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 Post subject: Re: Relationship advice, decisions, smiles or tears
PostPosted: Tue Oct 15, 2013 1:59 pm 
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allularpunk wrote:
At any rate, everything is fine. When I said that he was ignoring my texts, what really happened was that he was working and it took him around 30 minutes to get back to me. I'm so neurotic. (But really.)

I feel like this is a really common and unfortunate side effect of the ubiquity of text messaging. It used to be you phoned someone when you wanted to talk or needed to plan getting together. Now with the expectation that people are constantly available feelings get hurt because someone forgot their phone or was in a meeting or having a nap. It has become so easy to read layers and layers of meaning into the gap between sending and receiving and I have to think it's a net negative for a lot of people's mental health.

When my worried-brain is in control about this kind of thing I try to remind myself of all the reasons I can sometimes be slow to respond and how it almost always is about me and my particular circumstances rather than the person waiting for a response.

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 Post subject: Re: Relationship advice, decisions, smiles or tears
PostPosted: Tue Oct 15, 2013 10:08 pm 
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j-dub wrote:
allularpunk wrote:
At any rate, everything is fine. When I said that he was ignoring my texts, what really happened was that he was working and it took him around 30 minutes to get back to me. I'm so neurotic. (But really.)

I feel like this is a really common and unfortunate side effect of the ubiquity of text messaging. It used to be you phoned someone when you wanted to talk or needed to plan getting together. Now with the expectation that people are constantly available feelings get hurt because someone forgot their phone or was in a meeting or having a nap. It has become so easy to read layers and layers of meaning into the gap between sending and receiving and I have to think it's a net negative for a lot of people's mental health.

When my worried-brain is in control about this kind of thing I try to remind myself of all the reasons I can sometimes be slow to respond and how it almost always is about me and my particular circumstances rather than the person waiting for a response.


So true! This was the cause of some crazy needless anxiety on my birthday this past month. I texted T late in the morning, just random hello or whatever and hadn't heard back from him in over 2 hours (unusual for him). I convinced myself that all sorts of awful things had happened, and was on the verge of a full on panic attack. So I called him, and he had totally just been taking a nap because we'd been up really late the night before. D'oh. Cell phones really are ruining our lives.

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 Post subject: Re: Relationship advice, decisions, smiles or tears
PostPosted: Tue Oct 15, 2013 10:11 pm 
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I had to talk to my GED students about this! They would retext me after 30 minutes or so if I hadn't responded, and I would end up with 10 texts when I turned my phone back on after my high school classes. I have an iPhone plan with unlimited data, but no texts, so I pay .25 each.

Now I tell them to give me 8 hours before freaking out and to tell me exactly what they need in the first message.

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 Post subject: Re: Relationship advice, decisions, smiles or tears
PostPosted: Wed Oct 16, 2013 12:06 am 
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I do think that's problematic, but I also think the same thing happened before cell phones. You'd call, wonder why there's no answer. Leave a message. Wonder why they're not returning your call. I think humans are just crazy, really. Though I do find it extra annoying like in Lava's post when people don't say all that they want in the first text. This back and forth takes too long people just spit it out!

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 Post subject: Re: Relationship advice, decisions, smiles or tears
PostPosted: Wed Oct 16, 2013 1:17 am 
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I need the equivalent of 'out of office' for texts.

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 Post subject: Re: Relationship advice, decisions, smiles or tears
PostPosted: Wed Oct 16, 2013 6:23 am 
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Since I don't text message much, I guess I don't think of text messaging as instantaneous? Also, I leave phone messages for people and figure they will get back to me when they get back.

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 Post subject: Re: Relationship advice, decisions, smiles or tears
PostPosted: Wed Oct 16, 2013 8:36 am 
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Mars wrote:
Ya'll might be happy to know after perusing Meetup.com I've found a QUEER COUNTRY WESTERN DANCE GROUP that's meeting TOMORROW, and a vegan gay men's meet up group, that's meeting Wed! Going to both.

Good for you! Have fun!

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 Post subject: Re: Relationship advice, decisions, smiles or tears
PostPosted: Wed Oct 16, 2013 8:44 am 
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The only person I text back asap is Trevor. Everyone else can wait; just because you said something doesn't mean I have to respond right away! I guess it's sort of like screening your phonecalls.

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 Post subject: Re: Relationship advice, decisions, smiles or tears
PostPosted: Wed Oct 16, 2013 9:31 am 
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My mom projects all that onto me with texts. Somehow my partner and I don't fall into that spiral, but if I don't answer my mom right away or tell her in advance I won't be able to she will then call, text again, call and leave a message, facebook message me, and try to facetime me. It is a little intense. I think for her she might just be a bit enthusiastic about the technology and I know she doesn't have friends at their new place, but it gets to be a bit much...especially if she just wanted to tell me about a show she saw or something.

