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Turn, turn, turnabout...
June 2, 2006
4:52 pm
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2bstrong
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Where have you gone? Please let us know that you are still there!

I will be away from the computer until Sunday, so hope to hear from you, and I hope all is well.

2b

June 5, 2006
7:23 am
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Hey Tra!

I'd love to hear from you too!

I miss you!!!!

TC

June 5, 2006
6:11 pm
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turnabout
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Hey y'all, what a surprise seeing my name on these boards! Thanks for asking about me, 2b.

I don't know. Lately I come to the boards, read a couple of threads, and just don't have much to say. I don't know what it is... apathy? complacency? too distracted by my own life? Yeah, that's probably it.

Meant to respond to your interp on my dream long ago, tc. Thought you were pretty much right on. Good job!

Still seeing the new guy. He's 9 1/2 years younger me. It's been 2 months now, and he seems to adore me. Nearly broke up with him a week ago because I was feeling taken for granted and was coming to the conclusion that he was in it just to be in a relationship, period. Talked with him and he listened to my feelings and perceptions. That was a new experience. I've gotten so unused to feeling heard. So, we're still together, and now he seems more invested than I am. For one thing, I detached when I was feeling neglected, but there are other concerns ... other differences that I don't know how we will deal with them, but it seems definitely time for them to be addressed.

Still dealing with residual feelings from everything that happened with J_ and my old friends, but it's different. Revisited the gf's myspace site a couple of times, at first looking for updates that might mention their living situation so I could confirm that, but then just to see if she would update it with anything of substance. (Since determining that hiding from the truth has been a chief source of my pain, I'm committed to not hide from it anymore.) The last time was last week. I even visited her pic page to see the pic of them kissing. It affected me less than ever, and the uppermost thought in my mind was that he deserved her, and they probably deserved each other.

I've spent a long time trying not to think ill of the girl for fear that it would just be a manifistation of my bitterness, not really about her. My perceptions of her started changing after the confrontation when I stopped seeing her as the innocent victim of J_'s deception, but as a willing participant by turning a blind eye and being willfully ignorant to the truth. The last time I visited her page, it's like I realized that he isn't benefiting from his betrayal. I realized, due to exposing myself to HER and who she is in this way, is that she doesn't seem to have any more to offer him than he does her, and that, indeed, it does appear that he has to dumb himself down to be with her. Hah!

I had gotten by for a while on the prediction that he will one day pay for his choices, probably through her betraying him in a way resembling his betrayal of me, but this thought that he his CURRENTLY paying for his choices, even if he isn't fully cognizant of it yet, was very comforting.

I really am much, much better off. How nice.

2b, you have internet at home yet?
tc, how YOU doing? See anymore of that FF?

TraCo

June 7, 2006
11:55 am
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2bstrong
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Hi turnabout and tc...good to hear from both of you. I have missed your wisdom.

Sounds like things are evolving nicely with new guy, turn. I recently read a paragraph about relationships that I thought was very wise, and I found a lot of comfort in it: "Relationships are rarely if ever "standing still". They are either in a state of progress or decline." This was helpful for me to hear because I can see now that the two most significant relationships that I have had recently were NEVER in a state of progression. I was holding on to them with all of my might because I was afraid of being alone (and still am).

I know what you mean about being comforted or consoled about their choices or their situations. I am finally getting to the point where I truly feel that it was their great loss not to hold on to me. It has taken me four full months with constant obsessing, and finally, entering back into counseling to get a grip on my self esteem, and see FOR REAL that I chose to cling to relationships with people who were not healthy enough to even be in a relationship of intimacy.

I think my greatest fear is that they are going to find someone else and be happy, and I am still here, alone, flapping in the breeze without love.*

*I am dating someone...but it is not 100 percent there for me. The important thing for me right now is to stabilize my self-image...I am really dating for distraction and entertainment.--2b

June 7, 2006
12:47 pm
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Hi Tra,

Good to hear from you. It's nice to see you giving the new guy a fair shot. 2 months. That's a substantial amount of time... It's a good sign that you didn't just write him off at the first sign of incompatibility (like I have been doing pretty consistently). Maybe you like him more than you are willing to admit (even to yourself) because it makes you more vulnerable to him? Could it be your natural self-preservation instincts kicking in?

If you don't mind me asking... what are the other issues that are in need of being addressed? I'm just trying to get a handle on where the lack of investment in this relationship on your part could be coming from. I love digging down below the surface to find the WHY's in things. Sometimes I wish I didn't. I wish I could just go with the flow and take things as they come without analyzing the crap out of everything!!!!

