Hi, I'm Joe, for those of you who are curious about the title. I've posted here a couple of times a few years ago and it always ended up as a sort of diary, one that I used to get order in my train of thought. It helped me out quite a bit, especially when the diary started to become a conversation consisting of long thought out monologues as a response to one of you guys (the advantage of a forum, you can take as long as you like to write a thought out response without being interrupted by anything else).
Just as last time I'm honestly going to let my subconscious write this out for the most part and see where it goes. I have a couple of things on my mind but we'll see where it all goes. For those of you who got to this point, I'm sorry for the weird introduction and let's just jump into it.
So first (I'm sorry, let's almost jump into it) I might need to introduce myself to get a bit of a clearer picture here. I'm Joe (still) and I'm 24 years of age (why not 24 years old? I don't know, it just sounded more fun. I have realized by rereading the stuff I posted here in 2016 that I quite like my style of writing when I let my subconscious take over). I'm introverted, extremely shy (most of my problems are because of my shyness, but I tend to call it introversion because that sounds slightly better than shyness), possibly slightly depressed (will get to that one), unhappy with how I look and still a virgin (still as both in regards of my age and the last time I've posted here).
So why am I posting here again? Well, let's start with the first reason (finally starting! after 300 words, sorry...) I don't particularly like the way I look. This has gotten better over the last couple months/years. Told the hairdresser to just go with what he thought was right (he did a terrible job with the actual cutting of my hair, but the style and advice was great) and been able to grow out a bit of a nice beard (yay for males natural makeup).
The thing is, I'm too heavy and I don't like that part of myself (I'm 89 kg at 183, so that's not terrible, but still overweight, started at 96 tho, about 6 months ago, thought I should go back and add that (no, I'm not fishing for compliments, well, maybe, sue me)). The problem being I don't have a great body type. My rib cage (two separate words, who would've guessed) is quite wide, meaning I also look quite heavy even if I'm not, add the fact that literally the last fat to disappear is my belly fat (I once weighed 67 kg, quite light but still had a significant belly, no fat on my arms, lower legs but quite a bit on my belly and ever so slightly on my upper legs, meaning they looked quite fat even though my upper leg muscles are actually quite large). So my thought was, staying reasonable as to what was possible for my body type, let's go for a more strongman type of body, since that would probably look best on me.
The thing is, I've gone to the gym quite actively for about 6 months and although I would like to say that it's starting to show, it is not. If anything I look even worse (getting slightly bigger pecs but the fat makes it look more like man boobs (and I know, keep persevering (thanks google for the correct spelling) and eventually it will work out all right, right?)) and my traps are too big for my shoulders (again, probably with time, but time is starting to get to me).
My reasoning for starting to work out was rather sensible if I say so myself. My logic was that I didn't like the way I looked, and that I could either learn to love it (or honestly, in my opinion, and I do not mean any offense, to resign oneself to fate) or I could start working on improving it, thereby eliminating one of the hurdles that I faced and at the same time hopefully gaining some confidence (which I started to lose over the last couple of weeks, but perhaps I'll get around to that too, genuinely don't know what stops this train of thought is going to make (probably not the first to say that, but I do like that phrasing).
So that's the first thing, my logic being that if I would like the way I looked more, I might gain some confidence, maybe get some compliments here and there (maybe from some girls, not in the I want to date them kind of hope, but just the I'm not completely invisible kind of way) and maybe, hopefully, just lose some of that shyness. Is it foolish to think I will actually magically lose my shyness if I look better and get compliments? Yes, probably, I highly doubt that it would change that much other than I might think that some girl is checking me out when she's just randomly staring instead of realizing she's probably just randomly staring. Will I do anything if she does that? No, not at all, but one thing at a time perhaps. I would probably get some boost in confidence, sure, even if it is just because I'm more comfortable in my own skin. But will much change? Don't think it will, because It'll take a hell of a lot more to make stop being the shy introverted guy that I am.
