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Family Court Strategies: When Your Partner Has BPD OR NPD Traits. Practicing lawyer, Senior Family Mediator, and former Licensed Clinical Social Worker with twelve years’ experience and an expert on navigating the Family Court process.
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Author Topic: OK Leaving Board, soul searching time  (Read 4589 times)
PDQuick
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« Reply #30 on: March 29, 2011, 05:38:14 PM »

OK Havana, long time no see huh? You listed what you have endured, and what you saw, but didn't tell us what keeps you there. I know you are a stayer, and I respect the heck out of you for that, and I hope everyone here does as well. But what it the tradeoff Havana? What keeps you there?

Pdoll...Good lord girl!

Really great topic!

I met my ex on match.com, and the VERY first red flag was when he messaged me and I looked at his profile and saw his picture. He looked like a player-wannabe and the picture was with another girl, clearly his ex. Really, you don't have any pictures of yourself alone? It tipped me off that he always had to be with somebody, which ended up being true. His profile also said that he was interested in women who had never been married and I'm divorced. Come to find out, he didn't read my profile at all - he just saw the picture and thought I was hot.    I ignored his first message but responded to the second - another red flag  |> Sorry, there are just so many that happened all at once!

I signed up for match on a bet for 30 days, and I have to say that I will NEVER do it again. I went on 15 first dates in that month and my BPD ex seemed like the best pick in comparison - scary!

If you start off with a red flag upon the first sight, what inside of you attracted you further? Was it a need to be loved, or have someone? Seriously, what is it that kept you continuing? C'mon, you were really attracted to him weren't you?  
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« Reply #31 on: March 29, 2011, 05:43:21 PM »

Hey PD

exactly the same re control.. I let it go to get the love back, yes i would argue with her over this but in the end i would back down because it was not worth the heartache of losing her totally.. I was seething inside and she knew it but she also knew i wouldnt walk... She did in the end though because she saw me from my very soul and with a last effort scream at her ' NO MORE' .. I had burnt, no energy, nothing left but she knew the game was up, i wanted her to step up to the plate and she could not do it... It was bye bye Joop..
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PDQuick
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« Reply #32 on: March 29, 2011, 05:52:20 PM »

OK Joop, Ill give you my take on my final outcome of my relationship, and lets see if you can draw the same perceptions (there is that word again).

My ex had a terrible childhood. One that children should just not have. When I met her, she had 2 children, neither of which she had custody of. She was living with a convicted drug felon, and she had no license to drive because of a DUI. She was also a HAT RUINER! We got together, got custody of her children, got a new house, and then we were off on a 13 year journey of heartache and pain.

She did what she could with the upbringing that she had. She has a disorder, and that is that. I can't blame her, or hold her responsible for it, but I can hold myself responsible for my own actions. And finally, after it was all said and done with, I have.

I went through some really rough times in my teens, because of things out of my control. When I met her, I was running from myself, and my past. She distracted me, and gave me something to focus on other than myself. I was in no way, or sense of the word healthy minded. We tried to do the best that we could with our limited knowledge of our own selves, and the dynamics of relationships in general. We both made huge mistakes.

It took someone of her magnitude, and her intensity to first of all, stop me from running. It took the longevity of our relationship to run me down to the point of not being able to run anymore, and face the things I needed to face, to square my world, and my life up for me. It took the hurt and pain that I put myself through to finally reach out and admit that I had no idea what I was doing.

In short, she, and our relationship, as it still smoldered in ashes, turned out to be the pivot point in my life. It was my brick wall. Those two things, her, and the relationship, turned out to be the best thing that ever happened to me, my future, and my happiness.

It takes a while to see it, and you have to do the work, learn the lessons, and really get to know and accept yourself to get to that point, but I promise you, if you do, you will arrive at the same conclusion.
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sea5045
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« Reply #33 on: March 29, 2011, 06:14:03 PM »

Ok- I got a therapist early on bc she made me feel like I was the problem, so I remember my first red flag.

I had relocated here bc my father had alzheimer's and was sick, I was also 18 months into healing out of a bad relationship in upstate NY where I moved from, and she listened to me and was so kind to me, and sensitive, and interested...and two things...one time in a bar I heard her express her opinion to someone in a harsh way and I thought "Shoot, I hope she doesn't ever talk to me like that"...and when she had a male roommate and he broke something of hers, she raged at him one night, and I remember kind of victiming out and saying "Stop, you're scaring me, it's ok" ...I moved in a few months later, and boy was I the one she was talking to like that in the last year...
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« Reply #34 on: March 29, 2011, 06:18:32 PM »

Sht. I forgot she was drinking and smoking at age 14. Are those red flags?

This tickles me.

