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Never been truly loved by a man ...

(26 Posts)
BewitchedBothered Wed 12-Apr-17 20:33:49

I know that sounds very dramatic ... yet when I realised this today it felt very painful.

I'm talking about real romantic love. Not liaisons, crushes, unrequited love, lust, etc. I think it must be amazing to truly love and be loved by someone, but it just seems to happen for some people and not others. I am open to this now, but it feels like its getting a bit late age-wise for me.


PollytheDolly Wed 12-Apr-17 20:36:51

How old are you?

BewitchedBothered Wed 12-Apr-17 22:56:31

I'm 50 Polly.

I realise I haven't said much about myself. I look back and see that I had no expectations of love from men, which was self-fulfilling of course. Maybe now I'm having a kind of change of heart and priorities. It feels like at the moment I have this romantic, loving energy freed up. Its hard to explain. And now I kind of realise time is running out ...

RaspberryRoyale Wed 12-Apr-17 23:17:56

I hear you.

40. Divorced. Only ever in dysfunctional/abusive relationships, including my childhood.

I was literally just thinking this today and feeling a bit sorry for myself. Self esteem through the floor, even though my mantra is supposed to be "you deserve to be loved & respected".

Have a nice man friend, but honestly, have no idea if this is 'something' to him or just the usual 'passing time'. Got to work on that self esteem. Think about all the amazing things we do day in day out, without a thought.

I've been reading about attachment theory. Fascinating and very insightful...

imablackstarnotapopstar Thu 13-Apr-17 00:06:48

Same here - 3 abusive narcissistic ex husbands, plus a very nasty boyfriend in my late teens/early 20s, rubbish neglectful parents. Obviously I have sought out these relationships because they seem familiar but I do look at couples who have been together for 30+ years and say they married their best friend and feel a sense of longing.

MyPerfectCousin Thu 13-Apr-17 00:23:28

Yep. 42. Also only ever had dysfunctional/abusive relationships, including my childhood.

No idea what it is to feel safe or loved or cherished or respected or valued... I had no expectations of it either, having been brought up being told that no one would ever want or love me. I was focused on finding someone who would tolerate me. It meant that I put up with all sorts of stuff that I wouldn't do now.

The older I get, the less likely it is to happen because the less open I am to it and the more cynical and mistrustful I am of people's motives. Largely through experience.

It's a deep, physical pain.

Inexperiencedchick Thu 13-Apr-17 01:19:48

39, same here...

ittooshallpass Thu 13-Apr-17 08:41:37

I feel exactly the same. It is hard to explain the deep hurt, envy and sadness I feel.

Why is it so easy for others?
'Helpful' friends tell me it's my fault as I give off mixed signals. I'm closed. Apparently.

I have no idea how to resolve the situation. I am terrified of being alone for the rest of my life, but that's the way it is I guess...

Sorry OP. I have no answers but I really do feel you pain.

PollytheDolly Thu 13-Apr-17 08:48:15

I met my DH at 42. It's the love you describe so, never give up and believe in yourself.

My DH was 49, a year younger than you wink

noego Thu 13-Apr-17 09:11:59

Define Love? if you are seeking romantic love as depicted in movies, novels, TV programmes, magazines etc then that pseudo love is unlikely to occur except for a short period.
An emotional connected love, that is deep, holy, unconditional and pure is something that is in all of us and can be extended to all humans. Find that love within you and give it freely and you will receive love in return, this love will be for always.

heartbroken40 Thu 13-Apr-17 09:15:06

I have loved and be loved as you said once, over 20 years ago. Since then, nothing. And today I am feeling so sorry for myself.

I am lucky to have experienced it, but it was so many years ago. Since then, only sadness, some glimmer or possibilities that never materialised and now another crushing disappointment.

What to do? Maybe we are destined to this, some people are not meant to be loved that way.

I am 40.

BewitchedBothered Thu 13-Apr-17 10:41:46

Just getting back to thank you for your responses.

Its something I've only ever considered in the vaguest of ways before. But it hit me yesterday like a 4 tonne truck. I was driving, and a golden oldie song came on, one I've heard before, but it really affected me this time. I realised, suddenly, what I have missed out on sad.

As for my childhood, I think its more my parents were more emotionally neglectful, and unromantic as people. And one way this probably affected me is by not knowing how to look for love and lack of trust. So I was only guided by my hormones and vague romantic instincts which isn't probably going to mean a great outcome. Unless a man took a leap of faith, which no man ever did.

Anyway still a heavy heart here this morning, it feels very strange, as I still have to carry on with things with this realisation. I'm not sure what will happen with it. Part of me wants to go looking! And I probably will do a bit of internet dating, but not feeling all that confident it will change things and I know OLD is a testing forum to say the least.

Anyway, thank you all again. It was just nice to tell someone. I'm sorry to hear of your pain too. Sometimes it feels better not to know this, I wonder if thats what some people prefer to do.


MadameCholetsDirtySecret Thu 13-Apr-17 10:44:08

I only found it at 43.
My two long term relationships before had nothing on this one.

I hope you all find someone just like my DH. flowers

MyPerfectCousin Thu 13-Apr-17 12:12:30

some people are not meant to be loved that way

I no longer think I was born unloveable, but I do think I was made that way.

I was only guided by my hormones and vague romantic instincts which isn't probably going to mean a great outcome

Same here. And no, it didn't.

heartbroken40 Thu 13-Apr-17 14:31:19

Myperfect, what makes you say that you became unlovable? I am just trying to understand where I am going wrong.

Once in my life I was on top of the world, everything seemed possible. Now I exist, in a desert of trivialities and very small emotions (often no emotions) and I wonder what went wrong.

