Author Topic: Discussion What is Detachment for you? How did you do it?  (Read 2851 times)

Offline Anjae

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Discussion Re: What is Detachment for you? How did you do it?
« Reply #50 on: February 24, 2019, 02:02:43 PM »
Seems to me that often it is our exhaustion with the relentless drama that pushes us into really detaching.

I think so. Or a combination of things that may be different for each LBS.

A clinger is exhausting. I deal with clinger Mr J for a long time, including when I was already back home. It was hell. Yes, I could see bits of the real him, but I also had to deal with tons of drama. It wasn't doing me any good.

On the other hand, a MLCer may not go anywhere and the core person is gone during deep crisis. When my wallower cousin had his MLC we had no idea who that person was. Where was the real him? No idea. We only knew he was angry and depressed, then totally depressed and weird. He never went anywhere, but he was unrecognizable.

Even after he hit rock bottom we did not knew if the real him was ever going to show again. My friend who is a psychiatrist was my cousin's doctor after he crashed. My friend didn't knew if my counsin's depression was going to go away and if he was going to come back to normal. He told us we needed to wait two years. That if, after two years (of what we call rock bottom) he would not be back to normal, he never would.

My cousin come back to normal and, indeed, we was only back to normal, two years after rock bottom. Was my friend right that if my cousin was not back to normal in two years he would never be? I don't know.
Sometimes good things fall apart so better things can fall together. (Marilyn Monroe)

Offline AcornTopic starterTopic starter

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Re: What is Detachment for you? How did you do it?
« Reply #51 on: February 25, 2019, 11:34:10 AM »
Thank you everyone, for sharing your thoughts on Detachment.

Acorn, I love the definition you use, what is your source/where did you find it? It feels like mine, but seems easier to understand.[/size][/color]
Emotional detachment is a decision to avoid engaging emotional connections, rather than an inability or difficulty in doing so.  In this sense it can allow people to maintain boundaries, psychic integrity and avoid undesired impact by or upon others, related to emotional demands.  As such, it is a deliberate mental attitude which avoids engaging the emotions of others.

This detachment does not necessarily mean avoiding empathy; rather it allows the person space needed to rationally choose whether or not to be overwhelmed or manipulated by such feelings.

I googled the entire quote and it was from ....................Wikipedia!  ;D
Live-in MLCer
Feb 2015: BD.  H has a Nuclear meltdown. 
Oct 2015: ILYBIANILWY.
Apr 2016: Affair discovered
Dec 2017: Seriously reconnecting

Offline AcornTopic starterTopic starter

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Re: What is Detachment for you? How did you do it?
« Reply #52 on: April 22, 2019, 05:31:46 AM »
I would like to bump up this thread. 

The further I get from ABD, the more conscious I am of the huge role Detachment played in my journey.  That was a single most important ingredient in eventually being able to live my life joyfully despite my H’s MLC-related craziness.  I highly recommend Detachment!

So, please feel free to share your answers to the following questions:

1. What does Detachment mean for you personally?  (In your own words or a quote that best describes your thoughts)

2. What did you do to gain a measure of it?

3. What positives did Detachment bring you?
Live-in MLCer
Feb 2015: BD.  H has a Nuclear meltdown. 
Oct 2015: ILYBIANILWY.
Apr 2016: Affair discovered
Dec 2017: Seriously reconnecting

Offline AcornTopic starterTopic starter

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Re: What is Detachment for you? How did you do it?
« Reply #53 on: January 18, 2020, 02:34:32 AM »
I am bumping up this thread after having read some posts that show that there is a bit of mix up between Detachment and Distancing; not only mixing up the two, but also propagating misinformation which can potentially be harmful to LBSs, especially the newbies.

If you would like a refresher on these two terms, here is RCR’s excellent article addressing them:

https://loveanyway.theherosspouse.com/2015/05/25/detachment-versus-distancing/

Here are some excerpts.

(Detachment is) An emotional level wherein your emotions are no longer intertwined with someone else’s emotions and actions; it is a detachment from the ego and its emotional reactions and not a disconnection from the core person within.

........

In general, detachment is about separating your emotions from those of another person. Since the words distance and separate can be used synonymously, some people may use the word distance when discussing detachment and the confusion continues!  When your emotions are attached, one person’s emotional bursts yield an emotional reaction in the other person. Reacting is uncontrolled; when you are attached to your MLCer, their emotions create your emotions. Detachment helps you respond rather than react.

...........

Detached, you are not only more available to help yourself, you can better tend to your MLCer with empathy.

