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VIDEO: "What is parental alienation?" Parental alienation is when a parent allows a child to participate or hear them degrade the other parent. This is not uncommon in divorces and the children often adjust. In severe cases, however, it can be devastating to the child. This video provides a helpful overview.
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Author Topic: When They Dump You: Recycling Questions  (Read 11678 times)
UmbrellaBoy
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« on: October 07, 2013, 09:01:00 PM »

My BPDex dumped me 8 weeks ago, and it was understood that we wouldn't be speaking afterward. I can't even really remember how that was made clear this time, but I started the "no contact" precedent years ago when I cut him off a few times for being flakey (though he always managed to rope me back in). Then it began that he started cutting me off (either "abandonment pre-emptively," or out of engulfment fears, or on account of abandonment fears from the other guy he was involved with cutting him off) in which cases he made it clear that, while he probably imagined reconnecting at least as friends long term, we needed to take "time off" after. He came back once or twice from one of these too. The cut-offs he has initiated always lasted longer than my cut-offs, mainly because when I'd do the cutting off, he'd freak out and run back within a week or two. The ones he initiated have lasted 6 weeks, 12 weeks, this one is 8 weeks so far.

I guess my question is about two things:

A) what the are difference, do you think, in regards to recycling when they are the ones who end the relationship and suggest the "time out" or no contact versus when we cut them off

and

B) do you think a recycle is more likely if we leave them in a good mood or in a bad mood? That is to say, after he cut me off this most recent time I sent a mean email basically chewing him out and saying I didn't want to hear from him again. Part of me thinks this will help make it less likely for him to contact me, like he'll be too afraid or ashamed to do so, which is in his personality (though I did include a caveat something like "assuming your decision remains the same" or something like that). But part of me wonders if acting like I've moved on like that will, in the end, trigger his abandonment fears and make it MORE likely that he'll attempt a recycle, given that I didn't end it with an "I'm always here if you want to come back" or anything squishy like that.

So what do you think? Dumper versus dumpee differences when it comes to requesting the no contact? And a "strong" or "mean" or "moved on" final contact versus a "weak" or "I still want you" contact when it comes to affecting whether they try to recycle?
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Ironmanrises
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« Reply #1 on: October 07, 2013, 09:28:33 PM »

The fact... .

That you have gone through multiple recycles... .

And the fact... .

That your ex knows... .

He can successfully recycle you... .

Increases the chances significantly... .

For him to try and contact you again.

Since he knows he can come right back into your life... .

Again and again... .

Why would he all of a sudden change that behavior... .?

Even if he is with someone else... .

He may not contact you in the idealization phase... .

But when that relationship fails... .

And it will... .

He will very likely... .

Contact you.

See the pattern... .?

If you read through a lot of the accounts here... .

You will notice a pattern... .

Of the "cut off" BPD that that doesn't return at all... .

Versus... .

The "boomerang" BPD that returns again and again.

Now that isn't scientific... .

I know.

But it is a pattern nonetheless.

Their behavior does not change.

My ex returned to me once... .

And I allowed her back in.

And she left again.

Her behavior was the same as first time around.

Based on this... .

It is highly probable... .

That she will attempt to contact me again.

Why wouldn't she... .?

She knows... .

She got me to allow her back in once.

Her behavior isn't going to change now.

A good predictor of future behavior... .

Is past behavior.

Hang in there Umbrella.



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UmbrellaBoy
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« Reply #2 on: October 07, 2013, 10:31:03 PM »

Hm, yeah. He left once like this before only to return and things went on another 8 months, so it wouldn't be surprising if it happened again. Though the periods when he is the one initiating and enforcing the cut-off seem to last longer than when I tried to be the one breaking it off... .

I guess the main difference this time is that last time, though he was the one who left, I left the door open and played nice and was all "Please reconsider and I'll be here waiting and you can always come back" and he did. This time I sort of flipped him the bird as he left and said I never wanted to hear from him again. I wonder if that changes things any... .
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Ironmanrises
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« Reply #3 on: October 07, 2013, 10:54:25 PM »

Hm, yeah. He left once like this before only to return and things went on another 8 months, so it wouldn't be surprising if it happened again. Though the periods when he is the one initiating and enforcing the cut-off seem to last longer than when I tried to be the one breaking it off....

I guess the main difference this time is that last time, though he was the one who left, I left the door open and played nice and was all "Please reconsider and I'll be here waiting and you can always come back" and he did. This time I sort of flipped him the bird as he left and said I never wanted to hear from him again. I wonder if that changes things any... .

In bold.

They probably last longer due to... .

Control... .

Since he is the one who initiated... .

And possibly... .

If there was someone else... .

Which... .

Is another form of abusive control.

Even though you gave him the finger... .

When he left you again... .

As opposed... .

To... .

Ill wait for you to come back... .

Based on his previous behavior... .

He will return... .

Again.

And this will keep on repeating... .

Until you put a stop to it... .

For your own well being.

I fear my ex will try and contact me again... .

Because she has done so before... .

And was successful... .

In the attempt.

I am repairing so much damage... .

In the aftermath.

I cannot allow her reentry into my life.

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Oliolioxenfree
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« Reply #4 on: October 07, 2013, 11:05:18 PM »

If you are lucky they will never contact you again.

my experience has been, when i broke things off, he couldn't handle it and contacted me within a few days begging to be taken back.  He also had no victim lined up as my replacement.

this past breakup he had a replacement lined up and he broke things off with me to be with her.  Haven't heard from him in about 7 months since the breakup.

So its hard to say.  I think when they leave for someone else you won't hear from them during the idealization phase however they will still STALK you online. trust me. this seems to be a pervasive pattern even when they are with the new victim they left you for.

Once their new relationship inevitably fails you may hear from them, but again who cares.  its better to never hear from them again to be honest.  This is a no win situation.  With many exes after the breakup once you reach indifference you can be cordial and be friends, but with someone who has BPD, you cannot be friends, they will try to infiltrate your life and get to you even as your so called friend.  If they aren't contacting you, consider yourself one of the blessed.

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fromheeltoheal
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« Reply #5 on: October 08, 2013, 12:36:27 AM »

Remember BPD is an attachment disorder, and a BPD MUST attach to someone to feel whole, which is a big motivator; they don't do well on their own.  That being said, he has a higher chance of contacting you if he can't find a new attachment quickly enough, and it doesn't have much to do with you, you're just an attachment source.  It doesn't matter how things ended or who left whom either; over and over on these boards you hear of all hell breaking loose with a BPD and a very short time later they're acting like nothing ever happened.  I think the term for it is labile moods, meaning they're all over the map emotionally and can change on a dime, there is no long term consistency.
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DragoN
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« Reply #6 on: October 08, 2013, 01:39:05 AM »

Excerpt
I think the term for it is labile moods, meaning they're all over the map emotionally and can change on a dime, there is no long term consistency.

If you look at some of the posts on the leaving board, some are labile from day to day. Self included, although I'd say doesn't change on a dime. More the slow inexorable wave of sadness that hits like a ton of bricks. Then the slow pick up of working through the emotions and the root cause. I'd like to avoid medication and alcohol as a form of self soothing. Feelings aren't Facts and they change in time as well.
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GreenMango
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« Reply #7 on: October 08, 2013, 01:49:51 AM »

My experience it didn't matter.  I was both.  What drove it was need, opportunity and being receptive.

Umbrella it sounds like you are asking if there's a chance he will come back.  Do you want to try again with him? 

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UmbrellaBoy
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« Reply #8 on: October 08, 2013, 03:47:27 AM »

I am sort of asking if there is a chance he will come back or, rather, what factors make that more or less likely. But that doesn't necessarily indicate hope or that I want it. Part of it could be fear about him coming back and trying to figure out what's the best way to ensure No Contact stays that way forever. But I think I've said here, I don't know if I'd be strong enough to resist another recycle if he put "all the marbles" on the table, though I could see myself getting devastated if he reappeared but without making any commitments; that would feel worst of all. I don't want to hear from him again... .unless he's putting everything on the table. But I know that's unlikely (when they reappear, they tend to fish and be vague and try to get back in without firm commitments) and so, in that case, it's just best not to hear anything at all.
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GreenMango
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« Reply #9 on: October 08, 2013, 03:54:30 AM »

You sure he has all his marbles?

