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questioning whether my ex bf and I ever really connected with each other

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  • #367951
    sofia
    Participant

    I just broke up with my first boyfriend, I’m 16 and he’s 17. I’m beginning to wonder if there was actually ever a real connection. It’s a very sad thought, but I talked to him every day for over 5 months (on snapchat) and I always had this feeling in my chest/in my gut that told me something was off about our convos. I can’t even put my finger on it. We had banter, we would make jokes, but it didn’t feel like we were really on the same wavelength. We met in person eight times, and while we would laugh together, and we were physically attracted to one another, I felt off then too. He told me a number of times that he feels like we really “click”, which makes it all the more confusing to me, because a click is almost always a two way thing. I thought maybe I was just worrying too much, but the feeling in the pit of my stomach wouldn’t go away. So I ended it. I know it sounds crazy that I kept it going for that long despite the off feeling, but it was the first guy who had ever liked me/wanted me, and we had things in common. I also thought he was really cute, and he had so many qualities I’d want in a partner. He was perfect to me, he was kind, and funny. He also met my family, and they really liked him. They thought we were a good match. So much that when I would tell my concerns to my family they thought I was self-sabotaging, even though I wanted it to work out so badly. He even told me he “thinks he loves me”… maybe he just loved the IDEA of me though. I just wonder how it could be so one-sided, how could he feel like we really click, while I felt off about the relationship? He even would talk about our relationship years from now… I guess what I’ve learned from this though is to listen to my gut, especially when it comes to relationships. If I’m not feeling it from now on I just won’t continue it. The whole thing really upsets me though, that I spent so much time on someone I didn’t feel much of a connection with. I thought it could get better, but it didn’t. I just feel like all of that was just a “fantasy bond”, it hurts to finally accept that instead of just ignoring it. I spent so much time talking to a person who I had little “rapport” with. I feel like a horrible person for it. He didn’t deserve that. In a way, I feel like I led him on, even though I really, really wanted it to work. I still feel guilty though, because I shouldn’t have ever agreed to the relationship in the first place. Instead, I ignored my gut feelings, and just went with it. We were together for only a month and a half.

    • This topic was modified 1 month, 1 week ago by sofia.
    • This topic was modified 1 month, 1 week ago by sofia.
    #367956
    sofia
    Participant

    whenever I think about it I start hysterically crying, and also cried a lot when I broke up with him. I think it might be because of my guilt, feeling like I lost something, and I just feel like there’s something wrong with me for letting something go on that felt wrong to me. I was holding on to this hope that it would eventually feel better and never did. It’s hard to finally accept the truth.

    #367959
    anita
    Participant

    Dear sofia:

    You shared that you (16) had a boyfriend (17) for a  month and a half. You met him in person 8 times, and spent time with him otherwise on snapchat. You thought he was cute, were physically attracted to him, laughed with him, had things in common with him, and he had “so many qualities” you wanted in a partner. But “something was off.. I can’t even put my finger on it… I just feel like there’s something wrong with me”.

    The something off could be the something we discussed August of last year, more than a year ago. You suggested at the time that you may be suffering from OCD, but did not seek a doctor to possibly diagnose and treat you for OCD.  You wrote to me August 2019 that your mother was arranging for you to see a professional, to see if you indeed suffer from OCD and take it from there.

    People who suffer from OCD, often feel that something is off, that’s in the core of what OCD is about: something feels off again and again.. and again.

    What did you discover when you saw a doctor/ therapist (did you?)

    anita

     

    #367960
    sofia
    Participant

    Thank you for responding Anita, I saw a therapist for a few months, my therapist said she didn’t think I had OCD because she thought I didn’t have any compulsions, she also said that she thinks im just obsessive. I kind of think I do have compulsions though, because whenever I’m obsessing over something I look for reassurance, but I still don’t know if I have OCD.

    I don’t know why really, but I just felt like something was off. I would obsess and obsess over it, always trying to fix it. I would spend hours doing google searches about relationships. Maybe I was just being obsessive, but I don’t want to get back with him and feel the same way, that might give him false hope.

    and I’ve seen so much that you just “click” with someone, so I thought because I don’t always feel like we’re “clicking” the relationship must be wrong.

