant

    Hey @genie and @michelle

    Thanks for checking in! I followed the other thread for a bit and then the replies got a bit overwhelming so I didn’t check back for a bit. Keen to connect with you all though.

    Quite enjoying life in lockdown all things considered. I think my brain likes the certainty of knowing how the days are going to go and not having the stress of commuting to work or the reactions or strangers going about my day. Unlike a lot of countries we have a clear lockdown system and clear rules, and a timeframe for reviewing those rules. So a lot of my anticipatory anxiety is gone. It seems a bit… off… to be making the most of this lowering in anxiety given the wider context but it is what it is. I am actually more worried about re-aclimatising after this is all over but we’ll deal with that when I get there.

    In an unexpected twist of events, I also have an ‘iso-date’ lined up. Been talking to a person I met online  pretty solidly for a week now, and she suggested it. She seems lovely, and we have enjoyable conversations. She  found out that I use a wheelchair without me telling her because we have some mutual friends on Twitter and I really could not have hoped for a better response, which is always such a relief for me. We have agreed to keep being open with one another and once lockdown lifts, go on a date to see how we get along in person. I am trying really hard to not get ahead of myself and fantasise too much. And also recognise familiar patterns and take a step back to analyse my instincts and reactions more objectively before taking action. It’s not easy at all, but I do think I am learning! Whatever happens, I’m proud of myself for putting myself out there and I think I will make a new friend out of it at the least. Stay tuned, I guess!!

    How are you and Jay going Genie?

    Glad you are well and making the most of the sun and outdoor space, Michelle. It’s the same around here – so many more people out and about!

    Take care both. Happy Easter!

     

    #349006
    Genie
    Participant

    Aww Michelle I’m glad you found me! You’re welcome, I didn’t want to come across as a bitch but I was just being honest on what I had picked up and felt it needed to be said. I would be feel so upset if I had supported someone and when it came to my turn just never acknowledge it. I do feel bad for how things were left but I was not saying anything out of spite just to make her see what’s causing her to still be stuck and maybe aware of how she was coming across. She is a wonderful chick who has helped me so much with my situation with Jay just want to see her move on and find new adventures and love. Oh well everyone will get there if they want to. It’s just a shame it will be prolonged for her.

    Jay and I are good the distance is actually making things kinda heat up and I feel like a giddy teen. He is so understanding and caring too. I really can not wait until we meet again. Sometimes I have to pinch myself ! I am keeping interactions to a minimum or not regular – I don’t know if that’s because I don’t want to screw things up or I’m scared of establishing a routine with him and then if it goes off it triggers a spiral though because I don’t want to start panicking or worrying and its helped. Is that bad? Will he think I’m playing games?

     

    Where you live sounds really nice! The weather has been on our side so that’s made lockdown more bearable. Are you planning your next adventure?

     

    @adelaide it’s so so good to hear from you chick. Things did get a little strange on the other thread. I think we all forgot to realise everyone is entitled to an opinion and trying to help in their own way.

     

    Anyway so glad you came back on. I love that you have an ISO date planned. I’m so excited for you even more after reading you won’t need to worry about the focus being on you being in a wheelchair when you meet. So how did all this happen? So proud of you recognising your ex doesn’t define your life. You are pro actively searching for a better connection with someone who accepts you and your needs. This is significant progress!

    Now breathe and relax. Do what I’m doing enjoy the present moment for what it is. Dont worry about thinking too far ahead. That way you will not build up any expectations and take it as it comes! Same about acclimatising after lockdown..enjoy the current ease you feel. Step by step you’ll re adapt to “normal” life after lockdown

    Happy easter everyone. I hope you had a lovely day xx

     

     

     

     

     

     

    #349118
    Michelle
    Participant

    Hey both.

    @Adelaide. Really good to hear from you again, glad you’ve joined this thread. I know exactly what you mean by the ‘off’ comment. I think a lot of people are actually enjoying the lock-down – which isn’t quite the right word either but I think you guys will get what I mean.  People worry about global events but they don’t really mean that much until they impact you on a personal level. For a lot of people I know it’s meant more free time, less commuting stress and a realisation it’s a way better balanced lifestyle. So even though they want it to happen, they are likewise a little concerned about going back to ‘normal’, as/when that might be. Since we already have a pretty alternative lifestyle to most, it’s also a bit of an odd feeling to not be struggling too much with the lockdown when others are. So I absolutely get you on that one.