I ask because if you feel that doubt about your decision and that letter it may be you need to contact him.  If you want to try it again. And you'll have to be the one to make the initial move.  If you are mulling around this doubt and do contact him post on the staying board for guidance. 

If its a fear thing and you are scared you won't be able to resist his charm then it may be good to look at the facts of what transpired between you two and look at what kind of people you want to spend your time with.  What their character is like, theory values, etc and measure this guy up.

What would your reaction be if he called tomorrow?  Is he the type of person you respect and trust? What's his character like?
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happylogist
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« Reply #10 on: October 08, 2013, 04:33:03 AM »

Code:
What would your reaction be if he called tomorrow?  Is he the type of person you respect and trust? What's his character like?


Agree completely! Those are questions that you have to ask to yourself, UmbrelaBoy, instead of thinking about the probability of his effort to recycle you.

With or without BPD people are still somehow different, and whether he will or he will not depends on many factors, also when they will recycle depends also on so many factors (your availability, him having other attachment sources, being depressed or not, having an interesting job/interests ... .the list goes on and on).  It is very important to understand that their reasons for recycling are soo different. Some do to feel love again, some do not to feel hated, others do because they need all their attachment sources to confirm their availability.

My ex kept recycling his exes (telling that he loves them and all that stuff), just to feel not hated by them. That was the main aim of his recycle attempts, and not a sudden realization that he was wrong or he wanted to start from the beginning. Just to know that he was not painted black!  He broke it off with me, we are NC for 2 months and I know that the next time he contacts me - it will be more along the lines of his ex recycle attempts. My "wise mind" says he won't change, though of course emotionally I want him to say "sorry, i was so wrong, here are all my commitments to you, I want us to be together" and show me that in his actions.  This is why I am not trying anymore to do anything.  There is no complete reciprocity, which I need.
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fromheeltoheal
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« Reply #11 on: October 08, 2013, 08:54:09 AM »

Excerpt
I think the term for it is labile moods, meaning they're all over the map emotionally and can change on a dime, there is no long term consistency.

If you look at some of the posts on the leaving board, some are labile from day to day. Self included, although I'd say doesn't change on a dime. More the slow inexorable wave of sadness that hits like a ton of bricks. Then the slow pick up of working through the emotions and the root cause. I'd like to avoid medication and alcohol as a form of self soothing. Feelings aren't Facts and they change in time as well.

Thanks Sabratha, your point is key.  The cluster B personality disorder called BPD includes "a pattern of marked impulsivity and instability of affects, interpersonal relationships, and self image."  

Humans go through a lot of moods, especially when processing trauma, and who's to say a person's instability of affect is marked.  Having lived it and been shocked by it, I'd say we experienced marked, although it is a continuum, and who's to draw the line?  Not us, we aren't professionals, and after all it's about our healing anyway.
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mitchell16
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« Reply #12 on: October 08, 2013, 04:04:51 PM »

Remember BPD is an attachment disorder, and a BPD MUST attach to someone to feel whole, which is a big motivator; they don't do well on their own

Does this always include intimate relationships or just anybody. after this last time myexBPDgf become extremely close with a female co-worker 25 years younger then her. now they act like teenage girls, dress alike, posing for picture togther. the friend is in a relationship but her bf works out of town alot. The younger friend has even moved in with my exBPDgf a few nights a week. They hang togther all the time.

and since she has this, the recycle attempts have been longer and aint near as intese as in the past. Im just curious.
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DownandOut
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« Reply #13 on: October 08, 2013, 04:18:56 PM »

My "wise mind" says he won't change, though of course emotionally I want him to say "sorry, i was so wrong, here are all my commitments to you, I want us to be together" and show me that in his actions.  This is why I am not trying anymore to do anything.  There is no complete reciprocity, which I need.

And you're right. He won't change. I got all the things you mention. I got the sorrys, the commitment that this time was different, the speeches about how I was the one that got away and she needed the time to find herself so that she could be healthy for me and that she finally did. None of it mattered. As soon as I let my guard down and began to love her, I was devalued and she moved on while we were still together. It is so unbelievably painful, but it is a sickness that we cannot cure them of. The one thing I learned from my relationship and possibly why I have been affected immensely because of it is that there was something special about me to her. She was conscious of her illness but couldn't pinpoint what it was (I know now that it was BPD) and she knew that if she wanted to get better I was the person who would be there forever and help her do that. I was everything she wanted, needed and feared most. Amazing paradox when you think about it.
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peas
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« Reply #14 on: October 08, 2013, 04:54:19 PM »

In my experience, my ex wrote me off a final time after the last breakup, which he initiated. No recycle attempt in 3.5 months so far. He was really angry with me when we parted. Since I could tell he was serious the last time (actually, I thought he was serious with each breakup), I unleashed a lot of stuff I had been holding back. I stopped walking on eggshells, fed him some truth, agreed we were done, and that his abuse sucked.

I don't know if he jumped to a replacement, but he made it clear he wants nothing to do with me. I told him I didn't want to be part of his life either.

I do not believe he is keeping up with me from a distance. He blocked me on social media after the breakup (I blocked him first then unblocked after two weeks, only to see he immediately blocked me back) and I have not checked in a while whether I am unblocked. I think he made up his mind to completely cut me out and avoid any memories of our seven months together. He got fed up with the long distance relationship and I think for him it is easy to finally write me off because we are not in the same city. He can justify moving on if I'm not local. It's what he wants.

He was always the one to break up with me but he was also the one to return within a few days. I'm trying to avoid wondering if I will ever hear from him again. I go about my daily life with the attitude that he finally meant what he said, that there was no going back this time and he was finished. I'm also working on believing that I, too, am finished. So far his actions and mine (NC) have backed that up. 

I am beginning to realize I may never lay eyes on the guy again in this lifetime. That thought makes me sad, but I have to face that possibility.   
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DownandOut
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« Reply #15 on: October 08, 2013, 05:33:47 PM »

In my experience, my ex wrote me off a final time after the last breakup, which he initiated. No recycle attempt in 3.5 months so far. He was really angry with me when we parted. Since I could tell he was serious the last time (actually, I thought he was serious with each breakup), I unleashed a lot of stuff I had been holding back. I stopped walking on eggshells, fed him some truth, agreed we were done, and that his abuse sucked.

I don't know if he jumped to a replacement, but he made it clear he wants nothing to do with me. I told him I didn't want to be part of his life either.

I do not believe he is keeping up with me from a distance. He blocked me on social media after the breakup (I blocked him first then unblocked after two weeks, only to see he immediately blocked me back) and I have not checked in a while whether I am unblocked. I think he made up his mind to completely cut me out and avoid any memories of our seven months together. He got fed up with the long distance relationship and I think for him it is easy to finally write me off because we are not in the same city. He can justify moving on if I'm not local. It's what he wants.

He was always the one to break up with me but he was also the one to return within a few days. I'm trying to avoid wondering if I will ever hear from him again. I go about my daily life with the attitude that he finally meant what he said, that there was no going back this time and he was finished. I'm also working on believing that I, too, am finished. So far his actions and mine (NC) have backed that up. 

I am beginning to realize I may never lay eyes on the guy again in this lifetime. That thought makes me sad, but I have to face that possibility.   

Wow, I got the chills reading your post. I initiated the break up this time because I just have too much self-respect to be treated the way I was. I was also in a LDR and she always said how she regretted that she didn't see the light when we were in the same city. However, the plan was for her to move to my city but it never came to fruition. Anyway, the point is that I believe she too got fed up with the long distance even though I told her that I would move to her city again (my job is flexible like that) but she always hated when I talked about moving to her city. She always wanted to move to me but I think she eventually got cold feet and that was one of our many problems. I think at this point she has easily convinced herself that because we don't live in the same city it can never be and it's easier to pretend all the times we had together mean absolutely nothing. I too am beginning to realize that I may never see this person again in my entire life and it's probably the most difficult thing to face. I actually prefaced my last text to her by reminding her that the last time we saw each other would truly be the last. I just didn't realize that that reality hurts more for me than it does for her.
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UmbrellaBoy
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« Reply #16 on: October 08, 2013, 06:11:53 PM »

Excerpt
You sure he has all his marbles?

LOL! Yes, I suppose it would be hard for him to "give me all the marbles" if he doesn't even have all of his. I like that! It's a good way to think of it. He lost his marbles at some point, and so he can't offer them all, because he doesn't have them all. Perhaps, perhaps.

