It’s been a week. I talked to Erica last Saturday for about five hours, and I think we resolved most everything. It looks like there was a love-language miscommunication. For anyone who may not know, there’s a book by Gary Chapman called The Five Love Languages, that basically discusses the five methods people use to express love to others and like to have love expressed to them. The five love languages are: words of affirmation, acts of service, quality time, gift giving, and physical touch.
Erica’s primary language for receiving is words of affirmation, whereas my primary language for giving is acts of service. We talked about this subject, but I foolishly didn’t take it to heart. I thought everything was fine because I had spent the previous visit doting on her, cooking for her, washing dishes, cleaning her cats’ litter boxes. I neglected to tell her how much she meant to me, but she seemed so happy to be receiving what I gave her. She had made plans to come visit me in February, and I was gathering recipes and planning dates. While I was putting my time and focus on to those plans, I wasn’t telling her the words she needed to hear, causing her to feel distant from me. That’s why she wrote her original email.
We talked about her email, and she said it wasn’t intended as a break-up email; she wanted me to fight for her. However, in previous conversations, she said that she always says means, and when she said that our jumping into a relationship was a mistake, our relationship had run its course, and when we’re not physically present she could take it or leave it, I took those statements at face value. Furthermore, I spent so much of my teens and early twenties trying to win the affections of various women who weren’t interested. When a woman conveys to me that she doesn’t want to be with me, I back off. I don’t want to go through that process again because doing so was mentally and emotionally exhausting.
As for her deleting the photos, when we officially became exclusive, she took some photos of us and posted them on social media along with announcement. I said I was fine with what she was going to post, and I truthfully was, but after 100s of people started responding to it and making comments, I felt like a spectacle, and I didn’t like being the center of attention. When we talked about it, she interpreted our conversation as a request to take the post down, which wasn’t what I meant. So I as far as I knew, the photos were still online. When I saw that they weren’t as soon as she sent her email, I figured she had just recently taken them down. Miscommunication at it’s finest.
There were certain things I opted not to discuss if only because once the conversation put us on amicable terms, I didn’t want to disrupt the peace. Chiefly, I didn’t ask her about her debt situation. That was something that really bothered me, and still does. Erica would make these very strong declarations that she would make my dreams come true, my big one being achieving financial self-sustainability. However, if she’s $300k in the hole or used to having her rich father subsidize a lifestyle she can’t afford, she’s more likely to cost me my dream rather than help me accomplish it. For someone who said she only says what she means, I feel like some of her statements were more flash than substance.
Of course, we didn’t get back together. I could have promised to correct what I did wrong, to not stop telling her I love her with words, but such a promise might have come off a more coerced than authentic. She also said some things that left me a little confused. Early on in our conversation, she talked about how she now thinks she needs a man who’s a feeler like her rather than a thinker like me. She said I’m very much like her mom, which is not a bad thing as her mom is very even-keeled like myself, but her mom is a thinker while her dad is a feeler like herself, and she wants doesn’t want the personality clash. My introversion is also an issue. She claims to be an introvert her self, but I’m a few standard deviations deeper into that side of the spectrum. While she can survive just fine at a prolonged social engagement, after about 3 hours, I’m ready for some solitude. More pertinent to our conversation, she said that if she gets married, she’s want her husband to be a overjoyed as she would on the wedding day, and that if I became fatigued during the event, she “would resent me for the rest of her life,” her exact words.
After all that, she asked if I ever make up my mind that I want to be with her, then I would please let her know. It’s just, I don’t know if I could ever change those two aforementioned aspects of me. I’m always going to be a thinker and not a feeler. I like basing myself on facts and objectivity. Weddings, parties, and other huge get-togethers are always going to be draining to me, and I wince at the notion of her resenting me for the rest of her life because I wasn’t jitterbugging all night long if we got married.
Our conversation lasted longer than it probably should have. I asked to talk at 4:00pm, so that she’d have plenty of time to reach out to her friends and family if she needed support after our conversation ended. It just kept going, almost exclusively because we new when said “good-bye” it would likely be for the final time. She said she wanted to keep in touch and talk to me again. I do, too, and I told her my birthday is in a month, so that’s a perfect excuse to talk again. When the conversation and the evening reached it’s end, I didn’t say “goodbye,” I said “goodnight.” We both hung up, and that was it.
Hurts like Hell. I started dating because I felt like I was too comfortable in my solitude and I needed more human interaction. Now, I wonder if that was a good idea. This experiment has caused too much pain to justify its fleeting moments of pleasure. I wonder if I should return to my celibacy.
Last updated February 10, 2019