The photo below would probably be really funny if it weren’t so accurate, but I feel like this experience is incredibly relatable for so many women! I know it is for me:
Sometimes, I wonder how men and women ever really make relationships work. Lots of learning, compromising, communication (humph, when we can wrangle that), and diversions/friends/exercise/wine, perhaps. I just feel that we really do speak different languages a lot of the time, and it becomes harder to translate accurately when you really care about someone.
It always strikes me as odd that he and I somehow have opposite needs at the same time. Just when I’ve done something to make him happy that shows I really care about him, and that he enjoys and appreciates, he runs off for a few days afterward. I guess to get his thoughts back together, focus on work, etc…and that can be really anxiety-provoking for me. Less so now than when we were first starting out, but despite my friends and family and my own work, it can make me a little lonely for him while he’s “away.” I can trust now that he’ll return from “the cave” when he’s ready, fully prepared to talk and listen and be together and let me stand on his furniture (tall people really should invest in courtesy stools for guests if they want to prevent this), but I still miss him in the interim. And when he comes back, I need a little time to get close again like I wanted to before he vanished, whereas he’s recharged and ready. Because even though it’s okay that he needs space and I’m not upset with him for it, it still hurts my feelings a little sometimes.
It just doesn’t make sense on a visceral level for me, because there is never a time when not hearing from him makes my day better somehow. It’s hard for me to grasp that he–like most men, supposedly–can need that much space and still care about me like I care about him. I need more space than a lot of my female and some of my male friends seem to in relationships, so this isn’t something I’m very used to. Despite that, I have never needed this much room from someone I actually care about (as in I haven’t heard a peep from him since we spoke on the phone Tuesday night, and it’s now Friday morning), and I think that’s the aspect that is disconcerting at times. I don’t remember it being like that with other guys I’ve dated, but I suppose this is also my first “real” adult relationship, too.
It’s just a funny thing, I suppose. (1) I’m not worried, (2) I don’t actually think he is wanting to leave or that he doesn’t care about me, and (3) I know this week for him is more than ridiculously busy; in fact, I’m pretty certain that he’s pulled at least one all-nighter for work since we spoke…but still. I guess this is why I write: to avoid driving the poor man (or myself) crazy!