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He's overthinking and retreating

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This topic contains 74 replies, has 4 voices, and was last updated by  anita 2 months ago.

Viewing 15 posts - 61 through 75 (of 75 total)
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  • #139811

    anita
    Participant

    Dear bricklady:

    Will be looking forward to your next post.

    anita

    #140085

    bricklady
    Participant

    Hi there,

    I was pretty nervous all day. Breast Cancer run in my family; mom and three of her sisters have fought it and one aunt on my dads side as well.

    The testing took forever  but it went well. Brickman was in contact with me throughout the test. He was very supportive. I ended up calling him when I was done and we talked for about 10 minutes on how it went and what the doctors want me to do in the future.  He said very supportive things.  We also talked about the kids and how they are. The little one has been having trouble getting her homework done for the past month. I told him that I would be going to a festival in his town on Saturday and if the kids got their chores done I would love to take them if they were interested in going. He seemed really open to that. We talked about a surgery he will be having at the end of the month and I told him if he needed a ride there and home I am happy to go with him, he’s going to think about that. I kept the conversation light.

    He talked about how he is working hard on not worrying about every single little thing, that he is taking days one day at a time.  “So am I” I said. We talked about events that are coming up that we are both interested in.

    Yesterday morning I sent the kids a St. Patrick’s Day card just to let them know I am thinking of them and I hope to see them soon.

    It was really good to talk to him on the phone. I missed that connection with him.

    #140317

    anita
    Participant

    Dear bricklady:

    When are you expecting the results of the test?

    You have a few things going on: the invitation to take the kids to the flower festival, the offer to give Brickman a ride and the sending of the card to the kids. Three contacts- enough for now, I say. No more for a while, so not to overwhelm Brickman!

    You keep initiating and I suppose it is not necessarily a bad move on your part, as he seems open to some of it. But slow down now, wait and see what happens with these three initiations.

    Let me know…

    anita

     

    #140331

    bricklady
    Participant

    Thank you for asking! I got the results yesterday. All is good. I go back for a MRI in 6 months.  For now I need to keep a log of when I have the pain  and I need to follow up with my Primary Care  about a random pain I have had for a few weeks if it doesn’t go away.

    The kids are having  Father Field day today and I am sure I will get photos later. I am not going to ask again to see the kids. I put it out there, they will get my card and life will keep moving on.

     

    #140335

    anita
    Participant

    Dear bricklady:

    Glad you got good results of your testing!

    Regarding Brickman and the kids, I am here to slow you down, just in case you are about to rush. Here to “rain on your parade”- just in case… you are having a parade of pre-mature hope on this matter.

    (A bit of humor, but this is what I am doing…)

    anita

    #140337

    bricklady
    Participant

    I need that very much and I appreciate it greatly.  I hope you have a wonderful weekend!

     

     

    #140345

    anita
    Participant

    Thank you brickady, and hope you have a good weekend yourself! Looking forward to your next post.

    anita

    #140761

    bricklady
    Participant

    Good morning,
    The weekend was,blah. Brickman never responded on Friday if the kids could go with me to the festival. On the way there Saturday he messaged me that one kid was sick and the other was grounded so they couldn’t go with me. I was a little lost and he gave me directions to the festival and he chattered about how their plans for the weekend had changed.  I had a nice time with my friends but it wasn’t the same. I wasn’t going to ask if I could stop by and see them. He knew I was in town so I just left and went home.

    Yesterday I went out to lunch and for a long walk afterwards. I briefly went on social  media to see that brickman had taken the kids out to a local park with a lake. I guess they magically got better and ungrounded (that is be being bitter).  He does not want to see me, nor does he want the kids to see me.

    Last week my therapist gave me some homework. One was to send the kids a card, which I did. The second was to write a letter to Brickman, whether I send it or not is up to me. The letter is to tell him how hard this has been on me for the past month.  I have been trying to do this for a week and it just come out whiny which isn’t how I want to letter to be if I end up sending it. I wonder if I should even send it honestly.

    I just wish I could flip the switch in my head so I would not think and miss them during this time.  In the month we have been broken up I have not once received any indication that he or the kids miss me. It breaks my heart all over again. Time. He asked for time. It’s been a month today. I know it will take longer than a month to work through stuff. I dunno. I wish he would communicate with me what he is doing to work on himself and how its going. He tells me that he “takes every day, one day at a time” but that’s about it.  I will see my therapist in a hour and we’ll work on it I’m sure.

     

    #140765

    anita
    Participant

    Dear bricklady:

    By the time you read this, it will probably be after your therapy session. I am curious to know what happened in therapy and will welcome you sharing.

