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« Latest by WHY on Today at 09:41:51 AM »

The cocaine rush feelings in new love may treat symptoms of mood depression, in the short run. The chemicals that are released during new love are the same chemicals that some antidepressant medications make more abundant in our brains. New love is not a cure for depression of course - what we can expect is a short-term reprieve followed by return to baseline when the cocaine rush phase transitions into “the testing phase.” When relationship excitement is used to mask depression or help us pave over grief or loss of a different relationship (rebound relationship formation), the relief is temporary. Like most addictive processes, long-term positive change as a result of substances (or new love’s euphoria) is generally speaking a mirage in a desert of engulfing loss.
Our Community / How can she
« Latest by MadLuv on Today at 09:15:32 AM »
Wow, I can relate to living like this for years and it is not easy. I never gave up l, but my now XH did. Your wife is still there and so are you. It’s a hard life living in that negativity and I do not miss it, but envy you that you at least have a chance to hope she will find her way and that you have the inner strength and courage and confidence to let her try and find her way. Thank you for the update
« Latest by MadLuv on Today at 06:48:27 AM »
  But where it gets skewed imho is if we are dealing with someone who doesn’t do ‘normal’ reciprocity, who shows little respect or empathy or who wants something that we no longer want to provide. It’s a tough message, I know, and maybe not a popular one here, but I think they contact us bc they want something at the time....I’m not sure it has anything much to do with us or their feelings about us tbh, more like scratching an itch maybe?

THIS!!!  It is tough, but true. I think those of us with children no matter what age try harder to stay civil, connected , hope for family or may due to financial and or divorce agreements, but even with that I have found that they are either curious, wanting to see where you are or are so isolated in their new life that there is a bit of “using” us for a shallow friendship. Who doesn’t appreciate having someone love you and for someone who is emotional immature and avoidant I am sure they have some need to maybe keep us there. Give just enough to keep us hanging on.

So, I do think there is so much truth in that. I do think my XH has regrets and cares somewhat for me, but not enough to stop being disrespectful of my feelings or even of his children's feelings. If you have no contact and are in contact again you do see quite quickly where they are. Unfortunately, most times it is still in a place where they do us more harm than good. I have very little hope now that my XH will ever find the strength and courage to face his demons in life. That’s sad, but it is more sad now for him than for me and our family's future. I would not want to be him for anything. I still miss our family and who he was, but when I have had to talk to him he is not the man of character and morals that he once was. My most pain now from him is my children's loss ( as they have finally accepted he is not the father they knew)  and just that he is still walking the earth, but is not  anyone I know and as he stands not someone I would enjoy even for a 5 minute date. 

I would be beyond thrilled if my XH had an AHA wake up and my kids had their father back and I could talk to my best friend of 30 plus years again in reciprocal fashion, but right now that is a dream and not the reality. I can make a hundred wishes and   Pray to the heavens and it still not where we are. That acceptance is where I have found my own strength to move on. Appreciate who does show up in my life. Those are the ones you get love and friendship from. It’s just all so hard and we all have to find our own way. The  differing thoughts from everyone here however are always so good to read.  Some things just hit you and you feel understood. That is the beauty of this forum.
Our Community / Songs for your mood
« Latest by John T on Today at 03:30:22 AM »
The Verve ' Sonnet ' for me theses a line in it ' nature has its way of warning me , just feels so appat.

Ten City 'that's the way love is '

Keane ' Somewhere only we know '

« Latest by Treasur on Today at 02:51:40 AM »
PS the other thought that occurs to me about contact with case it’s useful.
Seems to me that humans contact each other as a kind of ‘opening bid’ bc we want something.....that’s normal in everyday life.....i’ve just sent a small card to a rather depressed friend bc I want her to know she’s in my thoughts and I hope it will encourage her to reach back to meet up with me bc I miss her. Although I understand that she might not, and won’t infer too much about her or what she thinks about me if she doesn’t. My expectations are coloured by my empathy and my experience of her.

