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Dear Cynthia... > Emotional Confusion
Emotional Confusion
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1 post
Dec 02, 2009
9:47 PM
It has been five months since my emotionally and mentally draining relationship ended. This confusing relationship lasted on and off for about 2 years. One moment he was in love with me, we were on a normal path so, I thought. He then started becoming distant, wouldn't answer my calls when he was with his friends and eventually I would only see him during the week. This wasn't a normal path I thought we were on. He tells me he tried to kill himself when we were apart the first time around. He claims he had life issues. I became more confused and emotionally traumatized. I do love him with all of my heart at this point. He then becomes closer to me once again, we are happy and so in love. He then falls into another dark place and goes away for the weekend to ski. He lied and said he was with his friends. He went to try to end his life again so, he tells me when he comes back. He didn't do it because he pictured how I would react to the news so, he made himself throw up the pills and wine that he had swallowed. At this point I am crying alone everyday. Worried about what he is doing and if I will ever see him alive again. I feel like I am interacting with a ghost. So, emotionally and mentally confused and my heart aches everyday. I tried to be the supportive girlfriend but, he eventually pushed me away with his own selfish ways and drifted in his own darkness. He couldn't give. He couldn't give me anything but, his words. He said he loved me but, I wouldn't see him for weeks, then months. He just couldn't.

So, here I am still emotionally and mentally confused. My heart still aches and I still cry everyday even just for a moment.

I know it's best that I stay away because I know I deserve a healthy loving relationship. I'm scared to love again so deeply. Not sure I ever will. I fell into a depression, began to lose interest in everything, felt angry, gained 18 pounds and hate my friends because they can't be here for me because they are with their damn boyfriends.

I know I am not responsible for his life but, I feel like I will always wonder if he is okay and still alive. This leaves me stuck emotionally and confused because I thought we really loved each other.

I know I need to take care of myself and this is why I let him go. I just wonder if I will truly ever let him go in my heart.

Writing this has made me cry hard and feel very sad but I think it's good because I haven't really told anyone about all of this. Thanks for listening (reading).
252 posts
Dec 04, 2009
1:22 AM
What an intense emotional roller coaster you've been on! It sounds like you are doing what you think is best for your own mental health, though ironically you are suffering emotionally by doing it. I don't disagree with your decision, but I do have a few questions to understand it more deeply.

So I have a funny question. You haven't told us what you love about him, other than his loving you, but are there many qualities about him that you would love if you found them in other people? Do you have interests in common, similar values, laugh together, meet intellectually, physically...?

Another funny question: do you have a parent who was depressed, distant, or irratic when you were growing up?

Also, has he tried to have his depression treated with therapy or medication or anything?

I have more thoughts, but the answers to these questions will help me understand better what you might need.

255 posts
Dec 10, 2009
4:51 PM
It sounds like you have developed the strength to separate from him despite the deep feelings you have about him, knowing that he is emotionally dangerous to you. That is really tough and courageous! People with Borderline Personality Disorder can be very charming and appealing sometimes and very destructive to themselves and the people around them at other times. They can tug on every need you might have to rescue someone in trouble or pain. They can be very difficult to separate from. I think your belief that you will thrive best if you don't have any contact with him is right. I know how hard that must be at times. Somehow you have to make peace with his being responsible for his own life, and the consequences of his choices. Some people do that by believing we all have a higher power that is responsible for each of us, and trusting his "higher power" to determine what his path will be. You must not forget how much pain you are in when he is in your life. I don't believe you can afford that.

There probably is some important information about you in who you have chosen for partners. We all choose partners that reflect our childhood experiences of love. This is a great focus for psychotherapy, so that you don't keep finding yourself in relationships with self-centered people who need you to take care of them. At least I wish that for you!


