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Author Topic: She broke my heart and has left scars on my psyche which I feel will never heal  (Read 3523 times)
Wicker Man
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Who in your life has "personality" issues: Ex-romantic partner
Relationship status: Attempting to reconcile after my affair.
Posts: 507


« on: April 13, 2018, 12:57:07 AM »

This post was split from Origin Topic, as it is a worthwhile topic for separate discussion

Harri,

I could not agree more with your comment on intent.  Try to forgive them, for they know not what they do.

My love and I had been together a year.  We had fallen quickly, madly and deeply in love.  :)uring our time together I was unaware of BPD -she had been misdiagnosed as a high functioning schizophrenic and I had accepted at face value what she had told me.

After beginning our realtionship she stopped cutting herself and the voices she heard under duress ceased.  I hoped having a supportive and caring mate would give her what she needed to begin to heal.  She was incredibly intelligent and a very gifted artist, but a tortured soul.  She had rage issued -I did my best to create boundaries and help her through them, as I did when she was depressed.  I hoped being patient and being willing to listen without judgement would give her a foothold to begin to feel safe.

The first time she was truly angry with me she told me -I am furious with you!  I said 'ok'.  She sat on the bed and said 'What the hell do you mean 'ok'?'  I said 'I love you when you are angry, sad or happy, they are all parts of you'.  She said ':)amn it I am not angry with you anymore'.  I said with a smile 'Wait a while, I am a very annoying person you will be angry again soon'.  I have worked around artists most of my life, and I feel there is no free lunch -with creativity comes pain and temper.  I accepted the bad with the good.

I was planning to leave my life and move abroad to begin a new life with her.  Our plan had been to have her grandparents move in with us and care for them; she was raised by her grandparents after she had been abandoned by her mother. She recalls the conversation between her mother and uncle about leaving her in the snow to die as a little girl.

It was a lovely plan (not the snow part, our plan).  I had never felt the storybook love I felt with her and I was willing to start over and do anything to be with her.  

As I was putting my affairs in order to close up shop and move to her country she began to rage every day when we would speak on the phone.  I did my best to mitigate her rage, be calm and wait for the storm to pass as it always had in the past.  This storm lasted longer, and after about 7 days of rage she said 'We have nothing more to talk about' -meaning she was breaking up with me.

I had told her early on this was not an acceptable threat -breaking up is something to be done once.  I grew up in the cold war and explained the concept of MAD to her (Mutually Assured Destruction). Later that night after she 'broke up with me' I woke up with a start and had had an epiphany -she will leave me one day.  I thought about what my life would have looked like if she abandoned me after moving to her county, and taking on caring for her grandparents.  It would have meant my utter destruction -no possible recovery of my career, no home, and virtually no country.

I was very fortunate to have had the instinct to leave -As I had mentioned I was unaware of BPD and the likelihood that she had already cheated on me perhaps more than once (a long, boring and irrelevant story).  I was ignorant and missed a lot of red flag events, which now make a lot of sense.

Finally to my point... . I bear her no ill will.  I miss her terribly and think obsessively about what we shared.  Perhaps we were experiencing love differently, but there was love.  She told me she had never been happy before meeting me -it was true for her when she said it.  She said she never thought she would marry or wanted children (I knew this was a partial truth, and we discussed it -but I believe she desired the hyperbole to make it more real for us).   Leaving her, or more accurately agreeing with her to end our engagement was the hardest thing I have ever done.  The image of the tears rolling down her face when she said 'This is the last time we will speak?' -I answered 'yes'.  Her last words to me where 'You hang up, I can't'.

She lied to me, she cheated on me, she raged at me for days at a time -but I bear her no ill will.  I feel deeply sad for her.  Now that I am more aware of her condition and having an idea of the utter darkness I have cast her back into --I feel sincere pity. She is beautiful inside and out, but beside the glowing light of her soul is an incredible darkness over which she has no control.  I am certain she blames herself for my leaving, what is worse I am sure her family blames her as well.  I adored her grandparents and I had rekindled (forced her to rekindle is more accurate) the relationship between she and her mother.

She broke my heart and has left scars on my psyche which I feel will never fully heal.  In all of my life I have never felt so loved, never experienced such soaring highs and crushing lows.  Heaven and hell. -But I know she never meant to hurt me, she never meant to make me cry.

My life now feels grey after walking away from the searing brilliance of her love -but I will be fine. I fear for her and wish her happiness.  I hope one day she can create a happy and loving home for herself, but I am afraid it is impossible.  


Wicker Man

A wicker man was a large wicker statue used by the ancient Celts for sacrifice by burning it in effigy.


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« Reply #1 on: April 13, 2018, 08:22:55 AM »

Hi Wicker Man and Welcome

Thank you for sharing your story with us.  Your descriptive writing about the experience and your emotions really resonated with me and I'm sure will with many others here.  You're in the right place.  Everyone here has been through a relationship and at least one breakup with a pwBPD/traits.  We understand. 

Excerpt
Leaving her, or more accurately agreeing with her to end our engagement was the hardest thing I have ever done.  The image of the tears rolling down her face when she said 'This is the last time we will speak?' -I answered 'yes'.  Her last words to me where 'You hang up, I can't'.

How long has it been since you split up and how are you feeling at present?  I also left my ex and struggled a lot with guilt about that, as well as missing him intensely and wishing things were different.  How are you managing the grief process and working through the emotions?

Excerpt
Now that I am more aware of her condition and having an idea of the utter darkness I have cast her back into --I feel sincere pity. She is beautiful inside and out, but beside the glowing light of her soul is an incredible darkness over which she has no control.  I am certain she blames herself for my leaving, what is worse I am sure her family blames her as well.

This is very tough.  My dBPDbf actually said to me that if he could cut the BPD out of himself he would in a heartbeat.  It's so difficult to see someone that we love in so much pain and inner turmoil, knowing all the while that we cannot change that - only they can.  Through fear of losing what they want more than anything - love - they drive the people closest to them away.  It's heartbreaking.
 You mentioned that she had an alternative diagnosis.  Does that mean that she is actively pursuing treatment of some sort? 

It sounds like you've done some reading about BPD and feel that this fits.  There is also a great deal of helpful information here in the Articles to the right side of the page, which can help you to deepen your understanding not only of your ex but your own situation.  The information on this site is reliable, and doesn't contain a lot of the 'urban myth' that can be found all over the internet.  I'd encourage you to look around and also to join other discussions.  This benefited myself enormously.

Keep posting - we're here for you.

Love and light x     
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Wicker Man
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Posts: 507


« Reply #2 on: April 13, 2018, 10:30:52 AM »

Excerpt
How long has it been since you split up and how are you feeling at present?  I also left my ex and struggled a lot with guilt about that, as well as missing him intensely and wishing things were different.  How are you managing the grief process and working through the emotions?

I just briefly unblocked her on Instagram to check -this is actually the 100th day.  She has posted something to me very day since I began NC (No Contract). To be frank, I think I likely could have guessed the day.  Perhaps today being the centennial day was what brought me to write my first post.

I began seeing a therapist soon after the end of our engagement, journalling, and as of yesterday began posting here.  I speak with friends when I can (although friend is a moniker thrown around too lightly and easily in this day and age -it is rare to find someone to truly confide in) and I have been doing a lot of reading.  It was reading 12 Rules for Life -An Antidote to Chaos (Peterson) where I stumbled upon a reference to BPD.  It has been a long time since psychology at the university, and I was unaware of the condition (to my own peril and shame).

I am not a fan of self help books, so I am inspired to go back to the source material -12 Rules is fine, but in my opinion, it is better to re-read Rand, Nietzsche, Exodus and Jung and make one's own interpretation.

Here is the part I am not proud of... . I filed for divorce when I fell in love with my BPD.  My wife and I are considering and working toward reconciliation which is difficult and painful.  I have fully disclosed the event in its entirety -this is a horrendous experience.  I hadn't been a cheater -I (actually) style(d) myself as a good person.  I should think I am a 'Nice Guy' with codependent tendencies.

When I began speaking to my lover I saw stars in her eyes -she told me, for her, it was love at first sight.  She actually said when she saw me 'everyone around you looked dark' I was consumed, swept away and happier than I had been in my entire life. -I had never been so attracted to another human being.  I work around beauty all the time, it is my job -but I never cared, never wondered, never wandered.  It was not the way she looked, but the way she carried herself, her work ethic, and pride.

Within the first 5 minutes of speaking with her alone I told her I was married and my age -I was frank and forthright.  I was working in Asia and they often have difficulty judging occidental age.  She told me after our first meeting I was 'the one', because no man had every been completely honest with her. --God it hurt so see 'Knight in Shining Armor' so often in BPD forums, because she used those very words... .Thus she likely had said it before and will again.  To read on these forums precisely what I experienced is brutal -what I had, I thought, had been exceptional -and it was apparently banal.

When we were together we would often spend the entire day in bed -I don't mean sex, I mean just being together talking, laughing and eating take away food.  We would spend 30 minutes every day talking and laughing with her grandparents on the phone.  It was the warmest most lovely of times. My heart rate would fall by 10 beats a minute when I was in her presence -I would sleep 9 hours a night because I felt at peace.  Peace I had not experienced since I was a boy, knowing everything was going to be fine.

 --Keep in mind I despise superlatives, however, in her case I must use them.  With her everything was -most, least, best, worst, darkest, lightest.

Excerpt
This is very tough.  My dBPDbf actually said to me that if he could cut the BPD out of himself he would in a heartbeat.  It's so difficult to see someone that we love in so much pain and inner turmoil, knowing all the while that we cannot change that - only they can.  Through fear of losing what they want more than anything - love - they drive the people closest to them away.  It's heartbreaking.


One of the red flags I missed... . In a rage she broke out all the tiles and tore up all the flooring in her grandparents home.  I would guess she had to prove to herself they would not throw her out -so yes, I agree, they test the people close to them brutally hard.  Which means I failed her final test and proved her affliction correct -everyone will abandon her. --This hurts.

Excerpt
You mentioned that she had an alternative diagnosis.  :)oes that mean that she is actively pursuing treatment of some sort?  

In her country mental health is medieval, so no.  She very rarely under extreme stress had visual hallucinations, and often heard voices -which I believe was the reason for the misdiagnosis. As I mentioned before she was a cutter and had attempted suicide before we met.

After our breakup I had a lengthy discourse with her closest friend, the only one she never painted black during my tenure.  I explained I believe she may have BPD and should try to seek help (there are Western therapists, but hard to find and expensive).  It was the best I could do.  I cannot be the one to help her through this.  She wants me back and I feel if I make any contact it will start her 'healing clock' over again -I also, of course, promised my wife to not make contact with her and intend to once again begin fulfilling my promises.

Excerpt
It sounds like you've done some reading about BPD and feel that this fits.

I have spent days (obsessively) reading everything I could find from DSM to pop-culture, good message boards (this one) and bad.  Much of what I read on the internet vilifies the BPD -because the 'non' is so hurt and lashing out.  I understand the urge to vent, but I feel in my heart she is a victim in our failed relationship as am I -we both lost.  It was this which compelled me to write my views here --my love is not evil, she makes me think about the parable of the Scorpion and the Frog -it is the scorpion's nature to kill the frog.

I felt if I loved enough, gave enough (was a big enough frog) we could get across the river. --'By believing passionately in something that still does not exist, we create it. The nonexistent is whatever we have not sufficiently desired.'  --Kafka  

I chose Wicker Man because I feel hallow and I was on a path which would have lead to my own immolation.  I was ready to give literally everything in this world to her -until my instinct told me she would leave one day.

Ironically -when she told her mother I agreed to care for her grandparents, her mother said 'He is lying'.  She told her mother 'He said I do not know what I am asking him to do, but he is willing.'  Her mother said 'He isn't a Lying, he is crazy'.  I not only feel the loss of her, but her entire family.  

I really can't agree with Tennyson -

'Tis better to have loved and lost
Than never to have loved at all.

My life will never be the same -the sense of loss is crushing.  The shame is palpable, and the pain is relentless.  I have managed to hurt my wife, hurt my lover, and hurt both families.  

Wicker Man
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« Reply #3 on: April 14, 2018, 08:14:40 PM »

Excerpt
I agree, they test the people close to them brutally hard.  Which means I failed her final test and proved her affliction correct -everyone will abandon her. --This hurts.

I'm sorry you're feeling this pain.  Unfortunately the only way out is through.  Time to grieve and heal is the key to things getting better.  Looking at the big picture can help somewhat when the guilt arises.  Without treatment her cycle of behaviour will continue, which means that had you gone a different path, the outcome would inevitably be the same or potentially a lot worse, as you established for yourself.  You did the right thing by yourself in protecting yourself from further pain down the line.

Excerpt
My life will never be the same -the sense of loss is crushing.  The shame is palpable, and the pain is relentless.  I have managed to hurt my wife, hurt my lover, and hurt both families. 

Feeling that way has got to be really hard for you.     You are going through a great deal right now and I feel for you.  I'm glad to see that you're reaching out for support and are taking steps to help yourself through this difficult time.     

Whilst I know it is incredibly difficult and painful, it is good to hear that your wife is possibly open to reconciliation.  There may be light at the end of the tunnel there.  Where does the divorce stand?

Love and light x   
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Wicker Man
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Relationship status: Attempting to reconcile after my affair.
Posts: 507


« Reply #4 on: April 16, 2018, 03:32:13 PM »



Excerpt
Looking at the big picture can help somewhat when the guilt arises... .You did the right thing by yourself in protecting yourself from further pain down the line.

Oddly, I do not feel guilt, I do fear for her and I dearly miss the dream of a life with her. The good part of her is something I have never seen in another human being -sure one could say it was just her mirroring, but once again she is a living feeling being -not just a BPD statistic.  I wanted to be the one to be able to protect her and keep her safe, but I could only do this if I believed she would stay by my side.  I, sadly, have learned my instinct was likely correct -she would have left me either after our marriage -or worse waited until after we had had a child. 

This is going to sound terribly arrogant, but I feel badly for her because she knows who and what she pushed away.  I am guessing her family also blames her of our dissolution.  I have a feeling her mother looked at me as a bank account with a pulse, but her grand parents wanted someone to care for her and keep her safe once the pass away.  There is an enormous loss of face for her and her family because of our engagement falling apart -all of this will fall upon her shoulders.

Excerpt
I'm glad to see that you're reaching out for support and are taking steps to help yourself through this difficult time. 
   

I keep wondering if I am not being active here to keep a connection with her.  I plan to speak to my therapist about how to best get on with the grieving process.  Is posting here catharsis, or part of the obsession I still feel for her?

Please do not misunderstand --this is an amazing group and you personally give so much of your self on this board it is, simply put, heroic

Excerpt
Whilst I know it is incredibly difficult and painful, it is good to hear that your wife is possibly open to reconciliation.  There may be light at the end of the tunnel there.  Where does the divorce stand?

I can not imagine the pain I have put my wife through by betraying her.  I imagine worse than a death in the family -people are supposed to die, they are not supposed to cheat. 

Esther Perel's 'The State of Affairs: Rethinking Infidelity' offers some hope.  It is apparently possible for couple to transcend an affair and come out the other side stronger.  We are both seeking therapy as well as couples therapy. 

My wife has OCPD and this has caused a lot of strain through out our relationship, she is now medicated, but the first 20 years were hell.  To be honest, ironically, having been with someone with OCPD for so long, I was used to rage and thought it was something I could get through, create boundaries, and mitigate with patients.  I didn't understand the rest of the instability BPD brings to the table -as I had said I took my affair partner's schizophrenic misdiagnosis at face value. 

It is an fascinating (by fascinating, to be clear, I mean horrible) conundrum -I need to fully apply myself to reconciliation, knowing at any point my wife may decide she cannot continue, I also need to somehow make sure this is the right life for me.  When I first spoke to the other woman I knew it was dangerous to my marriage to have an intimate conversation. -I didn't care.  This frightens me -it is simply not my nature.  Ok -that is no longer true -it hadn't been my nature... .

Back to your question, we are one signature away, if we choose to finalize our divorce filing. We are teetering on the precipice.

When looking back at the last year Madame de Stael's wonderful quote keeps ringing in my ears. "One must choose in life between boredom and suffering."

Right now it feels like I will spend the rest of my life wondering if I chose correctly.

Thank you again for the time you spend here helping people.


Wicker Man

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« Reply #5 on: April 17, 2018, 06:38:07 PM »

Hi Wickerman

Your post is one of the most eloquent ive ever came across, I can relate to what you say from my own experience, but without the ability to put my feelings into words that could encapsulate the power of the emotions I had for my ex, which I can see such parallels in how you have felt.

What id like to say is difficult for me, because in the midst of the power that your words carry and the passion and strength of your emotions, Id like to suggest the possibility of entertaining the notion that the despair you are feeling now, the magnitude of it, I felt my own version of it. If I could put it on a numerical scale as oppossed to being descriptive, with 1 being a complete indifference of emtional feeling to that of 100 being the absolute maximum of emotional intensity I have ever had to experience in life, if you could imagine your own scale based on that, I would put the pain I felt from my ex at close to 100. It really was, one of the most life-changing and devastating thing I have experienced. In terms of scaling the love I felt, compared to my other life experiences, it was way up in the high 90s. Again, an extreme of emotion and passion and euphoria at the height of it.

However, it was this small difference between that pain and that euphoria that made a very profound and important difference. From the way I read into your story, this similarity between us is most evident to me when you stated

"I was very fortunate to have had the instinct to leave".

where in the midst of what can be seen as overpowering strong emotions, there was something from within that underlying unsettled and troubled, and in my own case I can say, I was actively tuning out my instincts in order to fully embrace those undeniable, larger-than-life itself feelings that I just wanted nothing more than for them to continue.

I dont feel like going into more detail at the moment but id like you to know that coming from a standpoint where I had affirmed to myself that in the same vein you stated "she has left scars that will never heal on my psyche"

I made similar, for it was how I felt at the time, that 100 on the pain scale, its what I told myself because it is what I believed at the time.

As the time has went on since I left my BPDx, that scale did not stay at 100, it went down. 8 months on, it is in single digits.

A far cry from what I fully had believed and took upon myself. I was wrong about my belief, and I also think that holding such a belief, slowed down my own recovery. Something along the lines of "I think, therefore I am" or fulfilling my own prophecies.

But that has been my own journey, different from everyone elses, but I was in very much the same mindset that i gather you are now but that slider bar did incrementally drop, even if it was so slow as imperceptible on a day to day basis.

Some days I have seen the slider bar suddenly shoot back up a little, without understanding why. If I could chart it, would be high peaks and high troughs, but stretch this out over time and with the support ive had and the research ive done, and the intensity of those raw emotions from the event passing by they no longer seem like that rollercoaster ride anymore.

All I can give at the moment is a big welcome and my best wishes that in some small way, my experience can give some hope to where you are at now that however you are feeling, I truly believe it will not always be this way and that scars can heal, or at least diminish from what they first were to something more bearable even if it might not appear that way now.

Thanks Wickerman so much for sharing your experience, it resonated with me and brought back a lot of memories of my own, which I am grateful for, even though I can now see them from a perspective that is much different from where I did initially had to confront them.
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Wicker Man
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Relationship status: Attempting to reconcile after my affair.
Posts: 507


« Reply #6 on: April 18, 2018, 12:00:33 PM »

Excerpt
Id like to suggest the possibility of entertaining the notion that the despair you are feeling now, the magnitude of it, I felt my own version of it. If I could put it on a numerical scale as oppossed to being descriptive, with 1 being a complete indifference of emtional feeling to that of 100 being the absolute maximum of emotional intensity I have ever had to experience in life, if you could imagine your own scale based on that, I would put the pain I felt from my ex at close to 100. It really was, one of the most life-changing and devastating thing I have experienced. In terms of scaling the love I felt, compared to my other life experiences, it was way up in the high 90s. Again, an extreme of emotion and passion and euphoria at the height of it.

I know, intellectually, ending this relationship was the right thing to do.  I had so adored this other human being I had been willing to literally give up everything to be with her.  My plan sounds ridiculous when seen in the light of day -divorce, sale of houses, re-orientation of my career via moving to Asia, starting a family, buying a home in a country where foreigners have little property rights. -This all made perfect sense at the time,  I felt all I needed was "lieben und Luft" Love and air.  My battle cry was:

"Ultimately we know deeply that the other side of every fear is freedom".
--Marilyn Ferguson

As I look back this last year it is fascinating (this time I mean horrifying) to see how her mirroring changed when we first met.  She had been running and hiding in work (7 months job to job -we are freelance so this is, actually, not unusual to have long runs of work) from her previous boyfriend and he was wealthy (bought her a $1.5mm condo and a car) so she was mirroring being wealthy.  When we began our tryst she slowly extinguished this guise of wealth and began mirroring family values -which matches my sensibility. 

When he finally tracked her down and flew to the town where we were working they went out to dinner.  She was texting me as she broke things off with him.  She sent me 'I told him I love you' I replied 'That was not very nice'.  15 minutes later it occurred to me --You arrogant b@stard... .Did she mean 'Him' you or 'me' you.  I laughed at myself so hard my side hurt.  She had, of course, painted him black and meant me.  I should have recognized the cruelty of how she left him as a parable... .

As we became serious I demanded she speak with her mother (family values), as I was significantly older than she.  She and her mother had not spoken in over a year.  When she called her mother, her mother said 'You are out of your mind'  She replied 'That is what he said you would say'  Mother said 'He made you call me?  --tell me about this man'.  I won her mother's blessing.  So in all of the fallout from this shameful experience I did manage to rekindle the relationship between her and her family.  When we last spoke, over 100 days ago, she was staying in her home town with her family.


Excerpt
where in the midst of what can be seen as overpowering strong emotions, there was something from within that underlying unsettled and troubled, and in my own case I can say, I was actively tuning out my instincts in order to fully embrace those undeniable, larger-than-life itself feelings that I just wanted nothing more than for them to continue.

"When someone shows you who they are, believe them the first time."
-- Maya Angelou


I was  back in the US finalizing my divorce and packing to return to her, literally piece by piece parting out what my wife and I had built over decades.  The condo I was preparing for sale had been completely remodeled by our own hands --my wife's dream.  This was diabolically and excruciatingly painful, cruel and selfish. 

Within 36 hours of my being away from my lover her abandonment fueled rage began.  It was a 7 day slugfest where she insisted I was being too kind to my wife and further suggested 'anything you can not take away from the divorce should be burned' (this was a shot across the bow -I heard 'If we ever divorce it will be scorched earth policy' 

Apparently, the timeline of my return became an untenable issue, two weeks to lay waste to 25 years of marriage was unacceptable... .  She had no idea what I was going through physically and emotionally in preparing for such an endeavor.  It was about then when she ended a conversation with 'We have nothing more to speak of --滚' (which is tantamount go to hell).  At first I did the same thing you had -which was to white wash the negative and focus on the (perceived) bliss. However, it was after this conversation I woke up with a start at 3am realizing... .if one can threaten breaking up it is a perilously dangerous and deadly arrow to have in the quiver.

At this point I had been unaware of Borderline Personality Disorder --Sure, I knew she cut herself, had auditory and visual hallucinations, herculean rage, and a flirtatious relationship with the truth.  This could all be part of being an artist, a rough childhood, in a hard country -I had not understood she would be capable of one day walking away and never looking back.

I was blinded by my love for her and her family for quite a long time.  In 20/20 hind sight there were several times I should have ended this affair which became an engagement -from what I have since read about BPD it is likely she had already cheated on my as many as three times. 

It has been haunting reading how common and banal my experience was.  The things she said to me, what we experienced was a apparently day in the life, not a fairytale love -just an addiction.

I am a propagandist by trade, I sell things to people.  One of the best tools in our kit is the idea of happiness and true love.  I was hoist on my own petard!  I fell victim to an idea I have been peddling my entire career. I mean for f#ck-sake if it weren't me it would be funny.

"Everything is funny, as long as it's happening to somebody else".

--Will Rogers

Excerpt
Some days I have seen the slider bar suddenly shoot back up a little, without understanding why. If I could chart it, would be high peaks and high troughs, but stretch this out over time and with the support ive had and the research ive done, and the intensity of those raw emotions from the event passing by they no longer seem like that rollercoaster ride anymore.

What should go without saying --I should have been strong enough and man enough to have never started an affair -If I was unhappy in my marriage I should have either tried to fix it, or ended it.  As a result of my indiscretion I have shamed myself, hurt my wife, my wife's family, cast my lover back into utter darkness, shamed her in front of her family, and her family has lost face to their neighbors.  --All in all quite badly done.

When I returned to wrap things up my wife had sent me an email asking if we shouldn't consider reconciliation.  This email, regardless of whether or not we can reconcile saved my life.  --I am certain, subconsciously, I had been comparing real love with the unhealthy love I had experienced during my affair.

Time heals.  Thank you for taking the time for such a thoughtful exchange Cromwell.  I can not help wondering, did you choose the moniker 'Cromwell' as a warning to never recycle?  If I recall Cromwell was exhumed and beheaded. 


Wicker Man 
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« Reply #7 on: April 18, 2018, 03:39:11 PM »

Good Evening Wicker Man

Sounds like you really have been through an adventure, id like to just let you know how much it helps to hear such similar base-level shared experience of emotions on the one hand, but to get an idea of the back drop and circumstances that are very polar different. As you say, youve read quite a bit on here as have I, eventually it becomes canny to me and a sense of banality to see just how what others have been through sort of just ticks a mental checklist in my head to the stage that it has become more like a clinical observation than what it had been before. I wonder if at some stage you may or may not get to this point in time and recognise it and understand the feeling. Part of what stunted my recovery is not wanting to let go of the pain, because to a great degree, it was this Dr Jekyl and Dr Hyde alternation I was faced with is what made the amazing times so great. Or to make it clearer, and something I actually said to my BPDx when she was upset, I said "dont feel to bad about the bad times, because they have a purpose of heightening the good". I can see exactly now why I was able to say this at the time, I was accustomed to being disappointed it became an emotional baseline, so even just when she gave the scraps of happiness, they were so desired by me that it was like being a very hungry dog that had just had a bone thrown from the table. Then the day that you got thrown a juicy steak was like a paradise in comparison. Part of me became accustomed to the dynamic that I discovered she enjoyed having this control in a sort of emotional sado masochistic way. It became almost a role play that I entered myself into, for I had already in my heart abandoned the dream of having a healthy loving relationship, based on her cheating and other antics that had happened early on. This wasnt a role that I enjoyed but I felt that as a person who I realised at her core was lacking in self esteem, felt so much anger and powerless in the world, I felt that to an extent I would let her feel what it was like to have someone wrapped around her finger, and I was also interested to see how she would use this. Its why I ran after her most ridiculous needs and demands she put on me, knowing that she wasnt doing these things so much for any material gain as she was doing it to test just how far she could be in control of me.

I had never met anyone like her and knew nothing about the condition, but I did have strong feelings and felt love for her, I wanted to test, test, test and understand, being brought up with a mindset that you dont throw things out of your life if they have some inherently good value attached. People often come on these boards and a common theme is that they have ended up feeling "used" or been made a fool. Id like to say that my partner was and still is very much an enigma to me, just as much as she is one to her very self. I cant blame myself for not understanding someone, it doesnt happen overnight and there are no people that can read another person "like a book" as my BPDx once arrogantly told me. It takes time.

However, I found your quote by Maya Angelou quite inspirational and would like to link this page related to it, I hope others find it useful like I did. https://tinybuddha.com/blog/when-someone-shows-you-who-they-are-believe-them/

People come into our lives for a reason and things happen to us for a reason, even if that reason is not clearly evident and can take a very long time after the event to figure out. After what ive been through I have learned that at my core, I had excellent values and traits, but there was a side to me that should have not got swayed by such alluring emotions and to become blindsided to a person who went against values early on that were important to me, thinking that I could overlook them or change her. We get to a certain age in life, im in my 30s, and am the equivalent of a tree that is deep rooted and not easy to bend or change without making very big conscious plans to do so. I gave my BPDx many clues at times by saying that "i wont ever change", because that is what I felt she was attempting to do, we were not compatible in many important ways and it was folly of me to even entertain the idea that I would change the person I am in order to accomodate her. When I write it like that, it makes me realise just how much a borderline trait that is. She was an expert at mirroring my traits, but it wasnt who she was, she has a personality disorder and lack of an identity, able to change at a whim. and this, as you may have also found out, is not something that you can build a secure, stable relationship on and expect it to remain as such for any given length of time.

I think from my own insight into your posts is I get the impression that you have intellectualised and learned a lot about what you have been through, but it is still a very early stage to consider that this knowledge accumulation can take away the painful emotions and memories. I could have had the world expert on BPD telling me what was going on during my R/S, I would have slammed the door in their face; no-one would be able to besmirch the character of cast aspersions on the person who made me feel the way she managed to make me feel. What could their textbook know more than I could of the person I lived with. In other words, I was in heavy denial, didnt want to have this "addiction" as you also word it accurately, taken off me, and so it endured onwards. Im just happy that im close to the stage of radical acceptance and whilst I felt as you describe for quite some time, so can relate, those feelings are just not there anymore, I enjoy my life without her and im even grateful for the vast amount of experience I have gained in the process. But I wouldnt have said the same thing even a month or two ago. Thats why ultimately Id like to send you a message of hope, and not to rush yourself if you have to grieve or confront these feelings, but overcome them your own way and own time. My biggest hope is if any of what I have said will make you feel less fatalistic in some of the thoughts you have right now, trust me I know very well how it feels to think that way.

Most of all, thank you so much for your well written post, my recovery has been a result of an amalgamation of reading hundreds of experiences and there has always been some little gem that gave me at least something to think differently about. ive got the equivalent of what feels a treasure chest now. A far cry from the time I was in the darkness alone and was strategically isolated and did this voluntarily to let myself be "consumed" by another person in the absence of knowing deep inside that they werent able to love me instead as I had so much longed for.

I sure wont be letting that ever happen again! :D and thats what matters the most to me, that I dont wake up anymore and feel sorry for myself anymore. Although I believe that there was a time for that too.

Huge untapped value in the experience ive went through, when I start looking for it and not reacting to it emotionally. and by sharing it here becomes all the more powerful. If i have managed to even say one thing in all of my posts that has led to someone getting themselves back on a path that leads them to feel better, become happier however slight, then I feel humbled and happy for that at the same time. Just as your post have already done for me and youve only just barely joined us here. Thank you again.

I didnt choose my username and laughed out loud when I got it assigned to me, but have kept it since, its starting to suit and I love the historical comparison you pointed out, if there was ever a warning not to allow her to recycle me again that imagery will be the first thing that will flash in front of my mind, yes - youve done the trick, I really just felt a slight dislike to you now, for ensuring that there is no way of return for her. See there must have been even a slither of latent desire for that to happen and just goes to show I dont get complacent in myself however good I feel, still a work in progress and I enjoy that too - doing stuff for my own needs is starting to become enjoyable even, now I understand how much my BPDx liked it so much to have someone cater to her needs, she is missing out on a lot because hers is an insatiable appetite that cant ever be fulfilled. I dont just understand the recognised concept behind that, I truly feel it now. This is the synthesis of knowledge and experience, I was just floundering when I had one without the other. youve got the experience, id suggest read read read until you get to the saturation ppint where you really feel you are in control of these emotions by recognising their root cause and not the other way around.

id like to share a quote from my BPDx, "always remember, you are an amazing person, never let anyone put you down".

It doesnt maybe share the eloquence of established writers but i love the irony in that if I had taken on board her advice, I wouldnt have seen her the day after she bestowed it upon me.
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« Reply #8 on: April 18, 2018, 05:14:33 PM »

Oddly, I do not feel guilt, I do fear for her and I dearly miss the dream of a life with her. The good part of her is something I have never seen in another human being... .

I wanted to be the one to be able to protect her and keep her safe, but I could only do this if I believed she would stay by my side.    

... .her grand parents wanted someone to care for her and keep her safe once the pass away.    

I keep wondering if I am not being active here to keep a connection with her.  I plan to speak to my therapist about how to best get on with the grieving process.  Is posting here catharsis, or part of the obsession I still feel for her?

It is apparently possible for couple to transcend an affair and come out the other side stronger.  We are both seeking therapy as well as couples therapy.  

... .I need to fully apply myself to reconciliation, knowing at any point my wife may decide she cannot continue, I also need to somehow make sure this is the right life for me ... .We are teetering on the precipice.

I'm pleased to hear that you're not carrying guilt.  That's really positive.  When I left my r/s I was so deep in the FOG that I couldn't see my hand in front of my face.  Survival instinct kicking in is what saved me from heading deeper down the rabbit hole.  Sounds like we have that much in common.  That dream of the future with this person is so captivating, isn't it?  I'm afraid that waking up from that is a bit of a bumpy ride so try to be kind to yourself, regardless of what you feel you have done.  We all make mistakes, and it's how we follow these that counts.

I have a question about keeping her safe.  :)oes she need to be kept safe?  If so, from what?  Why is it that this is someone else's job?  I'm intrigued to see that your wife also has a PD.  What do you think is the draw for you?  I'm interested as I also have a history of dysfunctional relationships and have drawn some conclusions from that which have been very enlightening.  It's my belief everything happens for a reason and that all of life is a lesson to be learned.  If we don't take away the message from something the first time, it comes back around.  Clearly I'm not great at taking the hint  

Regards being active here keeping a connection, hopefully - this board being aimed at aiding detachment - the opposite will ring true for you in time.  We're here to help you let go and heal in a healthy way.  It is wise to want to work through the grief process.  The Lessons are a great place to start.  They allow us to assess where we are in the stages and consider how we are progressing.  I'd encourage you not only to keep reading and posting, but to join other discussions here.  I gained a great deal from that and still do.  Now I am simply giving back what I received when I first arrived here and am still humbled by this incredibly supportive community and the strength of its' members.  If you take endurance alone, the collective grit in these pages is mind blowing.

Good to hear that your wife and yourself are putting in the work with therapists to lay a foundation for something dare I say 'new' between you.  This work can only be a good thing, no matter what the outcome for you as a couple.  I do wonder if the 'teetering' puts you under pressure to decide if reconciliation is what you truly want.  From what you say about wondering if you made the right decision in the future, perhaps you could find a way to remove that pressure for the moment?  Just a thought.

Love and light x  
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« Reply #9 on: April 18, 2018, 06:13:19 PM »

Excerpt
That dream of the future with this person is so captivating, isn't it?  I'm afraid that waking up from that is a bit of a bumpy ride.

I have never used a schedule 1 drug, but I should imagine trying to fight addiction is much the same -it makes a great analogy as well.  Something which makes you feel better than you have ever felt and will ultimately lead to the destruction of life as you know it.

Excerpt
I have a question about keeping her safe.  :)oes she need to be kept safe?  If so, from what?  Why is it that this is someone else's job?  

I truly and deeply loved this person.  It is not easy to be a woman in her country, being attractive makes matters even worse.  She is perceived as a thing -youth is to be consumed and disposed of.  Of course, there are good men everywhere, but culturally it is not the norm.  There is a saying I heard while I was there 'Every man needs three things to beat, a wife a child and a dog'... .  Life will be hard for her. --You are, of course, correct -it is not my job. It was just a job I really wanted... .

 

Excerpt
I'm intrigued to see that your wife also has a PD.  What do you think is the draw for you?
 

That one is easy -I am a nice guy / codependent.  I am lucky enough to had cobbled together enough of a sense of self to have limits. 

"What child has not had reason to weep over its parents"

--Thus Spoke Zarathustra

My wife is a genius.  Our relationship began because her mother was going to pull her out of college.  Her mother may have been the single worst person I have every met -I despise hyperbole and I say 'worst' carefully and slowly.  The woman would actually plan evil -premeditate evil.  I believe she was bi-polar / histrionic.  I swear as I live and breath if you had been in the same room with her you would feel ill at ease.  She radiated malice.

My career had taken off early and I owned a home, so I let my wife move in so she could continue her studies -she was too brilliant to leave the university.  We became intimate and within 6 months her rage began --retroactive jealousy.  This went on for years, but I could not bring myself to end things and send her back to the gaping jaws of her mother.  Our relationship had been nearly sexless for 20 years and a rollercoaster ride.  I love my career so much I could hide in it.  When things got bad at home a job would come and I was off traveling, being creative and living my dream (workaholic).  This cycle went and time passed.  --I guess I had always had a mistress and she was work.  Beautiful, fulfilling and validating.

If anything good comes from my affair it will have been my wife seeking therapy and creating a wedge between her OCPD and herself.  She has been on an anti-depressant for the last 5 years, so the rage has stopped -that is only the beginning. 

Excerpt
Regards being active here keeping a connection, hopefully - this board being aimed at aiding detachment - the opposite will ring true for you in time.  We're here to help you let go and heal in a healthy way.  It is wise to want to work through the grief process.

This is an amazing community.  I wish I never had had cause to join the group, but I find myself here today... .  Borderline Personality Disorder is a hell of a thing.


 
Excerpt
 The Lessons are a great place to start.
 

I have been reading there too.


Excerpt
Good to hear that your wife and yourself are putting in the work with therapists to lay a foundation for something dare I say 'new' between you.  This work can only be a good thing, no matter what the outcome for you as a couple.

Yes, if not reconciliation, then closure and greater understanding.

Excerpt
I do wonder if the 'teetering' puts you under pressure to decide if reconciliation is what you truly want.  From what you say about wondering if you made the right decision in the future, perhaps you could find a way to remove that pressure for the moment?

You are, of course, correct in your observation.  We are taking things slowly.  I have taken an apartment and live back and forth between home and there.  We are not going to 'rush' into things, as recovering from the devastation of being betrayed takes a lot of time and effort.   We have been doing a lot of Solution Oriented Therapy (what we called in the old days -avoidance) and this goes well.  We enjoy cooking together and when I am not working I take care of the home so she has free time to herself in the evenings.  --to that point I should get started on dinner.

Thank you for making me feel so very welcome in the community.

Wicker Man
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« Reply #10 on: April 19, 2018, 11:17:29 AM »

Excerpt
Part of what stunted my recovery is not wanting to let go of the pain, because to a great degree, it was this Dr Jekyl and Dr Hyde alternation I was faced with is what made the amazing times so great. Or to make it clearer, and something I actually said to my BPDx when she was upset, I said "dont feel to bad about the bad times, because they have a purpose of heightening the good"... .    ... .Part of me became accustomed to the dynamic that I discovered she enjoyed having this control in a sort of emotional sado masochistic way
.  

My relationship may have been shorter than yours.  I almost never experienced rage while we were together.  One evening she flew into a rage and said 'I am extremely angry with you!' I said '好' which means something between ok and yes.  She stopped in her tracks and said 'What in the hell do you mean ok?'  I said 'Anger is part of you, and is happiness and sadness -I love you, all of you.'  She sat on the bed and said ':)amn... .  I am not angry any more.'  I said "it is ok I still love you -- don't worry, just wait I am very annoying and you will be mad again before you know it'.  

Later that evening we called her grandparents, which was a lovely nightly ritual, and she relayed the story -Grandmother laughed out loud and said 'He is perfect for you'.   --as a digression in a rage she once tore all of the flooring out of her grand parents apartment... .all of it and then smashed all the tile out of the kitchen.  To this day their apartment has concrete floors and walls in the kitchen.

When she was raging I filtered out the rage and listened for messages and only reacted to what she was trying to say.  This seemed to all but end the rage when we were together.  Over the phone was a different animal all together.  There was no way to mollify her -I am guessing in hindsight fear of abandonment was fueling her rage.  --I would use active listening and wait.

Not understanding BPD I thought this was a mixture of bi-polar and insecurity.  I believed I could help her through.  However, with BPD patients and compassion likely would not have been enough.

Excerpt
It became almost a role play that I entered myself into, for I had already in my heart abandoned the dream of having a healthy loving relationship, based on her cheating and other antics that had happened early on. This wasnt a role that I enjoyed but I felt that as a person who I realised at her core was lacking in self esteem, felt so much anger and powerless in the world, I felt that to an extent I would let her feel what it was like to have someone wrapped around her finger, and I was also interested to see how she would use this. Its why I ran after her most ridiculous needs and demands she put on me, knowing that she wasnt doing these things so much for any material gain as she was doing it to test just how far she could be in control of me.

This is very interesting to read.  My partner was starting to make a lot of bids for power in the relationship, some major and some ridiculously minor.  She cancelled a vacation to Thailand we had planned the day we were to leave.  She said she had wanted to buy new clothes and had not had time.  I told her this was fine, but the entire idea of Thailand was not not need much more than a bathing suit and flip flops... .  She began to refuse to go out of the apartment.  Two bids for power which planted seeds of danger were -she refused to accompany me to a work meeting 10 minutes before I was to get in the car to leave (she was to act as an interpreter if I had run into language trouble) and the other one was she was refusing to send a payment to my agent. I couldn't send the payment myself, it was something only she could do (banking system issue).  It took me 3 boring days to convince her I needed to fulfill my contract and make the payment.

Excerpt
I had never met anyone like her and knew nothing about the condition, but I did have strong feelings and felt love for her

I know this feeling absolutely.  Mine had visions, she lives between reality and a magical world.  She is an incredibly gifted artist and I learned a lot from her about movies, music and other art.  We had this in common, we both admired each other's work very much.  Our plan, actually, had been for her to work with me as my assistant and interpreter.  She told me 'I only feel happy when I am with you, you are my whole world'.  Since I am a workaholic the idea seemed ideal.  To be with the one I loved, doing what I love -it seemed like it would have been an incredible life.

Excerpt
People often come on these boards and a common theme is that they have ended up feeling "used" or been made a fool. Id like to say that my partner was and still is very much an enigma to me, just as much as she is one to her very self. I cant blame myself for not understanding someone.

Having spent hours reading on BPD Family before I made my first post, I have to say my experience was light and easy compared to many, if not most.  I have a thick skin and took no hit to my self-esteem, however if I had spent more years with her I am sure this would have not longer been the case.  As I said earlier, I would filter the anger out of her rages and listen for the actual message.  Her family was another mitigating factor, they saw I was good for her and would periodically interpose and remind her to be kind to me.  Her grandmother is a force of nature and with a word could all but create a 'hard restart' during a rage.  I was helping her little brother learn photography and would help him with his English homework.  Family is culturally very important there.  This is where I feel incredible loss.  She and I had spoken about having a child.  This was likely mirroring, I must have said something about having always wanted a child, or perhaps she just sensed it.  I feel the loss of her baby brother, grand parents as well as her mother and step father.  They had accepted me into the family completely.  I believe they wanted her to be safe and believed I could care for her.


Excerpt
I had excellent values and traits, but there was a side to me that should have not got swayed by such alluring emotions and to become blindsided to a person who went against values early on that were important to me, thinking that I could overlook them or change her. We get to a certain age in life, im in my 30s, and am the equivalent of a tree that is deep rooted and not easy to bend or change without making very big conscious plans to do so. I gave my BPDx many clues at times by saying that "i wont ever change", because that is what I felt she was attempting to do, we were not compatible in many important ways and it was folly of me to even entertain the idea that I would change the person I am in order to accomodate her. When I write it like that, it makes me realise just how much a borderline trait that is. She was an expert at mirroring my traits, but it wasnt who she was, she has a personality disorder and lack of an identity, able to change at a whim. and this, as you may have also found out, is not something that you can build a secure, stable relationship on and expect it to remain as such for any given length of time.


"If I wanted to shake this tree with my hands I should not be able to do it. But the wind, which we do not see, tortures and bends it in whatever direction it pleases. It is by invisible hands that we are bent and tortured worst." --Thus Spoke Zarathustra

Well... .young man I am in my young 50s... .  I was not wise enough to know the love I felt for her was too good to be true.  I have spent a lifetime trying to be a good man, well read, physically active, successful.  Instead of this giving me the strength and fortitude to protect myself from this sort of misstep it made me all the more susceptible!  I felt in my deepest heart I had found the love I had spent a lifetime preparing for, I deserved to be adored.  ---Foolish, and arrogant.  

Something that has struck me about the mirroring is this.  The stars you saw in her eyes, the mesmerizing brilliance and beauty was your own reflection. You saw you at your best reflected, meaning the real beauty actually lies within you and no one can take this away.

Excerpt
I could have had the world expert on BPD telling me what was going on during my R/S, I would have slammed the door in their face; no-one would be able to besmirch the character of cast aspersions on the person who made me feel the way she managed to make me feel. What could their textbook know more than I could of the person I lived with.

Ok, this is interesting and here we are different.  My ex-lover (kind of hurts to write ex and have avoided it thus far).  She had been misdiagnosed as schizophrenic with bi-polar comorbidity.  I knew I was signing on for a difficult journey and if we were to have had a child there was a genetic risk.  I adored her, saw beauty and brilliance, so I was willing to help her create a stable and nurturing home, a safe place to heal. I have a lot to give and enjoy doing so.  However, if I had know about BPD -which meant she would likely never be faithful and ultimately would have left me I would have walked away immediately.  I now feel certain at some point she would have switched me off.  I was lucky when she 'broke up with me' in a rage that I took her at her word. --as I mentioned at this point I was unaware of BPD, breaking up is simply never something to threaten.  In fact, I told her this early on in our relationship.  

It still hurt to let her go, to let go of our dream, to cast her free from the shelter I had offered her.  I will never forget the tears pouring from her eyes when she asked 'Is this the last time we will ever speak?' --It was.  

She posts daily on Instagram a dally count since the last time we have spoken.  I am trying to stay strong enough to not look.  

Excerpt
I didnt choose my username and laughed out loud when I got it assigned to me, but have kept it since, its starting to suit and I love the historical comparison you pointed out, if there was ever a warning not to allow her to recycle me again that imagery will be the first thing that will flash in front of my mind, yes - youve done the trick, I really just felt a slight dislike to you now, for ensuring that there is no way of return for her.

Give it time... .  I am quite annoying.  We can turn slight dislike to full on loathing.

Excerpt
See there must have been even a slither of latent desire for that to happen and just goes to show I dont get complacent in myself however good I feel, still a work in progress and I enjoy that too - doing stuff for my own needs is starting to become enjoyable even, now I understand how much my BPDx liked it so much to have someone cater to her needs, she is missing out on a lot because hers is an insatiable appetite that cant ever be fulfilled. I dont just understand the recognised concept behind that, I truly feel it now. This is the synthesis of knowledge and experience, I was just floundering when I had one without the other. youve got the experience, id suggest read read read until you get to the saturation ppint where you really feel you are in control of these emotions by recognising their root cause and not the other way around.

In a Road Less Travelled Dr. Peck writes about the concept of Childish love 'if I care for you the way I want to be loved -then you will love me that way too'  

I felt if I give myself up to her body and soul (house, two apartments, car)  it would be reciprocated.  Human being do not work this way... .  I supposed this is why Dr. Peck called it Childish... .  I was, I behaved like a child. However, when you are being told 'You are my whole world', 'You are my knight in shining armor' and so on it is easy to fall into a childish love.  It is like a fairytale love, but when kids find a house made of candy in the forest they may end up in the oven.

Excerpt
id like to share a quote from my BPDx, "always remember, you are an amazing person, never let anyone put you down".

It is good advice.  


Wicker Man
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« Reply #11 on: April 19, 2018, 02:15:48 PM »

Thanks for this post, Wicker Man and others, I read it twice.

I know the feelings you describe well. Lately, life seems flavorless without her. I'm certain nobody will ever feel so good in my arms again.

She hears voices, sees ghosts, and once she has smashed up my house in a rage. When she weeps, it shakes the walls. When she smiles, the whole world lights up. I am fascinated by her, the feral way she moves through the world. When she was with me, she stopped making bruises on herself by digging into her muscles with her knuckles, and she gained enough weight to look healthy. She managed, for a while, to go to school and hold a job.   

But she kept sabotaging everything until I cried uncle and made her go away from me, where I now keep her at arms' length. Now she's living in a flophouse going crazy.

She's ill, not a bad person, not malicious, traumatized by 31 years of neglect and marginalization. I'm not a bad person either, but I'm no saint. I have not yet had the wherewithal to totally walk away from this exciting creature who, for whatever reason, moves me like no other. Keep writing if it helps exorcise the demons, we hear you loud and clear.

Hope you start to feel better soon.
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« Reply #12 on: April 19, 2018, 04:25:23 PM »

Hi Wicker Man

wondering how you might be feeling today?

When she was raging I filtered out the rage and listened for messages and only reacted to what she was trying to say.  This seemed to all but end the rage when we were together.  Over the phone was a different animal all together.  There was no way to mollify her -I am guessing in hindsight fear of abandonment was fueling her rage.  --I would use active listening and wait.

I did the same, from what I have come across is that a lot of the outrageous behaviour is a form of emotional pressure-testing, how far can it go before there is an abandonment risk. The problem with appeasing the behaviour is that it can lead to it escalating in the long term. I never experienced much hostility of the violent or even hostile form, when I did I did the same as you, but my ex was a master of passive-aggressiveness and i have yet to come across anyone in life that could compare to how cutting she could be with the cryptic insults when she was in that state. This difficulty in dealing with BPD is that there is not one single given "standard operating procedure" on how best to deal with it. It really is a lose-lose situation every time. Yes there are some conflict resolution tools that can lead to having a less damaging outcome, but you cant win any encounter, the game is rigged this way.

This is very interesting to read.  My partner was starting to make a lot of bids for power in the relationship, some major and some ridiculously minor.  She cancelled a vacation to Thailand we had planned the day we were to leave.  She said she had wanted to buy new clothes and had not had time.  I told her this was fine, but the entire idea of Thailand was not not need much more than a bathing suit and flip flops... . She began to refuse to go out of the apartment.  Two bids for power which planted seeds of danger were -she refused to accompany me to a work meeting 10 minutes before I was to get in the car to leave (she was to act as an interpreter if I had run into language trouble) and the other one was she was refusing to send a payment to my agent. I couldn't send the payment myself, it was something only she could do (banking system issue).  It took me 3 boring days to convince her I needed to fulfill my contract and make the payment.

Hard to comment on this one because could be a few reasons. My ex would often agree to everything, I realise now it was part of the mirroring stage, but then when it came to the time to actually do it, she could withdraw. Impulsivity is a known factor with BPD, it is why they often find themselves doing things in the emotional state they are in, and often regretting it afterwards when the damage has been done, very much a constant them in my R/S. It is why I have forgiven her secretly for the cheating, despite that being the hardest to cope with, because I see it as part of her lack of impulse control when she was dysregulated. This could explain how yours agreed to do many things but as time went on and she shifts into a different state, she wasnt willing to. Just another way to look at it.

Well... .young man I am in my young 50s... . I was not wise enough to know the love I felt for her was too good to be true.  I have spent a lifetime trying to be a good man, well read, physically active, successful.  Instead of this giving me the strength and fortitude to protect myself from this sort of misstep it made me all the more susceptible!  I felt in my deepest heart I had found the love I had spent a lifetime preparing for, I deserved to be adored.  ---Foolish, and arrogant.  

Something that has struck me about the mirroring is this.  The stars you saw in her eyes, the mesmerizing brilliance and beauty was your own reflection. You saw you at your best reflected, meaning the real beauty actually lies within you and no one can take this away.

I was in a vulnerable state when I met my ex, compared to the rest of my life I met her at my lowest of my lows and looking back I did share a very similar mindset of thinking this was a reward for all the hardship and pain I had already gone through. I got carried away with the same idea that this is what I waited all my life for and finally found it. Foolish yes in hindsight, arrogant, yes at ignoring the warning signs and the advice of non-emotionally involved outsiders (everyone!). But I was in my own world, idealised her and thought of the whole thing in mystical terms as time went on, because that is how it felt. Remember that borderline is a condition of that person being in psychosis themselves, I was unwittingly joining her many times there.

my exs famous saying about "dont let anyone put you down", in many ways the biggest stumble block is to not assign this "anyone" to ourselves. Ive certainly been my own worst enemy (she was a close 2nd place   and realised that considering the circumstances, I actually did really well  and something you might be able to establish more as the emotions dont hold so much power, they will become more manageable.

 of everything I have discovered in all this research can be reduced almost to a small leaflet, but where im at now is simply that of being entirely guilty of giving my heart to someone who couldnt handle it.

that really is the succinct BPD-experience summary of where im at to now, the height of my research.  

with regards to instagram. I had inadvertently stumbled upon one picture of her that hadnt been deleted it, the infactuation factor, is not something to be downplayed on, im at the stage now where I dont feel any shallowness to admit that if she wouldnt have been so hot that I wouldnt have put up with 90% of what she did. actually that probably does just prove that im shallow  Smiling (click to insert in post) but hey, the truth shall set you free and all that.

best wishes,

Cromwell

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« Reply #13 on: April 19, 2018, 06:20:14 PM »

Greeting Cromwell,

Excerpt
wondering how you might be feeling today?

I am quite well.  I went to a movie, which can be a bit of a trigger, but all in all I am keeping the shiny side up.

Excerpt
This could explain how yours agreed to do many things but as time went on and she shifts into a different state, she wasnt willing to. Just another way to look at it.

This may very well have been the case.  Ironically, she craves attention, particularly male attention, but suffers from a bit of social anxiety. She dislikes crowds and closed spaces.  I also think perhaps she may have been testing limits of control. 

Excerpt
I was in a vulnerable state when I met my ex, compared to the rest of my life I met her at my lowest of my lows and looking back I did share a very similar mindset of thinking this was a reward for all the hardship and pain I had already gone through. I got carried away with the same idea that this is what I waited all my life for and finally found it.


Apparently, I had been very discontented in my marriage and was primed for such an encounter.  When we met I had been on this movie for 4 months working 7 days a week, and at average of 100 hours a week -I was focused and had wrapped myself in the movie like a warm blanket -my work is an escape for me, almost drug like.  So... .I would like to add, perhaps, a measure of extreme fatigue left me more emotionally open to throwing my marriage out the window.  I knew what I was doing was treacherous, dangerous and selfish -but I simply didn't care.

She caught my eye, and over a week or so, I had started putting together a profile of who I thought she might have been.  One day we ran into each other in a set hallway; I said hello and pointed to the tattoo sleeve on her right arm saying it was pretty, so I could have a look at her left wrist.  I had presumed she had attempted suicide in the past.  I had presumed this because of her stunning ability as an artist -there is never free lunch in life.  One does not get to be a brilliant artist without a darkness.  --After that brief encounter she 'friended' me on WeChat ... .something, something... .and I find myself here today writing to you.

Excerpt
... .considering the circumstances, I actually did really well  and something you might be able to establish more as the emotions dont hold so much power, they will become more manageable.

I have to say if I could hit a button and make this last year go away I would do so without hesitation.  Undo the pain I caused my wife.  I have a lot of pity for the other woman too.  She will now have to go through the rest of her life compering every man to me -the chances of her finding my equal is slim to none and I do not wish this on her.

Excerpt
being entirely guilty of giving my heart to someone who couldnt handle it.

This was my point of pitying her.  I had no agenda, no ulterior motive.  I loved and accepted all of her -except her ability to utterly turn her back on people when she no longer found them expedient. 


Excerpt
I had inadvertently stumbled upon one picture of her that hadnt been deleted it, the infactuation factor, is not something to be downplayed on, im at the stage now where I dont feel any shallowness to admit that if she wouldnt have been so hot that I wouldnt have put up with 90% of what she did. actually that probably does just prove that im shallow  Smiling (click to insert in post) but hey, the truth shall set you free and all that.

Mine was a stunning beauty as well.  It was actually her grace that attracted my eye, when she walks it is with pride -she had been schooled as a dancer before becoming a makeup artist.  I am an odd duck, of course it was lovely to have someone who was physically exquisite, but it was her mind and soul which caused me such rapture.  She is a genius with a brilliant sense of humor and the ironic.  ( I still struggle whether to write 'is' or 'was'... .  she isn't dead, just dead to me... .  Freud would have a field day).  I tolerated her issues because I thought they could be overcome with patients and my loving support, I thought the importance of family in her culture was a foundation to build upon, our age difference was accepted by her family, as well as her culture.  Her friends and family were relieved we were together, we had a very large support system -so it seemed like a good start.  I can say without and hesitation --the week I met her family was far and away the best week of my life.

I have been contacted by a few of her friends beseeching me to return to her.  To be honest, one of the friend's English was miraculously improved, I have a feeling I was actually communicating to my ex via proxy.

As a side note -this friend had been 'painted black' and my ex went 'no contact'.  Her friend was facing a grizzly divorce (axe, police etc... .good and ugly) and really needed my ex's help (see I am getting better... .I can use 'ex' now).  This poor friend sent me voice messages -her English is bad and it was hard for her to write (I can't read her language).  Her VMs were begging me to have my ex reach out to her.  This went on for weeks.  So... .this friend was, apparently, recycled (I believe to get to me).

The conversation went roughly like this:
Friend: 'What happened?  She is very sick and needs you'.
Me: It is her story to tell. I wish her well, but I will not be returning --we are done.

I did not want to betray my ex's trust and tell anything intimate to someone she had previously cut out of her life, and if my suspicion had been correct and it was actually my ex -I felt this was the best message I could convey.  Terse, but not cruel.

What a fine mess.  By the way I would like to apologize for the typographical errors in my previous post -I hit post instead of preview. 

Wicker Man
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« Reply #14 on: April 21, 2018, 06:25:50 AM »

Hi Wicker Man, 

glad to hear your being optimistic and doing your best. You know, there came a time when I didnt respond to my texts from her when they said "how are you feeling?". because I started to wonder if they were more rooted in sarcasm than having real concern or interest.  Thought

eventually i didnt like people to ask me how i was, because it meant to lie, there was no way to reveal the depth of hell I found myself trudging in. but nowadays i enjoy to tell people that im feeling great, happy, because its true, Ive organised my life so that it is as enjoyable as I can make it, and removing her has been the biggest stumbleblock on the road to getting there.  Bullet: completed (click to insert in post)

I understand with the work, i think its great that you are channeling the energy and it does give distraction and is doing positive, luckily I had a very stressful demanding job where there was little opportunity or time to be allowed to think about her, it was a form of mental respite and phones were not allowed (I worked in a hospital). As soon as i left work and switched on my phone would be on a good day just 1 message, but could be between 20 and 30, some of the content saying "your not even at work I know you are lying to me", blah blah.

but it was addictive and I found my work no longer a challenge in comparison to going home and not knowing if I would have an amazing evening staying in or going out with her, or if id come home and find her head in the oven. Smiling (click to insert in post)

So yes, there was nothing grey about this "love" I had, it kept me on my toes 24/7, the adrenaline kick followed by the burnout constantly was the addiction, but not love. but im just glad that it is over, i had an interesting life and hobbies and picking them back up again as my health has improved. I tried to show her that joy can be found without chaos and drama extremes, and had small success in doing so.

Dont worry about typo errors, in 3 years I stopped writing, reading, things I had taken great interest in. If I read something I could get two sentences and have to re-read them all over again. I still struggle a bit with writing. The impact that a R/S can have on you in the long y nothing to be scoffed at, im pleased that you got to the stage of putting "number 1" first despite the love you felt intertwining so strongly with your ex. Its what i struggled with, working in health care it is normal for my personality to be doing everything I can for an ill person, to centre everything around them. It is an underlying love for wanting to be a part in getting someones life healthy again so they are able to live it as they wish to, I get a lot of fulfillment in this. But in doing so i have overlooked my own needs, and there is nothing that highlighted this more than the relationship with my ex.  Thought Attention(click to insert in post)

This time on these boards is not about my ex, it is about doing something for myself, to get better, using whatever strategies work. I hope you will find that the same Wicker Man and your life wont feel so grey anymore but will find fulfillment by starting to discover more about what it was about the dynamics behind your R/S that made you feel alive and why. This has helped me considerably and i hope it will for you also. Bullet: completed (click to insert in post)

Have a good day Doing the right thing (click to insert in post)

Cromwell Smiling (click to insert in post)

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« Reply #15 on: April 23, 2018, 12:02:45 PM »

 
Excerpt
You know, there came a time when I didnt respond to my texts from her when they said "how are you feeling?". because I started to wonder if they were more rooted in sarcasm than having real concern or interest.  Thought

From what I have read my situation is a bit unique.  Mine has not attempted any direct contact with me -honoring our agreement to never speak again.  I had opened a dialogue with her best friend -it is a long story, but as part of my attempt at reconciliation with my wife I was trying to fulfill a request -or perhaps better put... .a demand.

My ex passively posts messages for my benefit on Instagram, but they are veiled and someone not in the know would not understand they are directed (with uncanny precision) at me. 

Excerpt
eventually i didnt like people to ask me how i was, because it meant to lie, there was no way to reveal the depth of hell I found myself trudging in.

I am very fortunate, my therapist is currently treating some people with BPD.  He understands what I have gone through.  I don't know if I am the first relationship partner of a BPD or not, but he sometimes knows what I am going to say before I say it.

Excerpt
but nowadays i enjoy to tell people that im feeling great, happy, because its true, Ive organised my life so that it is as enjoyable as I can make it, and removing her has been the biggest stumbleblock on the road to getting there.
 

An enviable state of being.  I am glad for you.

Excerpt
I understand with the work, i think its great that you are channeling the energy and it does give distraction and is doing positive, luckily I had a very stressful demanding job where there was little opportunity or time to be allowed to think about her... .

Here is the rub.  Work had always been my escape.  It was how I coped with a questionable marriage.  (My wife has OCPD -which was why I believe I was not taken a back by my ex lover's rage --I was used to it.)  I believe in 20/20 hindsight part of my attraction to my ex was the connection to my work.  We met at work, and we are both film lovers.  She, even in a short time, had helped me grow.  This is something, since I had been doing my job for 25 years.  She lives half in reality and half in a magical world of visions both beautiful and terrible -she sometimes has trouble remembering what was a dream and what was real.  She is hypersensitive to imagery and music, so I exposed to some absolutely wonderful, if not sometimes haunting imagery.

Now that she is gone even my work feels grey.  I will, assuming I repair things at home and continue in my marriage, never return to my ex's country.  It would be a huge trigger for my wife and I think it would be devastating personally to be there without my ex at my side.  I have not spoken Mandarin in 4 months and I can already feel it slipping away. 

I just finished coloring a movie (post production), which was usually a joyful experience.  I performed my job well, but it was not the same.  Since I was 16 (learning for dad) I have spent something like 4000 hours in color correction, and every time I left the sessions exhilarated.  This time was different.  Sure... .a job well done, but that was it -no joy.

I find out today about another movie -Before I would have been nervous and excited, now I suppose one could say that I am at ease with it either way.  In other words... .I don't care.  It would be nice to have the escape, but I am not excited about the potential of the project in the same way.


Excerpt
I had an interesting life and hobbies and picking them back up again as my health has improved.

Here is a personal failing of mine -During the economic crash in 2008 I was nearly knocked out of my business (My grandfather started us in show business in 1911).  I lost 7 clients and 5 companies, as a free lance worker this is devastating.  I re-tooled myself into something which was focused on work and work alone.  If it could not get me work -I didn't need it.  I find myself now needing to learn how to play again. 

While I was with my ex I worked 175 days straight with an average work week of 110 hours.  It was heaven for me -but in this bought of work I managed to give myself a repetitive stress injury in my hip -which made it so I couldn't run.  PT is helping me through this -but what I wouldn't give at this point to be able to run.   It had always been my 'therapy'.

Ok -I have to tell a story.  My ex asked if she could go run with me.  I said 'Of course!'  It took her 45 minutes to find her running clothes and get ready.  She looked stunning... .the perfect running ninja costume... .and... .ran 3 blocks... .and had to stop.  She had not run since the dance academy and was a heavy smoker.  We laughed so hard about this.

Excerpt
I still struggle a bit with writing.
HA!  I have been journaling -I had all but forgotten how to write -I mean use a pencil to create letters.  I have been typing for so long now -I realized my handwriting skills had atrophied. 

Excerpt
This time on these boards is not about my ex, it is about doing something for myself, to get better, using whatever strategies work. I hope you will find that the same Wicker Man and your life wont feel so grey anymore but will find fulfillment by starting to discover more about what it was about the dynamics behind your R/S that made you feel alive and why.

I enjoy my time on the board -I look forward to it each day.  I just, personally, have to take care it does not become a compulsion and a way of 'staying connected' to the dream I lost. 

I fight with the cognitive dissonance my relationship has created within me.  What I am grappling with most is how my relationship with her made me feel about myself.  I felt like I was growing by leaps and bounds -becoming a better artist, learning a culture, becoming intimate with a language, and becoming less material.  I had been so happy I didn't feel I needed a lot of things -my cameras, some clothes and a big smile seemed like enough with her at my side.

Our apartment was one of 3 bedrooms in a 4 story walk up artist flop.  All our room mates were artists.  We had very little space and to a Western eye the place would have been considered hard.  (there was no oven -as reference to your previous comment) and while I was there it had been some of the happiest days of my life.

Ironically our final battle, where she broke up with me was over money!  She was demanding I buy a house for her before our marriage.  Which is a very old way of looking at things in her culture.  Further, she was demanding this be done with out a mortgage -in other words pay for the home outright. I do believe, in hindsight, she was trying to protect her grandparents in demanding this, but ':)er Tone macht die Musik' --The tone makes the music.  When push came to shove I wasn't family.  I had been willing to give her everything (dumbass) -but something must be given and never taken.

Being willing to consider this (once again --dumbass), I told her we needed to wait until after Spring Festival (2 months) -no work begins before the New Year.  I knew I would get a movie right after the Spring Festival -and told her we would have some economic breathing room -divorce is expensive.  This caused her to lose her mind and began a 7 day verbal pounding, which included me being a liar, coward, etc -ending with her 'breaking up' with me.

Ultimately, this final rage of hers likely saved my life -it woke me up.  A friend of a friend, I have since learned, followed a similar life path.  He fell in love with a girl in Asia (different country).  He moved, they married, they had a lovely baby... .She left him --disappeared, family black balled him.  He found himself penniless, alone with nowhere to turn. 

He hung himself in the bathroom of a bar. 

This grand experiment in 'happiness' of mine could have ended life as I know it.  I am glad I had the intuition so step away and learning about BPD has given me some solace in knowing it was very likely the right decision.

I am fortunate --my wife and I are trying to work through the catastrophe my affair has created in our lives -and hopefully build a healthy and loving home. 


--It will be a long road.



Wicker Man

By believing passionately in something that still does not exist, we create it. The nonexistent is whatever we have not sufficiently desired.

--Kafka


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« Reply #16 on: April 23, 2018, 02:00:57 PM »

Hi Wicker Man (sorry I never realised how much I wrote, if you do decide to go through this, id suggest make a coffee first or something) Doing the right thing (click to insert in post)

Your posts are always full of insight for me, and inspiring at the same time. I cant match you in your workaholism, but then again, I am a believer that if you are working in a job that you have the passion for, it isnt really work, if this is the case for you, its an exception I think. I found myself working in stressful difficult jobs, but doing well financially, only to look foward to giving much of it away to others. I was brought up as frugal yet never mean. Yet my ex had this very fixed transactional concept of giving and receiving, in her world paradigm, people only gave if they expected something equal or greater in return. This is just hard wired progamming and i wouldnt be changing that. Once I realised, she became a very cheap date, I just stopped being generous and surprisingly, she became less demanding. I said no to things that id otherwise find trivial about. With my work ethic and resources, it would have been easy (with the soul working alongside) to have given her the help to turn around her life and it inspired me, yet I learned from painful experience of being made to feel like a fool by something she did early on and I realised since then, she was still with me as a way of hitting the big one on the slots. I played her along to understand better and confirm that to myself, the problem isnt that I was too stupid to know what she was doing at an intellectual level, its a feeling of self sabotaging your own defences in exchange to live in the ignorance of bliss. I didnt want to know the truth or confront the disillusionment. I handed her over my credit cards almost as a way of thinking "here, ill make this easy for you", I wanted in some way to be proven wrong, dumbass? I spent 2 extra years sleeping and living with "the enemy". I rightfully label that as "idiotic", whether blinded by the love, or more accurately "falling in love with the idea of being in love".

If I had not broken up from my ex, I wouldnt be on my way to fulfilling a different dream, in a matter of weeks of going NC, I was sitting in an interview to study at pre med school, 2 weeks after that im there. Each and every minute that was not spent in my text books was thinking about her, it gave me anxiety, I turned to these boards as my only known source of help and learned I was not alone in what I had gone through. I do compulsively check in here, because there are posts like yours that help me towards recovery, gain insight from different perspectives. The biggest advance ive made was by not holding back, sharing as much as I felt comfortable to and letting other people know so it wasnt festering inside. I still think of her daily, in the quiet moments, but not nearly as much as I did and without the emotional intensity. Actually a lot what you say resonates with how I feel, its changed my perspective to a lot of things, I just feel it took longer for me to get to the state you are in now. I call it a form of grieving for lost love, I think closure may have been more obvious for you because of the long distance between you and your ex, for me, we live in the same small city and whenever I see someone similar I get startled.

Part of the stage I am now is really a processing stage, but doing so from a non-emotional standpoint. Ive came close to conclusions in that this R/S totally swept away my sense of rationale. I shared your thinking about how I didnt care about material wealth, comparatively to my ex I was financially doing well but I never thought anything to share with her. One warm summer night we spent the evening by the beach inside a cave, I made a fire, we got drunk, chatted for hours until the moon came down, it was a feeling I wont forget, the type where you feel that besides the person you love with you, there isnt anyone else in the world at that particular moment and all the things that people desire in society such as wealth, houses, fine living, I felt none of it mattered for I was truly happy, no euphoric, to feel that closeness with another. She mirrored it so well, yet, this is what made it so hurtful to realise it was not genuine or truly shared, just my illusion or self induced fantasy. My ex could mimic happiness, or plagiarise the outward appearance of love, but as your title suggests, she is walking grey inside, 24 hours of the day, 7 days of the week, including that time by the beach.

I was thinking today, when I was recalling these happy times for me, that this was really the whole point that seems so obvious it doesnt get looked at. The very fact that I was able to feel that way, is fortunate. I just took it for granted that other people have that capacity (such as my ex). My ex could get short term, transient moments of happiness, but only by doing things that gave an andrenaline kick, this is where the chaos manufacture comes from, stealing, lying, frauding. Ive yet to come across a PD person that is happy unless they are involved in any of these things, alongside drug use, sexual promiscuity or chemical interest as a form of escapism. My ex couldnt understand how happy I was when she came into the kitchen I was cleaning and singing along to the radio. Didnt understand why I didnt take advantage to steal from my workplace which would be easy for me (she did in hers and was fired). I could go on ad nauseum, but you get the idea, Im just fortunate that I did get a grip of my emotions and scarcely avoided financial ruin as well as marriage and a child, because these were all waiting in the pipeline.

I feel deeply sorry to hear what happened to your friend of a friend, this greyness is part of us, and is there for a reason. To slow down, contemplate and make sense of the experiences recently gone through. Im at the stage where I look back and think "geez, what was that all about it was crazy". Yes its glib or flippant in the face of people struggling now, but as i feel ive finally got to a stage of overcoming what i went through I know its going to just be another chapter of my life and not something im going to carry, for this I feel grateful. 8 months ago the emotions were too raw and overwhelming, nothing made any sense and there seemed like no hope. It is strange to sincerely have these beliefs at the time, yet transition to something of an entirely different mindset. I dont think anymore whether my love was reciprocated or not, or how she really felt, I appreciate the things I did at the time for her, the ability to have hit those monumental highs and lows, yet move on from them. She is no longer the centre of my universe and she never really was the keeper of my happiness, i just associated it to her, gave her that power unwittingly or perhaps, made myself vulnerable to another and that was part of the feeling of liberating oneself.

Obviously, like yourself, it couldnt have been a complete hand over, or we would never have got to the stage of extracting from the situation.

it was nice to read of the good times you went through, I have hundreds of such times, that in itself is what I focus on most these days when I think of her, along with a slight amount of guilt that she spent all that time with me and likely didnt get to experience a fraction of what I got. Sure she never got the devastation, but I know that somewhere along the line she knows that she was loved and that she lost out on it yet has to consciously repress that, it wont be easy, theres not much i did to justify being painted black.

i spent a great deal of time researching BPD during and after, it was worthwhile but I found the answers I was looking for, like I said, for me it is a chapter closed, mentally, except that not only will I use the experience for my personal advantage, but I share it in return for anyone who was at the stage I was in. I might never have another R/S which can hit those high and lows like my BPDx induced in me, but I dont feel the need for it, I had it already. Induced being the word, those feelings came from within and not her, she was merely the conduit that activated them.

I will stop rambling, your post today inspired me to get on with my studies, I already know that you have the strength and intelligence that will pull you through this. Keep making those films that give so many people entertainment, it sounds fulfilling and dont feel afraid that the passion you had that seems subdued now wont return, passion in my experience cant just be turned off and on like a tap, there isnt instant results to getting better, it takes hard work everyday and a dose of courage to confront some hard facts about ourselves and why we ended up in the situation, so as not to let it happen again.

The worlds a big place, and I could find another person quite easily who could replace my ex, I think nearly everyone could - the inner despair I feel is more to do with, and i believe others face and is what makes the world seem a grey place is the "once bitten, twice shy" and not wanting to go through the pain again, for those who figured out it wasnt ultimately worth it. Thats why instead I want to have better than my ex, the next time, and can only manage this by becoming better myself. Evolution maybe? 

 thanks for the inspiration as always, your posts are  always crammed full of wisdom, interesting and huge value to me, ive even starting to dislike you far less! i wont be able to shrug off the medusa image now with my ex, you really are good at your job, putting visuals into my mind of turning into stone at the very idea of my latent desire for a recycle. ive not met anyone as cruel as you on here yet, but your methods are highly effective, ill give you that much. hahaha.

wishing you a good day as always.

Cromwell
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« Reply #17 on: April 23, 2018, 03:57:42 PM »

 
Excerpt
(sorry I never realised how much I wrote, if you do decide to go through this, id suggest make a coffee first or something) Doing the right thing (click to insert in post)
 

I appreciate the immense amount of time you have spent during our discourse these last few days. 

Excerpt
Once I realised, she became a very cheap date, I just stopped being generous and surprisingly, she became less demanding.

This was a wild contradiction in her behavior.  She never wanted anything from me monetarily until the house debacle.  Perhaps, pursuant to her 'You must leave me I will destroy you' comment she felt she needed to secure a nice home for her grandparents before managing to immolate me --however... .  As I write this it now dawns on me, this may have been the hand of her mother -who likely knew she would chase me off --he seems like a nice guy... .get a house out of him... .before he leaves you... .  Her mother was a hard one to get a read on -her accent was heavy, so it was hard for me to understand her Chinese.


Excerpt
... .fulfilling a different dream, in a matter of weeks of going NC, I was sitting in an interview to study at pre med school, 2 weeks after that I'm there.

You should be incredibly proud of yourself.  Good luck and godspeed in your studies.

Excerpt
I still think of her daily, in the quiet moments, but not nearly as much as I did and without the emotional intensity.
... .Not what I wanted her hear.  I would have preferred --nope, never think of her... .Life is skittles and beer --damn... .

Excerpt
I call it a form of grieving for lost love

I grieve the loss of a dream.  I had ensnared myself into living in a fantasy, and it is a construct which is as hard to admit to as it is to escape from.

Excerpt
I think closure may have been more obvious for you because of the long distance between you and your ex, for me, we live in the same small city.

I believe it was not actually the distance, but the action of consummating my divorce (moving, selling, bank accounts, destroying everything my wife and I  had created together), in conjunction with an email requesting reconciliation I received from my wife thus creating a crucible of stress which made my ex's final rage sink in for what it was -foreshadowing, a portent of impending doom.


Excerpt
My ex could get short term, transient moments of happiness, but only by doing things that gave an andrenaline kick, this is where the chaos manufacture comes from, stealing, lying, frauding. Ive yet to come across a PD person that is happy unless they are involved in any of these things, alongside drug use, sexual promiscuity or chemical interest as a form of escapism.
This part of my ex's personality baffled me.  She was fired from the movie we met on for being honest!  Her boss had bought some dangerous contact lenses and she told the actor to not wear them.  She was found out and fired when she refused to convince the actor the use them. 

I suggested that we shouldn't drink -I told her when you drink you forget about us.  She agreed and we went 7 months without so much as a beer.  Now, one should clearly see this was an indirect admission of having cheated on me.  --super... .  Before we met she had nearly drank herself to death (literally) on more than one occasion. During our time together she repeatedly put herself into a particularly dangerous situation with a single particularly powerful and dangerous producer --metoo sort of thing.  She seemed to enjoy it... .  In fact, she and her ex-boyfriend (boss) saw eye to eye on this one -imploring her to not drink in this man's presence.  I said to her very delicately once 'If you give him the opportunity he will rape you and then I will kill him -so if you don't want me to die in a Chinese prison... .take care of yourself.'

Excerpt
Im just fortunate that I did get a grip of my emotions and scarcely avoided financial ruin as well as marriage and a child, because these were all waiting in the pipeline.

I shudder to think what would have happened to me if we had had a child and then she left me.  I can't imagine which would have been more grizzly -if she took the child or left me to care for it alone.  something something visa, house, family... .career... . 

Excerpt
I dont think anymore whether my love was reciprocated or not, or how she really felt, I appreciate the things I did at the time for her, the ability to have hit those monumental highs and lows, yet move on from them.

This is exactly what causes so much cognitive dissonance for me.  She adored me and desperately wants me back.  She saw the safety and love she so desperately needs to fill her up and make her feel secure -sadly, in my opinion, her devastating childhood has left her incapable of upholding her side of a loving relationship. 

Excerpt
Obviously, like yourself, it couldnt have been a complete hand over, or we would never have got to the stage of extracting from the situation.

One may never place one's life completely into the hands of another. 

Excerpt
I will stop rambling, your post today inspired me to get on with my studies, I already know that you have the strength and intelligence that will pull you through this.

By all means hit the books, and once again thank you for taking time out of your day for yet another thoughtful reply.  I, for obvious reasons, can't talk to my wife about my experience on this level.  I have given her full disclosure of the affair -but 'I felt like I was touched by the wing of an angel' would likely be met with acrimony.  It is helpful to be able to talk about the intoxicating along side the toxic.

Excerpt
Keep making those films that give so many people entertainment, it sounds fulfilling and dont feel afraid that the passion you had that seems subdued now wont return, passion in my experience cant just be turned off and on like a tap, there isnt instant results to getting better, it takes hard work everyday and a dose of courage to confront some hard facts about ourselves and why we ended up in the situation, so as not to let it happen again.

Yes -my lust for work will likely return, but I need to learn a balance.  If I am not able to find happiness outside of work my marriage is doomed.

Excerpt
Thanks for the inspiration as always, your posts are  always crammed full of wisdom, interesting and huge value to me, ive even starting to dislike you far less! i wont be able to shrug off the medusa image now with my ex, you really are good at your job, putting visuals into my mind of turning into stone at the very idea of my latent desire for a recycle. ive not met anyone as cruel as you on here yet, but your methods are highly effective, ill give you that much.

I looked to the unyieldingly sharp and razor honed blade of philosophy and literature as I was entering the madness of my affair -trying to find the strength to live for 'true love'.  I now find myself running my bloodied hand along the other side of this double edged blade as I try to extricate myself from the aftermath of delusion.

This passage has changed meaning several times throughout my life:

                                                 --29--

Few are made of independence -it is a privilege of the strong. And he who attempts it, having the completest right to it but without being compelled to, thereby proves that he is probably not only strong but also daring to the point of recklessness. He ventures into a labyrinth, he multiplies by a thousand the dangers which life as such already brings with it, not the smallest of which is that no one can behold how and where he goes astray, is cut off from others, and is torn to pieces limb from limb by some cave-minotaur of conscience. If such a one is destroyed, it takes place so far from the understanding of men that they neither feel it nor sympathize -and he can no longer go back!  He can no longer go back even to the pity of men!

Nietzsche BGE


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« Reply #18 on: April 25, 2018, 03:19:07 PM »

Hi Wicker Man

thanks again for a very comprehensive reply, I really enjoyed the example from Nietzsche, mused about it today with regards to something entirely unrelated.

With regards to the drink, my ex when I met her, and still is, an alcoholic and recreational drug user as part of her BPD, it is recognised as one of the indicators. It is easier to forgive what she did, particularly as I know that alcohol was involved on the night of her cheating. Not that it is of any consolation but I can at least find some sort of acceptance as well as that she between the lines, told me this was the case. It is also easier to come to terms with that I cant fully blame her, I knew what I was getting myself into even if I didnt know about the condition itself, drink and drugs can bring the worst out of anyone but in her case she turned into Medusa. I really enjoyed your other post about quit smoking, I have recently 3 days ago done the same. the whole debacle has put me off alcohol, cigarettes and drugs for life, who really can tell what gifts in disguise have been secretly dropped in the fallout and the pain?

Cromwell
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« Reply #19 on: April 25, 2018, 05:14:38 PM »

Cromwell touches on a really valid point here.  There ARE gifts in such an experience.  Not least the things that can be uncovered on reflection when we consider what brought us into these situations and kept us in them for as long as we were.  We each must discover for ourselves what we will take forwards with us to benefit us in how we shape our future lives. 

I don't know where I read this, but it stayed with me and I feel it sums up a key and harsh learning for myself, amongst others:

When you write the story of your life, don't let someone else hold the pen

Love and light x
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« Reply #20 on: April 25, 2018, 06:42:01 PM »

Excerpt
There ARE gifts in such an experience.  Not least the things that can be uncovered on reflection when we consider what brought us into these situations and kept us in them for as long as we were.  We each must discover for ourselves what we will take forwards with us to benefit us in how we shape our future lives. 

I completely agree.  The experience was life altering and has certainly given me great pause.  Particularly since my experience with BPD was in the context of an affair.  It gives me a lot to think about and try to process.  What turned me from a good husband into a cheater?  What about the affair made me willing to walk away from my life and wish to begin anew?

Excerpt
When you write the story of your life, don't let someone else hold the pen

"My life, when it is written, will read better than it lived."

--From The Lion in Winter (see this movie if you have not)

I have certainly had an interesting year and if it had happened to someone else it would be a story I would have loved to hear. 

Everything is funny, as long as it's happening to somebody else.

--Will Rogers

This experience has forced me to look hard at myself as human being. This explosive time in my life will either serve to make my marriage stronger or end it. 

Thank you all for your kindness and support.

Wicker Man


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« Reply #21 on: April 26, 2018, 10:39:56 AM »

Excerpt
This explosive time in my life will either serve to make my marriage stronger or end it.

Now seems like a good time to assess what you value in a r/s and apply that lens to what you wish to achieve in your marriage.  Have you read our article on the Characteristics of Healthy Relationships?  It covers some of the things to look for in a r/s and those areas that are red flags for abuse or lack of boundaries in either or both of the partners.  It's interesting when applied to past partners, but also helpful to think about when considering next steps in romantic relationships.  You possibly have a rare opportunity to press reset on your marriage and perhaps think about what you might want to do differently.  I hope this is helpful.

Love and light x 
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« Reply #22 on: April 26, 2018, 12:33:33 PM »

Excerpt
Have you read our article on the Characteristics of Healthy Relationships?  It covers some of the things to look for in a r/s and those areas that are red flags for abuse or lack of boundaries in either or both of the partners

Thank you for the article.  I will continue to read it today and for days to come.

It is exceptionally poignant, since as you pointed out in an earlier conversation, I had gone from one PD relationship to another.  The two disorders being behaviorally opposite from one another.  The common theme is both women 'needed saving'  -This of course means I have to look inside myself and find out where the attraction lies.  I feel I am a 'nice guy' / codependent -and perhaps herein lies the answer. 

Excerpt
You possibly have a rare opportunity to press reset on your marriage and perhaps think about what you might want to do differently. 

If anything good comes from my inexcusable flight from my marriage it will be both my wife and I now seeking the therapy we have needed for so many years.  What I would not give to have known how much I had repressed and ignored until it built up to the point where I broke my marriage vows.  Please do not misread this -I accept full responsibility for my actions, but I wish I had had the wisdom to seek help years ago.

It feels particularly bad to be on this board as a cheater when so many people have been hurt by their BPD partners cheating on them... .  Ironically, it is incredibly likely mine cheated on me.  I suppose there is a justice in this -live by the sword and die by the sword. 

In the light of day what seemed right at the time was an embarrassing cascade of error, miscalculation, and denial. 

I have a lot of work ahead of me, but at least now I realize it and have begun.

Thank you as always for your insight, support and wisdom.



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« Reply #23 on: April 26, 2018, 04:16:56 PM »

Excerpt
I feel I am a 'nice guy' / codependent -and perhaps herein lies the answer.

You're in good company.  A large number of us would fit that description.

People with a predisposition to be a codependent enabler often find themselves in relationships where their primary role is that of rescuer, supporter, and confidante. These helper types are often dependent on the other person's poor functioning to satisfy their own emotional needs.

This is taken from the article Codependency and Codependent Relationships.  You can read the rest of the article HERE

It's the last part of the above statement that made me stop and think.  The good news is that with the knowledge that we behave in this learned way comes the opportunity to unlearn it and learn a new way to approach things.  One that serves us better.

Excerpt
It feels particularly bad to be on this board as a cheater when so many people have been hurt by their BPD partners cheating on them... .


I can see how that would feel bad, yet it's important to remember that each situation is unique.  I think it's fair to say that someone who is entirely happy and fulfilled in their life is unlikely to be sold on the advances of a love bombing BPD sufferer.  That is by no means pointing the finger at the spouse.  In my view the person who cheats does so because of an underlying issue that needs to be addressed.  It sounds like you're willing to put the work into getting to the bottom of that and I commend you on this.  :)o you have a therapist/friends/family you're able to talk to openly?

Love and light x      


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« Reply #24 on: April 26, 2018, 06:01:25 PM »

Excerpt
I think it's fair to say that someone who is entirely happy and fulfilled in their life is unlikely to be sold on the advances of a love bombing BPD sufferer.  

There are serial philanderers out there.  I am afraid I know a few, it simply isn't within me to act in such a manner.


Excerpt
In my view the person who cheats does so because of an underlying issue that needs to be addressed.  It sounds like you're willing to put the work into getting to the bottom of that and I commend you on this.

I agree, before being swept away, there was something inside me which allowed me to make first contact, putting myself and my marriage in jeopardy -I knew speaking to her on a personal level was dangerous, yet I did it anyway.  I still wonder about this.  There was some sort of an attraction I had never before been open to.  I work around beauty all the time, it is my job.  It really had nothing to do with how she looked, something drew me to her.

She is now out of my life. 

As the initial trauma of the affair has cooled my wife and I are beginning to address our relationship.  We will have to see which parts worked and which didn't.  With a lot of effort (and perhaps even more luck) hopefully we can transcend this crisis.

The State of Affairs: Rethinking Infidelity -Esther Perel

This book is an incredible resource, although it asks a lot of the betrayed, in my opinion, Esther Perel's approach needs to be taken slowly.  My therapist wanted to dive right in and talk about what in the relationship caused the 'tentpole' event of the affair.  I suggested we needed to give my wife time to absorb all the information I gave her during the disclosure process as well as vent some rage.  --there is that 'rage' word again... .

In my opinion, the couple must work through the pain of betrayal to the point where the betrayed doesn't immediately fall into diffuse physiological arousal.  When fight or flight first and foremost in ones mind anything heard is a faint echo and simply can not be retained or processed.

I am consciously not making a fundamental attribution error and blaming my spouse for my actions in the slightest.

Excerpt
Do you have a therapist/friends/family you're able to talk to openly?

I am seeing a wonderful therapist, my wife has a therapist and we are seeing a fair couples therapist.

I must relay a funny story.  My wife does not like children (we have none)... .  The couples therapist said 'What if it was a real child, a child of your own, not adopted?'

I raised my hand and said I was adopted... .  He hadn't hurt me, but I couldn't let him off the hook that easily -what he said was ignorant.  Know your audience... .  I smiled about that all day.

This part of my experience is getting a bit far afield considering our forum -thank you for giving me your consideration in this matter.

Wicker Man
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« Reply #25 on: April 26, 2018, 06:18:56 PM »

Excerpt
I knew speaking to her on a personal level was dangerous, yet I did it anyway.  I still wonder about this.  There was some sort of an attraction I had never before been open to.

You may decide to post on the Learning board as you work through any revelations that you have around this over time.  It's a good place to unravel things and come to a deeper level of understanding of ourselves.

How are you doing in regards to the break up at present? 

Love and light x

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« Reply #26 on: April 27, 2018, 10:05:05 AM »

Excerpt
How are you doing in regards to the break up at present? 

We have been no contact for 4 months.  She posts veiled messages meant for me on Instagram, which I blocked and do my best to not look at.  I will admit I have looked several times and it is always heart wrenching.

I keep having to remind myself of her rages.  I have to remember that she at one point tore all of the flooring out of her grand parents home and smashed all the tiles out of the kitchen -these are the people most dear in her life.

I have to remember the friends who she went no contact on -these people were sending me voice mails begging to have her contact them.  The even tried to write me in English -they were desperate.  They needed her help and she cut them off.

I have to remember the times I caught her in lies.

Most days this helps -then some days I very much miss my delusions.

She and I will never speak again -it is getting easier to say that.  There is a lot I would like to tell her -get help you are worth it and so on.  I know in doing this I would be starting her healing clock over again.  At this point she is still waiting for me, still pretending we are still engaged and will one day marry.  She also knows we broke up and are not speaking

To reiterate:  -She broke up with me in a rage and a few days later I agreed.  Her last words to me were "Then this is the last time we will ever speak?"  I said "Yes it is".  I feel desperately badly for her, to be still wearing the ring; she must be suffering incredible cognitive dissonance and pain. 

I am staying true to the promise I made to myself and my wife to have no contact whatsoever. 


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« Reply #27 on: April 28, 2018, 07:34:16 AM »

You can be proud of yourself for that.  I know how hard it is when we still care about our ex partner and their well being.  This may actually be a positive low point for her that changes her direction in life.  Sometimes the kindest thing we can do is to not help. 

Love and light x
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« Reply #28 on: April 30, 2018, 10:27:45 AM »

Excerpt
You can be proud of yourself for that. 

To be honest of all the words in the English lexicon 'Proud' is one which feels particularly far away these days.  I am attempting to navigate the path of least destruction, mitigating losses -rather than trying for a 'win'.  I am now sifting through the ashes of a failed marriage hoping to find a glowing ember, all the while fearing fear is my motivation.

Excerpt
I know how hard it is when we still care about our ex partner and their well being.

Once again being honest -I now have spent countless hours reading and trying to understand time I spent with my BPD lover.  Trying to understand how someone can say 'Always and forever' when she meant 'or until it slips my mind', How 'I am so God damn happy' can quickly slide into 'F#CK YOU! (insert my name here)'.  How as the loving codependent you can offer everything (money, house, elder care, love, patients, compassion) and be called 'weak and a coward' -because the money wasn't coming soon enough.

Here is the embarrassing part -in my time on this board, I think somewhere down deep, I have been reading hoping to find -No you got it wrong, you missed something, it really could have worked.  You had found true love.

Instead I read over and over she (likely, meaning I am not a professional and should take great care in psychological diagnosis) suffers from BPD and our relationship would have slid from rocky into mayhem.  Very likely the only reason I escaped (relatively) unscathed was the balance of power was still swung in my direction.  I still retained the power of veto, retained my financial wherewithal, and still have my career in the United States.  I imagine if the balance of power had swung over to her I would have gotten both barrels loaded for bear.

Excerpt
This may actually be a positive low point for her that changes her direction in life

She is young and beautiful, she is bombarded constantly with the attention of men.  The path of least resistance will be to simply start the cycle over again.  I sincerely hope having met a 'good guy' she would look into herself and at the behaviors which drove me away and seek therapy -but I do not see this happening. 

Yes, I loved her deeply, and still have concern for her.  I fear she will start drinking again and if she does she will end up, one day, being raped.  At best she will fall into another destructive relationship with a man who doesn't care for her inner beauty, thinks her pain is weakness -another man who will beat her when she is angry or sad.  Sex for her will once again become a brutal, unfulfilling and painful experience which is, as she once told me, 'necessary in a relationship' not an expression of joy and togetherness.

Excerpt
Sometimes the kindest thing we can do is to not help. 

Thank you for these kind words of hope -but I left to save myself not in any way altruistic -my leaving was utterly selfish.  I had to give up on her, throw her back into her crushing darkness. I helped prove her BPD worst fear -the fear that in the end everyone will abandon her. 

I promised to never abandon her, and I could not fulfill this promise without risking my own destruction.  Even with the mitigating circumstance -it is still a promise broken.  As a codependent people pleaser this is particularly hard to process.


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« Reply #29 on: May 01, 2018, 12:33:30 PM »

Greetings Wicker Man

I remember now, (your post somehow triggered this) a memory of very early on when I met Medusa, I think it was the 3rd or 4th time, we were not in a r/s at that point just a casual sex partner. But I remember each time I started to feel strange, and unhappy, it wasnt the sort of unhappiness of missing someone but something more. I realise looking back now, it was my intuition had picked up something wasnt right, but couldnt fully determine what it was, in order words, I didnt trust her in some way but didnt know why.

So on the 4th or 5th time when we met up and it was time for her to go I remember saying that "im not going to be seeing you again for a long time", and her response was one of shock and asking me why not. The way she did this made me feel too guilty to stop seeing her and I hadnt yet experienced anything significantly wrong with her behaviour, despite an inner sense feeling uncomfortable about something not being right - not knowing what that something was and shrugging it off.

What im saying is that I can relate to the fact that you acted really on intuition and some warning signals - before you had crossed the rubicon. I just see that as a very smart and strong minded person, and that comes across of how, despite the raw emotions after the event, you have pieced things together your own way. I wish I would have followed my intuition, if I could go back and "untrade" the euphoria that became inextricably linked to the mental torment, I would, it wasnt worth it, at least that is how I review it back now. which is quite a change in mindset from what I felt was induced at that the time, a blend of my own fantasy and her encouragement of it that id found a soul mate and cant even begin to imagine what it would be like to have her ever out my life. It actually worked out pretty great! but you dont see it that way in the midst of it all.

Also about your comment about her not having a diagnosis, I actually found far more progress when I asked myself a new question that I havent yet come across even with all my times on these boards. That question is;

"all other things kept equal, how do you know the behaviour is a direct result of the illness and not just a manifestation of someone lacking character and values".

Just because Medusa had met the criteria for BPD (which involves 5 or so traits in a list and diagnosis is not a one size fits all) doesnt mean to say that the painting black (not an official psychiatric term btw) or the cheating or the stalking, is necessarily due to her BPD, she could have done all of these things regardless of her official diagnosis and they may in fact, not have anything to do with her PD, more likely than the norm, yes, but not neccessarily so. Its why what im saying is, it doesnt really matter and it is counter productive to search for these unanswerable questions, the fact is you were treated poorly, and didnt want to accept it anymore.

I (stupidly) felt guilty and a bit scared of leaving my ex, "how will this poor vulnerable soul cope without me", she played on this very much. What I really should have felt is not to care, after all, she should learn her lesson to go and beg from the person she cheated on me with, to pay her electricity, yet she came to me. I think in your situation, you eventually saw the red flags to the extent that you didnt want to stake the farm on it all, regardless of the high intensity of emotion... .smart! and im lucky that my ex hurt me early on, because every day since then, although I compartmentalised it, (didnt want the "happy" feelings to be ruined so went into a form of denial)

I never went so far as marriage and children with her, which was what she was ultimately wanted. BTW, have you read the DSMV-5, I found the section on BPD quite an interesting read today.





Here is the embarrassing part -in my time on this board, I think somewhere down deep, I have been reading hoping to find -No you got it wrong, you missed something, it really could have worked.  You had found true love.

Instead I read over and over she (likely, meaning I am not a professional and should take great care in psychological diagnosis) suffers from BPD and our relationship would have slid from rocky into mayhem.  Very likely the only reason I escaped (relatively) unscathed was the balance of power was still swung in my direction.  I still retained the power of veto, retained my financial wherewithal, and still have my career in the United States.  I imagine if the balance of power had swung over to her I would have gotten both barrels loaded for bear.


when I read your initial post, I did think to myself "oh, that was me 8 months ago, just without the way-with words", but I could relate to how you talked about her was how I felt about my Medusa. I know how it feels in the aftermath to have so many  self doubts about whether have really done the right thing / over reacted? / abandoned this vulnerable soul mate who reached out for help. etc etc

In the aftermath of it all, I feel that for myself i did find love, but it was unrequited, which in many ways is the best form of love as it cant ever be broken. It is one sided and lasts forever.

but one of the biggest confusing things to get my head around is that I loved someone whose one of their BPD traits is a lack of sense of identity and hers was constantly shifting, the reason being she had to play-act a different person than she felt in order to survive childhood, which is the primordial root of this PD comes from. So I ended up loving someone "but who?", that person themselves didnt know on a day to day basis who they were, and could change so abrubtly to the point it becomes "love/hate/love/hate". For me love has to have the core founding stone of trust and respect, I couldnt trust my ex and she, due to her condition, couldnt trust anyone. Once I got around to accepting that it wasnt the fulfillment, soul intertwined form of love that id yearned for, but a manifestation of my own wants blended with false feelings, its been easy to detach, but took a long time to accept first.

from the way I read your posts I think it sounds like searching to find part of an answer that I also wanted to know - was I the victim of some charlatan that wanted to just use me, exploit me, or was I dealing with someone who suffered because of a mental illness that exhibited itself in a way that could appear i was being manipulated to that extent. My own end of the reflection is that they (BPD generally) havent established enough empathy, their needs are entirely self focused and self driven to the point of it appearing that they dont care about others and only want to take what they can get, its not that simple, your ex probably feels a great deal of shame afterwards, but at the moment they just dont have that empathy to realise the effect their actions are having. Then there is our part to play in the dynamics, I think to myself that if only I was a more thick skinned, less emotional person in the first place, I wouldnt have been hurt to the extent I was.

which leads to the conclusion of the r/s and starting to get some value out of it, at least for me, has been the start of a selfish journey in trying to figure out how I got into this situation in the first place and what ive learned about myself. Selfish because I dont centre my thoughts anymore on medusa, she is gone and will never be again, so I find little use in trying to psychiatrise all her behaviour, it wouldnt give more than to understand her issues, which is of no practical help to me. Lifes got a lot better when I focused on myself, and started to make efforts to avoid some of the mistakes I made that got me into this toxic R/S in the first place. and yes, im at the stage of my own recovery where im not afraid to call it toxic, or think that at least I got some happiness out of it, like I said if i could go back and have acted on my initial intuitions I would, and should. im just glad I did eventually, im hoping that with the experience, I can offer someone else the same me I was, but a bit more refined and stronger version.

In short, I dont feel walking in the greyness anymore, because I came to accept that she is history and ive filled it with hope and optimism. Although these 2 factors were markedly absent in my way of thinking at the time, I had zero hope and dreaded each new day, at the same time, missing out on the chaos that I had became accustomed to, it also became a form of subconscious challenge to keep trying and "win" this person's love, convince them that they were loved and to defy the condition. but that was trying to attain the unattainable and the more I lost the more the feeling of losing gets entrenched. Long term going through this really eroded my self esteem, her antics accelerated the more control she got. Just imagine what might have happened if you had actually gone through and the ball was firmly in her court? medusas life might be very challenging, ill give it that, but survive she will, using the techniques she has always used. but having mines ruined as a byproduct of her journey was not something I was willing to cooperate with anymore. that in itself takes courage to do what is right for your own life first and foremost. for how can you help another if you cant yourself first.


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« Reply #30 on: May 01, 2018, 01:09:21 PM »

Excerpt
... .it also became a form of subconscious challenge to keep trying and "win" this person's love, convince them that they were loved and to defy the condition. but that was trying to attain the unattainable and the more I lost the more the feeling of losing gets entrenched.

You are precisely right -the feeling of 'I can beat this'. 

Excerpt
Long term going through this really eroded my self esteem, her antics accelerated the more control she got.

Once again... .precisely right -during our last time together she had began talking about the notion of  "(name)'s Rules" in other words there was only one rule -hers.  I had to demand over a three day period she send a commission payment to my agent -a contractual necessity.  It was something I could not do myself for international banking reasons.  When I think back with a (relatively) sober mind she rarely ever did anything I asked -whether trivial or major.  Something as silly as me reminding her to have her nails done before she began a job was met with stubborn rejection.  --I am a selfish ass... .

She was kind, but only on her terms.  Even when we were apart she would order dinner and have it delivered to me -and then watch me eat it via video.  --I know the nice parts of our relationship are not relevant to this discussion (but that was nice)... .

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Just imagine what might have happened if you had actually gone through and the ball was firmly in her court?

Blood and pain -of course. 

Excerpt
medusas life might be very challenging, ill give it that, but survive she will, using the techniques she has always used. but having mines ruined as a byproduct of her journey was not something I was willing to cooperate with anymore.

Yes -of course you are right again.

Excerpt
that in itself takes courage to do what is right for your own life first and foremost. for how can you help another if you cant yourself first.

That is the 'I' in 'I love you'.

Cromwell, you have given me your time and insight over these last few weeks and I am in your debt.  My fantasy had been such a beautiful dream, unfortunately it was an artificial construct -just as artificial as the person she had morphed into while we were together.  --as I have said before I have no malice for her transformation, it is subconscious and innate. Fallout from her having to survive a diabolical childhood.  No child should suffer on a level which necessitates adopting such survival skills. --sure there is a genetic component, but if my mom considered leaving me out in the snow as a 3 year old to die who might I be today?

I miss her -partially because with her I lost the Chinese film market, I lost the culture, a lot of friends  and I lost the reason to continue my Mandarin studies.  I do not want to go back now, I think it would be too painful.  But the working conditions there are bone crushing -so working here in the US will be healthier for a multitude of reasons.

And you are right again about her survival skills -I saw a post of her from her dance instructor.  She has recycled her instructor and is now back in training.  She will be fine.

I need to let my fantasy go.  I have to mention in closing her name means ':)ream Come True' --ugh.


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« Reply #31 on: May 01, 2018, 06:08:36 PM »

In a way, having learned about BPD and believing she suffers from the disorder, it has made my recovering from the relationship more difficult.  I would really like to be angry with her -but I feel like it would be being angry at a cat for being a cat.

Yes --She broke my heart and caused me to have a brief emotional breakdown.  It was in this painful rift I had the clarity to end our relationship.

In the beginning of our relationship her innate ability to read me, to become seemingly perfect allowed me to construct this beautiful dream of fairytale love -but I don't feel I can be angry with her for assuming this guise -for in the moment it was real for her too.  I wish I had the luxury of feeling actively tricked, but I don't. 

The end result is tragic, but her actions were done without malice.  She raged at me out of a deep rooted fear.  She cheated because she could not love herself and was unable to find enough strength from our relationship --afterward she felt crushing guilt and fear.  I can only imagine what it would be like to be in a blossoming relationship and then feel uncontrollably compelled to take actions which are poisonous, dangerous, and hurtful.

It is no longer mine to contend with, but I feel for her loss as well as mine.  I am certain she knows who and what she pushed out of her life -and will without a doubt be reminded by her family.  She will feel the full brunt of their anger in no uncertain terms, there will be no convincing them our demise was of my orchestration.

How convenient it would be for me to be able to replace pity for her with contempt -but I how can I justify being angry at someone because I lost a fantasy of my own concoction?  How can I be angry with someone who has no control over their self image and emotional state?

I feel I have lost my innocence.  I felt love on such a level where it borders on psychosis.  I was loved by someone who was loving me as her very existence  depended on it, for at that moment it did. --love as mania.  It is little wonder, after having such a fantasy exposed to the light of day, life feels just a bit grey. 

What makes the experience interesting (once again interesting has become a synonym for tragic) is I really don't feel I have learned anything from this loss of innocence.  I delved into the realm of fantasy and upon returning to the real world I feel none the wiser, just battle weary.


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« Reply #32 on: May 02, 2018, 12:18:55 AM »

Dont worry about the grey too much, you get used to it  Smiling (click to insert in post) its there for a good natural reason too, an adjustment not to be feared, but as a defence to counter act those heights of emotion and blunt them down to a natural baseline. Is it really reasonable to expect to have those heights of euphoria as an expected, day to day, experience? Id suggest no, despite how amazing it may have felt, because logically if it became the norm it would no longer be what it is, it would become a baseline to expect more from. it wasnt natural or healthy, it was induced state that does have its parallels in other forms of addiction. not so difficult to understand why the resulting crash comes from, when its removed.

You said before you never took schedule 1 drugs before, ive tried everything and the drugs were less difficult to deal with, simply because the euphoria is there, the long term emotional investment/enmeshment is not. I met my ex when I was just coming off a severe drug habit, I can safely say that she was the perfect replacement and I got off all the other addictions by having her supply the emotional rollercoaster highs and lows. The thing that made it more dangerous than schedule 1 is because you dont have control over getting the next hit. Cutting off and going NC was the same as going off a schedule 1 "cold turkey", it works but is excruciatingly painful, not so much physiologically as this chemistry adjusts itself back to normal much faster than the psychological addiction. The majority of it is rooted in our own sense of finding fulfillment in idealising. The worst thing my ex did was not to take away the love I believe she had for me, but take away my own illusion of it. She built it all up, but then crashed it down, almost in a way of saying "i dont get to feel that way, neither will you". She knew she couldnt control me with the sex alone, I could and did go elsewhere for it, but she hooked me in by the love bombing and I was vulnerable to gullible for it. its her modus operandi, she has used in all the relationships before, it works.

even a cat knows when it catches a mouse to play with as long as it can, lets it run away, chases it again before finally deciding to let it go or kill it. but (and ive tried to) relate the behavior in some aesop fable sort of way, it doesnt help. Medusa was human and not a cat, her behaviour might be deep rooted, but she still had the power beyond that of any animal to decide what she would say or do.

Im not battle weary anymore because the battle was over 8 months ago, tactical retreat . Battle scars you pick up in life, they are reminders of what we have been through, but they do heal and are just helpful reminders of what have encountered, but ultimately, surpassed. She said she would destroy you, she didnt. Just like my ex told me we would be together forever, we could still be today, but she was wrong. Just how you feel that much of what you experienced was from within your own mind, so is using this same power of belief to get better. If you tell yourself you will never heal from it, you are in my opinion, programming yourself (telling your brain) to work towards this. But these self affirmations only have power if you truly believe in them, I felt the same way after the R/S I think many do, but its just part of momentary sadness and dealing with the raw state of emotions. I thought I would never heal from this, and this kept me stagnated as a victim, in many ways it is sharing the same pathology of our ex's mindsets, of being a perpetual victim, of believing that nothing will ever get better. a feeling of hopelessness. It can become a self fulfilling prophecy.

I dont know if this helps, but one of the biggest things have to embrace the fact that the feelings I had for my ex were real for me - at that time - and i feel fortunate to have experienced them. Its not that I havent been able to before, but the timing of it came where I needed a bit of self delusionment as a form of escapism. The thing that helped is to recognise it for what it was, rather than thinking I have "lost" on love. Feelings are not real and wanting is not the same as needing. I felt love and wanted love, in the end it wasnt what I believed and probably more importantly, I didnt "need" her as much as I became accustomed to believe I did. but this rationalisation did take time, and was impossible during the r/s to comprehend, just too much going on to process. The healing and recovery is very much for me an evaluation stage, the best thing that has helped has to look at other people's experiences from a non-emotionally involved perspective but to notice the similarities from my own, which then causes a revisit to those high intense emotions. Its not easy at all especially when we are dealing with memories that can teleport ourselves back to the time, rather than the fact that time has moved on, with it carrying life in a new direction and its really more a case of looking at history rather than reliving it, like what my ex did that kept her in that state, always replaying the negative things that happened in her life but in doing so, reliving them in the present and carrying them into her future conduct. Its a hard mental-cycle to break because there is some allure in maintaining a victim status. I got some sympathy from a lot of people for having went through the hardship of a BPD relationship. that was welcome at the time, but there comes a point to break free and the wounds to the psyche have healed. I wouldnt want to forget the bad times, for they are useful experience for the future, just like the battle analogy, sometimes you 'lose' a battle but if you survive it, you can still carry on the war with much valuable experience. From what I hear, after being with BPD and getting over it, theres not much in the future that will pull the wool over your eyes, or smoke and mirrors to blind with. There is a mess of tangled complexity to get the head around at first, but please dont let it grind you down or feel depressed or bitter of fatalistic in thinking that its going to stop you enjoying the future.

the next r/s will be better, because this process has made me better. I really feel for myself that has been the crux of all this, shifting towards the "self" and development rather than what I see the old me, that gravitated to giving my strength to others. ive recognised the disadvantage more than ever of being a people pleaser as not being the route to fulfillment. if anything, this BPD experience program, tutored by Medusa I see it as being the biggest alarm wake up call i needed. no one likes alarm clocks but hers was loud enough to wake me up from the self induced deam like trance. That doesnt mean cant have those feelings again or become disheartened, just that I found she wasnt the right person, yes i see her as a dream-stealer, but dreams arent real. they are actually a form of psychosis themselves, a bit of a clue of spending too much time with someone who is in psychosis a great deal of time due to their condition. Its easy to underestimate just how much has been through in these types of r/s, but I really believe that you will recover and overcome in your own time, the drug-analogy is a very good one but im having a harder time giving up cigarettes than I have to get over her, I think that shows myself just the real extent of how far the 'love' really went.

you will get there wicker man. one day at a time Doing the right thing (click to insert in post)
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« Reply #33 on: May 03, 2018, 11:04:59 AM »

Excerpt
Dont worry about the grey too much, you get used to it  Smiling (click to insert in post) its there for a good natural reason too, an adjustment not to be feared, but as a defence to counter act those heights of emotion and blunt them down to a natural baseline. Is it really reasonable to expect to have those heights of euphoria as an expected, day to day, experience? Id suggest no, despite how amazing it may have felt, because logically if it became the norm it would no longer be what it is, it would become a baseline to expect more from. it wasnt natural or healthy, it was induced state that does have its parallels in other forms of addiction. not so difficult to understand why the resulting crash comes from, when its removed.

Interestingly, what feels grey is no longer conversing with her, having her half real, half fantasy point of view in my world. The majority of the passion I miss was our hours long talks we would have -she often spoke of her dreams, which bordered on reality for her. What we would call dreams were visions for her.  The necessity of removing her companionship has created a hole --I suppose having someone who is always looking forward to speaking with you is enmeshment -but it felt good...   You and I have written about 'grayness' -she had seeped into every corner of my world -home, play and work. Her absence has left a vacuum, which I new have to fill with healthy things.  Reading, exercise, and work and I need to get back to some sort of hobby.

Excerpt
She knew she couldnt control me with the sex alone, I could and did go elsewhere for it, but she hooked me in by the love bombing and I was vulnerable to gullible for it. its her modus operandi, she has used in all the relationships before, it works.

Mine never tried to use sex to control me.  From the very beginning of our relationship becoming intimate I told her 'Sex is lovely and when you feel intimate I will be there for you and when you don't just say so -I am fine either way. Never feel you have to, and never ever feel you can control me with it.  Sex is something to be enjoyed by people who care for each other -not a tool'  Ours was an affair and my wife had used sex as a tool of torment, so I was immune.  I told my ex the same thing about the dating 'game'.  I said I like you, so send me notes when you feel like it, and I will do the same -no game of waiting and counting days.  --She said you are a very strange animal.  There was a large difference in our age, and I warned her several times -whereas I may seem youthful these eyes have been watching the world for a long time.  --sadly, these eyes had never seen splitting, never seen dysphoria, never seen destructive behavior patterns on a grand and global scale.

Excerpt
Medusa was human and not a cat, her behaviour might be deep rooted, but she still had the power beyond that of any animal to decide what she would say or do.

I still am not sure mine did. Your experience was much harder in some ways than mine.  I truly believe mine had no control whatsoever over her rage.  She introduced me to her family and we spent a lot of time together.  I had been the first man she brought home, if she were playing premeditated games she would never have brought her family into the mix.  Culturally this added a huge weight to the concept of 'us'.  She will have hell to pay with them and the neighbors in their compound -they threw a block party for us upon my introduction.  As I had mentioned, her grandparents raised her, and were the most important people in her world -in a rage she literally, I mean literally, tore all the flooring out of their apartment.  This would have been physically difficult for me -she weighs 90 pounds... .  She had no apparent emotional governor when she raged she was consumed and lost in it.

Excerpt
Im not battle weary anymore because the battle was over 8 months ago, tactical retreat . Battle scars you pick up in life, they are reminders of what we have been through, but they do heal and are just helpful reminders of what have encountered, but ultimately, surpassed.

Yesterday I was talking to my therapist about the end game in a long term BPD relationship -what might it have been like.  He began speaking about the possibility for some to make it work in the long haul (his job is to present possibilities, not offer direct guidance) and stopped himself and said 'OK... .Really, you very likely dodged a bullet', meaning by removing myself and ending my relationship.  I told him I don't feel I dodged the bullet, but instead of the bullet striking home lethally in core mass I turned away and took the shot in the shoulder.  A wounding rather than a deadly blow, all in all I will one day begin to consider myself lucky.

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If you tell yourself you will never heal from it, you are in my opinion, programming yourself (telling your brain) to work towards this.

You are, seemingly as always, correct here.  I am healing, and will continue to do so.  It seems I have fallen into the indulgence of hyperbole (hate that) -life will go on.  I am keeping a weather eye on myself and even on my use of this message board.  Making sure catharsis does not creep into compulsion or a way to keep my connection to her ghost.

Excerpt
I dont know if this helps, but one of the biggest things have to embrace the fact that the feelings I had for my ex were real for me - at that time - and i feel fortunate to have experienced them. Its not that I havent been able to before, but the timing of it came where I needed a bit of self delusionment as a form of escapism.

I was open to and blinded by the idealization phase during the beginning of my affair, I now believe, because my marriage with an OC(PD) woman had withered and all but died. The weight of my marriage gone cold was not something I had felt on a conscious level, but instead it had become a monster which emerged claws out and roaring from my subconscious .  The affair was, as you so aptly named it, an escape.  I had traded OC(PD) for B(PD) -note the commonality which become apparent through the use of parenthesis.  My therapist used this nomenclature and it really hit home.  I traded one personality disorder for another. 

Now... .in my defense, as limping and lame a defense it may be, I didn't know about BPD -I knew my affair partner was hurting, but I didn't understand the full brunt of her wounds.  Perhaps, if I had not been fleeing a flawed marriage, acting out like a child and having an affair in the first place -I would have been more aware the idealization phase was too good to be true.  Perhaps if the experience were to have happened in English, rather than Chinese I would have been more sober about the flaws and cracks which, now in hindsight, I can see were forming right from the beginning our our time together.  -There are so many ways to look back at past mistakes, and the harder I look the more my memories end up skewed with bias.  Recounting my experience sometimes feels like trying to grab smoke.

Excerpt
I felt love and wanted love, in the end it wasnt what I believed and probably more importantly, I didnt "need" her as much as I became accustomed to believe I did. but this rationalisation did take time, and was impossible during the r/s to comprehend, just too much going on to process.

Our experience here sounds similar -I kept sweeping her bad behavior under the rug and focusing on my fantastical dream.  Perhaps it was just mirroring, but she told me she wanted to have my baby -I was poleaxed, mesmerized and swallowed this offered future dream hook, line and sinker.  However, when we met she had had assumed the guise of a rich girl -her previous significant other had been wealthy.  As she and I spent time together she shed this skin and became family oriented.  I was too enthralled to notice the transformation, I thought this notion of beginning a family must be the bedrock of true love. 'Love at first sight' ':)estiny' 'True love' Knight in Shining Armor' 'Always and Forever'  --What madness love brings!

Excerpt
I wouldnt want to forget the bad times, for they are useful experience for the future, just like the battle analogy, sometimes you 'lose' a battle but if you survive it, you can still carry on the war with much valuable experience.

I went further.  In my journalling I have made a fairly comprehensive list of the bad times to keep myself vigilant.  It seems far too easy to fall back into the believing 'Omnia Vincit Amor' --when has latin ever done anyone any good? Smiling (click to insert in post)

Love can and does heal -iff (if and only if) a couple can commit to staying together and putting in the difficult work of being in a relationship -I do not believe she was up to the task.  Changing Ayn Rands theorem A = A slightly to Cat = Cat.

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... .but please dont let it grind you down or feel depressed or bitter of fatalistic in thinking that its going to stop you enjoying the future.

There is a mixture of embarrassment and shame in having deluded myself so thoughally -in not understanding what my marriage had devolved into and in acting out so badly.  In wanting so desperately to believe in fairytale love, it enabled me to fall into the disgrace of an affair as well as a dangerous dance with BPD.  Through therapy and a lot of hard work life will go on and in a positive direction. 

As devastating as this experience has been for all involved it has necessitated a hard restart for my marriage.  We literally can never go back to what we had, the betrayal of an affair is too damaging -but instead my wife and I are going to work toward evolving our marriage into something vital.  --Whereas my experience with BPD will make things hard.  OCPD manifests itself in coldness and perfectionism.  This silly codependent (me) had lived at one end of the personality disorder continuum and then visited the other side --my old companion rage was ever present.

Excerpt
That doesnt mean cant have those feelings again or become disheartened, just that I found she wasnt the right person, yes i see her as a dream-stealer, but dreams arent real. they are actually a form of psychosis themselves, a bit of a clue of spending too much time with someone who is in psychosis a great deal of time due to their condition.

Personality disorders are life long and hard on the people who suffer with them as well as their mates.  As the journey of my life continues I find myself now trying to reconcile my broken marriage, quietly trying to understand the heartbreak I feel after leaving my affair and all the while trying to understand where my needs actually lie.  I have a lot of plates spinning these days  --a myriad of therapists will be gainfully employed for months to come -so I guess there is an economic upside for the local mental healthcare workers... .

Night before last I was speaking with a long time friend who is currently divorcing.  She has observed my marriage for decades and said 'I was not surprised you had an affair -I was surprised it took you this long'.  What made the discussion diabolically difficult was her trying to convince me to go back to 'true love' -meaning my undiagnosed BPD lover.  --she diminished all of my 'concerns' about the disorder as excuses which could be overcome with enough love.  She said 'What is the worst thing that could happen... .'    It is hard enough trying to stick to my guns and keep the notion of annihliation firmly in mind, when my heart still yearns for the short term high. --if she only knew.

Excerpt
I got some sympathy from a lot of people for having went through the hardship of a BPD relationship. that was welcome at the time, but there comes a point to break free and the wounds to the psyche have healed. I wouldnt want to forget the bad times, for they are useful experience for the future, just like the battle analogy, sometimes you 'lose' a battle but if you survive it, you can still carry on the war with much valuable experience.

My tryst was relatively short being only a year and within this year I worked 300 days -175 of them without a break.  So as far as having had a tussle with a BPD lover I got away relatively unscathed.  BPD Family has been as an important learning and therapeutic tool perhaps as valuable as my therapy -reading and vicariously learning from the experiences of others has helped me put my experiences in some semblance of order.  I am re-reading the Art of War -I lost the battle, but intend to win the war.  Put my life back together and get on the right track.  It will take some time to figure out what I have learned and how to incorporate it. 

Excerpt
From what I hear, after being with BPD and getting over it, theres not much in the future that will pull the wool over your eyes, or smoke and mirrors to blind with.
... .
Excerpt
... .(don't) feel depressed or bitter of fatalistic in thinking that its going to stop you enjoying the future.

Oh!  I know the answer to this one!.  The only person who has ever been able to create blindness in my life is... .me.  The answer is easy, how to stop -therein lies the real question.  My fear lies in wondering -am I doing it again.  I need to fully commit to the reconciliation process, all the while trying to figure out if it is actually right for me -whether it is right for my wife.  This feels like emotional gymnastics -grieve loss, explore through introspection my flaws, and try to heal a relationship which has been destructive for 25 years.

Excerpt
I see the old me, that gravitated to giving my strength to others. ive recognised the disadvantage more than ever of being a people pleaser as not being the route to fulfillment. if anything, this BPD experience program, tutored by Medusa I see it as being the biggest alarm wake up call i needed.
 no one likes alarm clocks but hers was loud enough to wake me up from the self induced deam like trance.

Perfectly observed and well said.  I am awake and the lights are on now.  This tentpole event in midlife will force growth -but the impetus of this growth is pain -I suppose without hardship there is no chance for enlightenment.

Excerpt
The drug-analogy is a very good one but im having a harder time giving up cigarettes than I have to get over her, I think that shows myself just the real extent of how far the 'love' really went.

She and I smoked together.  I gave up both at the same time... .To quote the movie Airplane "I picked the wrong week to give up sniffing glue" --ok I never sniffed glue, but you get the idea.  I quite smoking quite easily, although painfully -I went no contact, I stopped buying them.  I quite smoking the same way I quit my affair --No Contact.


Wicker Man
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« Reply #34 on: May 03, 2018, 05:19:24 PM »

Hi Wicker Man

I liked your description about having a bullet aimed at the centre mass, but you got shot in a non vital spot. Without discrediting your therapist or picking at their words, its stuff like that what you say that makes crystal clear sense to me and carries a lot of weight, emotionally, it felt the equivalent of having been fired at with a clip of parabellum. In reality, I think I would have suffered far less, You say that you havent been through as much volatility as me, I can only say that this is because you made the decision to disengage before more power was shifted away from you. No one can predict what might have happened if you didnt, but what I can say is that in my r/s, there were upsets here and there but things escalated the more control my partner systematically over time got over me. Its a bit like the saying "power corrupts, and absolute power corrupts absolutely", the more I handed over my own control whatever form it was, it was used against me to my detriment, when what my objective was (again, this rather foolish romantic notion) of making myself intentionally vulnerable in order to feel closer.

I thought in doing so it would reduce her paranoia, reduce her anxieties and engender trust, which if you read about BPD, there are huge trust issues as part of the disorder. Perhaps this might have been where the "coward" came from, her feeling that you didnt trust enough, based on her own belief system. I think looking back that a big part of all the stalking my ex did on me was a result of these deep rooted inability to trust issues, it is why she couldnt commit to getting close, she was searching for something that she could label as a "betrayal" and her cheating on me was a pre-emptive strike. She did this in every prior r/s (which in a way, made it easier for me, I didnt take it personally, I was just another entity involved in a repeating pattern of her deep rooted behaviour.

Its good that you are evaluating what you have went through with more insight, it does help put it into perspective, such as when you say you didnt understand her condition or underestimated it. Very valid and important points I believe. as Sun Tzu said "know they enemy and know thyself" win every battle. I learned that I didnt know either. Is it fair to regard my ex as an enemy? Absolutely. When she was in the mode of painting me black, she was, regardless of waiting for this to cycle back to the person I loved.

Interestingly, what feels grey is no longer conversing with her, having her half real, half fantasy point of view in my world. The majority of the passion I miss was our hours long talks we would have -she often spoke of her dreams, which bordered on reality for her. What we would call dreams were visions for her.  The necessity of removing her companionship has created a hole --I suppose having someone who is always looking forward to speaking with you is enmeshment -but it felt good...   You and I have written about 'grayness' -she had seeped into every corner of my world -home, play and work. Her absence has left a vacuum, which I new have to fill with healthy things.  Reading, exercise, and work and I need to get back to some sort of hobby.


I can relate to this entirely, it is what made it difficult to detach, but it was very much enmeshment, in my case it got systematically more, where my ex became the centre focal point of everything. It does sound like a codependency, but on the other hand, it is natural to miss someone who you enjoy their company to that huge extent. I say that as how i felt, post break up and for some months after, yet this did change, not only because I got on with my life in other directions but because on reflection, a large proportion of the good company came from myself and not her! She was just astute at mirroring it and stuck with me because I was so good at providing her the company she desperately needed. (part of BPD is not being able to be alone) it is related as far as I understand to the notion of ceasing to exist without having another in proximity. i boiled all of that down to reduce it to the notion that, it wasnt a love for me that she was with me, wanting to be with me, but because I could fill this emptiness. If someone else would have been better at this than I was, she would have went elsewhere, indeed, she tried to.

its interesting when you say that your ex stated "you are a strange one", for how you never placed any pressure or demands on her. I got very much the same in that I was "one of a kind" and that she never met anyone who didnt expect anything from her. Of course, hearing this engenders a feeling of being special and with it, a hope that regardless of the condition (which I entirely was naive of and didnt understand, under estimated) that with just enough effort to do all I can to prove to her how much she was cared for, that as you say "love would conquer all". If you allow me to continue on with that, "errare humane est" goes alongside that. Dont blame yourself for not knowing about her condition, you can change a lot, but a personality that has been entrenched since childhood is deep rooted and ingrained. Is it possible? Yes, but the statistics are that you would do better pouring everything into a las vegas slot machine.

Be very wary about third parties giving you advice when they dont have direct experience with what you have gone through. Platitudes like "what have you got to lose", well the truth is, everything! Just imagine that instead of being on this board and getting help to recover from the emotions that have been hard to work through yourself that you would have sallied forth instead, got married etc. it must have taken huge courage to go against the passion you felt, and admit defeat before recklessly risking everything you have worked hard for, one of the few regrets I have is that I allowed the r/s to continue against my inner-guide screaming not to.
i
I think I dont get those urge feelings anymore or longing for her company, for the simple reason is that I went No Contact for so long now that this "reward" system left my psyche. The R/S goes on so long because - sometimes I won - and when I did it was amazing. Regardless of the big picture of so much dysfunction. This is like a casino, keeps you playing, you know the return on (emotional) investment will come but you dont know when exactly. its why I put up with all the "lows" - but it kept me hooked, and again, it was part of her strategy.

ultimately, I didnt have the courage to leave until it literally nearly jeapoardised my own survival. It would be the same as deciding to stop smoking just after being diagnosed with lung cancer, despite having all the signs of it developing for years prior. Thanks again for such valuable insight into what youve been through and going through it helps a lot, my last cigarette today, you are right the answer is in logic, dont buy them in the first place.

so stage 1 in my recovery was all that obsessive search for answers with regards to BPD and my ex, the "know thy enemy" component. but stage 2 has been the most valuable, figuring out my own issues that led me into that dynamic. "know thyself"

ive started to find myself again, acknowledge the good parts and work on the bits that got highlighted during the relationship. in short, we can only but do our best with whatever tools we have, but for me, going back had to first become a resolute non option. doing so salvaged that little shred of self esteem I had left, but was enough to show her that despite being willing to give her more love than she could have ever handled, that ultimately, I had to stop when it came at the expense of hurting myself. my ex believed in "tough love" and love = feelings of pain and betrayal. Its a difference of mindset and an incompatability. committed r/s can function where there is small tweaks here and there to accomodate the other person, but the gulf between BPD and non is a huge one to take on as a challenge. I value a quieter and peaceful life without her, always remember that you were not just a passive recepient of the excitement times, or be modest about how much the happiness was due to your own ability to express your personality.

The one thing I cant offer any advice on is how to reach your goals with regards to your wife, its something that wasnt part of my dynamic and I found it diffcult enough just to deal with the outfall of leaving medusa. do you feel that you have become closer as a result of what has happened? I certainly appreciate my family members and friends far more after this experience, they have been invaluable to helping me get better, as are all the members on here who have helped. Sometimes all it has taken is one sentence of a different perspective to give food for thought, which after time to digest, has helped me get to a place where far from "recovering" I feel happy for the majority of the time. thanks again wicker man.
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« Reply #35 on: May 03, 2018, 07:21:00 PM »

Excerpt
I liked your description about having a bullet aimed at the centre mass, but you got shot in a non vital spot. Without discrediting your therapist or picking at their words, its stuff like that what you say that makes crystal clear sense to me and carries a lot of weight, emotionally, it felt the equivalent of having been fired at with a clip of parabellum. In reality, I think I would have suffered far less, You say that you havent been through as much volatility as me, I can only say that this is because you made the decision to disengage before more power was shifted away from you.

Ironically, and off topic, I had promised I would teach her to shoot if we had visited the US together... .  As if she couldn't do enough harm to me with her words and actions?  The image of her with a handgun is terrifying to the point of being humorous.  I think my therapist's metaphor taken a step further is apt -I was in a hostile environment and under fire .  In 20/20 hindsight I could see her making constant bids for power.  I am an easy going secure person, so I let most of it pass -but the trend was alarming and yes... .It seems like she was gathering ammunition for a massive and protracted battle.  Sun Tzu "Again, if the campaign is protracted, the resources of the State will not be equal to the strain."  In other words no one wins a protracted battle.

Excerpt
No one can predict what might have happened

Well... .the odds started badly.  The odds of an affair becoming a healthy marriage is 20%.  Our age difference put us in the first percentile... .  Add an insidious personality disorder to the mix? Love is truly blind... .

Excerpt
"power corrupts, and absolute power corrupts absolutely", the more I handed over my own control whatever form it was, it was used against me... .

The idea of romantic love, particularly of the fairytale variety, makes this sort of sacrifice a gesture of love.  As a codependent, I was raised to love via sacrifice.  The notion of childish love 'If I care for you the way I want to be loved -then you will love me that way too' -from A Road Less Travelled (I think).  It seems ideal -but it simply is a horrible plan and an awful way to approach a relationship -- I am working on this.

Excerpt
I thought in doing so it would reduce her paranoia, reduce her anxieties and engender trust

From what I have read and, sadly, experienced first hand the more reasons you give them to trust you the more cognitive dissonance they feel.  What aught to relieve pressure and stress somehow creates an unbearable fear.


Excerpt
Sun Tzu said "know they enemy and know thyself" win every battle. I learned that I didnt know either. Is it fair to regard my ex as an enemy? Absolutely. When she was in the mode of painting me black, she was, regardless of waiting for this to cycle back to the person I loved.

To continue the analogy... .You did not have one enemy but several.  Not only that, but the battle ground was in constant flux.  Adoring, crying, cutting, raging, God forbid she had a drink -then she may simply pack up and play on someone else's battlefield.  Ok... .the metaphor fell apart there at the end, but you get the idea... .  It is impossible to know someone when they don't know themselves. 
 
Excerpt
She was just astute at mirroring it and stuck with me because I was so good at providing her the company she desperately needed. (part of BPD is not being able to be alone) it is related as far as I understand to the notion of ceasing to exist without having another in proximity. i boiled all of that down to reduce it to the notion that, it wasnt a love for me that she was with me, wanting to be with me, but because I could fill this emptiness.

I feel part of her beauty was seeing my own reflection when I looked into her eyes.  Who knows if it is true, but after complimenting her on her smile -she said 'I am glad you like it, before we met I never smiled'.  She was happy and at peace for a short time; her friends and family were relieved we were together.  It was a pleasure to make her laugh.  I am, as you very well know by now, if nothing else a smart-ass -I was constantly turning words around she taught me within moments.  She would repeatedly say 'I must stop teaching you Chinese'.  --So yes.  I do miss the time we spent talking... .The rages I don't miss so much.

Excerpt
its interesting when you say that your ex stated "you are a strange one", for how you never placed any pressure or demands on her. I got very much the same in that I was "one of a kind" and that she never met anyone who didnt expect anything from her.

Yep.  Ditto.  Knight in Shining Armor, first, best, only, my whole world, always and forever... .  The vernacular is identical -even in a different language for f#cksake... .  I sort of hate my experience was predictable to the point of banality... . 

Excerpt
If you allow me to continue on with that, "errare humane est"

You are on the right track... .Finish the thought!   "Errare humanum est, sed in errare  perseverare diabolicum."  --"To err is human, but to persist in error (out of pride) is diabolical."  This was the road I was walking.  Even when I felt the train sliding off the tracks my pride and my lust to save her from a cruel world (of her own creation) was enticing me toward conflagration!


Excerpt
Be very wary about third parties giving you advice

Yes. absolutely, but since I was sitting in the middle of her divorce ravaged home I felt I should take the beating gracefully.


Excerpt
I think I dont get those urge feelings anymore or longing for her company, for the simple reason is that I went No Contact for so long now that this "reward" system left my psyche.

Part of the magnetism which held me in a BPD relationship is the variable reward schedule --like a slot machine.  It is the most powerful of the reward schedules.  Add a feeling of responsibility, a dash of codependency, twist of pride --you have a very potent cocktail... .or perhaps it is simply an example of the  Stockholm syndrome.

Excerpt
ultimately, I didnt have the courage to leave until it literally nearly jeapoardised my own survival.

Yes... .I had the luxury of a brief emotional break -it hit me suddenly and hard.  Painful, but quick.

Excerpt
It would be the same as deciding to stop smoking just after being diagnosed with lung cancer, despite having all the signs of it developing for years prior.


Timing is everything I suppose.

Excerpt
Thanks again for such valuable insight into what youve been through and going through it helps a lot, my last cigarette today, you are right the answer is in logic, dont buy them in the first place.

Best of luck with the smoking.  It is a lovely habit -it just also happens to be really bad for us.  My mom was a model and smoked from the age of 13 on.  Well... .you are in the medical field you know -the end game is grizzly.

Excerpt
Stage 1 in my recovery was all that obsessive search for answers

Yep... .check.

Excerpt
Stage 2 has been the most valuable, figuring out my own issues that led me into that dynamic. "know thyself"

I am currently working on this endeavor.  Therapy and doing a lot of reading.  Getting out in the mountains cycling again.  Basically trying to keep the shiny side up.


Excerpt
The one thing I cant offer any advice on is how to reach your goals with regards to your wife, its something that wasnt part of my dynamic and I found it diffcult enough just to deal with the outfall of leaving medusa. do you feel that you have become closer as a result of what has happened?

Ok what I have learned here... .   Never ever start a relationship i.e. have an affair when one is married.  If you feel you 'need' an affair look hard at the marriage and figure out why.  If you feel there are truly irreconcilable differences -divorce, if not get your house in order.  Recovering from an affair is no fun.

In "The State of Affairs: Rethinking Infidelity" Esther Perel talks about marriages transcending the affair and becoming stronger.  We shall see, this is a lot to ask of the betrayed --now... .add in (yet another) personality disorder and it becomes a particularly tall order.  I will do my best.

Our dialogue has given me support, insight, plenty to think about and a few laughs.  You are welcome! --in like manner thank you again for your time, compassion and consideration.


Wicker Man
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« Reply #36 on: May 04, 2018, 06:12:43 PM »

Evening Wicker Man

Again, it is uncanny how much I read on here that gives me the impression that ive shared some form of parallel lives with others.

In the context of enjoying the ability to induce a smile and happiness in our exs. for me, ive thought about this a bit deeper and realised that it actually constituted "work" as opposed to what should just be a normal feature of the r/s I had. Intentional effort to help someone out of their state of dysphoria - and more so - to avoid the chance of a dysregulation. I had no choice but to make medusa happy, the alternative mood was something that had to be avoided at all costs. The fact that I was good at it, better than others, is of little consolation to me now when I realise that it was actually mentally straining - intentionally generated work as opposed to what i really wanted out of a r/s. Again, it is continuing this theme of servant-master relationship. I had no option but to ensure she was kept in a happy state of mood in the hope of it being reciprocated.

The good news is that there isnt a huge deal of concious work to do after a r/s like this, the very fact you have had the strength to detach from the magnetism and say no to experiencing any more of it, speaks volumes about what strength you already have. Beyond that, once the residual emotions are dealt with, the co-dependent traits I had are largely reprogrammed due to getting to a state where I had no choice but to amputate them and realised that they were dangerous when engaging with certain types of people out there. On the other hand, I wouldnt trade the person I was, for someone who would have just exploited and manipulated my ex to maximise the satiation of my own needs. I wouldnt have enjoyed the experience of happiness via kindness. My ex saw kindness or 'love' as a synomn for stupidity. Based on her own deep rooted experiences which led to the formation of her condition. There are some people who just cant handle it, understand it, or believe in it, despite a deep longing for actually wanting it. If her primary caregivers failed in this, then there is little chance of me being able to. In short, its not our fault for trying to do what seemed natural, and hoping to compensate or over compensate for something that was deprived of.

From what I have read and, sadly, experienced first hand the more reasons you give them to trust you the more cognitive dissonance they feel.  What aught to relieve pressure and stress somehow creates an unbearable fear.

This is entirely true in what I went through, I actually started to give less and conversely receive more. It is the most difficult paradox to rationalise but certainly made sense in my r/s. she felt safer when I did less, yet - only to an extent. Again, it is hard work having to figure out this precarious balance to reach whilst going through the trepidation of thinking you might err in doing too much or too little. "walking on egg shells".

Do you really feel that you were safe in the r/s to just sit back, relax and truly be yourself? Id like to think so, but the times where I did try, and would casually "speak my mind" (honesty was of prime importance to my ex), well i discovered that she was someone who generally couldnt handle the truth, despite seeking it. If I told her the truth of the depth of my strong feelings for her, it would cause her to become imbalanced, often to the extent of her thinking I was lying. Ultimately it is mission impossible, there is no way towards a win-win situation. In the mind of a PD the world is full of people who are just out to get what they want, and that broad bush is applied to us as well. Yes its true I wanted things from my ex, but she couldnt comprehend that they were not forced expectations or at the core of my intentions, ultimately I wanted to share myself with her in a zero sum way. I dont believe that it is any fault of some of her past r/s that caused her this level of distrust, by the sounds of it she had lots of people in her life that wanted her to succeed and become happy and fulfilled, but she sabotaged them the same we she did with me.

The hardest emotion I have yet to resolve is that I got so emotionally intertwined with her, it was her longest r/s and the more I have learned about her condition I stopped feeling so sorry for myself and realised that whilst my life goes on, in many ways enriched by having met her and the experience that went with it, I imagine her floundering and treading water as she has always done, whilst I have changed, I never saw anything to suggest that she had or will. So it is an emotion of sadness mixed with pity. A far cry from the sadness polarised by anger I had towards someone that I didnt understand the reasons behind her behaviour as being anything more than that of a manipulative callous and sadistic person. Just as from how I read your posts, you are already at that stage and seem to have stoically bypassed the anger stage. All I can say is great work on your part you tried your best to be good to someone who really needed it but there comes a point where there must be self respect and acknowledgement of our own needs as a priority, and this was my greatest failing, to subjugate my own needs for happiness.

3 years of my life I tried, and 9 months more of reflection and partly stagnation, its a big enough chapter to say enough is enough I did all I could, i went beyond what the vast majority would, and have come to the conclusion of seeing this as a character weakness rather than something to feel noble about or admire. Whilst my ex will have enjoyed being the recipient of all my energy provided, I believe at her core she didnt respect me for it. At least by leaving her I salvaged some of that and showed her that whilst I couldnt have made her love me, I will make sure she respects me.

like I said and I hope it might give you some hope of potentially experiencing the same, I genuinely feel that I came out of this r/s as a beneficient, a stronger more developed person. That is taking into the account the deeply traumatic and mentally "scarring" times, some of the worst ive ever had to go through. to the point of feeling guilty about it. but asides from that, I hardly think of her anymore, she was my responsibility to the extent of what I gave myself the task but its a bit like those silly people out there who win the lottery and still want to go back to their minimum wage job because they would miss their routi ne and work friends. it is banal thinking, and I just need to shrug off this residual "caretaker" role that i wanted to be her heroic saviour from what you said a cold cruel world. Heros often fail. sometimes you lose. these are just hard to accept realities, but acceptance is a must.

enjoy the cycling and look forward to getting better, your posts show such huge insight into how far you have come to understand what you have went through. there might be times you feel you arent progressing or even getting worse, its all part of the challenge in mastering the emotions and not let them be the master of us. Getting through this you will have the equivalent of the strongest kevlar vest, ive came across many otherwise succesful and intelligent people here but in emotions exist the passions and they are equally as destructive to us as they are enlivening.

so on the next gray day, do as i do each morning, take control, pump out the music so the neighbours can hear you, (remember this is about your needs not theirs), open the window wide at 4 am and at the top of your lungs scream out to the world (and to your ex especially) signal to all of them as loud as humanly possible (dont told back one bit) and shout at the top of your lungs... .

 "IM ALIVEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE!"

promise me youll do that and your day will guarantee be non-gray I assure it.
 Smiling (click to insert in post)
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« Reply #37 on: May 04, 2018, 06:24:14 PM »

Cromwell, your neighbours must love you!  I just popped by to say that I keep abreast of this thread and thought I'd share what a delight it is to read.  Wicker Man it's wonderful to see you process things as you are.  Tough realisations may come up and it's not all plain sailing, however this journey you are on is leading to the promise of a future of your own design and moments like these where we truly assess what we're doing in our lives don't come along every day.  Embrace where you've been and where you're going.  And if you live in an apartment block and decide to literally take Cromwell's last piece of advice, be prepared to buy a lot of apology gifts for the other residents... .There is something to be said for celebrating the here and now though.  This moment is a gift.  That's why they call it the present.

Love and light x
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« Reply #38 on: May 04, 2018, 06:54:56 PM »

Cromwell and Harley,

Thank you so much for your kind words and constant encouragement.  It will take me some time to process and respond to your post Cromwell -I will get to it as soon as I can.

It was about 35˚ in the mountains today -judging by how you spell 'center' I am guessing you use celsius Smiling (click to insert in post)   The heat and exertion help.  A bit of self mortification seems in order these days. --I will leave the cutting to my ex.

One difference you and I experienced was in 'earning' smiles.  For us the time we spent actually in each other's presence was nearly always pleasant.  In fact my resting heart rate would generally fall by 10 points the moment we were together -I would sleep 9 hours a night, strangely I felt at ease and at home.

The wheels would fly off when I was away for more than 24 hours -and boy howdy  they would fly off hard and fast!

Yes... .yes... .don't worry I know this would have changed.  I am not flagging in my resolve -just giving a little foreshadowing for my response.  It comes down to social economics or game theory... .One one hand you have smiles on the other annihilation... .  basically bad math(s)  --the 's' was for you Smiling (click to insert in post)

On my ride I was remembering Rilke's poem:

His gaze against the sweeping of the bars
has grown so weary, it can hold no more.
To him, there seem to be a thousand bars
and back behind those thousand bars no world

As he paces in cramped circles, over and over,
the movement of his powerful soft strides
is like a ritual dance around a center
in which a mighty will stands paralyzed.

Only at times, the curtain of the pupils
lifts, quietly--. An image enters in,
rushes down through the tensed, arrested muscles,
plunges into the heart and is gone.

For her there is no escape from her cage, I still had a way out.

Ugh -I promise I won't quote poetry or song lyrics anymore... .  I mentioned it was really hot in the mountains right?(!)


Wicker Man

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« Reply #39 on: May 06, 2018, 01:13:07 PM »

Excerpt
In the context of enjoying the ability to induce a smile and happiness in our exs. for me, ive thought about this a bit deeper and realised that it actually constituted "work" as opposed to what should just be a normal feature of the r/s I had.

This is perhaps what makes my detachment difficult.  When we were actually together she had a quick temper -what I mean by this is she would get angry now and again, but it was mild and infrequent (this is going to sound horrible, but I can't think of another way to say it... .like a normal person).  It was as easy to turn these situations around.  --In fact my nickname for her was 'Small devil'.  She told me this nickname was generally reserved for misbehaving children... .  I just smiled. 

One evening temper when off and she said 'Are you stupid?' -I sensed in the way she said it this had been a normal go to jab from past relationships... .So I answered 'I must be, I love you (I smiled) so I have to stupid'  She escalated switching to English 'F#uck you!'  I said looking around the restaurant 'Here? Right now? are you stupid?' this recursive 'argument' turned a flare up into laughing She said 'I love you' I asked her if she was stupid... .  --In our day to day life -in each other's presence things were usually beyond great.  Her anger would trigger and I could have her laughing within moments.  It had no emotional cost to me, and I had just accepted she was temperamental, there was no rage just the usual occasional friction of people sharing a life.

Ok... .allow me a digression.  Her 'real' nickname means 'Soft' -it is common for people in China to always use a nickname instead of their formal names.  I was one of the only people who was allowed to call her ':)ream Come True', --her actual name.  Well  'Soft' sounds a lot like 'Of Course' -which when she was being unreasonable I would just say 'of course'.  I began periodically calling her 'Of Course' instead of using her name.  Soo... .one evening she introduced herself to a friend of mine as 'Of course' instead of 'Soft'.  I laughed so hard... .  She had never encountered a smart-ass with my level of patients.  In comedy timing is everything -and I figured I had the rest of my life, so I was very patient.  --We did have some fun.

Excerpt
Dysphoria - Dysregulation... .
Rage began almost the moment we parted -every time.  For nearly a year it was retroactive jealousy.  She was raging over my past relationships.  It was inconsolable and since one cannot change the past there was no logical argument, yet I saw it was tearing her apart.  For better of for worse I had been through this for 5 years in the beginning of my relationship with my wife -so I knew the tune. 

I spent countless hours on the phone listening to her scream at me about people she never met.  At one point she was so angry she started texting me in Chinese saying she was too angry to type in English -so here I am running her text through 3 different translation programs, because none of them do flesh rendering vitriol very well... . 

When she had dysphoria she would cut herself.  I was very supportive, understanding and tried to offer alternatives.  I sent her this quote:

To live is to suffer, to survive is to find some meaning in the suffering —Nietzsche

I told her I completely understand why you cut yourself -she said 'you can't' -I explained to her I have gone running to feel pain.  Part of my attraction to fighting was getting hit (I used to train -I don't mean picking a fight).  I told her it is the same, but the way I chose to hurt myself is 'socially acceptable'.  I said sometimes when things are very dark pain makes time start again.  I told her a story about a very young friend of mine who died suddenly -To try to understand this I ran and ran, I fell and got up and ran more.  By the time I was done I was a bloody mess --but I had reached a level of understanding.  Within 3 months she had stopped cutting herself.  I was happy for her and proud I could help her. -We will keep coming back to pride.


Excerpt
I had no option but to ensure she was kept in a happy state of mood in the hope of it being reciprocated.
As a codependent, I sought this out --I was guilty of 'childish love' --'if I care for you the way I want to be loved -then you will love me that way too'

Excerpt
... .the very fact you have had the strength to detach from the magnetism and say no to experiencing any more of it, speaks volumes about what strength you already have.

I will reiterate your quote... .

“Errare humanum est, sed perseverare diabolicum --To error is human, but to continue out of pride is diabolical.”

I do not feel strong -I still feel, in my heart, like a bit of a coward for running away -this is pride, arrogance, codependence, and the slowly fading grip our love had on my soul.  Yes, of course, I know intellectually, I very likely did the right thing by ending our relationship, but there is an ache.  The residue from being in the variable reward paradigm which is BPD love.

I only saw full blown Dysregulation once.  She had 3 days where she was having severe visual hallucinations.  This is why I believe she had been misdiagnosed as a schizophrenic.  I was supportive and it passed.  Like the cutting the voices she heard also stopped --pride.

Excerpt
The co-dependent traits I had are largely reprogrammed due to getting to a state where I had no choice but to amputate them and realised that they were dangerous when engaging with certain types of people out there.

You are incredible astute (damn you).  I am currently working on trying to break my cycle of codependent behavior.  By the age of 6 my mother had made me an 'inappropriate friend' or perhaps even put me in a 'Surrogate Spouse Role' -no sexual abuse.  Fortunately, my wiring allowed me not to suffer enormous damage to me self esteem -but I certainly feel the need to save people and 'be strong' in my self sacrifice .  These traits kept me in a very badly damaged relationship with my OC(PD) wife for 25 years.  My affair has gotten both my wife and I into therapy -I know my wife would have never addressed her personality disorder without the tectonic rupture which is my betrayal  -and I likely would not have sought help for my codependence. 

This seems to be the tricky thing about personality disorders -they seem to be self rewarding.  OC(PD) makes you a perfectionist and a great worker -codependence makes me supportive and romantic... . 

I coped with my marriage by always having a socially acceptable mistress -my work.  Well... .apparently... .25 years of repression is bad... .  Who knew right?(!) In not dealing with my condition and what felt like a loveless marriage I ended up finding myself on an unfamiliar battle field, not knowing myself and meeting an enemy I had never imagined.

'Be extremely subtle, even to the point of formlessness. Be extremely mysterious, even to the point of soundlessness. Thereby you can be the director of the opponent's fate'. --Sun Tzu

Excerpt
On the other hand, I wouldnt trade the person I was, for someone who would have just exploited and manipulated my ex to maximise the satiation of my own needs.

I have wondered, not about exploitation, but a relationship where I might have set boarders and boundaries.  In other words always left myself a way out, but I do not think I am capable of being in a relationship where one is checking the corners and always aware of the nearest exit.  I only entertain this fantasy when I am hurting and missing her the most.  --This is precisely why 'No contact' is so vitally important. 

This is why I do not consider myself 'strong' for ending our relationship  -my situation with her was to be binary, on or off.  Since the relationship would have entailed moving to her country, buying a house, and having a child there would have been no shade of grey and no chance for a graceful endgame if (when) she decided to leave me.

Excerpt
In short, its not our fault for trying to do what seemed natural, and hoping to compensate or over compensate for something that was deprived of... .  ... .the more reasons you give them to trust you the more cognitive dissonance they feel.  What aught to relieve pressure and stress somehow creates an unbearable fear.

Wanting to save the beautiful and magical part of her, give her a safe place to heal and flourish was incredible seductive --pride again.

To see the relief in her grandparents eyes when we were together, to have her step father pat me on the back and smile when I entered their home.  They were all desperate to have her in a safe relationship. Believe me I was not 'perfect'.  Some Chinese can accept mixed marriages and others cannot.

Also... .  I am 3 years older... .  3 years older than her mother.  They didn't care, they accepted me into their home and into their family -they just wanted her with someone who could take care of her. 

To be clear -our age difference was my single greatest concern.  When I admitted to myself and to her I loved her I wept openly.  --It was definitely not my attraction.  Her difficult childhood and messy life had made her old beyond her years.  She, in someways, it seemed had had more life experience than I had.

Oh! I have to digress... .A while ago I mentioned I was the first man she had brought home... .  On my ride yesterday I remember her telling me 'My little brother likes you better than my past boyfriends' -so many lies.  How can someone who lies so frequently be so bad at it?  Doesn't practice make perfect?  I am an exceptional liar -I just choose not to do so.


Excerpt
If I told her the truth of the depth of my strong feelings for her, it would cause her to become imbalanced, often to the extent of her thinking I was lying.
My experience differs here -perhaps I left during the twilight of the idealization phase.  We spoke often about a future together and she was at ease.  She spoke about changing her family name to mine -which is incredibly difficult in China and may only be done once.  We spoke about what color eyes our baby might have -we spoke deeply and often about our future, and it seemed to be as soothing to her as it was for me.  We were shopping for homes and it was frankly lovely.  --The fantasy I had created for myself was seductive.

Excerpt
by the sounds of it she had lots of people in her life that wanted her to succeed and become happy and fulfilled, but she sabotaged them the same we she did with me.
I could never get a fix on her past relationships.  I now believe, as a result of reading about BPD, she was still sleeping on and off with her boss.  She kept us a secret from him until she was raging at him and told him she would marry soon -he cried.  She was keeping her 'dangerous' boyfriend spinning, and there were a few others close at hand.

I have some intellectual curiosity about her past relationships, but I will never ask -she would lie anyway.  I cannot have any contact with her, as it would be misunderstood by her (my mentioning this is not accidental and meant as a parable).  If I were to open any contact with her I fear it will start her healing cycle over from zero -it might give her hope of another go around.  I believe she lives with one foot in fantasy and the other lightly grounded in reality.  In mirroring she is "extremely subtle, even to the point of formlessness. Extremely mysterious"  -If I were to engage with her I could easily, perhaps even happily, be drawn back into the maelstrom.

Excerpt
So it is an emotion of sadness mixed with pity. A far cry from the sadness polarised by anger I had towards someone that I didnt understand the reasons behind her behaviour as being anything more than that of a manipulative callous and sadistic person.

I have spoken often about ':)ream Come True' not having any intent in her malicious behavior.  On my ride yesterday I think I found a 'proof' to my theorem.  If she had intent, the ability to control her emotions even slightly for self enrichment and personal gain she would not indulged in her final 7 day rage. 

If she had been capable of rational and manipulative thought she would have simply been supportive in our last week as a couple.  If instead of telling me 'Being sad and weak will get you no where --you are a coward' she were to have said 'I understand how hard finalizing your divorce must be, I have not had to sell homes and prepare to move to a police state... .-it must be stressful'... .  We would be together now and I would have sealed my fate. 

I was once signature away from divorce, the waiting period had transpired -the documents were prepared.  Over Christmas week I was packing up one of our homes for sale -the stress and pain were palpable, piece by piece tearing up a 25 year marriage.  I called and asked for some moral support from ':)ream Come True' and what I got instead was the worst of her rage.  This, once again, is why I do not consider myself strong for ending our relationship.  It felt like it was kill or be killed.


Excerpt
Just as from how I read your posts, you are already at that stage and seem to have stoically bypassed the anger stage.
You have missed the mark here, but inspired me to re-read Marcus Aurelius

"The soul becomes dyed with the color of its thoughts" --Marcus Aurelius

I wish I could be angry with her.  I just feel pity.  She is, like many people with BPD, a genius and I am afraid she knows who and what she lost.  If I could be angry it would be easier for me to let go of this pity.  This is partially my hurt pride -the ridiculous notion that I could have loved her enough to help her heal her inner demons. 

Excerpt
I will make sure she respects me.

This is dangerous -and relates to your new thread.  I cannot afford to consider what my ":)ream Come True" thinks of me anymore.  My greatest fear is she thinks I was her best hope for salvation -Why? Because I would have to agree with her.  That way lies madness for both she and I.  I cannot and will not go back to her.   She is very unlikely to find my equal and I hope she can somehow forget what I offered her and forget she shattered our dreams.

Excerpt
... .I just need to shrug off this residual "caretaker" role that i wanted to be her heroic saviour from what you said a cold cruel world. Heros often fail. sometimes you lose. these are just hard to accept realities, but acceptance is a must... .   ... .I genuinely feel that I came out of this r/s as a beneficient, a stronger more developed person.

I feel foolish, hurt, embarrassed and defeated (pride) -but my experience was an affair so the context will, of course, have a lot of bearing on the path to my on going recovery.

Excerpt
... .Its all part of the challenge in mastering the emotions and not let them be the master of us... .

Yes -life is journey.  This last year has been tumultuous to say the least.  It feels like I have woken up from a nightmare of my own creation.  The amount of pain and devastation I had a hand in creating is staggering.  --Doesn't fit well for a 'People pleaser codependent' and causes a lot of cognitive dissonance.

Excerpt
so on the next gray day, do as i do each morning, take control, pump out the music so the neighbours can hear you, (remember this is about your needs not theirs), open the window wide at 4 am and at the top of your lungs scream out to the world (and to your ex especially) signal to all of them as loud as humanly possible (dont told back one bit) and shout at the top of your lungs... .

I will take this under advisement... .   In the mornings I usually make a pot of coffee -chew some nicotine gum, walk the dog and post on this BBS. 


Wicker Man
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« Reply #40 on: May 06, 2018, 02:36:55 PM »

This is perhaps what makes my detachment difficult.  When we were actually together she had a quick temper -what I mean by this is she would get angry now and again, but it was mild and infrequent (this is going to sound horrible, but I can't think of another way to say it... .like a normal person).  It was as easy to turn these situations around.  --In fact my nickname for her was 'Small devil'.  She told me this nickname was generally reserved for misbehaving children... .  I just smiled. 

One evening temper when off and she said 'Are you stupid?' -I sensed in the way she said it this had been a normal go to jab from past relationships... .So I answered 'I must be, I love you (I smiled) so I have to stupid'  She escalated switching to English 'F#uck you!'  I said looking around the restaurant 'Here? Right now? are you stupid?' this recursive 'argument' turned a flare up into laughing She said 'I love you' I asked her if she was stupid... .  --In our day to day life -in each other's presence things were usually beyond great.  Her anger would trigger and I could have her laughing within moments.  It had no emotional cost to me, and I had just accepted she was temperamental, there was no rage just the usual occasional friction of people sharing a life.

It was the same, the vast majority of her anger was not at me, or about me, but bubbling under the surface her rage at a catalogue of people past and present. I was just the person there she trusted she could safely let this rage out and I wouldnt run from it, where others would. In the same vein, I was able to bring her out of this state of mind. Im not a big fan of NLP but it was sort of along those lines, I would divert her attention to something humerous, and it was startling how instantaneous her mood could alter. I suppose it is part of the reason why I was such valuable emotional source. I would have been ok with this, except for the one sidedness of it all. yes she had the ability to comfort and console me better than anyone else could, but the biggest issue was that she eventually became the principal major source of my upset, she became the source of my discontent and my happiness. thats where things started to fall apart. Its interesting you mention the misbehaving children, I think it speaks more than it might appear, the way that my ex could change her state of mood is very much related to how you could interrupt the temper tantrum of a toddler by distracting them with an ice cream. From what ive read there is a theme of emotional under development in BPD, being "stuck" or arrested in early development. By the sounds of it you did as well as you could have in the circumstances. quick changes of mood with great intensity, is a hallmark of BPD, but equally the dysregulation can even go on for days, if not altered, this is where needing something or someone to alter it is of such importance. (ie, a caretaker who is good at this task)
One evening temper when off and she said 'Are you stupid?' -I sensed in the way she said it this had been a normal go to jab from past relationships... .So I answered 'I must be, I love you (I smiled) so I have to stupid'  She escalated switching to English 'F#uck you!'  I said looking around the restaurant 'Here? Right now? are you stupid?' this recursive 'argument' turned a flare up into laughing She said 'I love you' I asked her if she was stupid... .  --In our day to day life -in each other's presence things were usually beyond great.  Her anger would trigger and I could have her laughing within moments.  It had no emotional cost to me, and I had just accepted she was temperamental, there was no rage just the usual occasional friction of people sharing a life.

Ok... .allow me a digression.  Her 'real' nickname means 'Soft' -it is common for people in China to always use a nickname instead of their formal names.  I was one of the only people who was allowed to call her ':)ream Come True', --her actual name.  Well  'Soft' sounds a lot like 'Of Course' -which when she was being unreasonable I would just say 'of course'.  I began periodically calling her 'Of Course' instead of using her name.  Soo... .one evening she introduced herself to a friend of mine as 'Of course' instead of 'Soft'.  I laughed so hard... .  She had never encountered a smart-ass with my level of patients.  In comedy timing is everything -and I figured I had the rest of my life, so I was very patient.  --We did have some fun.
Rage began almost the moment we parted -every time.  For nearly a year it was retroactive jealousy.  She was raging over my past relationships.  It was inconsolable and since one cannot change the past there was no logical argument, yet I saw it was tearing her apart.  For better of for worse I had been through this for 5 years in the beginning of my relationship with my wife -so I knew the tune. 

I spent countless hours on the phone listening to her scream at me about people she never met.  At one point she was so angry she started texting me in Chinese saying she was too angry to type in English -so here I am running her text through 3 different translation programs, because none of them do flesh rendering vitriol very well... . 

Interesting you bring up the jealousy indicator, its not an easy one to pick up on but it was more signficant than I appreciated. I think in my case it stemmed from having a lack of control. my ex didnt like that I made friends easily and that I could "talk to anyone". She also put me down at times for my accomplishments, which I shrugged off. I wonder if the jealousy was more a deep rooted fear of me leaving her, or finding her not suitable an insecurity. probably a mix of control issues or even a form of narcissim picked up from her mother where she is just role playing out. (this enmeshment and idolisation of her mother is hugely significant, I notice you mention a similarity from your own childhood, it is a defence mechanism but carries with it an underlying anger). I noticed it strongly but never ever dared to bring it to her attention, I can only but imagine the dysregulation. but i believe it is the crux to her developing this disorder. I wonder if you might notice anything about your ex's r/s with her parents that might reveal anything similar? I will quote my grandfather "if you want to know the daughter, look at the mother, the son, look at the father". I never gave my parents or grandparents the respect they deserved when I was younger but their wisdom really is just distilled from psychology. looking beyond our ex as an individual and seeing the wider picture of those who were directly involved in influencing their development is very significant but often overlooked. In my case I wasnt allowed too much contact with her family, at her request, but what I did see told me there was good reason for this. when she painted her father as completely black for marrying a woman 15 years younger and I pointed out that she wanted to marry me and im almost the same age difference, she became stuck as if forced to contemplate and rationalise. I think whats important to extract from this is that there is a lot of history that is unknown but significant, a lot of what we saw of the behaviour is deep rooted and linked to this, and a circumstance that we were nothing involved in but became the surrogate emotional outlet for. When my ex would rage at me I truly believe in her mind at that time she had associated me with her father, who had eventually left. to summarise, it is daddy-issues, and I didnt like being a passive participant in that role play. her jealousy of your previous r/s is based on her abandonment fears, just how she would choose to go with the person that best meets her needs, she believes you would do the same.
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« Reply #41 on: May 06, 2018, 02:43:09 PM »

 

When she had dysphoria she would cut herself.  I was very supportive, understanding and tried to offer alternatives.  I sent her this quote:

To live is to suffer, to survive is to find some meaning in the suffering —Nietzsche

I told her I completely understand why you cut yourself -she said 'you can't' -I explained to her I have gone running to feel pain.  Part of my attraction to fighting was getting hit (I used to train -I don't mean picking a fight).  I told her it is the same, but the way I chose to hurt myself is 'socially acceptable'.  I said sometimes when things are very dark pain makes time start again.  I told her a story about a very young friend of mine who died suddenly -To try to understand this I ran and ran, I fell and got up and ran more.  By the time I was done I was a bloody mess --but I had reached a level of understanding.  Within 3 months she had stopped cutting herself.  I was happy for her and proud I could help her. -We will keep coming back to pride.


Im also happy that I feel I was in many ways a good influence in her life. At the end of the day, its not so much a sense of pride but just what I expect a r/s should be, mutually supportive. I did my part and it seems you did yours. but no good deed goes unpunished, in many ways I believe my ex hated me for being or wanting to be her saviour, it is a reminder that she needed me. a lack of control. her previous way of dealing with it was cutting, alcoholism, drug taking and promiscuity. but she still felt in control with these options. me being there for her was taking the locus of control away by becoming reliant on me, but what if I leave? again, the abandonment fear of the caretaker is invoked and you end up becoming resented for your efforts.
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« Reply #42 on: May 06, 2018, 03:35:48 PM »

As a codependent, I sought this out --I was guilty of 'childish love' --'if I care for you the way I want to be loved -then you will love me that way too'

I will reiterate your quote... .

“Errare humanum est, sed perseverare diabolicum --To error is human, but to continue out of pride is diabolical.”

I do not feel strong -I still feel, in my heart, like a bit of a coward for running away -this is pride, arrogance, codependence, and the slowly fading grip our love had on my soul.  Yes, of course, I know intellectually, I very likely did the right thing by ending our relationship, but there is an ache.  The residue from being in the variable reward paradigm which is BPD love.

I only saw full blown Dysregulation once.  She had 3 days where she was having severe visual hallucinations.  This is why I believe she had been misdiagnosed as a schizophrenic.  I was supportive and it passed.  Like the cutting the voices she heard also stopped --pride.

I suppose im struggling with the same sense of ego. I didnt like the idea of having to retreat from this, its not in my nature, "who runs away lives to fight another day", sometimes we have to know our own limitations.
You are incredible astute (damn you).  I am currently working on trying to break my cycle of codependent behavior.  By the age of 6 my mother had made me an 'inappropriate friend' or perhaps even put me in a 'Surrogate Spouse Role' -no sexual abuse.  Fortunately, my wiring allowed me not to suffer enormous damage to me self esteem -but I certainly feel the need to save people and 'be strong' in my self sacrifice .  These traits kept me in a very badly damaged relationship with my OC(PD) wife for 25 years.  My affair has gotten both my wife and I into therapy -I know my wife would have never addressed her personality disorder without the tectonic rupture which is my betrayal  -and I likely would not have sought help for my codependence. 

This seems to be the tricky thing about personality disorders -they seem to be self rewarding.  OC(PD) makes you a perfectionist and a great worker -codependence makes me supportive and romantic... . 

I coped with my marriage by always having a socially acceptable mistress -my work.  Well... .apparently... .25 years of repression is bad... .  Who knew right?(!) In not dealing with my condition and what felt like a loveless marriage I ended up finding myself on an unfamiliar battle field, not knowing myself and meeting an enemy I had never imagined.

Some people go through their lives not acknowledging stuff like this, you have all the insight to overcome it. Like you say, there is plus points to everything, the drive to perfectionism is great in certain career fields and rewarding, but there is a down side. Im sure you will work on this to try and find a happier medium. It takes a huge amount of courage to identify stuff like this and I have also realised that part of my own personality disorder: non specified diagnosis comes from a dysfunctional upbringing. I also dealt with this by overcompensating and expecting perfection of myself. I reached my career dream at the age of 19 and had 98% job performance review, it was the highest out of over 300 other people in a highly sought after and competitive role. I couldnt accept the congratulations. I was angry that I had failed by 2%. Yet my main sense of achievement was achieving a career based on my parents telling me I would never achieve it and shouldnt even bother trying. In the dynamic with my BPDx, its why I was able to deal with the same criticisms, it was just noise that I filtered out, learned primordial behaviour. Yet it still is a dysfunctional coping mechanism all the same. Like I said, its great courage and a strong person that acknowledges the weak points and seeks to address them, if I had done this and not repressed it as you say, I would probably have never entertained a similarly personality disordered people in my life. I see the encounter with my ex as a wake up call that led me to finally acknowledge these things, in the midst of it, I lost a lot of ego and a drive to perfectionism, she made it blatantly clear that with all my best efforts, I wasnt going to rescue her as I set out to achieve. in the midst of this apparent defeat was actually a victory of great personal development benefit.


I have wondered, not about exploitation, but a relationship where I might have set boarders and boundaries.  In other words always left myself a way out, but I do not think I am capable of being in a relationship where one is checking the corners and always aware of the nearest exit.  I only entertain this fantasy when I am hurting and missing her the most.  --This is precisely why 'No contact' is so vitally important. 

This is why I do not consider myself 'strong' for ending our relationship  -my situation with her was to be binary, on or off.  Since the relationship would have entailed moving to her country, buying a house, and having a child there would have been no shade of grey and no chance for a graceful endgame if (when) she decided to leave me.

Wanting to save the beautiful and magical part of her, give her a safe place to heal and flourish was incredible seductive --pride again.

To see the relief in her grandparents eyes when we were together, to have her step father pat me on the back and smile when I entered their home.  They were all desperate to have her in a safe relationship. Believe me I was not 'perfect'.  Some Chinese can accept mixed marriages and others cannot.

Also... .  I am 3 years older... .  3 years older than her mother.  They didn't care, they accepted me into their home and into their family -they just wanted her with someone who could take care of her. 

To be clear -our age difference was my single greatest concern.  When I admitted to myself and to her I loved her I wept openly.  --It was definitely not my attraction.  Her difficult childhood and messy life had made her old beyond her years.  She, in someways, it seemed had had more life experience than I had.

I feel the same, its the reason I was so happy during the r/s, I saw there being no point to be in love but to simultaneously consider a betrayal. besides the momentary cheating, the r/s was a good match, two disordered people with complimenting skill sets of experience to pool together. She couldnt hold down a job or handle money, (a hallmark trait of BPD) I was the first to show her, and it feels sad that she was neglected in this way, or apparently no one showed any interest. Thats where the complementary part comes in, I was brought up to be cautious and frugal and had in the long run done financially well for myself, I met the polar opposite, and a middle ground was reached. I also learned to become more spendthrift, at least ive never been materialistic anyway, but I enjoyed the experiences we had because I had the resources to do so. its made me more rounded today and another plus point, just have to seek them.


