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Author Topic: 4.02 | Grieving Our Losses  (Read 5153 times)
busybee1116
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« Reply #30 on: April 06, 2016, 10:48:20 PM »

I think I have made progress with not judging my feelings and simply acknowledging that it is okay to feel what I am feeling.  

This is huge. I found myself with little-me saying things like: It's okay to cry. It's okay to be angry. I am not going to leave you because you are mad or sad or hurt. You are not alone. It's okay to feel however you need to feel. I can take it and I will love you even if you are crying, angry or unhappy. I will love you even if you don't quite trust me yet. I will make mistakes but I will do my best to protect you. I won't leave you. You'll never be alone again.

It was the first time I had ever heard those things from a motherly person (me mothering little-me) and it was very healing to allow myself to have feelings that were not nice or pretty. To cry big gulpy sobbing messy tears.
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« Reply #31 on: April 07, 2016, 11:55:56 PM »

I think part of the hold up with myself and maybe others here is that we do not have solid / healthy connections to the past. I am also realizing my father's mother may have abused me emotionally.

I wanted to stay in a certain town my last 2 years of HS. My father and new wife were moving out of state to get sober because it was not their fault they were druggies / drunks but the people around them. My father's mother knew things sucked for me there and always complained to new wife I was the problem. New wife agreed.

My father's mother offered to buy me a yearbook (one of the few gifts she gave me) from the class. Looking back, it may have been done out of guilt or even cruelty. I can now see things from my inner child and she rarely of ever showed me kindness. She did buy me a new car after she had a stroke and I rescued her from father's wife who had tried to suffocate her with pillow and then put her in nursing home. The car was her way of ensuring I stick around as she knew the alternative.

She could have let me stay with her my last 2 years of high school. She actually let my father's friend stay with her his last year of HS so he did not have to move but would not offer me the same.

I asked some guy ( guy I lived with as a kid who took me on burglaries) why father's mother hated me. He said she hated my mother and took it out on me.

When F was in prison, M dropped me off on her doorstep with some clothes and took off. Father's mother was pissed. It was around xmas and she bought me a train set. I played with it and the next day it was gone. She said my M called and said I could not have it.

I recall making up stories about my parents to father's mother. The stories tried to show they are stable and nice people in a subtle way. I made up a story about how my parents got along with neighbor's and they would lend /borrow tools from each other. I knew she hated me and my M and even deep down my F.

One thing that bothers me is there is no real continuity in my life. I believe we need connections (healthy) to the past as it's part of our identity. I wonder how many of us have the stable aunt or g parent who can share stories with us from when we were young. This builds you into a stable person as it lays a foundation. This is why when stress comes I have a tough time. I am working on weak foundations.

Maybe as I heal my inner child my foundation will get stronger.

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« Reply #32 on: April 10, 2016, 10:37:09 AM »

I am still going strong on connecting with my inner child. I have been talking to my 16/17 year old self lately and am listening to the things that bothered him. I can see the struggles this young man who later became me went through. I also see how I have an unhealthy obsession with a certain town of which I barely know about 3-4 people who still live there. It came about as this young guy as trying to establish roots somewhere and this place was selected.

I have also had weird pangs about not being more socially normal (girlfriends, dances, etc). This bothered my 16-17 year old self. I reminded him of how he was 19 -20 and tried to get custody of his younger brother. I told him he is a prince among men. Most guys could never step up like that. I admittedly only made  a half as*** attempt to get little brother but at least I tried. My F was going back to jail and brother (B) had no where to go. Younger kids were with ex wife and our mother had new family. I had a little apt and F said he would give me a few bucks as long as it did not get crazy for me to take him in. He ended up with our M until she kicked him out as he was not part of her new family.

I tell my young self to be proud of even considering this. Most kids that age are still children. You were trying to salvage the wreckage of your family. I then give him a loving hug.

I realize I am merely providing moral support for this 16/17 year old. This is what was missing. 

We can never go home. I cannot go back and relive these days in a healthier way. All we can do is heal and build better tomorrows.

