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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: "closure"? considering final, nice gesture to uBPDex  (Read 3863 times)
peas
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« 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?
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Learning_curve74
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« 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?
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peas
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« 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.
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fromheeltoheal
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« 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!
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Discovery
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« 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).

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patientandclear
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« 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.

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« 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. 
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« 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.

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fromheeltoheal
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« 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.
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« 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?
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« 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

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« 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
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« 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.
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« 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.    
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« 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.
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« 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.
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« 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.  :'(

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« 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.
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« 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. 

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« 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.
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« 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.
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« 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!
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« 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. 
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« 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.
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« 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.
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« 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.
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« 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.
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« 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.
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« 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

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« 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. 
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« Reply #30 on: November 12, 2013, 10:04:26 AM »

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.

This is very telling Conundrum.  I work with my ex and I have some opportunities to do just that, observe him, quietly, like I am watching a movie.  It really has helped me to detach.  The most interesting is when I am in a room with him and a few other coworkers that are somewhat close to him (arms length).  He does not know what to be or how to act.  He gets very anxious, as if he is onstage in a play and forgot his lines.  I often smile at him to try to make him feel comfortable, but he usually makes an emergent excuse to leave the room.   
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« Reply #31 on: November 12, 2013, 10:05:06 AM »

Excerpt
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.

Like how you said that, conundrum.

I find a hard concept to grasp is that those w/BPD fail to act in ways that most would consider rational or reasonable.  I wore myself out trying to "reason" with my BPDxW, which got me nowhere.  I wonder, Peas, if you are on a similar mission to talk some "sense" into your Ex and end things on a positive note, which I suspect will lead to more disappointment.  But in your case maybe it is worth a try, if only to confirm what you already know.

Lucky Jim
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« Reply #32 on: November 12, 2013, 02:15:49 PM »

Dear Peas,

    Whether you send a letter to him or not means nothing to him -- or you, actually.  The only thing that matters is that you have such a low opinion of yourself that you would even consider debasing yourself in this way.  Until you stand on your feet and break from him this obsession will never end.  I imagine you don't think explaining how you feel to be debasing yourself, but when someone tells you they don't want you around and you still send him a letter telling him, yet again, how much you love him -- that should be beneath your dignity. Honestly... .where does it stop?  You're better than this.  You just have to believe it yourself. 

    By the way, since I expect an angry response from you, let me say that I'd rather have you be angry than weak.  It's strength you need right now; not to stand up to me, but to him.  You are the only person who can get better here.

LT     
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« Reply #33 on: November 12, 2013, 02:41:22 PM »

Dear Peas,

    Whether you send a letter to him or not means nothing to him -- or you, actually.  The only thing that matters is that you have such a low opinion of yourself that you would even consider debasing yourself in this way.  Until you stand on your feet and break from him this obsession will never end.  I imagine you don't think explaining how you feel to be debasing yourself, but when someone tells you they don't want you around and you still send him a letter telling him, yet again, how much you love him -- that should be beneath your dignity. Honestly... .where does it stop?  You're better than this.  You just have to believe it yourself. 

    By the way, since I expect an angry response from you, let me say that I'd rather have you be angry than weak.  It's strength you need right now; not to stand up to me, but to him.  You are the only person who can get better here.

LT     

Peas... .before you'll be sending that letter, please read the above post. Please re-read all posts in your thread which contain some sort of warning.

I know you said the reply itself doesn't matter anymore. I thought that as well. But I ended up feeling even more bad every single time. The reply WILL hurt (silence or an angry response).

I'm repeating myself here, but the possibility of a satisfying answer is like one in a million.
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« Reply #34 on: November 12, 2013, 03:36:51 PM »

One good thing is I live in another city -- we had a long distance relationship. So if he flips out, he will flip out hundreds of miles away.

I really do not believe he will respond in any way to my gesture, if I decide to go through with it.

Also, it's funny, a lot of you are filling in the blanks and assuming I am going to send something long, flowery and hopeful. That's not what I had in mind.

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« Reply #35 on: November 12, 2013, 03:58:22 PM »

One good thing is I live in another city -- we had a long distance relationship. So if he flips out, he will flip out hundreds of miles away.

I really do not believe he will respond in any way to my gesture, if I decide to go through with it.

Also, it's funny, a lot of you are filling in the blanks and assuming I am going to send something long, flowery and hopeful. That's not what I had in mind.

Are you willing to share what you do have in mind?
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« Reply #36 on: November 12, 2013, 04:10:35 PM »

Heal, basically something along the lines of "nice knowin' ya!"
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« Reply #37 on: November 12, 2013, 04:25:10 PM »

Peas, the title for your original post is "considering final, nice gesture to uBPDx" so the assumption of a positive correspondence has some merit!  

I have been drafting an email, editing it and sitting on it for about two weeks now.  This thread has been incredibly helpful to me.  Thank you for introducing the topic and for all who have contributed so earnestly to the conversation.

