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« Reply #30 on: June 13, 2018, 07:53:15 AM »

Since I've decided to send the letter, as I think this might in fact not be your typical BPD/NC situation, I've re-worked another draft:

Excerpt
Excerpt
I just re-read one of my favorite all time books, The Little Prince, which my mother first read to me when I was five and I turn to at various points in my life when I need to find its wisdom, which changes each time you read it.

When I came to one of my favorite passages it seemed like it reminded me of you and me:

"I ought not to have listened to her. One never ought to listen to the flowers. One should simply look at them and breathe their fragrance. Mine perfumed all my planet. But I did not know how to take pleasure in all her grace. This tale of claws, which disturbed me so much, should only have filled my heart with tenderness and pity. The fact is that I did not know how to understand anything! I ought to have judged by deeds and not by words. She cast her fragrance and her radiance over me. I ought never to have run away from her . . . I ought to have guessed all the affection that lay behind her poor little stratagems. Flowers are so inconsistent! But I was too young to know how to love her .”

I'm not reaching out for 'reconciliation', I’m not even writing as a man to a woman, I’m just reaching out as a person to a person I really cared for and this passage made me think about how I’ve acted and how I might have hurt you without ever meaning to.  I'm writing because I’ve tried hard to put aside any hurt or anger about what happened during that very confusing maelstrom of a week and day and came to the realization that I may have I let you down when you were scared and needed me most and lashed out when what you needed was my strength and understanding. I’ll choose to believe that is the case, that the things that were said between us were real and true and that I should then have found a way that day to put my own pain and shock aside as I realize belatedly that the things you struggle with from your past might be bigger than I could know or understand. In my defense, I am sure you know I struggle with sharing myself and that day felt like after every part of it was asked for and given freely it was immediately stomped upon so I reacted from shock and pain. I am truly sorry for thinking the worst and any hurtful words when you needed just the opposite. It is one of the true regrets of my life.

I want you to know that the only truth of you and us that really matters for me now is that you came into my life like a rose when I needed one the most and cast your radiance over me and perfumed all my planet. I count my birthday night and the night we cooked as two of my most special and your affection moved me both nights. I remember some of your texts almost verbatim because they were filled with such understanding and caring and support of me I could hardly breathe after I read them because it was so lacking in my life. The vision you painted that day of us in your apartment that last day was beautiful to me when I finally laid my arms down to accept it. For whatever it may worth to you now or ever I thought you should know all that since I clearly was not strong enough in myself at the time to share it when it might have mattered to your life and happiness both of which mattered to me more than I knew.

There is no need to acknowledge or reply to this letter and I won't send another or reach out again. I’m simply writing because I realize with some distance and after reading that passage that you struggle with more than I imagined, as I realize you tried to tell me many times, and since I could not provide my full love and strength when you needed it my hope is that by sharing with my rose what she brought to my planet I might shine some radiance and perfume on hers as well.

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« Reply #31 on: June 13, 2018, 08:30:04 AM »

It's a very gracious apology and nicely written.

I think if your intent is to apologize, offer closure, and right any wrongs you may have done, then this letter well serves that purpose.

If your goal is to re-open the relationship... .or you aren't sure of your goal ... .then you can find yourself in a worse mess after sending this.

That's all we're saying here. Know yourself before trying to know others.
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« Reply #32 on: June 13, 2018, 08:39:25 AM »

Thank you for taking the time.

What if my goal is both with the first being primary?

How would this letter put me in a worse mess? Note I'm not looking or hoping for oh-my-god-what-did-I-do. I'm guessing if she has managed to spend 2 months not contacting me she is either a mess over this or moved on. I've just spent the entire time thinking she just moved on immediately and while I've been a mess here she's happily with other person or people. But knowing her past and knowing how she likely reacted she could as easily be hurt somewhere thinking *I* am the one happily moved on since I basically said that is what I was doing when I stormed off; going to date people with the heart she worked so hard to open.

So I guess I'm unclear, even if it is not primary goal and to tell the truth if I really consider it a goal at all (reconciliation and dating) since there were reasons I resisted for so long anyway, why this letter might make it less likely or 'a mess'?

Note too I modified the letter a bit to introduce some of my hurt as well since even though I am 'graciously' offering an apology in all honesty the person who would under ordinary circumstances be apologizing would be her since what she did (if you read the original story) was super messed up and hurtful and she should know it. I'm trying to put that entirely aside and understand her pain. It ain't easy.

It's a very gracious apology and nicely written.

I think if your intent is to apologize, offer closure, and right any wrongs you may have done, then this letter well serves that purpose.

If your goal is to re-open the relationship... .or you aren't sure of your goal ... .then you can find yourself in a worse mess after sending this.

That's all we're saying here. Know yourself before trying to know others.
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« Reply #33 on: June 13, 2018, 09:04:47 AM »

BTW; the only bad outcome from this is some nasty email or text (never contact me, get over it, etc). No reply won't kill me I'll know she got it and will process it as she always does. I'm thinking her reply to my email of a month ago ("thanks for the nice note. hope you've been well" is at least some indication that it means something to her and the door was open to reply/communucation as otherwise she could have gone silent.

It's a very gracious apology and nicely written.

I think if your intent is to apologize, offer closure, and right any wrongs you may have done, then this letter well serves that purpose.

If your goal is to re-open the relationship... .or you aren't sure of your goal ... .then you can find yourself in a worse mess after sending this.

That's all we're saying here. Know yourself before trying to know others.
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« Reply #34 on: June 13, 2018, 09:11:25 AM »

Where to start... . Smiling (click to insert in post)

I want to help. This will be a bit difficult to hear. Know that I say it with a open and caring heart.

The downside of this letter is that it will most likely feel like "more of the same" that caused her to pull back to begin with. It will almost certainly make matters worse. Not because she is BPD (anyone would feel this way), but because it's more about understanding your feelings than understanding her feelings.

Think of it his way:

The letter you want to receive from her is "I'm sorry I did that to you. I wasn't being fair to you".

Most likely, the letter she wants to receive from you is "I'm sorry I did that to you. I wasn't being fair to you".

This letter is not the latter.

To explain... .