    An iso-date huh?!? I wonder how many new words will exist from this crisis by the end of the year?! Made me smile though, I love it.  It’s a tricky balance – part of the fun of the initial meeting of someone where you get that spark is to imagine where it may or may not go and there’s no harm in indulging in a few happy fantasies. I think you know yourself pretty well to know when they become unhelpful for you though and when you are putting too much onto it too early. Stay focused on getting to know her and enjoy the positive energy – I do think it’s awesomely brave of you and it’s a wonderful story of how nothing good happens without a bit of risk. You know you are strong enough to handle it.

    @Genie. I didn’t think you were a bitch at all, all very respectful. Likewise I hope both Kkaxso and Shelby do eventually figure out that if they want things to change for them, it is up to them and there’s a lot of support for them if/when needed.  It’s hard when you see people you’ve gotten to know pretty well get stuck. It will be good for them to have their own space back and provide each other with the style of sympathy and encouragement they want from this forum. Hopefully at some point they will get there.

    It sounds like you are likewise enjoying the buzz of those early days with Jay, awesome to hear 🙂   If I understood correctly though, you’re nervous of establishing anything routine/expected in the way you guys are communicating?  I’m thinking because if it then doesn’t happen, that’s when you panic it’s “going wrong/he’s no longer interested”. Did I get that right? Jay’s clearly stuck through a lot with you so you know what I’m going to say here – this isn’t about him but you and that damn self-esteem we all struggle with at times… So my take, I think by avoiding establishing anything too committed, you’re protecting yourself from a possibility of hurt and a little like Adelaide, it’s a learning game to get the balance right of how much risk to take and when.  I don’t think he will think you are playing games as you’ve been pretty honest with each other but I do think he may get confused by the potential mixed signals.  So keep being as honest as you can about how much you are enjoying your communications, looking forwards to seeing him etc – which I’m sure you are doing 😉  At some point the lockdown will be lifted and this would be a good time to work through how you would like that to look with Jay, what are you going to be comfortable with in terms of regular dating. When you feel the panic rising at the thought of getting close to someone again who can potentially hurt you, take a big breathe and try to remember all the reasons, the ‘evidence’ if you like, of why this is a good thing, something to enjoy – worth the risk. And remember that you have survived far worse and can do so again if you have to. That strong Genie you remember is still in there, she’s just cautiously poking her head out and remembering life can be good. Do your best to encourage her 🙂

    Hope you both still ate too much chocolate and enjoyed the slightly odd Easter. Take care, ‘speak’ soon.

    #349390
    Michelle
    Participant

    Hey. Just a quick one as wanted to share some good news – got the all clear today 🙂   A huge relief and weight off – I had to practice my own advice on staying calm through it which made me smile when I thought of this forum.

    #349404
    Genie
    Participant

    Omg michelle I’m so happy to hear your good news! Now you should you can really take life by the horns and continue your exciting travel adventures when this lockdown finally ends! The relief was must be a lot. Put a smile in my face to hear your good  news.

    In relation to Jay you hit the nail on the head.i feel if I cease control I will lose control if my anxiety but at the same time I just want to let go of myself and be carefree like I was before my ex. It’s just getting that pesky balance. We do communicate honestly thats the major difference in this rship. I never knew how much healthier it is to just be honest with one another. If it’s the right person they’ll stick by you just like Jay has. I need to keep reminding myself that and be more self assured and not harsh on myself which kills my own self esteem. It’s just so often because he is so great in so many aspects I feel like what is he doing with me ? I just can’t shake that enough. I do want a full relationship with him. Part of reason I’m keeping him at bay even though I desperately want to talk to him day and night is I feel this is perfect time to work on my issues then when its lifted I can really show him what I can offer him. Present my best version to him. I do need to be careful I don’t keep too much gap between the interactions as I don’t want to sent mixed signals or make him feel like I did last time. It really hurt hearing how he felt. Well there it is another day in the mind of Genie! Hope everyone is enjoying the weather and had lots of eggs at least this weekend gone x

    #349608
    Adelaide1
    Participant

    Hey @genie and @michelle!

    Michelle, what wonderful news! I am so happy for you. A huge relief indeed. Well done on taking your own advice – no doubt it was good!