My email has been focused on stating how wrong and destructive her lying and manipulation was to me.  I was clear about how she hurt me when it first disclosed, but I displaced my anger and was very unclear with her and with myself on what I felt about what she did.  In other words, I came apart with hurt, but did not hold her accountable for her bad behavior (lying, cheating, manipulation).  The net effect was that I felt very diminished as a person.  That feeling was because I failed myself... .I failed to express my objections to what she did; and I did this because I was afraid I would lose her and I think I was afraid of my own anger (complex issue!).  Anyway, we were in contact again a month or so ago and she expressed how she was sorry to have hurt me.  There was no acknowledgement of what she did to hurt me.  And, I responded with a general absolution.  Since that interaction I have been experiencing a free flow of objection and anger toward what she did... .and feeling clarity about her behavior and how I want to live my life... .and that behavior such as that is not what I want.  It is all a bit late!  Yikes, about two or three years too late!  But, at least it is kicking in.  So, I have been writing it, and writing it, and writing it.  And, the process of writing it out really does change the emotions and thoughts.  It has been activating my boundaries... .I am realizing where and how I violated my boundaries and writing out my objections to our history has awakened them within me.

Will I send it?  I think so.  For me... .and just for me!... .one of my growth frontiers is defining and asserting my boundaries.  I will frequently withdraw rather than express them.  It is, I suppose, passive aggressive. And I feel like I need to express myself to my ex before it all fades into the sunset.  It feels risky to me, but I am thinking it is a risk that is worth taking.  Pressing the send button is my leap of faith.  I will have said "it".  But, I am still writing... .and thinking.

Sometimes on these boards we treat our the potential for our own hurt as an unacceptable risk.  Potential hurt is to be avoided at all cost.  One consideration in this instance for me is that maybe I just need to send it.  It will make me feel weird because it will be expressing objections to her behavior that I have tip-toed around.  Just sending it will be hard enough.  So, if she ignores it... .or reacts with anger... .or rebuts it... .so what?  So what means I might be hurt... .so what means maybe I won't be hurt, but maybe for me right now the key area of growth is to take a risk to express myself, for myself.  To feel like I could "face the facts" and "express the facts" and accept whatever reaction that might create.

And, if it awful and I fall apart... .it will only be for a while!  Sometimes we give these relationships too much power by fearing how they might zap us, as though we could not recover.  Mind you I am saying this after a couple of years of hell and an inner self that had jello for a spine.

All this being said, I will be patient and think and act on what I think is best at the time.
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« Reply #38 on: November 12, 2013, 05:17:10 PM »

Hey Winston (and peas, indirectly), Instead of crying over spilled milk, perhaps you could say to yourself, "next time . . .  I will stand up for myself, raise objections, express my misgivings, etc." rather than beat yourself up over what you might have done differently last time.  The sad reality is that nothing you could have done would probably have changed the outcome, because it is rare for a BPD r/s to hold up over the long haul.  It sounds, Winston, like you welcome the idea of doing something (sending the letter) that is likely to lead to more pain and regret.  Maybe you could sit with your feelings, before sending the letter, to try and understand why you seem to have a need to prolong the suffering?  Just a thought.  Lucky Jim
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« Reply #39 on: November 12, 2013, 05:58:04 PM »

I don't see my action as crying over spilled milk. I've already done that plenty over the past five months.

I mentioned above to Heal that my note will be "nice knowin' ya," and I was mostly kidding. But really, I do not plan on going into an analysis of any kind.

Winston seems to want to explain some things to his ex, and that is perfectly okay.

I'm with Winston on this:
Excerpt
And, if it awful and I fall apart... .it will only be for a while!  Sometimes we give these relationships too much power by fearing how they might zap us, as though we could not recover.



Incidentally, Winston, I composed a long e-mail to my ex about a week before we broke up. I didn't send it because I feared he would reject me upon reading it. I still have the draft and I re-read it the other day and it reads like a classic account of a BPD's detachment. I was upset at some increasingly disappointing behavior by my ex and how worried I was about our relationship. I wish I had sent it.

I do not see sending a letter now as a way to make up for past unspoken words. Whatever went unsaid will stay unsaid.
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« Reply #40 on: November 12, 2013, 06:50:12 PM »

I think many of us wish we could send letters to our ex's and move on. Unfortunately, it doesn't always work out that way. Having said that, who am I to judge? My ex won't leave me alone. I have so much anger towards her, and I truly would love to write a letter to her. I want to let her know how disgusted I am of her actions and broken morals. In the end though, she wouldn't care less of what I was saying. Sadly, it would probably make her day. She would be tickled to death that I actually contacted her. That's all she would get out of it. I do hope someday I can find closure, but its doubtful. If peas and Winston can do it, who am I to say no? I understand their pain. They're hurt and they still care about their ex's. Its much easier for me because I literally can't stand my ex. Some of us have moved on, but it took us a long time to get over the hurt.
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« Reply #41 on: November 12, 2013, 07:08:55 PM »

Sometimes on these boards we treat our the potential for our own hurt as an unacceptable risk.  Potential hurt is to be avoided at all cost.  One consideration in this instance for me is that maybe I just need to send it.  It will make me feel weird because it will be expressing objections to her behavior that I have tip-toed around.  Just sending it will be hard enough.  So, if she ignores it... .or reacts with anger... .or rebuts it... .so what?  So what means I might be hurt... .so what means maybe I won't be hurt, but maybe for me right now the key area of growth is to take a risk to express myself, for myself.  To feel like I could "face the facts" and "express the facts" and accept whatever reaction that might create.