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Woolspinner2000
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« Reply #33 on: April 13, 2016, 09:56:27 AM »

Yesterday in my T session, I mentioned that I don't grieve my uBPDm's death, but I do grieve nearly every day, because of the effect of growing up in a home of a pwBPD. He pointed out that I grieve more her life than I do her death. Good point, and I think that is how it is for most of us here. I continually go back to the fact that I grieve my dad's death and missing him, but I certainly don't my mom's death. Yet the day to day discovery of how much she influenced my beliefs, values, self, view of others, trust... .these are the things I grieve. It is so enormous.

My grief can change somewhat from day to day, depending upon any new memories or situations I find myself in that trigger the past. Today I am feeling sad, especially so, because of a new memory that surfaced only 2 days ago. I suddenly, out of the blue, clearly remembered something my mom said to us kids. I was not willing to trust myself though, so I texted my brother to ask him. His response validated what I did not really wish to believe was true.

She would say to us, "I wish I never had you kids." 

That's the stuff I read about BPD in books, but this time it's my mother that said it. My brother said he remembers it very well. I am allowing myself to feel this great depth of sadness at the reality of my childhood. How sad for a little child to hear this, not one time, but many. Long ago I learned that the Survivor's Guide on the right side is not linear, but that I come and go through different steps and repeat. Now I'm back to step 4, and 're-experiencing the abuse,' trying to allow myself to feel it. I'm not good at crying yet, which tells me that I have a lot of scar tissue built up around the pain.

Thankfully I have my T and a few trusted friends who continue to encourage me. I'm not afraid of this grief, but it is so very and profoundly sad.

Wools
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« Reply #34 on: April 13, 2016, 06:34:51 PM »

Hi Woolspinner,  how awful for you. What a terrible thing for a mother to say to her children. I like you have just begun to really talk about,  re live and admit to myself how wrong it was for my mother to rage at me and verbally abuse me. It seems so obvious now to my adult-personality-disorder-aware-self that she was and is so sick. I am a mother and I cannot imagine any circumstances where I would say such a thing to my son. It is the exact opposite. I am so grateful to be sharing my Life with him,  he is such a blessing and a precious gift. In relation to grief,  I feel I am grieving for the absence of love, safety, stabilty, protection, parenting... .
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« Reply #35 on: April 13, 2016, 06:40:38 PM »

Yesterday in my T session, I mentioned that I don't grieve my uBPDm's death, but I do grieve nearly every day, because of the effect of growing up in a home of a pwBPD. He pointed out that I grieve more her life than I do her death. Good point, and I think that is how it is for most of us here. I continually go back to the fact that I grieve my dad's death and missing him, but I certainly don't my mom's death. Yet the day to day discovery of how much she influenced my beliefs, values, self, view of others, trust... .these are the things I grieve. It is so enormous.

My grief can change somewhat from day to day, depending upon any new memories or situations I find myself in that trigger the past. Today I am feeling sad, especially so, because of a new memory that surfaced only 2 days ago. I suddenly, out of the blue, clearly remembered something my mom said to us kids. I was not willing to trust myself though, so I texted my brother to ask him. His response validated what I did not really wish to believe was true.

She would say to us, "I wish I never had you kids." 

That's the stuff I read about BPD in books, but this time it's my mother that said it. My brother said he remembers it very well. I am allowing myself to feel this great depth of sadness at the reality of my childhood. How sad for a little child to hear this, not one time, but many. Long ago I learned that the Survivor's Guide on the right side is not linear, but that I come and go through different steps and repeat. Now I'm back to step 4, and 're-experiencing the abuse,' trying to allow myself to feel it. I'm not good at crying yet, which tells me that I have a lot of scar tissue built up around the pain.

Thankfully I have my T and a few trusted friends who continue to encourage me. I'm not afraid of this grief, but it is so very and profoundly sad.

Wools

Yep my mom said something similar. Hang in there, we'll get through this together!

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« Reply #36 on: April 16, 2016, 03:06:32 PM »

Those are harsh words and it's good you mourn her life instead of her death. In a sense, there was really no death to mourn as the connection never happened. I hope that statement makes sense. The life you mourn is probably for what it should have been. That is how I feel.

I have tried to connect with old friends lately and realize my teenage years the 16/17 yr old self was a bit socially inept but I was able to find similar people.  Thankfully, we were not nerds (nothing wrong with that) as I was reminded of the trouble we got in i.e fights , police, etc.

