The mystery train part 12

Back in New York, Harold woke up the next morning and checked the phone on his bedside as usual for any news about Dave being found,  He let out a huge yawn and stretched his arm and strained his eyes to see if any messages had been left but it was nothing.  He groaned to himself in disappointment, It had already been a few days and still no news. He was growing more and more anxious each day but he couldn’t show it, he told himself to be strong for the family.  He walked to the kitchen and called his wife’s name but got a response from his daughter Betty, who had stayed the night.   She replied to her father “ Dad, mom went out.  Sit down, I’ll make some eggs and coffee” she said with a sigh.  She too was anxious about her brother but told herself to be strong. It was a family trait, no one talked about their feelings, they just carried on, no need to get too emotional, it wasn’t going to bring Dave back any faster.   The kids were in the next room watching cartoons, unaware of the tension in the house. Harold loved his grandkids and smiled, knowing they were at home, they always cheered him up. “Maybe we can go the park today” he thought to himself.   Lost in his thoughts, Harold looked outside and noticed Betty’s husband Mark outside, sipping a cup of coffee and smoking a cigarette.   Betty noticed her father looking outside and they both looked each other and she mouthed quietly “I know”.  Harold asked his daughter “Honey, what’s going on with you two?”   Betty replied “ I don’t know dad, I mean, like we just have trouble communicating. I try to talk to him and he just shuts down, I ask him about things in his life and he just avoids the question, like he’s hiding something”.  Harold asked her “ Are you both still going to marriage counseling?”  Betty replied “ Yes, it hasn’t changed a damn thing,  I will talk with the therapist and Mark will sit there quiet as usual, arms crossed, tapping his toes, just waiting for the session to be over.  He even told me it is a waste of time and money” She added “ I asked him , so repairing our marriage is a waste of time and money. He said nothing and walked away from me.  I don’t know what to do anymore, dad”  She continued “ And as you can see, he doesn’t seem to be concerned about Dave”   All of a sudden she broke down crying, dropping the spatula she was using to cook eggs “Oh daddy, I am so scared. Where could he be?”  Harold held his daughter and comforted her “shh, its ok honey” he said.  She knew that whatever was happening in her life, she could always turn to her father.  Lisa ran in and exclaimed “ Mommy, why are you crying? Is it about Uncle Dave? Is he ok”   She was really concerned, she loved her Uncle.  She loved when he would visit and give her gifts, take her out to eat or play video games with her.  Betty wiped a tear from her eyes and replied “ No, honey I’m ok, go back to playing with your brother”. She hugged her mother and ran back to the other room.

Mark looked up to the kitchen window and saw his wife crying and being comforted by her father, and shook his head and continued with his coffee and cigarette.  All of a sudden, he got a text from Jennifer, his new coworker. It read “ Hey Hun, we still meeting tonight?”   Mark replied “Still with the wife, I don’t know. Give me a minute and I’ll call you”.   Mark took a walk and once the coast was clear, called Jennifer.  She picked up and Mark said “Hey babe, sorry, caught up in family shit, you know”.   Jennifer sighed to herself, she felt so guilty, she knew Mark was a married man but yet he had pressured her into this affair. It had only been a few weeks but she was beside herself and wanted to break it off, but a part of her really liked Mark. He was cute and so charming. She was caught up in this affair and had no idea how to resolve this.  She replied to Mark “So her brother is still missing”   Mark said “Who knows, maybe he just needed to get away or ran off to Vegas to get married. I know  I shouldn’t say this but I never liked him very much anyways but whatever”   Jennifer changed the subject “ So when do you want to meet”   Mark answered “ Right now, I think we should wait a few days until things calm down. Maybe sometime next week. I will let you know.  We always have our time after work” said Mark with a laugh.   Jennifer replied “Yeah, in your car, real romantic. What are we 16?”   “I know, look I’ll think of something for us soon, dinner and that bed and breakfast you suggested, I promise”  Jennifer smiled and said “ I’m holding you to that”   Mark said “ Alright, I can’t be gone or else the wife will suspicious.  See you at work, babe”   Jennifer blew him a kiss on the phone and Mark ended the call by saying “Right back at ya babe”

