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Author Topic: Dating while detaching. I don't know what the hell I'm doing.  (Read 2664 times)
BasementDweller
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« on: August 20, 2018, 04:26:25 AM »

Hi all. Recently, I posted about meeting a man, quite unexpectedly who seemed interested in me. https://bpdfamily.com/message_board/index.php?topic=328144.0

It was all very unexpected, and therefore, I haven't really been clear on what to do. So I have laid low, and not encouraged him too much, though we have had some pleasant text exchanges. I figured it was just a tipsy impulse of his to talk to me, and that would be the end of it.

Last night as I was winding down to to bed, I got a message from him. "Bonjour, Madame. (He speaks French, so this is a bit cute.) How was your week? I was busy at work, and spent the weekend recharging and taking time for myself. I thought about you, however. I really enjoyed being around you, and I'd very much like to see you again. Are you free for dinner any time soon?"

I felt a lot of mixed emotions. I wasn't sure how to respond. Part of me wanted to ignore it. I actually had a "flee!" response for a few seconds. Not because I don't like him... .but because I am so shell-shocked by my break-up and relationship with my BPD ex, and it's all too soon. Part of me was intrigued, because I too spent the weekend alone and doing the "Introvert Recharge." I need that. Often.

What I do not need is to get involved with anyone right now, but random timing does not respect boundaries like that, and this guy just sort of showed up on the day that he did. It is what it is. Not his fault at all... .but I still have to consider that I'm not recovered from it all. I'm not really ready for anything.

After staring at the message for a bit, I had a very strange experience of feeling afraid, and wanting to ignore him, but also... .a weird leap in my heart, and a warm glow... .eh... .in other areas I forgot that I had. I have gotten so used to pain and sorrow associated with matters of the heart that I have apparently forgotten what real attraction minus the misery feels like.

I think it's this, though. I think I am genuinely attracted to this guy. I just don't know what to do with that. Just a few months ago, I was living with the man that I thought I would spend the rest of my life with, and his children. They were my family, and I loved them. I still do, but they are gone, and I am not sure where I'm at right now. My BPDex snapped, had a full blown psychotic break, and the relationship ended traumatically. I am not even done processing it, but I still feel loyalty to him in my heart. Because I love normally, and I do not discard people. In the end, I guess you could say he discarded me. I moved out, but only because he became hostile toward me, and unrecognizable. This has really messed with my self-worth and made me question what anyone would see in me.

So this strange, brilliant, measured, rational man appearing out of nowhere is a bit of a monkey wrench. I don't know WHAT to do. I am so attracted to his... .normality. I want to be able to spend time with a person like this, but I am traumatized, and that has to show on my face. I must appear damaged on the surface. I can't imagine that I am hiding this well. I never know when I will start to cry. My ex is on my mind all the time, and sometimes, I just lose my sh!t on a public bus or something. I start crying and have to reel it in and get myself collected. How the hell do I manage to hang out with this new guy? He would never understand the lunacy that I so recently endured. I'm so fragile right now, and I just feel like nobody should be around me. But he wants to be, and I like him. So I am having dinner with him on Friday, and I am terrified. Excited, but terrified. I don't even know if I know how to act anymore. Like... .on a date. My BPDex changed my perspective on love and attraction and made me associate it with something scary, dangerous, and negative. I really don't want this poor guy to be tainted by that. I feel like a damaged person that couldn't possibly be good company for anyone.

Has anyone else experienced this? Trying to get "back out there" and feeling like a total, absolute mess?

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« Reply #1 on: August 20, 2018, 05:04:29 AM »

Hey BasementDweller,

Tough spot and I can sense there is some push pull in your emotions about moving on... .however, what if you viewed this 'move' as not moving on... .yet... .It's a step in that direction yes but nothing is committing you to this new guy in the same way that going for dinner with this chap doesn't mean you have to be a fully signed up member of Tinder to play the field. This guy has taken a genuine interest in you... .well... .for you being you... .which is pretty awesome right?

I'm not versed on what the right thing to do here is, and I've made errors in the past with being too open... .but that's the kinda guy I am... .add to which I haven't dated anyone since '97 when I met my wife, and even that was a little dramatic rather than the usual get to know each other... .so you might want to disregard anything I say... .BUT. What would happen if you talked to the guy about your recent relationship experience? What would happen if you opened up a little bit about where you're at, your fears and what you want from him right here right now? If the guy hangs around to give you a dose of normality, respects you for your current predicament and continues the 'thing', you learn a lot about him. How this discussion goes might need some thought as you'd ideally like to avoid him "rescuing" you. You want him to stay normal and stay out of your chaos to preserve his normality specialness. I guess ideally this chap will listen, his jaw drop, say "that sucks" followed by "lets get shots" and then "lets just enjoy the evening, if you want to talk more, that's cool, if you don't, that's cool."

Allow yourself the space to make good decisions and work through your thoughts. You are vulnerable due to timing... .but that doesn't mean you have to treat this guy with suspicion since not all men are out to get you. But, you are entitled to happiness.
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JNChell
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« Reply #2 on: August 20, 2018, 06:17:32 AM »

Hi, BasementDweller. I really like what Enabler told you, and I also empathize with your position on the matter. Mostly the not feeling ready for anything, but really desiring it. I desire intimacy intensely. I’m a relationship person. I’m not real good at the alone thing. What I’m finally coming to accept, at 41, is that I need to be ok with myself in being alone. I have gotten myself into several bad situations because I’ve not been ok with being alone up to this point. I nearly allowed my last relationship to completely destroy me. As it is, we have a child together, so I’m tied to a person that I would like to totally leave behind me. I went all in for her. Emotionally, financially, etc. I made the biggest mistake of my life in doing so. I hope that that doesn’t sound too harsh. I do have a beautiful Son that I adore and that has allowed me to understand what true love is. I’m grateful for him everyday.

