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Before you can make things better, you have to stop making them worse... Have you considered that being critical, judgmental, or invalidating toward the other parent, no matter what she or he just did will only make matters worse? Someone has to be do something. This means finding the motivation to stop making things worse, learning how to interrupt your own negative responses, body language, facial expressions, voice tone, and learning how to inhibit your urges to do things that you later realize are contributing to the tensions.
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Author Topic: Here Yet Again, Will I ever learn?  (Read 294 times)
WindofChange
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« on: October 05, 2020, 07:55:21 PM »

Went back to my ex, he wanted to give it one more try, he asked me to do couples therapy. We did it, but he was often angry in therapy, left the room (telehealth) one time, got his shoes on and prepared to leave, etc. Got angry with me for messaging a man on fb asking for help to stop drinking (the guy is active in AA and lives in another state a long distance away). Accused me of cheating, outlandish accusations, mean accusations, accused me of talking to the man just to hurt him (??!). Hit his head against the wall (he does this when upset), then said it was my fault. I finally said to him, if all I am is a source of hurt to you, why don't you  move on and find someone else? If all I do is hurt you, then maybe I am keeping you from growing and healing. So...he changed his status on social media to single, and didn't respond. When I (stupid and pathetic person that I have been) told him I hoped he and his child were okay, but I'd really like for him to pay me back the money he owes me, he responded by saying he wasn't supposed to talk to me because that was a boundary he had set, but that he would pay me when he could.
He was setting a boundary with Me?? What the hell? Am I the bad person here? God, I tried so effing hard. There have been times over the past 8 months that he's wanted to call it quits, but I said, let's give the therapy time to work. Let's keep trying. And now he's setting a boundary with me?
Honestly, it makes me feel freaking pathetic. He accused me of deliberately doing things to hurt him. Constantly accuses me of wanting to have sex with other men. Being with him has been the best sex, best intimacy I ever had. WHY would I want to be with someone else? But he fixates on it.
So I feel like such a fool (again). Why can't I seem to get this through my head and move on? We've been down this road a few times now. He seems ready to just move on. But I am crying and feeling unhappy (and drinking). What is wrong with me?
I've read the literature, I really have. So why can't I get it through to my heart?
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WindofChange
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« Reply #1 on: October 05, 2020, 08:02:27 PM »

Regardless of which one of you has the "more major" mental health issues, I think he still has the right to "set boundaries" to help him move forward in life and not get dragged into old destructive habits, etc. Don't take it personally, and don't make it a contest to see which of you gets to set boundaries around the other - just be glad that he's actually taken that step towards self-improvement Smiling (click to insert in post)

I imagine it's part of the nature of online therapy during Covid-era, it's too easy for someone to "step away" and/or "walk out of the building" without needing as much gumption and conviction as they would've needed to do it before. But again, try to look at it at its most charitable - perhaps he knew he was going to say something destructive and didn't trust himself to continue the chat, so he went for a walk to calm down. I'm not saying that's the case, just that it can't likely hurt anything to give him the benefit of the doubt on something like that.

I hope this gets easier for you, it definitely sounds like you've got an oil/vinegar kind of relationship on your hands.
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Give not that which is holy unto the dogs, neither cast ye your pearls before swine, lest they trample them under their feet, and turn again and rend you.
WindofChange
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« Reply #2 on: October 05, 2020, 08:11:00 PM »

Honestly, all I wanted was a "goodbye, I wish you well" kind of response. After all the hateful words, hateful accusations from him, I tried to tell him we needed to move on. And probably we do need to just not contact each other. But couldn't he have said, "I agree, we need to move on." Or just, "goodbye."?  That is what hurt. I know I have issues I need to work on. But that made me feel...awful. It isn't as if I've chased him. I just said how I felt and I told him that this wasn't healthy. I guess, after the way we got back together the last time...him hitting his head against the wall, then cutting his forehead and sending me a picture of it, and saying he needed help....this has been such an unexpected about face that I am left reeling. I guess it is for the best. I am just feeling angry with myself that it still hurts so much.
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WindofChange
WindofChange
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« Reply #3 on: October 05, 2020, 08:34:44 PM »

