Contact=Pain. Please help!

Old 12-04-2013, 12:14 PM
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Contact=Pain. Please help!

I broke up with ABF last summer. Haven't seen him in over 4 months.

However, he asked that we keep in touch. He texts, or more rarely, calls. Sometimes he's sober, sometimes not. I only respond, never initiate. I will only engage when he's sober. I have remained detached, as I can tell that the same alcoholic/addiction cycle continues. He's not in any kind of treatment or program, not seeking help for his problems, but keeps quacking about how he's doing better/fine and has the support he needs.

Even loving messages make me feel like crap; they are hollow, empty words with nothing to back them up. And if we do try to talk about anything real, it usually goes south - blame shifting, denial, minimizing, lying, selfish bullsh**.

I am stuck in the hallway, folks, and I feel terrible. Still clinging miserably to tattered shreds of hope and connection. I have loved this man for most of my adult life, and the final cut feels like it will erase me; I am essentially abandoning a life-long fantasy, and I'm terrified I won't recognize myself without it.

My birthday is coming up. I need to be reborn as a person without these chains around my heart. I need to live the second half of my life with integrity and self-love. I owe this to me; and also, I wish to be an example of strength, growth and healing to my beautiful daughters.

Please, I need some E,S&H from you all. Thanks for reading.
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Old 12-04-2013, 12:27 PM
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I am so, so sorry you're hurting. It must be difficult hearing from him. Do you think you can cut all ties and let him know you don't want to hear from him anymore? Or block email, text, phone, FB?

I don't really know what to say except that I feel for you. It's so sad to let go of someone you love, even if you know it's better for you in the long run.

Wishing you much love and healing. xoxoxo
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Old 12-04-2013, 12:35 PM
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(((SpiderQueen)))

I think you are doing better with this than you realize. Feel those feelings...and then let them pass on. Grieve your losses...and then build new hopes & dreams based around what you want and can do for yourself. Pull out the pieces of the old fantasy that you can establish on your own and let the rest go.

My birthday this year was awful. I totally lost it - I was grieving the loss of my own hopes & dreams, where I am in my life vs. where I thought I would be. The next day came and I'm moving on. Life isn't over, but it is changed...and that's okay because it is/can still be great...just a different great than before.

It's up to you what to do about XABF...no new contact=no new pain. I think if you keep focusing on yourself, exploring your passions, strengthening your healthy relationships that you won't feel the need to hold on to the tattered security blanket of the old relationship.
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Old 12-04-2013, 12:40 PM
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is there a way to detect sobriety from a text ? ( Other than the ungodly spelling)

just because he asked to keep in touch doesn't mean you have to oblige. I think it's perfectly ok to decline that offer, or better yet stop responding, you are only pouring salt on your wounds here.

I am sorry that you are currently hurting. If I were you I would be making a plan to spend my birthday with family and friends far away from the madness. Even a mini overnight destination close to home, ( or a day trip somewhere) the main goal is to be in charge of your special day. Get out there and celebrate you, time to take your life back.
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Old 12-04-2013, 12:52 PM
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Remember that this is short-term pain for long-term gain!!!!!

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Old 12-04-2013, 12:55 PM
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btdt on some Very Harsh issues in the Past (now past, finally, TYG).

Here is my best advice.

That which is your Fear: Turn around, face it square on, run straight into it.

It is sort of like running into a Wall-of-Fire magic trick. While it looks like large flames, it is only a fraction of an inch thick and will not even singe you as you pass through.

While every thing Back Then was very real . . . . now, It is all an illusion.

What is your fear?
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Old 12-04-2013, 12:56 PM
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"Remember that this is short-term pain for long-term gain!!!!!"

I agree, life or death?
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Old 12-04-2013, 01:06 PM
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When I told my therapist I had begun dating someone that I knew to be an A (despite having just spent years dealing with the fallout of having an A mom), she asked me why I would willingly enmesh myself with someone as emotionally unavailable as an A. I have no memory of my response (thank goodness -- oof), but I do recall that she replied, "Well, all you're really doing is keeping yourself from a relationship with someone who is."

I got SO MAD AT HER. I thought she was being judgmental, I thought it wasn't her job to judge my choices and say things like that (oh, so many clues that she had said something important and life-changing!!!), and I let her know. She let me have my say but wouldn't renege the comment.

Many months later it finally sank in that she was right. And thank goodness it did because the world opened up to me that day. So when you say:

"I am essentially abandoning a life-long fantasy, and I'm terrified I won't recognize myself without it."