Apologies need to clear and affirmative. "I'm sorry I did ____ to you (accurately filling in the blank is very important). I wasn't being fair to you".  This type of statement is not that... .

   "I'm not reaching out her[e] for 'reconciliation' as I don't even know if we had anything to reconcile or what it meant if we did and some doors or windows don't stay open forever anyway and it has been... .forever. I'm writing because, while I don't really know anything about what happened at "the end" I think it may just be possible I let you down... .

I simply do not connect to people like that, never had. And it is not 'companionship' I want. I want someone who understands me, appreciates me, respects me, thinks about me, wants me. Yeah I get we all want that.

Yes. Correct. That's what she wanted/wants. The overall tone of the letter does not suggest that you "understand, appreciate, respect, think about, or want her". Just the opposite. And the 30 day lag makes it even less so... .

The letter will sound to her (any second party), in many way, like "what matters most to you is your feelings". References to your favorite childhood book punctuate that further... .

    If that is so, I don't know if you wonder or care what I think about you or if I cared about you but I want you to know that the only truth of you for me that really matters now is that you came into my life like a rose when I needed one the most and cast your radiance over me and perfumed all my planet. I

All in all, this is really a very good and heartfelt note to yourself. It has value. You are reflecting on what you feel and part of that is a disappointment in not knowing how to handle this better at the time. This is great self-awareness.

Your letter also show you that you are very worried about her reaction, so you have loaded it with insecurity and tentativeness with phrases like "for whatever it may or may not be worth to you now or ever". Imagine this in a hallmark card... .



I don't know too much about her, but is the issue here that her heart was invalidated day in and day out (unrequited love hurts - far more when you have BPD traits) and she grew numb and resentful. Then one day, when you came on very strong, all she could feel was the resentment. And your reaction was to tell her that she treats you bad and you're done.  Am I on track here at all? What do you think?

Empathy is most likley the thing you want to achieve... .check out this short video
https://bpdfamily.com/content/listen-with-empathy

Maybe the place to start is to share the first letter with members and her response to it. Let's get everything in perspective and context.   Smiling (click to insert in post)


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« Reply #35 on: June 13, 2018, 09:21:14 AM »

The worse mess comes from not getting a response you envision, leading to further rumination and difficulty in detaching. We've seen it often here -- members obsessing over no contact from their ex, or cryptic and unsatisfying contact.
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« Reply #36 on: June 13, 2018, 09:56:15 AM »

 Bullet: contents of text or email (click to insert in post) Skip

Hi thank you for the honest input.

First of all I think you read the first draft, not the last (which was in the post you replied to wherein I took that out).

I do get what you are saying, yet I also think telling someone what they meant to you means a lot. If I got a letter from her telling her how much my support and caring meant to her after her abuse etc I'd feel good not invalidated. If she told me how she had learned to not trust and when I did ABC it made her feel loved then it would mean something to me. If she included things like understanding where I'd been in the last few years and why it was so hard for me to open up ditto. I want to know how I affected someone in relation to who they are and their life.

I also do not think her heart was 'invalidated' day in and day out. I was very giving to the degree I could be and a very supportive friend AND lover. Having someone you tell that you are just re-entering the world and not fully available until you get your feet under you so you can be there fully for somoene else constantly push you into acting as if you are almost engaged (we need to discuss whether you should be moving to California, maybe consider staying her and buying a place for us here) is 'invalidating'.

I am not sure how much of the original post you read

https://bpdfamily.com/message_board/index.php?topic=325795.0

but my letter is a very tiny window of it where I apologize for something that was pretty horrible she did. I didn't come on strong 'all of a sudden'. I started opening up more and more as she pushed for more and more (read in the original e.g. givng me her keys, emptying drawers) and pulling me in. She didn't push me away as she got numb at every chance she had to do so she asked me explicitly to come in closer and have a relationship with her. She did some messed up things to get my attention and told me she did for that specific reason.

If you read just about the week leading up to the 'she treats me bad and I'm done' she told me she needed me to ask for and say I wanted a committed relationship and I did, without hesitation and she was thrilled. She made me meet her for lunch the next day to confirm (after seeing her therapist) that I HAD asked, that I meant it, and I would officially ask on our First Date Dinner on the weekend AND told me how much everyone was going to want to meet me she had not had a real boyfriend in ten years red flag red flag. She then made it clear to me she was NOT m girifrlend until I officially asked over dinner which I had, and we ended up having a conversatoin about that as it made me uncomfortable as I said do not ask em to ask if it is not in your heart becuase the words and committment mean something to me. She said they do to me too which is why I need you to officially ask me. So I did the whole Official Date and Official Ask. I jumped over each of the hoops and each time opened up parts of my self that were VERY hard to as she well knew.

We spend the night at her place as official BoyFriend-GirlFriend and she utterly future bombed me; how she was going to buy a king sized bed so we could sleep in comfort together, how the place was too small for us and where would we move when we were ready to live together, how I had to meet her whole family, brought out the family album to show me everyone AND the video of her grandparents renewal vows, what day of the week should be our official date night, how we needed to talk about finances, did I see myself as provider and protector even though she wanted to keep her job for at least a few years until she had kids, what our pet names should be, showed me Five Languages of Love and asked me to read it for 'us'.

That is not "numb" or "resentful". That is taking what was meant to be a 'yes I like you and want to be in a real committed relationship with you let's see what we have' to an engagement. I for the first time did not resist all of that and let my guard down and opened up for the first time in well over a decade to having a relatioship, a person to be with and share with and open up to fully. I bought into the Saturday night dates and the sundays in bed (the Sunday we spend was the first time since maybe 2008 I have not gotten up at 6 and gone to do my work at starbucks but laid in bed with a woman who cared about me and until noon no less). It was a HUGE day for me and a huge amount of myself to give because she really asked me to put it ALL on the table that day.

So the day i refer to in my letter is simply the very next day, 18 hours later, when she sat me down and said 'you are a great guy I'm just not into a committed relationship with you'.  Not only was she ripping out every cord she'd attached to me from my body the day after I accepted them all she was making me feel as if I had 'misunderstood'. She said as much when she said "I didn't do anything we just see things differently'. After months and months of pushing me past my comfort level, after walks in the park expaingin her behavior as being because she wanted a relatoinship with me so much, after making me prove my self the week before in some insane gauntlet to let down my guard and offer her up my soul.  I'd say I reacted better tham most people or men would have. It doesn't change that in retrospect it may have been harsh and if I were a SAINT I'd have taken her hands ands said 'baby what is wrong'. It felt like and still partially feels like she intentionally had me present all of myself to her just so she could smash it in some insane bit of revenge.

So I'd say "grew numb and resentful, then one day, when you came on very strong, all she could feel was resentment... .And your reaction was to tell her that she treats you bad and you're done." is in fact not on track. I dealt with the 'treat me bad' before this like a champ (when she slept with someone and said some really creepy things about fidelity), I understood and took ownership of my role in all this, I put aside how I felt about the inanity of having to ask someone you are in a relationship with to be in one and then to confirm it and then to officialy ask it as if it is a prom or a wedding and did all that because she needed it and because I got that my own behavior contributed to it. What she did that day was horrific, BPD or not, scared or not. And I was not about to buy into the narrative that I was some 'great guy' who 'misunderstood'.

I can find the letter I sent, it was sent three weeks later after I was in shcok to no have heard some 'baby I am so sorry I got scared and could not go through with it' or something like that since THAT was the apology that was needed from that day. My reaction was understandable even if I feel bad about it and my letter really casts this day in a single view point independent of the history or actuality.

My letter said something to the effect of (paraphrasing): "I'm not sure what happened, all I know is I'm amazed at how much I miss you. I forgot how my heart would soar when I'd see your name on my phone. I'm sorry I was not in a place in my life to accept the love you offered. Maybe in some other universe we met where our hearts were both open and we have something beautiful. I hope you find the live and love you deserve, and I'll always remember you and the fact that you opened my closed heart, it is a gift I will always cherish and I hope I brought something as valuable into your life".

I got reply in two days "Hi. Thank you for the nice note. hope you've been well. T'. Blew me away. The fact she was able to not text or email or call me for three weeks blew me away, she had just been planning our entire future.

I did in fact re-read TLP and that passage did remind me of her. I think perhaps reading it out of context or with limited background you could say what you did and that my "reaction was to tell her that she treats you bad and you're done." However the truth is she relentlessly and aggressively had me open up and commit every part of myself to her, she made damn sure that Official Dinner/Hurdle happened and she made sure when we were finally 'together' I put every other chip I had on the table and laid out an entire future she'd know meant the world to me and then took it all away the next day.

I'm trying very hard with my letter to just let all. of. that. go. and understand her in a way she has not given me an iota back on. She knew about my 15 years of pain and loss and solitude and she knew how hard it was for me to share and she knew how hard I was workng to build a foundation where I could be with someone fully. She could have NOT asked for those things if she knew she was going to throw them right back. When I said before the dinner 'do not ask me to ask you if you are not ready or it is not in your heart becaues words dont matter what is in your heart does' she could have done that and not said 'no I am committed to you I just can't wait for you to ask me officially tomorrow night' since she'd have to know. I'm not just some guy that asked her to date me she said no to. I'm some guy who is in my own way as damaged and hurt as she is from my recent past whose feeling she could have been as mindful of and she could have taken the last two months to have her own epiphany with her own childhood book about holy god I hurt him terribly.

So whilst I do appreciate the input greatly, I think telling her what she meant to me and my life is the only thing I can say. I can't speak to her past issue as she didn't tell me what they were ("there is a lot you need to know about me".
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« Reply #37 on: June 13, 2018, 10:13:35 AM »

I'm truly ok with no reply. It is what I have now. As per the original post I made about this, she is not 'the love of my life' but she is a woman who became very important to me and clearly more important than I'd realized. I have been closed off for years. In any event, taking into account what you said I modified the meat of the letter. Still keeping The Little Prince into in but this is the core of it now, not sure if addresses anything said or not:

I’m just reaching out as a person to a person I really cared for because this passage made me think about how I’ve acted and how I might have hurt you without ever meaning to. It has taken me some time to process and get here I am sorry, you were not forgotten.  I’ve tried hard to put aside any hurt or anger about what happened during that very confusing maelstrom of a week and day and came to the realization that I may have I let you down when you were scared and needed me most and lashed out when what you needed was my strength and understanding. I’ll choose to believe that is the case, that the things that were said between us were real and true and that I should then have found a way that day to put my own pain and shock aside as I realize belatedly that the things you struggle with from your past might be bigger than I could know or understand. In my defense, I am sure you know I struggle with sharing myself and that day felt like after every part of it was asked for and given freely it was immediately stomped upon so I reacted from shock and pain. I am truly sorry for thinking the worst and any hurtful words when you needed just the opposite. It is one of the true regrets of my life.

I want you to that you came into my life like a rose when I needed one the most and cast your radiance over me and perfumed all my planet. I count my birthday night and the night we cooked as two of my most special and your affection moved me both nights. I remember some of your texts almost verbatim because they were filled with such understanding and caring and support of me I could hardly breathe after I read them because it was so lacking in my life. The vision you painted that day of us in your apartment that last day was beautiful to me when I finally laid my arms down to accept it. I should have known that woman would never want to hurt me.  For whatever it may worth to you I thought you should know all that since I clearly was not strong enough in myself at the time to share it when it might have mattered to your life and happiness both of which mattered to me more than I knew.

I know you wanted and needed more than just kindness and support in return and I was trying to open my heart up to that piece by piece. When I asked you to be ‘my one and only’ I meant I was ready to give you all of who I was and all of what you needed and deserved from me. I’m sorry I never got to give that to you. For me partially but I believe I could have brought real happiness into your life and was fully prepared and wanted to make that that most important thing in my life. I’m not sure if you didn’t believe that and is so that is my fault. I’m not sure if you didn’t want that anymore and if so that is probably my fault as well. I did not mean to let you down in either regard.

There is no need to acknowledge or reply to this letter and I won't send another or reach out again. I’m simply writing because I realize with some distance and after reading that passage that you struggle with more than I imagined, as I realize you tried to tell me many times, and since I could not provide my full love and strength when you needed it my hope is that by sharing with my rose what she brought to my planet I might shine some radiance and perfume on hers as well.


The worse mess comes from not getting a response you envision, leading to further rumination and difficulty in detaching. We've seen it often here -- members obsessing over no contact from their ex, or cryptic and unsatisfying contact.
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« Reply #38 on: June 13, 2018, 10:44:35 AM »

The downside of this letter is that it will most likely feel like "more of the same" that caused her to pull back to begin with. It will almost certainly make matters worse. Not because she is BPD (anyone would feel this way), but because it's more about understanding your feelings than understanding her feelings.

On this: most of MY issues with HER were just that; she wanted what she wanted without caring where I was. I told her for instance one of the issues in my past as the love of my life left me when I lost my business/money yet she'd asked me things like (before we were even physical) 'when you make your business rich will you buy us a place to live in NY?'. When I told her I'd been working for 10+ years to rebuild my life while taking care of father/mother and wasn't sure I'd be ready to just jump into a relationship when I was secure (this is before we were datng/physical) she said I had a "Peter Pan" complex. I already mentioned the pressure for me to drop my plans to move to California for a fresh start away from all the bad memories so that I could stay here with here. It didn't even feel like I existed. I won't even go into sex since that became an issue as it was all about her.

So there is no 'more of the same that caused her to pull back'. When she'd pull back would be when I'd call her on her stuff and point out that I existed too. I had to point out to her that our Big Date Night was about us becoming a couple and that 'us' and 'couple' meant me not just her and that it was not just her that needed reassurance.

All she didn't get was to get the commitment and girlfriend 'treatment' she wanted from the start as fast a she wanted. And if anything she said is true about her ex's I treated her better in every way than any man she has ever been with. So I'd say that 'more of the same' is not part of what was wrong, though it might be in the original letter.
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« Reply #39 on: June 13, 2018, 10:56:30 AM »

I think telling her what she meant to me and my life is the only thing I can say.

You did before First Date Dinner, at First Date Dinner, and in a letter after she broke up.

I would assume that she heard you. We often think we are not heard. You were heard.  Smiling (click to insert in post)

I can't speak to her past issue as she didn't tell me what they were ("there is a lot you need to know about me".

If you can't speak to her feelings, you won't connect with her, 1stTimer. That's relationship 101... .and really important in a post relationship letter.

Look at this member who posted earlier today. He is on the same trajectory... .

... .we were on the very very verge of saying a sweet bye & see you around message to each other, I got a bit mushy & emotional in my message and talked of times when it was so painful to leave her each sunday night as our weekends together ended, and how she let me know a whole knew level of love existed inside of me... .she replied sidestepping all of that and just reminding me how she viewed me talking to her other exes after we split as a betrayal she can't forgive.

The abandoned male focuses on his feelings (loss). The abandoning female focused on hers (resentment). His comments only made her more resentful and polarized the situation more. She then blocked him.

Why did she block him?  Because she feels he doesn't get it. She feels that he is asking her to share in his sadness and is too self-centered and uncaring to realize how violated she feels.

This is, more or less, what you are about to do. We see this transaction on this site thousands of times.

Do you see the similarity to your situation?

Would you send the letter knowing that it has a 85% chance of polarizing the situation more... .
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« Reply #40 on: June 13, 2018, 10:56:57 AM »

Would you send the letter knowing that it has a 85% chance of polarizing the situation more... .

No clearly I would not. Do you feel however the modified one does the same thing? I mean look at a certain point I can't just fall on my sword totally here. She did some inanlely messed up stuff to me she wont' even look at. There is an excellent change she just ran off with her ex which would explain her ability to just disappear from a guy she planned a life around a month ago. I tried to address her issues in the new draft, clearly though I'm trying to balance not coming at this from mea culpa since in all honestly I think I handled this really well from beginning to end and tried my best to understand where she was coming from and give her what she asked for and needed in fact bent over backwards. So I can't just write a letter that says I know you need A and I let you down and I know you needed B and I apologize for not doing it. That isn't even what happened. again I'm trying to be VERY understanding about a situation I'm on the fence bout whether I need to be understanding at all. Most of my family and friend would slap me into tomorrow if they knew I concated her.

My mother hated her from almost the first time I mentioned her and said "I have a bad feeling about her, don't ever tell me about her if you date her it will be a travesty". In fact one thng that pissed said girl off: at some point well before we started anything when she was stil heavily pursuing, she mentioned she was trying to get a raise and needed to write a proposal. I took a couple DAYS talking to her about the issues, did a ton of research, and presented a whole game plan. She wrote a not such good letter based on that so I wrote the damn thing for her. I followed up for weeks and she ended up getting a 50% raise enough so so she could move from her unsafe crappy studio into a new lux apartment in (my) safe neighborhood. She brought me a $20 bottle of wine (to my wine bar where I then spent $60 on wine for us). My mother was livid. She said 'you just changed her life, you're not her husband or boyfriend, and you took time from your eighty hour week to write her proposal for her that is going to out 1/4 million dollars in her pocket in the next few years. That does not speak well for her'. And it did sort of summarize the 'relationshop'; it was based on what she wanted and needed.
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« Reply #41 on: June 13, 2018, 11:04:22 AM »

You did before First Date Dinner, at First Date Dinner, and in a letter after she broke up.

I would assume that she heard you. We often think we are not heard. You were heard.  Smiling (click to insert in post)

And you mean it did not matter? I did the first two times because she ASKED me to ASK her and to tell her. I might have been heard I don't think I was believed. Did you have any feelings on the first letter at least or did you find that 'all about me' too? She replied at elast...

If you can't speak to her feelings, you won't connect with her, 1stTimer. That's relationship 101... .and really important in a post relationship letter.

Ok so this is the best I can do and the most I'm willing to 'connect with her'. I've really I believe bent over backwards going back to April to understand her needs and fears, I've been pretty totalled in the process and that is not (all) on me. If you have the time or inclination please do let me know if the below is more in line with what you mean, I am in fact hearing you:


Excerpt
Excerpt
I’m just reaching out as a person to a person I really cared for because this passage made me think about how I’ve acted and how I might have hurt you without ever meaning to. It has taken me some time to process and get here I am sorry, you were not forgotten.  I’ve tried hard to put aside any hurt or anger about what happened during that very confusing maelstrom of a week and day and came to the realization that I may have I let you down when you were scared and needed me most and lashed out when what you needed was my strength and understanding. I’ll choose to believe that is the case, that the things that were said between us were real and true and that I should then have found a way that day to put my own pain and shock aside as I realize belatedly that the things you struggle with from your past might be bigger than I could know or understand. I am truly sorry for thinking the worst and the hurtful words I said when you needed just the opposite. It is one of the true regrets of my life.

