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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: Attachment styles of pwBPD  (Read 2617 times)
Pingo
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« on: November 28, 2014, 08:13:37 AM »

I am currently reading a book called 'Attached' by Amir Levine and it is extremely interesting and insightful.  It is a book about attachment theory in adults. I am left with confusion about some different aspects of this whole attachment theory.  When I began to read the book I decided my ex had an 'anxious' attachment. He was hypervigilant, possessive and jealous.  But as I read through I see that he was also 'avoidant'.  He was secretive and controlling.

I think I also have an 'anxious/avoidant' attachment but I don't think I always did.  I think this r/s created this in me.  I think I had secure attachment with some avoidant tendencies based on past r/ss.  

I am wondering if anyone has more insight on attachment theory and how it plays out in these r/ss, especially an abusive r/s. The examples in the book on how to resolve issues in r/s with people with different attachment styles is based on healthy partners.  I can't see how it relates to these extreme r/ss that we've been through.

Also, for those of us trying to get back into the dating scene, I really recommend this book.  I think it will be helpful in recognising these different attachment styles in potential partners and help us to select people with secure attachments and also help us to become the securely attached.  

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« Reply #1 on: November 28, 2014, 08:25:11 AM »

Hey Pingo,

I'm also reading a book on attachmentstyles  Doing the right thing (click to insert in post)

My conclusion was that my uxBDFgf had an anxious/avoidant attachmentstyle.

I, myself, have always been of the avoidant type, but working on that since my marriage broke off.

I believe that the awareness of your own attachmentstyle can help you grow to a more secure style.
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« Reply #2 on: November 28, 2014, 08:39:27 AM »

Hey Pingo,

I'm also reading a book on attachmentstyles  Doing the right thing (click to insert in post)

My conclusion was that my uxBDFgf had an anxious/avoidant attachmentstyle.

I, myself, have always been of the avoidant type, but working on that since my marriage broke off.

I believe that the awareness of your own attachmentstyle can help you grow to a more secure style.

Can I ask what you are reading? 

I would be curious to see how our attachment styles affected our choice to be in these crazy r/ss.  I know my ex brought out my 'anxious' attachment tendencies in the beginning and my 'avoidant' attachment tendencies later on when he tried to control and possess me. 
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« Reply #3 on: November 28, 2014, 08:51:43 AM »

Can I ask what you are reading? 

I'm reading a book in Dutch, "Blijf bij mij" (Stay with me) by Rika Ponnet.

What part of us is lured into the relation with our xBPD is a question that I cannot answer yet.

I'm also keen to learn more about that. But I'm just halfway my book  Smiling (click to insert in post)
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« Reply #4 on: November 28, 2014, 04:42:43 PM »

I've read and am rereading the book 'Attached' and find it very insightful too.

The thing I like about attachment styles is everybody has one, unlike personality disorders, which are much more rare.  And a personality disorder is not an attachment style.  I don't know what attachment style my ex had and don't care, it's irrelevant in the face of BPD, but when she was in devaluation mode she acted very avoidant, and I've learned that people with anxious attachment styles like me don't do well with people with avoidant styles, they're like Kryptonite for us, which is why I thought I was literally going insane in the relationship.

The good news is that it's said 60% of people have a secure style, 20% anxious and 20% avoidant, so I've got an 80% change of getting with someone other than an avoidant person.  I've also known other women whom I wouldn't consider disordered, but they were definitely avoidant, and that just doesn't work for me; I need someone to be emotionally available and communicate what's going on with them, especially where the relationship is concerned, otherwise, you guessed it, I get anxious and start to wonder where I stand.

The other good news is when an anxious person gets with a secure one, they can become more secure.  So there you go.  We've graduated from BPD school and I don't see myself ever being susceptible to that again, plus attachment theory is so simple and obvious, and when we meet new people and think from that frame, it becomes clear what type of person we're dealing with quickly, which can save a lot of time on the way to the life of our dreams.
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« Reply #5 on: November 28, 2014, 04:53:04 PM »

I read this book too.  I believe, prior to the r/s, I actually fell more into a category between secure and avoidant.  After the r/s, with all of the dishonesty and emotional abuse, I went into the anxious  . I found it interesting to note, based on their fear of abandonment and evaluation/devaluation, my expwBPD, actually didn't place in the same catagory if her behavior before and after were factored in,  in fact, if I recall this correctly as I read this mid-FOG,  the author notes that someone whose results indicated that movement may need professional help.   Interesting... .my hope is that the secure Hawk will come back.  Currenty, in the very beginning of a new r/s and I am super cautious and trying to be brave.
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« Reply #6 on: November 28, 2014, 11:15:46 PM »

The other good news is when an anxious person gets with a secure one, they can become more secure.  So there you go.  We've graduated from BPD school and I don't see myself ever being susceptible to that again, plus attachment theory is so simple and obvious, and when we meet new people and think from that frame, it becomes clear what type of person we're dealing with quickly, which can save a lot of time on the way to the life of our dreams.

I agree, it takes a lot of the guess work out of things.  It is so very simple and reduces self-doubt.  Who knew I was allowed to express my feelings and I don't have to worry about coming across as needy or insecure.  Better to express who I am, how I relate and find the person who will want to meet my needs and not shame me or run away from them.  My T said that being around a secure person will make me more secure, good advise!  The book describes abusive behaviour as avoidant.  Keeping people at arms length. I think this is over simplistic.  I think that there is a heck of a lot more going on than just conflicting attachment styles.

I read this book too.  I believe, prior to the r/s, I actually fell more into a category between secure and avoidant.  After the r/s, with all of the dishonesty and emotional abuse, I went into the anxious  . I found it interesting to note, based on their fear of abandonment and evaluation/devaluation, my expwBPD, actually didn't place in the same catagory if her behavior before and after were factored in,  in fact, if I recall this correctly as I read this mid-FOG,  the author notes that someone whose results indicated that movement may need professional help.   Interesting... .my hope is that the secure Hawk will come back.  Currenty, in the very beginning of a new r/s and I am super cautious and trying to be brave.

I'm stuck on the anxious thing too now and I don't think I ever was this way before.  It is really painful.  And any avoidant behaviour really triggers me. 

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« Reply #7 on: November 28, 2014, 11:36:09 PM »

Attachment in any form is unhealthy. Love has no perquisite of attachment, and attachment has no perquisite of love. If anything, love and attachment are enemies. Attachment leads only to unhappiness. Nothing in this material existence can bring us happiness be it a person, place or thing. Including money, sex, or drugs. Happiness is an inside job. If you would like to know more, ask me. Attach:detach. Attachment equals pain and suffering, sometimes sooner, sometimes later, but inevitable. We all want to be happy and nobody wants to suffer. The primary difference between dependence and interdependence. What a world of difference in two vowels and three consonants.
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« Reply #8 on: November 29, 2014, 02:44:00 AM »

I can't say her attachment style. Is paranoid a style, Laugh out loud (click to insert in post)? Anyways I know mine is "disordered attachment style". Only people with disordered attachment style get depersonalization disorder, which I've had, and still have to some degree.
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« Reply #9 on: November 29, 2014, 08:19:39 AM »

Attachment in any form is unhealthy. Love has no perquisite of attachment, and attachment has no perquisite of love. If anything, love and attachment are enemies. Attachment leads only to unhappiness. Nothing in this material existence can bring us happiness be it a person, place or thing. Including money, sex, or drugs. Happiness is an inside job. If you would like to know more, ask me. Attach:detach. Attachment equals pain and suffering, sometimes sooner, sometimes later, but inevitable. We all want to be happy and nobody wants to suffer. The primary difference between dependence and interdependence. What a world of difference in two vowels and three consonants.

Your post is an almost perfect description of someone with an avoidant attachment style Perf, I can see these things now, and it's a brand new world!
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« Reply #10 on: November 29, 2014, 08:44:35 AM »

Attachment in any form is unhealthy. Love has no perquisite of attachment, and attachment has no perquisite of love. If anything, love and attachment are enemies. Attachment leads only to unhappiness. Nothing in this material existence can bring us happiness be it a person, place or thing. Including money, sex, or drugs. Happiness is an inside job. If you would like to know more, ask me. Attach:detach. Attachment equals pain and suffering, sometimes sooner, sometimes later, but inevitable. We all want to be happy and nobody wants to suffer. The primary difference between dependence and interdependence. What a world of difference in two vowels and three consonants.

We have evolved to attach.  A baby attaches to their mother.  Either securely or insecurely.  But I think I know what you are getting at.  When I read Harriet Lerner's books on differentiation it seemed to conflict with attachment theory until I read more about it.  And denying we shouldn't 'attach' keeps us vulnerable to ending up in the wrong relationships again.  The goal is to find security in our attachment by being open and honest and learning how to communicate and finding a partner who will bring out the best in us, not trigger us to our defense mechanisms.
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« Reply #11 on: November 29, 2014, 09:28:37 AM »

Being in a relationship doesn't have to include attachment. As adults, relationships with attachment are unhealthy. If the mother child attachment is carried into an adult relationship it could not be a healthy one. Evolution or change is the very nature of all life, including human beings. Attachment existing as a normal function of life. Undermining attachment is fundamental in evolving into a fully potentialised  human being. Attachments are meant to be broken. The fetus is attached by the umbilical cord. This is the first attachment to be broken. The child grows, evolves into wisdom and knowledge by breaking attachment.
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« Reply #12 on: November 29, 2014, 11:41:13 AM »

Being in a relationship doesn't have to include attachment. As adults, relationships with attachment are unhealthy. If the mother child attachment is carried into an adult relationship it could not be a healthy one. Evolution or change is the very nature of all life, including human beings. Attachment existing as a normal function of life. Undermining attachment is fundamental in evolving into a fully potentialised  human being. Attachments are meant to be broken. The fetus is attached by the umbilical cord. This is the first attachment to be broken. The child grows, evolves into wisdom and knowledge by breaking attachment.

I think maybe you are using the word 'attachment' to mean enmeshment?  I understand this and realise that I had an unhealthy attachment to my mother, I never differentiated from my family in a healthy way.  My identity was wrapped up in their feelings and opinions.  It has caused me much anguish and has left me very vulnerable to abusive r/ss.  I think in 'attachment theory', attachment refers to interdependence, not enmeshment.  It allows for autonomy.  Attachment refers to how we relate to others.  And this is established as infants.  Figuring out how we attached will help us in understanding how we relate to others as adults.  And in doing so we are able to identify ways in which we defend ourselves rather than communicate our needs effectively. 

When we fall in love with someone, the same chemicals are released in our brain as were released when our mother comforted us as infants.  When we kiss and cuddle with our SO oxytocin is released, an important hormone in pair bonding.  Why would this be true if we weren't meant to attach to others as adults?
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« Reply #13 on: November 29, 2014, 12:14:27 PM »

Even when attached in a relationship that does not posses the dynamic of BPD, the relationship at some point will end. We must say good bye to all. This is not avoidable. We will suffer the loss in proportion to the strength of attachment. When true love is present, we don't want anybody to suffer. We can love without attachment. This is the purest love. The chemicals that our bodies produce are from our bodies and promote the body. When the body is examined, cut open, no mind is found. Explain this?
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« Reply #14 on: November 29, 2014, 12:23:41 PM »

We can sit and meditate, be still, create our own bliss, and when we do that enough we can find nirvana, a state of egolessness, and once there, we discover that we aren't separate from anything, everything's connected, we are all one.  Or are we all attached?

