Talk

Advanced search

Mumsnet has not checked the qualifications of anyone posting here. If you need help urgently, please see our domestic violence webguide and/or relationships webguide, which can point you to expert advice and support.

I've decided not to date. Why am I absolutely fucking terrified?

(51 Posts)
Farontothemaddingcrowd Sun 10-Sep-17 20:00:29

A potted relationship history:
12 year relationship and marriage. 3 dcs. He gambled and drank. I left him eventually. Then I rushed straight into online dating because I was terrified to be alone. I met a man 3 months later. He swept me off my feet completely. Said he loved me early on. Then became very cold and dumped me after 3 months. He was quite cruel to me and used me for sex afterwards. I became incredibly depressed and my poor dc didn't get the attention they deserved. I'm ashamed of that now.
I went straight out dating again. Met someone about 7 months later. Another 3 month relationship where he declared love early on and then dumped me.
Guess what? I went straight out dating again. Course I did. After 6 months I met a man who I was with on and off for almost two years. First year was genuinely good. Then he became more and more distant. Even when he was going me he didn't love me, I begged him to give me another chance. It all went horribly horribly wrong and he was sleeping with other women at the end, with my permission. It was really messed up and my self esteem was on the floor.
I dated again. Nothing that really went anywhere. Then I met my friend's brother at a wedding and we dated. That ended just over a week ago. He declared love early on, bla bla bla. Then his feelings changed. This time I let him go.
I downloaded all the apps again.
Then something clicked. I've told the dates I had lined up that I'm not ready to date. I've deleted all the apps. Tinder asked if something was broken when I deleted it. I put 'my heart.'
I'm terrified. I don't understand why I'm terrified but I do know there's not a chance of me meeting anyone while I'm so desperate to avoid being alone. I cannot keep doing this. I don't know why this keeps happening, but I need to walk away from it all right now. I hope I don't cave and start using the apps. But I'm knackered, I don't have that much free time, my kids need me and I've a full time job.
God. I don't know what the point of all this is. I don't know what the fuck is wrong with me. But I do know that I'm deeply unhappy and that I've been using dating to fill that empty space inside me for a long time. And I can't do it anymore. I just can't.

Farontothemaddingcrowd Sun 10-Sep-17 20:11:30

Sorry for the essay. I hope someone reads it despite that!

Fecho Sun 10-Sep-17 20:15:43

I read it and I also think you did the right thing by deleting the apps. Give yourself a break. flowers

pigsinwings Sun 10-Sep-17 20:16:18

OP, it's so impressive that you are able to see the problem and taking active steps to remediate the situation. Be proud of yourself and don't be tempted to veer off the path!!

junebirthdaygirl Sun 10-Sep-17 20:18:13

Might be a good idea to have some counselling so you can break the cycle. Well done on quitting dating until you are in a stronger place ( not for ever).
Do good things for yourself that have nothing to do with guys. See a friend. Do some exercise..so self care. You are already on a better track.

Farontothemaddingcrowd Sun 10-Sep-17 20:21:53

I will try. I feel pretty horrible and scared. But the fact that I'm scared shows that I'm a dating addict and I have NO chance of a healthy relationship no matter how much I date. Absolutely none. I'm stepping back, not just because I want a healthy relationship eventually, but because me and my dc deserve more. I deserve to concentrate 100% on the life I have and to learn to make it a happy one.
I may date again in the future but only when I don't need to date. When I don't feel empty inside. When I don't care that much.
I suspect it's going to take me a long time to reach that point. But I am not going to keep putting myself through pain.
When I am ready, my dc will be older and I'll have more freedom to date anyway. But for now, I need to learn to love myself. I don't at the moment.

motheroreily Sun 10-Sep-17 20:21:55

Sorry you've had such a bad time.

I'm taking a break from dating too. I'm not sure for how long but like
You I thought I don't want to invest my free time in swiping, chatting and dating. I work long hours and it
Felt like Another demand on my time.

It's so true dating can't make you happy. I've decided to use my
Spare time on concentrating on making my flat homely, im going to try and join a choir and be a bit lazy sometimes

Farontothemaddingcrowd Sun 10-Sep-17 20:23:00

I had counselling. I think the best way to break the cycle is to step away. I'm pretty self aware so I don't think I need counselling particularly. I just need time.

userxx Sun 10-Sep-17 20:30:22

Well done for recognising the cycle you have ended up in. Step away from the dating and concentrate on yourself for a while. As you say you will never attract a quality man feeling like you do.

scoobydoo1971 Sun 10-Sep-17 20:33:58

Resilience therapy is one thing to consider in your non-dating time. There is nothing wrong with wanting a boyfriend, a partner, a husband etc, but online dating comes with the added risks of being exposed to a player, a non-committed serial dater, a married cheater and a weirdo/ abuser. It is interesting that all the men you meet declare love etc early-on, and that may be because they read that is what you want to hear, and it is a way to manipulate you into compliance with 'their' preference for a relationship. As the wise ladies on here will often reply, you should see actions as priority over words...anyone can tell you they love you, but it is how they act that is important. Remind yourself that you are an attractive woman, the prize and that the right man will be appreciate you just the way you are. However, you need some time out and space away from men until you can set boundaries on expectations and behaviour that you expect from a dating partner. You must be emotionally exhausted after all this adverse experience. Resilience therapy may help you and there are free courses available online.

