12th September 2017
Remember the butterflies you got in your stomach when meeting someone new? The excitement of a first date? How about the rejection when you’re turned away? Friendzoned? Well I’ve experienced both in the past month, and although it was wonderful to begin with it all left me feeling extremely insecure and disappointed in the end.
When I meet someone new, it isn’t ever that simple. I’m already thinking about whether I’m behaving in the right way, whether I’m good enough, whether they are too good for me. I met someone online and we talked regularly. I really valued consistently hearing from him, consistency and stability is so crucial to me, but of course, a lot to ask for when you don’t know the person very well. In total so far we’ve met up 4 times, and although I enjoyed it a lot the first few times, as time went on, I became more and more insecure, which simply triggered a horrible bout of depression and I was right there, back in the dark black hole again despite being in the presence of a lovely person.
He gave me all the right signals to begin with – he kept saying how excited he was to see me and how much of a good time he had, he said he was really happy because of a “certain someone”, he would say I was one of the nicest people he has ever met. But I knew I started to come across in a bad way. Towards the end of the night I hated the thought of him going – I get terrible anxiety when I’m separated from people and so I was in an awful position of wanting to portray myself in a good light, but equally feeling such strong emotions that were difficult to conceal and so probably just came across as aloof and cold. This is what triggered my awful pit of depression for the past week or two. So somehow, despite meeting a lovely guy, it all made me equally unhappy and anxious. Who said romance was dead? Anxiety apparently.
He started to say “Oh I won’t be able to stay for long” and made excuses about future plans we had made. I didn’t know whether it was just me being insecure and reading in to things, or whether it really was a reality that he was put off me that quickly. I’m conscious of not making this post appear biased and “Oh poor me” whilst portraying him in some evil light, because that isn’t my intention at all. It’s just been such an extreme of emotion, I’ve experienced infatuation towards someone, and rejection from them in the space of a month!!!
But how are you supposed to make somebody new in your life understand your mental health condition/s? When somebody new enters your life, you want to make a good impression – you want to come across as positive, friendly, warm, kind etc. Yet inside, all you can think about is how lonely you are, how you’re not the person you want to come across as, how all you want to do is go under your covers and hide so nobody can see how much you’re suffering. So nobody can see the black dog raising it’s head again.
I asked him on the third date whether he liked me. He paused and said yes – I laughed nervously and said “that didn’t sound confident”. He said “Well I like spending time with you”. Alarm bells were ringing – it ruined my evening and I cried on the bus. On the surface it appears dramatic, inside it’s triggering a load of self-depricating and self-loathing thoughts about me and how I’m not good enough, and reminds me of all the times I’ve been rejected by guys. I told myself it’s cause it’s early days and I don’t want to come across as intense. So I left it.
We had arranged to meet up with his friend (probably was a hint from him), and I asked him a few days ago if he’s still up for it. He said he was supposed to tell me but he couldn’t make it for personal reasons. I knew that didn’t sound good, I just knew how much of a warning that was about where he stood with me. I’d had enough of keeping my thoughts to myself, so I just told him to be honest with me. My heart was racing – all of the cordial and polite conversations we had up until now were about to come to an end. He said he was happy to meet up as friends, and that he couldn’t see this developing beyond a friendship. He did say a few other things, including wanting to have a number of close friends rather than a relationship right now. Nevertheless, I felt devastated. I thought things had gone so well, at least to begin with, and despite all of my anxiety I did genuinely really like him. I told my mum about him, and I never tell my family about any guy I meet!
All of that anxiety was for nothing. I feel pathetic going on about this, but it really is a reminder of more complex issues beneath the surface for me. Things I need therapeutic support with. Rumination, over-thinking, attachment difficulties, separation anxiety, depression, the list goes on. How can I possibly be honest with a guy I don’t know very well when he asks me if I’m okay? How would that come across if I said how I really felt? Anxious, depressed, lonely? How would it come across if I told him how I really feel when I don’t hear from him as much as I used to not long ago? Openness is good but it felt impossible in this situation, and it was making me miserable.
I could go on about this for pages and pages, because it has been so intense for me and my poor mind, but I’ll end things there.