And, if it awful and I fall apart... .it will only be for a while!  Sometimes we give these relationships too much power by fearing how they might zap us, as though we could not recover.  Mind you I am saying this after a couple of years of hell and an inner self that had jello for a spine.

I think this is some good self-examination you got going on here, winstonDoing the right thing (click to insert in post)

It seems like No Contact has almost achieved the status of dogma on the Leaving board. What I'm saying is that it's taken for a fact that contact is bad, and that contact invariably leads to pain. But I think it really depends on what stage of healing you're at. Depending on the severity of the pain your reaction to it, pain isn't necessarily something to be avoided nor a bad thing. Pain is your mind and body telling you that something is wrong. If you don't know something is wrong, how can you heal it?

And to peas and Lao Tzu -- I love your usernames BTW -- I'm not 100% philosophically for or against Lao Tzu's viewpoint. I do think that if you have a self image of being a compassionate and caring individual, it can be self-caring to send a nice letter especially if the communication at the end and/or past the end was not what you normally would engage in. Why should you let other people influence you into being somebody you don't want to be? I want to be a caring and compassionate person, therefore I can write a nice letter if that is what I believe is true to myself and my values. However, I do want to say that we have a duty to ourselves too. I think writing AND sending a letter is best when you're far along the path of realizing the words in the column to the right: Attachment Leads to Suffering, Detachment Leads to Freedom. If there is little expectation of any particular outcome, whether your ex will reply angrily, reply kindly, no reply, file a restraining order, whatever, then the greatest value you receive from writing and sending a letter will be in reflecting and acting in accordance to your own inner beliefs and values.

For me personally, I don't have much desire to write anything to my exBPDgf right now, mostly because there's no point to it for me. She believes she is messed up, knows she pushed me away, and feels like she is unlovable and that everybody leaves. Anything I write will just be empty words to her since I "abandoned" her. So ironic that in the end both of us ended up believing that each others' words were only hollow lies.
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« Reply #42 on: November 12, 2013, 07:42:22 PM »

Nice Learning.  I never had a strong desire to communicate after I left, and fortunately I had my head about me enough that I didn't do anything I now regret or feel guilty about.

But you guys have got me thinking.  Sure, maybe I feel a sense of obligation to my integrity to do what's right, and maybe capping the dysfunction with a level headed missive to create a clean break would have been 'right', but for me there's also a strong sense of shared responsibility.  She would have had to be someone I cared about, trusted and respected at the end, and the fcking btch just wasn't, so for me that pretty much negates any obligation to act in accordance with my values, which need to be earned, and I don't feel bad about it.  Whew!
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« Reply #43 on: November 13, 2013, 05:26:52 AM »

Also, it's funny, a lot of you are filling in the blanks and assuming I am going to send something long, flowery and hopeful. That's not what I had in mind.

I don't actually think a lot of us did that. And I really feel you're missing the point here. I for one are not ashamed to admit that I would want to do the same thing as you. Heck, I already did that multiple times.

Why? To be normal friends or something like that? NO. It's a combination of desiring closure and ultimately it's just because I care for her.

Did it help me? No, it did not. It only helped for those minutes or hours or once even days when I felt the urge of sending something finally die down.

Do I still have that urge? YES I DO.

It is your decision, and only you can be the judge of your own emotional state. Are you truly ready and prepared for the consequences? We're not talking nukes here, but silence itself can probably cause even more damage any true weapon could. We just can't see if you are ready from our PC monitor, so some of us try to keep this thread balanced.

Not to 'know better' or anything. Just to try and be helpful.
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« Reply #44 on: November 13, 2013, 06:08:15 AM »

Hi Peas,

I am normally on staying but have had a break up before with my uBPDbf and so have been through this a little.

I think that we can do what we want (write the letter, email etc) if that is what we feel is right for us. The only thing I would want to be able to do at this stage if I were you is to let go of the outcome. If the closure letter and getting that information accross is important to you and will make you feel better then that is a valid feeling/standpoint for you. As long as it's about sending the letter ONLY and not about the reaction it will generate then I think its ok. Just my view.

I also agree with one of the posters who said that why should you change your character and act in ways you dont normally? ie with me I dont generally ignore people/shut them out/leave things on a bad note but with my uBPDbf I ended up doing just that when we split for a while. Eventually I daresay I would have done something similar in a letter for my own sake so as to uphold my own integrety. So that I could look back and say "hey at least I maintained my dignity in this and continued to act in accordance with my own values"

I think the main point here is that if you genuinly dont care what the outcome is - if you are prepared for silence as a response and it is only about saying your piece to help YOU then - well - why not do somethng to help you - and if its the letter then so be it.

