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Thread: The phone is a big secret...

  1. #11
    Bronze Member wgmitch's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by katrina1980
    I agree w lost re allowing my intution (which is quite astute) to lead the way.

    I don't accuse, I won't even ask anymore. I've learned, as you are now, when my intuition is sending me such strong messages, it's a futile waste of time and energy as they will become defensive, deflect, even gaslight.

    I experienced just that w my long term ex. As it turns out, my intuition was spot on.

    Mitch, when your gut feeling is such that you're searching the Internet and/or posting on forums for answers, the trust is gone and it's time to leave.

    That combined with your both agreeing your drifting apart reinforces that.

    I know how hard it is, you've been dating a year, you're emotiinally attached.

    I recall your threads about your gf (now ex) prior to meeting this woman, and you got over that, and you will get over this one too. Your strong, resilient.

    It's all a journey until you find the one you're meant to be with.

    She's not it, sadly, I'm sorry. ;(
    Sad, yep.

    Thank you Katrina. I hope you are well.

  2. #12
    Platinum Member smackie9's Avatar
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    Take someone else on this pending trip.

  3. #13
    Platinum Member DancingFool's Avatar
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    Asking a cheater if they are cheating on you is kind of pointless. No cheater will ever just go ahead and admit that to you. All you'll get is adamant lies and gaslighting.

    When you sense that something is not right and it is that overwhelming and you combine that with the fact that you two are drifting apart, it's probably time to think about whether or not you really want to continue this or whether this relationship has run its course. Do you really need proof in order to leave her or is your own unhappiness and discomfort enough? That's kind of an individual thing. You can spend a whole lot of time and energy playing relationship detective and dig up the truth eventually or you can skip all that pain and just walk away, heal, move on. It's a case of what will cause you personally least amount of damage.

  4. #14
    Platinum Member bluecastle's Avatar
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    Ugh—sorry to hear this, friend.

    Don't have much to offer that hasn't already been said. To me the biggest red flag here—aside from the feeling in your gut based on astute observations—is her response. The defensiveness.

    There are a zillion other ways to handle that when you have nothing to hide, ways in which even the most questionable developments (notifications off, phone on table) can be explained as a conscious shift in habits. (I made a choice years ago, for instance, to turn off notifications and keep my phone face down—for me, so I could be more present, with friends, lovers, the three dimensional universe; not, say, so I could shield DMs from an Instagram Random.)

    I'm not saying she's cheating, but it doesn't sound good. Heck, even the most generous response I can come up with—that, a year into a relationship, she is clumsily asserting independence in order to regain "herself"—doesn't sound good.

    I can only speak for myself, but I've lived by a rule that I refuse to be paranoid inside a relationship. It's less a rule so much as instinct. My threshold for feeling the way you feel right now is next to non-existent, the feeling itself enough for me to just end things. Wasted energy, and the polar opposite of what I want from a relationship, which is depth.

    Don't quite know what to offer in terms of advice. I'm tempted to say something pragmatic, like sit down and express to her the way you feel—that more concerning than the "phone secrecy" is this newfound edginess, a state that you just can't continue to live in. Maybe she hears you, can tune back into the frequency you guys once had. Maybe. Or maybe that sit down is something to need to check off in order to feel good checking out, and stepping onward, back out there.

    You're whip-smart—I remember you advising me over a year ago on something—and I'm certain you'll take the needed steps, make the right call.

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  6. #15
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    Originally Posted by katrina1980
    I've learned, as you are now, when my intuition is sending me such strong messages, it's a futile waste of time and energy as they will become defensive, deflect, even gaslight.
    In my last relationship with the phone behavior, every time I'd bring it up, he'd do this. I kept calling him "Deflect, defensive, and blame". I used the word "blame" because I had never heard the word "gaslight". It wasn't until I started reading a lot, and even rented the movie, that it hit me like a ton of bricks that yes, this is what they do.

    Bringing this up to her will cause her to do all of these things:
    She'll get defensive: "I don't know where that's coming from. That's your problem, not mine"
    She'll deflect: "What about that time you left me to go talk to your friends at that party, leaving me alone with no one to talk to?"
    She'll gaslight: "I have no idea what you're talking about. You are imagining things. Taking my phone in the shower? Are you nuts?"

    If she does anything resembling the above conversations, even in the nicest, sweetest way, run.

    If she says, "Honey, I'm so sorry, I've been so stressed about work/my best friend's marriage/my mom that yes, I've been taking my phone everywhere, let me share it with you", then you can use your best judgement to continue.

  7. #16
    Bronze Member wgmitch's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by bluecastle
    Ugh—sorry to hear this, friend.

    Don't have much to offer that hasn't already been said. To me the biggest red flag here—aside from the feeling in your gut based on astute observations—is her response. The defensiveness.

    There are a zillion other ways to handle that when you have nothing to hide, ways in which even the most questionable developments (notifications off, phone on table) can be explained as a conscious shift in habits. (I made a choice years ago, for instance, to turn off notifications and keep my phone face down—for me, so I could be more present, with friends, lovers, the three dimensional universe; not, say, so I could shield DMs from an Instagram Random.)

    I'm not saying she's cheating, but it doesn't sound good. Heck, even the most generous response I can come up with—that, a year into a relationship, she is clumsily asserting independence in order to regain "herself"—doesn't sound good.

    I can only speak for myself, but I've lived by a rule that I refuse to be paranoid inside a relationship. It's less a rule so much as instinct. My threshold for feeling the way you feel right now is next to non-existent, the feeling itself enough for me to just end things. Wasted energy, and the polar opposite of what I want from a relationship, which is depth.

    Don't quite know what to offer in terms of advice. I'm tempted to say something pragmatic, like sit down and express to her the way you feel—that more concerning than the "phone secrecy" is this newfound edginess, a state that you just can't continue to live in. Maybe she hears you, can tune back into the frequency you guys once had. Maybe. Or maybe that sit down is something to need to check off in order to feel good checking out, and stepping onward, back out there.

    You're whip-smart—I remember you advising me over a year ago on something—and I'm certain you'll take the needed steps, make the right call.
    Thank you my friend. Good to hear from you and your wisdom. Mitch

  8. #17
    Bronze Member wgmitch's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by smackie9
    Take someone else on this pending trip.
    Thanks, but I don't hold the cards on the trip she does. She did get insurance, so I only lose emotionally. I really want to go to Spain!

    She can take someone else. :(

  9. #18
    Gold Member Gary Snyder's Avatar
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    How old are you two?

  10. #19
    Bronze Member wgmitch's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Gary Snyder
    How old are you two?
    She is 46 and I am 54.

  11. #20
    Platinum Member bluecastle's Avatar
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    I checked with a trusted source in the Spanish Embassy. According to him, Spain is not going anywhere anytime soon and is best visited, either alone or with someone, when the heart is beating soundly and the head is cleanly attached to the spine.

    Kidding aside—and, well, I'm not really kidding—I'd really focus right now on how you feel inside, being honest about that, and seeing how a frank talk with her leaves you feeling. Does it bring calm, connection? Does it feel like a bandaid? Does the feeling just get worse?

    Look those questions dead in the eye, and step forward from there. Spain is waiting, ever patient, lovely at all times of year, all the years.

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