I got up earlier than usual, although I still spent a long time (I’m not sure how long) lying in bed feeling depressed.  I think I got woken up by the window cleaner, who made a lot of noise even before he took a phone call right outside my window.  It was hard to work out what the noise was with my sleep-befuddled brain; I don’t usually here voices from outside the window when I’m not on the ground floor.

Achievements today: I managed to write my devar Torah for the week in under an hour before lunch, which was an impressive start to the day.  I did a further fifteen minutes of Torah study; I would have liked to have done more, but, as usual, no time/energy.  The other big achievement was writing over 1,150 words of my novel in about two hours, making a good start on the next chapter.  I dusted my room, which didn’t take anywhere as near as long as I expected (admittedly it was not the most thorough dusting).  I went for a thirty-five minute run too.  It was OK, but not great.

***

I got notification that I should get some more money from selling copies of my non-fiction Doctor Who book.  Only about £10, but it’s nice to get anything.  I’m not sure how many copies I’ve sold and if I’ve still only sold it to people who know me personally.  I think the revenue today was from my sister buying a copy and then a little bit more from an Amazon sale to an unknown person, which is quite exciting.

When lockdown is over I still intend to send a review copy to Doctor Who Magazine to try to get some publicity.  I’ve even been thinking of going back on Twitter to promote it, but Twitter is so angry and political so much of the time, and is a massive time waster even when it’s not angry, that I’m wary of doing so.

***

Thinking of my book reminds me of E., because she insisted on buying a copy even though I said she didn’t have to and wouldn’t understand it (as she’s hardly seen any Doctor Who).  To be honest, a lot of things remind me of E. today.  I’m still not sure how I went from being “in the top 1% of boyfriends” (apparently) to someone inessential in such a short period.  Would our relationship have survived without lockdown?  It’s probably better not to ask those questions.

***

I don’t think I should be dating right now as I need to get over E., but I can’t help wondering if I will ever date again.  I mean, how would I even meet someone?  In the frum (religious Orthodox Jewish) community there are few events where unmarried men and women can mingle, not that I would have the courage to go/talk to anyone if there were.  I’ve become scared of shadchanim (professional matchmakers) and I’m not integrated into the community enough for the normal method of dating (being set up with someone by mutual friends).  I met my first girlfriend on Jdate, but since then my online dating experiences have not been good and I’m reluctant to try again.  I didn’t meet many women my age when volunteering or at shiurim (religious classes) and if I did I would not have the courage to talk to them.  Actually, that’s not quite true, the first time I volunteered at the asylum seekers’ drop-in centre, there were two sisters there about my age who I spoke to a bit and seemed to get on with OK.  They said they would come back the next time, but I haven’t seen them again in the years I’ve been going.

My Dad once asked a bunch of people who, if anyone, could help someone in the frum community with depression find a spouse.  Someone did answer.  The assistant rebbetzin (rabbi’s wife) of his shul (synagogue) gave him the name of someone and I said I would phone her, but I never did because I met E. (the first time we went out) and then after that it seemed too late and I was pessimistic about her, or any other anonymous shadchan, being able to help me, particularly as my rabbi mentor was sceptical about them too.  I guess I could contact her in the future, although saying “Rebbetzin X said I should contact you three years ago…” might seem a bit weird.  I am more sceptical about whether she could help now, and too ashamed to talk to her without having a job.

I feel I shouldn’t even be looking for love without having a job and less depression.  It’s not so much feeling that I don’t deserve love (although that is part of it) as thinking that no one will be able to look past those two things, as they haven’t in the past.

I probably have more needs than most people too.  I need some with shared values (obviously), intelligent, caring, ideally frum and probably family-centred, although as I get older, having children seems less and less likely.  That’s not too much, although building trust and communication is harder, given my social anxiety and high functioning autism, but the big thing is that she, whoever she is, would have to accept all my various “issues,” both psychological and the fact that I’m unlikely to be able to work full-time any time soon and my attempted career as a writer is not going well (not to mention my geeky interests – those alone have put people off in the past even without depression and unemployment).  That makes it likely that she will also have “issues,” yet negotiating two sets of borderline (at least) psychopathological issues is what basically killed off both my relationships, the one with E. and the one seven years ago.

Maybe I should be looking for someone with issues that aren’t psychological, but I don’t know how well I could connect with such a person, or how she could connect with me.

It’s easy to get sucked into thinking that I will never meet anyone and shouldn’t try, which will just make it almost certain that I won’t meet anyone.  I mean, it’s not impossible, as E. just dropped down from the sky (she read my blog and emailed), but I don’t expect that to happen again any time soon, particularly as my blog is hidden these days.

***

Bottom line: I feel lonely, but I worry I could never let myself be vulnerable with anyone again.

Related: I flip between wanting to make my blog fully public and “findable” again or making it completely private (at the moment doing neither).

***

A lot of complaining stuff was cut here, about the illegal minyan (prayer meeting) next door, about librarians who don’t know what they’re complaining against and should know better, and about antisemitism.  It’s been a day for getting annoyed with people.  Going to watch some original series Doctor Who (Inferno), as I need to unwind in the way that only my autistic special interest can do.

8 thoughts on ““I don’t know why nobody told you/How to unfold your love”

  1. My older daughter thought she would never meet anyone either; she was living in L.A. where it can be very difficult for a woman who wants marriage and children to find a sincere, down to earth guy with those same goals. It seemed like most of the men she dated were aspiring playwrights, actors, and musicians who were making a living as waiters. Yet she did meet Ryan and now they have their darling 4 week old son. You have ideas about what to do and a few possibilities; now you’ll need to decide if and when you want to take action. I’m hoping it’s when.

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    1. I don’t feel that I do have ideas about what to do. Everything I mentioned seems like a non-starter.

      As for when, I should wait a few months to get E. out of my system, but really there seems very little point in doing anything before I have some kind of job, preferably one approaching full time, which is not likely to be for a long time.

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      1. There is never a perfect time. I would say to remain open to possibilities. My daughter had given up on dating, deciding to remain single forever and get a cat. (which she did) I pressured her to go out with Ryan for the first time because she was fed up with the dating scene. The rest is history, although Ryan is allergic to cats. 🙂 I will continue to hope for the best for you, whatever that happens to be!

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        1. Thank you. I do feel that remaining open to possibilities just leads me to getting hurt. When I’m single (i.e. 90% of my adult life), I spend a lot of time wishing I was in a relationship, fantasising, crushing on women, etc. It’s not very healthy and I wish I could stop it.

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  2. My grandparents were frum and I was too for quite some time. Now I’m ‘just Jewish’ (progressively so). I found myself stuck between the pros and cons of frumkeit and I really wanted to be guided by chochmat halev in my teachings and not have my shiurim boxed in. I think focusing on getting a job first is a great goal — then try the Shadchan or Rebbitzen route for a shidduch. Best of everything to you! Sending chesedik thoughts your way.

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  3. I think you should try to stay open to a relationship while working on yourself. Otherwise, sometimes your self-talk reminds me of the quote by Richard Bach, “Argue for your limitations, and sure enough, they’re yours.” I do this, too. But it becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy. You may get hurt again on your way to finding the right partner, but if you reach the goal in the end, you achieved what you wanted. You can do this, Luftmensch.

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