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Lonely cures?

Old 10-08-2014, 10:20 AM
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Lonely cures?

I have my girls virtually all the time (not complaining in the least). The exception to this is a few hours on one weekend day and about an hour on one weeknight.

It is good to be busy because it is only when I slow down (during those few hours or late at night) that the reality of my life hits me and I have a really hard time with that.

I have close friends who I can talk to and that is fantastic, but I am finding myself deeply lonely. Not that I had this with xAH but I miss companionship, I miss having someone to talk to about my day, or laugh with about the cute things my kids do, adult connection ... I have hobbies, I read books, I have good friends but I have spent the last few months just feeling really lonely and longing for a connection with another adult.

I dont know when/if its a good time to think about dating after a marriage to an A, particularly an abusive one... Is there a barometer for "this is when I will know I am ready?"...

I was dealing with crisis management for so long and reacting left and right to xAH's antics that that sort of occupied my time. Now that that is not so much the case I have a lot of time to realize that I miss things that are lacking in my life and Ive just been sad about it...

Anyone else have this conundrum?
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Old 10-08-2014, 10:29 AM
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Yes and I have realized that thing and connection I was searching for in someone else, I had to seek it within myself. So many nights I have wanted to go out for some companionship but It's that old saying "when you least expect it, expect it".

Your posts are articulate. You sound like someone I would love to hang out with! Lol. Spend time with friends, hobbies, join groups, church or whatever you can! I am sure you are pretty terrific just being you. Then all of a sudden when you really come to a place where you are fulfilled within yourself you can be apart of a relationship. I was always looking for someone to fill something missing for me. I now know, what that loneliness was really about.
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Old 10-08-2014, 10:32 AM
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It is good to be busy because it is only when I slow down (during those few hours or late at night) that the reality of my life hits me and I have a really hard time with that.
This raised a lot of red flags for me. Know why? Because I recognize it. My dad used to say "I'm always skeptical of people who are busy all the time. I always wonder what it is they're avoiding dealing with?" -- and that's so me.

I learned to replace hectic activity with apparent (but not real) relaxation. Instead of getting involved in 387 volunteer activities to keep me busy, I started bingewatching TV series on Netflix. In all honesty, I think it was to avoid thinking.

Well -- it backfired. And with kids as canaries in the coal mine, it had to come to a crisis with one of my kids before I realized how much I can't push stuff away, how I am going to have to deal with it, feel all the uncomfortable, scary feelings, and how that's a necessary (dammit) step to dealing with them.

As for when you're ready to date... well, I married a guy I've been friends with since childhood. There was no learning curve and no getting to know there. But I can honestly tell you that if I hadn't married him, I probably wouldn't feel I was ready to date (weird as that sounds). After my divorce, the guys I was attracted to were still disasters -- controlling, abusive, even without addictions.

I think I would start with getting comfortable being alone. Honestly. Because being in a state of loneliness -- especially after a dysfunctional relationship -- is a bad, bad place to start a new relationship. How do I know? Because that's how I ended up with AXH...
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Old 10-08-2014, 10:41 AM
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After my divorce from my first husband (not an A -- that marriage was felled by my undealt-with FOO issues/codependency), I was on my own for three years. I like to pretend that it was a choice, but who am I kidding -- I had NO prospects for dating as I was a mess. So I was forced to spend a great deal of time by myself.

At first, I hated every second of being alone with me. It was torture. Nothing could distract me from the pummeling loneliness of not being in a relationship -- no surprise there as I had been in relationships for better or for worse my entire adult life. I had never even lived alone as an adult. All I could do was get through. Make sure I kept my job, my sure I took care of my dog, fed myself, cried, railed against the unfairness of all my friends who Had Someone...it was not great, I admit it.

Through therapy, however, I soon discovered that for me, it was Necessary. I had to learn to be alone with myself without being lonely. Like I said, this wasn't something I chose but something that sort of happened by circumstance, but it really made all the difference in my recovery. I had to learn to be okay just being with me before I could ever learn to be okay being with someone else.