Jennifer hung up the phone and felt pings of guilt in her stomach, she had never been with a married man and all of her friends had warned her that this was terrible idea but yet she was turned on by the how dangerous this affair had become.  She was attracted to Mark the first she met him at her new job. He was so confident and a real go getter.  He took her under his wing, showing her the the ropes and in the process,  they fell for each other. They both didn’t mean for it to happen but it happened nonetheless.  Jennifer called her sister Rachel.  Jennifer said to her sister “ I know you said I should break it off with Mark but we now made plans to go to a bed and breakfast soon, I feel so guilty, I had no idea it would lead to all this.  Rachel replied “ Oh honey, you know I love you but you are making such a mistake, I worry about you. What’s going to happen when his wife founds out. What about your job? Is it worth the risk?  You always fall for the wrong guy and you never think about the consequences”  “I know” replied Jennifer. She knew her sister was right and had no more to say, she knew she was wrong.   Jennifer asked her sister “ How do I break this off.  I can’t do it now. His wife’s brother is missing or something and it’s chaotic with his family. He doesn’t need the added stress.  And if I break it off with him, then I’ll still have to see him at work and that would be super awkward”.  Rachel replied “ Honey. I get it.   I would suggest at least avoiding the bed and breakfast thing, it would only entangle you more into this thing, you know.  I don’t have answer yet but look, we can talk about this more, maybe meet for lunch, maybe Thursday”   “Sounds good” said Jennifer.  She hung out up the phone and smoked her last cigarette, and tried her best to forget about it for the moment.  She was grateful to have a sister who cared because god knows, her friends all judged her and that was the last thing she needed.

 

Later on in the day, Dave was in Seattle in the house with his new friends, unaware of that his family ( that he couldn’t remember) was worried sick.  Melanie who had been out all day, walked into the house and announced to everyone “ Hey, guys, just found out there is going to a poetry reading at the coffee shop this Tuesday, we should all go!”  Susan nudged Dave on the shoulder and exclaimed “ Dave, you’re going to love it. It’s chance to meet some of our other friends and who knows maybe it will inspire to start writing”  Dave nodded his head and said “Yeah I’ll go”   Susan excitedly hugged him.   She knew that this was just what he need to come out of his shell.  He still was shy in many ways and they just wanted to help him.  They had grown to care about him these past few days and just wanted to see him happy.

Iris was sitting on the couch quietly, sipping a cup of coffee when all of sudden she got a phone call. She looked nervous and took the call outside. She picked up the phone and it was her mother.   Her mother calmly told her daughter “ Honey, I need to talk to you. I know we haven’t spoken in a while but it’s about your brother. “What about him?” she asked nervously.  Her mother replied “ Well, he was in a car accident and he had been drinking, he umm well, he didn’t see where he was going and uh he crashed into a telephone phone, the other passenger died and he is in the hospital in coma”  “Oh my god” Iris exclaimed crying.  Dave noticed from the window and Iris motioned not to approach.  Her mother continued “ I realize that things haven’t been the greatest in our family but he is your brother and I know you love him. Can you come home and see him? He needs you”   Iris stopped for a moment and gathered her thoughts.  She thought about Dave being alone and vulnerable in a new city  with amnesia but she had a duty to her family, she couldn’t stay here while her brother was in the hospital.  She replied to her mother “ Mom, of course I’ll come back home. I am in Seattle now but I am going to take the next train right of here. Ok?”  Her mother said “Thank you, honey. Call us as soon as you get to town, we love you”   “I love you too” she replied with tears in her eyes.

 