I know that NC is the thing that is advised a lot but when I went through it for a while I also spoke my truth (nicely) to my bf but I had no thoughts on his reaction, no expectation, no ulterior motive - it was all about me and the information I needed to be heard to help me feel better.
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« Reply #45 on: November 13, 2013, 07:45:47 AM »

I always think of contact equaling pain because anytime I have contact he starts going on and on and on with crazy making behavior about how terrible I am and how good he is and in the end we are right back together with me apologizing for hurting him….for what I can never figure out…because its so mixed up and crazy and him painting me white again because I listened, back on the pedestal and ready to be knocked of again. Its just such a mess anytime there is contact.  I have tried to communicate, to write letters etc in the past….he will always respond but only to a sentence or something he picks out of the letter that he wants to hear and never acknowledges anything that has to do with my feelings….its crazy.  He comes back and says things like he can't do 100 percent of the work…he is a vegan….buddhist….practicing kindness and stuff….and then more mean than anyone I have ever known. Any form of contact has never gotten me anywhere.  Its so hard to just let go with no closure. Its so hard to never feel validated for anything when you have worked so hard. Its so hard to let go of a relationship you want so badly esp when if you just say the right thing, you know you could have them back for a moment…but its not real. I have finally realized there is no such thing as "closure" and ironically that is giving me the closure I always wanted.
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« Reply #46 on: November 13, 2013, 10:28:02 AM »

I always think of contact equaling pain because anytime I have contact he starts going on and on and on with crazy making behavior about how terrible I am and how good he is and in the end we are right back together with me apologizing for hurting him….for what I can never figure out…because its so mixed up and crazy and him painting me white again because I listened, back on the pedestal and ready to be knocked of again. Its just such a mess anytime there is contact.  I have tried to communicate, to write letters etc in the past….he will always respond but only to a sentence or something he picks out of the letter that he wants to hear and never acknowledges anything that has to do with my feelings….its crazy.  He comes back and says things like he can't do 100 percent of the work…he is a vegan….buddhist….practicing kindness and stuff….and then more mean than anyone I have ever known. Any form of contact has never gotten me anywhere.  Its so hard to just let go with no closure. Its so hard to never feel validated for anything when you have worked so hard. Its so hard to let go of a relationship you want so badly esp when if you just say the right thing, you know you could have them back for a moment…but its not real. I have finally realized there is no such thing as "closure" and ironically that is giving me the closure I always wanted.

I can relate to this.  I'd get my head straight when away from her, then get together with her and start asking for what I needed and setting boundaries; yes, I did have the ability to see what I needed and wanted and ask for it, in spurts anyway.  And those conversations would ignite the biggest rages and the biggest blame; that was a road she just wouldn't go down, the one where real issues get discussed, so up went the defenses.  I caught myself avoiding it to avoid the rage and the blame, but screw that; I would have totally lost myself if I went down that path too long.  Closure for me was ensuring she would never, ever treat me like that again, and the only way to ensure that was leave, far, far away.
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« Reply #47 on: November 13, 2013, 10:38:01 AM »

Peas,

I can understand you wanting to get closure by doing that. The only thing that stands in the way of that is, your ex will most likely misinterpret that to mean anything but what it's intended purpose was. And in return, may/will backfire on you. Maybe to someone who wasn't disordered your intent would get through in proper form, but here, with BPD, I fear it will not.

There were many times I tried with all my communication skills, to get through to my ex. After she was triggered both times, all my words were mangled in her filtering process. She could not hear me at all. Or, she was hearing my words and not acknowledging them at all. I don't even know which was worse. And the more I tried to reach through to her, the more she closed down on me, with insults and jabs to boot.

Hang in there Peas.

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« Reply #48 on: November 13, 2013, 10:44:21 AM »

Peas,

I can understand you wanting to get closure by doing that. The only thing that stands in the way of that is, your ex will most likely misinterpret that to mean anything but what it's intended purpose was. And in return, may/will backfire on you. Maybe to someone who wasn't disordered your intent would get through in proper form, but here, with BPD, I fear it will not.

There were many times I tried with all my communication skills, to get through to my ex. After she was triggered both times, all my words were mangled in her filtering process. She could not hear me at all. Or, she was hearing my words and not acknowledging them at all. I don't even know which was worse. And the more I tried to reach through to her, the more she closed down on me, with insults and jabs to boot.

Hang in there Peas.

peas is doing it for her and it has nothing to do with him, which I can relate to; it's about our detachment and our healing, and if something needs to be said, and not saying it is getting in the way, then let fly.
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« Reply #49 on: November 13, 2013, 12:31:33 PM »

Excerpt
After she was triggered both times, all my words were mangled in her filtering process.

IM, that's why I intend to use few words in a letter.

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« Reply #50 on: November 13, 2013, 03:19:11 PM »

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? Advice?

advice?  no.  but, here's my experience ~ take from it what you will.

here's the wishful thinking:

yes i did want to and i did.  wrote a long heartfelt letter so we could part on good terms, so she would know how much i loved her, how hard i tried, how regretful i was 'we' couldn't make it work, how i hoped her happiness even if it meant being with someone else, blah blah.  i wrote it all!   Smiling (click to insert in post)

we ended up recycling, yay!  i thought my letter must have been brilliantly written and had had  an indelible impact on her.   Smiling (click to insert in post)

here's the fantasy:

several months later, when i was tidying up the place, i found my letter.  awe, it made me feel so warm and fuzzy inside, knowing it meant so much to her that she tucked it away and saved it!  it proved our love was strong, was meant to be, that i really was her soulmate, right?

here's the reality:

as i held the letter, having all those thoughts, i turned it over in my hand and i'll be d*amned if it wasn't even opened!  she hadn't even read it!  she hadn't even had the interest, or decency, to open it!   :'(

so, for the other recycles, i just didn't even bother writing "The Letter" again.  i knew it would be pointless.   just a plain "cya!" with a wave would have been sufficient.  

thanx for the trip down memory lane, peas.  seems like everyday at BPDfam i uncover memories i'd forgotten (or buried).  

oh, PS:  she told me the reason she hadn't opened it was b/c she knew basically what it said and it was too painful for her to have me say goodbye and leave her.     i didn't know it at the time but now i do:  that's classic BPD behavior... .ostrich head in the sand.


