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Why Don’t I Have Real Feelings in Relationships?

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I’m 19 and have been experiencing strange emotions this past year. The deep connections I felt with friends are suddenly forced and it is almost painful to be around people. I have also had strange spells of depersonalization. My ex boyfriend died a couple years ago which led me into a spell of depression and I don’t know if I ever made it out or if I’m just used to it. I’m constantly annoyed and tired and prefer to be alone most of the time. Yet I told my best friend what has been going on and she had no clue, she said I’ve been normal but maybe a bit distant, but the differences I see/feel are blaring. I also have short bursts of rage for really no reason. My relationships are what really make me question my growing issues. To sum it up, I go for the guys who can’t be tied down and have emotional issues usually sociopathic tendencies, I hate it but no one else interests me. This is what concerns me most, I don’t think I really have feelings. I feel like I just talk myself into being “in love” with them just to prove that I could get them. In the end, all I really want to do is win them. I don’t miss them when we break up, I just can’t fathom the thought of someone else taking my spot. I go insane with texting and calling when something goes wrong and can’t control myself. I show up at their house unannounced and the next day think “was that even me, I’d never do that”. I also feel like I can’t emotionally connect with anyone and I think it’s because they sense some thing is off about me. I constantly want to fight with them and pull them back when I think they are going to leave, I am always the one who gets left but it’s almost like I ask for it. If I even date someone I feel like it’s always going to end in them prying me off of them or either marriage. I get so into one person that no matter what I will try to make it work but ruin it as well. I’ve gone to a therapist but couldn’t say this all I just said I had anxiety. Please tell me what this could be or what I should do.

Why Don’t I Have Real Feelings in Relationships?

Answered by on -


Thank you for being so brave to explain all the statistical reactions. I admire your honesty. I think it may be two things that are happening simultaneously.

I would begin by looking at the unfinished grief from your boyfriend’s death. I think working through that in therapy would be good. Additionally, the fact that you preselect partners that can’t commit and then wobble back-and-forth when the relationship fails suggests that you may want to explore this pattern of attachment in therapy as well. While I believe grieving plays a big part I think this other dynamic maybe be very important in understanding why you feel the way you do. I would encourage you to bring these two points: the unresolved grief and your attachment process into therapy. Since your profile showed you are at a university means you have access through the counseling center to highly qualified counselors. They are usually very proficient in helping people sort through these types of issues, and I think talking to them about this will help.

Wishing you patience and peace,
Dr. Dan
Proof Positive Blog @ PsychCentral

Why Don’t I Have Real Feelings in Relationships?

Therapists live, online right now, from BetterHelp:

Daniel J. Tomasulo, PhD, TEP, MFA, MAPP

Dan Tomasulo Ph.D., TEP, MFA, MAPP teaches Positive Psychology in the graduate program of Counseling and Clinical Psychology at Columbia University, Teachers College and works with Martin Seligman, the Father of Positive Psychology in the Masters of Applied Positive Psychology (MAPP) program at the University of Pennsylvania. He is Director of the New York Certification in Positive Psychology for the Open Center in New York City and on faculty at New Jersey City University. Sharecare has honored him as one of the top 10 online influencers on the topic of depression. For more information go to: He also writes for Psych Central's Ask the Therapist column and the Proof Positive blog.

APA Reference
Tomasulo, D. (2018). Why Don’t I Have Real Feelings in Relationships?. Psych Central. Retrieved on August 6, 2020, from
Scientifically Reviewed
Last updated: 8 May 2018 (Originally: 6 Jun 2014)
Last reviewed: By a member of our scientific advisory board on 8 May 2018
Published on Psych All rights reserved.