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Old 03-15-2011, 09:59 PM   #1
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Question What can I do?

I was wondering if anyone could give me any advice on what to do. If anyone can relate to this please let me know how you get through it.

(I didn't think this would be so long, but I started typing and couldn't stop. So I'm going to pose my question first and if anyone wants the back story they can keep on reading.)

I can't seem to stop worrying about whether me and this guy I'm dating are going to work out. I've been a loner most my life and this is the first guy I've been interested in enough to want a relationship with in 12 years. I'm a guarded person, but I can open up to this guy no problem, so I think this is my only chance in life to be with someone. The pressure I put on myself scares me and makes me sick to my stomach. What can I do? What if it doesn't work out? I can't see myself wanting anyone else.

Back story (Warning: LONG):
I am a 27 yo female who has had only one boyfriend when I was 15. It was very teenager like and I was always too nervous around him to even kiss him. So obviously we never got to even first base and we instead became more like friends. We only lasted 3 months.

Since then I have had crushes on guys, but usually never had the guts to talk to them. There have been guys that have asked me out, but either they were complete strangers (which made me very uncomfortable) or I was not interested in them in that way. Since I can count the number of times that this has happened on one hand I just figured guys where not that interested in me.

At first I welcomed this idea because I am a loner and usually find social interaction to be very nerve wracking. As a child I was affectionate, but by my teenage years I didn't even like people hugging me. I've never been physically or sexually abused, but I seemed to avoid affection. I was this way for a long time.

However, about a year ago I started to change. My family life up until May of 2009 was very stressful. I still live with my mother and older brother and until that May my stepfather was living with us also. I never got along with him and believe that he was verbally and psychologically abusive. I tended to hide from him in my room and that lasted for years starting when I was a kid. I'm not sure if my reluctance to meet new people and date had to do with him, but I know that I was very depressed for a lot of my life because of my home situation. Since I was depressed the last thing I wanted was a relationship. I just saw it as more stress and something else to go wrong.

That May my stepfather moved out and him and my mother divorced. It was like a dark cloud was lifted off my shoulders and I could finally breathe. I could walk around my whole house without being scared of him and trying to avoid him. It was a GREAT feeling! Finally at the age of 26 I could actually have a life! I still wasn't ready for dating and was still nervous around people, but I was becoming so much happier than I had ever been.

Fast forward to August of 2010. I started to hang out with two of my co-workers. We would go get breakfast after work together (we work overnight) at least once a week. One guy is about 5 years older than me and the other is in his 60s. Me and the younger guy like to take care of our co-worker because he is unmarried, no kids, lives alone, and has some health issues. Everyone at work refers to him as our granddad. In fact, he was in the hospital recently and instead of calling his family he called us and we visited him everyday, bought him lunch and new clothes, and made sure he got home when he was released.

Now that August I was noticing the younger guy was paying more attention to me than usual. We had been working together a year, but had only said about two words to each other. Then all of a sudden he wanted me to go to breakfast with him and our other co-worker. At first I thought he was interested in me and I started to develop a crush on him. But then one day we were talking at lunch and as soon as this new girl started talking to him he blew me off and disappeared with her. I felt like such an idiot! I cried when I got home that day and couldn't understand why I thought he would be interested in me. He's incredibly cute, keeps himself in shape, is funny, polite, and very friendly. I realized that I was confusing his friendliness to interest in me. So I sucked it up, but we continued to go to breakfast. Fall semester started and I got involved in school because it was a difficult year and any crush I had on him disappeared.

In December while I was on winter break I was working more and we had breakfast quite often, sometimes the three of us and sometimes without "granddad." I started to develop a crush on him again and he was becoming very open with me. He would tell me all sorts of things from his past no matter how embarrassing they were. I was scared to develop feelings for him because of what happened in August so I kept my guard up. In early January he gave me his number and started to text me pretty often. About a month later we had dinner together, but I wasn't sure if it was a date. Two days later we were texting like crazy and I ended up with him that night and we slept together. Now, I don't think I need to tell you that I was a virgin before this given my track record with men, but I didn't tell him I was and he still doesn't know. However, I was never saving myself for anyone or marriage, the opportunity just never came up before.

