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Author Topic: My Story Love and Insanity continues

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My Story Love and Insanity continues
OP: July 28, 2021, 04:10:46 PM
So as my story continues…. My XH went on vacation with the OW. The one he says he doesn’t love. They drove 16 hours to their destination. He continues to spend water like it is money. A man that is extremely stingy. Also, A man that just expressed his exhaustion from the past few months from driving 5 hours both ways to see OW on the weekends to “escape my thoughts”

Trying to hard to detach and find some calm, but today my daughter who works for the same company was told by a stranger at work that her Dad was at a wedding on vacation that she had no idea. It was during small talk. My daughter is getting married in September and the person was asking her about her wedding and said he had thought it was this week when her Dad told him he was on vacation to attend a wedding.

She said she tried to play it cool, but was embarrassing and shocking to have someone else tell her that her Dad was on a vacation attending a wedding and she didn’t know, but just another reminder of the disconnect with with his own children. It makes me mad at him and feel bad for her.

What is truly shocking is the last time my XH attended a wedding I had to call the police for a well care check as he drove off from the reception drunk and suicidal. Weddings remind him of the fact his youngest daughter ( whom died at 14) would never marry .

My oldest daughters first wedding started my XH rapid decline into depression and MLC. She divorced and now is marrying again. The announcement of her getting engaged was what out him back in a major decline and his ultimate departure and asking for divorce. I am baffled beyond belief that an exhausted extremely emotional man would agree to drive OW to a wedding that he should not be able to emotionally handle. That is the craziness of the MLC mind.

Original thread
https://mlcforum.theherosspouse.com/index.php?topic=11796.0


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« Last Edit: July 28, 2021, 04:12:34 PM by Tornup »
H-54 W-58  M 7/6/91 Kids d-30 s-28 d-14 (dies 2009)
2013- moments of disconnect start
Aug 2016 promotion requires travel   
Oct 2017-total disconnect
Jan 2018- moved out H
Mar 2018- BD1 found old phone 3 EA ‘17-H in therapy
EA ow1-49,  EA-ow2 57, (EA- ow3-58 not reciprocated)
Sept ‘18 -2nd Home in new state H new job
Oct 2018-H moves home
Oct 2020 BD2 does not return home from B trip
Nov 2020 H move to 2nd home in other state OW4
Div filed-Dec ‘20   Div final-Feb ‘21
Oct 2021- XH moves in OW4
https://mlcforum.theherosspouse.com/index.php?topic=11796.

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Love and Insanity continues
#1: July 29, 2021, 12:17:53 AM
I’m sorry, Tornup. With time, you and your daughter will probably reach the ‘oh well’ stage. I think this is when we stop expecting them to behave in any way that resembles who they were or with any kind of ‘normal’ logic that we can comprehend or care to consider. And then you will find yourself both detached enough to not feel mad/bad or anything much about it at all. But it takes time, my friend. Time to adjust to this new reality that how you and your adult kids see xh now has to adapt to fit this new ‘normal’....and expectations adjust along with that. And a constant effort to pull one eyes away from him like when you drive past a car wreck really..... :)

Might sound a bit nuts, I know, but I used to have various short phrases I used. A kind of aide-memoire for my poor confused brain, if you like, which evolved over time. Initially, ‘my h does not care’, then something like ‘I don’t know’ then, now, on the rare times when I need one, probably something like ‘it’s in the past’ or ‘it doesn’t matter now’. Bc our perspective on this - and them - evolves as we heal. And the healing probably goes through a phase when we have one foot in the past (where they matter) and one foot in the present (where they start to not matter). Would it help to have your own phrase right now? Idk. But keep going, Tornup, it gets easier step by step with time......

