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Author Topic: Having a hard time getting over it  (Read 675 times)
lucidone

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« on: September 14, 2019, 11:44:11 AM »

Recently a relationship ended that I was in with someone who I'm certain had BPD or NPD.  It's been about a month since I last sent her an email, and about two months since we last had direct communication with each other.  We had an off again and on again relationship for a year where every three to six weeks she would have some kind of episode that seemingly came out of no where.  This episode she had some kind of problem with me or something that I did, wouldn't talk about it, be passive aggressive, blame everything on me, accept no responsibility for anything regarding it, and became, illogical, unreasonable, and vicious.  This was a predicable cycle, and I got to the point where I told myself that if it happened again, then I would end it.

And it did happen again.  There was an idealization day where she was practically euphoric over me and us, and then over the course of the next couple days she had an 'episode'.  I recognized what was happening.  This time I let it happen, didn't chase her, and casually dealt with her attempts to engage me.  At no point did she want or try to talk about what set her off, which I don't even think was the real reason anyways (I think she was 'pushing' me away due to the idealization period), but she was making attempts to interact.  After a couple days she wanted to meet up, led to her being at my place taking her things one at time, while she was watching my reaction, and I let it happen.  Then she left.  She tried to call me later about something neutral but I deflected it.

The rest wasn't so smooth.  The next day I panicked,  tried to reconcile, which at that point I was already 'black' in her thinking, we got mad at each other, things escalated, she keyed my car, and we called the police on each other.  Much fun.

Fast forward to today.  I think about her all the time.  Granted it happens less and less, but I still do.  When thoughts of her come up I usually respond with 'i hate her'.  And I do.  I hate how casual she treated me and our relationship, even though in a way, she needed both.  I hate how unfairly she treated me and how unequal she expected things between us to be.  I hate how she couldn't handle her own PLEASE READ and was incapable of having a more healthy relationship.

But I also kind of miss her.  I miss how great things were the rest of the time, and how loved she made me feel.  We got along so well.  It feels like if she was more emotionally mature and didn't have abandonment and rejection issues then we'd have a great, stable relationship.

I'm also in utter disbelief about how extreme everything was.  How fast me and us turned from 'white' to 'black'.  How she forgot about all the good things and focused on whatever bad thing she was currently experiencing.  How fast I could be discarded, and how incapable she was dealing with her emotions or any aversiveness that occurred between us.

It all seems so crazy and ridiculous.  On Reddit there is a forum called 'insanepeoplefacebook', with examples of some of the more bizarre and crazy things that people post on their Facebook.  I joke to myself sometimes that there should be something called 'insanepeoplerelationships', and that her and her concept of what a relationship should be would fit right in there.

The whole thing was, and still is, very hard to deal with.  A month ago I took two weeks of stress leave from work to try to sort myself out. I consulted with a therapist I was seeing.  I understand that some of this has to do with me.  I understand that I didn't set up boundaries properly and had co-dependency issues. I did ALOT of research on BPD, read books on emotional immaturity, codependency, and insecurity.  Spent a lot of time in self-reflection and worked on an action plan for myself.

I found a site during my research called sharischreiber.com, which seems to be primarily regarding BPD and its effects on the sufferer and others.  The single most impactful statement for me on that site was that 'you were trying to have a functional relationship with a dysfunctional person'.  It seems to be the truth, and I remind myself of this all the time, however I'm still having a hard time getting over this.

I'm sick of thoughts of her coming up in my head.  I'm sick of thinking about how much I hate her and what she did to me.  I'm sick of entertaining thoughts that one day she'll shoot me a text message after realizing that she has a serious mental disorder, that she's working on it, and that she wants to reconcile.  Logically I know that this won't happen, and I dismiss those hopeful thoughts as soon as they come up.  I just want it all to stop so I can move on.

I'm sure that taking this opportunity to vent will help.  Time obviously will help as well.  I know that there's literature on this forum that I should go through to help with the process.  However if anyone has any input and can provide some support it would be much appreciated.
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« Reply #1 on: September 14, 2019, 01:02:51 PM »

hi lucidone, and Welcome

youve come to the right place to grieve, to detach, and to grow.

i found that in my own recovery, two very important aspects were to grieve completely, and to feel everything (whether it was love, hate, longing, anger, sadness, whatever) without judgment, but to probe it. this is also a great place where members at all different stages of healing can help you to do that.

do check out the literature here! our article on surviving a breakup with someone with BPD and the ten beliefs that can keep us stuck is a great place to start: https://www.bpdfamily.com/content/surviving-break-when-your-partner-has-borderline-personality

how long was the relationship in all? what would you say youre struggling with the most?