My experience differs here -perhaps I left during the twilight of the idealization phase.  We spoke often about a future together and she was at ease.  She spoke about changing her family name to mine -which is incredibly difficult in China and may only be done once.  We spoke about what color eyes our baby might have -we spoke deeply and often about our future, and it seemed to be as soothing to her as it was for me.  We were shopping for homes and it was frankly lovely.  --The fantasy I had created for myself was seductive.
I could never get a fix on her past relationships.  I now believe, as a result of reading about BPD, she was still sleeping on and off with her boss.  She kept us a secret from him until she was raging at him and told him she would marry soon -he cried.  She was keeping her 'dangerous' boyfriend spinning, and there were a few others close at hand.

I have some intellectual curiosity about her past relationships, but I will never ask -she would lie anyway.  I cannot have any contact with her, as it would be misunderstood by her (my mentioning this is not accidental and meant as a parable).  If I were to open any contact with her I fear it will start her healing cycle over from zero -it might give her hope of another go around.  I believe she lives with one foot in fantasy and the other lightly grounded in reality.  In mirroring she is "extremely subtle, even to the point of formlessness. Extremely mysterious"  -If I were to engage with her I could easily, perhaps even happily, be drawn back into the maelstrom.

I have spoken often about ':)ream Come True' not having any intent in her malicious behavior.  On my ride yesterday I think I found a 'proof' to my theorem.  If she had intent, the ability to control her emotions even slightly for self enrichment and personal gain she would not indulged in her final 7 day rage. 

If she had been capable of rational and manipulative thought she would have simply been supportive in our last week as a couple.  If instead of telling me 'Being sad and weak will get you no where --you are a coward' she were to have said 'I understand how hard finalizing your divorce must be, I have not had to sell homes and prepare to move to a police state... .-it must be stressful'... .  We would be together now and I would have sealed my fate. 

I was once signature away from divorce, the waiting period had transpired -the documents were prepared.  Over Christmas week I was packing up one of our homes for sale -the stress and pain were palpable, piece by piece tearing up a 25 year marriage.  I called and asked for some moral support from ':)ream Come True' and what I got instead was the worst of her rage.  This, once again, is why I do not consider myself strong for ending our relationship.  It felt like it was kill or be killed.

I wish I could be angry with her.  I just feel pity.  She is, like many people with BPD, a genius and I am afraid she knows who and what she lost.  If I could be angry it would be easier for me to let go of this pity.  This is partially my hurt pride -the ridiculous notion that I could have loved her enough to help her heal her inner demons. 

This is dangerous -and relates to your new thread.  I cannot afford to consider what my ":)ream Come True" thinks of me anymore.  My greatest fear is she thinks I was her best hope for salvation -Why? Because I would have to agree with her.  That way lies madness for both she and I.  I cannot and will not go back to her.   She is very unlikely to find my equal and I hope she can somehow forget what I offered her and forget she shattered our dreams.

I feel foolish, hurt, embarrassed and defeated (pride) -but my experience was an affair so the context will, of course, have a lot of bearing on the path to my on going recovery.


This is where i need to really think about how you have tacitly dealt with this, put those intense emotions to one side and done the right thing, not just for your self, but for her as well. there has to be more fulfilment to your own life than to be a caretaker for her, in some ways the encouragement of her parents could be seen as a way of diluting their responsibility on to you. I really feel closer to clarity from your posts and can relate so much. the drive for perfection which results in the disenchantment of failure. the height of passion and love for someone by being the best person you can, making self vulnerable, to the point of recklessness. it leads me to a realisation though, if I never had those ingredients myself, then I would have never been with my ex, accepted her behaviour and also not enjoyed the magic of it all. In the end, i pressed eject and parachuted out as the alarm sounded for incoming missile strike, there is no cowardice in avoiding annihalation, you were perfect in saving your life from the high likelihood of catastrophe, my opinion, based around that the notion of 'perfectionism' is subjective a term. i didnt like the title of this board "detaching from a failed relationship", it is based on an assumption that the r/s failed but from that, it strikes at the pride of having failed and extrapolates towards the idea of being a failure. Is communism an inherent failure? or did it fail under the circumstances. Anyway, the nomenclature has forced me to be relegated back to "detaching" board, ive went a level down in my recovery. back into the fray.

self sabotage, much? Smiling (click to insert in post)
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« Reply #43 on: May 06, 2018, 03:51:21 PM »

Excerpt
It was the same, the vast majority of her anger was not at me, or about me, but bubbling under the surface her rage at a catalogue of people past and present.

I was always right in the crosshairs.  Rage is generated from fear.  Fight or flight -as I mentioned when we tried jogging together... .She made it 3 blocks.  She was a fighter not a runner... .  In retrospect (ugh) the her retrospective jealousy was fear of not living up to the women in my past.  Ok! Several of whom I had met before she was born and had not seen during her lifetime.  That is the beauty of irrational behavior I suppose. 


Excerpt
She also put me down at times for my accomplishments, which I shrugged off.

As I said, I believe we were in the twilight of idealization.  She was a big fan of my work and very proud of me and my accomplishments.  She had planned to actually work alongside me as assistant and interpreter.  --Which would have meant the utter disruption of my career if the wheels flew off our relationship.  Imagine if your ex is also your booking agent and has access to all of your clients? --It brings to mind the idea of me teaching her how to shoot a gun... . 

Excerpt
I can only but imagine the dysregulation

I had thought she was a high functioning schizophrenic -so I was ready for this eventually.  She had began seeing faces in rocks and trees and it was her mission in life to help these beings.  I told her I can't see them, but I knew they were real for her and I was willing to support her as best I could.  It passed in a matter of a couple days.  --I knew as I was getting into the relationship she had had a tremendously difficult life up to that point and I was willing to accompany her hand in hand on the path to her new healthier life.

Look at the irony of my situation?(!) Here I sit wishing she merely had schizophrenia instead of BPD -I am some sort of a poster child for codependency.  To explain myself a little... .  I loved her --schizophrenia does not imply she would turn my love inside out, weaponize it and use this newly honed weapon to eviscerate me. The safe and loving home which can help schizophrenics thrive would have spooled up her BPD to a fever pitch.  How dare you love me! ugh... .


Excerpt
I wonder if you might notice anything about your ex's r/s with her parents that might reveal anything similar?

Father was painted black and out of the picture.  I have wondered if he really was the devil she described -or if in fact he ran for his life from her mother.  -or perhaps he ran for his life from ':)ream Come True'.  He did try to make contact with her while I was with her and suggested 'people change'.  She was having none of it.

I had trouble getting a handle on mom.  She carried a very heavy ShangHai accent and had trouble understanding her -she spoke no English.  She had a vicious temper, but seemed to be doing a very good job raising her boy -Dream Come True's step brother.

Excerpt
Her jealousy of your previous r/s is based on her abandonment fears, just how she would choose to go with the person that best meets her needs, she believes you would do the same.

I know this to be true.  Sadly for her, I suppose for both of us I believed I was with the person who best met my needs.  It was upon learning this person would more than likely one day abandon me -I brought her worst nightmare to fruition.


Wicker Man

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« Reply #44 on: May 07, 2018, 11:05:56 AM »

What an amazing discussion this has been.  The companionship I found here helped me put some thoughts in order and certainly has given me something to look forward to each morning.  --Cromwell as you take to your studies please accept my gratitude for the countless hours you spent talking this through with me.

The subject line is, of course, incorrect.  My psyche will heal, as will my wounded pride.  I wish I could look at my relationship as a life adventure, but it simply is not who I am.  It was a failure and did me more harm that good.

As a learning experience?  I described my brush with BPD to my therapist as a loss of innocence.  To feel love for someone on the depth I have, to only realize this woman cannot see her own value, has no love for herself -where is the lesson for me? 

She said to me once 生活很难 -life is hard. I learned looking into her soul how truly hard life can be.  Her day to day existence is brutal.  Seeing into her world has left me very thankful for my own mental state, but the injustice, the utter tragedy of personality disorders leaves me feeling sad.

She would frequently buy junk food and arrange it on a table as if in a shop.  All in order, neat and tidy.  I asked her why?  She said having food near by made her feel safe.  Truly my dear 生活很难.

I did allow myself to look at her instagram feed.  The veiled messages to me stopped two and a half weeks ago.  I know it is best for both of us -she had to let me go. It is still bitter sweet.

I do not know whether to expect some sort of contact from her about returning my things -they are just things and I try not to care.  To be honest I don't know what I would do with my grandmother's earring and my mom's engagement ring at this point. 

--In a box here or a landfill in China the net result is the same.


Wicker Man




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« Reply #45 on: May 07, 2018, 12:21:08 PM »

Wicker Man, just be glad that you were not the one that ended up in a box or landfill! LOL

You are making wonderful strides! Keep it going!
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« Reply #46 on: May 07, 2018, 02:10:49 PM »

Excerpt
You are making wonderful strides! Keep it going!

Right now it feels like Madame de Stael had it just about right 'One must choose in life between boredom and suffering'. 

I don't know about 'great strides' -However, there is no danger of my breaking 'no contact', as it would hurt her perhaps more than it would hurt me.

The fantasy life I had imagined was so rich I am now grappling with how to reconcile to a life ordinary.  With the loss of her I plan to no longer work in China -working abroad is bone crushingly difficult, but I found a lot of inspiration as an artist and as a human being.  China is beautiful and terrible, both young and old and struggling mightily with an identity crisis.  The same could be said about ':)ream Come True' she is a near perfect metaphor for her country.

No contact taken to an extreme I suppose --but as of now I believe it is the right thing for me.  I am currently working with my agent to swing my career back to the US market.   

I believe a mitigating circumstance for my affair was the 110 hour 7 day work weeks -my limbic system got the better of me.  I was so hyper-focused on the work, mentally exhilarated and physically exhausted I was perhaps more open to an affair.  --Not a mistake I shall ever repeat, but it is perhaps time to step away from the brutality of working in Asia. 

China offers me as a workaholic what my BPD ex did as a codependent --a path to destruction.

Wicker Man
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« Reply #47 on: May 07, 2018, 05:05:43 PM »

Right now it feels like Madame de Stael had it just about right 'One must choose in life between boredom and suffering'. 

I don't know about 'great strides' -However, there is no danger of my breaking 'no contact', as it would hurt her perhaps more than it would hurt me.

The fantasy life I had imagined was so rich I am now grappling with how to reconcile to a life ordinary.  With the loss of her I plan to no longer work in China -working abroad is bone crushingly difficult, but I found a lot of inspiration as an artist and as a human being.  China is beautiful and terrible, both young and old and struggling mightily with an identity crisis.  The same could be said about ':)ream Come True' she is a near perfect metaphor for her country.

Soren Kierkegaard had a lot to say on boredom, about it being worse than death. Im not the best with philosophy but you might be interested if not aware of his work on it.
www.sparknotes.com/philosophy/kierkegaard/themes/

Ive found myself depressed in life, but rarely bored. I had conflated my ex with being equal to excitement, yet it was a big revalation to me after the post r/s post mortem to actually find that it was myself who initiated most of the boredom alleviation, and is indicative as to how good a "source of supply" I was. What im saying is that was it really a break from boredom or was it a hit of andrenaline each time, there is a big difference. my ex could manufacture chaos, promote a physiological response, but the actual context of it was just boring arguments, chasing after her, trips to the ER, something an emergency services worker would put down as just another day. andrenaline junkie yes, but I fail to see how any of it was interesting or novel experiences to feel enriched by from.
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« Reply #48 on: May 07, 2018, 06:51:57 PM »


Excerpt
Soren Kierkegaard had a lot to say on boredom, about it being worse than death. Im not the best with philosophy but you might be interested if not aware of his work on it.
I am not familiar and will have a look.

Excerpt
Ive found myself depressed in life, but rarely bored.

By boredom vs suffering --I suppose I am feeling the backlash of having planned and put into motion a very interesting, but difficult future for myself (even with the enormous presumption my relationship with ':)ream Come True' had been stable) the plan was dangerous.  Knowing what I know now about her personality disorder my plan was insane.  Love is blind.

Staying here in the US and redefining a stable relationship is a much better plan -and sane.  Both good things.  Happiness comes from within.

I am glad to have narrowly escaped the turmoil of a long term BPD relationship -I am grateful for my luck, but coming to terms with all of this will take some time.  Repression?  Midlife crisis? Head in my ass?  I will get to the bottom of it.  Time, therapy, and a lot of reading... .

Today has been rough and I don't know why.  I am going to blame Lacan... .  I think there is always good sport in blaming the French... .  Stupid (really smart) French guy using words and making me think --how dare he!


Wicker Man
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« Reply #49 on: May 08, 2018, 01:25:43 PM »

Wicker man just my observation but as reality has set in that you indeed dodged a bullet by no longer being in a relationship with your exBPD partner( same here)... .I think the disappointment of all of this takes a lot more time to swallow? I to tried blaming mid life crisis , ego flattery of having a young beautiful woman at my side , the false image of a perfect future life, this list goes on.But I’m going to go out on a limb and simply say maybe it is as simple as being disappointed?Ive narrowed mine down to simply saying to myself Shawn” you thought you had a dream woman,soul mate,almost a child and finally a chapter in your life accomplished”... .when in fact none of that happened .Sure we can feel foolish for “falling for it” , self esteem takes a kicking sure , but frankly I just think is damn right disappointing! And endless reading on the subject won’t fix what has happened .When you look at my past posts and many others to be honest ,we all seem to be perpetually stuck in the past tense .Its all done and over , time fixes disappointment,trying again or trying new things changes the mind frame to forget (as much as that is possible).

You seem very wise ,well spoken ,and observant , but all in all nothing more can be done to undo emotions triggered in the past .Time will take care of everything ,helping people here can to ,unless it triggers you back to thinking of her.This world is filled with endless triggers that for a long time will keep our wounds unhealed.For me it’s the simple stuff that sets me off like : couples walking hand in hand ,babies because I wanted to have kids and almost did with her, movies about lost love, this list is vast for me.When I feel like crap I come read the new stories of victims or even reread old stories and say to myself Shawn look what you avoided ,look what could have been? Now be grateful and go jog off the stress and sadness.

Just yesterday I went into my iCloud Drive guess what I saw and that I wasn’t looking for , pictures of us.You think I didn’t want to drink when I saw that? But I didn’t ... .I pulled the motorcycle out and went for a run.

Time wickerman time usually heals everything ... .if you let it.
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« Reply #50 on: May 08, 2018, 01:48:15 PM »

I am not familiar and will have a look.

By boredom vs suffering --I suppose I am feeling the backlash of having planned and put into motion a very interesting, but difficult future for myself (even with the enormous presumption my relationship with ':)ream Come True' had been stable) the plan was dangerous.  Knowing what I know now about her personality disorder my plan was insane.  Love is blind.

Staying here in the US and redefining a stable relationship is a much better plan -and sane.  Both good things.  Happiness comes from within.

I am glad to have narrowly escaped the turmoil of a long term BPD relationship -I am grateful for my luck, but coming to terms with all of this will take some time.  Repression?  Midlife crisis? Head in my ass?  I will get to the bottom of it.  Time, therapy, and a lot of reading... .

Today has been rough and I don't know why.  I am going to blame Lacan... .  I think there is always good sport in blaming the French... .  Stupid (really smart) French guy using words and making me think --how dare he!


Wicker Man

Hey Wicker Man,

This recovery stuff has its own roller coaster style of motion to it as well as the r/s you were in. yet the dips of mood I learned to associate with the moments I had just figured something out signficant. They were the "what the heck?"  Thought moments of clarity, no repression or confused thinking, but really starting to see the big picture. When you are sleep walking in a dream like trance, things happen and you are as you say "blinded". They do pass, and are preferable to the alternative, being in denial and repressing stuff long term. Some things will be painful to confront, and will feel depressed. Do whatever works for you, take a break from the books, go outside for awhile, be good and kind to yourself.

Today has been rough for me too, I started to talk about her to my colleagues in a joking way, which they were all highly amused by, but deep inside Ive started to revist the underlying return of anxiety and my hard fought for serenity has once again be cast a dark shadow over. i havent deleted her or changed sim cards because I want to see how this has made me feel, since that encounter on the bus I feel fatigued, it reminds me of the stress I had during the r/s, which is a good thing, it is my minds way of protecting me to prevent me from re-engaging. ive learned to trust these physiological responses more rather than try to alter them, they are inner warning systems.

im sure your just having to digest a great deal of thoughts, I know the feeling. Like I said before, this is not easy, its hard mental work, you might find yourself also going down dead roads that you have to back track on, or follow red herrings. The mind maze. Often the hardest part to accept is there will be many answers that regardless of an obssessive quest to search for, will always remain unanswerable. very hard to accept. Do you even think that much of philosophy will be written from the standpoint of rational and logic, I cant see how it can help when finding answers to someone whos behaviour is outwith that. philosophy doesnt have anything to say about BPD.
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« Reply #51 on: May 08, 2018, 01:57:31 PM »

Excerpt
I think the disappointment of all of this takes a lot more time to swallow? I to tried blaming mid life crisis , ego flattery of having a young beautiful woman at my side , the false image of a perfect future life, this list goes on.
It is indeed the loss of my dream I lament -the future ':)ream Come True' and I spoke of so often.  It is also the tragedy which is BPD -the image of what she will go through as she continues her journey through life.  She is not a disorder -she is a living breathing human being. 

I had hoped to, through love and understanding, allow her a safe place to heal.  It is a wound to my pride to have to admit 'failure'.  I intellectually understand I did the right thing in leaving her, but it will take time to accept this on an emotional level. 

Excerpt
Sure we can feel foolish for “falling for it”
I really have no feeling of having 'fallen for it' per se.  She was not ever trying to trick me, I know she had the deepest love for me, but her nature necessitated my departure.  The tragic irony of her personality disorder -the love she so desperately craves creates fear within her -this fear precipitates rage.

Excerpt
... .self esteem takes a kicking sure... .

I left her self esteem intact -I firmly believe I was perhaps the best human being she had had in her life -I am deeply sad in further believing she would agree with me.  I lament her loss as much as I lament my own.  I feel for her family -they wanted me to keep her safe, and I cannot.


Excerpt
You seem very wise ,well spoken ,and observant

Very kind of you, but check your premise Smiling (click to insert in post) If I was truly wise I would have never embarked on an affair in the first place.  If I had been observant I might have know there is no such thing as fairytale love. 

Excerpt
This world is filled with endless triggers

Oh God yes.  Endless... .  Movies, music, literature.  Our perceptions change as we change, what once brought joy now can bring waves of sadness. 

Excerpt
Just yesterday I went into my iCloud Drive guess what I saw and that I wasn’t looking for , pictures of us.

I do my own IT work and have made sure there is no chance of stumbling upon any photos.  I am a visual artist -the image of her face with tears streaming asking me 'Is this the last time we will speak?' is enough and burned into my mind.  I will not look at any photos.

Excerpt
I didn’t want to drink when I saw that? But I didn’t ... .I pulled the motorcycle out and went for a run.

Good for you!  I have been drinking more than I like, but being of Irish heritage I am well aware of the dangers and keeping it in check.


Wicker Man

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« Reply #52 on: May 08, 2018, 02:12:20 PM »

Excerpt
i havent deleted her or changed sim cards because I want to see how this has made me feel, since that encounter on the bus I feel fatigued, it reminds me of the stress I had during the r/s, which is a good thing, it is my minds way of protecting me to prevent me from re-engaging.

I have to leave to see my therapist in a few minutes, but I wanted to at the risk of being "a sadistic, hippophilic necrophile", but that would be beating a dead horse." -Whats Up Tiger Lily

Please make sure your motivation for not blocking her is as you say it is.  I have the deepest respect for your intellect, but it seems to me you are playing with fire.  If I had a trigger and ':)ream Come True' was at hand it would be all to easy for me to reach out to her.  If I did I know in my heart of hearts I would be drawn in.  She was my perfect drug.

I once and again feel compelled to reach out to some of our mutual friends -I know this must be a latent desire for connection with her.  -They were her friends to begin with, but accepted me while we were together.  Staying distanced has been difficult.

This morning I had a discourse with a Chinese work associate -simply speaking Mandarin again made me miss the dream of her.


Wicker Man
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« Reply #53 on: May 08, 2018, 04:35:08 PM »

I have to leave to see my therapist in a few minutes, but I wanted to at the risk of being "a sadistic, hippophilic necrophile", but that would be beating a dead horse." -Whats Up Tiger Lily

Please make sure your motivation for not blocking her is as you say it is.  I have the deepest respect for your intellect, but it seems to me you are playing with fire.  If I had a trigger and ':)ream Come True' was at hand it would be all to easy for me to reach out to her.  If I did I know in my heart of hearts I would be drawn in.  She was my perfect drug.

I once and again feel compelled to reach out to some of our mutual friends -I know this must be a latent desire for connection with her.  -They were her friends to begin with, but accepted me while we were together.  Staying distanced has been difficult.

This morning I had a discourse with a Chinese work associate -simply speaking Mandarin again made me miss the dream of her.


Wicker Man

I know what your saying WM, when I got her first text after giving her my number, I got it late afternoon the day after seeing her. I could feel that old andrenaline hit again hearing the beep in my headphones.

The same old tried and tested messages she sent. They did take me back momentarily in time. but I controlled it, ive build up the resistance over 9 months.

Its actually working out well for me, its like free drugs with no comedown. Lets call it a small relapse, like 9 months quit smoking and then doing again, im not going to beat myself up about it. she didnt text at all today, since I never replied to her cajoling message. It was an open invite to come running to her generated "distress". Ive not responded = im not interested in playing the game. ill take the little "hit", she wont get anything in return. when she realises im the one benefiting at her expense, I dont eventually need to worry about detaching, she will hopefully even do that part for me!  Bullet: completed (click to insert in post)

lets see how long it takes her to realise.


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« Reply #54 on: May 09, 2018, 10:19:52 AM »

Excerpt
lets see how long it takes her to realise.

Dream Come True was obsessed with me.  She would spend every waking hour sending messages or speaking with me if she could.  My presence was soothing to her -unless, of course, she was in a blind rage... .  Then she still wanted my time and attention, but it was to beat the stuffing out of me.

After we ended out relationship she began posting a veiled message to me on instagram -one a day for something like 116 days.  In her mind I would return -I had to.

The last thing I want to do is stoke her obsession.  I feel for her, I miss her, you know what?  Down deep I still love her, or at least the idea of her.

She gave me a few of the best weeks of my life and this statement has nothing to do with physical love -I mean the deep spiritual peace of being in love.  She also gave me the worst weeks of my entire life -I hate hyperbole, but when in a relationship with someone suffering from BPD hyperbole becomes a way of life.  Binary -bliss or horror. 

To alude to a comment from a different thread -I was not a victim, I was a volunteer!  The only victim in our relationship was a little three year old girl who overhead her mother talking about putting her out in the snow to die.

Someone who has know so much pain in her life is capable of things unimaginable to us relatively healthy people. 

Wicker Man

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« Reply #55 on: May 09, 2018, 12:51:53 PM »

Today I can say I still love my exGF, not the idea of what it could have been but actually her.I hope never to meet her again for the obvious sentimental reasons however if I ever did come eye to eye with her I already planned what I was gonna say. It would be “ I will always love you and you will always hate me for it”. That best sums up all I can think of when looking back at the whole scenario and last 7ish months .
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« Reply #56 on: May 09, 2018, 01:10:29 PM »

Excerpt
I will always love you and you will always hate me for it.

I don't have this in me.  I could not pour any salt into the gigantic hole I left in her heart when I left. 

I am strongly considering ending my career in Asia with her being one of the factors.  --Perhaps, I am lucky having the buffer of the Pacific Ocean between us.  It gives me the luxury of not having to wonder what I might say to her. 

However, as an intellectual exercise, if we were to ever meet again... .I would likely say 'I hope you are well'. 

She did the best she could to love me -and in her way she did love me deeply.

She cannot be in my life, but I wish her nothing but happiness and safety.  Ironically, or better put... .sadly, the two things she is least likely to find.


Wicker Man
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Harri
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« Reply #57 on: May 09, 2018, 04:36:49 PM »

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