Looked xabf up on facebook, now Im torn

Old 12-06-2016, 02:20 PM
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Looked xabf up on facebook, now Im torn

I know this is exactly what I shouldnt have done but I did. After about 8 months of absolutely no contact I received a sms a couple of weeks ago wishing me a happy birthday. I had erased his number from my contacts so it took me a while to figure out it was my xabfs. I just replied "thank you" and did not think much of it. But obviously my mind went crazy stirring up all hopes because after that I dreamed over and over that we were back together. He looked much nicer and healthier in my dreams than he had done in real life.

So one morning after waking from one of those dreams I told myself the best cure for this nonsense was to face reality and see what hes been doing lately in real life. I even thought finding out he was with someone else was preferable to this idealization. So I looked him up on facebook thinking I would be angry for a while and forget about him.

But it was a terrible decision! I did not expect to have so many and such intense emotions from seeing a few photos. First, there were pics of him at parties. This made me sad because he behaved like a teenager when hes in his late 40s. I was surprised to see he hadnt "evolved", somehow. Perhaps in the back of my mind I had assumed he would put his life on track when I was out of the picture, but he had just kept his lifestyle and main motivation in life: looking for people to drink with. He puts a lot of effort in his social life but the only ones who stick around are people who feel sorry for him or are alcoholics themselves. It seemed he was going out with someone new though not (yet) very seriously, of course this hurt and made me jealous. I know rationally that he cant maintain healthy relationships nor even relationships that last beyond one year, but still.

Then, there was a social gathering of his family of origin. I felt excluded, had always felt special for being made part of the family, although it is quite dysfunctional. I had always felt they were too complex to deal with, but I guess I had always hoped Id be able to help him overcome his alcoholism and then everybody would be so grateful. Childish, I know.
I also discovered he was following some creative writing course (this from someone with economic instability) so his dad (an ex alcoholic but well off) must be financing him.

I dont know why I expected things to take such a different turn. This was quite an eye-opener in terms of what to expect from an alcoholics life. But Im very upset by it. These past few months Ive been putting so much effort in working on myself and my life that its very painful to see that he just went with the flow of his drinking. On the other hand, I suddenly felt this urge to be with him physically. I really have to remind myself of the bad parts, which were a lot.

The thing that confuses me is that I see this facade of a big, strong and secure man, while underneath there is a huge void and insecurity. I can see now that I was attracted to his (non existent) strenght. I still wish he would be that man, not just pretend to be like that. I really dont know how to deal with these emotions, I can see how Im trying to convince myself that he is not really unhealthy, that everything will turn out great in the end and be the partner for me that I need, someone I can lean on. While in real life he never was like that, he just used me as enabler. I dont know if Im back to a state of denial?

Anyway, I guess Im just rambling, could use some support.
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Old 12-06-2016, 02:36 PM
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I'm not sure I follow--it looks like nothing has changed, so suddenly you're wanting him back? When NOTHING has changed? Even in the unreal eyes of Facebook?

My personal suggestion is to stay OFF Facebook, go back to complete no-contact. If you find yourself obsessing about him, distract yourself. Get therapy. Go to Al-Anon. Take a class. Get a new haircut. Make some new friends. Run a marathon. Whatever works.

I still have occasional dreams about my exes. Sometimes they are nice dreams, sometimes not so nice. But they are DREAMS, and mean very little except that something apparently popped up in my unconscious that made me think of them.
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Old 12-06-2016, 02:36 PM
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One of life's hardest lessons is that people aren't projects...you can't take the raw material, throw out the crap, keep the good, buy some decency and responsibility on eBay, and voila, perfect boyfriend. God knows I tried and more than once!

He is what he is and that's why he's in your past, yes? Maybe part of you never gave up hope, but it's maybe time to let that go.

Facebook...sigh. Don't get me started!
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Old 12-06-2016, 02:46 PM
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Look at what a whirlwind of negative yuck it stirred up in your life just by checking up on him.

I told myself the best cure for this nonsense was to face reality and see what hes been doing lately in real life. I even thought finding out he was with someone else was preferable to this idealization. So I looked him up on facebook thinking I would be angry for a while and forget about him.
We have a nagging addict voice in the back of our heads too - just like they do. It tells us lies, it tries to say that something is good when it's not, it romanticizes turmoil and it tells us someone else can make us feel better. ALL LIES. And you got suckered by it. We all do from time to time in one way or another!

