He could also use his hands for building things and for pleasure. Fairly insightful and self aware, he was aware that his approach was not working for him. He was doing something that was not working or not in his best interests. He could market himself well and attract people to him. He was authentic, earnest even and yet he kept attracting the wrong woman.
When he came to me, his first words were, “The last four women I have been with, have said that they feel overwhelmed by me.”
As he told me the story, it struck me as odd that people do this. He holds the car doors for them, cooks for them, brings little tokens on a date based on what she said the previous time about something they liked. He sends love notes, tells them how he feels, compliments them, does back rubs, inquires about their day, offers support and encouragement and resources. He’s between cute and average looking.
According to them there is good chemistry and they value his communication skills. He does conflict like a pro, neither avoiding it nor rubbing their noses in it. He is regularly positive and stays away from sarcastic comments. He asks about the pets and the kids. He asks if she is getting enough alone time and whether he is asking for too much of her time whether by text/phone or in person.
He spontaneously grabs them to dance in the living room or comes in for a hug from behind when the situation is right. There is precious little room to guess or make assumptions. They have talked about their vision of partnership and being collaborative.
They feel safe emotionally and physically and he respects them, so they know he is not going to cheat on them. Niether a big drinker nor a smoker, he has done his personal work to deal with the problems that life showers on us all. He doesn’t do porn and mostly eats clean unprocessed food. He takes good care of himself and does not impose those values on his partner.
2-4 weeks into each of the past 4 relationships, she has told him that she feels overwhelmed and cannot live up to his standards. That he has given her so much goodness, so much incredible pleasure, so many good times that she has to break up.
She could never reciprocate to the level he should have because it is so wonderful. She cannot compare to him nor compete with him in the relationship. She feels inadequate just being with him.
Two guesses from me and let me know what you think, too. Please.
I think he is coming on way too strong as divorced men often do. He is skipping some steps in the building a relationship phase. He is still courting her, but moves into the deep topics too quickly, thus the “too much.” One woman told him that he is trying too hard and cannot possibly keep it up. I know he can because his previous relationships he is and that she was likely projecting her own issues there. He is trying too hard for that exact phase. He is not seeing if it fits, he is getting ready for the relationship before she is saying she wants a relationship. This feels like pressure to her and rather than tell him that, which she might not even be able to articulate, she makes it seem like it is her issue. She feels overwhelmed that she cannot handle it rather than asking him to “go slower.” By the way, “Go slower” is not really a clear statement. Try this instead, “Hey, I like you and in this stage of relationships where we are both seeing if we fit, my preference is to spend time together, time apart and be with my friends. Yes, I miss you, but we are not really in a serious relationship, we are just dating. What you are doing feels like a different level. I would like to go on dates, spend some time, laugh, cuddle and get to know each other better. Maybe not spend so much time together just yet and not talk about the future, just be in the moment.”
My other guess is that she feels not good enough and whenever a man expressed interest in her, doted on her – she would struggle to receive the love. It is hard to be loved, to receive. It is easier to give than to receive many times. Until she works on her own issue of receiving, she will blame the other person and truly believe that he is making her feel a certain way. She will need to deal with self love and her own sense of worthiness at some point.