Excerpt
I ask because if you feel that doubt about your decision and that letter it may be you need to contact him.  If you want to try it again. And you'll have to be the one to make the initial move.  If you are mulling around this doubt and do contact him post on the staying board for guidance.

That's what I don't know. I don't want to contact him only to be disappointed or strung-along again.

The truth is, I do love him and respect him so much. I trust his judgment on everything except, sadly, romantic relationships and his self-awareness regarding his own feelings and behavior relative to those relationships. In almost all other areas of his life except navigating romance and sexuality, he is completely functional and amazing. But in romance and sexuality, he is deeply damaged and broken in a very BPD sort of way (though he sometimes lets that manifest indirectly in other areas) and keeps going through these patterns (and not just with me).

But it's so frustrating because we "click" (and it's not just "mirroring," trust me, because I know what he's like even outside interaction with me) in almost every way, have similar values and interests and complementary personalities... .in everything except the question of commitment and intimacy and the relationship itself. All the "objective" criteria are perfect for both of us, we're soul mates, and he's admitted as much, it's only the "relative" relational requirements of what that sort of closeness implies about formalizing a commitment and place in each others lives and futures that he always breaks down about and gets confused and collapses in dread and terror about.

Engulfment fears, I think, exactly because we are so close. I think I remember him asking me once something that sounded so silly but also so sad, something like, "Well, just because two people are perfect for each other and in love, does that mean they have to be together? I don't like the idea of 'having to' do anything!" It's almost like he spoke, bizarrely, as if the relationship was "too perfect," like he didn't want to do something "just because it makes perfect sense" or because his "feelings were making" him do it (bizarrely speaking as if his feelings were something separate from himself... .)

So I guess the position I'm in is that, at this point, I want All or Nothing. Like I said, I either want no contact ever again OR for him to reappear in the position of the beggar and say, "You were right about everything. I don't know what's wrong with me. I love you. Help me. I'll do what you say. I no longer have any leverage here because I've been a flake so many times. You've got the power in this negotiation."

He dumped me and made it clear that no contact would be necessary for at least the foreseeable future. But I am haunted by the idea that maybe he has had inclinations of changing his mind (he certainly has before) but is now too embarrassed or ashamed to reach out yet again, to change his mind yet again, especially when I sent him that one last email saying that I was through with the back-and-forth and was closing the door on any future contact.

I would be kicking myself if I found out some day that he was inclined to break down and commit to therapy and to me, but was prevented merely by fear that I didn't want to hear from him (though, like I said, I think even in that letter I implied that I was only saying it "assuming that your mind hasn't changed." Implying that if his mind had changed, I was open to hearing it.)

At the same time, I don't want to reach out to him and say something like, "I'm sorry I said that, if you did want a relationship, I'd still be open to it" because then I'm afraid of not hearing back or him responding to that with a rejection, a "don't wait for me," or, worse, that giving him some validation, making me seem weak, or making him think that he could come back and string me along since he would then know that I was pliable, since I would have then "shown my hand" and therefore wouldn't be able to extract concessions like agreeing to see a therapist, since I wouldn't be the one in the position of power, I'd seem like the begging one who had exposed my desire for him first (and the person who exposes their desire first loses the power).

So for now I'm thinking it's best to just leave things as-is and hope that if he does want to contact me, he'll be desperate enough to ignore my "I don't want to hear from you" email (he's ignored stuff like that before!) and tell myself that, frankly, he would HAVE to be that desperate for me to even begin considering talking to him again, because if he is anything less than totally at rock-bottom, he's unlikely to change at all.
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« Reply #17 on: October 08, 2013, 06:58:53 PM »

DownandOut, our situations are similar. My exbf talked about moving to my city or me moving back to his city (where I lived and we met before a job offer took me out of town). I had my mind firmly set on seeing things through with him and not prolonging an LDR any longer than necessary. He claimed to be on board, but he couldn't follow through. He got so distracted with me not being there 24/7. It was all about his immediate needs not being met. I think he also got spooked when I showed him I was committed to being with him; perhaps the so-called engulfment set in. Although he talked about moving to my city, which has a lot more job opportunities than his economically depressed city, he really didn't want to leave his comfort zone. Even when he would talk about us getting a place together in my new city, I didn't believe him.

Also, he took my relocation personally, like it was a rejection of him even though I was desperate for work and had to take the job. I drove to him nearly every weekend to demonstrate I was willing to travel every possible chance to keep the r/s going. He just didn't want it after a while. He told me toward the end that my visits stressed him out. This, from someone who during idealization would count the hours til my next visit. 

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« Reply #18 on: October 08, 2013, 07:12:52 PM »

DownandOut, our situations are similar. My exbf talked about moving to my city or me moving back to his city (where I lived and we met before a job offer took me out of town). I had my mind firmly set on seeing things through with him and not prolonging an LDR any longer than necessary. He claimed to be on board, but he couldn't follow through. He got so distracted with me not being there 24/7. It was all about his immediate needs not being met. I think he also got spooked when I showed him I was committed to being with him; perhaps the so-called engulfment set in. Although he talked about moving to my city, which has a lot more job opportunities than his economically depressed city, he really didn't want to leave his comfort zone. Even when he would talk about us getting a place together in my new city, I didn't believe him.

Also, he took my relocation personally, like it was a rejection of him even though I was desperate for work and had to take the job. I drove to him nearly every weekend to demonstrate I was willing to travel every possible chance to keep the r/s going. He just didn't want it after a while. He told me toward the end that my visits stressed him out. This, from someone who during idealization would count the hours til my next visit. 

It's amazing, that's exactly what I went through. She kept telling me to find an apartment and I told her that I would look when we got back from a vacation together. She would get upset with me that I wasn't actively looking for a place to stay every day. It was strange considering how it ended.

All this pressure to speed up the process and she went and found someone else but wouldn't break it off with me. It was like she was waiting to see how it turned out with me before she would commit to letting me go (ironic that it was the only thing she could commit to). She told me that she wasn't sure how she felt but "she didn't want to lose me." Well, I left. The thing that hurts me the most is that she's able to convince herself that it wasn't meant to be because of their uncanny ability to suppress emotions. The distance just makes that worse.
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« Reply #19 on: October 08, 2013, 07:19:36 PM »

And the fact... .

That your ex knows... .

He can successfully recycle you... .

Increases the chances significantly... .

For him to try and contact you again.

Since he knows he can come right back into your life... .

Again and again... .

Why would he all of a sudden change that behavior... .?

Even if he is with someone else... .

Yep, I allowed him back too many times and now it's the same old recycling.  Thanks for the reminder.
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« Reply #20 on: October 08, 2013, 07:36:09 PM »

Excerpt
The thing that hurts me the most is that she's able to convince herself that it wasn't meant to be because of their uncanny ability to suppress emotions. The distance just makes that worse.

Yes. That is one of the hardest feelings I have, how I might be easily dismissed because I'm not there. I had this feeling during the r/s and it was a big source of anxiety for me. It was exhausting trying to minimize or erase the possibility that the distance would cause him to withdraw.
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« Reply #21 on: October 08, 2013, 07:44:31 PM »

Excerpt
The thing that hurts me the most is that she's able to convince herself that it wasn't meant to be because of their uncanny ability to suppress emotions. The distance just makes that worse.

Yes. That is one of the hardest feelings I have, how I might be easily dismissed because I'm not there. I had this feeling during the r/s and it was a big source of anxiety for me. It was exhausting trying to minimize or erase the possibility that the distance would cause him to withdraw.

The sad part is I had 100% trust in her and I thought that the distance would allow us to take it a bit slower (as opposed to the first round where we went 160mph). I thought we could make the relationship grow and eventually end up together in the same city and grow from there. It was her that was constantly reaching out for updates as to what i was doing, where I was, who i was with. She got very upset when she found out that I went to hang out with two old schoolmates that she knew and I didn't tell her. Her exact words "we talk all the time how did you fail to mention that." The truth is it wasn't that important, and we were talking that day but I didn't mention it because I didn't find it important enough to mention considering we just had a cup of coffee for about an hour. Even when she went out with her friends and told me that "her ex bf would be there" I didn't get upset. I loved her, I trusted that she loved me so I had nothing to worry about. Even then she would text me constantly. Now, I'm no one and that kills me.
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« Reply #22 on: October 08, 2013, 08:02:02 PM »

First:
Excerpt
Now, I'm no one

You are not no one. Unless she has amnesia, you are in her memory. I believe I am someone to my ex, but I'm a past someone. My ex was divorced and he told me about his ex-wife and about some of his ex-girlfriends before me.

