Forum Replies Created
April 3, 2021 at 1:12 pm #377149
Many thanks for listening Anita, much appreciated.
I’ve slowly stepped away from him by reducing the amount of contact I have with him. I saw him when I was out walking a couple of times this week and I stopped briefly to chat. He texted a couple of times this week and I’ve responded, but I’ve not initiated contact. I appreciate it may hurt his feelings by my gradually stepping away, but I’ve tried to be a friend and to made it clear to him I am just a friend, and he has chosen not to hear me and his behaviour signals that he is wanting more than friendship and more attention and time than I feel comfortable in offering. However, I need to do what’s best for me and and my boys and I need friendships that are nurturing and supportive and not draining, pressurising or demanding.
I always find it difficult to walk away from what does not serve me best in life, but at the same time I know when it is the right thing for me to do.
Thanks again for listening 🙂April 3, 2021 at 5:33 am #377063
Thank you, it has taken alot of work on my part with regards to my son, in how I was addressing the situation. Less questioning has led to more understanding.
Yes, my being definate happened around mid February. Having reached a point of familiarisation of one another e.g. short life history etc.. I began to notice that when in conversation he shuts the conversation down if the subject matter isn’t of interest to him.. which frequently means him saying.. ‘right that’s enough of that subject, let’s talk about something else’.. yet when talking about subject matter of his own, conversation flows until he’s exhausted it. So I feel like I’ve not got anything useful to talk about.. some closed down subjects such as when talking about children (he doesn’t have children) the shut down response was ‘well that’s enough about that they’re mostly all brats anyway’.. and when talking about mental health/therapy (he asked how my boys were).. ‘well Psychology, counselling and all that, it’s all a bunch of codswallop, they don’t know what they’re talking about. Your son is just going through a phase like all teenagers’.. These are the two that have stuck in my mind.
And then things like.. I was talking about something daft I’d done during the week and he said ‘that was a bit silly, it’s just as well I like you’. I respond that yes it was a clumsy thing to do, and he looked at me and said ‘no, your supposed to say, well I like you too’, to which I didn’t respond and he said in a mock hurt way ‘she doesn’t like me’.
A text message asking how my day had been to which I responded it had been nice and I’d been doing some gardening, and I asked how his day was.. his reply was ‘its nice to be wanted!’, to which I could see no relation to the response I’d sent, so I sent back ‘?’ then he replied, ‘you run a taxi service’.. I wasn’t sure where this was going so I asked ‘I run a taxi service?’, and he said ‘you run mums taxi’. He then messaged with ‘same shit different day’ and asked my plans over the weekend which I relayed back, and asked what he was going to do over the weekend. His response was ‘tart the house up a bit, tank modelling, TV, and elevating feet.. open to suggestions after that?’.
It feels like he’s trying to pressure me to invite him to meet up, he’s not once asked if I’d like to go for a walk/cuppa etc despite my saying way back, ‘you can ask me if I’m free and if I’d like to go for a walk/cuppa, I won’t always say yes but that doesn’t mean you can’t ask’. He instead bombards me with texts throughout the week and beats about the bush waiting to be invited/asked out for a walk etc.
It’s uncomfortable I think because with all my other friends some text once a month/every few months and we arrange to meet up for a long walk etc, some text once a week just to check in/catch up, and some I speak to over the phone or facetime once every few months. So I find this guy overwhelming and not particularly on my wavelength hence my stepping back.
I know I probably sound quite cruel in stepping away, but I don’t really feel particularly free to talk or heard within this friendship. I appreciate he may be feeling lonely living alone, with no family nearby, but I don’t wish to be the security blanket so to speak. Again sorry if that sounds harsh.. we really don’t know someone until you take the time to get to know them and although they may play a part in your life, sometimes they’re not always meant to stay in it?April 2, 2021 at 1:48 pm #377046
Hi Anita. Thanks for thinking of me. I am well thank you. I have been connecting with my son through playing on his XBox with him which has led to conversations away from the XBox. Sometimes he chats about the here and now and sometimes about the past and how he’s felt in certain situations or places. I let him do the talking and I listen and don’t ask questions but say something like, ‘so it sounds like that was hard for you to hear that…’ etc.
On the friendship front I became aware that he wanted more than friendship and despite my actually telling him I’m definitely not interested in a relationship, and taking a step back, he continues to pursue more than friendship which is beginning to feel uncomfortable.
Thanks again for thinking of me.January 19, 2021 at 4:12 pm #373152
I think your right, had he have had a professional around him all the time he would have probably engaged with them by now.