Depends, drinking and smoking are usually reserved for the less sophisticated people. (Before you jump on me, I started smoking at 15 and I was a drunk at 18.) I was dealing with some particularly turbulent times in my life, but that is still no excuse for my behavior. We all have our lists of deal breakers, if smoking and drinking are on that list, and she still does it, then duh-huh, yes.  Smiling (click to insert in post)

She stopped doing those things because I asked her to. I told her I don't like smoking, so she dropped it. And she was doing it because the people around her were doing it. She does come from a severely broken home so her friends are typically broken too. I feel like I was the first stable person in her life--maybe even more stable than she thought, as I have come a long way. The person she replaced me with I suspect is a drug user. She literally does what the people around her do (mirroring), so I suspect she is probably doing drugs now--and perhaps even dropped out of her high ranking college.

I have a buddy who dated a BPD who dropped out of Harvard, so the idea isn't far-fetched. It is, however, heartbreaking to me. A lot of them have the ability to lead such a rewarding life but are bound by the chains of their illness. She ran me through the ringer but I don't want to see her crumble to nothing like a lot of posters on here want their exes succumb to. Just her choice in her new mate is sad in my eyes. I don't know her current status and may never know because I have cut every form of communication off and dare not to ever look at her Facebook or any digital footprint of hers ever again. My heart is lagging behind my head but my head is on a steady pace.
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« Reply #35 on: March 29, 2011, 06:37:55 PM »

PD


you have to let the hat incident go my friend, i feel its holding you back Laugh out loud (click to insert in post)

Yes my friend, it took this r/s to stop me from running from my fear. Yes i felt like a failure after my marriage ended and as i admitted to my T, i was no way over the breakup of my marriage.

Do you want to know an interesting thing, my ex wife said it took four years to get over our breakup and fully heal, that was just pure grief for our breakup.. I was totally shocked and she said to me when i spoke to her after this r/s ' you were no way ready to dive straight in like you did, you were no way healed from us'

you know what PD she was so right, i wanted to replace my grief with someone else whilst thinking i was over my marriage breakup, i had learned lessons from the breakup but not learned about me.. I had become very co-dependent. I was a care giver, the man of the house, the protector of my family, the rock of my family.. Then it was gone and i felt worthless and of no use, surely somebody needed that of me and hey presto along came the pwBPD with her horrible r/s history.. BOOM the co-dependent and the BPD.. A marriage made in hell..
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« Reply #36 on: March 29, 2011, 06:55:09 PM »

Hey PDQuick Smiling (click to insert in post)

I dont post much on the leaving board lately...but I saw your thread and thought I would post. I have a similar story as yours...

The night we met I was invited to join a mutual friend at a local pool hall. The mutual friend hadnt mention that ex was going to be there. It was "Free Pool Sunday Night"...I was 24 and a college student...doesnt get much better than that does it? I arrived first and reserved the table. The mutual friend showed up with the ex...she was pretty...but just pretty. The ex and I talked a little, but with a pool table all to myself there wasnt much I cared for at that particular point in time.

So there I was, playing pool with myself...and damn Im good against myself Laugh out loud (click to insert in post)...and she starts talking to another guy. The guy was kinda goofy looking and she kept glancing over at me so I knew she was interested...but I was the to play pool. After a while of watching her flirt with another guy that she clearly wasnt interested in I thought to myself "Forget her...she is just another bar tramp...playing jealousy games to try and get my attention." First  |>

A pitcher of Fat Tire into the night and our mutual friend wanted to go 30mi to pick up one of my friends that the mutual frined was having a casual sex r/s with. Mutual friend hasnt had anything to drink but wants the company, so the three of us drive to get my friend. When the three of us packed into the mutual friend's car I looked over at my bumblebee yellow Ford Ranger 4x4 and said "I wanna drive my truck. I miss it already." That little pickup was the first nice thing I owned...spent my first GI Bill check on the down. It was a fun pick up, not much, but to a stuggling college student it was my world. The ex asked me to point it out so I did. She replied "Oh that piece of sht?" and gave a chuckle as she looked down at me. Second  |>

A few min down the road and our mutual friend asked if it would be ok if ex could ride ing back with me...saw this as the perfect op to hit back. I replied "Sure, as long as she comes with a muzzle." Im sorry, but you dont just call a guys truck a POS...you just dont go there. I dont care how much of a POS it actually is...you just dont go there.

An hour later...we get the my friend...and end up back at the pool hall. All the tables are now taken, so as the 2 sex fiends (mutual friends) are playing tonsil hockey and doing the clothed naughty all over the pool hall...I was stuck talking to the ex. I figured Id make the most of it and told her that I was joking about the muzzle comment. She lightened up...and magically her blouse now had a botton malfunction...hmmm imagine that...third  |>

While enjoying my new view, I actually started to like her...well at atleast she didnt need a muzzle now. We didnt have a whole lot in common, but was nice talking to her...especially with her blouse half unbuttoned. I had stopped drinking since it was getting late and almost closing time. The 2 sex fiends were hot and heavy...they wanted to go to a hotel room. My friend talked me into coming along since the ex was going along too. The sales pitch ":)ude, shes just gonna be a third wheel. I need you to keep her with you in your truck while I do my thing." What are friends for right Laugh out loud (click to insert in post). The ex hears that I am coming too and suggests x hotel. Her sales pitch "They have free porn! Come on!"...fourth  |>

So we get to the hotel room...and wouldnt ya know...I am the only one with money. So I pay for the room. Fifth  |>

Well we get to the hotel room and sure enough...ex turns on the free porn. I leave the room and go sit in my truck.