Next:
Excerpt
I thought that the distance would allow us to take it a bit slower (as opposed to the first round where we went 160mph). I thought we could make the relationship grow and eventually end up together in the same city.

Same. I, too, thought the distance would slow things down and allow us to naturally develop. We started hot and heavy and I sometimes liked that I wasn't accessible during the week. Gave us both some space. A few times after idealization, when he was more sober thinking, he said he wanted to take it slow and not make the mistakes he made with his failed marriage, where he and his ex moved in together too quick. He even said "let's give it a year." He did maintain he wanted us to marry. He just wanted to be sure we were doing it right.

Then he devalued and we had a blow-out argument and in the turn of a moment our r/s was gone.

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« Reply #23 on: October 08, 2013, 08:06:18 PM »

Remember BPD is an attachment disorder, and a BPD MUST attach to someone to feel whole, which is a big motivator; they don't do well on their own

Does this always include intimate relationships or just anybody. after this last time myexBPDgf become extremely close with a female co-worker 25 years younger then her. now they act like teenage girls, dress alike, posing for picture togther. the friend is in a relationship but her bf works out of town alot. The younger friend has even moved in with my exBPDgf a few nights a week. They hang togther all the time.

and since she has this, the recycle attempts have been longer and aint near as intese as in the past. Im just curious.

A 'romantic' relationship to us, the one with the idealization, the mirroring, the projection (stuff everyone does BTW, but for different reasons than a BPD and usually to a lesser extent) is a replacement of the BPD's primary caregiver, usually their mother, in their psyche.  BPD is an attachment disorder, borne out of the BPD never having detached from their mother and endured the abandonment depression, so we get to unknowingly become stand-ins for the primary caregiver and subjected to the abandonment/engulfment push/pull psychic drama between their ears, and everyone here knows how that feels.  Very interesting info is available on the psychological processes that result from the way they were raised, worth digging if you're interested, it helped me make a great deal of sense of what happened.

The hanging out with youngsters thing is a different issue.  My BPD was 45 and considered her 17 year old daughter her best friend, in fact the daughter was the 'adult' in the relationship.  Her 28 year old son and 27 year old daughter intimidated her.  She had had a string of 25 year old boyfriends before me.  She had no problem connecting with young people as equals, but seemed to get lost with adults, and just fake it.  All of that stemmed from the fact that a BPD is emotionally arrested, and stopped maturing right around when all the trauma happened in their youth; I'd say emotionally mine was about 14 and very clueless about the world.  Sounds like something similar could be going on with yours?
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« Reply #24 on: October 08, 2013, 11:08:45 PM »

Excerpt
Thanks Sabratha, your point is key.  The cluster B personality disorder called BPD includes "a pattern of marked impulsivity and instability of affects, interpersonal relationships, and self image." 

Humans go through a lot of moods, especially when processing trauma, and who's to say a person's instability of affect is marked.  Having lived it and been shocked by it, I'd say we experienced marked, although it is a continuum, and who's to draw the line?  Not us, we aren't professionals, and after all it's about our healing anyway.

Thankyou heeltoheal , it's  a continuum, and I am aware that these sorts of emotional swings are not normal for me at all. I find it really disconcerting. It is about my healing and letting go and just carrying on the best I can.

Unlike many here, there is no social media drama in my r/s and by the looks of it, that's a very good thing. Mind you, didn't bother checking if he was back on dating sites. And if he is... .good luck to him, she can have him.
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« Reply #25 on: October 09, 2013, 10:18:40 AM »

Excerpt
You sure he has all his marbles?

LOL! Yes, I suppose it would be hard for him to "give me all the marbles" if he doesn't even have all of his. I like that! It's a good way to think of it. He lost his marbles at some point, and so he can't offer them all, because he doesn't have them all. Perhaps, perhaps.

Excerpt
I ask because if you feel that doubt about your decision and that letter it may be you need to contact him.  If you want to try it again. And you'll have to be the one to make the initial move.  If you are mulling around this doubt and do contact him post on the staying board for guidance.

That's what I don't know. I don't want to contact him only to be disappointed or strung-along again.

The truth is, I do love him and respect him so much. I trust his judgment on everything except, sadly, romantic relationships and his self-awareness regarding his own feelings and behavior relative to those relationships. In almost all other areas of his life except navigating romance and sexuality, he is completely functional and amazing. But in romance and sexuality, he is deeply damaged and broken in a very BPD sort of way (though he sometimes lets that manifest indirectly in other areas) and keeps going through these patterns (and not just with me).

But it's so frustrating because we "click" (and it's not just "mirroring," trust me, because I know what he's like even outside interaction with me) in almost every way, have similar values and interests and complementary personalities... .in everything except the question of commitment and intimacy and the relationship itself. All the "objective" criteria are perfect for both of us, we're soul mates, and he's admitted as much, it's only the "relative" relational requirements of what that sort of closeness implies about formalizing a commitment and place in each others lives and futures that he always breaks down about and gets confused and collapses in dread and terror about.

Engulfment fears, I think, exactly because we are so close. I think I remember him asking me once something that sounded so silly but also so sad, something like, "Well, just because two people are perfect for each other and in love, does that mean they have to be together? I don't like the idea of 'having to' do anything!" It's almost like he spoke, bizarrely, as if the relationship was "too perfect," like he didn't want to do something "just because it makes perfect sense" or because his "feelings were making" him do it (bizarrely speaking as if his feelings were something separate from himself... .)

So I guess the position I'm in is that, at this point, I want All or Nothing. Like I said, I either want no contact ever again OR for him to reappear in the position of the beggar and say, "You were right about everything. I don't know what's wrong with me. I love you. Help me. I'll do what you say. I no longer have any leverage here because I've been a flake so many times. You've got the power in this negotiation."

He dumped me and made it clear that no contact would be necessary for at least the foreseeable future. But I am haunted by the idea that maybe he has had inclinations of changing his mind (he certainly has before) but is now too embarrassed or ashamed to reach out yet again, to change his mind yet again, especially when I sent him that one last email saying that I was through with the back-and-forth and was closing the door on any future contact.

I would be kicking myself if I found out some day that he was inclined to break down and commit to therapy and to me, but was prevented merely by fear that I didn't want to hear from him (though, like I said, I think even in that letter I implied that I was only saying it "assuming that your mind hasn't changed." Implying that if his mind had changed, I was open to hearing it.)

At the same time, I don't want to reach out to him and say something like, "I'm sorry I said that, if you did want a relationship, I'd still be open to it" because then I'm afraid of not hearing back or him responding to that with a rejection, a "don't wait for me," or, worse, that giving him some validation, making me seem weak, or making him think that he could come back and string me along since he would then know that I was pliable, since I would have then "shown my hand" and therefore wouldn't be able to extract concessions like agreeing to see a therapist, since I wouldn't be the one in the position of power, I'd seem like the begging one who had exposed my desire for him first (and the person who exposes their desire first loses the power).

So for now I'm thinking it's best to just leave things as-is and hope that if he does want to contact me, he'll be desperate enough to ignore my "I don't want to hear from you" email (he's ignored stuff like that before!) and tell myself that, frankly, he would HAVE to be that desperate for me to even begin considering talking to him again, because if he is anything less than totally at rock-bottom, he's unlikely to change at all.

Sometimes thinking about your bottom line or boundaries and letting that define your response can help take that pressure or fear off.  Then no matter what kind of off the wall stuff happens, be it the "how are you email?" Or sideways fishing for attention, you kind of know what way you are going with it.

Did you leave it as he needs to get into therapy for the relationship to continue?
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« Reply #26 on: October 09, 2013, 12:19:48 PM »

A lot of "me too! Same here!" reading these... .

Mine said over and again that LDRs "never work, in my experience", and my replacement not only lives further away, but in another country! Go figure, as they say... .

Facebook played a huge role, as with many others. I think FB may be one of the worst things ever invented when it comes to BPDs and relationships... .

Before I consciously and deliberately started the process of moving on, with therapy, I did get to see the first defriending-and-then-refriending of my replacement, on the very day he came back from a week with her, his second visit to her. So, he is already starting the push-pull-push-pull dance... .and many months sooner than he started it with me. Despite changing his FB to "in a relationship" which he never did before with anyone, and not with me.

