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Author Topic: FAQ: Did she ever love me? [romantic partners]  (Read 6859 times)
oceanheart
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« Reply #25 on: February 17, 2008, 08:44:21 PM »

I feel bad because I feel I've been saying that people with BPD can't love, and that's not my place to say.

I have never had a long-term relationship, so what the heck do I know for love? The longest has been 6 months while most have been 2 months. I can't speak for people who have been in years-long romantic relationships (my deep friendhships tend to last for years).

So don't take what I've said as being representative to all folk with BPD. It isn't fair for me to suggest that I have the insider's knowledge of what love is like for BPs.

Perhaps it would be more truthful to say that there is love, but with the inherent, fundamental, pervasive fear that is part&parcel of (full-blown) BPD, it isn't a stable emotion. It isn't steady-state, it fluctuates in inverse proportion to the amount of fear.

How can you love if you're afraid the love will leave? How can you love if you're afraid you yourself are not loveable? It's like asking an animal caught in a trap to be capable of caretaking its young or something - the energy of the animal is cuaght up in doing something else, namely, surviving. The panic of fear - which I've seen people with BPD show when they feel they might be abandoned - blinds the organism to all else.

Of course, no one is in fight vs. flight mode all the time. But BPD is like PTSD in lotsa ways, I'm convinced. I've mentioned elsewhere that "complex PTSD" is sometimes used to mean BPD, tho the two constructs are somewhat different. Correct me if I'm wrong, but PTSD is about being in high-alert to possible danger. People with BPD are on high alert #1 because of our biology (nervous system dysfunction, brain abnormalities) and #2 because of the vigilance many of us cultivated in childhoods steeped in abuse and malevolence.

But when feeling secure, like many folks mentioned previously in this thread, that's when the love capabilities of the person with BPD can blossom into something good and adult and true. Unfortunately, that's not a constant state until significant recovery happens. Then security comes from within and we are no longer scared, and we can therefore give. I've heard told that a person is more likely to feel empathy and to behave in altruistic ways when s/he feels emotionally secure. I know that's true of me. I am a much more "human" person when I feel safe in myself. Luckily, that's most of the time now. Smiling (click to insert in post) I love myself, too, now, which makes most of the difference...
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« Reply #26 on: February 20, 2008, 05:26:44 PM »

very very well put, oceanheart. This goes for many people, not just those with BPD. If we are afraid to love then we are not truly in a place of love. In a lot of ways I was afraid to love.
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« Reply #27 on: February 23, 2008, 08:10:33 PM »

Wonderful thread and subject.

I have PTSD and in some ways it is similar. Especially the emotional regulation part.

I think my ex loved me and still does in his way. But it is not healthy because it is all about how he feels and very little about my needs.

But it makes sense as you put it Ocean. It isn't love in the healthy feel good way it has neediness attached to it. It explains why I was mentally exhausted all of the time.
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oceanheart
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« Reply #28 on: February 24, 2008, 10:00:29 AM »

I think my ex loved me and still does in his way. But it is not healthy because it is all about how he feels and very little about my needs.

Exactly - it's in their (our) own way, not the "normal" way (i.e., healthy adult intimacy). It's a limited capacity for love because like your last sentence says, it's a selfish emotion (much of the time). Limited in the sense of not how deep it goes, since most of the BPs I know have big hearts, but in the sense of being able to put other's needs first or to recognize others' needs are just as important as our own. Being BPD is being self-absorbed, if nothing else. And so how can you give love if you're so desperate to get all the love you can? [rhetorical question]

Loving and being loved by my Gramma and my best friend STV taught me how to share. Because they were exceptional individuals in their hearts, I could see that a healthy, loving relationship was about the 2 people in it, not just what I felt I needed to get out of it. I don't believe I could have learned that lesson in a romantic relationship - there would be waaaaaaay too many issues to overcome, especially with the sexual intimacy aspect (and I can't imagine how people with BPD who have sexual abuse in their past - I am not one of them - even begin to deal with it, and from what I've read here on BPDFamily.com, they don't deal with it well at all).
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AJMahari
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« Reply #29 on: February 28, 2008, 10:19:54 PM »

I'm very familiar with your stance on things. I've read every free article of yours and even paid for one, the non-dilemma - do borderlines love.

