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I realize too late - or is it?
October 18, 2001
4:32 pm
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pill
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I am thinking about the way things went with my boyfriend and I. I see now that there was a real power struggle between us. I have many projects going all the time and don't have a lot of extra mental energy. Now that I'm recuperating from the break-up, I've stopped all activities to focus on healing. Kind of hibernating... and looking back on he and I, I think I may not have put enough into things myself. I reallize now how very busy I kept myself, how distracted I kept myself. Like a wall of protection. No wonder he felt a little left out. I kept complaining about him not doing this or that, but never realized my own faults. I never realized it until now that I'm workign through things and seeing more of myself. UNTIL NOW.

Men and Women: IS IT TOO LATE TO TELL HIM THE ERROR OF MY WAYS? Can I explain that I see this in myself?

October 18, 2001
4:51 pm
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Molly
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Pill, why don't you give it some more time, that book I keep telling every one to read is great for looking at you, as a partner, now, then, and tommorow. Relational Rescue. Phil McGraw

October 18, 2001
5:28 pm
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pill
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I could give it some time and read in the meantime... but I want to be with him... < I'm such a romantic schmuck >

October 18, 2001
6:39 pm
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SusieMcG
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Pill...I know what you're going through because I did it myself when my husband left me for another woman after 20 years of marriage. I blamed myself and saw all my faults and thought I had screwed up and lost the perfect man. HA! That was some kind of insanity brought on by shock or sorrow or something. I look back now (it's been almost 3 years) and think how much better off I am now and how codependent he was (I am, too, but he was worse) and how sick and toxic our relationship really was instead of the wonderful, happy marriage I thought we had. I was just fooling myself, as I do a lot. Don't give in to your weakness right now. Do like Molly said and give it some time and make sure it's not just loneliness or self-pity talking. I don't remember the reason you broke up, but whatever it was, it was valid. Read the book Molly recommends. I know I will. It will probably help me even now, because I still sometimes have pity parties and feel guilty for "running him off", when in my saner, more honest moments I want to thank him for giving me my life back and my freedom and I pity HIM (and the cheap broad he married 32 days after our divorce) because he is still doing the same stuff he always did and I have gotten healthier. It was hard, I was sad, sometimes it's still hard and I still get sad, but not because he's gone or that I miss him, but because I realize now how unhealthy I was (and am) and how toxic our marriage was and I wish we'd gotten some help a long time ago, but that's the past and I'm looking ahead now. This website has helped me, too, and one of these days I'm going to start a thread of my own and I look forward to hearing what Molly and Ladeska and others have to tell me, because I know it will be helpful and wise. Right now I am too insecure. I'm the wallflower just watching the rest of you interact. You guys are really special. I just wanted to put my 2 cents worth in to Pill because I've been there...where you regret things and blame yourself and want to do anything in the world to make it up to him, when in reality it's a sick relationship (mine was anyway) and him leaving was the best thing that could've happened to me, even though he was and is a very good man and I really did love him. That still doesn't mean the relationship was healthy. That may not be the case for you. I just know it's easy when the wound is fresh and you're looking back at it too much,you tend to see it all wrong. Be honest with yourself and ask if you really were to blame for all the things you think you were. I blamed myself for so much crap and in reality, I had every right to react the way I did for those things I blamed myself for. Does that make sense? I mean, I would say "I shouldn't have done this or said that" but at the time and under the circumstances, I had every right to say or do whatever it was I was beating myself up for. He certainly had his share of the blame! And no matter what I did or said (and I was NOT mean or cruel to him, perhaps just too blunt and honest when I should've been kinder and diplomatic), but no matter what I did, it did NOT give him a free license to fall in love with someone else in his business. He knew what was happening and should've stopped it, I know I've had to do that many times during our marriage when I felt I was attracted to someone else, and SHE sure should've known better than to pursue a married man, but this is life, and now I would like to thank them both. I no longer have to live the rest of my life in a mediocre, codependent, passion-less marriage with an unhealthy-minded man who can't be honest with himself or others, but says what he thinks others wants to hear. Then later blames me for not letting him be himself. Please! But that's a whole new string. Just be honest with yourself and careful before you take all the blame and crawl back to this guy. I don't know what happened between you, but I'm sure it wasn't ALL your fault. Validate yourself. Your feelings and decisions were for a reason and were worthy. Don't kick yourself for not being a doormat, if that's what you are doing. Be strong. You may look back as I do and think this was the best thing that could've happened to you. Hope I haven't said too much. Our situations may be totally different. If so, I'm sorry. But you must have doubts about this or you wouldn't have written what you did, so just take your time and be honest, not a romantic schmuck, as you say. SusieMcG

October 18, 2001
7:25 pm
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pill
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Hey Molly? I bought the book and have already started it.

