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I think I'm too emotionally "touchy"...


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Old 14th March 2019, 8:24 AM   #1
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I think I'm too emotionally "touchy"...

I've been dating my girlfriend for about 14 months. It's been a pretty great relationship since the beginning. We've had a few "gut check" moments, but we've always worked through them together.

I was married for 9 years before my now ex-wife asked for a divorce. We were together for 12 years. Before that I had been in a 4 year relationship that almost ended in marriage.

I now find myself very emotionally "touchy" in the sense that I think I read way too much into everything.

She seems a little crabby? It couldn't be that she's just tired - it has to be that I did something wrong. She doesn't say "I love you" at the end of a call? It's not that she says it pretty much all of the time - it's the 1 time she doesn't that makes me worry.

I could go on, but hoping you all get the picture.

My last two long term relationships didn't end great and both times I really didn't see it coming. I was maybe too oblivious and just assumed things were great when they were not and then when it didn't I was kind of shocked.

I'm really not clueless (I don't think), but in the past I just didn't want to ever think things were not working out and now it feels crazy because I'm in a much better relationship and it's like I've pivoted in the other direction and now I'm hyper attuned to anything I feel might be off. I just have to think most of what I pick up on isn't anything to worry about.

I don't say anything to her about the little stuff. I think I know when something is big enough to discuss, but I still find myself very easily emotionally derailed.
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Old 14th March 2019, 9:13 AM   #2
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I think your sensitivities in this new relationship are quite normal actually. You had two long term relarionships that did not work out and ended somewhat unexpectedly. Look for patterns OP, your girlfriend is going to have bad days for reasons totally unrelated to anything you have said or done. Also if you are feeling insecure ask your. GF, " hey you seem a little distant or upset. Is everything ok? I think there's ways to ask for reaasurances without coming across as too emotionally needy or insecure. I assume she is aware of these past relationships and she should be understanding.
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Old 14th March 2019, 10:32 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lobouspo View Post
I think your sensitivities in this new relationship are quite normal actually. You had two long term relarionships that did not work out and ended somewhat unexpectedly. Look for patterns OP, your girlfriend is going to have bad days for reasons totally unrelated to anything you have said or done. Also if you are feeling insecure ask your. GF, " hey you seem a little distant or upset. Is everything ok? I think there's ways to ask for reaasurances without coming across as too emotionally needy or insecure. I assume she is aware of these past relationships and she should be understanding.
Not to argue but to play off of your thoughts, Lobousp: To me the healthier approach (when asking a partner if everything is okay because they seem upset or distant) is to be coming from a place of genuinely caring about how they are doing, not as a way of seeking reassurance to serve one’s insecurities. That self reassurance can usually only come from within oneself, especially in the context of past relationships coloring a present one.
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Old 14th March 2019, 10:44 AM   #4
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There have been times where I've asked her how she was doing when I sensed something was off. I usually try and approach it from the angle that I want to know how she is doing - even the few times I suspected she was mad at me. It has helped to get the conversation going.

The day-to-day stuff I usually try and let go. Deep down I know most of it is just the "chatter" of everyday life. I struggle to let it go at times, but I'm trying. One thing I do is to try and see things through her eyes. I guarantee there are days I seem distant and most of the time it has nothing to do with her. I'm tired or stressed or sometimes I'm just in a quiet mood.

I'd agree that my past probably has a hand in how I feel. Both of those relationships did not end well and I never saw the end coming - though looking back I can see that there were signs. Maybe that is why I feel like I'm always looking for any little indication that something might be wrong.
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Old 14th March 2019, 12:20 PM   #5
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Try couples counseling to help you. You don't know it maybe or you think you do, but you don't communicate well enough. I do see an issue of you not observing all those little details that you call "chatter", like you are out of touch with your partner. Your behavior is a prt of this too. I would never accept my husband being moody for days not expressing what is going on. As soon as he comes in the door he lets it all out over a beer with me...and it's great. That's how we have always connected. He doesn't hold anything back because he trusts me to be supportive.
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Old 14th March 2019, 12:22 PM   #6
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I think what's more important is not trying to detect the earliest signs of her displeasure, but rather to resolve the issue satisfatorily when it surfaces. You shouldn't have to feel like you're treading on eggshells. There are men who are hyper vigilant. They suspect everything. And yet when an issue is brought out for discussion, the guy puts up a wall or sweeps it under the rug and the issue is not resolved. So he moves on and stays alert for the "next" problem. But to her, it's all the same one problem that's just stewing over time and is never resolved. Then breakup is the only solution.
Also, if a woman is not communicative then she isn't right for you. There are different ways to communicate and you have to find someone that's compatible. A good relationship should not cause you this type of anxiety.
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Old 14th March 2019, 4:57 PM   #7
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I think you are absolutely on the money to detect and pay attention to--and to be alarmed by--her crabby-ness ... and her not saying "I love you" at the end of a call.

In fact, I think those shifts ... are huge! ... Major.

Doesn't matter that she's denying any chance. Ideally, she would tell you here's how I'm thinking. I know I'm sounding distance. This is why ... It's not you.

The fact that she has changed behavior without addressing it with you ... is a bad sign for her communication skills ... a bad sign of her level of openness ... and at the other extreme ... could indeed be a sign that she has lost interest.

You have to do what you feel comfortable with ... Me: I'd not chase her, and I wouldn't keep going pretending I'm not noticing what I'm noticing. I'd either pull back ... and let her take the initiative ... or (more likely) I would schedule an in-person meeting and confront her ... I don't mean yelling confront ... I just mean direct confront. Look, you say nothing wrong, but your behavior has changed. I think you're wonderful. This relationship has been great. I'm really into you ... But I need to know what's going on, even if you're unhappy with the relationship.

She does the denial thing, I'd repeat myself ... she continues full denial ... I'd get up and leave.

You don't want to avoid this for much longer ... because when you ignore big changes (and these are big!) ... you dull your radar and your connection ... you will not be able to get yourself to fully relax and trust her.

I used to do what she is doing ... and drawing on my own experience, unfortunately there is a chance she's lost interest ... and feels bad about having lost interest ... and is trying to deny to herself that she's lost interest ... hoping that she will regain interest ... She's hoping this will pass ... and is afraid of telling you the truth. Hopefully I'm completely wrong here.
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Old 15th March 2019, 2:07 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HankTheTank View Post
I now find myself very emotionally "touchy" <snip> She seems a little crabby? <snip> it has to be that I did something wrong.
Hank,

That is not emotional 'touchiness'...it is a type of emotional insecurity that has you making everything about yourself, to the extent that you're missing opportunities to
first consider what might be going on for your girlfriend and whether it is a time for you to be empathetic towards her. This one might need personal therapy
to help you root out all the deeper causes, and permanently resolve and overcome them.

It can also be another underlying factor that presently you do not trust that your girlfriend will let you know when something is actually bothering her,
or tell you when there is an 'issue' in the relationship that needs to be discussed and resolved, or a compromise reached. This one may also need personal therapy,
or might be able to be resolved through having open, honest and direct conversations with her about how she handles conflict and conflict resolution.

Sending hugs, and wishing you the best.
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Old 16th March 2019, 12:32 AM   #9
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You should say "what's up? Everything cool? Baby I'm here to help"
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