Missed connections

There comes a pivotal point in getting to know someone where I decide to say something serious, to unpeel a layer, to reveal something of myself.

It usually comes some time past where we have shared silly, flirty emails and the normal ‘getting to know you’ stuff, it comes at a point where I feel safe enough to let them have a little peek inside.

I know it sounds a little strange for someone who shares so much in public spaces to talk about letting someone have ‘a little peek inside’, but I’m sure you can imagine that for all I share here, even the raw emotional stuff, I keep a hell of a lot to myself. I am not emotionally fearless or open, I have so many walls I sometimes can’t imagine how anyone will ever get through them.

So I take tiny little steps, and the first one is a measure of him: how he reacts is either going to draw me out, or shut me down. And each time, if I get this far, I am wishing, fervently, that he will hear me, SEE me, and respond in a way that makes me feel safe to share more.

When he doesn’t, when his response makes it clear that he doesn’t ‘get it’ (or me), I quietly close the door that I have cracked open and often won’t try again. I go back to the frivolous emails we were sharing before, and if I am honest, I’m not even sure if he knows that it’s happened because on the surface, nothing has changed. But *I* have changed.

If our correspondence continues, I MIGHT try again… twice, maybe even three times, but each time the door is harder to open, it gets heavier, and soon enough it won’t open at all any more.

There is no blame in it, it’s no-one’s fault, but there is some melancholy for a connection that I had hoped might be made there.

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17 Comments

  1. “And each time, if I get this far, I am wishing, fervently, that he will hear me, SEE me, and respond in a way that makes me feel safe to share more.”

    I have gotten tired of trying to open the door and having to shut it back again. Honestly, I’ve even given up looking for anyone in my life. I am not convinced I will find anyone who can SEE me like that again. Well, not anyone I wish to have as a partner in my life. I do have a few friends who SEE me and I really appreciate them in my life at least.

    It’s hard reopening that door for another try isn’t it. It almost sucks the life out of you sometimes from the disappointment.

    I miss your gorgeous blog. I can’t wait to get to frequent it more often again.

    Respectfully,
    Mysticlez

  2. It sounds as if you’ve had a lot of this recently. I’m sorry about that, that sucks :(.

    “It’s hard reopening that door for another try isn’t it. It almost sucks the life out of you sometimes from the disappointment.”

    I find it hard to do it over and again with the same person, which is why I will try a few times, but then I’m done.

    I don’t find it so difficult with a new person because it’s a fresh slate. These are first tentative forays into something with a bit more depth, so while I will be disappointed if it doesn’t work, it’s certainly not a life sucking disappointment like you describe (thank goodness). I’m sorry if you have had a few of those recently.

    *hugs*

    Ferns

  3. ” I am not emotionally fearless or open, I have so many walls I sometimes can’t imagine how anyone will ever get through them.”

    I *am* emotionally fearless, and I still have walls. :/ Perhaps those walls are simply a part of the human condition. My own experience with opening myself up is that most people won’t necessarily SEE me, and that’s ok. I’m so introverted that it doesn’t much bother me. Though I might be speaking from a place of privilege since I have a long-term partner who does SEE me.(And a relatively new partner who is beginning to SEE me.)

    1. I DO think everyone has walls, I just think that some people have more, thicker, higher walls than others. This makes me think of this *laugh*.

      “My own experience with opening myself up is that most people won’t necessarily SEE me, and that’s ok. I’m so introverted that it doesn’t much bother me.”

      Most people won’t, you are right, and I can relate to the introvert part: I’m not interested in lots of casual friends, so if I’m sharing, I’m looking at this person as a potential partner (and they have shown that they have that potential), not a casual friend.

      “Though I might be speaking from a place of privilege since I have a long-term partner who does SEE me.(And a relatively new partner who is beginning to SEE me.)”

      Ha! Yes. I’m speaking as a single monogamous person talking to a potential partner and I strike so few who I see potential in that it DOES matter.

      Ferns

  4. Sometimes, you need to open the door enough so that people realize it’s being opened, not simply cracking the door and peeking.

    Jake

    1. I do understand what you are saying, but here’s the thing:

      1. When I crack the door open, I AM WEARING A CLOWN SUIT AND SHOUTING TAAAA DAAAAAAH. The fact that he doesn’t see it or hear it or react to it in a way that works for me is the problem.

      2. When someone doesn’t respond to me in the way I need them to, or if I have to change my behaviour in order to get the response I want, it’s a compatibility problem, not a behaviour problem.

