Thursday, September 22, 2016

Dating after abuse

Dating after abuse is a subject I never thought would be as tricky as it has been.
If you have been following my blog throughout my struggle you might remember that last year I felt like I had met The One. And, I must say that I still think he is The One however, it didn't work out in our favor… At least not for right now. Don’t worry I don’t cry myself to sleep every night thinking about him, nor do I sit and stare at my phone hoping he will call or text me a simple “hello”.  Those days have passed… I don’t do that for a guy anymore.

Just looking back at these two years I have had plenty of dating experiences.
The first short relationship I ended up in was a 3 month long rebound. 100% rebound. Did I know it at the time? Heck no! I thought he was the answer to all my prayers. The man that could outweigh all the bad. He was amazing on so many levels in my eyes. Smart, handsome, tall, had an understanding about the world outside of his town/religion/color/etc, loved kids, the way he would hold me, and on and on. Like really – the Perfect Man! So, what happened? Well… I couldn't handle a perfect man! I didn't understand why he was so nice and helpful all the time. I didn't understand why he cooked dinner all the time while he asked me to just sip some wine in the living room. I didn't understand how I could be pleased without reciprocation. I didn't get it… And it made me insecure! I laugh at it now but it was STRANGE to say the least. Everything I ever wanted was right there in front of me but I wasn't ready. I wasn't ready for ONE thing – to RECEIVE all of this goodness.  So it didn't last.

After the perfect man I ended up in an open long-distant relationship/friendship with a man I had met on a business trip. He had been my emotional compass throughout my process of leaving. He was the one checking in on me. We were dating but we were also both dating other people. It may sound strange now, but at the time it felt like the perfect scenario. Even if I was longing for the perfect man (a new perfect man LOL) I had also realized that I wasn't really ready. I needed to see what was out there. Learn to know myself...

The spring and summer of 2015 went by with random dates and visits to Mr Long-distant Guy. It was a great summer. My physical needs were met. I had a place to stay. I had food. I had an income. And, I had sex. Emotionally I was disconnected. Emotionally I was frozen. I didn't feel safe yet to let anyone in. At least not a guy, because who knows… he might just be an abuser in disguise. So I shut a lot of guys out before they even had the chance to see me again. It worked.

Then, The One appeared at the end of the summer of 2015. I was nonchalant with him too. I wasn't going to let him in. But then, on the third date something happened. My stomach started to flutter, sparkle, twinkle as I saw him come walking towards me. I honestly asked myself what the heck was going on. I couldn't stop smiling. I couldn't. The way he would literally ignite my soul was so new to me. I had this “OMG! This is how it feels like to fall in love” thoughts come flushing over me constantly. Previously, I had thought that maybe I wasn't capable of feeling those feelings. He made me feel like there was fireworks going off every time he crossed my mind, he held my hand, or whatever. I couldn't believe it. But I sure as heck was feeling it. I knew. I just knew…

It only lasted 4 months. And it was painful when it was no more. More painful when I realized he had another girl friend just a few months later. But despite the pain, the spark he ignited in my soul is still lit. I know what love feels like now, and that is a miracle in itself.

After the painful breakup I was determined to move on. I found someone else. It was online and before I opened the app I asked the Universe to bring me a man I would love to hang out with. And the Universe delivered. I met someone else. His smile was/is to die for! We could speak for hours over the phone and he came from an abusive past so we really had a lot of similarities. We lived 2 hours away from each other so we only met on weekends mostly. After our first two months together however I started to feel like something was missing, I just couldn't pin-point what it was yet. He seemed to be very into me and we did have fun together so I kept at it. And come on… his smile… To. Die. For. No. Joke. We also shared so many ideas about business that it seemed like too good to be true sometimes. He got me and my business. I got him and his business. 

But… yeah, you could feel it coming couldn't you?!… the “but”. He started to pull away. Not showing up to our weekends together. Stuck talking about himself. And it was just not a good feeling. I realized I was holding on to him not only because of his smile but because of the pain I saw him still be in. I believed I could help him out. I knew I could. However that is not the job of anyone. So the more I tried to “be there” for him the more he pulled away, until it all blew up in my face. I don’t blame anyone for the blow-up, I just see that we weren't a good match at this time. He had more releasing to do on his end from his past then I did and he wasn't ready to open up. He was me a year ago pretty much. So our nine month long on-and-off relationship ended. I still love his smile but realize he has to fight his own battles.

At this point in the story we are here. Current time. And, I have met someone else. Someone that pretty much took The One off my mind. Is he the new The One?! You may wonder… No he is not.. but he is another soul-mate connection. (I believe in multiple soul-mates). And right now I am figuring out what our relationship is and what it can be…

So from Perfect man, to Mr Long-Distant, to The One, to Smiles, to Soulmate… and let’s be honest a few other I didn’t even mention in between – I have learned a lot about stuff.
Love. Relationship. My likes and dislikes. And I have learned about Me.

I have learned that I deserve kindness, that I deserve to receive, that I can only help myself, that a relationship is mutual respect and love, that I am allowed to speak up, that I am allowed to feel differently, that I am allowed to ask for what I want, that I am allowed to be treated with nice “things”, that I am allowed to be protected, and that I don’t need to sit around waiting for a guy. That I am the first person I need to be in a relationship with – now and forever.  

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