For two years, I was hung up on an emotionally unavailable man. A former nationally-ranked athlete, Bruce was #22 on my list of suitors post-divorce. On our third date, I introduced him my favorite Japanese speak-easy. On our fourth, he took me to an underground tattoo parlor operated by a Russian dentist. Driving through Manhattan in his classic '70s car, we’d stay out until dawn, talking about everything and nothing. The Rolling Stones blaring from his speakers, I felt young and free.
Despite electric chemistry, he broke things off on our fifth date, saying we weren’t “a match.”
Although he “ended” it, Bruce kept calling, texting and pursuing. Magnetic and charismatic, his companionship short-circuited my otherwise rational brain.
He bought me expensive gifts. We shared lavish meals. His closest friends and family called me “The One.” Despite these clear indications, he kept the relationship in neutral. We remained platonic friends, teetering on the edge of a love affair.
His behavior was baffling. Forward and backward. Yes and no. Up and down. Despite the advice of friends and family, I kept hanging around, thinking I could change him.
I eventually nicknamed him "Come Here, Go Away.” He had the uncanny ability to pull me close only to toss me aside when the intimacy seemed too threatening.
Emotionally unavailable people wreak havoc on our self-esteem.