Humans are social animals, we evolved that way, since folks working together fared better and the loners perished; no man is an island.  If the word 'attached' or the term 'attachment style' doesn't sit well, pick another one, but the end-all is who we are is who we are in relation to others, as well as in relation to ourselves.
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« Reply #15 on: November 29, 2014, 01:34:58 PM »

Attachment is indeed part of human nature. Without it we would not exist. Impermanence is what human nature is held within. The weakest part of our suffering is attachment. When the wheel turns, and it always does, if we are attached we will be torn. Through a breakup, a death or any other separating change in a relationship, attachment is the reason we suffer. Through our nature we are all connected. This is the road to compassion, realizing that we are all caught in a similar type of existence.
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« Reply #16 on: November 29, 2014, 01:50:33 PM »

Excerpt
When the wheel turns, and it always does, if we are attached we will be torn. Through a breakup, a death or any other separating change in a relationship, attachment is the reason we suffer.

Which gave birth to the question "Is it better to have loved and lost, or never to have loved at all?"
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« Reply #17 on: November 29, 2014, 01:58:41 PM »

Love doesn't hurt. Attachment does.
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« Reply #18 on: November 29, 2014, 02:15:19 PM »

It's true that love doesn't hurt Perf, but attachment doesn't either, necessarily.  If you love someone and they love you back an attachment will be formed, and when it does each person's attachment style will become evident, and if someone is holding the belief that attachment hurts, they are exhibiting an avoidant attachment style, which is illuminating to the topic of this post.
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« Reply #19 on: November 29, 2014, 02:32:10 PM »

I love a lot of people. A lot of people love me. Because of an understanding of the temporary nature of mind and body, I know that we will separate. How would attachment serve me? Attachment has no duality. Attachment can be to anything. There are infinite ways to attach. All attachment is risen out of feeling or sensation delivered to us through our senses after we come into contact with something that either pleases or displeases us based upon qualities that they don't actually posses, but rather we assign to them. Breaking attachment will liberate us from suffering.
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« Reply #20 on: November 29, 2014, 02:41:59 PM »

That person is desirable! Why? Because we assign that quality to them based upon our own misperception of them. Do you not have an attraction to a potential partner before you ever say one word to them or even get to know them? I love freely and honestly without attachment. I want peace and happiness in my life and the lives of those around me.
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« Reply #21 on: November 29, 2014, 02:57:33 PM »

Well I have now finished the book and what I thought was true at the beginning ended up being completely different at the end.  I see that I have at times been securely attached in r/ss (a few relatively healthy ones) but mostly I've had insecure attachments being brought out by partners who also have insecure attachments.  My uBPDexh was anxious and although I thought that his secrecy and ST's were a form of avoidance I can now see that it was him being anxious.  He didn't do these things to distance himself from me, it was about punishment and control.  And I was anxious at the beginning as well but grew more and more avoidant as things went on.  The more he tried to control and possess me the more I withdrew from him emotionally (not to punish but to survive and detach).  I think in this case avoidance is healthy.  I was already detaching long before I left the r/s.  

Since August I have reconnected with an old bf via fb & phone.  It's been 16 yrs since he broke up with me for someone else.  Actually we were engaged.  I got over it easier than this BU. Life went on. Now after all these yrs we tried to establish a friendship.  But there was constant push/pull by him (he is not personality disordered) and a lot of inconsistencies in his contact.  I was always trying to figure out what was going on, is this guy playing games?  He was going through some majorly difficult things (like the loss of his brother) so I just excused my feelings thinking I was being too insecure or reactive and shouldn't have any expectations of him.  After reading this book I realise that he totally has avoidant attachment which triggers my anxious attachment and that is why it is making me so unhappy.  It also makes me realise that I can't be with this guy, I actually do have the right to be with someone who is reassuring and consistent and emotionally available.  You'd think this isn't rocket science but it really has been like a light bulb moment for me!  It has also made me realise that even after a 4 yr r/s with a pwBPD I am STILL vulnerable to getting into another dysfunctional r/s.  I think I was attracted to him bc he was so different (and so less crazy) than my uBPDexh.  It was refreshing.  But I was still willing to ignore my feelings!  So the healing/growing/learning continues... .

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« Reply #22 on: November 29, 2014, 03:18:02 PM »

Excerpt
After reading this book I realise that he totally has avoidant attachment which triggers my anxious attachment and that is why it is making me so unhappy.  It also makes me realise that I can't be with this guy, I actually do have the right to be with someone who is reassuring and consistent and emotionally available.  You'd think this isn't rocket science but it really has been like a light bulb moment for me!

There you go Pingo, the same thing happened for me with that book, lightbulb moments.  Working through the exercises and looking back at prior relationships, it is now crystal clear why it didn't work; they had avoidant styles.  A relationship between a person with an anxious style and one with an avoidant style can work however, it just takes work and there will always be that underlying clash of styles.  One focus shift I've taken out of it is ask the question "what would someone with a secure style do here?".  Fruitful.

Excerpt
It has also made me realise that even after a 4 yr r/s with a pwBPD I am STILL vulnerable to getting into another dysfunctional r/s.

Maybe we're not so vulnerable anymore.  And the way to make a dysfunctional relationship functional is to function well in them, starting with picking secure or anxious partners, which is 80% of the population, so our chances are good.  I'm excited by this news!
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« Reply #23 on: November 29, 2014, 03:39:58 PM »

I love a lot of people. A lot of people love me. Because of an understanding of the temporary nature of mind and body, I know that we will separate. How would attachment serve me? Attachment has no duality. Attachment can be to anything. There are infinite ways to attach. All attachment is risen out of feeling or sensation delivered to us through our senses after we come into contact with something that either pleases or displeases us based upon qualities that they don't actually posses, but rather we assign to them. Breaking attachment will liberate us from suffering.

Yes, attachment can be anything, but in the field of study of attachment styles it's a specific thing, and 100% of the population has an attachment style.  And having an avoidant attachment style isn't a bad thing, it just is, and the take-away for people with anxious attachment styles like me is attachments with people with avoidant styles are bad news, since they will always form an attachment that doesn't meet either person's needs.  That's OK, people with either avoidant or anxious styles have 80% of the population that aren't the style they don't gel with, so armed with the info, no worries.
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« Reply #24 on: November 29, 2014, 04:48:52 PM »

Fromheeltoheal, I am familiar with attachment theory in romance. It evolved from parent-child studies. The deeper, more subtle attachment is something you touched on earlier. We are already all in unity. To allow attachment to form one must view themselves as separate from everyone else. From a position of universal existence, the notion of attachment is absurd.
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« Reply #25 on: November 29, 2014, 05:59:08 PM »

I agree Perf, and that may make a great topic for another thread, and this one is about attachment styles, something both Pingo and I have found profound.  Humans have both the need for connection and love and the need to feel unique, significant, in a sense the needs to feel both together and separate, and how those show up in individual personalities in part determine our attachment style.  Which style would you say you have Perf?
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« Reply #26 on: November 29, 2014, 06:35:10 PM »

I would say that learning about attachment theory is just another tool in the toolbox.  It doesn't explain everything but it does add a lot of insight.  I feel like I'm an onion with many layers and being able to apply attachment theory to my life and defensive behaviors is like peeling another layer back.  I would like to have a zen mind where I can detach from everything and live in a state of bliss but that is not likely to happen in my injured state.  And since you have to go through the pain, not around, in order to heal, accepting I have a dysfunctional attachment style is actually empowering.  It gives me hope that I can create a life where the attachment is healthy and brings out the best in both of us.  It also reduces my shame about my 'neediness and insecurities' and it helps me recognise my triggers.  I didn't get here for no reason.  It helps me find compassion for myself and for the others in my life.
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« Reply #27 on: November 29, 2014, 06:52:39 PM »

Excerpt
accepting I have a dysfunctional attachment style is actually empowering.  It gives me hope that I can create a life where the attachment is healthy and brings out the best in both of us.  It also reduces my shame about my 'neediness and insecurities' and it helps me recognise my triggers.

Another thing empowering about attachment styles is none of them is dysfunctional, they just are, and that word is not used to describe them in that book.  Dysfunction applies to relationships, and a part I liked was not only can an anxious person and a secure person have a totally functional relationship, partly because a secure person knows intuitively that an anxious one needs reassurances and emotional closeness and gives that to them easily, but it's what they want too.  Plus, being in a relationship with a secure person can make the anxious one more secure, and while an avoidant person may make us feel ashamed about the needs we have, a secure one just meets them without question.  Life is about to get awesome Pingo, it's about letting the right ones in, and who we are is who we are in relationship with others.
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« Reply #28 on: November 29, 2014, 06:57:39 PM »

accepting I have a dysfunctional attachment style is actually empowering.  It gives me hope that I can create a life where the attachment is healthy and brings out the best in both of us.  It also reduces my shame about my 'neediness and insecurities' and it helps me recognise my triggers.

Another thing empowering about attachment styles is none of them is dysfunctional, they just are, and that word is not used to describe them in that book.  Dysfunction applies to relationships, and a part I liked was not only can an anxious person and a secure person have a totally functional relationship, partly because a secure person knows intuitively that an anxious one needs reassurances and emotional closeness and gives that to them easily, but it's what they want too.  Plus, being in a relationship with a secure person can make the anxious one more secure, and while an avoidant person may make us feel ashamed about the needs we have, a secure one just meets them without question.  Life is about to get awesome Pingo, it's about letting the right ones in, and who we are is who we are in relationship with others.

Good point fromheeltoheal, dysfunctional is my own judgement, the book describes it as insecure attachment.  It has led to dysfunctional r/ss bc we both triggered each other and didn't recognise what was going on. 

I now know that when I hear that little voice early on, the one that says 'this feels uncomfortable' or 'this makes me feel insecure and uncomfortable' is actually a voice to listen to, not one I should feel ashamed about or beat myself up about bc I think I should be something different, more secure and less reactive.  We need to learn to listen to that voice!
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« Reply #29 on: November 29, 2014, 07:12:37 PM »

Excerpt
I now know that when I hear that little voice early on, the one that says 'this feels uncomfortable' or 'this makes me feel insecure and uncomfortable' is actually a voice to listen to, not one I should feel ashamed about or beat myself up about bc I think I should be something different, more secure and less reactive.  We need to learn to listen to that voice!

Yeah, I'm very familiar with thinking I should be something different, which of course comes from thinking I'm 'not good enough' the way I am.  Very disempowering mindset, and although my head goes there automatically, I'm a lot better at catching myself at it today.

And beyond just listening to the voice that says 'this feels uncomfortable' or 'this makes me feel insecure and uncomfortable', I've been practicing actually saying it to people, because it's true in the moment, and also to see what I get.  Some people are easy with the negative judgments, unsolicited advice, or unwillingness to engage with me there, but some, the ones I want to keep in my life, validate those feelings and create a safe place where it's OK to talk about what's going on with me.  Those are the people we need in our lives Pingo, in a romantic relationship or not, and I've pretty much had enough of settling for less, and blurting out my truth is a quick way to see who's going to be there for me and who isn't.
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« Reply #30 on: November 29, 2014, 07:39:40 PM »

There are a lot of different models for how conciousness interacts with itself.  :)ifferent models extoll different virtues.  Each model has inherent values especially in relation to how other

Models function to sort of unearth the dogma that can arise in any one model.

