No worries about not posting sooner! We totally get that sometimes life just sweeps you away, and you don’t necessarily have time to even sit down and figure out how you feel until much later. It’s good to hear from you now.
I can hear that out of the experiences that you had with this guy, you’ve been learning a great deal about how your own mind and about how your interactions with other people work. You talk about “polarizing” people in your mind — the way that they affect you leads you to either paint them as black or as white. It sounds like after you’ve stepped away, or calmed down some about a particular instance, you’re able to see that they are much more grey than that, full of their own flaws and strengths. You mentioned that this idea probably seems obvious to us, but what I think is interesting is that it probably feels really obvious to YOU sometimes (like when you were writing this last response) – and perhaps even AS you are actively seeing someone in extreme (correct me if I am wrong). I can imagine that that’s part of what feeds into the confusion about how to manage emotions…. The idea that you are aware that you do this, but can’t stop it, even as it’s happening.
After all of this, and seeing him and recognizing that he’s not necessarily all that he appears to be in your “movies”, I can only imagine how tiring and saddening it is to still feel so strongly for him! I can hear that it’s making you wonder a great deal about how you manage intimacy in general. I wish I knew the answers to your questions, Luciana, because I can hear how concerned you are with what you’re seeing that seems to be a trend in the barriers that you put up between you and others. In answer to “how can I stop doing that?”, I would ask you WHY you think that you do it — you mentioned that you’re afraid of being hurt. What do you think it would take for you to be able to trust someone?
I’m afraid that I don’t have an answer to your second question either — mostly because it’s one of those very personal situations where I don’t think that we could possibly have an answer for you, and where I believe you had to try your own path. Which you did. The fact that it might not have worked in terms of removing him from your thoughts doesn’t necessarily mean it failed either — just perhaps that it’s difficult to separate your emotions from your thoughts about someone who you powerfully care(d) for… I know that’s not really a great answer when you’re still feeling trapped by intrusive thoughts about him though, and I can really hear the emotional turmoil that you still feel when you talk about him. I can hear how much you just want to put it behind you — to be able to break the bonds that seem to be holding your emotions to him still. I wonder if there’s anything in particular that you have found helps to relieve your thoughts about him?
Thanks for sharing about how you deal with challenging social situations — it sounds like your response is somewhat similar (though to a lesser degree perhaps) to the way that you described keeping distance between yourself and people that you care strongly for. Do you think that the two are related, Luciana?
We definitely understand how much easier it can be to connect over the internet (that’s obviously some of the thinking behind youthspace.ca), and I’m glad that you find it cathartic to talk things out here. It’s good that you’ve been able to find some other places where you can get support as well — I’m happy that the centre you talk about is there as an option.