Eventually, I just got sick of being so miserable that I just HAD to try something else. I started writing as it was always something that had made me feel good. I took an opportunity to replace an actor who had dropped out of a show with a company and a director I admired even though it was scary to do so. I learned to be a better cook. And all of those things that I was sort of 'bullied by life' into trying out started to add up to a foundation of self-esteem and self-respect that I had literally never known before, and never would have known had I dived into a relationship with someone else. Now I can say, "I wrote a book once."

Many years on now, I don't get nearly as much alone time as I got used to during those three years. Sometimes I miss it, especially when I think of all the things I accomplished! But I recognize that time as a sort of hibernation time. I needed to go through all of those uncomfortable feelings and learn that they were not going to be the end of me. Now I have a sense of self that is pretty unshakable. I still get blind-sided by stuff, no doubt, but I feel confident that whatever comes my way I will be able to handle it.

As for how I knew when I was ready -- I didn't, really, but after three years on my own and building a stronger sense of self, it was clear when other people started to be interested in me and I actually noticed and felt like, well sure, why wouldn't they be? I am kind of awesome. Now, I still chose the A out of that lot...but I consider that whole mess the final stage of me proving to myself that I was not the Cause, Control, or Cure for someone else's alcoholism. Just me reliving my FOO pattern out to a different, healthier conclusion. Again -- wouldn't have been possible without that investment I made in myself.

Wow, looks like I wrote another book. Sorry! I hope this helps somehow...? Anyway, sending you strength and patience and many hugs. You may be lonely but you are not alone.
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Old 10-08-2014, 11:09 AM
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I hear you. It comes in waves for me. I was very lonely last year at this time. Not so much now. It comes and goes.

I don't know what to tell ya. I would say go join this and do that but as another full time mother with full time job - when on earth is that supposed to happen? How many hours are my kids supposed to be home alone? Where do I find these elusive clubs? I live in a town of 800 people :P.

I didn't get married until I was 29 and I've been alone since the end of 2009. I actually live alone quite well and contentedly for the most part but like you, I miss companionship. Sometimes I feel that more strongly than others. Also - sex - none - and quite sick of that thank you very much
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Old 10-08-2014, 11:10 AM
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I should clarify... I am okay with being alone... I am alone after the girls are in bed every night (and theyre little so in bed early)...

I have stopped being here so much or being online with friends or on the phone bc of that realization that I was trying to hide from having to deal with being alone...

But the lonely feeling is new... I am a social creature and love to chat and share stuff with others... And I just am confused about how to be happy/okay being alone, but also deal with being lonely...

I guess I dont subscribe to the "if I am happy being alone, all will be well...". Some people seem to like or need more alone time than others... I am not one of them... My career is a people person career and I talk all day long as part of my job... It's just hard to not have someone at home to talk to about my day...

Maybe this is just about being mopey today and wishing for a life that isn't what I have...

This too shall pass I guess...
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Old 10-08-2014, 11:13 AM
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Yeah this is it exactly... it comes in waves... And working full time means evenings with my kids are really more like homework race, dinner, bed -- not real quality time... So I am truly not in a place to want to spend the quality time on weekends that I have with them, leaving them with a sitter to go do social stuff. What I enjoy is my kids..

So maybe what I am sad about is that the in tact family with a spouse who is a partner to me and a parent to my girls isnt something I have (nor really ever had) and it just makes me sad...

Originally Posted by Thumper View Post
I hear you. It comes in waves for me. I was very lonely last year at this time. Not so much now. It comes and goes.

I don't know what to tell ya. I would say go join this and do that but as another full time mother with full time job - when on earth is that supposed to happen? How many hours are my kids supposed to be home alone? Where do I find these elusive clubs? I live in a town of 800 people :P.

