Dating is something that’s always kind of tricky to traverse, no matter how much of a loser or Casanova one is. I’ve been dating this one girl who has had some trauma a few years ago which would prevent our relationship from being a “normal” as other peoples’. Because of this, she and I didn’t even kiss until our fourth date, something I am very much unaccustomed to since most other people my age are having sex by around the third date. She had explained things to me somewhat, but it didn’t make things any less difficult since I did like her and have feelings for her.
For our third, we went to see a movie and it was our first time holding hands as well. She had told me before that she didn’t want me to think that she didn’t like me because she very much did, but at times I found her as coming off as somewhat cold and would tell myself “Just let go of her hand Ani, you’re embarrassing yourself, she doesn’t give a shit about you.” She was verbally telling me that she liked me a lot, but her actions were telling me that she wasn’t interested in me. She’s the only person I’ve found luck dating recently, so it makes me more willing to be patient, but it doesn’t make things any less difficult since I’m used to more physical affection, not even necessarily sex, just more physical affection. On our most recent date, a similar thing was happening, we were looking into each other’s eyes and smiling at each other, speaking softly, delicately, breathily, all nonverbal signs of higher intimacy. As it seemed to become more clear we would kiss, she turned away and started crying out of nowhere, apparently she’d had a massive flood of anxiety kicking in and she felt terrible about it because she very much wanted to kiss me but her past trauma was preventing her from doing so. Eventually, at the end of our date, we were able to and that very much shelved a lot of worries for me, but those initial times, it’s really disconcerting when the words and actions of a potential romantic partner don’t line up.