One thing I have been deliberately not acknowledging here is the impact my relationship with my BF (4 years as of Jan 1, 2011) has on my symptoms of depression.  I haven’t said much about it (except vaguely) mostly because I knew that as soon as I started talking about it it would become more real to me, and then I would really have to take some kind of action.  Which could mean hurting his feelings, getting in a fight, or even splitting up (depending on how intense things got).  Because of course I imagine forward to the worst case scenario, which involves a nasty breakup, me moving back in with my mom to save money, etc.

I have made this declaration a couple times to some trustworthy folks: BF is wracked with his own set of emotional issues that stem (I believe) from a childhood with disengaged parents and a mean older brother.  He values the independence he was allowed through that solitary upbringing, which is something I can appreciate — my family stressed personal independence in a way none of my grade school classmates likely experienced.  And I do appreciate the experience I gained from that.  However, my impression is that BF grew up in almost an emotional vacuum.  Playing alone, no one reading to him or engaged with him much at all.  No impulsive and enthusiastic hugs.  In short, little that would resemble love expressed at all.

Because of this he is somewhat detached himself, but also dreadfully afraid of being alone, of not having someone to love and to love him.  But when he has that person (in this case, me) I think he really doesn’t know what to do next.  He doesn’t know how to be loving, because he never had an example of it growing up.

Not that I was impressed with a great idea of romantic love.  I was shocked at my father’s death to hear my mom express how much they had loved each other.  I never really thought they had.  It certainly was never apparent.  Maybe it’s because I’ve dealt with depression and spent a lot of time crying into my journals and picking apart my feelings, thoughts and motivations with therapists, but my yearning for love and affection seems much more in the fore of my psyche than his.  Not only that, he is also extremely hesitant, I think even a little afraid, so start talking about how we can teach each other to be loving.

But back to the main point of this entry.  I can not allow myself to pretend that this is not affecting my progress.  I am living with someone who I care about, and who cares about me, but we don’t know how to express it, and don’t seem to be making any real effort to try.  It’s frustrating.

 

I’m not completely despairing though.  I know that he does care, and I think that, very slowly, he can learn (if he is willing) to open up some and deal with his own pain so he can get on with his life.  I just don’t know if I have the stamina to last the whole process.  Or even to get to a point where real change is taking place.  I am trying to think positively about it — I have to — but I really don’t know what is going to happen.

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