I highly respect your work and I really appreciate what you've done to help explain things. I honestly wish there was another name for borderline personality because I truly believe my ex could benefit from reading your work. You have a way of explaining what's going on that's comforting to those who suffer and gives them a sense of acceptance for themselves without leaving them justified in staying that way.

But back to the point of love and trust. She had said on several occassions that I must not care about her, that she must not be important to me. I was completely hurt by that as it was a total negation of my love for her. I'd rather she said she doesn't love me because I'm fat.

But now that time has passed I could see this was a forewarning. An imagined scenario:" I felt like I wasn't important to you anymore. I felt like you didn't care. XXXX does care about me and he pays attention to me like you never did and that's why I slept with him, it's your fault for not caring about my needs before yours. I had no other choice" This is exactly the kind of conversation I knew would have been inevitable had I stayed with this person for years.

Hi discohornet,

I noticed there was a little confusion here re the mix up with Oceanheart and me Smiling (click to insert in post) I am glad that you've found something helpful in what I've written. About the name BPD, really, given the nature of what BPD is and all the defense mechanism in play I am not so sure that no matter what its name was the person with BPD wouldn't have the same type of reaction in many cases you know?

In terms of what you are sharing about your experience of your partner re love and trust and what amounts to the negation of what you give to her just know that she can't tell you why she feels as she feels likely because she really doesn't know. It isn't that she doesn't love you because of this or that, it really isn't about you and doesn't have anything to do with you. When nons experience this from a borderline, this negation, and "you don't love me because" or "if you loved me you would have ..." or "if you loved me you wouldn't have ..." it is really the borderline experiencing some aspect or degree of her abandonment trauma the way it played out with someone else in her life when she was very young and the non - in these moments is really NON-existant. Sadly, it is borderline suffering projected out on to the non closest to them.

You sure were insightful about that being a forewarning. As you likely gathered from my ebook the love that one thinks is even in play in the relationship can be most deceiving as well.
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AJMahari
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« Reply #30 on: February 28, 2008, 10:35:20 PM »

From my own experience with having had BPD I think it is important to say that when one does not know who he/she is one cannot find a sense of self from which to connect in ways that are relationally healthy. I can compare what I was like and what I knew or rather all I had no clue about love, connection, and relating when I had BPD to what I know and have experienced love to be and mean since I have recovered from BPD. I can safely say, that love with BPD is well, questionable to say the least. Love after BPD exists. They are two separate and distinct worlds. The "love" of those in the active throes of BPD and the love of those either recovered or who are non are two ships destined to either pass in the night or collide in the night but that cannot really manage meaningful lasting connection.

What does BPD mean to or for love? Well, it may well depend upon how you define love and how you experience love and what you expect the love that you hope to share with another to be. It also depends upon the foundation and base of the love you as a non have to give and the way that interacts with where the person with BPD is in terms of having any sense of self yet or not. Those with BPD who do not have a sense of self do not have an identity. One of the things that dramatically affects love in this relational dynamic between those with BPD and nons is the degree to which the person with BPD is needing and seeking to live through you and is needing and seeking to have you be a container for all that they cannot bear to know, hold, or feel that is so real and palpable about the abandonment trauma that caused the loss of the borderline's authentic self.

I do have an ebook on this subject and there are plans to feature an excerpt here on this site in the near future. I say this only as information and not any commercial Smiling (click to insert in post)
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« Reply #31 on: February 29, 2008, 03:23:49 AM »

Well when dealing with multiple PD's in another = I find it difficult to find the luv once the honeymoon/romantic myth wears off.  And wonder sometimes if there was luv? Yet I belive there truly was luv yet what difference does it make?  When one is only capable of transmitting 50 units of luv compared to my 50,000 units it is a joke to hear it said "I care about you or I luv you" (I never have to date ever heard this stated with any of my BPD dates numbering 4 to date).  GET IT! It is a joke! They do not have it in them even if they wanted to luv...not happening.  I now know that I need to HEAR sweetness and HEAR them say their feelings or it is a deal breaker and a done deal.  If you cannot speak it, what you are feeling (not just thinking) she is not the one for me. 



 
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« Reply #32 on: February 29, 2008, 06:39:29 AM »

Helo All,

   My BPDW has at times shown love and intimacy.  But I strongly feel it is given just enough to maintain her need and keep from her fear of abandonment.  We were going through a divorce when she suddenly came back...but it was more out of need intstead of love.  She was living with her mother, her car got repossesed, her family had loaned her a pickup and suddenly took it away from her and her children where living with their father.  When wanted me to help her buy another car but I told her that isn't my responsibility.  She than told me that she 'felt" as if we had unfinished business between us.  That maybe we could work things out.  I asked her if she loved me and she answered, "I think I could love you agian".  I didn't really believe it.  I told her that if she wasn't in the situation she was in she wouldn't even give me the time of day.  She of course denied that.  Within three weeks of our split she attached herself to another man.  That lasted a couple of months.  She immediately went to another man and that lasted only a month.    When she gets into one of her moods which makes her very angry and she starts calling me every name and tells me she is seeing other men.  When she tells me how unloving, evil , unfaithful, a poor provider, and many other things that I am...I don't think she is feeling any love for me.  I am painted black at the bllink of an eye.  She bit me on the nose and while it was bleeding denies that she had done that.  I called the police and she immediately told them I pulled her hair and that I am the abuser.  At that point and time their is no love between us.  I could burn in Hell and she would not care.  So LOVE as we percieve it becomes unimaginable, not believed in.  Have you ever asked why is this happening...WHY can't we just LOVE each other and enjoy each other?   I LOVE her...but it is like wearing armor,,,,,And she is chipping away until It will be removed and damaged, and destroyed.
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oceanheart
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« Reply #33 on: February 29, 2008, 02:23:53 PM »

...when one does not know who he/she is one cannot find a sense of self from which to connect in ways that are relationally healthy.

That's a great point, A.J. I know you speak a lot about the authentic self in your writings, and that concept resonated very deeply with me in the beginning of my recovery and continues to guide my efforts towards healthy living.

When you are No One, there isn't anything there for others to connect with: just smoke and fog (and the BPD identity shifts as much as the latter). Insubstantial beingness. And of course if you are "empty" then what do you have to give to others? Nothing. I often quote the U2 song, "So Cruel" as a perfect description of a BP relationship. Part of the lyrics are:

Excerpt
The men who love you, you hate the most

They pass right through you like a ghost

They look for you, but your spirit is in the air

Baby, you're nowhere...

She wears my love like a see-through dress.

Also, AJ mentioned people with BPD seeking to put their negative emotions - which predominate in a BP's emotional life - onto someone else becuase of their own inability to handle them. So there doesn't seem to be much chance for love to survive in that kind of environment.

I wonder if theomorphic has the right answer about the question of love with someone with BPD: in the end, what difference does it make? The result of a relationship with a BP is often the loss of love, abuse, heartache all around, split marriages, custody fights, etcetcetc ad nauseum. I don't think I have to remind anyone here on BPDFamily.com the consequences of a BP's actions in a romantic relationship - love or no.

So what's my point?

Truthfully, I just don't know anymore. Maybe there shouldn't even be a point, just a place to come and figure out what we need to do NOW. As a recovering BP, I know the tasks I need to do: continuing to strengthen my sense of self; continuing to accept responsibility for my choices, decisions, and behaviors; continuing to connect in positive ways with people in my life; and continuing to add to the good of the world in whatever way I can. Maybe that's the way I can repay my debt for taking love out of the world when I was unrecovered (whew, that's a bitter truth to swallow).

So, what do YOU need to do...?
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« Reply #34 on: February 29, 2008, 02:40:24 PM »

Here's an odd thought,

Maybe non's are drawn (and quartered) to BPD relationships because some of us deep down inside don't believe we deserve to be loved.  So when we meet someone who is emotionally unavailable (which produces a strong draw) yet who appears to shower us with love (at the onset), it's like a fantasy fulfillment.  The honeymoon (aka carrot) is the fantasy that we can eat our cake and still have it, but as the relationship metastasizes, what keeps us in is the reinforcement of our deeply unhealthy beliefs about ourselves (aka stick).

Schwing
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« Reply #35 on: February 29, 2008, 03:52:01 PM »

oceanheart,

I think the point is balance. BPD when broken down to a very simplistic level is a lack of balance. Everyone lacks balance in certain areas and some moreso than others or in certain areas moreso than others.

Love begins in the innermost circle and moves outward. However as many have said if you can't love yourself then you can't love others as you will always be stuck on the problem of not loving yourself.

Love is about understanding that we as human beings BPD or not are part of a species. We all contribute positively or negatively but we all have an impact on how we develop genetically and behaviorally.

BPD seems to me that person has internalized that they are not part of the human race and should not be allowed to partake in the "normal" rituals.

Besides intimacy I'd almost say it's a disease that necessitates desire to fit in and be a part of something


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« Reply #36 on: March 01, 2008, 01:40:15 PM »

“Immature love says: 'I love you because I need you.'

Mature love says: 'I need you because I love you'”
-Erich Fromm

I think that's all that really needs to be said. I was gonna ramble but this just sums it up so nicely.

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theomorphic
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« Reply #37 on: March 02, 2008, 08:45:27 AM »

MY X BPD/GF would never give me the satisfaction of saying anything endearing, she refused to tell me what I meant to her when asked? Just went silent again avoiding responsibility.  Would never be straight with me just lied and called me a lier.  She is not capable of luv and being straight with me in terms of this is what I need, what I want, what I wish.  Only the demeaning, cruel one lines awaited me and she states she is walking on egg shells. I do not miss the lack of luv or the on-going misery, trama drama crap.   
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TonyC
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« Reply #38 on: March 04, 2008, 08:23:46 AM »

i think she loved me more than life... during certain periods... then something took over her mind...BPD? i dunno i think it went deeper than that...

but when she loved me she loved me hard...

and then there were the periods she morphed into another person... a person i didnt care for...

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« Reply #39 on: March 04, 2008, 11:35:26 AM »

i rember me saying to her , in a conversation another heated one , then you want to be with this guy more than me , she said it's not as straight forward as that ...im still not sure what she meant.. confusion on some aspects still with me im afraid ... love for BPD  as i see it is getting what they need from who ever is willing to give it to them , imo you will never get lasting love in return ...it just aint in them to do so...w
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« Reply #40 on: June 28, 2008, 01:02:45 PM »

Nicely stated Schwing!

   I was listening to a lecture where it was stated that if we do not love ourselves we attrack others in our lives who do not love us.  Today and moving forward ILOVEMYSELF!  This pathology stuff sucks. 

I can now identify Narcissistic behavior and Bi-Polar behavior (somewhat) and MP/Borderline behavior is becoming more easily identified THUS today I RUN the other way.  They are a waist of my time!  I now understand more that ever I am cheating myself out of life.  They are callous, their feelings/feelers are burned out they only act out emotionally.   I want a soul who is with their feelings and emotionally available.  It has been a painfull process to stop my interfacing with them as they are so Outwardly Beautiful yet inside they are that same degree of uglyness. 

YES They Love us!  Yet Who Cares? = Their ability to love is So Little.  They do not have it in them to be grander or kinder or even get near even what we have to offer them...so why do we it?

   




   

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« Reply #41 on: May 02, 2009, 09:15:07 PM »



Thank you for explaining this, oceanheart (although it was over a year ago)...still, and thanks for keeping this workshop around Joanna.