PS. i read a lot of shari schreiber when i was going through it. tread carefully, theres a lot of stuff out there on the internet, some good, some bad. more about her here: https://bpdfamily.com/message_board/index.php?topic=273738.0
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lucidone

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« Reply #2 on: September 15, 2019, 06:38:17 PM »

Hi Once Removed.  We were together for a little more than a year.  With the intensity and codependency it seemed like longer though.  I've read that for codependency its important to accept and respect one's thoughts and feelings, but sometimes I feel like this is getting excessive.  There has been times where I've been afraid that it's getting obsessive.

I think at the moment I'm struggling most with the anger.  The fact that she treated 'us' so casually despite needing something from me. The lack of communication, respect, consideration and accountability.  The hiding of all this aversive behavior and gradually exposing it to me over time, whether consciously or unconsciously.  That gradual incrementation increasingly making me more receptive to it.

Then there's the shock of putting together all of the pieces and fully realizing the full extent of her illness.  The realization that I was dependent on a person who never had the emotional maturity to have developed a sense of morality or the ability to feel empathy for other people.  It's scary to consider this, and it's disgusting to think that there are people like that walking around out there.

I'm also struggling with the disappointment.  I otherwise felt that she was the most compatible person that I've met, both with personality and physical characteristics.  The whole thing makes me feel like I had the love of my life, who got into some kind of tragic accident and developed amnesia and now can't remember who I am or all of the good things that we've been through, and just walks off to start a new life.

Then again, I don't even know who she really is.  Was she really the person she was during the 'good' times, or was it all an act to hide all of the negative qualities?  How much is there to her besides her fear and insecurity?  Was it all manipulation to lure someone in to project her negative feelings onto and make her life more bearable?

I try to feel pity for her but i haven't forgiven her for what she did to me.  I know that she's going to face a life of failed relationships and emotional turmoil, but at the same time she's a tornado that's going to be rampaging through the lives of whatever guys happen to stay with her long enough to do so.  She's ignorant to her illness and what she's doing to other people, and that's horrible.

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« Reply #3 on: September 15, 2019, 11:03:05 PM »

Excerpt
but sometimes I feel like this is getting excessive.  There has been times where I've been afraid that it's getting obsessive.

there are certainly fine lines. by judgment, i primarily meant, for example, trying to replace longing or loving with anger or hatred, or telling ourselves we "shouldnt" feel something in order to make it go away. i did a lot of that, it just made me feel small and ashamed. we dont do that sort of thing when we are grieving say, a death.

reality testing, perspective, and "is this healthy" are all good things. what do you fear is excessive or obsessive?

Excerpt
The whole thing makes me feel like I had the love of my life, who got into some kind of tragic accident and developed amnesia

i can relate a lot to that. stick with us. work through this. you really can make sense of things, and you really can come through it.

Excerpt
Was she really the person she was during the 'good' times, or was it all an act to hide all of the negative qualities?  How much is there to her besides her fear and insecurity?  Was it all manipulation to lure someone in to project her negative feelings onto and make her life more bearable?

there arent simple answers. these are emotionally loaded and challenging relationships, and coming to terms with them is a really challenging aspect of recovery, but it can be done.

as you work through it and gain perspective, expect that some of your thoughts and feelings will change, some of them many times even. and expect that some wont.

we loved difficult, complicated people. people with deep insecurities, deep seated fears, who also had/have wonderful qualities. they both attracted, and overwhelmed us. today, i look back and i see two wounded people that came together, and whom, in spite of their love, couldnt make it work it, and were really dysfunctional. i see why i loved her. i also see why shes not for me. it took me a lot of work to get to that place.

was she the person she was during the good times? generally, yes, just as she was the person she was during the bad times. one of the challenging aspects of recovery is integrating the two, realizing that we werent dating two different people, so to speak. was it an act? think of it this way: we all put our best foot forward in a new relationship in order to attract our partner. we downplay the worst aspects of ourselves as part of that. people with bpd traits do the same thing, just to greater extremes.

was it all manipulation to lure you in to project on you and make your life unbearable? not likely. people with bpd traits love intensely, and desperately want to be loved. they are dreamers. they are also more at the mercy of their impulses than clever or cunning. people, generally speaking, dont get into relationships in order to hurt the other person. was there manipulation, did she project on you, was your life unbearable? im sure all of that is also true. one challenge of recovery is sorting out what is what.

fear and insecurity are likely a big part of her, no doubt. think of the fear of flying. most of us have a little bit of it. some people will fly regardless. some people will only fly if they must. some people will need a sedative when and if they do. and some people will arrange their entire lives in order to avoid ever getting anywhere near a plane. it isnt to say that for those people their fears and insecurities are all they are. but it can be a significant part, it can color their actions, how they interpret and relate to the world, others as well as how they see themselves, it can color their entire world view.
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« Reply #4 on: September 17, 2019, 08:21:40 AM »