I think MLC spouses reach out bc they want something too......different wants vent, or get reassurance, or feel better in some way. And we respond often bc we want something feel we matter, to keep a connection, to feel ‘right’ or to try to fix something. At one level, that’s normal, isn’t it? But where it gets skewed imho is if we are dealing with someone who doesn’t do ‘normal’ reciprocity, who shows little respect or empathy or who wants something that we no longer want to provide. It’s a tough message, I know, and maybe not a popular one here, but I think they contact us bc they want something at the time....i’m not sure it has anything much to do with us or their feelings about us tbh, more like scratching an itch maybe?

I think we know in our gut when any relationship or friendship has respect and overall reciprocity in it. And when it doesn’t. I still remember in the first year or so post BD how my then h could bang on for hours about his concerns, ailments and woes.....and not ask a single question about me, my mother, our friends or my life. Not was as if I was an inanimate object to talk at rather than talk with. Some of us have had friendships like that, ones that over time just seem too one-sided. That friend who just wants to talk about themselves or is irritated that your troubles get in the way of you listening to them talk about their new shoes  :)

So, if we see contact from them as being about their wanting something in the moment, we can decide if we want to offer it or not. And if the cost feels ok to us or not. Just bc someone wants something from us does not mean we are under an obligation to provide it, after all. And it doesn’t make us mean or bad or unkind if we decide not to. Conversely, we contact them or respond to their contact for our own wants too imho....and sometimes quiet reflection will lead us to see that they are unable or unwilling to meet those wants, and we are the ones expecting something of them and hurting ourselves bc of our expectations of the contact.

Seems to me, 66, that for reasons beyond my understanding, your h likes to have a notional ‘diary date’ some way out and likes you to respond if he contacts you. Both of those things give him something he wants and his behaviour is not influenced much by what you might want. Is that fair? And how does that stack up against what you want or expect of him in the current circumstances? And if it doesn’t, to remind you that you do have a whole raft of choices between doing the same and NC at all  :)

Again jmo but I think contact with anyone who is sufficiently dysfunctional to be unable to do basic reciprocity and respect needs to be a thought through choice. And you can probably only do it consistently if the cost is low, if you can accept them as they are and the interaction at face value without inferring or expecting more.
« Latest by Treasur on Today at 01:15:06 AM »
As you said, most of us have found that it takes a village during those hardest of times. I’m not sure why it can be so comforting to feel that others ‘get’ it and want to provide comfort and support, but it can be, can’t it? It’s a privilege really to be part of that village and to offer back what we were given.

Imho acceptance includes accepting that, at the moment, you feel how you feel. Learning to temper the usually inner voice (more than the voices of others) that says you shouldn’t feel how you feel. I never found that this voice made any difference at all to how I actually felt. It just left me feeling ‘less than’ in some way - so a sort of double whammy.  ::)

I also think that it is worth unpicking the difference between love and attachment bc I have come to see them as not quite the same thing. Seeing my mother (who has advanced dementia) reminds me of that - she is no longer present enough to be my mother and my life is lived without one now....I don’t expect mother-ness from her or much daughter-ness from me even (and when I still did, it hurt me a great deal to see her). But there is love. A different kind of love in practice, but I find the fact that love remains is a tremendous thing, a treasure really bc it says so much about me and her and my past family. I am grateful for the love even though the object of the love and much of my opportunity to show it or receive it is lost if that makes sense. The attachment, and the grief, is more self-centred, I think, more about my pain and my loss....the love is not.

Again jmo but I think the ‘addiction’ element is more about the attachment, or what it represents to us, than our love for the person. Which is why it’s complicated perhaps.