My experience was that I was loved, but not for me so this clears things up allot.  It was tough to define that love and she would ask me frequently, "you do know that I love you...right?"  I would answer that I did and then occasionally ask her the same question in return after she would ask it.  Her response was always that she wasn't sure. (Now I know what that is.)  This would break my heart in very quiet ways as I couldn't understand what more I could be doing as my hope and happiness were eroding along with hers.

So...okay.

Yes, it was hurtful and frustrating.  I didn't meet her needs.  I couldn't have but not because I'm not enough.  I'm just not the one and neither was she, for me.  I can't be the love she didn't get as a child and somewhere in her she has to reconcile that for herself.  I so hope she does.

The view into the window here is very complimentary to this stage of my own awareness.  I used to feel so inadiquate.  Then I used to feel so resentful.  Then I used to feel so angry and hurt.  Then I used to feel self righteous, sad, hopeless, less than...and finally...emotionally gone.  It was a cycle of moving in and out of those feelings while searching for peace and questioning my self worth according to her perceptions, her projections and my own insecurities.  As it turned out these things were a perfect compliment to each other...her projections, my insecurities and all those confusing emotions.

And now these are some of the things I need to reconcile.

I was loved...just not the way she needed to love me...and not the way I need to be loved and I did love her...just not the way she needed to be loved...and not the way I needed to love her.

I think we all marry into each others past lives to some degree however, it really helps to know how far back and what I was being loved/hated as, and for.

I kind of thought so.  Yep, I did.  Sure helps with the process.

Thank you again.

Peace, UFH
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« Reply #42 on: April 08, 2011, 03:21:32 AM »

Split from: Is there any sensitivity

The only thing I can add to this, is that during the honeymoon/idealization phase, the pwBPD is actually quite real in their expressions of love towards you.  The general consensus I've found here states they are in love with the idea of love.  :)uring this phase, they are.getting the fuel and feelings they associate with love.  What we call infatuation.

They simply live for the feelings of the moment being the facts of life.  Most people know that infatuation isn't sustainable, and leads to either mature love or acceptance of a fling that has run its course.  We move on.  pwBPD don't compute this notion of an evolution and growth from infatuation.  They are high on endorphins and oxytocin; they are addicts that want to hang on to the fix.  They love bomb you, because it is how they feel about you.  You overwhelm them, making them forget their flaws.  They want to express 'love' and bask in their happiness.

It isn't your fault they don't understand infatuation becomes something else; they are incapable of the next step.  The chemical bond masks fall off both parties, and the high is gone.  The devaluing then begins, because we failed to keep giving that rush of 'love'.  That is the illusion they wanted.  Not a mask, just a person addicted to the idea of love no human can sustain.  Just someone that wants to feel accepted. Intensity is their mantra.
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« Reply #43 on: April 08, 2011, 07:55:59 AM »

Simple,

I relate to you more than you know.  I have been struggling with my anger, to the point where it has overwhelmed me at times.  I guess there are many perspectives on this disorder, with some taking the position that there are genuine moments of love with the BPD partner.  I have read repeatedly that they loved us in their own way.  There are others who state that all of their actions/words are exclusively about them. I tend to agree with the latter.  Not because I need to hate my ex to move on, but rather to recognize the relationship for what it truly was in order to regain my emotional health.  

Like Lucky, my ex bought me some very beautiful gifts, for which I was extremely appreciative at the time.  I do believe that she wanted to purchase the gifts at the time.  I have learned from much discussion here, that these actions like many others weren’t consciously calculated to manipulate or deceive.  However, the overriding motive for such actions was to elicit a response from us that helped the BPDex cope with his or her dysfunction.  Regardless, I agree with you that the relationship wasn’t real, at least for those of us that use nonBPD relationships as our basis for comparison.

