Hiccups and tears.

Perhaps I spoke too soon.

Is it normal to have relationship hiccups so early? Misaligned behaviors or communication styles which cause friction? I’m hard-pressed to think of men it hasn’t happened with. Leo, perhaps… but only because he was a very responsive communicator and generous with his time and attention.

It’s the stage of dating that can really suck – when you know enough about someone that you know you want to spend more time with them, but you aren’t secure enough in how they feel about you, and how you are with each other, and you aren’t a priority in each other’s lives yet.

So many issues can arise at this stage – and the anxiety associated with these “hiccups” is pretty awful. How can I know the difference between a sign that someone isn’t into me, versus simply overwhelmed, nervous, feeling pressured, and the like?

Should I ignore the loss of his Friday-night erection, and being twice turned down for sex the following morning, after I woke Jack up with my mouth on his cock and he stopped me mid-ride to say he had to go pee, never to return to my depths?

Should I read nothing into a lack of communication the following night or morning, even though I too neglected to text, afraid of being ignored in addition to unwanted?

Should I tell myself it’s not the beginning of the end when he texted last night saying “I imagine by your lack of communication with me today that you’re upset with me”, and I replied I was out of sorts, partly due to him and partly due to the memorial service for my friend, and he replied he was in the same situation?

Should I forgive that he brought it up but couldn’t talk, and ignored my text messages that night and this morning?

Can I get convince myself it’s simply a matter of a lot going on (children going away for the summer, loss of erection, perhaps too much sharing of my inner thoughts, perhaps too much godddamned pressure), instead of a final realization that he’s just not into me?

I’ve been unsuccessful as yet.

41 thoughts on “Hiccups and tears.

    • He’s with his children. I’ve texted to ask if he has his son tonight and if we can see each other, but he hasn’t replied. He could be at the hospital. At some point yeah, will just call.

  1. That’s where communicating only via email saved me.
    I had doubts, but being used to him not responding very often, I had time to work out my worries and doubts by myself.
    Maybe he needs some time to sort his shit, and you do too?
    Maybe giving him a day, a week, is all that will be needed?
    I guess my advice would be to stop overthinking and overanalyzing, try to accept that things simply ARE, and you don’t always need to know why… especially as you’re still young in the relationship and he may not know why himself!
    I guess this could be used as an opportunity to figure out what your insecurities are (the fact he didn’t want sex makes you feel unwanted? It’s sex he didn’t want, not you!) and work at them…

    I know, I know, much easier said than done!

    Good luck Ann. Grief tends to exacerbate everything. Give yourself and him some time to find your bearings!
    (And again, I know, easier said than done!)

    XO

    • I know exactly what his physical rejection of me triggered – I felt it was more more thing that made me doubt he is super into me.
      I don’t mean to sound snotty but I don’t have shit to work out. I need someone who is respectful and communicative. I’ve given him the benefit of the doubt given what he’s going through, but for a primary and exclusive relationship (his demand!) there are also things I need.
      But yes, I’m going to give him time.

      • When I meant stuff to work out, I was referring to your feeling unwanted because he didn’t want sex with you.
        If you feel you don’t have anything to work out for yourself, then good for you.
        I totally agree that you need someone who is respectful, and I agree that if this is his demand, he has to make good on it. And that you need to communicate.
        Oh well… I guess I’ll know how it evolves soon enough šŸ˜‰
        XO

        • Dawn, of course I have things I’m working on – that should be clear from my blog! I’m hardly a finished product šŸ™‚
          I am admittedly in a supremely shitty mood and was replying to what I interpreted (incorrectly) you as saying – that it was somehow my fault for demanding responsiveness or courtesy, and I needed to work on it.

          • Hey! It’s Ok! I thought so, but… I learnt you have to accept that people are wherever they are and… you can’t move them against their will, so whatever they say, you have to accept. Which I tried to do (failing!).

            It just goes to show… the shitty mood and miscommunication (with Jack as with me) are also by-products of the grief, the guilt you may feel not to have read your friend better, not to have pushed further in your analysing…? I may ascribe feelings that you don’t have. I just go with what I felt from your posts, I apologise if I’m mistaken!
            But the insecurity I sense now is not just about Jack. It goes further than that I think.
            Which is why I think you should take your time.
            I’m not sure I posted about the silly email I wrote about a year ago, when I was feeling very insecure. I almost ended things with The Dancer. Because I was feeling insecure.
            I’m glad I spoke with friends who talked me out of sending the email, realised this was my issues talking, not something he had done, and found ways to come through to me.
            I wish you the best, as I hope you know šŸ™‚

          • Thanks Dawn. I don’t feel guilt about my friend – nothing I could have said or done would have stopped his liver or heart from failing – but I am very sad that he is gone from my life.

