In honour of my vulnerable - 43 blogs in 43 days series, I thought I would share with you one of my bad dating experiences.
I’ll take you back to a time when I was so desperate for love I dated a man who was psychologically abusive.
And I mean this was a Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde type of scenario playing out in my dating life.
I met Jekyll/Hyde in April of 2007 and it all started off well.
He was by all accounts, an intelligent, successful man with dimples and a nice smile. We'd met online and had an instant connection. Our first date lasted over 15 hours and ended with us watching a romantic movie on the lounge.
At one point during that date he asked me to ring his mobile phone because he didn’t think it was working – so I did but the phone was working fine.
The next morning my phone starts to ring and it’s him.
But when I answer the phone, I don’t get the same man. No, instead I have my first encounter with Mr Hyde.
“Yeah, I got a missed call from you, did you call me in the middle of the night, like really, did you call me in the middle of the night?”
I thought about it for a moment and realised that the missed phone call was from last night when he asked me to test his phone.
Once he realised this he seemed to even out again into Dr Jekyll.
I was really perplexed by his reaction to something so benign, but I assumed he might be having a bad morning.
Over the course of the next couple of weeks and have not seen Mr Hyde again, we planned our first weekend away together.
I packed an overnight bag and slipped it into the back of my car as I left for my last shift of the week.
The plan was that I would work my usual Saturday morning shift and head straight to his place Halfway through my shift, I receive a text message from him. “Weekends off” with no other explanation.
Confused by the message I rang him assuming Dr Jekyll would answer the phone but he doesn’t pick up.
A few minutes later he rings me back and this was my second encounter with Mr Hyde.
He begins to yell at me “What are you ringing me for, I told you the weekend is off”.
At this point, I am in a state of shock. I don't have a clue what he is talking about or why the weekend is being called off.Since I cannot get a straight answer or any sort of logical explanation from him I decide to go straight home after my shift.
This is the time that I become frightfully aware of Mr Hyde’s regular presence.
He calls to apologise the next day and explains that he was feeling so much pressure from his boss and wasn’t in a great mood yesterday.
He seems to simmer down and now he’s in fully Dr Jekyll mode. Sweet, loving and just all-round nice guy.
We end up having the weekend we’d planned previously and it’s really lovely. No red flags just loads of laughs and fun.
But over the course of a few weeks it never did settle down as he switched between Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde.
By this stage I’m fairly emotionally battered and bruised then I happened to miss a phone call from him.
I'd been in a meeting all afternoon and couldn't get away to answer the call.
He called and called and called but still I could not pick up the phone. He finally leaves a message and its Mr Hyde again.
At this point I get it. I decided that it wasn’t ever going to be the type of healthy relationship I wanted.
I didn’t bother ringing him back or tell him we were over. I’d really had enough at that point, so I just wrote off the entire experience and slowly moved on with my life.
And vowed to never continue dating a man with obvious red flags ever again.