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Hi lovely people,

 

After a rollercoaster of a year I am feeling much better and positive.

I started dating a guy again who I used to date in the past. Back then he was really emotionally distant, and I was always attracted to emotionally distant guys (I see now).

I didn't date for a while, and I feel that I am finally ready for something more serious now.

Back when I used to date him he made me feel super insecure (cancelling dates, sometimes not letting anything know so we didn't speak for a while, never talking about feelings, neither did I). I told him I didn't want to have contact anymore.

He came back into my life this year and told me how badly he wants to see me and if I can please give hij another change to show that things can be different this time. I still felt the attraction but not the feelings as before.

We have been dating for a month now, I see him twice a week since he lives in another city too.

Things feel different then before: He tells me how much I mean to him, plans in dates, wants to take me to places, also in the future and wants me to meet people he knows. He told me he has been in therapy for a while and feels a lot better now and want to make changes in his life.

 

Thing is, I think he had a relationship one time before. He used to date a lot of girls but could never be serious with them. He likes the attention, is very active on social media and this is the impression he gives me. I can definitely tell that he changed in a positive way, but I am really catching feelings for him again and feel in doubt about what to do. When we are not together he barely texts or replies in a short way the next day. We never have a real conversation going on there. He does plan in dates and makes effort when we are together.

I feel the insecurity coming back, not knowing where I stand. Im afraid that his feelings are not the same as mine, especially because of the past and I still feel a little vibe about wanting attention from others. On the other side I feel that he really likes me in a way, just not sure if its enough.

 

I think the obvious option would be to talk about this with him, but I feel very vunerable lately. I ask myself tons of questions: is it too early to ask about his feelings? Am I going to fast? What if he doesn't like me when he notices how much I mean to him (insecurity).

Also other things, that I feel scared to have feelings for someone who could reject me after being so close. I was insecure for a long time because dating guys like this and I dont want to feel less again. I want to protect myself. And the negative feelings that this situation brings scares me. I didn't have this for +6 months and this makes me feel scared to feel so vunerable again.

 

I hope the story makes any sense. I feel negative at the moment and writing my thoughts down on this forum is already something that works for me. I wonder what other people think. Or maybe tips to handle the situation outside of the situation itself, like how to cope with the insecurity it brings (especially when my mind is on the subject a lot :p) I miss the peace haha

 

Thank you for reading!

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......One way to cope with insecurity is don't date people who make you feel insecure.

 

You said that you have a problem with getting involved with avoidant types and here you are doing it again.....and knowingly so. You are focusing on superficial things like "he plans dates", but the core problem is still there and the same - he IS emotionally distant and disconnected and that is what's driving your anxiety up and rightfully so.

 

Look, if/when you ever date a good man who is emotionally healthy, you will feel safe and secure in the relationship. It won't be built on jitters, fear, and anxiety. Instead of feeling insecure, you'll feel confident and secure. The right relationship will bring out the best in you - stronger, happier. The wrong person, the wrong relationship brings out what you have now - fear, anxiety, confusion. These emotions that you feel are your clue that you need to step away from this guy.

 

You may know what your issue is, but not only have you not fixed your picker, you jumped straight back into the fire. You might want to take some serious time to figure out why you are doing this to yourself.

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......One way to cope with insecurity is don't date people who make you feel insecure.

 

You said that you have a problem with getting involved with avoidant types and here you are doing it again.....and knowingly so. You are focusing on superficial things like "he plans dates", but the core problem is still there and the same - he IS emotionally distant and disconnected and that is what's driving your anxiety up and rightfully so.

 

Look, if/when you ever date a good man who is emotionally healthy, you will feel safe and secure in the relationship. It won't be built on jitters, fear, and anxiety. Instead of feeling insecure, you'll feel confident and secure. The right relationship will bring out the best in you - stronger, happier. The wrong person, the wrong relationship brings out what you have now - fear, anxiety, confusion. These emotions that you feel are your clue that you need to step away from this guy.