Iris wiped the tears from her eyes and walked back in the house.  She said to Dave “ Hey can we talk for a minute”  Dave knew it was serious. They walked back outside and Iris hugged Dave as tight as she could and started crying again.  Dave asked “ What’s wrong, iIris?  Iris said through tears “ I’m really scared. My brother was in a car crash and he’s in the hospital, he’s hurt real bad”  Dave hugged her again, he hated to see his friend so upset.  She continued “Honey, you know I care about you and I said that I’d stay with you until you found your identity but my mom wants me to come back to New York, I don’t want to leave  you here all alone but I have no choice but to go back, I mean, you can go with me if you want”  Dave paused and said “ I understand and I think you need to be with your family right now, you don’t need me there”  Iris said “But, Dave you are from New York or at least that’s where we met”   Dave said “ You may have seen me in New York but who knows where my family is, they could be somewhere else, it’s just confusing. Look please, go see your family and I will be fine”   Iris replied “Honey, are you sure. Do you trust these two girls?”   Dave said “Yes, I think I do. Just like I trusted you. I have a good feeling about them.   Iris replied “You know, so do I”   Iris overcome with emotion exclaimed “Goodbye, I love you, never forget that”   She hugged him one more and kissed him on the lips tenderly.  Dave all of a sudden in that split second changed his mind.  He said to Iris “ Iris, I think I’m in love with you”  Iris taken aback asked “You do?”   He continued “Yes, you are beautiful and caring and have been my saving grace ever since I lost memory”  She didn’t know how to respond but she felt the same way but wasn’t quite sure how to express it.  Dave took a deep breath and said “ Iris, I don’t want to lose you and if it’s still possible I would like to back to you with to New York. I will be there for you like you have been for me. I don’t want to leave your side”   Iris couldn’t hold back her emotions “ Yes, of course you can come with me!  I need someone around who can help me through this.  And Dave, I fell in love with you the minute I layed my eyes on you. You are a beautiful man with a wonderful heart and I felt like that this whole time, I just couldn’t say because I didn’t know how you felt”  Iris continued with a laugh “ And you know, I was so jealous when I saw you talking with Susan. I thought you had forgotten about little old me”   Dave laughed too and said “ Now, how could I possibly forget about you and if I made you feel like, I am sorry”.   They sat out there for another hour or so, smoking cigarettes and just talking.  Susan and Melanie wondered what was going that caused them to be out there for so long.

 

They walked back in the house and Melanie asked “So guys, what’s going on?”   Iris said “Uh, guys, we have to talk”   They all sat down and Iris said to the two girls “I just got a call from my mother and my brother has been in a car accident and he is in coma in the hospital”   Susan asked “ That is terrible, do you know what happened exactly?”   Iris said “ Apparently my brother had been drinking and he crashed into a telephone pole and the guy sitting in the passenger seat died”  “Oh my God, is he being charged?” exclaimed Melanie.  Iris didn’t like the way she worded that question and sternly replied “ I am more concerned about my brother’s wellbeing, not whether is going to jail, ok?”  Melanie realizing her mistake backed off and quietly listened.  Iris said “ My mother wants me to go back to New York and I am leaving as soon as I can.  I talked with Dave and he offered to go with me.” Susan looking concerned turned to Dave and asked “ Is this what you really want?”   Dave look confused and turn to Iris for an answer.  Iris replied to the question with “ Yes, Dave and I already talked about it and he wants to go”  Susan asked again “ Dave do you really want to go?”  Iris was getting upset but she wanted to remain calm.   Dave reiterated what Iris has said “ Guys, I am leaving with Iris. I really appreciate your friendship but Iris has been taking care of me since I lost my memory, I can’t leave her.  Susan threw up her hands and said “Fine, whatever” and stormed out of the house.  She, like Iris, had really grown to love Dave and was hoping to get to know him more and now he was leaving. She sat on the porch smoking a cigarette, just trying to calm her nerves.  Back in the house, Melanie stated “ I apologize for her, she can be emotional at times. We just care about you, Dave.”   Dave nodded his head and said he understood but he needed to do what he felt was right.  He hugged Melanie kissed her on the cheek and thanked her for everything they had done for him.

Dave walked to the porch to talk to Susan who was still upset.  She turned to Dave and asked “ Why are you letting Iris tell you what to do? I thought you were happy here and we were going to help you too.”  Dave replied “ Look, you guys have been great and I really appreciate everything you guys have done for me but Iris was with me since I left New York. I can’t leave her side and I want to be there for her and her family. Also if we met in New York, then maybe my family is there. After all they are looking for me.  Do you understand?”   Susan nodded her head and hugged Dave. She said “ I am just going to miss you, Dave, I really like you”   “I’m glad we are friends, said Dave”  Susan told out a piece of paper and scribbled out the address to the house.  She said “Please feel free to write us and let us know how you are. And when you get a phone you can call and maybe visit us. I really hope you get your memory back Dave. Take care”  She like, Iris had tears in her eyes. She loved Dave but could never say it.  What was the point, he’d be leaving forever and besides she knew that he was really in love with Iris, it was obvious, she had known it all along but was in denial. She knew know that Dave would never be hers. She had no choice to accept that.  Susan said to  Dave, I just need to take a walk and clear my head. I’ll be back later. She walked off into the distance. Dave sighed and saddened by the outcome. He knew that he was doing the right thing.  He just sat on the porch, staying at the dusk sky, listening the hooting owls and cried silently to himself.  He knew was going back home and didn’t know what would happen in this journey and he was gripped with fear but could take comfort that he loved Iris  and she would be by his side so he  could rest easy.