A friend who has known my replacement for twenty years says she is the least sympathetic woman she's ever known, incredibly intolerant of having anyone in her minimalist, immaculate and very tiny apartment, and also is highly critical of what she regards as "whining".

I find it interesting that the most recent contact from my ex, on the 6th Oct, including allegations that I whined all the time. I suspect he is projecting onto me something he is currently defending himself about... .

So although I no longer see anything either of them does or says anywhere on FB, I reckon she's already on her way out, having already been devalued once.

It helps me, to feel that she means no more to him than I did. When I believed she was somehow "better" than me, it hurt. Now I understand more (thanks to this board and the messages posted here), I understand that his obsessive love for me twenty years ago most likely caused an idealisation of me during 19 years of having no contact, and that I mean far more to him than any other woman. It is terribly sad, but I'm just really glad I got out after 15 months and not longer... .
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« Reply #27 on: October 09, 2013, 12:49:02 PM »

A lot of "me too! Same here!" reading these... .

Mine said over and again that LDRs "never work, in my experience", and my replacement not only lives further away, but in another country! Go figure, as they say... .

Facebook played a huge role, as with many others. I think FB may be one of the worst things ever invented when it comes to BPDs and relationships... .

Before I consciously and deliberately started the process of moving on, with therapy, I did get to see the first defriending-and-then-refriending of my replacement, on the very day he came back from a week with her, his second visit to her. So, he is already starting the push-pull-push-pull dance... .and many months sooner than he started it with me. Despite changing his FB to "in a relationship" which he never did before with anyone, and not with me.

A friend who has known my replacement for twenty years says she is the least sympathetic woman she's ever known, incredibly intolerant of having anyone in her minimalist, immaculate and very tiny apartment, and also is highly critical of what she regards as "whining".

I find it interesting that the most recent contact from my ex, on the 6th Oct, including allegations that I whined all the time. I suspect he is projecting onto me something he is currently defending himself about... .

So although I no longer see anything either of them does or says anywhere on FB, I reckon she's already on her way out, having already been devalued once.

It helps me, to feel that she means no more to him than I did. When I believed she was somehow "better" than me, it hurt. Now I understand more (thanks to this board and the messages posted here), I understand that his obsessive love for me twenty years ago most likely caused an idealisation of me during 19 years of having no contact, and that I mean far more to him than any other woman. It is terribly sad, but I'm just really glad I got out after 15 months and not longer... .

In bold.

If that is the case... .

He will/most likely increase... .

His attempts to re engage you.

And her too.

Probably/most likely... .

At the same time.

So while he is sending you messages... .

There is a very disturbing possibility... .

That those same messages... .

Will be sent to her as well.

That is BPD.

A pattern of behavior.

It doesn't stop.
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« Reply #28 on: October 09, 2013, 12:56:10 PM »

Oh yes, IronManFalls, I agree - he's probably wildly alternating between dismissing me from his thoughts and life, and dismissing her ditto, and swapping us frantically back and forth in his mind just now!

But from *my* point of view, what matters to me is that she is not "better" than me - she's getting exactly the same treatment, at an even faster pace, as I got. So whether they stay together, whether they split, whatever the two of them do, I KNOW that she is not some kind of magically-better woman who he is suddenly normal and respectful and healthy with.

Do you see what I mean?

At first, I was haunted by my rejection by him - I have my own childhood issues meaning I fear that everyone will always prefer someone else to me, that I will never ever be on the same level as others, but always one step lower.

Because I can see that BPD pattern already swinging into action with my replacement, it means that he is following the same behaviour.

So it wasn't just me, it wasn't that I didn't try hard enough, I wasn't loving enough, I wasn't this, I wasn't that... .

... .it was that he has a major mental condition that renders him unable to form healthy close emotional relationships, and unable to sustain what he does form.

In his own words... .It's not me, it's him.

It truly is.
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« Reply #29 on: October 09, 2013, 01:20:59 PM »

Oh yes, IronManFalls, I agree - he's probably wildly alternating between dismissing me from his thoughts and life, and dismissing her ditto, and swapping us frantically back and forth in his mind just now!

But from *my* point of view, what matters to me is that she is not "better" than me - she's getting exactly the same treatment, at an even faster pace, as I got. So whether they stay together, whether they split, whatever the two of them do, I KNOW that she is not some kind of magically-better woman who he is suddenly normal and respectful and healthy with.

Do you see what I mean?

At first, I was haunted by my rejection by him - I have my own childhood issues meaning I fear that everyone will always prefer someone else to me, that I will never ever be on the same level as others, but always one step lower.

Because I can see that BPD pattern already swinging into action with my replacement, it means that he is following the same behaviour.

So it wasn't just me, it wasn't that I didn't try hard enough, I wasn't loving enough, I wasn't this, I wasn't that... .

... .it was that he has a major mental condition that renders him unable to form healthy close emotional relationships, and unable to sustain what he does form.

In his own words... .It's not me, it's him.

It truly is.

In bold.

Yes.

Absolutely.



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« Reply #30 on: October 09, 2013, 03:11:34 PM »

But from *my* point of view, what matters to me is that she is not "better" than me - she's getting exactly the same treatment, at an even faster pace, as I got. So whether they stay together, whether they split, whatever the two of them do, I KNOW that she is not some kind of magically-better woman who he is suddenly normal and respectful and healthy with.

Do you see what I mean?

She's in the idealization phase, maybe towards the end, and you're in the devaluation stage.  It's a flow-through system and the only winner is the disorder; a BPD gets massively hurt too, every time their next fantasy gets a reality check and yet another mate is not perfect.  And none of that has anything to do with you or her.

At first, I was haunted by my rejection by him - I have my own childhood issues meaning I fear that everyone will always prefer someone else to me, that I will never ever be on the same level as others, but always one step lower.

So it wasn't just me, it wasn't that I didn't try hard enough, I wasn't loving enough, I wasn't this, I wasn't that... .

We all struggle with feeling 'less than' or 'not good enough'.  Lately I've been looking at the difference between shame and guilt, and reading Brene Brown's books, Daring Greatly specifically, and they've helped a lot.  It's easy for folks like us to assume it's something we did that caused the abuse and the demise, and sometimes it is, but not in this case; we were enmeshed with a serious mental illness, and the most confident, self-assured human on the planet would have met the same demise.
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« Reply #31 on: October 10, 2013, 01:58:58 AM »

 It's easy for folks like us to assume it's something we did that caused the abuse and the demise, and sometimes it is, but not in this case; we were enmeshed with a serious mental illness, and the most confident, self-assured human on the planet would have met the same demise.

I believe now that a more confident, self-assured person than me would never have stayed for 15 days, let alone 15 months.

So I think it takes two to tango, and I am working hard with my therapist on why I fell so far down the rabbit-hole, and why I stayed and ignored all those Red Flags from early on... .my craving for love and affection, and my lack of understanding of how those work between two healthy-minded people, and my ready willingness to put up with being treated badly because I somehow equated attention with affection.

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« Reply #32 on: October 10, 2013, 04:53:14 AM »

That's what I don't know. I don't want to contact him only to be disappointed or strung-along again.

The truth is, I do love him and respect him so much. I trust his judgment on everything except, sadly, romantic relationships and his self-awareness regarding his own feelings and behavior relative to those relationships. In almost all other areas of his life except navigating romance and sexuality, he is completely functional and amazing. But in romance and sexuality, he is deeply damaged and broken in a very BPD sort of way (though he sometimes lets that manifest indirectly in other areas) and keeps going through these patterns (and not just with me).

It sounds like you have your own answer here but maybe you don't want to accept it?

It sounds like you want some guarantee that you won't get burned again. That's not realistic BPD or not.

If we want love in a romantic relationship, then being vulnerable is a requirement to receiving it. When you start talking about power like you did, then we are talking more along the lines of a master/servant relationship or at the very least something drama-filled. Which is ok if that's what you're into but that doesn't sound like the case?

You sound like someone who wants to "game the system." Are you going to be satisfied if you have to play games throughout the entire relationship just to keep it afloat? And how accepting can you be of failure if that's what it comes to?
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« Reply #33 on: October 10, 2013, 09:09:15 AM »

 It's easy for folks like us to assume it's something we did that caused the abuse and the demise, and sometimes it is, but not in this case; we were enmeshed with a serious mental illness, and the most confident, self-assured human on the planet would have met the same demise.