She comes out to join me cause our friends are now doing there thing. I start to enjoy talking to the ex again...start to open up to her about military...the bad break up Id just come off of...she shows me hickies from a week prior...tells me that she had to escape from her last BF and that they are actually bite marks...sixth  |>

So, we end up sleeping in the same bed in the hotel cause its like 4am after our friends finish up...I slept on the VERY VERY edge of the bed. I wasnt remotely interested in her...nice to talk to but NO THANKS! I left the next morning thinking about that Rodney Carrington song "T*****s N Beer"...I was 24 and got my fill of both that night without contracting Gonasyphilaids...mission accomplished!

A week later...I got a phone call from the mutual friend telling me that ex was "intrigued" by me and wanted to meet up at mutual friends house...this sounded different. I didnt think the ex could use that word. I checked it out. That night I saw a much better side...all red flags disappeared and we kissed. The hook that really got me..."You seem like youre not ready for a relationship." It was a challenge to my manhood...almost as if she were taunting me say "You can't handle me." Little did I know...I couldnt.
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PDQuick
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« Reply #37 on: March 29, 2011, 07:03:13 PM »

OK, I didnt want that post to end Brer Rabbit.  Being cool (click to insert in post) That was entertaining.

And so...? What kept you in the thick of red flags?
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« Reply #38 on: March 29, 2011, 07:55:45 PM »

Why did I take him back the first time?  Because I loved him already (although I hadn't told him yet) and because he really, genuinely seemed sorry.  He told me that he hadn't let anyone into his heart in years because of being hurt in the past, and I believed him.  It made sense to me.  Everyone in his family said that he hadn't had a long-term relationship since his divorce, which at that time was ten years previously.  We seemed to have so much in common (I still think we do).

I guess the truth of the matter was that I was not ready to give up on the relationship.  I am not one for just giving up on anything.  I felt that we had something special and that it was worth fighting for.

I also believe that people make mistakes and deserve a second chance.  This was the first mistake he had made in the relationship in my mind, so I wanted to give him another chance.

So I did.

I guess I just wanted to it to work out SO BADLY.  In a way, I still do.
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« Reply #39 on: March 29, 2011, 08:07:08 PM »

If you start off with a red flag upon the first sight, what inside of you attracted you further? Was it a need to be loved, or have someone? Seriously, what is it that kept you continuing? C'mon, you were really attracted to him weren't you?  

I was telling myself not to judge a book by its cover and all that...that the guy of my dreams may not look how I expected on the outside...he was very polite and sweet in the beginning so I gave him a chance despite the Red flag/bad  (click to insert in post)  . I guess I was naive and desperate.
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« Reply #40 on: March 29, 2011, 08:19:12 PM »

Okay, 1st red flag.

We were introduced by his father, whom I've know for years. He was visiting from CA. We went on a date while he was here, then continued a long distance relationship for months, visiting each other as often as we could.

In the first couple months if dating, I didn't call him back one night. We talked on the phone every single night for months, and I was busy that night- I thought it was no big deal. The next day he called me, angry as hell. He said he couldn't trust me because he really needed to talk to me that night about something important, and I wasn't there for him. I was devastated. It took a few days and several emails to prove to him it wasn't done intentionally, and when he calmed down, I felt much better, and pretty much blew the situation off.

We got married that year (he moved here). I can think of several more of these same situations- if I went out with friends he'd call wanting to know when I'd be home. One time he injured his leg, and I asked if it was okay if I went out for a few hours to go shopping with my daughter. While at the mall, I miss a couple oh his texts so I called him back asap. He screamed at me for leaving him alone, even though he said it was no problem.

He ended up leaving me. I cannot for the life of me figure out why I stayed- I'd still be with him if he hadn't left. Codependcy? Didn't like being single? We had SO much fun together and so much in common- my 1st husband and I had nothing in common, so this was bliss. He also out me on a pedestal and made me feel so good, so worthy.
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« Reply #41 on: March 29, 2011, 08:31:02 PM »

So, we meet New Years Eve party, she was visiting from out of town, we talked a lot - went out back to the bonfird (I kid you not) some woman looked at us and said you two have a connection and belong together.

2 days later, we are out at a bar - drinking, kiss - she goes home with someone elsered-flag

6 weeks go by, she is now back and living here on sabatical - it was super bowl party - I said "hey" no big deal from before as it was nothing serious and lets say the dance began there.  She would push & pull for the next six weeks and each time I fell deeper into the highs.

I was in-between jobs, she thought I was smart, funny, hot, honest, amazing - hell, through her eyes I rocked!