That said I have fluctuated through various attachment styles at different points in my life.  Mainly between anxious and avoidant. There was a period I had a sort of combination of healthy/avoidant style in my interpersonal relationships. Though durring this time I had a deep profound attachment to nature.  

A really interesting exploration between the relationship between attachement and projection is explored in the book The song lines. Which is basically a travel journal of a man going to Australia to learn about traditional aboriginal culture.
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« Reply #31 on: November 29, 2014, 07:45:41 PM »

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the relationship between attachement and projection

  Can you sum it up for us Blim?

To me, both people in a relationship project things on each other and mirror each other, sometimes we can get so close it's hard to tell where they stop and we begin, other times we couldn't be farther apart, and in the midst of and comprised of all of that is the attachment.
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« Reply #32 on: November 29, 2014, 07:51:52 PM »

That said I have fluctuated through various attachment styles at different points in my life.  Mainly between anxious and avoidant. There was a period I had a sort of combination of healthy/avoidant style in my interpersonal relationships. Though durring this time I had a deep profound attachment to nature.  

Interesting!  I have a deep attachment to nature as well.  And this brings out my 'avoidant' attachment to humans as I have a fantasy of living like Grizzly Adams (remember that show from the 70's?  You are probably too young! Laugh out loud (click to insert in post))

Part of the book 'Attached' asks for the reader to identify secure examples of attachment.  I wracked my brain and had a real hard time coming up with one couple!  I did have a bf years ago that was much older than me but was very secure and brought out this in me.  We had such an 'easy' r/s.  He made me feel very safe.  Outside of that it's hard to even imagine a TV couple with a secure attachment.  I haven't come with any yet!
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« Reply #33 on: November 29, 2014, 07:54:50 PM »

the relationship between attachement and projection  Can you sum it up for us Blim?

To me, both people in a relationship project things on each other and mirror each other, sometimes we can get so close it's hard to tell where they stop and we begin, other times we couldn't be farther apart, and in the midst of and comprised of all of that is the attachment.

I will try.

Basically it is a model of the relationship between mother father and child and the process of growing into an adult on a macro scale. 

The aboriginals project their relationship to the mother archetype into the land and the father archetype as sort of the structure of society as a provider as the father archetype. The period of the walkabout is where they take the lessons they learned on providing and their relationship to various archetypes and are given a personal song that creates a map through the land. They can sing a song and know where to find waterholes and food in terrain they have never explored before.  Each part of the song represents part of the archetypical journey of the hero. So this represents seperating from the mother in infancy and then seperating from the father and reconnecting to the mother as their own individuated provider and this they become a man. This connects them also to their ancestors.  Different tribes spoke different languages but each member of a different tribe was given a unique portion of song or map.  When encountering other tribes that speak different languages they can connect through common song with different words and know each other.  In this told the song is a connection to the Holy Spirit and connects individuals because the song of the ancestors lives on in each individual no matter the tribe.

In civilization the mother archetype has been severed from the land. This is represented in Art and myth in civilized cultures as the decended female archetype who fell from heaven. In some Greek art gaiah is depicted rising out of the earth. In some myths she falls from heaven forgets who she is and then treated like a whore.

So basically traditionally humans would project aspects of our psyche onto natural phenomena and had traditions and rituals to represent stages of development that was in tune with the natural rhythms.  Or when there were periods of becoming out of tune and suffering the consequence was kept in the traditions as a lesson. For example in the song lines they have songs of animals that went extinct over 30,000 years ago and lessons about that experience for that individual to learn from. 

Our connection to these aspects of our psyche has been in many ways severed and it is a traumatic experience with lasting consequences on a macrocosmic scale. At the microcosmic level it creates pockets of society that feel this truama filtered down through there direct experiences with others creating unhealthy attachment styles and addictions perpetuation the original truama of the psyche from the

Divine feminine that connects all things.
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« Reply #34 on: November 29, 2014, 08:01:33 PM »

Excerpt
Outside of that it's hard to even imagine a TV couple with a secure attachment.

Barack and Michelle Obama seem pretty secure to me, and their daughters are benefiting, then again we only see what they want us to.  I've known secure married couples, married for decades and still very much in love, the kinds of relationships that just seem to work, because they make them work, and there's a fundamental compatibility there.  It's possible for all of us, starting with picking the right partner.
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« Reply #35 on: November 29, 2014, 08:37:03 PM »

Basically civilization is like the child of the goddess and it is in the terrible 2s stage going around killing off all connections to the mother.
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« Reply #36 on: November 29, 2014, 08:50:52 PM »

Basically civilization is like the child of the goddess and it is in the terrible 2s stage going around killing off all connections to the mother.

I don't find that mindset especially empowering, but then again, civilization and humans are part of nature, and the "periods of becoming out of tune and suffering the consequence was kept in the traditions as a lesson" is an ongoing process, we're not perfect yet, and is that even a goal?  It's also possible, and important, to connect with Mother Earth or God or whatever you want to call it, and it's as simple as going out into natural surroundings, away from the concrete and the steel, and just being, breathing, being still, and that can also be done inside your house by meditating.  It's easy to reestablish that connection, it's easy to feel it, and I agree it's important to do, to the point of scheduling it regularly, as we live our busy lives, progressing or making the next mistakes, or maybe a little of both.
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« Reply #37 on: November 29, 2014, 09:53:17 PM »

Basically civilization is like the child of the goddess and it is in the terrible 2s stage going around killing off all connections to the mother.

I don't find that mindset especially empowering, but then again, civilization and humans are part of nature, and the "periods of becoming out of tune and suffering the consequence was kept in the traditions as a lesson" is an ongoing process, we're not perfect yet, and is that even a goal?  It's also possible, and important, to connect with Mother Earth or God or whatever you want to call it, and it's as simple as going out into natural surroundings, away from the concrete and the steel, and just being, breathing, being still, and that can also be done inside your house by meditating.  It's easy to reestablish that connection, it's easy to feel it, and I agree it's important to do, to the point of scheduling it regularly, as we live our busy lives, progressing or making the next mistakes, or maybe a little of both.

It takes a long time. We are in tune with society. The book song lines gives the clearest portrait I have seen that explains how archIac humans projected their psyche. An afternoon in nature gives a taste. Really the best way for someone to reconnect would to do it like the Buddha. To go into an old growth forest and sit under a tree and meditate alone for months eating a very plain simple diet. It takes time to get into the space where one begins to encounter repressed parts of the psyche. Then to tune into the natural light cycles that alter the ballance of chemicals in the brain. It is actually pretty terrifying. Many meditation styles from the east we pick up on in the west are relaxation meditation styles that are sort of a preparation for a vipisanna type of meditation. Where one is isolated and comes into confrontation with their unconcious mind. In the west we often call this confrontation cabin fevor.

In a traditional culture like how the Australian aboriginals lived they prepared their youth their entire life up untill the walkabout for this confrontation.

It is not necesarily the earth or Mother Nature, that is a projection. It is the archetype in the psyche Carl Jung refers to as the anima that is covered by the shadow.

In early Christianity they called this archetype Sophia. The original trinity was the father the son and Sophia. The holy spirit that connects all things. 

I went into the woods and meditated for about 1000 hours alone for about 6 months in my early 20s. When I left the woods I lost a connection I had made out there once i reinserted into society. I felt that connection again with my ex upwBPD. She led me to confront my shadow like I had done in the forest but even deeper in a more profound way. Without going into the woods in my youth I don't think I would have been able to bond with my ex as deeply as I was able to.

After about 30 days alone with no contact with another human in nature with no electricity and just staying in one spot without distracting onese self with tasks a confrontation occurs with ones shadow. It is kind of like the pain we go through after a break up with a pwBPD but it is more about detaching from societal conditioning. Books like the Tibetten book of the dead describe this confrontation if interpreted in an esoteric way.
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« Reply #38 on: November 29, 2014, 10:15:57 PM »

Interesting Blim.  I've gone solo backpacking in the mountains for a few weeks, I've seen the shadow you mention, and those experiences are very growth-inducing.  It's not one or the other for me though; we live much more comfortably than the ancients and humans are social animals, so while it's important to go 'out there' and connect with ourselves and what is really real, it's just as important to connect with each other, and the two complement one another.  Also, I've found that having made that connection to the larger, natural world, our home for much, much longer than the ones we've currently fashioned, it's easy to get back there, to reconnect, important.  Now meeting someone who also sees the value?  Now we're talkin'... .
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« Reply #39 on: November 29, 2014, 11:04:25 PM »

Interesting Blim.  I've gone solo backpacking in the mountains for a few weeks, I've seen the shadow you mention, and those experiences are very growth-inducing.  It's not one or the other for me though; we live much more comfortably than the ancients and humans are social animals, so while it's important to go 'out there' and connect with ourselves and what is really real, it's just as important to connect with each other, and the two complement one another.  Also, I've found that having made that connection to the larger, natural world, our home for much, much longer than the ones we've currently fashioned, it's easy to get back there, to reconnect, important.  Now meeting someone who also sees the value?  Now we're talkin'... .

Lol that would be great to connect in that way with a woman. I saw the potential with my exuBPD. They have done studies that it takes 2 weeks in nature for the mind to revert to a natural ballance of melatonin. I have found that ballance to be crucial for deeper meditative work to be done without something like being broken by a pwBPD in shadow confrontation.  I used to love backpacking and I think it is amazing. I really believe that it is an important part of the process if one goes into nature to do this sort of work. Ultimately I think it is critical to find a spot and just sit their doing nothing except the most basic of tasks. If you have ever seem that tom hanks movie where he is stranded on an island he has that volleyball Wilson.  What I have experienced and with others that have gone into the woods is they use busying tasks like a sort of Wilson.  Letting go of Wilson is a critical step to go deep into the depths. I struggled with that part for months. I would let go of Wilson then come back to Wilson then let go.

All that said my experience with my ex uBPD was more powerfull in everyway because like you said that interpersonal connection. Now that I have found that deep part of myself with my ex finding a way to reconnect through projection onto something like nature would provide a way to stay in contact. 

ArchIac humans would project these aspects of the psyche onto the sky as well thus astrology. Society in general has tendency to convert things like projecting the psyche onto Something such as the night sky into like a horoscope.  That would be like taking the exoteric meaning of astrology and simplifying it into something anecdotal. Although their is an esoteric message encoded into it and it was used as a means before humans had developed writing. The meanings were kept incoded into things like poems and songs and projected onto natural phenomena that created a map of the psyche the terrain and the seasons and a recorded history in a mythic format.

It's sort of like Carl jungs psychological types format then modeled into the Meyrs Briggs then if you look up your Meyrs Briggs type it tends to be like a horoscope. There is a deeper esoteric meaning to it.

My ex wife was a cultural anthropologist so she was sort of academically taught about this but even still the guy who wrote songlines seems to explain this better than I have experienced within the world of cultural anthropology.

