Julie's problem is not uncommon in dating. She recounted, "I had started a relationship with a man i grew to like. Though we went out only on a few dates, we talked on the phone three times a day and had really intimate conversations. he called me pet names, and his voice has a sexy tone like a boyfriend's would. Then all of a sudden, he disappeared. I am in terrible pain. Should I call him?"

An intense connection that is suddenly, abruptly, and inexplicably broken is extremely painful. Once you have opened your heart in good faith, only to be shut out, you can suffer grave emotional trauma (self doubt, fear, and insecurity) as well as physical symptoms (tightness in your chest, constriction around your heart, shortness of breath, disinterest in your work, fatigue, and sleeplessness).

Many women and men in Julie's situation question whether they are desirable or lovable. Reassure yourself, and trust that you had reason to believe that this person cared for you. it may not, however, have been as primary in importance for him/her as it was for you.

Friends may advise that you never call this man until he calls you, or that you dismiss him entirely to protect your pride and prevent desperation. But if you are suffering, consider calling him not a disgrace or defeat, but an effort on your part to achieve resolution to this troubling break. Ask for his feedback on what was really going on and what he felt about you, to help you in your future relationships. You might be surprised that his withdrawal could have nothing to do with you, but rather other preoccupying stress in his life that he was fearful to share with you.

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