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« Reply #51 on: November 13, 2013, 06:21:05 PM »

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.

you know what?  i did give it a try, just now... .the last 1/2 hour spent watching clips of one of my faves (planes, trains, and automobiles w/steve martin and john candy).

i've had an internal day from h*ll, but laughing has really helped.  thank you, from the bottom of my heart, juno.
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« Reply #52 on: November 13, 2013, 07:42:04 PM »

Yes Juno, I meant to reply to your suggestion about watching movie clips on YouTube. I watch old music videos sometimes and that cheers me up. I also watch comedy film clips. There's a silly Joe Dirt clip I watch to get me laughing.

Also, ucmeicu2, thank you for sharing your tale of writing a letter and how your ex responded. I am glad to learn of other people's experiences and what they took away from it.



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« Reply #53 on: November 13, 2013, 07:51:19 PM »

here's the reality:

as i held the letter, having all those thoughts, i turned it over in my hand and i'll be d*amned if it wasn't even opened!  she hadn't even read it!  she hadn't even had the interest, or decency, to open it!   :'(

Wow!  This reminds me, my ex had a letter from his grandmother sitting unopened on his kitchen table for weeks.  This is a grandmother he told me he was no longer speaking to.  I asked him aren't you going to open that letter?  And he told me no.  I asked him how he could just let a letter sit like that unopened for weeks.  And he said he could let it sit there for years and it would not bother him one bit.  Just Wow!

So now I am thinking, my ex probably didn't even open my letter either.  I'm off to watch some movie clips on YouTube. 
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« Reply #54 on: November 13, 2013, 07:54:38 PM »

It is your decision, and only you can be the judge of your own emotional state. Are you truly ready and prepared for the consequences? We're not talking nukes here, but silence itself can probably cause even more damage any true weapon could. We just can't see if you are ready from our PC monitor, so some of us try to keep this thread balanced.

in bold, and in general, this is a really tricky part. dialectics are precisely what the pwBPD needs to learn, btw, it's what is taught in DBT ~ dialectical behavior therapy ~ they need to learn to be able to sit with opposites.  it's lacking that ability that is the bain of pwBPD.

NC as dogma... .  hmmm, ok so the tricky (dialectical) part is that YES only the individual can be the judge of their own emotional state and readiness (or lack of) to have contact with their pwBPDx. 

on the other hand, the dialectic is that addiction always lies to us!  the beast always lies.  alcohol for the alcoholic  sez: you're ok now, you can drink now, just this one time, just today, just one won't hurt, stop at 2, etc.  but the alcoholic is being lied to by the addiction!  same goes for any addiction:  they all talk/scream to the addict to keep doing it.

we were, i believe, addicted to our BPDx's.  if we are still addicted, even just the teensiest bit, is it not potentially dangerous to have more contact with the ex?  yes. even if one doesn't answer that w/a resounding 100% "yes", ya gotta ask yourself if it's worth the risk involved.  risk analysis.  if you say it's worth it and you can/will be able to handle the results, who are we on this board to say NO?  hehe, i mean, yeah we do say no sometimes but i don't think any of us mean it as binding legal advice or a court mandate Laugh out loud (click to insert in post) !  we're just sharing our experience, opinions, gut feelings, etc.

the beauty of these forums:  take what you want and leave the rest.


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« Reply #55 on: November 13, 2013, 09:14:34 PM »

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.

This is very telling Conundrum.  I work with my ex and I have some opportunities to do just that, observe him, quietly, like I am watching a movie.  It really has helped me to detach.  The most interesting is when I am in a room with him and a few other coworkers that are somewhat close to him (arms length).  He does not know what to be or how to act.  He gets very anxious, as if he is onstage in a play and forgot his lines.  I often smile at him to try to make him feel comfortable, but he usually makes an emergent excuse to leave the room.   

wow! I had exactly the same experience. I watched my ex once amongst a group of his friends - he had exactly the same reaction... .did not know what to be or how to act. He seemed lost. He too had an excuse and left. Indeed, watching them from a detached state you see how different they actually are from who you are. They truly are lost children.

Bananas, you are lucky that he is still there, and you can look at him and see him for the way that he is.  Perhaps that is what is so difficult about NC... .we are left with nothing, except our memories of them when we were hopelessly attached, enmeshed.  Imagine, if we were to work on detaching, but also have limited contact with them... .where we can really and truly start to see them for who and what they are: lost and sad.  I may be wrong, but sometimes I did find NC so much more difficult than if I had to see him on a regular basis. While I was with him I think I started moving down the path of detachment... .but he disappeared into a void of nothingness before I could really get to a point where I wasn't totally sucked up by his energy.   But perhaps making contact is just a way for us to feel our way through the dark... .and simply getting the validation that yes indeed, it is impossible to "be" with them. 

