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Before you can make things better, you have to stop making them worse... Have you considered that being critical, judgmental, or invalidating toward the other parent, no matter what she or he just did will only make matters worse? Someone has to be do something. This means finding the motivation to stop making things worse, learning how to interrupt your own negative responses, body language, facial expressions, voice tone, and learning how to inhibit your urges to do things that you later realize are contributing to the tensions.
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Author Topic: If you knew then what you know now...  (Read 631 times)
Madison66
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« on: April 09, 2014, 11:35:57 AM »

In my case, I didn't know about BPD/NPD nor did I have the awareness of my own issues with boundaries and fear of abandonment when I embarked in a r/s with my uBPD/NPD of 3+ years.  I'm assuming many here on this forum were in the same (sinking) boat.  So, what were a couple of examples of early behaviors that made you say "whoa" and probably wrote off as quirks?  Based on what you have learned, what would you do now if confronted by similar behaviors?  I'm talking about behaviors that cross boundaries more than PD traits.

I ask this as I'm moving on with my life with an awareness of boundaries, respect, personal accountability, self awareness and behaviors I'll accept or reject in those I'm dating.

A few examples:

About a month or two into the r/s, I received a call from my ex gf during my workday.  She was in her car with her young kids (4, 6 and 8 at that time) and a couple of them were acting up.  My ex gf was crying and screaming at the kids while talking to me.  I listened for a little while, again during work, and then said I was sorry she was having a bad day and asked if she needed anything.  Then, she got upset with me when I said I had to go.  This type of call repeated a few times in the following couple weeks and I finally confronted her.  Her response was that she should be able to contact her partner when she was having a rough day.  There was no empathy or respect for me or for my work.  

Another really strange behavior was in the first 60 days, my ex gf would either call me on the phone late at night and tell me that she needed to stay on the line with me because she couldn't be alone or stand the feeling of being alone.  She'd also show up at my house after work (midnightish) needing to see me and couldn't stand going home alone (kids at their dad's place).  She'd at first almost refuse to come in my house and then stomp her feet like a child before coming in with tears in her eyes.  We'd almost always immediately have sex and then she'd leave.  After the repeated late calls and/or her showing up at all hours of the night, I asked her is we could talk and meet a little earlier due to my need to get sleep before work days.  She'd become angry and defensive, and would say that she'd then have to find someone else to talk to if I wouldn't be available.  

This was the early and easy stuff.  Both examples are emotional abuse and blackmail, along with me not enforcing boundaries and allowing someone else to control me due to my own fears of abandonment.  Again, first 60 days of r/s!  If confronted with this kind of behavior today, I would definitely be more direct about the behaviors and how they make me feel.  The over-the-top emotional stuff early on would be an indication to walk away without question.  If I feel a lack of empathy from the other person, I would walk away without question.

Easy to say now, but I have definitely learned my lesson... .  
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HerPerpetuallyTornLover

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What is your sexual orientation: Gay, lesb
Posts: 41


« Reply #1 on: April 10, 2014, 12:36:49 PM »

I wrote off so much, my hand is still tired, a year later! Lol. Id say the first little "quirks" I noticed were the times she would change her mind, after explicitly stating something. It could be days, weeks, maybe even a month, but I would be the recipient of some rage because I was operating under the assumption that what she had said or told me before was true. So I get in trouble for ruining whatever it was, then made to feel guilty because I wasnt aware of it before. Like... . uh... . say something next time? The impulsivity was so damaging, it felt akin to gaslighting. She gave me whiplash with all the things she would decide, then change her mind about without informing me until later. I chalked it up to it being my first lesbian relationship, figured eh, shes young and flaky and doesnt know what she wants, maybe thats just how it is. But then I started an online journal between us, so I had written evidence of what she said she wanted, as if that would help   But I was still really taken aback at the process, I couldnt rationally conceive why someone would say one thing, spend so much time convincing me of the fact, then secretly change what she wanted and never inform me until it was later and damage had potentially been done. The most common one was wanting my help. I would get raged at for helping later. Then I had her set her own boundaries, yet she still tried to accuse me of being controlling.

I was also surprised at how quickly the relationship moved, Im not sure but that seems to be a BPD relationship trait. I even held off on physical stuff for a while, but that didnt stop her from essentially moving in to my home beforehand.
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