Pebbles1989 Sun 10-Sep-17 20:38:56

OP, it's incredibly self-aware of you to recognise the pattern and take the steps that you have. flowers

Could you set a time limit, e.g. one to two years, during which time you will focus on yourself and do all those things you always planned and dreamed of? The time may come when it's right to return to dating, but I think your break is very wise.

Farontothemaddingcrowd Sun 10-Sep-17 20:43:19

Yes I think at least a year. I think in my dating I've rejected men who were more measured and I've gone for those who declared love quickly. Again I think my time off will allow me to understand myself more. I can discover what I like doing and really cherish my dc, rather than (I'm ashamed but I must be honest here) resenting them as an obstacle in my dating life. We all deserve more than that.
I think a year will allow me to understand myself.

Pebbles1989 Sun 10-Sep-17 20:45:41

That sounds very positive. It's a good point about getting swept away by men who declare love quickly; I know I've been burnt by that too. Good luck.

Beentherelefthimgotthetshirt Sun 10-Sep-17 20:47:25

Bloody good for you Far! Look just how far you've come over the last few years with increasing self-awareness. So many people don't achieve this. You do need to find that point where you are happy just 'being' if that makes sense. I find that an unhealthy relationship (even when it started well) destroys my inner equilibrium and it always takes me time to get that back. I know when I'm off balance because I think that a totally unsuitable twat could be my Mr Right! I recognise that now.

It's clear from your track record that you have no problem attracting men so when you're balanced and ready then you can get back to dating be that in a year or three years - whenever.

Good luck! A lot of women don't get to where you are preferring to cling to the misery and loneliness that comes from a toxic relationship rather than striking out on their own. Think of the amazing role model you're becoming for your DCs.

Farontothemaddingcrowd Sun 10-Sep-17 20:52:22

Thank you for all the support.
Been you just made me cry, in a good way.
I have mumsnet, I've just downloaded IT to read on my kindle (love the film) and I have Netflix. I can do this. I know it won't be easy and I know I won't always feel positive.

Justaboy Sun 10-Sep-17 20:58:51

Its showing what a midden OLD is in practice. I wonder often where the typical men on these sites came from some other women's unwanted burdens most do the time?.

Course they'll tell you what you want to hear in order to get what they want. Take a bit of time out and see if you can make a few friendships or with someone whos interested in what ever you might be interested in instead but don't got from disaster to disaster please!

You'll manage fine on your own for a while you can do it!

Farontothemaddingcrowd Sun 10-Sep-17 21:18:30

I think they genuinely believe it when they say it. I think I'd rather use mn as a crutch to get me through this. Eventually I won't need a crutch at all.

misszp Sun 10-Sep-17 21:45:12

Far I just want to add that I think it shows strength and self awareness to recognise the cycle and want better for yourself and DC. Too many people look to a partner or others the 'fix' the issue, when actually the healing has to come from yourself. I am still young with no DC but some of what you said has really struck a chord with my own patterns and behaviour, so I just want to say thank you and also good luck with taking this time out for you!

starskey80 Sun 10-Sep-17 21:45:22

Oh you poor thing, that does sound absolutely exhausting.
I have decided the very same. I went out of a ten year marriage and straight away started dating.
Met some one, were seeing each other for a year but he broke my heart.
I straight away downloaded those stupid apps.
But I've deleted them. I need to be alone. To put myself and my wonderful kids first.
And I'm going to be selfish, pamper myself, do some fun courses.
It's gonna be all about me 😀

Farontothemaddingcrowd Sun 10-Sep-17 21:53:26

It has been exhausting. I can't say I feel triumphant, I just feel very very sad. I probably will feel sad for a good long while yet. There is a little child inside me who wants to be cuddled and loved and I need to learn to give that love to myself rather than looking for it externally.

Farontothemaddingcrowd Sun 10-Sep-17 21:55:53

I told my friend (whose brother I just split with) that I would be in touch when I felt better. I can't be reminded of him at the moment. She understood.

MyGastIsFlabbered Sun 10-Sep-17 21:56:31

I'm impressed OP. I'm addicted to online dating, nowhere near any position to be dating really, but scared to be alone. I feel like my self-esteem is totally reliant on how many 'irons' I have. It's a bloody mess.

Farontothemaddingcrowd Sun 10-Sep-17 21:56:40

I actually think, I need to square it in my mind that I may never be with anyone and be happy with that, before I contemplate dating again.

Farontothemaddingcrowd Sun 10-Sep-17 21:58:34

That's brave to admit Gast. Don't be impressed. I'm an absolute bloody wreck, a quivering, man-obsessed, needy mess still. But maybe, at some point in the future, I won't be. Till then I'll just keep putting one foot in front of the other.

NinahH Sun 10-Sep-17 22:42:23

I love not dating! I love it so much I doubt I'll ever bother again. You have so much more time for everything else, I got so bored with the couple thing. You may get to like it too, op!

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now