I’d like to echo the advice that you’ve gotten here that it might be ok to offer a little honesty to this person of interest. He already knows that you’re struggling with your ex. I imagine that he is curious about it seeing as he is showing interest in you. I don’t recommend opening up the flood gates of information on him, but maybe a brief overview of what you’ve been through. You’re not committed to him, but you do have a sense about him that feels good to you up to this point. Always trust your instincts. This is a new tool that my psychologist has been helping me to grasp. Many of us on these boards were raised to not trust our instincts. There were bad consequences for doing so. I didn’t even think that instincts were something to be considered. Now they are.

I’ve followed your story here, and I’m so sorry for what you’ve been through and what you’re having to leave behind. I know how much it hurts to be a part of family that has fallen apart when we tried so hard to keep it together. We lost ourselves amongst trying to do so. Trust your gut.
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« Reply #3 on: August 20, 2018, 09:52:01 AM »

Ohhhh, he speaks French! That makes me swoon!

I like the idea of just telling him, without lots of gory detail, that you're just getting out of a bad break up and need to go slow. You don't have to get into a relationship with this guy, it's just dating, it's ok to relax, have fun, experience a bit of attraction and attention. Just breathe, go slow, and check in with yourself a lot.

Just remember YOU need to be your top priority right now.

Doesn't mean you can't go to dinner  

I'm glad you're having some fun, getting a taste of what else might be available to you in the universe.
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BasementDweller
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« Reply #4 on: August 20, 2018, 03:42:10 PM »

Thank you for your replies, everyone. Solid advice and I appreciate it. It can be difficult to think outside the bubble of BPD... .it's weird. Before my relationship with my ex, I knew about BPD from a clinical perspective, and also, my sister has been diagnosed with it as well. She is much lower functioning than my ex, but not once has she ever lashed out at me. She is older than me and has always been intensely loving and protective of me. She and my mother get in some nasty arguments, but she has never said a cross word to me in her life. I really had no idea what it feels like to be the target of BPD rage, and I thought, somewhat naively, that it would be ok. That if my partner and I loved each other, everything would be fine.

Now I'm both shell-shocked but also feel defective. Like... .it's contagious, and now any "non" I meet will pick up on my anxiety and see me as crazy or unhinged too. I never would have imagined how the partners and ex partners are affected by these relationships. And I do believe that without having survived it, anyone else would not understand. I wonder if it would be easier, when the time comes, to say that my ex had a drinking problem and some emotional issues and leave it at that. It's not a lie... .at all. But explaining BPD - I'm wondering if that would be TMI?

I want to respond more to what you all wrote, but right now I'm kind of feeling physically and emotionally exhausted. I get overwhelmed at times, like BPD is a black cloud that's always hanging over me. I'm split from my partner, but it still haunts me constantly. Mainly the fact that he just... .disappeared in the end. He wasn't the man I thought I knew anymore. He hated me. He spewed such rage and vitriol at me, that it was so hard to believe he once loved me. He had no recollection of any of the kindness and love that I showed him and his sons. What a horrible, evil disorder. It robs these people of the beautiful memories they had with loved ones, and fills their heads with anger and mistrust. He legitimately seems to not even remember who I am. I used to trust in love and now I am terrified of it. I'm so afraid to open up to anyone ever again.
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« Reply #5 on: August 20, 2018, 04:12:12 PM »

I wonder if it would be easier, when the time comes, to say that my ex had a drinking problem and some emotional issues and leave it at that. It's not a lie... .at all. But explaining BPD - I'm wondering if that would be TMI?
I'd have to ask, are you ready to get out there in the dating world? Emotionally and mentally? If you are testing the waters I suggest stop worrying about what you should tell your date and just enjoy the dinner and the company. He might find it a little off putting if you talk about your ex right off the bat. And might be too much for him to digest. Give him a chance to get to know you first. Then talk about your ex later. 
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BasementDweller
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« Reply #6 on: August 20, 2018, 04:28:46 PM »

Hi, SC! No, I'm definitely NOT ready, haha. But I am going to try anyway. He does know a little about my ex, as we talked extensively the night we met. I did tell him that he had some difficulties he was struggling with that ultimately led to the downfall of the relationship. So he at least knows that, and yes, I guess for now that is enough. If we were to continue to date regularly, I may then tell him a bit more, but if he's not really familiar with BPD (for his sake, I hope he isn't!) then I'll likely not try to explain the disorder in detail.

I have a close male friend that I sometimes have dinner or coffee with and really enjoy talking to. He has an uncle with BPD, and recalls when he was a kid, riding in the car with him and he'd have meltdowns of violent road rage and drive like a maniac. He also got kicked out of a sporting event for punching someone. When I told him my ex has BPD, the recognition on his face was immediate. He said "Oh. OUCH. I'm sorry. My aunt suffers terribly because of her husband's disorder, and he scares the whole family." It was such a relief to talk to someone who knew firsthand what it was like. He totally understood.
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JNChell
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« Reply #7 on: August 20, 2018, 04:32:26 PM »

.it's weird. Before my relationship with my ex, I knew about BPD from a clinical perspective, and also, my sister has been diagnosed with it as well. She is much lower functioning than my ex

This makes sense. We are attracted to what is subconsciously familiar to us. We don’t have control over the things we don’t know about yet. Our childhood directs us. I’m glad that you’ve realized this. It’s one hell of a conclusion to make, but an important one.
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« Reply #8 on: August 20, 2018, 05:01:10 PM »

Hey BD,

As I was reading this I couldn't help but think that some meditation might help. Don't know if that is something you do or not, but it might help with letting go of expectations and being in the present moment.

