Kathryn's Blog

What to do when a really interested prospect scares the beejesus out of you

Hey Kathryn—I have had some stuff going on….... A few weeks ago, after a particularly large drought, I took down my match profile for about a week. When I put it back up, all I did was change my profile pic and modify my story about myself. Next thing I knew I had so many emails it was like I was new on there again! So I got some dates out of that, but nothing really worked out. I have found that I have a bit of a problem when I start dating someone. If the guy seems really interested and starts frequently contacting me, I completely freak out! I can go from being really excited, to being absolutely terrified in the matter of days. Obviously I want to date someone who likes me, but I’m not sure if they are just too ready to get serious, or if I’m too scared too??  Carolyn

Hi Carolyn— Oooh.  Now that is a problem!  Good for you for figuring out that you get scared.  It’s like “Be careful what you wish for, because you might get it,” right?

Looking for love can be quite attractive and enticing while in the fantasy stage.  It can also be extremely anxiety provoking.  People often set up conditions that are so unlikely to be fulfilled that they are protected from the fear.  But when you actually get some real interest from a guy and he energetically pursues you, then YIKES!  Now you have to deal with all the issues of allowing intimacy, both emotional and sexual.  Staying single can then feel more appealing.

A very good book for explaining relationship stages is “A Fine Romance” by Judith Sills.  She explains that any move towards more intimacy is likely to scare one or both of the potential couple, how that plays out in feelings and behavior, and how to handle the “crisis.”  I highly recommend it to all my clients.  I hear back how reassuring it is, often comparing it to the Bible.  Quite a statement.

Anyway, let’s stick with what you know: You get scared when a potential partner shows strong interest. What do you think you are afraid of?  It may be hard to pin down.  You may find yourself being critical of them, rather than focusing on you.  But just mull it over: what are you afraid of?  Let the question float at the back of your mind and see what comes up.  Once you have figured out likely culprits, then we will have an idea of what to do next.

Keep me posted!  Best, Kathryn



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