Oddly, I have been reminiscing / fantasizing about what my life as a clean -cut, fresh-faced and innocent school boy would have been like. I think my 16/17 yr old self yearned for that. Being able to have a stable home and play a sport and just do healthy, normal teenage stuff. There is   clearly something wrong in my human development path. I was able to gravitate to normal kids when I moved but seemed to quickly have falling outs with them. i always maintained a core group of friends however. There was some social awkwardness that soon appeared with me. I am telling my 16/17 yr old self you did good with the circumstances and not to compare yourself to others. You were not on equal footing with most.  I also realize how weak and mean my father really was. He was unable to provide a basic home for me out of irresponsible behavior. I volunteered at a shelter to serve food through my school and he insulted me saying I was probably benefiting somehow from it. Oddly, he saw everyone around me hate me and he in a way joined in. He later admitted to me these people hated me because they hated him. I was hated by extension. I am not sure why he continued to associate with such people. He did not understand healthy relationships.

  The fact my 16/17 yr old self worked tried to play a sport and simply survive is great. I find this young guy beating on himself as he wanted a girlfriend and to be a bit more normal. I tell him not to worry as he is doing  great, keep bettering himself and he will end up okay. I can tell I am reaching the heart of this great kid who it seems everyone hated. The adults who I had in my life were not much help to me. Much like high school, kid's with no social proof ie. friends, etc get ostracized. These mental midgets still had that mind set.

I am continuing to mentor the 16/17 yr old self and can see how the healing is beginning.
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« Reply #37 on: April 17, 2016, 05:22:23 AM »

After emailing my former therapist about someone in my life I realized I'm on step 13 now so I printed out those pages from the book and will make a separate post on it.
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« Reply #38 on: April 17, 2016, 09:20:07 AM »

I think the grief is a part of the situation, something that I have learned to accept as a result of how I was raised. The obvious grief for me is the loss of my father, even though it has been a while, I will think of him and cry from time to time. I think this is a normal grief for the loss of a parent.


I had an interesting event a while back. It was my birthday and my mother sent me an impersonal generic gift- one she sends to everybody. It isn't special. How much someone spends on a gift for me is not something that would bother me, but receiving this generic gift  felt worse than if she had not sent anything- because basically it is the same gift she gives everyone.  I know this because I have taken her shopping before to pick up a few of these items to give as gifts to people. I don't expect anything from her, yet I began to cry when I saw it and cried off an on for several days.

Why? It was grief. Partly my fault as well since I am not close to her. But the idea that, after all these years, she doesn't know me any better than she knows her hairdresser or dentist struck me as sad. That no more thought went into this gift than any other gift.

It was grief that, after all these years, my mother doesn't really know much about me. That she doesn't even know me well enough- that if she wanted to buy me a gift- there are many inexpensive things that would be meaningful to me. She has suggested several books she like to me- could have sent me one of them. Cookbooks, cooking gadgets, a scarf ( I love them), simple earrings, but it isn't the object that I would be thrilled about- but the fact that someone was thinking of me as an individual when they bought it.

Mom did the best she could, and so I thanked her. But it was a reminder to me of the disconnect between who I am and who she imagines I am.
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« Reply #39 on: April 17, 2016, 12:06:22 PM »

A few recent comments about the disconnect with parents is common. We have to understand there is little to no relationship.We know them but it's one sided. This confuses us in our younger years and as adults takes us coming to a place like to this to understand they are messed up.

If you go to Facebook ( FYI- i am getting sick of it as it creates false realities of how people live), look at people who were dysfunctional like ourselves and look at people who came from well-rounded and healthy families. Many people suffered more than we realize as only  a child of a BPD can pick up on these traits. I am sure you know what I mean.

Many of the dysfunctional people appear to be living a bit "rougher" while the ones who grew up stable are still more stable.

This is what I have been working on my 16/17 yr old self lately. he knew he was damaged at  a young age. I recall my F being arrested for DUI in my 11/12th grade year. He was going to lose his job and we were not stable to begin with. There is no way I could have been "normal" back then with so much chaos going on.

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« Reply #40 on: April 17, 2016, 02:31:11 PM »

I want to articulate what I meant in my previous post. There was little to no investment (not always monetary) made in us. Parents should be actively involved in our lives. I suspect many of our parents  were not involved with our school and or friends. I see parents going to kid's games , knowing their friends, etc. What these parents are doing is helping to socialize their kid's. If you do not have this advantage of parental investment, you are going to come us short in many areas and have to over compensate. I see this where I work. Young adults from good homes always seem more stable than the ones who do not.