That said, I like Mr. Not Quite at the Right Time.  He likes your brains and your beauty. And I bet he has his own stories... .you just haven't heard 'em yet.

Try not to focus on all the reasons not to and just let it be. And also keep grieving your losses... .that can't be rushed... .just let it happen as it does.

I know how it feels - awkward - when you start up quickly with a new person, the lingering guilt, those feelings of attachment to the past. It will fade.

I hope this goes well! I can't wait for Friday - now I have something to look forward to this week! hahahaahaha.

hugs, pearl.   
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BasementDweller
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« Reply #9 on: August 20, 2018, 05:07:44 PM »

Hi, pearl!

Yeah, I guess I am a bit excited about Friday, which means that the week is gonna drag by slowly, I'm afraid... .

BTW, would this be considered Act II? Just asking... . 
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« Reply #10 on: August 20, 2018, 05:14:08 PM »

Hi, SC! No, I'm definitely NOT ready, haha. But I am going to try anyway. He does know a little about my ex, as we talked extensively the night we met. I did tell him that he had some difficulties he was struggling with that ultimately led to the downfall of the relationship. So he at least knows that, and yes, I guess for now that is enough. If we were to continue to date regularly, I may then tell him a bit more, but if he's not really familiar with BPD (for his sake, I hope he isn't!) then I'll likely not try to explain the disorder in detail.

I have a close male friend that I sometimes have dinner or coffee with and really enjoy talking to. He has an uncle with BPD, and recalls when he was a kid, riding in the car with him and he'd have meltdowns of violent road rage and drive like a maniac. He also got kicked out of a sporting event for punching someone. When I told him my ex has BPD, the recognition on his face was immediate. He said "Oh. OUCH. I'm sorry. My aunt suffers terribly because of her husband's disorder, and he scares the whole family." It was such a relief to talk to someone who knew firsthand what it was like. He totally understood.
You sound excited and I am glad for you=) It's a good indication that you are slowly moving forward. Think of it as a good distraction.
BPD is a horrible disorder. I feel bad for us the "discarded" ones, but worse for the ones who are suffering from it.
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« Reply #11 on: August 20, 2018, 05:15:20 PM »

Hi BasementDweller

Above all, set the pace for yourself - youve been through a lot, there really is no rush to anything, it sounds like a great source of company and support - beyond that is the pace you want it to move at.

Meeting new people, friends, dating - it was invaluable - but I had many days as well where phone calls I ignored, they were those times I was ruminating, anxious, depressed and just didnt feel like i had any energy. Then having to make excuses why people couldnt reach me, when i reconnected and enjoyed good times, went out, was distracted, it helped me to see the difference of how a day can turn so unexpectedly along with the mood - as you noticed yourself, I think its a lot of courage to do so when your stuck in that sort of rut state of mind to just abandon it for awhile and be open to opportunities.
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« Reply #12 on: August 20, 2018, 05:18:18 PM »

Crikey... .

I feel like im the unhealthy version of you! Im totally devastated about my ex and im going through woman like they are about to go extinct, and each time I feel worse and worse about myself, comparing each to my former lover against whom they cant hope to compare... .

Every time I get a text from any of them I sit there starring at it for a bit, they swipe it away because I cant face it, but the more I ignore them the keener they are... .

Today I started to extract from them all, which felt like a huge relief making the decision to stop doing that, and the first I did that with actually went really well! To the point I actually feel like I did a good thing... .Ill type our messages below.

But if you ask me yours doesn't feel like mine, yours feels more healthy, I don't think timing knows about your ex, maybe yours Is worth chasing, mine aren't... .


Verbatum texts after we spelt together last friday... .

Her: Hiya, i know you are busy at work but i just wanted to ask if i overstepped the mark by coming onto you on friday? I never normally second guess myself so please don't think im like that its just youre the only one i like and would love to see you again so would hate if friday affected any chance of that.

5 hour delay... .

Me: No not at all, i guess i take things slower, attraction is more than just looks, you seem quite intense about things, i see dating as a period of discovery about another person, you seem to want to hook me... .

Her: Oh gosh thats not me at all, i dont want to hook you i want to get to know you and take my time about it. Im a firm believer in if things are meant to be they will.

Her: I had a feeling id given off the wrong perception of me the second i text you on saturday morning. Could we go back to the end of friday and start again? No rushing just going with the flow and getting to know each other?

24 hr gap gap... .( i was camping with no signal, id told her that was happening... .)

Her: Sorry, me again, final message i promise. Just wanted to say thank you for being honest with me, its good to know where im going wrong so i can learn from my mistakes

Me: Oh <<her name>>, whats going on here? It shoudnt be like this! We met once and your freaking out, and the camping thins (**she accused me of ignoring her despite knowing i was going camping and no singla*... .youre a lovely girl but i dont think youre ready to be dating, you get very serious and worried very fast and thats not a goo thing. Maybe you need to think about why that is?


