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Struggling with no contact?

No contact is of the utmost importance when it comes to recovering from any unhealthy relationship.  Why, then, can it be so hard to maintain?  How is it that we can do so well for long stretches and then become instant Jell-O with seemingly little warning?

Of the myriad of struggles we may experience during recovery, this seems to be one of the most common snags.  The cold reality is that we are going through withdrawal and there is no methadone to ease the pain of this addiction.  Making matters worse, each and every time we break it, the clock starts over, feeling worse than we did previously.

However, from experience, I know that we do get to the point where we truly do not care to emotionally interact with our past counterparts.  We also genuinely get to the point where their attempts yield little or no emotional response from us.  At the same time, I also know that the road to that place can be quite long and challenging.

Recently, I realized that another interesting snafu exists regarding the no contact rule: successful implementation with one individual often does not automatically carry over into other relationships where the same is necessary.  Yes, we may pay better attention to various red flags and recognize certain behaviors and know what must be done, but that doesn’t mean it’s necessarily smooth sailing.  However, with diligence, we can do it.

How can we fight the urge to talk, text, or write?

1.  Examine the feelings causing the need to want contact

Other than in cases where we were so deeply involved that we became “addicted” to our pathological other halves, fear and old habits are two very common reasons we consider re-connecting with our pasts.

Believe it or not, one of my past no contact struggles was prompted by a dinner conversation with someone I had known much of my adult life.  Over steak and a Stella (Artois) the nicest man in the world (not a psychopath) revealed that he was interested in a relationship with me.  Instantly, the twinge from within took over.  “Me?” I asked  in a shocked, surprised, and probably fairly horrified voice.  “Yes, you.  You are beautiful, smart, and strong.  What guy wouldn’t want that?”

From there it got fuzzy.  I began to sweat profusely and my head began to spin.  However, once I got past the shock, I mentally reviewed my past relationship life.  The sad fact was that I didn’t think I could be attracted to a “nice” guy (an issue for another article, which, by the way, I now have totally figured out, at least in theory, even if not in practice.)

So, what did I want?  Why did a nice person make me long to reconnect with someone I have absolutely no business being with?  Much like a dieter looking for a cheeseburger, I wanted to travel back in time to something that felt more comfortable; I longed for an unhealthy relationship where I could give, give, and give some more, while only receiving small amounts of reciprocity along the way.

Being a “fixer,” giving more than I get comes naturally, but it shouldn’t and fear of the unknown and desire for familiarity should not be the driving force behind contact, especially when the outcome would not yield satisfying results.  Thus, just because it’s comfortable, doesn’t mean we should return to it.

I resisted.

2.  Examine what happened after the previous communications….and there probably were previous communications

It is likely that prior attempts did not work or we wouldn’t be here.  No good can come of making contact with someone who either does not want it with us, is just not that into us, or is pathological.  Therefore, we must examine our motives.  What do we hope to achieve from our communication?  Unless the answer is more heartache or irritation, which will send us reeling and feeling terrible, we should not do it.

How many times have we poured our hearts out and offered explanations for things not working if we wanted to make peace with an ex or ex-interest?  How many times have we tried to explain “just one more time,” for some semblance of closure?

We are famous for owning everything; the things we should take responsibility for, as well as those we should absolutely not!  They know this.  It takes most of us concerted efforts to stop that…and we should stop it.  Although counterintuitive, it will bring us to a better emotional place, as we take control of our own peace.

When I thought about all of this, I resisted.

3.  Review “old material.”

Most of our counterparts assume we have short memories.  In some ways we do, but not always.  For most of us, it is in our nature to try to see the good in others and forgive.  Many of us have also endured such extreme trauma that we block quite a bit out.  However, for those of us who are savers of correspondence, it helps to resurrect what we have.  It’s like relationship Soduko.

