Dating and managing feelings

I’m a regular reader of the Dating Goddess, even though I don’t date and have no desire to date. After relating a brutal “kiss-off” from a *gentleman*, DG asks “How do you manage your disappointments?”

The end of my last relationship left me feeling something I’d never felt for any past significant other: rage and hatred. The reasons aren’t interesting or relevant. Suffice it to say this was unusual, and unexpected. (I didn’t felt like this about my ex-husband or ex-fiancé!) My feelings weren’t of disappointment (I  knew the relationship was ridiculous 6 months into it) , but how did I manage the feelings? I did try to manage the feelings for quite a while because I didn’t like that I could be a person who felt such ugly things for a human being, and I absolutely didn’t like how the feelings absorbed almost all my energy and focus. I made no progress–and I was becoming downright ill. Eventually, I stopped trying to manage the feelings. Instead, I started thinking about them and the fact of them.

As DG mentions in her post “There must be a pony in here,” I started looking into what the feelings were telling me and what I could learn from the relationship and my feelings about the breakup. Most importantly I accepted that it would take time–time without any romantic entanglements–to really let go of the anger.

What I’ve found after nearly 2-1/2 years is that I don’t want a relationship. Or rather I don’t want a romantic relationship. Instead I’m building relationships with friends and a new home city, family, and focusing on my business. I’m happy that I can be a friend to my mom who is facing some big end-of-lifetime types issues. I’m also deeply affected by my relationships with the kids I tutor.

So, rather than managing the feelings (we do seem rather hell-bent on always managing feelings don’t we?) I found relief by accepting them (not acquiescing or wallowing) and looking for different ways to fill the need I’d tried to fill with an entirely ridiculous relationship.

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3 Comments »

  1. Wow! Thank you for the mentions in your blog. I am flattered.

    You have exactly the right attitude — to feel the feelings, but not let them overtake you. If you try to stuff them, you don’t heal.

    I appreciate that you read my blog even though you have no interest in dating. Cool! Please comment on the blog so others can benefit from your wisdom.

    DG

  2. dawn said

    While I do want to date, the opportunities in my town are not wonderful. So, I turn those wants into work, photography, writing, etc. I think it’s important to learn how to channel that energy into positive actions.

  3. Nancy said

    Hi, Dawn…I might want to date again someday, who knows. But in both our cases it’s a good idea to follow one’s interests. It’s the best way to meet someone who’s like-minded, don’t you think?

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