This topic contains 13 replies, has 6 voices, and was last updated by Ashley 6 days, 15 hours ago.
- July 13, 2017 at 9:52 am #693560
I’m in my first post-divorce relationship, with a girl I met on a dating app about 3 1/2 months ago, when I’d just started testing the waters as far as dating goes. I didn’t expect to find someone I was so compatible with so soon, and neither did she- but we really are compatible. We have tons of chemistry, we have lots in common in terms of interests, background, etc, as well as where we are in life. This is also her first post-divorce relationship, and each of our first relationship with a woman (which is what dissolved both of our marriages).
The problem is that I’m really ambivalent about this relationship, which is new to me. In every previous relationship I’ve had with men, I would get to the point where I felt totally trapped and unhappy, and would end things and then feel nothing but relief at the decision. But in this case, I have things that don’t feel like she’s the right person- mainly that I tend to be a little bit of an anxious person and I think I want to be with someone who challenges, encourages and pushes me a little, where she tends to be a lot more cautious than even I am. She’s very happy to stay home and go for walks and watch Netflix. I’m an introvert and I like those things- but I also really value people who take me out of my bubble now and then. I appreciate independence and ambition, and while she’s driven, it seems like it comes from more of a fear of failure than curiosity or passion, if that makes any sense at all.
Honestly, I feel like I spent my whole life up until now making myself smaller- not necessarily physically, but mentally and spiritually and emotionally. I was so worried about meeting peoples’ expectations and figuring out the “right” answers to things and what I “should” want or “should” do, that I was almost incapable of hearing my own intuition or desires. After my divorce and coming out, I’m finally in a place where I can follow my gut, and in this relationship I feel like I’m sort of taming that voice again for different reasons. We couldn’t really travel like I want to because it’s hard for her to find foods she can eat (a legitimate allergy, but something I’m sure we could work around by planning ahead if she wants to). We couldn’t foster kids because she wouldn’t want to get attached (an opinion that’s totally valid- but also something that’s really important to me, but that I’m already feeling myself trying to talk myself out of). Her default position is all the reasons why something can’t happen, where mine is to figure out how something can.
But maybe I’m being too picky? Like I said- she’s a great person, and gorgeous, and we have amazing chemistry. Our senses of humor are compatible, and she wants more kids, and she’s supportive of my interests and neuroses and all that. It’s weird in that this is the first time I’ve dated someone that I actually like at all (romantically), so I’m not sure how to navigate my mixed feelings. And I feel like I should be better at determining these things at this point in my life, but in a lot of ways I feel like I’m back to high school when it comes to dating!July 13, 2017 at 10:10 am #693562
Well, it sounds like you got serious pretty quickly (talking about fostering kids together 3 months after meeting?) because that’s what you’re used to doing, but really this is a straightforward case of “not that jazzed about the relationship 3 months in, time to move on.” This happens all the time to people who date, online or otherwise. You give it a shot, and then 3 months is kind of that make or break it point when you decide if you’re in it for serious. Which, here, you’re just not. So you break up. I think your cognitive dissonance is a result of seeing this as a serious relationship prior to the point when you should have made that judgment. She doesn’t have to be a bad person or have done anything wrong – she’s just not the right long term partner for you. Keep looking and figuring out what works for you.July 13, 2017 at 10:20 am #693564
Cripes, you met this woman three months ago, and you’re already describing her as, generally, someone who holds you back. Someone who makes you think, “Meh.” Just show your girlfriend this letter, and she’ll probably be happy to dump you.
Move on already. Make a commitment to NOT make a commitment to someone for awhile. Debating having foster kids at 3 months in? Why in the WORLD would you be thinking about this so early, with one or both of you dealing with kids of your own already who are probably struggling with the divorce and Mommy’s New Partner?
You say this is the first time you’ve dated someone that you actually like at all (romantically), so slow down and figure out what the heck you’re doing before you commit, maybe marry, and then inevitably divorce some other poor sap because you don’t know what you’re doing at all in life.
Therapy might help.July 13, 2017 at 10:42 am #693566
Thanks- sorry, I should have proofed the original post because it really did end up being a lot more stream-of-consciousness than I intended… and it certainly sounds like we are a lot more serious than we are. We haven’t even officially defined the relationship, and tend to say “the woman I’m dating” rather than “girlfriend” even. There is no commitment, although there is enough of one implied that if I were to date someone else at this point without saying that was my intention, she would reasonably be expected to be upset about it. (I honestly can’t say how I’d feel if she wanted to date other people.)
We haven’t talked about fostering children together- just in the hypothetical “things I want to do in my life one day” sorts of conversations that go into determining long-term compatibility. It really surprised me, to be honest; every first date I went on (just a handful, but still), the “do you want kids?” question came up- and I was never the one who brought it up. I’ve been assured by friends that this is just part of dating in your 30s, and not wasting time on someone incompatible about such a black-and-white issue from the get-go.
I guess I’m just feeling like maybe I should be more jazzed than I am at the moment after 3 months of dating. Like maybe I’m being unfair, or expecting too much.July 13, 2017 at 11:38 am #693572
You should feel jazzed, yes.July 13, 2017 at 11:43 am #693574
It’s never unfair or expecting too much to want to be excited by your relationship. In fact, it’s a bare-minimum requirement.July 13, 2017 at 2:07 pm #693616
I don’t think you’re expecting too much. I think at three months, if your relationship is good, you should feel like you’re in a cloud of happiness and warmth. That doesn’t sound like your case. Don’t settle.July 13, 2017 at 2:53 pm #693623
Honestly, it makes me sad, because there is so much that’s good about her that I think I should be in that new-relationship-happiness-haze. If I were to end the relationship, there would definitely be things about her that I would miss. Not just the physical. But the other things that add up to determining if I want the same sort of life she does long-term don’t necessarily seem to match. It’s like we would be better friends or FWBs than romantic partners, because what we want out of life (the specifics- not just “a partner, kids, etc”) don’t line up like I’d hoped.July 13, 2017 at 3:11 pm #693626
Don’t confuse good/nice person with good fit for a relationship with you.
People do it all of the time. Just because you have some stuff in common with a person or they’re nice doesn’t mean that y’all would be a good fit for a relationship.July 13, 2017 at 5:35 pm #693642
Yeah like Cleopatra says, she probably is a good person and you’d miss her. But that doesn’t mean that you two belong together. If you are looking for a long term person she is not the one. And that’s ok. You don’t have to settle.July 14, 2017 at 6:01 am #693661
Frankly mate I’d be a little disappointed in you if you stuck with your first same sex post divorce relationship. Get out there! Learn who you are in this brave new world! It’s your first go out of the gate, you have too much awesome stuff to do to stick with someone you’re ‘meh’ about.July 14, 2017 at 9:27 am #693679
Your post was confusing to me. You say you have great chemistry and are super compatible, but then you write two paragraphs about how you couldn’t do the things you want to do with her, you can’t fully be yourself, and she doesn’t really fit what you’re looking for in a partner. That doesn’t sound like compatibility or chemistry at all.
Just because you’ll miss someone doesn’t mean that it’s not the right decision to part ways. It sounds like you’ve learned a lot about yourself through your divorce and are worried about actually acting on the things you’ve learned. (As in, you learned what you want/need and are worried about actually making relationship decisions based on that.) But there’s no point in learning about yourself if you’re not going to use it in practice!