Susie? THANK YOU for taking the time and having the courage to relate. I guess in some way i'm trying to rationalize what happened. Now that things have calmed down, I'm getting those loving feelings back i had in the beginning. It's getting harder every day to not call, to not write to him.

I don't know if this happened to you, but I lost who I was around him, and became a limp, scared, lifeless whimp. Afterwards, he wrote me an email saying he was not happy feeling like "the boss". And I understand why now. In the beginning, I was independent and knew what I liked. Then settled for less than what was healthy for me, because he "had a hard life" and other crap like that.

Truthfully...I'm really horrible for doing this and feel crazy even admitting it: I CONFESS. IN THE BEGINNING I HAD EVERY DOUBT IT WOULD WORK OUT. I really did not believe. He had to paint me pretty pictures and tell me fantasies of the future to keep me encouraged. I think I led him on! I feel so bad...

Anyway, blah blah. It's over now and this is past. The book seems good so far...

Peace to all,
Pill

October 18, 2001
7:27 pm
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pill
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Hey Molly? I bought the book and have already started it.

Susie? THANK YOU for taking the time and having the courage to relate. I guess in some way i'm trying to rationalize what happened. Now that things have calmed down, I'm getting those loving feelings back i had in the beginning. It's getting harder every day to not call, to not write to him.

I don't know if this happened to you, but I lost who I was around him, and became a limp, scared, lifeless whimp. Afterwards, he wrote me an email saying he was not happy feeling like "the boss". And I understand why now. In the beginning, I was independent and knew what I liked. Then settled for less than what was healthy for me, because he "had a hard life" and other crap like that.

Truthfully...I'm really horrible for doing this and feel crazy even admitting it: I CONFESS. IN THE BEGINNING I HAD EVERY DOUBT IT WOULD WORK OUT. I really did not believe. He had to paint me pretty pictures and tell me fantasies of the future to keep me encouraged. I think I led him on! I feel so bad...

Anyway, blah blah. It's over now and this is past. The book seems good so far...

Peace to all,
Pill

October 18, 2001
7:28 pm
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pill
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And now they're playing sappy love songs on the radio.. and my heart just wants to reach out and forgive all and give him a call... < damn him! >

October 18, 2001
7:54 pm
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I lost who I was around mine, too, but I didn't quite become a limp, scared, lifeless wimp. I became the strong one because HE became a limp, scared, lifeless wimp. We were just toxic for each other after a while and instead of seeing it, admitting it and getting help, we just stayed in the same cycle. I couldn't respect him because he was weak, he couldn't be strong because he was afraid he'd screw up, (he was scared of me I think), and we just played a charade for a long time but both said we were happy and even seemed to be on the surface. Now that I've read up on it, I see that we both had many, many codependent tendencies and never knew it. He was a child of alcoholic parents, I was a child who felt unloved and unwanted all my life because I was emotionally neglected. We were not healthy.

I am glad you are reading that book. Reading always helps me a lot, and I'll look for it,too, because I am now having trouble with new relationships with men. I run from them. I don't know if I'm just not ready, if I'm enjoying being by myself too much (haha), or if I'm afraid of being hurt again. A part of me doesn't even WANT another relationship, at least not for a long time, and maybe that's what I should be listening to.

And by the way, sometimes sappy songs STILL make me cry for mine! But in my strongest and healthiest moments, I know I wouldn't take him back on a silver platter, and that feels GOOD!

Take care

October 18, 2001
8:11 pm
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pill
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yes - I was afraid of him! Intimidated too.

October 19, 2001
9:36 am
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pill
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Susie? I'm sorry... I just can't leave this alone... I'm really lost and suffering... (no pity please) just looking for feedback and any advice...

Susie... Do you think I could suggest he and i go get help? Maybe there's just a little thing that we each could change that would turn thing around... Tuesday will be a week since I spoke to him... do you think that's long enough to call him? perhaps I can say that it's obvious we want to be together, we just don't know how to make each other happy, and why don't we try to get some help... what do you think? anyone? I'm not trying to have you feel sorry for me - just looking for a POLL...

October 19, 2001
11:45 am
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nonsmoker
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Let it go at least the 21 days... I've heard that it takes 21 days or 21 times to form a new habit. Let it go that long and see what happens. If it's meant to be, it will work itself in spite of the 21 days, right? 🙂

October 19, 2001
11:50 am
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pill
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Hi nonsmoker.

What would you think about sending a card during that time? Something just to say hello?

I'm kind of half and half on the fate thing. I believe that people can steer their destiny somewhat...

I wonder why 21 days, though?