I want you know to that you came into my life like a rose when I needed one the most and cast your radiance over me and perfumed all my planet. I count my birthday night and the night we cooked as two of my most special and your affection moved me both nights. I remember some of your texts almost verbatim because they were filled with such understanding and caring and support of me I could hardly breathe after I read them because it was so lacking in my life. The vision you painted that day of us in your apartment that last day was beautiful to me when I finally laid my arms down to accept it. I should have known that woman would never want to hurt me.  I should have done her the honor of swallowing my hurt and listening to her. I did not and I am sorry.

I know you wanted and needed more than just kindness and support in return and I was trying to open my heart up to that piece by piece. When I asked you to be ‘my one and only’ I meant I was ready to give you all of who I was and all of what you needed and deserved from me. I’m sorry I never got to give that to you. For me partially but I believe I could have brought real happiness into your life and was fully prepared and wanted to make that that most important thing in my life. I’m not sure if you didn’t believe that and is so that is my fault. I’m not sure if you didn’t want that anymore and if so that is probably my fault as well. I did not mean to let you down in either regard.

There is no need to acknowledge or reply to this letter and I won't send another or reach out again. I’m simply writing because I realize with some distance and after reading that passage that you struggle with more than I imagined, as I realize you tried to tell me many times, and since I could not provide my full love and strength when you needed it my hope is that by sharing with my rose what she brought to my planet I might shine some radiance and perfume on hers as well.
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« Reply #42 on: June 13, 2018, 01:51:39 PM »

here I sit a month later still, amazingly, missing her and still amazed at how after that relentless campaign to win me for her future she can just disappear me.

In reading your prior posts trying to read between the lines and get a feel for what was going on with the two of you - rightly or wrongly - you two were not on the same page. She wanted romantic intensity and future building from you and you were working long hours and going at a very different pace.

It sounded like the dynamic got to the point where she was pushing you to do more (and you were slowly coming up to that) and at the same time, you were pushing her to expect less (and she was accepting and rethinking based on that). She was likely getting some "are you sure about this" from her confidants.

This doesn't sound like a simple problem, there are some very significant value conflicts here. It sounds like you both whacked each other pretty hard at times with planks with nails in them. She pushed hard. You did two, in a different way.

You have huge resentments. I read it in your posts and responses. You are very in touch with it, can only partially put it aside. Your responses and draft letters are very conflicted. I sited one example earlier, and here is another "there is no need to acknowledge or reply to this letter and I won't send another or reach out again". How will someone who feels you didn't appreciate their feelings react to a statement line this. It can easily be received as "I want to be heard, my feelings are all that matter here, don't bother me with yours".  I know this is not your intent, you are saying this to protect yourself emotionally, obviously, but this type of protection doesn't work well... .its another sign of being shut down. We have members all the time break long periods of silence by writing a notes that says "I'm going no contact, don't contact me".  

I suspect she has huge resentments too, as I said earlier. I don't think you are in touch with that at all. If she has BPD traits (highly sensitive) or if not, I think you were a lot more invalidating than you know (this is a problem in many mother daughter relationships, too). Remember, invalidation is measured on the other persons meter. I really encourage you to look at the empathy video.  And watch this one too: https://bpdfamily.com/content/communication-skills-dont-be-invalidating  It will help in your discussions here.  It will really help 1T.

I don't think you can make much progress with a long email... .if anything, if you want to reconnect and open the door, you don't want to overwhelm, and you will need to let her feel she is being heard (empathy).

Deep down, is this really about hoping she will reconnect back and apologize and go back to appearing to want you more than you want her? Hard question, but think about that. It feels that way.

You said earlier that ou can likely get her to respond to a short text... .maybe you should think in terms of some light probe (see if she is still talking) as a first step. Ease into this a bit.
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« Reply #43 on: June 13, 2018, 02:20:12 PM »

It sounded like the dynamic got to the point where she was pushing you to do more (and you were slowing coming up to that) and at the same time, you were pushing her to expect less (and she was accepting and rethinking based on that).

I agree she was pushing for more, I was not pushing for less. I stopped pushing back and started... .accepting. Not sure if you saw the part where after she did her whole 'mark my words by the end of April you will ask me to be your girlfriend" and when I thought about it realized she was right and asked her to meet me at the bar to ask her just that. She was clearly in her campaign mode so I didn't get to ask and she launched into her whole really disturbing other guy she slept with, other guy she was going on a date with, how she didn't want to because she knew she'd cheat on him but would never cheat on me and later on how she said all this to make me jealous. I was spun out of control so did not ask. I think our timing was atrocious as I came around just as she decided to go the nuclear option and force my hand (in the most wrong-headed way possible)

I do get this:

"there is no need to acknowledge or reply to this letter and I won't send another or reach out again"."

Yes it is protecting myself I don't want her to think I'm saying this to get her back or will keep writing her. I can remove it. I do believe the rest of the letter (not sure if you read the last with the "I know you wanted and needed more than just kindness and support in" but other than the line you allude to I tried to make that completely about her. What am I missing here? What about it is not letting her know she is being heard. I've acknowledged I jumped down her throat when what she needed was me to listen. I've acknowledged she needed more than just 'friendship' and needed me to make her happiness as 'my lady' important. I've acknowledged if she did not feel that from me it is my fault and if she did not want that anymore ditto. I am unclear what else I can say to make her feel 'heard'.

Yep I have huge resentments. From being pushed when I was not ready yes, but mostly from then giving all those things freely and completely and jumping all the hurdles to boot only to have it kicked back at me and asked to pretend I never heard or experienced what I did. I tried to remove all of that from my reply. It doesn't change that I feel I should have gotten an "I'm sorry" from her and way sooner than now. I was at least up front from the beginning. I did not 'take advantage' of her when I could have because I took into account where she was and what she wanted and it was not right to take it it I was not ready to give it back. She never did any such thing. I simply came along as fast as I could as HONESTLY as I could. She on the other hand asked for what she needed, despite what I needed and when I gave her what she needed shoved it back at me. Yep, I have resentments.

