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Fear of Being Single


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hiya-

i'm 28 and haven't been single since i was about 16. single as in having no boyfriend/husband (i was married once). at times i've had more than one boyfriend, and at other times not.

right now i have a boyfriend who the world thinks i should dump. and i most likely should.

one of the big problems is that i'm afraid to be single. i'm afraid of the big dating world. i'm afraid that no one will want me. i went from being very gainfully employed to being on ssdi, and from being healthy to having had LEEP surgery for hpv yesterday (it will take 3 clean pap tests to be sure i'm ok).

who would want someone who collects disability and works at a gas station to make ends meet? who would want to date someone who is diseased?

i feel like i've got the best i'm going to get, because he does accept me how i am, despite him taking me for granted and letting me down.

does anyone else share this feeling that they must be in a relationship no matter what? wz said i need to "reset my guy magnet", and i like that way of putting it. are you afraid of singlehood, and do you need to reset your magnet so you don't attract losers?

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there was a while when i was scared to be on my own - i thought i was too crazy to manage it.

so i forced myself to live alone and not date for half a year. then i was thrilled to live with someone where i got help being taken care of lol. but it was a good experience, because i can look back and say "i managed it once".

abi

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i'm afraid- i don't know if i'm ready- i'll talk to my tdoc tomorrow, and probably in another week, and in another week...

sometimes it takes me awhile to get to the point where i'm fed-up enough to face a fear/get rid of a no-good boyfriend.

but like abi says, i do want to prove that i can. and i want to meet someone who will be a good fit for me, so i need to be more selective.

i like this guy i used to work with and we frequent the same club. we've made out before once but in the scheme of club life, that's common and not a commitment. when we're talking we stand closely and i feel he likes me too. the problem is that i'm insecure due to being on ssdi and feeling like a loser, while he has a great career and a very nice apartment. my apartment is such a dump compared to his.

i'm also "attached" right now, even to mr. already married/can't commit to me because he has higher obligations.

i'm afraid to be single, and even ready to pursue mr. makeout because i'm afraid of being single (and i like him).

how can i manage this and not come out the loser once again?

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You are afraid of yourself Loon. Running from one relationship to the next to mask your fear of being alone with yourself will only end up with the same results you have now. You stayed with a loser who treated you like dirt for 4 years. Would you stay with someone who beat you just to say yu have a man? You become stronger when you don't live your life thru some man. You need to be by yourself gain some confidence and self reliance. Okay I'm gonna quit now, cause you will learn these lessons in your own time.

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everyone is right- i'm just too much of a coward to move in the right direction sometimes. he treats me bad in that i'm not a priority in his life. i'm not used to being a priority in any man's life, so i guess it is an abuse i'm used to.

maybe i am afraid of myself and what i'll find and be like if i don't have someone else in my life. maybe my tdoc is right and it is a self-esteem issue. she's pretty adament about that.

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everyone is right- i'm just too much of a coward to move in the right direction sometimes. he treats me bad in that i'm not a priority in his life. i'm not used to being a priority in any man's life, so i guess it is an abuse i'm used to.

maybe i am afraid of myself and what i'll find and be like if i don't have someone else in my life. maybe my tdoc is right and it is a self-esteem issue. she's pretty adament about that.

here is my view on a good relatoinship: if you don't have two complete people, you don't have a complete relationship.

so i think if both people aren't complete in and of themselves, their relationship can't be complete.

does that make sense?

it's something i've seen happen a lot, and i have seen it in my own relationships, so i believe it is likely true.

anyway, you definitely need to work on self esteem (who doesn't?) and better self esteem really will make for better relationships.

so here is one question for you: are you a priority in your own life? because that's where it matters the most. i know it's cliche, but all those silly platitudes are true: who can love you if you can't love yourself? an empty well can't give water (it took me forever to figure out that meant something about people and giving hehehehe, i love being autistic ;) )....

