A New Start!

Postby toughbird » Sun Apr 15, 2018 6:52 pm

I have been in an on/off relationship with my friend for about one year.

When the relationship first began, it was so good. We both contributed towards the relationship.

However I guess as they say, once the honeymoon period ended. Things changed between us. He stopped making contact and initiating with going out. He stopped coming over. The affection changed. I guess you could say, he began to pull away.

Before the relationship, as we are colleagues and work so closely together. I became to realise that he had depression and anxiety which he takes medication for.

Once the relationship began, he made me aware of his relationship experiences. Such as one night stands and short term relationships. I became more aware in time he has in the past pulled away whilst in relationships. One ending the friendship.

Once our relationship started to change, it began to fall more into a friendship.

I guess, I became so resentful as 1) I ended up being the one to initiate contact and going out 2) When ever I showed affection, it was like rejection because he kept pushing me away. He would push my hand away or wouldn't let me kiss him. Something that hurt like mad.

However, he is very passive and would always avoid any kind of confrontation. He always avoided deep meaningful conversations everytime I asked him why does he keep pushing me away? Why is he so scared and what off? He uses a lot of indirect communication which has made the relationship difficult.

No matter how hard it got and no matter how much people were telling me to move on. I just couldn't allow myself to do so. Somehow, I believed in the relationship and in him – that I felt I needed to change my approach. Learn to observe him more. Be a friend.

In work, this approach worked well. We got on better with laughing and just taking things light. I made myself a promise that I would stick by him and support him especially as I found out he is struggling to do his own job. Falling behind on paperwork and coming into work drunk.

Overtime, we formed a strong close bond to the point we became best friends. We hung outside of work. My observations on him is he has a very strong anxiety disorder.

We decided to give our relationship another go. I dropped the resentment and adopted a more understanding approach. I've researched as much on anxiety as I can. Although I can relate to having anxiety. The severity and fears he has – I've tried to have a more softer and patient approach.

Things did get better to the point, he started to come over and spend the night. Although he has tried to put off having sex together with needing more time. I have been patient and we have slept together. But as it's a close intimate thing, I have told him to go home this way he can have his space. I learnt to become the leader and to have tons of patience. Not too much expectations. Small steps. And NOT to take his behaviour personal.

Recently my employer tried to change our shifts around to even out the service. For this to happen, would mean we would less of each other. I made such a huge fuss about it putting my job on the line as I was not prepared to go the change. I completely rebelled against it. As well as feeling let down previously over a few things from management.

I saw a new job in the same company. Different department but still works at the same place sometimes where I currently am. A new senior role with new experience and a whole new challenge. Despite working less together. We would have more time together in the new role. More space to have a better chance with having a personal relationship than a professional one.

So I applied and have got a new job. I leave my current job in two weeks and then go on annual leave before starting the new role.

Things between I and M has been a lot more positive now than ever before. So I decided to take the next step in asking M if I could see his flat? This is completely out of his comfort zone.

However, when I re-mentioned it again in person. His anxiety went overdrive. I made it clear of my expectations. Like I want to get to know that side of him. I rubbed his hand once for reassurance. Changed the subject to get his mind off it. However, this fear remained with him for a bit. Once he got confident and relaxed about it. He informed he doesn't mind and initiated next time we go out after work. He will show me his flat. He came out of himself after this. I made sure I didn't mention any more of it and I didn't show any over affection.

But I am focusing on my future. New job. I am confident this is the new start for me.
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Postby Candid » Mon Apr 16, 2018 7:57 am

toughbird wrote: I am focusing on my future. New job. I am confident this is the new start for me.

I'm glad to hear it!

Women are raised to be nurturers, but it goes too far when an intimate, supposedly adult, relationship starts out as more like nurse and patient: the woman totally ignoring her own needs while being endlessly considerate of the man's psychological blips.

It would be good for you to take a step back and get to know yourself, so you can have an adult relationship of equals. Playing therapist is sort-of okay in a dating situation, but if you set up home or (God forbid) marry a man like this, it gets less cute very fast. No matter how tough a bird you are, there will come a time when you need someone to lean on -- and you'll be rightfully outraged to discover your partner isn't 'there' for you. I'm afraid that would be your fault, for doing a Big Momma on him now.

As to having children with a 'man' like this, forget it. He just isn't father material.
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Postby Livetowin » Mon Apr 16, 2018 12:42 pm

I'm not here to rain on your parade, but you've just parked yourself on a dead end road that will take you no where. You have made life and career choices for someone who doesn't even have the transparency to show you where he lives? REALLY? You've made all of these sacrifices, as if you think there's this official tally sheet that both of you follow. You're thinking, " I do this, you do that." It's a big trap.

Isn't it always interesting how a person's "inner issues" only relegate authority to the things they want to hide, but never get in the way when it's about something they want from others? I think you would be well served to step back and reevaluate yourself in all this. You only control yourself. All these changes you have made only set yourself up for disappointment and resentment if he doesn't deliver on your expectations.

Making sacrifices to a person who is not completely invested is not an act of nobility. It's a sign you're undefined within yourself. Even if we could look inside both of you and see "good intentions" throughout, what you have going on here is an attempt to manage what he will not give. You're trying to influence his ability to see what you think is 'love" by making sacrifices in your life so you can say to him, " See? I'm here for you. I did this for you." What you're actually doing is saying, " I'm not worthy to have my own goals. I need this person to define myself."

Don't live for other people. Playing the white knight is a lost cause. The more you give to get him to a prescribed place, the more you only create disillusionment for yourself. Relationships are a two way street. They require enormous sacrifice at times , but most importantly they require identity from both parties. Both of you have insecurities that are likely the focus of your relationship. You are making life changes for someone who can wake up tomorrow and say, " I'm all better. You did so much to get me here and I thank you. But you know what? I'm needing to move on." How supportive will you be when you fall out of the equation? How giving of your resources and life will you be then?

Are you here to help out a poor lost soul or try to find your own? I'm sorry but this transaction has a expiration date stamped to it. Relationships don't last when they are formed from dependency issues. Comparing scars is good in the moment. But when we use that angst to build the foundation for a relationship we discover all too soon that once we have healed one person's pain, there's no longer a cause to be together. You deserve better for yourself. Make goals for you and life will be a better place for you to find your smile.
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