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Thread: Helping someone who cannot be helped?

  1. #1

    Helping someone who cannot be helped?

    I have an unusual situation.
    6 months ago I started talking to a girl online who was having relationship issues with her now ex-boyfriend. We became very close friends, and had a really strong genuine connection. We would talk for 6+ hours easily without even realizing. All contact was always initiated by her.

    I'm 30(M), she's 23. She's very self-destructive with relationships. She chooses guys who treat her horribly simply because she finds them attractive. Honestly, I started developing feelings for her, despite knowing we could never have a relationship (I couldn't ever trust her, so that's a no-go, and I have a quasi-relationship with someone else around her age). Despite knowing that I was developing feelings for this girl who's self destructive and extremely hungry for male attention, I kept talking to her. I take full responsibility for doing something that stupid. She's a very affectionate, energetic person. That was the pull for me. She doesn't know I have feelings for her, although she probably suspects it. She's said I love you, I never reciprocated because I knew I had to keep some distance from her. She definitely highly values whatever kind of relationship we have, and so do I

    It got to the point where I wasn't able to hide my frustration when she would tell me about the guys she was interested in, because it was so obvious that the relationship would be a failure. The more abusive she would be treated, the more interested she would be. I always knew that if she ended up in one of these relationships, I'd simply stop talking to her, as it's not enjoyable to hear about. She's very smart despite making stupid decisions, and she's very directionless, not knowing what she wants to do with her life - I motivated her to pursue a career as a doctor, which I successfully did. I genuinely enjoyed giving her leadership and trying to help her develop. Since I have a degree in Chemistry and know a lot of pre-med stuff, I was able to help her study and stay focused. But I knew I wouldn't be able to do this if I knew that these efforts would likely be wasted the next time she gets obsessed with some guy who couldn't care less about her. So I had her agree that if she wants my help, she needs to stay out of relationships / hookup culture, because I knew I'd just be wasting my time if not. Honestly I was hoping that she could stay out of these relationships until med school, as then she'd be surrounded by higher quality people, and I wouldn't really care if she was in a relationship like that.

    She agreed to it and lasted about a month (even though I'm sure she was looking during this time). She started really slacking off on studying for a couple weeks, and eventually told me she's very depressed about the way she's being treated by some guy who she hooked up with (he basically started ignoring her after they had sex). She told me this about 4 days ago, and she had a Chem exam coming up today. I was helping her with Chem when she told me (which I appreciate the honesty, but she's really just telling me because she's curious about my take on the situation, wondering if I think the guy will contact her again). The guy sounded like a typical covert narc, love-bombing her initially, getting sex, then playing the victim and pulling back once he knew she was emotionally attached. It was completely enraging to hear that she allowed herself to get so used and distracted by this guy knowing it would cause her serious issues, but I didn't show it. She was probably also testing the waters and seeing if I'd be cool with it now - which obviously I'm not, since she proved that my time would be wasted helping her with if she continued with these stupid 'relationships'. I told her that if she gets into one of these relationships, her boyfriend would be the one giving her leadership and assistance, not me.

    I realized by her story that she's a genuinely traumatized individual - that she becomes this obsessed with guys who are abusive. So I told her the only possible way we can continue is if she starts going to therapy 3 times a week, which I'd pay for (I'm wealthy, it's no issue to me to pay for it, if she actually wanted help, I'd do it without question). She said she'd do that, but she kept talking about this guy who's ignoring her, making me believe she doesn't actually want help or that the help would simply be wasted on her. She also said that she wants this guy as a boyfriend, and she wants to keep dating. She also indicated that she's losing motivation and probably will end up changing majors. I definitely appreciate the honesty, but that's obviously a dealbreaker, so I revoked the offer for the therapy, as I don't think it will do her any good.

    I've cut all contact and now am going through the process of becoming indifferent to her. She's still trying to contact me to basically convince me to be cool with it, but I'm no longer interested. I've accepted now that she needs life to teach her things, not me.

    What's your take on this situation? Am I extremely weird to put myself in this situation? Was I very unfair to make such a rule that she must stay out of relationships / hookup culture if she wants my help? I'm realizing now that it's a ridiculous stipulation to put on someone - I was looking for some assurance that my time wouldn't be wasted, even though it's pretty obvious that it would be. I blame myself for this situation 100%, not her

  2. #2
    Forum Supporter ~Seraphim ~'s Avatar
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    I have learned over the course of my life if someone is not willing to help themselves you won’t be able to help them . People are ultimately responsible for themselves.’

  3. #3
    Platinum Member LaHermes's Avatar
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    WS.

    You may be familiar with the saying:

    "No good deed goes unpunished".

    What you describe is a prime example.

    I take it you never actually met this person?

    Never get enmeshed and entangled in other people's problems, real or perceived.

    Could I just add that there are worthy organisations and trusts out there which promote education for disadvantaged but motivated people, in an organised and objective fashion. You could give of your time volunteering for some such organisation and as you are well-off I am sure donations would always be welcome.

    No truer word S.

    "I have learned over the course of my life if someone is not willing to help themselves you won’t be able to help them . People are ultimately responsible for themselves.’"
    Last edited by LaHermes; 11-11-2020 at 08:49 AM.

  4. #4
    Originally Posted by ~Seraphim ~
    I have learned over the course of my life if someone is not willing to help themselves you won’t be able to help them . People are ultimately responsible for themselves.’
    True! Thanks

    Originally Posted by LaHermes
    WS.

    You may be familiar with the saying:

    "No good deed goes unpunished".

    What you describe is a prime example.

