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Thread: How come I can't magnify the good?

  1. #401
    Platinum Member tiredofvampires's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by ~Seraphim ~
    That was pure cruelty.
    Yes, I agree. But I also think there has been mounting cruelty and aggression on Naomi's part for a while. This whole, "I don't care, it's not my responsibility, you're not my responsibility, get a grip, you make me sick, he could move to Planet Mars for all I care" is not kind, it's not about good boundaries, it's not about people knowing themselves and standing their ground, it's PURE HOSTILITY. But I've said it before, to no avail.

    Naomi, I'm sorry, I have to agree with you that you had your chance in that cafe and you fumbled it epically. You know, the one chance you had been trying to get it together to do for how many weeks and thread pages? You had it in the palm of your hand. You could have been done with this, and clean. The way you described even the beginning of the get-together, with him being nervous and cat-got-his-tongue (like on the phone) while you awkwardly glance around the room, waiting for him to talk, tells me a lot about how difficult it is for you to communicate in a clear and mature way. You didn't have to wait to calmly and directly look him in the eye and initiate things, saying, "Okay, so here we are. And you said you had questions you wanted to ask me. So let's stay en pointe. What are they? I'll answer anything so long as it's not about my life post break-up." And that would have immediately gotten things on task, with you doing what you set out to do, and him having the chance to focus on what has been eating him all this time.

    Instead, you acted like you were lost and letting him lead the way into whatever confusion he wanted to walk into (and I note that even as you relate this story of the meeting, you convey contempt for him and found things to not like -- his opening remarks were "blah blah", he got the chronology wrong [which may be true, but isn't that another reason you're incompatible? You don't think things through the same way]).

    Then a telling moment came -- you expressed what you've been expressing here, which I find to be quite cold and callous. Your contempt came through in a way that he realized you weren't just objecting to things about him, you actually deeply disrespect him and pity him, at best. When the truth hit him, he finally grew a set.

    And that's when he suddenly became attractive to you.

    He became attractive when he told you to he didn't want YOU anymore.

    And then, he was worth running after. He became desirable by saying no to you and drawing his line in the sand.

    But because he was in tears, you still felt to be the one up. He was SOOOOO vulnerable in that moment, all you needed to do was give him one sign that you cared, and he'd be back down where he was before....groveling and running after YOU. All it took was your "motherly kiss" for him to run after YOU saying, "Wait, I haven't rejected you!", in a moment of feeling his own pain in you. And trying to give you the consolation he wanted from you since the break-up.

    So now you're on top again. He has no closure, as he requested/needs, and you will still want him to stop being a pest, a fool, a desperate dumpee, a "manipulator"....and what you did was not at all manipulative?

    This was supposed to be you asking him to lay out his questions so it could be ended, and he might have done just that had you lead him. As the dumper, you have a little more control to guide things. Instead, you took the opportunity to tell him the same old vague generalities that left him wondering earlier. Frankly, I have to wonder aloud if you didn't tell him what the details were of your incompatibilities because you felt sorry for him, or because leaving him hanging would mean you not having to commit yourself to being done with this. I mean, you "didn't have the heart" to tell him what he wanted so much to hear, just to FINALLY know it, which would have been the kind thing? I don't really buy it. You didn't have to tell him, "You're a cheapskate" to tell him in a diplomatic way the truth, and break it down for him. And if you had asked him what his questions were, he could have given you the prompts to be specific as needed. It was totally do-able. So feeling sorry for his bleary red eyes is a weak excuse for not being straight up. I don't doubt that you felt sorry for him, but I wonder if you're being honest with yourself that that's the reason you didn't level with him. I think it's more. And, to boot, you instead chose to drill home the point that his wanting more from you was not your problem, which was dismissive of the meeting's intent, and dismissive of him.

    So mission failed, but not only that, the one moment he had where he tried to break free (which you had been *wanting* so much), you managed to maneuver in such a way that he wouldn't be too certain about you.

