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Slumdog....

Old 12-16-2009, 02:04 AM
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Slumdog....

Slumdog Millionaire– did you see it? Latika, she was my girl. The girl who had a tough life, had unimaginable things happen to her, was still living in such a hellish place she told me on more than one occasion that she “wished for death every day”. In my reality/story the girl didn’t make the choice or take the steps needed to change anything. No, she ended up being a woman with low self-esteem, co-dependency issues, trust issues, a liar, a manipulator, and of course had an addiction (to help numb herself to all of the other stuff. In her words, “to quiet my mind, stop the hurting, even though it is just temporary”).

As I watched this movie flashes of my ex came to me again and again. Those feelings I had for her came to me…. Were they love? Can you “love” someone with whom you are so different from? Maybe you can, but can a relationship work with them? In some way I will always love that girl. I have a deep compassion for her, the pain and issues she struggles with. Yet, I have to wonder if those feelings were a good enough reason to try and make it work for as long as I did. Is it possible sometimes we confuse compassion, sympathy, and the sadness we feel for someone with an addiction for love?
Looking at it now I can say I would still feel a tremendous draw to her if I saw her. Probably for the reasons as stated above. Yet now I am with someone who I have total admiration for. Someone who has the same values as me, that I trust implicitly, who is driven, I could go on and on. You know what? I am also happy, all the time. In an intense way, but this time it lacks all of the ups and downs, the drama. It seems to me that the emotional high is amazing, just as intense as with the ex, but evenly keeled. I think I (we?) can get addicted to the intensity of the emotions we experience with an addict. That amazing feeling we get when they do what they say they will (for a change), or take a step toward recovery. I sought that high, but had to endure all the lows to get there.

What’s my point? Hmm, I guess the point I am trying to make is if you, we, (I) step back and look at what we are fighting for, are we doing it for the right reasons? Sure it feels intense, love, the compassion, the optimism we feel can be off the charts. However are the core things there? The similar lifestyle, TRUST, the same financial values and work ethic? Love and emotions are essential to a long lasting relationship. However, a lot of authors have written that the other things may be more important for a long lasting relationship.

I am so fortunate now to have it all. All the feelings in the world could not have made me happy in the long term with my ex. There were so many areas of differing values. So I guess I ask those of you struggling and battling whether to stay or go….do you have all the things needed to make this last? Not just the intense emotions….those are why I stayed, but in retrospect it could have lead to a huge mistake (in fact I should have left years before I did so in a way it was still a huge mistake). I know posts I read from others on here telling me about their “addict” relationship from the past verse a healthy one they had now helped me slowly put things in perspective. It give me the strength to ultimately move on and break away. Hopefully at the least this thread will ring some bells or make people think about what they are doing and why. You couldn’t pay me to go back to where I was. Not in a million years. I just wouldn’t tolerate that treatment again…but at the time not only did I tolerate it, I fought to get it back again, and again. It’s mind boggling what we can adjust to and learn to accept. Is what you’re fighting for worth it?
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Old 12-16-2009, 02:32 AM
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I don't know if it's worth it. I'm still on the fence about what to do. I keep reading what you write. All the questions you've said to ask myself about whether or not it's worth it. Honestly, right now, I'm not even thinking about my romantic relationship anymore. I'm thinking about the life of my friend. His mother died from drinking. If he goes down this road. He will die too. He's been sober and in school for almost two years, turning his life around. He's on winter break, drinking drinking drinking. Do I go get him? Do I try to help my friend if he's asking for it? Or do I save myself from more misery?

All those questions you asked, I think, "No, we won't make it as a couple. It won't work." But can I distance myself enough from the "in love" feelings so fast and enough to just be able to help him as a friend for a few weeks? And then, if he doesn't recover, can I let him go right away?

I still don't know what the right thing to do is. But I'm getting that book! I ordered it on Amazon.
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Old 12-16-2009, 02:49 AM
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In step 1 there is an excellent question

"what is the difference between pity and love?"
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Old 12-16-2009, 08:05 AM
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Pity has masqueraded as love for me more than once in my life.

Fear has also masqueraded as love -- what I told myself was "love" was actually a fear that, if I turned my back on a damaging relationship, I would never again experience the feeling of being loved.

But mostly, my codependent tendencies did the best job of pretending "love." What I told myself was love was my desire to do the right thing, to be liked/loved, to be approved of, to do like the people in movies and books do. So although my heart and spirit KNEW that this was not the relationship that would bring me joy in the long run, I stayed anyway, "because I loved him."

The writer Robert Heinlein has a line in one of his books that says, "The more you love, the more you can love — and the more intensely you love. Nor is there any limit on how many you can love. If a person had time enough, he could love all of that majority who are decent and just."

What that meant to me was not 'run around and have lots of relationships' LOL, but that there are many, many, many people out there deserving of our tenderness and real love. Why was I pouring mine down the black hole of addiction, where I could be guaranteed to be fearful and doubting for the rest of my life?

I am sorry for all of the world's Latikas, of both genders. It is tragic where some people end up. But I only have one life to live, and I have to choose whether being rescuer/savior is going to be enough for me. Or will I reach the end of my life, sit on the edge of my sickbed, look back and say, "Oh my god, I spent my life making someone else's more comfortable, instead of doing what I was really put here to do."

It's the avoidance of that moment that drives me away from people who refuse to take responsibility for their own addictions. Regardless of their circumstances.

Very thought-provoking, IPT.
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Old 12-16-2009, 08:20 AM
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Originally Posted by KeepPedaling View Post
I don't know if it's worth it. I'm still on the fence about what to do. I keep reading what you write. All the questions you've said to ask myself about whether or not it's worth it. Honestly, right now, I'm not even thinking about my romantic relationship anymore. I'm thinking about the life of my friend. His mother died from drinking. If he goes down this road. He will die too. He's been sober and in school for almost two years, turning his life around. He's on winter break, drinking drinking drinking. Do I go get him? Do I try to help my friend if he's asking for it? Or do I save myself from more misery?

All those questions you asked, I think, "No, we won't make it as a couple. It won't work." But can I distance myself enough from the "in love" feelings so fast and enough to just be able to help him as a friend for a few weeks? And then, if he doesn't recover, can I let him go right away?

I still don't know what the right thing to do is. But I'm getting that book! I ordered it on Amazon.

The problem is, KP, that the ONLY WAY YOU CAN HELP HIM IS BY NOT HELPING HIM! The more you "help" him, the longer you delay his recovery. Is that what you want?

If you love him, you will set him free.

I'm very sorry. Been there.
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Old 12-16-2009, 01:26 PM
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Great post IPT! Great questions!

My marriage definitely failed because all I had was the intensity of emotion and the attachment to things someday getting "better!!"

I had a lot of maturing to do and all the things like friendship, kindness, consideration, financial responsibility, responsiveness all started to matter the most....and those were all weak areas with my exH.

thought-provoking....

peace-
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Old 12-16-2009, 02:06 PM
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Originally Posted by GiveLove View Post
I am sorry for all of the world's Latikas, of both genders. It is tragic where some people end up. But I only have one life to live, and I have to choose whether being rescuer/savior is going to be enough for me. Or will I reach the end of my life, sit on the edge of my sickbed, look back and say, "Oh my god, I spent my life making someone else's more comfortable, instead of doing what I was really put here to do."

This is what I am talking about. I think people are in general compasionate and caring and it is easy to get very wrapped up inwith someone who is struggling. I know I did.....
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