Since then we see each other everyday and call and text everyday. I'm starting to develop real deep feelings for him, but he said he can't be in a relationship right now because of things that are going on in his life. However, I'm confused about how he treats me. We go on dates and he can be very affectionate with me. But I'm always on guard because it is becoming obvious to me that he is not sure what he wants. We are exclusive to each other and have agreed not to talk to other people. 90% of the time he is the one that initiates texts and makes plans with me. Even when he has been in school 12 hours straight and is practically falling asleep he wants to hang out with me at Starbucks for a coupe of hours. He has introduced me to his brother and constantly brings me his moms cooking and we share lunch at work. People at work assume we are together and so do complete strangers at Starbucks (we're there practically everyday). But I'm not sure what we are doing. He considers himself to be single and I want nothing more than to be his girlfriend. Its not like he is getting sex from me as we don't get to have sex that often. Once a week if we are lucky. This confusion is what makes me depressed. People tell me I need to calm down, enjoy being with him, and take it one day at a time. But sometimes I'm so hard on myself to make this work I convince myself that obviously I'm just MsRightNow for him and he will drop me once he's bored with me. I hate this feeling and don't know what to do.

 
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Old 03-16-2011, 05:13 AM   #2
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Re: What can I do?

Actually, I think you know what to do: carpe diem (seize the day).

Yes, what people are telling you makes sense.

I also ask you to reconsider this piece from your post: "I think this is my only chance in life to be with someone." This is not really true.

Actually, this is your first chance. This is not, by any measure, the end of your life.

You will certainly go through a lot of things in the next years, some good, some not so good. Accept whatever comes your way

That is life. Be cleverly optimistic. And take part in life as it unfolds before you.

 
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Old 03-16-2011, 05:36 AM   #3
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Re: What can I do?

I agree...enjoy it - he sounds like a nice guy and he took his time to open up as well. Don't sabotage this budding relationship by over-thinking and doubting. You are a man and woman testing the waters and becoming closer to each other. He is keeping on foot on the ground (by not being ready for a relationship) and it is not a bad idea for you to do the same, just enjoy his company and be open to what may happen. Maybe he will not be the one, but that does not reflect badly on you or him. He sounds as if he is being honest with you, and who knows what is around the corner. I only know that you can waste your life being too scared of things not working out and miss out on some awesome experiences. Cheers, Sera

 
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Old 03-16-2011, 10:43 AM   #4
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Re: What can I do?

The other members had great advice. The only other thing I would add is that you need to be more positive about yourself. This isn't your only chance and you're a good person who deserves someone equally, if not more, as good.

I'm going to let you in a little secret. Healthy relationships start with people having healthy positive attitudes about themselves.

 
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Old 03-16-2011, 12:23 PM   #5
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Re: What can I do?

here is something I read today that makes really good sense

Loving someone, is no guarantee that one day that person won't leave. There is no choice in the matter. You must give your love freely, and without strings attached. If you go toward people always asking for guarantees or protection, you will make them feel that you don't trust them. In turn, they won't trust you. It's a vicious cycle, and the only way out is through giving your heart unconditionally...

 
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Old 03-16-2011, 01:38 PM   #6
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Re: What can I do?

Thank you for the replies everyone!

Quote:
Originally Posted by pendulum View Post
I also ask you to reconsider this piece from your post: "I think this is my only chance in life to be with someone." This is not really true.
I was worried that this sounded too dramatic when I wrote it. I guess what I mean is the idea of me and him not being together just hurts so much. I'm scared of going through that with him. Then when I think how long it was before I felt this comfortable with any guy I think this is my only chance. Also, I just can't imagine feeling this way with anyone else. I know that there are "many fish in the sea" but I don't want anyone other fish. The idea of dating various guys depresses me since I won't date a guy unless I feel like I want a relationship with him.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Seraph View Post
He is keeping on foot on the ground (by not being ready for a relationship) and it is not a bad idea for you to do the same,
Someone once told me to keep my feelings in check for him, but I'm not sure how to do that. I know what I want and once I make that decision I'm in for the long hall. I can notice other men, but the idea of seeing myself with something else feels all wrong.