The thing is the people who are a living link to this past of uninterrupted flow of hunter gatherer cultures that understood this connection are probably all dead there may still be a handful left on earth. This is why a book like the songlines is so important.
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« Reply #40 on: November 29, 2014, 11:47:45 PM »

Pingo, heel, blim, this is an awsome topic. Heel, I started another thread before I read your post. I see the importance in doing so. Everybody wants happiness and nobody wants to suffer. To answer your question heel, I am very open and un avoidant. All of my relationships have been of the secure nature. I hold nothing back and act from my true self. I give generously and expect nothing in return. I bring security into my relationships and avoid nothing without being confrontational. I'm sure that my compassion and generosity make me a target for those less virtuous. I would say that my attachment type is secure. That being said, my attachment is what brought me to suffering.
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« Reply #41 on: November 30, 2014, 11:42:16 AM »

You got me thinkin now Blim, thanks for the discourse.  I choose to believe there is no ancient, hidden wisdom that is lost, or more accurately, all of it is innate and accessible, it's just a matter of focus.  The human brain has tripled in size in the last 2 million years, which doesn't mean we're necessarily more evolved, but we can certainly come up with more distractions.  Ancient humans had a whole lot of downtime too, so it's not a stretch to imagine them kicking back, staring at stars and making sht up, which became mythic lore, the best parts of which got passed down the generations, a prehistoric culling.  Seems the smarter we get the more distracted we become, although we're smart enough to know that, so it's a matter of consciously shifting our focus and returning to our roots, where the innate wisdom can be awakened because it feels like home.  And then record it all on Facebook, the human psyche recorder for the new millenium.  OK, maybe that one needs and upgrade... .

Youda man Perf.  The goal of attachment styles theory is for us all to behave more securely in relationships, and 'holding nothing back and acting from my true self' seems pretty secure, and that's easy when things are going well, although when the sht hits the fan, anxious people like me use 'protest behavior' as it's termed, dysfunctional and room for improvement, but the bottom line for me is it's about having courage to stay the course of my true self at times like that.  I'll visit your new thread and see what's up.
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« Reply #42 on: November 30, 2014, 06:36:23 PM »

You got me thinkin now Blim, thanks for the discourse.  I choose to believe there is no ancient, hidden wisdom that is lost, or more accurately, all of it is innate and accessible, it's just a matter of focus.  The human brain has tripled in size in the last 2 million years, which doesn't mean we're necessarily more evolved, but we can certainly come up with more distractions.  Ancient humans had a whole lot of downtime too, so it's not a stretch to imagine them kicking back, staring at stars and making sht up, which became mythic lore, the best parts of which got passed down the generations, a prehistoric culling.  Seems the smarter we get the more distracted we become, although we're smart enough to know that, so it's a matter of consciously shifting our focus and returning to our roots, where the innate wisdom can be awakened because it feels like home.  And then record it all on Facebook, the human psyche recorder for the new millenium.  OK, maybe that one needs and upgrade... .

Youda man Perf.  The goal of attachment styles theory is for us all to behave more securely in relationships, and 'holding nothing back and acting from my true self' seems pretty secure, and that's easy when things are going well, although when the sht hits the fan, anxious people like me use 'protest behavior' as it's termed, dysfunctional and room for improvement, but the bottom line for me is it's about having courage to stay the course of my true self at times like that.  I'll visit your new thread and see what's up.

It is innately within everyone but we are all programmed.  What I mean is it is a projection of aspects of the psyche that we have been disconnected from.  It is the same thing we project onto our mother as an infant. People still access it but they filter it through their own culture. Before colonization in Australia everyone there was culturally conditioned to project in this way. It was connected to the land. The land was the mirror.  I'm our society the mirror is something much different. We still project in that way, I did on my ex. I am highlighting one culture and book that explains the nature of this type of projection.  It's a travel writing book but the concept he is getting at is as deep as profound as anything you will ever find in any spiritual text if anything they were probably the most in tune. They just had to be because they lives in such a harsh environment.

I just say there in the woods it took a long time but my mind began to unprogram and I reconnected.  The connection died as I went back to life in modern society it is just a totally different frame if reality.
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« Reply #43 on: November 30, 2014, 07:34:58 PM »

It is innately within everyone but we are all programmed.  What I mean is it is a projection of aspects of the psyche that we have been disconnected from.  It is the same thing we project onto our mother as an infant. People still access it but they filter it through their own culture. Before colonization in Australia everyone there was culturally conditioned to project in this way. It was connected to the land. The land was the mirror.  I'm our society the mirror is something much different. We still project in that way, I did on my ex. I am highlighting one culture and book that explains the nature of this type of projection.  It's a travel writing book but the concept he is getting at is as deep as profound as anything you will ever find in any spiritual text if anything they were probably the most in tune. They just had to be because they lives in such a harsh environment.

I just say there in the woods it took a long time but my mind began to unprogram and I reconnected.  The connection died as I went back to life in modern society it is just a totally different frame if reality.

Well, you've instilled interest in that book Blim.  I'm going to Yosemite over the holidays, that and Maui are the most spiritual places I've ever been, and I may just dive into that book, among others.  Since detaching from my ex and going through a bunch of career sht I'm feeling humble and searching again, a state I actually look forward to since it's usually a period of growth, and chilling out in heaven on earth and feeding my brain sounds really good right now.  Thanks for the discourse and the focus shift.

Hope you don't mind the slight hijack of your thread Pingo; we tend to go off on subjects sometimes.  I'm going to reread Attached over the holidays too; 2015 is going to be awesome, for us all.
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« Reply #44 on: November 30, 2014, 07:51:40 PM »

It is innately within everyone but we are all programmed.  What I mean is it is a projection of aspects of the psyche that we have been disconnected from.  It is the same thing we project onto our mother as an infant. People still access it but they filter it through their own culture. Before colonization in Australia everyone there was culturally conditioned to project in this way. It was connected to the land. The land was the mirror.  I'm our society the mirror is something much different. We still project in that way, I did on my ex. I am highlighting one culture and book that explains the nature of this type of projection.  It's a travel writing book but the concept he is getting at is as deep as profound as anything you will ever find in any spiritual text if anything they were probably the most in tune. They just had to be because they lives in such a harsh environment.

I just say there in the woods it took a long time but my mind began to unprogram and I reconnected.  The connection died as I went back to life in modern society it is just a totally different frame if reality.

Well, you've instilled interest in that book Blim.  I'm going to Yosemite over the holidays, that and Maui are the most spiritual places I've ever been, and I may just dive into that book, among others.  Since detaching from my ex and going through a bunch of career sht I'm feeling humble and searching again, a state I actually look forward to since it's usually a period of growth, and chilling out in heaven on earth and feeding my brain sounds really good right now.  Thanks for the discourse and the focus shift.

Hope you don't mind the slight hijack of your thread Pingo; we tend to go off on subjects sometimes.  I'm going to reread Attached over the holidays too; 2015 is going to be awesome, for us all.

Yeah I highly recommend it he makes some really complex concepts accessible to the western mind. It is quite similiar to what the native Americans talked about but we already have a preconception of the native Americans that is hard to remove the filter from as the noble savage. The author presents it in a very sober and imaginitive way. There is definately more layers to what he is alluding to that will deepen the understanding if added to another model.

That's the really hard thing is to try to understand another cultures spiritual model because it is so contextual to their own culture.
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« Reply #45 on: December 20, 2014, 03:35:49 PM »

aren't we talking apples and oranges?  the article and workshop right here at BPDfam - find it in the right hand column of most board list pages - says verbatim that attachment leads to suffering and detachment leads to freedom:   https://bpdfamily.com/message_board/index.php?topic=135116.0

":)etachment is rarely something we achieve once and for all. It's a moment-by-moment, day-by-day process of accepting reality as it presents itself, doing our best to align our actions with what we think is right, and surrendering the outcome."

i think the books on secure/unsecure human attachment is legit (humans DO attach to each other.  if they didn't, all babies would die because they surely are a PITA what with all that crying, pooping, and endless hunger, Laugh out loud (click to insert in post).  we would not survive if we did not attach). 

i also think the quote above about detachment -  the problem being attached to outcome - is legit.  one does not stamp out the other, eh?

icu

Attachment in any form is unhealthy. Love has no perquisite of attachment, and attachment has no perquisite of love. If anything, love and attachment are enemies. Attachment leads only to unhappiness. Nothing in this material existence can bring us happiness be it a person, place or thing. Including money, sex, or drugs. Happiness is an inside job. If you would like to know more, ask me. Attach:detach. Attachment equals pain and suffering, sometimes sooner, sometimes later, but inevitable. We all want to be happy and nobody wants to suffer. The primary difference between dependence and interdependence. What a world of difference in two vowels and three consonants.

Your post is an almost perfect description of someone with an avoidant attachment style Perf, I can see these things now, and it's a brand new world!

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« Reply #46 on: December 20, 2014, 04:15:46 PM »

Yes, I think we're talking about different things as well ucme, both valid in their context.  The concept of attachment styles includes the fact that everyone has one, and how two people interact and whether or not they get their needs met is dependent on what each person's style is; it's a specific model of relationship between people that I've found to be profound and valuable.  And then there's the larger concept of attachment vs. detachment, a realizing we are larger than our emotions and our outcomes and can experience them both while staying detached from them, results in freedom.

I think it can be taken both ways as it relates to a relationship with a borderline.  Being attached in an attachment style sense to a borderline is painful, as we all attest here, and detaching from that is definitely freedom.  And then detachment in general, in a more zen sense, leads to freedom in general.  I say we go for both.

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« Reply #47 on: December 20, 2014, 04:24:16 PM »

Hope you don't mind the slight hijack of your thread Pingo; we tend to go off on subjects sometimes.  I'm going to reread Attached over the holidays too; 2015 is going to be awesome, for us all.

fromheeltoheal, I just finished another book on attachment theory by Sue Johnson called 'Love Sense'.  It was very interesting if you want to delve into this further.

I told my T on Friday that I get melancholy reading about attachment theory bc it always reminds me of how relatively healthy people can fix their r/ss if they just tap into their style of attachment and work from that point of view.  It brings back feelings of being a failure, like if I had just loved him better or worked harder at 'fixing' us I could have saved him.  Of course I know that all this is crap.  But I still get those twinges of sadness.  My T reminded me those books aren't written with a pwBPD in mind, that there is no 'fixing' these r/s.   At best you get some kind of progress where you learn to 'cope' with them and the r/s.  What kind of existence is this?  (I also learned my T has a sister with BPD so she knows personally how these people tick).
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« Reply #48 on: December 20, 2014, 04:56:36 PM »

Excerpt
My T reminded me those books aren't written with a pwBPD in mind, that there is no 'fixing' these r/s.

That's the thing I like about attachment style theory: everyone has an attachment style, while people with personality disorders are a relatively small percentage of the population, and at this point we're better than most at spotting them, schoolin' through pain.  So let's focus on the healthy people who have compatible attachment styles, 80% of the population for someone with an anxious style like me.

Thanks for the book review Pingo, I'm hungry and want more.
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« Reply #49 on: December 20, 2014, 08:16:06 PM »

Yeah attachment theory is interesting.  I'm planning to read some of the primary texts on that in the near future.  Bowlby and ainsworth.

Fear of abandonment and fear of engulfment. That is clearly a mixed attachment style of anxious and avoidant.  