      I have enough experience with lovely men with whom I have had conversations about *how to communicate with me* that I know that if there is a fundamental problem with how he hears me or how he reacts to my vulnerability, it’s not something that can be ‘fixed’.

      Ferns

  5. Try flinging it open and shouting TAAAAAAA DAAAAAAAAAA while dressed in a clown suit then

    No?

    Oh ok

    Coug

    Honestly I think it’s a good thing to test the water, but it is heart wrenching to find it’s not what you wanted

    1. “Try flinging it open and shouting TAAAAAAA DAAAAAAAAAA while dressed in a clown suit then”

      HAVE YOU BEEN SPYING ON ME??!!

      “Honestly I think it’s a good thing to test the water, but it is heart wrenching to find it’s not what you wanted”

      It’s a shame, yes. And I find boys I really like so rarely that I feel that melancholy ‘oh’ quite keenly.

      Ferns

  6. Google “a Gestalt Prayer”
    I would quote the whole thing but its late.
    Don’t know why its attributed to Bruce Lee on so many sites.

    I think its message is – stop over analysing things , life is too short.

    1. For those who don’t want to google it:

      I do my thing and you do your thing
      I am not in this world to
      live up to your expectations,
      and you are not in this world to
      live up to mine.
      You are you
      and I am I
      and if by chance we find each other,
      it’s beautiful.

      “I think its message is – stop over analysing things , life is too short.”

      Actually that’s not the message at all, it’s more about fulfilling yourself and your own potential regardless of other people, and the theory that if everyone did that, we would be in a better place to make genuine connections with others.

      But if YOUR message to me is “stop over analysing things, life is too short”, you’re essentially telling me to STFU on my own blog.

      Yeah, that ain’t happening.

      Ferns

  7. You so often capture, and put into words things I feel and/or do in a way that I can’t even explain myself. I’m not quite sure how you do it. And also, I think I may be a mini you in some ways…. :D <3

    1. Hello mini-me *smile*.

      I’m glad that you can relate, though bummed if it means you are having some disappointments.

      Hopefully I can start bringing us both some happy posts that you can relate to! The sooner the better.

      Ferns

  8. “I’m sure you can imagine that for all I share here, even the raw emotional stuff, I keep a hell of a lot to myself.”

    I can learn a something here because, in spite of being very introverted, I am not nearly so guarded in holding things back. I have the unfortunate habit of saying what I feel and if anything, my boundaries are not nearly high enough. I’ve gotten a lot better at it over the years but I still have a way to go. I am also sure that I miss a lot of signals as well. Apparently, I broadcast far better than I receive.

    “I have so many walls I sometimes can’t imagine how anyone will ever get through them”

    By the same token, you are far less likely to let incompatible, or even toxic people into your life. From my experience, not finding the “right” one is far better than finding the “wrong” one

    1. “I have the unfortunate habit of saying what I feel and if anything, my boundaries are not nearly high enough.”

      I know you are seeing this as a negative, but I don’t think there is ANYTHING wrong with that. I think it’s a lovely quality, but it comes with the caveat that you have to couple it with good judgement or you will run into a world of hurt.

      Perhaps don’t work on building walls, but on making good judgements about who you let in. Maybe that’s a thin line that’s difficult to navigate.

      “By the same token, you are far less likely to let incompatible, or even toxic people into your life. From my experience, not finding the “right” one is far better than finding the “wrong” one”

      *smile* This is so very true. I learnt pretty young that being with someone who wasn’t right for me (no matter how much I wished otherwise) was an experience to be avoided.

      Ferns

  9. @Miss Ferns:

    “When he doesn’t, when his response makes it clear that he doesn’t ‘get it’ (or me), I quietly close the door that I have cracked open and often won’t try again. I go back to the frivolous emails we were sharing before, and if I am honest, I’m not even sure if he knows that it’s happened because on the surface, nothing has changed. But *I* have changed. ”

    Oh dear. Every time you say anything frivolous or light-hearted to me in an email in the future, I shall feel that I’ve missed something deep and important that you were shyly trying to impart.

    :-(

    1. I don’t ‘shyly try to impart” things. I say them out loud like a grown up (ref my comment to Jake above).

      If he misses it/ doesn’t react in a way that works for me/ ignores it, we are simply incompatible.

      As for you, if you miss something, I shall shout at you. You’ve earned a bit of shoutery… :)

      Ferns

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