I believe now that a more confident, self-assured person than me would never have stayed for 15 days, let alone 15 months.

So I think it takes two to tango, and I am working hard with my therapist on why I fell so far down the rabbit-hole, and why I stayed and ignored all those Red Flags from early on... .my craving for love and affection, and my lack of understanding of how those work between two healthy-minded people, and my ready willingness to put up with being treated badly because I somehow equated attention with affection.

Great questions and great work Escaped.  You struck a chord for me; I too equated attention with affection.  In the beginning attention was enough, and I always knew where I wanted to go with the relationship, from attention to affection, which to me is a normal progression, but we never got there, I got abused instead, and yet, I stuck around much longer than I should have.  Right now I'm blaming optimism; sure she's raging now, but we're just going through a phase, and once we work through it things will look and feel like this awesome union in my head.  Reality check required.
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« Reply #34 on: October 10, 2013, 01:11:04 PM »

You're right, learningcurve, I've gotten to the point where I don't want to make myself vulnerable anymore. I guess that is an "answer," isn't it? I made myself so incredibly vulnerable for three years, and finally I've gotten to the point where I couldn't stand yet another disappointment or rejection from this person. But maybe that means I don't want to be vulnerable with him anymore, and maybe that means I'm not really in love anymore?

Yes, so much of our relationship was games, and boy they were entertaining at first, such a challenge. They hurt a lot too, but every time I managed to keep things afloat it was a rush. Now I realize, though, that it probably wasn't me keeping things afloat at all, really. I didn't "win him back," for example, the BPD made it inevitable that he'd come back like a boomerang all those times no matter what I did. It wasn't some triumph on my part, no feat of skill or proof of the heroism of my love. Just me being codependent enough to stick around. Ugh.

And yet, if he did come back in such a way as to hand me the power... .I'm not sure how I'd use it. I still can't say I'd use it to say "I'm done, I don't need you, good bye!" There's still a chance I'd try to use it, if I truly had it (and, given their games, that's a big if) to get him into therapy and to commit in more irrevocable ways to "us." But is that even what I want anymore, or do I just want to "win" at this point? It hurts so much and is so confusing.
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« Reply #35 on: October 10, 2013, 01:15:16 PM »

And yet, if he did come back in such a way as to hand me the power... .I'm not sure how I'd use it. I still can't say I'd use it to say "I'm done, I don't need you, good bye!" There's still a chance I'd try to use it, if I truly had it (and, given their games, that's a big if) to get him into therapy and to commit in more irrevocable ways to "us." But is that even what I want anymore, or do I just want to "win" at this point? It hurts so much and is so confusing.

If it helps, one thing my therapist pointed out when I said much the same thing about my ex, was:

"if your ex had proper treatment, and the years of therapy to become a healthy-minded person, then he would probably not find you attractive, because he would no longer want a codependent relationship, but a healthy normal relationship"

That made me think.

A lot.

I was *bargaining* - if he got treatment, then I'd get back with him... .and it was a bit of a shock to ahve it pointed out that if he got treatment, then I would no longer be wanted by him.

The corollary is what I'm working on now: as I get treatment and stop being a codependent person, then I will no longer find him attractive, because I will only want a normal healthy interdependent relationship with a mentyally-healthy person.

It's happening, slowly but steadily.
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« Reply #36 on: October 11, 2013, 03:35:44 AM »

If it helps, one thing my therapist pointed out when I said much the same thing about my ex, was:

"if your ex had proper treatment, and the years of therapy to become a healthy-minded person, then he would probably not find you attractive, because he would no longer want a codependent relationship, but a healthy normal relationship"

That made me think.

A lot.

I was *bargaining* - if he got treatment, then I'd get back with him... .and it was a bit of a shock to ahve it pointed out that if he got treatment, then I would no longer be wanted by him.

The corollary is what I'm working on now: as I get treatment and stop being a codependent person, then I will no longer find him attractive, because I will only want a normal healthy interdependent relationship with a mentyally-healthy person.

It's happening, slowly but steadily.

YES! Great insight there, Escaped!  Doing the right thing (click to insert in post)

As a pwBPD or a codependent gets treatment and grows as a person, they may find themselves so different from whom they used to be that they will no longer love the other partner.

It makes me even wonder if my exBPDgf didn't have BPD and didn't engage in the heavy mirroring and love-bombing, would I ever have fallen for her as hard as I did? Maybe, maybe not. That's a lot to think about! 
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« Reply #37 on: October 11, 2013, 01:12:57 PM »

I think I would have fallen in love with my ex regardless of the idealization. I liked his looks, personality and hanging out with him right away, before I saw any adverse behavior. The idealization just drove it home.
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« Reply #38 on: October 11, 2013, 02:40:14 PM »

Excerpt
And yet, if he did come back in such a way as to hand me the power... .I'm not sure how I'd use it.

Umbrella that power you've talked about seems important with regards to him.  It sounds like you need full capitulation from him to feel safe.

That power struggle especially with a person is an ugly place it turns into a war for control.

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« Reply #39 on: October 11, 2013, 07:57:06 PM »

Yeah, and that in turn just triggers his Engulfment fears.

And yet, after being burned so many times it's impossible to have Trust. And the less trust you have, the more you cling or try to control.

But it's not like I want control for its own sake. I'd only want him to surrender the power to me long enough to stabilize him, guide him into therapy, and get "us" to a place where I could trust I wasn't going to be burned again.

I know control is an issue for me. I may lean a little OCPD myself, and I've heard people with Cluster C tendencies attract those with Cluster B. My guy liked my "in control" way of thinking and behavior, because I "had it all together" (to an obsessive degree!), whereas his inner life was chaotic and out of control. And, yeah, his "slippery" emotionality was a thrill and a challenge for me, it intrigued and so enticed me... .
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« Reply #40 on: October 12, 2013, 12:46:21 AM »

He may have liked it at first but I'd bet dollars to donuts it sparked a rebellious streak.

It is hard to trust after things like this.  Being transparent and honest communication helps.

The irony is even if you had this control to guide him is there really any control over whether it takes? Ultimately he's going to do what he does per his standards.  Would it ever be enough?
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« Reply #41 on: October 12, 2013, 02:16:21 AM »

But it's not like I want control for its own sake. I'd only want him to surrender the power to me long enough to stabilize him, guide him into therapy, and get "us" to a place where I could trust I wasn't going to be burned again.

I know control is an issue for me.

Ummm... .to be a bit blunter than I usually am, way up at the start of this discussion, your wording leapt out at me, I have to admit.

you said "I either want no contact ever again OR for him to reappear in the position of the beggar and say, "You were right about everything. I don't know what's wrong with me. I love you. Help me. I'll do what you say. I no longer have any leverage here because I've been a flake so many times. You've got the power in this negotiation.""

"for him to reappear in the position of the beggar and say, "You were right about everything""

I don't know the two of you, but... .well, wouldn't a less-control-y thing to want be something like "for him to reappear and say "Help me, I don't know what's wrong with me, I love you""? Rather than leading with "You were right" and above all "him in the position of the beggar?

I think your insight here into your own control issues might be key to helping you let go and move on.

but I could be wrong - I only know what you have posted here!

Take care of yourself... .
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« Reply #42 on: October 12, 2013, 02:54:30 AM »

And yet, after being burned so many times it's impossible to have Trust. And the less trust you have, the more you cling or try to control.

What you write is very interesting! Why didn't you write, "And the less trust you have, the less involved you want to be"? If you had a friend or a co-worker who you realized you couldn't trust, wouldn't you tend to distance yourself from them rather than trying to get closer or trying to control them?
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« Reply #43 on: October 12, 2013, 10:00:23 PM »

Excerpt
I don't know the two of you, but... .well, wouldn't a less-control-y thing to want be something like "for him to reappear and say "Help me, I don't know what's wrong with me, I love you"?

Yes, I would have wanted that... .before the last 2 or 3 recycles! That would have been enough.

In fact, it was enough, back then... .to rope me back in.

But the problem was there was no accountability "built into" those sentiments. So now I'm at a point where I have to fee like... .only a "surrender" of interpersonal power would give any hope of success.

The problem with the plain old "help me" line... .is that when the problem is a problem with their own selfhood, their own agency, merely asking for help is only progress for as long as they are willing to TAKE the help. It doesn't involve any sort of "binding of the future self" and so they can always just withdraw when they change again.