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« Reply #50 on: December 20, 2014, 08:31:32 PM »

Fear of abandonment and fear of engulfment. That is clearly a mixed attachment style of anxious and avoidant.

my xBPDgf had both fears, abandoment and engulfment.  is that common in pwBPD? 

like only a very small percentage of the time were we actually "together" ~ the vast majority, like 95% of the time(?) was either moving towards or moving away.  often 1 step fwd, 2 steps back.  mostly running away.  small piece of paradise followed by vast expanses of her feeling afraid and "unsafe"   ::::eye roll::::, me trying to "prove" myself as worthy small piece of something vaguely resembling paradise, lather/rinse/repeat.  always me trying to get back to that idealization phase, or, really, anything even just remotely similar would have been fine.  i didn't need the over-the-moon thing... .  it was horrible, gut-wrenching, heartbreaking for me. 

the last 7 wks were phone or text only, b/c she was so "afraid" of me :::more eye rolls:::  i mean she snapped overnight b/c of engulfment fears combined with me refusing to swallow her BS and me erecting bounndaries!  one of the last conversations we had was on the phone, and i was crying, sobbing wildly, and screaming, "what have you done with (her name)?  WTF have you done with (her name)?  WHERE IS SHE?"  it was wretched.

icu
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« Reply #51 on: December 20, 2014, 08:40:13 PM »

Fear of abandonment and fear of engulfment. That is clearly a mixed attachment style of anxious and avoidant.

my xBPDgf had both fears, abandoment and engulfment.  is that common in pwBPD? 

like only a very small percentage of the time were we actually "together" ~ the vast majority, like 95% of the time(?) was either moving towards or moving away.  often 1 step fwd, 2 steps back.  mostly running away.  small piece of paradise followed by vast expanses of her feeling afraid and "unsafe"   ::::eye roll::::, me trying to "prove" myself as worthy small piece of something vaguely resembling paradise, lather/rinse/repeat.  always me trying to get back to that idealization phase, or, really, anything even just remotely similar would have been fine.  i didn't need the over-the-moon thing... .  it was horrible, gut-wrenching, heartbreaking for me. 

the last 7 wks were phone or text only, b/c she was so "afraid" of me :::more eye rolls:::  i mean she snapped overnight b/c of engulfment fears combined with me refusing to swallow her BS and me erecting bounndaries!  one of the last conversations we had was on the phone, and i was crying, sobbing wildly, and screaming, "what have you done with (her name)?  WTF have you done with (her name)?  WHERE IS SHE?"  it was wretched.

icu

As soon as my ex fully trusted me and we broke through to her deepest levels it activated the disorder.  The disorder manifested situations to break us up and it's like we made an umbilical connection and she jumped off a cliff back into the abyss pullin me down with her.  Her doubts and fears attached to the validation of others and enablers and was turned against me and I was in a position of exerperiemcing all the confusion and suffering this part of her feels.  Her fears created a self fulfilling prophecy of abandonment and in turn justified why she should trust the disorder above anyone else.
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« Reply #52 on: December 20, 2014, 08:53:33 PM »

Excerpt
my xBPDgf had both fears, abandoment and engulfment.  is that common in pwBPD? 

It's the norm with borderlines.  A borderline doesn't have a fully formed 'self' of their own, because they never successfully detached from their primary caregiver in infancy and weathered the subsequent abandonment depression, which most people do, a standard part of becoming an autonomous individual.  So because of that, when a borderline gets too close to someone they feel engulfed, like they will lose themselves, since they don't have that self of their own, so they push that person away.  And when they get too far away they feel abandoned, a replaying of that earliest abandonment fear they never successfully transitioned through, so they pull the person back.  That sets up a continuous push/pull with no stability and the only contentment being on the fence between engulfment and abandonment, short lived and the fence is always moving.  Crazymaking for those of us trying to navigate that.  You probably noticed.
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« Reply #53 on: December 21, 2014, 01:00:59 AM »

Heel, can you expand on what you're referring to when you use the expression "self"? Please
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« Reply #54 on: December 21, 2014, 11:21:47 AM »

Heel, can you expand on what you're referring to when you use the expression "self"? Please

Hi Perf-

In my efforts to understand why she did what she did, I landed on Masterson's book The Search for the Real Self, a fascinating read that is beneficial beyond all things borderline, and he makes the distinction between the real self, a 'self' that develops normally as a young human grows up, and a false self, one that shows up in a personality when something happens along the way and arrests the development of a real self.  That knowledge along with what I knew about how she was raised and how she behaved really made the lights come on for me; I finally understood why she does what she does, which was very freeing.  And also, as I read the book, I saw traits that I've exhibited more than once and where I've lived false selves in my own life.  Eye opening.

Anyway, the beginning of the chapter on borderlines goes:

Excerpt
NORMALLY, the real self and its capacities emerge allowing the child to mature into an autonomous adult capable of self-activation and self-expression, with a sense of entitlement and the self-confidence to live creatively in the face of challenges and disappointments.  However, when the child experiences the abandonment depression during the first three years of life, the real self shuts down to avoid further aggravating the feelings of abandonment. This shut-down arrests psychological development and produces varying degrees of impairment in all the capacities of the self. Unable to tolerate feeling the abandonment depression, the child engages in a number of measures to protect himself from feeling depressed, at the cost of growth and adaptation. He avoids activities that would further the emergence of the real self, and consequently all the self’s potential capacities are impaired. In addition, the need for defense causes a similar arrest of what is classically described as ego development so that it, too, continues to function on a primitive level.

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« Reply #55 on: December 21, 2014, 12:00:25 PM »

Heel, can you expand on what you're referring to when you use the expression "self"? Please

Hi Perf-

In my efforts to understand why she did what she did, I landed on Masterson's book The Search for the Real Self, a fascinating read that is beneficial beyond all things borderline, and he makes the distinction between the real self, a 'self' that develops normally as a young human grows up, and a false self, one that shows up in a personality when something happens along the way and arrests the development of a real self.  That knowledge along with what I knew about how she was raised and how she behaved really made the lights come on for me; I finally understood why she does what she does, which was very freeing.  And also, as I read the book, I saw traits that I've exhibited more than once and where I've lived false selves in my own life.  Eye opening.

Anyway, the beginning of the chapter on borderlines goes:

NORMALLY, the real self and its capacities emerge allowing the child to mature into an autonomous adult capable of self-activation and self-expression, with a sense of entitlement and the self-confidence to live creatively in the face of challenges and disappointments.  However, when the child experiences the abandonment depression during the first three years of life, the real self shuts down to avoid further aggravating the feelings of abandonment. This shut-down arrests psychological development and produces varying degrees of impairment in all the capacities of the self. Unable to tolerate feeling the abandonment depression, the child engages in a number of measures to protect himself from feeling depressed, at the cost of growth and adaptation. He avoids activities that would further the emergence of the real self, and consequently all the self’s potential capacities are impaired. In addition, the need for defense causes a similar arrest of what is classically described as ego development so that it, too, continues to function on a primitive level.



Fromheeltoheal
, do you think this is the same thing as 'emotional masking'?  Where we hide our emotions so no one sees our pain and thus avoid the chance of being judged or being seen as weak?  This is a coping strategy I developed as a child. 
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« Reply #56 on: December 21, 2014, 12:32:51 PM »

Excerpt
do you think this is the same thing as 'emotional masking'?  Where we hide our emotions so no one sees our pain and thus avoid the chance of being judged or being seen as weak?

I'm not an expert Pingo, but I do know that BPD is deeper than that; it occurs during the development of the personality before cognitive reasoning is possible, so it gets hardwired into the personality as it develops, literally a personality disorder.

I say everyone exhibits emotional masking to some degree and at certain times; that's where phrases like 'put on a happy face' and 'fake it till you make it' come from.  Pure emotional vulnerability takes courage, sometimes we got it, sometimes we don't, and then there's that whole pesky issue with boundaries, where we let them down too far with the wrong person, only to snap them back up and put on an 'emotional mask'.  Standard human I say, hard enough with the healthy ones, but when we find the right ones and let fly with our truth, bliss ensues.  Lately I've been letting fly with my truth just for practice: it's what I want to be doing in general, plus it's a shortcut to finding out if I want people in my life or not, based on the reaction I get.  It's a brand new world... .
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« Reply #57 on: December 23, 2014, 12:32:09 PM »

Wonderful thread, and after reading it last night and then reading a few pages in the preview of Attached online, I woke up this morning with many revelations about myself and my attachments (I'm definitely avoidant, and possibly avoidant-anxious).

I've read and am rereading the book 'Attached' and find it very insightful too.

... .[snip]

The good news is that it's said 60% of people have a secure style, 20% anxious and 20% avoidant, so I've got an 80% change of getting with someone other than an avoidant person.  

But a question about this, fromheeltoheal (or anybody who knows): In several posts you repeat the very hopeful possibility that 80% of people are ripe for being an avoidant's partners? Nice idea, but isn't your math off a bit?

In the online preview of the book I found, Levine/Heller say in Attached:

Excerpt
“All people in our society, whether they have just started dating someone or have been married for forty years, fall into one of these categories, or, more rarely, into a combination of the latter two (anxious and avoidant). Just over 50 percent are secure, around 20 percent are anxious, 25 percent are avoidant, and the remaining 3 to 5 percent fall into a fourth, less common disorganized category.”

Plus, there's also a chapter (which I couldn't read online, just the title available) about the 'Anxious/avoidant trap'. That seems reasonable to me -- Anxious + Avoidant seems like a recipe for hell. (I think I had one of those and know whereof I speak   )

And wouldn't an avoidant+avoidant be almost as bad? Granted, I haven't read the book, but IMO neither avoidant with avoidant, nor avoidant with anxious, seem like good bets.

So isn't the correct field of people who we, as avoidant attachment style (or even if we're avoidant-anxious), might look for, going to be only the "just over 50%" of people who have a secure style?

Certainly still an exciting possibility, and learning how to know them will be critical. So, do we consider other avoidants as good possibilities also? Or not? Is that addressed in the book (or anywhere?)




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« Reply #58 on: December 23, 2014, 01:35:51 PM »

I recommend the book PP, it is very enlightening for me.

I've read elsewhere that the ratios are 60/20/20 for secure, anxious and avoidant, respectively, and yes, in the book Attached the numbers are a little different, but the point is that someone with an anxious attachment style getting together with someone with an avoidant attachment style is bad news for both, and they can work on it, but there will always be an underlying conflict in styles to contend with, and neither partner will get their needs met.

So, for someone with an anxious attachment style like me, I need to avoid the avoidants, which leaves 70-80% of folks, depending on the source, the ones with secure and anxious styles, available to me for potential relationships; that is very optimistic.  And a personality disorder is not an attachment style, so the small percentage of those need not apply, plus I've identified people in my life, ones I never did connect with very well, as people with avoidant styles, and that understanding has really helped explain things to me and helped me lower my expectations around what I can expect out of those relationships.  It's a brand new world.
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« Reply #59 on: December 23, 2014, 01:41:14 PM »

I would just add that when an anxious gets together with an avoidant, it is more difficult on the anxious as they are the one doing all the accommodating generally, their needs never really getting met as they are always chasing the avoidant in many respects.  I can see how this has played out in a couple of r/ss.  And the more avoidant they are, the more anxious I become when in other r/ss I am quite secure or even a little avoidant.

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« Reply #60 on: December 23, 2014, 08:03:21 PM »

Certainly avoidant and anxious is bad mix. Never again.  

But... .I described myself as primarily an avoidant... .so when I said

So, do we consider other avoidants as good possibilities also? Or not?

what I meant was (and I don't think anyone has addressed this yet in the thread):

Is avoidant and avoidant also a bad mix?