          • I do understand that.
            I sometimes had weirdly strong reactions to people I barely knew dying, so I do understand about the sadness and grief losing a friend can cause.
            The guilt… may not necessarily be about his death, but also about things you didn’t say or do before, the fact you didn’t understand/read his emotions properly before his death.
            Grief is tricky in that way that it is seldom straight forward.
            Reminds me I still have a few things to grieve around my uncle’s death 3 years ago. Thanks for that šŸ˜Š

  2. Is this a parent that is hospitalized? I know from a close friend who lost both his parents in a year’s span, his father from a tragic accident at the ocean and his mother from pancreatic cancer a year later, that it deeply affects the ability to function like normal. It’s been 5 years, and he’s still not 100%, or anywhere close to the same. It changed his outlook on life, he went through a depression and lost like 40 pounds. I don’t know if this is relevant, just offering up another perspective. And whatever is going on with Jack, it’s not you.

    • Yes, its a parent. It’s likely they will be out in the next few weeks. He’s been visiting for 3 hours every day he doesn’t have his children. I know he feels some guilt he’s not there more.
      I know that the combination of that, plus his just moving into a new place, is a lot for anyone to deal with. I’ve been patient and understanding because I like him (and I’m a good human). But his physical rejection of me threw me for a loop – I have been given no basis for understanding what happened and his lack of outreach knowing I was dealing with the memorial service for my friend stung. Now being ignored is just too much for me. It would have taken 30 seconds, if that, to say sorry we didn’t connect last night and today will be difficult but he will reach out later. That would have meant a lot. But it seems that’s too much to ask at this point. It’s hard to not think its about me.

      • I think it’s very likely about him rather than you. But who knows–you really don’t know him yet. It takes many months with someone before knowing how to interpret things like being uncommunicative or not being in the mood for sex. He has a lot of hard stuff going on in his life and he might be someone who retreats when he’s overwhelmed. If you really like him, be patient and give the relationship time to unfold. If he’s bring blatantly disrespectful, of course call him on it, but if you can weather these bumps in the road, you’ll see where this goes. And most importantly, don’t doubt that you are an incredible woman and that if he isn’t into this relationship, you’ll find out soon enough.

        • Thank you Holly. I do agree with you and that’s what’s hard – I don’t know him that well yet. I’m trying to find the balance of being patient and understanding with taking care of my needs. It was very difficult this weekend.

      • I can understand that. Is it possible the parent has passed and you just don’t know it yet? Just a thought. I know I’m reaching, but I have high hopes for you two, once you get past these huge obstacles.

        • Gosh I don’t know. It would be a shock if that happened. I think he’s just punishing me to be honest. He ignored multiple texts and a phone call for 36 hours. I asked him this morning when we could talk today and he did reply. So we are talking this afternoon. Hard to focus on anything :/

  3. He’s on his way out the door. You just met him. You’re stressing him out. His parent is dying, Ann. So is his childhood. He needs a shoulder to lean on, not a new girlfriend putting him over hot coals every day keeping track of all he does or doesn’t do. It’s not about you right now. You’re not being supportive during the worst time in a person’s life. That’s what I see in all this. He could have been great. IN TIME.

    • Sophia – I’m not sure why you are saying I’m putting him over the coals, stressing him out, and not being supportive. I’ve been that shoulder, I’ve been understanding, I haven’t given him a hard time. He told me a couple of weeks ago he was surprised I was still with him and I said I liked him enough to weather the storm. I meant it.
      My writing about my frustration here doesn’t mean I’m also sharing it with him. I write here so I have an outlet and don’t have to make it his issue.

  4. Warning: my comments are very blunt but come from a place of candid, loving friendship.

    Um, first of all, everybody has shit to work out however big or small – that’s how we grow. Second, he’s working thru some major life events: dying parent and ending a LTR. At the same time he has work, kids and a new abode. Yet somehow he cares enough about you to squeeze in some time with you.

    I’m not surprised that sex with his new love interest isn’t a top priority for him. He needs some breathing room. It seems like he’s spending time at your place on your terms. Maybe I’m mistaken. Have you volunteered to help him unpack? Stock his fridge so he has a decent meal when he comes home wiped out from watching his parent slowly die?

    Give the man some time and space without critique. You have had a taste of his grief with the recent death of your friend (my condolences BTW). Put yourself in his shoes for a moment. It speaks volumes (and not good ones) that he already thinks you are annoyed with him due to inconsistent communication. His life is really complicated. He likes you but be careful you don’t push him away with a lack of empathy.

    • Maggie I have volunteered to help him get stuff for his new place. To help him with errands. To bring him meals. To stay at his place so he doesn’t have to schlep. I offered him food from my fridge on Sat when he said he didn’t have anything for his children. I’ve offered ALL THE THINGS. Him staying with me is not on my terms. I should not be seen to have a lack of empathy because I have it in spades.

