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Thread: Waiting for couples therapy

  1. #11
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    Originally Posted by bluecastle
    My heart broke a few times reading this.

    The way you feel right now, physically, mentally, and emotionally? These are not feelings we want from a relationship, especially a new one. Recalling your last thread, it seems like you're just getting worse—that being with him, in short, is just bringing you down and spinning you around. Think about that clearly for a moment. Think about how you felt, in life, in your own skin, before you met him. Was it better than this?

    Couples therapy? At six months? I just have to ask: Why? You're so smart, so awesome, and, in ways, you just got out of a relationship that had become a dead weight around you. Why engage in another? Where do you think this instinct comes from to double (and triple, and quadruple) down on something that is so clearly throwing you for a loop?

    I don't ask those questions with judgment, but earnestly. He has never been faithful. Drinks till he blacks out. Refuses to work on himself. I made the comment a few times that he is levels below you in his journey. I fear that if you stay on this path you're just going to find yourself getting pulled backwards to a place you've already been.
    I do remember what it felt like when I was single. I felt much better. I originally made the therapy appointment for me. It is still made out for only me, but I can have him join. I've never had therapy before and didn't know what to expect. Once I get into a relationship and become invested, I feel compelled to try to do everything I can do to help it. I want to do right for someone I care about. Once all avenues feel depleted, that's when I concede. Otherwise, it feels like I haven't tried hard enough. I do have a strong fear of failure, much to my own demise I realize. I do have feelings for this person and I don't want to squander a relationship, is the line of thinking.

    I was talking to my best friend, who I've come to the conclusion it is likely due to my parents. To cut it short, I learned how to have a relationship by observing theirs, which isn't the best. I allowed myself to have feelings for a person I shouldn't have feelings for. Before I realized it, it was too late. I saw red flags, but the question that haunts me: "what if"? What if I was wrong? It doesn't seem like I was now. I wanted to give it a chance because it is hard to know when is enough and when to try.

  2. #12
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    Thank you all for the replies. It helps. I do need more from a partner. It's funny and also sad, that I immediately wash the clothes he leaves behind, just so I can return them to him when I finally feel like I've done enough. I've done this for a while now. More than once, I prepare for a clean break up, but then I see his face and how happy he is to see me. How loving he is when we meet once again...it's gonna be hard. I am at a loss on how to do it. How? It never feels right. How he makes me feel in the moment, especially that one, all my worries melt away and I just want to feel that way forever.

  3. #13
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    Originally Posted by yatsue
    Thank you all for the replies. It helps. I do need more from a partner. It's funny and also sad, that I immediately wash the clothes he leaves behind, just so I can return them to him when I finally feel like I've done enough. I've done this for a while now. More than once, I prepare for a clean break up, but then I see his face and how happy he is to see me. How loving he is when we meet once again...it's gonna be hard. I am at a loss on how to do it. How? It never feels right. How he makes me feel in the moment, especially that one, all my worries melt away and I just want to feel that way forever.
    Of course it's hard especially when your focus is on how you feel rather than how he acts, how he treats you, what you are worth. Same as me wanting two squares of dark chocolate right now but limiting myself to one for health reasons. Same reason I made the really dumb decision 16 years ago to have unprotected sex (yes I was on the pill) with someone with a questionable past plus someone who wouldn't have wanted me to have his child if my one method failed. Because I was so over the moon about him after dating 4 months. Everything worked out fine thank goodness.

    He's not acting in a loving way by definition. The opposite. He's happy to see you when he sees you and feels like seeing you. So?

    Again if your priority is how you "feel" at that moment - the 'high" then make choices based on that and accept the downsides -the significant risks to your physical and emotional health and your future relationships. If you consider based on head and heart then you might make different, more healthful, balanced choices.

    Of course it's hard to let go of a high. Just because something is hard doesn't mean you don't do it.

  4. #14
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    Originally Posted by Batya33
    Of course it's hard especially when your focus is on how you feel rather than how he acts, how he treats you, what you are worth. Same as me wanting two squares of dark chocolate right now but limiting myself to one for health reasons. Same reason I made the really dumb decision 16 years ago to have unprotected sex (yes I was on the pill) with someone with a questionable past plus someone who wouldn't have wanted me to have his child if my one method failed. Because I was so over the moon about him after dating 4 months. Everything worked out fine thank goodness.

    He's not acting in a loving way by definition. The opposite. He's happy to see you when he sees you and feels like seeing you. So?

    Again if your priority is how you "feel" at that moment - the 'high" then make choices based on that and accept the downsides -the significant risks to your physical and emotional health and your future relationships. If you consider based on head and heart then you might make different, more healthful, balanced choices.

