Their relationship anxiety is getting difficult


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This topic contains 23 replies, has 1 voice, and was last updated by  Maddie 2 weeks, 4 days ago.

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  • #920376 Reply

    P

    I have talked a bit about this before but can’t find the thread.

    I’m F dating another F we are both late 40s. It’s only been 6 weeks or so. I really really like her so far and I’m into her looks and personality. The sex is the best I have ever had as well. She thinks that I’m really really attractive and very much a catch. So all great.

    I have previously talked about how she said I can do better than her. With my looks and personality. This was on our first date. she was nervous but she has continued to worry about this. I found out at the heart of this is not that she will not put into the relationship and it seems to be different than when a guy will tell you this. It’s based on her fear that I will end up finding that she isn’t enough for me. That maybe I want to still date people as well as seeing her but she definitely doesn’t want to see other people that she has dated enough and feels like she has found someone that she really really wants to be with. I’m thinking it’s a fear of getting hurt.

    I find women are very different to men. A man would never think this way that they are the best and if they didn’t they wouldn’t let their anxiety take over and say things like this. She really seems to think she has a better chance of keeping me in her life if I’m not just seeing her. I said ok then if you want me to date other people and that’s how you feel then maybe we should allow one other to do so. The look of pain on her face was unmistakable. She said she doesn’t really want this but feels that I might be missing out if I don’t. She just really wants me to be happy.

    She isn’t being dramatic, though typed out it sounds a bit that way. She has told me this week that she has social anxiety but she takes medication for it and it’s pretty good now.

    I feel rejected when she tells me that maybe I want to still see other people. I told her this and I said i wish she was much more confident in how I feel about her. That she should feel confident in herself.

    She was badly hurt a year ago when she dated a woman that was in an open relationship. She said she had strong feelings and she had to get counselling to get over deal with it after she ended it as it was too painful.

    This issue is starting to make me feel like pulling away. Any advice?

    #920393 Reply

    Raven

    Male or Female… Low self esteem is something that will rear its ugly head & is usually a deal breaker…

    Again, proceed with extreme caution!

    #920415 Reply

    Maddie

    Agree with Raven. This isn’t a gender issue, anxious men can do the same sort of defensive self-sabotage things when they don’t know how to cope with their own insecurities. She wants validation from you, but it will never be enough because the problem is hers not yours and she needs to handle it. You simply can’t fix it for her. She also doesn’t trust you, again because of issues on her end regardless of however you act, and it’s impossible to build something healthy and sustainable without trust. Don’t ignore your instincts that this doesn’t feel good for you just because you’d prefer for things to work out… I’m sorry to hear things have not progressed in the most positive direction since your last post. I believe the past advice had been collect some more info to see if her offputting remark was a one-off or not since you barely know each other yet, but sounds like things are still trending in the same direction as in that last post, which means this is the direction they’ll continue to go.

    #920430 Reply

    P

    Thanks.. I think it’s tricky as I feel like I have been in that place once. She hasn’t said it again until this morning. I guess she tells me after we are intimate which points to fear..

    I’m feeling like I’m
    In a really good place now. I think I will pull myself back a little emotionally. I feel like it’s too early for any angst. It should just be fun and hopes at this stage shouldn’t it?

    #920482 Reply

    Tallspicy

    I would be honest…. Suggest she read up on anxious attachment and look for a therapist, otherwise you need to only be friends. While there is such a thing as someone who is not available, this is not her case… you will never be able to validate someone enough who is presenting like this so early and often. Say, I have done the work, and will support you as you do it, but I won’t do it like this.

    #920515 Reply

    Ss

    F

    #920542 Reply

    Maddie

    You say you’ve been in her shoes. What got you out of it? My guess is you mostly got yourself out of it because you wanted to change, and it wasn’t a partner who fixed everything for you?

    Tallspicy is giving good advice here.

    #920548 Reply

    AngieBaby

    I’m sorry to hear this P because I know you like her. You’re right, it’s not supposed to be this complicated in the early days. I was hoping this might have been a little passing initial anxiety but it sounds like she’s got major wounds and issues. Telling you to date other people is a big red flag and you really can’t ignore it. You’re going to wind up being a therapist/fixer if you keep going like this. I agree with everyone else, there is no way you can provide her with enough assurance to make her feel comfortable and make this a good relationship.

    I think it’s time to tell her you’d rather be friends for the time being to give her the time and space for her to get therapy and work through these issues. If you keep having sex you’re both going to get attached to each other and it’s really going to be painful for both of you when you have to walk away, because trying to constantly prop up your partner gets tiresome quickly as I’m sure you’re finding.

