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Trying to stop being used
May 6, 2004
11:35 am
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curly
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I am new to this. First ever on-line discussion. I can relate to so much I have read on this site. I am involved with an alcoholic who uses me and takes me for granted. Right now I am struggling with driving 25 miles one-way to where he lives because he asked what I was doing for lunch and how would I like to come over? He's out of money and cigarettes. Last week when he had money and I was about to go to see him - he has no car, no nothing - he said the drive was too much for me and let's do it next week... I am compulsive about this guy. Against my better judgement, I told him I would come over today. I even said "I'll bring you smokes" as if to say "don't play me stupid" but he didn't get it. He said, "Oh that would be good." I need to stop this insanity before I go off the deep end. I'm asking for help. I'm going to pray.

May 6, 2004
2:04 pm
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gingerleigh
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Or... maybe you need a new "project" to work on... yourself maybe? You can actively work on yourself so that you don't have time to drive all that way. You're not saying no, you're just too busy to say yes!

I understand how it feels to be compulsive about someone. You can't think about anything else, and you're worried for him or wondering about him or daydreaming about how it will all be when he finally gets his act together. *grin* Here's my secret... It NEVER happens! *good-natured laugh*

What can pull you out of this is you and a good support network of friends and family who can keep you occupied with other things. Sign up for a class that you have to pay for so that you won't be tempted as strongly to miss it.

Hang in there! And come here to vent any time.

May 6, 2004
2:15 pm
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why me 32
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Sounds like you have a need to be needed. It also sounds like you're dating my ex.

My ex was living in my house for the last couple of weeks. After all the hell he put me through, I allowed him to come back into my house because he didn't have anywhere else to go, and I can't tell you how much better I felt that I was able to wash his clothes, cook his food, let him have free use of my car, buy him beer and cigs...and not expect a thing in return...which is good because I didn't get anything but grief for it.

I ran out of money a couple of days ago, and he was gone. He called me up at 11:30 the other night (after he took my car to supposedly go out with some friends), screaming at me about how he's tired of me threatening him and how he was going to have the sherrif's department escort him to my house the next day to collect his belongings...that I needed to get it through my head that it was over. He said this all for the benefit of his little girlfriend, I suppose, because I had not entertained any thoughts of us getting back together. I had not threatened him with anything. I was just laying down in my bed, wondering where the heck he was with my car, and he just went berzerk on me. Anyway, I got up out of my bed, put his stuff in suitcases, and had them sitting there when he got home. The idiot actually tried to apologize to me...which I rejected on principal...and he took off walking down the street. A buddy of his came over the next day to collect his things. What a coward.

It made me feel whole again to be able to take care of him. How twisted is that? Anyway, don't fall into that trap. Run away, as fast as you can, and don't look back. You're new at this, so you have a chance to nip it in the bud, so to speak. I have been conditioned to be like this through years of manipulation and verbal/mental abuse. I don't feel like a good person if I'm not taking care of him. Do you want to feel that way? Hope not.

I apparently like to get hit over the head with a hammer over and over again, which is something I'm really, really going to have to work on. Don't you do it to yourself.

May 6, 2004
3:00 pm
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why me 32
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Funny thing is, I don't feel hurt. I haven't been crying or anything. I just don't feel anything. When I look at him, I feel nothing, almost blank or something. I suppose I'm immune to it. It was just nice to have the illusion of being married again, I guess (just without the sex). My daughter had been praying every night for her daddy to come home, and there he was. Who was I to mess with God? So, I let him stay. I thought that by him staying in my house, at least he wasn't at the girlfriend's house...so it was okay.

Now my thinking is, let her deal with the jerk. I kind of feel sorry for her (NOT). I just hope I've let him drop the hammer on me for the last time.

Geez, I need to get out.

TTFN Twinks, and good luck to ya' Curly.

