Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Emotional Constipation

Fear. What a driving emotion. People have a difficult time making the simplest commitments to dating, marriage, to a meaningful future based on fear of being emotionally intimate.  My ex and I were married for 20 years and in all those years he could not, would not be emotionally intimate with me on the shallowest level. I dated a man/boy for 2 years who went emotionally deeper, but even when I took marriage off the table, he could not, would not discuss the possibility of our having more than a dating relationship in our future.

What are some signs of emotional constipation? From my own experience as well as those of many of my friends, I have come up with this list. It comprises a spectrum of relationships; from a few dates, to dating for a few years to living together, to marriage. Just because a man commits to marriage does not mean he has made an emotional commitment. Sadly, I have learned this from experience. (Some women can also be susceptible to this disease):
*They do not call you when they say they will
*They say what a great time they had, but do not follow up with more dates, phone calls, etc.
*They are perpetually late or do not show up and have silly excuses
*They take from your well/reserves but do not fill your well up
*They will not stay the night
*Even though their words say one thing, you feel that they aren't that into you (trust the feeling) they are just keeping you on the hook until something else comes along; and something else always comes along; they are either ruminating on the one that got away or keeping the door open for someone else to come along. Living in the moment with you is not an option.
*They are hyper-critical of the smallest things
*They wait until you are asleep until they come to bed
*They insist you engage in their activities but will not engage in yours with you
*They talk endlessly about themselves but do not ask about you
*They will keep at least some aspect of their life from you- either a secret or will not allow you to participate in it
*They complain that they are low on money to spend on you while they spend money on frivolous things

Learn from me. Get a clue early in the relationship. Let them go. They will never change. They are not worth the value that you can give them. Find someone who will appreciate the fun and excitement and joy that you can bring into their life. There is a man out there who gets giddy when he sees you, can't wait to hear your voice, is not afraid to express his deep feelings for you.  I have seen it. I have experienced it. I know it exists. Embrace it when it happens to you.

No comments: