Home page of BPDFamily.com, online relationship supportMember registration here
June 22, 2021, 06:25:15 AM *
Welcome, Guest. Please login or register.

Login with username, password and session length
Board Admins: Harri, Once Removed
Senior Ambassadors: Cat Familiar, I Am Redeemed, Mutt, Turkish
  Help!   Boards   Please Donate Login to Post New?--Click here to register  
bing
Beware of Junk Psychology... Just because it's on the Internet doesn't mean it's true. Not all blogs and online "life coaches" are reliable, accurate, or healthy for you. Remember, there is no oversight, no competency testing, no registration, and no accountability for many sites - it is up to you to qualify the resource. Learn how to navigate this complicated arena...
115
Pages: 1 2 [All]   Go Down
  Print  
Author Topic: Emotional and Physical Intimacy  (Read 4081 times)
VitaminC
*****
Offline Offline

Gender: Female
What is your sexual orientation: Straight
Who in your life has "personality" issues: Ex-romantic partner
Posts: 717



« on: July 28, 2016, 08:19:19 PM »

I have been thinking what it means to be emotionally intimate in a romantic relationship.

Is it just simply:

- being able to show how you feel
- being able to say how you feel
- reveal fears and things you don't tell people who aren't close to you
- trust that what you show will be treated with gentleness
- want to know about the other person and listen to them with the same gentleness

The reason I am thinking about this is because C.Stein asked me this in another thread and I realised that I was stumped for an answer. It seems obvious, but also not.

I thought about how I feel that I am emotionally intimate with my friends, but did not need any physical (sexual) intimacy with them. I started to get confused by the different types of ways we have of being intimate - I am thinking about intellectual, emotional, and physical. And in a partner, I want all three (but had settled for only two and now have the scars to show for it).

I also realise that emotional intimacy is something I've had a problem with in the past. I remember one therapist saying the words : "Intimacy... .In to me see... " and then smiling at me as if she'd just written an epic poem or something. I cannot convey here how loudly and deeply I snorted in derision at her (in my mind only, I am almost always polite) .

But the reason I snorted is the thing. It's a cutesy and hokey way of putting it perhaps, but isn't it also true?  Just as simple as that? Not being afraid to communicate, for example, "Here are my 10 Values, whaddaya think of that, buster" ?

Please help me, people. What is emotional intimacy? How do we know we are emotionally intimate ? Am I overthinking this?
Logged
Turkish
Senior Ambassador
*
Offline Offline

Gender: Male
What is your sexual orientation: Straight
Who in your life has "personality" issues: Other
Relationship status: "Divorced"/abandoned in Feb 2013.
Posts: 11044


Dad to my wolf pack


« Reply #1 on: July 28, 2016, 10:38:39 PM »

I get the feeling that you need to be polite.  Have you ever tried saying what you thought in therapy?  My view is that I'm a paying customer.  That doesn't mean that I need to be abusive,  but I certainly have the right to disagree.  My T said within about two months,  "I sense that you have a healthy disrespect for my profession." Maybe I laid my normal sarcasm and "sick and twisted sense of humor" as he commented later,  a little thick. 

It helped him see me for who I was,  and by how he reacted,  who he was.  It helped us connect,  resulting in me trusting him more.  This was different than when  my BPD mother sent me to therapy when I was 13. Then,  I was guarded,  because I knew he would rat me out to my mom.  My guardedness was my learned survival mechanism growing up in a dysfunctional household. It took many years (decades) to unlearn.

Your list telegraphs to me that you don't feel what you show will be reciprocated.  Is this what you may struggle with?  That being guarded is your armor not to be invalidated or even hurt? 
Logged

    “For the strength of the Pack is the Wolf, and the strength of the Wolf is the Pack.” ― Rudyard Kipling
VitaminC
*****
Offline Offline

Gender: Female
What is your sexual orientation: Straight
Who in your life has "personality" issues: Ex-romantic partner
Posts: 717



« Reply #2 on: July 29, 2016, 08:49:41 AM »


My guardedness was my learned survival mechanism growing up in a dysfunctional household. It took many years (decades) to unlearn.

Your list telegraphs to me that you don't feel what you show will be reciprocated.  Is this what you may struggle with?  That being guarded is your armor not to be invalidated or even hurt? 

Holy cow, Turkish. My list telegraphed that? Really?
You've really hit the nail on the head. I know it because I'm kind of shaking a little from deep inside me, physically. wow.

Yes, absolutely, what you've said is true. I feel that I will not be heard or properly understood or valued.  I know where that comes from, my poor dad who did his best and all, but was really emotionally an incompetent dad.

I am guarded. It's true. Bloody hell, I'm actually crying now. [Where did that come from]


What do do?
Logged
VitaminC
*****
Offline Offline

Gender: Female
What is your sexual orientation: Straight
Who in your life has "personality" issues: Ex-romantic partner
Posts: 717



« Reply #3 on: July 29, 2016, 08:52:27 AM »

I know.

It's because you actually saw me.  Heard me, whatever.

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

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


« Reply #4 on: July 29, 2016, 09:03:01 AM »

What is emotional intimacy? How do we know we are emotionally intimate?

Good topic and questions VC!  I've been digging here lately too, and have discovered it starts with vulnerability.  And vulnerability is not weakness, in fact expressing it takes massive courage, and so called "wholehearted" folks don't consider expressing it either necessarily comfortable or excruciating, they just consider it necessary, to be fully alive.  And that belief goes along with the beliefs that we are worthy of love and belonging, one, and two, that what makes us vulnerable makes us beautiful.  That's it.  Not necessarily easy to go there, but not complicated either.  

So adopting those core beliefs is necessary, and if we don't currently believe them, adopting them might be met with lots of resistance, and looking at that is where the growth is.

That's the first part, but emotional intimacy goes beyond that, now we get to connect.

Excerpt
- being able to show how you feel
- being able to say how you feel
- reveal fears and things you don't tell people who aren't close to you
- trust that what you show will be treated with gentleness
- want to know about the other person and listen to them with the same gentleness

These are pretty good!  So how do we get there.  I've been practicing what I call blurt mode, where I blurt my truth from my heart to someone, with varying levels of success, but I do it for two reasons: one, because I want to, I want to be authentic and open-hearted, and two, the important one lately, to see what reaction I get.  Some people just won't go there, change the subject, or worse yet give me unsolicited advice or judge me, out of their own fear or they think I'm crazy or weird, but some people listen intently and reciprocate.  Those are the keepers.  And that's only the start, emotional intimacy doesn't just happen, it needs to be built over time, and how far can you go with someone, how deep can you get?  Some more than others.  So it's been a process, since I left my ex, to build empowering relationships with people, populate my life with empowering people, because what else is there?  And it's amazing when we can be open, honest and vulnerable with someone, and be fully accepted anyway, and have them do the same.  That's emotional intimacy.

And then, if there's also mutual physical attraction going on, physical intimacy can happen too, and not only happen, it can add to the emotional intimacy, like a way to reinforce and enlarge it.

Sidebar: I grew up with a girl who became my girlfriend for a while 30 years ago, and we still talk now and then, not really friends but we have a lot of shared history, and we were talking about sex a while ago, because there I was in blurt mode speaking about a lot of things, and she's typically very negatively judgmental and argumentative, which is why we're not close friends, but this is a woman who was left by her husband, and then left by subsequent significant boyfriends, and she now talks about "just sex".  Not talks really, more like poor impulse control screeches, and we began talking about what is "just sex".  I thought about that for a while, and just sex is the physical act without the emotional intimacy.  Been there done that, and it's clear to me that she's given up on emotional intimacy with significant others, they leave her and it hurts, so she settles for just sex.  That may be fine for her but I want more.  My borderline ex and I had "just sex" because she lacks the ability to become emotionally intimate, or more accurately, emotional intimacy means something very different to her than it does to us, because she has a personality disorder, in her mind it's two people fusing to create one, where for healthier people it's two autonomous individuals creating a strong bond called an emotionally intimate relationship between them, so we never, and could never, go there together.

Anyway.  Musings are becoming ramblings so I'll end with that.  What do you think?
Logged
VitaminC
*****
Offline Offline

Gender: Female
What is your sexual orientation: Straight
Who in your life has "personality" issues: Ex-romantic partner
Posts: 717



« Reply #5 on: July 29, 2016, 09:32:21 AM »

Oh, FHTH, you again.   

And that belief goes along with the beliefs that we are worthy of love and belonging, one, and two, that what makes us vulnerable makes us beautiful.

So adopting those core beliefs is necessary, and if we don't currently believe them, adopting them might be met with lots of resistance, and looking at that is where the growth is.

... ." I've been practicing what I call blurt mode, where I blurt my truth from my heart to someone... ."


Ok, here's where I go all robotic - this blurt mode Smiling (click to insert in post), how do you do it? when do you decide? how do you pick the person? what does it feel like afterwards?

When I think of my friends and how openly I can speak to them, I get confused about what difference it has actually made to me or to our relationship.

I am not sure how to explain. I guess I sometimes feel a bit embarrassed afterwards or, more frequently, if it seems to be ok to have said it, I kind of question if it was a big deal for me at all - as in, if I said anything so honest and from the heart.

Dammit, maybe I just feel that hardly anyone really appreciates either what it cost me to say it, or what a truthful and special thing it therefore is - by virtue of its truthfulness, if that makes sense.  It rarely seems that making myself vulnerable is anything that leads to me feeling better. Even my ex-husband used to say that "you always needed to be so strong and self-sufficient". It's true. Growing up I never felt there was anyone grown-up enough to be my guide or support, not really. I kind of felt responsible for everyone.

And I've often thought I have spent my life looking for someone who could impress me with their intellect & wisdom while also protecting me and cherishing me.

I am stuck again in swirly-headed mode. That's another way I know I am where I need to be, but I don't like it.


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

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


« Reply #6 on: July 29, 2016, 12:24:25 PM »

Ok, here's where I go all robotic - this blurt mode Smiling (click to insert in post), how do you do it?

Well, we all have politically correct or culturally correct ways to communicate with each other, superficial and light usually, plus we hold onto the idea of trying to be who we're "supposed" to be instead of who we are, yes?  So it's a letting go of that, and that's what it is really, a letting go and just being, from the heart, and then we might connect with how hard and how much work it is to maintain the facades we've been using to function.  But you'll freak people out too, since they've got their facades and going deep isn't the norm.  And social media and texting and all that make it worse, more disconnected, but that's stuff for another thread... .

Excerpt
when do you decide? how do you pick the person?


I decided to permanently do that after I left my ex and grieved the loss.  Had I done that with her from the beginning we never would have made it past the second date, and see what happens when we ignore stuff and barge ahead naive and blind?  Never again.

So I do it with everyone, just did it earlier this morning with someone I met in Starbucks, but like I said the important part right now is to notice what reaction I get, and true emotional intimacy takes time, it's not going to happen the first time we meet someone.  But it's about noticing if someone is willing to go there with me, not many are at first, but that's OK, I'm mostly doing it to practice anyway.  Some folks I've met lately, once they get to know me a little, call me "special", which could mean a few things I guess, but really they mean that I'm different in that I won't conform to societal norms, mostly because they're BS.

Excerpt
what does it feel like afterwards?

It depends.  If someone frowns and breaks eye contact, they either think I'm crazy or weird, or I've touched on something they don't want to look at in themselves, let's stay light, it's safer, but that doesn't feel good especially.  And some folks reciprocate and we have nice conversations, and that feels good.  But then there's the actual building of a relationship, be it a friendship or something more, and that takes time.  I figure we all only have a handful of people we're really close to, it's not necessary or even possible with everyone, but the way to meet those handful is to just assume everyone we meet could be, and go from there.

Excerpt
When I think of my friends and how openly I can speak to them, I get confused about what difference it has actually made to me or to our relationship.

I am not sure how to explain. I guess I sometimes feel a bit embarrassed afterwards or, more frequently, if it seems to be ok to have said it, I kind of question if it was a big deal for me at all - as in, if I said anything so honest and from the heart.

Yeah, I understand.  It depends what we mean by "friend".  I got my world rocked by my relationship with my ex, and everything changed as I detached and grieved, and a ripple effect was I started looking at all of my existing "friendships" and decided that quite a few of them were disempowering and shallow and had to let them go.  What if that was the key?  Populate our lives with empowering people and remove the disempowering ones, it's a brand new world.  And then, part of empowering is creating safe spaces, so if we feel embarrassed after, or someone helps us feel embarrassed, then how deep can we really go with that person?  Great feedback to get, on our way to emotional intimacy.

Excerpt
Dammit, maybe I just feel that hardly anyone really appreciates either what it cost me to say it, or what a truthful and special thing it therefore is - by virtue of its truthfulness, if that makes sense.  It rarely seems that making myself vulnerable is anything that leads to me feeling better. Even my ex-husband used to say that "you always needed to be so strong and self-sufficient". It's true. Growing up I never felt there was anyone grown-up enough to be my guide or support, not really. I kind of felt responsible for everyone.

So I think I'm reading in there that you equate vulnerability with weakness, maybe a little?  I did too, and that's what I've been learning, that expressing vulnerability is anything but weak, it takes courage to do and it's extremely powerful, but expressing it to the wrong people, who might consider it weak or otherwise be unsupportive, can be disempowering if we let it be.  But we can also decide screw it, I'm going to do it anyway, and that will be recognized by whomever, now or later.

BTW, the root of the word "courage" is cor, which is Latin for heart, and an original definition of courage was "to speak one's mind by telling all one's heart."  Hmmm.  Something to think about... .

Excerpt
And I've often thought I have spent my life looking for someone who could impress me with their intellect & wisdom while also protecting me and cherishing me.

Nice!  And who do you need to show up as to attract such a gentleman?

Excerpt
I am stuck again in swirly-headed mode. That's another way I know I am where I need to be, but I don't like it.

Swirly-headed!  Awesome description.  Been there, more than once, will surely be there again... .

Take care of you!
Logged
VitaminC
*****
Offline Offline

Gender: Female
What is your sexual orientation: Straight
Who in your life has "personality" issues: Ex-romantic partner
Posts: 717



« Reply #7 on: July 29, 2016, 12:48:07 PM »

Thank you so much for all this!

So I think I'm reading in there that you equate vulnerability with weakness, maybe a little?  I did too, and that's what I've been learning, that expressing vulnerability is anything but weak, it takes courage to do and it's extremely powerful, but expressing it to the wrong people, who might consider it weak or otherwise be unsupportive, can be disempowering if we let it be.  But we can also decide screw it, I'm going to do it anyway, and that will be recognized by whomever, now or later.

Yes, I do, you're right. And I've been aware of how faulty that is for years. But still slip into it, as we saw there Smiling (click to insert in post)

BTW, the root of the word "courage" is cor, which is Latin for heart, and an original definition of courage was "to speak one's mind by telling all one's heart."  

That's so nice. I love words. Definitely something to think about.

Nice!  And who do you need to show up as to attract such a gentleman?
Excerpt

Mm, you specialize in easy questions, as I see.

Copying into a word doc and saving this to think about while we're offline tomorrow.
Logged
fromheeltoheal
********
Offline Offline

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


« Reply #8 on: July 29, 2016, 12:56:47 PM »

Copying into a word doc and saving this to think about while we're offline tomorrow.

Oh yeah, I forgot we're down for upgrades.  Good plan on the doc!
Logged
VitaminC
*****
Offline Offline

Gender: Female
What is your sexual orientation: Straight
Who in your life has "personality" issues: Ex-romantic partner
Posts: 717



« Reply #9 on: August 04, 2016, 02:21:05 AM »

Hey FHTH,

I just entered blurt mode with someone and it was nice and the world didn't end Smiling (click to insert in post)

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

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


« Reply #10 on: August 04, 2016, 06:19:55 AM »

Hey FHTH,

I just entered blurt mode with someone and it was nice and the world didn't end Smiling (click to insert in post)

Nice VC!  And how did you feel when you did it?  It usually feels very free, and there can be apprehension if we worry about how it's being received, but if we can get out of our own way it's a good ol' time.

I had a particularly social day yesterday, blurted with 5 people (I count, as I practice), 4 of them lit up like Christmas trees, and the 5th was having none of it, very negative, contradicted everything I said, and there was a time in my youth where that would have been entirely my fault in my head, because I'm defective or did something "wrong", but I can now step out of that and realize and accept that I was being real, I am who I am, and I really have no idea what was going on with her, it's none of my business unless she makes it my business, and I can mostly let it go, although there's still a bit of me that wonders hmmm, was it me... .?  Pfft.  Human nature man, complex... .

Here's a popular Ted talk by Brene Brown, who chats about what we've been discussing; more academic than warm-n-fuzzy, but I've watched it a few times and gotten good value https://youtu.be/iCvmsMzlF7o
Logged
VitaminC
*****
Offline Offline

Gender: Female
What is your sexual orientation: Straight
Who in your life has "personality" issues: Ex-romantic partner
Posts: 717



« Reply #11 on: August 04, 2016, 06:43:53 AM »

I am laughing at "I blurted with 5 people". The Blurt Project rolls on.

I've got dodgy internet where I am at the moment, so will check that talk when I'm back. Thank you for the link!

Re the reaction and my own feeling thing - I think I'm better with disagreement than blankness from the blurtee. A non- reaction or a dozy one where the person just doesn't get it at all is always hard to take.  I prefer robust discussion than a shoulder shrug. Could say that's because I like to engage etc, which is true, but I think there's also something there about just being heard and acknowledged. One feels like acknowledgement and the other like speaking into a void.

Do you differentiate between those kinds of reactions and exchanges? Does it make a difference to you?

I guess in an ideal world we keep doing it and searching for connections, however brief, and place value on just glancing off our fellow humans in whatever way.

But, you know, it's a process Smiling (click to insert in post)

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

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


« Reply #12 on: August 04, 2016, 07:11:19 AM »

Re the reaction and my own feeling thing - I think I'm better with disagreement than blankness from the blurtee. A non- reaction or a dozy one where the person just doesn't get it at all is always hard to take.  I prefer robust discussion than a shoulder shrug. Could say that's because I like to engage etc, which is true, but I think there's also something there about just being heard and acknowledged. One feels like acknowledgement and the other like speaking into a void.

Do you differentiate between those kinds of reactions and exchanges? Does it make a difference to you?


Oh yes, I'm looking for connection, and it's either there or it's not.  Nonverbal responses are more powerful than what someone says; if their eyes light up and they smile, I know I'm connecting, but I'm with you, nothing at all is not connection, and then I fill in the blanks myself, did that with that gal yesterday, like does she think I'm crazy?  :)oes she think I'm up to something or trying to hit on her?  Truth is we don't know, and her reaction probably has more to do with her than me anyway, and I agree that someone disagreeing is better, although it depends how they're disagreeing yes?  A friendly debate, a healthy discourse, is great, but someone disagreeing just to be disagreeable is a pain, and a lack of connection, and it doesn't feel good.  So that's fine, I then go to hey, I initiated the conversation, and we're never going to know what we'll get until we start, celebrate the wins, let go of the losses.

That's with people I just met though.  Once we develop a connection with someone and it's ongoing, it can get more challenging as I go deeper, we bang into walls, fear can show up, connection can get lost for a while, but hey, keep pushing.  When I was younger all of my relationships were superficial, activity partners more than real friends, and that's no longer acceptable.

Excerpt
I guess in an ideal world we keep doing it and searching for connections, however brief, and place value on just glancing off our fellow humans in whatever way.

Yep, and what if it is an ideal world, and everything happens for a reason and it serves us?

Excerpt
But, you know, it's a process Smiling (click to insert in post)

It is, and everything gets better with practice yes?
Logged
Moselle
********
Offline Offline

Gender: Male
What is your sexual orientation: Straight
Who in your life has "personality" issues: Ex-romantic partner
Relationship status: Divorced
Posts: 1899


Every day is a gift. Live it fully


« Reply #13 on: August 04, 2016, 08:01:30 AM »

Hi all. Great topic Vitamin C.

I have a few questions?

- FHTH why do you say that you would not have gotten past the second date with your ex if you have done the blurting project with her? Can Borderlines not be emotionally intimate? What are the telltale signs? I thought that I was emotionally intimate with mine during the honeymoon phase . Though that was 16 years ago before I could spell emotional intimacy  Smiling (click to insert in post)

- Does blurting help you see who to be selectively vulnerable with? I understand that you do it to practice and manage the unsafe ones before they cause too much damage. I have a problem of being open even to unsafe people and get hurt and angry when they screw me over and go into my shell. Once these show their true colours, how do we manage them?

I was speaking to someone the other day. A recovered co-dep after 11 years. She has the twenty door policy. Open door number 20, behave and I'll open door 19 etc.  In the case of a BPD we let them down the @sshole slide which bypasses all the doors and comes out at door #1. If we send them back out to door 20, will they get bored and move on?
Logged

fromheeltoheal
********
Offline Offline

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


« Reply #14 on: August 04, 2016, 08:24:44 AM »

- FHTH why do you say that you would not have gotten past the second date with your ex if you have done the blurting project with her? Can Borderlines not be emotionally intimate? What are the telltale signs?

Because a real connection wasn't there.  She was pouring on the sugar because she was trying to attach and I was buying it because she was hot and apparently into me.  But it wasn't there, it was fake and I knew it, but I forged ahead anyway thinking we'll just fix it as we go.  Note to self: trying to force a connection that isn't there will get you screwed.  And she's very into listening to someone else open up, but she can't and/or won't go there herself, so I accepted physical intimacy and pillowtalk as "good enough" emotional intimacy, but it wasn't.  

Excerpt
- Does blurting help you see who to be selectively vulnerable with? I understand that you do it to practice and manage the unsafe ones before they cause too much damage. I have a problem of being open even to unsafe people and get hurt and angry when they screw me over and go into my shell. Once these show their true colours, how do we manage them?

Yes, that's why I do it.  I blurt my truth because that's how I want to live, one, but two, to see what reaction I get, if there's a connection or not.  And these are people I just met, I'm doing it for practice right now, and if there's no connection, see ya, I'm no longer willing to accept superficiality or lack of connection.  We manage people we don't connect well with by removing them from our lives.

Excerpt
I was speaking to someone the other day. A recovered co-dep after 11 years. She has the twenty door policy. Open door number 20, behave and I'll open door 19 etc.  In the case of a BPD we let them down the @sshole slide which bypasses all the doors and comes out at door #1. If we send them back out to door 20, will they get bored and move on?

Yes, I've heard that, and it's a way to protect ourselves on the way to real intimacy: share a little, see what you get back, share a little more, see what you get back.  That's a good way but I get impatient, so blurt mode.  And yes, a characteristic of a relationship with a borderline is that it gets way close, way soon, or does it?  My ex and I were telling each other we loved each other after about 6 weeks, and there wasn't a real connection there.  What the heck?  Well, I was in borderline school then, and having learned the lessons, no more settling for fantasies and unreal.
Logged
VitaminC
*****
Offline Offline

Gender: Female
What is your sexual orientation: Straight
Who in your life has "personality" issues: Ex-romantic partner
Posts: 717



« Reply #15 on: August 04, 2016, 09:01:48 AM »

FHTH, thank you for another insightful reply!

Moselle, glad you find the topic helpful.  I'm only a beginner at opening doors, so I'm taking what FHTH is saying on board and checking in with  myself and here Smiling (click to insert in post)

We could do worse!
Logged
VitaminC
*****
Offline Offline

Gender: Female
What is your sexual orientation: Straight
Who in your life has "personality" issues: Ex-romantic partner
Posts: 717



« Reply #16 on: August 07, 2016, 04:08:49 PM »

Another thing that I've been thinking about that is part of this.

I was away for a few days and met various people. The situation was such that most were passing through and staying around for a day or two. The situation was also such that people were quite relaxed and open and easy and trusting of each other. I noticed myself connecting to people - I'm very good at building rapport quickly - and then checked myself to see how "real" I was being. If I was going about it in my usual way or if I was sharing of myself more calmly and authentically.

I noticed a few things about my interactions, the main one that I am thinking about at the minute is how I had my antennae out for development of these brief connections. I spoke to a friend about it who has done lots of backpacking on her own when she was a little younger and she commented on how, yea, that used to happen all the time when travelling. You'd hook up with someone, spend all your time together going to wherever for a few days, and then just go your separate ways probably never to meet again. This was in the days before all the social media possibilities.

I said how I found it a bit unsettling that if I really found someone interesting and enjoyed talking with them, that it felt natural to me to have curiosity about them and want to continue the conversation. Another part of me enjoyed the freedom and loveliness of people just sharing things about themselves, without any expectation or attachment.

It's just something I noticed myself noticing - my instant desire to continue. Desire is too strong a word. There was something automatic about my sense that having a really interesting exchange should not just end. At the same time, I felt the impulse from a couple of others towards me and easily removed myself from their orbit.

Does this make any sense? These connections are in no way romantic or anything of the kind, just humans talking.

What's going on there, is what I have been asking myself.
Logged
Moselle
********
Offline Offline

Gender: Male
What is your sexual orientation: Straight
Who in your life has "personality" issues: Ex-romantic partner
Relationship status: Divorced
Posts: 1899


Every day is a gift. Live it fully


« Reply #17 on: August 07, 2016, 04:50:59 PM »


There was something automatic about my sense that having a really interesting exchange should not just end. At the same time, I felt the impulse from a couple of others towards me and easily removed myself from their orbit.


I also have this ability to connect quickly with someone else. Build rapport. It's vat for sales and deal making Smiling (click to insert in post)

I really like what you are doing here. Connecting and then filtering those who are unsafe. It's sounds very healthy.
Logged

VitaminC
*****
Offline Offline

Gender: Female
What is your sexual orientation: Straight
Who in your life has "personality" issues: Ex-romantic partner
Posts: 717



« Reply #18 on: August 07, 2016, 06:04:00 PM »

Thanks, Moselle.

Yes, I am capable of filtering. But I'm more thinking about why I seem to want something more from an exchange if the person particularly appeals to me.

I filter out those that are not safe or those that bore me. Depending on my mood, I can be quite easily bored. I'm probably more stringent in filtering the bores than the ones who are not safe, actually.

I think I am not really trusting myself and am questioning  my  motives in connecting in the first place.

And really I'm asking if it's "better" in some way to have a genuine mini- bonding with someone and be able to leave it at that. Like an almost anonymous gift we can give to a stranger - one where we really have no desire to get anything back, not even another nice chat.

Maybe it's to do with acknowledgement and my wanting to free myself of the need to have it from others and just wanting to give warmly but wisely of myself and have joy in that.     

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

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


« Reply #19 on: August 07, 2016, 06:13:11 PM »

I noticed myself connecting to people - I'm very good at building rapport quickly - and then checked myself to see how "real" I was being. If I was going about it in my usual way or if I was sharing of myself more calmly and authentically.

I noticed a few things about my interactions, the main one that I am thinking about at the minute is how I had my antennae out for development of these brief connections.

It's just something I noticed myself noticing - my instant desire to continue.

What's going on there, is what I have been asking myself.

That's exactly what I've been doing and talking about VC.  I too can BS with anyone, but what are we really saying and does it matter?  And noticing how real I'm being and how it's being interpreted, accepted or not, reciprocated or not.  Human interaction practice, viewed from a kind of detached place at times to get a different viewpoint on what's really going on.  And when I go into blurt mode and am being real and open from the heart I kind of lose that, I go internal in a way, so it's a matter of being selective about who I go there with, something I didn't do in the past.  So point is, it's the noticing, the paying attention to ourselves and whomever, and don't it feel great when all the lights are green and it flows?
Logged
VitaminC
*****
Offline Offline

Gender: Female
What is your sexual orientation: Straight
Who in your life has "personality" issues: Ex-romantic partner
Posts: 717



« Reply #20 on: August 08, 2016, 05:22:36 AM »

I want to put these two quotes next to each other because it's in the tangled heart of these ideas that my questions lies. 

Well, we all have politically correct or culturally correct ways to communicate with each other, superficial and light usually, plus we hold onto the idea of trying to be who we're "supposed" to be instead of who we are, yes?

These are the masks, the facades, the different personae we inhabit. We can choose to identify ourselves in a lot of different ways, depending on the context. So sometimes I am defined by my daily work, sometimes by my relationship to someone (daughter, niece, friend, colleague, etc), sometimes by my aspirations for myself, and sometimes the qualities I see or particularly value or don't value about myself. Are there others?

These may all be accurate, again depending on the (external) context. Wouldn't you agree that what I'm calling the "external context" is the different roles we inhabit and these too define us in some way? And to some degree the correct ways of communicating that you refer to is what makes social interaction possible? Speaking to someone in their professional capacity is going to be quite different to speaking to them on a personal level, usually.

We navigate through them in a variety of ways but the key to being authentic is to always be aware of, have access to, and weave in this:

And when I go into blurt mode and am being real and open from the heart I kind of lose that, I go internal in a way... .

How much of our internal selves can be present in our communication, in whatever context we need to be interacting with someone else?

Or is it as simple as being aware of the different roles we have and recognizing that these are separate to our internal selves?
Sometimes, if we're lucky I guess, our roles overlap a lot with our internal selves. If my values include things like connection and I have a role in life that allows me to live that pretty fully, I am going to feel fulfilled and authentic and more alive?  If that same value doesn't get a chance to be expressed or lived in something that I have to spend 8 hours a day working at, I better try to get it somewhere else to ensure I feel real?

I see how these things are important:

a) being aware of one's values
b) feeling gratitude for any areas in my life where I live my values
c) realising that one's identity is comprised of both external roles and internal values
d) checking in on which values are not being fulfilled and finding ways to fulfill that
e) realising that it's at the end of a b c d, is where the communication becomes more authentic

I get confused by the construction of identity - actually a topic I am researching in a professional capacity - and to what degree it is socially constructed. Without social interaction, humans die. There are many different theories of identity; we can look to philosophy, psychology, sociology, spirituality & religion (which crosses over with philosophy but is very different in providing actual schemas and instructions), neuroscience, and more recently computer science (in particular developments in Artificial Intelligence). 

I thought the Brene Brown Ted Talk was interesting as she had a particular approach based on her own discipline, but still, interestingly, arrived at the point of privileging a more internal basis for identity. Would you agree, FHTH, that that is the conclusion she arrived at?

I think my whole project, all my life, has been to understand what identity is. How we construct it. And proceeding from a purely personal, or internal, sense is either not realistic or actually impossible - because we all get our ideas from somewhere, whether scientific literature, self-help books, or popular culture - to name a few. Disentangling the different influences on us, and making sure the method also includes a healthy dose of considering our own personal psychology (family influences etc) is the hard thing.

What do y'all think?








Logged
VitaminC
*****
Offline Offline

Gender: Female
What is your sexual orientation: Straight
Who in your life has "personality" issues: Ex-romantic partner
Posts: 717



« Reply #21 on: August 08, 2016, 05:47:56 AM »

Maybe all those musings were a bit much for this board. Sorry, if so. But I hope not Smiling (click to insert in post)

But one more thing I just thought of. We can also split it up this way and, for me, I can put it very simply:

My brain: I just want to develop and do hard work to aquire information, analyze, and understand
My body: I just want to move and dance and feel myself in the world
My emotions: I just want to be loved

But the simplicity is deceptive, of course. Because they are not separate compartments but are instead entirely interrelated and interdependent. We are autopoietic systems. I've got a cool link, for anyone that is interested.


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

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


« Reply #22 on: August 13, 2016, 02:33:20 PM »

Great posts VC, we're a diggin now.  Powerful stuff, and here's my version of things:

An identity is a belief, the most powerful kind, a belief about who we are.  We can have empowering identities (humanitarian, kind person, optimist) or disempowering ones (loser, idiot, dumbass, the inner critic run amok).  And then we've got values, which we've talked about, and getting our identities to align with our values is livin' large; do that consistently and our self esteem will skyrocket.

An example:

Say someone values health, but smokes.  And consider the difference between a behavior and an identity, a behavior being what you do, an identity being who you are.  Smoking is a behavior, and if someone does it once in a while, they may not consider themselves a "smoker" which is an identity, a higher level in the psyche than a behavior.  So if someone identifies as a "smoker" but values health, there's a conflict. And we have an internal drive to stay consistent with who we say we are and what we value, so if there's a conflict between a value and an identity we know it on some level, which erodes our self esteem, and we get really busy with the justifications and rationalizations about how it's somehow OK to be a "smoker" while valuing health.  An easy way is to downgrade the identity to a behavior: "well, I'm not really a smoker, I just do it once in a while."

Now your other topic is roles.  We all play many roles in our lives, and notice the terminology, "play", and it's fruitful to see if our roles are consistent with our identities, again beliefs about who we are.

Examples:

In our professional lives we may have the identity of a professional, which can be a manifestation of living by the values of intelligence, integrity, creativity, whatever, and we can inhabit the role of "professional" without sacrificing any values or the identity.  And if we do some piss poor work that is inconsistent with a value or the identity, it hurts, so we get on it and fix it.

In our roles as a member of a family, things can get stickier.  With my elderly mother, for example, I inhabit the role of Respectful, Loyal Son, even though I just ain't feelin' it, we've never gotten along well, and it's getting worse with age.  So I play that behavior, while retaining my values, but that is not an identity I want, so I play the role.  And it is playing, superficial and light.

And the above focus is internal and isolated from others, a great place to start, but as you mention, to a large extent who we are is who we are in relation to others.  So what if we could inhabit an identity, a belief of who we are, consistent with our values, in relationship with someone, and be completely accepted and encouraged for who we are, and reciprocal?  Nirvana.

So that's where blurt mode comes from for me.  We all have this pure place inside us, and all it takes to get there is to get out of our own way.  It's easy to come from that place, the hard part being stopping ourselves and "being" someone we think we're supposed to be, inhabiting a role, that is appropriate for the context and whomever we're with.  I've been consciously pushing boundaries with all of my existing relationships, and let go of a few as a result, and with new people I meet, when I can get out of the way of my own fear, I just blurt my truth; it's a shortcut to getting real and we find out in a hurry if this is someone we want in our lives or not.  Looking for real connection, because what else it there?  Livin' all the way, because what's the point otherwise... .

Whew!  That was wordy... .
Logged
Moselle
********
Offline Offline

Gender: Male
What is your sexual orientation: Straight
Who in your life has "personality" issues: Ex-romantic partner
Relationship status: Divorced
Posts: 1899


Every day is a gift. Live it fully


« Reply #23 on: August 14, 2016, 01:30:58 PM »

So what if we could inhabit an identity, a belief of who we are, consistent with our values, in relationship with someone, and be completely accepted and encouraged for who we are, and reciprocal?  Nirvana.

This is certainly a Nirvana. It seems very simple, so why aren't more people happy in a relationship? I can't think of many people who I would say are delighted to be married.
Logged

VitaminC
*****
Offline Offline

Gender: Female
What is your sexual orientation: Straight
Who in your life has "personality" issues: Ex-romantic partner
Posts: 717



« Reply #24 on: August 14, 2016, 03:44:25 PM »

Thank you for a really considered reply, FHTH. I must cogitate on this for a couple of days.

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

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


« Reply #25 on: August 14, 2016, 04:55:51 PM »

So what if we could inhabit an identity, a belief of who we are, consistent with our values, in relationship with someone, and be completely accepted and encouraged for who we are, and reciprocal?  Nirvana.
This is certainly a Nirvana. It seems very simple, so why aren't more people happy in a relationship? I can't think of many people who I would say are delighted to be married.

I wasn't talking about intimate relationships and marriage specifically Moselle, just relationships with humans in general, since we're social animals, although I do know quite a few happily married people.  What they have in common, some have told me, some I've just witnessed, is they get fully present with each other and get real, and they stay there, even if it's uncomfortable.  That's it.  Now there has to be a basic compatibility to begin with or that will never happen, but if that's there, and the honeymoon stage is easy, everyone's floating on air, a psychological byproduct of regular sex IMO, but after that, then what?  Does the relationship devolve into unresolved resentments, or identities that shift in diverging directions, and unclear roles or roles conflicts that create tension?  Or all of those?  Whatever, people are all different and relationships sure as hell are, but the good ones?  Partners make time, schedule it even, to be fully present and real with each other.  That's it, and when that happens all the crap goes away, as long as they're still both willing to work on that thing between them called a relationship.

And I've known couples who have done that and chosen to no longer be married too; they parted with no animosity and remain friends, no really, and had decided that they were no longer on a common path, identities, values and roles again, and realized that the best thing for everyone was to part ways.  Beautiful that.  Now that we've graduated borderline school, we can have that kind of relationship too yes?

Logged
Moselle
********
Offline Offline

Gender: Male
What is your sexual orientation: Straight
Who in your life has "personality" issues: Ex-romantic partner
Relationship status: Divorced
Posts: 1899


Every day is a gift. Live it fully


« Reply #26 on: August 15, 2016, 09:11:13 AM »

Quote from: fromheeltoheal link=topic=297167.msg12794080#msg12794080

Beautiful that.  Now that we've graduated borderline school, we can have that kind of relationship too yes?


I think it depends on how well we graduate  Smiling (click to insert in post)

I sincerely hope so. Are there any other schools out there which we might be enrolled for without our knowing?

Like VitC, I'm still digesting your previous post. Thanks for sharing this understanding. Doing the right thing (click to insert in post)
Logged

Moselle
********
Offline Offline

Gender: Male
What is your sexual orientation: Straight
Who in your life has "personality" issues: Ex-romantic partner
Relationship status: Divorced
Posts: 1899


Every day is a gift. Live it fully


« Reply #27 on: August 16, 2016, 08:40:11 AM »

FHTH, thanks for sharing your insights, they are fascinating!

I wasn't talking about intimate relationships and marriage specifically Moselle, just relationships with humans in general, since we're social animals, although I do know quite a few happily married people.  What they have in common, some have told me, some I've just witnessed, is they get fully present with each other and get real, and they stay there, even if it's uncomfortable.

Is it really this simple, after we can cross the compatibility box?

- BE REAL. I don't seem to have a problem being real. I am open, perhaps too open so I connect and get real fairly quickly. People sense my openness and share openly.

- BE PRESENT. Being present is a challenge for me because I get so obsessed with people, places and things that I am often somewhere else mentally (though I am working hard on this at CoDA).

- STAYING WITH THE DISCOMFORT? I did it this weekend with my children but it is very new experience. I raised some issues around relationships which brought anger and frustration out in my 2 eldest girls. I was able to be vulnerable and also allow them to feel these emotions without my trying to control, or evade them. We sat with them and they passed, whereas before I would have stopped the discussion, or been a bit judgemental/authoritarian. So I'm proud of that  Doing the right thing (click to insert in post)

What about growth? I think I was emotionally compatible with my BPD/NPD ex when we married. I am aware of the inherent mismatch in BPD school Smiling (click to insert in post)

However we were:
1. Both adult children.
2. Both scarred emotionally from abuse/neglect
3. Both looking for a person to fill in the gaps
4. Both in denial about the issues.

So emotional compatibility wise - fairly equal. Where we were not equal however was in growth potential. The rate of change of my identity was far in excess of hers. I was well aware of her shortcomings even in the act of rescuing her from neglectful and abusive parents, but overestimated her ability to grow from that.

I have a female friend at the moment with whom I can compare, and her hunger for growth matches or even exceeds mine. It's incredible to witness someone pulling harder than me at recovery. She's in CoDA dealing with similar issues. But I realise I want someone who wants to grow with me as well.

So I add growth potential to the recipe to sustain a healthy relationship. Of course there is no guarantee that she or I will grow in the same direction, so the potential for a magnanimous split as you described above, is always there.
Logged

fromheeltoheal
********
Offline Offline

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


« Reply #28 on: August 16, 2016, 12:15:46 PM »

I wasn't talking about intimate relationships and marriage specifically Moselle, just relationships with humans in general, since we're social animals, although I do know quite a few happily married people.  What they have in common, some have told me, some I've just witnessed, is they get fully present with each other and get real, and they stay there, even if it's uncomfortable.

Is it really this simple, after we can cross the compatibility box?

No, it isn't that simple, relationships are challenging, and the good ones rewarding and worth it.  But the relationships that fail, fail because one or both partners didn't stay in it, didn't stay present, didn't stay real, then the relationship becomes a business deal or an arrangement, resentments set in, and intimacy goes out the window.  And staying in it when it's uncomfortable, because we're talking two people here, with potentially differing values, and like you say, different ideas as to which direction to grow, or one is growing and the other isn't, is the challenge; way too easy to throw in the towel and claim incompatibility, when there was basic compatibility but a fear of staying in uncomfortable.  And throw in the ability, or lack of, to problem solve, another factor.  But the successful ones see this thing they've created between them called a relationship as something valuable, to be nurtured and cared for, something that requires work to maintain, but the best kind of work because it's where they go to gain sustenance and grounding.

Excerpt
- STAYING WITH THE DISCOMFORT? I did it this weekend with my children but it is very new experience. I raised some issues around relationships which brought anger and frustration out in my 2 eldest girls. I was able to be vulnerable and also allow them to feel these emotions without my trying to control, or evade them. We sat with them and they passed, whereas before I would have stopped the discussion, or been a bit judgemental/authoritarian. So I'm proud of that  Doing the right thing (click to insert in post)

Nice!  That is awesome Moselle, that's livin' all the way, and the girls benefited from it, as did you.  If you keep that up it will only benefit your relationships with them.

Funny, I don't consider my relationship with my borderline ex to fit anywhere in this conversation, unlike many here.  Our relationship was relatively short, we weren't married and we didn't have kids, and the whole entire thing was a fantasy, one we both steeped ourselves in fully, and when it became undeniably obvious that reality didn't match the fantasy AT ALL, I left.  Done deal, although it wasn't until months later that it became apparent how deep she'd gotten her hooks in, and what she'd gotten her hooks into, which then started this period of growth that continues today.  I was in a bad place when we met, she filled needs at the time, but then, after all the borderline crap, I've swung 180 degrees the other way; if that was definitely NOT an empowering relationship, what is?  Which brings us to VC's thread; it's a brand new world... .
Logged
VitaminC
*****
Offline Offline

Gender: Female
What is your sexual orientation: Straight
Who in your life has "personality" issues: Ex-romantic partner
Posts: 717



« Reply #29 on: August 20, 2016, 04:14:56 PM »

... .although it wasn't until months later that it became apparent how deep she'd gotten her hooks in, and what she'd gotten her hooks into, which then started this period of growth that continues today.  I was in a bad place when we met, she filled needs at the time... .

Ok, I am coming back to this, finally. I've got this summary from what you said, FHTH:

Our identities are things we believe about ourselves about who we essentially are
Our behaviours can contribute to or be at odds with those beliefs (which together make up our identities)
Our roles are things we play in life, required (and accepted by us, consciously or unconsciously) by our various social relations (family member, worker etc etc).
Our values are things we prize as being ideals to strive for.

I've now reached the point, and this often happens to me, where it seems more of an intellectual puzzle I'm solving outside of myself. It seems that pretty much everything about ourselves and how we are in the world is something we choose to believe and then, if that's the case, we can also choose to reformat or restructure those beliefs. I get that this is the underpinning of DBT and other therapies, and therefore views of human nature, that we, largely, buy into on this site. It makes sense, because it's practical and puts the power back in the hands of the individual and we are all here to heal from various psychological wounds. There is nothing wrong with that and probably everything right with it.

Maybe the reason this initially sounded exiting is the same reason it sounds a little underwhelming now. This way of configuring the world makes me think it's all in my head and all up to me. That's great, empowering and all that, but if I weave the magic then how can I ever be surprised? I mean, that's one of the big things relationships give us - a whole other magic-weaver that surprises us with their own spells and fantastical worlds. That's brilliant! I love being surprised! I guess I love it so damn much that it doesn't even have to be a delighted brand of surprise, it can be a hideous form of it too and I am so fascinated by what's unravelling before me that I stay to see more.

This might be the drama thing we were talking about earlier on; I think Meili had a nice point there about people with high intensity needs and their often turning to extreme sports as one way to fulfill those.

Bungee jumping, while thrilling, is just never going to give me the same kind of thrill as the discovery of the dense, moist, living jungle of someone else's inner world. And in that inner world, I don't just want to see sunny fields of cornflowers and babbling brooks and blue skies with flitting fluffy clouds. Sorry, but I get bored with that. The shadowy darkness of people is fascinating and beautiful too.

Maybe I'm worried that being a healthy person in the way we speak about it around here has the effect of draining off what's really uniquely interesting about an individual. Who was it that said something about all happy families being alike and all unhappy families being different.  Tolstoy, in Anna Karenina, I just googled it.  It's taken out of context and I can't remember what he meant by it but I guess it stuck in my head for 20 odd years because I interpret it to mean that unhappiness is what makes us unique - it is what shapes us; what kind, when it happened, how it formed us, what we've done with it - all that.

If we get healthy and happy, are we all the same? Boring drones just whittering away about being happy in ourselves and bla bla bla? Smiling (click to insert in post)

There are many wonderful works of art that would never have been created if the creator had had a happy childhood and had good healthy genes. I mean, take Beckett. What a character; what darkness and deeply scary, hysterically funny, and awe-fully sad mindsets he had. If his psychoanalysis in the '40s had "worked", maybe he would have been happier guy and not written a single other word. Instead his particular brand of depression and self-hate expressed itself in sublime language games in thought puzzles on the meaninglessness of life. Although, there was a lot of love in there too, in his later years and later works - a mellowing, I guess.

I don't know what I'm saying, really. I'm trying to figure it out by writing it. I'm not questioning that the main human project is to find happiness, or contentment, or something like either of those states. I know that having a clearer sense of ourselves is indispensable.

Maybe I am questioning how far we can go on our own. I can think I'm "fine", until I encounter the jungle of another mind. That's just another way of saying that we can only experience / feel some things in a relationship, sure. I feel like I'm grasping at something fragile and elusive about what I mean, about something hugely important to me that I've not identified. I am not sure if it's in my list of values - or if it's even a value. I maybe even don't want to find the right word for it, because one word could not possibly do the thing justice. It would be a reduction, not a distillation. There is no way to distill a single essence or particle from something very complex. The thing can only exist as a whole.  I realise this sounds mystical, and maybe it is. I think of it more as the feeling and possibility that poetry engenders. Like shards of glass, each refracting the light, but when you put them all together in a heap on the ground is when they really create a whole world of light.

It is, actually, kind of lonely to think about these things on my own.

I'm going to stop here because I really don't know where I'm going with this.


I put that above in quotes from your post, FHTH, because I was going to ask you: what did she get her "hooks" into? and why did it only become apparent months later? Don't answer if it's no one's business, obviously. 



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

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


« Reply #30 on: August 20, 2016, 05:09:41 PM »

Whew!  I'm enjoying this thread.  Lot there VC, it's going to take me a few to contribute further, but I thought I address this, since you asked, and pfft, if it ain't you guy's business, who's is it?

I put that above in quotes from your post, FHTH, because I was going to ask you: what did she get her "hooks" into? and why did it only become apparent months later? Don't answer if it's no one's business, obviously.  

I started a business years ago, and as it ramped up I spent my days in a room by myself staring at a computer, like I'm doing right now, and it got intense and stressful, so I dealt with it by ingesting massive caffeine during the day, sleeping pills at night, and heavy booze on the weekends to provide some chemical respite for a minute.  It worked in that I've made a boatload of money and I have a good reputation, but it escaped me how socially isolated I'd become, and pretty wacky as a result.  And then she found me on Facebook; we used to work together in the 80's and had what I thought was real then too, turned out I was one of many, per borderline usual, yet I was game for round two because "she'd changed" and I was in an altered state.

So we were telling each other we loved each other within weeks, having 9 hour phone conversations, and I was feeling validated and empathized with, feeling compassion, a deep emotional bond, I was fully open, boundaryless, floating on air, the full deal, until the tides changed and the devaluation started, which I responded to by getting defensive, justifying, explaining, generally freaking out, she was raging at the drop of a hat, it got so bad I left.

This story is by no means unique, and clear why I found a home here.

So it wasn't until months after I'd left her that I started digging: why did I go to those places?  Why did I freak out when I was no longer getting idealized?  Well, it caught me by surprise, the personality disorder thingy and all, and I'd made connections with what I'd learned back to how she'd been in the 80's too, it all made sense, but I was moving beyond her to me, and why did I do that?

My parents loved me, but I never felt loved growing up, and it wasn't until decades later that I realized they loved me but their own stuff prevented them from communicating it, at least in a way I could hear it, so that was that.  So I'd spent my life trying to get love by "doing" instead of just "being" inherently lovable, which is what people who grew up feeling loved do, so when someone like my ex withdraws their love, for their own reasons, I freak out and scramble around trying to "fix" it, and that's happened a few times, it was just so extreme with my ex that it was undeniable and therefore useable.

So the hooks she got in me were the compassion, validation, empathy, connection and love that I'd never felt at that level, and it was a slap in the face to have all of that yanked, but now what?  So it's been a process of deciding I'm inherently lovable, treating myself that way, looking for references to support that belief, focusing on being aware and present with people I communicate with, focusing on building an empowering core and protecting it with boundaries, and then blurt mode, let's get real and see who gets to be in my life and who doesn't.  Whew!  Kinda feel tired just typing that, but it's a brand new world, the project of Me moving full speed ahead, motivated more than ever, and yes, we can feel loved, accepted and connected, and it starts with us.  
Logged
VitaminC
*****
Offline Offline

Gender: Female
What is your sexual orientation: Straight
Who in your life has "personality" issues: Ex-romantic partner
Posts: 717



« Reply #31 on: August 20, 2016, 05:36:39 PM »

it was just so extreme with my ex that it was undeniable and therefore useable.

Thank you very much for sharing all that. I get it. It was similar for me, the complete freak out when he stopped idealizing me - my reaction was nuts. I now know why - so that's pretty damn good!  That sentence I'm quoting for you really struck me - the extreme things are, by their virtue, undeniable and that makes them useable.

I just opened a document I wrote a few months ago. Kind of a diary in which I was trying to work it out. I haven't even thought about it in ages, but what you wrote made me remember it. I think I was crying pretty hard while writing most of it - there's ten pages - but now the feeling is quite different when I read it.  Here are a few paragraphs out of it:

As a kid, I sought refuge first, in myself, I guess. And then in books. I sought to escape but more than that, to understand. I thought there must be things here I did not understand and if I could learn enough I would understand them and that would make them better. I read fiction and as I grew I became interested in literature, psychology, and philosophy. And even now I think the answers lie there. They do. I have a lot of answers now. A lot of understanding. But it took a very long time and I’m still not done.

I’ve left the barrenness of my childhood behind, that tundra full of joyless duty. I’ve made things more solid and interesting and beautiful for myself. I’ve done a lot.  In some ways that me is so far in the past and I haven’t thought about these kinds of things for years. BPD has kept my mind very occupied for the past two years.

Let me say that again. BPD has kept my mind very occupied for the past two years.

In so many different ways he has filled it with other things; some wonderful candies – the kind of intellectual stimulation I prize above so much else, and shared interests outside of that, books and music and a few little adventures of the body, far more of the mind, and for the first time since my husband a glimpse of a future.

Let me say that again too.  For the first time since my husband, a glimpse of a future.

Even a wonderful little child / little sister. So much possibility.  The many things he did for a time that showed me he knew how to take care of  someone.  :)oing the little things I craved for someone to do without being told. So much possibility.  

And so much ugliness too.

The more ugliness, the more I wanted to get at the core.  I kept going back, for more punishment as my friends perceived it. And me too. The many times I was driving to his house asking myself why I was going there, why was I going there when I felt somehow forced or at least coerced into it, when I didn’t expect anything good or pleasant, when I didn’t face into it with joy or pleasure or excitement but the opposite. How often, I would ask myself, was I to repeat this self-punishment and WHY?

Because I had to. I had to keep going until I got to the cut and red flesh beneath it.  To see it, the wound, I had to see it.  To understand.  Like a forensic scientist, like a true scholar who needs the evidence.    I also liked the game, the challenge. It was exciting. I guess because it made me feel really alive.   Why is that?   Is it because it’s true? Because it’s real? Not makey-uppy, not upper brain stuff, but the primitive, most basic thing there is? Because it seems connected to survival in a way the other things just aren’t?   It must be something like that.

It’s so easy to keep getting lost in details.  What matters in all this is how this is affecting me so deeply and how I can’t stop it for good. And how I couldn’t make my needs clear in a mature way at the start and instead acted like a spoilt, mute child. And then kept at it. For well over a year now. Kept trying to fix the thing that is not fixable because I what I really want to repair is my whole childhood.

That person, who I was with him for a few months, that person is who I want to be all the time. Who I think I am. But I want to be. So in myself, so earthed, so magical, so full and sensuous and giving and of the stars. Everything.


In that same document, I had this link saved:

www.dana.org/Cerebrum/2000/Wounds_That_Time_Won%E2%80%99t_Heal__The_Neurobiology_of_Child_Abuse/

I'd forgotten, in the meantime, how hard I was trying to work all this out. My part, his part, the sort of monstrous thing we'd made together.

So yea, you're certainly right that it "starts with us"
Logged
fromheeltoheal
********
Offline Offline

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


« Reply #32 on: August 20, 2016, 06:11:14 PM »

I’ve left the barrenness of my childhood behind, that tundra full of joyless duty. I’ve made things more solid and interesting and beautiful for myself. I’ve done a lot.  In some ways that me is so far in the past and I haven’t thought about these kinds of things for years.

Tundra full of joyless duty.  That's a pretty bleak visual, the motivation to leave it behind no mystery, and good for you!

Excerpt
Because I had to. I had to keep going until I got to the cut and red flesh beneath it.  To see it, the wound, I had to see it.  To understand.  Like a forensic scientist, like a true scholar who needs the evidence.    I also liked the game, the challenge. It was exciting. I guess because it made me feel really alive.   Why is that?   Is it because it’s true? Because it’s real? Not makey-uppy, not upper brain stuff, but the primitive, most basic thing there is? Because it seems connected to survival in a way the other things just aren’t?   It must be something like that.

That's really cool.  Seems you were able to stay a little detached from the emotion and look at what was going on, on a more objective level, even in the face of borderline hell.  And also the compulsion to do so.  I never got there, the introspection happened much later, it was more 'this sucks, I'm outta here' at the time, my relationship was much shorter though; I could feel an immunity to the crap coming on, a protective numbness I guess, although it felt better, but why would I want to be in a relationship I need to be numb in?  Even then I was thinking that.

Excerpt
Kept trying to fix the thing that is not fixable because I what I really want to repair is my whole childhood.

More great awareness.  I concur.  And this was a few months ago and you're feeling differently now; have you made progress on that issue specifically?

Excerpt
That person, who I was with him for a few months, that person is who I want to be all the time. Who I think I am. But I want to be. So in myself, so earthed, so magical, so full and sensuous and giving and of the stars. Everything.[/i]

And who you think you are is your identity yes?  And the cool thing is that although a borderline can awaken that, we're not dependent on them for it, it's still in us and we get to keep it, and find more sustainable, holistic ways of fully awakening it and keeping it awake, while thanking the borderline for reminding us what's possible.
Logged
drained1996
*****
Offline Offline

Gender: Male
What is your sexual orientation: Straight
Who in your life has "personality" issues: Ex-romantic partner
Posts: 687


« Reply #33 on: August 20, 2016, 09:50:14 PM »

OK... .I just stumbled into this post... .FHTH, I think you are me, or I am you.  I have been a blurter since I can remember.   I've learned more what it was for after my BPD experiences though.  It's a weeding out process, something I just naturally came about in life... .and the older I get the better definition my actions of blurting have in my brain.  Like you, it helps me process who I may want to get to know or not.   The more knowledge I have gained on what I want and need in life, the more selective I was about responses to my blurts that would gain my attention. 
This thread is something many should read... .I've only glimpsed at some of it, so I'll have to go back and read it all!  Great posts all, goodnight!
Logged
VitaminC
*****
Offline Offline

Gender: Female
What is your sexual orientation: Straight
Who in your life has "personality" issues: Ex-romantic partner
Posts: 717



« Reply #34 on: August 21, 2016, 12:26:57 AM »

Tundra full of joyless duty.  That's a pretty bleak visual, the motivation to leave it behind no mystery, and good for you!
It's funny, how even here, I feel the urge to state that my parents were fine - to protect them from anyone's misunderstanding or judgement! They weren't monsters, far from it, just a bit young to be parents. And I was a sensitive kid, always aware of everything and feeling things deeply. I did learn early on to protect myself, to kind of erect a big metal wall and be careful who I let it and always keep the stepladder handy so I could quickly scamper up and over the wall back to safety.


I never got there, the introspection happened much later, it was more 'this sucks, I'm outta here' at the time, my relationship was much shorter though; I could feel an immunity to the crap coming on, a protective numbness I guess, although it felt better, but why would I want to be in a relationship I need to be numb in?  Even then I was thinking that.
This is the bit that I have always found interesting - you've mentioned it a good few times in your posts. That you got out so quickly, after "freaking out" about the devaluation etc. Can you recall how your feelings went during that process? Something like : 1) freak out, 2) get numb to self-protect, 3) run away -- I can get steps 1 and 2, but not what happens after that.

As I was falling asleep, it came to me to wonder how important it is (or not) to remember our processes. I wonder how much of it we need to retain in our consciousness to actually have the lessons stick and genuinely help us along the road. As I said earlier, I had actually forgotten how hard I was working to understand it all as it was happening. It was too much input while we were still enmeshed to process all the info that was coming in, and I think I spent a lot of time in the state with that spinning pizza disc you get on your mac when it's "thinking" and before it's ready for the next command.  

Hi Drained, glad you find the thread useful! It's nice to find people to think with Smiling (click to insert in post)
Logged
fromheeltoheal
********
Offline Offline

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


« Reply #35 on: August 21, 2016, 07:41:59 AM »

It's funny, how even here, I feel the urge to state that my parents were fine - to protect them from anyone's misunderstanding or judgement! They weren't monsters, far from it, just a bit young to be parents. And I was a sensitive kid, always aware of everything and feeling things deeply. I did learn early on to protect myself, to kind of erect a big metal wall and be careful who I let it and always keep the stepladder handy so I could quickly scamper up and over the wall back to safety.

Yes, you mentioned it was your childhood that was barren, which has as much to do with our own sensitivities as it does our parents.  Some people, seems many people here, had atrocious parents and upbringings, but I, and also you as you say, had parents that were fine; mine were raised in a culture where emotions were never expressed, a stiff upper lip vibe, the communication being a little formal, aloof, and superficial.  I too am extra sensitive, and understanding-driven, much more comfortable with open, honest communication that with superficiality, where what's really going on needs to be intuited.  I too erected walls, no, that's not really it, I just created my own worlds; I'm an introvert by nature, a rich internal landscape, although you wouldn't know it because my wall has been the gift of gab, a way to protect myself, which makes blurt mode easier in a sense, but I'm no longer trying to keep people away, I'm trying to connect, trying to decide whom to let in, having been entirely oblivious to that when I was younger, so I let the wrong ones in, a lot, along with people I could really relate to too, although purely by chance.  I'm taking the chance out of it today.

Excerpt
This is the bit that I have always found interesting - you've mentioned it a good few times in your posts. That you got out so quickly, after "freaking out" about the devaluation etc. Can you recall how your feelings went during that process? Something like : 1) freak out, 2) get numb to self-protect, 3) run away -- I can get steps 1 and 2, but not what happens after that.

Yeah, that was years ago and I kind of express it in shorthand now, I'm way out of it and don't go to that place anymore, so understandable how it's a little less than fully descriptive.  And this thread is good, fun to talk with you VC.  The last few months of our relationship were bad, I'd left her because she had cheated on me, she came groveling back a week later, we got back together, it was never the same, me lacking trust, her feeling abandoned, and any comfort in the relationship that had been there was gone, and I fell into a "fix it" mode and ignored what was really going on, like the vibe in my childhood.  Walking on eggshells is the perfect description for how I was feeling, she was triggered and getting more and more unpredictable and moody, raging all the time at nothing apparent, I was making it my fault and scampering around fixing and trying to plug emotional holes, damn, I get a little cold sweat just typing this.  So what do we decide to do?  Go on vacation together, that'll work.  We went on a cruise, great plan, incarcerated on an ocean liner for a week, I fully understand now how some people jump overboard on cruise ships, I felt the urge.  Anyway, it got so bad we couldn't make eye contact, not talking, spending our days at opposite ends of the ship with separate groups, and something snapped for me.  That's were the numbness showed up, I went from fully engaged, anxious as hell, confused, to nothing, just a disconnect.  And that was great in a way because suddenly I could think straight, went internal again, everything made sense, the direction was clear, so when the ship docked on the last day I said goodbye and left, walked away, didn't run, and never looked back.  That was pretty easy really, it was the following months that were full of upheaval as my emotions woke up again, lots of What the heck was I doing?  The biggest part being I made all of it, everything that had happened, my fault, and it clearly wasn't, and throw in the personality disorder thingy that was obvious, and why did I take all that on?  And that brings us to my current mindset, years later, where I've been focusing on being lovable instead of doing to be loved, being completely myself, noticing what I'm getting, and instead of going to the default assumption that I'm not connecting with someone because of something I'm doing wrong, I'm choosing to remove the folks I don't connect with and nourish relationships with those I do.  Sea change.

OK, that was still a little abbreviated but hopefully I caught the gist.

Excerpt
As I was falling asleep, it came to me to wonder how important it is (or not) to remember our processes. I wonder how much of it we need to retain in our consciousness to actually have the lessons stick and genuinely help us along the road. As I said earlier, I had actually forgotten how hard I was working to understand it all as it was happening. It was too much input while we were still enmeshed to process all the info that was coming in, and I think I spent a lot of time in the state with that spinning pizza disc you get on your mac when it's "thinking" and before it's ready for the next command.  

Yep, there's that need to understand, same with me, and I get very uncomfortable when things are un-understandable, and the lesson is don't go to those places, if something unspoken is going on, bring it up, have that conversation, and before that even, populate our lives with people who we can have those conversations with.  My ex would never have been one of them.  And there's the fear there, the fear of vulnerability, which is lessening as I go there more often, kind of a I just don't care anymore, I am who I am.  And I'm constantly meeting people who default to negative judgement, unsolicited advice, invalidation, for their own reasons and just as a matter of course it seems, pain in the ass, but once in a while I meet people who I can be me with and vice versa and it works, which is where blurt mode comes from, I want more of those.  And I find I start a lot of sentences with the word and, what's up with that?

There's me VC, thanks for the chat, some healin' goin' on round here!
Logged
drained1996
*****
Offline Offline

Gender: Male
What is your sexual orientation: Straight
Who in your life has "personality" issues: Ex-romantic partner
Posts: 687


« Reply #36 on: August 21, 2016, 10:34:17 AM »

"My parents loved me, but I never felt loved growing up, and it wasn't until decades later that I realized they loved me but their own stuff prevented them from communicating it, at least in a way I could hear it, so that was that.  So I'd spent my life trying to get love by "doing" instead of just "being" inherently lovable, which is what people who grew up feeling loved do, so when someone like my ex withdraws their love, for their own reasons, I freak out and scramble around trying to "fix" it, and that's happened a few times, it was just so extreme with my ex that it was undeniable and therefore useable.

So the hooks she got in me were the compassion, validation, empathy, connection and love that I'd never felt at that level, and it was a slap in the face to have all of that yanked, but now what?  So it's been a process of deciding I'm inherently lovable, treating myself that way, looking for references to support that belief, focusing on being aware and present with people I communicate with, focusing on building an empowering core and protecting it with boundaries, and then blurt mode, let's get real and see who gets to be in my life and who doesn't.  Whew!  Kinda feel tired just typing that, but it's a brand new world, the project of Me moving full speed ahead, motivated more than ever, and yes, we can feel loved, accepted and connected, and it starts with us."

I feel like I'm looking at my own autobiography when reading the above... .literally... .that was/is my life... .
Logged
VitaminC
*****
Offline Offline

Gender: Female
What is your sexual orientation: Straight
Who in your life has "personality" issues: Ex-romantic partner
Posts: 717



« Reply #37 on: August 21, 2016, 11:39:33 AM »

I fell into a "fix it" mode and ignored what was really going on, like the vibe in my childhood.  Walking on eggshells is the perfect description for how I was feeling, she was triggered and getting more and more unpredictable and moody, raging all the time at nothing apparent, I was making it my fault and scampering around fixing and trying to plug emotional holes... .

Yes, same here. It was only after his confession of cheating, wow, I realise 2 days short of one year ago exactly today, that I fell into fix-it mode.  Up until then I'd had one foot out the door of the relationship and, for a bunch of reasons (still to figure out - that's my next topic Smiling (click to insert in post) ) I suddenly got riveted and determined to fix it at that point. I considered myself at least partly to blame; I'd not been supportive or validating, and certainly not by the standards of what a BPD needs, which I had no idea of at the time.  So, I went backwards and remembered all the hurtful and dismissive things I'd done and thought I could actually understand why someone would seek out the comfort of someone else.

Maybe with a normal person that would make a degree of sense - I did a lot of reading about cheating in relationships etc - but not with a BPD, who himself had stated very early on that he'd cheated in every single relationship he'd ever been in. Well, it doesn't matter. What does matter is how I became fixated on fixing. That was the key for me too - but a much longer process than yours.

I knew I was on to something big when I realised the feeling of being in panic mode and trying to fix was deeply, deeply familiar.


Anyway, it got so bad we couldn't make eye contact, not talking, spending our days at opposite ends of the ship with separate groups, and something snapped for me.  That's were the numbness showed up, I went from fully engaged, anxious as hell, confused, to nothing, just a disconnect.  And that was great in a way because suddenly I could think straight, went internal again, everything made sense, the direction was clear... .

That numbness, that disconnect, is an interesting moment, I think. There's a lot going on there. It's what people describe as something akin to waking up or snapping back to sanity - but that doesn't begin to explain whatever it is that actually happens in there. Fascinating. Any theories here?


That was pretty easy really, it was the following months that were full of upheaval as my emotions woke up again, lots of What the heck was I doing?  The biggest part being I made all of it, everything that had happened, my fault, and it clearly wasn't, and throw in the personality disorder thingy that was obvious, and why did I take all that on?
 

Funny about the time lag there - it was both of the things overlapping for me, although also serious What the heck memories and moments a few weeks after NC.  Hm, interesting. You must have really shut down to get through in the last while of the relationship - somehow receded from yourself.

I'm still doing it - still trying to understand every thread, every particle, despite my stated resistance to reducing things to particles. I am so... .what's the word for when someone is two contradictory things at once?  Oh! Maybe it's "contradictory"?


And there's the fear there, the fear of vulnerability, which is lessening as I go there more often, kind of a I just don't care anymore, I am who I am.

How great for you! Really.

I am worried about this part, for myself I mean. I have no fear of vulnerability right now. But I bet if I started to go sweet on someone tomorrow, it would be right there with big open arms and a sly laugh.  I'm not sure how to "practise" on regular people - I've come a long way from my walled up self, after all. I'm grand with friends now, but relationships, whoowhee . I mean, who knows?

I've go to say your description of the cruise made me laugh. I know it was probably horrible, I can well imagine, but it's so absurd at the same time, isn't it? The things we do, pff.

[soft punch in the upper arm emoticon]
x
Logged
VitaminC
*****
Offline Offline

Gender: Female
What is your sexual orientation: Straight
Who in your life has "personality" issues: Ex-romantic partner
Posts: 717



« Reply #38 on: August 21, 2016, 11:49:21 AM »

Oh yea, this : "Yep, there's that need to understand, same with me, and I get very uncomfortable when things are un-understandable, and the lesson is don't go to those places, if something unspoken is going on, bring it up, have that conversation, and before that even, populate our lives with people who we can have those conversations with. "

I am not sure I get this properly. I understand the words - but I like mysteries! If I don't understand something, that is exactly when I want to go there.

Clearly there's a difference between healthy / beautiful mysteries and diseased / ugly ones - but a) we can't always know in advance which ones it's gonna be and b) like I said, I find the ugly ones somehow beautiful too.

Ugly doesn't always have to equal destruction... .

I think there's something here I have to dig around in
Logged
fromheeltoheal
********
Offline Offline

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


« Reply #39 on: August 21, 2016, 12:18:40 PM »

That numbness, that disconnect, is an interesting moment, I think. There's a lot going on there. It's what people describe as something akin to waking up or snapping back to sanity - but that doesn't begin to explain whatever it is that actually happens in there. Fascinating. Any theories here?

I dunno, for me it seemed pretty simple, at least in retrospect.  We were both living a fantasy, both living some version of a relationship in our heads that were different from each other, and neither one matched reality, and I can really only speak for myself here, and regardless of ample evidence to the contrary, we kept doing it, me blinded by the "fix it" mode and anxiety, and what the relationship actually was on that cruise was so divergent from the fantasy that it broke through, finally.  And when it did it was shocking, but also freeing, in that all of the drive to fix and all the anxiety got replaced with a drive to leave, this is not what I signed up for, this sucks, I'm out.  And yes, cruise ships get lonely when you're by yourself, but I didn't see anything deeper than that there, do you?

Excerpt
I am worried about this part, for myself I mean. I have no fear of vulnerability right now. But I bet if I started to go sweet on someone tomorrow, it would be right there with big open arms and a sly laugh.  I'm not sure how to "practise" on regular people - I've come a long way from my walled up self, after all. I'm grand with friends now, but relationships, whoowhee . I mean, who knows?

See, I used to make this huge distinction between friends and significant others, like they were entirely different creatures, when really are they that different?  Sure, there's a higher level of vulnerability and intimacy, and add physical intimacy, but aren't the best relationships comprised of people who are the best of friends?  I'm coming from a place of having fallen into most of my previous relationships, like how the hell did I end up here, some good, some not, but all mostly by chance, so how do we take the chance out of it, at least mostly?  By connecting with lots of people, getting real, seeing what we're getting back, and building on what works.  You say you're grand with friendships now, and what makes them grand, and why wouldn't that apply to a relationship too, only deeper?

I feel like I'm looking at my own autobiography when reading the above... .literally... .that was/is my life... .

Yep, it's cool when we connect with someone else's life huh drained, like we're not alone and we're not unique, and the less we think we are the healthier yes?

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

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


« Reply #40 on: August 21, 2016, 12:33:10 PM »

Oh yea, this : "Yep, there's that need to understand, same with me, and I get very uncomfortable when things are un-understandable, and the lesson is don't go to those places, if something unspoken is going on, bring it up, have that conversation, and before that even, populate our lives with people who we can have those conversations with. "

I am not sure I get this properly. I understand the words - but I like mysteries! If I don't understand something, that is exactly when I want to go there.

I like mysteries too, except when the mystery is how someone feels or what they think about me, that's triggering, and my head goes to all the dark, critical places when I don't know.  So I need to be with people who are emotive and communicate openly about that, I certainly do, and when people don't, it's a problem.  I get labeled "special" and "different" a lot, and the people saying that are meaning it in a good way, I kind of like it really, I am being myself, but maybe it's a little true so finding people to really, deeply connect with is challenging, which why I've been practicing so much.
Logged
Moselle
********
Offline Offline

Gender: Male
What is your sexual orientation: Straight
Who in your life has "personality" issues: Ex-romantic partner
Relationship status: Divorced
Posts: 1899


Every day is a gift. Live it fully


« Reply #41 on: August 21, 2016, 01:46:26 PM »

So it's been a process of deciding I'm inherently lovable, treating myself that way, looking for references to support that belief, focusing on being aware and present with people I communicate with, focusing on building an empowering core and protecting it with boundaries... .the project of Me moving full speed ahead, motivated more than ever, and yes, we can feel loved, accepted and connected, and it starts with us.  

Hope you don't mind me jumping in on this thread with my splinters of understanding. I am fascinated by it. Thanks to both of you for leading it.

Is this process a continuous journey of improvement?

I like the idea of an empowering core!

Like a nuclear reaction producing high levels of energy and power, protected by electric fences and concrete walls 10ft thick.

Well maybe our boundaries can be more permeable  Smiling (click to insert in post) Like a state of the art membrane, stronger than a 10ft wall, but selectively permeable to individuals, thoughts and emotions which add to the nuclear power.

What does this empowering core consist of?
Logged

fromheeltoheal
********
Offline Offline

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


« Reply #42 on: August 21, 2016, 02:02:02 PM »

Is this process a continuous journey of improvement?

Oh yes, as is life a continuous journey, but a big area of focus for me lately.

Excerpt
Like a nuclear reaction producing high levels of energy and power, protected by electric fences and concrete walls 10ft thick.

Yes, although creating boundaries that are too strong creates a personal prison, so really the boundaries are the guards at the gates, deciding who gets in, and hopefully avoiding those borderline Trojan horses.  Their security protocols have been upgraded significantly, so it's pretty tough to get past today.

Excerpt
Well maybe our boundaries can be more permeable  Smiling (click to insert in post) Like a state of the art membrane, stronger than a 10ft wall, but selectively permeable to individuals, thoughts and emotions which add to the nuclear power.

Nice!  Now you're gettin high tech, I like it!

Excerpt
What does this empowering core consist of?