I so badly wanted to get to that "neutral" point... .neutralize it. But no matter what happened, the energy was so frenzied and anxious. It was so tough for me to swing from amazing and passionate, to dreadfully tragic, to frightening, to heart wrenching.   What I think we simply need to understand is that with a pwBPD, that middle ground - perhaps the ground where a healthy adult relationship can grow because it is a foundation of stability - simply does not exist.
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« Reply #56 on: November 13, 2013, 09:19:23 PM »

Amazing thread.

   I realized as I read them, I figure there's no one right answer. If there were, that might be black or white thinkingish.

    BPD's are variant- ish, and whether one is giving up a BPD or a drug, alcohol, or overrating, I'm guessing there are all kinds of ways: cold turkey, tapering... .etc.

   Though I do like some of the advice that's a bit of tough love... .
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« Reply #57 on: November 13, 2013, 09:32:01 PM »

here's the reality:

as i held the letter, having all those thoughts, i turned it over in my hand and i'll be d*amned if it wasn't even opened!  she hadn't even read it!  she hadn't even had the interest, or decency, to open it!   :'(

Wow!  This reminds me, my ex had a letter from his grandmother sitting unopened on his kitchen table for weeks.  This is a grandmother he told me he was no longer speaking to.  I asked him aren't you going to open that letter?  And he told me no.  I asked him how he could just let a letter sit like that unopened for weeks.  And he said he could let it sit there for years and it would not bother him one bit.  Just Wow!

So now I am thinking, my ex probably didn't even open my letter either.  I'm off to watch some movie clips on YouTube. 

just a thought, but I doubt it was about interest that they didn't open it.  They probably didn't open it because they knew or feared what was in it: words of love, hurt and letting go from someone they care about.  All these things are what they spend their lives getting wrong. It cuts to their core, and not opening that letter avoids them experiencing that pain, something they go to immeasurable lengths to avoid in fact.
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« Reply #58 on: November 13, 2013, 11:04:33 PM »

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.

Yes.  The one opportunity I had to do this was the time, at the end, that we went on a cruise together.  To be on a cruise is to be incarcerated on a boat in the middle of the ocean with 3000 other convicts, fun if you make it fun, an opportunity to socialize and relax.  My borderline ex was so massively uncomfortable and without a clue how to behave that she spent almost the entire cruise in our cabin, paranoid and hiding.  Both shocking and funny to witness, I made a lot of friends out in the real world, and that realization, taking her out of her world and her comfort zone and watching the wheels fall off, was the wake up call I needed.  And then the questions start; why the hell did I do that so long?
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« Reply #59 on: November 13, 2013, 11:30:22 PM »

Guitargirl,

Excerpt


I have tried to communicate, to write letters etc in the past….he will always respond but only to a sentence or something he picks out of the letter that he wants to hear and never acknowledges anything that has to do with my feelings….its crazy.  He comes back and says things like he can't do 100 percent of the work…he is a vegan….buddhist….practicing kindness and stuff….and then more mean than anyone I have ever known.



Totally the SAME for me!  In reply to him after he unilaterally cut the the r/s by email, totally bewildered, I did a huge personal inventory of anything I might have done to hurt him, apologized and owned every thing I could think of that was not kind or fair, said I could only guess that he must be acting out of fear to flip from love to quasi-hate so radically... .Asked him to give me feedback, said his well-being mattered to me and I wanted to know if there were things that upset him so we could address them, etc. I said a lot of things. In the reply to me, he singled out a single few lines, responded to those and COMPLETELY IGNORED ALL THE REST.

I experienced this selective replying to only what he felt like replying to all the time. It is TOTALLY crazy-making... .and it wasn't until I started reading about passive-aggression etc. that I came to realize this kind of manipulative quasi-communication is ABUSIVE.

My former partner also is a supposed practising buddhist, does the Loving Kindness sutra every Friday at group meditation, and loves feeling virtuous helping homeless people. But then treats his most intimate partner with NO respect or compassion. The integrity gap is a chasm.

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« Reply #60 on: November 13, 2013, 11:40:49 PM »

Unhooking... .

Excerpt


I doubt it was about interest that they didn't open it.  They probably didn't open it because they knew or feared what was in it: words of love, hurt and letting go from someone they care about. All these things are what they spend their lives getting wrong. It cuts to their core, and not opening that letter avoids them experiencing that pain, something they go to immeasurable lengths to avoid in fact.



I totally agree. AVOIDING, RUNNING, HIDING, PRETENDING, DENYING, MASKING.

Exposure to emotional truths is too painful, so the only strategy is to act is if nothing is wrong.

This has got to create a huge amount of internal unreleased tension and pain. It's invisible for the most part, but it's got to be there. That's where karma comes in for me... .what you do to others will come back on you sooner or later.

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« Reply #61 on: November 14, 2013, 10:47:43 AM »

Bananas, you are lucky that he is still there, and you can look at him and see him for the way that he is.  Perhaps that is what is so difficult about NC... .we are left with nothing, except our memories of them when we were hopelessly attached, enmeshed.  Imagine, if we were to work on detaching, but also have limited contact with them... .where we can really and truly start to see them for who and what they are: lost and sad.  I may be wrong, but sometimes I did find NC so much more difficult than if I had to see him on a regular basis. While I was with him I think I started moving down the path of detachment... .but he disappeared into a void of nothingness before I could really get to a point where I wasn't totally sucked up by his energy.   But perhaps making contact is just a way for us to feel our way through the dark... .and simply getting the validation that yes indeed, it is impossible to "be" with them. 

