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Thread: Faith Commitment Action

  1. #461
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    I don't think she's drawn to complexity - not in the positive, relationship-growing sense -I think she's drawn to drama of many different types whether it's because the guy is married/has a girlfriend/doesn't want a girlfriend, etc. - and when there is drama - it's repainted/reconfigured as "complexity" or "depth" as a justification for remaining with the person. On a separate note certainly you are complex, IamFCA, certainly you are bright in many different ways, very talented - your complexity is genuine, it's inspiring. But the "complexity" in these men you grow attached to - I think that allows you to delve into "relating" with the person from the stance of trying to accommodate the various forms of distancing/hot/cold/on/off/drama - but that kind of relating isn't the kind that builds lasting romantic relationships IMHO.

    I understand that you're not holding on to reconciling, just commenting on BC's comment that you're drawn to complexity.

    Currently.planning to take a vacation and invest the time in my home, moving in all over again, in a sense. The redo will be a major source of energy." -what a great plan!!!

  2. #462
    Platinum Member bluecastle's Avatar
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    I agree with you, Batya, on the general point about how drama, or even just immaturity and insecurity, can be repainted by the mind, heart, and loins as depth, complexity. Been there plenty in my own life, as both painter and canvas.

    But I get the feeling that what she was perhaps initially drawn to here seemed genuinely complex, appealing for that, and was that—for a time. Once it showed its cracks (the drama over the depth) back in June she "repainted" it, not without some melancholy reckoning and frustrations, as not being the genuine complexity she needs, seeks, and is drawn to in a partner. If it was in fact drama that she was genuinely drawn to than she would not have ended it, but would be continuing to engage and cultivate, no?

    In other words, you can be drawn to something but stumble a bit in the search, in fine-tuning the radar. The prince turns out to be a toad, or the prince is still reckoning with his inner toad in ways that only become apparent after a month or a year or whatever—time that was not wasted, but helped adjust the compass.

    I was seeing someone for a two months last fall who I wrote about, and who I was initially drawn to because she seemed complex in ways that were relatable—someone who had done some real work and, like me, valued self-work. Stuff I want in a partner, in short. When that idea came to be challenged I struggled a bit, ultimately having to accept that what I thought was one thing (complexity) was another (drama). And so, like IAmFCA, I ended it. What I hoped was an ocean turned out to be a puddle. Doesn't mean I'm actually drawn to puddles, but that I slipped around in one for a moment. In a past life that slipping could have been a year or more; in this one it was a few weeks. Better radar.

    I admit I have not been following this story from beginning to end, so I'm reacting less to the specifics than to something I'm seeing or sensing in IAmFCA. If there is a romantic history here of trying to swim marathons in puddles—well, that's to be examined.

  3. #463
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    Yes certainly could be. I often see her describe new men in her life in glowing, pedestal-like terms with a focus on the over the top feelings (not always but often) so not sure if the pull is complexity or simply the newness. With this guy I think it was slower to develop maybe?

  4. #464
    Platinum Member IAmFCA's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Batya33
    Yes certainly could be. I often see her describe new men in her life in glowing, pedestal-like terms with a focus on the over the top feelings (not always but often) so not sure if the pull is complexity or simply the newness. With this guy I think it was slower to develop maybe?
    Batya "I often see" would be true if we condensed my last 5 years into one flat landscape.

    Fortunately with the help of you Batya and others it has been a landscape rich with growth.

    I have known this person for some 15 years. Blue nailed it, in the sense that he is someone who has done a lot of work and will continue to do so, and I value that trait highly. He had thought he had arrived at a different place, with himself, than what turned out to be true in his own estimation. While I thought I saw more noise within him than he saw within himself, I too thought he was in a substantially stable spot. He just wasn't. The stability he felt deteriorated as we became more involved - no surprise there - and it overwhelmed him. Big surprise there.

    I mean, his own therapist thought his foundation was stable, when it wasn't. He is articulate and has a measured manner, is self contained and self controlled. Nobody saw what he described, which included some suicidal ideation, deep shame bubbling up.