    I know you felt sympathy for him as well, we are all complex beings, so there can be mixed motives. But I think the greater part of you felt that him leaving you would be too final, and that furthermore, for the break-up to give you peace, it would have to be on your terms, which is to say, him being a pathetic mess. You couldn't have that peace with him being the one to leave in the end, and you being walked out on, as he reclaims his dignity. That would cause you too much doubt about your decision to leave, and doubt about yourself. I think you had to hate on him and feel "on top" to stay firm in the break-up.

    For what it's worth, I think the most important thing for you to keep in mind is that no matter how you slice it, you are incompatible. All the things that weren't working for you would continue. So it's not a question of, "If I just learned to appreciate the companionship and the good, maybe I'd stop worrying about pens and granola bars." There were too many elements of approach, mannerisms, style, values that were clashing in all those instances, and love is not enough to bridge those things.

    It shouldn't have ever turned into this slightly sadistic behavior on your part, but that's because you have unresolved issues and both of you are deeply wounded. Both of you have serious abandonment issues, and they are just playing out differently. You have a different way of coping than he does, and it's just as dysfunctional. So neither of you are ready for a relationship and once again, this keeps coming up in all your threads: you have major things you need to work on with communication skills. I don't know what you are going to do to fix them, but I think it's going to involve help outside yourself and this board (I'd offer suggestions, but I don't think you'd take them). Until you learn how to communicate with directness, not being emotionally reactive, articulating and listening in equal measure, you are not going to get through relationships. Communication can make or break a relationship, and it may have even potentially saved this one - but neither of you has the skills, and as I said, there is too much to individually heal before anything healthy could occur. It just can't work.

    I don't know what you're going to do next, but my hunch is that you'll try to work something out in a less flamboyant way, and now that you've been knocked off your pedestal, you'll feel bad and try to make it up to him, and it'll end up with sex. I hope I'm wrong.
    Last edited by tiredofvampires; 03-28-2017 at 05:39 AM.

  2. #402
    Platinum Member mustlovedogs's Avatar
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    What I wrote seems to have been lost -

    The bottomline is: you are cruel and manipulative. You're enjoying watching him suffer. You like the effect you have on him. It's terrible. Stop acting surprised at how needy and clingy he's been - your actions are single handedly delaying his healing significantly.

    Reading about your interaction with him hurts. Stop complaining about him and take a look at yourself, because I find your actions cruel and vindictive. Regardless of intent - this poor guy is a victim of your manipulation.

  3. #403
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    Originally Posted by IThinkICan
    Naomi, there are few moments when we are comfortable telling someone else they are cheap, anti social, etc. There are many moments when it is appropriate to say, "I prefer someone who sees more of a boundary between his things and theirs. It sounds petty, but it became a symbol of a number of ways in which I felt like my boundaries were under attack. That isn't your fault; they are my boundaries and I am responsible for making them clear and enforcing them as needed. My fault was twofold - not knowing my boundaries were there, and not knowing how to assert them. Because I am no good at asserting boundaries, we are incompatible. "

    Put it on you. Always.
    Yes. And I also can see that even with the eloquent and graceful way you put it -and I mean it -want to copy that and use it for myself in similar types of situations! - that timing might be off. but she played a part in creating a timing and situation where that wouldn't have even been on the table because in reality she didn't care whether she got to be honest with him about her boundaries.

  4. #404
    Platinum Member IAmFCA's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Batya33
    Yes. And I also can see that even with the eloquent and graceful way you put it -and I mean it -want to copy that and use it for myself in similar types of situations! - that timing might be off. but she played a part in creating a timing and situation where that wouldn't have even been on the table because in reality she didn't care whether she got to be honest with him about her boundaries.
    Much easier to say what need to be said when it is about ourselves, rather than an insult to the other person. Naomi, as we have said before, and now perhaps you have greater appreciation for the exercise: every time you think about his (or anyone's) faults, rethink it in terms of your preferences.

