Ben’s in love: Off the Market

B

Love lives. If you have me as a friend on Facebook, or you are close to me in person, then you know that I have recently announced that I have a girlfriend. It’s finally happened, people. And she tolerates me.

To cut a long story very short, we met on Tinder in April, and announced we were together in June, after 2 months of courting, and getting to know each other. The specifics of it aren’t really important to share on a public platform, but it’s worth noting that I never thought I’d get this far with someone. Love is one of those emotions that, I feel, you need to experience to get. And I’ve never been in love before. That is why I wrote the poem ‘I don’t believe in true love’, because I didn’t get love. Maybe I still don’t. I don’t know.

I have written extensively on this blog about my personal struggles with my mental health and my autism, and being with someone provides you with those new challenges. How do you meet their needs? How do you ensure you’re looking after yourself? Are you giving them as much time and attention that they need? It can be a lot to juggle, and I cannot say that I am expert. And, in a lot of ways, I suck as a boyfriend. I am selfish, I can be confusing, and I find it very hard to let my defences down around people. I don’t want to defend myself for those traits, but they’re there and I want to stop them.

In many other ways, and I am sure that Katie will tell you, I am a good boyfriend. I try to make her laugh and make her happy. I try to be myself, and not pretend to be the perfect person that I know I am not. For the longest time, I was scared of her. Scared that I will hurt her or upset her by being my stupid self. But, when I look into her eyes and see a reflection of my face, I see what she sees. This bloated, loud, eccentric writer who just wants us both to be comfortable and happy.

I don’t know what the future will hold for us, but I know that there is a future now. Katie, welcome to my life. You’re stuck with me now. I love you 3000.

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About the author

Ben

Since 2012, Benjamin Attwood has written for the If you Ask Ben blog.

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