What if she asks

I was talking to my therapist last week and I mentioned I sensed I was getting more attention from women ( flirting, looks, compliments); which is unusual for me because dating has always been difficult and because of it I don’t have a lot of confidence especially since I’ve never been in a long term relationship. But I was telling her how I felt more confident; partially due to writing; and I’m less fearful of women I’m interested in; she said that soon I might be dating; which makes me nervous to be honest. That’s for someone else; not for me.

But I started thinking about what it would be like to be in a relationship ; having someone to confide in; sharing things with her, learning about just how to be in romantic relationship (sort of a foreign concept.) Those things sound nice but there is a lot of fear of sharing my personal history with someone who doesn’t know me. It’s one thing to share things with my friends who already know me and are painfully aware of my history but it’s a whole different story sharing my painful past with a woman that I am interested in romantically. That’s why I would never add anyone I was remotely interested in on my social media; it might make them think twice about wanting to know me; that hurts.

It’s a scenario that often plays in my head. Let’s say I meet a beautiful woman and we start talking to each other and suddenly we are a couple and now are sharing our personal lives with each other; our family history. That is the most painful question: Do you have siblings? What do I say? Do I deny my brother’s existence and say I’m an only child and spare her the truth about his death? Or do I tell her the truth that he is dead and then comes the dreaded question: how did he die? As far as I have come and as much support as I have; I still feel some shame of the fact that he took his life. It raises some many questions in a person’s eyes about mental illness and my own mental state. That’s a lot of baggage to being carrying around and not everyone is understanding. ( in fact most people don’t have a clue) And I have no idea how I’d go about it.

And I am not actively pursuing a relationship; I will continue to work on myself but it is a possibility for the future. Like anyone else; I’d like a relationship; I think I have good qualities and am very caring but I’m dealing with past issues that very few people are dealing with and I do think it has an impact on all my relationships. I hope as I can continue reaching out to my friends, writing and healing; that everything will work out the way it is supposed to.

Thanks for listening as always

Dave

It hurts to look at you

Written for no one in particular

Your so beautiful; it hurts to look at you

My heart skips a beat when you pass by me

I do my best impression of a calm person but you see right through it; my voice quivers, hands shake, I don’t have much of a poker face.

Dark hair, dark eyes, your smile; albeit concealed; sends me into orbit.

We don’t need words; a look; a glance over the shoulder is all we need to say; to throw the passersby off.

Am I just imagining this; it’s mostly likely so. So I walk on by quietly; back to our respective places in the world. Until next time.

Get confident

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Dating is a sore subject with me; I have had very  few successes and I put the blame on how I carried myself in the past; how I put myself down; I had low self-esteem and I didn’t take care of myself physically, emotionally or mentally; that really affected my interactions with women. I have been isolated for a long time with pretty much no friends since I moved to this city about 10 years ago.  I have had small successes like talking to women in bars or going on a date with a coworker but that was short lived and it ended in disaster; which left me with basically no confidence when it came to women.  I think I have had more opportunities than I had realized in the past but my emotional difficulties I think were a barrier. Every time I liked a woman; I would get all nervous and she could  tell; any chance of a date or even a friendship quickly faded due to my anxiety. I used to get frustrated at myself and wonder why I couldn’t calm down and manage my emotions like every other guy around me ( it’s a question I have yet to answer).

