If you haven't already you should buy this book https://www.amazon.ca/Attached-Science-Attachment-Find-Keep/dp/1585429139.
I don't often put much weight into "self-help" shit, but that book will change your life.
Thank you so much for sharing! Your post really resonates with my feelings and experiences. Hugs!
I think you're doing one of the most important things already- You are allowing yourself to be vulnerable with people and open to new things! We can't control how they feel- so if the other person isn't ready to be vulnerable or pulls back- that's on them, not you.
I'm currently reading Attached which is a book on romantic attachment theory- it's seriously an eye opener for me- I am a anxious and nerdy person who likes to know the whys and the whats, and the book literally explained what happened in my last 3-4 relationships to the T. It might be interesting to you too.
Read this book: https://www.amazon.ca/Attached-Science-Attachment-Find-Keep/dp/1585429139
She doesn’t sound like a true narcissist but somebody that has an avoidant attachment style. Also sounds like you have an anxious attachment style ( I also have this). I recommend reading the book Attached to learn more about yourself and it’ll help you for falling into relationships with women like her. The book explains how people with avoidant attachment style are hot and cold, push you away, and talk about their ex’s. Narcissists normally lack empathy and exploit people for their own gain. They see you as an object in their reality and not like a real person.
If you're interested, Attached is the name of the book I read and it's an excellent resource for navigating not only your relationship, but also yourself in the relationship. I had plenty of habits I could easily identify as avoidant (seeing the same girl two days in a row was unappealing for me) but also a few that I was surprised to learn don't apply to everyone ("I'm in a minority of people that put their exes on a pedestal six months after the relationship ends? Not everyone does that???"), and just identifying my Avoidant traits was beneficial to my relationship health. It's a lot easier to talk yourself out of breaking up when you realize your anxiety is a you problem, not a them problem.
Good luck out there, brother!
I recommend you read Attached. It focuses on a love perspective but I find it very applicable to my friendships as well.
Consider also going to a therapist and maybe a support group for people with similar issues.
Read this book:
Most people who engage in affairs have an “avoidant” attachment type and are with someone who has a “secure” or “anxious” attachment type.
My wife is avoidant, I am anxious. She minimizes her feelings and rationalizes her choices in order to avoid having difficult conversations about her emotions.
This led her to connect emotionally with someone else when she found it easier than discussing difficult issues with me directly. This emotional connection made her more receptive to his attention than she may have been otherwise.
Understanding how she became vulnerable has helped us understand how to avoid the situation recurring in the future.
I wish you peace.
Attached: The New Science of Adult Attachment and How It Can Help YouFind - and Keep - Love https://www.amazon.com/dp/1585429139/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_apa_i_aag1Cb93524R8
You might find this book helpful-
It's probably your anxious attachment style that's smothering her until she needs to escape.
once she's gone for a while, she feels relieved, romanticizes history, hopes you've stopped being a clinger and gets back together with you, only you do it again.
Your needy interrogation about "what she likes about you" gave me flashbacks to an awful first date I had, where the dude moved his chair to pin me in to question me for 15 increasingly uncomfortable minutes after I declined a second date.
Why don't you want to date me? Why don't you find me attractive? What changed between swiping me and now? Explain it, describe it?
Oh I dunno mate, being cornered and aggressively questioned is incredibly unattractive in itself? My survival instincts actually kicked in and I sat there frozen until he stopped.
You should break up, let her breathe, and read Attached before attempting another relationship. And find other external and internal methods for validation. Relying on a sexual partner to do all of that is exhausting and makes sex a burdensome chore. Then they withdraw. Then you pursue. etc.
23 M fresh out of college, did something very similar and am in a similar situation, except I’ve decided that getting her back isn’t my goal. At this point I have too much respect for her and myself to go down the selfish path of trying to get her back. I’d start exploring the idea of getting better for you and you alone and a better woman will come along one day, or not, and that’s what I’m learning to be okay with.
I’d HIGHLY recommend this book it is a very easy read(grammatically speaking) that hits very very hard. This is an amazing way to baseline where you’re at and figure out what needs to be worked on, chances are there’s plenty stuff you’re unaware of.
