Home page of BPDFamily.com, online relationship supportMember registration here
January 20, 2021, 02:22:05 PM *
Welcome, Guest. Please login or register.

Login with username, password and session length
Board Admins: Harri, Once Removed
Senior Ambassadors: Cat Familiar, I Am Redeemed, Mutt, Turkish
  Help!   Groups   Please Donate Login to Post New?--Click here to register  
bing
Books members most read
105
The High
Conflict Couple
Loving Someone with
Borderline Personality Disorder
Loving the
Self-Absorbed
Borderline Personality
Disorder Demystified

Pages: [1] 2 3  All   Go Down
  Print  
Author Topic: "closure"? considering final, nice gesture to uBPDex  (Read 3844 times)
peas
****
Offline Offline

Gender: Female
What is your sexual orientation: Straight
Relationship status: single
Posts: 376


« on: November 10, 2013, 08:58:36 PM »

I have been grappling with breaking NC after four months. The breaking contact urge flared up last week and has not subsided. I have not broken contact, other than I looked at his Facebook page (I swore that off when I went strict NC).

Looking at his FB page, from what I could see of it, relieved some NC tension, but I am still ruminating about my ex. He has been on my mind -- and I am not exaggerating -- probably every few minutes since the breakup five months ago. It's hell.

I kept and have re-read our last text exchange, which was hostile and full of words from him telling me to go away, I suck, I'm a psycho and he is going to call the cops if I continued texting. That's our last lovely conversation where I was looking for answers to his dumping of me.

I vacillate every day from extreme disbelief and anger toward how he treated me to empathy and longing for what he promised me. There is no getting around the fact that I fell head over heels for the guy, no matter how much I have re-cast our r/s through a BPD lens.

So I have been wondering whether I should break contact, why I would break contact, and how. I think I'm looking for "closure." Something that will bring me the peace I have been looking for since our crazy breakup. I just can't get over that he must think I am a worthless person, considering his last angry words to me.

I've ruled out calling or texting him because that's too easy for him to ignore. Plus I am probably blocked from his cell and e-mail. I also think digital media is too impersonal for this. I've ruled out showing up on his doorstep unannounced because he'll probably think I'm stalking him and call the cops. I'm thinking of sending a letter or something tangible.

My question to you: have any of you done a final, nice gesture regarding your BPDex? If so, how was it received?

I don't expect to be contacted by him after. If he responds nicely, great, thank you, good bye. If he responds terribly or not at all, same: good-bye. 

I am doing this for me, not him. I guess I'm looking to replace the negative image I'm assuming he still carries of me with something positive. I don't want to linger in his memory as a horrendous experience.

Then again, pwBPD can interpret anything positive as a horrendous experience, especially if I was the trigger to begin with. Nice words from me could very well enrage him and perpetuate my painted blackness. 

Advice?
Logged
Learning_curve74
********
Offline Offline

Gender: Male
What is your sexual orientation: Straight
Who in your life has "personality" issues: Ex-romantic partner
Posts: 1333



« Reply #1 on: November 10, 2013, 09:25:05 PM »

peas, I totally understand where you're coming from. Even though I had a long talk to dump my exBPDgf, I still felt there were things left unsaid or not understood afterwards, especially after I thought about it. And I know that breaking off the relationship hurt both her and me a LOT. Mutual friends told me some of what happened afterwards, she was pretty messed up.  :'(

It's often suggested on the board here that we write our letters to our exes and just not mail them. There is something about the act of writing out what we want to say and being able to read it that is different from merely having the thoughts and feelings roll around in our heads. If it is done for our own benefit, then the question is: why is it necessary to mail these letters to them? What more is there to be gained for ourselves whether they read the letter or not? If you are looking to find out from him whether you meant something to him, you can't get a feeling of value and worth from a person who themselves has no feelings of self-worth, they don't have any to spare for themselves much less for you.

On the Leaving board, if you look to the sidebar to the right titled "Leaving a Relationship [links]", you can see the biggest words in colors next to the bpdfamily butterfly read Attachment Leads to Suffering, Detachment Leads to Freedom. If there is a certain finality in sending this letter that leads to finally detaching, then maybe that is a good reason to send it? What other reasons could you have?
Logged

peas
****
Offline Offline

Gender: Female
What is your sexual orientation: Straight
Relationship status: single
Posts: 376


« Reply #2 on: November 10, 2013, 09:57:45 PM »

Excerpt
If there is a certain finality in sending this letter that leads to finally detaching, then maybe that is a good reason to send it? What other reasons could you have?

So that he "knows." I want him to know he meant something to me.
Logged
fromheeltoheal
********
Offline Offline

Gender: Male
What is your sexual orientation: Straight
Who in your life has "personality" issues: Ex-romantic partner
Relationship status: Broken up, I left her
Posts: 5642


« Reply #3 on: November 10, 2013, 10:36:08 PM »

I just can't get over that he must think I am a worthless person, considering his last angry words to me.

My question to you: have any of you done a final, nice gesture regarding your BPDex? If so, how was it received?

No!  Tell me peas, did you trigger his disorder when you were in the relationship?  That is something to give yourself; not just anyone gets through the walls of a borderline's defense mechanisms.  A borderline is a master at putting masks up and portraying themselves as whatever they consider 'normal', I say it's because they know that something is up with them and if they let fly with who they really are they would be rejected and abandoned, which is the worst thing that could happen.  So the facade goes up, except for people who get close, who they let get close, so give yourself that please: you mattered enough to be let into his world, where it was probably pretty awesome for a while, and then the disorder, THE DISORDER, caused him to feel badly about himself, which he then projected onto you, and you became the scapegoat.  Every borderline needs a scapegoat, and you were it.  Unless of course you actually did something heinous that he can hate you for, you would know, but if it makes no rational sense IT'S THE DISORDER!  Give yourself that.