Why did I stay?  because I kept wanting to come back to this.  Ya'll know I am a big proponent of the 10 beliefs that keep us stuck and frankly, every single one of them is me - she was my happiness, my future, love conquered all, we were married, her childhood was bad, her mom was sick & died, nobody understood her, I COULD BE ENOUGH DAMN IT!
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« Reply #42 on: March 29, 2011, 08:32:37 PM »

how is that for dramatic effect.  Accidently hit post. Laugh out loud (click to insert in post)

Well, I am sad to say that I found I could not save someone from themselves and frankly I was not doing a very good job of saving myself.

So, there is my story and I am so glad to have PDQuick back   
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« Reply #43 on: March 29, 2011, 08:43:56 PM »

My first red flag...hmm I ignored so many of them.  My history...I have been NC for 7 months after being left homeless (i lived with him, in his house in another country) and he basically stole all of my belongings..this all occurred because it came out he was having an affair...

Red Flag- we were in Iceland, which was about 3 months into our relationship.  I had told him that was a place I had ALWAYS wanted to visit- he said me too!  At the time I felt - aww a sign it was meant to be...now of course I know differently..  we were having dinner and I ordered chicken, he had a little fit at the table and refused to talk to me.  I sat in silence and at the time was ticked and thinking What the heck?  After dinner he told me a story about how his ex wife (BPD according to him).would only ever order chicken fingers off the kids menu and how humiliating that was for him.  

I didn't buy it and pretty much said nothing- that night at the hotel, he woke me up and we had the best sex ever at 4 am and he apologized, I accepted and all was good.  He had a second fit on that trip, I just walked away..again he apologized and I accepted.

My situation, mid 30's all of my friends were married with kids, I was the professional girl who focused on my career- looking back I think I was desperate for a serious relationship, when my ex appeared it was like - there he is and I was bound and determined to make it work...

At the time, I had never heard of PD's.  Fast forward a few months, the relationship was rocky and he was always blaming me.  I was in FOG and because I hadn't been married - I thought heck maybe there is something wrong with me..so I went to a T, asking for clarity on what my issues were.  At my first session- he pretty much diagnosed my ex with a PD.  

I remember going back to my condo, and just sobbing on the balcony and I was reserved to the fact- I love him, he is ill.  If he had cancer I wouldn't leave him...and my decision was made- I would make it work.

I continued seeing the same T, and worked as hard as I could to learn about his disorder and do all the things you are supposed to do (which I did).  When the affair came out - I was utterly and completely devastated...flat out devastated.  I still see my T (had a session last night) to help me.

Looking back now, I stayed because I truly loved who I thought he was- when we were together we travelled alot and took many photos, I was looking at them a couple of weeks ago and I could see the love in my face for him..

I stayed because it got to the point I was desperate to salvage all the work I had put in, I had decided I would not fail.  I was strong enough, I could help him...and I felt sorry for him.  I had a great childhood and my heart broke that we probably didn't.

In a nutshell, going into the relationship- I think I lived in a world where everything around me was purple and sparkly- I had not really experienced failure or the hard realities of life.  I certainly wasn't spoiled and I worked hard- but 'everything just went my way'.  I was lucky.

Going through the abuse and the rest of it- was a crash course on just how cruel and unfair life can be..I still have a hard time accepting that- who knows maybe I watched too many episodes of Little House on the Prairie growing up..

It still makes me sad that he (my ex) didn't want to get better...

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« Reply #44 on: March 29, 2011, 08:53:30 PM »

Sixspeed, very interesting story, and I apologize for not being familiar with the entirety of it. Do you mind explaining what happened a little, and what you eventually did start seeing? You had a great insight into the idolization phase.

All her past bfs and husband had betrayed her. She told me she experienced abuse from her father (who she disowned for a while), step-parents, but never the details.  Her family was chaotic, they used each other for money, plagued with addictions, abuse, and poor life decisions. She raised her siblings while her mom was unable to be responsible. A dog that always was at her side, in the bed with us, and became a deflection between us. Small lies I found out later about minor things. 

with us:

That first job she quit within a couple of months, I told her I supported her decision to quit. She quite more jobs that came, often called out sick. She was always suffering from a physical ailment. I wanted to help her out of debt to help our future, I paid off 10% of it to start and we'd work on the rest together. It's around this time she asked me one drunken night after sex about marriage again, I asked about our previous conversation about taking it slow but she denied we'd ever had it. In sort of a confused fog and some frustration I said I wasn't sure about marriage, then in the morning explained I did love her and would marry her as we formed a partnership living together but didn't like the context she asked me in.  (we'd know eachother 14 months now only 2 living together)

She quit another job, I covered all our bills and all hers. At home she became depressed and despondent, slept all day in bed, withdrawn. I thought a vacation might help, took her to Europe, she seemed back to good self on it. I tried to get her to exercise, eat better, take care of herself, I offered to do these things with her, we did them together a few times, then she accused me of hating her body and stopped. She Saw a therapist once, he gave her an anti-d, she took it but was unregulated. I worked hard to keep her engaged, doing things, getting her out of the house, showing my love. I presented her a plan to pay off all her debt with some of my savings but asked if we could sell her car after to kick back into the pot because we didn't need it in the city. Anything repaid wouldn't go to me but to us in a joint account toward a house back in her home state, and we'd get her a new car then. She withdrew, told me I looked angry (I wasn't), accused me of being her father, and from here on told me I was too intimidating to talk to face to face, we'd have to use email or txt. I was crushed, becoming depressed myself, I'd never felt so unable to show love to someone in my life, I was lower than during my divorce.

