Certain things will make me completely shut down from the rest of the world, and unnecessary confrontations are one of them. The energy from harsh things like that seems to linger, and I feel it. If you’ve seen a wounded animal, they usually hide in the dark and don’t want to socialize, and that is what I tend to do. Sometimes I stop going to my normal places, doing my normal routine, or even posting on social media. I pretty much hide from people and don’t come out until I feel safe or in a pack, even if it means not coming out of my house for days at a time. This isn’t just for physical protection, but for mental and emotional protection, as well.
After that crazy incident at the restaurant about a month ago, I haven’t been out to eat at all. And although I’ve been staying home and keeping to myself except to go to the store or see my family, crazies are still abundant. This is only one story…
Being that I have not tried to make friends or meet people in general over the past year or so, I thought it was time to get out of the house and do something different. Continuing to stay out of bars, meeting people is a little challenging sometimes, because I have no social life whatsoever. Someone that I mutually follow on Instagram had chatted with me a few times, all general conversation, much of it about the posts we have in common. It was unknown to me whether or not this person was male or female due to the first name on the account being an initial. By the way things were written in messages and the overuse of emojis, I’d assumed it was a woman. After chatting a little more, I was given a name, discovering this person was a man only a few years older than me.
After several weeks of chatting back and forth, Insta-Friend and I decided to meet in person, because it seemed we go to the same locations due to our shared hobby, and we figured we’d run into each other eventually anyway. He seemed chill and laid back, and maybe we’d have some good conversation. At the very least, I figured I’d make a new friend. We agreed to meet for sushi for our initial in-person meeting. It was understood that this was just a friends thing, not a date at all, and split the check. Dinner was okay (I was feeling subpar), the conversation was unexciting, but I figured everything had to do with me not feeling well. (I’m seeing now that I often blame myself for things.)
Insta-Friend and I continued to chat via Instagram (I did not give out my number) about activities we do in the area, and one day we met up at the beach for about a half hour. It was chilly and windy, so I’d stayed in my car, and he was on his bike standing next to me. I felt a weird vibe from him, but I wasn’t sure what it was exactly. I felt he was trying to put off sexual vibes, which didn’t interest me whatsoever, and then suddenly, my intuition screamed “Never be alone with this man!”
And then I kind of froze with these thoughts stirring in my head, trying to find an excuse to leave without seeming rude or looking like a flake. That’s when I noticed Insta-Friend kept looking down into my car at my legs or something. I finally asked what he was looking at, and he replied, “What are you wearing under there?”
I was taken aback at his comment, as I felt not only was it inappropriate, but I hardly knew him! I’d been wearing a bathing suit under a tank top and jean shorts. Being that I was sitting down, my long tank top may have hidden my shorts, but either way, I felt his question was creepy as hell. Whether or not he could read my body language or facial expression is unknown, but I thought I made it clear I was uncomfortable with his question (I later figured out he was either clueless or just didn’t care – like many men behave when it comes to women’s boundaries). At that point, I just wanted to leave and get away from Insta-Creep and decided we wouldn’t be hanging out anymore.
This wasn’t the first time Insta-Creep said something that I didn’t like, but since texting can get misinterpreted, I forgave his comment and thought maybe I’d taken it wrong. (Instead of taking it for what it was, I made an excuse that maybe I’m the one that took it wrong. I blamed myself again!)
Prior to all of this, I had recommended that crazy restaurant to Insta-Creep, and then told him about the night of the incident there, because I wouldn’t be going back. When I got to the part about the owner’s baby-mama screaming and accusing him of fucking me (the customer), Insta-Creep asked what I was wearing and if my cleavage was showing. At that time, I’d asked him what does what a woman is wearing have anything to do about someone else’s behavior? And by the way, I was dressed from neck to ankle in the same type of clothing I’d wear to work.
He shut up after that, but it stayed in the back of my mind, because it completely rubbed me the wrong way. For a man to say that to a woman about what she’s wearing screams that sexual assault is also a woman’s fault. I’d also realized later Insta-Creep said some things during our chats about physical touch, and now I believe he was hinting that he wanted to get laid. Of course, none of this came together to make sense until other things happened, because of the same wording that was used.
The same evening of the beach incident, Insta-Creep sent me a message saying how much fun he had hanging out. I thought calling it “fun” was a little over-the-top, because it was just like I would normally chitchat with any of my friends at the beach. He hinted at hanging out again, but I wasn’t having it, and my answers were brief. I guess my short responses and lack of interest made his other personality come out, because a day later he started sending messages that sounded like he needed attention. LOTS of attention!
The first message from Insta-Creep was on a Friday, stating that he was going to be having a sad weekend. The way he said it made it seem like someone had died, but since he didn’t mention it, I didn’t ask. Again – my intuition told me not to ask, not to get involved with this at all, and so I replied that I hoped he felt better. And that’s when things got really bizarre!
Around 1 a.m. Insta-Creep sent me a message that sounded like he was under the influence of something, because it was completely different from any other messages due to the spelling, grammar, and overall tone. This is exactly how he sent it:
“I’m a fool for telling u I was sad You’re emotionally unavailable.or unwilling or dont know me well enough to care or put forth an effort..Sorry. I’ll keep my feelings to myself. Seems it is my lot in life to suffer always has , why would it change now.”
Oh. My. God. What. The. Fuck.
He just graduated to Insta-Psycho.
This was totally not what I’d expected to wake up to that morning! I thought it sounded pitiful and that he attempted to manipulate my feelings by making me feel sorry for him. But it didn’t work. Again, I was not going to get involved in anyone else’s shit while I’m still healing myself, BUT if someone sounds like they might need help, I’m also not going to sit back and say nothing at all. I told him I understood how it feels to be sad, that I’m going through my own set of problems, and I sent him a link to a local counseling center with a sliding-scale fee.
Insta-Psycho completely dismissed anything I suggested, said he doesn’t need a shrink… and: “I know my problem. I have a tormented heart. Always have. To be so empathetic, and to yearn for a love returned. It is my journey or curse in this life.”
(Was I reading Edgar Alan Poe?)
What I really wanted to say was put your big boy panties on and suck it up, buttercup! But… I responded that counseling gives us tools to deal with these issues, that there is nothing wrong with it, and that I’m not equipped to deal with half of my own stuff right now and unable to take on anyone else. His response:
“Tools, schmools, it is time that heals, and a little Rx help. And if your lucky the arms of another to offer warmth and tenderness. If your really lucky someone who unexpectedly blows your mind and leaves your heart and mind clear and full of new feelings. I would always be open to listening to you if u wanted. I may be wiser than u know.”
Tools schmools? I was attempting to reach out to help even after I told him I cannot take on other people’s problems, and his arrogance, entitlement, and condescension was the last straw for me. That’s when I realized he wasn’t really “sad”; he was pouting about his ex from a year ago and probably pouting about me not being interested in him. He was playing my empathy and kindness by attempting to manipulate me! Now I was really pissed. I was also a little freaked out by it all, and I stopped responding to him. But Insta-Psycho wasn’t through.
More to come…