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 Post subject: Re: Relationship advice, decisions, smiles or tears
PostPosted: Wed Oct 16, 2013 9:32 am 
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I don't expect everyone to text me back right away, just my dude, since that's how it's always been with him. I just forget that sometimes he gets busy at work or takes naps or is charging his phone in the other room.

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 Post subject: Re: Relationship advice, decisions, smiles or tears
PostPosted: Wed Oct 16, 2013 11:24 am 
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I don't text and I don't have an expensive phone to constantly check email. I give 2 days between messages.

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 Post subject: Re: Relationship advice, decisions, smiles or tears
PostPosted: Wed Oct 16, 2013 12:11 pm 
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Mars wrote:
I do think that's problematic, but I also think the same thing happened before cell phones. You'd call, wonder why there's no answer. Leave a message. Wonder why they're not returning your call. I think humans are just crazy, really. Though I do find it extra annoying like in Lava's post when people don't say all that they want in the first text. This back and forth takes too long people just spit it out!

True dat. Dorothy Parker even wrote a short story about telephone anxiety: http://www.classicshorts.com/stories/teleycal.html

When I was a teenager, I had this girlfriend who would call me, like, five times a day. If I was on the phone with someone else, she did, on at least one occasion, call the operator to have them interrupt the call saying it was an emergency (you could do that, I think, with some begging. Who knows, I never tried.) And did this routinely to others, I believe. But yeah. The old waiting for the phone to ring anxiety response is as old as time. It was probably waiting for cave paintings once, you know, back in Neanderthal courtship days.

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 Post subject: Re: Relationship advice, decisions, smiles or tears
PostPosted: Wed Oct 16, 2013 12:39 pm 
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Oh my, I'd forgotten all about having the operator interrupt a call for an "emergency" back in the pre-call waiting daze. My bff used to do that regularly. I sort of thought it was an age thing that I don't expect an immediate response to texts but I will bet my old emergency interrupt bff does.

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 Post subject: Re: Relationship advice, decisions, smiles or tears
PostPosted: Wed Oct 16, 2013 10:21 pm 
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Meep. Feeling so many feels. And feeling guilt and regret! I know in theory being Mr. Repeated Plans-Canceler is pretty bad form but Ungh I mean, I really should have thought through that first initial talk we had, and realized he was saying I was being too intense for him. I didn't understand the gravity of his initial pre-all-this-drama feels that he did indeed try and explain to me. And I do kind of get super excited and want to spend lots of time with crushes.

Blaaaahhhhhhhhhh I hate drama. I want to talk to him and get clarity on everything. I have not received a response yet to my response to his apology & reasoning message for Sunday. My response was supposed to be more of a continued discussion... I didn't 'end things' like I may have made seem. But I did say I was upset and can't be cancelled on like I've been, and maybe we should have a week or two without time together. But I ended it asking him what he thinks. Sigh pants. Biggest sigh pants. I know it's no tragic broken heart thing but... it's just all so silly and stupid and makes me feel like I'm really missing out on something that could really be great. I know there's no way of convincing y'all that great part, but I really just can't explain it, there's somethin' about this one. Blah I also kind of feel like I'm being exactly what he's afraid of. Obsessive.

P.S. I know feeling guilt is silly. Just sayin' it's there not that it's logical.

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 Post subject: Re: Relationship advice, decisions, smiles or tears
PostPosted: Wed Oct 16, 2013 11:06 pm 
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Mars, I say this with all kindness, you are being a little obsessive and it's a surefire way to a broken heart. It sounds like you've got a lot of anxiety around relationships and that is just unsustainable. Can you spend some time to work on the source of that anxiety and strategies to combat it? Maybe access some counselling?

It really, really shouldn't be this hard this early. You shouldn't be consistently anxious and hurt and he shouldn't be consistently failing to meet your needs. It sounds like you guys have a real mismatch of communication and interpersonal styles (plus whatever else is going on with him) and you are really hurting for it.

There's a brilliant line in the Perks of Being a Wallflower: "we accept the love we think we deserve." I'd spend some real time thinking about what you deserve and if you'll accept less than that.

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 Post subject: Re: Relationship advice, decisions, smiles or tears
PostPosted: Thu Oct 17, 2013 1:14 am 
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j-dub wrote:
Mars, I say this with all kindness, you are being a little obsessive and it's a surefire way to a broken heart. It sounds like you've got a lot of anxiety around relationships and that is just unsustainable. Can you spend some time to work on the source of that anxiety and strategies to combat it? Maybe access some counselling?

