When I get rejected when dating I feel out of sorts and like I need to find someone else that will want me. I’m not sure if this is too specific of a problem to write about or how connected to the TMS it is. I know that loneliness and how I deal with it is one of my problems. There’s a girl that I met recently that I was powerfully attracted to. I’ve been doing some dating over the past year or two but the relationships were problematic. She was the first person in many years that I had spent so much time fantasizing about how things might work out with her. I was thinking about things like what classes we might take together or how things could work out if she needed to travel like she’d mentioned. The signals she was giving me seemed strong but not unequivocal. We were living together and talking quite a bit. We spent one or two nights talking for a while on her bed. Which was great but made me feel physically uncomfortable. Before she invited me to sit there I was sitting as far aways as physically possible. After I moved there I still was very careful about avoiding physical contact. (One of my friends recently told me that she thought my mother had been emasculating. Initially I thought that was a find but perhaps not illuminating view point. I’ve read about so many psychological theories that I’ve realized that it’s possible to see a problem through just about any lens. It wasn’t clear to me that seeing her as emasculating would be any more helpful than seeing her as abusive or needy. Yet her theory has rattled around in my head a bit and I think it has validity. My mother often ridiculed my dad and she always had to be the strongest, most dominating voice. Plus she would go into weird harangues on the subject of sex. These happened rarely but made me uncomfortable.) I picked out an amazing date/adventure for us to a gigantic abandoned tunnel with great lighting and interesting graffiti. Before we went I taught her how to use a camera. I was impressed that she was adventurous enough to do all of this- to learn photography and go to this strange place. I also thought she was beautiful and just a good person. Not a good person in the sense of just being nice or non-confrontation but someone with a lot of concern for others. During this adventure I tried to kiss her and she kind of shrunk into herself when I attempted it. This made me feel awful on a number of levels. It’s pretty painful for me to think that I would be the cause of someone feeling so uncomfortable. It made me feel like I’d betrayed her trust- maybe not in a huge or irreparable way. It also made me feel that I was keep getting rejected by the people that I really like. But it was also a relief because I was getting stressed out by not knowing whether this was going to be romantic or not. I wanted to know one way or the other and I also wanted to be sure that I didn’t fail due to lack of courage. When I was much younger I was utterly afraid of attempting a first kiss and missed out on whole relationships due to this. In my head at least it’s much better that things are not working out now than if I’d allowed our living time together to elapse and had never made a move. Right now I feel out of sorts. I want to find someone new just to soothe myself and (even worse) to show her that people want me. Luckily I have enough presence of mind that even if I start flirting with someone or go on a date I stop when things don’t feel right. I think there’s some anger too. As I’ve mentioned anger is very hard for me to feel but I resent that she rejected me and didn’t give me a chance. That I was the only one that had to display courage. If she had been willing to talk more about what she wanted all of this could have been avoided. And I think she wasn’t uninterested but conflicted. So she still could have talked and maybe we could have figured out a way to navigate this where she would have been comfortable. It does seem unfair that I was the only one that had to make some kind of unequivocal move and that instead of it being recognized that this is difficult and a statement of affection that it’s nows something that I feel bad about doing. I understand it from her perspective- she may get hit on more than she likes and she may not have developed the skills to deal with it in a way that acknowledges it well. Or she may have been feeling sympathetic about how awkward the situation was for me. I can’t figure out a way to really direct any anger towards her and it seems futile to try and direct it towards the situation. __________________________________________ Do you think you are avoiding any part of this treatment? What emotions or past events might you be repressing? Beats me as far as past events go- I feel like I’ve exhaustively covered the bad things my parents did. I suppose there were some stressful times at school but I haven’t repressed them. It’s an interesting question to think about but I’m also wary of going on a hunt for something with just the idea that it could have been traumatic. The biggest part of treatment that I’ve avoided has been journaling but I’m working on it and am going to finish this program.