Hi everyone! Just checking in.
How is everybody doing?
Quick recap for me. I started dating again in December - someone I knew from work. I ignored some of my spidey sense feelings about his potential narc-iness to give him the benefit of the doubt, but ultimately was let down when he showed me that I'm really not a priority.
I was initially very mad at myself for not trusting my gut instinct from the get go, but my IC is encouraging me to see it from a different perspective - that I was willing to give someone a chance, and to work out what about my responses/gut feelings are real vs. what is a trauma response/anxiety.
And now I'm feeling proud of myself. I was successfully able to 1) identify red flags not just in the beginning, but as time went on (rescheduling of plans constantly being the number one, but there were others), and 2) give the appropriate level of benefit of the doubt (understanding that he has kids, and a career that might mean schedules change sometimes) and not let my anxiety monster take over.
While also maintaining a healthy level of skepticism (taking note of the times when he has rescheduled plans with me, but still has somehow managed to make time for his friends, bowling, golfing etc) and being very clear and communicative about my own needs, how the things he has done have made me feel, and how I would like them addressed moving forward. Nobody could accuse me of being indirect, that's for sure. So now I'm feeling much better about it.
It's hard not to be mad at myself for not writing him off in the first place. There is a part of me that wishes I had just brushed him off, which was my initial reaction. Like I would feel like a "stronger" woman had I done that. But I've also been working with my IC on not constantly "having my dukes up" as she calls it. So this was good practice for that, I guess.
It was also good practice in saying exactly what I need/want. In telling him (in a nice, constructive way) when he did things that pissed me off, and giving him a chance to correct it. But when I really think about it, I don't think I've ever been that bad at saying what I want/need! I'm actually pretty direct, and if anything I've been told I'm too blunt. So maybe it's just that I'm far too willing to believe in the good in someone, that the thing they did wasn't intended to hurt me, or that they are willing to change. When in reality, people don't change all that much unless they REALLY want to.
I'm also disappointed because this "relationship" was just dropped in my lap, and it was easy. We relate to each other in a lot of ways, get along well, work together well etc. I've also never been in a relationship with someone who works in my industry and therefore "gets it" in a way that others don't. And that was really, really nice. I have absolutely zero interest in online dating or apps. That's how my ex hooked up with people, and the window-shopping-ness of it is a HUGE turn off. So the fact that this just kind of happened was very appealing.
But I also know that I want to be in a relationship with someone who actually wants to spend time with me, and will do what they need to do to make that happen. I'm in no way advocating for someone not having their own life, in fact it's one of the reasons why I was still in it with him, because I saw his rescheduling and such as his own way of setting clear boundaries over what he needs. But I can only be the last thing on the priority list so many times before I realize that I'm not climbing up that ladder of priorities anytime soon. And while I don't expect to be the first thing on that list, I do expect to be high enough up there that I actually get alone time with him other than stolen lunch and/or brunch dates when he has time for me in between his other activities.
It's crazy to me that I actually said to my IC the other day, even if he was just a fuck buddy, I would be fine with that. But we haven't even done THAT in over 2 months, due to these constant scheduling issues. So let me get this straight, I have to chase you to spend time with you AND I'm not even having an orgasm? Tell me again what I'm getting out of this?
Anyway, glad I only spent 4 months of my time on this rather than 7 years like with the last one!