May 6, 2004
3:36 pm
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curly....here is one word you can say to your boyfriend to keep him quiet..........just say NO......don't
say yes to please him, when deep down you are bothered by his actions.....just say NO, its easy...then maybe he will quit taking advantage of you and you can be strong and think of yourself more....read some "coda" books and
attend meetings...they will keep your mind busy, and maybe take up a hobby or just go for a walk...your boyfriend will be "ok"...its YOU you
have to look out for.

May 6, 2004
3:37 pm
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curly
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Wow! Thanks. I even laughed about dating "the ex." Yes I do feel better when he "needs" me and I do everything I can for him. I do for him and in return get nothing. My friend says I need to look at the baby steps I have made. First of all, he is not living with me anymore because I paid the rent for his apartment in the next town where he found a job - I figure it was money well-spent even though a healthy person would have kicked his butt to the curb the first instance he didn't pitch in his half, well over a year ago. We have been involved for 18 months and he moved in with me last May. I have been trying to get him out of my place since last November. Push and pull...It's so damned hard to let go of the hammer or even get out of the way. Also I just got my key back from him because I got a roommate - one who will share the rent. A woman friend of mine needed a place to live. I don't think he was too impressed with that.
This is the first time he has had a job since we hooked up. He took some contracts in the last year and I kept track of how much he made - $2000.00. It cost me a helluva lot of money for him to make that much! Driving him here and there...
Yes I need a new project - ME. Why is it so hard to look after me? Yes I have been fantasizing and waiting for him to get his act together, to be there for me when I need him, to show me that he loves me. It's not going to happen. I know this yet I am unable to let go. That is pathetic at my age (51). I will try to do things for me. I need to love me. Thanks for your support! Talk later.

May 6, 2004
3:58 pm
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CAMER
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you go girl!!! take those baby steps and just do one thing a day for
yourself, whatever makes you happy and learn to say NO to him.

May 6, 2004
10:18 pm
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Trish04
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Curly-----I've been with a guy that used me and took me for granted. We have not talked nor seen each other in over 2 weeks. I'm hoping that each day gives me more strength to not go back to him. I miss him....but then ask myself....what do I miss? Someone that is self-centered and everything is always about HIM. I am now trying to find myself and get MY life back. I keep all the negatives of him in the front of my brain and don't dwell on the good times or how nice of a guy he is otherwise. It's a whole package and we need to learn to not settle for anything less.

Just take each day as it comes and just keep telling yourself that you deserve better. Someone once told me that if you are in a relationship you should have the feeling every night when your head hits the pillow that "you feel cherished". If you don't feel cherished, then you are in the wrong relationship.

I'm waiting for the cherished relationship.

May 6, 2004
11:17 pm
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great attitude Trish04....and thats true...keep all the bad things about him up front, and don't overload your mind with the few good times you may have had.....do the right thing and take things day by day...and you will get stronger.

May 7, 2004
9:17 am
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curly
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Thanks for all the encouragement - this discussion is wonderful support. He's called me already today (8:15 a.m. and then said I'll call you later at work. I am wondering what he wants. No I don't feel cherished - I feel invisible, unless he wants something and then he turns on the charm. Good advice Trish04 about the whole package. A few well-place "i love you's" go a long way. I wonder, does he know how much of a con he is? Does he know he's using me? I know I am responsible for allowing him to use me and I am trying to change. I will do something good for me today...

May 7, 2004
10:53 am
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curly: he probably knows that he is
conning you and taking advantage of you cuz you allow him to do it....if
you don't do what he wants and stick with it and say know...he will realize that yes, you are a strong
gal and won't put up with his crap.

May 7, 2004
11:04 am
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Trish04
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Curly---I'm not sure that some men are aware that they are using us. I don't think they "think" about it. It's their normal way. Have you noticed him using his friends and family, too? That's how I know not to take it personally, it's just the way he is. But that doesn't mean I have to accept it. I did accept it for a long time. But, by God, I have needs too.

Sometimes I thought my guy cared for me and other times I thought I'm just the "woman at the the time". When I tried to talk to him about being emotionally unavailable to me, he said, I've always been that way. Every woman I have been with comes to the point that you are at now....wanting more affection, attention and caring. He said, I just can't do it. My come-back to him...."I just can't do it anymore either".