"The whole thing makes me feel like I had the love of my life, who got into some kind of tragic accident and developed amnesia"

It felt like that to me as well. It's like there is no way the person I fell in love with would act or treat me this way without some major reason that I would have caused her to change that. I'm far from perfect but I treat people, especially my significant other very well. I was criticized for stupid things like not liking the way I take off my shoes, not washing my hands RIGHT AWAY after/during petting her cat or similar small things. In my pwBPD experience I was hyper criticized over the small things, which would normally just be seen as quirks in, otherwise wonderful, healthy relationships. I was on constant Eggshells after the Idealization phase started to pass and it would snowball until everything I did pissed her off.  She would eventually see she was over reacting and remember all the good and we would recycle. This happened 3 times to me until I put down borders about how I was being treated which she didn't like. Its almost like an addiction to get back to the idealization phase and see the person you fell in love with. Sadly with in my pwBPD exp[experience and many others it never lasts. Do you want to live your life on Eggshell and constantly worry about any minor thing that might piss your pwBPD of and start the cycle again?
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« Reply #5 on: September 17, 2019, 11:09:40 AM »

Hey lucid one, Your story is quite familiar.  You are not alone, believe me.  Most of us have done a lot of head scratching over what happened in our BPD relationships.  You've only been apart one month so be patient.  It takes time to recover from a BPD r/s and everyone heals at his/her own pace.  This is a good time to figure out why you got involved with a pwBPD in the first place.  Hint: usually it has something to do with one's FOO or other childhood trauma.  Does that ring a bell?  Fill us in, when you can.

LuckyJim
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« Reply #6 on: September 17, 2019, 11:25:46 AM »

lucid,

this sounds so similar to my story. i was criticized over the oddest things. it left me scratching my head most of the time. i too felt as if i met my soul mate, my forever, but there came a point i just couldn't take the verbal lashings anymore. i'm closing in on 6 weeks of no contact this coming friday, and although i still think about her daily, it is getting easier. i have to keep reminding myelf of the criticsm, the bullying, the lashings that i dealt with. i deserve better, and so do you.

i received a comforting message from my cousin yesterday who spent some time with my ex over this past weekend. she told me, "know you were right in your decision to move forward and away from her."

i hope in time you find some peace again.

best wishes,

r
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lucidone

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« Reply #7 on: September 17, 2019, 01:35:19 PM »


Excerpt
there are certainly fine lines. by judgment, i primarily meant, for example, trying to replace longing or loving with anger or hatred, or telling ourselves we "shouldnt" feel something in order to make it go away. i did a lot of that, it just made me feel small and ashamed. we dont do that sort of thing when we are grieving say, a death.

reality testing, perspective, and "is this healthy" are all good things. what do you fear is excessive or obsessive?

My fear is that these thoughts are intrusive, distracting, and relenting.  Like I'll be at work trying to concentrate and I'll start thinking of certain things of our relationship.  It certainly was like that when we were together.  In all honesty I think it's a combination of ADHD and the importance that I placed in the relationship in my life.  That's another thing that bothers me, is that she was ready to discard me at a moments notice (in fact I found out that she as on a dating app the day after our last face to face contact), whereas I'm here two months after still having thoughts of us.

a
Excerpt
one of the challenging aspects of recovery is integrating the two, realizing that we werent dating two different people, so to speak.

You're right, obviously.  It's hard not to see it as two different people though, considering what 'one' would do was so opposite of what the other did, how it usually seemed like one or the other was in control,  and the fact that one wouldn't be aware of what the other experienced.  Like how the hateful one didn't remember what the 'loving' one experienced.
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lucidone

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« Reply #8 on: September 17, 2019, 01:48:11 PM »

Excerpt
It felt like that to me as well. It's like there is no way the person I fell in love with would act or treat me this way without some major reason that I would have caused her to change that.

Yes!  There was so much unnecessary and uncalled for remarks and criticisms.  For me it occurred more and more as time went on.


Excerpt
She would eventually see she was over reacting and remember all the good and we would recycle.

Unfortunately this rarely occurred with my BPD.  She almost always blamed me for the way that she felt, which justified her extreme behavior.  There was a couple times where she stated that I was older and was more mature like it was an excuse for her to act a certain way.  Every altercation was my fault, or at least she tried to frame it that way, and she barely ever took ever responsibility.


Excerpt
This happened 3 times to me until I put down borders about how I was being treated which she didn't like

Good for you.  I didn't do that.  I didn't realize that I should have.  I never had to do that before any other relationships.  It would have helped, but ultimately I think the outcome would've been the same.  I feel like it would've been a constant balancing between enforcing boundaries and walking on the eggshells.