When last I felt  weak over a past connection, I wanted to text to say something…anything, exactly what I didn’t know.  I spent the better part of two hours talking myself out of doing so.  While my heart and rational brain dueled like two pianos in a night club, I pulled up his name in my phone.  Fortunately, I am not one to delete much, so I scrolled to the last break-up conversation (there are a few) and read what he had written.  Needless to say, I put the phone down.  There would be no text from me.

I decided that I did not really care for how he spoke to me in those texts.  I re-visited the feelings the silent treatment that followed evoked.  There was a time when I minimized the words, but not at that moment.  The words were mean and I felt empty.  I did not care that my reactions to them were not perfect (they were not.)  I was able to re-live the experiences in my mind and chose me and my well being.

Likewise, years ago, I felt I needed reassurance that my decision to enlist no emotional contact with another individual was warranted.  While years of experience should have been enough, the volumes of past e-mail and the journals I kept were what really told the tale.  “Normal” was not part of the equation.  The pathology in that correspondence was like graffiti on a wall and the ability to see the big picture, a written gift.

With that, I continued to resist.

4.  Examine the situation objectively

What would you tell your girlfriend to do if she came to you for advice, assuming the tables were turned?  If the answer is run, resist contact.

This goes hand in hand with using old material.  We can pull from past conversations and experiences, re-examining the negative feelings those situations created, and acknowledging the red flags we noticed throughout our relationships.  We should try to trust in our initial reactions to them.  If we felt hurt before, they will hurt again once re-opened.  It helps to step outside ourselves and recognize our own worth and beauty, just as we would a friend’s.

When I thought about how I’d counsel my bestie, I resisted.

5.  Give it time

Sit on your desire to initiate contact for at least one week or some other extended period of time.  It’s a good idea to use this time to think about all of the potential consequences.  The wait will probably be worth it.

Isn’t this difficult?  Trust me when I tell you, this goes against every fiber of my being, but the wait time will clear us for the option and allow us to choose what’s best for us, which is probably resisting.

What about when they dangle the carrot and casually contact us first?

Resist.  Truly.  Resist.  Depending upon the circumstances, we may or may not choose to respond.  Just as we did above, when we were thinking about initiating contact, we must ask ourselves what we hope to achieve by answering them, as well as what the consequences could be for either.  If it is a communication that does not require a response or would send us backwards, we should let it go.  If we choose to respond, keep it short and unemotional.  If we cared or care more than they do, we are the ones at risk for becoming emotionally entangled again.

There is always the possibility that the contact may be legitimate, unless, of course, the person truly is pathological, which may or may not be the case.  Regardless, if they tell us they are thinking about us or they miss us, they may.  We may actually be on their minds.  Truthfully, however, it probably means nothing near what we tend to turn it into.

Typically, when they make contact, they are merely “fishing” to check in on our emotional states.  Our reactions act as barometers.  Therefore, we should guard what we give back.  We may truly no longer care, we may be full-on acting, or we may legitimately be somewhere in the middle.  But that’s ours to know.

What do we want for the long haul?

So…we had a bad experience or two.  That’s ok.  What matters is that we part with a clearer picture of what we see for our futures.  How do we want to feel and what are we willing to tolerate?  No contact helps us stay the course.

While various things will undoubtedly wreak havoc with our desire to maintain no contact, understanding the roots of our struggles and using our tools can be incredibly helpful.  Be strong, friends, and if you falter, know that it’s ok to re-set the clock, but also allow yourself extra care while dealing with the challenges that go hand in hand with that re-set.

Above all else, know that the day will come when the urge to re-connect will disappear for good.  If the need repeats itself with another individual, use what you know as empowerment.  If we were successful once, we can be successful again.  Always learning, always improving.


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159 Comments on "Struggling with no contact?"

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My ex P conned all my friends. I received some apologies from some of them for not believing me until I showed them the evidence I had. Most of my friends thought I was the crazy one but I was conned as well – we were all conned by him, so how could I blame them?…
I look back on all he did and how manipulative he was and know that none of us ever stood a chance of knowing the truth unless I uncovered it. I seriously wouldn’t have any friends if I ditched everyone that was conned by him – I have just as much sympathy for my friends as I have for myself – we all suffered in some way….

It took years, but I also received a couple of apologies from acquaintances who were conned, and the test of time showed the spath for who he is. There are some who will never apologize but they are people who have a habit of being petty, clique-ish, gossipy, and engage in politicking and factions.

Hello Kittylover from CatH9L >:)

Here’s a story, crazy and true…

The Characters are:

CatH9L
SPexH (pronounced “specs”, sociopathic ex husband)
FWBex (pronounced “F the What’n B* X”)
WoeSib (wordly sibling)

CrazyM (local lawyer who is low down without being on the down low)

Act One
Let’s begin with horror:

Okay, so during my marriage and brutal divorce from SPexH, I decided to consult my WorldlySibling the player from the Hood. WoeSib knows that SPexH had suggested to me that I had sign away all the marital property to SPexH and sign away any and all inheritance rights in favour of our minor child.

SPexH was asking this because he was “so in luv wit me – CatH9L”. Needless to say I didn’t sign any such thing and in fact insisted the marital home be in my name due to SPexH’s financial difficulties and impending storm of bankers.

Anyhow, WoeSib indicated I would certainly have gotten something after all once the money was transferred to SPexH and the documents signed, esp with him as trustee for the minor child…What would the Cat get?!! WoeSib believes I would have gotten new overshoes… made of cement… in the traditional fashion…

ACT 2 – FWB enters from the Wrong Side of the Stage

WSib also suggested my then beloved, FWBex might be in the employ of SPexH, since FWBex needed cash for … well… new specs… and everything else!!

So I trooped up to FWBex and said “YOU THINK I DON’T KNOW THE WORD ON THE STREET”

(rather dumb, I know, but as you may have gathered from my posts, I’m generally passive but sometimes a little over the top)

Anyhow, instead of a confession of being in SPexH’s employ, FWBex started apologizing for slandering me all over the town esp. the local support groups and 12 step movements… and apparently…

HE TOLD THEM I WAS AN ALIEN…

(Now, I don’t mean the kind without a green card, because who needs a green card when one is a 13 ft tall reptilian from Alpha Draconis…)

Yes… meds needed all around…

Act Three – Denouement

Whereupon I became the only person HAPPY to learn I was the victim of a smear campaign. Because what hit man is THIS loud and loony?!! And SPexH salvaged one of his businesses, signed off on the divorce, and so far is keeping a peaceful distance.

Act Four

Meanwhile who holds any cash to invest and turn a profit? Answer is in the list of characters!!
And just WHO is the mysterious Alien…

Yes… I really need someone to BEAM ME UP SCOTTY!!

CatHas9Lives
I Know! I Know! (waves hand wildly)

Alien is love child of Halle Berry.
Beautiful
Beautiful
Beautiful

Hello NotWhatHeSaid of Me,
Well, now Halle Berry is someone smart, talented, gorgeous, who it seems because of the childhood issues, has been ending up with the wrong characters. Not sure if these guys are SPs, maybe?!! At any rate, right answer!!

I think one of the things I miss about these characters is that my life no longer feels like a bad movie script!!

Hello kittylover,
Hang in there!! You’ll find a way to survive and later to thrive!! (me, I started to write again after dealing with the characters)

Hugs,
Cat

Plus Halle Berry is the star on Extant, where she birth an alien! She was on a solo mission and came back to earth preggers!

Sounds like my kind of movie 🙂

the pain so bad at this moment.. do not worry… id never harm myself…
but I feel I wont make it.

I have lost tons and tons and tons of hair the past 3 weeks.
had blood taken last week and will hopefully get results tomorrow.

I MISS HIM. That is sick.
I miss our jokes and fun and how well we both worked with the elderly together. we both are highly energetic and good with people.