I figure that he will be a lonely man the rest of his life. He is okay in a new relationship, but as the women figure out they are not getting anything in return they move on and he moves on to another woman. I can't believe that it took me over a year to try to move on. I have always been in healthly relationships before--ones that were mutually loving and caring, So why I have stayed in this relationship is so unlike me. I really don't get it. Was it the challenge to see if he would change because I was so nice to him and did so many things for him? Did I think he would see the light someday? Well, I thought wrong...he will never change.

May 7, 2004
11:58 am
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orchid
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Hi Trish...I can totally relate to what you've been saying about being used. And don't feel badly for taking a year to get out of it...I've been in and out of a similar relationship over the past 2.5 years and I still miss him and want to be with him, even though he never gave me anything in return. And like you, I can't figure out WHY I would put up with that. My theory is that it is fear. I fear that I won't find anyone I will love again, the same way I loved him. Which is probably irrational, but when you find something wrong with every guy you date, it becomes a worry. I totally relate to the "woman at a time" thing..my ex NEEDS to have a girlfriend, and I'm now convinced that most of the time he was with me was only because there was no one else around. As soon as one of his ex girlfriend's came on the scene he was gone so fast. Like even before he and I were done, because he had to make sure she would take him back before he got rid of me. Then he will get rid of her and come back to me (I've let him do this before) but not anymore, no matter how much I "think" I want to. Focusing on the bad things is all that gets thru, because he's a manipulator and con-artist and knew when he had to give me some scrap of love/goodness to keep me around. It's like being let around on a string. Anyways, just thought I'd share with you that there are other girls out there who fall prey to these guys, and it's not our fault, just that they are so damn good at what they do. Good luck, and stay strong. I've not seen my ex in over a month and i won't lie, it's still hard.

May 7, 2004
12:35 pm
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Gee Curly,,,I believe maybe this guy is related to an alcoholic I dated for about three months. I cannot believe the trouble I would go to for this creep!!! What in the world was wrong with me. It was awful. He never had money, was a mean drunk, used me, then went back with his wife,,then had the nerve to call me collect from jail telling me that his wife was just playing "him" for a fool, he'd gotten into trouble for drugs, was in jail, and said he "guessed he'd made a mistake by dumping ME." It was all I could do not to laugh. Lucky for me I had already met another alcoholic, but this one had money, so I forget about the other Mr. Wonderful. Otherwise, I probably would have cartwheeled all the way to the jail just to let him have another go at me!!! Pathetic? Yes. Explainable? Not by me. I must have a damned poor opinion of myself to put up with that creep. Sometimes I wonder if I'm not the most dependent, codependent, low-self-esteemer in the entire universe. That particular phone conversation, he said that he had dropped by my place one night a few weeks before he was put in jail, but I wasn't at home? As if I owed him an explanation. That was about six years ago, and I'm 50 now, so don't feel too bad about your age while doing this type of thing. Oh,,by the way,,I married the alcoholic who saved me from the other alcoholic...I'm making really good progress,,hehehehe. At least I can stand up to this one. The other one was too mean,,Lord how I loved that man!!! Jeez,,hopeless. Now you don't want to be like me do you? If it helps, just think of this little story, realize he is only using you and doesn't care one little bit about you no matter what he says or does, and practice saying "get lost loser and lose my phone number" without explaining anything to him even if he asks questions, in the mirror over and over until you get it down-pat!! You can even smile when you're saying it. They say that when you're smiling and talking on the phone, it comes through to the other person. W.