Like we've been talking about in this thread: values without values conflicts, empowering beliefs about who we are, which are identities, empowering beliefs in relation to other people and the world, and references to support them.

We can elicit all of that with questions:

Who am I?  Who do I want to be?  What would not being that cost me?
What do I value?  What value do I consider more important than what other value?  What will I gain with this value?  What will it cost me?
What do I believe about other people?  How does that help my connection with people?

And then that expands to needs and roles, vehicles we use to meet those needs.

Deep stuff man, but it starts there, and you ever notice we get better at everything we focus on and practice?
Logged
VitaminC
*****
Offline Offline

Gender: Female
What is your sexual orientation: Straight
Who in your life has "personality" issues: Ex-romantic partner
Posts: 717



« Reply #43 on: August 21, 2016, 06:29:08 PM »

https://medium.com/p-s-i-love-you/on-dating-men-with-potential-2a7a5fbf5b0b#.bmzhetjjg

Guys, there's so much there to think about. I've gotta get some sleep, but I came across this today and it's funny and honest, and has some nice insights that overlap with what we've been talking about.

Nevermind the gender thing, that's not the point for me.  You'll see what I mean anyway.  

I think it was in the article on this site that talks about "the lonely child" ( have i got that right? ) that the point is made that when we fall in love with another we're falling in love with something that is not fully alive in ourselves.

That resonated v much for me when I read it. It's another way to slice it. Kind of very sad, but also somehow sweet - that longing for something we perceive in the other is really a longing for the muted or locked away or hidden parts of ourselves.

Because we don't/didn't just love how nice the other was to us, but also the particular kind of weirdness that made them stand out, kind of glow out, from the crowd.

I find that quite moving, I must say.

I agree, FHTH,  Moselle,  and Drained, great thread. Amazing conversation. I have so much more to say to you and ask you, but enough for today.

Night night
 
Logged
VitaminC
*****
Offline Offline

Gender: Female
What is your sexual orientation: Straight
Who in your life has "personality" issues: Ex-romantic partner
Posts: 717



« Reply #44 on: August 21, 2016, 06:36:07 PM »

Just came back to say , Moselle, your nuclear reactor with the permeable walls!

 Smiling (click to insert in post)

Very fine image, I like it mucho.

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

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


« Reply #45 on: August 22, 2016, 09:13:58 PM »

Good article VC, and funny, and all the places mentioned are in my neck of the woods, I went to school in San Luis Obispo and have drunk in that bar.  But wait, I had potential!  Where the hell was she?  Wait, wait, I had potential!

But anyway, to me the concept of a reflection, or of a connecting with an otherwise inaccessible or missing part of ourselves in someone else, and hence the attraction, reminds me of object relations theory, and one of its offshoots, attachment theory, which I've gotten some value out of, although I can't ever say I've been consciously aware that someone I've been attracted to was attractive because they were acting as that reflection or fulfilling something in me I considered missing.  Maybe, in that I've been attracted to people who have skills or traits I don't, although isn't that just opposites attract?  Then again, I saw my borderline ex as someone highly attractive because she was meeting needs in me she had gleaned, due to her need to attach, which I only learned later, but I didn't see her as someone with potential, I saw her as someone who already had what she needed and was using it.  Until she didn't and I didn't.

But what are the other reasons someone "with potential" could be attractive?  
There's rescuing, fulfilling a need to rescue within us, but also, someone who has been rescued is dependent and therefore won't leave, so abandonment fears handled.  Of course once rescued someone might leave because the dynamic changed, gotta be continual rescuing to work maybe... .
Or control, someone with unrealized potential could be seen as "less than" and therefore controllable.  
Or a project, going to the gender-specific axiom that men want their woman to stay the same and women want their man to change, questionable validity and too broad, but not without some merit.

I'm more inclined to believe that the right person can awaken parts of ourselves that were already there, more than provide access to something that is missing, although I'm not entirely sold on that.  I look forward to more input... .

Logged
drained1996
*****
Offline Offline

Gender: Male
What is your sexual orientation: Straight
Who in your life has "personality" issues: Ex-romantic partner
Posts: 687


« Reply #46 on: August 22, 2016, 11:00:41 PM »

I have some input on this subject... .I read the article yesterday, and have had a long day... .here is what I think I remember:

She dated a lot of men she claimed had "potential".  They didn't work out.  Pretty sure she also claimed to have dated a good number of men that had their sh!t together... .but obviously they didn't work out either.  But then she tears down the men with "potential" only to set the table to be ready for someone with their sh!t together.  

The whole concept left me a little confused... .it seemed she wanted someone with it all together, but her past made her remember those that seemed to arouse greater emotion in her... .and they only had potential... .the others that had it together... .but if only for this article, really didn't stir her emotionally.  

I'll go out on a pretty strong limb here and say, I didn't like the article... .nor her approach.  People are people... .we all have our baggage.  In the overall scheme of things, we all want to be happy.  What makes one person happy, is not necessarily for everyone.  Most everyone has potential to somebody... .and some who are "very successful" are no good for anybody.

As FHTH said:
"I'm more inclined to believe that the right person can awaken parts of ourselves that were already there"
I'll roll the dice and be me... .cause that's all I have.  I don't have everything together, but I have potential... .Smiling (click to insert in post)
I'm good with who I am now, and I'm sure I will be even better with a great partner in life... .which goes back to FHTH's quote above.  Our matches will make us better partners, and vice versa.  
Logged
VitaminC
*****
Offline Offline

Gender: Female
What is your sexual orientation: Straight
Who in your life has "personality" issues: Ex-romantic partner
Posts: 717



« Reply #47 on: August 23, 2016, 05:35:02 AM »

Let me start by saying that I think the way this article is written is definitely for easy consumption and not in the deeply reflective mode that we are in here. It's a way to talk about relationships that makes me think of dinner or cocktail parties; some wit and a summary that just begins to touch on some deeper insights. As such it's a bit frothy, sure.

What appealed to me was the part about recognizing an impulse to fix as something that was left over from childhood - because that is an insight that I had, strongly and for the first time, just a few months ago.

... .connecting with an otherwise inaccessible or missing part of ourselves in someone else, and hence the attraction, reminds me of object relations theory, and one of its offshoots, attachment theory... .

Have you got a link to anything on object relations theory? I've talked about this with a friend and could not find anything that to help me understand the theory - where it comes from, how it works. I've read a bit about attachment theory and also got some understanding from it, but it doesn't go far enough for me. I didn't even know that the two were connected or one an offshoot of the other.

But what are the other reasons someone "with potential" could be attractive?  
- There's rescuing,
- abandonment fears handled (because the rescued becomes dependent on the rescuer)
- could be seen as "less than" and therefore controllable
- Or a project

I think these are the unhealthy reasons that we might be attracted and I am sure these happen all the time or are frequently in the mix. They have been for me, to some degree, in my last relationship - more despite myself than as things I really wanted to be doing in particular. I sort of fell into the rescuer mode for a while and, I'll be honest, I liked feeling like the one that had some answers on personal development questions. For a while. But it was never something I felt totally at ease with because I recognized a patronizing attitude in there, same as I recognize in that article. 

I also think that by presenting it in this way is a kind of after the fact way of explaining an attraction. It's strong, we see the red flags, convince ourselves that those are issues that can be overcome (with time, or with our help, or both), and class the issues as things that stood in the way of someone's achieving a fullness of self ie their potential. I think the examples she gives are more about society's views on being "together"; earning money, paying bills, working in ways that are consistent with one's education etc.

I'm personally not focused on this kind of stuff at all and what I think about as "potential" is  more to do with someone who is still searching, still curious, still open to change. Maybe I've a childish or simplistic view in some way and think that someone with more obvious issues is more in that mode of being and am therefore more intrigued initially and see the possibility of exploring together. I assume that someone who is outwardly successful (in society's terms) is less likely to be interested in exploring the self and so I would be less captivated emotionally.  I see less "potential" for being connected in the ways that I need.

If that's the case, then yea, I definitely need to pay even less attention to outward trappings and do what you both say - just be myself - and see what happens or what comes back. That's what we've been talking about here from the get go, right? Blurt mode is one behaviour that is in contact with that thing in a pretty powerful way.   

Maybe, in that I've been attracted to people who have skills or traits I don't, although isn't that just opposites attract?

vs

I'm more inclined to believe that the right person can awaken parts of ourselves that were already there, more than provide access to something that is missing, although I'm not entirely sold on that.

I've never understood "opposites attract". I've always seen it as more of gaining "access to something that is missing". If we're attracted to someone because they have the trait or skill of being more open than we are able to be - isn't that something that we want for ourselves? Someone who models the kind of behaviours we want to exhibit helps us along the road. I do realise that sounds like using the relationship as a vehicle, using other people to learn about ourselves - it's not quite on par with using people to further our careers, as an example, but it has the same kinds of tones.  Hm.  And yet, isn't that, at the base of it, what relationships are or do?

We talk a lot about being grateful for the lessons we've learned from all our relationships. Finding the good in that. There's that whole way of thinking about life as a journey and people accompanying each other for a while and then parting ways and each continuing on their own path. Etc. 

So, if we agree that that is one way to look at it, and a pretty healthy way, then is it morally objectionable to have that as almost a guiding principle? - I am learning all the time, for a while I will learn with this person.

I'm getting myself into a bit of a knot here and feel I'm drifting off from the topic at hand. Although it's connected, but then every damn thing is connected to every other damn thing, isn't it? Argh.






Logged
VitaminC
*****
Offline Offline

Gender: Female
What is your sexual orientation: Straight
Who in your life has "personality" issues: Ex-romantic partner
Posts: 717



« Reply #48 on: August 23, 2016, 06:09:45 AM »

Just highlighting where I want to go in thinking this through:

We were both living a fantasy, both living some version of a  And when it did it was shocking, but also freeing, in that all of the drive to fix and all the anxiety got replaced with a drive to leave, this is not what I signed up for, this sucks, I'm out.  And yes, cruise ships get lonely when you're by yourself, but I didn't see anything deeper than that there, do you?

I do. But I am still thinking on this.  I am sure to come back and ask more questions on this moment.

See, I used to make this huge distinction between friends and significant others, like they were entirely different creatures, when really are they that different?  Sure, there's a higher level of vulnerability and intimacy, and add physical intimacy, but aren't the best relationships comprised of people who are the best of friends?  

You've nailed something here for me.   It's coming to me, what I want to ask here, but it is not fully formed yet.

I'm coming from a place of having fallen into most of my previous relationships, like how the hell did I end up here, some good, some not, but all mostly by chance, so how do we take the chance out of it, at least mostly?  By connecting with lots of people, getting real, seeing what we're getting back, and building on what works. You say you're grand with friendships now, and what makes them grand, and why wouldn't that apply to a relationship too, only deeper?

Exactly. Good question.

Can I introduce a new part to this investigation we are conducting?  Jealousy.  A sense of ownership of aspects of the other, an idea of the "specialness" or uniqueness of the connection - that's how I think about it.

I had an interesting moment the other day. My ex-husband is someone I trust absolutely and see as almost a more highly evolved being than almost anyone else I know. He has been with a new partner for the last 4 or 5 years and had a child earlier this year. I am in touch with him and wholly supportive and happy for him. It was a long process to disentangle all the emotional remnants of 14 years together, but now we are in a kind of "pure" relationship. We talk soul to soul, I would call it, and what's outside (the rest of life) doesn't matter so much. 

I was talking to someone at work and relating a funny story that happened years ago. Something about my mention of my exH clicked with the colleague I was talking to and she stopped me and asked is that so-and-so?  I didn't know that was who you were married to and it's great you're still on such good terms.  I think he's an amazing character and went on to say a few more things about him as a person. He's always been a blurter too, and people are either a bit scared by the intensity or magnetically drawn to his honesty - generally the latter.  So this appraisal of him was not unusual in any way; I've encountered it hundreds of times.   

And yet, something in me, when she spoke about him as if she had some kind of inside knowledge, reacted with, I guess, something akin to jealousy. I put it aside to think about it later.  Why should I have a reaction of anything other than joy that yet another person recognized the good in someone I think has an awful lot of good in them.

Obviously it's not as simple as that. I started to think about the definition of jealousy as the one I put above; essentially some kind of ownership.