Excerpt
Its almost like an addiction to get back to the idealization phase and see the person you fell in love with.

True.  I wish I could get back to that.  However it's hard not to feel that the person that I fell in love with never existed to begin with.  When this happened it was before most of the negatives came out of hiding.
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lucidone

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« Reply #9 on: September 17, 2019, 01:59:27 PM »

Hey lucid one, Your story is quite familiar.  You are not alone, believe me.  Most of us have done a lot of head scratching over what happened in our BPD relationships.  You've only been apart one month so be patient.  It takes time to recover from a BPD r/s and everyone heals at his/her own pace.  This is a good time to figure out why you got involved with a pwBPD in the first place.  Hint: usually it has something to do with one's FOO or other childhood trauma.  Does that ring a bell?  Fill us in, when you can.

Thanks for the support from you, and everyone else that has posted.  Really appreciate it.

It's interesting that I got over my 5 year 'less unhealthy' relationship much be faster than this 1 year 'more unhealthy' relationship. I understand that some of this has to do with me and my issues.  When I took time off I realized that I have certain codependency traits.  I was depending upon our relationship for validation and happiness, and that was part of the reason I stayed with her as long as I did.  I didn't get much emotional intimacy when I was growing up, and I still feel a need for it from adult sources.  I understand that it isn't healthy, and ultimately its not going to fulfill that childhood need that never was fulfilled.  My self work is going to revolve around loving myself more and not 'needing' others in that capacity.  Its definitely been an enlightening last couple months.
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lucidone

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« Reply #10 on: September 17, 2019, 02:06:00 PM »

i was criticized over the oddest things. it left me scratching my head most of the time. i too felt as if i met my soul mate, my forever, but there came a point i just couldn't take the verbal lashings anymore. i'm closing in on 6 weeks of no contact this coming friday, and although i still think about her daily, it is getting easier. i have to keep reminding myelf of the criticsm, the bullying, the lashings that i dealt with. i deserve better, and so do you.

It's refreshing to hear about others having similar experiences.  Especially about thinking of her daily.  I've been considering leaving notes or something similar around my room to remind me of the inappropriate behavior, and while that will help with not wanting to be with her, it will likely make me more angry, and I don't know if thats a better thing Laugh out loud (click to insert in post).

Congratulations on 6 weeks.  Sometimes I think that maybe I'll shoot her a text message in half a year and see if she's still the same person as I remember.  Then I tell myself the idea is crazy and that I'll just be putting myself in the same situation.
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« Reply #11 on: September 17, 2019, 02:26:59 PM »

Excerpt
That's another thing that bothers me, is that she was ready to discard me at a moments notice (in fact I found out that she as on a dating app the day after our last face to face contact), whereas I'm here two months after still having thoughts of us.

i felt similarly. my granddaddy is old school, has an attitude that if someone hurts you, you kick them to the curb, cut them off. a lot of people have that attitude, that theres something wrong with...hurting over, missing, someone that hurt you.

one thing ill tell you is grief is not a contest. acknowledge your hurt - its the way through it. in fact, it will make you more resilient.

another thing that i learned, which while painful at first, ultimately gave me perspective that helped me detach, is that what my ex and i were experiencing toward the end was very different. there was a lot i wasnt privy to, and we were on very different pages. what feels so sudden may have been happening in stages, boiling under the surface.

regarding the intrusive thoughts, there are ways to deal with them. i tried a supplement called SAM-E, a natural antidepressant. it made everything in my head so much smaller and more manageable, and i felt a great deal better. i definitely recommend it.

there are also tools to stop rumination: https://bpdfamily.com/message_board/index.php?topic=103393.0;topicseen

im a big believer in writing them down on paper, it can have a powerful effect. its not unlike a recurring dream, where, if you follow it to its conclusion, it can resolve, and you can even learn something from it. to some extent the mind wants to make sense of the experience. its possible to do so. but it can also be excessive, debilitating, and managing and limiting can help.

Excerpt
When I took time off I realized that I have certain codependency traits

this is good work. as you get a bit more removed from the pain, id encourage you to explore it here and dig deep. it will help you detach, and it will take you far in future relationships.
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« Reply #12 on: September 17, 2019, 02:38:32 PM »


True.  I wish I could get back to that.  However it's hard not to feel that the person that I fell in love with never existed to begin with.  When this happened it was before most of the negatives came out of hiding.


I don't know that the border thing did much but made me feel better, she was already well on the way to painting me black again. As for your last comment I totally agree and is where I feel like a fool. I miss that person and would see glimpses of her in the recycle "upswings" but question her existence. If she were really there in that way it be hard to imagine being here.