    Let that motivation to make him feel better (which is also your motivation to avoid responsibility) be your motivation to learn this lesson. If you had learned it before your meeting, you would have been able to explain why you're incompatible.

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  6. #405
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    Originally Posted by IThinkICan
    Much easier to say what need to be said when it is about ourselves, rather than an insult to the other person. Naomi, as we have said before, and now perhaps you have greater appreciation for the exercise: every time you think about his (or anyone's) faults, rethink it in terms of your preferences.

    Let that motivation to make him feel better (which is also your motivation to avoid responsibility) be your motivation to learn this lesson. If you had learned it before your meeting, you would have been able to explain why you're incompatible.
    Yes, sure, and I think the way the meeting transpired- and the way it was set up - it was not the right environment even to put it as "it's my boundary issue not yours" -and I don't think she much cared, either.

  7. #406
    Platinum Member journeynow's Avatar
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    Thank you for updating us, Naomi. I know you didn't have to. Relationships aren't easy and learning about ourselves can be lifelong. I want to go back to this:

    Originally Posted by Naomi99
    I doubted everything they taught me as a child but never raised a question until one day, I did…and promptly got disowned and kicked out of my childhood house. I haven't been in contact with my biological parents and sisters for 20 years because of this. So yes…this impacts my ability to be authentic in relationships because of the consequences I suffered when I did voice my opinion. I lost my family. This probably sums everything for why my life isn't as good as it could be.

    ... I lost my entire family when I was a teenager. I started over.
    When you mentioned this much of what you write about yourself and how you interact with others made sense to me. I think you've mentioned that you see a therapist, but, I don't know, it seems to me that the hurt teen in you is still making an appearance in how you interact with others, creating drama but not necessarily a deeper understanding. It sounds like you are hurting from this episode, and I don't want to add to it. Sending hugs and tulips and a good hot Latte.

  8. #407
    Platinum Member Annia's Avatar
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    I did some back reading in this thread and I just want to thank Naomi for this thread and the people who answered. So many different amazing insights and perspectives. I could see myself in many of the things written here... it was so enlightening that I even had some epiphanies and even got a bit teary eyed at some parts. "Lame", I know... but this thread impacted me more than I thought lol

    Naomi I'm so sorry for what you've been through in your past. I know you might not see it that way, but from previous threads I've read and this one, I think you've came a long way. You're one hell of a strong woman and I think that you've became very conscious of your behaviours and their reasons and that's already a big step. I don't know you, but I fully wish you happiness and I'm sending good vibes from the other side of the ocean.

  9. #408
    Platinum Member Annia's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Naomi99
    Long story short. We ended up meeting Sunday evening at a cafe. He was already seated when I walked in. "hey/what's up/you look great.." blah blah. I sit down. Silence. He fiddles with his coffee cup, clears his voice, fiddles with his laptop, looks at me and says, "Do you want to sit at another table?" I say, "No this is cool."

    I'm waiting for him to start talking but he doesn't!! So I start looking around at the walls, at my finger nails, out the window.

    And there's so much awkward silence he finally goes, "I'm nervous."

    I said, "Why? Don't be. It's just me. Nothing to be nervous about."

    He goes, "Do you not want to be here? Do you want to leave? Because you seem like you don't want to be here."

    I said, "I came all the way out here in the rain, at nighttime, to meet you. You've been haranguing me to talk for nearly two months, and here I am. So please. Talk."

    He finally starts talking and he is so nervous I feel sorry for him. His voice is all high and shaky. He proceeds to rehash the events and the day of the breakup, (BTW, he got at least 50 percent of the chronology and details wrong, and of course he re-wrote history to support his story,) the days after the breakup and how he's been so depressed because he doesn't understand how I could love him so much and break up the next day. He had tears in his eyes and I just could NOT bring myself to tell him about the cheapness and the way he behaved on that night I had my friends over. I didn't think it was proper timing to kick someone while they were down, so I defaulted to the generality of "we are incompatible and the timing was off. You were leaving so I saw no reason to iron things out…" blah blah.

