Forum Replies Created
May 4, 2015 at 11:23 am #76122
I’m sorry I just realised how long this is! If anyone has the patience to read it, you are awesome.June 16, 2014 at 3:23 am #58901
Oh @inky thank you. I do get that, I really do. I have long given up on having the traditional everything- I think maybe what this recent situation has made me realise is that I actually want a partner. For some time post divorce I became obsessed with thinking about children, and I made up my mind that I would be having a child on my own. I just thought that would be the way it would end up for me.
I know it may sound ridiculous to have been thinking that at say 32,33,34, but I was. I think I now have a bit of perspective on what was going on there and it was more to do with me not wanting to think that i needed or wanted a man in my life, that I would and could do what I wanted, because (without being aware of it, this is something I’ve only realised recently) I was actually too scared to take steps towards anyone again in case they hurt me like he did. With this new man I was able to open up a bit and I now see I do have love to give, I do want to give it. I want to be loved also though, so pining for someone who isn’t able to give me the same does seem like a waste of energy. In fact the children thing can wait, as you say- and that feels like a revelation in my thinking about myself. Thank you @Inky. I have learned so much recently. I wish there was a way to fast forward and see how things end up, because if there was I think I’d be OK. Its the fear that it might not happen for me that is hard to “sit with”. Maybe I still need to do some reading on uncertainty.June 15, 2014 at 6:04 am #58857
Thank you, thank you, thank you. @Inky never apologise, am so grateful and I love your insight. I think you may have a point in that my reaction to this loss is kind of disproportionate in some way to the relationship itself and it might be that I have work to do still since my divorce, rather than this necessarily being a great loss itself.
That kind of hurts, because I really worked hard on that, or so I thought. Maybe its something you never ‘get over’ completely and utterly….I’m not sure. When we split (my husband), he walked out and I literally have never seen him again. It was a shock, and as such I took a long, long, LONG time to feel better. There was no conversations, explanations, nothing. It wasn’t like we’d been fighting. In fact he’d been talking about us having a family soon. So it just came out of the blue and felt like a trauma, in that I relived it every day for years. He hadn’t told me anything was wrong, and he wouldn’t talk to me after. He told me he had mental health issues and couldn’t be with anyone, but I later found out he’d been cheating on me and he married her within 2 years of leaving me. I lost myself for a while, stayed indoors, ignored social engagements, etc. Eventually I did a lot of CBT and behavioural activation to engage in new activities. And I wrote, wrote, wrote. Talked to friends. Spent time with family. It was 3 years before I felt remotely human despite all this, and another year before I would meet anyone else. I analysed it to death, wondering why it had happened to me, why he would treat me like that, and every morning I would wake up, throw up (not something I could help, just a body reaction to stress with me), and wonder why the universe hadn’t stopped becuase I wanted to scream “Wait! Wait! This isn’t what is supposed to happen! I’m supposed to be having a baby right now like all my friends! Can we just hold on a goddam minute while I catch up!” It just made me see the world so differently and I don’t think I’ve ever fully got over that. Although, I did make a new life for myself.
And I think part of the difficulty and why I took so long to recover was my age, which I began to see as a failing (I was 30 at the time). I was suddenly single for the first time in my whole life, but I was 30. I had no idea how it would feel to be the only single person at friend’s weddings, standing in the sidelines of other people’s milestones and celebrating their life events while I was dying inside. Spending Saturdays or whole weekends alone. It wasn’t until I was 34 that I met this new man. I rarely meet men that I can spark with. I do go out a lot, don’t get me wrong, but I am not a fan of internet dating and the pure and simple fact is its a small fish pond just now (everyone married or taken). So when I met this recent man it felt like a gift, even though there were issues from the start as he was himself quite bruised from his own divorce. I felt chemistry and I thought “aha! That is what this feels like!” I’d forgotten all of that. I felt human again, that basic instinct we all have to touch and be touched. And then suddenly I was. And he was very flattering, and I know he tried his best, but he ultimately couldn’t commit to me. So I feel rejected again, and @Inky maybe you are right this is setting off emotional memories of the other great relationship trauma in my life. I was not 100% happy in this recent relationship but I saw such a potential and I feel upset and cheated it didn’t work out.