abi

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good point- that fear is a motivation to keep buttheads in my life who don't deserve me, just because i'm afraid of being by myself. i look after myself- he's hardly ever here- but it is the fact that he is in my life in some way that makes me feel better.

it took me 4 1/2 years to dump the last creep i was involved with. i hope i can do this in much less tme. i had a tdoc appointment today and she cancelled on me, and i haven't seen her in 2 weeks, so i feel like i'm in the ocean with no boat. with all that's going on- my bf is a jerk and i'm afraid of dumping him and being single- i just need her now more than usual. then there's my lovely job...!!!

i'm afraid of never having anyone to look forward to seeing. i'm afraid of hurting his feelings (as if he hasn't hurt mine), i'm afraid that if i'm wrong and he does want to stick it out with me that i'll be missing out. that's my primary concern i guess, that dumping him could be a mistake because sometimes affairs do lead to new relationships. but then again, do i want a guy with that track record?

i'm afraid of doing the wrong thing, as much as i'm afraid of being by myself.

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a taste of his own medicine? that's a good way to look at it, and something i hadn't thought of before. how would he like to be on the receiving end of not being a priority, not being a priority at all, period?!

making breaks is hard to do, especially for me. as i said, i haven't been single for a day since i was about 16. i've always had one or more boyfriends, and i was married.

and what is getting treated like crap? i guess that is up to each of us to decide. what am i willing to tolerate before i decide to go for the net or fly? under what circumstances should i cut the ties? when is it better to be single than in a relationship that only meets my needs sometimes? it is like a part-time relationship. very part time. i don't want to turn this into another ex bf #1 situation where it is sex and nothing else. so far that hasn't happened, but how do i know about the future?

should i bail and risk being single before i get more attached? or give him another chance and see if he can reform? his words and his actions don't match. something is up. '

maybe there is coffee i should wake up and smell?

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It really is irrational, because you are really not part of a couple even now. You're a lot closer to single than you realize.

Listen to me, Loon. I have so much respect fpr you, because you have been through hell and back during your life. You've been through more already than many people ever experience. AND, you have come out of all the rough stuff strong and wise and powerful.

We can all see it.

You only think you are weak when it comes to having to have a man one hour a week. It's one measly hour. What's that? nothing. I really think that you will find that you enjoy being single, owning your power, and CALLING THE SHOTS for your love life. I'm certain that men will be throwing themselves at you, and YOU will get to decide who is worthy of your time.

You're young and cute and smart. Have fun. Enjoy your 20's. Don't tie yourself down to some idiot who barely acknowledges you.

You are precious. Be proud.

I care about you, Loon. I want you to care about you, too.

;)

Lib

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libby- thank you so much! praise is hard to come by in this world. i know i rarely hear it. i know you know that i pretty much am single now, and pretty much have been this whole time (especially with ex bf #1). knowing that and really owning it are two different things. one thing i'm very afraid of is that people will reject me because i'm MI and have hpv (though i just had surgery for that so hopefully it is gone). my current "boyfriend" is fine with all of the above. he doesn't care that i'm a little crazy, or that i have an std. i think most people would scream and run! when i told him he took it in stride and didn't freak out.

sensation- if he leaves me, it makes it easier on me, because i don't have to do the dumping. i hate doing the dumping, but when i'm dumped it isn't as bad. but i don't see him dumping me anytime soon. that is, unless i get on his case really bad about his asshole/jerk behavior, then he may consider me to be a nag and think twice about it.

i'm just deformed, and he is someone who accepts me. i'm afraid to tell hot, available people about my flaws because i'm afraid they'll run for the hills!

i'm also afraid to be by myself, as i've been saying. no one there to talk to, no one there to snuggle with (not that he's ever here to snuggle with anyway), no one to share my aspirations with. i guess it is the comfort of someone being there, just like it was with the last one. this would be the first time since i was 16 that i would be totally single, and the thought scares me to death.