Quote:
Originally Posted by baffomet View Post
I'm going to let you in a little secret. Healthy relationships start with people having healthy positive attitudes about themselves.
We both decided that a relationship can't make you happy. He said that's what he tried to get out of past relationships and it never worked. I thought I was pretty happy now in my life and that's why I'm looking forward to starting a relationship now with him. However, I guess I still have to work on my self-esteem. I'm much more comfortable with myself now that I have ever been, but I still have my doubts sometimes.

Quote:
Originally Posted by rosequartz View Post
here is something I read today that makes really good sense

Loving someone, is no guarantee that one day that person won't leave. There is no choice in the matter. You must give your love freely, and without strings attached. If you go toward people always asking for guarantees or protection, you will make them feel that you don't trust them. In turn, they won't trust you. It's a vicious cycle, and the only way out is through giving your heart unconditionally...
I understand what you are saying. It just scares me. Again, the thought of it not working out scares me. I wish one day he would call me his girlfriend and I would feel so much more secure then. I would feel like I wouldn't have to hold myself back, but still that is not a guarantee that we would be together forever. Even marriage can't guarantee that.

I just need to figure out how to stop worrying about the future. I worry about everything I say to him and analyze how he might take it. Just so I don't mess this up. I'm big on preparation when I do things, but relationships I just can't prepare for. It drives me nuts trying to figure out what he thinks about me. I don't like getting caught off guard and not having some sort of control over my life. If I give myself to him completely emotionally and it doesn't work out I don't know what I'll do.

 
Old 03-16-2011, 02:03 PM   #7
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Re: What can I do?

You mentioned in your original post that you had not been the victim of abuse, but later you mention the fear you had of your stepfather, and the great weight that was lifted off you when he left...Well that is abuse.

It sounds as if you are just now finding a new part of yourself, and if you tend to be the loner type, all this must take some time to get used to. There are always risks in every relationship, and even if this is not the forever guy, it is a great place to hone your skills as a partner in a relationship, and hopefully find enjoyment in it, which is sounds as if you have.

You may have gotten off to a later start than others, but that is not a bad thing...Enjoy yourself, and you will become a much more fun person to be with, making everything better.

I wish you the best...

 
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Old 03-16-2011, 02:25 PM   #8
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Re: What can I do?

Quote:
Originally Posted by writeleft View Post
You mentioned in your original post that you had not been the victim of abuse, but later you mention the fear you had of your stepfather, and the great weight that was lifted off you when he left...Well that is abuse.

It sounds as if you are just now finding a new part of yourself, and if you tend to be the loner type, all this must take some time to get used to. There are always risks in every relationship, and even if this is not the forever guy, it is a great place to hone your skills as a partner in a relationship, and hopefully find enjoyment in it, which is sounds as if you have.

You may have gotten off to a later start than others, but that is not a bad thing...Enjoy yourself, and you will become a much more fun person to be with, making everything better.

I wish you the best...
Actually I meant that I wasn't physically abused, but I knew he was verbally and emotionally abusive. Sorry about that, I can't remember if I added that last part.

I guess I just don't want him to be my jumping off point. The idea of ending with anyone else just bothers me. I suppose eventually I'll get more relaxed. When we first started dating (like within the first week or two) I thought I was going crazy. I analyzed every second of the day. Compared to that I feel a lot better now. I'm just trying to get to the point where I can relax completely and just have fun and connect with him without worry.

Does anyone think there is something I can do about this or do I just need time? Eventually I'll get used to the situation since this is my first real relationship?

 
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