Either way, I am so grateful for this community. I wish I could see this last relationship in a mindful sense, as maybe some kind of learning experience. I am trying to look for silver linings. I am using everyone’s advice, around being worthy, but my own self worth is really, very knocked right now. I need my confidence boosted and my self esteem back, but I’m so scared because I don’t have another 4 years to ‘work on things’ so I’m maybe living in my fear rather than getting out of my comfort zone. I feel like my time is running out (bio clock). I’m trying not to wallow in my own pity party, really. It may not sound like that! I will try today do something to take myself out of this.
Thank you for listening.June 15, 2014 at 5:45 am #58855
It sounds from your post that there is a lot going on in your mind just now, your feelings for your girlfriend being just one of a whole range of things. You mention an emotional time with stresses at work, and you feel the need to run away. I don’t want to put words in your mouth, but is your reaction to your girlfriend at this time something that is becoming more of a focal point at a time when your mind has so much going on, rather than necessarily about her?
It might well be that your feelings are changing and are less strong than before. But it may also be (I’ve done this myself in long term relationships when facing a crisis in my life) that you are pushing away the person who is nearest because you want to push away everything just now. You mention that she is ‘really nice’ and doing everything she can for you now. Is there some part of you that sees yourself as unworthy of this level of devotion right now, and therefore she is somehow unappealing to you?
If you have a lot to deal with and you want to run away, can you take time out in a different sense? Get some fresh air, some sea or some countryside, take a few days on your own without it being a case of throwing the whole thing away? I’m not sure about your parent situation but running to others may help, or you may need some head space.
it does sound from what you have said that there are issues in the relationship, but perhaps you won’t be able to sort them out without sorting other things first. You should re-read your paragraph that starts “I want to be happy now”. There are so many posts on here about happiness and its pursuit. Happiness really does come from within, you can’t rely on her to make you happy ( and reject her when you are not). Do some reading, do some mindfulness, think about what you have. and then if you still feel its the relationship that is the issue, you must talk and be honest with her. You must always be honest.
I hope this helps in some way.June 13, 2014 at 8:24 am #58783
This really hit home with me so I hope you don’t mind me adding my thoughts. I agree with @wigirl that you have to follow your heart. I’m kind of trying the same thing (I’m doing 60 days). Its hard as hell. And we don’t live in the same city so there is no way that I can illicit the kind of response @kaileygilbert describes in terms of letting him know I’m happy. I’m also not on any social media. So its just pure and simple no contact.
I think, reading these posts, that part of my motivation in doing so is that I want to believe that if I leave him alone, he will come back. I wondered what others thought about the no contact rule and if in fact this motivation is necessarily a bad/wrong one? I mean, its forcing me to get on with my own life, but it does feel a little bit like constant white noise in the back of my mind- he might come back, he might come back. I’m not sure if that is the best for my recovery. BUT its at least stopping me contact him (I’ve heard so many tales like @kaileygilbert describes, ie leave him be and he’ll come back if its meant to be, and I find it very hard not to hope that will happen). I’m not going to pass up other opportunities if they come my way, and I’m not sitting around moping and waiting, but the hope is making it somewhat easier to bear. That we are not necessarily never going to see each other again. That maybe, one day….
I’m sorry to jump on this bandwagon @janfromjersey but I do understand where you are coming from.
Is it the action (not contacting) or the attitude that matters? ?? I think that’s more the question for me.
Its also easier to do no contact if you don’t think you will get the response you want anyway, which is what I am kind of coming round to seeing. As more time goes on and he doesn’t contact me I think he probably doesn’t care. It makes me very sad.June 6, 2014 at 10:13 am #58253
I am sorry its still so hard. I am going to try to share some things from a past break up that was years ago, but it was the one that broke my heart and took me a long time to put myself back together from. It is something I have a lot of perspective on now as so much time has elapsed, whereas at the time it felt like hell, which sounds like you are feeling now.
I know exactly what you are feeling, its an attachment to an idea and a hope, and an imagined future, that you are clinging to. Something you really, really wanted. But its not real. The person you wanted to face that future with is not the person in your mind. Be very careful to stop carrying around this imaginary person with you. She has made her decision, and as hard as that is, you have to make your own decision now to stop. Your ‘imagined’ future was a happy one with someone you loved and who loved you too, not with someone who ultimately couldn’t give you back what you could give to her. So you haven’t in fact lost what you think you have lost. Does that make sense? Once I’d realised that I hadn’t in fact lost my ‘one great love’ or the ‘one I was meant to be with’, it was much easier to move on, because I kept telling myself “he wasn’t what I thought he was” or “it wasn’t the relationship I thought it was”. That was the first stage.
