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Author Topic: Round Robin Meeting Room...Bring your thoughts.  (Read 779 times)
peacebaby
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What is your sexual orientation: Gay, lesb
Who in your life has "personality" issues: Romantic Partner
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Posts: 2500



« Reply #30 on: June 02, 2008, 04:16:25 PM »

Okay, I'll play, though I am presently in and committed to my relationship with my DBPDSO of whom I am writing. This is probably way too long but I've edited it as much as I can, even still, I'm sure there's stuff I've forgotten.

Who was I before and why did I get involved with her?

--I was pretty self-aware and was pretty good at figuring people out. I met her at this hobby-related thing and we became friends. She clarified she wanted more, but I saw all these red flags telling me to stay away, so instead I played the role of wise, supportive friend, the one person who would not take advantage of her, the knight in shining armor friend. The longer I knew her, and the closer I got to her, the more red flags I saw. I knew she was a mess, but I didn't know how big. Not by a long shot. But she was a cool person and we were friends. We had fun together.

--I had this idea that I didn't want to have sex with anyone I wasn't in love with, partly because I can't get into it without the emotional attachment, and partly because I was concerned that I would get emotionally attached to whoever it was and end up in love with someone who might not be the right person). So, due to the fact that I did not manage to get involved with someone I was interested in, I didn't have sex for, let's say, somewhere between 5 and 10 years. I really wanted love more than anything, that feeling of being loved, giving love, having someone wonderful to share my life with, but by this time I was in my mid-30s and I'd only been involved with a handful of women--being gay does cut down on your choices--they say 1 in 10 people is gay, after all...

--So a few years after we met, my friend (AKA my present dBPDso) hit rock bottom and had to move home to another state. During this time she seemed to change, become calmer, acting out less, started taking prozac. Meanwhile I had gotten to the point where I was just going to have sex with someone and see what happened because waiting for the right person just wasn't working--this sleeping with her was supposed to be progress, get me back in the saddle so to speak. I had no desire to do it with a stranger, and I had two friends who had expressed wanting to "do it" with me, and I chose you know who. I didn't think we had enough in common to be partners, and she lived in another state, so I figured it was safe to give it a try when she came to visit. Suffice it to say, it was a wonderful, loving experience, and after she went home, within a few weeks, I was in love with her and she with me. Part of it was that she had indeed begun what I was later to realize was her recovery from BPD, and part of it was that now that I had experienced her as a lover, my knight in shining armor friendship morphed into the lover version. I remember this moment that first weekend when I told her, of course we weren't going to get serious, and she broke down, and it just pulled at my heart strings--I was going to love this young woman who had never really been loved and I was gonna make everything okay. Ah ha ha ha. And I knew it even then, it's there in my diary--not that it was BPD but that it was probably foolish. But there was this thing that kept telling me, when you feel love you either move towards it or away from it and after so long with no love in sight, I felt I had to move towards it.

What mistakes did I make at the beginning and in the first year of the relationship?

--So the red flags continued (wanting to get close quick, falling in love too fast, her idealization of me, her overly emotional relationship with her girlfriend--oh that's a nice slip--her roommate who she wished was her girlfriend--and we fell in love way too fast, that kind of love where you drive a truck full of your so's possessions halfway across the country after you've only been involved a few months. I knew it was stupid, I knew she was having trouble finding work and I had agreed to support her until she did--totally into the idea that I'd take care of her and heal her, love her like no one else ever had. But, you know the story, the love felt so right.

--More mistakes like letting her move in 'cause she didn't have money to go anywhere else, committing to her as a life-partner in a private ceremony. There I was "married" and living with her when I had wanted to take it more slowly.

--Supporting her emotionally as she started to fall apart due to our intimacy exploding the defenses she's created to block out her childhood abuse. Totally allowing myself to be made into the good mommy. And it felt so good. She basically had a nervous breakdown and I allowed her to totally fall into it, have no responsibilities at all, and basically took on the role of a parent as far as large parts of her life.

--I'd just gotten out of debt and started heading back in, due to supporting her.

What mistakes have I made since realizing the BPD/what bad roles have I been playing/played?

--I figured out she had BPD early on, after coming from the compassionate place about her recovery from childhood sexual abuse, I have been way too compassionate and patient, enabling her to continue to be lazy in many areas of her life while she is working so hard on her mental illness and behavior due to it.

--At times I've let myself become totally obsessed with her and her illness and trying to make her better. Putting money towards therapy for her instead of therapy for myself.

--I've allowed her to treat me in ways I never imagined I'd allow anyone, and used the explanation of her mental illness and my love for her as an excuse.

--I've been messed-up and immature at times, feeding into her psychotic rages.



Who am I now/what have I learned/what issues have I realized I still really have to work on?


--I already knew that my childhood of keeping my family "okay" playing my mother's partner in social and emotional ways after my parents got divorced, and taking close care of my (some kinda social anxiety disorder) brother set me up to be the caretaker in any relationship I would get into.