Last Edited by on Dec 10, 2009 4:55 PM
3 posts
Dec 14, 2009
1:28 PM
Thank you for reading and for your kind words! I appreciate it very much!
4 posts
Dec 29, 2009
8:36 PM
Hi Cynthia,

I wrote this letter on x-mas night because I was sad. Sad thinking about how happy we were last x-mas. These holidays have been the toughest! Anyway, I didn't send it. Not sure if I should or just keep it as a therapeutic piece. I am experiencing a lot of anger and not sure how to shake it? Any thoughts? Anyway, here is the letter to him...

I hope all is well and you enjoyed the holidays! I think about you often and hope you are happy and healthy. I also feel guilty. Not sure why I should feel guilty. It's not like I am living such a wonderful life and should feel guilty for it...lol. Anyway, my guilt just comes from continuous thoughts of not being able to be strong enough to be with you and how I used anger to help me move on. What can I say, that wall of anger has helped me get through the toughest of times. It's an emotional struggle but, I'm trying to move on and honestly trying to be happy. Unfortunately, I am filled with lots of bitterness towards any idea of a good relationship. It's starting to affect me as a person and I need to figure out how to release all this anger. Until I do I won't be able to have a normal relationship. I guess this is why I am writing to you to help me through it. I'm sure you would rather forget and move on and for that I apologize for disrupting your
life. I would like to believe that I will love again and I would like to believe that you can have a normal loving relationship one day as well. I certainly hope this message doesn't make you sad! It is not my intent. I just wanted to say sorry and my heart just aches for you to be able to be loved and for you to be able to love. I just hope you haven't built up any anger for me because i chose to move on. I know you made the choice long ago to distance yourself from me but, I really didn't make the decision for myself until the last time we chatted in November. I think the hardest part are the thoughts of why a certain person comes into one's life. You know, what the positive side to it was. I try to think that I came into your life to help you work through some of your issues and show you that your life has worth even though you had been abused to think it didn't have value. I would like to think that expressing all that to me helped you learn more
about yourself and has made you a stronger person and now you can put it all behind you and quit dragging it around. Now you can be your true self and know your life has worth and you deserve to be loved. What you have experienced is over now the emotional load is not so heavy on your heart and mind anymore. I know you have a disorder and that is probably the most difficult thing to have to deal with if anyone wants a relationship with you. I think knowing this hurts my heart for you even more. I just hope and pray that you can overcome this disorder and be happy.

So, I have tried to see what the positive was in having you in my life and what I can say is that I have learned some things about myself that I need to be aware of when I get involved with someone the next time. I am taking the mentally healthy route of being alone right now and realizing that I am in great need to be with just me. It is a struggle because I do want to love and be loved blah blah blah but, I just so clearly can see that I am not ready for that process again. I don't tell you this in hopes that we will be together again someday so, please don't think that I am waiting for that to happen. Honestly, we aren't compatible in so many ways but, for some reason there was a strong emotional connection. Anyway, life is so confusing to me right now but, I'm trying to figure it out day by day.

I hope you are fighting towards that road to happiness as I am. If you are happy as a clam then that makes me happy to know!

Take care and have a great new year!

260 posts
Dec 31, 2009
6:00 PM
Hi Yolanda,

In my opinion, this is a very useful therapy letter, but asking for trouble if you actually send it (I hope I'm not saying this after you already did)! I think if he were to read this letter, he would be confused about what you want from him, and what you have to offer him. You are sharing your heart in the letter, which is a wonderful, healing thing to do in intimate relationships and in therapy, but you are trying to disconnect from him. To send such an intimate letter to someone you are trying to disconnect from is probably confusing to you, and probably would be to him too. It sounds to me like you are telling him you are still hooked into him through guilt, and identifying with his emotional pain, and I don't think you want him to have that information, because he could only hurt you with it--even if he does nothing. All the pain and doubt and guilt and sadness and anger and longing you feel needs to be heard--but by almost anyone but him. I'm sure it's tempting to connect with him, especially at this time of year, when emotions are stronger and more painful for most people, but in my opinion, you will be glad later, if you don't send it. At least show it to some other people, wait until the holidays are good and over, and give yourself some more time to think about it, if you still feel tempted to send it.