As we start to heal, there is a point imho when it’s no longer about the metaphorical nail.....
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« Last Edit: July 29, 2021, 12:54:09 AM by Treasur »
T: 18  M: 12 (at BD) No kids.
H diagnosed with severe depression Oct 15. BD May 16. OW since April 16, maybe earlier. Silent vanisher mostly.
Divorced April 18. XH married ow 6 weeks later.
Healing and growing found here https://littleplotbythesea.wordpress.com

"Option A is not available so I need to kick the s**t out of Option B" Sheryl Sandberg

T
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Love and Insanity continues
#2: July 29, 2021, 04:01:43 AM
Treasur- That METHOD of having a “PHRASE” has actually gotten me through many a low moments and to be honest my phrase had been more of a crude on, but yet affective. The standard  F#@#  HIM !!

I think we can always take on more ourselves, but when it affects our children adult or not it is a different story. I mean, I picked him to be their father. Ughhhhh, but we don't have that crystal ball to determine what will be and so we deal with what is.

My EX brother-in-law called me and we had a nice 2 hr chat before all this. He said he is reaching out by text to his brother and he is now responding. He usually asks him how he is doing and gets a response oh basically “have good days and bad days “  BIL said XH did visit him while in person and he said he is clearly a shell of who he was and his eyes are black like he is not there. There is a relief that someone, but me sees it.

Detachment at this point is my focus. I REALLY need sanity and calm. My work is all changing and seems nothing is staying the same. I have made great strides in this past month on a personal level. I hired a financial advisor and am working on building my financial future, which already looks pretty secure. I refinanced the house under only me and decided to stay in it for now, but pay it off in 8 years vs 12 that remained on the old terms.

So as my XH continues to self destruct financially and personally I am taking control on those levels. He is showing everyday he DID need me and our family and frankly I am showing I DONT need him.

So I guess my new phrase is  “ I GOT THIS”
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H-54 W-58  M 7/6/91 Kids d-30 s-28 d-14 (dies 2009)
2013- moments of disconnect start
Aug 2016 promotion requires travel   
Oct 2017-total disconnect
Jan 2018- moved out H
Mar 2018- BD1 found old phone 3 EA ‘17-H in therapy
EA ow1-49,  EA-ow2 57, (EA- ow3-58 not reciprocated)
Sept ‘18 -2nd Home in new state H new job
Oct 2018-H moves home
Oct 2020 BD2 does not return home from B trip
Nov 2020 H move to 2nd home in other state OW4
Div filed-Dec ‘20   Div final-Feb ‘21
Oct 2021- XH moves in OW4
https://mlcforum.theherosspouse.com/index.php?topic=11796.

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Love and Insanity continues
#3: July 29, 2021, 05:51:08 AM
So I guess my new phrase is  “ I GOT THIS”

Between that and

for the newest antics of xH.... But those antics are really no long your issue... So maybe another phrase might be
"Not my circus, NOT my monkeys!"
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Together 19 years - Married 17 at separation & 21 at D-Day
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Divorce final 30 August 2019

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Love and Insanity continues
#4: July 30, 2021, 11:12:20 AM
So much reflection the last few days trying to make my cut off of communication stick this time. Reevaluating my marriage.

My XH never had a mean word, so I think it has been hard to view him as abusive. He was! Emotionally abusive.  He always helped around the house, complimentary, kind and when off work available and did things with me. Yet, on reflect what he did was much less than what he seems to have time and energy to do now. Maybe in-fact what seemed to be him doing everything I wanted was not as it actually was. Maybe it was IF he was ready or wanted to do something. Maybe everything he wanted to offer was what HE was available to offer; he wanted me as long as HE wanted me, as long as he didn’t look around for someone else HE could want.

I was OK, even the best, only as long as I kept my profile low and asked for nothing I needed emotionally.
After almost 30 years I have come to finally understand that there's something else beside being abused or betrayed that can make you feel miserable when married: that's not being seen.

His good manners, his rationality, his all too wise and balanced detachment actually made me feel guilty all the time for being over emotional, over-demanding, unstable, unpredictable, restless and never-contented.
Around my early 50’s I started trying to be closer as I felt him slipping away after our daughters death.  Starting to feel I was not good enough anymore. A totally ALWAYS self confident woman in looks and personality. Where did that come from, where did I go?