    Genie, sounds like that pesky inner critic is holding you back a bit, but it’s great you recognise that. I have been learning that trying to control things is all a ruse anyway. It helps anxiety in the short term but doesn’t actually relieve anything at the end of the day; it’s all a perception of control more than anything. I’m sure you know this already! As you say he has stuck by you this far. And you gave me some great advice about just enjoying the moment, without expectation, so why don’t you just try do more of that? I often find myself getting stuck in patterns of “I don’t want to seem too X so I will or won’t do Y”, but I’m learning that that isn’t necessarily helpful and the best interactions are when I just let myself go and enjoy them for what they are without thinking too much. Hope you are able to see each other in person soon enough!

    Update on the isodate (not sure if I made that up or saw it somewhere but I do love it too). Thanks for your support and good wishes! We did it tonight and it was really fun. I was a bit nervous but was just myself and I feel we connected well. We FaceTimed and then watched a stream of a theatre show and messaged a bit, then FaceTimed again. The conversation felt like it flowed easily and was a bit flirty here and there. At the end she said that she really enjoyed it and that she would talk to me again soon. I said that we’d have to do this again another time and she agreed and blew me a kiss through the screen which I guess is as good as it gets in lockdown! So I have that nice post-date buzz. The challenge is now for me to sit with the anxiety trying to break through – this is common for me. Something will go well and feel natural and then the anxious, critical thoughts start. The ‘what ifs’ about her not contacting me again or it not going as well as I thought. The nice thing is that I feel I am more able to just let these thoughts be here without reading too much into them. And given last time this happened, I had not had a ‘proper’ relationship, there were a lot more unknowns which are not as scary anymore because I have been here before and know it’s possible. And happily I did not think of or pine for my ex, except that the more time passes the more I realise that she really wasn’t what I was looking for in many ways but I am still very grateful I had the experience and wish her well.

    So… there we go! Seems like there will be more to report in future hopefully!! I couldn’t wait to tell you guys – you’ve become my relationship cheerleading squad of sorts. Thank you so much for your support! Hope lockdown life continues to go ok. Chat soon. Xo

    #349616
    Michelle
    Participant

    Hey both.

    Great timing @Adelaide, I was literally just replying to Genie & then your awesome isodate update came in! I can tell how well it went just by the enthusiasm bursting through your writing 🙂 I did laugh at us being a cheerleading squad – being more than a bit of a tomboy it’s not a natural image for me 😉  But so long as I don’t need to wear a frilly skirt I’m honoured and so happy to hear it went so well. Perhaps we get t-shirts ?!?  It’s also so cool to hear how far you have come in, both in terms of your ex and even better in being able to see the anxious thoughts for what they are, just thoughts, not reality.  Absolutely, the more you do something you find scary, it becomes less unknown and the fear reduces as you see it for what it really is.  That’s why all the thinking in the world is no good without action and vice-versa.

    Thanks both for celebrating my news, it is a huge weight off indeed. And just in time for my partner & I to celebrate our 20th anniversary tomorrow – how crazy is that, 20 years somehow…flies by I tell ya!

    You are bang on how I think about the illusion of control too.  It’s a sticking plaster for anxiety and bizarrely it’s only when you give it up that the anxiety truly disappears. I’ve had many many times fighting to deny that, trust me! It’s one of the reasons I’m so into travel – it constantly challenges you to accept and deal with changes/challenges. Alongside all the fun stuff obviously..!  Once you accept you can’t control anything but yourself and your own choices/actions it’s actually really empowering, not scary, I’ve found anyway. Again, the more you do it, the easier it becomes as your mind learns to trust this new behavior more than the old anxious behavior.

    @Genie.  It’s hard isn’t it, when you feel like you aren’t good enough for someone. And it doesn’t matter how many times someone tells you different if you don’t believe it yourself. I used to struggle with this one big time, being very needy for a lot of assurance. Two things made the big difference for me. One, I realised that I needed to be brave enough to be myself, to show my real self to the world, not who I thought they wanted me to be. It’s hard when you’ve been brought up by an anxious people-pleaser, it’s second nature to try to be what people want. But that just means that when they like/love you, you don’t really feel it – instead it’s just that they are liking/loving the image of you.  That’s why I know Jay is good for you as you can be yourself with him – which has taken huge courage on your part so give yourself some credit for that.  The second one that helped me was the one on control/courage. Each time you do something out of your comfort zone, you grow a little. You get more confidence in being able to do so again. You have a wider, deeper life and you aren’t dependent on peoples responses to be happy or not.  You trust yourself and in doing so, you are able to free those tight reins of control without losing control of yourself. So whilst the thing with Jay is going well and that’s awesome – remember this is really about your whole life, your health, family, friends, work – Jay is just one part of it. A fun, exciting possibilities part for sure but you get what I mean here I know. You’re smarter than you think and have great self-awareness. I know it’s tough but start to believe in yourself and be proud of how far you have come already.  Keep taking those small steps forwards into what scares you and see yourself sitting with the stress, dealing with it and then seeing it turn out ok. Practicing in non-Jay related areas of your life will make it so much easier as you get used to it.