About J_... He has to "dumb it down" to be with her. That made me laugh! I think it's true what you said about hiding from the truth. Sometimes, the truth can bring so much pain... and other times, it can bring great relief. Like in your knowing that she is NOT living the dream life that you imagined yourself living with J_... and she is not a rocket scientist by any stretch of the imagination.

The place I'm at right now is that I know FF has been dating other people... and right now, I'm sure he's just seeing ONE... I can't get the thoughts of HER out of my head!!! I can't stop thinking of what she looks like, the conversations they have and the fun they must be having with finding everything out about each other... you know, that giddy NEW RELATIONSHIP feeling?? I picture them together constantly and I imagine him longing to be with HER. It causes me so much pain. I don't know why I do that to myself. It's pure torture.

I want to know the truth... but ONLY if the truth is that she is a dirty smelly, toothless troll with the personality, witt and charm of a lump of clay.

It is SHOCKING to me that he is choosing to be with someone else over ME!!!! ME?!!! He loves everything about me, dammit!! I am a great catch and he is releasing me! I KNOW it has nothing to do with me personally and EVERYTHING to do with his fear and inability to commit, but damn! It still hurts!!

Sorry... I didn't mean to de-rail your thread! This should be all about YOU!!!! I started my own thread with my update...

How's your acting thing going? Have you been hanging out with your new friends? Any contact with the old friends?

Hope to hear back from you soon.

TC

June 14, 2006
9:14 pm
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turnabout
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"Relationships are rarely if ever "standing still". They are either in a state of progress or decline."

That is a very profound statement, 2b. A nice reminder that it's normal for things to not be "just right", as I seem to be expecting. There are highs and lows, and we're both just adjusting to each other and to being in a relationship right now.

He totally straightened up, though, when he almost lost me. He's been consistently attentive ever since and commented several times about how he "almost messed up once" and doesn't want to do it again. How wild is that!?!

Maybe you like him more than you are willing to admit (even to yourself) because it makes you more vulnerable to him? Could it be your natural self-preservation instincts kicking in?

Very insightful, tc. I've been giving that a lot of thought this week (about my reservations in general)...

I'm just trying to get a handle on where the lack of investment in this relationship on your part could be coming from.

... and I realized something about myself. I always view guys I'm interested in as being above me somehow, and guys interested in me as being below me somehow. I don't mean in the sense of literally looking down my nose at them, but I am naturally suspicious that any guy who spontaneously shows interest in me has to be either insincere, is basing it on only the most superficial of reasons ("You're hot!" -- Thanks, oh man-of-my-dreams), or ... and this one would apply to my current situation ... is actually just using me to personify his dream girl rather than seeing me for who I am.

I KNOW! How very textbook codependent of me!! I have to EARN a guy's admiration, therefore I try getting the attention of someone not so readily available. I've read about this trait and understood it, but STILL couldn't relate to it or see how my thought patterns APPLY it. I'm afraid that the guys who are most interested aren't really liking ME, but some IMAGE of me, and that they'll ultimately abandon me when that illusion is shattered. I never realized how INSTANTLY my mind dismisses a guy that shows strong interest in me as having something wrong with him.

So, I realized yesterday that I haven't been regarding New Guy as an equal. He MUST have something wrong with him, so I'm just laying in wait for it to pop up so I can say, "Look! See! I KNEW something wasn't right!" I mean, yeah, I have some concerns ... like I'm a very spiritual person, but he isn't and he says he doesn't want kids, but I think I will someday ... that will DEFINITELY become issues if they aren't addressed ... but my main hangup (and, looking at it all now, i see it's been hanging me up from even getting to the point of addressing these vital concerns) is that I've never really regarded him equally up to this point. I've seen him as a boy with a crush. I've seen him as a "delightful fellow" or, rather dismissively, "this guy I'm seeing."

He's a GROWN MAN!!! And, God knows, I'd better be seeing him that way if I'm going to be in a relationship with him!

You know, I never saw J_ as a grown man, either, and no woman who stays with him possibly can. A relationship with him requires putting up with too much crap for anyone who's with him to regard him as a mature adult. A babysitting job is all it is. And here I am trying to turn this new thing into another babysitting job!!

I DON'T WANT TO BABYSIT ANYONE!!!! (My liberation cry, there.)

So, when I back off of my mental henpecking about how the New Guy can't possibly know what he wants or what he's getting with me, I'm able to ACCEPT that he's involved with me b/c it's what HE WANTS (rather than thinking he just doesn't know any better) and ACCEPT that he IS ABLE to see what I can give as well as what might not be so great about me. I can ACCEPT that he IS ABLE to DISCERN that the good outweighs the bad rather than just glossing over the rough stuff.