I realized today (or maybe accepted), these people f***** us over hard. Watching them get high and drunk instead of properly socializing us traumatized us in ways we are still understanding.

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« Reply #41 on: April 19, 2016, 10:15:47 PM »

I lost my BPD Mum when I was 15 from accidentental overdose. I'm grieving for the person without her having BPD. I wonder what she will be like as a mother ? Will she have a successful career, what social activities or hobbies she will be enjoy doing? I grieve for her life that she should of had and what she deserve. She deserve so much more then having BPD.
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« Reply #42 on: April 20, 2016, 07:59:36 AM »

Watching them get high and drunk instead of properly socializing us traumatized us in ways we are still understanding.

This is tough to go through please help. Seeing our parents for who they really are, disordered individuals is a harsh reality to have to accept. Your parents were the adults, the ones responsible for taking care of you but they unfortunately failed you. You cannot change that past, but as you grow and heal you can hopefully work on creating a future for yourself that is more positive than your childhood with your parents. The healing process is a journey, often a long journey and often also painful. Yet as you work through these issues, I do believe it is possible to make positive steps forward. You are definitely moving in the right direction, yet I also realize that all these new realizations and insights you are having, can be very difficult to deal with.

I lost my BPD Mum when I was 15 from accidentental overdose. I'm grieving for the person without her having BPD. I wonder what she will be like as a mother ? Will she have a successful career, what social activities or hobbies she will be enjoy doing? I grieve for her life that she should of had and what she deserve. She deserve so much more then having BPD.

Hi Peta87  From all your posts It always becomes clear that in spite of everything, you greatly loved your mother. Your mother was a troubled individual, but she was still your mother and losing her in such a tragic way when you were only 15 is very hard. Your mother's life was cut short and seriously influenced by her BPD. Though she did not get to live the life you are now envisioning she might have had, in a way your mother lives on in the love you still have for her. As you move through life and try to build your own life in the most positive way you can, in a way you are also giving your mother some of the things she never got to experience for herself. As you live your life, your love for your mother is still present in everything you do so in a sense your mother is there with you experiencing it too
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« Reply #43 on: April 20, 2016, 08:55:27 AM »

This inner child healing is remarkable. I realize my obsession with a particular town is nothing more than a "setting" for my ideal imaginary life. Additionally, I was clearly seen as downtrodden in this town as it's relatively small and mostly middle -upper class. I also realize after talking to me 17 yr old self, most of my inadequacies come from not having the stable foundation to have lead a normal teenage life.

A few takeaways; 1) This is primarily a first world problem. If I compare myself to typical American 17 yr olds, then yes, I come up short. All I have to do is look at what other kids in many other countries go through and I will quickly realize I should shut my big mouth. I had access to food, education and relative safety ( I was the victim of a bombing or forced to be a child soldier)

2) Sure, the early part of my life sucked. Ironically, that gave me the strength to create a better life in my later years.

I understand all this 16/17 yr old kid needed was some love, someone to listen to them while they truly opened up and provide sound advice on how to navigate their late teenage years.

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« Reply #44 on: April 20, 2016, 09:42:55 AM »

** Note- I want to edit above post. I was NOT the victim of a bombing or forced to be a child soldier.


Many of us are capable of leading rich and fulfilling lives. Arguably, these early traumas can be turned into positive strength. Growing up in an  idyllic childhood never wanting of anything does not build the  strong characters many of us here possess.

I think this healing process is me telling the 16/17 yr old self just focus on surviving this period of your life and things will get better. Do not compare yourself to others as you are different.

Thanks for listening
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« Reply #45 on: April 20, 2016, 10:12:46 AM »

This may not line up exactly with this board, but Grief is exactly where I find myself.  In my case it is the grief of losing my two children (D17, D20) to Parental Alienation.  While I can "understand" what drove my uBPDexw to destroy our family, I just can't accept her, in league with her same-sex affair partner, turning my daughters against me.  What a wonderful (sic) job was done - I have now seen my children for less than 10 hours in the last 3 1/2 years.  Divorce I can accept and even welcome after decades of BPDish experience. But I just can't get over the daily pain of losing my children. 