I am soooo sad. how did this happen?

how was he here two sunday nights ago and all was well and we were talking marriage?
hey..
I just realized that marriage…
and
mirage…

and spelled very similarly.

and I am so sick, or sad or whatever…
that I have not blocked his number.
I am not ready for that.
I will not text or call him.
if he texts… I will not text back.

I know that sounds bad.

I guess part of me still hangs on.

I see a therapist this week, but who cares? theyu cant take my pain away… or make my hair come back…
or find me someone I love that much again or have such amazing chemistry with and sex.
and it was more than that….

I am venting.

I wonder which girl he is with tonite? and why?

You’re asking the same questions most of us survivors asked, and each of us found answers that worked for us or we accepted that there aren’t answers that make sense but it doesn’t matter. I know how bad you’re hurting because I was there at one time.

You miss who he said he is. That isn’t sick, that is normal. He deceived you with talk of marriage. That is serious and that is a commitment. You were preparing your heart and mind to give and receive in a loving, stable and committed relationship. That is normal and that is good. You were betrayed. That is what is sick – the one who betrayed you. Missing jokes and fun and working together is not sick; it is normal and healthy to grieve a loss. If you did not bond with another person, if you could just drop him without a second thought when you’d been considering marriage, then you would be sick – but he is the sick and unhealthy one.

Your physical responses to the pain of being betrayed will run their course. Perhaps you’ll find out you have a vitamin or mineral deficiency due to stress, and you’ll rebalance your system. Your hair will grow back again.

You are doing a good thing for yourself to arrange to see a therapist. I hope he/she is a good match for you and understands pathological people and relationships. If he/she doesn’t seem to be helping, try another. You’re right that seeing a therapist won’t take your pain away. He/she can show you ways to cope with your loss, to get through it, to recover and get to a place in your life where you are not suffering.

I did not block my ex spath’s communications to me because there were business matters we needed to communicate about from time to time, and some other reasons. I was always surprised at how each contact set me back. I did not foresee how much his subtle evil abuse would affect me. Even after months and years of no contact and me doing well, I would end up bedridden and unable to function for several days after having to interact with him or even hearing from him or hearing something about him. I did not expect to feel this way. PTSD is a serious condition, and you really don’t want to exacerbate it. You might consider protecting yourself from being damaged again if your ex contacts you. It is very likely he will, though maybe not right away, and it is very likely that it will cause you more pain.

Which victim he’s with tonight? It makes no difference to him; his victims are interchangeable and he can and will leave any of them without a second thought. If he hangs around for awhile or pretends to treat a victim well for a long time, it’s because he’s getting something he wants from her – money, status, a place to live, sex, whatever. It has nothing to do with her, and he will drop her whenever it suits him.

He will hurt whomever his is with, eventually he will do to her what he’s done to you.

Why? Because he’s getting something trivial he wants from her: status, sex, money, a place to live. Boring, very boring, and very shallow.

As much as you can, try to give yourself a break from grieving, and focus on something else for awhile – take a walk, watch a funny movie, call a friend or acquaintance and talk about something that interests them instead of your betrayal and abandonment. It’s very difficult, but would be good for you to take a break.

Keep taking good care of yourself. No contact is the number one best commitment you can make to get through the grief and pain the soonest.

Sorry Kittylover
Normal. You’re normal.
Hair loss? Normal.
Sick? Normal.
Horrific nightmares that you wake yourself up sobbing in pain? Yep. Normal.

My immune system was destroyed. I worried about you because you already had the issue.

It’s why I wanted you to take special care. Because I know the nightmare of trying to reclaim dignity and self worth. I want so much to help others to not have to suffer as I did. But I know, there’s nothing to be done to stop the suffering, but at least you don’t have to go through it alone.