Yes, I tried to get closure, more denial on my part.  There was no way we were connected or having any real heart to heart conversations about anything towards the end, when she was triggered full time and I was out of my head too, and the closure attempt was just more dysfunction; it hurt far more than it helped.  I thought of writing her a letter after I'd been NC for a while, but I saw that as an opportunity for her to start communication again, and the absolute refusal on my part to have anything to do with her made any upside of sending her a closure letter worthless by comparison.

I say nothing good can come with a communication attempt and it will only hurt you, one way or the other.  You read it here.  I say yes, write the letter, even read it to people who care about you, you might be surprised, but don't send it to him.

There's my two cents.  There are resources available to help with rumination; I looked for a link but couldn't find it.  The thing that has worked the best for me is to focus on the future, where I'm living the life of my dreams happy and content, and she's not in it, in fact I'm not even focusing on her not being in it, I'm just living it, and I've made that vision so compelling that I'm doing the necessary work to get there.  Try that, and take care of you!
Logged
Discovery
**
Offline Offline

What is your sexual orientation: Straight
Posts: 94



« Reply #4 on: November 10, 2013, 10:45:55 PM »

Peas, I have been having the same questioning. My uBPDx cut all contact 5 weeks ago in a cold and brief email. I've cycled through HUGE OCEANS of emotion - all of them - (still ongoing). I feel so sad to think he has cut ALL connection between us - what if he died or got hurt and I never knew? That seems so tragic to me; we spent 7 years together and shared at a deep level - in my heart he is as much a member of my "family" as my biological family members... .I might not choose to be with family members, our r/s may shift and evolve, but the connection is always there at some level. In spite of all that has happened, and with no illusion that our r/s would ever resume as partners, there is a part of me that does and will always love him AS HE IS, especially now I know that he is ILL and suffering in his way as well.

I have been feeling, also for my own closure, that I want to say "Goodbye" in a way that feels right FOR ME. For me, that means saying goodbye in a respectful, honoring way, expressing gratitude for the good I did experience in the r/s, and expressing appreciation for his good qualities which enriched my life, wishing him well on his path. I feel like I want to go out having MY last word... .a word which is kind, respectful and which corresponds to "treat others the way you would like to be treated."

This is in no way condoning or minimizing what he did and how it hurt me.

It's not in any way about HIM or what he did, only about ME and how I treat people who matter to me.

Part of me feels that writing this letter will allow me to send to him the kind of energy and words that I want to leave behind me. That would allow my heart to let go and let go with some *peace.* And that will help ME detach, to know I've done what I need to do to close the r/s with respect and dignity. The way I would say goodbye to someone I love who is dying and to whom I would be sharing my last words.

But I've been uncertain as well, because so many people say do NOT contact them anymore after they stop contact.

I hope others will share if they've had this desire and if they've actually sent a letter. I'm also open to hear others' perspectives on why this might not be a good thing to do (for me).

Logged
patientandclear
********
Offline Offline

Gender: Female
What is your sexual orientation: Straight
Relationship status: single
Posts: 2785



« Reply #5 on: November 11, 2013, 02:23:43 AM »

Discovery, I think there is much to be said for the gesture you outline.  Especially if NOT doing it is going to hold you back in the detachment process.  Many have found that strict NC actually contributes to getting "stuck."  I feel like it did for me (10 months of NC and I really had difficulty in the detachment process because it felt there were questions that were emotionally open for me, if that makes sense).

I don't think there is any reason that that letter per se is a mistake, IF you can truly let go of the outcome.  Sending something like that & getting no response or a curt response could be hurtful, and it is possible.  Bear in mind too that often they do not think, or do not consciously think, that they were the cause of what happened, so "forgiveness" may not make any sense to them -- it may need to be couched in other terms.

But I also believe it is often gratefully received.  pwBPD are proceeding with their lives hauling an enormous amount of baggage behind, and such gestures of reconciliation and good will are rare.

Peas, same applies to what you wrote, except my worry for you is I think you may not be completely sure about what you want.  It sounds to me, from your recent posts, that you're interested in opening the door to additional contact while saying you don't want to get back together.

As the frequent poster child on these boards for "additional contact while saying you don't want to get back together" (I've been back in touch with my exbf for over a year), I just want to caution that this is a very tough road requiring extraordinarily clear boundaries on your part.  I thought mine were clear -- like you, I wasn't going back in thinking he'd be a romantic partner -- but they were not clear enough.  My ex has found it extremely convenient & helpful in his life to have me intimately emotionally accessible to him, on terms defined entirely by him.  Without going into details here, I am finding it necessary to step back considerably because the dynamic is not good for me.

The Catch 22 is that, while I NOW could probably maintain NC and maybe wish I had, I couldn't have gotten there directly -- I needed to understand better and more completely how he works, to see the depth of the problem.  He truly doesn't think he has any relationship issues.  He is constantly in search of the new and exciting.  He is deathly afraid of being controlled, including through criticism -- not just afraid of rejection & abandonment.  He has enormous challenges truly trusting anyone and truly letting anyone in.  He expects all intimate associates to hurt and persecute him.

These problems color every aspect of all of his relationships, including ours.  I understand this much more deeply than I did before I got back in touch, and the learning has been a painful process.  I'm not going to use NC again, because I offered him a real friendship & I think I can manage that with real boundaries, and it's on me to do that, not him. I'm just saying there is no happy road here.  NC is a tough road.  Back in touch as friends is a tough road.  Back in touch as lovers is a road fraught with peril.

I don't think there is any right or wrong choice about sending the letter, but if you do, please protect yourself with very clear boundaries around what you want if you do restore contact.