My therapist a few years ago said I was a "vacillator." Apparently rejection hits me really, really hard. It's my worst fear. I guess that is why this hurts so much. I am the one who left his place 2 weeks ago when he was yelling at me and being abusive. And I am the one who said no, when he stopped by and asked me to take a drive.  (After all the mean stuff he'd said, I was not willing to be trapped in the car with him.) And yet, when I get no response, no closure, and I contact him, he says he's not supposed to be talking to me, because that is the boundary he set. And I feel rejected. And that hurts so much.
Well, it has all hurt so much, he accuses and accuses and accuses. He always thinks I'm cheating. I guess he would always think that. And so it's best to move on. I'm just tired of hurting, tired of feeling sad all the time...tired of crying. I feel like a lunatic. I am seeing a new Therapist. I am hoping that it will be helpful for me. I vent here because I can't tell anyone else about this. My friends have been saying for a few years that he's an a$$hole and a manipulator and that I should dump him. I am the one who kept holding on. Obviously I have issues to work through. And there are so many more important bad things going on in the world with COVID-19, with wars, etc. But still I feel this hurt and rejection. And I can't help but cry.
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WindofChange
Lucky Jim
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« Reply #4 on: October 06, 2020, 11:59:01 AM »

Hey WindofChange,  What would you like to see happen?  I can't tell from your post.

Are you hoping for a recycle, or are you ready to detach?  We are a pretty jaded bunch here on the Detaching Board, because most of us have been in a failed BPD r/s.

At the end of the day, it's your call.  What is the right path for you?  Only you can answer that question.  If you are unsure, suggest you listen to your gut feelings.

LuckyJim
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    A life spent making mistakes is not only more honorable, but more useful than a life spent doing nothing.
George Bernard Shaw
WindofChange
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« Reply #5 on: October 07, 2020, 05:11:38 AM »

Hi Lucky Jim. I had been trying to make it work between us. We were doing couples counseling (which he had pleaded with me to do several months ago), and he was doing weekly individual therapy. I had just started with a new therapist. Then he got angry and made accusations over my casual fb conversation with a man from college (nothing there, nothing at all) and there was a huge blow up. He said lots of horrible, hurtful things, and I did, too.
 I guess I just wanted some kind of kind goodbye, closure, although I realize that when a relationship ends, that isn't always possible. Rejection is very difficult for me. I've been told I have an anxious attachment style. So, when I feel rejected, it feeds right into that. It is an unbearable feeling for me. And I have a lot of guilt issues with this relationship, so because of that I have tried hard to make it work, and put up with things that I should never have tolerated.
I feel better now. I emailed him yesterday and said how I felt, and now I am striving to be finished, for good this time, and to move on. I had a good session with my new T last night, so that's a start. I realize my post was unclear, it was just emotional venting. I feel angry with myself for putting myself through this yet again. It has been a hard, painful lesson. But I intend to move past it. Thanks for responding!
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Be kind always.
WindofChange
Lucky Jim
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« Reply #6 on: October 07, 2020, 11:13:11 AM »

Hey WoC, Take a deep breath and be kind to yourself.  I suggest you let go of the guilt.  You haven't done anything wrong.  The well being of another adult is not your responsibility.  Those w/BPD say a lot of terrible things when triggered.  The key, in my view, is to decline to internalize the venomous comments.  I have a saying: "Poison is harmless if you don't ingest it."  Hey, you're human, so don't beat yourself up.  In my view, going through the BPD crucible leads to greater happiness, once you move past it.

LJ
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    A life spent making mistakes is not only more honorable, but more useful than a life spent doing nothing.
George Bernard Shaw
WindofChange
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« Reply #7 on: October 07, 2020, 03:29:31 PM »

Thanks, LJ. Can I ask, are you happy now? Are you in a good relationship now?
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WindofChange
Lucky Jim
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« Reply #8 on: October 08, 2020, 11:51:57 AM »

Hey WoC,

Yes, I'm a lot happier than when I was in a self-destructive downward spiral in my marriage to a pwBPD.  I pretended that things were OK when they definitely  were not.  Like many here, I was caught up in an unhealthy dynamic.  Things got so bad that two kind friends and a family member conducted an intervention on me.  That's a story for another day, but suffice to say they helped me to detach when I lacked the strength to do it on my own.