You must be proactive about taking care of yourself. Make it your life’s mission. And even if you get some crumbs from the jerk, it will never be enough to keep you healthy (and believe me, the crumbs get very tiny and very rare). In fact, once you get this controlled, this physically sick, the contact is quite dangerous. Somebody that empty and evil is not worth dying for. That’s what I had to focus about my ex. To not let the evil one win. Because at the core, it is a battle between good and evil. Which is who is obvious. You are precious. I knew that from the first word you typed: “kittylover”.

kittylover, If you have the resources, try to find an acupuncturist. This will help balance your hormones which are probably way out of whack right now. It may also help with hair loss, which is probably due your adrenals (fight-or-flight hormones) working overtime. Anything you can do to take care of your body will be helpful. It won’t take the pain away, but it will help you maintain some control over your health, even while you are going through this emotional devastation. When I have been in periods of deep depression and wanting to give up, I forced myself to eat well and to keep exercising, even when I didn’t want to. I have a tendency to overeat when I’m stressed or depressed. You don’t want to spiral downward because of declining health. Even when you are in pain, try to do the bare minimum you can to maintain your physical health, even when it takes a Herculean effort to do it. You will be thankful down the line that you did.

I believe that learning to take care of ourselves and respect ourselves will ultimately attract partners who respect us and appreciate our self-care, as opposed to those who can easily tear us down.

Stargazer
This is good advice for me as well so thanks for the reminder to take care of myself rather than just hide away doing nothing but binge eating the wrong foods and creating really bad habits I’ve never had before….
I’m off for a walk this morning regardless of how much energy and motivation it will take to ditch the slippers!

It’s good advice for me, too, ironic! I fight with myself sometimes to go to Zumba and the gym. The other day I dragged myself to the gym. I was not in the mood – the gym is not fun for me. I was talking to the guy behind the counter and he said something very crucial – “Getting here is 90% of the battle.” It’s true. If I can just get dressed and get in my car and get there, the rest takes care of itself. In a half hour it’s all over and I can enjoy the rest of my day. I get that good feeling that I did something good for myself. I love doing Zumba – it really gets my endorphins going. But sometimes it takes a tremendous effort to get up and get there. I didn’t go today, and I missed the gym, too. So now I will drag myself there tomorrow after work. Wednesday night salsa class. Friday Zumba and gym. Saturday morning – two hours of salsa. Sunday Zumba and the gym. Monday can be a day of rest but I feel better if I do a little Zumba. It takes so much discipline to stay healthy! There are days it’s a real struggle for me. I’d much rather sit at home with a pint or two of Ben and Jerry’s and watch movies. I used to do this all the time in my more depressed days. But the results are worth it. Today, I put on a string bikini and went to the pool. And I felt pretty darn good in it, even at nearly 54! At least I can have that. I can say I’m healthy, and that’s a lot.

Stargazer
What an inspiration you are! 54 and a string bikini is now my goal…I’ll let you know how I go but I’ve got a few years to achieve this 😉
At least I made the effort to go for a long walk today so I’ve started!

Ironic, you’re awesome (((hugs))). But coming from a fashionista, not everyone will want to wear a string bikini, even if they have an amazing body. Everyone should wear the style that most flatters their unique figure. String bikinis look good on me because I’m short waisted. The bottoms sit very low so it gives me the illusion of a longer waist ***really needs to be a fashion designer and personal shopper*** LOL Often, once pieces do not fit me well because they are designed for more long-waisted people. Also, if you’ve had kids and have stretch marks or have lost a lost of weight and have excess skin, there are some very sexy one pieces that criss cross in the front but show off your sides. I cannot wear these for the same reason I cannot wear other one pieces. But they are very flattering for the right figure and can hide all kinds of stuff.

Sorry for the slight diversion in topic here. You get me talking about clothes and that’s what happens!! I’m a total fashionista. But I did have one serious point and that’s not wait until you are a size 4 to put something on that makes you feel sexy. Dress to flatter your current figure and start feeling sexy right now! There are swimsuits that suck you in around the midsection and make you look 2 sizes smaller. I will totally wear those if I ever gain more weight and cannot wear my bikinis anymore (I’m sure the day will come sometime). Thanks for letting me indulge my superficial love of fashion for a few minutes!