I think it boils down to what we consider love.  As I assume you would agree, love requires selflessness and a genuine desire to shield your partner from harm.  That is not to say that we do not fail in these endeavors in healthy relationships. However, it is the driving motivation.  Since those who are afflicted with BPD live their lives by doing what is necessary to survive emotionally moment to moment, they lack the capacity to focus on love’s long term goals.  Therefore, they are equally capable of horrific acts of cruelty, (sub) consciously doing whatever is necessary to ensure their emotional survival.  Again, I understand this, but I cannot accept this as love.  I also think that we must remain consistent in our view of this disorder.  Most of the literature I have read states that the negative behavior of someone with BPD is not about us.  It is about his or her need to cope with the dysfunction.  Why, then, should I accept that the acts of kindness or “love” were anything less than manifestations of that same behavior?

For me, if I am to accept that my exbpgf was broken, then I must to do in all facets of our relationship.  To do otherwise would only be narcissistic.  In other words, she loved me because she recognized how wonderful I am, but mistreated me because of her disorder.  I still manifest some of this behavior.  I have been NC with my ex for almost two weeks and haven’t heard anything from her.  While I understand why this is happening, from both my and her perspective, I occasionally catch myself thinking “but she seemed to love me so much, how can she not reach out?”  This is fueled by my need, even on a subconscious level, to believe that the “love” we shared was real.   In doing so, I only serve to perpetuate the delusion that allowed me to endure so much abuse and pain in the relationship.  

Again, I don’t hater her and recognize that this experience has opened my eyes to some positive things about myself.  I owe some of that to her.  But I will not spend one more minute trying to rationalize her extreme ambivalence as anything more than a symptom of her disorder.

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« Reply #44 on: April 08, 2011, 10:09:27 AM »

I think it boils down to what we consider love.  As I assume you would agree, love requires selflessness and a genuine desire to shield your partner from harm.  That is not to say that we do not fail in these endeavors in healthy relationships. However, it is the driving motivation.  Since those who are afflicted with BPD live their lives by doing what is necessary to survive emotionally moment to moment, they lack the capacity to focus on love’s long term goals.  Therefore, they are equally capable of horrific acts of cruelty, (sub) consciously doing whatever is necessary to ensure their emotional survival.  Again, I understand this, but I cannot accept this as love.  I also think that we must remain consistent in our view of this disorder.  Most of the literature I have read states that the negative behavior of someone with BPD is not about us.  It is about his or her need to cope with the dysfunction.  Why, then, should I accept that the acts of kindness or “love” were anything less than manifestations of that same behavior?

For me, if I am to accept that my exbpgf was broken, then I must to do in all facets of our relationship.  To do otherwise would only be narcissistic.  In other words, she loved me because she recognized how wonderful I am, but mistreated me because of her disorder.  I still manifest some of this behavior.  I have been NC with my ex for almost two weeks and haven’t heard anything from her.  While I understand why this is happening, from both my and her perspective, I occasionally catch myself thinking “but she seemed to love me so much, how can she not reach out?”  This is fueled by my need, even on a subconscious level, to believe that the “love” we shared was real.   In doing so, I only serve to perpetuate the delusion that allowed me to endure so much abuse and pain in the relationship.  

desertbuck, this is a very well written position. You do these really well. They are stimulating to read. Smiling (click to insert in post)

The logic of this "argument" is very dependent on the definition of love in the first paragraph (which may possibly be limiting) and on what she was feeling in the relationship - you have set your own feelings aside (in the "argument".  :)o you want to do this?

You may in time, when the anger and the hurt subsides, find that you want to hold on to the good memories that you had. As you say, you had some of the most rewarding times in your life in this relationship.

I haven't seen it mentioned on the board recently, but one of the reasons we stayed for all the grief in these relationship is because there were many moments that we cherished and held dear.  If the relationships were simply pure hell, we would have gotten out much sooner.

I'm years out of the relationship and I found that in time my feelings on this evolved and went through stages. And I have followed many members here and seen their feelings evolve too.  And its not always the same path.

Initially, thinking about any good in the relationship can be threatening because we are trying to detach from the "addiction" of it.  So we focus on the anger and the injustice of the relationship to keep from going back in.  This is normal grieving - it is a phase - it is healthy.