Deep down, is this really about hoping she will reconnect back and apologize and go back to appearing to want you more than you want her? Hard question, but think about that.

I don't want to go back at ALL to her wanting me more than I want her. What I wanted was to be at a place where I put my hands down and got reciprocate the wanting and the affection and the attention. I wanted this which I said in my latest:

"When I asked you to be ‘my one and only’ I truly meant I was ready to give you all of who I was as a man and all of what you needed and deserved from me as a woman. It is why I started addressing you as M’Lady since I felt you were... My Lady. I’m sorry I never got to give that to you or treat you as such. For me partially but I believe I could have brought real happiness into your life and wanted to make that that most important thing in my life. "

The whole point of my asking and even acquiescing to the Official Date was not to propose to her but exactly what I said that night; to stop pretending we were not in a committed relationship and commit to it fully, reciprocally, an for me to feel comfortable to open up and give her a full on committed romantic relationship, man to woman. I'm not looking for a sycophant. I'd love her to be nuts about me again but only with me being nuts about her. My last relationship was a beautiful one precisely because our hands were down and we both loved making the other one happy and feeling loved. *I* have loved like this and can. If her stories are any indication she has not (no relationship in 10 years, I'm going to say ever since her marriage was a sham) and she seems to have a string of controlling abusive men in her past. So it seems as if you are implying I want to return to the Golden Days of when she was nuts about me and I got to keep her at arms length. And the answer is I really HATED that for a number of reasons and am not trying to somehow stimulate or simulate that. I want what she painted that last night. I want the king size bed and the saturdays exploring the city, I want to be her man and treat her as my lady, I wanted to open up and show her my full romantic/masculine/loving/supportive self, I wanted her by my side supporting my business and I wanted to share it with her.

Should I post my latest? I think it is about as close to what you described as possible, if not I'm totally missing the boat.


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« Reply #44 on: June 13, 2018, 02:26:19 PM »

I don't think you can make much progress with a long email... .if anything, if you want to reconnect and open the door, you don't want to overwhelm, and you will need to let her feel she is being heard (empathy).

Man I don't know if she'd reply to a text. That is dangerous territory and not sure how it opens the door to say more. I'd much prefer to send the whole enchilada and let her chew on it. If she wants to reply now or one day or never that is fine but some 'Hi' thing sounds like a losing gambit to me.  I don't know how I can be more empathetic than this, if not I guess I don't get it. I even made sure that I framed the part about what she meant to my life back into how I should have known that that person would not have hurt me and she deserved more from me because of it.

Excerpt
Excerpt
"I just re-read one of my favorite all time books, The Little Prince, which my mother first read to me when I was five and I turn to at various points in my life when I need to find its wisdom, which changes each time you read it.

When I came to one of my favorite passages it it jarred me into a realization about you and about me:

"I ought not to have listened to her. One never ought to listen to the flowers. One should simply look at them and breathe their fragrance. Mine perfumed all my planet. But I did not know how to take pleasure in all her grace. This tale of claws, which disturbed me so much, should only have filled my heart with tenderness and pity. The fact is that I did not know how to understand anything! I ought to have judged by deeds and not by words. She cast her fragrance and her radiance over me. I ought never to have run away from her . . . I ought to have guessed all the affection that lay behind her poor little stratagems. Flowers are so inconsistent! But I was too young to know how to love her .”

I’m just reaching out as a person to a person I really cared for because this passage made me think about how I acted hurt you without my ever meaning to. It has taken me some time to process and get here I am sorry, you were not forgotten.  I’ve tried hard to put aside any hurt about what happened during that very confusing maelstrom of a week and day and came to the realization that I I let you down when you were scared and needed me most and lashed out when what you needed was my strength and understanding. I’ll choose to believe that is the case, that the things that were said between us were real and true and that I should then have found a way that day to put my own pain and shock aside as I realize belatedly that the things you struggle with from your past might be bigger than I could know or understand. I am truly sorry for thinking the worst and the hurtful words I said when you needed just the opposite. It is one of the true regrets of my life.

I want you know to that you came into my life like a rose when I needed one the most and cast your radiance over me and perfumed all my planet. I count my birthday night and the night we cooked as two of my most special and your affection moved me both nights. I remember some of your texts almost verbatim because they were filled with such understanding and caring and support of me I could hardly breathe after I read them because it was so lacking in my life. I should have known that woman would never want to hurt me.  I should have done her the honor of swallowing my hurt and listening to her. I did not and I am sorry and beg your forgiveness.

I know you wanted and needed more than just kindness and support from me and I was trying to open my heart as fast as I could, I am sorry if I caused you pain in my struggle to get there. When I asked you to be ‘my one and only’ I truly meant I was ready to give you all of who I was as a man and all of what you needed and deserved from me as a woman. It is why I started addressing you as M’Lady since I felt you were... My Lady. I’m sorry I never got to give that to you or treat you as such. For me partially but I believe I could have brought real happiness into your life and wanted to make that that most important thing in my life. I’m not sure if you didn’t believe that and is so that is my fault. I’m not sure if you didn’t want that anymore and if so that is probably my fault as well. I did not mean to let you down in either regard.

I guess in the end I’m simply writing because I realize with some distance and after reading that passage that you struggle with more than I imagined, as I realize you tried to tell me many times, and since I could not provide my full love and strength when you needed it my hope is that at least by sharing with my rose what she brought to my planet I might shine some radiance and perfume on hers as well."
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« Reply #45 on: June 13, 2018, 03:10:36 PM »

If she has BPD traits (highly sensitive) or if not, I think you were a lot more invalidating than you know (this is a problem in many mother daughter relationships, too). Remember, invalidation is measured on the other persons meter. I really encourage you to look at the empathy video.  And watch this one too: https://bpdfamily.com/content/communication-skills-dont-be-invalidating  It will help in your discussions here.  It will really help 1T.