I have always said it's like missing Santa Clause or The Easter Bunny, an idea of a person that never truly existed.
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« Reply #13 on: September 17, 2019, 04:35:57 PM »

Excerpt
I understand that some of this has to do with me and my issues.  When I took time off I realized that I have certain codependency traits.  I was depending upon our relationship for validation and happiness, and that was part of the reason I stayed with her as long as I did.  I didn't get much emotional intimacy when I was growing up, and I still feel a need for it from adult sources.  I understand that it isn't healthy, and ultimately its not going to fulfill that childhood need that never was fulfilled.  My self work is going to revolve around loving myself more and not 'needing' others in that capacity.  Its definitely been an enlightening last couple months.

Great work!  Yes, some of it has to do with you and your issues.  Sounds like you are on the right path.

I pretended a lot in my marriage to a pwBPD.  No more; now I strive to make my life a journey towards authenticity.  You might try that approach, too!

LJ
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« Reply #14 on: September 17, 2019, 07:39:04 PM »

It's refreshing to hear about others having similar experiences.  Especially about thinking of her daily.  I've been considering leaving notes or something similar around my room to remind me of the inappropriate behavior, and while that will help with not wanting to be with her, it will likely make me more angry, and I don't know if thats a better thing Laugh out loud (click to insert in post).

Congratulations on 6 weeks.  Sometimes I think that maybe I'll shoot her a text message in half a year and see if she's still the same person as I remember.  Then I tell myself the idea is crazy and that I'll just be putting myself in the same situation.

I was considering doing the same thing with text messages that she had sent me. Compiling some of them and putting them in a box. Opening them and reading them if I ever felt a desire to reach out. I'm not so sure I want to reopen those wounds though.

Continued luck on your journey.

r
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« Reply #15 on: September 20, 2019, 10:25:57 AM »

you will definitely need some months for heeling and i suggest some antidepressants as well. unfortunately you cannot skip the grieving process, but going back for another recycle believing that thinks will be better, will just prolong your trauma.
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« Reply #16 on: September 20, 2019, 01:13:12 PM »

Excerpt
going back for another recycle believing that things will be better, will just prolong your trauma.

Agree w/hardrockcy.  I should know, because I did it several times!

Often a recycle is a way to avoid going through the pain of a b/u, based on the mistaken assumption that getting back together will relieve the pain.  It does, but it's only a temporary fix because the fundamental problems remain.

LJ
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« Reply #17 on: September 20, 2019, 07:11:15 PM »

Agree w/hardrockcy.  I should know, because I did it several times!

Often a recycle is a way to avoid going through the pain of a b/u, based on the mistaken assumption that getting back together will relieve the pain.  It does, but it's only a temporary fix because the fundamental problems remain.

LJ

Think of it like a quick drug fix. It will temporarily relieve you, but prolong the pain.

Best of luck

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« Reply #18 on: September 23, 2019, 08:52:39 PM »

I think about her and us all the time, but there is significantly less emotions.  I may tell myself that "I hate her" when I do think about her, but there isn't much anger.  I give permission for myself to feel angry, and I'm hoping that it's a sign that I'm getting towards indifference.  Sometimes I feel sad.  I miss the times when she was reasonable and fun to be with.  I miss how she needed me, and at the same time I needed her.

It's possible that I miss more of the ideal concept that I wanted her to be.  Someone that understood and loved me.  Over time I realized that she didn't' accept me, or at least portrayed that in an attempt to wear me down or to shift/blame her negative feelings on me.  I suppose it doesn't matter why.  And I realized that she didn't love me, at least not in the traditional sense.  She told me many times, but she doesn't have the capacity for empathy and trust to have that kind of attachment to someone.

I think I still think about her a fair amount because I'm still deciphering the extent of her disorder(s) and how my latent insecurity, empathy, and idealism overruled my common sense and intuition.  I'm pretty sure that she has NPD characteristics as well.  Aside from the splitting, idealization and devaluation cycles, the sensitivity to criticism, rejection, and abandonment, there was a sense of entitlement and arrogance.  She was never at fault for anything that went wrong in our relationship or how she felt; it was always mine.  She went out of her way to play the victim and would be offended easily, and her reprisal was either a casual passive aggressive distancing or an extreme, prolonged, thorough verbal onslaught (only over text though, curious enough).

Every once in a while I'll get a fantasy that she'll contact me, or we'll bump into each other, and things will escalate to us being back together.  I used to think that maybe she'll see how abnormal her behavior is and she'll make a commitment to grow, but that will never happen.  She doesn't think that there's anything wrong.  She freaked out when I suggested that she probably has anger issues, after/during one of her episodes.  There's no way that she'd consider that she has something as serious as a personality disorder.