    I read your last post and it occurred to me that this period of time, this one month today has been really, a time during which you have been actively waiting and reaching out to him to reconnect. It has not been a time when you retreated, to match his retreat and wait.

    It has not been a break but a chase: you chasing him.

    And you learned that at this point “He does not want to see me, nor does he want the kids to see me.”

    And you wrote that he does not “communicate with me what he is doing to work on himself and how its going.”

    Looking forward to your next post.

    anita

     

    #140813

    bricklady
    Participant

    You are right, I have not retreated as well but have continuously reached out to him. A chase. I think that is because I fear that he will forget about me if I don’t remind him I am here.

    It was a good visit. I am actually going back on Wednesday afternoon to see her as we were in the middle of something and her next client was there so we couldn’t extend my visit.

     

    #140821

    anita
    Participant

    Dear bricklady:

    Better stop chasing him then. People tend to either run away from a chaser, or if they are caught, they feel defeated, trapped.

    anita

    #140831

    Craig
    Participant

    Bricklady,

    On the topic of the chase – retreat dynamic, consider thinking about ways you can help him get away. If you do that, then maybe he won’t have to.

    Craig

    #140833

    bricklady
    Participant

    What do you mean? (I have a giant headache and I can’t think straight)

     

    Thanks.

    #140837

    Craig
    Participant

    I think of it like this… and this may sound crazy at first… when a person is fleeing, they are feeling scared and for whatever reason, their brain thinks safety is found in running away. If YOU help the person get away, then you become a source of safety instead of threat. You become someone they don’t have to get away from.

    It might look like this…

    Person running away: “I need some space. I don’t want to talk for a week.”

    Person learning not to chase: “I hear that you need space. How about I send you a quick text in TWO weeks?”

    This can work. But you’ll have to get good at handling your own anxiety along the way.

    #140941

    anita
    Participant

    Dear bricklady:

    I re-thought was has happened and what is happening here. If you consider what I am about to write, please be as calm as you can be as you read it, if you are not calm, maybe postpone reading till later.

    You met Brickman for the first time in your life May 2016, less than a year ago. Two months later, you already met his children. Maybe already that July, two months after meeting him, you were already sleeping over (although at first he slept on the sofa) in his home and a significant amount of your stuff was permanently in his home. You were also involved in parenting decisions regarding the children’s dinner choices, friends choices, etc. When there were disagreements between you and Brickman regarding the children, you talked and came to resolutions. A suggestion was made that you move in December 2016, and later in summer 2017.

    You wrote that the two of you took it slow, but this time schedule suggests the two of you took the relationship very fast, the speed of light, considering he was freshly out of a long marriage at the time you met him.

    This is my understanding. It is not 100% accurate, of course, more of my theory based on your posts and our communication here: You met a man in transition, very vulnerable. You also met a man who was unassertive, a people pleaser, ready to bend over to accommodate others. This is probably how his marriage was for the longest time. This may be why his elder daughter talks disrespectfully to him, having witnessed that he was submissive to her mother, not standing up for himself.

    At one point during this fast relationship, he became very distressed, maybe his blood pressure went up because of his distress, he had a therapy session, and came to the realization that the relationship with you is not working out for him. He felt very strongly about ending it and wanted to have zero contact with you.

    But you disagreed and pressured him (directly and through his friends)  to reduce but keep contact. Being the unassertive man that he is, hating confrontations, he caved in. When he had you remove your belongings from his home, he felt very badly, being the people pleaser that he is and fearing confrontation. He didn’t want you angry, that is why he apologized so profusely for you taking your stuff out.

    As time progresses, he is feeling more and more comfortable with the separation, which is what I believe this is. I don’t think this is a waiting period for him. I think this relationship was way too soon for him. I also think you mistook some of his people-pleasing, unassertive behaviors and accommodations to you as being loving.

    I think that it doesn’t matter who the woman would have been, if it wasn’t you- he was not and is not ready. He is definitely not ready for a live-in. He may have been okay with a female friend for a little bit of socializing time, but he was not and is not ready for a replacement wife or a replacement mother to his kids.

    You were and are very eager to be those things, and already took those roles upon yourself. This is an indication, to me, of your neediness and his accommodating ways to you, ways that fit you very well.

    In summary: I think that this relationship is over. I don’t think this is what you want to read. But this is what I think nonetheless.

    Notice, bricklady: there were no promises made: a marriage didn’t take place. It is his right to make a choice to separate from you. There is no debt, nothing he owes you (as long as there was no contract made between the two of you).

    anita

     

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