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i'm also afraid to be by myself, as i've been saying. no one there to talk to, no one there to snuggle with (not that he's ever here to snuggle with anyway), no one to share my aspirations with. i guess it is the comfort of someone being there, just like it was with the last one. this would be the first time since i was 16 that i would be totally single, and the thought scares me to death.

;) But you are all alone, and you have no one to snuggle with. Was he there for thanksgiving, or your birthday? What about Valentines??weekends? And guess what you are surviving, you have a job, you have social security coming in, you have people around you who could become a support system (people at the gas station)If you where on your own you wouldnt have to worry about him disapointing you every week because you have yourself to rely on.

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of course very true.

of course, it is all very true.

i just keep thinking that somehow this will change, when the writing is on the wall that it won't. he's told me in the past that i'm not "a world changer", and that because he wants to see his kids all the time, every day, that he doesn't want to leave his house (i think a joint custody thing could work, but anyway), he says it is the best thing for his kids. currently his wife stays at home and homeschools the kids, who are 5, 5, and 3.

he claims there was no love in their marriage to break up, so i'm not a home wrecker according to him.

no matter what is in his kids' best interest, that is his concern. what is in my best interest is my concern. i just need the strength to do it. it took me awhile with ex bf #1 - far too long, but this time it won't be so long. the next time i see him we're going to have a talk that i hope will settle things, and at least give me more perspective (like i need more perspective than what i already have!).

so, i'm a low priority, not a world changer, he doesn't want to change his living situation "because of the kids", and he bailed on me when he said he'd take me to my surgery. really, what further evidense do i need? oh, but he loves me and wants to be with me "in the end". when is "the end", and why should i wait around for someone who treats me like shit?

that is so true, i can and do treat myself better than that (except by allowing myself to be treated like crap).

i think i want to tell him that if and when he is ever really available, that he knows how to contact me, and i may or may not be available, and may or may not want to give it another go with him. but until then, have a nice life.

as we're getting down to in my 'should i dump him?' thread, it seems that i have commitment phobia, in that i always date people who are unavailable in some way, so i can avoid being committed to them. but how can this be, if i'm afraid to be single on one hand, but on the other being with otherwise committed people so i don't have to commit myself? isn't that contradictory?

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Okay... seriously... he told you you're "not a world changer"?

That's fucked up. That's degrading. That right there is reason enough to get rid of him.

He doesn't love you. That's not love. Or maybe he does, in his own twisted way. But it sounds like he's laid out the conditions he wants this relationship under. And they sound pretty shitty to me. I mean, you decide what kind of relationship you want to have. And if you decide this guy, who tells you you're "not a world changer" and expects you to just be cool with it, oh, okay, you like me but not enough to get out of an already loveless marriage, is what you want... I think you mostly are just going to have to accept these terms.

Boys suck. I know what it's like to have everyone tell you to get rid of someone that you really, really care about. I've been playing that game for what, like at least a year now, more like a year and a half. He's not my "boyfriend" (I've been single for almost 3 years and it ain't killed me yet and I still get to snuggle every so often, even) but he's a very important person in my life. I have decided, by and large, to accept the terms. I have my reasons, but they don't matter. I just wanted you to know I'm not some high and mighty bitch coming in here to tell you to just get rid of him (not directing that at anyone, seriously)... that it's something I struggle with still and think about regularly.

You love and care about who you love and care about. You have to decide if this guy is worth being the part of his life that he is willing to make you, you know? Maybe that's degrading and stupid and if he doesn't want to give up everything for you, if he isn't sure you're a world changer, then it's not worth it. But I can't decide that for you, only you can know that.

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Okay... seriously... he told you you're "not a world changer"?

That's fucked up. That's degrading. That right there is reason enough to get rid of him.

