Affection And Intimacy Is Like A Forign Language For Me, Help!

I'm 29 and never had a girlfriend or went on a date. I learned about women from my mom and my sister, and they are far from feminine. My mom and sister actually hate being feminine, they would never wear a dress or have a desire to look pretty, which I find strange. I learned alot about women from TV, but I never learned how to interact or flirt with a woman and I think that has alot to do with my social anxiety and my family. My parents were very much friends, they never kissed or hugged each other. I found out later that my dad was afraid to show affection to my mom and even more afraid for us to find out. They did a great job, for about half of my childhood I thought they might divorce. Now, fast forward 20 years and find out that my sister has borderline personality disorder. I paid the dues, I've been chewed out, and under, and out again, threw water in my face, trashed my room, acted psychotic with knives, sometimes removes the locks from my bedroom, goes through my stuff. She also expects me to know when she is hungry or thirsty and if I forget I'll get chewed out. She wants to know a day in advance when and where I'm going so she can plan out her day, even though she can't drive and does nothing but complain about her pain and anxiety all day. She goes with me everywhere except work. She makes me feel awful on a daily basis, but I'm getting off track here. Where all this is leading is that I think all the years of watching my sister go nuts has scared me away from women. I don't know if it could be true, but I have evidence.

I did some handyman work for my psychiatrist's wife, she's about 35 and attractive. It was the fist time I was alone with a woman and it was a success. She was so easy to talk to and didn't get mad at me or anything, even when it took twice as long to fix something. I got in some good practice before my sister found out and didn't want me to see her again. My sister was worried about her coming on to me, which would never happen anyway, women just don't do that out of nowhere. I wish I could go there again, it's a rare opportunity to talk with a woman. It's weird, somehow she knew I didn't have a girlfriend and came out to car just as i was leaving and said "someday you'll make a woman very happy". Later on I found out what happened. That day my sister was calling me chewing me out and crying, his wife heard this and started acting different around me, she knew what was up with me that day and seen how nervous it made me. I know she's taken and I would never try to meddle in someones marriage, but I felt loved by her. It made me think "what the hell am I doing", why don't I just stay here and finish all the work. But I drove home, and received the worst chewing out of my life, from 4:00 to 11:00 that night because I was late coming home by an hour. I tried my best to get home in time driving 70mph on 45mph roads but it wasn't enough, I was in trouble. She was suicidal with a knife and I had to get home as soon as possible. She didn't kill herself or anything, but all the hundreds of times she's threatened to kill herself have really made me think I'm not helping her, and actually making her worse. I wondered that night, what if I stayed and didn't give into my sisters demands.

I decided to make a deadline to go on a date before I'm 30, which is like 5 months from now. I'm going to ask out any woman, and the first one to say yes will be treated to a nice dinner with me, how I usually am. Since I can't do the date thing, I'm not expecting a successful date. I'm not up on the date lingo and how to act, I can only act like myself, which is going to suck but I'm just doing it to say I dated. And I am curios what might happen, I have been dreaming of this for like 15 years. But knowing it will fail is what will help me. I don't want it to lead to something I can handle, and I certainly can't handle a real girlfriend, all that intimacy, deep down I want a woman. I want to cuddle with her, I want to pick her up and take her to the bedroom, or make mad love to her against a wall while whispering in her ear how much I love her, I want to hold hands with her in public for the world to see, I want to make her feel like she's the luckiest girl on the earth, I want surprise her with little gifts, I want to kiss her in public in front of alot of people and not care because that would prove how in love with her I am.

I might be better off not doing it at all, but now being almost 30 and all the problems, how can I make it any worse.