    I take it you never actually met this person?

    Never get enmeshed and entangled in other people's problems, real or perceived.
    Correct, never met her. I know she's who she says she is due to Facetime though. and thank you

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  6. #5
    Platinum Member Lambert's Avatar
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    I don't think this makes you weird. I do think however, you are choosing to put yourself in some weird situations. Probably because you are hungry for connection and meaning. Therefore, trying to create one through trying to save someone.

    I would ask myself... why am I investing in relationships/ interacting with women that are not viable candidates for a real relationship? Why am I willing to pay for someone to go through therapy, who is not only not my family, but I haven't met?

  7. #6
    Originally Posted by Lambert
    I don't think this makes you weird. I do think however, you are choosing to put yourself in some weird situations. Probably because you are hungry for connection and meaning. Therefore, trying to create one through trying to save someone.

    I would ask myself... why am I investing in relationships/ interacting with women that are not viable candidates for a real relationship? Why am I willing to pay for someone to go through therapy, who is not only not my family, but I haven't met?
    I think you're exactly correct. the driving force of it has a lot to do with wanting to feel like I'm saving someone

    "why am I investing in relationships/ interacting with women that are not viable candidates for a real relationship?"
    It's probably the enjoyment I get out of the connection we had honestly. Also there's probably some thought that if she did significantly mature that something may develop in the future

    I'd have no problem paying for therapy for anyone who I cared about and I thought would benefit from it. Not sure why I'm like that honestly

  8. #7
    Platinum Member DancingFool's Avatar
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    The person who needs the therapy is you though.

    Wanting to fix others is avoiding fixing yourself and addressing your own issues.

    Not going to mince words here - your involvement and attempts to control a 20 year old were bordering on creepy. She is not a traumatized damsel in distress or an investment with an ROI for you. She is a typical young 20 year old figuring out herself, dating, her life and direction for herself. Most people that age might talk a lot, but are not serious about relationships and do sleep around, play games, etc. Ditto for guys her age acting....like that age. It doesn't make them some kind of a narcsissist psychopath for telling sweet nothings to get laid. Eventually most people grow up on their own and learn from these experiences. Not your job to attempt to control and parent her or anyone else.

    Bottom line is that take that money and invest it in fixing your own issues and whatever is driving this behavior of yours. It's beyond inappropriate and you are doing a great deal of fantasizing and projecting.

  9. #8
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    Originally Posted by weirdsituati
    I think you're exactly correct. the driving force of it has a lot to do with wanting to feel like I'm saving someone

    "why am I investing in relationships/ interacting with women that are not viable candidates for a real relationship?"
    It's probably the enjoyment I get out of the connection we had honestly. Also there's probably some thought that if she did significantly mature that something may develop in the future

    I'd have no problem paying for therapy for anyone who I cared about and I thought would benefit from it. Not sure why I'm like that honestly
    I think you like being in control -she is vulnerable and "needs" you -so she says- and it's easier that way -it's not a balanced relationship of equals, of give and take so you don't have the upper hand and you know you never have to be vulnerable because she's not available for a relationship.

    I started a friendship with a woman who turned out to be full of drama/train wreck (I originally met her husband through our kids and have much more in common with him but it would have not been appropriate for me to pursue a friendship just with him -and I met his mother too when I first met him -same thing -but that also wasn't a friendship I could pursue) - anyway after one train wreck after another I started to realize - I know she has an illness[es], but at bottom I do not respect her choices. I do not respect her values. I do not support her constant entrepreneurial wild ideas that are child-like and involve roping in friends and acquaintances and spending money they do not have, I do not like how when she's feeling great about life she brags. So I had to hold myself in check -because why was I interacting with someone I didn't respect? I made myself back off -I do not want to be in a situation where I am approved of because I'm there as a sounding board but do not respect the person as an equal. I'm fine with a balanced friendship where at times one friend is much needier than the other -that's life -but I have to respect the person's choices and values at bottom.

    Do you respect this person? Is "anything is possible" -she might -remote possibility -become mature in the future -is that your standard for how you invest your time? Ask yourself why, ask yourself why you like being this person in power who feels so needed and superior -but never has to be truly close or vulnerable.

  10. #9
    Platinum Member Lambert's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by weirdsituati
    I think you're exactly correct. the driving force of it has a lot to do with wanting to feel like I'm saving someone

    "why am I investing in relationships/ interacting with women that are not viable candidates for a real relationship?"
    It's probably the enjoyment I get out of the connection we had honestly. Also there's probably some thought that if she did significantly mature that something may develop in the future

    I'd have no problem paying for therapy for anyone who I cared about and I thought would benefit from it. Not sure why I'm like that honestly
    Thinking a significant change will lead to a healthy relationship, is not a healthy way to a relationship. Its a project.

    People are not projects. life is not a makeover show where you get to feel good fixing people who did not ask you to fix them.

    you cannot have an honest connection with a person you do not know in real life. Thank your lucky stars this person did not rip you off for the therapy money. Many people will use your kindness and hurt you.

    I suspect that maybe you use your wealth to make people indebted to you so that they won't leave you. you don't have to do that. I think a therapist might be able to help you find your self worth and how to love yourself. because that's what really seems to be the problem from what you said.... finding your worth in what you give others.... is a sure fire way to breaking your own heart.

  11. #10
    Platinum Member LaHermes's Avatar
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    I agree with you Lambert.

    And this is concerning:

    "I motivated her to pursue a career as a doctor, "

    From your description of her I cannot imagine anyone less suitable for such a career, its duties, requirements and challenges.

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