    #920888 Reply

    P

    Thanks guys I’m still mulling it over.

    One thing that is bothering me. We are in lockdown still in my state. So there isn’t a lot we are allowed to do…

    When I stayed at her place on the Saturday night I asked what time she wanted me to leave on the Sunday . She said around 12 would be good as she has something she needs to do. I didn’t hear what but she is usually very transparent. We are seeing one another again this weekend. She can come from late morning but she said she will be there around 1 or so as she has a few things she needs to do.

    So I guess I’m confused. We really only have every second weekend and I have made some arrangements so I can see her one night on the week she doesn’t have her teenage child. She is super keen to move forward with me. Typical lesbian intensity is talking of moving in together at some stage down the track.

    I have other things to do too but I’m making her a priority, maybe I’m wrong in thinking this but with how we are talking wouldn’t you want t to spend as much time together as you can ? I would spend the whole weekend with her but she will joke at coming 1 min past 11 but then say does one suit as I have a few things to do etc.

    I’m I the one being needy? I’m really confused by this.

    #920901 Reply

    AngieBaby

    Actually her behavior makes perfect sense given what else you’ve said about her. She is putting up walls because she doesn’t want to get attached because she thinks you’re going to leave her for someone else. That’s how I read it.

    From everything you said a normal healthy connection really isn’t possible with her.

    I could be wrong, but that’s my take given everything you’ve told us so far.

    #921048 Reply

    Raven

    You ask, “ I’m I the one being needy?”

    I’m not sure ‘needy’ is the proper description… I do think you’re going above & beyond & making someone a priority who is already causing you a lot anguish.

    Please don’t move in with her…
    Always wait a year. You need to see someone through all four seasons.

    #921071 Reply

    Liz Lemon

    To be fair, if she works a job during the week and has a child, there may be errands she needs to run on weekends. Or something she has to do with her child. Asking you to leave at noon on a Sunday one time, or showing up at your place at 1 pm on a Saturday, is not unreasonable.

    I’m not making excuses, I just don’t think it’s reasonable to expect your partner to dedicate every second of their weekend to you all the time, especially if they are a parent (but even if they are not).

    However, having said that, I agree with what the other posters have commented about this person and her insecurities. I totally agree that you need to date a good long while before you even think of moving in with someone. Especially when there are kids involved. Moving in together should not even be a topic of conversation at 6 weeks of dating!

    #921085 Reply

    AngieBaby

    As P noted, from what I’ve heard from my lesbian friends, it’s pretty common in lesbian relationships to talk about moving in or actually doing it way sooner than hetero relationships would consider normal. There’s even a joke about it: what does a lesbian bring on a second date? A U-haul. So while this may sound alarming to us who are hetero it’s not unusual in this case to be talking living together already.

    Regardless… PI hope you will slow your roll on this one. She may be keen to move forward with you but she’s thrown up a lot of yellow and straight up red flags here.

    #922722 Reply

    P

    The weekend was great.

    Don’t get me wrong we are not talking about moving in together anytime soon. The conversation has come up as she is currently renting after her selling her place a couple of years ago she is needing to decide if she should buy, keep renting or wait to see where we end up and if she should at some stage move closer. We both know it’s a weird conversation.

    Im up for suggestions. I’ve just found out my child’s father has been exposed to covid. She he needs to isolate for 14 days. I was next going to see her I’ve day next week then spending the weekend with her. Now it will be 3 weeks as she has her daughter every second weekend. This seems far too long .

    I have a lot of feelings for her and I know the feelings are mutual. It’s really early days but I’m very excited about where this might head. I know I can’t really love her but those words want to fall out when I’m with her. This is not at all typical for me. I would never say them yet. But that’s how I’m feeling toward her.

    Any suggestions on this 3 week thing would be good. I could use some advice. I have thought maybe I can drive to her one of the days to just spend a couple of hours. My child is fine for a few hours on her own. But it kind of makes me feel like a bad parent, even though most pate ta around here leave there children home for the day while they work etc.

    #922786 Reply

    Liz Lemon

    I think it’s fine to leave your child alone for a few hours. I recall from your other posts that your child is 13, right? That’s absolutely old enough to be left alone. When I was 13 I was babysitting newborns, LOL. It’s fine. It doesn’t make you a bad parent. I’m a single mom myself and when my son was that age I had no qualms about leaving him alone for a few hours.

    I know it will be hard to go 3 weeks without seeing someone you’re really into. I suggest phone/video calls during that time, and like you said, getting away for a few hours for a short visit. You will get through this.