 

You may know what your issue is, but not only have you not fixed your picker, you jumped straight back into the fire. You might want to take some serious time to figure out why you are doing this to yourself.

 

I get what you are saying and I agree. It wasnt the smartest move to make. I think it had something to do with an old connection I used to feel + attraction and some kind of hope in his words.

I have been thinking to cut things off the whole week, because I feel insecure again. Then again I wonder if I am not acting out too soon. From his point of view he has been taking interest in me. He wants me to meet his friends, go on holiday together, take me out to dinner every time. Tells me every time that he finds me beautiful and unique and he loves to do things together. I know this is not everything, but its different then before. I think that's the reason why I didn't cut things off yet. What if he really does like me and Im making things worse in my head then it is in reality.

I believe someone can also bring out their own fear and insecurity too. But this is definitely a trigger, because of the past we have.

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In my opinion, an ideal loving relationship is one where you feel content, happy, feel loved, comfortable, secure, and can open up and be vulnerable.

If you are lacking most of these things, this is either not the right person for you or the right time to be dating... for you or him.

 

Please take the "I've changed and things will be different this time" stance with a grain of salt. Yes, some people can change for the better but some say utter those words very loosely.

Fundamentally at the core, do you think he has really changed?

 

My advice:

It's only been a month and you are seeing each other infrequently, maybe things will look different in a few more months. It's worth dating for a few more months to see if you have a real relationship worth working for. Keep an eye on his words and see if he is showing you the changes, not just speaking of them.

 

Wish you well.

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I think you are trying really hard to rationalize what you already know isn't good for you and what is already throwing you into a mess.

 

Also, to be completely blunt, this is more about your own ego than anything genuine. He rejected you and made you feel bad, but now he is chasing you and that is stroking your ego.....except that this whole game is still a shallow sham and the genuine connection between two people isn't there, thus the anxiety. It's your body ringing every alarm bell it has, but you don't seem to want to listen because.....ego..... If you want to fix your picker, you've got to start being a whole lot more brutally honest with yourself about what motivates you.

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In my opinion, an ideal loving relationship is one where you feel content, happy, feel loved, comfortable, secure, and can open up and be vulnerable.

If you are lacking most of these things, this is either not the right person for you or the right time to be dating... for you or him.

 

Please take the "I've changed and things will be different this time" stance with a grain of salt. Yes, some people can change for the better but some say utter those words very loosely.

Fundamentally at the core, do you think he has really changed?

 

My advice:

It's only been a month and you are seeing each other infrequently, maybe things will look different in a few more months. It's worth dating for a few more months to see if you have a real relationship worth working for. Keep an eye on his words and see if he is showing you the changes, not just speaking of them.

 

Wish you well.

 

Thank you for the reply!

I do really believe he has changed, he is open about emotions and we talk about feelings too now (just not the ones about where we stand together now). Also in the way he acts he is much more open and sweet. But I am not sure if he likes me as just fwb or for more. He did tell me he likes me a lot, but I dont know if its enough or if this could change with him in the future. A month is indeed not enough to tell if someone has truely changed. And with his active social media I still feel like he needs some kind of attention (posting a looot of selfies haha).

Would you recommend to already talk about what it is that we have? Or keep observing his actions for a while?

 

Wish you well too :)

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I think you are trying really hard to rationalize what you already know isn't good for you and what is already throwing you into a mess.

 

Also, to be completely blunt, this is more about your own ego than anything genuine. He rejected you and made you feel bad, but now he is chasing you and that is stroking your ego.....except that this whole game is still a shallow sham and the genuine connection between two people isn't there, thus the anxiety. It's your body ringing every alarm bell it has, but you don't seem to want to listen because.....ego..... If you want to fix your picker, you've got to start being a whole lot more brutally honest with yourself about what motivates you.

