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The hole in my life that she filled was empty again and I really took a dive emotionally.
I went into a deep depression and got in touch with a fear that there might be something really wrong with me.
Not surprisingly, she had some of the same complaints about me that Suzanne has.
‘He’s detached, distant, aloof and withheld.’ She used to tell me all the time how frustrating and painful it was to be with someone who didn’t share himself and spent so much time isolated.
When he’s under stress, he values no one’s company more than his own and finds clarity, comfort, and relief in being solitary. Once Ted is refueled, he’s ready to re-engage and connect with other people. Suzanne, on the other hand gets recharged by being people. “I fell in love with Ted because we had such great connections.
When she’s stressed out, her initial impulse is always to get with people; preferably in person, but if that’s not possible, then at least by phone. We used to talk for hours about the most personal and meaningful things in our lives.
It wasn’t that I didn’t like Gloria, I really did, but she was just too much for me.
What to her was a reasonable expectation of connection time, to me was overwhelming.
It seems that the harder I try to express my frustration and my need for more closeness, the more he withdraws.
So when Suzanne and I met, we both fell hard for each other and I was sograteful and relieved to have been given another chance to do it right this time.
The first year that we were together was incredible. Shortly after our first wedding anniversary, I started feeling some of those old urges to seek out more solitary time. She felt like I was punishing her but I really wasn’t. We got into a vicious cycle that didn’t let up until as a last ditch effort we got intomarriage counseling. We’re not completely out of the woods yet but we’re on our way and we both have learned a lot more about ourselves and each other in the process.” Introverts (like Ted) and extroverts (like Suzanne) have opposite—we prefer to call it “complementary”—means of dealing with stress and meeting their emotional needs.
I loved his depth and his capacity for listening and understanding; I thought that it would never end. I don’t know what happened but over time it seemed that Ted became increasingly more distant and less emotionally available.
He reacted to my efforts to engage him and draw him out with resistance and resentment.