    Of course it's hard to let go of a high. Just because something is hard doesn't mean you don't do it.
    True. You're absolutely right. I guess when I see him so happy it makes me happy because it reminds me of the good times we've had together. To want more and make more of those good times. I haven't been listening to my head, for much too long at this point. I'm glad your situation worked out for you in the end. I'm actively dealing with the fallout this relationship has caused, such as consulting my lawyer about contesting my ticket for a reduced citation/getting points off my license, living with a good friend who helps friends when in need (I'm so glad I have an amazing friend like her!), dealing with my health under the advisory of my doctor, and of course looking forward to my date in therapy.

    When I list that out, it feels surreal how much this relationship has affected me, meanwhile my bf is saying I've been overreacting and making my struggle sound worse than it actually is. I haven't told him everything, but he still should not belittle my situation. So, I'm determined this morning to do right by me and will see him. I have gathered all of his things he left at my place. I figure if I make it fast like pulling off a band aid, he should just passively accept the break and I will no longer be pulled by my heartstrings.

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  6. #15
    Platinum Member bluecastle's Avatar
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    Glad to hear you're taking the steps you're taking. Hard as it is at the moment, I think you'll find that a lot of what has you spun around right now will level off pretty quickly after the bandaid is ripped off. Remove the toxins from our diet and, after a brief period of withdrawal, we tend to feel better pretty fast; this guy is a toxin in your diet, and with some space and some reflection I suspect you'll maybe see that those toxic qualities weren't the exception but the rule, the glue that binds, the dangerous drug that produced a potent high.

    I think this is a good experience to work on redefining what success and failure looks and feels like when it comes to romance, to give yourself time to reset those gauges. Merely being in a relationship, grinding to make a relationship "work"—that isn't success if the price of admission is feeling gutted, "depleted" by "caring," since that's essentially the equivalent of "working" a grueling job that doesn't even produce a paycheck. In binary terms, I'd say that's all closer to a failure, since you're neglecting your own spirit and conditioning yourself to equate some craggy, corrosive feelings with love, to gauge a connection's power and worth based primarily on how awful it makes you feel.

    Therapy is great for helping us understand why we may be drawn to things that make us feel sick, finding those places in our head where some wires are crossed. Because it's generally the head—not the heart, not the body, contrary to the language of romance—that gets us into these knots. Your heart and body, literally and metaphorically, have been signaling to you for a long time now that something here is off; something in your head, meanwhile, has kept overriding that, finding ways to reinterpret discomfort as meaning. Find out what that something is and you'll be more free, more you, and less resistant to connections that feel powerful for destabilizing you, blurring you to yourself. That toxic glue just becomes less sticky.

    I can't help but feel, in this case, that what you have been compelled by with him is an idea far more than person, an idea that probably existed in your head before even meeting him, and in him you found a vessel for realizing it. What is that idea? Only you can find it. Sounds like some kind of atonement to me—that "making things work" with this guy quickly came to represent something for you: growth, success, a different, deeper connection than you'd known, or perhaps a genuine connection where past connections have been more artificial. Or, well, something awaiting you to mine it, so it can be purged, so you can listen more clearly to your heart and body.

    I've been in your shoes, as have most. Have spent some time in versions of his shoes too. Speaking for myself, I spent a lot of time getting intimate with those parts of me that are prone to searching for intimacy in the shade, be it the shade of another or myself. Seeing that, recognizing the potential in me, has made it easier to step away where I once would step in—to value the feeling of the present above all else so the drug of "getting back to when things were good" loses its potency.

    It's a general rule of thumb, in my opinion, that when our goal is "going back to how things once were" that we've already lost. Means the genuine prospect of a rewarding future is so intangible that we can only search for a version of it by moving backwards. In a marriage, with a mortgage and kids and rich shared history, that can be a worthy fight. Ideally not even a fight, but just part of the shared, forward-moving journey. But six months in? No. That's just trying to build a home on a foundation that was always more cracks than anything else, a foundation that can't shelter you. Better to "get back" to how you once were, and to accept that you were doing better and feeling better outside of the relationship than in it.
    Last edited by bluecastle; 08-24-2019 at 10:46 AM.

  7. #16
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    Don’t indulge in the “it’s just that “ stuff. Because that stuff is irrelevant in comparison to the other stuff. To be clear my situation worked out in the sense that I didn’t get pregnant. He ended things after five months so no it didn’t work out for us as a couple. And that’s a good thing.

  8. #17
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    Originally Posted by bluecastle
    Glad to hear you're taking the steps you're taking. Hard as it is at the moment, I think you'll find that a lot of what has you spun around right now will level off pretty quickly after the bandaid is ripped off. Remove the toxins from our diet and, after a brief period of withdrawal, we tend to feel better pretty fast; this guy is a toxin in your diet, and with some space and some reflection I suspect you'll maybe see that those toxic qualities weren't the exception but the rule, the glue that binds, the dangerous drug that produced a potent high.