    Then he starts in with, "You knew I couldn't eat. You didn't even wish me happy birthday or even thank me for the pastries. Why didn't you ever reach out to see how I was doing? I lost 15 pounds and couldn't eat. Don't you care about me?"

    Then I said (okay maybe a little bit animated), "Look, I know you are upset over this whole thing, but it's not my responsibility to hold your hand through this breakup, especially when I am the one who did the breaking up! How is you losing 15 pounds my responsibility? And sending me those pastries, I wish you hadn't. It wasn't a highlight of my life, more like a hinderance from moving on. I was trying to close that chapter and you kept reopening it. I'm not obligated to wish you happy birthday, or even meet here with you, to be quite honest."

    Then at that point he looked shocked and said, "I'm leaving." He got up and shoved his laptop into his bag and had tears coming down his face and his eyes were all pink and he stormed out.

    I followed him out. It was raining and I kept shouting his name. Finally I caught up to him and I pulled him under a store awning out of the rain. He was crying. He said, "I'm so hurt right now, but I understand now who you are and this is the closure I need."

    And then I did the unthinkable, and you guys are going to slap me for this. I lifted my chin and leaned forward to kiss him. And it wasn't a sexually-driven act at all…it was because he was crying and I could see he was genuinely hurt and I felt like a mother kissing her son's boo-boo.

    And then he did the unthinkable. He grabbed my shoulders and pushed me away!!!

    I stood back with my eyes all big, kind of embarrassed. I said, "Okay, well, then I guess I will be going."

    So I turned around walked out into the rain looking for my keys, making a beeline for my car. I was embarrassed because he pushed me away, and secondly because it was misread as a romantic kiss when it was a sympathy kiss.

    Then he starts chasing me in the rain, "Naomi, naomi, come back. Come back here. I didn't reject you. It's just inappropriate to kiss right now. That's not why I wanted to meet you."

    He clearly could see I was embarrassed, so he pulls me back under the store awning, opens his bag and whips out a huge-ass tupperware. Inside of it is a bunch of hand-picked beautiful flowers that he arranged into a perfect little bouquet. It was so sweet. I started crying and I said where did you get these?

    He said he picked them during his jog earlier today. (given his past stealing fruit, an image of him tromping through some old lady's prized garden stealing her award-winning flowers flashed through my mind.)

    Anyway we talked a little bit more. He said he's had the worst two months of his life, and his friends say he's an idiot for chasing me, but he says he just couldn't give up. Then he asked me now that he is staying local, has that had any impact on how I feel about him.

    I said: You are everything I want on paper and physically but there are fundamental differences too great where this won't work out."

    He asks, "What are those fundamental differences?"

    I still felt the moment was too raw to bring up that he is a sorry cheapskate, etc….so I said, "This isn't really the right time to talk about it. It's late, I'm freezing and really gotta get home."

    And he said, "Okay…well, why don't we just think about things for the next few days, and then I'll contact you and we can talk again."

    I said, "Okay."

    The end.

    I'm not going to lie. Seeing him for the first time, I DO love him but I am not in love with him. I care about him. And that whole thing last night was incredibly romantic in the rain, under the streetlights, under the awning surrounded by trailing vines. Then whipping out a bunch of flowers out of his bag.

    (I know I'm going to get it for not speaking my mind, but honestly guys. Be gentle with me. As mean as I am, I just couldn't bring myself to be completely honest at that moment. is wrong with me??? Maybe I should have brought it up while he was crying.)
    So you basically prolonged it... I feel you left some hope in the air, at least from his perspective). You said "NOW it isn't the best time to talk about it" so he assumed you were going to talk to him about it later... and you said ok. You could have said everything and close the case right there and then. But once again you didn't totally close the door. This seems like a pattern with this relationship and break up in general...

    I know it is hard when someone is crying in front of us and everything, but...

