As a teenager and young man, my reaction to emotional pain was to pull any lesson, any value, that I could from it. “If I can at least learn something,” I’d tell myself, “then this isn’t pointless suffering.” I began at some point to believe that if I learned “the truth” over time, I would be free of pain and suffering, that my life would just be joy and free of any pain or suffering. That’s what I subconsciously believed.
And I brought that expectation of myself with me into relationships with girls and women. Which became me judging them and trying to get them to see what I was seeing, to know what I knew. “If only,” I’d tell myself, “they saw this thing another way (the way I see it), they’d be happy.”
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