The depression and panic attacks became worse for her, another job but she was fired. She diminished herself, said she was a burden, ugly, not up to my standards, I told her she'd do the same for me, she was beautiful, and I believed in her but I couldn't just tread water on the debt, we should work on my plan. The first suicide threat was made. I was on a business trip, I felt so powerless, I wanted to fly back home to her, I had my parents pick her up and spend the weekend with her. When I returned, she had a job prospect shortly after, didn't get it. Another suicide threat, I flew her to me where I was on business. She perked up, I told her I was at her side, together we'd make it through this rough patch. Right after she moved back to her homestate me saying it was the only way she could survive, to be back home with family. I repaired her car for the trip. I suggested we take a break while she healed, she begged not to, I felt obligated to honor that, she'd moved to be with me in the first place, it would be selfish of me to dump her now I thought.

She lived with family a short while but was kicked out moved in with an ex-bf, took money from him, I was concerned, she asked me if I was cheating on her. I was floored. She assured me nothing was going on just that he owed her from his betrayal of her 8 years ago. I stuck with it, when I visited we'd have a great day like old times, flirt, smile, go for dinners, hikes, be affectionate, be sexual but she'd withhold the act of sex, told me she had trouble feeling an emotional connection. I went on for a year trying to repair our interaction, flying her to me, me to her, we had some good experiences but an inability to communicate, make a plan for our future, or uphold any boundaries we negotiated, she took no role in anything, I admitted my flaws looked for reconciliation, sometimes I begged her to forgive me, asked her to meet me halfway, but I was always to blame. I started to lash back out at her and withdraw from her, I was damaged, I said something I regret still about her gaining weight, I wanted to hurt her and that scared me. We ended it, in a mutual agreement by email, but she wanted to be friends, maybe try again in a year or two. We stayed connected on FB, she seemed to turn around in spirits, added ex-bfs who were painted black before, broadcasting going out all the time, lots more men were added, flirting. I went NC because it was painful. I broke that when she told a mutual friend she wanted me back, thought I forgot about her. I offered to work with her on us, share our failures, but I received a condemnation and blame in response with a I'll think about taking you back.

Now I'm back to NC. I'm learning about me, what I can improve in myself, learning about BPD. Hoping to take the lessons to my next relationship and apply them in my parenting.



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« Reply #45 on: March 29, 2011, 09:13:04 PM »

Ok- I got a therapist early on bc she made me feel like I was the problem, so I remember my first red flag.

I had relocated here bc my father had alzheimer's and was sick, I was also 18 months into healing out of a bad relationship in upstate NY where I moved from, and she listened to me and was so kind to me, and sensitive, and interested...and two things...one time in a bar I heard her express her opinion to someone in a harsh way and I thought "Shoot, I hope she doesn't ever talk to me like that"...and when she had a male roommate and he broke something of hers, she raged at him one night, and I remember kind of victiming out and saying "Stop, you're scaring me, it's ok" ...I moved in a few months later, and boy was I the one she was talking to like that in the last year...

What did I do to excuse it? Wipe it clean, wave a magic wand that I could get her to speak to me as she was so concerned about my issues, and she probly had an issue of her belongings bc she was 7th of 8 children, not bc she was abusive or unreasonable or entitled...aggghhhh...others started popping up as well, but good to remind myself...

my therapist said never move in before you have your first fight.
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« Reply #46 on: March 29, 2011, 09:46:19 PM »

Right after she moved back to her homestate me saying it was the only way she could survive, to be back home with family.

Correction here on a typo, she said it was the only way she would survive. I tried offering many other plans; moving apartments (she hated our landlord), visiting her family long term instead of all out moving, reinforcing my desire to help, offered to help her go back to college instead of work, therapy (would put her on my medical insurance). I relented in the end when suicide was raised as her "only" option if she stayed.
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« Reply #47 on: March 29, 2011, 09:57:06 PM »

I had met my uBPDxbf on an online dating site.  He contacted me and we started chatting and clicked right away.  I didn't think I would be interested because he lived states away and I wasn't interested in a LDR. We chatted online daily for hours every night after my kids went to bed.  Within a month he was talking about us both selling our houses and moving to a new state together.  I told him I refuse to uproot my kids by leaving the state and my large family, etc.  That was the deal breaker and it was over.  About 2 weeks later of NC he contacts me, says life isn't worth living without me and the kids and that he'll move to my state... and we were back on.

He fed my need to be 'needed'... to feel important... to include my kids, etc.  I mean WOW... he said life wasn't worth living without me!  He loves me so much he's willing to sell his house and move to my state! He's willing to give up everything to be with me.  I was hooked.

It's easy to look back and see the relationship was moving way too fast, but at the time it felt like I hit the jackpot.  I ignored a ton of red flags because I believed he loved me more than anybody ever had or could and I wanted the dream future we were planning to become a reality.  I was willing to do anything for that dream to come true.