Later we start testing our own emotional balance by venturing into the things that we enjoyed during the relationship to see if we are detached.  I remember that it was a milestone to be able to do the things we did as a couple again (by myself or with other) and enjoy them, not be pained by them.

Overtime a balance starts to set in.  We start to see the hyper-love that we felt as maybe not so monumental.  The anger / fight / flight as no longer necessary to our survival. We can pick out the good memories in the relationship and savor them and keep them in perspective with the overall fundamental flaws in the relationship.  This balance is, of course, dependent on how much damage was done in the end.

I believe this balance is important because it lets us really see who we were in the relationship.  It lets us take things from the relationship and sow them elsewhere.

The only thing I can add to this, is that during the honeymoon/idealization phase, the pwBPD is actually quite real in their expressions of love towards you.  The general consensus I've found here states they are in love with the idea of love.  :)uring this phase, they are.getting the fuel and feelings they associate with love.  What we call infatuation.

They simply live for the feelings of the moment being the facts of life.  Most people know that infatuation isn't sustainable, and leads to either mature love or acceptance of a fling that has run its course.  We move on.  pwBPD don't compute this notion of an evolution and growth from infatuation.  They are high on endorphins and oxytocin; they are addicts that want to hang on to the fix.  They love bomb you, because it is how they feel about you.  You overwhelm them, making them forget their flaws.  They want to express 'love' and bask in their happiness.

It isn't your fault they don't understand infatuation becomes something else; they are incapable of the next step.  The chemical bond masks fall off both parties, and the high is gone.  The devaluing then begins, because we failed to keep giving that rush of 'love'.  That is the illusion they wanted.  Not a mask, just a person addicted to the idea of love no human can sustain.  Just someone that wants to feel accepted. Intensity is their mantra.

What strings says above is something that I think rings true for a lot of these relationships.

Normal relationships go through phases...

  • Honeymoon/Romance


  • Power Struggle


  • Stability


  • Commitment


  • Co-creation


In many BPD relationship the breakdown happens (as string says) between phase one and two.  The person with BPD views the power struggle (which is challenge in any relationship) as relationship failure and keeps trying to rebirth the honeymoon/romance. While many of us are trying / willing to go the next step.
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desertbuck
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« Reply #45 on: April 08, 2011, 03:36:15 PM »

Skip, I must say that you constantly challenge me, in a positive way, regarding my perspective on these issues.  

Excerpt
The logic of this "argument" is very dependent on the definition of love in the first paragraph (which may possibly be limiting) and on what she was feeling in the relationship - you have set your own feelings aside (in the "argument".  :)o you want to do this?

This is a very salient point and brings to mind the age old debate as to whether fact or perception shapes reality, especially when they are in opposition.  Obviously, fact can create or alter perception.  However, perception cannot, by definition, alter fact.  While in my relationship, I did feel a profound love for my exbpgf.  That was my perception at the time.  However, the facts, as I have come to know them, suggest that my emotions were not suggestive of love, as much as they were of frenzied infatuation, mirrored idolization and codependent tendencies.  

It has become important for me to acknowledge the difference between my perception and the facts, even if the line between the two became blurred during my relationship.  I felt that I loved my ex within the context of our relationship.  But with some distance, I see that it wasn't really love, at least in a healthy sense.  At times, she did things that brought me intense joy.  At times she acted kind and in a loving manner.  However, in other moments, she was very cruel and abusive.  The juxtaposition of such contradictory behaviors in one person heightened my response to any positive stimuli from her to almost manic levels.  I was so pleased that I could elicit warmth, caring and kindness from her, that I literally hit a euphoric high.  So, in retrospect, I can say that I felt more intensely than I ever have before.  However, I do not equate that intensity in this context, even when it was positive, to love (or at least any form of love that I would want in my next relationship).