May 7, 2004
12:35 pm
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wings
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I can relate to all of these stories. I also feel loved and useful when my boyfriend needs me, which is usually for money! It's so hard for me to let go even though the bad times seem to outnumber the good. Everything is about him and what he wants and I get so sick of it, but I can't seem to say No. And when I do say No, he comes up with some explanation to make me do something his way. He treats me like crap and then when I confront him, he says he doesn't know why he does it...I am doomed

May 7, 2004
12:40 pm
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Trish04
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Gosh Orchid...your story does sound so much like mine. He does seem to take out his little black book and hook up with an old girlfriend when it seems he is bored with me. He has done this 3 times now and this time I am not going to be around for him to hook back up with me!! Orchid, I appreciate you sharing with me. It helps to know that I am not the only one out there who has stayed in a less that healthy relationship and wondered every day "why am I in this".

I was with some friends the other night and one of the couples had been married for 22 years....just watching them together reminded me what true love and respect are all about. They were so cute together and still are having fun and enjoying life together. So after a breakup the key is to get back out there and be around "normal" people. This is helping me take those blinders off that I have had on for soooooo long.

What you said rang true with me about feeling that I will never find someone to love again. I know he is not the last man on the earth....and even if he was....would I want to settle for something that does not make me truly happy? I think NOT!!!

May 7, 2004
12:48 pm
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why me 32
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Your'e only doomed if you want to be.

I've been in doom-ville for a long time, and let me tell you, it sucks.

I had to ask myself the other day exactly what it was I was losing in divorcing my husband. I'm losing the feeling of being needed is what I came up with. But it's not that he needed me, it was that I was easy to use, and that's not good. As long as he told me he loved me a few times a year, I was totally happy with being used. Let me share this too; when we were in bed together, he didn't like to kiss or cuddle afterwards or anything like that. It was just wham-bam-thank-you-maam....snore.

Gee, I'm giving up so much. Thfffpht. He had the nerve to tell me he wasn't satisfied in bed. What an a-hole. Sometimes I didn't even know it had happened, he was so quick.

Self-esteem rebuilding time for me.

May 7, 2004
2:31 pm
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Trish04
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Boy can I relate!! My guy was one of those wham-bam kinda guys too. Even the foreplay was weird....all about him..none about me. He didn't like to cuddle anytime...in bed or out of bed. He never told me I looked nice or that he missed me or that he loved me. Now that I think about it....he has got to be the strangest guy I have ever been with. Why, oh why did I stay as long as I did???????

I didn't realize it until the end, but his behavior was affecting my self esteem. I kept wondering what was wrong with me. I never had this problem in any relationship before. I still think I was in it for the challenge to see if I could change him. That's a joke!!

May 7, 2004
3:01 pm
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why me 32
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What's foreplay?

Oh, you mean BJ's. Yeah, he referred to my "monthly" as BJ week.

Ugh.

May 7, 2004
3:35 pm
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CAMER
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i too have been in all types of
unhealthy relationships, always with men with addictions.....sometimes I felt addicted to them like they were
addicted with their drugs, booze and
gambling....and yes, its low self esteem...but think gals, we are all
taking lil steps by just "writing" and sharing in this group....and not
being in total denial...I too agree
alot has to do with fear...I was so
afraid to be alone that I would pick
any guy, and I mean any man just to
have a man by my side...during my
life I have always had boyfriends,
ones with addictions...and put up with
so much and deep down I was so unhappy but could not break up with
these men...it seemed better to have
a "bad" relationship than no relationship at all and face the
important one, which is me!! You can
never change a man, so now I am not
involved with anyone and try so hard to look for the red flags....and the
best thing for me was to say **NO***
to make me happy and not yes to
make someone else....just keep practicing and have pride in yourself and look in the mirror and love yourself!

May 7, 2004
5:11 pm
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curly
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Yes Camer! Right on. I am going to meet my "addiction" now. Why I don't know. It's like we're supposed to get together for some reason? Oh yeah he has no money so he probably would like some dinner, maybe bum some smokes. We'll see...It's like putting yourself in harm's way. I will not have access to the net until Sunday or Monday so I'll check back in and let you know if I said "NO." Prayers and kind thoughts to all of us!

May 7, 2004
8:01 pm
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CAMER
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curly.........just try to say NO once and then it gets so much easier...take things in lil steps, it makes it alot simpler and you wont be overwhelmed...please let me know how it went.