    I think this is a good experience to work on redefining what success and failure looks and feels like when it comes to romance, to give yourself time to reset those gauges. Merely being in a relationship, grinding to make a relationship "work"—that isn't success if the price of admission is feeling gutted, "depleted" by "caring," since that's essentially the equivalent of "working" a grueling job that doesn't even produce a paycheck. In binary terms, I'd say that's all closer to a failure, since you're neglecting your own spirit and conditioning yourself to equate some craggy, corrosive feelings with love, to gauge a connection's power and worth based primarily on how awful it makes you feel.

    Therapy is great for helping us understand why we may be drawn to things that make us feel sick, finding those places in our head where some wires are crossed. Because it's generally the head—not the heart, not the body, contrary to the language of romance—that gets us into these knots. Your heart and body, literally and metaphorically, have been signaling to you for a long time now that something here is off; something in your head, meanwhile, has kept overriding that, finding ways to reinterpret discomfort as meaning. Find out what that something is and you'll be more free, more you, and less resistant to connections that feel powerful for destabilizing you, blurring you to yourself. That toxic glue just becomes less sticky.

    I can't help but feel, in this case, that what you have been compelled by with him is an idea far more than person, an idea that probably existed in your head before even meeting him, and in him you found a vessel for realizing it. What is that idea? Only you can find it. Sounds like some kind of atonement to me—that "making things work" with this guy quickly came to represent something for you: growth, success, a different, deeper connection than you'd known, or perhaps a genuine connection where past connections have been more artificial. Or, well, something awaiting you to mine it, so it can be purged, so you can listen more clearly to your heart and body.

    I've been in your shoes, as have most. Have spent some time in versions of his shoes too. Speaking for myself, I spent a lot of time getting intimate with those parts of me that are prone to searching for intimacy in the shade, be it the shade of another or myself. Seeing that, recognizing the potential in me, has made it easier to step away where I once would step in—to value the feeling of the present above all else so the drug of "getting back to when things were good" loses its potency.

    It's a general rule of thumb, in my opinion, that when our goal is "going back to how things once were" that we've already lost. Means the genuine prospect of a rewarding future is so intangible that we can only search for a version of it by moving backwards. In a marriage, with a mortgage and kids and rich shared history, that can be a worthy fight. Ideally not even a fight, but just part of the shared, forward-moving journey. But six months in? No. That's just trying to build a home on a foundation that was always more cracks than anything else, a foundation that can't shelter you. Better to "get back" to how you once were, and to accept that you were doing better and feeling better outside of the relationship than in it.
    Thank you blue. As always, you pose questions that continue to make me ponder. Most of them, I do not have an answer to. As much and as long as I've thought about this relationship, even to the point where the persistent thoughts plagued me enough to just want to make it stop, I still need to look inside my own head. That's the hard part I need to unravel. I wish I could find one healthy relationship, but that is hard when you don't really know what one looks like. I am curious, have you found one like that?

    Right now, I know I do not want to find a partner until I have figured out myself first and become settled. Sure, I may still flirt and such. I'm not dead. I just want to be me for now, until I am ready to find a special person to build a life with. I can't fathom that will be soon. In time I hope to find the answers to your questions. I need to be well again and I will make sure of it. I need to find that zest for life again, without my anxieties getting in the way. I hope this, or another therapist can guide me on the journey to be a better me, who can then search for a great life partner. I truly look forward to it. I don't want to feel tired anymore.

    Now, I am awaiting for my boyfriend to get back to me in order to meet hopefully this morning. He wants to meet for breakfast, but I plan to try to meet first at his place and do the deed there. I believe he is going to see his family today in the neighboring state, which I think he would find comfort in afterwards. I'm not sure though. He doesn't like communicating to me, other than in person, so I haven't heard a peep from him since Monday until I proposed a meet. It makes me feel like I'm not a part of his life this way, and creates distance for me. Maybe he thinks something is up? Hence the delay. It is making me nervous he will cancel or something. We're supposed to go to an event tomorrow, which I don't want to attend under such circumstances. I feel myself a little shaky right now. I'm trying to work on my breathing to help calm myself.

  9. #18
    Platinum Member itsallgrand's Avatar
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    Could you arrange to see a good friend or family member today ?
    It wouldn't hurt for you to have some support after the fact and to have a grounding force around. Maybe that good friend who you'll be moving in with?
    I'm really happy to see you are moving towards ending things with him.
    We all want to see you thrive!

  10. #19
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    I don't for today. Everyone is busy at work or too far away at the moment. I feel really nervous I'll get cold feet. His new roommate may be home. I have work tonight as well. I have to head over soon and am getting a little teary.

  11. #20
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    I read until the part where you mentioned he knowingly hid STDs from you. That alone would make me exit that relationship really fast with no turning back.

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