Monday, May 14, 2012

Lucid Analysis: Trials in Therapy - What is love?


I really didn’t feel like writing on Friday, so here’s our Monday edition of Lucid Analysis.
Mostly Therapist wanted to talk about my relationship with Tech Boy and whether or not I felt like we were developing emotional closeness (She forgot to give me a copy of those questions we went over last week so I can’t post them for you yet).  
Things with Tech Boy and I have been pretty awesome. I finally was able to coax him into Brooklyn this weekend. We double dated with Roommate and her boyfriend to two of my favorite hangouts in the world. We had an absolute blast. I got way more drunk than I expected to. I only had 5 drinks over the course of 6 or 7 hours, but I had a killer workout that morning and barely ate so it all went right to my head. It made me a little more vocally affectionate. Towards him and towards Roommate.
I hate when that happens. It’s so embarrassing. I only told Tech Boy that I liked him a lot, many times. At one point I remember telling Roommates boyfriend that I was glad he was so awesome because if he ever did anything to hurt her I’d have to kill him because she’s one of the best people in the world ever. I’m so sappy sometimes. I think they thought that was sweet, but I’m so embarrassed when I start to let out how much people mean to me. Seriously, it feels like I’m word vomiting a poem of epic proportions. Cringe.
So here’s is the episode where Therapist decides more than ever that she really likes Tech Boy. He made me blush that night. Which let me tell you, is not an easy thing to do. A burlesque performer came on stage. I was explaining the difference between burlesque and stripping because he’s never seen either professionally. I kept getting distracting by the performance and he kept trying to reacquire my attention. I said something like, “Don’t you want to watch the pretty half naked woman on stage?” Without missing a beat he replied with, “You’re way more beautiful than she is.” ::blush:: I brain crashed into a wall and I think I just gaped at him like a fish before kissing him on the cheek and telling him thank you. You have to understand, Tech Boy isn’t a flatterer. He doesn’t just toss compliments around or mince words about stuff he doesn’t mean. So, amazingly, I believed him. Then on the way home as I was getting very ill from the sea sick motion of how the car was driven, I curled up with my head in his lap and tried not to vomit. Even then he stroked my face and told me I was gorgeous. I just wanted to laugh.
The next morning we woke up to me having one of the worst hangovers I’ve had in a very, very long time. We had been faux arguing the night before about gaming. I’m a PC gamer, but I like to play alone. I don’t really like getting on Battle.net or whatever and joining a party, so I don’t. I like being an anti-social hermit. Except apparently this lead to me missing out on the knowledge of some gaming combinations that had him floored. So when we finally hauled out of bed he mentioned again how he  couldn’t believe I didn’t know that thing. I just shrugged and said, “I know, you’re right, I just don’t like playing with other people though.” To which he replied, “You wouldn’t even play with me? We could have a character date and kill monsters together.” ::swoon:: I about died. That’s probably the most romantic thing he’s ever said to me haha.
 The only time I ever carbo load is when I’m extremely hungover. So he drove us for Italian food and he stayed to take care of me while I indulged my hangover traditions of pasta and bad explody movies with the blinds pulled and the lights out.
And then! We had tentative plans to hang out with Roommate and her boyfriend Wednesday b/c I felt obligated to introduce him to The Notorious Betty Page. Seriously. How do you not know Betty Page? Anyways.  The night before he switched it up on me a little. He posed plans of having dinner with his parents AND grandparents first, then movie with the roomie.
Dinner plans. With the grandparents. That’s like, a relationship step there. I’ve spent a little time with his brother, sister, and step-dad before, but not really his mom (though we’ve met) and definitely  not his grandparents. His family is really nice. Therapist asked me if I felt like I belonged there, if they were nice and inviting. This had me confused. They were very nice and welcoming, but that won’t make me feel like I belong there. Hell, I don’t feel like I belong with my actual family, how does she expect me to feel like I belong with someone else’s? Anyway, it was a really pleasant dinner. We chatted a lot and when we were leaving his grammy gave me a hug and said it was nice to finally meet me, she’d heard nice things about me. ::shock face::
So, in summation, signs point towards things getting closer between us. But for me that translates into no less scary, maybe even scarier, than things were before. I still, just don’t know.
