Reflecting on anxiety in a relationship, what I´ve learnt and what´s new

It´s been multiple months since I last wrote.
At the time I thought this could be an outlet for all that had happened, but it was just too close to the bone.

My first post covered the problem of being defined as anxious in a relationship
That me having anxiety was an excuse to not to be taken too seriously, to not be heardTo not talk it through, as ´adults´

As I said I would, I gave up on it

A phone conversation, one he almost insisted on deferring for another day
But he deferred and rejected conversations as *he* felt fit, serious or not, for over a year
In that conversation, I dont believe he understood that what I´d called for, was exactly what he told me was going to happen
Getting off the phone, it was a breath of fresh air
I wouldn´t contact him unless he contacted me
And it was a relief believing he wouldn´t contact me again

I went downstairs to the party where the call took place
And for the first time in months I just let everything go

There were still times I felt I should apologise
For a long time I still believed I was too blame
Sometimes the smallest niggle tells me it was
but enough time has passed that I understand
I now understand it wasn´t working
That I held on for too long
That from a combination of my own ideas and his treatment of me
I believed it should work
We just had to talk, to communicate
I just had to be better

Communication is undeniably a foundation in a relationship, and for a combination of reasons it broke down.
I tried to fix it, to hold onto it
I believe, that many would

I truly believed -during and post-relationship – that he was my best friend
Even when I was stressed, and anxious, and too paralysed by fear to speak when he would shout
He said I was his best friend, he said I was there for him when noone else was
But at the same time I felt guilty for being anything other than happy

When we moved out I felt guilty for inconveniencing his schedule in any way
He made me feel bad for having a job, friends, things to do
I cut down topics that angered him, until there was nothing left
But we were ´best friends´, I just didn´t want to upset him

It´s still taken time to fully accept that being told I wasn´t allowed to feel certain emotions or get upset wasn´t okay
Being told I *had* to do somany things wasn´t okay
Being made to feel guilty for not doing enough, whilst doing exactly what he´d asked, wasn´t okay

I don´t believe he even realises these things happened
Or if he does he never said anything
There was a time, not long before we went our separate ways, where he said ´can´t we just move on from that´

But, it was a year and a half, or more, where I felt unable to speak my mind without being shouted at
Where I felt if I did something wrong, it would be the end
Because I believed it was my fault, I believed *I* was the one who needed to change
I couldn´t just move on, without acknowledging what happened
Because I had a ´best friend´ I was scared of, a ´best friend´ who´d put me down
And I couldn´t just go back, unless he understood who I was as a person, unless I knew he didn´t mean the horrible things he said, that I was actually worth something
For a long time that seemed worth it, because I believed he was my best friend
I believed I didn´t have anyone else
But he wasn´t really, not for a long time

It seemed so perfect, this ideal drilled into you from a young age, where you have so much in common. Music, films, books.
We spent all our time together, we went places.
We set ourselves apart from others.
Social Media was only a means to get attention
We talked throughout the day, all the little things mattered

In my head, it plays back like a film
Was that the reality?
For a time, perhaps.
Being at university allowed this idealistic life, without truly being an adult.
We had the time and energy to do things, they were a break from studying
When we moved elsewhere, due to life and depression, he just didn´t anymore.
I went to find that again, only to find out he resented me for leaving him at home.

That ideal misses out the fights we did have.
It is the romantic film ideal
It meant I believed there was something to be salvaged, because the good times were good
They just happened less
They happened so long as I acted a certain way

When he did call a few months ago, I didn´t answer
After consideration I asked why he called
It was because he needed to talk, something serious had happened
I couldn´t do it anymore
I couldn´t explain why

I would just flashback to trying to tell him how he was treating me wasn´t okay
And having anything I said being thrown back, and being told I wasn´t perfect, or that I was anxious therefore he didn´t need to listen
-not perfect? I knew that all too well, but when someone doesn´t want to listen past a few words, it is hard to create a comprehensive concise explanation, which doesn´t excede several sentences, if not several paragraphs.
For months and months, it felt like I was constantly trying to write a history essay, and I had to discuss and justfy in-depth any bias held by a source (aka me), any point I was trying to make, when it should have been assumed.
I had to try and think so hard on how to speak or how to write, when, possibly bar a few words, it might not even reach his eyes or ears
Because he had concluded from those few words alone, it was not worth his time
My view wasn´t valid, for x, y or z.
With x being anxiety.
There was no discussion
The conversation was over.

And because of all that, I couldn´t take the potential stress anymore
I still can´t
Even in my current relationship, it still weighs me down sometimes
So I just said I couldn´t be his friend, because being with someone new now, it made me uncomfortable
That wasn´t the real reason
But I´d given up trying to discuss and defend what I was saying

What bothers me now, is I still seek this non-éxistent ideal I had with this person
It is not the foundation for a strong relationship
After months of reflection, of watching videos, reading blogs, of looking at relationships which do work
I know that it is not the basis for a long term relationship
I know that I shouldn´t be so emotionally reliant on someone again, and they shouldn´t be so reliant on me.
I know that you should want the best for the other person,
ideally you stay together, but that isn´t always possible
You don´t resent them
I still feel the guilt for having things to do, having gone away to see friends, for having a job, for being happy, for being sad

I still struggle with that
I struggle with knowing what I can ask of someone
And what is a sign that you are different people

I am with someone now, who hasn´t been in a relationship before
Most of the time it is long distance
Things which were the norm in this previous relationship are not necessarily assumed or healthy.
I end up stuck between trying to be a stronger person, and wondering if it´s because I should explain why some things in a relationship are meaningful, or make someone feel valued.
Occasionally I get stuck, I feel isolated, I believe that it won´t work, until it spills out
And more often than not, he hugs me, he tells me he loves me
But when alone, or apart, these fears can sneak up on me too easily
At times it has been too much for him
A language barrier and different levels or types of emotional maturity means it is too hard.

I say types because, I believe there are ways he is more mature and realistic than I
But the topics I´m used to talking about with a partner or best friend can be too complex, too draining
The regularity I can become anxious or upset when apart has almost pushed us over the edge at times
Often I was upset about being too anxious or upset, because I still have issues believing I would be loved for getting upset, no matter how valid the reason
Or I don´t want to ask for something because the potential stress of trying to explain why feels like too much
Undoubtedly I need to be stronger, I need to recover
For a long time I hated that person who had anxiety, who sometimes got upset, I didn´t want to need someone, or get anxious
But sometimes I´ve ended up trying to be too strong, and saying nothing, and that also isn´t healthy
I´m trying to find a way to be happy, in myself, and by myself
To remember how to talk

It is a new relationship. I know he loves me even if “my brain is a little darker”. I know he wants me to be happy.
Sometimes it is just reminding myself that he loves me, and that it´ll take time for me to get over what happened, but I will, and only time can tell whether a relationship will work or not
There is no pre-destined love, no matter how much rose tinted glasses can make life look like a film


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