Being in a romantic relationship always sounds nice to me in theory. However, whenever I find myself in one, I don’t enjoy it that much. And it’s completely my own fault. In 2014, I was in relationships with 3 guys. I dated more than that. I am not a casual dater, but when I signed up for an online dating service at the end of 2013, I found myself meeting and dating a lot of people, and liking some of them.
I, however, am terrible in relationships. When I get into a relationship, I start to doubt myself. I start to pick at my appearance. I start to worry about my quirks. I start to wonder whether someone can actually love me. I start to analyze every date, every word, every period of silence. I worry that not responding to a text or facebook message is because they’re tired of me, I’ve done something wrong, I’ve angered them, I hurt them, I…I…I…
It really doesn’t matter how sweet and kind and understanding the guy is. I self-sabotage every relationship. I am not the person who gets dumped, because I always freak out and end relationships. And, of course, dumping people always makes me feel like a terrible person because then I feel like I’m leaving a string of broken hearts in my wake, which makes me even more reluctant to get into another relationship.
All this to say, I was NOT looking to get into another relationship, especially not with “the boy”. We began dating 5 years ago, dated for a year and a half, then I broke it off. About a year after that, we got back together, dated for a year, and then, again, I broke it off.
Early last year, we started talking again. We always gravitate to one another. We were best friends, and I destroyed that, twice, when we broke up. Life isn’t a sitcom where you can conveniently keep all your exes as friends. Hearts get broken and things get awkward and feelings get hurt and it doesn’t work. At least, not at first.
And yet, we always end up talking again. We date other people, we “move on”, and then we end up back together. The truth is, I never stopped loving him. I have loved him for 5 years. Unfortunately, we have different goals for our lives, different core beliefs, and many obstacles that make me worry that it can’t last, which is one reason I keep ending it. Despite my “best efforts” to ruin my dating life, I truly do want to be married and have a family and have someone to grow old with.
So we started talking again. Just short conversations here and there. A birthday card, a quick catching up, and so forth. He was clear, he “couldn’t do this again”, meaning he couldn’t be in a romantic relationship with me again. I had broken his heart twice and he wouldn’t let me in to do that again. But he did.
I don’t know when exactly it happened. I’m not even sure how it happened. Gradually, over time.
Before long he was sending me flowers and using terms of endearment. We took a trip together at the end of November. However, he won’t call us an item. He’ll sleep with me, but he won’t call me his girlfriend. And that refusal to commit, which I understand, worries me. It feeds into my self-doubt and my fears.
Then, when I have situations like the last couple days where he is not in communication with me at all, I fear the worst. Not that he is in trouble, but that i have done something. I have been too clingy. I have been smothering. I have said or done something wrong. I freak out. My anxiety goes through the roof and my behaviors get worse and I know, I just KNOW I’ve messed things up again.
Turns out, he was just really, really sick and hasn’t been up to talking.
When, at the beginning of December, I was incredibly sick and didn’t talk to him for the whole weekend, I didn’t think anything of it. Yet, when he does the same, I go out of my mind with worry over what I have done to make him keep silent.
I am not good in relationships.