If you have dated for a while, you’ve probably fallen head-over-heels in love at least once, and then you discovered that your partner wasn’t exactly who you thought he or she was. Maybe you were in a relationship for a few weeks or a few months. Maybe you had sex and you felt a certain level of commitment. You wanted to be loyal and you were not a quitter. Maybe you had moved in together. It wasn’t easy to end the unhealthy relationship.
Your inner dialogue might have gone something like this.
- I don’t want to hurt his feelings.
- Maybe I haven’t given it enough time.
- What if I never find somebody who is a good match for me? I better stick with what I have.
- I don’t want to be alone. I want a life partner. I want someone to share the joy. I want someone to share the bills.
- All my friends are getting married. I want that, too.
- My friends want me to be happy and they like him, so maybe I should stay.
- I heard God tell me that this is the one for me, so even though there is some dysfunction, I should stay in this relationship and try to work it out.
- Maybe if I just find the right way to talk to him, he’ll be able to understand me and then I’ll get the emotional support I want.
- Or worst … I’m afraid to leave because what if he becomes violent or stalks me or spreads rumors about me on social media?
Highly sensitive introverts have more intense emotions that last longer than non-highly sensitive people. That’s why dating might be more challenging for us. We yearn for truly meaningful relationships. Like the Goldilocks fairy tale, we want our porridge not too hot and not too cold, but just right.
How do you know if you should stay in the relationship or leave? That’s a very important question. Let’s explore it.
Blind Spot #1. God Told Me
Highly Sensitive Introverts value spirituality.
Kim had known Ken for one month. She had a strong Christian faith, and she heard God say, “Ken is the man for you.” He was a successful businessman and was so busy with work that he wasn’t available for Kim as much as she wanted. She pleaded with Ken, and he made promises to spend more quality time with her. More often than not, they had a quickie, and then he vanished for another two weeks. She craved being with him. He was the one for her, she just knew it. Kim hung onto the hope that he would meet her needs after “work settled down” just like Ken promised. This cycle lasted for over a year. Kim had a really hard time letting go.
Blind Spot #2. Sexual Drive
Highly Sensitive Introverts intuitively know what pleases their partner.
Adam was smitten with Kristy’s beauty, intelligence, and sexiness. She had a perfect hourglass figure and long brown hair with sparkling blue eyes. Her vivaciousness was mesmerizing. Although he knew he should take it slow in the beginning, his sexual impulse got the better of him, and he jumped into bed more quickly than he planned. Fortunately, Adam and Kristy both loved making love. It felt fulfilling, and he couldn’t wait for the next time they were together. Being a true-blue kind of guy, he didn’t want to date more than one person at a time, and he devoted several hours a week to Kristy. Adam was on a high, excited to get to know everything about Kristy. He loved her brilliant mind and they even shared many of the same spiritual beliefs. Then one day, Kristy, announced that she wanted to get back together with her former boyfriend. Adam was crushed. He thought Kristy was totally into him. Why did she change?
Blind Spot#3. When Patience is Not a Virtue
Highly Sensitive Introverts are kind and forgiving.
Alice met Mike on a dating site. He was OK-looking but not handsome. He was kind and a good listener, a welcome change from the other self-centered guys she had met. It was OK that he wasn’t hot-looking because that would help her go slow at the beginning of the relationship. They didn’t live in the same town, but the distance was no problem because Mike was willing to travel to see her every other weekend. They had fun talking, or hiking, or watching movies. They even found out that they knew some of the same people. Mike was really sexually attracted to her, and Alice gave in to his advances sooner than she had planned. Even so, she was smarter this time. She was watching for the red flags so she wouldn’t be caught off-guard. She was getting older and she didn’t want to waste time. She had learned to assert herself instead of stuffing her emotions, and she made sure to express any concerns to Mike. He was receptive and willing to discuss all the issues that she brought to him. One thing bothered her. When she asked to visit him at his house, there were multiple reasons why their schedules didn’t synchronize. Alice was kind and forgiving. She was pleased with her ability to be patient so they could find the right time to visit. When she finally saw his home nine months after they began dating, she discovered that Mike was a hoarder and that his home was filled with mold. She terminated the relationship. She kicked herself for wasting all that time.
All of these blind spots arose from good intentions. Maybe you’ve been in similar situations.
Now It’s Your Turn.
Create a journal entry labeled: “What I’ve Learned from Red Flags.” Take some notes about what you learned from these stories and from your own experiences.
(These stories were created from composite scenarios and the people were given fictitious names.)
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How important is it for you to have a fulfilling HEALTHY relationship? Rate yourself on a scale of 0 to 10, where 10 is most important.
If you answered eight or above … and if you want to stop wasting precious time …
You’re invited to apply for the Conscious Dating Inner Circle for Highly Sensitive Introverts.
You’ll learn how to spot YOUR BLIND SPOTS, sort out the weeds from the flowers, and increase your ability to create a fulfilling relationship.
You will learn more quickly because you will have access to the combined wisdom of several people in the INNER CIRCLE, not just your own knowledge. And you’ll have access to my expert guidance.
Click here for details and to read “20 Benefits of Membership in the Conscious Dating Inner Circle for Highly Sensitive Introverts.
FACILITATOR: Benita A. Esposito, MA
I’m a life coach, a spiritual counselor and an ordained minister with AIWP. I earned a master’s degree in clinical psychology, and my bachelor’s degree is in psychology/sociology. I’ve studied with the Order of St. Luke with my dear friend Father John Rice where I learned how to combine Christian spiritual healing and psychological principles. I follow a grace-filled Christian path that honors all faiths that advocate loving God and each other. I coach adults (individuals and couples) in private sessions and in intensive retreats.
Your Authentic Life. Anything Else is a Compromise.