I’m emotionally unavailable. I have been for quite some time now. Blame it on daddy issues, low self-esteem or being burned one times too many, but I push away the men who really, truly want to be with me, and I keep around the men who just like to bang me.
For whatever reason, I could never bring myself to be in a physically and simultaneously intimate relationship. I can’t f*ck someone I trust, and I can’t trust someone I f*ck. The two have always been mutually exclusive.
There are men who are my friends, and then there are the men I sleep with, but having the same two in one person has always seemed like too much. Having one person fulfill both my emotional and physical needs just seems like too much. What if that person were to go away? I couldn’t risk demanding it all from him. Divide and conquer has always seemed like the only logical way to go about my love life.
So it’s no surprise that I found myself in a year-long, on-and-off, dead-end relationship. His name was Colin*, and I had met him at a bar a year ago, but we were in a purely sexual relationship. He made it very clear it was never going to be anything more, but even when I eventually caught feelings for Colin, I continued to f*ck him because I was too afraid to be real with him. I was completely closed off emotionally, and it wasn't hurting anyone but me. I needed to find a way to be more honest with myself so I could have a healthy love and sex life. It was time for a change.
So I met with Richard Barker, the "Incredible Hypnotist," with the intention of completely turning my life around.
I’d heard good things about hypnosis for years, but I never thought it’d do me any good. Honestly, it just sounded like a bunch of hoopla. But I was getting tired ("tired" is an understatement) of being on the unfortunate end of one-sided relationships and half-assed f*ck-buddy arrangements.
I met Richard at a spa in Manhattan. He instructed me to lie down in a dark room and throw on a pair of headphones. He spent the next 45 minutes talking into my ear and telling me I was going to lead my life differently: that from now on, I would have zero insecurities in the bedroom with someone I trust. According to him, my aversion to healthy relationships had nothing to do with an unfair predisposition and everything to do with my frame of mind.
There was a catch: hypnosis was only going to work if I committed. For the next 30 days, I’d have to listen to the recording every night before bedtime. If I really wanted to see results, I couldn't skip a day.
I wrote in a diary each week to document the changes happening to me. Here are my entries.
It’s been a week since I slept with Colin. He texted me this past weekend. I would’ve hung out with him, but a nasty stomach virus had been going around my office, and I finally became its bitch. I spent a grand total of five days in bed, with no human connection and a lot of time to think.
All I wanted to do was lay in bed with Colin. I wanted to be touched and held. There was no one special in my life, but he'd have to do. But we weren't too heavy on the texting, unless we were texting to make plans. I felt very alone.
I’m really hoping to see some changes by listening to this recording.
I fell asleep listening to the recording. I felt incredibly calm. Colin stayed the weekend, and for the very first time in a year of knowing each other, I was emotionally real with him. I told him everything that was on my mind. He nodded along with a confused look on his face, but it felt good to get it all out.
Even though I'd had feelings for him for months, I'd kept quiet up until then. The sex was getting too real, too intimate. I thought to myself, "Why can't I have it all? This is what I want. I want the sex AND the relationship. Now what can I do to get there?"
My feelings for this guy are what's been giving me anxiety for months. They've been keeping me awake at night (quite literally; I'm an insomniac), and it's what's kept me from getting to know other people.
I spent Valentine’s Day with Colin. It didn’t feel right. I called it quits with him. After a YEAR of nothing but gray with this guy, I got myself out. He and I weren't on the same page, and instead of continuing to be strung along, I finally put a stop to it all so I could open myself up to something else.
The day after I ended things, I sat on my bed and cried it out. And then I felt weirdly okay. Blindly optimistic. To my surprise, it didn't feel like the end of the world. I'd miss the sex, but I was ready to have sex with someone who actually liked me for me.
Did I just have to wait for Valentine's Day to roll around, or was the hypnosis finally starting to kick in? Who was this new Sheena, and WTF did she do with the old Sheena?
This weekend, I'm going on a date with a guy I met at a bar during the blizzard. I'm not really in the mood for it, seeing as I just ended something, but we'll see how it goes.
By the end of this week, I was officially out of the woods with Colin and dating out in the real world again. I went on my first-ever blind date this past weekend. He’s a friend of a friend. We had some chemistry and we’re making plans to see each other again. I plan on taking it very, very slow with him, something I’m not really used to doing.
But it felt good to date. It's a change for me, but it's what I was hoping would happen during the hypnosis. I feel like I'm giving the guy I'm currently dating a fair chance, which is something I wouldn't have been able to do with a f*ck buddy in my life.
I don’t know if it’s pure coincidence, impeccable timing or the hypnotism actually working, but I can feel myself finally opening up to the idea of having sex with someone I’ve also opened up to emotionally. In just four weeks’ time, I cut ties with someone that used me just for sex and willingly went on a set-up. Months ago, I’d never have agreed to that; I was too proud, too afraid, too set in my ways to even entertain the idea of getting to know someone again.
Instead of wishing and hoping my f*ck buddy would finally answer my f*cking text hours later, I’m texting back-and-forth with the blind date. I don’t want to jinx it, but if that isn’t the start of a 180-degree transformation, I don’t know what is.
I’m not saying I’m at all ready to be wifed up. But I’m beginning to see the merit in having a partner you can trust with your mind, body and soul.
*Name has been changed.