In Shakespeare "Tis better to have love then lost then to never have loved at all"

ygufty ygufty
26-30, M
3 Responses May 22, 2012

I agree with some of the other posters that the relationship you have with your sister is very abusive and controlling. It's like you're investing all your emotional energy on her instead of making friends and taking care of yourself. Seriously that is not your responsibility. Life's too hard without the added burden of another person hanging off your neck. Threatening suicide is like the ultimate manipulation. I'm not saying she doesn't actually feel like that at the time, but you are not qualified to fix her. Just ask her to get help and find some for yourself. I know there are books available for dealing bipolar people maybe you should check out one of those. I know when you're isolated with abusers it's like living in a jar in the sun with no way out. Just the heat pouring in distorting your views. Your ability to grow and to know what is normal is stifled and learning how to relate to others in a healthy way virtually impossible. Also, doing outside work for your psychiatrist (his wife) seems a little inappropriate like it crosses a professional boundary. You might want to check that out. Anyway, I think you'll probably do great with a woman. Just find common interests, be yourself and treat her with respect but for goodness sake stay away from those psycho abusive ones!

I should change this story because she has since then gotten help and does not do this anymore. I'm going to rewrite it. Thanks for commenting on the other parts of it.

Oh, okay. Sorry for waxing philosophic. It just hit cord with me. You seem really nice and sweet and I wanted to help in some way. I hope I didn't sound too bossy, lol. I just hate to anyone in pain. Good luck on your search for companionship.

I thought your response was nice and well thought out. I could tell that you must have had something similar happen to you. Thanks for the help.

Yeah, actually. I've never had a close relationship with a bipolar person but I have dealt with a lot of abuse. I was the scapegoat of a fairly dysfunctional family and am still struggling to figure out how to relate in a healthy way. Intimacy is terrifying but in the past it's meant pain. Isolation and avoidance is the easiest solution but it can get out of control. Like if you get really good at it. It's hard to become reachable.

1 More Response

I think the relationship with your sister is really unhealthy. I think if she threatens suicide you should call the police and have them warn her that if she does anything she will be taken to the hospital for a psych eval.

As far as the intimacy part, I personally do not like public display of affection, but other women may like that. Just be yourself, and take it slow.

"Don't rush something you want to last."

I'm excited for you to go on a date, even if its unsuccessful. Just keep trying. That's the "fun" part about dating, trial and error.

Thanks for the help, but she has gotten help and no longer does these things. Unfortunely, I remember it well. Thanks for the help.

I really think your sister seems to be a bigger problem in your life right now than the lack of dating. Of course it's natural to want intimacy from the opposite sex, but your full-time job appears to be caring for your sister. She needs help. I think you should start seeing a new therapist, because it's not healthy for you to have to take on the burden of your sister's emotional ups and downs. I really feel for you. I hope things get better. I believe there is someone for everyone out there.

Thanks for posting, I'm still amazed people are still commenting on what I wrote here. Things have been getting better recently, the problems are still there though. She is not as depressed as she was. What she wants me to do is take charge and have fun with her, hard to do when anything you say wrong could send her into chewing me out for hours. I'd love to ask that question on here, should anyone let someone chew them out for hours. It's so hard on both of us that I think the answer is no. I bought some dating books and the more I read the more I realise how bad I would be at dating or intimacy. I see all the comments on here are from women. This is where I'm not sure women would understand my problem.

I have never even slightly flirted a woman, even in school I spent YEARS not saying a word to any girl. That part of a mans brain that tells them to do the right things to attract a woman isn't there with me, I see women as attractive but haven't a clue what to do (is there a class for this). I'm way too nice and women would find me boring, I also found out from my sister that I'm too selfish. I'll have to work on that before I date. But I don't think I'll ever be capable of a serious relationship, I think I'll be happy if date before I'm 30. I mean one date that will fail because I'm not good enough yet, if I don't expect anything to happen I wont be disappointed. I think my mom was wrong about one thing, she taught me to be really nice and said women would love that, but they don't. They want the man that's mysterious, or that's exciting, romantic, spontaneous guy that's maybe a little scary, not the nice guy. I'll work on it, one thing I wish I had is a friend that was female that I could talk to. I also wish I could find if any women are attracted to me at all, if not then I'm probably just a lost cause for a relationship.