‘I Stopped Having Sex or Relationships for Ten Years. Here’s What Happened’ by Anonymous

‘I Stopped Having Sex or Relationships for Ten Years. Here’s What Happened’ by Anonymous

(Link): ‘I stopped having sex or relationships for ten years. Here’s what happened’ by Anonymous

[The woman author in London describes having been in two relationships that broke up because both men cheated on her. She then quit her job, volunteered at a charity in another nation, came back to London and changed to yet another job and made other changes in her life]

Yet one thing eluded me. I couldn’t form a romantic attachment to men. I found men attractive and felt sexual energy towards some.

I enjoyed flirting but avoided sex out of fear it would cause an emotional attachment.

For the next decade of my life, from the age of 35 to 45, I had no relationships, one night stands or dalliances that would throw me off balance.

In that time, loneliness emotionally crippled me. I craved the love and affection of a partner and yearned for the comfort of a stable relationship. But it also terrified me.

I had rebuilt my life but lost the courage to share it.

I’d lean on friends and family to fill the void, but in the end, I’d go back home and cry myself to sleep, wake up and reinforce the self-imposed dating hiatus.

I could not break the cycle.

Even as I attended friends’ engagements, weddings and baby showers I still felt dread at the thought of committing myself to someone else in that way.

I applauded their bravery but resented their happiness.

I counted all the ways these relationships could go wrong and that was enough to send me running back to the comfort of my hiatus.

Then the unthinkable happened. I lost my father to heart failure unexpectedly. He died within minutes while he sat on his favourite chair at home.

I felt the full force of the impermanence of the things I loved. Nothing is forever. It never had been.

I finally understood that I had wasted a decade of my life trying to control an outcome I had no control over.

With the help of friends, I joined a dating app and set up five consecutive dates.

This time, I chose differently. I put into practice what I’d learned from 10 years of being alone. I would not choose the one who made my heart flutter. Instead, I would look for traits that might serve me well: empathy, intelligence and kindness. Appearance no longer held sway with me.

The first date went remarkably well, but I never heard from him again. I carried on regardless.

My second date was everything I’d been searching for: smart, witty and interesting. We met and our connection was instant. I never went on the remaining dates.

Date Number Two and I have now been together for a couple of months. Just three months ago I couldn’t have imagined being this happy.

Even if nothing comes out of it, I’ve finally broken my self-imposed dating hiatus.

After a decade of denying myself tenderness, it feels good, not only to love another, but to accept it in return. I am aware I’m vulnerable but now I am also courageous.


Related:

(Link): What I Learned From Being Accidentally Celibate For 5 Years by C. Brooks 

(Link): I Haven’t Had A Boyfriend For A Decade. Here’s What I Learned. by R. Thompson

(Link):  Research: Being Single [or Fear of Being Single] is a Meaningful Predictor of Settling for Less in Relationships

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