It had to be me, because he was kind, correct, rational, unabusive: he was there… when HE was there and how HE wanted to be there. I realize now I felt non existent.
Is it really too demanding to ask to be seen? He would never hit me, or insult me, he swore he never cheated on me (all the while having 3 EA affairs), yet to hug me, or kiss me started to feel like a chore. In the end, he would avoid even looking at me.

Once I asked him what he loved in me . He said I was strong, independent, loving, My strengths were his weaknesses.
Having to ask put me in a vulnerable place. I felt my desperate need of affection was stupid, exaggerated, childish. Maybe what I needed was really nonsensical,  maybe it was even bad to ask to such a good man.
Then I would start accumulating frustration and bitterness, until I'd finally explode still feeling lost.

Whenever there was a deep discussion, he would not reply to me, he would just let me go on and on and then he would stop talking to me for some time. Never having anything to say. Never having the words. I realize now that we had the same discussions, because he never responded, so they just kept coming up. I had many one sided conversations.

It wasn’t always like this, yet to some degree it was. Depression and MLC brought it to an unsustainable level for a relationship.

So, what am I mourning ?  Is it someone I had in my mind who simply did not exist. Maybe I had constructed a husband to fit the story I wanted to be in. Maybe I just settled?
Now I realise that as much as he wouldn't see me, I wouldn't (or didn't want to) see him.
I had invented the ideal husband I wanted him to be (truth be told it was the man he had told me he wanted to be, but never was), and now maybe I do not feel miserable for the man I have lost,  but for the fairy-tale I cannot keep telling myself.
Is it possible he remained inside the marriage only until he found a replacement?

In our last year together he worked quietly and steadily to push me away: gently, softly, more and more silently, he would skilfully build the tallest wall of no's, don'ts and can'ts, until I transformed into the worst, bitterest, saddest version of myself.
Yet, even more stubbornly, I would keep asking what he would like to do. What would make him happy. Vacation, activities, move ?? What would help? He was unhappy, but I was also unhappy due to his unhappiness. However, I had found a way to cope: I had accepted the idea that I was not worthy. That if I just hang on he will come out of this. I was devoted.
In the end, exhausted and love-deprived, feeling shameful for having become the worst copy of myself, I was blindsided with divorce and to follow the OW.

He has been with OW for one year now to some degree  from my calculations. XH I think gave me a great settlement as he feels he was economical obligated to me (for old times' sake), I agree he was. I helped to get him where he was.
He also wants to remain friends: after all we have been together over 30 years, yet I had seemed to be doing all that work as well.
I tried  to be friends for some time, but now I have decided to stop seeing him at all. Stop talking, texting.

You know why? Because despite all, every time I talked to him I think I started hoping he'd fall in love with me again. He would snap out of it (not something I am not sure I actually want, but my ego needs) I do mourn my family and future.

He cannot even remotely understand the emotional turmoil I'm in, the codependence I developed as I was desperately trying to save our marriage. Trying to save him.

I think I have finally come to understand that I do not need to wait for him anymore to know I am worthy.  It took me a little bit.  I do understand he was unhappy and I know I have ownership in that, but have been able to reflect and hope that I can use that to be a better person going forward.
I know he felt misunderstood as well, but I tried. I asked all the right questions, but a closed off non communicative person gave me no answers. 

Now I want peace for myself and for him. I love him as a friend, but that friend does not exist. I hope by separating that he will do the work and in the future we can have a friendship. That can only happen with detachment.

Im not oblivious that knowing all this, will not extinguish the pain, stop all the tears, prevent my heart from breaking, as I have a way to go on my journey, but I have hope that at some point I will be free!
 
