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He wants to get back together
September 12, 2005
3:26 pm
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gayle
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Ok, so Friday night he and I talked for real for the first time in a couple of weeks. We broke up after he revealed to me an event of sexual abuse from his past. He basically refused to let me love him b/c he hates himself so much. I do love him and I understand better what I am dealing with now that I know what I know. I am struggling b/c I know if I can trust him not to pull away like this again. He did say that he was going to get back into therapy- he got out b/c his therapist moved away. I did fine with NC and want to keep my boundries. He doesn't live near here and he asked me to come see him this weekend. I am going to go and I kinda worry about how I will feel once i get there. I have never known anyone that has been through what he has and I want to support him and love him but I dont want to let what he told me to get in the way. its really my issue with what he said. He came back to me saying he knows he wants me in his life and that he wants to make it work and he doesn't want to hurt me and he is sorry if he did. I had a hard time the first couple of days but as time went on I felt better and knew he asked for what he needed which was time. I respect him for that. I guess I am just trying to work this all out, and I know this doesn't make much sense. We have been friends for years and involved for a couple of years. He said the idea of marriage spooks him right now but eventually he would like to get married. He wants to be my boyfriend and be in a relationship. I have 2 boys and I don't bring them around him b/c until I have a true firm commitment from him I don't want to confuse them. We are taking it one day at a time and I feel until he is able to come to some sort of way to really deal with the abuse from his childhood he is not someone I would want to marry. I know I love him and I can't fix him and I can't make the pain go away. I hurt too and I need to honor that as well. what he told me was horrible and I am trying to deal with it too. Does that make sense?

September 12, 2005
3:36 pm
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Anonymous
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it all makes sense.

if you can keep your boundaries until you see some progress from him - then go for it.

if it appears that having contact again, while he struggles with the initial startup of therapy, will sabotage your own efforts, how about staying away a little while longer and confirming that he is in fact "healing" himself.

it IS hard to stay in a relationship while the other person promises to change and starts to - but we tend to have such high expectations - and hopes - and dreams - that sometimes the reality continues to hurt us - cuz the progress is sometimes more agonizing and slow than we are comfortable with, and sometimes they are only promising therapy cuz they want to suck us in again.

truth is - he will stay "detached" from you until WELL INTO his therapy - because it isn't going to change overnight.

If you are going to go see him - then explain your reservations and listen to your gut - if you get there and can't handle it - politely leave - don't feel obligated to stay.

I also wonder if you feel obligated to try to work it out - like when an alcoholic finally admits he has a disease or a cheater admits the affair - then promises to fix it - they want us to continue to stay by their sides. And they want to forget the ugliness and have a fresh start - and that is often too hard for the "injured" party.

can you give him a fresh start - let go of the past - get over this issue - retain your boundaries - love him despite his warts - and not "rescue" or "fix"?

you seem like you want to - just make sure you examine your motives and be honest with yourself.

ps...I admire you for keeping your boys out of it - that's something I struggle with - having a daughter and dating - how do I not expose her? it's hard.

September 12, 2005
3:47 pm
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gayle
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Yeah, and its hard on us b/c that means we only see each other when I don't have the kids. I don't want to save him, I have children to take care of, he should take care of himself. I think he is, he said he wants to spend time with his friends and his hobby- RC Cars. I think its a good idea b/c he started acting jealous when I started back to school and would hang out with my friends. I told him this and that I needed to be able to make decisions without feeling like I had to check with him b/c I allow him that as well. We do trust eachother not to cheat or anything like that. We know what we mean to eachother and we eventually want to marry. I am trying to figure out if I am ready to take him back. I need to process all he told me and be able to be around him without it interfering in how I see him. this is more about me than him right now. I will go and I think once I see him I will feel better. Thank you Ali- You are so wonderful!

September 12, 2005
3:55 pm
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Anonymous
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why make a decision now?

as I said earlier - how about stating your hesitation to see him - and then go - but know you can leave if it's too uncomfortable. make the "date" a small one - coffee or lunch or a little shopping - something you can do together, talk and test the waters - not dive in head first.

then from there - trust your gut - if it says stand back - stand back - he should understand after all you went thru.

I know it feels like you need to make a decision NOW, but you don't. You don't see him regularly, and have to plan it, so you got one safety net in place right there - almost wish I had the same! Stand back, be his FRIEND, and let him work on therapy - then see what your heart and mind say down the road.

you guys talk about "possible marriage" - and that may change for him too - during therapy he is either going to get more comfortable with the idea, or realize he really doesn't - again, you have no guarantees which way it will swing.

stay his friend - or his gf from afar - until you feel comfortable. he has to know how sick he feels over this incident, so he should understand how worried you are about the ramifications on your future and how icky it makes you feel too.

you don't need to make that decision now - let him know that - let him know why - and let it go - let him process it and do what he needs to do to fix himself.

if it's meant to be, it will happen...just let it happen naturally - don't force it or yourself.