So what even started my workout and wish to become more confident? Well, little over a year ago (april of last year) I hit a bit of a low point, or I "met myself" as the dutchies would say. I started seeing a therapist (for about 6 months, that's how long you're insured for in Holland) and started to think more actively about the choices I was making, stopped drinking basically completely (not that I ever drunk much, just at couple of beers at a party every 2-3 months) because I realized the only reason I drank was because it was offered to me, which I thought to be a terrible reason, so now I only drink 1-2 dark beers if we go to a restaurant and somebody else is driving, because otherwise I really don't mind being the designated driver (or Bob in dutch). I also realized that I needed to hit the gym instead of working out at home (had some weights and a bench, so it was OK). After much fright (really, I was terrified to go to the gym, I got out of bed, into my workout clothes and ended up not going for a couple of times before I finally went (btw, if you ever feel that way, go in the morning before work/classes, there are like 4 people there when I work out and they all don't give a damn about me or each other, they just work out and leave again).
Now where am I going with all of this? Honestly, I only know where I want to end up eventually, not what happens in between, maybe it's just to clear my head, to get it all on paper (or pixels) and clear my head. In the end that's been my real problem, so let me explain it shortly (haha, me and explaining things shortly, I know... But I'll try I promise) Last week I was at the gym, just working out as usual, having a bit of a motivational problem before going (which happens) and thinking that it'll fade once I'm biking there (usually happens too). This time however, somewhere mid workout, I was just done, and I don't mean physically, I mean mentally, as in I was almost crying there. Got most of it done, skipped 2 exercises I never really fancy doing on a good day, and I left.
Why was I so upset? I think for several reasons, but let me summarize (yeah right...) them. First of all, I have this hugely (and I mean extreem) fantasy world in my head, where I am somebody completely different, successful, charming, have a lovely girlfriend/wife (depending on when in my fantasy world I am) am a lot closer to my parents, and generally am just very happy. Now the problem? I have a rich fantasy, so I could (and will) get lost in this world of mine for hours at a time and I think it's really starting to hurt my psyche.
Of course the reason I'm lost in this world is because I'm unhappy about my real one. I notice I start to lose energy, I'm just sitting, watching something on netflix the entire day (summer vacation, nothing to do) basically either pausing shows because something happened that I can use in my fantasy world, or waiting for the appropriate time to make dinner, or go to bed early (so I can spend the next 3 hours spending in my fantasy world). Basically letting the real world pass me by as I just go throughout the day having no energy whatsoever (hence the maybe I'm depressed at the beginning).
Honestly, it all started out pretty innocently, I was just wondering what it would be like to have a girlfriend, just cuddle on the couch, letting my arm drape over her, giving her light kisses on her head as it rests on my chest. Feeling intimate with somebody for so many more things than just sex.
So I thought maybe I should go back to that therapist, because you know, new year, new 750 minutes of therapy in my insurance. The only thing is, since I went there the first time, things with my parents went a bit weird.
So let me quickly explain something about my parents (really, another detour? Yes, another one). My mom is this really sweet lady that just gets on my nerve so easily (really mom, I love you, but I need to vent a lot more than I need 38 minutes of advice on something you sadly just don't know anything about), what I mean is, I don't share anything with my parents. Anything I do share is oftentimes extracted by them with the most difficulty. Why? Because my mom will give this long speech about I don't know what, pointing out all the obvious things, and sometimes rambling on a bit. My father on the other hand (again, love you dad, but sometimes it's nice to be my dad, not the project manager) can have this big explanation, and is really good at pointing out different points of view and has a certain eloquence in his phrasing that I just cannot debate against. It's amazing to talk to him about anything that isn't about me, technology, science, that sort of stuff (we both are really interested in these sort of things).
But, this means I don't feel comfortable sharing anything, because I get annoyed when I share something with my mom (and weeks later she finds an article in one of those housewife magazines related to what I said and sends it to me, have you ever read these magazines? What a load of...) and with my dad I feel like I somehow have to defend myself tooth and nail. Both really awful situations, so I just don't share. I would like to, as I said, fantasy me is really close to his parents, but not me.