Have a great day! I’m off to work after a 2-week vacation. 🙁

Stargazer

Oh please indulge! Then come to visit me in Australia and help me create a new wardrobe of clothes that I feel sexy in 😉
As for the size 4…there has been a lot of discussion about the way Americans view size, here in Australia. We haven’t changed from the old way and while the information has been available I haven’t bothered to by into it so as a size 10 (here) I’m assuming I’d already be considered a size 4 (ish) there? To me, at my age I think I’m doing well and have only a few issues about weight gain which have all been associated with the stress hormone cortisol. Once I start to feel good on a more consistent basis, I’m sure I’ll lean up like I’ve always been…that and finally getting a new kitchen and being able to cook again after 8 weeks of chaos and moving – kitchen booked to go in on the 19th = yippee I say with Thermomix and Nutri Bullet in a box waiting to come out to play again!

Ironic, you live in AUSTRALIA? I’m SO all over that. 🙂 I’ve always wanted to go there and cuddle a joey. I cuddled one here once and the cuteness was overwhelming! I’m picturing you saying all your words now with an accent. lol

I haven’t gone through menopause yet, but I hear weight gain is inevitable. I’m trying to ward it off as long as I can, but I will accept whatever my body does naturally as it ages.

It took me over a year to accept the ‘red flags’ that were there from the start and to begin to look objectively at my ‘ex’ and the relationship. Having gone through the ordeal I now have the strongest, healthiest self esteem of my life! Thanks for the part that you all, here, played.

fixerupper
I hope you gave yourself Enormous grace for not seeing red from the start. NO ONE goes into a relationship looking for sociopaths. I have learned to assess and LEAVE sooner (rather than stay and hope that I’m wrong) and I think that has saved me from a couple nefarious jerks trying to con me (not romance but in business).

I am desperately struggling with no contact. I posted here a few years ago and am sad to say that I went back. I gave him 2 more years…off and on…of my life.

This past time we were “on again” for 3 months. He finally got his divorce. He introduced me to his son, and I introduced him to my kids. I met his entire family for the fourth of July, and I went on vacation with him, his son, and his family for an entire week in August. Then after vacation all hell broke loose.

I felt the shift. It was our last day at the beach. He started being cold and mean, and we got in an awful fight which led to him leaving me at the condo alone while he and his family went out. He then came back and locked me out of his room. He knew I was heartbroken, but he would not talk to me. The trip home was awful, and I tried to make things right that first not back, but it ended with him throwing a fit, yelling and screaming, and walking out on me. We tried talking on the phone a couple more times, but he was so irrational. I didn’t even know why we were fighting! So I packed up his things and left them on his doorstep. I didn’t hear from him again for 2 months.

So last Thursday, he showed up at my work and left a note on my car saying “Dinner tonight? Call me!” Just like that. Just like nothing had ever happened. I didn’t call him because I have a new phone and phone number, and I don’t want him to have it. When I didn’t call him, he showed up riding my bumper when I left work that afternoon. I pulled over in a parking lot because I didn’t want him following me home, and I didn’t want to call him. He told me that everything was my fault. He said I left him…that I abandoned him! That I didn’t put him first. He said all the things that I would have said to him, and he left me feeling crazy like were we even in the same relationship? Was I crazy? Was I wrong? I didn’t give in, and it was so very hard. He grabbed me and kissed me and said I was making the biggest mistake of my life, and he got back in his car and drove off.

The next morning at 2am my phone rang and it was the front gate to my apartment. I can’t prove it, but I know it was him. He was hoping our meeting softened me and that I would let him in, or he was hoping my phone number would show up on the screen. Regardless, I lay there terrified that he would get in a bang on my door so I got up and put a note on my door that said “do not knock. My kids are here.” I haven’t heard from him since.

So it has been a week now, and I am struggling. I miss him so much, and I don’t know what I miss…the lies, the abuse, the abandonment, or the insecurity? Why can’t I break free of this. It takes every ounce of strength not to contact him, but I know exactly where it would lead. But at the same time, I think at least I would have a little happiness for the few weeks that he would love me. I would have a little relief from this depression…until he leaves again. It’s so very hard.