Logged
Lady31
*****
Offline Offline

Posts: 565


« Reply #6 on: November 11, 2013, 02:53:25 AM »

Peas - I think patientandclear and others are correct.

IMO - it isn't "closure" you seeking - it's getting a fix.  It's the fact that you are hurting right now and you are wanting to reach out to him in some way to soothe YOU.  He CAN'T.

Why are you wanting to make sure he "knows" when he obviously couldn't give a crap if you knew or not when you sought answers? 

You can't keep trying to force your own heart on someone else.  When I say that I mean - you are wanting him to be a different person - someone like you.  He is not.  You want to re-write reality and for him to be different and behave different - you can't - he is THAT guy.

All you will do is hurt yourself by reaching out to him.  It may hurt really bad - or you may get a lil fix for the moment - but what happens when you need another one?

If you won't protect yourself who will?  I'm speaking a little tough love to you girl because I have been telling myself the same thing recently.

Do not enable his behavior and crappy treatment of you with you wanting to sweep it all under the rug and play nice.  Then he isn't abusing you... .you are abusing yourself.

Hang in there - detox.  Go through the shakes.  Get to the other side. 
Logged
Accepting
***
Offline Offline

Gender: Female
What is your sexual orientation: Straight
Posts: 122


« Reply #7 on: November 11, 2013, 03:44:52 AM »

This is a really helpful thread by all.

I don't feel good inside about the last contact I had with my ex - I feel like apologising even though I confronted 'his' ill behaviour or lies. I still feel guilty. My brother tells me it was great I called my ex on his behaviour... .for me, it doesn't sit well. I'd like to have had the last contact be amicable, kind, calm... .but it wasn't. The very last thing I wrote after a range of emotionally charged messages from finding his online dating profile (when he said he needed to be alone to find himself after telling me he loved me) was 'I feel disgusted by you' - then I deleted all contact numbers and email for him.

So I feel the need for closure/or last contact different to the one I have... .but the fear of another recycle outweighs the need for this. I actually fear being back in touch with the one person I've ever felt was going to be my life partner. I'm scared of what power the chemistry has over me... .I'm scared of how something so beautiful can be so tainted - and hence I take what comfort I can from the concept below... .and from similar thoughts... .I believe I did mean something and I try to take comfort from the memory of moments when I was looking in his eyes and I saw how much I meant. I try to remind myself that the last words likely are not as clear to him as they are to me anyway. With time you usually remember the better things... .he would always miss me heaps after time apart. I miss him so I'm guessing the same might be the case with him. I'm sorry, very sorry my last contact was the words I mentioned... .but maybe, just maybe, it helped him in some way to be called out on his actions?

Hang in there.

Tell me peas, did you trigger his disorder when you were in the relationship?  That is something to give yourself; not just anyone gets through the walls of a borderline's defense mechanisms.  A borderline is a master at putting masks up and portraying themselves as whatever they consider 'normal', I say it's because they know that something is up with them and if they let fly with who they really are they would be rejected and abandoned, which is the worst thing that could happen.  So the facade goes up, except for people who get close, who they let get close, so give yourself that please: you mattered enough to be let into his world, where it was probably pretty awesome for a while, and then the disorder, THE DISORDER, caused him to feel badly about himself, which he then projected onto you, and you became the scapegoat.  Every borderline needs a scapegoat, and you were it.  Unless of course you actually did something heinous that he can hate you for, you would know, but if it makes no rational sense IT'S THE DISORDER!  Give yourself that.

Logged
fromheeltoheal
********
Offline Offline

Gender: Male
What is your sexual orientation: Straight
Who in your life has "personality" issues: Ex-romantic partner
Relationship status: Broken up, I left her
Posts: 5642


« Reply #8 on: November 11, 2013, 07:07:56 AM »

Part of me feels that writing this letter will allow me to send to him the kind of energy and words that I want to leave behind me. That would allow my heart to let go and let go with some *peace.* And that will help ME detach, to know I've done what I need to do to close the r/s with respect and dignity. The way I would say goodbye to someone I love who is dying and to whom I would be sharing my last words.

I considered that too Discovery, and concluded that I had been trying to send her the kind energy and words the entire relationship, and it never got in, or it did and she got afraid and pushed me away.  I was done trying by that point.  Leaving and disappearing the way I did, communication would probably have gotten her attention, but what was my agenda?  Was there anything left unsaid?  No.  I decided it would have been me justifying myself, that I wanted to have the last word, it would have been fueled by anger, and nothing good could come of it.  So I ended up leaving having done nothing I regret or feel guilty about, the whole thing being sad, but nothing left to say.
Logged
fromheeltoheal
********
Offline Offline

Gender: Male
What is your sexual orientation: Straight
Who in your life has "personality" issues: Ex-romantic partner
Relationship status: Broken up, I left her
Posts: 5642


« Reply #9 on: November 11, 2013, 07:28:33 AM »

I needed to understand better and more completely how he works, to see the depth of the problem.  He truly doesn't think he has any relationship issues.  He is constantly in search of the new and exciting.  He is deathly afraid of being controlled, including through criticism -- not just afraid of rejection & abandonment.  He has enormous challenges truly trusting anyone and truly letting anyone in.  He expects all intimate associates to hurt and persecute him.

These problems color every aspect of all of his relationships, including ours.  I understand this much more deeply than I did before I got back in touch, and the learning has been a painful process. 