I was just a short while ago thinking about how else I might connect with my son, he enjoys playing a game on his console called Minecraft which I sometimes join him with. He also likes to play a game called House Flipper, and away from the console he likes to play poker. He likes to watch certain programmes on TV too, and is also showing an interest in painting and decorating, so I was thinking that may be other ways to connect.January 19, 2021 at 2:38 pm #373146
I have done some research into DBT and from what I understand DBT is a type of talking therapy based on CBT but specially adapted for those who feel emotions very intensely. The aim of DBT is to understandand and accept difficult feelings, learn the skills to manage them, and become able to make positive changes in your life.‘ Dialectical’ means trying to understand how two things that seem opposite could both be true.
I can see how this would be helpful for my son, but the barrier he has is engaging with people other than immediate family. He literally avoids other people. He has so far refused to engage with professionals who he has been referred to making it exceedingly difficult to access help, support, therapy/treatment. So I am effectively on my own in trying to help and support him. I really don’t know how to reach him to be able to help/support him and I feel at a complete loss..January 11, 2021 at 12:32 pm #372604
Thank you for helping me to better understand how my son is potentially feeling and why it is so difficult for him to relay anything to me.
Is there a particular way in which I can approach my son with his OCD? So that I might be able to gently help him to understand what OCD is and how it affects him. And/or the best way I can support him without making things more overwhelming for him?
Are there perhaps some of my own behaviours in the way I interact with him that I may need to consider? I appreciate my own anxieties about him may not be helpful.January 11, 2021 at 9:53 am #372593
Hi Anita.. I’ve tried my best to go into a bit more detail.. My son has struggled to share with me the thoughts underlying his difficulties, and when I have asked him why he is feeling uncomfortable, he says that I wouldn’t understand, that he has so many thoughts in his head that he can’t get rid of them, and that he is doing these things to make them go away, but he won’t share anything further with me. There are other times when I have asked him why he is feeling uncomfortable or why he feels the need to do certain things, another example is when he goes outside he will wear his big thick winter coat, on this particular occasion during the hot summer last year, when asked why he feels the need to wear it and he says, “I’m protected”, but will not be able to explain further what this means. He constantly seeks reassurance when he feels that people around him are coughing or sneezing, or if people brush past him and touch him in public, or if his brother has touched him. I try at these times to query why he feels this matters so much and that lots of people have potentially brushed past/touched me without knowing and that I am ok, but I am again met with “you just don’t understand. When I ask him to help me to understand how it feels for him, he says to me “you’re just not listening to me, why does no one listen!. I don’t want to explain, I just need to do it!”. The one occasion where he has said that he doesn’t want to complete the ritual but feels he has to was last week – He said “I’ve got to have a shower now, I don’t want to have a shower, but i’ve got to have one”. I asked why he felt he needed to have a shower if he didn’t really want to have one and he said, “because I’ve got to. Because I think K (his brother) touched me and I asked you if he touched me and you don’t know!, so I’ve got to have a shower! You just don’t understand and don’t you listen!”. At this point he became quite angry and subsequently asked me to leave his room, which is what will happen on most occasions if I try to talk about things. I appreciate I am probably going about things completely the wrong way, but having not experienced OCD myself and obviously not knowing what is going through his mind, I simply do the best I can even though it may not be the right way to address it.January 8, 2021 at 1:22 pm #372450
I think I understand/see what you mean regarding telling him of my interest in him.
I do try to keep calm around my son as best as I can, I do find it difficult on occasions especially when I’m tired, this can be a problem as his OCD somewhat extends his bedtime routine. He has created his own daily routine although he has become nocturnal and now doesn’t wake/get up until 4.30/5pm. He has a projector light in his room which he’s had since young along with two fans, I recently got daylight bulbs for a few rooms in the house which he seems to like, so I’m looking to get some more to put in other rooms too. He has preference for certain loose clothing which I buy, jogging bottoms, hoodie, t-shirt, and for the labels to be cut out. I’ve bought him some chew jewellery as he will otherwise chew on the neck line of his clothing, chewing gum helps too. The main difficulties I have is helping him to accept and understand his OCD, he’s aware something feels different as he will say he has to have a shower for example but in the same sentence say he doesn’t want to but just has to otherwise xyz will occur. His OCD revolves around contamination so there’s alot of cleaning, wiping of his body and items. He also sees his older brother as a source of contamination.
When his older brother is online or with his mates, he insists that he always joins them too because they are his mates too even though he has only met them a handful of times. My older son doesn’t mind his brother joining them occasionally online or outside for a game of football, but he would like to spend time with his mates on his own. My younger son gets angry about it and it causes alot of friction with my older son feeling trapped.