I definitely don't want to go through that ever again.  In fact I should probably not be in a relationship again any time soon.  That desire is part of the reason why I was involved with her so long in the first place, even if it was only a year.
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« Reply #19 on: September 24, 2019, 01:56:22 AM »

Lucid, reading your posts, your story and aftermath is like looking in a mirror. Honestly, my ex was eerily similar in behaviour. It's scary, infact.

I'm still suffering, to be honest. 8 months later. Not to try and get you down or anything. This woman had a greater effect on me in a year of a relationship than anyone else ever has, and a lot of what I feel, like you, is still a mixture of pain, sadness, confusion, and anger.

But I do feel better than I did so I promise you it will get better. I'm just really learning now about how deeply this has affected me, as I'm sure you are too.
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« Reply #20 on: September 24, 2019, 02:25:18 PM »

Ill share it here, not sure if there is a better place but this article was so well written and describes the pain I felt initially before I started seeing the light both within myself as to why I was susceptible to this behavior and to my expwBPD and her inexplicable behavior, twists and turns. Also explains why there was longing for something I knew in my heart was so unhealthy.

www.nicolamethodforhighconflict.com/ex-girlfriend-bpd-good-times/
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« Reply #21 on: September 24, 2019, 08:14:46 PM »

Ill share it here, not sure if there is a better place but this article was so well written and describes the pain I felt initially before I started seeing the light both within myself as to why I was susceptible to this behavior and to my expwBPD and her inexplicable behavior, twists and turns. Also explains why there was longing for something I knew in my heart was so unhealthy.

www.nicolamethodforhighconflict.com/ex-girlfriend-bpd-good-times/


Thanks for sharing that!  It provided some additional information that I did not consider as to why we feel the way we do with our BPD.  I found the stories in the comments quite similar to what I experienced.
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« Reply #22 on: September 25, 2019, 10:35:21 AM »

Thanks for sharing that!  It provided some additional information that I did not consider as to why we feel the way we do with our BPD.  I found the stories in the comments quite similar to what I experienced.

Your Welcome, there were some different insights in the article that hit home for me and since most of us on this thread had similar experiences I wanted to share it.
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« Reply #23 on: September 25, 2019, 11:17:15 PM »

I give permission for myself to feel angry, and I'm hoping that it's a sign that I'm getting towards indifference.  Sometimes I feel sad.  I miss the times when she was reasonable and fun to be with.  I miss how she needed me, and at the same time I needed her.

there will come a time when whatever you think of her (whether it be the good times or the bad) will not cause you pain or interfere with your feelings of well being.

its been nearly nine years since i split with my ex, and i still remember a great deal of it pretty vividly. i can recall some really good times; it was my first adult relationship, there were no shortage of firsts, special moments, and fun. i wouldnt say i miss them or long for them; ive moved on, but i can smile and laugh. and as for the bad times, which were plenty, theyre humbling. we loved hard, and we fought, at times, even harder. its easy to say i wasnt the same guy i was then, but stress has a way of challenging us, and revealing us. i still work at learning lessons from that relationship, as well as new ones. but the bad times stopped hurting a long time ago.

it took me a long time to get there, but its something to shoot for.

Excerpt
It's possible that I miss more of the ideal concept that I wanted her to be.  Someone that understood and loved me. 

i can really relate to this.

i think its why so much of this is so painful. it feels as if someone got closer to us than anyone else, and loved us for it, and then rejected us for the very same thing. thats a wound that can really linger.

in my experience, time may reveal that that wound is ultimately more about us, our hopes, our expectations, than them. i had such a need to be understood, to be validated, to have the best parts of myself mirrored back to me, its no wonder i struggled when my ex couldnt keep that up. in recovery, and when you get back to dating, it can help to shift what youre looking for to how you feel about your partner as a person...the qualities youre looking for in them, and not just how they make us feel about ourselves.

Excerpt
I'm pretty sure that she has NPD characteristics as well.  Aside from the splitting, idealization and devaluation cycles, the sensitivity to criticism, rejection, and abandonment, there was a sense of entitlement and arrogance.  She was never at fault for anything that went wrong in our relationship or how she felt; it was always mine.  She went out of her way to play the victim and would be offended easily, and her reprisal was either a casual passive aggressive distancing or an extreme, prolonged, thorough verbal onslaught (only over text though, curious enough).

one of the hardest things for me to understand in my recovery is that the way i felt about how my ex treated me, how we interacted, or how much difficulty i had with her, was not necessarily an accurate reflection of what was going on with her, or necessarily, a reflection of a lifelong pattern.