October 19, 2001
8:20 pm
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SusieMcG
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Pill...How long were you with this guy? How old are you both? How serious had you gotten with him? How happy were you when you were the happiest, and how sad (or lonely, or hurt or whatever emotion fits) were you when you were at your worst together? Was he happy? Did you break up or did he? No one can tell you what you should do. You have to decide yourself. Personally, in my situation, I think my ex and I could've gotten help and survived, IF we had both been honest with ourselves and each other about our true feelings a long time ago. I mean YEARS ago, before we settled into a comfortable rut and just let it go. But we were married for 20 years, we had a son and a business together, a home and land and IRAs and on and on and on. We were in it for the long haul. We really lost a lot when we split up, as far a secure future and life together. So it was really worth saving, in my eyes anyway. Because we both still cared for each other, we were the best of friends and had fun together, when we let ourselves. But somehow, and I don't even know when it was, we drifted an inch too far and this other woman came into the picture at an opportune time. It looked an awful lot like mid-life crisis to me, he changed his looks and personality drastically, and started acting like a damned fool, lost his reputation in the community and practically turned his back on his whole family. But still I think if we had admitted years ago that we were in trouble, we could've been saved and been happy again, because we had a good foundation. But he never told me he was unhappy, and he put on a good act, and I never told him that I was because he was very sensitive to criticism and I knew, or I thought, it would hurt him very bad if I told him I wasn't happy with our relationship, so I stifled it and accepted it the way it was. He acted like he was happy right up to the very end, literally. He ought to be an actor. He kissed me good-bye one morning and that night came home and told me he was in love with another woman, which I had suspected for a week or so and had asked him direct a few days earlier and he denied it and said he loved me. It happened just like that. The rug pulled right out from under me. So by then it was too late to do anything, it was over. But if you really think your relationship is strong and worth saving if you both had a little help, then do it. If that's what you're feeling and believing, then it's worth the effort. My ex and I went to counseling but it turned out that he was only doing it so he could say he tried, and to hopefully help me get over the shock of it all. He admitted that later. He never had any intention of working it out, he just wanted to soothe his conscience and get me some help. Believe it or not, we are still friendly, and sometimes we still hug when we meet, but like I said yesterday, I wouldn't go back to the past for a million dollars. With the space of time and distance, sometimes you see things you can never see when you're in it. So if it doesn't work out for you and yours, have faith and be strong, because you may see later on that it's for the best for both of you. Good luck. Keep me informed. Susie

October 19, 2001
8:48 pm
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nonsmoker
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21 days is a weird thing... I think it's a psychology thing, but I don't remember where I heard it. Supposedly you have to do something 21 times before you get officially in the habit, or break an old one. For instance, if you put the cap back on the toothpaste 21 times, you will do it unconsciously on the 22nd time.

A card? Mmm, I wouldn't. I think if I remember from one of the other messages, you said that he broke up with you. It should be his move the send the card, not yours. My advice would be to sit back and relax. It sounds awful, but men like to be the pursuers, don't be so available. People tend to want that which they cannot have, and reject that which is readily available.

Pretend like you just don't care. After a while, you won't have to pretend any more. Can you focus on something else, some other goal, maybe something really challenging physically or mentally so that you don't have any extra brain cycles to spin on mulling over what might have been?

No more emails either, Pill. If you want to write out something for therapeutic purposes only, open up notepad.exe or microsoft word and save it on your hard drive, don't even mess with the email editor since ooopses happen all the time in email.

You can do this! It's less than one month! What's one month? Isn't there some quote that pops up on this site that says "We can tolerate anything so long as we know that it is only temporary..." Make a promise to yourself to try something new.

How about this, this is a support group, right? Can you make a promise to yourself that you will check in with us for the next 21 days before you attempt to contact him and give us 24 hours to give you feedback? It's hard to tackle something like this alone, but with everyone here, it doesn't seem like you would have to do it alone, not really!

October 20, 2001
12:43 am
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pill
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Yes nonsmoker... I will check in and talk about how I feel before doing anything. I've even marked my calendar - 21 days from the day he broke up with me. That's only two more weeks. But by then there's no telling how I'll feel. I'm a pretty quick healer. My sense is that he's probably given up because he knows just how bad he was. He probably knows down inside that the things he did are irreppairable (in his eyes-and he doesn't know what to do to fix it) and is not even contemplating getting me back in any way. So be it... nothing I can do to control his behavior.

Thank for your suggestions and support. I will be checking in...