After the multi-year trauma of trying to work through a court system that seems perversely designed to reward the alienator, I have recently found some solace spiritually.  Never considered myself a truly devout Catholic, but now I find the most comfort among the clergy and laity of my church. 

Beyond my personal pain, I feel grief for my children as they go forward.  I have not, and will not, give up.  But I have let go as much as I can.

What a horrible disorder.

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« Reply #46 on: April 20, 2016, 10:46:09 AM »

Stolen, I'm so sorry for this grief of yours, and I'm glad you posted about it in this thread. Grief knows no limits, and it affects so many areas of our lives.

In my case it is the grief of losing my two children (D17, D20) to Parental Alienation.   

Divorce I can accept and even welcome after decades of BPDish experience. But I just can't get over the daily pain of losing my children.

My hope is that one day your children will see the truth of the disorder and seek you out, and I'm glad for the comfort you are finding in your faith.

Pleasehelp, it is so wonderful to see your progress.  Doing the right thing (click to insert in post) Each day you are learning more and more. It can be overwhelming as each new discovery comes along, but continue to be patient with yourself. Remember it is a journey that takes time.

Hugs to all of you! 

Wools
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« Reply #47 on: April 20, 2016, 11:01:12 AM »

Thanks Wools.

In reading this thread I got the feeling that I experienced the trauma that would lead my children to post on a similar thread years down the road.  I both dread and hope for the awareness that will help define for them what they experienced; dread for the pain it will probably cause, hope for the understanding that is necessary to rise above it.

My xW could have been an active participant on this thread, I know she suffered horribly from her own disordered FOO, and continues severely compromised.  But with all of the attempts to expose and understand the toxicity of her childhood, it just bewilders me that she would fall into lockstep to expose another generation (my children) to the same (but different) dysfunction.

I guess I have seen firsthand how the heritability of this disorder plays out.  What a horrible ringside seat I have had.
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« Reply #48 on: April 21, 2016, 07:53:01 AM »

Stolen,

  If you are stable and intact, your children may end up okay. Please continually examine yourself and look for defects that can be fixed. This will make you a much better parent and offset you spouses craziness.

  My 16/17 year old self is really unleashing on me. The social awkwardness of living in a new city was tough. He (me) tried to replace his close friends from home with new ones and rushed things a bit. That struck people as weird. The lack of confidence around women, etc. all bothered him. I am telling him in 2 short years he will be living on is own with a car, job and going to college nights. He will be much more confident around women. I think this guy knows his potential but simply had too much going on at home. This drama at  home stifled his human growth development.

I also tell him he has an old soul. He does not function well in adolescent situations. I can almost feel the physical impact of stress  being released by calming my old self down. He could function quite well if he did not have the chaos at home. No stability , drug addicts who hate him, etc.

Oddly, I went through a divorce years ago to a BPD woman (it's what brought me here) and during the separation, someone asked me why i was so shut off and timid. This is how my early life was spent. A totally chaotic home life with no stability naturally leads to social awkwardness. This is magnified in our HS years unfortunately.

I can feel my young self becoming happier. 
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« Reply #49 on: April 21, 2016, 11:29:04 AM »

Stolen,

 If you are stable and intact, your children may end up okay. Please continually examine yourself and look for defects that can be fixed. This will make you a much better parent and offset you spouses craziness.

PH,

I get this.  I really do.  But with near total alienation of my children, I have scant opportunity to model "stable and intact".  As with other forms of abuse, it is the isolation that so greatly enables it.  And xW's grand plan, of including the kids in her transit to her new, welcoming lesbian community, has been brutally effective.  

Since this was planned and initiated behind my back, with nary a word of honesty, my children were effectively drawn into the confidence and mendacity that was kept from Dad (me).  What a secret, and cross to bear, this must have been for them.  

Shhhhhhhh... .don't tell Dad.   Well - easiest way to avoid telling, it just purely avoid.  And as such, alienation for them becomes not the problem, but the solution.
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« Reply #50 on: April 21, 2016, 08:20:20 PM »

Stolen,

  You are in a tough situation. My only suggestion is a war of attrition. If you can hold up and remain stable, your ex spouse at some point will collapse. Most BPD's do. If you simply live well and fight a little every day for your kid's, I suspect you will win.