On top of that, some standard ways to jolt your body to support your mental progress: exercise, eat clean, meditate, sleep more, drink less, etc. if you’re not doing this any mental progress you attempt to make will be much more difficult. There’s some amazing correlations behind changing your bodily habits and the positive changes in thoughts and emotions.
Don’t go crazy, though. Lift for an hour 3-4 times a week, do some free YouTube yoga on your rest days, and get good sleep. If your job allows it, start implementing a sleep schedule to help manage your time. All these little things have a way of building up and impeding the progress we really care about, make the effort to “automate” a lot of those fundamental processes and you’ll put yourself in the best position to effectively make emotional and mental progress through meditation or whatever other therapy you seek out.
Good luck, feel free to PM me about more stuff I’m in a similar boat as you
Edit: also this book is another essential for being emotionally mature. Understanding Attachment Theory will make your dating life much more manageable
I've been through lots of relationships and no I do not wonder why I wasn't enough... I have a pretty good idea of why each and every one ended.
Incompatible lifestyles is pretty common.
Love is real though. It's science. You don't necessarily need a lot of self control. The desire to be loyal to the on you love can be pretty overpowering.
Great stuff. thanks for puting this all together. I know it took a while to get this all out on here. Keep up the good work.
We are going through a similar series here in our local group. This idea of vetting a woman can be tricky stuff.
One of the things that we teach is to learn about attachment styles. Attachment styles are crucial because some personality types can go undetected during even the longest of dating periods.
For example, a covert narcissist is skilled at hiding and obfuscating and has in fact built their whole life around covert behaviors and gas-lighting manipulative behaviors. These types of behaviors are never talked about or trained, etc.
They can ruin relationships of all types...especially marriages.
A nice intro book into Attachment Styles is Amir Levine's book:
Anyway, keep up the great work in helping guys learn how to better vet women.
You should read this book if that comment was helpful to you.
I'm seeing a weird pattern here
> We weren't initially super attracted to one another at first
But then you wanted sex for ... I'm thinking possession? Don't want anyone else to have him? Lock him down for some reason? Wanted him to like you? He's good on paper? He's safe and protective? He's safe to experiment your autonomy and control with? What exactly were the feelings around that moment?
And then again later after he'd been with someone else.
You don't find him attractive on his own merits, so something unhealthy is kicking in, such as mate guarding, to make you "want" him. But you don't "desire" him, or desire sex for yourself, or desire sex as a mutually pleasurable, bonding/connecting/intimate experience.
Have you read Attached
> Please help me find my sex drive again!
It'll be with someone you find sexually attractive, ouch :(
She clearly has an anxious attachment style. If you are avoidant (you don’t really get into any of your issues here) then it’s a recipe for disaster.
When I read the book it was an instant lightbulb moment and realized all the root causes of the issues in my past relationships and has helped my current one.
I wonder how much of this is NRE and how much might also be an anxious attachment style? Are you familiar with attachment theory in adult relationships? The book Attached: The New Science of Adult Attachment is excellent and speaks to many of these issues.
(on mobile, sorry if things are scrambled /spelling)
Something that really helped me realize a bad cycle of relationships was a book called Attached.
It's about the different adult attachment styles. I bet you, your coworker you didn't feel the spark with is the secure type. You're maybe the anxious type or avoidant. Your ex absolutely is avoidant by the sounds of it.
One of the things I remember in that book was often the spark as you know it isn't there because the mess of a potential relationship between the avoidant and anxious type that you're used too that you think of as a spark isn't there. Whem reading through your description of you and your ex and you mentioning no spark with your new interest I immediately thought of the attachment styles.
I might not have remembered it the best but this reminds me of your relationship. I might suggest taking a look into it further to see if it helps clear your thoughts on how unhealthy this all sounds.
It's incredibly cruel of him to play these games, especially with your daughter. I hope you find the strength to cut him out of your live.
Wiki link with a bit more info about the attachment types: https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Attachment_in_adults
The book I mentioned : https://toptalkedbooks.com/amzn/1585429139