I didn't get married until I was 29 and I've been alone since the end of 2009. I actually live alone quite well and contentedly for the most part but like you, I miss companionship. Sometimes I feel that more strongly than others. Also - sex - none - and quite sick of that thank you very much
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Old 10-08-2014, 11:13 AM
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Originally Posted by wanttobehealthy View Post
I have stopped being here so much or being online with friends or on the phone bc of that realization that I was trying to hide from having to deal with being alone....
Actually I love the online socializing. I wouldn't want to replace real life socializing with it but no real life socializing happens at 10pm for us mom's with kids at home so embrace it. The friendships are usually very fickle 'here today gone tomorrow' but it can be a lot of fun while it lasts
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Old 10-08-2014, 11:18 AM
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Originally Posted by wanttobehealthy View Post
So maybe what I am sad about is that the in tact family with a spouse who is a partner to me and a parent to my girls isnt something I have (nor really ever had) and it just makes me sad...

I hear ya. ((hugs)).

I'm 45yr with young kids that are a handful. Other parents/people here my age have kids that are in college, not in grade school. There socializing is not something I can take part in and they are not so interested in going back to doing the young family oriented things. I just have to accept that I'm alone and that is the way it is for now.
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Old 10-08-2014, 11:24 AM
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I think it means you are ready for SOCIALISING

I haven't been ready for socialising for a while now , but I know that once I start getting that lonely feeling I have already set up / joined some socialising groups which meet up during the day and one group chat and do sketching and I love drawing so it will be therapeutic on both levels

Dealing with alcoholism is isolating , it feels like no one understands unless they have been through it themselves and it is not the sort of thing you mention in social circles of people you don't know well

There are parents groups for Mums who are around during the day

Try Meetup.com there are LOADS of groups tailored to your interests / socialising needs , they go for walks or meet up in a cafe or simply do nice things together and the parenting ones will be good as you can chat about the children etc and there are other ones to suit your interests too like daytime book clubs

There are some groups which do outings in the summer with the kids but there are some winter activites as well

What ''parent support'' is there in your area?

I know there is ''carers support'' for children with special needs as carers can get isolated but so can ALL parents and I think it is good for your confidence to get out and about , sounds like you are in a GOOD place and the loneliness is just a sign you are ready to socialise and enjoy your life more and being around people!

Are there any family members who offer their support?

I find family members give good HUGS and they are very comforting - I visited my Uncle and cousins recently and the hugs they gave me were AMAZING - I DID burst out crying though as I needed the comfort of a real hug and they were good company too!

So am slowly getting out and about more too and reconnecting with people after my DD's alcoholism and impact of it has taken over my life...

I don't know about dating , am not interested in that myself , just chatting with PEOPLE is like a breath of fresh air to me now I am 'emerging' but I could be in the situation where I am less free so am making sure I have a support network / possible socialising activities to get involved with so I don't feel so isolated as want to enjoy my life and my GS if I have him one day x
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Old 10-08-2014, 11:34 AM
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Ah , just noticed you are not available during the day , some of the parents groups do meet up at the weekend and do fun things together

Could you get a babysitter from time to time as if available in the evenings there are LOADS of social activities on offer in the evenings or at weekends

It is normal to feel lonely sometimes , circumstances sometimes make it so , you can be a confident and content person in yourself and yet we ALL need some companionship from time to time

It is good to socialise - I used to run 2 socialising groups for people who simply wanted to get out of the house and meet others with similar interests , it was great and there were over 2,000 members in my groups so there must have been a need for it 95% of people turned up on their own and I always think perhaps if that event was not on that night those people would have been sitting at home on their own as I would too and it was a good feeling to know that because I had put on that event even if it was just going for a curry those people who arrived would have probably be sitting at home and feeling lonely that night!