If he came back, I'd need him to do and say things in such a way that it would put him in a bind even in the future, make it more difficult emotionally and socially for him to retract. In other words, he has to offer something that I can "hold over" him in order to hold him accountable to actually following through with the help I'd offer.

Until I get something like that, it's fruitless to even entertain any contact with him anymore.

So, yes, if he wanted my "help" again... .it couldn't just be empty gestures this time. This time, the "treaty" would have to have "teeth," would have to come with enforcement mechanisms that would let me be able to feel that I wasn't just getting involved in another project that could fall apart as soon as his mind/heart waffles yet again (given that the whole point of the project would be to deal with that very waffling!) He'd have to give me "power" to actually get things done in spite of his own potential future resistance (as that potential future resistance is the very problem we'd be trying to address).

I'm not going to give him any unilateral promises anymore. The "contract" would have to include two-sided "consideration" as they say in law. There would have to be something I could hold over him if he didn't fulfill his end of it. Because otherwise there's nothing I can do except hope he doesn't flake out again, which I know he will! So if he wanted me back, he'd have to give me something I could use to get him back on track the next time he does flake.

"Help me" at this point would have to mean "hold me accountable." But "hold me accountable" has to include some mechanism for holding him accountable.

Excerpt
What you write is very interesting! Why didn't you write, "And the less trust you have, the less involved you want to be"? If you had a friend or a co-worker who you realized you couldn't trust, wouldn't you tend to distance yourself from them rather than trying to get closer or trying to control them?

Yup. True. But then, I'm not in love with them. But that's my codependency I guess... .
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« Reply #44 on: October 12, 2013, 10:24:22 PM »

Umbrella... .

All these things you mention... .

Would make perfect sense... .

To a non... .

As they are... .

Reasonable... .

And coherent... .

Things... .

Based on logic.

But therein... .

Is the problem... .

Someone with BPD... .

Will not... .

Cannot... .

Wont... .

Doesnt want to... .

Doesnt care to... .

Doesnt know how to... .

Be reasonable... .

Coherent... .

Accountable... .

And have logic... .

When... .

Their very disorder... .

Exists... .

To deny... .

Themselves... .

Of having any of those things.

I wanted the very same things... .

You wrote... .

When my exUBPDgf... .

Came back to me... .

In round 2.

She appeared... .

To show me... .

Those very things... .

Until... .

The very day she was triggered.

All of that... .

Went out the window... .

On that day.

There was no more... .

Reasoning... .

Accountability... .

And what not.

Vanished.

There was never holding her accountable.

That is the unfortunate... .

And awful... .

Realization... .

That i have to accept.

It is not easy to accept.

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« Reply #45 on: October 12, 2013, 10:34:53 PM »

This is why he'd have to agree to get his parents and friends involved. There's nothing I can do, alone, to hold him accountable. I have nothing "over" him, and there's nothing he can really give me to hold over him to keep him accountable. His parents and closest friends are a different matter (for example, his parents still give him insurance and pay his rent while he's in grad school). If we talked to his parents, for example, and he described his problems to them (instead of just admitting them to me) and he said directly to them "The problem is I may flake out in a few weeks or months again, and when/if I do, I need you to hold me accountable and to demand that I stay in therapy"... .then I believe they would probably do so, and he'd have no choice.

But if he refuses to do something to "bind his future self" like that, then I'll know his cries for "help!" are so much crap and refuse to give into them.
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« Reply #46 on: October 12, 2013, 10:42:36 PM »

Umbrellaboy, your desire to have some form of accountability from your partner is normal and understandable. BUT, with BPD your are banging your head against the proverbial wall of denial and instability.

Excerpt
"I don't know what I want, I'm so confused."

From your first post. And that is at the core of the problem. They really don't know. When they have you, they devalue you, and when you leave, they idealize you and want you back. And it's the wash rinse repeat cycle that grinds your heart into a mangled hash of hamburger meat.

You want accountability, but that requires a sense of responsibility which they lack as any fault or error is projected everywhere else but at themselves. Catch22 and the Self Fulfilling Prophecy all rolled into one.

Pretty words, lovely lyrics, empty promises are the world of BPD romance. If you buy into it without Actions following up his "words" you are at fault for the heart break that will ensue because you are already aware you cannot trust him.

Excerpt
"Help me" at this point would have to mean "hold me accountable." But "hold me accountable" has to include some mechanism for holding him accountable.

He is an adult. If you have to more or less black mail a person into a relationship, who wants that?

If being straight up and honest with him doesn't work. What's the point? He doesn't respect your feelings. He's jerking your chain because he knows you care. But that can only work for so long as you allow the chain to be jerked. Remove the collar. When he knows what he wants , hear him out, otherwise? It's like trying to hold smoke.

They don't know what they want until you're gone. 
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« Reply #47 on: October 12, 2013, 10:52:48 PM »

Umbrellaboy, your desire to have some form of accountability from your partner is normal and understandable. BUT, with BPD your are banging your head against the proverbial wall of denial and instability.

Excerpt
"I don't know what I want, I'm so confused."

From your first post. And that is at the core of the problem. They really don't know. When they have you, they devalue you, and when you leave, they idealize you and want you back. And it's the wash rinse repeat cycle that grinds your heart into a mangled hash of hamburger meat.

You want accountability, but that requires a sense of responsibility which they lack as any fault or error is projected everywhere else but at themselves. Catch22 and the Self Fulfilling Prophecy all rolled into one.

Pretty words, lovely lyrics, empty promises are the world of BPD romance. If you buy into it without Actions following up his "words" you are at fault for the heart break that will ensue because you are already aware you cannot trust him.

Excerpt
"Help me" at this point would have to mean "hold me accountable." But "hold me accountable" has to include some mechanism for holding him accountable.

He is an adult. If you have to more or less black mail a person into a relationship, who wants that?

If being straight up and honest with him doesn't work. What's the point? He doesn't respect your feelings. He's jerking your chain because he knows you care. But that can only work for so long as you allow the chain to be jerked. Remove the collar. When he knows what he wants , hear him out, otherwise? It's like trying to hold smoke.

They don't know what they want until you're gone. 

In bold.

Spot on Sabartha.

Umbrella... .

In bold... .

Even if you managed... .

To get his family and friends... .

To exert that accountability... .

Over him... .

What is written in bold... .

Will occur... .

Regardless.

Their disorder will still surface.

And f¥ck all that up inevitably.

I know what you are trying to say... .

I get that... .

But that would work... .

For a non... .

Whose thought processes... .

Are stable.
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« Reply #48 on: October 12, 2013, 11:26:08 PM »

Excerpt
He is an adult. If you have to more or less black mail a person into a relationship, who wants that?

Well, not into the relationship, but into therapy.

I know the people here are right.

The thing is, he's already gone. 9 weeks now. This is just me setting up my boundaries for IF he were to ever come back.

Maybe imagining that he'd seriously agree to go right over to his parents house (no stalling!) and tell them everything and set up an appointment with the therapist is unrealistic. But that's fine: if it's not going to happen, then that just means, practically speaking, I'm not going to take him back!

If my "non-negotiables" are extremely unlikely, then that just means me taking him back is unlikely. And I'm fine with that (though I do have to imagine that therapy must sometimes work).
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« Reply #49 on: October 12, 2013, 11:42:52 PM »

Understand what you mean. Want him to be accountable to go into therapy and you will support him.

Excerpt
Maybe imagining that he'd seriously agree to go right over to his parents house (no stalling!) and tell them everything and set up an appointment with the therapist is unrealistic. But that's fine: if it's not going to happen, then that just means, practically speaking, I'm not going to take him back!

In a nut shell. R/S requires two people and only one to break it. For whatever reason the r/s breaks down can be multivariate. He leaves, you leave , or boundaries are not respected. What ever it may be. Takes one to end it.

Cannot change, cure nor control another, and you must be completely aware of what you are willing to put up with.


To care about him is normal, you were in a r/s at some point. However his actions? They are on another piece of paper. Over the years, the value of remaining detached from the BPD chaos has served me well. It also serves well with others.

Close friends that have stood the test of time don't pull this stupid PD garbage. There is consistency and accountability. When a primary r/s is being hammered with push/ pull and abuse. It's unhealthy. Best to let them sort themselves out, if they ever reach that level of awareness or not. It hurts like hell but to stick around is to enable them. I fought tooth and nail to get out of the PD Matrix and the Blue Pill is not on my night stand I can tell you that.

