I had a dog for less than 48 hours.

I have wanted a dog, in the worst way, for years. I put in my adoption application, and had been so excited since then. The only people who told me it was a bad idea were my parents, but they’ve never really supported any idea of mine. Hell, they only wanted to control everything from my choice in food to college career. They can’t ever just trust me, but the few times they had, I crapped all over it, so of course I’ll be “the younger disappointment” in their lives.

I finally picked up the dog on Friday, after meeting him with my roommate’s dog, and they got along great. I was so nervous. I wanted to give him everything he could ever need or want in life. I wanted him to feel loved. I wanted that parental bond so much. But, true to my form, the cart was put before the horse, and the wheels fell off the cart.

I was so uncertain of what I was doing, where we were going, etc. Not specifically, just long term, generally. We got him home, and he still didn’t have a name. The dogs bonded, but he would whine and cry when the other dog was locked in my roommate’s bedroom with her for the night. I tried lying down next to him on the floor, which worked for a little bit. My shoulder cramped up; I went back to bed. The next day, my roommate slept in and kept her dog in her room for 12 hours. I don’t know how that dog does it. I took my dog on a walk, fed it, tried to engage in playing with some toys, but it whined for the other dog. Eventually, my roommate left and I was all alone with both dogs. I was overwhelmed. I couldn’t do the regular things I usually do on a Saturday, which I knew would happen, but it was frustrating. The dogs were playing, and sometimes it would get rough and one would yelp. I’ve never had to deal with this before. When my roommate finally came home (14 hours later), we fed them. The dog exhibited food and toy aggression earlier, something the foster family didn’t know about, and when I told them this, they seemed shocked. After all, he was just a “sweetheart.” I didn’t know how to feed them by myself without one getting aggressive and such. Turns out I could have just fed them individually in another locked room, but I didn’t think of that. Why? Because I was overwhelmed and my brain had shut down. I’ve been so used to taking orders that thinking for myself in stressful situations doesn’t go so well. I didn’t know how much emotional and mental energy this would cost me. I thought I knew, but I didn’t. I feel like such a failure now. I thought it was going to be so much easier than this, like my previous dog I had years ago. All I ever considered when choosing this new dog was my roommate’s dog, not what I wanted and needed.

I don’t know if the adoption agency will trust me with another dog. I wanted something to love, and this dog wanted my roommate’s dog. He didn’t bond to me. I only gave it two days, so did I give up too soon? I was so worried with what everybody else was thinking and feeling that I never stopped and considered my wants and needs.

This adoption process has taken months, since last October. Everybody was so shocked when I gave the dog back. I couldn’t handle it. I failed at taking care of something that I’ve loved and wanted for years. This dog didn’t want me. (This feeling of indifference, ignoring me, not wanting me, etc., is not new, but it hurts every time.) It was bonded to my roommate’s dog, and I was jealous. I wanted that bond. I want to feel wanted and needed.

I don’t know if I’m finger-pointing at the roommate’s lack of support, training her dog, etc., or if I’m just using that as a cop-out for my failure. I cried all Saturday night, got 3 hours of sleep, and was absolutely broken inside; and the dog just missed my roommate’s dog, didn’t come to me, didn’t show concern, etc. I wasn’t what the dog wanted. I wasn’t enough. I had depressive and suicidal thoughts for hours. I wanted to drink. I wanted to set everybody up so they wouldn’t have questions of what I wanted or needed after I died. I didn’t want to fail again, and here I was, failing with something I’ve wanted so deeply. I wanted to love a dog. I wanted a dog to love me, treat me like I was something special, and it didn’t. I gave up on it before 48 hours was up. I’ve put in so much effort into other relationships only to be crapped on, so why should I have to put forth tons more effort? Why does it seem like everybody has their shit together, and my life only continues to fall apart? Why does everybody have something that I don’t? A handle on their emotions, relationships, houses, family, etc. What have I done wrong?

But I didn’t drink at all and I’m seeking out counseling, so at least I have that going for me.


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