But about a year ago something interesting happened. After a few years of being unemployed I got a job in a department store and started working 30 + hour weeks; it made me feel productive; I interacted with people instead of staying inside of my house; I wasn’t moping about being depressed and alone plus I had money in my pocket; it was kind of life changing. After a few months I just started feeling more confident without even realizing it. In the shoe department there was this young co worker ( maybe 19 or 20 years old) who started talking to me every time I was there. When were in the stock room; she’d get real close when talking to me and I thought this is interesting.  One day she says that there is this movie she really wanted to go but had no one to take her. I knew immediately what she meant but I hesitated; she was much younger than me. She was 20 or 21 and I was 35; so I declined. Plus my last experience with trying to date a co-worker was so bad that I decided it wasn’t a good idea to date anyone from work. But it was an ego boost and I kept it to myself which is something I would have bragged about in the past. And other things started happening; another female co-worker started trying to talk to me all the time; even asking me to lunch. Again I declined and I have to mention; she’s pretty cute and I noticed her right away but she’s a little off and I have enough problems to deal with.  I just started to see that women were noticing me and I was a little confused as to why; since I felt like the same guy I did a few years back but maybe I am different who knows.  During my lunch breaks sometimes I sit by myself to write or check social media ( and of course my blog) and there have been many times when female co-workers will sit with me to keep me company; I mean, this was not happening in the past.  I don’t know if it’s because they find me attractive or they feel comfortable around me; I may be more approachable. I certainly see myself as different than most of the guys there ( in a good way) I have a gentle way or speaking and relate more to women; maybe they sense that. I even notice at times female customers will smile at me more; or get closer to me physically; maybe it’s in my head but in the past I found they were nervous around me and never smiled at me and rarely engaged me in conversation; now they do; it’s nice

So I decided that I wanted to meet people since I had no luck at work or school; I started going to this bar which was known to cater to people in their 30’s and 40’s; it is an immensely popular bar that is packed during the weekends; they even had a band.  I had so much anxiety the first time I went; I felt myself getting an anxiety attack so I went home.  I calmed myself down; got something to eat and went back. I’ll never forget that I went on the patio to have a smoke; I was alone and it pretty cold. This woman walks out with her friend and I was expecting her to ignore me but she walked right up to me and asked for a cigarette and we hung out for 30 or 40 minutes; pretty amazing. It may not seem to amazing to some people but for me; someone who couldn’t talk to average looking women was talking to this beautiful woman who was actually seemed interested; even offering to buy drinks. I just didn’t understand why she was talking to me; I was dressed like crap, I was alone and to be honest I didn’t think I was half as good looking as the other guys there. But maybe I had confidence; maybe I carried myself well and I was approachable; obviously I was doing something right.  I realized that I needed to go back and so I went the next week and I met another woman and we talked for a while too and she was also beautiful. It didn’t turn into anything but I realized that I had the confidence to talk to women I was attracted to; i could carry a conversation and hold her interest.  Those few nights did so much more for my confidence than reading any article or book ever could; experience,  I am no expert on women but I think confidence and personality gets you further than physical appearance or financial status; but I could be wrong.  I think guys look at a woman and day she sure she’s totally emotionally unstable and could destroy me but at least she’s hot ( I am not speaking for myself here; just to be clear) and a woman looks at a guy and she might say she he’s cute but he’s crazy as hell or is boring and i have options; so no.  The difference between the sexes I guess.

I want to end this and note some things that had made me feel more confident and that is 1. my writing and 2. My support network.  I think ever since I started writing; I have really grown as a person; this is my outlet and it’s something I’m very proud of; it’s a conversation starter and if I can recall I’m pretty sure I used it when talking to women      ( and this was before the blog); it always seemed to pique their interest.  I think some women are attracted to creative types; but don’t get me wrong I write to help myself and other; not to pick up women but it doesn’t hurt to be passionate about something. But yeah, writing makes me feel confident; like I’m finally good at something. The second thing I have a support network ( online; because I have moved far away) mostly of female friends which to me is vital. Regardless I love my friends but talking to them helps me to relate to women; to understand them and see them as people instead of sexual objects. I prefer to have a female perspective when I talk about my issues with dating or my feelings in general.  I started to make a connection and saying to myself that these friendships are important because if you can’t relate to women in some way then you can’t have a romantic relationship. I started looking back and realizing most of my close friends growing up were girls; I felt more comfortable ( the ones I wasn’t attracted to) with them  and I started see how today that could work in my favor. Instead of hiding my feminine traits; I am embraced them; the sensitivity; the gentleness, the writing, helping others, encouraging people; traits I hid for many years. Once I was able to be myself; I became happier thus more confident. I was talking to my therapist and she mentioned that I could be dating soon; and maybe all of these could be leading up to a potential relationship.  If I continue to work on myself and find ways to boost my confidence then in the near future it could be possible,  I think confidence is key to success in anything in this life. If you want people to believe in you; first you have to believe in yourself.

