I lose interest as soon as I get what I want and that scares me. What can I do?

warminthesnowstorm asks:

I’m a 20yo male, I’ve been this way since I was 13. I have a relatively high body-count because I’ve never been in a relationship. Maybe I’m just a borderline sex-addict. I don’t know. The idea of a relationship is adorable to me. I’m a nice guy and would love to have that, but the second that I chase a girl and finally get her, I start to get bored. This has never really bothered me until now, because for the first time in my life I legitimately care about this girl and we are only a few dates away before it’s obvious this is going to be long-term, but here I am scared shitless that I’ll lose interest. On top of that, it’s one of those super awesome relationships where we’ve been best friends for years so the love is already there, and the attraction and intimacy is new between us. I really could see myself going long-term with her, but with my history of losing interest I’m scared to continue and possibly hurt her.

Demetrius says:

This is, sadly, a pretty common feeling for so many people. The idea and feeling that the only rewards in dating can be found in the chase. Once you’ve gotten what you want, whatever that may be, you lose interest. Sad, common, but ultimately, it’s taking the easy route.

Using this sort of mindset in dating, one where pursuit is its own reward, and anything beyond that bores you, is like playing the dating game on Easy mode. Real talk here, successes in dating may vary from person to person, but overall, it is very easy to have casual sex. Sure, it might be harder depending on specific people, but if you’re willing to sleep with whoever will sleep with you, believe me when I say that getting laid isn’t that big of a deal. It’s not really that hard. What’s hard is making a relationship work.

Maybe the reason you lose interest in people once you sleep with them is because you’re afraid of hard work. Maybe the idea of working hard to get to know someone, learn about them, and fight for them to build a real connection, frightens you. Maybe you’re the sort of person who doesn’t know how to deal with challenges that are their own reward, so you quit after you get what you want. Maybe it’s deeper than that, maybe it isn’t. Maybe you’ve got commitment issues, or maybe your “commitment issues” are really just “I’m afraid to try and fail” issues.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying this to insult you, I’m speaking from experience. I used to feel the same way. The thrill of the chase excited me so much more than trying to make a relationship work. I realized later, MUCH MUCH LATER, that it wasn’t because of some larger “relationship issues”, or “commitment issues”, it was because I liked to do things I was good at, and hated challenges. And trust me, relationships are a challenge. Getting someone in bed is  easy, so I liked doing that. Opening up to someone, making yourself vulnerable? That part was hard, much too hard for young Demetrius to handle.

So, I get where you’re coming from, and I’m not saying that every single woman you meet is someone you have to maintain interest in, but if this seems to be the trend for every single woman you’ve ever slept with, it probably has more to do with you being afraid to try to make things work than anything else. I could be wrong, I can’t read minds, but at 20 years old I was in your shoes, and 12 years later I can honestly say that my losing interest in someone post-sex had more to do with being afraid than anything else. Fear of commitment, fear of hurting someone, fear of being hurt, and fear of failure. If you let your fear rule you, you’ll be 50 years old wondering why you can’t stop loving the chase.

My advice to you, is to try, even when you feel like giving up. If you’re seeing someone, and you feel your interest wane because you’ve already hooked up, stick it out. Sure, the first time you have sex with someone is a unique thrill, but I can promise you that it is so much more rewarding when someone opens up to you. It’s even more rewarding when you find someone who you can open up to. Sex is cool and all, but it has nothing on love. Trust me on this.

Think about it like this: Did someone in your life ever introduce you to something that you grew to love? Something that, at first, you were reluctant to embrace? Maybe it was a sport, or a TV show, or a hobby. Sometimes you need to actually try something, and really give it a shot, before you quit.  Don’t give up on people before you get a chance to really know them, because the initial excitement you feel when you first start dating someone can and will diminish, but if you meet someone great, it can be replaced by something even better.

Good Luck Out There.