I did read that page in fact earlier, some good insights on how to reframe feedback to be sure. I've also read some of the Nicola Method techiques for dealing with high conflict people.

I tried to in my own way not invalidate here. Perhaps sometimes i did e.g. when she'd tell me how her mother or sister said I had to start courting her, which seemed pretty ridiculous to say to a person you are trying to woo in the first place.

But other times I think I was very "validating", perhaps not in phraseology but in intent. The MOMENT we agreed to 'be a couple' she showed me "5 Languages of Love" and how we should each tell each other what are priorities are. Again a girl who has had no experience in relationships. I said look the whole joy in a relationship is figuring out and learning who someone is and what makes them happy and vice-versa; I promise if you ever feel I haven't noticed what you need you can tell me and I will work on it. But I don't want to learn you from a book. Maybe not the best way to say it but the best way to say I get you but get me too.
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« Reply #46 on: June 13, 2018, 03:37:49 PM »

Perhaps sometimes... .

Perhaps.  Being cool (click to insert in post)

when she'd tell me how her mother or sister said I had to start courting her, which seemed pretty ridiculous

You have to read these things - they are significant. Women love to be courted and put on a pedestal. She was asking you to court her more.  Giving you her key meant she wanted yours... .etc.  It sounds like she was trying in many was to lead by example to get you to engage more.

But other times I think I was very "validating", perhaps not in phraseology but in intent. The MOMENT we agreed to 'be a couple' she showed me "5 Languages of Love" and how we should each tell each other what are priorities are.

You have to read into these things!  Smiling (click to insert in post)  She was trying to connect, 1T.  You said you were in a withdrawn state when she met you. This book is plastered all over the women's magazines as a great relationship book.

Stop 5 girls on the street, 40+ years old, and ask what their love language is. You'll get an instant answer.

Again a girl who has had no experience in relationships. I said look the whole joy in a relationship is figuring out and learning who someone is and what makes them happy and vice-versa; I promise if you ever feel I haven't noticed what you need you can tell me and I will work on it. But I don't want to learn you from a book. Maybe not the best way to say it but the best way to say I get you but get me too.

There is irony here.   Smiling (click to insert in post)  I hope its a  Thought moment.

I'm not taking her side or saying she was right... .I am trying to paint the world with the paintbrush she is using. While you may think the comment about courting or the a selfhelp book is non-sense, these things were meaningful for her.
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« Reply #47 on: June 13, 2018, 08:25:37 PM »

Well at least you've decided me. No way on this planet does she get an email or letter from me APOLOGIZING to her. Or anything.

Allow me to address your points:

Got it. She was asking me to court her more. We were not dating then. I didn't want to date. I wasn't ready to date. She wanted ME. She didn't care that I was not ready to date, had no money to date, had no time to date, had no emotions to spare between taking care of my mother (I was a 'mama's boy' by the way for putting my mother's health before her when we hadn't even kissed or date) and dealing with intense family issues. Let me tell you when the 'courting more' conversation started: We were in her new apartment for the first time, the one she'd had likely from my hours of helping research, draft and write a raise proposal which ended up changing her life with a 50% raise.  We were sitting there after I spent an hour talking to her about a very sensitive issue with her boss and therapist she was terrified to tell me about and was in tears at how I was non-judgmental and very helpful and supportive in helping her to address, and a day or so after our first physical encounter where I spent upwards of 4 hours pleasing her w/o an ounce of reciprocation. I'm the guy btw who declined he sexual advances for a year when she said she wanted a committed relationship because it was wrong. If her mother's take on all that is I needed to start GIVING her and BUYING her stuff something is dead wrong. That isn't 'loving by example' it is taking. As her father or brother or sister or mother I'd say 'you have a keeper treat him like gold' not 'how come he isn't buying you things'.

Showing me 5 Languages isn't 'leading by example' it is fitting me into her cookie cutter cut out silhouette near her picture. This is what I want a man to do (give me things) and this is how I want a man to love (in this order). That isn't loving or leading. If she wanted to love by example she cold have noticed MY language order and showed me she saw who I was and needed. She IGNORED what I needed from day 1. she didn't care about any limits I set, she didn't care about what I needed or what I could give, she cared about what she wanted and rolled over any need I had. She didn't take the time to make herself into someone I wanted to court, she didn't respect my needs or wants. She didn't care that I desparately wanted to move to California to put the horrors of the last decade behind me, she only cared that I agree to stay in NY where I was miserable AND buy a place with her because she wanted to be here. That isn't leading or loving by example. She wanted what she wanted; the relationship when she wanted the way she wanted, the sex she wanted the way she wanted, the things she wanted and for me to refer to 5 Languages, Sex in the City and Fifty Shades of Grey to be the cookie-cutter man her adolescent never-had-a-relationship arrested development mind wanted. I did not EXIST. On the other hand I loved by example and to the degree I could. I did not take advantage of her when I could have and respected I should not take from her when I could not give to her what she wanted, a respect she never returned in the slightest. Asking me to court her when she knew how uncomfortbale I was about being in relationship because I could not afford to treat a woman the way I'd like or support her was not leading or loving by example. Asking me to officially ask her to be mine when she knew she did not want to be but did want me to ask was not loving by example. Painting a picture of a life with me she knew she didn't want just to get me to buy into it wasn't loving by example. I know how to love, I've had relationships with fabulous women who I've made very very happy because I know how and they loved and respected me in return. I can go find once I get my stuff together here (which I made clear I need to do before I can give a woman myself fully and have the emotional and financial and spiritual things to give) any woman in the city who wants to be 'courted' and 'put on a pedestal' and give me her own ordered list of the 5 Languages of love and figure out which guy from Sex in the City I'm most like and cater to her sexual whims. That isn't leading or loving.

I GET they were meaningful to her. They didn't take me into account in the slightest and I don't see irony in my rejecting them for that very reason. She didn't take account of me in the slightest and most assuredly not at the end. And that leads me to this; there is only one person who deserves an apology. Abject, on their knees, oh my god I get what I did to you apology and it is decidedly not her. That letter gets burned and I'll save all the parts of me in that that are good for a woman who deserves it and deserves me.