I have these conflicting ideas of what I envision in “the perfect relationship” and at the same time fearing that I’m going to somehow ruin his life for having to deal with me. We have a lot in common but he lacks that artistic passion and creativity that I’m so attracted to. On the other hand, every guy I’ve had that with has been a complete and utter asshole and treated me like shit. Those guys have also lacked my appreciate for the outdoors, athletics, and a healthy lifestyle, which Tech  Boy does have.
It makes me wonder if that’s really what I’m attracted to or if I simply associate those strong feelings with those traits because they happen to have occurred with those kinds of people.
How I perceive love is something else I need to take into consideration.  With the people I believe I have really loved, there has always been some kind of abuse or mistreatment. There has been no trust and there has been a lot of conflict. A lot of conflict. That conflict makes my emotions spike, it triggers those fears of abandonment and creates the need to hold on tighter to the relationship. They’re always on the verge of ending (for reasons that are real and reasons that I blow out of proportion in my mind) which makes me obsess about how I can make them last, how I can be better, how I can hold onto them longer. All that conflict created by the abuse, inspires those obsessive feelings of love and pain.
That’s what I know of love.
I don’t have that with Tech Boy. Which is good! He treats me wonderfully, he seems to really like me, he’s not abusive, we never fight…. Which Therapist thinks might actually be a problem…. He’s really good to me. But without all of that constant fear and conflict I’m not shocked into obsessions of devotion. I like him a lot, but without all the pain, I don’t know how to gauge just how much I feel for him. I don’t know what love is without pain.
So that’s where the lack of conflict comes in. As Therapist says, some conflict in a relationship is healthy. Couples that occasionally fight but also work through the conflict develop stronger relationships. Tech Boy and I never fight. We have nothing to fight about really. He’s really down to earth and nothing bothers him. My biggest complaint is that we don’t see each other enough but what am I supposed to do about that? He moved here for the job, so all his friends are back where he grew up. He goes out of state to visit them. It’s not like I’m going to stand in his way and tell him he can’t go visit his friends. That wouldn’t solve anything either. I don’t know. 
I like him a lot. It’s hard for me to even admit it because if I admit it, it makes it real, and I can’t protect myself from being hurt by keeping those feelings behind a wall. I think this is why I get so uncomfortable when Therapist asks me how I feel about him. Really, really uncomfortable.
But it shouldn't always be.
How am I supposed to know how much I like him without this correlation to what I’ve known of love before? I’ve never had mutual romantic love AND a healthy relationship. I’m not saying I’m there yet, but I am saying that I don’t know what real love is. What real love is all about. I have to start form scratch and reevaluate what it is I think love is supposed to be. Not close myself off because what I’m experiencing now is different. Not give up because I don’t feel the way I think I’m supposed to feel, because I know how I’ve felt before is a product of the pain I was also experiencing at the time. My whole perception of love is changing.
Post therapy update: Yanno, how I always say he doesn’t talk about his feelings or how he feels about me?  That’s not so true anymore. He’s been opening up more. He was talking about how things were really falling into place in his life and said that I was really the missing piece that made everything right.
Which makes my heart all melty and makes me freak out a little at the same time. I’m doing really, really well with my meds and therapy but I’m still worried that I’m going to screw up and ruin this perfect perception of reality that he has.
I’m different now though. I have a very hard time remembering that who I was, is not necessarily who I am now.  My past will always be a part of me, but who I am becoming is not who I used to be. I still have a lot of doubt and inner turbulence, but I’m learning to control it so it doesn’t just explode out of my control. I’m succeeding too. I can’t seem to let go of the idea that all of the bad that used to be me and in my life, is still with me, worn like a suit of shame. Everyone’s done stupid things, bad things, things they’re not proud of, but the trick is to learn from them, and not make the same mistakes again. If I can continue to do that, continue evolving, than I can be exactly the kind of person that I want to be.

1 comment:

Leave me a comment! It makes me feel good and less paranoid about talking to myself =)

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