I don’t know if I agree with xyzcf about how LBS here perceive any love for their former spouse. It’s complicated, I think. I don’t think I know the answer myself about my own’s a thing but I don’t know how to describe it or define it. It’s not the same as it is was, but it’s not nothing either. And my life is not better for what happened, just different. What changed, I think - and it took a long time - is that I came to accept that he chose to go and that he is no longer a presence in my normal day to day life bc that is what he chose in how he left. And that this means that some of my own thoughts about him and my role in his life or his in mine were no longer appropriate or indeed loving even. That perhaps the most loving thing to do for both of us was to accept a changed reality in the most constructive way I could. So, for instance, it was my choice not to hate my xh or wish him harm....that never made sense to me having loved him as I did.....which did not mean I was not angry, resentful, hurt or bewildered or that I wanted to say what he did was ok or excusable.....or that I needed to interact with him bc it brought nothing good for me when I did......I just decided not to convert it to hate. Regardless of what he felt/feels and that it might make no difference at all to how he is living his life now bc he doesn’t know (or perhaps care) What I think or feel. It was a choice for me bc it made sense for me. . I know it sounds bizarre, but I really did find it helpful to think of it as if he died....although to be fair, it is years since he did any pop up boomeranging  :)

These issues and feelings are almost existential imho....they are about who we are and how we approach living....not surprisingly they take a bit of time to work through. And different folks come to rest in different spots.

The same is true, in my experience, for those issues about hope and optimism. We are shaded a bit by this experience and it causes most of us to take a hard look at our own take on the world, doesn’t it? My inherent optimism and the way I love left me naive in some ways, that’s true.....but it is also the same part where my gratitude lives, where love for my mother lives, where the flavour of my own resilience lives, where my kindness and joy live. I like what I call my Babe-ishness (after the little sheep pig in the movie  :) ) - it has some downsides, sure, but I value it too much to let it go just bc my former h didn’t value it and bc it didn’t fix my marriage or my other losses. Again, it took quite a while to work that out and to learn how to do Babe-ish separately from the folks I had loved and lost. Normal, I think.....and I have no doubt that you will find your own way to that too.

As Ever said, I hope you can see that your ‘recovery’ process is different now, that falling over and getting up again thing. I suspect it is a common experience that some kinds of contact with the situation reset the clock a bit....which is why perhaps some of us choose to minimise or reduce contact with them. Bc in reality we are reducing contact with a situation as opposed to the person, if that makes sense. But I think there is some level  of healing that doesn’t really deepen until we accept their absence....and for some of us, little or no contact is the only way to accept their absence. Not for all, but for some. I found thinking of myself as withdrawing from a situation that simply became unlivable with (for me, and I still remember the point in I think 2018 or so when I reached it, when he sent the police to my door bc I had not replied to some bizarre text messages) as opposed to thinking of myself as going NC with him.......I said no inside to the situation, and the effect on me, as opposed to saying no to him if that makes just happened to be the fact that one brought the other in my case. But I knew myself well enough to know that this was necessary for me bc the situation really was relentless and insane enough that I could not live with it being present in my life one day more.
« Latest by WHY on March 21, 2023, 09:53:00 PM »
I’m listening to this audio book by Robert Greene, The Art of Seduction (shocker, I need to figure out how the opposite sex works after two decades, I’m a little rusty!).

However, I heard something today that resonated when I read your story and it seems like too much of a coincidence. 

I’m really not sure if this helps at all.  But Greene talks about the Coquette seduction type.  Which I’ll be damned sounds just like a clinging boomerang and I’ve just put two and two together.  The Coquette often leads to the ruin of the victim (think Napoleon and Josephine). 

Gosh this is interesting.  Perhaps understanding what affect a Coquette has on LBS can help to break dependency/addition.  It’s more about the victim understanding what’s occurring and perhaps using that to break the cycle and detach.  Coquettes also have weaknesses which could be useful. 

It’s very interesting stuff RCR.  It may prove helpful in our quest for survival here.

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Our Community / J to the B part 3
« Latest by JohnnyBravo on March 21, 2023, 08:22:22 PM »
In RCR's courses, she talks about "beginners mind" aka "childlike wonder." (pro tip: It's a good thing.)

Saw this spoof article today:

(For my 40th birthday, I gave myself an experience called "Dig This!" where I learned to drive a bulldozer and a tracked excavator. The company is in Las Vegas now.)
« Latest by xyzcf on March 21, 2023, 05:31:41 PM »
I am very happy to see other people writing here and sharing their own grief and sadness about the loss of their loved partner. Those of us who still have these deep feelings are not an anomaly and we need never feel that something is wrong with us because we still feel such pain.