Her: I really do owe you a huge thank you, thanks to you ive seen that im not over what happened to me last year and that i cling onto men to try and fill the void i have due to that. What youve taught me tonight is that i need to work on myself and be happy with who i am before i can move on and thats what im going to do. I used to be a great woman now im just a shadow of my former self but ill be back better than befoe


So ignoring the total irony of me giving someone else relatonship advise... .i feel this is dysfuntion in its highest form, so if your mesages to your new friend arent like this then give it a pop! The worst that can happen is you get sex then get to enjoy the intense self hatred that brings combined with having to then try to dump them because really youre still absolutly in love with someone else and hey arent them then feeling like you have helped them because they are just as broken as you and everyone was lying to themselves. Hopefully you and your friend dont end up like this, he doesnt sound broken
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BasementDweller
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« Reply #13 on: August 20, 2018, 05:27:55 PM »

You sound excited and I am glad for you=) It's a good indication that you are slowly moving forward. Think of it as a good distraction.
BPD is a horrible disorder. I feel bad for us the "discarded" ones, but worse for the ones who are suffering from it.


I couldn't agree more... .we can recover eventually and move on, but they have to live with themselves, in their own heads. I really do hope my ex gets some relief and improvement from therapy.
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« Reply #14 on: August 20, 2018, 05:57:27 PM »

Hi, pearl!

Yeah, I guess I am a bit excited about Friday, which means that the week is gonna drag by slowly, I'm afraid... .

BTW, would this be considered Act II? Just asking... . 


hee hee.

I must say he sounds so interesting! I also have to say, I know we are a bit alike, dreaming of ourselves in monasteries from time to time, but then... .there you are all over again! On a date! And all those tingly feelings turn on again... .and... .who knows. So much potential.

I picture you two on a rooftop... .looking out over the city... .having deep intellectual discussions until that first kiss finally happens!  

Be in the moment. "Normal" is good. You are where you need to be now. Let it happen.

Act II, but a good Act II, not some twist that introduces trouble and keeps you apart! Just a lovely, mature, blossoming romance!

Two of the most wonderful guys I met were Mr. Not Great Timing guys. My advice: if he's great and you like him, it will be the right time in due time.  

excited for you, pearl.  
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« Reply #15 on: August 20, 2018, 05:57:53 PM »



I couldn't agree more... .we can recover eventually and move on, but they have to live with themselves, in their own heads. I really do hope my ex gets some relief and improvement from therapy.

You know before I joined this site I was wishing that my ex is just, or if not, more miserable than I was. But then I realized that he is actually suffering every day for having BPD. Now I just feel sorry for him.
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« Reply #16 on: August 21, 2018, 05:53:27 AM »

Did my thread get moved from Detatching to Learning? Hmmm... .the mods have more faith in my sanity right now than I do.   I still feel decidedly not detatched. However... .Friday night fun with the brilliant architectural engineer is heating up.

We agreed to have dinner on Friday, but have decided together to shop for ingredients, and I will prepare one of my epic dishes (red thai curry coconut steamed mussels) and he'll be the sommalier and DJ, at his place. 

I am entering into this plan knowing that the likelyhood that the option to... .eh... ."make the beast with two backs" will present itself. I'm terrified and mildly excited at the same time. I mean, wine, mussels, and a Friday night? This is both a dangerous and thrilling moment in my sad little life! Since my one real secret weapon, (besides my caustic wit and "bull-in-a-china-shop" brand of femininity) is my cooking, I have to be honest and say I've gotten a marriage proposal or two out of it, or at least a few pairs of trousers falling off. Just saying. I didn't ASK for that in return. They just fell off. So I kinda know what I'm doing in extending this invitiation.

The exchange went like this:

ME:
Monsieur, I have two possible ideas swirling around in my head. Ok, more like millions... .but these two are relevant to Friday:

1.) [RESTAURANT NAME] at [LOCATION] is absolutely fantastic. Not sure if you have ever been there. Quite cozy! [LINK]

2.) We go to the supermarket and I cook! I have complete confidence you will be highly impressed. However, if this sounds too terrifyingly domestic for you (like... .something akin to going to IKEA together) then option 1 still exists.

If you have other suggestions, I’m all ears. I hope your week is off to a good start.


HIM:
Madame,
Since I, over the recent past years, have transformed from a wild "jet setter" to calm, domestic old man I would prefer option 2. If you are in charge of the cooking I'll take care of the beverages. Deal?

ME:
Deal! I’m slowly becoming domesticated, but still have a very tiny wild streak - usually limited to absurd acts of rebellion like inappropriate food and wine pairings, or minor fashion felonies like wearing motorcycle boots with a dress. You can be the sommelier, bartender, and DJ. I’ll be the chef and stand up comedienne.

HIM: Sounds like a great plan. Looking forward to seeing you... .in motocycle boots and a dress! :-)

So, I think that's flirting. Between nerds. Or something. I seriously thought he'd pick option #1. I'll have to psych myself up for this now.

hee hee.

I must say he sounds so interesting! I also have to say, I know we are a bit alike, dreaming of ourselves in monasteries from time to time, but then... .there you are all over again! On a date! And all those tingly feelings turn on again... .and... .who knows. So much potential.

I picture you two on a rooftop... .looking out over the city... .having deep intellectual discussions until that first kiss finally happens! 

Be in the moment. "Normal" is good. You are where you need to be now. Let it happen.

Act II, but a good Act II, not some twist that introduces trouble and keeps you apart! Just a lovely, mature, blossoming romance!

Two of the most wonderful guys I met were Mr. Not Great Timing guys. My advice: if he's great and you like him, it will be the right time in due time.  

excited for you, pearl. 

Hahaha... .I hope I don't have a very boring report for you after... .but who knows? "Yeah, he ate one of the mussels that didn't open, and ended up in the Emergency Room with violent, bleeding gastroenteritis." <-- (Total BasementDweller luck.)

Crikey... .

I feel like im the unhealthy version of you! Im totally devastated about my ex and im going through woman like they are about to go extinct, and each time I feel worse and worse about myself, comparing each to my former lover against whom they cant hope to compare... .