May 8, 2004
12:40 pm
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you can burn some smokes - by all means - do - as long as you don't burn YOU huh? - 🙂

May 11, 2004
12:27 pm
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curly
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Well I said NO. First of all on Friday when I met him - remember I was wondering what he wanted - he wanted me to drive him around to do his stuff for an hour and then meet back up with his friend to go and paint their shop, drink beer...So I asked, "Why am I here? "To drive you around because you're buddy has personal things to do?" It's not like that he said. Anyay, I took him to where he needed to go first, turned off the imaginary meter and said, "That will be $6.40 please?" I felt used and jilted because this was his first weekend not going to jail because of a DUI conviction and he chose to spend it with his buddy, drinking and not me...the weird thing is that I should have realized that this would be his preference because he is an active alcoholic...there I was thinking 'I don't mean anything to him...poor me...' What do I expect? I need to face reality. Now for the breakthrough! He askeed me to come over to see him Saturday afternoon. I figured oK now it's my turn, he's going to give me some time, put some effort into our relationship. I got there he was already half-pissed and being grandiose...I stayed around for awhile...he attacked me and apologized, he put me down and blamed me for him treating me badly, then he said OK let's start over...I love you...until the next hour and there was another attack. Everything is all about him and I can't even get a word in edgewise and he's having a great time being half-pissed and having another beer...I finally said, "I have to go. I have been emotionally and mentally battered here today and now I am numb. I can't stay." He pleaded with me to stay - "Please stay, just lie down and rest. I won't even bother you, just stay." I said I came over here to be with you and have some good, kind, and fun inter-action with you and that's not possible so I have to go. He got angry and said, "I can't do this anymore." I very calmly said, "Neither can I." and I left. The next day I was hoping he would call but he didn't. I figured either he's being a coward or he's pissed off and making me suffer. I wanted to go over to see him to make sure he didn't want to end it for good...but I didn't do the compulsive thing. I took an objective look at what has been happening and saw my role in all this too. I thought he must feel like shit. I called him yesterday morning to hold out the olive leaf and to let him know that I care about him. You see, I've come to the realization that he is a sick person, out of control and he is very unhappy. I know what it is like to take your anger and frustration out on those closest to you. I am an alcoholic too but today I am sober. As soon as I don't want or expect anything from him, I can feel compassion for him. I went over to see him last night - same thing- 6 pack on the go and a guy with him in the shop. I felt that terribly familiar "sweet disappointment." I'm like a dog on a chain waiting for someone to come over and pet me? No damned way. No more. I went to eat and when I got back he was ready to go. We went to his place and it is dirty and I didn't want to stay. I said what I wanted to say. "If we can't have a relationship, let's at least have a truce...I feel for you and I don't want you to feel sad and lonely and I figured you need me to be your friend. I just wanted you to know that and Now I have to go home because I want to, OK?" I do not want to be his victim or his persecuter anymore. If I can't treat him the way I would like him to treat me than I am just like him. I see the games I need to play to inter-REACT with him. I want to ACT, be responsible for my well-being. I do care about him - that's a fact but I am trying one day at a time to quit allowing him to use me. I must confess that I did buy him two packs of smokes and gave him $10. I asked him not to buy beer with it. I regret giving him the dough and the smokes. This too will stop. He wanted me to stay last night too. He wasn't drunk either but I didn't want to so I left, on good terms. ONE DAY AT A TIME> 2 STEPS FORWARD 1 STEP BACK...I'm feeling not too bad today -I prayed to become more detached and I feel my prayers are being answered. I can feel myself loosening my grip, getting ready to let go. If I get compulsive and want to hold on too tight, to control, I will have to try to again loosen the grip, let go and let God. I feel like I am getting somewhere. Thanks for listening for those who had the time to read this rather long entry. Have a good day!

May 11, 2004
12:36 pm
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acj
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Way to go, Curly...Way to go.

You keep moving forward, now.

acj

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