    Originally Posted by journeynow
    I feel for him. I know what it is like to be heartbroken and be given confusing answers like " You are everything I want on paper and physically but…." Maybe you are not kicking him while he's down, but you are not being direct, simple, and clear. Leave out "You are everything I want blahblahblah wawawawawa" and stay with "I don't want to date you, period."
    Me too... I've been through this on both sides. It feels like the person doesn't want to totally let you go. I can understand that the person doesn't want to hurt you and feels like totally breaking the chord will hurt you. But sometimes breaking the chord totally and closing the door completely is the most compassionate thing to do, if we can't really be in a loving relationship with that person or the feelings and the willingness aren't there.

    Originally Posted by boltnrun
    I knew from the beginning there was no way you were going to let this guy go. It's just way to irresistible to have a guy who worships you, who can't eat and can't sleep and can't forget you.

    You know you didn't tell him the truth because he might have actually walked away from you for good. And you don't want that. You WANT him "pestering" you, which is why you won't block him and why, despite insisting the meeting was off, you met him anyway. And why, when he tried to escape, you tried to kiss him. You want him to keep holding on.

    None of this is nice.

    Instead of keeping him around to boost your own ego, how about you just let him go? You aren't in love with him and you don't really want to be in a relationship with him. The kindest thing to do would be to let him go.

    Will you do that? Or is your need to have someone worship you more important than being kind?
    He told her to leave and he was leaving her, but she followed him... she even kissed him and reassured him that THEN it wasn't the right time to really talk about what the incompatibilities were... and said that they could talk later. Now we go back to the pattern where she gets angry that she accepted to do this and give him one more chance. he'll continue to text her and she'll continue to get angry and saying he made her angry with his actions But then his puppy eyes, misery and romantic bouquets of flowers under the rain will make her back track and leave the door a bit open one more time. One day he'll get tired and leave. Maybe even find someone. I think she'll get angry at that and wonder "but he said he loved me so much and did all of this for me, and now he just gives up???"

    If it was simpler to say/write assertively "This is over, I don't want to be with you. I wish you luck and the best. Thank you. I ask you not to contact me again and maybe it's even better that we block each other" (regardless if she chose to say the specifics or not). Then just block and out of mind out of sight. Then he heals alone with the help of his friends and knowing that there is no hope of getting back together. And she moves on wishing him well but not being in involved in what he's doing at the moment. It would be simpler... but the hardest for most people... because there's some sort of comfort in this drama... and clean break ups don't make up for good hollywood romantic movies.

    Not trying to be mean... just making some predictions based on previous statements and how many people act. I'm no saint, I've also made my mistakes and had/have patterns hard to break.

    I was afraid this was going to happen. I can only wish everything turns out ok.
    Last edited by Annia; 03-28-2017 at 12:50 PM.

  10. #409
    Platinum Member Ms Darcy's Avatar
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    I think it's only when we feel like we are the one down in life that we keep trying to be "one up" in our interpersonal relationships.

    You've been cruel. Maybe not for cruelty's sake. Probably not. But because unhealthy is what feels normal.

    You are fundamentally emotionally unavailable hon. And keep picking men who are wholly unsuited to you, but attractive to you, so you can be utterly mad at them.

    I suggest that therapy (again) might be a good idea.

  11. #410
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    Originally Posted by Ms Darcy
    I think it's only when we feel like we are the one down in life that we keep trying to be "one up" in our interpersonal relationships.

    You've been cruel. Maybe not for cruelty's sake. Probably not. But because unhealthy is what feels normal.

    You are fundamentally emotionally unavailable hon. And keep picking men who are wholly unsuited to you, but attractive to you, so you can be utterly mad at them.

    I suggest that therapy (again) might be a good idea.
    Another poster mentioned fight or flight to create distance, I think it was tiredofvampires. So Ms. Darcy, what you said about her choosing men wholly unsuited to her so she can be utterly mad at them makes sense. She needs to fight with them to create distance, because like you said she is emotionally unavailable and needs that distance to feel emotionally safe. Therapy would be good.

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