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« Last Edit: July 30, 2021, 11:49:05 AM by Tornup »
H-54 W-58  M 7/6/91 Kids d-30 s-28 d-14 (dies 2009)
2013- moments of disconnect start
Aug 2016 promotion requires travel   
Oct 2017-total disconnect
Jan 2018- moved out H
Mar 2018- BD1 found old phone 3 EA ‘17-H in therapy
EA ow1-49,  EA-ow2 57, (EA- ow3-58 not reciprocated)
Sept ‘18 -2nd Home in new state H new job
Oct 2018-H moves home
Oct 2020 BD2 does not return home from B trip
Nov 2020 H move to 2nd home in other state OW4
Div filed-Dec ‘20   Div final-Feb ‘21
Oct 2021- XH moves in OW4
https://mlcforum.theherosspouse.com/index.php?topic=11796.

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Love and Insanity continues
#5: July 30, 2021, 01:10:52 PM
Just know that you are worthy. Trying to pick apart the past is a fools errand, in my book. My XH and I had GOOD times, I didn't imagine those and I refuse to let what he has done color those memories with an excrement brown. Was he perfect? Nope. Was I? Nope. None of that matters. Normal people deal with differences in an adult manner. MLC is anything but.

What we really have here at the end is that in many cases they ramped up to the discard and we did not notice. We erroneously assumed that they were going through a "spell" and would work their way through it. But they knew the discard was coming and we did not. They withdrew affection, time, etc, trying to make us angry enough to leave so WE would be the bad guys, not them. No one saw the subtle withdrawls, the antagonizing. In fact, I took to taking my own car when we would go places because he would pick a fight in the car, then enter the party like nothing had happened leaving me to put myself back together, wondering what the heck just happened. That was my first real clue that something was really screwed up. But I still thought it was because he was having issues at work. The truth was, he was having issue at work because he was heading down the hole. I was aware enough to know how to deal with the behavior, but not enough to see that this wasn't just a blip in life.

Was he just a reflection of you, maybe the person he wanted to be? (Mine did that, used someone else as his own identity, switching from time to time) Was he always a jerk and you didn't notice? There was a conversation on nas's thread about accepting behavior that really isn't acceptable because you might not know any different. Are you used to dealing with not really being seen? I know I was, minimizing my needs until I was not just low maintenance, but non-maintenance. I maintained myself. That helped me in the long run, but isn't necessarily the way one should be.

We can "maybe" ourselves into the ground. What you do know is what he is NOW. Do you want to hang with that? Do you want to be a friend to a person who cannot be a friend to you at this time? Do you want to listen to what he says and wonder if he is STILL lying? You can decide the answer is no to all of those questions, and still be open to him returning somewhere down the line. Or not.

It had to be you? No, nothing "had to be you". If you had 20 great years and the last three were gawd awful, those last three years do not have to negate anything good that came before. Rewriting our own history is not really helpful. Own what is yours and throw away the rest. If you accepted unacceptable behavior, sure, identify that and make sure you do not allow that from another human being. Figure out a boundary around that.  Now that you know about feeling unseen, if you feel unseen and you have addressed it and nothing changes, you can stay with whomever does not see you, or you can move along. No, it's not easy at all but it IS within your control. You cannot control if someone else chooses to "see" you or not.

We do not live in bubbles. What other people say and do does affect us. What we control is how we want to deal with what others say and do.
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Re: Love and Insanity continues
#6: July 30, 2021, 03:16:34 PM
This is a really important conversation. I think for those of us who go through divorces, there comes a time when we have to get super honest with ourselves. We're going through a grief process, and the only way through, is through. Can't skip any of the realities that come up if we want to heal.

When I got BD'ed, my experience was a lot like others' here: I idealized my xH. And I did that for many years, because it made it easy to stand for such a great person, a great relationship, etc. He really had been my best friend since I was 17, but that didn't automatically make him perfect. Or shouldn't have. ;) And he definitely had some mental health red flags all along, but I loved him, warts and all (and I knew I too had some issues. Who doesn't?).