5 posts
Feb 02, 2010
9:12 PM
Hi Cynthia,

No, I never sent the letter. Well, I have some news for you. I found out today that my ex was cheating and lying the whole time we were together. He says he is a sex addict and of course he still claims he is borderline personality. Nothing was true. Of course he claims that he did love me and tried to just be with me but, the temptation was too strong. All the stories he said about his ex-wife and his actions in some circumstances were not true. Everytime he said he was with his friends he was with other women. He used me, lead me on, emotionally and mentally drug me into his life of lies for two years. The only reason he decided to tell me was because he got busted and he wanted me to know what kind of person I fell in love with. He did try to committ suicide but, not for the reasons I thought. He wasn't happy with what he was doing and not happy with himself. I am relieved to know what really was going on but, I feel so heart broken. I feel so much pain and lonliness that I don't know what to do. I don't know how I am going to get thru this and ever trust again. I haven't dated in 8 months and I just don't even want to go anywhere now and I don't want to meet anyone. How do I get thru this? How do I find any hope and faith again? I hate him for doing this to me.
273 posts
Feb 04, 2010
12:55 AM
That's great you never sent the letter! I'm glad you were able to find out the truth. What do you mean when you say he "got busted?" Do you mean arrested, or caught being a sex addict (or both)? You mentioned his being in intense court-mandated treatment in your first post--what was that for? I'm still confused about why he told you about the lies and women and addiction--is he in Sex and Love Addicts Anonymous? If he were working a program like that one, he would need to make amends to you for hurting you as part of his recovery. Otherwise, why would he want you "to know what kind of person I fell in love with?"

Actually, I'm glad you hate him for doing this to you--I'm mad at him for doing this to you too! Sometimes when something like this happens, women hate themselves rather than the guy responsible for the hurtful behavior, and that causes women more harm to themselves.

If you think about it, you may see that you learned some things from this experience. Only you can really say what they are, but these are some I'd hope would help you try loving again:

1. As counter-intuitive as this may seem, just feeling love is not enough reason to have a relationship with someone.

2. Bonding through the ways you and the other person were wounded as children is not a good foundation for a relationship.

3. Any guy who has a borderline personality disorder will be likely to manipulate, charm, have erratic behavior, be addicted to something, have intense angry outbursts, be very needy, harm himself, be confused about who he is, be unable to have stable relationships, suffer from depression and anxiety, be very changable, and, yes, be very self-centered. A relationship with someone like this will likely be very wonderful sometimes and very painful and very unstable.

4. You may get hooked by men who need you because they are in pain, and you may get hooked by a list of characteristics that describe your childhood experience of your Dad (and/or your Mom). Men who are selfish, troubled, abandoning, make you feel special irratically, and there are probably other traits on that list may tend to be attractive to you. When you choose someone to date, take it slowly. Don't have sex right away. See if he is someone who could be a good friend, as well as date. Talk honestly about him with friends you trust and introduce him to them. Listen to their intuition about him. Test him to see if he is trustworthy. Take seriously any red flags--such as being in trouble with the law, addictive or irratic and dramatic behavior, estrangement from all previous partners, instability, impulsivity, lies to anyone, gaps in information about him, etc. See the movie "An Education."

With these realizations and new ways to look at choosing a partner, you will have a much better chance of finding someone trustworthy. You will need to feel the sadness and anger that is natural to losing someone--that is grieving, and it is healing with time. Then strengthen your trust in yourself by protecting yourself when something seems off. Much of this seems related to your being molested by your father, and what that taught you about parenting yourself. In therapy, or however you do it, you will need to earn your own trust by being able to show yourself you can protect yourself from harmful people and still be close to people you're mostly safe with.

Warm Wishes,

Last Edited by on Feb 04, 2010 1:03 AM

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Email: CynthiaLubow@yahoo.com 

 Cynthia W. Lubow, MFT

 For 30 years, compassionately helping people build self-confidence and feel happier.

 San Francisco East Bay Area Therapist

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