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.
Unfortunately, Jack and I experienced a hiccup in our early dating communication. Well, to be specific, he didn’t realize a hiccup occurred, but it did.
He didn’t reply to my text, but over lunch, he called. Even better. He told me his parent had taken a turn for the worse in the hospital – he’s been there every day for a few hours. But he went on to tell me his ex-girlfriend (with whom he is still sharing a house, but imminently moving out of) called the police on him to say he had assaulted her.
If communication styles between two people aren’t perfectly aligned, as someone highly attuned to it, in the early days of dating it can cause doubts and anxiety until I get comfortable with patterns and see an alignment between words and actions.
Jack was saying all of the right things. He was clear from the start he preferred the more traditional form of dating – just one woman at a time. He explicitly said and wrote I was that woman. He complimented me in his texts about the things he liked about me.
But I’ve been fooled before. I’ve had great first sexual experiences just to have someone disappear. Shit happens. Continue reading →