.........

Detachment does not have to mean you become aloof or cold toward your MLCer. This may be what happens initially while you are learning what it is to be detached and while you may also try to put more space between you when attachment is a temptation. But detachment allows you to care without caring being a risk to your heart and emotional stability.


—————

I can give you my personal testimony that Detachment was one of the most important ingredients in maintaining and expressing my understanding, love and empathy to my suffering MLCer. 



« Last Edit: January 18, 2020, 03:15:28 AM by Acorn »
Live-in MLCer
Feb 2015: BD.  H has a Nuclear meltdown. 
Oct 2015: ILYBIANILWY.
Apr 2016: Affair discovered
Dec 2017: Seriously reconnecting

Offline Treasur

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Re: What is Detachment for you? How did you do it?
« Reply #54 on: January 18, 2020, 03:18:37 AM »
Looking back, the single most important key to detachment for me was acceptance.
Accepting all of it and standing in each day at a time just as it was, regardless of my opinion of it.

In my situation - bc I was under 'attack' by others actions I couldn't control and bc I was too vulnerable at that time - I had to do distance first to find detachment. Which is not necessarily true for everyone. It just was for me bc I was drowning.  And tbh there was a big time lag between the two, months probably, maybe a couple of years. But I learned surprisingly that I could find more empathy the more emotionally detached I was bc I was no longer invested in the outcome or needing my voice to be heard as I had before probably.

So, for me, the steps were distance (for self-protection), acceptance (to figure out what was real and true for me) and then slowly detachment came. And it did bring peace, some forgiveness, more empathy probably along with less of a need to judge in the sense of approving/disapproving, and a sense of feeling clearer and stronger in myself.

I suppose that detachment meant that a lot of things which had mattered very much ceased to matter much at all. But a few things that 'belonged' to me mattered much, much more.
« Last Edit: January 18, 2020, 03:24:37 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

Offline Nerissa

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Re: What is Detachment for you? How did you do it?
« Reply #55 on: January 18, 2020, 05:13:19 AM »
- I had to do distance first to find detachment. Which is not necessarily true for everyone

Distance - as in very low contact or no contact was essential for me before I could do anything very constructive.  I expect it is true that some people are able to detach quickly but I’m not sure how many.  I sometimes wonder that if I had been so ‘together’ and emotionally mature and whole as to detach very quickly, whether I would have ended up in this situation or at least been quite so blindsided, since, for me, with hindsight, There were red flags  I was in denial about, or excusing and when I attempted to have a talk, I didn’t press or insist when deflected.

That may not have altered his route necessarily, but a bit less complacent trust and emotional dependency and a bit more responsibility for myself would have reduced the damage to all
Of us. 

Offline Not Your Monkey

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Re: What is Detachment for you? How did you do it?
« Reply #56 on: January 18, 2020, 07:49:22 AM »
Thanks for reviving this thread. It gave me a chance to revisit where I am at a year later.

When this thread was first started, as I described in previous posts, I was detached.

But when I read this again, I realized I am not longer detached. My H has reached a point where I can be emotionally vulnerable and assertive and he doesn't run away from it. I was compelled to do it after he made a remark during a fight about how "We haven't had a relationship in a long time." That was a wake up call for me. I realized that my detachment was partially to blame for that and so I decided to reverse it.

I do not shy away from telling him how I feel about him and how his behavior affects me. I still get defensiveness and denial from him, he's definitely not ready to take responsibility for what he has done or show an remorse but he has engaged in some positive actions in response that show he does understand what I need from him and is trying to deliver some of that.

I think if I hadn't put myself out there and been blunt with him, he would have continued on with the status quo indefinitely. I guess I should say I am a sample of one, but I am very glad I stopped detaching and began to reattach myself to him.

In thinking about all this I remembered this article from HB:
https://thestagesandlessonsofmidlife.org/how-you-can-still-love-while-remaining-detached/

Offline Couragedearheart

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Re: What is Detachment for you? How did you do it?
« Reply #57 on: January 18, 2020, 07:53:35 AM »
I currently have an at home MLCer. So interaction every day.

1. What does Detachment mean for you personally?  (In your own words or a quote that best describes your thoughts)
Detachment for me, is delineating personal meaning from my H’s words and actions. It’s not emotionally investing in an outcome....of anything, the marriage, his crisis, a conversation and interaction ect. It’s separating me and my ability to be okay, safe, happy, content from the actions or words of another person. It’s surrendering control or even the ability to influence the outcome of anything but my own words and actions and thoughts. It is detaching emotionally from the marriage.

