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Does what therapist said sound right

(10 Posts)
darknessontheedgeoftown Mon 20-Feb-17 22:35:33

I'm male and 40ish. I'm shy and have had various issues for which I see a therapist. For various reasons I was a non starter in relationships in my 20s and though I hate to admit it somewhat terrified of women. I have been trying to make sense of a period of my life a few years back when things started to change. To cut a long story short I got depression and when I "awoke" from it I found I could relate to women much better and they to me. I was still catastrophic at chatting anyone up, in fact I still am, but somehow I felt a connection and openness and make some very nice and kind friends some of whom were the gender who I had previously been so afraid of. My therapist reckons I may have come across as arrogant or aloof before, standoff ish. I'm so ashamed to say it but I only started thinking of women as human beings with insecurities like mine once depression had visited me. After, totally devoid of any sexual motive but longing for any human connection I was an ultra safe and unthreatening person who others often confided in. Just wondered if that sounds plausible to anyone reading this.

SpongeBobJudgeyPants Mon 20-Feb-17 22:39:06

Plausible, yes.

geordiedench Mon 20-Feb-17 22:43:08

Yes, that sounds very possible. Do you think it's right? Do you feel happier and more comfortable now that you can relate to women as people and not just as potential partners?

darknessontheedgeoftown Mon 20-Feb-17 22:57:58

Geordie I do feel happier, yes. My sense is that it is right actually. Thing is pre-depression I both failed completely in romance (never spoke to any women) and yet failed to see them as people too. After, I still never "pulled" anyone, not for several years, but I definitely sensed people in general especially women feeling 100% more comfortable around me.

geordiedench Tue 21-Feb-17 15:19:59

Well, that's massive progress. (Always good to hear of something positive coming out of the burden of mental illness.)

Having friends who are women, moving socially in mixed groups, developing interests that appeal to both sexes is a step forward. Then you can move on to inviting women out within a social group, so you get used to asking, and them saying yes or no without it being the pressure of a date, since it's clear you are inviting several people at once. But it makes you comfortable to do the inviting.

The pressure of asking someone you fancy out on a date is massive. I don't know how anyone does it. But asking groups of people out on a regular basis and learning who you have stuff in common with may create a situation where you and someone you like end up getting close naturally through friendship and shared interest or humour.

TDHManchester Tue 21-Feb-17 15:42:28

I think thats very possible. People who are perhaps a little introverted/shy/call it what you like may seem aloof and arrogant to some others.

EssentialHummus Tue 21-Feb-17 15:50:04

People who are perhaps a little introverted/shy/call it what you like may seem aloof and arrogant to some others.

Exactly. Completely plausible. Glad you're doing better OP.

Prawnofthepatriarchy Tue 21-Feb-17 16:20:32

I too am encouraged to hear of your progress, OP. What your therapist said sounds completely plausible.

Sadly there are far too many men who don't see women as wholly human. The PUAs only have to rely on nasty manipulation to get dates because they can't relate to women as people. Rape is only possible when you don't see your victim as human like yourself.

If you learn to be friends with women you will find love. My late (and great) DH got on far better with women than with men. He was a faithful husband because he genuinely loved and respected me. Men like that are popular and respected in return. It's the path to happiness and fulfillment.

Keep on keeping on. You're on to a winner her

Prawnofthepatriarchy Tue 21-Feb-17 16:21:26

Sorry, "winner here."

darknessontheedgeoftown Tue 21-Feb-17 21:11:35

Thasks for those responses. Very moving to hear Prawn's response and I'm sorry for your loss. I think some men see women they are attracted to as a kind of light shone on their (the man's) failure to attract them. They imagine these women are internally looking down their noses at them and taking pleasure in making them fancy someone they can never have. The men then start to hate their own male sexuality and in a sense themselves. The tragedy for some is that they don't look at themselves and perhaps invest in say friendships, getting on in their career or just becoming more emotionally rounded. I was genuinely genuinely incredibly moved when I dropped all the b*****it and admitted the truth to a couple of women I got to know as friends, namely that I was totally insecure and imagined every single woman I might (n)ever talk to would tell me to f* off, tell me I was ugly and make fun of me speaking to them. Obviously I was badly wrong. Not only that the people I spoke to actually understood and empathised with the struggles of the shy straight man vastly more than I thought. I was only ever a danger to myself never anyone else but I do sometimes wonder if all the abusive, angry, frustrated men from Elliott Rodger to the AltRight who seem to be in the spotlight in the world at the moment could actually do with a dose of depression like the one I had, plus a dose of therapy and one kind warm hearted platonic friend of the opposite sex to show them that things are not as they think.

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