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Constantly worried a man will go off me - anyone else ever get like this?

(20 Posts)
Gah81 Wed 01-Feb-17 16:06:22

Does anyone else ever constantly think that the person they're dating is probably going to leave them? And then worry if they don't text/call (or respond to your text/call) within a set period of time that it's because they're going off you? Even if you've been in a relationship with them for 1/2/3/whatever years?

I'm lucky enough to have my own job, life, hobbies, flat, friends etc. I've spent various periods happily single, but also have been lucky enough that some men seem to want to ask me out (I work in a male-dominated industry, which probably helps, and have quite a few male friends though my closest ones are female).

I'm currently in a relationship with a lovely man and have been going out with him for a year. He is sweet, attentive, generally wonderful and I can be myself with him. Mostly, anyway - the one thing I'm still trying to keep from him is that I am constantly worried he is going to go off me so am always on the lookout for signs that his interest is waning.

I don't know why I do/think this. I always seem to imagine the worst in relationships, even with my parents (when I was little and they were a bit late coming back from an appointment, I used to be really worried that something horrible had happened to them) and just waiting to be left. Yet in reality, I've dated lovely men who treat me beautifully and who are always there for me.

I feel ridiculous for being so needlessly (when there are bigger problems in the world), the worrying is driving me nuts and I don't want to drive my boyfriend away with my insecurities. Am I alone in this? Can anyone give me any tips on how to deal with it?

Polarbearflavour Wed 01-Feb-17 16:11:22

I'm exactly the same! I did have counselling and it helped a bit.

I think part of my insecurity is in that I've been in relationships with live in partners but not married and in my head it's the lack of commitment that makes me anxious. I do realise that marriage is no guarantee either!

I'm dating again - first time in years and driving myself mad! It's far more anxiety reducing than being in a relationship.

justpoppy Wed 01-Feb-17 16:34:30

I could have written your post (apart from the bit about dating lovely men!). I've been with my boyfriend for just over a year and honestly it's the best relationship I've ever been in. I'm just full to the brim of self doubt though and it's doing my head in. I'm pretty good at hiding it too which probably makes it worse as he has absolutely no idea how I'm feeling.

thisisallnewtome8 Wed 01-Feb-17 17:00:28

I'm feeling very similar myself at the moment. I'm convinced something is wrong. Try and play it cool but then end up asking 'what's wrong' and this just irritates him beyond belief and then we do end up arguing. I don't want this relationship to end but hate feeling in a state of anxiety all the time.

Gah81 Wed 01-Feb-17 17:02:55

Thank you both - that makes me feel a lot better just knowing I'm not the only one who feels this way. I don't think my boyfriend knows how I feel either, justpoppy and I do wonder if I ought to get it off my chest... but I'm not sure what good it would do, practically.

That's an interesting point Polarbearflavour re: not being married. Though you're right, marriage isn't a guarantee that they're not going to go off you (look elsewhere on MN for so many examples of that). I've never been married either.

The only way I could deal with dating anxiety/insecurities was to start off dating a few men casually (drinks, maybe a kiss) for a few weeks. If I was worried about not receiving a text from one of them, at least there was usually a text from someone else waiting which made me feel better.

I keep trying to tell myself I'm a nice person with good qualities (I like to think I am!) but even though I might understand it in my head, I don't seem to really feel/believe it. Maybe therapy would help. May I ask, what kind of therapy you did (CBT or talking or...?)?

Gah81 Wed 01-Feb-17 17:05:10

Ah, we crossed thisisallnewtome. I find it so hard trying to strike the right balance between hiding it/bottling it up and letting them know that I'm worried.

thisisallnewtome8 Wed 01-Feb-17 17:09:42

I'm thinking I do have something to worry about though. He has been distant for a couple of weeks. He also said something really hurtful last weekend. Although he apologised and said he didn't mean it. I'm not sure I believe him. It's the dreading it I hate. I would rather just know. Arghhhh!

Polarbearflavour Wed 01-Feb-17 17:22:18

I had talking therapy.

I am an anxious person generally and I guess even if I was in the perfect relationship or marriage I would still be feeling like this.

OnceMoreIntoTheBleach Wed 01-Feb-17 17:35:19

I feel like this too. After 10-yr marriage break up and then 2.5 yr relationship ended, I'm now dating again and I feel I need to try not to be paranoid. I hope to be able to just be me and be open and honest and easy to talk things through with and figure that if he wants to break up at some point, that's out of my hands.