And when I see things that way, I think I'm a really lucky girl to have someone think of me the way he does. And maybe I don't have to wait anxiously for the other shoe to drop. Maybe I can just accept that we are BOTH mature adults who can weigh what we're getting against what we WANT to see if the relationship is measuring up.

I love digging down below the surface to find the WHY's in things. Sometimes I wish I didn't. I wish I could just go with the flow and take things as they come without analyzing the crap out of everything!!!!

We are kindred spirits there, tc. I've been living inside my head so much today that real life has felt like a hindrance. And I don't understand people who DON'T overanalyze their lives and relationships. I ate lunch with K_ today, and that got me to thinking about my old friendships. Many of them are like that. I don't understand them, and they don't understand me.

Speaking of old friends, I had a revelation about them today, too.

Next post ....

June 14, 2006
11:39 pm
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turnabout
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So, I don't know what exactly triggered it, ... several insignificant little things, I guess ... but the old friends were on my mind today. Before I knew it, I was agonizing (again) over being ostracized for no good reason and feeling hurt to the point of tears ... repeating to myself the same old things I've gone over dozens of times and thought I'd resolved. I was surprised by my emotion and disturbed by the intensity of it. After all this time and WORK, WHY???

One of the ideas I was torturing myself with was how the "Universe" seems to be condoning their choices, letting them all go on leading their merry, little, delusional lives and ignoring the wake of destruction left behind (a little melodramatic, but you get the point), and questioning if I had a right to feel as I do about their behaviors, attitudes, and/or choices - esp. those NOT connected to ME in any way.

In other words, do I really know enough to judge their choices as mistakes, esp. when they seem to suffer no negative consequences from them? Am I wrong in judging their behavior by MY standards?

But then I started looking at the patterns these people follow, remembering how I used to follow them, too, when I was mired down in the muck of it all ... adapting myself to believe many things were normal or acceptable that my lifelong beliefs and reasoning said otherwise.

Like how I talked myself right out of believing I couldn't get involved with an alcoholic. Or how I talked myself into accepting that regular alcohol abuse is normal, as long as it isn't too regular. I talked myself out of thinking that 1 + 1 = 2, basically ... that cause & effect isn't universal ... and that I had no right to think I could or should judge situations by my own unfairly high standards.

I bought into all that bullshite, b/c I was told I should, or b/c everyone else was buying into it. But now I'm on the outside looking in.... looking in at where I used to be.

It all looks fine from the inside, when all you see around you is people acting the same way or condoning each other acting a certain way ... like when TW and LJ guy hi-five each other over tales of impersonal, sexual conquest, or K_ never being told she has a reputation for being easy, or people congratulating L_ on getting married to someone she's known only 8 mos., TW and several of J_'s friends not telling him they don't like his gf, like no one inviting me to events where J_ will be or vice versa...

It's just one big, enabling, cess pool. No one is REAL with each other, and everyone is invested in protecting themselves from whatever anyone REALLY thinks of them.

And this was the realization (finally!) ...

I thought all of them were letting me drift away without a glance just because they didn't care enough about me to keep me in their lives (and that much is true, I guess), ... I thought things might change if I reasoned with them, telling them how their choices were making me feel,

but it was never about me...

The main reason I was so easily dropped by all of them is because they've all unwittingly conspired in creating this little cocoon of a world around them ~ the kind that can protect you from realizing when you're making an ass of yourself ~ and I upset the balance by becoming too REAL. My heartache over J_ was too REAL, my bitterness towards him too REAL, my emotional outbursts too REAL, my insecurities too REAL, my openness about the consequences of their choices was TOO REAL. And they don't want that. They want to be left alone to believe in their delusions about their lives and their relationships b/c that's where they feel safe. They don't want what's REAL; It's too scary.

Basically, I'm just rehashing something I think 2b or tc said to me months ago ... about how these friends can't handle me... my intensity, but it's like I'm finally translating it into my own language so that it makes sense to ME now. It isn't that I'M too much to handle, but that REALITY is too much to handle ... and AWARENESS is too much to handle, and, unfortunately for them, I guess, I crossed that line from being able to pretend I'm okay with everybody and everybody's okay with me. I find it really hard to ignore all the deceptions I see going on around me, which makes it really hard for anyone else to ignore them, too, unless they just aren't around me.

And so they've chosen....
and I'm okay with that. I like my way better, I think. Yeah. I do. I really do.

TraCo

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