IT still hurt. I still cried, woke up every day with him in my mind, etc etc. But I could start taking small steps to the outside world again. Please, if you can, stop looking inwards and start looking outwards. Look up, you will see more, than if you look down. I spent years looking inside, wondering what was wrong with me, why I was so mired in the past. It didn’t help my progress, not one bit. As soon as I started focusing on the outside world again, things moved forward much more quickly. A practical example- I’d spent months turning down social engagements which involved new people, because I wanted to only be with people who I knew really well and would not think any less of me for being a bit down/boring/anti social. That didn’t help- I needed to throw myself into meeting new people and putting on a bit of a front for a while. It was tiring, but I did it, and now I have all kinds of new people in my life, and its good! It was hard, but had to happen.
You have said in your post you are waking each day trying to be positive. That is good. Keep trying, you are doing better than you think I reckon. But you are also saying that you have ‘moments’ when it feels too much or you want to give up. Realise that you can cope with these moments. They are, simply, moments. Let them come and go. Don’t fight them. But don’t wallow in them either. Allow yourself some self pity time, but keep it in perspective. Then get out the house, just physically move around, shake yourself a bit.
Look at people on the bus or train or in the street, and you will realise that everyone is having some kind of ‘moments’ themselves. Or have had in the past. Or will have in the future. Its what makes us all human. Look how popular this site is, we are all seeking solutions and trying our best to make things better for ourselves.
You feel used and lied to and broken. its ok to feel anger, but you have to channel that somehow. That’s your mind starting to see things maybe a bit differently. Maybe this wasn’t the perfect person for you. Should relationships make you feel lied to and broken? No, but they do sometimes. I still feel a degree of anger towards someone in my past, and I am still working on that, but I feel now a complete indifference to him. That took me a long time. But it has meant that in this most recent situation I’ve been posting about, I recognised immediately that I wasn’t being treated well. And you will, next time, too. you need to tell yourself that you deserve that future you wanted. You deserve the person who says- yes Michael I feel that way too let’s just go for it. She wasn’t able to do that. Poor her. What a loss. Say goodbye to that and focus on yourself and other people around you a bit more. You can’t live your life in someone else’s head, or through memories.
I hope that doesn’t sound too much like rambling and has been of some use. My heart goes out to you.
TZJune 6, 2014 at 9:54 am #58250
I can’t thank you enough for these awesome replies, I really mean it, I’m so touched and it helps a lot to have your input. I have in fact printed out these responses, and read them over and over, its so amazing. What has shifted as a result is that I now know and feel that this is just something I have to go through rather than battling it and wanting it to change. I mean, I still want the situation to change, in that I want him to make contact with me, but I don’t feel quite so hopeless. I accept that I will feel sad probably for a while. I accept that this isn’t the situation I wanted. And I am trying, really trying, to accept that I am in control of my thoughts and as you pointed out @Inky this could be the universe’s way of steering me from one path to one that may bring more happiness in the longer term. I really hope that turns out to be true.
I still feel tearful and sad, though, which I suppose is OK, and as time goes on its getting a bit less and less. And you are all helping me with that, so thankyou.
Someone advised me to make a list of silver linings of this situation though and that really stumped me, I couldn’t think of a single one, I obviously still have work to do!
TZMay 30, 2014 at 2:29 am #57694
Funny timing, I’ve been feeling more than a little bit ‘off’ just now too, so I came on here to seek refuge, and read your post. It still hurts for me too. I feel like I am carrying a physical weight around with me at all times, and its really hard to move one. Like you, I struggle with the idea they are moving on when I can’t. I think what makes it different for them than us is that they were (at least in the situation involving you) a bit more in control, and able to say “I’m not ready”. Whereas for you (and me) we didn’t get what we wanted. But if you think about it, they are even less in control because they are themselves riding the waves of probably more deep rooted and difficult issues that will take a lot longer to move on from, and as a result they are unable to commit to something new. It may be hard to hear, but this is probably better for you in the long term, although its so very painful. You are the one able to not only have feelings, but to express those feelings, and to be true to them, and that is something to take comfort from and feel proud of. A short(ish) period of sadness is much better than a relationship that isn’t what you deserve, and may ultimately leave you feeling even more bereft than you do now.