So ignoring the total irony of me giving someone else relatonship advise... .i feel this is dysfuntion in its highest form, so if your mesages to your new friend arent like this then give it a pop! The worst that can happen is you get sex then get to enjoy the intense self hatred that brings combined with having to then try to dump them because really youre still absolutly in love with someone else and hey arent them then feeling like you have helped them because they are just as broken as you and everyone was lying to themselves. Hopefully you and your friend dont end up like this, he doesnt sound broken


Thank you, Samson - for saying that. I am sorry that you've had to go through all this post BPD break-up confusion. I'm there as well, and not feeling at all "healthy" but I'm trying to motor through it and tell myself that a cute, funny, smart guy just sort of fell into my lap when I was at rock bottom, and no, he doesn't appear at all to be a head case. Very calm and responsible man so far as I can see now. I am just excited about being on a date with a man who doesn't belittle me or insult me. (Which is all my BPD ex did for the last couple of months I was with him.) So I'm going to whip up some mean mussels and hope for the best. ;-) Re: Sex. Can't say it hasn't crossed my mind, ... .BUT ... .I don't want to ruin it by having things happen too soon. This is a classy guy, and I actually like his personality. So I have to figure out how to pace myself here and not screw everything up. Jesus, why am I having teen dilemmas at my age? 

   
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« Reply #17 on: August 21, 2018, 08:26:02 AM »

Motorcycle boots with dress=HOT!
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« Reply #18 on: August 21, 2018, 08:30:17 AM »

Motorcycle boots with dress=HOT!

Haha! Thank you!   I'll have to see what I can throw together. ;-)
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« Reply #19 on: August 21, 2018, 08:38:35 AM »

I recently met a young man I was attracted to, 16 years younger than myself but mature, runs a business with his brothers, very soft spoken but seems strong and sure, and he's a vegetarian which I love (I eat a little seafood, he doesn't even.) We made the "beast with two backs" as you so delicately put it) after our 2nd great date, and he stayed the night. It was nice. I probably wasn't ready, I am still obsessed with exBPDgf, but I was lonely and horny and he was into it, so... .

I've never been the sort of woman to fret about having sex too early, or waiting for the 3rd date or whatever. I make love when and to whom I feel like. However, I admit feeling perturbed when he didn't text me the next day. The day after that I texted him to see if he wanted to hang, then again a few days later. He was nice enough about it, but says he's busy. Maybe so, but I'm wondering if it's a blow off. Oh well, I wasn't taking him as a candidate for a serious relationship, he's just 2 months out of a 4 year relationship, I'm 4 months out of a 2 year relationship, plus our age difference, plus I generally prefer women. Still, it always boggles my mind how men often pull away right after sex, like they're scared I'm going to ask 'em to put a ring on it, . Whatever.  

Luckily, I enjoy dating. I love having one on one time with another person, plus there's usually wine and food and sometimes sex. Yay!
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« Reply #20 on: August 21, 2018, 08:43:12 AM »

I definitely want to respond to your post, but I'm getting ready to leave work (Dammit!) But that's a really interesting topic... .that whole dynamic with the timing of sex and all the moral/social hang-ups people have about it. So I am going to get back to this thread a bit later!

I always enjoy the opportunity to use the phrase "beast with two backs" in any conversation.   
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« Reply #21 on: August 21, 2018, 04:20:20 PM »

Basement Dweller,
I'm sure you've heard all the cautions and probably thought obsessively about them.    I will just restate the ones that the people who love me have been reminding me of: 
1.  There is value in knowing that you CAN be alone.  Entering a new relationship before you have experienced that can sometimes put you in a position of holding onto that relationship out of fear of being alone. 
2.  The right man will be willing to wait for the right time.  There are amazing, healthy men out there (or so I hear) that can handle relationship with someone who is healing, but generally healthy people seek out other healthy people for relationship, so there is a  Red flag/bad  (click to insert in post) or at least a  Yellow flag/questionable (click to insert in post) if a man doesn't have at least some hesitation about getting involved with someone freshly out of a difficult relationship.

That said, I do wish you joy on Friday and clarity as you walk this new relationship road.  I don't think that there will ever come a time when you feel absolutely ready and spending time with someone who brings you joy and shows you what a good relationship can look and feel like can be a great part of healing.  I'm just passing on some of the loving advice I'm fielding right now. 

I have my own "I don't know what the hell I'm doing" situation going on.  Mine has headed down the road of platonic friendship.  Neighbor B wants to honor his decision to take a break from dating and use that time to explore friendship.  I think that there could be possibility for something more when he's worked through the hurts that led him to that decision and had some time to check out the  Yellow flag/questionable (click to insert in post) he's got about dating a neighbor who is so recently divorced.  I respect his decision and am trying to figure out how to make the mental shift that will allow me to explore friendship without the feeling that we're dating without really dating or just counting down the clock until he feels he's ready to date or feels I'm ready to date.  I value friendship and think he's the type where friendship wouldn't be a consolation prize for either of us. 

So I'll let you know how things go on the (overly?) cautious path and you can let me know how things go on the follow your heart and seize the day path.   

BG
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« Reply #22 on: August 22, 2018, 04:01:43 AM »

Still, it always boggles my mind how men often pull away right after sex, like they're scared I'm going to ask 'em to put a ring on it, . Whatever. 

Luckily, I enjoy dating. I love having one on one time with another person, plus there's usually wine and food and sometimes sex. Yay!

LI - hello! I totally see your point here, and I always saw it as a little bit of game playing, or if the "thrill of the chase" is all they're after, then they get bored if it all happens too soon. If this guy is blowing you off in the end, his loss. You seem like a really cool lady, and I think it's odd when people act all weird around each other after sex... .like they have to "avoid" the person. Unless it was an awful, regrettable event, I highly doubt that's necessary.