the dsm advises against using diagnostic criteria with a sort of cookbook approach. its easy to do...criteria for some of the personality disorders can upon first glance be fairly vague. a member here made an analogy recently: it can be a bit like having a headache, reading a book about brain tumors that indicates headaches as a symptom, and concluding you have a headache. youve probably been in arguments before, and thought the other person sounded arrogant or entitled and not concluded they had a personality disorder.

to illustrate the point, look at the diagnostic criteria for ASPD (sociopathy). if your ex was impulsive, self centered, cold, deceitful, and you felt manipulated (all things members here report), well, you might be well on your way to concluding your ex was a sociopath. it isnt how the DSM or personality disorders work.

i dont want to belabor the point. part of recovery is about sorting out the relationship dysfunction (ours and theirs)...what was pathology, what was stuff that, albeit dysfunctional, is pretty common in the dating world. most of these things, we will see again.

Excerpt
I definitely don't want to go through that ever again

a better understanding of psychology and human nature will take you far.
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« Reply #24 on: October 04, 2019, 02:11:47 AM »

  We had an off again and on again relationship for a year where every three to six weeks she would have some kind of episode that seemingly came out of no where.  This episode she had some kind of problem with me or something that I did, wouldn't talk about it, be passive aggressive, blame everything on me, accept no responsibility for anything regarding it, and became, illogical, unreasonable, and vicious.  This was a predicable cycle, and I got to the point where I told myself that if it happened again, then I would end it.

I wonder if there is something to the timing of it. In my almost Two year relationship with expwBPD there were 4 push and pull cycles to various extents the last 2 being breakups. The Odd thing is once they started after the idealization phase which was long mine were almost exactly 2 to 2 1/2 Months apart. Like Clockwork scary.
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« Reply #25 on: October 07, 2019, 09:28:14 AM »

Thank you for sharing. I too can relate. I'm continuing to go to therapy even though we've been apart for a while. We struggled to keep the relationship going near the end. But, I kept getting into no-win situations, scenarios and a vortex of questions that couldn't be answered. We were supposed to sell the house and live apart. She rented a place, but never moved out. She kept saying doing that would be a step backwards and the relationship wouldn't survive. I finally have in and said stay, we'll continue to go to counseling together. She wouldn't accept that either. She would say I treat her like I'm leading her on. Then the next morning it would be, I'm treating the relationship like an afterthought. So, which is it? Do I love you too much, or not enough?

You mentioned you wonder if what you could of done differently. I went through the same thing and every once in a while a, 'if' statement pops in my head as well. But my therapist reminds me that there's nothing I could of said or done that would of changed things. That's the vortex. They push, pull you away. They put you in no-win situations. Even if I would of said whatever I bargain with the past on, there would of been something else. She reminds me that I'm trying to apply normal people logic to an abnormal person's logic. Doesn't work.

"I'm not crazy. It's not my fault and I'm not alone".

Keep doing what you're doing. Time will heal.
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« Reply #26 on: October 07, 2019, 11:56:32 AM »

All of this just hurts so much...and the battle of intellectual understanding and emotional upset and pain....that she was afflicted with bpd...and she knew she was and constantly warned me (saying she was born with something missing and everyone has know she is emotionally and mentally sick but her) and would admit she thought I had ulterior motives for loving her and then she would split me...she read me an article once about it...saying “i know I do this to you” but it never stopped her from doing it or trying not to....she would “turn me” as she said and then came the silent treatments and cruelty....and the break ups 10-15 times in a year and half and the blame for everything..the constant looking at other guys in front of me...not caring how it made me feel...and then saying I was possessive when it upset me.....I would have to apologize for everything and she would still tell me I took no accountability for anything...she never did....she never said Shane, I am sorry I did this and this how I feel so scared and this is about me too...and how i don’t want to do this to you anymore or at least include each other in it...nope I just became the enemy....we could be insanely close and then a day or two before and BAM!!! She could just turn her feelings off and I was crap.......I saw the fear of abandonment and fear which never lasted long and she would immediately go to engulfment and all the push pull behaviors...I thought things were getting to a place where we were starting to recognize all aspects of the relationship...that it didn’t have to be perfect to be in love and we could fight and be afraid and upset with each other (you know being in a relationship) but nope.....and in the end broke up me again through text with 4 short sentences...5 days before telling me how much she loved me and us making love twice and talking about the future etc......I feel like this relationship when it started was something of dreams and that I found the person I was going to spend the rest of my life with...that she was so self aware and appreciated me in a way I always wanted someone to..loved my sensitivity and passion and depth...and she always told me how she had never felt so loved and known and never so attracted to someone and the sex was unlike she has ever known...we talked about marriage constantly she even told her 13 year old daughter we were getting married all the time...she said a lot of people would marry for  the sex alone...let alone everything else we had  ...but I was a fool and need to majorly look at myself and look what the HELL was I thinking ..she warned me...over and over...but she also Manipulated me with the “don’t lose faith in me” crap and “I don’t know what I would do if I ever lost you” which was less than a week before she broke up with me again..... and  less than a month before she walked away...permanently and is now with someone else and I broke no contact and you guessed it she blamed everything on me
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« Reply #27 on: October 07, 2019, 12:38:38 PM »

