Taking Off the Blinders: When It’s Too Good To Be True

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If there is one grand lesson I’ve learned about life and love, when it feels too good to be true, it usually is. If you stow that little nugget of truth in the back of your head, it will force you to keep at least a little part of yourself safely back—even when it’s tempting to just dive into the glorious beauty of what feels like the most delicious love affair with drunk blindness.

Though I didn’t really see signs, I felt them in my gut. I tried to explain why to a friend of mine. If we meshed so well intellectually, emotionally, and physically, had wonderful times together, and he seemed so into me, where did my hesitation come from? I rattled off a few concerns—that I wasn’t going to live up to his larger than life impression of me, that he was probably moving back to his native country in a year or so and that I had some worries that I would wind up wanting more from him emotionally time-wise than he had in his schedule to give.

It’s interesting because he chose that word—a gut feeling—to describe how he has felt that things might be a little off between us the last two weekends, like we were on different trajectories. This was after having two amazing weekends filled with dancing nights, lazy mornings twisted in each others arms, and hours of intimate conversations that he agreed made us feel like we’d known each other much longer than the period that we have.

This was after I’d spent the last 4 nights and 4 days in his home, two days longer than I’d intended because he’d said, “I don’t want to think about it,” when I asked him when he thought I should head home. That same day he bought a ridiculous amount of groceries, asking me what I wanted and needed as if I was going to be staying for another week, if not visiting again for a long visit soon.

Then, the next night, after we’d had a particularly bonding conversation, he went to do his nightly meditation. After we snuggled into bed, he brought up that if it were okay, he would like a couple of days to himself to quiet his thoughts and reconnect with himself. I said that was totally fine, reassuring him I wasn’t upset by his request because I needed to get back and take care of things at home.

The next day, he was in constant contact as I got ready to go, then took a taxi to take a train to take a bus back home. After a few days, however, I realized that while we were still keeping in touch, I was doing most of the initiating. I started to get a little suspicious. As the weekend was on the brink, and we hadn’t yet made our normal confirmation of our plans, I asked him if he wanted to get together. He said something about still needing some time to himself. I told him that I thought he might need that.

His reply:

 Thanks for understanding. You are very mindful and wise and I want to let you know that I value and respect that a lot!

After all the effusive, romantic and affectionate words he’s used with me in the past, these words struck a wrong chord with me. Something wasn’t right. But later that night, he sent me a message from the bar with his friend asking, “How is my honey doing?” To some joking request I’d made on his Facebook page where he’d posted a photo of the night, he’d say, “For you, SoloAt30, always… J”

Yesterday I heard nothing from him all day, so I finally decided to confront him. Was this needing time for himself actually code for wanting to see other people? Call it women’s intuition—or just a reality check. Though he was supposed to be working, he took time to make the phone call.

Blinders On by Angie Warren

I sat stunned, listening to the spew of bullshit, couched in words in attempt not to “cause suffering or hurt feelings.” He told me he did in fact have a drink with a girl this past week, but his friends said it would be okay since we weren’t exclusive, like boyfriend/girlfriend or anything.

Seeing each other exclusively for several weeks now, driving three, sometimes six hours a week to see me; being intimate with each other exclusively; calling me his girlfriend to me, to his roommate, his friends, family; telling his father in another country about me and introducing us informally via phone; making every effort to get close to my family, including calling himself “Uncle” around my nephew…I’m not sure what else I was supposed to think. Hey, maybe they run things differently in that central European country of his, but if he had to hide things and talk code to me about it, I am thinking not.

The worst thing about it is that he wasn’t going to talk to me about any of this—didn’t think he had to—if I hadn’t asked him. Said he hadn’t really put these thoughts and feelings into words yet, and struggled to even do so now, which was apparent because he couldn’t even give reasons for this off feeling in his gut.

Well, that off feeling in his gut I think is really that he met some other girl who intrigued him enough to want to go on a date with her, but he wanted time to see how that and maybe other dates with other women go before he possibly made any decisions with me. I told him that, and he got all huffy that I was accusing him of this American term of the “fade out.” But really, we both know that’s what this is, even if he is saying he’d like to meet me again sometime. Really?

Come on, seriously, grow a pair of balls. Just be real. Some of you guys wonder why we flip out. It’s not that you make a decision to move on. It’s that you toy with us and then lie about it to our faces before you cut us loose. It’s that you are secretly moving on before you finally tell us about it. That’s what pisses me off.

If you’re genuinely confused about how you feel, just be honest about that. This is supposed to be the king of communication, the one who kept urging me to talk and tell him how I was feeling about this and that. Why didn’t he feel like he should reciprocate?

Believe me—when I say I can handle it, I can. And by handling it, I mean hitting flush and moving on.

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10 thoughts on “Taking Off the Blinders: When It’s Too Good To Be True

  1. I’m only an occasional visitor to your blog, but after reading this post I just wanted to say that I’m really sorry to read this and that sounds like a really crappy way for him to act after all the intoxicating deliciousness that preceded it. I’m glad that you sound strong and like you’re not buying any of the bullshit that followed. Of course he knew what impression he’d given you and that you had every right to be upset. Getting huffy sounds like guilt deflection. And yes, honesty is really helpful. I hope you meet a guy who has that romance and charm and combines it with honesty and integrity too.

  2. I am so sorry that this happened to you. :( I am not going to make any kind of trite comment that cheapens how you feel, but when this kind of hurt happens…I just felt it should be acknowledged.

  3. The gut feeling never lies. Ugh. I’m going through something similar now in my relationship. If you sense something is off (even with no grounds or real reason for suspicion), then there’s a 99 percent chance something is wrong. Just be thankful you didn’t waste any more time with him. And that bit about “needing time to reconnect with himself” – such bull shit! I hate dating.

  4. Some of this sounds eerily similar to the relationship I am currently in now. Only it’s her doing some of the things the guy you were dating did. It might turn out different for us, but right now, I’ve been left to wonder.

    The one main difference between my situation and what you experienced is the level of signs he gave that suggested he was thinking long term. That’s what pisses me off. I’m really sorry you had to go through that.

    I do think that sometimes, people need time to reflect and “reconnect” so to speak. But clearly, he was just stalling, hoping you wouldn’t push on the situation for awhile.

    Perhaps he got scared and decided it would be easier to run. Real intimacy always brings up fear, and it seems a lot of folks these days would rather bail than face that fear. Which is sad

  5. Good for you, girly. I’m so sorry this happened to you, but this man doesn’t sound worthy of your time at all. You deserve much better. When you notice these kinds of behavior patterns so early on, there’s no chance they’ll improve over the course of the relationship.

    I’m not sure why guys think total avoidance is a better approach than honesty. THAT’S why we get upset; because of their inability to be completely upfront from the get-go.

  6. Charlotte – this isn’t just a guy thing. I’ve been faded on like this by a few women who seemed totally into me. One in particular comes to mind. One day she’s saying she loves me for the first time. A few days later, she e-mails me to say she can’t talk right now, but something is up. And then it all went downhill from there. I’d spent time with her children. Met her friends. The whole bit.

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