I so badly wanted to get to that "neutral" point... .neutralize it. But no matter what happened, the energy was so frenzied and anxious. It was so tough for me to swing from amazing and passionate, to dreadfully tragic, to frightening, to heart wrenching.   What I think we simply need to understand is that with a pwBPD, that middle ground - perhaps the ground where a healthy adult relationship can grow because it is a foundation of stability - simply does not exist.

What is that saying, you always want what you don't have.  I wish I could have NC.  I find it impossible to get to that neutral point!  Being in a position where I may or may not have to run in to my ex and feel that frenzied and anxious energy you speak of... .  eight months out and still have those feelings.  My ex disappered into a void of nothingness, but I can see him.  It is like seeing a ghost. 

I make a lot of progress on the weekends because I have NC.  Then it's back to work, and when I see him my heart breaks a little more each time.  And I can't say a word because we are in public.  I have to stuff everything inside just to keep in together so I don't turn into a mess in an environment where I must remain professional.  No easy task.   
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« Reply #62 on: November 14, 2013, 12:08:32 PM »

What is that saying, you always want what you don't have.  I wish I could have NC.  I find it impossible to get to that neutral point!  Being in a position where I may or may not have to run in to my ex and feel that frenzied and anxious energy you speak of... .  eight months out and still have those feelings.  My ex disappered into a void of nothingness, but I can see him.  It is like seeing a ghost. 

And I, in a sustained, reasonably functional post r/s friendship with my ex, also find it like being with a ghost.  All the connections between us are still there, but not allowed to mean what they once meant.  It is exactly like having a r/s with a ghost.  Bananas is right, all the options are very hard.
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« Reply #63 on: November 14, 2013, 12:11:40 PM »

I make a lot of progress on the weekends because I have NC.  Then it's back to work, and when I see him my heart breaks a little more each time.  And I can't say a word because we are in public.  I have to stuff everything inside just to keep in together so I don't turn into a mess in an environment where I must remain professional.  No easy task.   

I did that for a while Bananas, and it was extremely difficult.  The day she got fired came with a massive sense of relief, I felt my whole body relax for the first time in months, it surprised me just how much I'd repressed just to keep it together.  I hope you are able to make some peace with yours.
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« Reply #64 on: November 14, 2013, 05:00:33 PM »

here's the reality:

as i held the letter, having all those thoughts, i turned it over in my hand and i'll be d*amned if it wasn't even opened!  she hadn't even read it!  she hadn't even had the interest, or decency, to open it!   :'(


just a thought, but I doubt it was about interest that they didn't open it.  They probably didn't open it because they knew or feared what was in it: words of love, hurt and letting go from someone they care about.  All these things are what they spend their lives getting wrong. It cuts to their core, and not opening that letter avoids them experiencing that pain, something they go to immeasurable lengths to avoid in fact.

unhooking, yeah <nod nod> i said almost the same thing verbatim, at the bottom of my post you quoted from, maybe you missed it:

oh, PS:  she told me the reason she hadn't opened it was b/c she knew basically what it said and it was too painful for her to have me say goodbye and leave her.   huh  i didn't know it at the time but now i do:  that's classic BPD behavior... .ostrich head in the sand.

*but*  i also found (here and there, not like all in a box together) other letters/cards including from her parents, an exBF, and the exGFfiancee that she had failed to tell me about(!).  so there was something else going on inside her head b/c i seriously doubt she thought there was "abandonment" inside that christmas card from her parents or birthday card from exBF. <shrug>
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« Reply #65 on: November 14, 2013, 08:24:15 PM »

ucmeicu. Yeah... .strange.  Perhaps through letters people can express vulnerability, more so than in person, and pwBPD just can't handle it.  But mostly, some of their behaviour just makes no sense whatsoever.  It's amazing the trail of chaos and hurt they leave behind them.  I've heard that sometimes pwBPD actually hold on to tokens of people.  My ex had articles of clothing, jewelery from others that he liked to wear sometimes, people he hadn't spoken to in years but who had supposedly been his BFFs... .

Bananas and heal, thanks for sharing your stories.  It's true. We always want what we don't have.  That sounds really hard what you went through... .and yeah, I probably would have struggled immensely with having to work with him.  I feel that I've made some really big steps and perhaps NC has allowed me to get to the point that I am at now.  I did experience moments of weakness when I would hear from friends about what he was doing, and those moments would set me back.  Maybe I hoped low contact would dispel the fantasies that I wove in my head about him... .but in the end, good ol' self discipline, getting my mind off him, onto my own, and other, more interesting issues was probably the best medicine.   
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« Reply #66 on: November 14, 2013, 08:54:35 PM »

ucmeicu. Yeah... .strange.  Perhaps through letters people can express vulnerability, more so than in person, and pwBPD just can't handle it.  But mostly, some of their behaviour just makes no sense whatsoever.  It's amazing the trail of chaos and hurt they leave behind them.  I've heard that sometimes pwBPD actually hold on to tokens of people.  My ex had articles of clothing, jewelery from others that he liked to wear sometimes, people he hadn't spoken to in years but who had supposedly been his BFFs... .