Of course things started getting worse, very quickly, after a few months.   After 7 months, I broke up with him. 
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« Reply #48 on: March 29, 2011, 11:40:33 PM »

The very first red flag I saw was his intense use of language.  We knew of each other from earlier times in our lives, had connected online, and right away began communicating over email - everyday, sometimes several times a day.  I emailed just as much as he did.  But then right away he used language that felt intense to me (my Dearest...).  I remember an instant feeling of specialness, followed by that questioning feeling.

After about a month of emails I recognized feeling stimulated, adventurous, excited.  I had not ever had such discussions as ours.  It felt good, and I liked it.

Communication then never moved away from the computer, he wasn't asking for my phone number to hear my voice or talk person to person.  Eventually later he did ask for my number but it was weeks later (maybe a month) before he ever called.

My intellectual reasoning to my self, when my insides questioned, was that I had not dated in 25 years - I didn't know enough about dating "nowadays".

I had a long term marriage end very shatteringly about a year earlier, and I thought I had processed enough to test the waters.  He was someone I knew, I thought to myself it would be safe, he wouldn't hurt me.

I was lonely, I was tired of being alone.  I was lonely in my marriage years before my marriage ended and I knew why.  I wanted a life again, and I've always wanted to share it with someone.

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« Reply #49 on: March 30, 2011, 01:53:18 AM »

"Lets see if we can identify the precursors to the lives we put ourselves through, and why we did this to ourselves."

I got a red flag for ya...this thought process...

Excuse me for not knowing that it was even humanly possible for a person to behave in such erratic abusive ways...maybe I skipped class that day and didn't get the memo...

Also, excuse me for not questioning her every word and action right out of the gate , assuming that all women are sociopathic manipulative abusers...

And seriously, I should have known that she was going to gun the car 10 feet from me during our first fight and that not having full body armor on really is on me...I should have spent every waking moment preparing for something unthinkable emanating from an illness I had never heard of and didn't know the first thing about, and completely on me that the woman i slept with nightly and whose children I was helping raise in a very enjoyable living experience who expressed great love for me in every way would try to kill me, in a church parking lot no less

Its so commonplace the news doesn't even cover it anymore..I googled the whole idea...too many entries to even list...Really on me, i watched my parents do that to each other,both my brothers wives tried to take them out, my entire graduating class from college all met an early demise from exactly the same situation I was lucky to survive..

Yeah,now that you phrase it that way, man, what was I thinking trying to dent  her car with my leg...that is so abusive of me...thank you for showing me the light..I'm going too make an amends to her for messing up the paint job on her car with my blood, and I'm going to turn myself in for vandalism.

Its all about personal responsibility...and its high time i take responsibility for doing this to myself..

Good grief...
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« Reply #50 on: March 30, 2011, 02:28:04 AM »

I actually made it about 2 months if I am honest and say it was Thanksgiving, he missed Thanksgiving  |>  without even telling me what was going on. He just called last minute and told me he was working so his sisters boyfriend could spend time with her. The holidays are a big thing for my family and it hurt. I knew he was being cold and very harsh in his wording and seemed distant but I excused it as him being busy. I loved the way he made me feel most of the time but that was sad.The next big red flag was when I found out he was still married, after we had been living together 6 months.Red flag/bad  (click to insert in post)   I felt like a home wrecker even though they were living in different states. Then I still did not kick him to the curb. I loved him and was in to deep. I even paid for his divorce. lmao I was a moron. I hate dating and truly loved him. Love is blind, deaf and dumb in my case!

Hey Overcoming, we all do things that in hindsight seem a little ridiculous. Can I ask you to expand, and tell us what needs he met, or what desires he quenched for you? There was something there that kept you.

He made me laugh. I had been depressed when my husband had a stroke in our bed. He had been sick for years before the last incident but it was so traumatic. I hadnt laughed in a long time. Xbph was funny, smart and made me feel like I didnt die when my husband did. Until xbph I felt like I had. I guess in a way I was angry my husband had passed and not me. He could have handled it better than I did, he was so mentally strong and kind. He appeared to have things under control. When he passed I fell apart. I was so weak I never stood a chance next to xbph. I was ripe to be used and abused. Enter the xbph and bam watch the drama unfold.
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« Reply #51 on: March 30, 2011, 06:32:15 AM »

The first red flag I really remember (although there were previous "hints" that something was off) :

At that time we were still friends only, and she was visiting my mother in the hospital, and supporting me (it was a very difficult time for me and she was such a support at the time...).

We were having a coffee at the coffee-machine and were about to head back to the hospital room where my mother was.

Out of the blue, she deliberately warmingly and lovingly took my hand, ushering  "I'll never let this hand go now...".

I felt such an amount of love and sweetness. It overwhelmed me.

Until a few hours later, we were in her car going back from the hospital.