--I've realized I tend to surround myself with friends who are damaged people, ever since I was a "weird kid" and the less-apparently-damaged people don't tend to hang with the weird kids. This has culminated in having a mentally ill life-partner. I think I have done this so that I don't feel so f-cked up and I don't have to force myself to continue to grow in certain areas--look at everyone around me--in comparison I'm in great shape without having to move a muscle.

--I've realized I identified more with my father even than I'd previously thought--I thought I had his romantic POV on love, but really I have his attraction to women with BPD. My mom's okay, but his 2nd wife was CLASSIC WITCH BPD and I lived with them for a while in my teens. Even though I did 9 years of therapy on this, I still got involved with a woman with BPD (though quite different from my UBPDstepmother) who even reminds me of her physically and sexually and I've known that from the start, always wondering if I'm trying to cure my father's wife through this or I'm trying to make my father's life turn out okay. (She completely sucked his life from him and he died at least ten years too early.)

--I have allowed my partner's stunted growth to give me permission to be lazy about my own emotional growth. I've allowed myself to remain passive aggressive and lazy and unmotivated and moody and btchy, with the excuse of taking care of her being more important or "waiting until things are less crazy" to do whatever.

--I've also realized that in lots of ways throughout my life I've put others needs/desires in front of mine, and that I need to focus really hard on what I need and want from life and figure out how to motivate myself to get it.

--I've allowed myself to be involved with a woman who can steal and lie, a woman who doesn't know what's going on half the time, who I have to take care of in lots of ways, and who can be abusive to me. Not being able to completely trust my partner has taken a toll. I am not sure exactly how yet. Sometimes it makes me very sad, and I've had PTSD and anxiety symptoms I never had before this relationship.

The bad parts of why I continue to allow myself to stay:

--I know I shouldn't be involved with someone who abuses me, and part of me can't believe I am. Why am I, other than all the reasons about loving her and knowing it's transference? I think because I've watched so many movies and TV shows like "Xena" and "Buffy" where romantic couples kill each other and physically fight each other, that I've found a place in me where this is an acceptable kind of epic romance--look how dark and painful this is but they still love each other and will make it through.

--Because sometimes my step mother used to lose it on me and it made me feel like she loved me more--'cause she only lost it like that with me (sad). Both my mother and step mother were picky btches, so I'm used to living with someone who's picky and btchy. I've finally figured out how unhealthy my relationship with my brother was--us both just enabling each other to avoid moving on in life for years--and I'm hoping this will inspire me more to improve my present relationship.

--I really should be with someone more on my level who can help me with the "real life" parts of my life (like motivation and person growth) more than my partner is able to.


Okay, so there it is for today. I'm sure there's more. Thanks to anyone who actually read it all the way through!

Peacebaby
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schwing
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« Reply #31 on: June 05, 2008, 01:20:57 AM »

My role in the relationship -

• My role in the relationship was to play a "role."  At that time in my life all I knew was to play roles: the good student, the dutiful son, the loyal best friend, the social butterfly, the doting boyfriend.  It was a means of disconnecting from my internal strife and appear functional.  But really I didn't know who I was, I just wanted a fantasy:  someone to rescue, and in return would rescue me back.  I don't think I  had the wherewithal or motivation to do the personal development I lacked (thanks partly to momster).  It was easier to believe in romantic love, that I would be made whole if I only found the right person.

• When she painted me white, I was in heaven.  Of course she was able to create for me the fantasy I longed, she was a borderline.

• I willingly gave up just about all aspects of my life in order to be with her, my friends, family, interests, time and effort.

• I suppose I was co-dependent.  Here's what co-dependency meant to me:  as long as I was with my BPDgf, I didn't have to work on me.  I didn't have to take care of myself (she would pretend to take care of me), emotional, physically or spiritually.  She was my one-way ticket to avoidance.  Only it turns out, it was really just a deferment plan, and payback was a butt.


Things I learned -

• Fixing oneself is worth it.  Because avoiding is only a deferment.

• I am worth getting to know, and worth spending time/energy on.  Fixing other people instead of myself is a form of avoidance.

• I do not need another person in order to feel/be whole.

• I am the ONLY person who can rescue me.

• It is NORMAL to feel scared during the process of developing intimacy.  Instant intimacy (ie, BPD love) is an illusion.  Do not be seduced by illusion, the pain in the aftermath is not worth it.

• Pain is a diligent instructor, do not ignore these instructions.

• Emotions are not bad, having them does not mean you are a weak person.

   ... If at some point you lose touch with your feelings, it is because you are in too much pain.

   ... However if you can work past that pain, and "experience" all the bad feelings you have deferred (ie, avoided) then you might have an opportunity to experience other feelings (good feelings) provided you start taking care of yourself.

• Loyalty might be an honorable quality if it is truly loyalty you are expressing.

