Direct Answers – Emotional Gluttony


I was with my boyfriend seven years, and I loved him to pieces. We laughed, had sex regularly, had great friends and similar dreams. After college we moved in together.

I was afraid of marriage because I’d seen so many fail, but I felt safe with him. My only complaint was his lack of emotion. I only saw him cry once. I don’t even know if it was actually a tear. There may have been something in his eye.

When we argued, we raised our voices but always apologized afterwards. He never expressed worry or sadness to me. I asked him why he never cried, and he said it’s just not him.

My job got crazy. I worked almost every day and we rarely saw each other. We finally decided I needed to leave my job. We packed up our things and moved to another city where he could get stationed as a pilot and I could find work.

Before we moved I met a woman, Marne, through my old job. She was gay and beautiful. I was happily engaged, though not planning a wedding because marriage still scared me. Marne and I talked about my relationship all the time.

She knew me well and could read my emotions and body language. I didn’t think anything of it until one night, after a few too many drinks, I kissed her. She tried to stop me multiple times, but I was persistent so she gave in.

I fell for her hard and fast. We saw each other in secret while my fiancé and I continued to have a “great” relationship: good sex, laughter and motivation for life.

I tried to talk to him about needing more emotion and wanting to know the inside of him. He called me silly and grabbed me to cuddle. I didn’t want to cuddle. I wanted my mind stimulated and my emotions fed.

I had never been with a woman. It was foreign, exhilarating and incredible. It didn’t feel like cheating because she was female, though feelings of guilt about the affair grew. I convinced myself, with Marne’s help, I shouldn’t be okay with sleeping with a woman behind his back. I felt, if he knew me, he would know something was wrong.

I sat him down and confessed. He didn’t flinch. We argued and talked for a month. He never shed a tear. He didn’t show an ounce of fear of living without me. One day I came home from work and he was gone. He didn’t even say goodbye.

It’s been a year and I still cry over the way he left. I have put Marne through hell. I know I love her, but I don’t know if I want to end up with a female for the rest of my life. She is willing to do anything to keep me, but I keep pushing her away.

I’m going crazy, so tired of fighting with her and crying over him.

~ Courtney

Courtney, some people crave an amuse-bouche, a perfect bite of food. Others desire a perfectly proportioned meal. Still others want the all-you-can-eat buffet.

Emotionally speaking, you are like none of those. You are more like a competition eater in a pie eating contest. You want a marathon of conversation about your feelings, the YouTube video that made you cry, and that time when you were seven.

You want that instead of what? Being happy? Being content today and going about your business?

You cheated on a levelheaded boyfriend who uprooted himself to your benefit. You seduced a woman against her better judgment. You want to feed off their tears because you have an insatiable appetite for negative emotions. Usually this is found in people who grew up with crazymakers.

Somehow a switch within your brain got toggled in the wrong direction. The only cure is intensive individual therapy.

~ Wayne & Tamara

Column for week of May 29, 2017

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