I recently read a blog by Bryan Reeves titled ‘The One Thing women are actually most afraid of in Men’.
He writes that it is not masculine aggression that is feminine womans greatest fear but abandonment.
We fear our men not stepping up. We fear their inability to hold us. Stand strong, support us and be there, even when we are crazy and irrational, unfathomable, and all they want to do is run for the hills!
I sat in a cafe and read Bryans blog and from nowhere the tears started rolling…..it touched me so deeply. I thought…this is me, this is my deepest fear in relationships.
A little backstory…
My Father left us when I was four years old. He left our family and joined another one. He raised someone elses children and barely saw his own. He was mostly absent for my entire childhood. I’m not wishing to give you a hardluck story here…I was very blessed in many other aspects of my childhood. However…the ‘absent father’ box was well and truly ticked!.
Now, I know as an adult that my Fathers absence was not my fault, it was not personal and I’ve done a lot of work on my relationship with my Dad and can hand on heart say, I hold no resentment towards him. Not only that but I take responsibility for my part in our adult relationship. I judged him, shut him off and did not give him an inch for error.
Even so…venturing into the adult world of romantic relationships I had a well proven belief that ‘men I love leave’…Its just what they do. In my 20’s I pretty much held the cards, ending relationships first. Especially if the guy in question really liked me which I saw as a sign of weakness (theres a whole other blog there!). My heart got broken for the first time in my mid 20’s. I fell hard, now looking back not in a healthy way. But this guy I had to win..I had to make him to want me, I had to convince him almost. He was unavailable physically and emotionally. I’m still not entirely sure why we women persue this type of man…for me I think it was the challenge of ‘making’ him fall in love with me. And it worked for a short while…but as with all manipulated relationships the foundations were weak….he ended it and experienced my first heartbreak.
For the next 10 years I don’t really think I let myself go fully in any romantic relationship I had. This technique kept me safe. I got to be in control…and I saved my heart.
The next time I opened my heart I was 36..10 years later. This one was ready…I was sure of it. He wooed me, chased me…I felt safe with him. I began to relax and let go into the idea of a relationship with this guy. But the more I opened the more he closed. My desire to ‘name’ and ‘know’ where the relationship was going just triggered his fear of ‘being’ in a relationship at all. The more I chased the further and faster he ran!. He could not and did not hold me. He couldn’t, he just didn’t have it in him…he shut down and closed off. I kept lowering my expectations…he would under deliver on them. Eventually the whole thing crumbled, it was a mess. My worst fears were realised and I got to be right again ‘men I love leave’. I felt like shit.
Over the last year or so I’ve been on quite a journey. I gave myself a healthy break from dating and men and sat in the space that was left by their absence for a while. I’ve been learning more about me, what I need and what I want to give in a relationship. I feel ready to trust myself and follow my heart. Embrace my strength and fragility. My passion and my fears. The thing is(and I know this sounds cliche)…as painful as these experiences are at the time..they are gifts. I would have missed so many incredible opportiunities without these experiences. I wouldn’t have had the opportunity to know myself better AND I wouldn’t be writing this.
I have met and recognised and formed friendships with more openhearted, emotionally evolved men over the past year than ever before. Is this because I’m attracting them? Or Im noticing them more? Or are there just more around these days? I’m hoping its a mixture of all three!. I also notice that many of my female friends are far more aware of what they want in a relationship, choosing to be single over ‘making do’. I know less women who are blindly dating and hoping dating and hoping(including me!). They are more selective about where they place their attention.
I believe men are protectors, it is their calling and desire to care for and be there for the women in their life. I am lucky enough to know men who show and prove this daily. I’m not saying that we need saving of course…we really do not. But it does raise question is can we, as strong, independant, feminine women be brave enough to let go and allow them to do so? The safety we so deeply want to feel can only be found by jumping into a potentially dangerous situation…are we brave enough to jump? And can our men step up without the fear of being responsible for ALL our future happiness?
I can only speak for myself….I’d love to think I could jump…and I’m working on it. I’d love to hear your thoughts please do get in touch.