I'm curious patient, did your opinion of him change once you reconnected?  I got lost in the relationship, and once I disconnected and the fog cleared, and I learned about the disorder, the lights came on for me, everything made sense.  But once I got my feet on the ground and thought about what went down, I don't like her.  And sure, I've been able to blame the abuse and the disrespect on the disorder and forgive her, but that doesn't remotely make it OK moving forward.  Curious how you feel about your current relationship with him and why you continue it?  You mention you offered him a real friendship, which I assume means you will be there for him, and are you getting anything out of it and does he treat you with respect?
Logged
bpdspell
******
Offline Offline

Gender: Female
What is your sexual orientation: Straight
Relationship status: Married.
Posts: 892


« Reply #10 on: November 11, 2013, 07:46:50 AM »

I have been grappling with breaking NC after four months.

Advice?

Advice is a funny thing because more than half the time we're looking for the one voice that will validate what already know what we want to do in our hearts. No one on here can tell you what to do with your life but I suspect that you aren't done eating at the table of toxic dysfunction. It's common on here. Our ex's are an addiction and if we don't focus on ourselves and nursing our own wounds were are susceptible to convincing ourselves that our ex's will have the answers to filling our emptiness, our hurts and our pains. I compare this experience to any narcotic abuser or alcoholic who struggles with wanting that quick fix to mask their inner emptiness.

I've struggled with delusion, denial, and non-acceptance the entire time I've been out of my relationship. In the early days struggling to want contact made me delirious and I was obsessed in my thinking.

It does get easier but the thoughts of wishing that things could be different are powerful and addictive. There is a vacillation between standing strong in NC and feeling weak in the pit of your stomach for unrequited love so I totally understand the minds ability to play tricks on you.

The fantasy goes something like this: You write the letter + He cries + he calls and admits he missed you + he apologizes profusely, apologizes for treating you nasty + he promises to make things better, he promises to be better + you have bomb makeup sex = you happily skip off in the sunset together. But the reality is that it never pans out that way because contact with a disordered person throws acid in your emptiness. You'll be chasing the carrot of intermittent reward and your pain will only intensify.

If you're seeking catharsis I would write letters (and not send them!) like Learning Curve suggested or speaking to a core-trauma therapist. While you've been NC 4 months; it seems you still have a lot of feelings bottled inside and you need to get them out.

The thing is this. A mentally ill person cannot give you closure. They cannot fix their wrongs nor make wrongs right and that's a bitter pill to swallow. They cannot mend or repair what they so easily destroy. They are emotionally dysregulated and there's no amount of niceness or kindness we can model to them that will change their faulty brain wiring.

Their validation will not make us love ourselves, heal ourselves and they are certainly not capable of giving us the peace we delude ourselves into believing they have the power to do. They don't have that power.

The truth is that if they could give us what we seek so badly from them they'd give it to themselves and they wouldn't be mentally ill.

Spell

Logged
LA4610
***
Offline Offline

What is your sexual orientation: Straight
Posts: 127


« Reply #11 on: November 11, 2013, 08:18:34 AM »

There is a ton of good advice this thread. Thanks all. 

In regards to your letter, writing it without mailing is a great idea. When i was in the EXACT SAME SITUATION AS YOU (constant ruminating, struggling with NC, etc) a letter seemed the way to go. I had this beautifully laid out letter in my head and ruminated about it for days. When I finally sat down to write it I wrote Dear XYZ, I then sat there for a few minutes, which surprised me. Then, I wrote in all caps #@$ YOU. Of course I didn't send it.

My point is that writing your letter is a great idea. Sometimes our heads fool us and mask our real emotions (in my case anger). The letter will help you heal.

In regards to ruminating... .that is tough and you are right it literally feels like hell. The one thing I can say has helped me has been to get in and stay in a routine from the time I wake up to the time I go to bed. Simple stuff like shaving, doing laundry, making my bed, etc. All in a routine. One of the first mornings I remember crying my eyes out while I was shaving, but I just kept moving on with my routine. It helped.

Take care... .I'm pulling for you
Logged
Aussie0zborn
******
Offline Offline

Gender: Male
What is your sexual orientation: Straight
Who in your life has "personality" issues: Ex-romantic partner
Posts: 803



« Reply #12 on: November 11, 2013, 08:20:34 AM »

Totally agree with spell. In my experience, a pwBPD cannot give you the closure you seek and deserve. I yearned for closure for about a week, then realized they are not capable of it and got off that bandwagon. It just ain't gonna happen.
Logged
heartandwhole
Retired Staff
*
Offline Offline

Gender: Female
What is your sexual orientation: Straight
Who in your life has "personality" issues: Ex-romantic partner
Posts: 3591



« Reply #13 on: November 11, 2013, 08:30:12 AM »

Hi peas,

This is so tough, I'm sorry that you are feeling so divided and stuck right now.  

It sounds like by writing a heartfelt letter you would like to influence how your ex perceives you.  :)id that ever work when you were together?  Splitting behavior happens, and it's mighty difficult to "control," as far as I know.  The motivation for your letter is very sincere, and I understand how that feels like something you can do for yourself.  

If you feel that you are truly in the final stages of detachment, I can see how it might help close the chapter for you.  :)o you think you are there, now?

In my opinion, your power lies in focusing on how you feel about you, what you think about you, not what he feels and thinks about you.  You've never had control over that, and no matter how wonderful the letter, you can't predict how he will perceive it.

Just to let you know: our circumstances are different, but I did write a letter to my pwBPD.  I poured my heart out, didn't send it, and found that very helpful in my healing.