October 20, 2001
7:49 pm
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HI PILL , I AM GOING THROUGH A BREAK-UP NOW AND IT'S SOOOO PAINFUL. TOGETHER 2 YEARS AND I GOT TO THE 12TH DAY AND SCREWED IT UP BY CALLING HIM AND STARTED ASKING HIM QUESTIONS ABOUT OUR RELATIONSHIP IT'S LIKE AN ADDICTION I CAN'T STOP CALLING AND NOW HE SAYS IT'S TOO LATE. WE WERE ONLY SUPPOSED TO CONTACT EACH OTHER THROUGH MAIL AND NOW I THINK THERE IS NO CHANCE IN HELL TO GET BACK. I AM SO MAD AT MYSELF AND WISH I KNEW HOW TO STOP CALLING HIM. HE ALSO USED TO TELL ME ABOUT THE 21 DAY THING, I GUESS IT WORKS! BECAUSE HE DOESN'T SEEM TO HAVE ANY PROBLEM. I THINK IT'S OK TO LET THAT PARTNER KNOW AFTERWARDS RELATIONSHIP THE THINGS YOU MAY HAVE WANTED TO TELL THEM ABOUT YOUR WEAKNESS/STRENGTS. YOU CAN ALWAYS SEND IT VIA MAIL. I HAVE A BROKEN HEART AND AM DESPERATELY SEEKING SOME ADVICE ON MY ISSUE TOO. I GET IN ARGUMENTS WITH HIM ABOUT THE PAST AND I SAY THINGS I DON'T MEAN TO SAY. HE SAYS MOVE ON,BUT WROTE ME A LETTER SAYING HE THINKS ABOUT ME DAILY AND WONDERS HOW I AM , HE IS HURTING STILL AND I SHOULD HAVE GAVE IT TIME INSTEAD OF CALLING. NOW I REGRET THE CALL AND AM BACK WHERE I STARTED . I WANT TO HEAL ONLY TIME WILL LET US BOTH BUT I STILL THINK IT'S TOO LATE UNLESS THERE IS A MIRACLE. ANY SUGGESTIONS HERE?

October 20, 2001
7:55 pm
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nitty
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OH BY THE WAY RELATIONSHIP RESCUE IS A GREAT BOOK AND MY OTHER HAVE SAYS HE DOESN'T REALLY THINK WHAT DR PHIL SAYS IS RIGHT ALL THE TIME . BUT HE SAYS DR PHIL SAID SOMETHING LIKE " IF COULD HAVE BEEN" SOMETHING OR OTHER DO YOU GUYS KNOW WHAT HE'S TALKING ABOUT IN THE BOOK? I READ IT AND IT WAS GOOD. WE HAD STARTED READING TOGETHER LONG TIME AGO AND MY EX SAYS THAT BROUGHT UP THE BREAK UP FROM MONTHS AGO. I GUESS HE STARTED BEING HONEST WITH HIMSELF. I WAS GOING TO GIVE HIM THE BOOK IN HIS MAILBOX BUT IT'S TO LATE NOW DO YOU THINK I SHOULD OR NOT AND IS THAT BOOK FOR PEOPLE THAT HAVE GIVEN UP ON THE RELATIONSHIP OR ONLY TWO WILLING PARTNERS? I DO BELIEVE ONLY TWO WILLING PARTNERS. BUT I GOT ALOT OUT OF THAT BOOK. I SUGGEST IT TOO,.

October 20, 2001
9:48 pm
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pill
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I don't know Nitty, but maybe you can have a person you can call instead. Those times when you feel like you'll die if you don't hear his voice, call a sister or a friend and tell them you're going crazy. They'll encourage you... OR just write to us here. We may not get it right away, but will respond as soon as we can...

The book is only for you. It's about seeing yourself and behaviors separate from your partner. If anything it helps you gain clarity about yourself. That way when you feel like you'll die if you dont' hear from him, you can withstand it until it subsides.

As far as your boyfriend: I'd tell him you're going to leave him alone for a couple of weeks. And do it. You will feel so proud of yourself each time you make it past that craving to call him. Call us here, or call a friend if you have to - but be strong.

With a little time, you and your partner will see more clearly if you really do want to get back together. Then you know the decision is true and unmuddled - FOR REAL. Then, you're not making a desicion out of lonliness or fear.

You can also send him notes to let him know he's on your mind. But don't talk about the relationship!

October 24, 2001
11:29 am
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....."little people" can't stay around strong people very long. Makes them squirm and they run off to their little rat cave, drag someone in with them and knaw on each other's tails until they implode on their own vomit. Um no.....not somehting to miss, is it, Blondie? (smile) High Five, girlfrien'

October 24, 2001
1:01 pm
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SusieMcG
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Hey Blondie...What a coincidence, I am also told that I look 37, and I'm 47. I lost weight after my divorce and have kept it off and people tell me I look better than I have in years. My homewrecker has gained weight, too, much more than I ever weighed. So it's true, what goes around comes around. If I made it sound like I'm moping around for my ex, it was not intententional because I'm not. I'm happier than I've been in years. Thanks for your post and I wish you all the best.

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