   ... just make sure it is not a rationalization to avoid doing what is hard (ie, leaving your BPD)

• There is NO SUCH THING as unconditional love (as least in the mortal realm)

   ... all love is conditional, just make sure you understand the conditions and they are fair and acceptable to you.

   ... anytime someone is saying they expect it of you, they are really expecting you to be their parent but without the conditions (ie, a child's obligation is to learn to become adults)

   ... and don't believe them when they say they are giving you unconditional love

   ... judge their actions not their words.


Schwing

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Bumpy Road
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Relationship status: ex-fiancé is no longer to be included here in the future
Posts: 1271


« Reply #32 on: June 08, 2008, 01:37:51 PM »

i have learned it was not all her fault. much of it was me and my issues and the fact the we were both victims of addictive and unhealthy love



Love & Sex Part 1 - Dealing with Healing - Criteria Past

Love & Sex Part 2 - Sex, Love & my Obsessive Addiction

Love & Sex Part 3 - Love Addiction & Childhood Sexual Abuse


had it not been for my screwed up relationship with 'her'... i may not have gotten back into therapy.
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foiles
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Relationship status: Remarried (Dec. 2010) to a wonderful Non man
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« Reply #33 on: June 09, 2008, 08:14:12 PM »

Thanks for the topic.  I think maybe that I am in a certain 'stage' in the 'looking back' part of the recovery process: From obsessive looking back (can't turn off the replay button-he'll know I'm right this time! -in my own mind no less!) to forcing myself to look back to erase the denial and face the facts and emotions, to the relief of being able to not look back, to maybe now needing to look back again.  Tying up some loose ends...  At least the ones I'm aware of!

My role in the start of the relationship: 2 months separated after 22 years of marriage: lonely, looking for the opposite of exH (ding! wish granted) -

1. My complete codependency on him for my emotions, thoughts, and actions which allowed him the control he thought he needed and, frankly, I was more than willing to give it away.  I came into the relationship with no 'Self' (so much so I had to look up 'Self' online when my T asked who I was), a chameleon with most people I came in contact with (except those genuine people-the few true friends). 

2. The self I did have was full of guilt and hell-bent on proving I deserved whatever came my way.

3. So, to 'keep' him, the idealization and false love I so desperately wanted back to fill my void of Self, after the abuse started, I would lie.  Lie to keep the peace, lie so he would keep 'loving' me, lie to control the environment to placate him, lying about my horror at what he was doing.  Being the uber-emotional detector he was, he could sense this falseness and his radar went off, building things that weren't even there.  More abuse.  More lies.  Cycle repeated.  My way of walking on eggshells.

4.  Deep down, I wanted the drama; to make me 'feel'.  I pushed down so much.  I couldn't push this down. 

5.  Thought I could help fix him.  Thought it was possible that he could fix himself.  More lies, I guess.

What I have learned:

1. NEVER, ever, allow abuse in your life.  WALK -THE FIRST TIME. If you are looking at yourself in the mirror saying "Get out.  What are you doing?"  That means GET OUT.  NOW.

2. Believe someone when they tell you they are angry or jealous or unkind or violent. 

3. "It's getting better" is not good enough.  The only thing good enough is "It stops".

4. The 'perfect man', the perfect relationship, the perfect anything... Too good to be true is no cliche.  And at the same time, 'no one is perfect' is no excuse.

5. Now the good part: The hard-fought battles won: I exist.  I have intrinsic worth. I write my own life script.   I love myself, so the script will be a good one.  Everyone has has intrinsic worth.  Everyone is worthy of love.  I can love, truly love.  I am worthy of forgiveness, Grace.  Everyone is worthy of forgiveness, Grace.  I forgive him.  He was a gift. 

6.  I have a long way to go.

7.  I have learned that I cannot help but laugh every time I see the name Bananahead.

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Bananahead289
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« Reply #34 on: June 10, 2008, 01:20:02 PM »

Bananahead, Bananahead, Bananahead.  Smiling (click to insert in post)

The name is in tribute to the brother of my daughter's Ex-boyfriend.  The kid looks like he has a banana head.  No joke. 

Foiles, your #1 is really true.  Don't allow abuse - physical, mental or emotional. Just because I wasn't getting hit didn't mean I wasn't getting abused.  It really shocked me when my daughter came home and showed me the essay she wrote for her GED practice examination.  The teacher had praised her and said it was a riveting story.  Well, it was all about a strong person she knew and she had written about how her mother had left her father because of domestic abuse.  I was that abused woman.  I allowed somebody to abuse me and I allowed my daughters to observe that.  Thank God we got out, all had a lot of therapy and they have good, decent boyfriends who don't abuse in any manner. I kick myself that I wasn't a good example to them, but they can learn from a bad example too.
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Moving On
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Relationship status: Divorced, 19.9 years married, boys stay home, ex and I alternate weeks with them.
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« Reply #35 on: June 11, 2008, 08:32:33 PM »

My complete story is here, along with a whole bunch of good ones:

US: Stories: Why did we stay in a long term relationship with a Borderline SO?



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