The other thing is encouraging him to engage/communicate with others. It would be nice if he is able develop a new friendship or two I think this would benefit him greatly.
I would like to gain an understanding of why he finds it difficult to talk about it, or accept it? Any insight into OCD would be much appreciated.January 8, 2021 at 9:40 am #372438
I made a wise choice in leaving my ex, and I have settled into being the best parent I am able to be for my son, it’s been a huge learning curve. I do appreciate it’s difficult for others to understand the way I parent my son, but I know I need to do what feels right for me and for my son. Feeling under pressure and constant judgement when with my ex was not helping in any way or form and if anything made my parenting journey alot harder at the time.
I appreciate that not all men are the same, and I’m glad they’re not.. It makes sense to open up to him a bit at a time, and gain a sense of what he is looking for perhaps before I tell him that I have an interest in him as more than a friend.. Although I want to be honest with him so it might be wise to tell him that I have an interest in him as more than a friend..
I would be very grateful for your insight and advice in caring for my son as the more understanding I have of what it feels like or may feel like for my son and ways I might help him (and I) to better manage, the better.January 7, 2021 at 3:56 pm #372400
I forgot to mention than in terms of caring for my son he is in my care 24/7, and visits his dad along with his brother once every other Saturday but they very rarely of at all stay overnight – now they are old enough to make that choice they generally choose not to stay over. They used to stay at my parents sometimes, but that is a rarity too now.
I’ve managed to carve out time a few days a week of a morning to go for walks for a few hours or so with this guy on the days he has off.. but I still fear, based in past experience as I’ve explained, that I feel I wouldn’t be able to offer enough time to a relationship.
Just feeling quite sad now coming to realise, despite loving my sons to bits, how restricted my life feels at times..January 7, 2021 at 3:26 pm #372396
My fear relates to when I split with my ex partner two years ago, I have been single since. We split mainly due to him wanting more from me – more time together, staying over his more often, and him staying at mind, trips away an so on – as my son’s mental health difficulties were beginning to esculate further. He also found it difficult to tolerate my son, and didn’t agree with the way I parented him saying I needed to be alot stricter. I couldn’t have him sleepover at mine either as my son would not tolerate people outside of our family in our house. It’s still the same now, and he won’t even allow his dad to step any further into our house than the conservatory when he comes to pick him and his brother up. I was the one to end things as I felt under pressure and overwhelmed trying to find the time to spend with him, and meet his needs, but realising I wasn’t meeting my own needs and he wasn’t considering my needs. I have spent the last few years trying to seek support and help for my son from mental health services etc, but due to my son refusing to engage with anyone professionals or otherwise he has been discharged from services until he is able to engage. I simply manage the best I can mostly alone and with my parents helping where they can.
January 7, 2021 at 1:43 pm #372389
- This reply was modified 3 months, 1 week ago by Oceandrive24.
Thank you for taking the time to read my post and reply, it is much appreciated.
‘A decision on whether to have a relationship between two people needs to be made by the two individuals, not by one. If you give him all the information and let him make the decision for you- you are giving your power away.’.. This makes alot of sense and is something I had not thought about. I need to decide what is right for me and likewise it is for him to decide what is right for him.
Whilst on our last few walks after I offered friendship I’ve began to feel more relaxed and the conversation has began to flow, and it seemed to be the same for him. We began to share more. I’ve shared a little more about my son, about my parents and growing up, about work, my interests and social life as limited as that can be sometimes, but I do connect with my friends regularly.. In our conversation whilst we have laughed and joked – we have a similar sense of humour – I have found out more about him.. Although he is happy being alone and independent he’d like company too, someone to share his life with whilst still being able to spend time alone.. this made me think of how I enjoy my independance and do like time alone. What I mean in my last relationship it felt claustrophobic and it felt too much leading to feeling like I needed to escape, I couldn’t give him what he felt he needed – to be there all the time. Does that make sense? I enjoy company but not being joined at the hip.
We’ve spoken about what things we like to do outside work/caring duties.. He likes history WW2, antiques, model making, reading, walking, he used to be in the territorial army, he likes watching old films and is intrigued by science fiction, we’ve had some great conversation around that! Socially minus the current pandemic he’ll meet on the odd occasion for a beer with a mate or mates at his local, or head off to a car boot sale or antiques market. Me, I like history, antique markets, keeping fit and being active, long walks and fresh air, reading, making things/crafting..
I guess there’s plenty more to find out..
I do feel at ease with him and it’s made me think this evening whether I’m hiding behind friendship out fear? Fear that what I can offer wouldn’t be enough.. that he would want more like my ex did.. but then he’s not my ex.. x