It really resonates with me when you say ‘I just want to be out the other side’ because that’s how I feel too. I had an epiphany yesterday but then today I woke up feeling the ache again. Its just up and down, and all I can say to you is that it does get easier (I was married for 12 years and that finishing was truly awful, but I did manage to get over it. I try to remind myself of that these days). Can you take yourself away somewhere? I live near the sea and find that very therapeutic. Maybe find somewhere that you can go and get some new perspective, especially if you are ruminating. A day out – fresh air, the sea, grass and trees?May 24, 2014 at 5:20 am #57223
Oh wow thanks everyone for their helpful comments. I love this community. @msmaedae I took your advice to write what I wanted for myself. And I love your comment about learning how strong you are and better at coping than you think. Thank you so much for that. (I write a lot, but it tends to be how I feel, and ruminating type stuff, all very negative- which helps to get it out, but tends to also keep me stuck). What I want is to be happy. First and foremost. And I want to be in a committed relationship, and I want to have a family. But most of all, I want to know I can cope with what life throws at me, and be OK INSIDE. And I think sadly this ending/breakup or “the relationship that never quite was” has pushed me to the side a bit and I’m finding it hard to garner my strength. But I am trying. Small steps and all that. Just need to find my way back to the path!!
@guru and @kelly how are you doing? I’m still no contact, but almost broke it again last night. I still feel a bit like I’m putting rose tinted spectacles on how things were. I ask myself, did he treat me right? Did he make me feel like an awesome person? No. He made me feel anxious, on edge, never sure of his feelings and what he wanted. Then I was trapped in thinking about what HE wanted and I lost myself in that. ANd now I am thinking constantly about what he is thinking and if/when he might make the positive changes to himself that he needs to go through to feel “ready” for me. Its like I can’t let go of that small hope that while its not meant to be NOW, it might be meant to be LATER. THAT HE WILL COME BACK. Its helping me cope a bit, but its also keeping me stuck. Anyone else have that? I still feel like there’s a bit of a grey sheen over everything at the moment and I’m not very happy. I am still crying a lot and I’m still really, really sad. I keep telling myself I am enough but I don’t quite believe it…..May 19, 2014 at 9:17 am #56547
Wow, thanks @kelly and @michaelsmith for your wise words. I really needed them after this weekend. I had drafted a text message to send to him and I debated it ALL weekend, while crying, and in the end decided not to send it. I thought of all the times I’d initiated contact with him when we were together, and then about how it ended. I know he’s very depressed so I am worried about him but I realised that if he cared enough about me he’d contact me. And of course he hasn’t, which still hurts a lot. But thank you for affirming that its OK for me still to feel sad. Kelly I’m sorry that you were told your feelings were wrong. That is just simply awful. I’m glad you feel stronger now and while it hurts I’m sure this will be better for you in the long run. Because you will be validated and be able to express yourself, more fully, in the future. There is growth ahead!
While I know I deserve more, it still hurts a lot to think that NOTHING is preventing this except bad timing and someone being in the wrong head space. I am so sad to be alone, again. At least he lives in another city so I won’t bump into him. But I kind of wish that would happen so he’d realise his mistake…..AND the cycle begins again….arghMay 16, 2014 at 4:52 am #56391
Thanks Kelly. And I’m sorry for your hurt. I hope you are doing better. You sound strong. It really helps to know there are others out there going through all this too.
Sometimes I do feel strong when I think of the fact that it was me that initiated the conversation and told him I wasn’t happy, but of course then when I feel lonely I think “why did I do that?” , “he’d still be here” etc. But the REALITY is he wasn’t really there/present. It was a hope that I had rather than a reality. So I just hope it gets easier as I keep moving forwards.
One positive thing I think I’ve realised is that its much easier to just allow yourself to feel sad, than to beat yourself up about feeling sad, tell yourself that you should be feeling better by now, or by this date. To tell yourself that you are weak for having these feelings and fighting/railing against it constantly just makes it harder to deal with. I think this is something I’ve done to myself repeatedly all my life when I’ve felt sad, and this time I am genuinely allowing myself to just feel it and trying very hard to banish those self-chastising thoughts. Not very easy for me, but I am trying.May 15, 2014 at 3:46 am #56317
Thanks Michael, I really appreciate that. How are you getting on? I hope things are getting easier for you.
3 weeks now for me. I haven’t made any contact, but I’m having to constantly stop myself. I just wake each day wishing upon wishing that today will be the day he will get in touch with me and tell me he’s made a mistake. ANd then I feel annoyed at myself for thinking that, and the whole thing begins again with chastising myself. I wonder whether this is common? If I could just be nicer to myself I’m sure this would be easier.