You haven't lost 8 months of progress, you are NOT who you were a year ago. You have not put the blinders back on. You had a weak moment... You had a slip. That's all. No big deal. Tomorrow is a new day. You get back on that wagon and back to your healthier, happier life.....knowing that no good comes from humoring that nasty little voice.
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Old 12-06-2016, 02:46 PM
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so let me get this right, in order to shake yourself out of your idealized visions you had of your EX...............you went to FB????? and are now giving all the photos and updates a forensic autopsy.....even down to assuming that his father MUST be paying for his creative writing class......

i think you need to work in living in YOUR here and now, YOUR reality, and not all the fluff you make up to fill in the blank spots.

The thing that confuses me is that I see this facade of a big, strong and secure man, while underneath there is a huge void and insecurity. I can see now that I was attracted to his (non existent) strenght. I still wish he would be that man, not just pretend to be like that

this is called projection. you are projecting ON to others the things you wish and dream of. you STILL want to believe or make a believable enough lie that he IS that guy.

so about that NO CONTACT thing............
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Old 12-06-2016, 03:01 PM
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Hey, bluelily. Keep doing the footwork. It doesn't sound as though your ex has cleaned up his act at all, and I'm sure you know inside that you are far better off without him than with him. Was your breakup at all unequivocal? I thought about and dreamt about an ex for years, off and on, because it was a weird breakup and I never got, for want of a better word, closure. I realized, several years, several states, and several lifetimes away from him that I mourned the life I thought I could have had with him, not the reality of what the life would have really been. I think we would not have lasted because, at the end of the day, he thought he was better than me. And, at the end of the day, I knew I deserved better than him. Peace.
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Old 12-06-2016, 04:40 PM
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Originally Posted by AnvilheadII View Post
so let me get this right, in order to shake yourself out of your idealized visions you had of your EX...............you went to FB????? and are now giving all the photos and updates a forensic autopsy.....even down to assuming that his father MUST be paying for his creative writing class....
Yes, I know that sounds bizarre, but thats because he is one of those people who uses fb as a personal diary, recording every place hes been and people hes seen. With photos of every activity. If something really great happened - like him landing a good job - he would undoubtedly boast about it.
Anyway I did not dwell much on his page because I began feeling sad and remembering the bad things.

When we broke up he was at a point where he had no stable income and was deep in debt, he actually asked me for a lot of "loans" which he spent mostly on vodka. When we began our relationship he gave this image of a this alpha-male self made man, who had overcome so much difficulties on his own to create a good life for himself with no help from anyone. Then as time went on it transpired that his father was paying the rent and had always supported him financially.
So after our breakup I assumed sorting out his financial situation would be a priority, not spending time and money on a full time course. I made these assumptions about his father paying for it because its the most logical explanation.
Anyway.
None of it is very uplifting.
The thing that saddens me is that he turned out to be so completely different from the person he seemed to be in the beginning, and I tend to remember him as the person he never was.
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Old 12-06-2016, 04:56 PM
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Originally Posted by firebolt View Post
We have a nagging addict voice in the back of our heads too - just like they do. It tells us lies, it tries to say that something is good when it's not, it romanticizes turmoil and it tells us someone else can make us feel better. ALL LIES. And you got suckered by it. We all do from time to time in one way or another!
Thanks Firebolt, that makes a lot of sense. I do have a nagging voice in my head from time to time and it completely takes over my emotions. Im not sure why it popped up now, probably because Im stressed out by a lot of things in my daily life - nothing serious but Im just tired.

Some days ago I had a choir rehearsal with a new director who reminded me a lot of the positive side of my xabf - not something real but the image he likes to project. I discovered myself thinking Wow this guy is like xabf without the alcohol - or the idea I have of what he would be like if he werent an alcoholic. But then this thought popped into my mind "but I prefer xabf because hes familiar". Which was quite a revelation. And then I guess I began obsessing over going back to xabf. (Not that anything happened with the director, it was just the idea of opening up to the possibility of something better than turmoil. It really scared me!)
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Old 12-06-2016, 04:58 PM
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bluelily......I think it is always a bit jarring when we realize that they are not the larger than life, perfect creatures that we saw through the rose colored glasses of early attraction and emotion.
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Old 12-06-2016, 05:25 PM
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Originally Posted by bluelily View Post
The thing that saddens me is that he turned out to be so completely different from the person he seemed to be in the beginning, and I tend to remember him as the person he never was.
Bingo. Keep reminding yourself of this, yes? And the next time you're interested in a supposed "alpha male," proceed a little more cautiously?
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Old 12-06-2016, 05:28 PM
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Ok. What's done is done. Now you know. Did you think he would be posting images of his misery on FB? Nope! It all looks good from the outside looking in, doesn't it?