    He did have a lot of good qualities though, good sense of humor, kind, was very much into me and I thought he was really attractive. I might not find someone like that again for a long time. I’m second guessing my decision a bit.

     

    #367964
    anita
    Participant

    Dear sofia:

    I will be able to read and answer your recent post (and anything you may add to it) later, it may be in a few hours, or in as long as 16 hours from now.

    anita

    #367966
    anita
    Participant

    Dear sofia:

    You are welcome. You wrote that you “saw a therapist for a few months”. You wrote that your therapist said that she didn’t think you had OCD, and that you were “just obsessive”.

    By “just obsessive” did she mean that your obsessive thinking is no big deal?

    I want to understand the nature of the therapy you received: did she clarify to you anything that wasn’t clear to you before, did she define to you any problem in your thinking that should be corrected, did she point to any events in your childhood that need to be looked into… what happened in the few months of therapy and why did it end?

    anita

     

    #367973
    sofia
    Participant

    By “just obsessive” I meant she just thought I obsessively worried over things, but that she didn’t think I have compulsions.

    She never dug very deep… she didn’t ask much about my childhood, we more focused on my self esteem. I brought up some of my obsessions, and she would mostly just reassure me that I was being irrational. It ended because I didn’t feel like I was getting much out of it. I feel like she wasn’t a very good therapist, I might be wrong though.

    #367977
    anita
    Participant

    Dear sofia:

    “she just thought I obsessively worried over things”- you already knew that you obsessively worried over things before you saw the therapist. You shared about in various threads here since last year. So, that was not a revelation: something she told you that you didn’t know before.

    * What did she suggest that you do about your obsessive thinking?

    “I brought up some of my obsessions, and she would mostly just reassure me that I was irrational”- did she give you any Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) exercises designed to replace irrational thoughts with rational thoughts?

    “It ended because I didn’t feel like I was getting much out of it”- you weren’t getting anything out of it if the only things she told you were things you already knew without bringing you to any new understandings and without giving you tools so to lessen your obsessive thinking and to replace irrational thoughts with rational thoughts.

    “I feel like she wasn’t a very good therapist”- a very good therapist would make a world of difference in your mental health. I wish you were able to see a very good therapist.

    * Here are a few quotes from what you shared in previous threads and my comments:

    July 24, 2019: “my problem is, I have a lot of past mistakes that I feel very guilty about. I ruminate over them constantly… I have a downright terrible compulsion.. to compare what I have done to what others have done.. I will feel better for a millisecond before I feel very ashamed”-

    – you obsess over mistakes that you think you made while feeling stress, and your compulsion to compare your mistakes to others’ is a way for you to feel a very temporary relief of that stress. This is what compulsions are about: temporary relief of stress. Following that temporary relief, stress increases and another compulsion is required. This is what OCD is about.

    You have a variety of obsessions at one time or another: one is about mistakes you made, another was: “I basically have an OCD sexual obsession for everything you are not supposed to be attracted to”. In August 7, you mentioned another obsession: “There’s this guy… I obsess over him so much”.

    One of your compulsions was asking me questions. When you received an answer you liked, you felt a temporary relief. Following the relief, your stress increased again, and you needed to ask me another question: on July 24, 1:59 pm (my time), I gave you an answer that pleased you. A few moments later, at 2:05 pm, you wrote to me: “Anita, I don’t think you know how much those word truly helped me. No one has been able to help me as much as you did. Thank you.”.

    But by 3:33 pm, an hour and a half later, your stress was up, and you asked me another question: “Anita, I’m sorry to bother you again, but I had another thought cross my mind.. does that mean I should feel pain myself?”- – see for how long you were “truly helped”? Less than an hour and a half before “another thought”, that is, another obsession occurred to you, compelling you to ask me another question.

    Well, sofia, as you can see (I hope) you need quality psychotherapy with a therapist who will ask you questions, lead you to new understandings, teach you tools to use and guide you in the process of correcting irrational thoughts and to manage/ regulate your emotions.

    anita

    • This reply was modified 1 month, 1 week ago by anita.
    #367979
    sofia
    Participant

    I remember she gave me some tips on how to stop ruminating, I don’t remember her giving me any CBT exercises though. I still think I have OCD even though she told me she didn’t think so. It was a very quick judgement, she said that after only one session.