 

Oof this makes my head hurt haha. Maybe this is something to talk about with my therapist. Could be! I also find him to be attractive and we have a lot of shared interest + the same humor. I remember we watched the full moon for hours last time and talked about life and everything. Felt super nice. It feels genuine for me, he makes me smile a lot and I can tell that I am making him smile a lot too. When we are together the connection feels genuine and good, when not my insecurity comes up and makes me doubt everything. Main thing is that I wonder if its my thoughts, him or a combination of both that makes me doubt everything.

About being honest with myself, I really want and try to! I guess I just dont understand whats going on really and that's what Im here on this forum for too. To see another persons perspective.

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Great advice from DancingFool.

 

You can make this very complicated, or very simple. I propose that latter. Whether you're dating an ex who was once awful, or a new guy who seems like a saint and treats you like a princess, there is really only one reason to explore romance: doing so makes you feel increasingly secure as you explore. Makes you feel other things too, of course, like excited and turned on, but if that doesn't exist under an umbrella of security, what's the point? Do you keep eating food at restaurants that, regardless of how delicious it is in the moment, make you feel sick and queasy twenty minutes after the meal?

 

I'll put it in personal terms. I'm in a relationship, live with my girlfriend, all that. I'm not here because she tells me she loves me, or "shows" me this through discussing future vacations, how she can't wait until I can see where she grew up, and so on. That's all lovely, of course, but I'm here, doing this, because it feels very, very good, and I'm as certain as one can be that she's got her version of the same story. That was the case after one date, one month, six months, and now coming up on two years. Moments of jitters, sure, but moments, like a mosquito bite on an otherwise joyous hike, not a hike spent fearing a mudslide.

 

Having followed other threads of yours, I get the impression that you've spent a lot of time reflecting on yourself, turning over rocks, looking in the shadows. Great stuff, all that. But also? It's vulnerable stuff, kind of like stripping a home down to its studs to repair the wiring. It's just one step, with the next, crucial step, being the one where you reinstall the insulation, the drywall, and so on, so you can feel secure in the house and go about furnishing it in a way that bolsters (or, in psych-speak, validates) that security.

 

Guess what I'm saying is that your behavior here—wading into the waters with a source of past insecurity, feeling increasingly insecure as the water level rises—is the behavior of someone looking to validate a vulnerable state of being, rather than a strong one. How another person feels about us is always—always—an unknown, regardless of what they say, do, or how they act on social media. How we feel around another person is always—always—a known. As such, the latter should be what magnetizes the compass needle.

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Would you recommend to already talk about what it is that we have? Or keep observing his actions for a while?

 

Absolutely. You know the expression of "fly on the wall". When you are spending time together, pretend you are the fly on the way out of your own body observing his behaviour as a bystander.

Without emotional investment involved, it might become clearer of his intentions.

Do his words match his actions consistently over the months, or does he say one thing and do another?

At this stage, he might prefer a FWB arrangement and feeding you with words that will sustain it.

I strongly recommend keeping the dialogue open for "real relationship" discussions. Watch his body language closely during the convo. If he wants a strong bond with you he will be calm and want to continue the conversation and add in his own needs, wants. If he seems to skirt around the subject or even get defensive...that is your yellow or red flag.

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Heh....that might be a good idea to explore this more and deeper with your therapist.

 

The reason I'm skeptical about him changing is that he is not consistent. You've said this several times now - when he is around, it's great, but when he is away, he is cold. It's that this push and pull dynamic is still present. He might have changed in some superficial ways, but at his core he is still the same. Granted, I believe that people can change their behaviors but not their core personality. Someone who is cold or avoidant at their core isn't going to become warm, although they can learn to fake it - future talking, gestures, dates, will introduce you to friends and call you gf - all gestures. My point is that some part of that person will always remain off limits and the push/pull, cold/hot dynamic on the emotional level prevails. It's why you are here and what's making you feel off about him.

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I would consider being straight up with him. Revisit the reasons it didn't work before and why you decided to end it. At the same time acknowledge the changes you've seen in and gently remind him you still aren't up to investing in something that isn't going anywhere. He may have changed, but your values haven't.