        • Oh I will always clarify šŸ˜‰
          Perhaps yes, it’s just time. I’m frustrated because he shouldn’t have misled me when we first met – he was still living with his ex and he didn’t tell me right away. He is likely not ready although he swears he is. He says it had been 4 months since they’d been intimate and I’m choosing to believe him. Perhaps it’s like me at the end of my marriage – it’s possible that it was 100% emotionally over. And he also DEMANDED (his word) exclusivity after a week, which again seems rather short sighted given everything. Or at least a bit selfish if you know you can’t give someone your all.
          But again, that’s my logical side speaking and I understand how in reality it’s different.
          His parent should be out of the hospital in a couple of weeks – they aren’t dying but it was serious – and then hopefully at least some of the stress will be relieved.
          Now I just wish he’d stop ignoring my texts so we can connect and be supportive of each other instead of this awful silence.

    • Oh and my comment about shit to work out wasn’t a general comment about my life – of course I’m always working on stuff which should be pretty evident to anyone who reads my blog. But when it comes to being ready for a relationship and knowing what it takes and how to work with someone to get there, I think I’m in a pretty good place. I don’t have to sort shit out to be emotionally or practically available to someone. That’s what I thought Dawn was saying and that’s what I was replying to.

  5. Unfortunately this sounds like what I just went through. I kept accepting the excuses (kids, school, work, etc) for communications while we still saw each other and made plans. He finally broke it off exactly a week ago, before the long holiday weekend where we had plans. Now I am just trying to not text him again (which I never did for anyone else: I am not tempted usually to contact after it’s over) and add some insult to my injury.

    Fortunately, it doesn’t have to be the same situation as mine, so fingers crossed for you.

      • Five months. I knew with his schedule it would be difficult but he kept saying that he was in it…then he wasn’t.

        I am swearing off dating again, though I will miss sex for sure.

        • I was saying something similar to one of my girlfriends yesterday. “I’m on a peniscation” but then we realized that wasnt clear if I was on a vacation with abundance of dicks, or a vacation from dicks.

          So instead I am on a penilestinence. Not because of the organ itself, I’m quite fond of it most times, but because of the unavoidable fact that it is attached to a male human, and male humans, lately, are not my favorite kind of humans. #guysaintshit

  6. Erectile dysfunction is complicated for guys. Speaking from personal experience my lack of erection rarely has anything to do with the lady that I am with and is driven by other factors. The problem is of course with a society that places such value upon female sexuality this can be interpreted by my partner as me not finding them attractive or they do not turn me which is not the case at all.

    At the time it is very difficult to discuss because you feel less of a man and secondly the person that you are trying to please has had their feelings hurt as you have not provided the visual and physical validation of their desire. A

    • At that moment everything feels terrible and your emotions are all of the place as you feel that you have let someone that you care about down.

      The solution of Viagra or other medical options does not always work if what you are dealing with is more psychological than physical. I know for me that the viagra had side effects that made me feel sick and my urge for sex was diminished because I felt queasy.

  7. I found three things helped me with the problem:

    1) Sleep – more than anything lack of sleep due to stress and work impacted performance. A couple of night of quality sleep greatly impacted my ability to gain an erection.

    2) Talking about it – you have to talk to your partner in a factual and matter of fact way, I have this problem when this happens. If his problems stem from stress and worry (ill parent, relationship break up and children etc) then please don’t just jump to the Viagra solution it may not work and just create problems. You both have to understand the situation and work together

    3) I learnt how to eat pussy like a demon so that even if I lost erection I could bring my partner pleasure and show her that I cared about her pleasure and sexual needs as well.

  8. “Should I forgive that he brought it up but couldnā€™t talk, and ignored my text messages that night and this morning?” YES…if he is with his children, which I think I read in the comments that he is, let his children be a priority right now and don’t expect instant gratification. Give it a few days so you can talk when he doesn’t have the kids

    • In the first two weeks he had no issues texting when he had his children. He was in pursuit mode and he made the time and effort. Even until last week our pattern was that he would text then call after they went to sleep. So this is a change – it’s deliberate on his part. He opened up the dialogue Sat night, then didn’t reply and the next morning easily could have said “hey sorry fell asleep let’s talk tomorrow” – which again, he’s done before – but he chose not to. It’s hard not to see it as deliberately punitive, given his patterns for the first 5 weeks.

      • OK, good point, but LIFE happens. Things come up and we can’t expect the same behaviors from our friends/family/significant others day after day, week after week, month after month. You both agreed you were both “out of sorts” so now just find a time where you can meet and talk. I texted a girlfriend a couple days ago hoping we could meet up this morning to go on a walk. I haven’t heard from her. BUT I don’t know what’s going on in her life so it’s silly of me to be upset that I haven’t heard from her. IF in a few months, you see this lack of communication again and again, then he might not just be the one for you since communication is so important to you. Until then, I say relax and take a deep breath.

        • I think a big difference with your gf and you – as it is with me – is that you have a stable foundation upon which you are working. If that foundation isn’t set, everything is still wobbly :/

          • That’s worrisome, especially in addition to his insistence on monogamy so early on. It’s a lot to ask of someone you are just getting to know. It would be much more reasonable to say–I prefer to focus only on you and I hope as you get to know me better you will decide you want the same. And what you just described above regarding control sounds passive-aggressive as f—. Please be careful with your heart until you really know him.

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