Then, for no reason, she turned into Mr Hyde : cold, weird, asking questions as if she was suspecting a lack of honesty from me ( I repeat : we weren't even together, hadn't kissed or anything). Maybe trying to identify something bad about me. Like I was a threat in some way. And she was hyper-vigilant.

I remember feeling so ill at ease... Like I had a different person in front of me. An evil person. She gave off so much gloom.

It really freaked me out and I remember all I wanted was to get away. It was the very first time I felt this. Almost "threatened".

My guts would scream " GET AWAYYYYYY FROM HER SHE'S NUTS !" ...

The following day, she was back to sweetness again. Like nothing happened.

I stayed and let things evolve into a relationship...

Why ?

First : because she was so much support for me and what I was going through with my mother being in an hospital.

Second : because her behavior did not make any sense. I could not process the Jekyll / Hyde stuff. So I told myself that maybe I was tired and there had been a misunderstanding on my part.

When other Red Flag occured, I was so hooked...
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« Reply #52 on: March 30, 2011, 06:50:56 AM »

I have thought hard about this question, what was the first red flag, and I cannot come up with the answer. I have been maried over 18 years to uBPDw, known her for over 20, have four children together. When I think back over the entire time, all I can see is a lanscape of emotional and spiritual carnage covered with red flags, like a great battlefield littered with the dead, each marked in his position by a red flag sunk into the ground next to the body. Each corpse...a piece of me that was slain by some expression of her "disease". And each red flag...a reminder that hell can indeed exist upon the good Earth and a man can indeed be eaten alive one bite at a time.

It is very difficult to identify what small parts of me still survive, but recently I have decided with conviction that they shall not go down the way the rest have because without me, the children would be at extreme risk.

For anybody who doesn't know, because they are just getting started in their experience with a pwBPD, it is no joke. It is some profoundly evil scat that you will be very fortunate to survive long-term should you decide to try. Run! if you still can.

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« Reply #53 on: March 30, 2011, 01:49:32 PM »

OK, I didnt want that post to end Brer Rabbit.  Being cool (click to insert in post) That was entertaining.

And so...? What kept you in the thick of red flags?

Well, there were a few things...

First, I was 6 months out of a r/s with my first love. We had lived together...she had been with me thru 2 deployments...and there was a lot I hadnt dealt with. I didnt grieve that loss. So when ex came along...it was a rapidly progressing r/s...so it felt like I was in the heart of the old r/s without any of the hard stuff to deal with. I truly thought I was having my cake and eating it too. Oh wow I was soo wrong.

Second, LUST! Like I had mentioned before, the ex wasnt stunning or the most georgious woman I had ever seen or been with...but the sexual energy...WOW! It was very addictive. Theres a saying that "Love is blind." I dont believe that anymore. I believe "Love is all seeing and Lust is blind." In the first weeks of dating the ex...there was no way that the sweet soft lipped angel that just went down on me on her parents couch while her parents were in the other room could really be that monster...no way! If you have seen that movie "Orginal Sin" with Antonio Banderas and Angelina Jolie...that was the way it felt. "Ohhh the sex!" seems to be a very common thread here. I think it would be a very good topic of exploration for another post...Was it Love or Lust? For me...it was almost purely lust. There wasnt even chemistry or spark for me...I didnt fall head over heals for her...she wasnt my soul mate...my heart didnt go pitter patter...that was a Red flag/bad  (click to insert in post)  in itself I think.

Thirdly, well with lust comes the consequences. By the first month of dating we got pregnant. I asked her father for permission to marry...we moved in together...and thats when life got really nasty. We were fighting every day...she was out all night partying and I was at home studying...SHE WAS PARTYING WHILE PREGNANT AND I WAS STILL IN CHEM 1 IN COLLEGE! I was now addicted to the conflict. I couldnt get out because I felt I had a moral obligation to stay...so I tried to control her behavior. Yeah, that didnt pan out so well. She was 5 months pregnant and had a miscarriage. The drinking got worse...and drinking and driving...and one night she came home and tried to start a physical fight...drunk obviously. I had enough...no responsibility...it was over! For 24hrs Laugh out loud (click to insert in post).

Well, after the first breakup...she changed her ways. She didnt have even a sip of alcohol for 1yr. The next year was good...and I did grow to love her. We had some good times in that year. We were officially engaged...got prenant...got married...had our first born...then over the next 4 years of marriage she slowly turned back into that creature that I could stand.

What kept me in the marriage was quite different from the first 6 mos of the rs...SHE WAS MY WIFE. Not a lot of posts here really talk about that. I made a commitment...I swore an oath...for better or FOR WORSE. As a result of being divorced now...I am not sure if I believe in those vows. I believe in love and commitment...but those vows...I am just not sure.

There are other things too. My father had NO sense of boudnaries and my stepmom walked all over him. So I am sure that my lack of boundaries was a learned behavior. I suppose I was like the old frog in boiling water too. Like the saying goes...if you throw a frog into a pot of boiling water he'll jump right out but if you put him into cold water and slowly boil it he will stay until he dies.