In my experiences, always having been a bit timid in that area, I haven't had any real heavy encounters with anyone I didn't know really well first. Largely because attraction isn't instantaneous for me. Normally by the time something physical happened, we were pretty well established... .so every single one of those encounters has turned into a long term relationship. I have no moral hang-ups or opinions about how these things should happen, only my own experiences. I would guess about myself that the more I like a guy, the longer it would take me to want to have sex, because I'd not want him to disappear.

If I wasn't that into him, maybe it would happen sooner - or not at all... .if that makes sense? But this guy is really smart and interesting. So I am treading with caution. My plan is to be pretty straightforward and do what has always worked for me in the past. Stick to light beer, and don't get too tempted, haha. But for real... .I have said before to a guy "I'm attracted to you, and wouldn't mind something happening between us, but I still feel a bit awkward and want to get to know you better first." It has never had a bad outcome to do that. So I'll feel it out, and if that seems the right approach, so be it. Doesn't mean we can't kiss and fool around a little if that feels right. ;-) I just don't know. The social rituals of flirting and seduction are something I have never mastered or understood. I often liken myself to a bull in a china shop that way. I am literally the clumsiest woman ever when it comes to being charming or cute. I start giggling nervously and almost faint if a guy kisses me. I don't know what to do with my hands. Still. It's like I'm still 14. 

Basement Dweller,
I'm sure you've heard all the cautions and probably thought obsessively about them.    I will just restate the ones that the people who love me have been reminding me of: 
1.  There is value in knowing that you CAN be alone.  Entering a new relationship before you have experienced that can sometimes put you in a position of holding onto that relationship out of fear of being alone. 
2.  The right man will be willing to wait for the right time.  There are amazing, healthy men out there (or so I hear) that can handle relationship with someone who is healing, but generally healthy people seek out other healthy people for relationship, so there is a  Red flag/bad  (click to insert in post) or at least a  Yellow flag/questionable (click to insert in post) if a man doesn't have at least some hesitation about getting involved with someone freshly out of a difficult relationship.

Thank you for these reminders - I definitely understand. Prior to meeting my BPD ex, I was single and living alone for a year and a half. I was happy and content and I loved it. I'm very introverted and actually really enjoy alone time. Since leaving my ex, I have lived alone for over two months now, but he and I were not really together romantically for the last two months when I was there. I am still grieving, but not suffering from the alone part. I can be ok with that. It's just ... .you know, all the hurt feelings in the end.

At this point I can't be sure how much this guy knows about my relationship, other than it ended some months ago, and I did tell him that first night it was still a bit hard. But that was really it. I don't know how many red or even yellow flags there could be, because this isn't so uncommon, and I didn't really dwell on it or go into detail. I am quite sure I came across as "mentally healthy" because I was very stoic and laid back. When he suggested going to his place I made it clear I was NOT just going to jump in bed with him. He was fine with that and totally respectful... .he seemed mentally healthy himself... .just very reserved.

What I did do was talk and laugh with him and have a nice time, and I think what it boiled down to in the end is we really were oddly compatible. If I went out and say... .met three or four different men, chatted them up a bit, and one was still reeling from a bad break-up, and the others were not - if "break-up guy" were the most appealing, intelligent, and compatible to me... .I'd choose the one I felt for - regardless... .just keeping in mind the situation was going to require some special attention. But I would take a chance if I really liked the person. We can't really always choose attraction to happen at the "right" time.

My solid impression of this man is that he is very rational and thinks things through. He doesn't appear to be a "rush headlong in" kind of guy. I remember the love-bombing from my BPD ex that was immediate in the beginning. This man is WAY more level-headed. I can feel the difference, in spades.

That said, I do wish you joy on Friday and clarity as you walk this new relationship road.  I don't think that there will ever come a time when you feel absolutely ready and spending time with someone who brings you joy and shows you what a good relationship can look and feel like can be a great part of healing.  I'm just passing on some of the loving advice I'm fielding right now. 

Absolutely. That's how I am going to choose to look at it for now. And take it one day at a time. Thank you! :-) Let's not say "relationship road" yet, haha. I'm just putting out a feeler. One tentacle. 

I have my own "I don't know what the hell I'm doing" situation going on.  Mine has headed down the road of platonic friendship.  Neighbor B wants to honor his decision to take a break from dating and use that time to explore friendship.  I think that there could be possibility for something more when he's worked through the hurts that led him to that decision and had some time to check out the  Yellow flag/questionable (click to insert in post) he's got about dating a neighbor who is so recently divorced.  I respect his decision and am trying to figure out how to make the mental shift that will allow me to explore friendship without the feeling that we're dating without really dating or just counting down the clock until he feels he's ready to date or feels I'm ready to date.  I value friendship and think he's the type where friendship wouldn't be a consolation prize for either of us. 
So I'll let you know how things go on the (overly?) cautious path and you can let me know how things go on the follow your heart and seize the day path.   

Yes! Sounds like a good plan, and I'm really happy to hear that you and Neighbor B have thought sensibly about this and decided you want to take your time. That sounds like a well-ordered approach that still leaves the door open if and when the time is right. It's also really a bit more complex with you two because you are neighbors, and both have children. Me and this guy live on opposite sides of the city, alone, and with no children... .so it's not so loaded a situation.