I would really appreciate your answer, I am reading a lot about happiness/relationships etc but I am lost

noego Thu 13-Apr-17 14:54:10

Everyone is lovable. They may have been conditioned not to believe this from childhood or previous relationships. There is a lot of love around, don't believe there isn't.

Thedaffodilsarecoming Thu 13-Apr-17 15:15:28

It breaks my heart to read people saying these things about themselves. Everyone is loveable but only by the right person. We're all odd, all have our foibles but I truly believe there's someone (or lots of people) out there for each of us. Age doesn't matter so never give up on it. When you do that you push others away. Who knows when they might turn up? They also might not look like you expect them to.

ittooshallpass Fri 14-Apr-17 08:56:02

Believe me, I am not pushing others away. There is no one to push!

It's all very well saying never give up, but for my own self preservation I have had to. It hurts far too much to have it at the forefront.

Every now and then the realisation hits and the pain and sadness is excrutiating.

It's hard to read posts from those who are saying we should give our love freely to receive it. I have plenty of love in my life. There is just no one who loves me above anyone else. It's hard to explain; I'm just not that special person for anyone.

A simple example; I get hugged and wished Happy New Year at around 5 past 12... after everyone has wished the most important person in their life a Happy New Year. So I am loved and do love, but I'm not special to anyone.

BewitchedBothered Fri 14-Apr-17 17:31:51

Well you know I understand what you're saying ittooshallpass. I have a lot of love to give, and I don't believe I'm --fighting suitors off--pushing people away either. Maybe the (charming) drunk who admired my hair colour in 24 hour Tescos two nights ago, but you know, generally I'm not. I don't feel unloveable either, though I know some people do. Lots of people who are loved aren't even that bloody nice! Anyway, I feel a bit better today. In the scheme of things romantic love may not be the biggest thing since, but there is still some aspect of it, the intimacy and sharing, I would love to have in my life truth be told.

isitjustme2017 Fri 14-Apr-17 17:46:54

Do you think its something to do with the types of men we fall for? I've had 2 horrible relationships (still currently in the 2nd). I think I was just attracted to the 'mean and moody' type who then turned out to be just plain mean. i always remember going out with a lovely, attentive and loving guy years ago who just didn't interest me.

So perhaps its just the guys we've been attracted to?

MyPerfectCousin Fri 14-Apr-17 18:50:58

heartbroken my mother told me from a very young age that no one would ever love me/want me/take me home/want to be seen with me...

I didn't realise at the time but, on reflection, I had pretty much internalised being unloveable by about 10/11. Through my teens and early 20s, I was desperate to meet someone to love and be loved. Partly to prove her wrong and partly because I already felt the weight of being unloved. But I didn't believe that I deserved anyone decent. So if anyone 'worth having' showed an interest, I just felt really embarrassed/ashamed for them and pushed them away. All of my relationships were abusive. I was in my mid 30s before I realised domestic abuse wasn't a feature of all relationships. When men treated me badly, I just accepted it because I'd always been told I didn't deserve any better anyway and should just be lucky that someone was willing to "take [me] on".

I married a man at 31 who had issues. I knew that I didn't love or fancy him and I knew that he didn't fancy or love me either. We were good friends and just figured that at least we wouldn't be lonely. It didn't work like that. We were too incompatible and clashed on all the important stuff. He was financially abusive. And he eventually met someone he fell in love with.

I'm now 42 and not only do I have all the same inadequacies that I had as a child/teenager/20something/30something... I'm now also a couple of stone heavier than I'd like, a lone parent of 2 children and I have another few decades of all that stuff being reinforced.

I've been told that I am 'unloveable' not because I always was, but because I have learnt to be that way. I've been told that I would need fairly long term intensive therapy to even stand a chance of putting it right. I don't have the time, the money or the emotional energy/capacity for it.

heartbroken40 Fri 14-Apr-17 20:53:30

Thanks myperfect, it is a similar story for me. My parents always thought the best of my intellect but they always thought I was not very pretty. Now I think I am decent looking but still I often feel inadequate. How tough!

user1489261248 Fri 14-Apr-17 21:12:18

I am sorry to hear that OP.

However, I have heard a few people say who I know/have known, that they have never been IN love. One lady I know told me some time back, that even at the age of 50-something, and after 30 years of marriage, (35 together,) she can honestly say she has never been in love. She cares for her husband, and has feelings for him, but has never been truly in love with him. And she says it makes her sad that she has never been in love, but that's just the way it is.

She said she dated him at 18-19 because her best friend was dating his mate, then they drifted into a relationship, started living together, then got married, and had kids. Because it was expected of her, and it was the done thing. She said, back in her day, women didn't want to be left on the shelf, so most women would settle for a man that would do. As long as he had his own teeth and hair, and a job, he would do.

But she says he is a nice man, a good dad, and a good provider, and they get on well most of the time.

But she has never been in love with him. After 35 years together.

Almost as sad as not being loved by a man, to have been with a man for 35 years that you are not in love with.

Especially when - as she stated - he is in love with her.

And no, he doesn't know that she is not in love with him.

BewitchedBothered Fri 14-Apr-17 22:06:04

Interesting points User148. Bit sad though. You'd think she'd have grown to love him maybe, but when you "settle" maybe thats not how it works.

Also, occasionally you come across people who have low self-esteem but (luckily?) meet someone who loves them to bits!

Its all a mystery!

BewitchedBothered Fri 14-Apr-17 22:19:22

"She said, back in her day, women didn't want to be left on the shelf, so most women would settle for a man that would do. As long as he had his own teeth and hair, and a job, he would do"

But she's only in her 50s shock. Perhaps she came from a very traditional place though.

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