The first time Mr. Opposite hugged me, I knew I was in trouble. Big trouble. You see, I was use to only the highest quality of men who didn’t show affection or didn’t even like me. You know, the best sorts of men.
Anyway, the first time we hung out as ‘more than friends’ it was so much fun. We laughed a lot, we were totally comfortable, in general it was an overall good time. Before he drove me home we stood up and he hugged me. I mean really hugged me. It was such a strange feeling to have a male genuinely hug me (well, I have male friends that hug…but that’s different). First I thought, “Whoa, this is so nice,” and then came “AHHHHHHHHHHH what’s happening here? I need to leave!”
For the first time in my life, I was spending my energy on a man who was decent and who I couldn’t see the ending of our relationship and it freaked me out. A number of things ran through my head: the first one was that I should end it. I wasn’t looking for anything. In fact, at that point I had recently come to terms with actually being happy while single. It was a big step for me. That said, end it? End something that feels right? What an idiot. You would think that thought would have passed through my head when I was dating all those other douche bags, but it didn’t.
Next I thought: What if I hurt him? You see, we were friends first and I genuinely cared about him. So the thought of hurting him seemed terrible. Also, what was I thinking? Intentionally sabotaging something great? Once again, me = idiot.
Thirdly, I thought: Oh my god, what if this works out? The fear I felt about the fact that something in my life could actually work out was almost stronger than the fear of dating someone who I knew would hurt me. What’s that all about?
To sabotage or not to sabotage? The state of panic I was in was overwhelming. Luckily I had a good pep talk with a girlfriend who told me that I needed to just go with it. That I sounded happy and that I’d be stupid to not see where this went. And thank god I did, we’re now coming up on a year and it’s wonderful.
I realize that all of what I wrote above seems crazy (well not seems crazy, is crazy), I do believe that all of what I felt is somewhat (yes, only somewhat) normal. The same girlfriend who gave me that great advice was in similar situation when she started dating someone wonderful. Mr. Wonderful is what we’ll call him. Anyway, she got so freaked out the first few weeks in that she momentarily considered going on a date with a boy she knew was trouble. The thought/fear of having something work out was so overwhelming that her ‘fight or flight’ instinct kicked into gear. So, I gave her the same advice she gave me as (funny how it’s so hard to take your own advice). She already knew she was being foolish and just needed to hear it. She could see that this thing with Mr. Wonderful was something special that she didn’t want to ruin it. And with that, she did not engage in any activity that would sabotage her amazing new relationship.
It’s strange how we spend all our lives looking for love and that when we finally find a true opportunity to have it, our first instinct is to destroy it. Thankfully, women don’t act on instinct, we act on logic!