Yeah I know I'm being obsessive. I don't know why I have anxiety around relationships, it feels so odd to me. I tried counseling for a while during my marriage and a bit after the divorce, and some when I was a late teen too, so total I'd say I've had four or so different people, and with all of them it never felt helpful at all. Talking with counselors for me has always felt like just havin' a lil' chat with someone. Usually just friendly banter, or if I try and force myself to get deeper it just feels like mutual exacerbated sighs about the obvious. I've never felt a gain. Not opposed to trying again but I think it's more my way of interacting with people, I don't see that a different counselor will make a difference.

j-dub wrote:
It really, really shouldn't be this hard this early. You shouldn't be consistently anxious and hurt and he shouldn't be consistently failing to meet your needs. It sounds like you guys have a real mismatch of communication and interpersonal styles (plus whatever else is going on with him) and you are really hurting for it.

Yeah. I agree it shouldn't be this hard! Maybe I'm stubborn or something because my mind is pretty gung-ho on telling me that some big, convoluted mix-up happened and if we hit the reset button but remember all these ridiculous mishaps it'll all come together.

j-dub wrote:
There's a brilliant line in the Perks of Being a Wallflower: "we accept the love we think we deserve." I'd spend some real time thinking about what you deserve and if you'll accept less than that.

A friend of mine said something very similar, and it takes me to two places. One is that "well, I deserve someone awesome, fun, and sexy and that dude is awesome, fun, and sexy so, no problems there". The other is that "Ugh I hate the word 'deserve'! Who really 'deserves' anything?". Not that those thoughts lead to anything productive.

Moral of the story: It's just so annoying to me that this all happened at all. Even if he and I weren't going to work out, I just find it so, so annoying it did it like this. Feels so unnecessary and nit-picky, from both parties. Just really really doesn't feel like a way I would ever ever end any relationship, not even a friendship.

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 Post subject: Re: Relationship advice, decisions, smiles or tears
PostPosted: Thu Oct 17, 2013 5:32 am 
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Mars--I don't know you, but I just want to hug you! Because I can see pieces of me in what you are saying.

When I learned about the cheating and the lying in my relationship, I was still so focused on what it had been before that I was unable to see the damage that had been done. My heart was so heavy that I couldn't comprehend the damage that was done... I had the same two thoughts about "deserving" a good relationship and partner.

Since our relationship ended, I've talked to others, reflected, and seen that my needs were probably never being met during the relationship. In fact, there were a lot of signs of emotional abuse. I don't know how I over-looked it for so long. I made myself SO vulnerable, gave unlimited access to my emotions, my body, my soul.

That's not a pattern that I usually fall into--and maybe it's not for you either--but I can say that just from this one instance of giving myself, pouring myself endlessly into someone who ultimately didn't or couldn't appreciate me has broken me completely apart. There is this feeling of being scattered in a million directions, and it's scary as hell. How do I know how to put myself back together? How do I know what to look for in the future? How can I possibly experience love ever again in a healthy way, if I couldn't protect myself?

I know that your relationship was/is only in its earliest forms, but I hope that you are able to claim what you need and to be able to be heard or to walk away. Because even if that person is awesome in their person-ness, it doesn't mean that they are able to be awesome for you and towards you.


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 Post subject: Re: Relationship advice, decisions, smiles or tears
PostPosted: Thu Oct 17, 2013 5:46 am 
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Mars wrote:
I do think that's problematic, but I also think the same thing happened before cell phones. You'd call, wonder why there's no answer. Leave a message. Wonder why they're not returning your call. I think humans are just crazy, really. Though I do find it extra annoying like in Lava's post when people don't say all that they want in the first text. This back and forth takes too long people just spit it out!

Yeah people tend to blame technology with this one but I think it's just what some people are like when it comes to communication.

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 Post subject: Re: Relationship advice, decisions, smiles or tears
PostPosted: Thu Oct 17, 2013 7:13 am 
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Waiting on someone to text you is fantastic compared to the feeling of doom when using Whatsapp and you know they've seen your message but not replied.

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 Post subject: Re: Relationship advice, decisions, smiles or tears
PostPosted: Thu Oct 17, 2013 7:18 am 
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Efcliz wrote:
Waiting on someone to text you is fantastic compared to the feeling of doom when using Whatsapp and you know they've seen your message but not replied.


Oh man! That's one of the things I dislike about some modern forms of communication: the fact that the other person can see that you've seen their message. Sometimes I'm just not in the mood to answer, or I'm in the middle of something else, or I am tired and am having trouble forming words. It's nothing personal. But if I know that someone has seen that I've seen their message (like on Whatsapp, facebook, or even PM) I feel pressured to answer right away even though I don't want to (for any of the above-mentioned reasons) because I don't want them to think I'm ignoring them.