    I wish I could see a good therapist too, I can’t at the moment though. My mom also doesn’t really believe I have OCD, or at least she really hopes I don’t (understandably). I told her what my therapist said about how she doesn’t think I have OCD, and how I thought she was wrong and my mom told me it seems like “I want to have OCD”, which is far from the truth. I hate that I’m obsessive, and that I look for reassurance. I just felt like my therapist was invalidating my issues.

    I do see that I need quality psychotherapy, hopefully I get that sooner than later.

    #367994
    anita
    Participant

    Dear sofia:

    “I remember she gave me some tips on how to stop ruminating”- you can find such tips by googling “tips on how to stop ruminating”. A therapist should do for you more than a quick google search can do for you.

    “I still think I have OCD even though she told me she didn’t think so.. after only one session”- too quick to determine that you don’t suffer from OCD.

    “My mom also doesn’t really believe I have OCD… my mom told me it seems like ‘I want to have OCD'”- it seems to me that your mother downplays things, preferring to believe things are not really bad, or serious.

    Plus, when she suggested that you want to have OCD, what was she suggesting.. that you are making it up for fun, to get attention… for what purpose would a person want to have a false OCD diagnosis.. (?)

    “I hate that I’m obsessive”- you said it and I believe you. I read all your posts and I agree: you have been obsessive for years. So, you are definitely the O of the OCD. Even if you didn’t fit the OCD diagnosis, a lot of your mental/ emotional life-experience is the same as that of any diagnosed person.

    In July 24, 2019, you wrote: “My family has always been very loving and I am very lucky for that… When I was 11 I started to have intrusive thoughts.. I started to believe I was bad”- no family is “always” very loving, not a single family. For example, when your mother most recently told you that it seemed to her that you want to have OCD- that was not very loving!

    There are hardly any family where there is no arguing and fighting, at times. I wish there were many families with zero aggression.. but there are few. Aggression (raised voices, cruel words, slamming doors, etc.) scare children very much, especially young children. Do you remember such events in your home?

    anita

    #367996
    sofia
    Participant

    Yes, it seems like that’s what she did because she sent me a link to an article with tips on how to stop ruminating. The therapy was online because of COVID.

    I think my mom thinks that I might be making it up for attention, or to seem “special”.

    And yes, there have been events like that in my home. When my mom gets very angry, she would yell at us, and call us names. Sometimes when my dad got angry, he would slam and throw things (not at us) and yell.

    #367998
    anita
    Participant

    Dear sofia:

    “I think my mom thinks that I might be making it up for attention, or to seem ‘special’.. When my mom gets very angry, she would yell at us, and call us names”- I am sure that you don’t feel special, in a good way, when your mother calls you names.

    I understand that you want to seem special, everyone does. And I understand that you suffer from obsessive thinking that has been making you miserable a lot of the time, for years- both things are true and none contradicts the other.

    Being yelled at (“she would yell at us”), being called names (“and call us names”), hearing and seeing things slammed and thrown (“he would slam and throw things.. and yell”)- these are very unpleasant experiences for anyone, especially for a young child.

    Yelling, slamming, calling names are unfortunately common and happen in many, many households- this is why so many children get deeply hurt emotionally. A young child doesn’t say to herself: oh, this yelling, that happens in every home, so it doesn’t bother me-

    -No, a young child doesn’t think that way. She gets very scared every time she hears/sees/feels yelling and other forms of aggression.

    I am reminded of what you posted more than a year ago, September 21, 2019: “I think I was about 7 maybe, my sister (who was maybe 9 years old) and I were having a fight while we were raking leaves in the yard. I held up the rake and told my sister I was ‘going to kill her’.. I was just mad.. I told my mom about it, and she just laughed and said she thinks nothing of it”-

    – she though nothing of it because she is okay with herself yelling at her daughters and calling them names when she is mad. Lots of people justify their behavior when angry, as if anger by itself is a license to hurt other people, including their own children.

    Children often copy the aggression they experience at home, not necessarily in the same ways (neither one of your parents may have held up a rake perhaps), but nonetheless, they copy the aggression that they experience at home.

    anita

     

    • This reply was modified 1 month, 1 week ago by anita.
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