I just think it is tragic that we were made to feel like we were so important to them and never really were...she was this important to me and I wanted to keep knowing each other and being able to work on things in a way that we could feel how we felt and bring them into the relationship ...but that could never happen because she doesn’t know how she really feels and when she runs into the part of herself to actually heal to know she runs away and projects and blames and it ball game over...I just tragic...
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« Reply #28 on: October 09, 2019, 05:54:59 PM »

Ill share it here, not sure if there is a better place but this article was so well written and describes the pain I felt initially before I started seeing the light both within myself as to why I was susceptible to this behavior and to my expwBPD and her inexplicable behavior, twists and turns. Also explains why there was longing for something I knew in my heart was so unhealthy.

www.nicolamethodforhighconflict.com/ex-girlfriend-bpd-good-times/

Wow, I read three different articles on the site.  Amazing.  Thanks for sharing.  I can certainly relate!  This is so helpful in the healing process.  I am the 'nice guy', so it's amazing how I was 'targeted'.  The more I learn about BPD, the more I realize that it's not my fault.  I don't want to lose me. Thank you, thank you.  I'm not alone, either.
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lucidone

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« Reply #29 on: October 20, 2019, 10:29:59 PM »

All of this just hurts so much...and the battle of intellectual understanding and emotional upset and pain....that she was afflicted with bpd...and she knew she was and constantly warned me (saying she was born with something missing and everyone has know she is emotionally and mentally sick but her) and would admit she thought I had ulterior motives for loving her and then she would split me...she read me an article once about it...saying “i know I do this to you” but it never stopped her from doing it or trying not to....she would “turn me” as she said and then came the silent treatments and cruelty....and the break ups 10-15 times in a year and half and the blame for everything..the constant looking at other guys in front of me...not caring how it made me feel...and then saying I was possessive when it upset me.....I would have to apologize for everything and she would still tell me I took no accountability for anything...she never did....she never said Shane, I am sorry I did this and this how I feel so scared and this is about me too...and how i don’t want to do this to you anymore or at least include each other in it...nope I just became the enemy....we could be insanely close and then a day or two before and BAM!!! She could just turn her feelings off and I was crap.......I saw the fear of abandonment and fear which never lasted long and she would immediately go to engulfment and all the push pull behaviors...I thought things were getting to a place where we were starting to recognize all aspects of the relationship...that it didn’t have to be perfect to be in love and we could fight and be afraid and upset with each other (you know being in a relationship) but nope.....and in the end broke up me again through text with 4 short sentences...5 days before telling me how much she loved me and us making love twice and talking about the future etc......I feel like this relationship when it started was something of dreams and that I found the person I was going to spend the rest of my life with...that she was so self aware and appreciated me in a way I always wanted someone to..loved my sensitivity and passion and depth...and she always told me how she had never felt so loved and known and never so attracted to someone and the sex was unlike she has ever known...we talked about marriage constantly she even told her 13 year old daughter we were getting married all the time...she said a lot of people would marry for  the sex alone...let alone everything else we had  ...but I was a fool and need to majorly look at myself and look what the HELL was I thinking ..she warned me...over and over...but she also Manipulated me with the “don’t lose faith in me” crap and “I don’t know what I would do if I ever lost you” which was less than a week before she broke up with me again..... and  less than a month before she walked away...permanently and is now with someone else and I broke no contact and you guessed it she blamed everything on me

Yes, can relate to a lot of this here.  The specific statements and behaviors may be different than what I experienced, but I think the underlying cause is similar; that being insecurity.  They can't take the blame for anything because of the implied shame associated with doing something inappropriate is too much for their fragile self-esteem.  The various manipulations, like guilt and jealously, to try to secure the SO in the relationship.  Pushing away because fearing engulfment.  Pulling closer because fearing abandonment.  Etc.  All of the behaviors and defense mechanisms seem to all stem from that insecurity.

It helps, at least for me, to consider why she was doing all of this.  I don't want to fall into the trap of 'she's so damaged that she couldn't help but do these things', because I feel that it would invalidate the horrible things that she consciously put me through.  We all have the right to feel whatever we feel as a result of these negative experiences.  Somehow its comforting to consider all it though.

Thanks for sharing. Smiling (click to insert in post)
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