Bananas and heal, thanks for sharing your stories.  It's true. We always want what we don't have.  That sounds really hard what you went through... .and yeah, I probably would have struggled immensely with having to work with him.  I feel that I've made some really big steps and perhaps NC has allowed me to get to the point that I am at now.  I did experience moments of weakness when I would hear from friends about what he was doing, and those moments would set me back.  Maybe I hoped low contact would dispel the fantasies that I wove in my head about him... .but in the end, good ol' self discipline, getting my mind off him, onto my own, and other, more interesting issues was probably the best medicine.   

A component of the disorder is a borderline harbors reunion fantasies with all of their exes, a remnant of the earliest attachments that created the disorder to begin with: never say never.  My borderline and I were together the first time 25 years ago, it ended in chaos per usual, but she contacted me once in a while over the decades, until she found me again on Facebook 2 years ago, and off to the races we went again.  I've never had another girlfriend do that, and the way she showed up when we spoke, as if everything was rosy and not a day had gone by, was just creepy.  But I went there anyway.

Low contact is an option, there is no rule and NC is just a tool.  I sometimes wonder what it would have been like if I had been around her after the relationship ended, and strong enough to detach and observe her objectively.  I'm sure my opinion would have changed, she's a weirdo and I ignored most of it when I was caught up in the emotion.  Would have been interesting.

What I did do was disappear without a trace because I was VERY pissed off, which maybe saved my life.  And then after a while the emotions waned and I could look at it more objectively, and I don't even like her.  Not even close.  She's got the cutesy facade she puts forth, honed to perfection to seduce men after decades of practice, but it doesn't take long to see there's not much under it, and what's there is very unattractive.  NC for me, permanently.
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« Reply #67 on: November 17, 2013, 09:27:21 PM »

Hm... .

So I've been reading some interesting stuff on "no contact", including the sidebar in an article on this site. It seems like "NC" can sometimes be rigid, just like a BPD. The article in the resource center here pointed that out... .that "NC" can also be iffy. (My words)

    Sometimes I wonder about how I hear people speak of the "mentally Ill". To me, it's a spectrum, and yeah that may conflict with diagnostics or DSM's that help in some ways and can also have it's limitations. We all have out crap, and some more than others.

    I also think it's possible I'm being Pollyanna, but I've been quite a student of psychology for 20 years, and been in many therapeutic settings- allanon, men's groups, yoga retreats, psych courses, workshops galore. I figure no one is beyond hope for change, and it's not for us to judge or guess.

   It's for us to be authentic. Live in our truth as it's evolving. Be kind. Be strong. Heal ourselves. (Also in this sites article center an article recommends to lie when a BPD ex calls and say "someone's at the door". Lie? I don't like to lie. To me there are better solutions whether they're tougher for me or not. I've done enough lying and experienced enough lying.)
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« Reply #68 on: November 17, 2013, 09:35:19 PM »

And to be more clear, this isn't advocating for re-enmeshing with a BPD ex. It's about the issue of NC and the flavor that takes. The idea that when we are getting over a relationship with someone who is somewhere on the spectrum of mental illness, there might be many choices for how to do that. And maybe none of them are less evolved than others. They're all just different ways and some could result in friendships with ex's, and some could result in NC.
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« Reply #69 on: November 17, 2013, 10:09:34 PM »

Hm... .

So I've been reading some interesting stuff on "no contact", including the sidebar in an article on this site. It seems like "NC" can sometimes be rigid, just like a BPD. The article in the resource center here pointed that out... .that "NC" can also be iffy. (My words)

    Sometimes I wonder about how I hear people speak of the "mentally Ill". To me, it's a spectrum, and yeah that may conflict with diagnostics or DSM's that help in some ways and can also have it's limitations. We all have out crap, and some more than others.

    I also think it's possible I'm being Pollyanna, but I've been quite a student of psychology for 20 years, and been in many therapeutic settings- allanon, men's groups, yoga retreats, psych courses, workshops galore. I figure no one is beyond hope for change, and it's not for us to judge or guess.

   It's for us to be authentic. Live in our truth as it's evolving. Be kind. Be strong. Heal ourselves. (Also in this sites article center an article recommends to lie when a BPD ex calls and say "someone's at the door". Lie? I don't like to lie. To me there are better solutions whether they're tougher for me or not. I've done enough lying and experienced enough lying.)

LivingLearning, exactly. It's about being authentic and we need to express ourselves in a way that doesn't do harm to us or them and it comes from a good place, that's part of the deal.
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« Reply #70 on: November 17, 2013, 10:44:30 PM »

Thank you peas, "comes from a good place"... .

I suppose that's so much of what I've been figuring out. What is the good place? When am I caretaking? When am I being harsh?

And then there's another place where I relax a bit and I'm like... .hey this is me... .maybe I'm good... .Let me just do as I do. Let me hear any advice, and then just go for it.

This is a bit of a tangent, but I think this is something I struggle with: how much can I trust my "instinct". How much is my "gut feeling" a product of my BPDish mom or dad? How inch can I trust myself? Who do I listen to?

All stuff I figure maybe people in my shoes struggle with on some level.
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« Reply #71 on: November 18, 2013, 12:32:30 AM »

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