Guys, I am in love. Lurve. L-U-R-V-E. No doubt about it.
But, as you might have been able to guess, there's a catch.
The catch is that this guy, who is basically the perfect complement to me in every way—I mean, the Einstein to my Tesla! or whatever—is irrationally, profoundly distrustful.
Not jealous, not insecure. Distrustful. For things that have nothing to do with my breaching his trust—it mostly relates to two exes who really betrayed him (of note, he says really nice things about all of his other exes).
This is a whole new beast for me. I understand jealous insecurity; that is common enough. But deep-seated trust issues? I have no idea how to handle that.
It wasn't entirely unanticipated. When I first glimpsed the potentiality of this problem, I thought to myself, perhaps naively, "Well, I am crazy about this guy, so if I show him how madly in love I am, he'll know that I value what we have too much to jeopardize it."
But clearly that doesn't work, because there have been a handful of occasions—not too many, really, but more than one—where he has flown off the handle about me doing something entirely innocuous. So innocuous, I don't even know how to guess what will set him off in order to be considerate. (Just so we're clear, he is never mean and certainly never abusive. When I say "fly off the handle" I'm mostly referring to the handle that is rationality.)
To make matters worse, he is very bright, and thus especially capable of convincing himself that whatever irrational fears he is experiencing have some basis in reality.
After our most recent, 36-hour spat, he came around to acknowledge that perhaps his trust issues affect him more deeply than previously thought. We haven't been together very long (7 months!) so the progress is well-taken, but I am worried that irreparable damage is going to occur to this relationship if it continues (and I told him such).
Just so we're clear: I have ditched guys for less. If he weren't so great in every other way, I wouldn't stick around. But I'm going to, because I'm committed to him, and I think he's worth the occasional heartache.
So, my question is: who else has dealt with this? Is there anything that can be done to make things easier, improve them, so on? I suggested therapy and while he wasn't opposed, he thinks remaining mindful will be sufficient.