Since then, I've been in healthy relationships and discovered that there are kind people out there who will treat me well.  Not in a r/s at the moment, but that's OK during the pandemic.

Happy to answer any other questions you might have.

LJ
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    A life spent making mistakes is not only more honorable, but more useful than a life spent doing nothing.
George Bernard Shaw
WindofChange
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« Reply #9 on: October 08, 2020, 09:18:41 PM »

I'm glad that you are happier overall now. I want that, too. Did it take you a long time to get to the point of being free of that past unhealthy relationship and feeling...I don't know, whole again, healthy? Obviously being married is more of a commitment than a long term relationship (over 9 years total for me). But did you go through very many recycles?
It's funny you mention the intervention. I finally reached out to a friend recently, telling her just a little about what had been going on, and she was very blunt, saying, "There is no future with him. He is a manipulator. You need to move on."  It wasn't really an intervention, as the breakup was already in progress...but it was helpful to hear those words.
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WindofChange
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« Reply #10 on: October 08, 2020, 10:25:32 PM »

Hi WoC,

Thank you for sharing. I've been missing my ex so much lately, wondering if I did the right thing by leaving. I have a feeling it would pretty much go the same way it did here, and this is exactly what I needed to read tonight.
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Lucky Jim
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« Reply #11 on: October 09, 2020, 02:20:59 PM »

Hey WoC,  I'm confident that you'll get there in terms of overall happiness.  Everyone heals at his/her own pace so I'm reluctant to give any specific timeframe.  It's a process.  I'm not going to sugarcoat it, though; it's an uphill climb without a straight trajectory.  It's a gradual thing, in my experience.  Part of it involves finding one's core again, and also learning to love oneself.  Recovery may sound easy, but can be pretty hard for us Nons.  I didn't mind the ups and downs, though, because I decided that they were all part of MY path, which made it OK for me, if that makes sense.  I had gotten so far off track in the turmoil of BPD that it felt good to be finding my own way out of the forest.

No, I didn't go through recycles.  When my Ex and I separated after 13 years of marriage, there was no turning back for me, once I had experienced freedom from abuse.  I had been under a tremendous amount of stress for years and had nothing left in the tank.  You could say I had depleted all my resources.  I vowed never again to allow myself to be the object of anyone's abuse.

I could go on at great length.  Instead, why don't you ask me any particular questions you might have?  Glad your friend was blunt with you and that my intervention story struck a chord.

LJ





 

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    A life spent making mistakes is not only more honorable, but more useful than a life spent doing nothing.
George Bernard Shaw
WindofChange
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« Reply #12 on: October 09, 2020, 04:19:57 PM »

Hey, Light and Shine, I'm so glad my post was helpful for you. Ugh, it's so hard, isn't it? I'm glad this site exists! How long have you been apart?

Lucky Jim, I get what you're saying about wanting to go through the process to get to the healing on the other side. I'm glad you've gotten there. I'm sure it was a difficult road at times.

I think all the time he and I spent together, just the two of us (since he couldn't come around my family or friends) warped my thinking. And because I felt I couldn't confide in anyone, there was not a good way to reality check the situation. Although I'm still sad and have my times of feeling hurt and crying, I know I'm just going to have to feel the feelings and the grief, and keep trudging through it. There is also relief. I told my T the other night that the anxiety that I'd been feeling was pretty much gone. I had been walking on eggshells so long, every time I was with him, I would take alcohol with me and drink, because I was so anxious. I never knew what kind of mood he'd be in, what would set him off. Never anything physical, but the dark moods were scary. I would just want to enjoy the time with him on the weekends, and sometimes they were good. But more often the past several months they were not. I was afraid to talk to other men on social media, afraid to even respond to anything a friend said in response to a post, because he would get jealous and start accusing me of cheating. Now, I can just relax and learn to be myself again.
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WindofChange
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