    Take care both, I  won’t be around tomorrow since we’ll be out and about celebrating here – well, as far as allowed in quarantine! )

     

    #350026
    Adelaide1
    Participant

    Hey again!

    @michelle, hope you had an awesome celebration! Good food and drink can go a long way even if you can’t go out for it!

    Thanks for being agreeable about being my cheerleader hah! Don’t worry I am definitely not the frilly skirt type either but we can definitely get tshirts! You are so right about the thinking-action balance which I am very much still trying to get right. But trying is the key word.

    I feel I have let my anxiety get the best of me the last couple of days, but in other ways I am proud of myself. I have found myself overthinking things quite a lot in terms of our communication after the date. It’s so interesting because I recognise much of it feels the same when I was having communication anxieties when I was with my ex. I just get so anxious about communicating too much or too little, the tone of it, how the other person responds to what I say, who messages who first, how the conversation ends. And then in order to try and reduce this anxiety I create all these different ‘rules’ for myself in my mind about how I will communicate, and as predicted it just leads to more anxiety and less control! So I have been trying to instead take a step back and reconsider how I react when I feel like this, but it is so tempting to fall into the same patterns. I read somewhere that the brain loves the familiar, so it seeks that out even if the familiar is unpleasant.

    Anyway the short of it is that, despite all my overthinking, we have been in touch and she has made some hints at what we could do on our next date. So there really is nothing to be concerned about; it’s just my lack of self esteem making me think that it’s not going to go anywhere, or that she will choose someone else because why would she choose me. Honestly, I feel like I did when I was a kid in these moments; scared and timid. I can travel back in my minds eye to memories that evoke exactly the same feelings from when I was very small to when I was a teenager. I just need to be able to reassure the scared and timid kid that things will be ok whatever happens and that there is no need to try and rush things or people please.

    I also have been dealing with some big feelings. Today is the anniversary of a former Flatmate’s suicide and of course that always brings up all sorts of feelings. What I am proud of is that, I posted about it on social media and my ex replied saying she was sending love and thinking of me (I talked to her about it quite a lot). And though I thought about it I resisted replying or using it as an excuse to reach out to her, whereas even a couple of months ago I would have almost certainly done so and caused myself a lot of pain.  Likewise, funnily enough the “flirtatious acquaintance” I have talked about got in touch with me after about a month of no contact (about something else) and we had a brief conversation on social media but again I didn’t use it as an excuse to message her. So… some progress to celebrate!

    I’ll keep trying, s’all we can do. No doubt these feelings will come up again and again, but just have to change the way I react a little  each time and soon enough feeling overwhelmed by then will happen less. I hope???!

    Thanks again for your support both. Have a good weekend. Xx

     

    #350042
    Genie
    Participant

    @adelaide sometimes I read what you write over again as it is so well written and you are so so astute and aware!

    Yes control is the problem, just need to let it go and live. The thing is I am enjoying the moment but I’m limiting the moments if that makes sense. He suggested he comes over to mine because he knows I don’t want to come to his parents, now that the lockdown has further been extended further he joked he would come under the rule he was escaping an argumentative environment and going to stay with a friend as apparently that’s allowed under the guidelines. I told him off though and said he shouldn’t joke about that as unfortunately there are people in abusive homes stuck in lockdown with their abusive partners. He went a bit subdued over facetime. Another case of foot in mouth for me! We were fine later that evening though so that’s good otherwise I think my anxiety would have tortured me all night.

    I am considering it but don’t know if I’m ready to jump straight into living with each other.