I am not sure how to proceed with this thought process. I can see there are connections to what we've been talking about, but the map is still smudgy.
Logged
VitaminC
*****
Offline Offline

Gender: Female
What is your sexual orientation: Straight
Who in your life has "personality" issues: Ex-romantic partner
Posts: 717



« Reply #49 on: August 23, 2016, 06:23:13 AM »

More highlighting:

I like mysteries too, except when the mystery is how someone feels or what they think about me, that's triggering, and my head goes to all the dark, critical places when I don't know.  So I need to be with people who are emotive and communicate openly about that, I certainly do, and when people don't, it's a problem. 

I'm thinking a lot about this part.  That sounds like good self-knowledge and a useful gauge that can be made into a boundary.  Different kinds of mysteries, hm. 
Logged
Moselle
********
Offline Offline

Gender: Male
What is your sexual orientation: Straight
Who in your life has "personality" issues: Ex-romantic partner
Relationship status: Divorced
Posts: 1899


Every day is a gift. Live it fully


« Reply #50 on: August 23, 2016, 06:47:23 AM »


I'm personally not focused on this kind of stuff at all and what I think about as "potential" is  more to do with someone who is still searching, still curious, still open to change. Maybe I've a childish or simplistic view... .I assume that someone who is outwardly successful (in society's terms) is less likely to be interested in exploring the self and so I would be less captivated emotionally.  I see less "potential" for being connected in the ways that I need.


Thanks for this VitC. I love the way you put it here, "still searching, still curious, and open to change". I believe this is crucial in any successful relationship.  

BTW, I don't believe that outward success in society's terms precludes this. I've had the privilege of working with some very outwardly successful people, and found many of them to be incredibly searching, curious and open to change.

I have taken the last 6 months to focus almost exclusively on my recovery - searching, curious, and open to change. It's a luxury, but I have done it and I am now beginning to resume more laborious parts of my life, and one of my greatest fears is that fall back into the attitude of "I've got this", and become complacent.

Any tips on how to remain this way?
Logged

fromheeltoheal
********
Offline Offline

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


« Reply #51 on: August 24, 2016, 08:43:12 AM »

Hey VC-

WooHoo!  The thread grows, lot goin' on here!

Have you got a link to anything on object relations theory? I've talked about this with a friend and could not find anything that to help me understand the theory - where it comes from, how it works. I've read a bit about attachment theory and also got some understanding from it, but it doesn't go far enough for me. I didn't even know that the two were connected or one an offshoot of the other.

Here's the wiki on object relations theory, and I've gotten value out of the book Attached by Levine and Heller.

Excerpt
I'm personally not focused on this kind of stuff at all and what I think about as "potential" is  more to do with someone who is still searching, still curious, still open to change. Maybe I've a childish or simplistic view in some way and think that someone with more obvious issues is more in that mode of being and am therefore more intrigued initially and see the possibility of exploring together. I assume that someone who is outwardly successful (in society's terms) is less likely to be interested in exploring the self and so I would be less captivated emotionally.  I see less "potential" for being connected in the ways that I need.

To me there's a correlation of both getting our act together and maturity with the "still searching... ." vibe.  If life isn't working too well for us then we're going to be searching, curious and open to change, looking for ways to live that don't hurt so much, but once we've found a way, values, rules, beliefs, identities and roles again, then we're going to be resistant to changing that; if it works don't fix it.  And then maturity: when we're young and still finding our way we're malleable, which is as it should be, and as we mature we can get "set in our ways".

Then again, if we adopt the belief that maturity is not a process of replacing the child with the adult, it's a process of adding the adult to the child and becoming self-parenting, then that child is still alive and well, and wants nothing more than to jump in that puddle with glee, where the adult walks around it and b___es about it.  So maybe the key is retaining that youthful curiosity and malleability while also adjusting our lives to create more pleasure than pain, and realizing there's times for the child to play and times for the adult to do what needs to be done.  A delicate balancing act, and I'll get on it just as soon as I'm done being gleefully irresponsible for a minute... .

Excerpt
I've never understood "opposites attract". I've always seen it as more of gaining "access to something that is missing". If we're attracted to someone because they have the trait or skill of being more open than we are able to be - isn't that something that we want for ourselves?

I don't think necessarily.  My ex, for example, was very vivacious, bubbly, flirty, energetic (a facade designed to attach, I learned much later), and I'm not, and don't really want to be, although I found that extremely attractive in her.  Maybe there's some subconscious drive towards that because I'm not that and want it for myself, but I didn't feel that, I just looked at it as this is someone very energizing to be around.  Hmmm.  Maybe something deeper there... .

Excerpt
I do realise that sounds like using the relationship as a vehicle, using other people to learn about ourselves - it's not quite on par with using people to further our careers, as an example, but it has the same kinds of tones.  Hm.  And yet, isn't that, at the base of it, what relationships are or do?

Yep.

Excerpt
We talk a lot about being grateful for the lessons we've learned from all our relationships. Finding the good in that. There's that whole way of thinking about life as a journey and people accompanying each other for a while and then parting ways and each continuing on their own path. Etc.  

So, if we agree that that is one way to look at it, and a pretty healthy way, then is it morally objectionable to have that as almost a guiding principle?

Nope.  The experience of life is just that, an experience, to make of what we will, and there is no right way to live it, and to me, morally, as long as you're not hurting anyone, let fly!


Logged
drained1996
*****
Offline Offline

Gender: Male
What is your sexual orientation: Straight
Who in your life has "personality" issues: Ex-romantic partner
Posts: 687


« Reply #52 on: August 24, 2016, 10:49:03 AM »

" So maybe the key is retaining that youthful curiosity and malleability while also adjusting our lives to create more pleasure than pain, and realizing there's times for the child to play and times for the adult to do what needs to be done.  A delicate balancing act, and I'll get on it just as soon as I'm done being gleefully irresponsible for a minute... ."

A very telling statement for the world I find myself in today.  Was I too much of that child in my relationships and corresponding decisions?  I think so, which is why the scales need to be tipped with a little more responsible (and now more knowledgeable) adult.  Sometimes it's just a little hard to practice, as I love jumping in those puddles!   Smiling (click to insert in post)

As to the object relations theory, this one hit home.  I've recently had a breakthrough on where a lot of my feeling bad comes from in a lot of r/s's.  At an early age I was put into the position of being made to feel responsible for my mother's feelings (feelings being the object).  In all types of r/s's I can clearly see where my thoughts immediately turn to how I think I made another feel when I do something... .or don't do something that I think may affect them negatively.  It's certainly something I need to focus on understanding better, and handling my reactions to such feelings in a more healthy way. 
Of course my BPD relationships magnified this issue for me as there were plenty of bad feelings to go around.  I find it very refreshing to understand where it all began, and how it evolved in my life... .off to play in some puddles now... .or is it time to walk around them?... .all so confusing at times.   Laugh out loud (click to insert in post) Smiling (click to insert in post)
Logged
Moselle
********
Offline Offline

Gender: Male
What is your sexual orientation: Straight
Who in your life has "personality" issues: Ex-romantic partner
Relationship status: Divorced
Posts: 1899


Every day is a gift. Live it fully


« Reply #53 on: August 31, 2016, 05:38:56 AM »

Just came back to say , Moselle, your nuclear reactor with the permeable walls!

 Smiling (click to insert in post)

Very fine image, I like it mucho.

Vit C, FHTH, drained, please can I ask your opinion on how I can ignite a nuclear reaction at my core, which powers a thriving life instead of a victim or a survivor?

Nuclear fusion reactions energize stars, including the Sun, and the resulting sunlight has profound effects on our planet.

Nuclear fusion: The union of two light atomic nuclei to form a heavier nucleus, resulting in the release of enormous amounts of energy.
Logged

fromheeltoheal
********
Offline Offline

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


« Reply #54 on: August 31, 2016, 08:22:03 AM »

Hi Moselle-

Vit C, FHTH, drained, please can I ask your opinion on how I can ignite a nuclear reaction at my core, which powers a thriving life instead of a victim or a survivor?

Nuclear fusion reactions energize stars, including the Sun, and the resulting sunlight has profound effects on our planet.

Ummm.  Nuclear physics!  Yikes!  I'm out of my depth... .

Anyway, the answer is in this thread, I think, it's a long one: values, rules, beliefs, a compelling future.  When we take a look at our values, where they came from, what order they're in, why, and if there are values conflicts or not, and get that straight and empowering, and then look at our rules, what has to happen to live by those values, live those values, making it easy to meet them and hard to violate them, then beliefs, about ourselves, others, the world, identifying disempowering beliefs and changing them, choosing beliefs to create an empowering belief system with, then a compelling vision for the future, the life of our dreams, then action in that direction.  Simple, maybe not easy, but you ever notice everything we focus on gets better?  Everything we commit to improves?  Everything we practice we get better at?

So it's about going to that core you reference Moselle, seeing what's there, deciding what stays and what goes, building a life worth living, not only that, a life we're fired up about, protecting it with boundaries, and populating it with people who are supportive of it.

Considering ourselves a "victim" or a "survivor" is to assume those identities, and we do it because those identities meet our needs at some level and at some point, so looking at that starts with are those identities still meeting our needs and at what level?  What other identities are available to us?  If we were to take on the identity of "Thriver", what would we need to believe about ourselves?  What beliefs would we need to let go of?  And the way to install a belief, and an identity is just a specific form of belief, a belief about who we are, the way to install one is to choose to believe it and then look for references to support it.

So if you were thriving right now, if you were a "Thriver", what does that look like for you Moselle?  What would you be doing, what would you be believing, what would life look like?  And what will it cost you if you don't start believing that?  When is now a good time to nurture that identity?
Logged
Moselle
********
Offline Offline

Gender: Male
What is your sexual orientation: Straight
Who in your life has "personality" issues: Ex-romantic partner
Relationship status: Divorced
Posts: 1899


Every day is a gift. Live it fully


« Reply #55 on: August 31, 2016, 10:53:38 AM »

Quote from: fromheeltoheal link=topic=297167.msg12798583#msg12798583

Ummm.  Nuclear physics!  Yikes!  I'm out of my depth...

hehe  Smiling (click to insert in post)

Quote from: fromheeltoheal link=topic=297167.msg12798583#msg12798583

And populating it with people who are supportive

and then look for references to support it.

I am sitting with this on the weekend and will build my future in blueprint. Thank you for the summary FHTH. I've struggled to process this thread for it's complexity but this helps me understand. Respect to you sir Idea

Gathering support for this new life. And references. This is a great skill to have.
Logged

drained1996
*****
Offline Offline

Gender: Male
What is your sexual orientation: Straight
Who in your life has "personality" issues: Ex-romantic partner
Posts: 687


« Reply #56 on: August 31, 2016, 11:43:04 AM »

"So it's about going to that core you reference Moselle, seeing what's there, deciding what stays and what goes, building a life worth living, not only that, a life we're fired up about, protecting it with boundaries, and populating it with people who are supportive of it."

The above quote from FHTH summarizes my process quite well.  I knew at my core who I was, which in my thoughts was a kind, gentle, and empathetic person.  I just didn't understand why some of my r/s's made me feel so bad about me at times (friends, family, and SO's), and subsequently made me react not so well at times.  Through my process I gained the understanding that I actually ALLOWED these people or situations to let me have bad feelings.  It's a process I'm still perfecting, but understanding that I am in charge of how I feel is very empowering.  My original thoughts about my core I still carry, and like FHTH states  Bullet: contents of text or email (click to insert in post) I choose to believe that, and look for references to support it.  Understanding and enforcing boundaries has played a major role, as has Radical Acceptance.  Radically accepting others for who they are and involving them in the correct places in our lives... .or out of our lives completely has been very helpful in my journey as well.  FHTH laid it all out perfectly in the things that need to be explored, and it has shown me a few things I may need to delve further into.   We will all get to where we are going someday... .Happiness
Logged
fromheeltoheal
********
Offline Offline

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


« Reply #57 on: August 31, 2016, 11:53:15 AM »

understanding that I am in charge of how I feel is very empowering. 

Yes!  Nice.   Doing the right thing (click to insert in post)
Logged
Can You Help Us Stay on the Air in 2021?

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

Our 2021 Financial Sponsors
We are all appreciative of the members who provide the funding to keep BPDFamily on the air.
12years
alterK
Andi1956
Anondad
Cnvi
doghouse
drained1996
EyesUp
Harri
JD2028
lovenature
Mac5
Methuen
Mommydoc
Mutt
old97
P.F.Change
Skip
snowglobe
Swimmy55
Teno
Turkish
wendydarling

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