 

It's possible he'll tell you what you want to hear. In the meantime manage your expectations and pay attention to what he does, not what he says.

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Great advice from DancingFool.

 

 

You can make this very complicated, or very simple. I propose that latter. Whether you're dating an ex who was once awful, or a new guy who seems like a saint and treats you like a princess, there is really only one reason to explore romance: doing so makes you feel increasingly secure as you explore. Makes you feel other things too, of course, like excited and turned on, but if that doesn't exist under an umbrella of security, what's the point? Do you keep eating food at restaurants that, regardless of how delicious it is in the moment, make you feel sick and queasy twenty minutes after the meal?

 

I'll put it in personal terms. I'm in a relationship, live with my girlfriend, all that. I'm not here because she tells me she loves me, or "shows" me this through discussing future vacations, how she can't wait until I can see where she grew up, and so on. That's all lovely, of course, but I'm here, doing this, because it feels very, very good, and I'm as certain as one can be that she's got her version of the same story. That was the case after one date, one month, six months, and now coming up on two years. Moments of jitters, sure, but moments, like a mosquito bite on an otherwise joyous hike, not a hike spent fearing a mudslide.

 

Having followed other threads of yours, I get the impression that you've spent a lot of time reflecting on yourself, turning over rocks, looking in the shadows. Great stuff, all that. But also? It's vulnerable stuff, kind of like stripping a home down to its studs to repair the wiring. It's just one step, with the next, crucial step, being the one where you reinstall the insulation, the drywall, and so on, so you can feel secure in the house and go about furnishing it in a way that bolsters (or, in psych-speak, validates) that security.

 

Guess what I'm saying is that your behavior here—wading into the waters with a source of past insecurity, feeling increasingly insecure as the water level rises—is the behavior of someone looking to validate a vulnerable state of being, rather than a strong one. How another person feels about us is always—always—an unknown, regardless of what they say, do, or how they act on social media. How we feel around another person is always—always—a known. As such, the latter should be what magnetizes the compass needle.

 

This is beautifully explained, thank you! I absolutely understand where you are coming from and Im sure I will read this again.

I wonder if our inner compasses arent a bit broken sometimes, I am afraid to judge someone else in a wrong way because I might be overanalysing. Still this makes me understand that its always important to stand up for my gut feeling and protect myself if this situation feels unstable and makes me feel insecure. I should listen to that more too instead of reading into it too much. Would you recommend from your point of view to cut it off completely and find someone who feels secure from the start, or have a talk and see his view before making a decision? I can see the first one makes more sense, but I wonder if a feeling could change from feeling insecure to secure after a talk or is it a lost cause?

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Absolutely. You know the expression of "fly on the wall". When you are spending time together, pretend you are the fly on the way out of your own body observing his behaviour as a bystander.

Without emotional investment involved, it might become clearer of his intentions.

Do his words match his actions consistently over the months, or does he say one thing and do another?

At this stage, he might prefer a FWB arrangement and feeding you with words that will sustain it.

I strongly recommend keeping the dialogue open for "real relationship" discussions. Watch his body language closely during the convo. If he wants a strong bond with you he will be calm and want to continue the conversation and add in his own needs, wants. If he seems to skirt around the subject or even get defensive...that is your yellow or red flag.

 

I am more fly then human lately, I observe all the time haha. I will keep this in mind! Thank you for taking the time to reply!

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Sorry to hear this. Don't jump in with both feet. More importantly, don't date people who make you feel bad.

 

Thank you Wiseman :). Yes definitely true!

I didn't have the best relationships in the past, so Im still figuring out what is the right way of someone making me feel good. What if its my mind that is creating a problem somewhere because of bad past experiences and traumas, this is something that makes me wonder. But truth, they shouldnt make me feel bad.

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I think you're insecure and need time to yourself. That's the simple answer. Generally, when there's confusion, more time is needed to process.

