I Hated Emotionally Unavailable People Until I Became One

“Well that blew up in my face.”

My straight friend texted me that one early morning the other day. I was just waking up and ottering on SCRUFF (catching up on all the late-night callers as usual) when I was met with his message.

His situation was a usual occurrence: bad luck with women as of late. This was a result of his disinterest in pursuing relationships, and these girls were reacting poorly. Understandable as their feelings may be, according to him (and I believe him), it’s not about them as much as it is about his own life and career.

He continues, “I’m emotionally unavailable.”

I also believe this to be true.

Three years ago, I might have reacted to his statement with disdain. After all, I had been on the receiving-end of a “ghosting” that summer. My guy’s disappearance (after nearly three months of dating and hooking up) was a result of his own emotional unavailability. Interacting and being involved with someone like that was exhausting. I felt used, cheated, and worst of all unwanted.

But I was 25, and the three years since then have given me a lot of perspective. Like maybe I shouldn’t have posted a scathing blog post where I pseudo-stalked the guy at his restaurant in hopes of confronting him (even though he wasn’t even there). Maybe I should have just remained calm, and said to myself, “It’s actually not me, it’s him, and that’s okay.”

After being involved with another emotionally unavailable dude (also young/immature/cowardly, but I’m not bitter or anything) derailed my romantic dream in 2014–and then once again in 2015 (yes, he followed up a year later to really screw my romantic fantasies)–I quit dating in the hopes of meeting “the one.”

Dating just became a routine. A method to have a nice night with a stranger, maybe eat dinner, drink a cocktail, and fool around.

Basically, after all of these bum, soulless dudes, I became what I was vehemently against–emotionally unavailable. How could I do this? How could I be such a hypocrite?

Well, life isn’t easy.

Best friends pass away, your parents age and go through major surgeries, your career shatters and you have to reassemble the pieces. So much stress and energy is used on things like that already that opening up your heart to a stranger seems dangerous, not to mention tiresome.

So you close up.

Yes, you might go on a date, you might smile and say you’re okay, and you might fuck, but you have no obligation to anyone but yourself.

Here’s the thing, though…That doesn’t mean you get a free card to be dishonest. That’s an important part of all this.

If you are feeling unable to be open and willing, then you must lay this out at your admirer’s feet. You must draw the line clearly in the sand, so there is no miscommunication. If they continue to pursue whatever proposal you’ve laid out, it is their choice, and your conscience can be clear.

Take this time of solitude to figure out what you desire and need in your life to be content.

For the most part I believe we cannot be okay with commitment until we are committed to ourselves. As we’ve all heard before, you must love yourself before loving another. It may sound trite, but that doesn’t make it untrue.

And when you’re feeling super blue about where your faith in love has gone, don’t forget your heart will not remain closed forever. It will open back up slowly but surely, or in an instant like a crack of thunder and lightning.

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1 Comment

  • Loved reading this, you spelled it out nice and clear. You definitely have been through the ringer, which isn’t easy to bounce back from, but you have managed to keep a great outlook about it all. I really admire that, because its easy to say it, harder to act on it. When it comes to keeping your heart honest, and open after being crushed it takes so much time to heal that wound. Opening up again, and starting over seems painstaking and gets really obnoxious with every try and fail. The important thing is, you are trying. Some people I know sit there and say “fuck off” to everyone in their lives and those who come in at that time get rejected and that is now way to live your life or treat other people. We have all done this at some point of another, because we are not loving ourselves enough. The thing to keep in mind is that app pain is temporary, and yes good things do come to an end, but they do so that something better can begin (you just have to be open to it). I have been going through something similar, and I will tell you what – I HATE being ghosted, it is literally the most annoying and disheartening thing ever, all you can do is lay it out there, and you are at the mercy of another person. If they cared about your heart though, they would be honest with you and talk to you. Communication and trust ARE the most pivotal parts of a relationship. Everything else can be built upon those two foundations.
    Anyways.. I went on a tangent. Thank you for sharing Alex!

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