So, a while back I was seeing this guy that would turn contrarian whenever he felt insecure. He would have an array of strategies he used – sometimes just ending the conversation abruptly, sometimes lashing out on me and sometimes just trying to shrug it off by acting ‘untouchable’. I was not going out of my way to make him insecure, it just sometimes happened that I stepped on a toe.
As I discovered this, I spent some time thinking about my ex’s behaviour and the decaying intimacy in our relationship. I stumbled upon the same pattern. My ex would use things I had trusted him with against me when he felt insecure. He would either consciously or subconsciously use those things to get back to me. For a while we had a very chaotic and on and off relationship for exactly this reason…because on one hand I was trying to distance myself from him, on the other hand there were still quite strong feelings. So I would end up avoiding telling things to him for some time and then, because he was also a good listener and could be very sweet when I was in pain, trust him again. But it would always end up the same way…during some argument he would take out the recent hurt of mine and just try to get back…
What is going on with these people? Why are they doing this? Well, mostly because the other option – being vulnerable and coming out and saying that they felt hurt, insecure or scared seems to be way worse if not impossible. I think I was once the same. My mum had given me multiple lessons in that regard. The first lesson was – being vulnerable means being weak. The second one was – if you were to ever trust me with some weakness of yours, I will make sure to exploit it when need be. And finally…if I do hurt and exploit your weakness, you are to be blamed, because – why are you so weak?
These patterns of non-vulnerability repeat itself generation after generation. It is granted that my ex and the guy I was seeing have been hurt badly by their parents and decided that it is safer not to be open and vulnerable. I know the process all too well. The problem is, if you ever happen to date someone like this, it will become very difficult. If you have to jump through hoops and leaps to constantly convince someone that they can trust you and still manage them lashing out to you when they feel insecure, it will take someone extremely patient and ultimately strong. The issue is, such kind and patient people are not usually attracted to people that struggle with intimacy. Instead, what happens is the pattern much like mine and exes where you at least in the beginning had both people struggling with intimacy in their own ways.