We're here for you, peas.    
Logged


When the pain of love increases your joy, roses and lilies fill the garden of your soul.
findingmyselfagain
******
Offline Offline

What is your sexual orientation: Straight
Posts: 940


« Reply #14 on: November 11, 2013, 09:36:44 AM »

Hi peas,

I struggled with closure for a very long time. I even joined a support group for BPDs to try to gain a better understanding. They pretty much all told me to run. I really did believe it was love and that we had something special. I did send a letter and she seemed responsive, but then I was painted black quickly. If I wrote again, I don't doubt eventually she might respond, but what would it accomplish? I pretty much adopted her baby daughter. I would like to be able to just say hi, how's everything with so and so every once in a blue moon? Maybe that isn't really normal either? If she could approach me in a very mature way and say, Hey, I've been really looking at myself and going to therapy. I'm really sorry for hurting you and I would like to have a better relationship with you and other people... .but I just don't believe she has the willpower. It's up to us to let them go so they have a chance at saving themselves. I wouldn't take the chance to get back with her, because the affection, the good times, etc., aren't worth being kicked to the curb right when things are just getting good.
Logged
Juno

*
Offline Offline

What is your sexual orientation: Straight
Posts: 45


« Reply #15 on: November 11, 2013, 09:38:58 AM »

Hey Peas,

Hang in there. I know its easier said than done, but your doing great. The hardest part of break ups is the beginning. I know 5 months seems like a lifetime, but its not. Stay strong and stay the course. My situation is much different, but I remember going through a few bad breakups in my lifetime. Look at this as breaking a bad habit. It takes a consistent path to overcome anything. Its kinda like working out. You want to lose weight and look better. Yet, the weight isn't going to come off right away. It takes a change in eating habits and a dedication to your workouts. You won't see the results imediatly, but eventually you will. Patience and preservation wins.

I'll tell you what helps me when I'm feeling down or confused. I love watching YouTube scenes from my favorite movies. I really get a lot of inspiration from watching some of my favorite scenes. Give it a try.
Logged
EdR
****
Offline Offline

Gender: Male
What is your sexual orientation: Straight
Who in your life has "personality" issues: Friend
Posts: 435


« Reply #16 on: November 11, 2013, 10:33:14 AM »

Hi Peas,

My take on things: I would ssssssssssssssoo much like to have something like closure.

I tried to mail stuff... but all I got in return: silence. She was in control and always has been. She controls the beginning and the end of her ST. I have no say in it.

Your pwBPD seems to be a little more talkative. Which is a good thing imo. But please... .don't think the letter itself will give you closure. If that would be the case, you may as well not send it and let it remain a psychological help for yourself.

If you would send it, your pwBPD will either react like:

-) keeps silent

-) will start shouting, name-calling, etc. etc.

Both of those replies WILL hurt you. And it won't give you closure.

Maybe there is a 3rd option: middle ground, giving an explanation, saying sorry. Chances of that happening seem to be one in a million though considering we're dealing with a pwBPD.  :'(

Logged
patientandclear
********
Offline Offline

Gender: Female
What is your sexual orientation: Straight
Relationship status: single
Posts: 2785



« Reply #17 on: November 11, 2013, 11:18:08 AM »

I needed to understand better and more completely how he works, to see the depth of the problem.  He truly doesn't think he has any relationship issues.  He is constantly in search of the new and exciting.  He is deathly afraid of being controlled, including through criticism -- not just afraid of rejection & abandonment.  He has enormous challenges truly trusting anyone and truly letting anyone in.  He expects all intimate associates to hurt and persecute him.

These problems color every aspect of all of his relationships, including ours.  I understand this much more deeply than I did before I got back in touch, and the learning has been a painful process.  

I'm curious patient, did your opinion of him change once you reconnected?  I got lost in the relationship, and once I disconnected and the fog cleared, and I learned about the disorder, the lights came on for me, everything made sense.  But once I got my feet on the ground and thought about what went down, I don't like her.  And sure, I've been able to blame the abuse and the disrespect on the disorder and forgive her, but that doesn't remotely make it OK moving forward.  Curious how you feel about your current relationship with him and why you continue it?  You mention you offered him a real friendship, which I assume means you will be there for him, and are you getting anything out of it and does he treat you with respect?

Hi Heal (I prefer to call you Heal rather than Heel Smiling (click to insert in post)).  Great questions, questions I'm not completely sure how to answer yet.  But here's how it looks for now.

I go back and forth enormously on the issue of whether I like him.  There are aspects of him I really like and respect.  I respect his work and how he goes about it.  I respect his mind -- he thinks broadly & carefully (about everything but interpersonal relationships it seems) and I like how he thinks.  He is a dedicated parent of adult kids.

At the same time, in the past few months, he has made clear just how dedicated he is to not rethinking or changing the dynamics that have been so painful for me (and many other women he's run through before, and now after, me).  He has been embracing a life philosophy of spending time with people for as long as it lasts, and then letting go gracefully, without "clinging."  He's taken what happens to him & elevated it to a set of principles that I certainly don't share -- it seems antithetical to commitment and working through hard things because someone or something is worth it -- but if he were just a friend, that would be one thing.  I have a hard time getting past the fact that he accessed my deepest, most private places by claiming a set of values that were completely different -- he wanted to go through time together, he was desperate (clinging?) that I not change my mind about him, he reassured me that I had nothing to fear from committing to him, he concealed his own r/s history so I wouldn't have grounds to worry whether he'd follow through.  If he'd been honest with me, I'd never, ever, have let myself care about him as I did.  That, I don't respect.  I resent it and I feel like I'll be dealing with the fallout for the rest of my life.

Also, I've now watched him cycle through one, maybe two, other women since me, and even though I'm not the one on the operating table, it's pretty awful to watch him make similar promises to them and then pull away when suddenly his feelings go wonky, and devastate them.  I know one of them -- she'd been through a few trips around the track with him before & was deeply in love with him, and she tried so hard to protect herself by setting conditions and boundaries and requirements ... .he got past those, and she relaxed, and he still blew things up shortly after that.  He was interested in the quest, not the arrival -- same old story.  No, I don't like that.