    Your Iso date (I love that term too!) Wowee! Sounds like it went perfectly. Definitely cheering you on. Michelle can be the mascot if she is tom boyish! I’ll take the pom poms and skirt. Or t shirts it is. GO adelaide GO! You deserve this chick..but just busy yourself and you’ll be one step further in this new adventure. I’m so glad to read she made contact again too – see you are awesome believe in yourself chick! Double woo hoo! What’s remarkable is you’ve moved on, well done on recognising you deserve a relationship which meets your needs and you don’t have to waste time pining over something which wasnt for you. It was nice of your ex, if you are fine with cordial and it doesn’t affect you in anyway than you can keep contact open and reply cordially. However, this is the perfect time to cut the cord and remove contact completely that way if something doesn’t go your way in other aspects of your life you are not tempted to go back there because it feels comfortable and safe. That can take you all the way back to square 1 and undo all the hard work in moving on. An ex is an ex for a reason. That is why I got my ex to block me so I never felt tempted. It worked! Now Im in a much more fulfilling almost rship with Jay. Someone who I initially messed around and neverbthought I’d be at this stage but when someone gets you it beats everything!

    It is a great you don’t need to be sucked into a conversation with your flirty acquaintance for a short term ego boost. That is an achievement too, you starting to see your own value and you don’t need that type of attention, you recognise that you want genuine connections and people in your inner circle who care about you and get you. So much progress Adelaide,!!!

    I’m thinking of you too after reading about your friends suicide…its such a great loss and harder for those left behind. I hope you are coping with that ok today. You’re welcome to post on here and chat further if you need company today.

    @michelle —— HAPPY 20th Anniversary. Wow that is two decades. Your partner is lucky to have such a wonderful person. Hopefully you had a great day celebrating even if we are under lockdown. What did you do?

    I cant imagine you ever being needy, but look at you now celebrating 20 years, definitely inspirational. You are right, Jay is a very good presence in my life. I can be unashamedly myself so I need to work on pushing myself to break the barriers further so I can really let go and be free of the shackles of anxiety and enjoy the whole relationship and my life blossoming.

    @michelle what do you think about Jay staying at mine..I’m kind of nervous by what it would mean intimately. Would he have expectations and if I wasn’t ready would he feel knocked back. When stuck together in lockdown  that would cause issues that I really need currently. Then the carefree old me wants to just jump right in and see what happens. What would you do?

    #350184
    Michelle
    Participant

    Hey both.

    Yep, an awesome day celebrating, despite quarantine! Mr S (as I’m going to call him from here on as I’m fed up writing partner!) & I made the most of the sunshine and had a picnic in our garden with lots of our favourite food & drinks from places we’ve travelled to.  Then we slobbed out with pizza and a romantic movie in the evening. Stylish eh 😉  Still no idea where 20 years has gone but it was fun remembering all our different ups & down over the years – as well as dreaming & planning out what’s next once we’re ever allowed out again!

    @Genie.  Hmm. So first up, it doesn’t really matter what I think, it’s always your decision as to what feels best for you. You know yourself and Jay best. But I’m happy to offer my perspective.  I guess I would first say that I see the whole ‘living in the moment’ thing a little differently. Some people just jump in for the hell of it and take it to mean don’t bother to think things through or consider the consequences. Whereas I tend to think of it as making a considered decision to do something, understanding the possible different outcomes and accepting I can’t know which one will happen but that I’ll cope with each of the different possibilities. Thus by giving up control and fear of the outcome, I’m free to enjoy the moment. Fortunately not everything takes that long to think about! Especially the better you know yourself over time.  Though as I’m also known for jumping into things with two feet at times, I’ve taken my time learning this one!

    So on the Jay staying at yours thing specifically? Honestly, I think it’s a big step to go from not really dating to spending a lot of condensed time together straight off, especially when you’ve been anxious about even regularly talking. I get it’s not easy to find a middle ground in the quarantine. Staying together defn has obvious questions on what happens physically so you’d have to be reasonably open & upfront on what you are and aren’t ready for if you want to help the whole thing go well. You could always do so without getting heavy about it, something like “are you going to be ok sleeping on the sofa…..” or whatever. I wouldn’t say Jay would have expectations but he’ll clearly have hopes – after all,he’s probably got his own giddy teen thing going on!  Most importantly – you want to go into anything like this thinking the risk is worth it and being happy about it. Not nervous that if you say no or keep delaying he’ll lose interest. So at the end of the day it’s trying to understand what’s holding you back and whether that’s a good reason or not. And then go for it either way and have confidence in your own decision making 🙂