It's also easy at BD to see narratives like the standing sites present, with 'lead in' times and esoteric paths, and project our own situations into them. But if we remove those concepts at some point (and divorce is a really good point), we can hit the kind of realness you've done here and have a more objective view. "18-month lead in"? How about, "Things gradually started to change in the dynamic of our relationship." "This isn't a normal divorce, it's MLC!" that leaves us with this triggery resistance to actually processing the divorce to "This is what happened to me."

And it's also hard to accept that whether they ever become more like their old selves again or start to turn an eye toward reconciliation of some sort, putting our lives on hold for years and keeping tabs on "the script" or "where they are in the timeline" doesn't matter. I think we do those things to still feel involved with them. I know I did it. I was just not ready to really let go.

Once I did, I was surprised at how apathy was not what initial came, but all of the anger I'd staved off for years. I not only could no longer see only the good parts of him - those were gone - but every wrong that I'd forgotten over the years presented. It's a healthy part of the process of grief! I rolled with it, and that passed too.

I shake my head at the thought that I could reconcile a relationship with someone so fractured, who would have absolutely nothing healthy to add to a new relationship. If he were a stranger on the street I went for coffee with, it would be over in ten minutes! And that's without any of the history. But I do understand giving it a shot. I value who I became because of standing. That was the win!

You've gone through so much, and as a family, I can't even imagine the weight of the loss you've experienced together. It's nothing to be taken lightly that you've let him process through in his own way while you yourself have soldiered forward in such a beautiful way that honors your daughter. There are no doubts that no matter what the outcome with him, you will be fine. But getting there is still a process. You really do seem to be so healthily on your way. It's a benefit to others that you've posted here to show your train of thought. Continue to lean on us, and be a great example.

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Love and Insanity continues
#7: July 30, 2021, 03:25:32 PM
Beautifully stated, OffRoad and Ready2Transform. And I do think most of us, in grieving the loss of the relationship that was, go through periods of idealizing the former relationship and longing to have back this idyllic partnership that probably wasn’t actually idyllic (even though it may well have been pretty solid); as well as periods of wondering if any of the good history was actually real - and this is magnified by the gaslighting that they do when they tell us they were unhappy for one year… no, five years… no, one hundred years. I think that most of the time, as we heal a bit and start to see things through our own lens instead of those provided by our grief and our oh-so-helpful MLCers, we come to the realization that some was good, some was less good, there were probably some warning signs, but maybe none that we could reasonably have been expected to recognize in the moment.

All we can do is move forward, heal, practice good, gentle self-care… and honor what has been and continues to be true and good and meaningful in our own lives.
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#8: July 30, 2021, 03:28:19 PM
Good words from OffRoad and Ready as always!

I would add that statistically, couples who have lost a child often end up divorced, so that is an added part of your story.

Looking back, many of our spouses were not able to communicate well regarding their emotions or their wants and needs. A small example was when we moved to Asia and I went with his administrative assistant to find an apartment. We found one I liked very much and called him to ask him to meet us there to see it..his response was "if xyzcf likes it than I am sure I will too"....that felt great at the time but it was quite common for him to accept whatever it was that I wanted.

However, when I read your post I felt that you were somehow rewriting history. I know that their crisis probably starts years before it shows externally but there are signs. Many of us look back and see the signs that we did not see then.

But as both OffRoad and Ready have said, I wasn't perfect either and it worked really well and I miss who he was and the family we had.

The only thing I wanted to add was something that was proposed to me in the early days. I was asked what food I absolutely hated. I responded "liver" and the woman who asked me this stated something like this:

"so, would you eat liver every day of your life for 30 years if you hated it?"

The feelings of being unworthy are good to flush out, especially if other significant people in your life and childhood contributed to why you might have felt that way in the marriage. All the processing is sooooooo tiring but sooooo very necessary.
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« Last Edit: July 30, 2021, 03:32:57 PM by xyzcf »
"Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see" Hebrews 11:1

"You enrich my life and are a source of joy and consolation to me. But if I lose you, I will not, I must not spend the rest of my life in unhappiness."