Each person is different and sometimes it seems like many HS members have been able to shut the door and walk away quickly, some express that they are happier now then when they were married, others have gone on the find a "better" partner...often the idea of no contact is pushed because it is felt that somehow that will alleviate the pain and destruction in our lives, and that is also true for some.

You cannot "blame" yourself for still getting shook by his contact with you....Evermore has explained it very well,  each time we get smacked, it takes less time for us to "recover" albeit there is still pain and can be for several years.

My therapist explained it like a slinky that is going in reverse but it never goes back as far as the first time.

So thanks for all who have shared .....sometimes if I may say this Schartz you are quite hard on yourself for still having these feelings for him. Others have similar experiences. With a great amount of time, we heal. Perhaps those of us who take "longer" (and I learned a long time ago dealing with death) there is no time table for grief.

You said:
I thought I had stopped all the whys and realized we will never understand and yet, here I am cycling with the Whys all over again. Why be consistent for 9 months, why insist there is hope, why call me....

I am smiling because when I would ask so many "why's" DGU (DontGiveUp for those who are not familiar with him) would look me straight in the eye and say "xyzcf, what part of the word crisis don't you understand". or as Ursa puts it, trying to understand is like trying to taste the color green with your elbow.

The only minuscule explanation that I can give you is that he is a "clinging boomeranger" and that is what they do. I am 13 1/2 years post would think that by this time he would not initiate contact with me ..yet he does quite regularly. There could be 1,000 reasons why and then 1,000 more and there is a pattern...after some contact (and that includes going on vacation for 9 days just recently) he will disappear and I won't hear from him and then he'll contact me again...almost weekly text messages..jokes mainly...nothing of is a pattern he has repeated for years.

Of course years ago I thought each contact meant he was coming back, that he was missing me, that he still loved me but those were my dreams and desires, not his......

And the only rationale to me really is that something happened to the man I loved so deeply, they call it "mid-life crisis" and whatever he does/doesn't do has absolutely nothing to do with me.

Well of course you have heard this before ...spending time with him allows me to observe him in the flesh and photos taken are even more telling...he is still running and may always do so.

He has the ability to compartmentalize extremely well, he has bragged to me about how well he can compartmentalize and perhaps that is why they can say or do something that makes us think they are waking up...when in reality, they continue to pushdown any feeling or emotion that might cause them some distress.

Your husband cancelling the dinner might have been from fear of being in your company and so blocking contact with you for him might have been his protective mechanism not to have to feel anything at all. Or maybe not, just a loose theory.

Because I feel everything very strongly ( I would say I am an empath) both good and bad feelings are experienced but they are also dealt with...not so for the MLCer who compartmentalizes anything that has a semblance of "feelings".

I went back to therapy 8 years after BD because I could not seem to feel "JOY"....I felt like I was just going through the motions of life, life was flat and I missed having an intimate partner, being touched, feeling loved.....and I am grateful that that is now in my past and joy has become a natural part of my life.

The switch back to our feeling calmer and more content does not happen quickly unfortunately after these major disappointments....I do see a change in your writing and hope that you will soon find even ground again.

We have been there, it's horrible the somatic response that occurs, that we cannot control. I think that our spouses are seen as "danger" and so the body responds as it has been made to do...our job is to learn how to mitigate those responses and bring ourself back into a calmer state...easier said than done.
« Latest by Dragonfly33 on March 21, 2023, 02:49:55 PM »
I agree with what Evermore said. Maybe for now you could swim away from your H and find those calm waters. Good to hear you're feeling better. I know how it feels like when your H gives you hope and then withdraws. It's horrible. But one day you'll get there.

Even though I have no more contact with my exh, I still have those tearful moments. Because we truly  love our spouses, I believe it takes a long while to heal from what we had to go through. Like what everyone said here, our healing is not linear but one thing is for sure, we are heading towards that direction.

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