 

The longer answer is that in that time on your own you may discover things that do and don't work for you over a long period of time (long term relationship). You've identified that you feel insecure but he also gives you reason to believe that he's more serious this time around. In every relationship, you'll have to learn to self-soothe and not fly off the handle or become anxious when you don't hear from someone or when texting styles aren't compatible with yours. There may also be other issues that aren't compatible with you from communication styles to general lifestyle choices.

 

If you're unsure about the social media presence, maybe this person genuinely isn't for you. I'm using this one facet as an example. There's something about it that is a turn off for me also. I generally don't find individuals heavily into social media very interesting to talk to. You can see how I've narrowed my window with dates in the way I view this subject alone and it doesn't really bother me. I'd rather be alone for a long time than be caught up with the wrong person. It is ok to take a closer look and decide whether certain lifestyles or outlooks aren't for you. Ultimately the way your partner spends his or her time, will also have a ripple effect on your time together and how your lives combine.

 

This is the time now to take a good look at each other and get to know one another. If it's not for you, it's not for you. Think through things carefully and figure out what makes you happy.

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Heh....that might be a good idea to explore this more and deeper with your therapist.

 

The reason I'm skeptical about him changing is that he is not consistent. You've said this several times now - when he is around, it's great, but when he is away, he is cold. It's that this push and pull dynamic is still present. He might have changed in some superficial ways, but at his core he is still the same. Granted, I believe that people can change their behaviors but not their core personality. Someone who is cold or avoidant at their core isn't going to become warm, although they can learn to fake it - future talking, gestures, dates, will introduce you to friends and call you gf - all gestures. My point is that some part of that person will always remain off limits and the push/pull, cold/hot dynamic on the emotional level prevails. It's why you are here and what's making you feel off about him.

 

I really felt this one. This is exactly the thing that I couldnt understand, why do I feel insecure when I can clearly see him trying, a new changed version of him and everything feels right when we are together. I wondered if its my own fear of getting hurt, but this makes a lot of sence. Clears a lot of things up.

I know he is a shy person, and he experienced traumatic things in the past too.

He is in therapy now, I did the same two years ago. I believe that in our genes certain characteristics will always stay. We are born with them. I hope and see other ones can be formed and change. I dont know if this behaviour is changable in the long run or indeed eternally there.

 

Thank you for this insight!

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Which is it OP? He likes attention, is very active on social media and indulges in getting attention or he is shy. He can't be both. You see....you are trying to excuse his behavior, but reality doesn't match up......so confusion, except you are doing it to yourself.

 

You don't like how he acts and how he treats you, but instead of walking away, you are trying to excuse and justify and that's what leads you into trouble and toxic relationships.

 

It doesn't matter why he is the way he is, it only matters that it's the way he is and it's not working for you. That is enough to walk.

 

Do not take on fixer upper projects when it comes to relationships. Let this and all the triggers go. Seek a man who makes you feel good, safe, secure from day one - not to be confused with whirlwind romance, but rather steady, stable, does what he says, consistent, never running hot and cold.

 

As for this guy, again, don't take up with a fixer upper project. He really shouldn't be dating yet if he is still working on himself and still is inconsistent within himself and thus with others. Where he is at now - you are his crutch and his experiment. If he does x or y, how will you respond. Thing is that when he is done with all that and figures out his new self - he'll drop you like a rock. Once a broken leg is healed, crutches get discarded. Nobody ever continues to hop around on them once they can walk, no matter how good, lovely, comfortable and helpful those crutches were. This guy is quite frankly taking advantage of your empathetic nature. At the same time though, you are participating and willingly jumping in instead of sticking to your guns and walking away from toxic people.

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You mentioned he's changed. Can you accept him for who he is now? How does he, the way he currently is, make you feel?

 

By the way, how long ago did you date this guy before? There's a difference between having previously dated him 10 years ago and recently. We are not necessarily the same we where aeons ago.

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