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« Reply #46 on: April 08, 2011, 07:43:08 PM »

Thank you for this amazing dialog. Reading this over has been so help, so enlightening for me...
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rosannadanna
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« Reply #47 on: April 12, 2011, 03:52:47 PM »

None of us can ever know for sure whether our ex loved us because we can't read their minds.  The only thing we can accurately measure is whether or not we felt loved.  It seems that most of us felt loved in the infatuation stage, but less so as this stage faded.  I agree that a pwBPD cannot successfully move into the next phase.  I found this quote on one of these message boards because it really hit home (I found that cutting and pasting the jewels is very therapeutic for me):

"While their need for love is apparent they don't know how to return love.  In reality they are afraid of intimacy and do not have the emotional strength to fight their fears of inadequacy or abandonment in a manner that makes it possible for them to return love.  After the passion of new love subsides they become bored, often moving on to a new partner.  If they continue in the relationship instead of deepening concern and communication, there ensues a struggle for control.  The arena of this often violent struggle may include time, money, sex, fidelity, spiritual beliefs, children, or physical and emotional distance.  The centerpiece of the struggle is the threat of abandonment."[/i]

Simpleone,

I can identify with how you are feeling.  I wonder if I have been replaced.  I am struggling with feelings of inadequacy because I wasn't "good enough" for him to stick with through his "recovery". 

You see, during the year that we dated was the longest r/s he had since his divorce 4 years ago.  A couple of years before his marriage ended and just after his father died, his memories of his childhood abuse that had been repressed came out.  He was hospitalized and diagnosed with BPD.  He did extensive DBT work as well individual therapy the first two years post-divorce.  During the year we were together, he dealt with constant flashbacks involving his father abusing him and had them basically under control at the time he dumped me.  I can't help feeling used, especially since I am a therapist, so I think I fulfilled a huge emotional need for him to "process" everything and have everything be about his victimhood.

Now I think, but not sure, that he is getting his emotional needs met by a female friend (she was friends with him b/f our r/s but receeded into the background).  I think he resurrected this friendship and will "see where it goes" (he told me that!)

Unfortunately I can compare oceanheart's story to my ex's story.  Like oceanheart, my ex's friend is of the opposite sex.  I hear in oceanheart's experience that her friend is definitely only platonic.  This was always a point of contention with me and my ex.  When we started dating, he had a number of what I called "nongirlfriends".  My theory was they were surragate "mommies", ego feeders, and good to have around for triangulation.  Both oceanheart and supposedly my ex are healing and he keeps his "nongirlfriend" and dumps me in the process. 

God, I feel like a bookmark!  He put her on a shelf, then pulled her down from the shelf once he was done with me. It makes me feel so crappy thinking that he is getting better and getting closer to the ability to really love someone and all I got was some crappy half-assed BPD version of love.  That is what I got in return for loving him.  Dare the residual codependent in me say that I loved him towards health, only to be discarded.  Crap!

Wow, so now I struggle with the thought of "ok we were both unhealthy going in and he is looking at his stuff and I am looking at my stuff separately and that is ultimately a good thing, but it still doesn't change the fact that the whole year was a mind f---k and an ego anihilater.  Couldn't there been a less painful way to learn about myself?

R

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numb4life07

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« Reply #48 on: April 14, 2011, 12:30:13 PM »



Yes, she loved you. I have BPD and I dated a woman for over 3 years. We just recently decided to take a break, because of my unfair standards.  I cheated on her in the past, but told her if she had ever even flirted with someone, it would be over. I am dialectical behavioral therapy now and I see my faults a lot more clear. The people I cheated with never compared to her and I knew it. They meant absolutely nothing to me.  I just couldn't stop myself from doing it. I am extremely impulsive and attention seeking. I never want to feel alone so I try to surround myself with as many people as possible even though she is the ONLY one who matters. I do love her with everything I have and she is my motivation to recover. I know a lot of people with BPD seem incapable of loving, but it can happen. Just because they don't love the way someone without BPD would, doesn't mean they don't feel just as much.
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Skip
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« Reply #49 on: April 14, 2011, 12:56:41 PM »

Thank you for your comments, numb4life07.
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