September 12, 2005
4:02 pm
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gayle
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You are right, what I don't want to be is crutch for him to lean on instead of him leaning on himself. I will take this slow, one day at a time- same advice I give but I can't seem to find it for me~ go figure, I have been feeling some anxiety today and I am reigning myself in some. I can't afford to put everything out there right now. When he was in therapy before he would talk about getting married and how he couldn't wait and once his therapist moved away he lost alot of his confidence. We were talking the other night and I said "If" we go that route- meaning marriage and he corrected me and said "when" so I know he wants to marry me its that he is afraid of the responsiblity of the kids and all and he and my x know eachother and hate eachother. so that is fun. But Ali, you are so wise- no decisions now, take it slow, see how it goes this weekend and decide when I am ready. Starting to feel the tension leave my shoulders. Thank you!

September 12, 2005
4:16 pm
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taj64
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I was just going to say that just as you were going to get over your hurt and know it would take time to heal from it, the same route as if you ended up back with him, to take each day at a time, and some good days and some bad. or what I am trying to say is treat yourself the same way as if you were broken up, that you continue working on you too. Maybe after this experience, your eyes are open a lot more and you grew from it. Pay very close to your anxiety feelings, it is telling you something. Just remember this is your life too.

September 12, 2005
4:17 pm
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and remember - if this weekend seems too much - there is no shame in ending it early - call it a day. If he truly is understanding - he will let you go without a fuss - and if he fusses - leave anyway, and know that's another issue you would have to face for next time.

I'm no different than you - I want to know what is gonna happen before it happens and I wanna know NOW damn it!!!

I spent all morning worrying about "where he was gonna take me" for my bday surprise - my gut had a guess, and I realized as the days went by (from my bday wed to the day on sunday) that I did not want to go where I thought he was taking me - for oh so many reasons - and AGONIZED over how to break it to him. I had been to my CODA meeting the day before and the meeting was about saying no when someone wants something of you that you aren't comfortable with - and sticking up for your own wants and needs. Well, I didn't think the meeting had any meaning for me - until sunday morning when my gut said "you don't want to go there". so, when he woke up (I laid there for HOURS waiting), I asked him if that's where he was taking me, he wouldn't answer, so I told him I didn't want to go there - he got up, didn't answer me and showered - I didn't have a straight answer, but had a gut feeling - so when he was done, I made a statement about getting up so we can do wherever, and he said "you don't want to go" in a tone that would make me feel guilty. I laid in bed for a while - crying - feeling guilty - etc - I ruined the day for both of us - then got up showered, determined to salvage the day. We went out for lunch and I took him shopping to places I wanted to go. He didn't pay, I guess it was his payback for not taking me candle shopping) but I still got what I wanted and got to go where I wanted for "my" day. The day turned out okay - tho was a bit of a struggle.

pay attention to your gut and don't rush - therapy is a long slow road - it is okay to be his friend and support him - and not rush back into the whole relationship thing.

when he starts talking about "when" we get married - remind him that A) there is no ring or commitment yet, and B) there is a long road ahead of you and you aren't prepared to make wedding plans just yet. It may burst his bubble - but you have to be honest. He may be using "when" as his goal and crutch - instead of just focusing on himself - and what he needs to do ALONE for himself.

you ARE learning - think of how you would have handled this in the past.

September 12, 2005
4:47 pm
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gayle
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You are both right and this time I had some down times but I was much more resilent and didn't completely fall apart and that feels really good. I think it will take time for me to trust him with my feelings again and that is where I am holding back. I do have my eyes open and I need to remember not to make a mountian out of a molehill. That is the codependant talking when that happens. I also have to remember that he called me to come back into his life, I didnt ask for it, he asked for time and we both took some and I know that if I asked for time he loves me enough to give it to me. I won't even think about this weekend, I will think about today, today and tomorrow, tomorrow and if we make it to the weekend then I will take it as it comes. Feeling even better! Thank you Ali and Taj- I really feel like I have friends in you two! I love you both!

September 13, 2005
11:33 am
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gayle
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Still struggling today with this, not sure how I am feeling. He said that he decided to talk to me again b/c he knows he loves me and that he doesn't want to be without me. He shared his deepest darkest secret with me and I think I am still dealing with that. How do you handle being told of someone elses abuse, knowing it is always on their mind and ever present. That is overwhelming to me. I love him and i don't want him to hurt. I want to find peace with what he told me. The issues I have with him right now are my own, he is being sweet and thoughtful and can't wait to see me wants to spend time just cuddling together and reconnecting with eachother. I am the one that is pulling away and I am projecting this on to him. It is not fair to him and I don't want to do this. I don't want me to hurt regarding what he told me. My feelings are valuable too and I need to honor them and value them and not sweep them under the carpet and make them less important because of all he has gone through. He has to work on his own issues on his own. I am starting to feel better, I think part of me is afraid to see him b/c of what he told me. ITs too much pressure to be the only other person he has told this to, I know I won't let him down but I feel like I have something to live up to now and I don't want that pressure. Again I think I am putting this on myself. I want to stop doing this to me and I am trying to figure out how.