    @Adelaide. Ha – I loved your description of the rules in your head. I know exactly what you mean. I think it’s something about believing if we do everything “right”, then it will all be ok. Which is complete rubbish ofcourse as there is no ‘right’ or ‘wrong’, just what we think is best. So absolutely, it’s all about breaking old habits, well-grooved thought patterns which do so often follow us from childhood. Brains are notoriously lazy/efficient and will absolutely cling to the well-known and safe habits and thoughts, even when they are no longer useful for us. They will cling to the familiar at all costs regardless. One of the things I think you’d enjoy reading about is building up your resilience, it’s like gaining the quiet inner confidence that lets you live you life how you want to.  Humour has always been my secret weapon, I find it easy to laugh at myself and when you can see when you are being ridiculous, it snaps you out of it pretty quickly!

    I am not at all surprised to hear your iso-date has followed up already – hope you have some good ideas for your next one?! I think it’s so awesome you are finding a way to work around the quarantine challenges. Perhaps it’s something Genie could suggest to Jay, as a half-way house too, if she doesn’t go for the inviting him over to stay route.  Well done on not responding in the same way to either your ex or your ‘flirt-pal(?)’ – it is all you can do – one step at a time and I bet you now feel much more confident about being able to do the same again next time.  I was sorry to hear about your loss of your flat-mate. I think suicide is especially hard to deal with as on top of the loss itself there’s all the anger and sadness you couldn’t help or didn’t see it coming. All normal feelings but nothing that makes it any easier to deal with. A virtual hug from me if it helps at all.

    Take care both, catch up another day.

    #350474
    Adelaide1
    Participant

    Hey both!

    @genie Thanks for your nice feedback on my writing. I’m glad you find it helpful! Thanks so much for the cheerleading and support! Re “cutting the cord”, the latest interactions I’ve had with both my ex and flirty acquaintance has been on Twitter which is public anyway. I’ve committed to myself that I’ll only interact with them on public platforms now, if at all, as they’ll be able to see what I say regardless – but you’re right there’s always a risk of temptation. I think now that I see how unfulfilling the relationship with my ex was, from an objective perspective, it’s unlikely. Like you say, progress! 🙂

    I think Michelle has excellent advice re Jay coming to stay with you. Let us know what you decide! I am very happy to hear that you too have moved on and recognised you deserve a life-giving relationship! I do think you guys should consider a series of iso-dates if you don’t end up together in quarantine; amazing how creative one can get!

     

    @Michelle, your celebrations sound lovely! And reading about you planning your next adventures made me smile. Must be extra sweet to do so knowing you have the all clear health wise!

    It’s reassuring that you can relate to the ‘rules’ thing as I do feel a bit ridiculous! And I think you’re right about it being a need to get things ‘right’. What I am learning too is that different people of course react differently – so reminding myself that just because my ex did or didn’t do something doesn’t mean this person will do the same makes me less afraid to try things out.

    Our next iso-date we are thinking we will eat ice cream in our pajamas and watch something together again. What makes it quite cute is that she got ice cream delivered to my house (I knew she was getting something delivered but wasn’t sure what), so we will be eating matching ice cream! I also ordered her some flower shaped cookies because it’s the closest thing I can find to flowers at the moment. I don’t think she’s got them yet though.Who says romance isn’t possible long distance… 🙂

    Re resilience and humour, yep humour is my go-to, too! I haven’t seen my therapist in awhile but when I am talking about my anxieties, or a particular thought pattern of mine, she has said to me a few times “you’re laughing about this?” And I say “yes because it is so typical of me!” so yep it does really help to have a laugh at our own expense. I have the resilient feeling you describe  in other areas of my life but it’s fair to say that because I am so inexperienced with romantic relationships, I have a lot of work to do to build it in this aspect. However as you say, the more I do or don’t do things the more confident I feel so I guess I just have to keep at it.

    Thanks both for your kind words about my friend’s/Flatmate’s suicide. I feel like therapy has helped me in terms of just being ok with sitting in the sadness of it all whenever I need to. And being ok with the fact that even if other people in my life don’t acknowledge the impact of it on me (e.g my parents, whose way of dealing with hard things is to minimise them), I can acknowledge it myself.

    Sheesh, I do feel I have put a lot of work into some heavy stuff the last six months or so. Nice to reap some benefits from it. Thanks for always being a great sounding board! Take care! X

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