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11 Mar 2003

Infatuated with another women
I'm not a lesbian - yet I've become infatuated with another women. I'm in my twenties and very lonely, shy and withdrawn. This person just seem to draw me out of myself and she is very popular - so being seen as 'her friend' makes me feel important / seem important to others. She seems to fill some desperate need in me for companionship / to be loved. I don't feel sexual / physically attracted to her at all. I just want to be around her (and seen by others with her) and talk to her all the time. It's a problem because I talk about her too much and I am constantly thinking about her and what we would talk about next. I get paranoid that she would see me as being obsessed / infatuated with her (she's in her 40's). Everytime I do / say something I carefully consider whether it would be perceived as 'too much' or 'obsessive'. I'm just so afraid to ruin the friendship!!! Whenever she's feeling a bit down or something's going on in her life - I can't help but be subjective and think that I must have done / said something to put her off / or that our friendship has now come to an end. Obviously this causes a great deal of anxiety, sadness and stress. I just want things to go back to the way they were before this 'infatuation'.
I'm pretty healthy and fit and around people all day. I'm involved in sports and hobbies and am quite healthy and enthusiastic. I don't have any dark secrets in my past and have a few other actually healthy relationships. (However, I have become infatuated with people similar to her in the past - especially as a teenager).

What would be the best immediate action to take? Should I avoid her completely? Should I just continue as is - with the awareness of an abnormal infatuation and possibility of ruining a friendship? Please help!
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Expert
CyberShrink
cybershrink

01 Jan 0001

Dear Missy,
As you have confirmed, this is the latest in a series of "crushes" on others. In a younger teenager it's not unusual for an adolescent to form a "crsh" on either an older person ( like a teacher ) who seems to have the strengths you admire ; or on another student, who is popular and successful, and whose status and skills you admire and envy.
But it is more than time to give up this pattern of relating, which is not a full and fulfilling adult relationship, and more towards more grown-up ways of choosing and relating to others. That you are still getting caught up in such feelings, suggests that perhaps your self-esteem and self-confidence are lower than you deserve, and that counselling could be really useful to you in enabling you to recognize and enjoy all the good qualities you already have, as well as whatever others you may choose to develop ) and to feel self-assured enough to relate to men and women on a more adult-to-adult basis. it should also help you to have and less exclusive relationships ( like this one ) which make you over-dependent on one other person, and more of a range of relationships, so you have a range of good friends whose company you can enjoy ; and to have these as open relationships of the usual kind, rather than liking from afar, and feeling hesitant to admit to them.
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