I offered him a friendship bearing in mind that I know he has an attachment disorder -- I just didn't completely understand the implications of that.  The particular problem I'm working on now is that he pulls me in to a quasi-partner position even while denying that that is what he's doing, and then doesn't sustain that, and that hurts me every time.  I am drawing the necessary conclusion that we are not going to just "organically" grow a deeper, healthier romantic love because we now know each other much better and have more of a basis for trust.  That is, he has more of a basis to trust me.  But I have even less of a basis to trust him.  Every time I feel like we're on solid ground, he changes it.  He moved to another city, and he started dating another woman (not that he's told me that, I could tell from shifts in his intimacy patterns with me & then I got some easy online confirmation by accident).  Obviously as friends it was not out of bounds to date others, but to me, it is out of bounds for him to set what is going on with us aside as soon as he has someone else.  I wouldn't do that to him -- I wouldn't embark on something with him that I wouldn't sustain.  And that makes me feel used.  So I am pulling back to a zone where I am not giving him such intimate access to me, one where I will not feel betrayed if he pushes pause, since that seems to be inevitable.

Why do I continue it?  At this point, mostly to keep an important promise.  He does have an attachment disorder.  He does believe that people who come close have a hidden agenda or will hurt or betray him.  I'd rather not be part of confirming that.  I offered friendship, and sure, I got confused when what that meant for him was a romantic r/s in all but name -- but that really is on me.  I needed to not allow that, since I had no reason to think he would or could sustain that.  I'm not blaming myself but saying that the solution to that is a boundary on my part that prevents him from being able to hurt me -- a boundary that insists we are JUST friends.  Not all the benefits he'd like to a romantic r/s, minus any obligations, which is where we've been.

He hasn't broken any of our rules of engagement.  I just never expected him to get THAT close to me and then not call it what, to me, it is: a deep, abiding, life-partner love.  He did.  Now I know that, and it's my responsibility to protect myself.  I've explained to him how I feel, he's made his decisions (move, date someone else) -- OK.  I need to make some changes to make this not keep hurting.

I suppose my other reason for staying is that he didn't decide to have these problems and he really has very little insight into them (he really did just tell me a few weeks back that there is "nothing to fix," after having initiated a conversation about how he doesn't know what happens with relationships in his life).  There is some core real person under all the defenses with whom I feel like I have a genuine bond.  I hate the defenses and they have a vicious grip on that little kid.  But I am going to stay loyal to the little kid, because the defenses are not all of him -- although it does mean backing away to a place where his predictable push-pull won't get at me the way it has.

If we are truly "just friends," I will offer what I offer my other close friends, and not look to him for more than I get from my other close friends.  That's not daily communication, and it is not this sense that we are one another's primary confidante.  I don't approve of all the ways he goes about his life but that is true of some of my friends as well -- I don't stick my nose in those parts unless asked, and the same will be true here.

Sorry to hijack peas!  Maybe this should be a different thread.  Anyway, peas, I agree with Spell and the others -- it feels like you may be driven by the impulse to play it out, and I understand that, and if you are, you are -- it can be hard to let things go when you feel you have unanswered questions that you can't deal with just intellectually, you need to live the answers.
Logged
Bananas
****
Offline Offline

Gender: Female
What is your sexual orientation: Straight
Posts: 346



« Reply #18 on: November 11, 2013, 12:18:46 PM »

Hi Peas,

I wrote a letter and I gave it to my ex.  It was a nice letter, not to emotional and I think my reasons for writing it were something along the lines of what P&C wrote:

Why do I continue it?  At this point, mostly to keep an important promise.  He does have an attachment disorder.  He does believe that people who come close have a hidden agenda or will hurt or betray him.  I'd rather not be part of confirming that. 

I also work with my ex so NC was never an option for me.  I want things to be OK as much as possible when we see each other and have to work together.  I wrote to him that I valued our time together, and although things didn't end up the way I wanted I wished him well. 

In return I got silence.  I expected this.

He is still very uncomfortable around me.  He goes back and forth between being friendly and ignoring me completely.  I am not sure if giving him the letter was a good idea or not.  Sometimes I feel good about sending it, and sometimes I feel stupid.  It didn't change anything really. 

Logged
fromheeltoheal
********
Offline Offline

Gender: Male
What is your sexual orientation: Straight
Who in your life has "personality" issues: Ex-romantic partner
Relationship status: Broken up, I left her
Posts: 5642


« Reply #19 on: November 11, 2013, 01:24:59 PM »

Thanks for the illumination patient, interesting and seems growth provoking.

I suppose my other reason for staying is that he didn't decide to have these problems and he really has very little insight into them (he really did just tell me a few weeks back that there is "nothing to fix," after having initiated a conversation about how he doesn't know what happens with relationships in his life).  There is some core real person under all the defenses with whom I feel like I have a genuine bond.  I hate the defenses and they have a vicious grip on that little kid. But I am going to stay loyal to the little kid, because the defenses are not all of him -- although it does mean backing away to a place where his predictable push-pull won't get at me the way it has.

I loved the little girl under all the crap too, I just couldn't get to her, perpetually frustrating, and to get the crap beat out of me for trying with pure motives didn't help.

It was very painful, and still is a little, when I think about giving to her and loving her and that didn't work out.  But then if I turn it around for a second and ask how well I was getting my needs met, not at all, except that need to rescue of course, there is nothing for me there, and getting abused trying to get them met got really old.  Life doesn't have to be that hard, and there are plenty of people willing to build relationships with me based on trust and respect.  Gotta let her go, and I hope she finds peace somewhere.

Sorry to hijack peas!  Maybe this should be a different thread.  Anyway, peas, I agree with Spell and the others -- it feels like you may be driven by the impulse to play it out, and I understand that, and if you are, you are -- it can be hard to let things go when you feel you have unanswered questions that you can't deal with just intellectually, you need to live the answers.