    This is in the context of excelling in his professional life under some challenging conditions, requiring self advocacy directly to the executive board and ownership and out maneuvering the people to whom he reports. None of his friends saw it; his parents encouraged him to develop our relationship even as they are friends with his ex; nobody saw the abyss he felt.

    So, I am handing this one to Blue. Even so, I am trying to find blind spots to help make me better at this.

    And also, it may be smart to acknowledge that some of what happens is beyond my control. Remembering the presence and impact of externalities helps me remember the presence of risk. A good balance to my we-can-do-this nature.

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  6. #465
    Platinum Member IAmFCA's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by bluecastle
    I like way you're thinking about this, or the way you think in general. It's relatable. My sense is that you are drawn to complexity, generally speaking, which will inherently make you drawn to complexity in others. But there is a limit, an awareness when the complexities of another (and/or their wrestling with them) might smooth yours over, simplify yourself in a way that isn't genuine. Or, as the kids say, where what seemed complex is maybe #basic, too #basic for you.

    And that's kind of what I see here. He's reckoning with something, and you've got a built in respect for those sorts of reckonings. Great stuff. But you've got your own reckonings, so if someone can't reckon alongside you—yeah, it just becomes an intellectual exercise that doesn't fire enough synapses. I can almost feel your brain listening to him with total compassion while another corridor is going: "Welcome to the club..."

    I'm likely wrong. I wouldn't be so presumptuous with another poster, but I trust your ability to discard and absorb as needed. Personally, I think there's a sweet place where we're all trying to get where we can be both "in transition" and "settled," if that makes sense. Or maybe it's a certain subset of the population, those with a pronounced searching gene. I don't know. Things I think about from time to time.

    Anyhow, my gut says that you're further along on that search that he is—that you can be in transition and settled without hyperventilating. For a good stretch, I think, he seemed like a fellow traveler there, but in time you've seen a more binary mode of thinking, of being, that does not compliment you where you need to be complimented.

    So the house. You're doing a renovation?
    Blue, Someone has crawled into my brain and projected it onto your laptop screen. Just, yes.

  7. #466
    Platinum Member IAmFCA's Avatar
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    Reporting a useful exchange with the ex with respect to resentment, meeting ones needs etc. He found no resentment within himself or me. He did suggest that my use of goal setting (for the day, half day, hour, week) can be misinterpreted as advancing my own needs to the exclusion of others, particularly if the other person is not someone who lives according to a to do list. It is clear that is not my intent, that in fact I crave having someone else set the agenda. He made the helpful point that others may not understand my approach to propelling myself forward.

    To that I think "Well. Other people can simply say what their needs are," which is both true and ineffective. More helpfully I think I can tell someone upfront (when appropriate etc) how I operate. (To me this is what everyone does; they don't. I don't understand that and don't have to. I accept that some people don't set an agenda for how to attack their day.)

    Most helpfully, I indeed crave having someone else set the agenda, just to get beyond my own horizons and to let my brain ride shotgun every now and again. Also, to serve my internal needs (entertainment, emotion, engagement, etc) while I am down in the weeds trying to make this life happen as best I can for these kids I am raising.

    That craving is an imbalance and likely caused me to attract someone who also is hyper focused on having his needs met, or rather, uncertain whether anyone else hears him and cares to meet them.

    Makes sense. Especially when we met I was particularly observant how much I am ready to have my home to myself and yet don't wish for that at the expense of having my children here. Its a conflict born of my own needs asserting themselves.

  8. #467
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    Originally Posted by IAmFCA
    Reporting a useful exchange with the ex with respect to resentment, meeting ones needs etc. He found no resentment within himself or me. He did suggest that my use of goal setting (for the day, half day, hour, week) can be misinterpreted as advancing my own needs to the exclusion of others, particularly if the other person is not someone who lives according to a to do list. It is clear that is not my intent, that in fact I crave having someone else set the agenda. He made the helpful point that others may not understand my approach to propelling myself forward.

