Hi KeepingStill and all,
I'm a bit late to the conversation but this posts really resonates with me too.
I started seeing a guy recently who led me to feel a way I've never felt before. I've never been in a long-term relationship, and like KeepingStill, have found being single as a safe space for me. This guy is caring, smart and handsome. And in many ways, I've felt like he is too good to be true. We have great chemistry, he's very understanding and we are very loving... something very unlike me! He is one of the greatest people I've ever met.
However, as the relationship began to progress I became overwhelmingly filled with doubts and anxieties. They began as I started to obsessively think about him 24/7, when I wasn't with him I felt very down. At first, the thoughts were positive but then they began to be very negative and intrusive. I started to tell myself he is ugly and he isn't right for me. Leading me to have a series of panic attacks. I also began to lash out on him, dramatically ending it after not being with him for two hours, and telling him I didn't find him sexually attractive.
Like others, I would ask myself "Are you having fun? Is this the way it's meant to be?" And would question to myself whether I found others attractive (people I would never usually look at) almost to tell myself that I shouldn't be with him. Whilst I knew I had 0 interest in being with anyone else.
On the other side, I love him very much. I get excited to see or talk to him, I still get butterflies before we meet. He makes me laugh and act in ways I've never acted before, and I care about him in a way that seems alien to me. All of this makes it harder and more distressing to have negative and intrusive thoughts. Also, our sex is the best both of us have ever had, yet my mind finds ways to intrude into that too.
Like many others, I thought that he just wasn't right for me. But the more I thought about it the more I realised it could be the intrusive deceiving side of anxiety. I have had similar thoughts about other people close to me before, dark thoughts that are made to cause my distress and retreat from the other person.
Whilst he is very understanding and wants to work my anxiety through with me, I didn't feel it was fair on him and I needed time on my own to think it through.
Your post has given me comfort KeepingStill in that it could be worked out. As despite ending it, I maybe naively still see a future.
Any more recommendations would be welcomed.