Thanks for your kindness. I will try and stay strong. Part of that means having to remind myself of how difficult the relationship could be and how he wasn’t in reality what I wanted or needed, but I’m still struggling with the emotions of my attachment to him.
TZ xMay 8, 2014 at 2:56 am #55996
Thanks for your thoughtful replies. Daniel, I am like you in that I did write a lot during my relationship with him, so I can look back on that and remember that it was HARD. Too hard, too hard. I think you are right when you say I should not ‘wish’ to get over something. This is maybe just a process I have to go through. A process of saying goodbye to my hopes that things would change. It does help to know that things change in other people’s heads too! I really hope I feel better soon though, as this hurts a lot still.
Jag James, thanks also for your perspective. Its an interesting one, and one which I’ve in fact been struggling with myself. I spent six months wondering the exact same things you seem to be battling too. I wrote in my journal, and I talked to friends, and I tried to take steps back and assess how much was ‘anxiety’ and how much was reality. I did that a lot. And that’s how I know in all honesty to myself, that my anxiety did not cause the ‘split’. I kept giving it ‘a few more weeks’ to see whether things would change, but it just didn’t. In my particular situation it was very hot/cold, push/pull- seeing each other very irregularly, great when we were together, then lots of emotional distance in between times. Never knowing where I stood. being told I was special, and a priority, and then no contact for days. And he told me directly he can’t even take baby steps towards a future with me, because he’s so broken he doesn’t believe in futures any more. So if I was to keep going, just to have in my life in a ‘less than perfect way’ my mental health would suffer, because I would develop feelings for him that he was TELLING me he couldn’t see himself reciprocating. So I did cause the split, but not because of anxiety or vulnerability, in fact because I was strong enough to see that what I wanted didn’t match what I was getting. I think we are all worthy of love and a relationship should make you a bigger person, not a smaller version of yourself, which is what I was becoming.
But ….obviously part of me feels like having him around in any way is better than none. Its been two weeks now, and its still sore. Especially when I know I could just get in touch and have him around. But whether that is what I want, I think I need to take time to decide. I wish I found it easier to focus on a future, rather than obsessing constantly about my past.May 3, 2014 at 1:52 am #55761
Wow, thanks so much Big Blue and Inkrid for being kind enough to take time to respond to me. I mean that. It means a lot that a stranger somewhere else in the world is selfless enough to care.
I also really appreciate the practical advice about meeting someone new. I think I am just at the stage where I am too sad about my loss just now. Although I did think yesterday that in fact this loss is the loss of hope, rather than the loss of a relationship that was making me happy, because ultimately it wasn’t and that’s why he is not here with me this morning. I know I deserve more than he was giving me. Or….Big blue you hit the nail on the head when you said “would you agree you are worthy”. Because actually I think the root of this fear of mine is that somehow I don’t believe I am worthy.
This week has been a little easier. I had a cognitive hypnotherapy session to try to deal with some of my fears and anxieties, and it did help. Part of my problem I think is I need to be more loving to myself and to forgive myself. I see being single in your thirties and not having a family as some kind of mark of shame, and I feel like a failure. Which isn’t a start. So I am going to try and be more positive. I think I have some way to go. My inner voice is telling me I am not strong enough.
Big blue I think you are right about just being out in the community and doing things you like. I’ve taken that on board and planned lots of things for today and I also find that just putting on a bit more make up or some lipstick or whatever can make me feel that bit more confident as I leave the house (when inside I am shaking with fear and having to breath deeply to even leave the house). I’m still quite scared about what lies ahead.April 30, 2014 at 3:02 am #55621
Thanks Inkrid. I will try that. I am not really someone who meditates, but I like the idea of visualising who you want to be, what you want to have.
The hardest part of this is the bit where I think “here we go again”. Its the emotions that are all recycling around me all the time and I’m having panic attacks. I’m trying really hard, walking, listening to music, talking to friends, and journalling. But it hurts a lot right now, not just dealing with the loss of something I thought might eventually be good (although it wasn’t good), maybe its the loss of hope that is affecting me the most? The old feelings of hopelessness are actually more familiar to me than feelings of hope, because I spent 3 years feeling hopeless. I wake up in the mornings feeling like its 4 years ago and I’m processing all this stuff from my past CONSTANTLY. Its breaking me, and I’m terrified. Has anyone else been through this in terms of reliving the past when things don’t work out?