...I have to wonder -- what if the You without that fantasy is...unrecognizably extraordinary? What if she's a surprising, vibrant, beautiful butterfly that has just been waiting in the wings to emerge? What if letting go of this fantasy is better than you can possibly imagine?

Maybe...just maybe...it's time to find out?
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Old 12-04-2013, 01:11 PM
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Spiderqueen, two things that just happened to touch my heart.

I have loved this man for most of my adult life, and the final cut feels like it will erase me; I am essentially abandoning a life-long fantasy, and I'm terrified I won't recognize myself without it.
There was a man like that in my life as well. In retrospect, I think part of why I held on to the fantasy of what I thought life with him ought to be like because it protected me from having to accept a REAL relationship. As long as I held him as a hope, I didn't have to take anything else seriously because he was always the REAL plan (in my mind) so any heartbreak or problem that happened in other relationships didn't matter, not really…

A good friend of mine is dying today. He's 42. I'm thinking "if I had died at 42 I would have died still tethered to an alcoholic and never really known how wonderful life could be."

None of us live forever. It's your choice how you want to live the rest of your days.
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Old 12-04-2013, 01:24 PM
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and I'm terrified I won't recognize myself without it.

you probably won't! because you will no longer be under the pall and stress of someone else's addiction that you can never solve, no more albatross around your neck, pained expression in the eyes, garments rended in grief. imagine instead of hanging on to a FANTASY, you got the chance to get busy living REAL LIFE in the here and now. imagine if you LIVED each moment to the fullest and liked it???

it's up to you...you can drive your bus looking out the windshield or the rear view mirror.
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Old 12-04-2013, 02:11 PM
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Just hugs Spiderqueen

Remember I'm ten steps behind you. Show me the right path xxx
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Old 12-04-2013, 02:16 PM
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Originally Posted by SparkleKitty View Post
...I have to wonder -- what if the You without that fantasy is...unrecognizably extraordinary? What if she's a surprising, vibrant, beautiful butterfly that has just been waiting in the wings to emerge? What if letting go of this fantasy is better than you can possibly imagine?

Maybe...just maybe...it's time to find out?
Beautiful point!

Spider, can I ask.... what are YOU getting out of allowing him to stay in contact, even in a minimal way like this? Is it friendship or maybe the possibility of reconciliation, or is it just TOO difficult to cut someone out of your life that has been part of it for so long? (either way, I totally understand... just curious what your motivation is for allowing contact at all)
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Old 12-04-2013, 02:41 PM
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I have loved this man for most of my adult life, and the final cut feels like it will erase me; I am essentially abandoning a life-long fantasy, and I'm terrified I won't recognize myself without it.
My STBXAH was my high school sweetheart. After some heartbreaking relationships and the birth of my first child, we found each other again and hit it off famously. We both appeared to be two kids who'd had hard times but got our **** together -- this turned out not to be true on either of our parts, but only one of us was willing to finish the marathon, so to speak. I was madly, deeply in love with him. I felt like we understood each other. I overlooked, excused, or argued with a lot of behavior that I shouldn't have because I was so attached to him, and attached to our love story.

There's no timeline on this or set of steps for you to follow. Here's a suggestion:

He texts, or more rarely, calls. Sometimes he's sober, sometimes not. I only respond, never initiate. I will only engage when he's sober.

Even loving messages make me feel like crap; they are hollow, empty words with nothing to back them up. And if we do try to talk about anything real, it usually goes south - blame shifting, denial, minimizing, lying, selfish bullsh**.
Maybe don't engage right away. Set a boundary that you will not respond "in the moment," sober or not. Give yourself time to decide whether it's worth dipping your toe into this particular puddle. When I am contacted by triggery people, I set it aside and give it time, and give myself to space to feel it through before I jump in. A turning point for me was the true, deep, and honest acceptance that he may battle this for the rest of his life, and that I was not equipped, willing, or able to be a front row witness to it in any capacity. Once I got there, that became the overarching decision-maker in my dealings with him.

And when I need a reminder and start to get soft around the edges and miss him a little? I go back through my posts here on SR and relive his lies, abandonment, broken promises, theft, abuse, and coercion, and my confusion, disappointment, sadness, and grief for him and for myself. Sometimes I need to remember that yes, it really was that bad, and that the guy I'm holding on to was mostly a figment of my imagination. The guy in front of me is not capable of doing a single thing I need in a relationship. Not-a one. And I deserve a lot better than that, and I'm ready to try some new things and new people in my life, and some ways of living in which I don't set myself up for disappointment and failure.
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Old 12-04-2013, 03:52 PM
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Hugs sweetie. I am sorry you are going through all of this. I advise No Contact...it would make you life so much easier. It's hard...I know.
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