Similarly, is anxious and anxious also a bad mix?

Anybody have experience with these? Do they work?

Is there analysis of these combinations in the book(s) being discussed?

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« Reply #61 on: December 23, 2014, 08:19:04 PM »

Certainly avoidant and anxious is bad mix. Never again.  

But... .I described myself as primarily an avoidant... .so when I said

So, do we consider other avoidants as good possibilities also? Or not?

what I meant was (and I don't think anyone has addressed this yet in the thread):

Is avoidant and avoidant also a bad mix?

Similarly, is anxious and anxious also a bad mix?

Anybody have experience with these? Do they work?

Is there analysis of these combinations in the book(s) being discussed?

I don't know about avoidant and avoidant PP, I wasn't focusing on that, although the traits of the styles are clearly defined and you can figure it out on your own when you read it.  My first thought is two avoidant people would spend all their time avoiding each other, so how could they have a relationship?  Or if they did, it might be an emotionally detached arrangement, something like a business deal, which could also work if that's what both people want.

Yes, two anxious people could get together, they want the same thing, emotional closeness and intimacy, and don't do well without assurances and communication, so they would spend a lot of time reassuring each other if it were to work.  Secure people want the same thing and communicate emotionally openly and easily, so anxious folks warm up to that too, and it can make them more secure.
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« Reply #62 on: December 23, 2014, 08:21:42 PM »

In pretty much every tradition of a wounded healer or savior figure it is through suffering that they acquire the wisdom to not suffer.  Before they encountered otherworldly suffering they are often portrayed as an ignorant fool.
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« Reply #63 on: December 24, 2014, 04:54:06 PM »

In pretty much every tradition of a wounded healer or savior figure it is through suffering that they acquire the wisdom to not suffer.  Before they encountered otherworldly suffering they are often portrayed as an ignorant fool.

Not sure how that applies to this thread Blim, although it's both true and bleak.

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« Reply #64 on: December 25, 2014, 11:23:32 PM »

Hey Perdify. Great post

My question is this: are humans not hardwired for attachment?

As much as I agree with you and that any attachment leads to pain, I find that NOT attaching is almost impossible.

Do we not look for cues in potential partners to go deeper than non-partners? Does deeper not mean attaching more, valuing more, sharing more?

I love zero attachment in theory but worry that it does not actually exist... .much like Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs and the pursuit of self-actualisation

I already know I'm wrong (LOL) and I love your insights so much but the absence of attachment feels robotic to me... .and impossible as a human being.

Relationships are layered or tiered or classifiable. Family, colleagues, friends, lovers all have different levels of importance or significance... .

... .and hence different levels of attachment? no?

What does an attachment free romantic relationship look like? Can the partner cheat, abuse, love... .all without eliciting a response from us?

thanks

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« Reply #65 on: December 26, 2014, 12:19:25 PM »

Bb12,

Attachment theory was initially developed  with regard to parent-child relationships. As two adults in a romantic relationship, neither is a child. As adults we should each know that the nature of all things is impermanence, and, that to become attached to anything will only result in a sense of loss. Incompleteness.

To be in a romantic relationship without attachment, is to be in a mature relationship. A relationship where we know that one day we will be parted, whether it's through separation of mind, or death. Our ways will part.

Being hardwired for connection is nothing more than the sense that we all have of unity in all things. All things are connected. We know this intuitively. Do we not live in a universe? A oneness?

How we respond to cheating, lying, etc., depends entirely upon our personal boundaries. Our personal boundaries are for us, not our partners.

Just an observation, there is no mature attachment style.




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« Reply #66 on: December 26, 2014, 01:46:13 PM »

Excerpt
Being hardwired for connection is nothing more than the sense that we all have of unity in all things.

It's more than that Perf.  Bowlby's study of attachment theory started with parent-child studies but worked backwards from there, to something that is pretty obvious:

... .we’ve been programmed by evolution to single out a few specific individuals in our lives and make them precious to us. We’ve been bred to be dependent on a significant other. The need starts in the womb and ends when we die. Bowlby proposed that throughout evolution, genetic selection favored people who became attached because it provided a survival advantage. In prehistoric times, people who relied only on themselves and had no one to protect them were more likely to end up as prey. More often than not, those who were with somebody who deeply cared about them survived to pass on to their offspring the preference to form intimate bonds. In fact, the need to be near someone special is so important that the brain has a biological mechanism specifically responsible for creating and regulating our connection with our attachment figures (parents, children, and romantic partners). This mechanism, called the attachment system, consists of emotions and behaviors that ensure that we remain safe and protected by staying close to our loved ones. The mechanism explains why a child parted from his or her mother becomes frantic, searches wildly, or cries uncontrollably until he or she reestablishes contact with her. These reactions are coined protest behavior, and we all still exhibit them as grown-ups. In prehistoric times, being close to a partner was a matter of life and death, and our attachment system developed to treat such proximity as an absolute necessity.
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« Reply #67 on: December 26, 2014, 03:01:22 PM »

Heal, I understand attachment style theory. We, as humans evolve. We grow. Attachment is a fact of life, just as birth, aging and death. Attachment is definitely part of the deal. What worked for paleo man may not be the ticket for a more evolved human. As infants and children, we need attachment for survival. As an adult, do you feel as though you would die without an attachment? When we, as adults, are able to destroy attachment, it opens us up to accepting and being in unity with every human being, every animal, every plant, and every stone, exactly as they are. We are able to love openly and freely, without attachment. It's easy to see that attachment style theory sprang from attachment given the sheer force that attachment possesses. To place qualities on things that they don't actually possess is human nature.
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« Reply #68 on: December 26, 2014, 04:10:16 PM »

I get the unity stance Perf, although I question how 'evolved' we are; 'modern' humans have been around for an insignificant amount of time relative to primates in general, and the preference for attachment has been in our DNA for tens of millions of years.

But anyway, if attachment=bad then maybe connection is a better word.  Connection with a human brings something to the party that connection with a rock or a plant cannot, and deliberately eschewing that in the name of bliss is avoidant.  Although living without attachments (or connections) is possible, I don't like it, connection with people is where the juice of life is, it's also where the fire is, and hopefully us smart monkeys have learned enough to avoid them borderline flames.
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« Reply #69 on: December 26, 2014, 04:46:31 PM »

To be in a romantic relationship without attachment, is to be in a mature relationship. A relationship where we know that one day we will be parted, whether it's through separation of mind, or death. Our ways will part.

I have to disagree with you Perfidy.  Of course we know one day we will part from one another, one way or another.  And yes, this will be painful and hurt like hell.  So?  So since when is life supposed to not hurt?  It is this fact that everything is temporary that makes our connections with others that much more meaningful and special.  Knowing we need to treasure our moments in life, not take them for granted.  And be thankful for them.  I think a mature r/s is when we allow ourselves to show ourselves deeply and love deeply, despite the fact we'll have to one day say goodbye. 

I get the unity stance Perf, although I question how 'evolved' we are; 'modern' humans have been around for an insignificant amount of time relative to primates in general, and the preference for attachment has been in our DNA for tens of millions of years.

But anyway, if attachment=bad then maybe connection is a better word.  Connection with a human brings something to the party that connection with a rock or a plant cannot, and deliberately eschewing that in the name of bliss is avoidant.  Although living without attachments (or connections) is possible, I don't like it, connection with people is where the juice of life is, it's also where the fire is, and hopefully us smart monkeys have learned enough to avoid them borderline flames.

Fromheeltoheal, you put into words what I was thinking but didn't know how to express.  There is a richness in our connections with others.  I would rather have a lifetime of heartbreaks than have a life with no deep connections. 

Apparently when Bowlby wrote about his attachment theory, he wasn't sure what to call it and was originally calling it a love theory.  But with so many subjective ideas on love, he used the word 'attachment'. 
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« Reply #70 on: December 26, 2014, 06:13:51 PM »

if you have a beef with what perfidy is saying then you have a beef with mindfulness, buddha, buddhism, etc. and a beef with bpdfamily.com because "detachment" is what both promote.

case in point, there are article links on the right margin of the leaving board with the words "attachment leads to suffering ~ detachment leads to freedom" -- they lead to this article:   https://bpdfamily.com/message_board/index.php?topic=135116.0

i recommend reading the whole article, but here's some excerpts, notice they promote "engagement" not "attachment" -- no where did i see perfidy suggest not engaging,

"as is so often the case with the big issues of spiritual life, detachment involves a deep paradox. It's true that those without a lot of clutter in their lives have more time for inner practice. But in the long run, disengaging ourselves from family, possessions, political activism, friendships, and career pursuits can actually impoverish our inner lives. Engagement with people and places, skills and ideas, money and possessions is what grounds inner practice in reality... .So we can't use detachment as an excuse not to deal with fundamental issues such as livelihood, power, self-esteem, and relationships with other people. (Well, we can, but eventually those issues will rise up and smack us in the face, like an insulted ingenue in a 1950s movie.) Nor can we make detachment a synonym for indifference, or carelessness, or passivity. Instead, we can practice detachment as a skill—perhaps the essential skill for infusing our lives with integrity and grace.

The Bhagavad Gita, which is surely the basic text on the practice of detachment, is wonderfully explicit on this point. Krishna tells Arjuna that acting with detachment means doing the right thing for its own sake, because it needs to be done, without worrying about success or failure."


   pain is inevitable, suffering is optional  ~me

To be in a romantic relationship without attachment, is to be in a mature relationship. A relationship where we know that one day we will be parted, whether it's through separation of mind, or death. Our ways will part.

I have to disagree with you Perfidy.  Of course we know one day we will part from one another, one way or another.  And yes, this will be painful and hurt like hell.  So?  So since when is life supposed to not hurt?  It is this fact that everything is temporary that makes our connections with others that much more meaningful and special.  Knowing we need to treasure our moments in life, not take them for granted.  And be thankful for them.  I think a mature r/s is when we allow ourselves to show ourselves deeply and love deeply, despite the fact we'll have to one day say goodbye. 

I get the unity stance Perf, although I question how 'evolved' we are; 'modern' humans have been around for an insignificant amount of time relative to primates in general, and the preference for attachment has been in our DNA for tens of millions of years.

But anyway, if attachment=bad then maybe connection is a better word.  Connection with a human brings something to the party that connection with a rock or a plant cannot, and deliberately eschewing that in the name of bliss is avoidant.  Although living without attachments (or connections) is possible, I don't like it, connection with people is where the juice of life is, it's also where the fire is, and hopefully us smart monkeys have learned enough to avoid them borderline flames.

Fromheeltoheal, you put into words what I was thinking but didn't know how to express.  There is a richness in our connections with others.  I would rather have a lifetime of heartbreaks than have a life with no deep connections. 

Apparently when Bowlby wrote about his attachment theory, he wasn't sure what to call it and was originally calling it a love theory.  But with so many subjective ideas on love, he used the word 'attachment'. 

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« Reply #71 on: December 26, 2014, 07:00:47 PM »

It's not a beef ucme, it's a conversation.  And it's really just semantics: attachment, detachment, connection, engagement, similar but very context-specific; attachment and detachment are only the opposite of each other when they're in the same context.

Detachment in a spiritual sense, a realizing that we are much larger than our emotions, our possessions and our aspirations and it's possible to be engaged with or feeling those things but also stand off to the side of them, remain detached from them, acknowledge them but not be them, is a moment to moment endeavor and always the goal. 