Ironically, it was me who ended all my previous relationships, so it can't be being dumped that has made me paranoid. But one thing I know is that everything can change and sometimes we can't do anything to stop it, so I try to not worry. Easier said than done but I know that my paranoia has been a stumbling block to relationships before and I don't want to go through that again.

SheFeedsYouTeaAndOranges Wed 01-Feb-17 17:37:34

Yep, same here. My solution is staying single.

2cats2many Wed 01-Feb-17 17:39:47

Google "Attachment theory" and take a look at an attachment style called Insecure Ambivalent and see if any of it strikes a cord.

The thing to remember when looking at attachment theory is that it isn't about what's "wrong" with you. It's an explanation about how we adapt to our upbringing and survive. It can help to explain responses that otherwise make no sense.

Gah81 Wed 01-Feb-17 20:16:20

Thank you all. I too am an anxious person - I keep trying to relax and calm down like other people, but I really am one of life's worriers.

And I will look into attachment theory - would be nice to have some light cast on why I react the way I do.

thisisallnewtome8 sorry to hear that - I agree that not knowing is the worst. Currently am trying to tell myself: we have no ties, no complicated finances or anything so if he wanted to break up with me, he would just do it.

OldLibrary Wed 01-Feb-17 20:56:41

I do and it then happens, at some point, be it months or years.

May be a self fulfilling prophecy.

Chocolatefudgecake100 Wed 01-Feb-17 21:03:28

Im the same x

LesisMiserable Wed 01-Feb-17 21:57:47

Well statistically most relationships end at some point be that weeks/months/years. And for a miriad of reasons. Just as likely to be dumped and doing the dumping, I know I've been on both end of it. Maybe stop seeing a never-ending relationship as a goal and start seeing the here and now as a gift worth enjoying. Do you make each other happy?' If you do, be present. Be grayeful and stop focussing on a future event that is in no way promised to you either way. You're lucky to have met someone who makes today better for you, lap it up, relax and let it unfold as it will.

user128057 Thu 02-Feb-17 12:01:18

This is exactly like me. I constantly worry that my partner will find someone who doesn't have a disability and whose way more prettier than me. I'm hard bloody work in relationships

sweetlifeforme Thu 02-Feb-17 15:03:25

This is just so me... I actually opened my own thread about my current situation and dreading the fact that the great guy I just met is ALREADY not into me... even though we only met recently and all was great.

Sometimes I feel like there are 2 people in my mind... one who is experiencing all this freaky issues and struggles to cope with them, and the other one who thinks 'really'... and sardonically laughs at how ridiculous it is to even thing of it that way... as we all know relationships and why they don't survive are a complicated matter, and it all happens for millions of reasons.

Gah81 Thu 02-Feb-17 16:37:09

It really does seem like there are a few of us out there flowers.

Just...how does one ever get out of thinking this way? Therapy? Or being with a guy that you can admit how you feel to? Though I can't help thinking that if the shoe was on the other foot and he told me he was insecure in this way, when I go out of my way to make him feel cared for and tell him that I love him etc., I would think he was so silly, albeit rather sweet - it wouldn't change how I feel about him.

I agree it could be a self-fulfilling prophecy (which is what my mother always tells me) and thinking this just adds to the pressure I feel not to let him know how anxious I get!

I just sometimes wonder what it would take to make me feel secure. I've been the one doing the breaking up (except for one occasion) so it's not like I've had a series of men say "you are driving me insane/I have found someone prettier/more interesting/more intelligent, I have to leave you" which at least might be a logical reason for being so anxious about it. I must google attachment theory later too...

I feel I can be myself with the current guy, except for this one respect - when I sit on my hands/bury myself in a project or hobby/find another distraction to not seem concerned if he hasn't texted me as quickly as I think he should (!)

LoveforPGTipsMonkey Thu 02-Feb-17 21:32:01

OP so when you dumped all these exes, was it to do with feeling anxious that they'll dump you first - or not connected at all? If it was, then obvoiusly your anxiety is so high that you become avoidant, as rhe fear gets to much and you want to end each situation.
If it's just with this guy - well maybe it's not so bad, possibly then the fact you ended all r-ships makes you anxious due to knowing how easily you can go off someone = could apply to him in this case.

Ava7Susan Mon 14-Aug-17 01:12:07

Message deleted by MNHQ. Here's a link to our Talk Guidelines.

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