" The truth does not change according to our ability to stomach it". Flannery O'Connor

https://www.midlifecrisismarriageadvocate.com/chapter-contents.html

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Love and Insanity continues
#9: July 30, 2021, 11:30:17 PM
It probably doesn’t feel like it, Tornup, but I want to encourage you to accept that you are still in the early days of adjusting to a new situation that you never saw coming. Yours may happen to include a pretty speedy divorce, but the underlying process is probably much the same after a long marriage.

Most of us experience a pendulum effect....from devotion to a kind of disgust....as our brain tries to make sense of how we got here. And that can lead to us rewriting our own life experience a bit.
I’m not going to ask you not to do that. Most of us do for a while.
But I am going to encourage you to accept that you may not yet be at a place where you can see through the swirling mud with as much clarity as you might think. There are things that need a little more time to marinade yet. Let yourself feel and think as you do but accept that this may not be your eventual resting place with it all.

Why does this matter? Bc there can be a cost to rewriting our own history particularly if it leaves us believing that we caused things we had no hand in or failed to see what we did not see. We can damage ourselves by trying to explain out the dissonance of then and now. And most LBS don’t need more damage, do we?

I know that you have experienced the kind of grief that leaves us in an abyss for a while. Imho this process works a bit like that. Things swirl around for quite a while before they settle and our minds do some funny things in the swirl. So I know you know that the swirl does not last forever, that it is hard to see clearly through the mud and that one’s perspective changes with time. 

It’s normal and natural to try to make sense of something that makes no sense to us....tbh the MLC ‘label’ is probably part of that process too....but a kind eye towards oneself at least is important too bc our spirit does pay attention to what we think  ::) so when we can choosing thoughts that do not cause more damage matters. It’s just a bit difficult to pick out truth from swirl for a while. Just as the others say, it probably isn’t as black or white as your brain wants to paint it right now.....and part of grief is mourning the reality of our losses, of what was good and real and treasured in our lives. And accepting too that we couldn’t save these things from a life storm much as we wish we could.

It puzzled me for a very long time that a) I simply did not see whatever it was that happened in my h coming bc I am not a stupid or oblivious kind of woman and b) that I had felt so genuinely loved and valued for years and years which made no sense given more recent events even though I could remember the feeling like a muscle memory if I let myself. This was very confusing for me and I got stuck in it for quite a while. With time, a lot of time lol, it became easier to not try to retrofit my own life and memories, to accept that it was more likely that what was real was real until something beyond my pay grade and sight changed the ground I stood on. And that once that happened, it did happen and could not be unhappened so here I was. And that, if I was really honest with myself, I may never really understand the ‘something’ bc it wasn’t MY something. It was more like weather or what insurance policies call ‘an act of God’......not a very comfortable place to sit with though....and the fact that a metaphorical tornado had just destroyed my metaphorical house did not mean there was anything inherently wrong with how the house was built or with my choice to build there or how I had felt happy for years waking up in that house. It wasn’t an either/or, more of a both/and if that makes sense. It was a good happy house AND it was now a pile of rubble.

But there was also a time when I realised that I no longer wanted to camp in the rubble too....one of those gradual shifts that you suddenly just know without trying and that has nothing at all to do with how good the old house was or not.
Time.
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« Last Edit: July 30, 2021, 11:36:30 PM by Treasur »
T: 18  M: 12 (at BD) No kids.
H diagnosed with severe depression Oct 15. BD May 16. OW since April 16, maybe earlier. Silent vanisher mostly.
Divorced April 18. XH married ow 6 weeks later.
Healing and growing found here https://littleplotbythesea.wordpress.com

"Option A is not available so I need to kick the s**t out of Option B" Sheryl Sandberg

 

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