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It’s burdensome for me to go out with women

The Yomiuri ShimbunDear Troubleshooter:

I’m a male company employee in my 20s. My job and my life recently became stable, but now I’m worried about my relationships with women.

After I began to earn a living, I started to live on my own. In the beginning, I couldn’t do my laundry, cleaning, cooking and other things needed to care for myself properly, and I was psychologically depressed.

I was also stressed out at work as I had many things to learn. So I was emotionally dependent on a woman I had previously dated; I feel she saved me psychologically.

Now, I’ve grown up a bit more and feel like I can stand on my own two feet and step forward without relying on women.

Once I felt that I had become independent without needing to ask a partner for help, I could no longer find fun or meaning in interacting with women in and outside of the office. Now I only find it burdensome.

I still have a desire to get married someday, but right now I don’t feel like actively involving myself with women. What should I do?

D, Tokyo

Dear Mr. D:

Hmm. When you were dependent on your girlfriend, you might have had respect for her from the bottom of your heart and might even have been in love with her. However, when you started learning about how the world works, you came to find women in general no longer attractive. Don’t you think it’s a matter of what you expect from them?

I think when you didn’t know what the whole world was like, you wanted women to “teach you” or “help you,” seeking the passive love of “wanting to be petted.” In short, you were looking for “motherly love” at that time.

However, you emerged from that phase and grew up. What you are looking for now is more active love such as “supportive love,” “giving love” and “love that creates.” You haven’t met a woman who has caused you to feel such love.

Basically, the only thing you can do is wait. If you want to do something about it now, I think you shouldn’t stick to dating women. Rather, foster your own humanity as a member of society. It may sound like a cliche, but I believe the chance to meet a nice woman comes about when you aren’t consciously aware of women.

Soichiro Nomura, psychiatrist

(from May 13, 2018, issue)Speech

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