    #923242 Reply

    P

    Thanks @lizlemmon

    I found out she has been thinking of plans to make it work. She is going to drive over after work so we can go walking together. I’m slightly impressed and touched that she would drive an hour just so we can spend a short amount of time together.

    Things are going along really well :) I think having a bit of physical distance although a bit frustrating, will also help to pace our relationship a little. We both just really want to be around one another.

    #925293 Reply

    P

    I’m trying to keep this thing between us in perspective and paced.

    When we are together it feels really good, but when we are not I have doubts and feel a bit disconnected from her. I think I have some relationship anxiety.

    She told me the other night via text that I’m such a great girlfriend that I’m so much more thoughtful than she is.she then listed off all that I have done for her, the flowers small gifts, her birthday and the effort that I went to.

    This kind of highlighted something I didn’t really notice. It felt very much like when someone tells you that you are a much better friend to them than they are to you. It doesn’t feel like a compliment at all.

    In fact talking about her past relationships i have realised that people that she fell for treated her with a lack of interest she had to do all the work and they were not really invested or available. This is a very bad sign I think, and I’m not sure I can have something with someone when it feels like they need me to be avoidant and unavailable with my feelings. She tells me she wants me to close and tell her how I feel, she wants me to be romantic but I can’t help feeling scared that this will end the connection we have.

    #925318 Reply

    AngieBaby

    P… she has relationship anxiety, and now you have relationship anxiety… honey, it’s just not supposed to be this up and down! This is supposed to be the honeymoon period and it’s supposed to be fun and feel good, which clearly this situation is neither.

    I understand you’re not ready to pull the plug on this, but truthfully, your “relationship anxiety” is your gut telling you this situation isn’t right. You’ve seen and heard and experienced enough to know this woman is extremely insecure and that doesn’t bode well for a healthy relationship.

    I’m going to step back from commenting while you play this out, I’ve said all I can and I get that you really like her, and I don’t want to be a downer.

    #925331 Reply

    Raven

    When you lower your standards (as you have), you’ll unfortunately, end up being burned… I’ve seen it time & time & time again- myself included…

    #925336 Reply

    P

    @AngieBaby I really appreciate your input.

    both of our attachment styles are fearful/avoident. I do move over to secure. I feel that if I can stay there then we should be fine.

    I do think my last relationship has done a number on me so I’m being super cautious. I have decided to try and view this as a see how it goes. The sex is the best I have ever had and I’ve had really great past experiences and the intimate connection blows my mind.

    #925338 Reply

    AngieBaby

    P, I’m on your side and just want you to be happy. I respect it’s your life and you certainly shouldn’t make important decisions like breaking up with someone just on the say-so of strangers on the internet. I’m rooting for you, and if it doesn’t work out, I’ll be here with support. You go girl. Crossing my fingers for you that you two can get past the anxiety. I know you have stability and common sense.

    #925340 Reply

    P

    Thank you @AngieBaby

    #925348 Reply

    Maddie

    P, I’d really be careful here. None of us want to be a downer for you, because as said it’s clear you’re not ready to walk away. But the red flags, and the fact she doesn’t seem to be working on her issues, are going to continue to spike your anxiety and keep you on a stressful roller coaster. Even if you keep yourself in a secure space, you can’t control her behavior. I’ve been in situations where I was very anxious with someone fearful avoidant and much later very secure with the same person. There was no change in their behavior at all because they were causing themselves their own issues. My being more secure made the relationship less painful for me the second time around (the first time was horrifically painful) and taught me a ton, but didn’t make it any less messy and didn’t make the relationship happy or lasting. You said you’ve done a bunch of work, I believe you’d mentioned therapy. Is she open to doing the same for herself? I’d be very, very cautious about interesting further if she isn’t, because you will end up exactly in the situation you are concerned about: that she will only stay attracted to someone unavailable. This is what happens for fearful avoidant who don’t deal with their issues… someone more avoidant / unavailable makes them swing anxious and feel very attracted and attached. Someone available seems boring or overbearing (even though they’re probably not!!) and they’ll swing avoidant and back away. And since you are fearful avoidant too, that’s why you’ll end up on a roller coaster because you’ll respond to her push/pull by feeling the opposite, though you’ll be better positioned because you already know the patterns from your own prior work.

    After getting out of a relationship that did a number on you, I’ve learned that the only type of being “super cautious” that works is choosing future partners you can actually trust. Opening up to a new person who has shown you can’t quite trust them will force you to replay the issues over and over. Take note of the anxiety in your gut, because in this case it is there for a reason.

    Good luck. I hope you can talk to her about this, and that she’s curious and interested in doing what she needs to for herself so that she approaches her relationship with you in a healthy way!

    #925349 Reply

    Maddie

    *investing further

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