Online flirtation: When it's more than just a smiley face
Petaling Jaya Travel Blog› entry 6 of 13 › view all entries
I have been having a whole crazy bunch of mixed feelings and emotions of late. Iâ€™ve gone through the gamut of going from being overjoyed, delighted, just-pleased-with-myself highs to insecure, self-conscious, depressingly sad lows.
Iâ€™m sure that to some of you, this may sound like the emotional roller-coaster of an individual suffering from depression, but I donâ€™t consider myself depressed. Iâ€™d like to think that Iâ€™m generally sufficiently happy, with minor moments of sadness and discontent. Lately, though, there have been more lows than highs.
It could very well be the events that have unfolded over the last few weeks that have caused for my moments of delirium, which then spiraled down towards feelings of rejection and being unwanted. I do think that rejection is ranked right on top as the feeling that every living being canâ€™t fathom having. Rejection is to not be wanted. It is not being accepted for who you are and what you are. It is not receiving love and being cast aside for some other thing/creature/person. Being rejected means one does not belong, which is our greatest desire.
Iâ€™ve been feeling rejected these last couple of weeks. The person that has been in touch with me for the last year or so, wooing me and trying to win me over, has not called me in the last few weeks. Heâ€™s promised to travel with me to Bali this month. Yet, he has not committed to a date for when he will arrive. He has said, though, that he will be here and be with me as we take this communication period called a relationship to another step, where we get re-acquainted in person. But not hearing from him for the last few weeks, after we had spoken almost daily in the last few months, was utter torture, which sadly breeds feelings of insecurities and a crazy lack of confidence.
During this time of me feeling unloved and unwanted, I had met with a new friend online, who had caught me off guard when he said that he was interested in me, after just a few days of us getting to know a bit about each other! How does one react to this unexpected news? Surprised, a little afraid, excited, truly flattered definitely describe how I felt when I found out. This was all new to me!
I wasnâ€™t exactly the popular teenager in school. In fact, I wanted to blend in with the walls as much as I could. I was bigger and taller than most of the girls, freakish-looking (read: bow legged) and still a bit of a tomboy. I didnâ€™t exactly have the boys lining up and banging on my door when I hit my 20s either.
It is a little perplexing to me, how ï¿½ï¿½" though theyâ€™re not lining up outside my door ï¿½ï¿½" there are now men (and surprisingly, younger men!) softly knocking at my door. Yes, I am very much aware that this isnâ€™t some new phenomenon that has swept parts of the world like the Macarena or Soldier Boy dances, but for me, it was a whole new experience! I have always had a preference for older men, but theyâ€™re not the ones showing me serious interest at the moment. So it has been a little difficult for me to get used to the fact that guys as much as five years younger are interested in me. WOW!
Going back to my new friendâ€¦ the first thing I did was lay it all out for him ï¿½ï¿½" that there was someone, apparently seriously interested in me, so I canâ€™t exactly promise him any kind of mutual interest, though I did enjoy our chats/conversations, which were mainly of the online kind. When I told my friends what I did, they told me I was crazy to do that, and that the man who promised to come be with me hadnâ€™t had anything carved in stone, and that I should enjoy the attention I was getting. Maybe I took it all too seriously, but to me, this all seemed real, and I was not about to hide any information or â€˜cheatâ€™ on anyone, even though that â€˜anyoneâ€™ was some who was technically still a stranger to me. The thing with online dating, or even courtship, is that you canâ€™t take it too seriously. That is easier said than done, especially when real people with genuine feelings are involved. What then? I am a hopeless romantic, but I do have realistic expectations, though Iâ€™m certainly not a cynic!!
So as much as I was enjoying the attention, it was slowly getting to me. HE was slowly getting to me, this new friend of mine. I thought Iâ€™d just be flattered by all the attention and crazy romantic notions heâ€™d thrown my way, and leave it at that. Unfortunately, the more you encourage this â€˜fantasyâ€™, the more it starts to manifest itself. And the unconscious game of flirtation you found youâ€™d been playing has backfired. Then you find yourself wondering a little when the messages donâ€™t come as thick and fast as they used to. You canâ€™t sit back and bask in his adoration and need to be in touch with you, because the moment you find that heâ€™s not on your page as often as he used to be, youâ€™re on his page, looking for him!
But then, I realized that I enjoyed the attention he was giving me. I wanted so much to be appreciated by this other man that I took whatever form of attention I could get from my new friend as I wanted it with a passion! Now Iâ€™m wondering what kind of rabbit hole Iâ€™d dug myself into, and how I am going to crawl back out of it. How I wish I was back to those days when no one was in to meâ€¦ those were much simpler times!!