I used to ALWAYS have a ''Valentines Celebration'' night every year , we used to party it up and celebrate being single , no moping around at home allowed!! lol

I used to be a very different person it seems and I would love to get back to that place and socialising has a lot to do with it and it slowly builds your confidence and reminds you of who you are! x

So go for it!!
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Old 10-08-2014, 11:41 AM
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Meetup.com also have teetotallers groups where people get together but DON'T drink , they seem like they could be some very supportive groups and some even go to nightclubs but don't touch a drop of drink together , good moral support I reckon and if / when my DD is ready I will recommend some of these groups as I think she will find moral support and have fun!
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Old 10-08-2014, 11:52 AM
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I think there is a difference between loneliness and isolation - I think you can feel happy and content in your own skin and still feel ISOLATED due to your circumstances / not enough opportunities to be with others xx

This is when I do and will seek outside activities with others which fit into my hours , not to ''escape'' anything , just to embrace some hopefully good company from time to time!

I think it is healthy to seek solutions to isolation , being out and about chatting with others in a mutually supportive enviroment from time to time can make the world of difference I reckon compared to NO company / no one to chat to at all , we ARE social beings after all x
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Old 10-08-2014, 05:38 PM
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I think the type of loneliness that you're describing is a distinctly partner loneliness, rather than a "friend for coffee and a chat" type of loneliness. I'm living alone now, focused on my recovery, working a job I love, have friends that I do things with, active in AA, and still, late at night, I just want someone to snuggle with on the couch, someone who cares how my day went in a different way than a friend, someone who will rub my feet if they are tired.

It comes up for me at interesting moments. I notice it when I need to put an emergency number on something at a doctor's office. I have friends that I put, but it isn't the same. I think it is a loss of the sense of "belonging" to someone.

I haven't always had that "belonging to" within relationships either, but glimpses, and in some relationships a surety that should there be a car crash, there was someone who would be sitting bedside, concerned, adult, mine.

I don't have any biological family living near me. Good relationships with bio-family might take some of the "belonging to" edge off, I don't know.

I do know that I'm not ready for dating quite yet. Still working on enough internal stuff that I am afraid love will distract me from.

In the interim, I'm contenting myself with "connecting with" fellas who might someday be relationship material, but as friends, without the flirting or the physical. I've realized that I move very quickly into relationship and sexuality with men, and then get "stuck" with all their dysfunction and addiction - much of which I would have noticed and would have influenced my decision-making if I had spent an ample amount of time with them first, as the strangers-becoming-friends that people actually are at some point. I typically do strangers-becoming-partners, and that has not worked for me.

I'm also taking care to make sure that I get a fair amount of nurturing touch from other sources - I get regular massage and I hug both men and women a lot at aa meetings. It isn't quite enough, but I'm accepting that it is where I am right now. My bed is vast and quite chilly at night when I go to sleep, and I simply don't like that. I've made a vow though, that the next person who warms my bed is going to love me and be kind to me and want "mutual belonging" as I do.

I've actually considered buying a stuffed animal toy to sleep with, but keep chickening out, because that just feels a little too "inner child work" to me. It keeps reappearing as an idea though, so I may just have to follow through...
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Old 10-08-2014, 05:52 PM
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I joined an online dating agency.
It made me realise straight away I was not ready for that.
I couldn't imagine another man in my home, near my child.
No, no, no not for me.......yet.

My point of posting is maybe try something like this,maybe if you joined one and you don't have to commit to anything, go out with anyone, share your life with anyone, it might help you decide if yes you are ready for a new relationship or dating type thing, or no not yet.

If its no, you know you need to find companionship elsewhere in friends, female groups whatever.
If its yes, then you can see whose out there.
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Old 10-09-2014, 10:17 AM
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I hear you, wanttobe (and the rest of you). I am right there with you. I am okay, my kids are good, I am busy with work, I am collecting a good number of friends, and I can usually find someone to do things with on the weekends that the children go to their dad's house.

I have some friends who understand what kind of companionship I am looking for and others who encourage me to come hang out at the bar on a Sunday afternoon and go dancing. Which I never can do and I don't think they understand why I can't do that.

Primarily because of Sunday night and Monday morning with 3 kids.

But also because I am looking for deeper connections than I am likely to find in a bar. With people who have no family responsibilities. I don't think I am likely to meet a good partner who can be my emergency contact and soft place to fall in that kind of place.