2. What did you do to gain a measure of it?

Grieve the losses. First by accepting that my H, who I was to him, my marriage our family, life as I knew it was gone. Then grieving the loss of what all those things meant to me. Grieving the loss of the roles I had held and their personal meaning to me.
Finding the root of what bothered me, or upset me, or caused an emotional reaction in me and then letting go of the expectations I was holding that caused the emotions.
Accepting the end of the marriage meant grieving the loss of all the expectations I had for H for his treatment of me, for his interactions with S15.
Examine my motivations for any interaction with H, and taking time outs to work through my emotions and let go of things before allowing interactions.

Internal self talk. Not letting me take things personally, make things about me, or assign meaning to things that were out of my control.
Taking all my hurts and frustrations and injustices to God. Telling him about my struggles and questions and doubts and fears.

3. What positives did Detachment bring you?

The ability to see things more clearly. Emotional stability. More clarity of thought and choice. The ability to focus on myself more. It allowed me to focus solely on me and my feelings, thoughts and needs and wants. The ability to respond rather than react. Perspective. Self regulation. The ability to separate my compassion and self worth and self love and general happiness from other people’s feelings, emotions, words or actions.
The ability to listen. A sense that no matter the situation I was okay. Trust in myself. A more consistent version of myself that wasn’t dependent on what was happening to me or around me to feel safe, or in control.
Me 36
H 36
S15
Wallower?
EA discovered 5/31/2019
BD May 31 2019
EA ongoing? 🤷‍♀️ (Who knows?)
“God allows us to feel the frailty of human love so we’ll appreciate the strength of his.” C.S. Lewis

Offline Treasur

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Re: What is Detachment for you? How did you do it?
« Reply #58 on: January 18, 2020, 10:11:12 AM »
Thank you for posting that article, NYM. I have found a lot of HB's articles very useful and your sharing of how you detached and then saw the need to re-attach (and were able to do so) may be very helpful for others with long term live in MLCers or those reconnecting. And it is probably a reminder that detachment and love and compassion are not mutually exclusive. And that when you are stronger and clearer, or the situation changes, you can choose to attach again.

Right now some of the debate on other threads seems to be that detachment equates to distancing and that both get in the way of empathy. I have seen others post in the past that they fear detachment will irretrievably shut off any love they have towards their spouse. It seems as if this is not necessarily so.
« Last Edit: January 18, 2020, 10:15:36 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

Offline barbiedoll

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Re: What is Detachment for you? How did you do it?
« Reply #59 on: January 18, 2020, 12:54:21 PM »
Quote
1. What does Detachment mean for you personally?  (In your own words or a quote that best describes your thoughts)

2. What did you do to gain a measure of it?

3. What positives did Detachment bring you?
.

I guess if I look back to the beginning of my journey with BD and finding HS, being advised to detach was a WTF moment for me. Detach was interpreted as "its over, let it go, be done with it and get on with a new life". Almost like "give up ". And ( at the time) I was not in a "give-up" frame of mind. I remember thinking that there is no one in this universe that will understand me , if "detach" is the advise I should follow. How could I possibly detach?

But I did detach in actual fact although it was a result of deep emotional shock, inability to see him or talk to him , fear of the pain it caused. I suspect it was protecting myself from any further interaction with monster ...it truly nearly killed me . I was ZERO contact when he moved out...I would NOT even answer his texts or phone calls. I couldn't . Nothing.  I know that is not the true meaning or idea of detaching, but in my case it is what happened.

What Treasure posted on the very 1st page , is what I have printed and keep at my desk . I remember reading it and finding meaning and understanding and something to learn. It was only when I mixed the word "acceptance" into my thinking that I found ways to detach ( in a healthy way) .

Despite what many may believe , detachment is very very important in reconnecting...I practise detachment/acceptance often. It does give me peace to read over and over . I was given a copy of that at Al Anon. It is regarding addicts ...but it applies to many circumstances .

https://www.hazelden.org/web/blog-people-in-recovery.eight-reasons-why-detaching-with-love-is-good-for-your-addicted-loved-one.5003069.view

For me, it was about practise over and over and over. It was recognizing the freedom and actual relief that comes with acceptance. It took a long long time to understand ...but I continue to practice .
Married April 1985
5 children
Bomb Drop April 2013
Thrown out of house August 2013
Affair discovered November 2013 (i guessed who)
Home December 3 2013
The Journey Of Reconciliation .. is for the brave .

Anger is like a candle in the wind ... it blows out the light of all reason.

 

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