Being on the receiving end of not just someone’s intense interest in and attraction to us, but their seeming desire to jump into a relationship, can be pretty intoxicating. The intensity creates this romance of false intimacy, and we think we’ve jumped into a fairy tale.

But as many a person who, with the benefit of hindsight, recognises they were involved with someone who fast-forwarded and engaged in future faking can attest to, this doesn’t make for a great relationship. It makes for what seems like a great, fairy tale beginning, sure. It also makes for what can at best be fraught and at worst a nightmarish middle and end.

Some people love jumping into relationships. There’s no build-up, no proper getting to know; they jump without realising that a commitment is involved.

And because they move so frickin fast, they jump right past the building of a foundation. It’s a fantasy. Sure, they like the feeling of newness, but the big driver is the fantasy of who the person is. It’s total projection. We like to feel as if we have a great deal to do with it. You know, like we’re just that fabulous. And don’t get me wrong, we do have our fabulousness. This idea, though, that someone is so into us that it drives them to want to squeeze a lifelong relationship into a day, week, month, few months or year is self-deception. It’s flattering, but we are deceiving ourselves while denying us the intimacy of getting to know someone (and being known).

People with a pattern of jumping into (and out of) relationships are intoxicated by beginnings. Reality, including commitment, sobers them up and sends them out the door.

We think jumping into a relationship, including them pushing and us being swept up in it, is commitment. It’s like, ‘Well, they’re so crazy about me and are talking about marriage, spending the rest of their life with me—and they don’t want to take their time. They’re committed, right? I mean, why would someone say all of this stuff without actually being able and willing to commit in the fullest sense?’

But someone living in a fantasy isn’t fully cognisant of (or that interested) in actual commitment. You know, the actions. So from the moment reality starts to intervene and they see more of our human self that contradicts the fantasy, they’re on their way out.

And it’s not because we’re not enough, that we did something wrong, that we’ve put them off. It is not.

I know we like to convince ourselves that someone’s u-turn on the intense relationship is our fault, but that’s just more self-deception.

We’re buying into the lie that it’s OK for someone to start from a place of fantasy and that it’s our job to convince them, to sell them, on the notion that the real deal is better instead. That’s our fantasy. It’s like ‘Why would they want the fantasy when they could be with me instead?’ Then it becomes, ‘Well, I know that they didn’t really know me and that they were living in la la land. Still, I obviously couldn’t compete [with the fantasy]. I’m obviously not good enough. That’s why they did a u-turn.’

The worst thing is, we believe the bullshit fantasy they projected is who we’re supposed to be. It’s the idealised self. Yep, another fantasy of ours. So we beat ourselves up for failing to meet it, not realising that this person was into someone who doesn’t and was never meant to exist.

Someone who jumps into relationships jumps out of them too because the fantasy isn’t sustainable.

They’re not interested in the real deal (or commitment). These take vulnerability, intimacy and basically showing up.

If you want a mutually fulfilling relationship, you can’t get swept up in someone else’s intensity. You can’t try to take the shortcut of jumping into a relationship because you will ultimately sell yourself very, very short and wake up in a nightmare. Or out in the cold.

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