Our sex life sucked. I had gained 60+ lbs of depression weight...my coping drug of choice was energy drinks. She had an eating disorder and got to under 100 lbs. I was not remotely attracted to her...but my need for lust was still there. This is when I became fully addicted to lust. We got crazier and crazier...turned to porn...etc. Before I knew it I liked porn more than her as she was never there. The porn was mutually enjoyed, but of course was mental cheating on my side. I had become everything that turned my stomach upside down about her in the beginning. Much like that movie Original Sin. I had become her...I had lost myself.

In the end...the only thing that got me out were the affairs. Not 1, not 2, but 3...in 6 months. They started when our 2nd daughter was 1 month old. She settled down with the 4th.

I have learned soo much from this r/s...so much about life. I got 2 beautiful daughters out of it amd learned some lessons that I am not going to forget. I cannot say that I am fully grateful for this experience, but I cannot say that I am ungrateful for it. I have fully grieved the loss of my first love and realized my short commings with her. I understand more about my own family dynamics...yeah theyre a bunch of nuts too. I have emerged a better me.
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« Reply #54 on: March 30, 2011, 02:45:46 PM »

Interesting thread!

I met my stbxh in high school.  Looking back I can identify 3 red flags during our dating years. 

1) The rush to intimacy.  My H decided very quickly that he was in love with me and wanted to  marry me.  Although it took us a couple more years before we actually married, the idealization phase was very attractive to me. I loved being accepted and loved for who I was and believing I was the most important person in the world to him.  Felt like he would sacrifice anything to be with me.  I could do no wrong.  The love/attention from my FOO seem to be based on performance so I yearned for this kind of acceptance.

2) Future H called frequently and made me feel guilty if I didn't spend all my time with him.  I resented  that he would call me for a date, assumed my answer would be yes and then ask me to plan it; i.e.  he would call and say "So, what are we doing tonight?"

3) Future H did not respect my boundaries while dating.  I had a curfew and preferred to play by my parent's rules.  Future H would pressure me to stay out with him past my curfew and I would end up getting in trouble for it.  It bothered me that he seemed so self-absorbed to not care how his actions affected me.  I guess at the time I saw it as he loved me so much he didn't want to say good-night.

I didn't see the inconguity of his words vs. his actions.  I didn't have the self-respect or healthy self-esteem to take my own needs/wants seriously nor knew how to voice them. My future H like my FOO did not seem to experience a full range of emotions.  We lived life by stuffing them and avoiding conflict at all cost.

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« Reply #55 on: March 30, 2011, 04:06:16 PM »

Excerpt
OK Havana, long time no see huh? You listed what you have endured, and what you saw, but didn't tell us what keeps you there. I know you are a stayer, and I respect the heck out of you for that, and I hope everyone here does as well. But what it the tradeoff Havana? What keeps you there?

I get asked this a lot. What kept me for the longest time was the kids but that stopped being a factor about 8 years ago. Finances is a factor. She has every debilitating ailment you can make up (fybromyalgia, ibs, rsd, three different osteo things) so I would really get screwed in a divorce. She has rarely worked in the 40 years we have been married. She couldn't make it on her own. At this point she spends most of her time in her bedroom which is fine with me. I guess most people would say my life sucks but it doesn't. I make do. The biggest problem for me right now is I'm afraid I'll end up being in the "Never touch a boobie again club"
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« Reply #56 on: March 30, 2011, 04:37:35 PM »

Thats amazing Havana. It sounds like you are staying to take care of her. Thats takes a lot of will and love, I respect that. You are a good person.I wish I could have done it but I couldn't. Marriage vows are so important to me and I am just calling it quits? I won't ever get married again, think this bp journey has cured my desire for i do's.
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« Reply #57 on: March 30, 2011, 07:26:40 PM »

Marriage vows are so important to me and I am just calling it quits?

Messes with your head doesn't it?  It's what bothered me most when I was going through my divorce with my xh.  BOTH people have to uphold their marriage vows for it to work.  One day I realized I didn't quit on him... he quit on me by breaking his vows many years before I filed for divorce. He never cheated on me, but the love, honor, respect, appreciation, etc. never happened.  I don't remember manipulation, control, abuse etc. being spoken as part of the vows on the alter.  And, he refuses to take his meds, go to therapy etc.  It's not me who was the quitter.
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« Reply #58 on: March 30, 2011, 11:39:28 PM »

pdquick,  do u ever see the kids?
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« Reply #59 on: March 31, 2011, 12:15:52 AM »

Marriage vows are so important to me and I am just calling it quits?

Messes with your head doesn't it?  It's what bothered me most when I was going through my divorce with my xh.  BOTH people have to uphold their marriage vows for it to work.  One day I realized I didn't quit on him... he quit on me by breaking his vows many years before I filed for divorce. He never cheated on me, but the love, honor, respect, appreciation, etc. never happened.  I don't remember manipulation, control, abuse etc. being spoken as part of the vows on the alter.  And, he refuses to take his meds, go to therapy etc.  It's not me who was the quitter.

Yes Crystal it does. You are right though he quit way before I found the strength to walk away. I just hate it was that way even if it was right.
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