    To that I think "Well. Other people can simply say what their needs are," which is both true and ineffective. More helpfully I think I can tell someone upfront (when appropriate etc) how I operate. (To me this is what everyone does; they don't. I don't understand that and don't have to. I accept that some people don't set an agenda for how to attack their day.)

    Most helpfully, I indeed crave having someone else set the agenda, just to get beyond my own horizons and to let my brain ride shotgun every now and again. Also, to serve my internal needs (entertainment, emotion, engagement, etc) while I am down in the weeds trying to make this life happen as best I can for these kids I am raising.

    That craving is an imbalance and likely caused me to attract someone who also is hyper focused on having his needs met, or rather, uncertain whether anyone else hears him and cares to meet them.

    Makes sense. Especially when we met I was particularly observant how much I am ready to have my home to myself and yet don't wish for that at the expense of having my children here. Its a conflict born of my own needs asserting themselves.
    Please please stand true to who you are and don't let him or anyone tell you if you're too focused on schedules or goal setting. That is you and you benefit from it and you yourself recognize any downsides and have decided in your wisdom that the upsides make up for it. Good for you! So, sure, if you meet someone who is more "spontaneous" and doesn't have a to do list it doesn't have to be an issue at all unless one of you make it one. You either meet in the middle or you have boundaries. For example, I really "need" (want? honestly, feels closer to a need) to work out in the morning and preferably first thing. I do my utmost, especially now that our son is 10 and can be alone in the house while my husband is still sleeping on a Saturday - to work out while it doesn't affect others' needs/schedules etc. So I do sacrifice my comfort level to an extent to accommodate others but to an extent. Or my husband said to me the other day when I said I needed time to sit and eat a proper breakfast on my own and needed that me time (that 20-30 minutes of me time) desperately -he said "well I just you know grab something to eat and I'm done." Cool. That's him. It's not me. I will do the grab and run if I have to - but again I have that need. Big whoop if he doesn't. That's called a "relationship".

    I also tell my husband who doesn't love schedules/to do lists that he also has a sleep schedule - he is a night owl who gets his best work done at night and then he sleeps in (because his work allows him to -he doesn't miss meetings or work!) - so I remind him that he too has a schedule he prefers.

    And who cares if others don't understand your approach to propelling yourself forward. They do not need to. Only you need to. You're not asking for their help in propelling yourself forward. Yes, you tell someone upfront IF it affects their life in some way either practically or emotionally. I am too much for certain people too. Oh well. Yesterday I met a friend in person for the first time -been corresponding on and off for a few years through a FB group. We went food shopping after lunch and I honestly don't love shopping with people and had to get stuff done. So I (rudely?) walked ahead of her to the dairy section and she commented "you're just like my friend who's a fast walker!". I remembered yes I have to slow down if I am "with" someone.

    Sorry to ramble but I don't buy your ex's crap about how you're supposed to change your approach so others will "understand" it. It's interesting that you also want someone else to set the agenda -to take over once in awhile. Totally get that

    And perhaps he's jealous -he knows that if he were more driven like you he'd be in a different, better place?

  9. #468
    Platinum Member IAmFCA's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Batya33
    Please please stand true to who you are and don't let him or anyone tell you if you're too focused on schedules or goal setting. That is you and you benefit from it and you yourself recognize any downsides and have decided in your wisdom that the upsides make up for it. Good for you! So, sure, if you meet someone who is more "spontaneous" and doesn't have a to do list it doesn't have to be an issue at all unless one of you make it one. You either meet in the middle or you have boundaries. For example, I really "need" (want? honestly, feels closer to a need) to work out in the morning and preferably first thing. I do my utmost, especially now that our son is 10 and can be alone in the house while my husband is still sleeping on a Saturday - to work out while it doesn't affect others' needs/schedules etc. So I do sacrifice my comfort level to an extent to accommodate others but to an extent. Or my husband said to me the other day when I said I needed time to sit and eat a proper breakfast on my own and needed that me time (that 20-30 minutes of me time) desperately -he said "well I just you know grab something to eat and I'm done." Cool. That's him. It's not me. I will do the grab and run if I have to - but again I have that need. Big whoop if he doesn't. That's called a "relationship".