He doesn't love you. That's not love. Or maybe he does, in his own twisted way. But it sounds like he's laid out the conditions he wants this relationship under. And they sound pretty shitty to me. I mean, you decide what kind of relationship you want to have. And if you decide this guy, who tells you you're "not a world changer" and expects you to just be cool with it, oh, okay, you like me but not enough to get out of an already loveless marriage, is what you want... I think you mostly are just going to have to accept these terms.

Boys suck. I know what it's like to have everyone tell you to get rid of someone that you really, really care about. I've been playing that game for what, like at least a year now, more like a year and a half. He's not my "boyfriend" (I've been single for almost 3 years and it ain't killed me yet and I still get to snuggle every so often, even) but he's a very important person in my life. I have decided, by and large, to accept the terms. I have my reasons, but they don't matter. I just wanted you to know I'm not some high and mighty bitch coming in here to tell you to just get rid of him (not directing that at anyone, seriously)... that it's something I struggle with still and think about regularly.

You love and care about who you love and care about. You have to decide if this guy is worth being the part of his life that he is willing to make you, you know? Maybe that's degrading and stupid and if he doesn't want to give up everything for you, if he isn't sure you're a world changer, then it's not worth it. But I can't decide that for you, only you can know that.

Becca

You are so frickin' awesome. Said so perfect ane real

Loon be healthy and happy. Good luck

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as we're getting down to in my 'should i dump him?' thread, it seems that i have commitment phobia, in that i always date people who are unavailable in some way, so i can avoid being committed to them. but how can this be, if i'm afraid to be single on one hand, but on the other being with otherwise committed people so i don't have to commit myself? isn't that contradictory?

My friend, the reason you choose these flawed unavailable people is because you think that you aren't good enough for an available healthy one. You've mentioned being afraid of what good men will think of your illness and your job situation, so you settle for someone whom you can't really have because you think thats what you deserve.

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do you think it goes back to what my tdoc was saying about self-esteem, that i don't feel like i can have/get better people, or deserve to have them, so i settle for people who aren't in a position to commit?

do you think it comes down to believing that i deserve to have higher standards?

i was thinking that if i dump him, that i'm "bailing" on our relationship just when things are a bit rocky, and not staying it through. but if it is flawed to begin with because of his situation and the way he has to live his life and wants to live his life, then i can't help that, and shouldn't settle for that.

it is amazing just what commitment phobia can do, that it can keep you with someone when you deserve better just because you're afraid to commit to anyone or anything, including yourself. i'm probably afraid to commit to myself at this point. where am i going to get myself to? what would i do with myself? what would it be like without having someone else at least somewhat there? i haven't been single since i started dating. its been awhile.

and maybe about time for a hiatus

edited to add- and dee, i've done the same thing. in between actual "relatinoships", i've managed to scrape up some poor souls for flings and one night stands. some of these have become actual pseudo-relationships that have lasted into my "real" relationships.

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interestingly enough, i'm reading in this book (the one sunshine recommended) that it is the fear of BEING in a relationship that is keeping me in the situations i'm in. why? because i'm always with someone who isn't available to commit to me, therefore i don't have to commit back. it is the perfect cover for a commitment phobic person. we don't have to 'fess up to our own phobias and fears, we can mask it by blaming our partner for THEM not commiting.

so according to this theory, it isn't that i'm afraid to be single at all. it is that i'm genuinely interested in the idea of being with someone, but can't handle the actual fruition of that idea, so i date unavailable people. or i push away people who do want to be with me who are available. all interesting stuff.

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i'm not afraid to be single anymore, because no i am except formally.

he finally decided to contact me (email, naturally) and was as rude as hell, and told me that he wouldn't be seeing me tonight, etc.

i wrote back saying that email was not an appropriate forum for the discussion we would be having, and to call me back "when (he) is ready to deal with people again".

he's crossed that line. we were supposed to be having a romantic night tonight and he stood me up. this is the last time he's going to be standing me up.

give him enough rope and he'll hang himself...

loon

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