Keep you head together ( I know it's easier said than done) and maintain a steady , low-level battle to get your kid's back.

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« Reply #51 on: September 30, 2016, 06:56:38 AM »

The topic of grieving is very important, yet often also very difficult. In this thread started by our favorite llama Woolspinner2000, we discuss this topic. You can add your own experiences and insights and also just read what others have said before because that too can be very helpful.

Bumping this thread up parrot style!
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« Reply #52 on: October 01, 2016, 07:56:48 PM »

Thanks Kwamina for bumping this back up. Guess it's a sure sign that I need to pop back in. I've been off wool gathering  Smiling (click to insert in post) and it's time to come back and share about the grief of my past few months since that seems to be the topic of the moment!  Doing the right thing (click to insert in post)

The longest summer ever. That's the super short summary. So much grief consuming me since mid May. I've been treading water, just trying to keep my head above it all.

It all began with my step mom coming north from Florida to sell my dad's house. In order to do that, we had to sort through his things. She was anxious to get through it all, sell, and head back south. That's exactly what she did, throwing out everything, even the wedding photos of my dad and her. As I think I mentioned someplace in a previous post, there were good things too with my etended family, but the grief over loosing what remained physically of my dad pushed me into more grief, and then the sense of abandonment by our step mom was the icing on the cake. Two weeks ago she texted that she got remarried.

As I was rereading much of this thread, I see that I was able to put into practice some of what I posted from Pete Walker, about fully feeling my grief. I spent a lot of time crying the day I got the text saying she was remarried. While I don't wish her to be alone the rest of her life, it is the reminder of how much her current choices paralleled those of my uBPDm when she abandoned us kids and my dad that I realize caused the depths of grief.

As Kwamina had said early in this thread, he let himself become immersed in the feeling of grief, and that is the same thing I did. To allow myself to feel it so deeply is a sign to me that I am healing far deeper than I knew. I don't like feeling the intensity of the pain, but the opportunity this situation brought up with my step mom took me back to all the unexpressed pain of my inner 19 year old child when my mom left home and left us. I took that inner older teen and held her and let her cry her tears, and I told her how sorry I was that she was going through this again. As she shared her feelings from back then in the present, something happened. The grief from the past settled and upon being acknowledged, the pain lessened significantly.

The grieving and recognizing the grief is helping, healing, and bringing wholeness to my soul. The fragments are coming together.

 
Wools
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There are far, far better things ahead than any we leave behind.  -C.S. Lewis
Kwamina
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Person in your life: Parent
Posts: 3363



« Reply #53 on: October 08, 2016, 01:40:12 PM »

You're welcome Wools Smiling (click to insert in post)

That's exactly what she did, throwing out everything, even the wedding photos of my dad and her.

Your stepmom doing this would hurt me too. Her throwing out everything like that, even the wedding photos almost feels like throwing away or even trying to erase the past to make it seem like it never existed or wasn't important.

Two weeks ago she texted that she got remarried.
... .
I spent a lot of time crying the day I got the text saying she was remarried.

Just by reading this I can understand the pain you felt. I can see how receiving such a text would trigger you, particularly given your past experiences with your mom. This text comes on top of her throwing everything out. Did you respond to the text?

As she shared her feelings from back then in the present, something happened. The grief from the past settled and upon being acknowledged, the pain lessened significantly.

The grieving and recognizing the grief is helping, healing, and bringing wholeness to my soul. The fragments are coming together.

As difficult as this has been for you, what you describe here sounds like significant progress, a clear sign of your healing and how far you've come. Especially when we are faced with challenges is when we can really assess our growth. This whole experience was a test for you, a very difficult one, but you've come through it Doing the right thing (click to insert in post)

Take care

The Board Parrot
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Oh, give me liberty! For even were paradise my prison, still I should long to leap the crystal walls.
WildernessMan
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Person in your life: Romantic partner
Posts: 76


« Reply #54 on: September 22, 2017, 12:39:45 PM »

My BPD wife and are in the first stage of divorce. She served me on August 17 and we have a 17 yr old daughter and 14 yr old son.

If it helps anyone, think about this: As a non-BPD, you will eventually find happiness again. As a BPD, your partner will never find peace due to their internal storm.

 
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