Anxiety and Depression Support
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Intimidated by other women

Maybe it's from self-hatred, but I feel terribly scared, anxious, and paranoid around attractive women or women who are dressed a certain way (you know the way I mean). It's pure torture for me. It makes me feel isolated but at the same exact time it feels like all eyes are on me, judging me, comparing me. If there are any men in the room the feeling worsens. And if my boyfriend is there then it is worsened tenfold.

I know why I feel this way, but I wish I knew how to stop it. In my 2 previous relationships I was cheated on and not just in a sexual way. One of my exes was engaged with someone else during the last year of our 5 year relationship. I had no idea until it was too late. And then the boyfriend following that had 2 other girls he interacted with. One of them was for sexual reasons but the other girl he was invested in emotionally. They didn't have sex, but he talked to her sweetly and innapropriately which actually hurt far worse.

Now when other women are around me, I feel like I'm of less importance or less value than them. And it's maddening trying to go anywhere with my boyfriend because the moment I see a woman I shut down. I feel like I have to draw away from him. I think irrationally and imagine that I can feel him staring at them. I feel so weak. This is the first guy I've been with who actually loves ME and doesn't want anyone else yet still I feel unwanted. He shows me small, meaningful affections when attractive women are around (or on tv) but I get it in my head that those affections aren't meant for me but for the other women.

Are there other women here who know the feeling? Any advice on how to combat it? I try to rationalize that I'm hurt and so I'm seeing things differently than they are but that doesnt help. I also try to reply to a negative thought with an opposite, positive thought, but that doesn't work either. Any advice is welcomed, I'll try anything at this point.

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