Yeah, sorry peas, although patient has given us some insight into what happens if you do reconnect, maybe useful.
Logged
peas
****
Offline Offline

Gender: Female
What is your sexual orientation: Straight
Relationship status: single
Posts: 376


« Reply #20 on: November 11, 2013, 03:04:55 PM »

All, so far excellent feedback. Thank you. Heal, Discovery, P&C, Bananas and others (it's a greatl list), I am taking in all your words.

A couple of things as I see them now:

I feel more strongly about writing and sending a letter. To write something and not send it -- what's the point? I want to communicate something to him. I'm done communicating with myself on the matter. My nerves are shot. I feel this has to be done. I am stuck.

And to clear something up right away, this is NOT the case

Excerpt
The fantasy goes something like this: You write the letter + He cries + he calls and admits he missed you + he apologizes profusely, apologizes for treating you nasty + he promises to make things better, he promises to be better + you have bomb makeup sex = you happily skip off in the sunset together. But the reality is that it never pans out that way because contact with a disordered person throws acid in your emptiness. You'll be chasing the carrot of intermittent reward and your pain will only intensify.

... .The thing is this. A mentally ill person cannot give you closure. They cannot fix their wrongs nor make wrongs right and that's a bitter pill to swallow. They cannot mend or repair what they so easily destroy.

First, I find that passage derisive in its oversimplification ("You write the letter + he cries + ... .make up have bomb sex... .". We all know feelings and dreams attached to our BPD experiences are more complex and fraught than that.

Closer to the breakup months ago I held out hope that included making up and both of us acknowledging our love and mistakes. I know this is unrealistic now. I don't expect an apology or change from him or even an acknowledgement of our time together. Further, there is a possibility he will interpret a letter, five months after the breakup, as me being "psycho" and "creepy" (both of which he has accused me when I spoke emotional truth to him) and I wouldn't put it past him to call the cops on me. 

I am not looking to him for closure. I am looking to myself for closure and I am out of options. I still carry a lot of guilt and personal regret over the relationship. I just want to get back to neutral. I am exercising my grieving rights irrespective of his reaction. He can only "throw acid in my emptiness" if I let him and I don't plan on letting him.   

In one respect, I see mailing the letter akin to bringing a handful of flowers to lay at a memorial of someone who died.
Logged
fromheeltoheal
********
Offline Offline

Gender: Male
What is your sexual orientation: Straight
Who in your life has "personality" issues: Ex-romantic partner
Relationship status: Broken up, I left her
Posts: 5642


« Reply #21 on: November 11, 2013, 03:18:02 PM »

I am not looking to him for closure. I am looking to myself for closure and I am out of options. I still carry a lot of guilt and personal regret over the relationship. I just want to get back to neutral. I am exercising my grieving rights irrespective of his reaction. He can only "throw acid in my emptiness" if I let him and I don't plan on letting him.   

In one respect, I see mailing the letter akin to bringing a handful of flowers to lay at a memorial of someone who died.

OK.  Your focus is on you and your closure and that's a good thing.  "Exercising my grieving rights" is a cool phrase.  I hope you get the closure you're looking for, you've processed this a lot and come up with the letter idea, so it is what it is, and I hope the fallout is minimal.  Power to you peas and keep us posted!
Logged
Learning_curve74
********
Offline Offline

Gender: Male
What is your sexual orientation: Straight
Who in your life has "personality" issues: Ex-romantic partner
Posts: 1333



« Reply #22 on: November 11, 2013, 03:48:13 PM »

I feel more strongly about writing and sending a letter. To write something and not send it -- what's the point? I want to communicate something to him. I'm done communicating with myself on the matter. My nerves are shot. I feel this has to be done. I am stuck.

Hey peas, I totally get where you're coming from. You want to tell your ex something and not doing that is eating you up inside, at least that was the way I've felt and TBH still do sometimes.

You know all the different ways he might respond (or not respond). I am of the opinion that any way he responds has the potential to make you feel more hurt in some way. Even if he is nice, that can still hurt. But maybe sometimes it gets worse before it gets better.

Whatever you decide, we will still be here to listen. 
Logged

HarmKrakow
*******
Offline Offline

What is your sexual orientation: Straight
Posts: 1226


« Reply #23 on: November 11, 2013, 05:29:48 PM »

Closure from a BPD relationship is like hitting the jack pot. It only happens to a few of us.
Logged
Waifed
*******
Offline Offline

Gender: Male
What is your sexual orientation: Straight
Who in your life has "personality" issues: Ex-romantic partner
Posts: 1026



« Reply #24 on: November 11, 2013, 06:31:21 PM »

Peas

Your BPDex will likely throw the letter away before he opens it. HE THREATENED TO CALL THE COPS ON YOU!  Enough said. They do not care about us once the relationship is over. They have moved on. The only reason you will ever hear from him again is if he needs something. Focus on the way he broke you down to a fragile skeleton with no self esteem, friends or hobbies. You are better than him. He does not deserve your love or the knowledge that it is still inside you. Don't give him the satisfaction that he still has power over you. YOU DESERVE BETTER THAN HIM.
Logged
Juno

*
Offline Offline

What is your sexual orientation: Straight
Posts: 45


« Reply #25 on: November 11, 2013, 07:53:15 PM »

I agree with everything Waifed said. That being said, we're not in Pea's shoes. Some of us fought this battle and learned from it. We didn't learn from it until we went through the process. My wish is for Pea's to stay strong and stay the course, but it's not my call. She has to do what she thinks is best. She's asking for our advice and we will give it as we see fit. Yet, we need to remember what it was like to be in her situation. There's a lot of uncertainty and loneliness and that can intensify from day to day. All of us on this board has suffered in one way or the other, but the best thing we can do for each other is to always be there for each other.

