How to combat fear.

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    I haven’t posted here in ages, but I did so when I was trying to leave my ex after 21 years together. It became emotionally abusive and a tosic situation to live in. That was almost 2 years ago and I have really progressed in terms of stability and also my own peace of mind. He has made things very difficult in the time after the split, we have two boys together and share child care so essentially will be in my life until the kids are old and flown the nest so to speak. I have probably been more giving to him than he deserved and its only been in the last few weeks he has been more stable and well, nice. The reason for this is he is in a new relationship. I am not in the slightest bit jealous, but angry that he can change his attitude so quickly now he is occupied with another woman. I am however enjoying th peace (and hope it lasts).

    The last 24 hours I have felt hugely emotional, very tearful and feel very vulnerable. Partly because my rescue dog I got not long after the split is quite unwell and his prognosis is poor. A few months after I split form my ex I started a friends with benefits type relationship with a guy. We had a great six months then it stopped abruptly because he was having doubts and both of us were developing feelings for each other. It ended (I know now because we talked about it) because he couldn’t understand why I wanted to get into a relationship with him when I had just ended a 21 year one. He felt I should go out, date, meet other people and see what happened. I did, I had 6 months of fun with a few flings, then we started to see each other again (about 6 months ago). We have undeniable chemistry, I love being around him and this time things have notched up a gear (he stays over when I don’t have the kids, we cook together etc, before was just really sex). We are still not “public”, my choice not his, he is happy for people to know, I am not ready for that yet.

    He came over last night, we started to make love and I had to try really hard not to cry, i was so overwhelmed with emotion. I don’t know if it is love, I don’t actually know if i want a conventional relationship and be tied to one person. He puts zero pressure on me and quite frankly is one of the nicest sweetest people I have met. He is kind, leads a very simple life, never complains and is generally always happy. I know he likes me a lot, the feeling is mutual and it could be a even more beautiful thing than it is. But he struggles with being in a relationship (he is a free bird), and I am not 100% sure I want to be in one.

    I was in bed last night trying to unpick what it is that is wrong and I think its fear. Fear of never being enough. For years I tried to make my relationship work with my ex and nothing was ever good enough. I think it is self preservation, but how do I get passed that and just enjoy this for what it is?


    Thanks in advance.






    Dear jlo5:

    Welcome back.

    Your ex, the father of your boys has a new relationship and as a result he has  been nicer to you in the last few weeks. In a  previous thread you wrote  about him: “I’m realizing that my every waking moment around him (and  even when I was away from him) has  been focused  on keeping  him happy”. I think it upset you to see that another woman made him happy (so far, somewhat). Because you tried for so long, focused on this aim so intensely. What do you think?

    In this thread you wrote: “For years I tried to make my relationship work with my ex and nothing was  good enough”- I think this is what you are grieving, why you cried the other  night.

    “The fear of never  being  enough”- do you think it came up recently because (as  understand  it) this friends-with-benefits relationship has been becoming more serious, and the never-being-enough fear has been activated  in the context of a more serious relationship?


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