Q: I hope you can help me with this issue that has been with me for a long time. I am very confused…. I am 25 and have dated men all my life. I don’t date too much, as I am very choosey. I have very high expectations when it comes to physical appearence etc. I am ‘turned on’ by men sexually and am very sure of that, but sometimes feel intimidated by men. I have some body image problems, so that is part of the problem. I am slightly overweight.
The confusion is that I look for nurturing from women. Its weird. My mother was not nurturing at all, so I always search for that in other women older then me (like doctors). In a weird way I want them to take care of me. This is something I think I should be looking for in a man or future husband?
I can’t imagine being with a woman sexually, I don’t have a desire to. I want a family and kids, but I worry about this thing I have always looking for nurturing from other women and what it means. I need to get it under control cause it affects my life and makes it hard to move on and be sure of myself and form long lasting relationships. . It does scare me as I wonder does this make me gay?
Do you have any insight? Please can you give me any advice. Is there anything I can read?
A: It’s no surprise that you would look for nurturing from older women if you never had that experience from your own mother. Older women friends can give you some of the warmth you never had and can also show you how to be a nurturing woman. I’m confused why being close to women in this way effects your life negatively. The only hint I have from you letter is perhaps that you are avoiding more difficult problems by focusing on your relationship with women. It sounds like you have some problems with self-confidence and that you might be making excuses for why you aren’t attracting the kind of man who could give you the love and tenderness you want and need. You seem over-concerned with both your own appearance and the appearance of the men you date. You also raise questions about your sexuality. I don’t know if you are genuinely questioning your preference or if this is yet another distraction. I really, really hope you will find a therapist who can provide a safe place for you to explore these issues and help you learn to be in a relationship where you can be on both the giving and receiving end of acceptance, love, and tender care.
I wish you well.
Last reviewed: By John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on 2 Jan 2007
Hartwell-Walker, D. (2007). Nurturing and Sexuality. Psych Central. Retrieved on March 9, 2014, from http://psychcentral.com/ask-the-therapist/2007/01/02/nurturing-and-sexuality/