So funny you should say that... .I have never been a "seize the day and follow your heart" kind of person. Ever. I don't trust that damn fickle organ, haha. Normally, the "tread cautiously, and use your head" approach is what I do. EVEN in romance. Which... .well, with the exception of Mr. BPD has made life pretty easy for me. I am kind of doing that with this guy. What I like most about him is he isn't overwhelming me, and he doesn't wear his heart on his sleeve. He seems to be assessing me for normality as well. (Poor guy, hahaha!)

I guess I can try to act like a lady for at least one evening. 
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« Reply #23 on: August 22, 2018, 03:20:13 PM »

Hi BD,
Just wanted to wish you well on Friday - I will be sending out all kind of positive vibes your way.  I feel a bit of an online kinship with you because you may remember that my ex also experienced a very similar complete psychotic break prior to our divorce earlier this year. 

I've been sitting in the peanut gallery, munching popcorn, enjoying your thread immensely and avidly living vicariously through you!  If this guy has a single brother - send him my way - French speaking or not 

Joking aside - you have articulated all of my reasons for why I so don't feel ready for dating yet (i.e. healing, dealing with my issues,  figuring out who I am etc. with a healthy dollop of feeling like a middle schooler who hasn't the faintest clue HOW to date anymore).  I did however feel up to adopting a kitty this week so I guess that's a start 

This guy does sound mighty intriguing... .  Like Pearl, I sit with bated breath for the next installment of this particular telenovella

Warmly,
B
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« Reply #24 on: August 22, 2018, 05:00:36 PM »


I have my own "I don't know what the hell I'm doing" situation going on.  Mine has headed down the road of platonic friendship.  Neighbor B wants to honor his decision to take a break from dating and use that time to explore friendship.  I think that there could be possibility for something more when he's worked through the hurts that led him to that decision and had some time to check out the  Yellow flag/questionable (click to insert in post) he's got about dating a neighbor who is so recently divorced.  I respect his decision and am trying to figure out how to make the mental shift that will allow me to explore friendship without the feeling that we're dating without really dating or just counting down the clock until he feels he's ready to date or feels I'm ready to date. 


Not to hijack Basement Dweller's dating thread, but Beaglegirl, I'm in a similar situation with a female friend. We've been friends since we were both married to men, and for the first time in the 10 years since we met, we're both looking for women, and both available. We've been spending more time together lately, and a bit more touchy-feely than we used to be. I find myself having thoughts about us being together, but I can't tell if she thinks of me that way. I can't decide if I should be hanging around her more, or if I'll just end up getting hurt when she hooks up with some other woman because, after all, we're just friends. I haven't been brave enough, like you were, to just ask. Too scared to ruin a long, supportive friendship.
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« Reply #25 on: August 22, 2018, 05:48:27 PM »

Oh my gosh! I am so here for this thread!  

[breaks out popcorn and prosecco and cheers the other ladies on!]

I swear just when I think I could never, would never, possibly date ever again in life... .then I see this! I really am okay with the idea of being alone, but then I remember that rush of excitement, the first kiss, the clothes flying, finally seeing what was hiding under those clothes! hahahaaha. It's so fun!

Okay. I am up way too late and have a massive headache so this is all the cheer I can bring... .there is so much more to say though... .

Happy Friday!  
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« Reply #26 on: August 22, 2018, 07:40:50 PM »

I just have to say that i've been enjoying this thread as well — especially as my separation seems to have been turning a corner after three months. This is a really awkward time. I moved out of a four-year marriage to a uBPD three months ago, and have felt like I've been stuck in purgatory.

Basementdweller, your story has been delightful to follow, especially knowing firsthand the pain and confusion that BPD partners can cause in our lives. I've struggled with wanting to allow myself time to heal, vs. the urge to get back out there and start making up for lost time, and the need for validation and touch. Since it's still so early in this new phase of life, I have no interest in getting enmeshed in a relationship. And until child custody is decided and our separation agreement signed, I can't risk my ex finding out about any dating on my part, even though it's not expressly forbidden.

Anyways, for what it's worth, I'll document where I am right now: if an opportunity presented itself to quietly and casually make the beast with someone, I'd consider it. I've gone out on a few "practice dates" — mainly to just have some connection and see if I still had some "mojo" after my uBPD's invalidation of me. My flirting has been kind of tepid and half-a**ed but I had a really nice smooch session after dancing with a very foxy lady of my own age.  I've gotten together a couple of times clandestinely with a single-mom friend and we've exchanged foot massage, caressing and what she calls platonic touch.

All of the above has been nice and validating. Well, it also seems a little more tepid and slow than what I was used to before I met my uBPD. But then again, my uBPD hit me with extreme love-bombing. I feel a bit of shame about wanting more validation and desire from these very casual encounters. So I'm letting that feeling sit there, and learning how to live with the discomfort.

Still, I'm feeling more cheerful that I have in ages. And very happy for you. Wishing you a great Friday!  CC
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« Reply #27 on: August 23, 2018, 07:17:26 AM »

Oh, my! Hahaha! Now after reading everyone else's responses, I am both nervous and giddy about tomorrow. I hope that the night isn't a total dud where I have to come back to the boards and explain what an embarrassing, horrible flop it all was! I'm also grappling with a somewhat cathartic, but still emotionally challenging encounter with my exBPD yesterday. But life goes on, and tomorrow is Fri-YAY. 

Hi BD,
Just wanted to wish you well on Friday - I will be sending out all kind of positive vibes your way.  I feel a bit of an online kinship with you because you may remember that my ex also experienced a very similar complete psychotic break prior to our divorce earlier this year. 

Hello, baglady! Yes, I recall we spoke about that - I'm really sorry your experience was as such. I was shocked to learn that these BPD psychotic episodes can be so similar in their presentation. I'm not sure why I was shocked... .but I was. And if how I felt "post psychotic break" is anything like what you felt, then I truly empathize with you.