    I also tell my husband who doesn't love schedules/to do lists that he also has a sleep schedule - he is a night owl who gets his best work done at night and then he sleeps in (because his work allows him to -he doesn't miss meetings or work!) - so I remind him that he too has a schedule he prefers.

    And who cares if others don't understand your approach to propelling yourself forward. They do not need to. Only you need to. You're not asking for their help in propelling yourself forward. Yes, you tell someone upfront IF it affects their life in some way either practically or emotionally. I am too much for certain people too. Oh well. Yesterday I met a friend in person for the first time -been corresponding on and off for a few years through a FB group. We went food shopping after lunch and I honestly don't love shopping with people and had to get stuff done. So I (rudely?) walked ahead of her to the dairy section and she commented "you're just like my friend who's a fast walker!". I remembered yes I have to slow down if I am "with" someone.

    Sorry to ramble but I don't buy your ex's crap about how you're supposed to change your approach so others will "understand" it. It's interesting that you also want someone else to set the agenda -to take over once in awhile. Totally get that

    And perhaps he's jealous -he knows that if he were more driven like you he'd be in a different, better place?
    Thank you Batya. I very much appreciate and share the passion of your post.

    I failed to.mention that he emphasized that I need not change a thing, only to understand the potential dynamic, and only because I asked.

    If he were able to express his needs he would have, and if he can learn that skill as I had to then he will take care of himself regardless of his company. If he doesn't then he may struggle being with the sort of woman he thinks he wants.

    For my part, I got what I needed in terms of learning something rhat made all the pieces fit together. That gives me peace.

  10. #469
    Platinum Member IAmFCA's Avatar
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    Trying out a specific dating app just to see what it feels like to be there. Have been easing into it for a week or so. Is helping me stretch forward, which I need to do.

    It may not be fair to others, though, so am treading slowly.

    I am drifting, at least, forward. Want to be intentional about it. Thinking of dating is a proxy for envisioning - reentering, in a way - my adult life. Haven't been nearly as social as "normal" since my dad died, and this may signal one more step of recovery from that.

    Meanwhile, ex (weird to call an old friend an ex) and I had an exchange this weekend, he away with family (meaning his parents etc) and missing me and learning to let that be a warm feeling.

    He affirmed that he didn't want to date anyone, that he wanted to focus on himself. That he would not have kissed me "so soon" had he known his emotional health was tenuous.

    I appreciate that. Not getting stuck there. Eventually, will have to resolve this open channel between us. The "friend" space won't work; too much energy there. We have less than frequent contact but it will need to decline further. Going for gradual decline, maybe next we will both go two weeks.

  11. #470
    Platinum Member IAmFCA's Avatar
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    Bluecastle,

    As others have said, your writing is remarkable. Its quality is made beautiful by the humanism. You've a love for your fellow homo sapiens that adds a delicate light to your text. Perhaps its a bit like photography at dawn, golden light at a young hour, full of opportunity, and in that sense so very different from the photographer's "golden hour".

    What I hear in your writing is a fundamental belief that our time on Earth will be rewarded in some way. A basic faith in us, or perhaps, an appreciation for the struggle and its prize, that so often is different than what we want and yet is precisely what we need.
    .......

    Yesterday at Goodwill I saw a man dressed in the comfort of clothes that are never in nor out of style, intently focused on three ball caps. He worked to choose among them, his head craned over his hands as the hats passed between them, he studying their attributes. Then, his shoulders relaxed; he had made a choice and it satisfied him. He would buy the black ball cap, the one that seemed identical to the one he was already wearing.

    It made me smile, he an emblem of our way as people, focusing on the trees lest we get lost in the forest.

    Anyway. Thank you BC for being an impactful voice here.

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