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 Post subject: Re: Relationship advice, decisions, smiles or tears
PostPosted: Thu Oct 17, 2013 8:12 am 
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pssht, just own it! if they know you, they should know your habits and respect them! I have all of my read-receipts visible (except for email) which is totally okay. I like to know that at least someone acknowledged it, but doesn't feel like responding. i.e. if I message saying "running late, I'll meet you at X", then if they're driving they don't have to reply and I know that they know

clearly from this thread of conversation it's not an isolated thing - tons of people don't like to reply asap. reclaim the read receipt as a positive thing! :)

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 Post subject: Re: Relationship advice, decisions, smiles or tears
PostPosted: Thu Oct 17, 2013 8:42 am 
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Mars, just let this guy go. Seriously, he's obviously giving you more grief than the amount of happiness he's bringing you is worth. It's so, so easy to say, "but if we just..." and "if he just..." and "if I just..." but the thing is, you need to find someone who things ACTUALLY work with, not someone who if you both just completely changed things about yourselves it might possibly maybe work out.

I've learned that it's easy to have that initial connection with people. It's easy to feel like someone is amazing and wonderful and perfect, and to picture yourself having their babies or raising kittens in Guam together or whatever. The thing that's harder to find is a person who is ACTUALLY compatible, and in the right headspace, and right circumstances. I know how easy it is to get wrapped up and invested in a relationship based on that initial rush of awesomeness without vetting whether a person is really, realistically, a good partner. It's really hard to step outside of the infatuated feelings and take a good look at whether that person is a good match long term, so I guess maybe it's helpful having a message board full of people to use as a sounding board in that regard.

I'm sure K is a good person. And yes, it sounds like if things were different, he could potentially be a good partner for you. Unfortunately, things aren't working out the way things are. It sounds like maybe he is just not in a place to give you what you need, and that's sending you into a bad place. Look after yourself. Keep line dancing.

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 Post subject: Re: Relationship advice, decisions, smiles or tears
PostPosted: Thu Oct 17, 2013 8:51 am 
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lepelaar wrote:
Efcliz wrote:
Waiting on someone to text you is fantastic compared to the feeling of doom when using Whatsapp and you know they've seen your message but not replied.


Oh man! That's one of the things I dislike about some modern forms of communication: the fact that the other person can see that you've seen their message. Sometimes I'm just not in the mood to answer, or I'm in the middle of something else, or I am tired and am having trouble forming words. It's nothing personal. But if I know that someone has seen that I've seen their message (like on Whatsapp, facebook, or even PM) I feel pressured to answer right away even though I don't want to (for any of the above-mentioned reasons) because I don't want them to think I'm ignoring them.


Also it doesn't really mean that they have seen your message! It just means that their device has passed by your message! I don't necessarily read everything right away, but I might happen to navigate to the open Facebook tab, or have left my computer on when I've walked away from it. Someone might be on a device they share with others, or someone else might pick up their device...there are a zillion things that could potentially have occurred when you see a "this person has seen your message" message that aren't actually "this person has seen your message". I don't assume anyone has actually seen my message unless they acknowledge in some way that they've seen it.

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 Post subject: Re: Relationship advice, decisions, smiles or tears
PostPosted: Thu Oct 17, 2013 9:11 am 
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Jordanpattern is wise. I think it's one of the hardest things when someone seems like the right person, but the circumstances are not right. Which almost hurts more, but it's vitally important to a relationship.

My unsolicited advice would be to just be friends with this kid while you both work on yourselves, you know? He doesn't sound like a bad guy, just a little thoughtless? And he can't give you what you need from him. This is coming from someone who is friends with all of her exes though, so take it with a grain of salt.

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 Post subject: Re: Relationship advice, decisions, smiles or tears
PostPosted: Thu Oct 17, 2013 11:15 am 
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Mars wrote:

j-dub wrote:
There's a brilliant line in the Perks of Being a Wallflower: "we accept the love we think we deserve." I'd spend some real time thinking about what you deserve and if you'll accept less than that.

A friend of mine said something very similar, and it takes me to two places. One is that "well, I deserve someone awesome, fun, and sexy and that dude is awesome, fun, and sexy so, no problems there". The other is that "Ugh I hate the word 'deserve'! Who really 'deserves' anything?". Not that those thoughts lead to anything productive.

Moral of the story: It's just so annoying to me that this all happened at all. Even if he and I weren't going to work out, I just find it so, so annoying it did it like this. Feels so unnecessary and nit-picky, from both parties. Just really really doesn't feel like a way I would ever ever end any relationship, not even a friendship.

If he was really awesome for you, you would not have to vent on a message board. He might be great but not what you need. What you deserve is to have someone in your life who can meet your needs and whose needs you can reasonably expect to meet.

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