Chasing Amy Syndrome

Okay, now let’s get back to what really seems to be my problem. I’ve seen a few people write about Chasing Amy Syndrome, referring to a guy who is unhealthily insecure about his perception/his perception that his mate is more sexually experienced than he. The term is a reference to a Ben Affleck movie.
“Kevin Smith once explained why he made it—it’s well known that the story was based on his real-life relationship with Joey Lauren Adams and the way he unfairly projected his insecurities onto her.”

“He wrote in this 2000 piece: “The day I saw disbelief, outrage, and hurt reflected in the eyes of the woman I loved as she realized I was insisting that she apologize for her life up until the moment we met… well, that was the day it struck me that I wasn’t quite as liberal as I fancied myself and instead came to grips with the fact that I was rather conservative. And rather than enter therapy, I decided to exorcise my demons on screen. Chasing Amy was conceived as a sort of penance/valentine for the woman who made me grow up, more or less—a thank-you homage that marked a major milestone in my life, both personally and professionally.”

There’s not much written about how to exorcise this syndrome. Suggestions seem to include: therapy, “get over yourself,” and cognitive behavior therapy techniques to reduce the symptoms. I’ve been working on all three, with some success. I do need to specifically discuss this with my therapist, and get her off of the time-wasting tangents we otherwise discuss. As for “get over yourself,” gratitude is a helpful tool for me. Compassion and friendship are also helpful. And, the cognitive behavior therapy techniques do help: interrupting unhealthy thoughts and redirecting my thoughts.

I would be interested to find others who have struggled with this syndrome, and to learn more about it.

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2 thoughts on “Chasing Amy Syndrome

  1. In my professional life I help clients to literally place a line between past and present (in present I include your current relationship). Yes, I do let them all spew it out first. Let’s get all in the open!
    After that, hangovers from the past are dealt with individually.
    The type of jealousy you refer to, is to me imho less so about jealousy but more about you and your hangups on how you measure up. It is a non-issue…as
    TL wanted you and she still wants you. So, obviously you do not have to care about how you measure(d) up…you won!
    Nurture this woman as there are not many like her and I know!
    Elisabeth

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks. I think you’re right about my hang-ups and comparisons.

      My rational mind knows you’re also right about TL having chosen me. But, the irrational part of my mind asserts itself too much. It says: “She preferred them for their masculinity, and only chose me because I stuck around and appeared to be a friend. They didn’t stick around and offer a choice.”

      In any case, having done all the hurtful things I’ve done to TL, I have no right to feel anything but gratitude toward her now. I can’t afford to chase her away with more of my insecurities. The only reason I bring up this topic now is as part of my quest to be sure I don’t hurt her again. I’m just trying to understand it.

      Liked by 1 person

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