Now what does this have to do with my therapist? Simply said I have a couple of options, go to my therapist again and just don't tell my parents (avoid the whole discussion, them being worried (which I know they were from last time, my mom still sometimes checks in with me, asking me how I am out of the blue (which btw, for somebody whose not particularly in the best mindset, how are you is such an extremely simplistic stupid question, to which I mostly just reply "fine", since it's not really a question to get a now 2000 words explanation on whats on my mind, but anyhow), I'm pretty sure only for that reason)) but I don't want to do that (go to my therapist and not tell my parents, for those who missed the train as it went hurdling past the station).
I could go and just tell them that I am going again, which would open up a whole conversation about how I am doing, in which my mom (bless her, but sometimes...) will just talk for the most part, coming up with solutions to my problems, which either don't apply or I've already thought of (and I KNOOOOOWWW... It's so sweet, and she's just doing it because she loves me and hates seeing me in pain/lost, I know, I really do, but that doesn't mean I don't feel any more uncomfortable).
Or I could just not go to the therapist, which I know, it's a bad idea, especially since the worst is yet to come. Although I will say, there is something else that makes me kinda not want to go. I just don't know how to talk to her about one of the more prominent reasons I'm not feeling well, that is because I am starting to just crave intimacy. How do you get that smoothly into a conversation at the therapist?
So I thought, online dating, that's probably not going to be the death of me (well... read and weep...). So after much dread, I finally took a couple of selfies (had to specially make them, because I don't use snapchat, or instagram, or facebook, or anything like that). Made a profile (jesus crist that's difficult to do, write something about yourself, well, you know, in a way that people wouldn't swipe left because there's too much bagage (plus, I wouldn't be able to post 2400 words on there anyway)). And I started swiping. I literally ran out of people yesterday, I have 3 likes and had one match, she had an even worse profile than I had and no bio, so I had absolutely nothing to start a conversation on. Bumble wasn't much better for those suggesting that, also ran out of people and 1 like, no match. So that was an absolute failure.
The thing is (and I truly hate putting this at the end, so I'll probably come up with another topic just so I don't end on this one), I sometimes have these fleeting moments of what the hell am I still doing here (not suicidal, don't worry, really, I could never do that). And other fleeting thoughts, like maybe it wouldn't be so bad if I didn't wake up tomorrow, turned out I had some weird illness and just died. Or let's move to a different country, so I can just cut ties with everything, including my parents (sorry mom and dad) and not have to feel like I'm a disappointment. You know? Just go somewhere that nobody knows me, find some job somewhere, just never talk to my coworkers or anybody else more than I have to, get a dog and that's it.
Because at the end of the day: "It'll work out fine", "Don't worry, you'll find a great girl, I just know it" and other advice like that is simply not true, not saying that in a pessimistic (yeah, me saying I'm not pessimistic after THAT paragraph) way, but rather a realistic one. There is no guarantee that it'll work out, that I'll find somebody. Something I read on reddit (I know, not the best source for confidence boosts and positive outlooks on life sometimes) a guy posted something about him being 30 and still never having had a girlfriend. Realistically, that could become me, again, realistically it COULD happen. Not in the pessimistic I'm just going to die alone way, but in the realistic it could happen kinda way.
It also reminded me of something my brother-in-law said (technically they're not married, but together for almost 10 years, so he basically earned that title a long time ago) after my sister started dating somebody a year or so back (she's a year and a half older than me). "Finally, it was starting to be time" to which I replied *some noises and grunts because I didn't feel like I had anything to say in that matter* and as if he knew exactly what I was thinking, he just said "And the same applies to you". And he was right, and he still is, but I just don't know anymore sometimes, you know? (again, would love to just move to a different country and grow old and alone together, away from everybody who would feel pity/disappointment).
So I've come about to the end of my journal intake for today, for those of you who got so far, sorry there was not TLDR. And thank you, just simply thank you for reading all this. Even though I mostly wrote these 2900 words just for the catharsis of it (catharsicism? Cathartic release?). I could have just written it in word (as I had mentioned the previous times I posted here). So I must have some kind of goal right? Probably just because I need to tell somebody, and the great thing about this forum? Even if there is judgement, only positive messages make it through, how lovely. So again, thank you for reading all of this and I hope it wasn't too depressing.
Good for you Joe. Putting everything in words will help clear your mind and keep you accountable.