And 'attachment styles' is a field of study concerning itself with what happens when two humans become emotionally engaged with one another, and whatever our attachment style is WILL show up when that happens, as we build a connection, an emotional engagement, while concurrently working on our internal detachment from our emotions.

So in reference to our borderline exes, which one is it?  Both.  Taking all of the emotions around whatever happened while we were in it and detaching from those, in a spiritual sense, while physically detaching from that person by removing them from our lives, while also using attachment style theory as a tool as we connect to, engage with, attach to new humans as they enter our orbit.  All this work!  Not really, it's a settling-into, and detachment in a zen sense really helps with that.
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« Reply #72 on: December 26, 2014, 07:07:18 PM »

Pingo, you might be on the right track with love style theory, or perhaps, engagement style theory. Unity is the nature of all things. Everything exists in harmony, naturally. To depart from our nature is to be unhappy, because happiness is our nature. Love isn't something that we possess, love is it's own entity that fills us when we don't stand in it's way, and we perceive the phenomena of love with the phenomena of mind.  Love is our nature. Who doesn't want love and happiness?
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« Reply #73 on: December 26, 2014, 08:32:23 PM »

Pingo, you might be on the right track with love style theory, or perhaps, engagement style theory. Unity is the nature of all things. Everything exists in harmony, naturally. To depart from our nature is to be unhappy, because happiness is our nature. Love isn't something that we possess, love is it's own entity that fills us when we don't stand in it's way, and we perceive the phenomena of love with the phenomena of mind.  Love is our nature. Who doesn't want love and happiness?

I know we have been possibly talking about two different things throughout this thread but this has been an extremely interesting conversation everyone.  I have read books on Buddhism and such for years and years but I think for myself I was trying to spiritually bypass the hard work of healing I've been going through this year.  I was trying to detach from my pain without first feeling/processing the pain.  I think learning about 'attachment theory' has helped in going through this process.  I hope to come to a point where I can re-read those same books and understand them better and be coming from a more whole and healing place.  And I hope to someday connect with another man in a secure way, where we can share our deepest selves and experience trust and comfort in our intimacy without coming from a place of need but a place of love.
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« Reply #74 on: December 26, 2014, 10:23:59 PM »

Pingo, this is productive in the sense that definition is essential in understanding. So many things that we casually talk about have no clear definition. This is great that we can all share our minds in this media format without the distractions of body. A meeting of the minds. In a secure attachment style is happiness guaranteed? Does it take more than attachment style to feel secure with a romantic partner? Part of the problem with truly disordered people is that they tend to fool us with their theatrics into thinking that we are secure with them. I have a secure attachment style as defined in theory, my BPDexgf also seemed to have a secure attachment style. I remember the unbridled expressions of love, trust and commitment that were shoveled on me while at the same time the life was being sucked out of me. She was convincing! Didn't end well.
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« Reply #75 on: January 17, 2015, 12:25:23 PM »

hmmm. regarding attachment styles (based studies of infant attachment and the adult attachment interview) and eastern philosophy that suggests bliss is about not begin attached... .

I love mindfulness and everything that goes with eastern philosophy and teachings.  I also enjoy being a human being on earth.

We are confined from birth to a human body that has a brain, vagus nerve and central nervous system that is the means of connection  and attachment with other human beings who are also in a body while on this earth.  I like the comedian who refers to it as a ‘meat body’.  It can be a drag, being that we are all part of the oneness of universe to be confined to a meat body while on earth, but, it is what it is.  That’s the price of admission.

There is nothing wrong with having a healthy attachments while on this earth to loved ones such as creating a healthy family. Learning about attachments styles is valuable and interesting.  Healthy family  and friend attachments CAN coincide with deep acceptance that nothing is permanent, we are all here in ‘meat bodies’ doing the best we can,  we are obviously all changing every second and none of us are going to stay in this body forever.  It’s both.

Sometimes the most troublesome attachments are not to people or things but to ideas.

It is both, not either - or.

Be unattached in your attachments.

Also, I do not believe the point of existence while on earth is to avoid all suffering and meditate my life into total blended consciousness at all times, what is the purpose of being here in a meat body if it’s just to mediate myself back into the ocean of oneness?  If you are in a body, you will have some suffering.  I think the Universe wanted to fall in love and suffer, it wanted to know itself through life in a body on earth.  Stop avoiding it!  You are here.  The acceptance of being human and in a human body while on the earth is part of the path.  There is suffering and there is bliss. It’s both.  There is oneness and there is self.  It’s both. I assume I will dissolve fully into the oceanic one-ness of the universe again when I die and am no longer in this meat body, but since I am here on the earth in a meat body right now, I am AS interested in experiencing the universe while in a body and having a ‘self’ in that body as I am with exploring the fact that I came from the oneness of the universe.  It’s both.  I am here experiencing the universe in the form of a body right now and as part of that journey I use my nervous system to have strong emotional connections and attachments to specific people I meet along the way who are also reincarnated into a meat body,  and it sometimes brings suffering when they leave or change…. SO WHAT?... .for a short blip of time for  some reason I am HERE…I will suffer on the earth from time to time…so what?   Why not be here now and accept what is?  

It’s both.

None of us are perfect beings with all the answers, at least not while on this earth.  Stay open to everyones path and experience.  

It’s all good.  
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« Reply #76 on: January 17, 2015, 12:55:55 PM »

Meat body!  I love it!  I better not fancy myself as too much of a prime rib, but I have seen some mighty fine tenderloins.

To me it's where we create our bliss.  It's totally possible to sit quietly, meditate, bliss out, get a very real sense that we are detached from everything although everything is one, it's all energy.  That works, and, we're floating on a rock in the middle of nowhere, or everywhere, with 9 billion like-minded souls who are prewired for connection, we're social animals.  Another form of bliss is to connect with another human at such a deep level that the line between them and us disappears, a melding of psyches, invigorating, and also not difficult to discern who's me and who's you as long as both are autonomous individuals.  We can have both at the same time, or different periods of the same time, but insisting on blissing out on your own when you're with someone else is avoidant.  And the challenge, which attachment style theory has helped me a great deal with, is starting down the path of creating an attachment with someone and getting to that place of relational bliss without the wheels falling off, without resorting to 'protest behavior', developing something that grows and strengthens with time, not the opposite.  And sure, it's risky, but everything worth it is.  Noticing what another person's style is, which WILL show up when we connect with other humans, is critical and was the piece that was missing for me; avoid the avoidants at all costs, says the man with the anxious style.  And the disordered ones?  Well avoiding them goes without saying.

Coals are fired up, time to go snuggle in the warmth with a hot meat body... .
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« Reply #77 on: January 18, 2015, 07:26:43 AM »

accepting I have a dysfunctional attachment style is actually empowering.  It gives me hope that I can create a life where the attachment is healthy and brings out the best in both of us.  It also reduces my shame about my 'neediness and insecurities' and it helps me recognise my triggers.

Another thing empowering about attachment styles is none of them is dysfunctional, they just are, and that word is not used to describe them in that book.  Dysfunction applies to relationships, and a part I liked was not only can an anxious person and a secure person have a totally functional relationship, partly because a secure person knows intuitively that an anxious one needs reassurances and emotional closeness and gives that to them easily, but it's what they want too.  Plus, being in a relationship with a secure person can make the anxious one more secure, and while an avoidant person may make us feel ashamed about the needs we have, a secure one just meets them without question.  Life is about to get awesome Pingo, it's about letting the right ones in, and who we are is who we are in relationship with others.

Hmmmm... .when my r/s started my attachment style was secure and hers was anxious... .and I believed what you said in bold - and spent a LOT of time reassuring her - but it didn't work.  Maybe that's the BPD though - if it had ONLY been about differing attachment styles (without the BPD) it might have worked.

Over time, she flipped to avoidant and I flipped to anxious... .which is the first time I've had that experience in a r/s and it was HELL.  I will work hard to avoid it like the plague in the future - by recognizing it if I see/experience it again.
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« Reply #78 on: January 18, 2015, 08:58:17 AM »

Be unattached in your attachments.

Also, I do not believe the point of existence while on earth is to avoid all suffering and meditate my life into total blended consciousness at all times, what is the purpose of being here in a meat body if it’s just to mediate myself back into the ocean of oneness?  If you are in a body, you will have some suffering.  I think the Universe wanted to fall in love and suffer, it wanted to know itself through life in a body on earth.  Stop avoiding it!  You are here.  The acceptance of being human and in a human body while on the earth is part of the path.  There is suffering and there is bliss. It’s both.  There is oneness and there is self.  It’s both. I assume I will dissolve fully into the oceanic one-ness of the universe again when I die and am no longer in this meat body, but since I am here on the earth in a meat body right now, I am AS interested in experiencing the universe while in a body and having a ‘self’ in that body as I am with exploring the fact that I came from the oneness of the universe.  It’s both.  I am here experiencing the universe in the form of a body right now and as part of that journey I use my nervous system to have strong emotional connections and attachments to specific people I meet along the way who are also reincarnated into a meat body,  and it sometimes brings suffering when they leave or change…. SO WHAT?... .for a short blip of time for  some reason I am HERE…I will suffer on the earth from time to time…so what?   Why not be here now and accept what is? 

It’s both.

I agree with this, MaybeSo.  It is this experience in our 'meat body' (love this! Smiling (click to insert in post) ) balanced with our experience of oneness, it can be both! 

Coals are fired up, time to go snuggle in the warmth with a hot meat body... .

Doing the right thing (click to insert in post)
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« Reply #79 on: January 18, 2015, 09:06:18 AM »

Hmmmm... .when my r/s started my attachment style was secure and hers was anxious... .and I believed what you said in bold - and spent a LOT of time reassuring her - but it didn't work.  Maybe that's the BPD though - if it had ONLY been about differing attachment styles (without the BPD) it might have worked.

Over time, she flipped to avoidant and I flipped to anxious... .which is the first time I've had that experience in a r/s and it was HELL.  I will work hard to avoid it like the plague in the future - by recognizing it if I see/experience it again.

Yes.  One thing I like about attachment styles is everyone has one, 100% of the population, where only a few percent have personality disorders.  My ex was way, way out there, living in a universe of her own, so far away from what most of us call 'normal' that being with her was entering the Twilight Zone.  It's not about her anymore, hasn't been for a while now, but the new, revised me is meeting lots of new people, and looking at it through the attachment style lens has been profound for me.  There are a few women whom I've known for decades, I was in short relationships with two of them, and the special something was never there, we never took off into that kind of relationship that just finds its own energy and flies on its own, it always felt like a struggle.  Well, they both have avoidant styles, and one of them is in a relationship with someone with a secure style and it seems to work, a lot better than it did with anxious me, so there's something to that theory, of course it's not the end-all. nothing is, but more lights have come on... .
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« Reply #80 on: January 18, 2015, 09:07:35 AM »

Hmmmm... .when my r/s started my attachment style was secure and hers was anxious... .and I believed what you said in bold - and spent a LOT of time reassuring her - but it didn't work.  Maybe that's the BPD though - if it had ONLY been about differing attachment styles (without the BPD) it might have worked.

Over time, she flipped to avoidant and I flipped to anxious... .which is the first time I've had that experience in a r/s and it was HELL.  I will work hard to avoid it like the plague in the future - by recognizing it if I see/experience it again.

