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Thread: Envy? What’s the basis for that feeling?

  1. #51
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    I think you have to become the right person to find the right person. Many many high quality people are on dating sites - I know many people who are so and met their high quality spouses through dating sites - especially in their 30s because the typical ways of meeting quality people get harder especially for quality people with really busy careers. I did not meet my husband on a dating site but he was on one for a couple of years as was I. But you do have to be emotionally available plus right place right time.

  2. #52
    Gold Member Nebraskagirl14's Avatar
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    Envy? What’s the basis for that feeling?

    Originally Posted by bluecastle
    Razor sharp here, and a subtle distinction that is the difference, or part of it, between available (reality) and unavailable (fantasy). There is a comforting softness to the former, a passivity, an ellipsis instead of a period; the latter is hard, active, bracketed. Both are really just stories, the things human being need, along with food and shelter, to stay alive without going mad.

    The question is: What is the more nourishing story to tell to get through the day and get what we want?

    Been thinking about this thread, trying to figure out why it resonates. Think I can relate, in my own way, to the idea of envying "emotional availability," even before I had the language to express that. Jobs, homes, cars, looks—that stuff has never been more than a mosquito bite. What people think about me—not a major concern. I making a living, in ways, by being publicly consumed and have never much paid attention to what people say because I already know the answer: they say everything. Other people having sex with and loving people who are not me, including those I've loved and had sex with, or yearned for some version of all that with—that hasn't been much a of thing either.

    But I have felt a pang when I could detect a level of "availability" in people that I didn't have. Didn't have to be in a romantic situation; could be dude I meet on a corner. I could riff plenty on my own journey, but maybe something to think about is isolating that as the thing you "envy," a kind of state of being, rather than something other people are doing or experiencing out there in the world, without you or instead of with you.

    If you think of it like that the only solution is what you've just touched on: focusing on yourself rather than others. And it might come kind of organically—with some time, patience, discipline, and awareness, of course—rather than through some kind "work."
    Man, this is great stuff, thank you, bluecastle, Batya and Cherylyn. You all are so beautifully articulate and emotionally intelligent in how you give advice. I completely agree that I have to be that person first before I attract the person I want to attract and the truth is, I haven’t been THAT available. I have been afraid of being left or being smothered and that has led me to being with people that weren’t right for me. But at the end of the day, I am not really available right now. And because I am not available, I am attracting people that are also not or only partially available like I am. And we connect on some level and there may be a slice or two of pie for both of us, but the whole pie eludes us both as well. So, there are these beautiful moments and delicious interludes but it isn’t a committed relationship and part of me is okay with that, while another part of me does eventually want the whole pie. I have been feeling much better and more grounded after reading all of your comments and really starting to shift my perspective on all of this. Thank you all!

  3. #53
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    I think almost all of us have fears around committed relationships and developing them, and losing them -depends on the extent and how much you want to be available/want the light at the end of the tunnel. When you're ready to get concrete and down to basics see if you have a specific time line of when -if all worked out - "eventually" would be. Big difference if it's in one year, five years, five months of course as to what steps you want to take to meet like-minded people.

  4. #54
    Platinum Member bluecastle's Avatar
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    Something it took me a while to grasp: that being "emotionally unavailable" is not, in itself, some flawed state of being. Doesn't mean you have a heart of ice or a heart plagued by who knows what: childhood trauma, bad karma, a certain attachment style, something to purge on the therapist's couch or during the ayahuasca ceremony. Just might be where you're at, for a period. Like a lot of places where we're at, for periods, we sometimes don't quite know it until we have a chance to step back and assess. Which happens when those beautiful moments and delicious interludes lose a bit of luster, their edgy pull.

    You're assessing right now. Great. That's a shift. Instead of being "emotionally unavailable" you are now "exploring that"—a new state, and one with a goal: being more available. Good stuff. Intentions where in the past maybe there were fumblings: emotional, physical, whatever. Often I think we drift here and there—losing intentions, or moving without intention—which is where "envy" can crop up. We're looking for others as models, guides, instead of looking inward.

    We can't always look inward, of course. I didn't figure out what I wanted to do for a living by listening to myself. I was moved by a certain thing that human beings made and wanted to be a human who made that thing. Same with surfing or riding motorcycles, huge parts of my life. That want—a form of envy—lit the inward path. It's not always clear, never will be. So it goes. Still, I think once we can isolate something we want—from a Ferrari to emotional availability—we've instigated a shift. We've found intention, and no longer need to rely on outside stimuli to tell us who we are (or aren't) internally.

    Romantically and platonically I spent a lot of my 20s and 30s in a state of semi-availability. First shift was with friends: cutting out the bs, creating harder boundaries so I could get softer. Pretty organic, how all that happened. A shift in what interested me. And rewarding: oh, this is what available feels like. No drama, no edginess, no fear of being unliked or cast off because I know I am in it for the right reasons. My friendships became earnest, easy. I spend almost no time thinking about them and a lot of time enjoying them.

    Romance, I think, followed this—a thornier, less-linear path. Because: hormones. Because: stuff. Because: other people are complex. It wasn't until I was 34 that I'd even isolated the word "partner" as a goal, and that isolation did not result in me immediately taking steps to realize that. There were detours, one big one in the form of an f'ed up relationship that really reset my emotional scales for the better. Per what Batya said above, it's when I stopped thinking in terms of "eventually" and started thinking in more concrete terms—and found a genuine deliciousness in that. And suddenly I found it delicious to disengage from things that once engaged me, to bracket things in periods instead of ellipsis. I can't help but think that deliciousness is connected to that of the relationship I've been in for the past 9 months, where for the first time in my life I don't even have a toenail hanging outside the door. Doesn't mean I "know" we'll last forever, or that I have found "the answer" to those questions. Just means I know I am 100 percent available to it, which is a state of being I'd come into before she came into my life.

    Maybe that helps, maybe not. It's always weird when we start realizing that something that once worked for us—certain kinds of beautiful moments and delicious interludes—no longer does. Some, I think, can be extreme in those moments. No more going out, time to settle down! Green tea instead of whiskey, kale instead of burgers! And so forth. I'm not big on that approach, because I think it's the flip side of the same coin you're tried of flipping. I myself have a taste for beautiful moments and delicious interludes that isn't going anywhere, ever. The compass needle has just moved. I find them in different places—I rode a wave yesterday alongside a sea lion!—so places where I once sought them with blurred intentions (friendship, romance) could take on a richer texture.

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