Excerpt
If my "non-negotiables" are extremely unlikely, then that just means me taking him back is unlikely. And I'm fine with that (though I do have to imagine that therapy must sometimes work).

For their sake, let's hope it does.

Don't know about you, but after a decade dealing with BPD chaos, I took the Red Pill. They can go play around in the Rabbit Hole all they want, without me.

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« Reply #50 on: October 13, 2013, 04:39:30 AM »

Excerpt
He is an adult. If you have to more or less black mail a person into a relationship, who wants that?

Well, not into the relationship, but into therapy.

Blackmailing a person into a relationship OR therapy, neither is healthy... .Aren't you trying to be controlling? Aren't you saying that you know what's best for him and that you want to force him into it? He doesn't have to have BPD to resent feeling controlled.

Going back to trust, isn't your partner who you love, the person you need to be able to trust the most? Even more than you trust a friend or coworker? If you can't trust your partner, then what does that say about the relationship and the possible future?
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« Reply #51 on: October 13, 2013, 05:16:45 PM »

I feel like he lost the right to expect NOT to be controlled, at least for a little while, after all this jerking me around.

Or, rather, he has every right not to hand over control. But he has NO right to expect BOTH to maintain control AND to get me back in for another round. If he wants to keep his control, fine, that's his right. But then he doesn't get any more chances with me!

Beggars can't be choosers. If he comes back begging for a second chance but then also tries to be a "chooser" and not meet my conditions for re-engaging... .then screw him, I'm not re-engaging.
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« Reply #52 on: October 13, 2013, 05:31:32 PM »

The last post was a turn.

That's when this became about your standards.  And what you would require to let him in if he came back.  Therapy and accountability.

Here's one thing that really opened my eyes to how futile this was - the exhausting idea I would have to  constantly police my boundaries.  Like a prison guard. 

I don't know about you but the kind of family overhaul and maintenance for a single wayward adult that wasn't my child sounds like misery.  Never getting the opportunity to relax into the relationship with trust and kindness - essentially sleeping with one eye open waiting for the next turn of events.

Umbrella maybe the whole purpose of this thread was to help you define what kind of partner you need and want-and by default help to rule out this individual a little?
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« Reply #53 on: October 13, 2013, 05:41:21 PM »

Maybe. That's certainly not the sort of relationship I imagine is healthy.

And yet, I have lots of other rather narrow/rare requirements in a partner, and he meets all of those, so it's very frustrating.

I feel basically like I need to find "him... .without BPD" but I don't really know how realistic that is. Gays are already at a disadvantage in terms of having a much smaller pool of potential partners and not having homosexuality be the "default assumption" when you meet someone in life like a coworker, a friend-of-a-friend, etc. It becomes this much more deliberate effort, and much harder to do "organically" unless you maintain certain social circles which are not necessarily "my" type of social circle.

And I still do have this incredible attraction, though I know it is unhealthy and unrealistic and irrational, to a romantic narrative of being someone's psychological or emotional savior. I'm working on getting over that, but it's tough.
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« Reply #54 on: October 13, 2013, 05:56:42 PM »

Excerpt
I feel basically like I need to find "him... .without BPD" but I don't really know how realistic that is.

Ahh I'm pretty sure we all thought this at one time or another. If only the pesky mental illness wasn't there.  It isn't realistic. 

One of the staying board mantras is radical acceptance - this is part of who the person is.  We can't control that or change that.  We can try to not make things worse or provide a healthier environment if the person decides to try to tackle theory emotional problems.  But forced therapy really doesn't take that well - it works better if the person wants it.

Maybe give some thought to what a healthy relationship would be for you (we have a workshop on it on the home page) and that we usually get into these relationships with complementary or matching maturity.  It may be his instability allowed that need for control you mentioned to blossom - and it satisfied that for you until it didn't anymore.  And now its becoming something you are noticing that may not be working for you as much anymore.  Hence seeing a therapist about it.

Just a thought.  We all have our reasons, issues and quirks.
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« Reply #55 on: October 13, 2013, 07:57:02 PM »

I don't know about you but the kind of family overhaul and maintenance for a single wayward adult that wasn't my child sounds like misery.  Never getting the opportunity to relax into the relationship with trust and kindness - essentially sleeping with one eye open waiting for the next turn of events.

Umbrella maybe the whole purpose of this thread was to help you define what kind of partner you need and want-and by default help to rule out this individual a little?

Good post GM. 
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« Reply #56 on: October 14, 2013, 01:51:50 AM »

Great post and the healthiest and most empowering comment in this thread. Well done 

"if your ex had proper treatment, and the years of therapy to become a healthy-minded person, then he would probably not find you attractive, because he would no longer want a codependent relationship, but a healthy normal relationship"

That made me think.

A lot.

I was *bargaining* -

I get treatment and stop being a codependent person, then I will no longer find him attractive, because I will only want a normal healthy interdependent relationship with a mentyally-healthy person.

It's happening, slowly but steadily. [/quote]
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« Reply #57 on: October 14, 2013, 04:48:34 AM »




Dear Ironman

Could I ask why your posts are written like stanzas or verses from a poem?

For some reason I keep thinking of the pirate character fron dodgeball

I realise that it might just be me and I mean no offence but I find it makes your thoughts and observation difficult to read and absorb





Umbrella... .

In bold... .

Even if you managed... .

To get his family and friends... .

To exert that accountability... .

Over him... .

What is written in bold... .

Will occur... .

Regardless.

Their disorder will still surface.

And f¥ck all that up inevitably.

I know what you are trying to say... .

I get that... .

But that would work... .

For a non... .

Whose thought processes... .

Are stable.[/quote]
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« Reply #58 on: October 14, 2013, 07:55:16 AM »

Reforming... .

Those are my thought processes... .

And i write like this... .

Because it is orderly for me.

And by writing like this... .

My thoughts are laid out... .

As if i were drawing... .

And for it to be easier... .

To read too.

No offense taken.
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« Reply #59 on: October 14, 2013, 08:56:07 AM »

I feel like he lost the right to expect NOT to be controlled, at least for a little while, after all this jerking me around.

Or, rather, he has every right not to hand over control. But he has NO right to expect BOTH to maintain control AND to get me back in for another round. If he wants to keep his control, fine, that's his right. But then he doesn't get any more chances with me!

Beggars can't be choosers. If he comes back begging for a second chance but then also tries to be a "chooser" and not meet my conditions for re-engaging... .then screw him, I'm not re-engaging.

You've got your answer right there, now it takes a while for the heart to catch up to the head.

IF, you were to go the route of Radical Acceptance, you will most likely have your heart ripped out through your rib cage in short order. There's only so much you can "let go", and "living in the moment" that is realistic. Your emotional needs go unmet while you are forever on the giving end of the equation. It's exhausting.

The other tragic truth, he may actually promise you the sun, moon and stars, but in the end, without therapy, he will revert to base line BPD and you will be banging your head into a wall.

Control is not a healthy concept in a r/s anyways. And a BPD will resent that more than you can imagine, the simple fact being, they can't control themselves as it is. Balance. Reciprocity, these are not in a BPD dynamic at all.

Should the best of the best occur and he accept your terms? Guess what, you will still be forced into the position of detachment. Why? Even he accepts the terms, he will not be able to follow through. BPD promises don't last the length it took to speak the words.
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« Reply #60 on: October 14, 2013, 09:44:56 AM »

  Balance. Reciprocity, these are not in a BPD dynamic at all.

Hallelujah!   Doing the right thing (click to insert in post)

The day she started telling me how to use the toilet I finally discovered that.
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« Reply #61 on: October 14, 2013, 09:54:32 AM »

You're kidding?  Laugh out loud (click to insert in post) why in heck would she be interested in that? 

Mine came raging up the stair one time, because he had put the toilet roll on the wrong way and blamed me. I was unaware there was a "right" way... .silly me 
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« Reply #62 on: October 14, 2013, 10:07:34 AM »

You're kidding?  Laugh out loud (click to insert in post) why in heck would she be interested in that? 

Another emasculation attempt she used as part of the devaluation.  I let her words matter for too long as it was, but that one crossed the line, and was one of many during a very dysregulated and shtty weekend towards the end.  The things we put up with... .
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« Reply #63 on: October 15, 2013, 12:42:31 PM »

Staff only

Hi, everyone.  This thread has reached the four page limit and is now locked.  Feel free to start and new topic and continue the conversation.
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