Have a good night

Dave

My first club experience

My first club experience

Pulsating lights blind me and I trip over the vibrations of the music coming from the floor. Hoards of people push and shove towards the bar, sweaty, eyes darting from side to side, zombie club kids, my ears feel like bursting from being next to a monster of a speaker and I cant make out what shes saying but it must be good because shes smiling. She pulls me to the dance floor; my heart beating out of my chest; 100 mph; someone call a doctor. Dancing real close; she’s gone, lost in the song that to me seems like a blur, she dancing to her own beat. Different colors radiate from the ceiling; I can smell the smoke from the patio; going out for air; she follows .Things are going great; shes beautiful and all of a sudden she kisses me and everything is technicolor and we only met like 10 minutes ago, I’m unprepared with this unexpected turn of events; stop overthinking and just go with it. A dream like state because I must dreaming; this whole place is surreal and I’m lost in a stuper, dazed and overwhelmed by this whole place. In the middle of my dream I am snapped back to reality when she exclaims “My boyfriend is over there”. Fearing for my life; I’m out the door, panting in the hot summer heat. Why did i come here again?

Washington D.C August 2001

How do I define love?

This word keeps popping up in my head; the word love. Now when most people think of love; they immediately think of being in love ( which i have never had the pleasure of experiencing. )That mad passionate love that starts out strong but fades quickly; the long looks and embraces; that is their definition of love and that is fine. But they tend to discount the other kinds of love that are equally important. The love we have for our families; the love of friends; the love for someone in need; these are all important kinds of love. They may not be passionate but they sure last longer. We all need love; I know that is cliched but I think it’s true. When we don’t feel loved; we become cold and distant; devoid of experiencing being cared about. And there are people in this world who walk around feeling alone and unloved; and some of end up taking their lives because they feel no one cares for them; it’s a lonely world. To me, I define true love as accepting that person for who they are; being a part of their lives; investing in them; being there not just for the good times but the painful times. love can be simply just listening to a friend vent their sadness. Love means forgiving those that hurt us; we mess up; we say things we don’t mean; loving someone is seeing past the anger and realizing your friend or family member is hurting and that no matter what you will always be there for them. And love isn’t just reserved for friends, family and romantic partners. Love can be helping someone less fortunate than you; maybe spending the day with them; and realizing maybe you are the first person to spend time with them in years because no one took the time to know them. A lot of hateful people out there; i try to be beacon of love. I try to treat others with compassion because i know how good it feels to be loved and i also know what its like to the subject of ridicule. its hard to love everyone; its hard to forgive those that hurt us. How can i love someone who is sabotaging my day or rejects me in one way or another but i say to myself that if i want to be loved; i have to love others Christ calls me to do so and when I love everyone I feel good; that simple. I will say the most difficult thing to do is is tell someone I love them; its just awkward lol. I don’t go around telling everyone I know I love them; I just don’t do that. But i will end this by saying to all my readers whether i know you or not I love you! I hope that wasn’t too awkward..

Dave

Walking down the street ( a date)

I’m walking down the street; I gotta move my feet; I got someone I’m supposed to meet and she’s so sweet, but I don’t think I’ll ever get to where I want to be. My destination seems so far and I’m startled by the honking of a passing car; I walk past a bar where the party’s outside; I’d like to stop for a drink but I think I’ll take a raincheck ; I have to be on my way; I’ll take that drink another day. It’s cloudy; so much fog; a woman yelling out the window; it’s a barking dog. She’s yelling as loud as she can but that dog can’t understand a word.  I pass a garden of flowers and I think I’ll pick one for my date but time is a wasting and I don’t want her to wait; and I don’t want to disappoint her; she’s so great.  As I continue to walk I realize I wasn’t supposed to meet her today; I’m forgetful; what can I say. So I turn around and go back the way I came; continuing to do the same thing I do every week; walk down this street.

