Dr. C-: so, it's been a while. tell me what's going on.
Me: well, i had a date. in february.
Dr. C-: exciting!
Me: it was fine. ok. whatever. it didn't lead to a second date and that's ok. but it made me weird for a couple of weeks. there wasn't any chemistry but, for some reason, i felt bad about that.
Dr. C-: well, that's to be expected. you haven't done this in a while. have there been other dates?
Me: i keep putting them off. i think i'm ready to go but then i just get all stressed out and then i put it off.
Dr. C-: talk about that.
Me: there's two guys. perfectly nice guys. they aren't the type i usually go for but that's ok. they're in the burbs, they're single dads, they have some college but they aren't grad school types. they ask me out, we're in the planning stages - logistics, you know? the plans are very low-key. movies or something. but then i find a reason to back out - oh, it's too far, my schedule is too busy, blah blah blah.
Dr. C-: what are you afraid of?
Me: well, i don't know that it's fear, it's anxiety. stress. i think about the travel, the dressing up, the effort of getting to know another person, and then i start thinking about if this person is going to fit into my life, my friends, my routine and i suspect that they aren't because i'm not that into them in the first place, and they're probably looking for a mother for their kids and i'm not that - i can't be that - and then i think that i'm going to start resenting them the way i began to resent B- and then i am relieved when the date plans don't work out and i think, 'whew! dodged a bullet on that one!'
(silence for a minute)
Dr. C-: that's a lot of thinking. before you even go on a date.
Me: i know. it happens instantaneously.
Dr. C-: you know, in our field, 'anxiety' is very often 'fear.'
Dr. C-: so it's like you're expecting the same issues that you had with B-, you start feeling the anger, fear and stress that you felt when you were with him and you're basing your behavior with these new men on it.
Dr. C-: well, i think you need to go on more dates.