September 13, 2005
12:20 pm
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gayle - I forget - are you in counseling?

perhaps you can write his secret down in a letter, put it in an envelope, seal it and put it up on a shelf in the closet - and use it to symbolize your "letting go" of it.

the problem sounds HUGE - and I know you are in his confidence not to share - but this place is anonymous, so if you can or want to - let it our here.

you realize he is damaged goods now - and you are not sure that you or anyone else, including him, are able to fix it - make him whole again.

and that's okay to feel - feel it - pay attention to it - don't put it away.

you know down deep that the problem he told you about is something seriously huge that is going to cause long standing consequences in your future - and you are paying attention to those warning flags.

it's not easy - you do need to honor those feelings - and you need time.

as I said before - there is no rush - and he shouldn't be rushing you, and doesn't sounds like he is, but you worry he will at some point - and out of guilt or wanting to love him, you will dishonor your feelings by putting them away.

the good thing is you realizing this is coming from within you - and you have the power to stop.

I don't know how to make yourself stop, other than do more research - go to the library and look up stuff on the subject of his "past" and what was done to him - see how they recommend victims heal and how their families should cope as well - maybe this will help with answers?

don't worry you will scare him off - he has alot to deal with himself - and perhaps once he starts therapy, he will be the one pulling away - let him pursue his therapy and see how things shake out - don't rush it (like I seem to be) and just try to relax.

September 13, 2005
12:22 pm
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gayle
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I am in counseling, I think I am obseeing over this and talking about it too much to let it go. I think I am going to take a break from this right now.

September 13, 2005
12:23 pm
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taj64
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Hi Gayle, this abuse that happened to him, he needs to adjust to letting it out. This was a difficult thing for him to share his secret. Just like trying to recover from a break up as you well know takes a lot of time. It is still fresh in your mind right now. It is not going to be easy to jump back into what seemed normal. I think it is acceptable to show that you support and care for him during his discovery process. But at the same time, protecting your own heart. Each of you have been so hurt and the more postive feelings will take time to develop. Don't rush or force. Loving others while protecting yourself from harm is a good thing to do.

September 13, 2005
2:38 pm
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gayle - I think that's my problem too - talking too much about it - equals obsession - I have a migraine - I need a nap!

I have such a HARD time waiting for results once I know the answers...and when there is a problem - I am hell bent on finding the answers - and don't stop until I do.

that's one of the things I will be discussing in therapy tonite - cuz I don't want to keep discussing him - I know what she will say - and know that I have the answers in my head and heart. I just have to honor them.

I know that all my BF is doing is in fear - fear of intimacy, fear of trusting me, fear of change, fear of letting go, fear of...the list goes on. I just don't know if I can accept it and wait while he figures it out and does anything about it - if he even does.

September 14, 2005
10:05 am
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gayle
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Hi Ali-Thank you for being so supportive. I realized I needed to stop talking about it here and actually deal with my feelings-and talk to him. So that is what I did. He was so sweet and supportive. He knew I was having a hard time starting to say what I needed to say and he said "talk to me baby" and I took a breath and did. He got quiet and said that he loves me and that everything would be ok. I told him that I couldn't wait to see him and that it would be healing for me and he said for both of us. We had a great afternoon and evening talking. This morning we have talked about how excited we are about seeing eachother this weekend. I feel so good! I feel good because I honored my feelings and I spoke my mind and took care of me! Thank you Ali- I am starting to be just like you! Did you get a nap? How did therapy go? ((((ALI)))

September 14, 2005
12:28 pm
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gayle
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Taj- you are right about the abuse, I think as much as I am trying to adjust to what I now know he has to adjust that I know it, ie last night he didnt sleep very well and before I would ask him why and what was he thinking about and now I already know the answers so I just tell him I love him and it will be ok and we move on, he said he used to make stuff up when I would ask and now he doesn't have to do that. Plus now when I tell him I love him as he is he can't second guess that and say to himself "yeah, but theres this awful thing you don't know about me and if you did then you might have something different to say" It is hard knowing what I now know but I think it is for the best and seems to be bringing us together. I am working on me still and I still take time for time with just the boys. I refuse to lose focus on myself at the expense of being with any man. I love him and I am happy and we can talk about this even though it is hard, never know maybe this helps him too. How are you doing Taj, haven't talked to you in a while. I miss you!

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