 

 

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My fear of dating

I want to start off by saying that is a hard post to write because it feels pretty embarrassing. When people ask if I’m dating someone or why I don’t have a girlfriend; I do my best to the deflect question because it’s an uncomfortable subject for me. I write this in hopes I can get over my fear of dating once and for all; because I hate feeling alone and writing has been healing for me so here goes.  So as you can tell I have a fear/phobia of dating; I never have had a steady girlfriend; which is a depressing fact and it hurts deeply. I have been on dates here and there and been with women but it never turned into a relationship. Every love song or couple is a dagger in my heart; I’m 36 and I’ve been in love or remotely in love; unrequited love doesn’t count or does it? I often look within myself and wonder why I am incapable of having a meaninful relationship with a woman. Maybe I’m not good looking enough or I can’t hold a conversation; maybe I’m not masculine enough and lack confidence; maybe it’s simply a lack of opportunities; I don’t come across many women I am attracted to or would like to date. And it very easily could be the fact that I’m dealing with mental health issues and that doesn’t help matters. It’s interesting to note how women with mental health issues can manage to find partners and start relationships; yet men with the same conditions struggle getting dates and you can forget about long term relationships; but that is for another blog.  I would say that though the main reason I have been lacking in the relationship department is fear and anxiety. There were times where I was so hurt that I developed a very real phobia of dating women or talking to those I am interested in. I can remember a time when a girl I really liked tried to get close to me; I misread her signals and didn’t know how to deal with my feelings so I seeked advice from others and she found out.  I told her I liked her and she rejected basically but was still nice to me. I had difficulties accepting that rejection at the time and I couldn’t let it go. It is important to mention that my mental health issues were starting to surface at the time and I was not properly diagnosed or medicated; which could have contributed to the situation.  I couldn’t stop thinking about her for months and I knew she was uncomfortable around me and if i could back in time; I would have left the group and never talked to her but I stayed; feeling guilty about liking her and clinging to the hope that someday maybe we could be “friends”.   I also put her on pedestal; like she was perfect. The truth is no one is perfect and I didn’t really know her that well to begin with; we only hung out  once or twice and her friend was there too so it wasn’t really a date or anything. Eventually I left the group and I never saw her again; leaving me with all these unresolved feelings; I felt shame; I felt guilt for making this person so uncomfortable; I felt like my feelings were on display for all to see and laugh at ( which is pretty much what happened)    After that whatever confidence or swagger I had before was gone; Every time I liked someone and tried to get close; I’d get so anxious that i would drive that person away. There were times when I thought I was close to a relationship; times where I thought someone liked me; the physical closeness and the smiles and giving me the phone number but something always prevented it; either they had a boyfriend or they had some serious issues themselves that prevented me from pursuing the relationship. I really thought they liked me but I guess I was wrong. I still think of some of those women and wonder if they ever think of me; I highly doubt it.  I don’t write this because I am looking for a relationship; because I’m not; nor is there anyone I am interested in right now; I just want to get over the fear of dating and not be so anxious around potential partners. The terrible irony is that I far more comfortable talking with women; than men; I have always been like that even as a kid and a teenager.. I feel I am sensitive and caring and I very open about my feelings; and women are good listeners. Most of my friends were women growing up and I don’t see myself as a typical guy; I’m more interested in the emotional part of the relationship as opposed to the sexual; I’m not one to make crude comments about women or see them as objects. And yet I am still not able to have a romantic relationship with a woman; I can’t express my feelings without  it becoming awkward; i move too fast on an emotional level; scaring the person in the process.  It is something I want to work on. I hope to meet someone someday who will give me a chance; understands and loves me; I hope I can do the same for her; because I think we are all deserve love; no one wants to be alone.

Thanks for listening,

Dave

 

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Her eyes meet mine and its a sign that its time to say something. I try not let my anxiety show, surely she’ll know that I am as nervous as can be and walk away from me as is usually the case but this face seems kind and surely she wont mind wanting to talk so we walk down towards the city lights on a beautiful night. We walk without saying a word, she must be bored but after awhile she turns toward me with a smile. She didnt need to say anything else because i knew how she felt and my worries faded away, everything was okay and thats all i have to say until another day.