This was also my experience!  I do believe it was about the BPD, I think that in a non-disordered person experiencing an anxious attachment your reassurances would make them feel secure.  And I also saw my own style flip through the r/s but I did the opposite, I was becoming avoidant near the end because he was trying to smother me with his possessiveness and controlling behaviours.  I did it to protect myself and I guess I was beginning to detach.

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« Reply #81 on: January 18, 2015, 10:28:50 AM »

Hmmmm... .when my r/s started my attachment style was secure and hers was anxious... .and I believed what you said in bold - and spent a LOT of time reassuring her - but it didn't work.  Maybe that's the BPD though - if it had ONLY been about differing attachment styles (without the BPD) it might have worked.

Over time, she flipped to avoidant and I flipped to anxious... .which is the first time I've had that experience in a r/s and it was HELL.  I will work hard to avoid it like the plague in the future - by recognizing it if I see/experience it again.

This was also my experience!  I do believe it was about the BPD, I think that in a non-disordered person experiencing an anxious attachment your reassurances would make them feel secure.  And I also saw my own style flip through the r/s but I did the opposite, I was becoming avoidant near the end because he was trying to smother me with his possessiveness and controlling behaviours.  I did it to protect myself and I guess I was beginning to detach.

Yep, same story for me as well, a complete switch in attachment style, like being a different person. I imagine this a common occurrence in these relationships, perhaps why the FOG was so hard to get out of.  I lost myself somewhere along the way.

Reassuring to know that others faced the same experience.  As FromHeeltoHeal pointed out, trying to work on being more actively aware of these attachment styles in my current relationships has been an eye opener.
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« Reply #82 on: January 18, 2015, 12:16:41 PM »

Hmmmm... .when my r/s started my attachment style was secure and hers was anxious... .and I believed what you said in bold - and spent a LOT of time reassuring her - but it didn't work.  Maybe that's the BPD though - if it had ONLY been about differing attachment styles (without the BPD) it might have worked.

Over time, she flipped to avoidant and I flipped to anxious... .which is the first time I've had that experience in a r/s and it was HELL.  I will work hard to avoid it like the plague in the future - by recognizing it if I see/experience it again.

This was also my experience!  I do believe it was about the BPD, I think that in a non-disordered person experiencing an anxious attachment your reassurances would make them feel secure.  And I also saw my own style flip through the r/s but I did the opposite, I was becoming avoidant near the end because he was trying to smother me with his possessiveness and controlling behaviours.  I did it to protect myself and I guess I was beginning to detach.

It's funny, because at the beginning of the r/s I was aware that I was secure and she was anxious... .although I didn't have an understanding of "attachment theory" to back it up.  I thought (again in the beginning years) that I was secure enough that, over time, she would feel less anxious by virtue of being involved with me... .that my healthy "secure" style would bleed over into her life.  If only I knew what was coming... .
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« Reply #83 on: January 18, 2015, 12:21:16 PM »

Yep, same story for me as well, a complete switch in attachment style, like being a different person. I imagine this a common occurrence in these relationships, perhaps why the FOG was so hard to get out of.  I lost myself somewhere along the way.

YES.  This ^... .I went from secure to anxious and she went from anxious to avoidant. It was hell. Never, ever EVER again.
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« Reply #84 on: January 18, 2015, 12:32:43 PM »

Yep, same story for me as well, a complete switch in attachment style, like being a different person. I imagine this a common occurrence in these relationships, perhaps why the FOG was so hard to get out of.  I lost myself somewhere along the way.

YES.  This ^... .I went from secure to anxious and she went from anxious to avoidant. It was hell. Never, ever EVER again.

Yes, me too, and this is the personal inventory board, where the pesky borderline no longer matters.  How can we use attachment style theory moving forward, so not only do we avoid disordered folks but also folks with incompatible styles?
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« Reply #85 on: January 18, 2015, 12:43:54 PM »

Yes, me too, and this is the personal inventory board, where the pesky borderline no longer matters.  How can we use attachment style theory moving forward, so not only do we avoid disordered folks but also folks with incompatible styles?

Listen to that gut feeling that tells you this doesn't feel good.  Don't minimise it.  Don't dismiss it.  I'm practising this right now with someone I've met online.  Listening to my body, my need to feel soft, relaxed in the conversation.  So far so good.  I haven't met him in person yet. 
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« Reply #86 on: January 18, 2015, 12:47:13 PM »

I am trying to be more actively aware of attachment styles in my current relationships, romantic or otherwise, FHTH ... .but I'm not sure that will be sufficient to protect me in the future.  

I need to learn how to best respond to different attachment styles, given my own.  I've read several of the books on the subject in the last few months.  But it's one thing to know something intellectually, and another to put it into practice.  Trying to figure that part out.
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« Reply #87 on: January 18, 2015, 12:59:36 PM »

Yes, me too, and this is the personal inventory board, where the pesky borderline no longer matters.  How can we use attachment style theory moving forward, so not only do we avoid disordered folks but also folks with incompatible styles?

Listen to that gut feeling that tells you this doesn't feel good.  Don't minimise it.  Don't dismiss it.  I'm practising this right now with someone I've met online.  Listening to my body, my need to feel soft, relaxed in the conversation.  So far so good.  I haven't met him in person yet. 

Exciting Pingo!
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« Reply #88 on: January 18, 2015, 01:04:31 PM »

I am trying to be more actively aware of attachment styles in my current relationships, romantic or otherwise, FHTH ... .but I'm not sure that will be sufficient to protect me in the future.  

I need to learn how to best respond to different attachment styles, given my own.  I've read several of the books on the subject in the last few months.  But it's one thing to know something intellectually, and another to put it into practice.  Trying to figure that part out.

You're right Copper, it's not the whole story, just a piece, although a profound piece for me because it explained why it just didn't work with some women I've known, not the disordered one, other reasonably sane ones, but we had a conflict in styles that was never going to go away.  And of course when it didn't work I blamed myself, so going from that to a style incompatibility is very freeing.

And you're also right that learning something intellectually and putting it into practice in the real world are two different things.  The real-world part just takes practice, and that practice is job one for me right now, exciting, and I don't have to be perfect or even good at it overnight; let's celebrate progress!
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« Reply #89 on: January 18, 2015, 01:09:59 PM »

I am trying to be more actively aware of attachment styles in my current relationships, romantic or otherwise, FHTH ... .but I'm not sure that will be sufficient to protect me in the future.  

I need to learn how to best respond to different attachment styles, given my own.  I've read several of the books on the subject in the last few months.  But it's one thing to know something intellectually, and another to put it into practice.  Trying to figure that part out.

You're right Copper, it's not the whole story, just a piece, although a profound piece for me because it explained why it just didn't work with some women I've known, not the disordered one, other reasonably sane ones, but we had a conflict in styles that was never going to go away.  And of course when it didn't work I blamed myself, so going from that to a style incompatibility is very freeing.

And you're also right that learning something intellectually and putting it into practice in the real world are two different things.  The real-world part just takes practice, and that practice is job one for me right now, exciting, and I don't have to be perfect or even good at it overnight; let's celebrate progress.

I think that attachment theory is a valuable tool because you can tell almost straight away what someone's attachment style is by listening to how your body is reacting to them.  It saves a lot of time and grief!  You don't feel right?  You don't feel relaxed with how things are going?  You don't have to analyse it till the cows come home!  You can just say this isn't right for me!  And onto the next one! 

I also found that it made me feel a lot freer to be who I am.  I don't have to worry if someone won't like me or find me too needy or whatever they might perceive.  I can be honestly who I am and wait for the partner who has the right fit for me! 
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« Reply #90 on: January 18, 2015, 01:19:20 PM »

Yep, same story for me as well, a complete switch in attachment style, like being a different person. I imagine this a common occurrence in these relationships, perhaps why the FOG was so hard to get out of.  I lost myself somewhere along the way.

YES.  This ^... .I went from secure to anxious and she went from anxious to avoidant. It was hell. Never, ever EVER again.

Yes, me too, and this is the personal inventory board, where the pesky borderline no longer matters.  How can we use attachment style theory moving forward, so not only do we avoid disordered folks but also folks with incompatible styles?

Well... .having now had experience with someone who exhibited both anxious and avoidant styles, I would say that EITHER would be a dealbreaker for me.  Initially I would have said that I could deal with anxious, but when I really look back on it, it was EXHAUSTING... .and avoidant was hell.  So neither.  And I feel as though it would be pretty easy to recognize both.
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« Reply #91 on: January 18, 2015, 01:32:21 PM »

Yep, same story for me as well, a complete switch in attachment style, like being a different person. I imagine this a common occurrence in these relationships, perhaps why the FOG was so hard to get out of.  I lost myself somewhere along the way.

YES.  This ^... .I went from secure to anxious and she went from anxious to avoidant. It was hell. Never, ever EVER again.

Yes, me too, and this is the personal inventory board, where the pesky borderline no longer matters.  How can we use attachment style theory moving forward, so not only do we avoid disordered folks but also folks with incompatible styles?

Well... .having now had experience with someone who exhibited both anxious and avoidant styles, I would say that EITHER would be a dealbreaker for me.  Initially I would have said that I could deal with anxious, but when I really look back on it, it was EXHAUSTING... .and avoidant was hell.  So neither.  And I feel as though it would be pretty easy to recognize both.

Anxious and avoidant people are 40% of the population combined jhk, so that's a lot of people to eliminate.  What style do you think you are?   A person with an anxious style is not someone who is needy, helpless or whiny, like a disordered person may be, it's just someone who needs assurances and communication in a relationship and wants intimacy, which is why partnering with a person with an avoidant style won't work because they are always looking for emotional distance and independence. 
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jhkbuzz
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Gender: Female
What is your sexual orientation: Straight
Who in your life has "personality" issues: Ex-romantic partner
Posts: 1639



« Reply #92 on: January 18, 2015, 06:58:43 PM »

Yep, same story for me as well, a complete switch in attachment style, like being a different person. I imagine this a common occurrence in these relationships, perhaps why the FOG was so hard to get out of.  I lost myself somewhere along the way.

YES.  This ^... .I went from secure to anxious and she went from anxious to avoidant. It was hell. Never, ever EVER again.

Yes, me too, and this is the personal inventory board, where the pesky borderline no longer matters.  How can we use attachment style theory moving forward, so not only do we avoid disordered folks but also folks with incompatible styles?

Well... .having now had experience with someone who exhibited both anxious and avoidant styles, I would say that EITHER would be a dealbreaker for me.  Initially I would have said that I could deal with anxious, but when I really look back on it, it was EXHAUSTING... .and avoidant was hell.  So neither.  And I feel as though it would be pretty easy to recognize both.

Anxious and avoidant people are 40% of the population combined jhk, so that's a lot of people to eliminate.  What style do you think you are?   A person with an anxious style is not someone who is needy, helpless or whiny, like a disordered person may be, it's just someone who needs assurances and communication in a relationship and wants intimacy, which is why partnering with a person with an avoidant style won't work because they are always looking for emotional distance and independence. 

I think I'm secure... .and I wouldn't necessarily want to avoid "anxious" people - I'm pretty good at reassuring.  It's just that my anxious exBPDgf turned avoidant... .I'd be afraid that if it started anxious it could end avoidant... .and I never want to go THERE again.
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