I've been sitting in the peanut gallery, munching popcorn, enjoying your thread immensely and avidly living vicariously through you!  If this guy has a single brother - send him my way - French speaking or not 

Sadly enough, there is no brother. Only one married sister. 

I did however feel up to adopting a kitty this week so I guess that's a start 

Wow I WANT A KITTY. Let's trade! You take the hunky (albeit oddly quirky) multilingual guy. I'll take the cat! 


This guy does sound mighty intriguing... .  Like Pearl, I sit with bated breath for the next installment of this particular telenovella


My twisted mind misread that as "testicular paranovella". My god. I've completely lost it. I'm not fit to date. 

Not to hijack Basement Dweller's dating thread, but Beaglegirl, I'm in a similar situation with a female friend. I can't decide if I should be hanging around her more, or if I'll just end up getting hurt when she hooks up with some other woman because, after all, we're just friends. I haven't been brave enough, like you were, to just ask. Too scared to ruin a long, supportive friendship.

No problem - hijack away! ;-) Of course you are welcome to join in.   I totally understand this. The awkward uncertainty of it all is what keeps me a little bit paralyzed with fear, too. And also coming from a pwBPD, (insane initial love-bombing) when I had a nice night with this guy, then he texted a bit but didn't ask me out again right away, I thought, "Ah, ok, he just sees me as a beer buddy... ." And I felt stupid for feeling like he might like me "that way"... .and we never really do know. I have always felt like asking the other person "what are we doing here?" points out an elephant in the room that drives the person to put the brakes on, since they may not have a clue either. So I just typically sit there confused having no real plan. I really do just SUCK at dating. Maybe I got sucked in with my exBPD so fast because he was so ON IT that I didn't have to do anything. There was no doubt he was mad about me... .until he was just mad AT me. 


Anyways, for what it's worth, I'll document where I am right now: if an opportunity presented itself to quietly and casually make the beast with someone, I'd consider it. I've gone out on a few "practice dates" — mainly to just have some connection and see if I still had some "mojo" after my uBPD's invalidation of me. My flirting has been kind of tepid and half-a**ed but I had a really nice smooch session after dancing with a very foxy lady of my own age.  I've gotten together a couple of times clandestinely with a single-mom friend and we've exchanged foot massage, caressing and what she calls platonic touch.

All of the above has been nice and validating. Well, it also seems a little more tepid and slow than what I was used to before I met my uBPD. But then again, my uBPD hit me with extreme love-bombing. I feel a bit of shame about wanting more validation and desire from these very casual encounters. So I'm letting that feeling sit there, and learning how to live with the discomfort.

Still, I'm feeling more cheerful that I have in ages. And very happy for you. Wishing you a great Friday!  CC

CC - I can totally understand why you are starting out slow and sort of putting your toes in the water before jumping in. Plus you are dealing with legal issues and a custody situation which absolutely makes things a lot more difficult. But you are at least taking some joy in some casual dating, and your friend whom you have had a bit of affection with. "Platonic touching"... .that's cute. I don't touch my platonic male friends like that. *wink wink*... .but seriously. You are doing it right! Move at your own pace, and start to rediscover attraction again - without all the turmoil and drama. It feels SO WEIRD to think about dating for me, though. I get it. Part of it feels like I am cheating on my pwBPD - but he cruelly threw me out of our life together months ago. I'm not doing anything wrong, even if it's a bit odd and scary for me right now.

Oh my gosh! I am so here for this thread! 

[breaks out popcorn and prosecco and cheers the other ladies on!]

I swear just when I think I could never, would never, possibly date ever again in life... .then I see this! I really am okay with the idea of being alone, but then I remember that rush of excitement, the first kiss, the clothes flying, finally seeing what was hiding under those clothes! hahahaaha. It's so fun!

Okay. I am up way too late and have a massive headache so this is all the cheer I can bring... .there is so much more to say though... .

Happy Friday! 

THANK YOU! You just reminded me that since he is in charge of the beverages... .I want prosecco! I'll be requesting that. 

"Clothes flying everywhere." I am seriously dying in my chair here. I now feel as if the bar is set high. It will essentially be date number 2, and I have never even kissed this man.

I have a hilarious visual in my head. I'll wear a demure, one piece, loose-fitting, pant-suit/jumper situation. But little will he know it will be lined with snaps on either side from top to bottom, and essentially, with one quick tug, it becomes a "break-away" jump suit. BAM! I'm naked!

I'll wow him with a fabulous dinner, some intelligent conversation, a glass of prosecco, and just as he's finishing his meal, I'll leap up from the table shouting, "I hope you enjoyed your dinner buddy, now put that fork down, and (*BAM - BREAK AWAY! let's make the beast with two backs!"

A real dramatic leaping up, and the simultaneous jump-suit breakaway. One fell swoop! Just the whoosh of fabric, and the sound of his fork clanging to the floor.

Can you guys imagine? I totally can.       






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« Reply #28 on: August 23, 2018, 08:07:05 AM »

If you're one of those girls that doesn't kiss and tell you're going to have 20 VERY disappointed people here... .no pressure though     
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« Reply #29 on: August 23, 2018, 08:24:13 AM »

If you're one of those girls that doesn't kiss and tell you're going to have 20 VERY disappointed people here... .no pressure though     

Oh, crap, haha! And if I don't kiss, then there will be nothing TO tell... .and everyone will still be disappointed. I wonder if this poor chap's ears are ringing right now.

Hopefully everyone will be satisfied with a recipe report. Even if my personal life isn't always steamy and delicious, my cooking typically is. 

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