THAT said I do appreciate your insights in how to communicate with someone when I'm trying to show them I get them in a way that shows I get them. I'll use that moving forward with women who deserve it.

Perhaps.  Being cool (click to insert in post)

You have to read these things - they are significant. Women love to be courted and put on a pedestal. She was asking you to court her more.  Giving you her key meant she wanted yours... .etc.  It sounds like she was trying in many was to lead by example to get you to engage more.

You have to read into these things!  Smiling (click to insert in post)  She was trying to connect, 1T.  You said you were in a withdrawn state when she met you. This book is plastered all over the women's magazines as a great relationship book.

Stop 5 girls on the street, 40+ years old, and ask what their love language is. You'll get an instant answer.

There is irony here.   Smiling (click to insert in post)  I hope its a  Thought moment.

I'm not taking her side or saying she was right... .I am trying to paint the world with the paintbrush she is using. While you may think the comment about courting or the a selfhelp book is non-sense, these things were meaningful for her.
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« Reply #48 on: June 13, 2018, 09:33:35 PM »

It's a good thing to determine what you want in the future and by what core values you'll hold to in the future.  My T pointed out what I already knew: my ex and I weren't a good match.  Buying her a $40k SUV in 2013 was what she wanted to feel valued but it wasn't enough and she started cheating on me a month later.  There were many things leading up to this, however,  on both sides.  "Things" weren't really the core issue there.  I experienced similar things,  had to do x, y and z as she defined or i didn't care about her enough. Some couples work well in what I view as lopsided relationships.  Turned out I didn't (don't) even if for whatever reason at the time I thought I could.
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« Reply #49 on: June 13, 2018, 09:55:24 PM »

I'm very good at not 'do x y an z'. One of my early conversations with this 'pwBPD' was when she (in her quest to date me) texted me "You can buy me a glass of wine Friday if you want" to which I texted "I'm busy but you can buy me a glass of wine Saturday if you want". A month later I bumped into her and she said "I don't buy men drinks or anything". I asked her to explain and she said "Men buy drinks and dinners and walk women home and eventually support them with a home and income". I said "Really. And what do you do?" She said "I talk to them and help make them into better men". I said "Really. I have an alternate offer: how about you pay for my dinners and drinks and home and walk me home and protect my life with yours and I'll talk to you and make you into a better woman?" She said "That is crazy" and I said ":)amn straight". I also told her "By the way: I'm a better man than you could be or imagine, I don't need you to make me better". I love 'courting' women and love protecting the, the ones who make you want to do so by the way they act and treat you and acknowledge how you treat them and make them feel. It isn't chivalry that is dead it is grace.

It's a good thing to determine what you want in the future and by what core values you'll hold to in the future.  My T pointed out what I already knew: my ex and I weren't a good match.  Buying her a $40k SUV in 2013 was what she wanted to feel valued but it wasn't enough and she started cheating on me a month later.  There were many things leading up to this, however,  on both sides.  "Things" weren't really the core issue there.  I experienced similar things,  had to do x, y and z as she defined or i didn't care about her enough. Some couples work well in what I view as lopsided relationships.  Turned out I didn't (don't) even if for whatever reason at the time I thought I could.
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« Reply #50 on: June 13, 2018, 10:01:51 PM »

BTW in reply to the whole implication of the reply; I am very clear on how to notice what women want and need and respond to feel loved and appreciated and beautiful. I know how to court and when to court and who to court. I know how to make a woman feel loved without a book or a cheat-sheet from 5 L of L. I've in fact learned to not notice my male friend's wives or gf's haircuts as I get dirty looks from hell from their husbands who didn't, I've learned to not say 'Over easy with white toast' when a guy asks his significant other how she likes her eggs (again). I notice these things. I don't need to learn.

Perhaps you didn't notice that this girl was trying to force me early on into a relationship she wanted, ignoring my clear communications I did not want a relationship (didn't mention with her) and that I was in no place for one and kept trying to force me or guilt me with what her mom/sis thought I should do for her because she liked me or because I had the audacity to 'get physical' with her once resulting in about 20 orgasms for her and none for me (I believe in fact I remained dressed the entire time). Not that I'm *counting* but damn don't tell me I owe you a dinner to boot. Don't show me a book to bone up on on your 5 'languages' are when we are finally 'a couple' when you ignored every language I needed or wanted getting there.

Perhaps.  Being cool (click to insert in post)

You have to read these things - they are significant. Women love to be courted and put on a pedestal. She was asking you to court her more.  Giving you her key meant she wanted yours... .etc.  It sounds like she was trying in many was to lead by example to get you to engage more.

You have to read into these things!  Smiling (click to insert in post)  She was trying to connect, 1T.  You said you were in a withdrawn state when she met you. This book is plastered all over the women's magazines as a great relationship book.

Stop 5 girls on the street, 40+ years old, and ask what their love language is. You'll get an instant answer.

There is irony here.   Smiling (click to insert in post)  I hope its a  Thought moment.

I'm not taking her side or saying she was right... .I am trying to paint the world with the paintbrush she is using. While you may think the comment about courting or the a selfhelp book is non-sense, these things were meaningful for her.
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« Reply #51 on: June 13, 2018, 10:30:02 PM »

THAT said I do appreciate your insights in how to communicate with someone when I'm trying to show them I get them in a way that shows I get them. I'll use that moving forward with women who deserve it.

And that is all I was doing, 1T  Smiling (click to insert in post)

This doesn't sound like a simple problem, there are some very significant value conflicts here.

At the core of all of this, you have to decide if you want to take this on.
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« Reply #52 on: June 13, 2018, 11:40:03 PM »

At the core of all of this, you have to decide if you want to take this on.

Not in any way, shape or form. I didn't want to take it on when I met her (thus my "I KNEW what you were about when I met you it is why I would not DATE you!" on my way out) nor during most of the time we communicated. It was only for a short period of time I started to believe there was something there and only for a 10 day period I bought in mostly due to some insane toxic whirlpool she whipped up and I stepped into. Other than the fact there was a connection and I had my eyes open to the possibility of having a real connection again in my life after a decade-plus there was nothing about her or between us that would make me want to try to take this on. There was a woman I lost years back I'd take this on and more and ride it out to the end but I loved everything about her (she was not BPD).
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