Am I splitting hairs? I don't know. I do know that I have kids who are crying out for my attention and a household that can't run without me spending my "free" time at the grocery store and getting ready for the week ahead.

I don't want to be nothing more than the lonely, bitter mom, but the reality of solo parenting is that if I don't do it, it doesn't happen, and I don't want to waste my limited hours on hanging out with people with whom I don't really have anything in common.

I'm 44, attractive, smart, and covered up with childrearing obligations. Going out somewhere has to be worth the time.
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Old 10-09-2014, 11:53 AM
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HI Want to Be Healthy,

Didn't you mention a man you had been dating? I think I remember you spending time with someone. Maybe I am confusing people. If it was you, how did that go?

I used my lonely time to work on myself and try things I had not tried before. It pushed my comfort zone and helped me chill out on investing so much in a relationship. Meaning, when I was dating again, it wasn't that important so I wasn't desperate or seeking another person for make me feel good.

Hugs
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Old 10-09-2014, 12:14 PM
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I dreamed up projects for myself. I cleaned the heck out of my house that first year, threw out so much. I'm really into DIY at the moment, refinishing my basement by myself on pennies. I had to stop looking for outside solutions to internal problems, and learn to find happiness and comfort inside of myself. I really, really, really intended to get comfortable with myself and with being alone that first year, and I think I have. I had no libido or desire to be with anyone at all. I frequently said (and still do) that I would GLADLY be celibate for the rest of my life than to put myself and my family through that again.

I am dating again, one guy I really like, and I have taken it EXTREMELY slow, months and months of just hanging out, getting to know each other, being friends. He's a good egg, and I'm glad he's around. He encourages my ambitions and recognizes what makes me tick. I had no idea, and I'm very grateful to have him around. At this point, I wouldn't settle for anything less.
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Old 10-09-2014, 12:46 PM
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Originally Posted by MissFixit View Post
HI Want to Be Healthy,

Didn't you mention a man you had been dating? I think I remember you spending time with someone. Maybe I am confusing people. If it was you, how did that go?

I used my lonely time to work on myself and try things I had not tried before. It pushed my comfort zone and helped me chill out on investing so much in a relationship. Meaning, when I was dating again, it wasn't that important so I wasn't desperate or seeking another person for make me feel good.

Hugs
I was sort of dating (aka when I felt like giving up my time with the girls) a man, yes...

But the reservations I had early on ended up being accurate... and so I ended things. He was nice... but needy and whiny and wanted to be "taken care of" and since I have a xAH who fits that bill too I had zero tolerance for it.

I actually was sort of pleased with myself for drawing a line and saying that it wasnt what I wanted bc up to now I have ALWAYS tolerated intolerable behavior from others in relationships (friendships and otherwise) so it was a big step for me to have no trouble at all saying "Im not feeling this" and be totally ok with that...

I am not wanting to settle just to have company and no matter how small, any red flag is sort of a deal breaker for me.

My best friend who is also a single mom has been in a relationship with someone who makes her unhappy for a long time... And she keeps saying that she stays with him bc she is afraid to be lonely... That is something I will NEVER do.

Then there is me. I am unwilling to put up with anything that smacks of needy/pity seeking/blaming others and my best friend has suggested that maybe I am being overly harsh or have too high criteria etc... And she has been pointing out that even if things are not great with her bf, at least he's company when she's alone (and admittedly that gets me a bit even as I realize that that is a large part of why I stayed with xAH for so long and KNOW that that is unhealthy)...

So, I have been feeling lonely and thinking that maybe I am unreasonable...

Is it unreasonable to have clear standards in my mind of what I can and cant deal with?

What do others of you think? Do you have a lower tolerance for BS in the dating world post the A?

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Old 10-09-2014, 12:54 PM
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What do others of you think? Do you have a lower tolerance for BS in the dating world post the A?
I sure as hell hope so or I haven't learned much!

Someday I hope to put it to the test, lmao.
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