I know so many of us are in so many ways stuck in neutral. Holding our breath, waiting for what we have been facing to go away, but it never will. I find myself stuck in new ways. I decided about 2 months ago to open the chance of finding someone new to bring into my life. To open my heart to the possibility. So I jumped on the online dating bandwagon. Being a computer person and also a person who worked specifically in computer security, I actually relished the random fake profile coming my way so I could mess with them for a few minutes and then report them to the admins. Yes I find joy in crazy places. The problem with this for me really comes down to history. I have never dated before. And I don't mean just in the last 27 years while I was with my wife, I mean I have really never dated before. My wife and I lived in the same house at college, we were around each other a lot and then just decided one day, we were going out. I decided about 5 days later I wanted to marry her, took me a year to convince her :D. And so I went from just hanging out with someone at school with half a dozen other people around while doing it, to being in a full relationship to getting married without any of the first date, second date type of thing. I honestly get how not having done something for many years would also leave me in almost the same place, but at least I may have had history to guide me a little.
So after going out for coffee or a dinner with someone, I honestly don't have a clue how to move forward, and I come back and start to do the horrible thing of comparing them to my wife. This one is too tall, this one doesn't have any interest in the stars, this one doesn't have that look when they are up to something...The excuses I can make to tank anything that may be good. I even did something worst than that with one person, I left an empty space between us where my wife would have sat. I know when I said I was going to do this, I convinced myself that I could push through this, that I could actually be fair and open for someone else. Now I wonder if I am still stuck in place where the only person I see filling my days is a person who can no longer be here.
What I think is worse for me is that after each date I come home doubting myself, thinking, that the person was interesting but they probably don't like me, that I am boring or withdrawn or whatever I can come up with to torpedo myself. And the reality is that I am many of these things. I spent 27 years where the topic of conversation when I was chatting with someone new was my relationship in one way or another. I now find myself trying to draw back into a corner and not spend the entire time with someone new reminding them of who I was with before. I want to find out about them and for them to find out about me rather than us. Yet still I am sort of stuck in that place where the things that come to mind are always about her. Sitting across from someone with my wife's antics and face flashing through my mind.
So perhaps I am not really ready to open the door, maybe I will just have to make myself be happy with being alone for a bit longer while I work through some things, but honestly I am not sure that will help. What I think I need is dating 101 :D. Why don't they give a class for adults in how to start a new relationship? Not only that the fear of all the recent 'Me Too' movement has me waiting for them to make whatever move they will and are willing, but perhaps this standoffish nature is also making things worse.
I think that what brings me to the blog today is that fear that perhaps I like someone new but just can't figure out how to open the right doors or say the right things to let them know without coming off like I am racing in with flaming hair. And that fear, that anxiety has had me stuck in place to the point where if I didn't put it somewhere, say something about it to someone, that I would just go a bit crazy. Well crazier than I already am :D.
Anyone else explored the world of dating after your loss and managed to figure out how to get past that first hump of admitting that you could like someone who wasn't your spouse? And not only that, but that it was okay to like someone new?