Okay but if you have been in a controlling relationship where what you wanted and felt were not important and you lost yourself and you have vowed never to do that again, how do you navigate dating and all the triggers involved?
I want a relationship but am also afraid of them given how much they have taken from me in the past. I only want answers from those who have struggled with this before: Is it possible to date and not lose yourself or let another’s desires and needs shape you?
I am very very happy where I am. And with who I am. I am kind of afraid of losing that by adding someone into my life. I have a tendency to shape myself around others for fear of losing them. And my disability means my life is a balancing act already.
My needs are not malleable. There are few things I can healthily compromise on. I worry that adding another person will just make me feel guilty all the time that I can’t meet my partners needs because of my body and that I will then compromise my dreams.
Maybe I just need to get some of the work I feel intense pressure to get done before dating? So wait another year or two? Lol. I don’t know. Trying to connect with and love other people while maintaining your sense of self is not something I’ve ever done successfully.
Important context: I am a woman dating men. Let’s be honest, most men don’t hold their privilege lightly. They don’t think about the ways that expressing their desires or needs can feel like an overwhelming kind of pressure.