Do yourself a favor. Don't do that again. Nothing good will come out of it and honestly, it's just going to set you back. Curiosity killed that cat, Ya know?

Learn from it and move forward. You've got so much to look forward to!
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Old 12-06-2016, 08:17 PM
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"(Not that anything happened with the director, it was just the idea of opening up to the possibility of something better than turmoil. It really scared me!)"

^^^This is where every ounce of your attention & energy should be -
focused on you - on a healthy relationship with yourself. I have learned people connect with people on the level of their woundedness. Healthy attracts healthy. Sounds like healthy is very frightening to you right now.
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Old 12-07-2016, 03:13 AM
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Maybe it's the time of year, nostalgia crops up and you think 'what if?...'
Facebook often stirs up negative emotions due to the fake 'happy' lifestyle pictures that many people post. I tend to avoid it. But there's another thing, whoever has been unlucky enough to get involved with your ex will most likely experience the same thing as you, if someone hasn't already. It probably wont be obvious on Facebook though.

My XABF got through 2 more women in the space of 8 months after me. It was quite amusing to know the exact same story had played out again and again...even down to his belongings being packed for him and being dumped outside!
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Old 12-07-2016, 11:31 PM
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I did this myself many years ago. What I did after that was block him on FB. That way I couldn't see anything and if I had a moment where I thought I might want to look, it would take several steps to unblock, giving me time to realize what an idiot I was being.
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Old 12-08-2016, 06:11 AM
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Going no contact was the best decision I ever made. I blocked him, his friends and family on all social media. I was amazed at how quickly I progressed once I did this. If he did pop up in my feed somehow it made me feel sick to my stomach, but only confirmed why we weren't together. Every picture I saw him in he had a drink in hand, and one time a pipe as well. These are confirmations that we made the correct decision - our presence or lack thereof has no bearing on how they decide to live their lives.
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Old 12-08-2016, 07:18 AM
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General rule of thumb - you can't believe what you see on the internet, especially FB!

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Old 12-08-2016, 07:31 AM
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Been there, done ALL that Lily!
For us Codies, "picking up" that first "drink" is just the way you described it. We are not addicted to the drink, however, we are addicted to relationships.
I TOTALLY understand where you are coming from on this.
One sobering thought for me, is asking myself why I would pick a lover who isn't even friend material.
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Old 12-08-2016, 08:47 AM
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Eauchiche.....I have thought the same thing, myself, in the past. It doesn't make good sense to our logical, intellectual brain, does it?
However...a big however....connecting with a friend is not the same as co nnecting to a lover.....
Because....there is sexual attraction and bonding involved with the lover.
It involves a cascade of several hormones...and, involves parts of our brain that are involuntary.....
We are transported to a "different" plane....it happens rapidly and without the interference of our intellectual, logical minds......

Arrgh...!
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Old 12-08-2016, 02:16 PM
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Originally Posted by dandylion View Post
It involves a cascade of several hormones...and, involves parts of our brain that are involuntary.....
We are transported to a "different" plane....it happens rapidly and without the interference of our intellectual, logical minds......
You know, in my case this bonding has been completely irrational on my part, I had never had such an illogical relationship. With other guys we had a lot in common, things to talk about, we were friends as well as lovers. But with xabf I did not even like him most of the time, so it was (and is) very confusing that there was such a strong attraction.

Anyway Eauchiche you are right about the addiction of relationships, I had some kind of despair and craving kicking in after I was faced with xabf again. Actually I think what triggered me most was his birthday sms, it mustve been like going without a drink for months for an alcoholic and then taking a sniff again. The only thing that makes me calm down (a bit) is thinking that this message of his was a way to bait me and find out if I was willing to be his enabler again. Not sure if thats true but hes so manipulative that I find it hard to believe he would just randomly send me a birthday wish after no contact for so long. I mean he would only send people messages like that if he was looking to gain something from it.
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