Peas, I wish you luck and peace in your search for closure. All of us understand what your going through.
Logged
peas
****
Offline Offline

Gender: Female
What is your sexual orientation: Straight
Relationship status: single
Posts: 376


« Reply #26 on: November 11, 2013, 08:35:12 PM »

Thank you for the kind words Juno, Heal, Waifed, Harm, Learning.

I will let you know how this goes. I talked about this with my therapist today and she gets it. She agrees that it's hard to let go and find peace when a close, loving (as loving as it could be wBPD) relationship ends abruptly in hostility.

She said whatever reaction or non-reaction I get from the ex could be grist for the mill -- a confirmation that indeed this guy is not the one for me and I can move on.
Logged
fromheeltoheal
********
Offline Offline

Gender: Male
What is your sexual orientation: Straight
Who in your life has "personality" issues: Ex-romantic partner
Relationship status: Broken up, I left her
Posts: 5642


« Reply #27 on: November 11, 2013, 08:43:32 PM »

She said whatever reaction or non-reaction I get from the ex could be grist for the mill -- a confirmation that indeed this guy is not the one for me and I can move on.

Yes.  The extinction burst contact attempts after I left her did nothing but reinforce my decision and accentuate her disorder.
Logged
Discovery
**
Offline Offline

What is your sexual orientation: Straight
Posts: 94



« Reply #28 on: November 11, 2013, 08:48:57 PM »

Peas,

I know each person wBPD is different... .Like you, I want to write a closure letter... .if you feel you want to, please do share your experience if you do send it... .how you felt doing it, what happened (or not) as a result. For me, too, the intent is to close things in a way that feels right FOR ME -- knowing that however he does/doesn't respond is simply a clear indication of HIM.

Wishing you well

Logged
Conundrum
****
Offline Offline

Gender: Male
What is your sexual orientation: Straight
Who in your life has "personality" issues: Ex-romantic partner
Posts: 316


« Reply #29 on: November 12, 2013, 12:47:54 AM »

Take a revolving door that is in perpetual motion, how do you close it without turning off the system?  It moves in the same cyclic pattern, and one either enters or exits but does not remain inside. We desire stasis from these dialectic souls. Closure implies permanence and these are not permanent people. They are predictable people. Predictable, in that all is subject to cataclysmic change at any given time--for disordered enigmatic reasons. If they were the arbiters of the Constitution of the United States we would have amendments rescinded, reenacted, reconstituted and abolished all on a daily basis. They are relational anarchists and will never let themselves be ruled by any "one" attachment. It is necessary to accept this about them or else we remain in an unhealthy aspirational dream-state. Do we ask the waterfall to pause its torrent for a moment so that we can make peace with it? No we let it flow. Let these strange beings flow too, and love them or hate them for what they are. They have no closure within, how can they ever provide closure without.

This is just my opinion. If you truly want closure with your pwBPD spend a day with them without allowing your ongoing desire to control you. Watch them in a detached state--be a camera. Appreciate all their strange quirks and anomalies--but if you can maintain that detached form of observation you will start to see the absurdity and futility of trying to take this person seriously in a relational sense. They are impossibly immature and without the adult tools necessary to sustain a meaningful relationship. You will say goodbye to both them and your aspirational dreams--in a sense. It is very sad for them in the long-run. We did our best. We tried to love those who many shun and consider the devil's spawn. They are just people. Broken children. If you want to have a truly krazy friend or lover in your life with all that entails, and the strength that it takes --that choice may await you. It is a very personal decision. But desiring closure in a traditional sense with a pwBPD leads to further suffering. 
Logged
Can You Help Us Stay on the Air in 2021?

Pages: [1] 2 3  All   Go Up
  Print  
 
Jump to:  

Our 2020 Financial Sponsors
We are all appreciative of the members who provide the funding to keep BPDFamily on the air.
40days_in_desert
Ahquei3s
alphabeta
Amethyste
Angie59
ArtistGuy70
AskingWhy
assumezero
At Bay
Avanzando
Baglady
Beneck
bigredneck
Bittlecat
Boll Weevil
calmboom
Cat Familiar
Chosen
Dnmtnbkr
drained1996
Eggshellsbroken
FaintTheGoat
FaithHopeLove
FindingMe2011
Forgiveness
freespirit
GaGrl
ggGreg
Gift to Myself
gotbushels
Harri
hopeandchoices
I Am Redeemed
Imatter33
Jazzy48
jdc
jones54
Jonthan
Katrinalove
Kwamina
l8kgrl
LLgreen
Longterm
lorymac
lovenature
loyalwife
lucidone
Manifest32f
MariannaR
Meridius
Methuen
mgirl
Minttea
Mommydoc
Mutt
narcdaughter2
needPeace
NorseWoman
Notgoneyet
oceanheart
oftentimes
Omega1
once removed
Only Human
otherlife
palynne
PeacefulMom
Pedro
pest947
podsnapG
ProudDad12
pursuingJoy
Radcliff
Raul
Recycle
Resiliant
Rev
Rosheger
Sad4Her
SamwizeGamgee
Sandalwood
SBBayArea
SCM
SerendipityChild
SES
Silverhope
Skip
songbirdtwo
StillStuck
Swimmy55
Teno
townhouse
truthbeknown
turtleengine501
Ventak
vinnie77
Violet00
wavewatcher
wendydarling
WhatJustHappened?
Whichwayisup
whirlpoollife
Wicker Man
WindofChange
worn_out
WTL
zachira
zaqsert

Powered by MySQL Powered by PHP Powered by SMF 1.1.21 | SMF © 2006-2020, Simple Machines Valid XHTML 1.0! Valid CSS!