Dear aj1202,
My heart goes out to you. I’ve been exactly where you are and could feel your pain as I was reading your post. Sadly, what you miss is an illusion that he created for his benefit. It was never real. It was fabricated to pull you in for his use and then he moved on. And blamed YOU for everything that he did wrong. I’ve been there.

These days when the urge to contact my ex strikes, and it usually does when a certain song comes on, or I happen to remember a memory of us having a good time together, I try VERY HARD to hit PAUSE mentally. And I say to myself: I miss an illusion. This sociopath never loved me, only used me and then put me out on the curb like the trash and said that I was the one that abandoned the relationship. I keep saying this over and over again. If that fails, and sometimes it does because I find myself sobbing, desperate for that “love” again, I pick up my smartphone and write a note. I pretend that I’m sending a text (but I purposely put it in the notes app so that there is no way I could send it) to this ex that I miss so much. I write of a shattered dream; of a love that broke my heart and aches to this day. I write of how much I miss all the good times we had and the amazing laughs, fun, sex, meals…and then I pause again. This pause is much harder than the first. Believe it or not, when you actually write this to “nobody” you release all the emotion by writing it down. It takes away the power from the urge.

I don’t know if that will work for you, but since I started doing this a year ago, I have NEVER communicated with the ex. It’s really hard. But if you can at least convince yourself that what you had wasn’t real, that it was just an illusion created for his benefit, then it will make it easier to deal with the communication.

I wish you luck. Be strong.

to aj1202 and stillstrong
I sought out all kinds of ways to cope. This is one that really helped me on those days where I knew I was going to be vulnerable and alone or if I simply needed a pickmeup:

I would send a card to myself. I’d write a note from my caring self to my hurting self. Dear Hurting NWHSOM…
It would be delivered the next day. I also buy and send myself loving messages (Hallmark has lots of cards!), I send cards for Christmas (one of the worst days for me) and esp I send a card AND have flowers delivered for my birthday. That way, when he called or tried to hurt me (more likely) on my special days, I had a card that made me feel cared for.

It SOUNDS weird but it works. If I go on a trip, I send myself a postcard. I am amazed how intelligent I sound sometimes. I keep the cards in a box and at low points that come up in life, I read them because when I feel forgotten and alone, I FORGET what I have learned or appreciated that got me out of bad moments. They are a wonderful reminder that I CHOOSE to live a GOOD life. I don’t let him decide to be in my life, I CHOOSE that HE IS NOT. (Actually he EARNED not being a part of my life.)

It’s just so hard. I have so much guilt. Maybe I will try your idea. It couldn’t hurt, and I am looking for anything to ease this pain. Thanks for responding.

Notwhat…
What a fantastic idea, I love it! How nice to have those messages to read when all is crashing around you. I think you are the best friend yourself could ever have ★

Thank you stillstrong. I have done that so many times. It does help, but it’s only a temporary fix. I miss him so much, and I hate him for all that I lost. I keep thinking that if he was for real…that if we had worked…that the end of my marriage and the pain I put my kids through wouldn’t be so hard to accept. But I gave up everything for a man that treated me horribly and tossed me aside. He is still logged on to facebook on my computer so I can go on facebook and look at his page without him knowing, and he is living his life, and I am suffering. Every second is a struggle. I know I could call him or text him and he would come over and take away this pain for a few hours or a few days or maybe I would get lucky and it would last for a few weeks, but then it’s more time wasted, and he would distance himself and then disappear again. But the pain is just so overwhelming. How can I love someone so evil and so heartless? How did I give him everything and end up loosing all that I loved?

aj,

It sound like he is really manipulating you. Consider that he manufactured that big argument because he was planning to go be with someone else, and when he was done with that he came back with a bunch of BS lines trying to get you to take him back so he could exploit you for awhile.

You love who he pretended to be and who you thought he was and who you hoped he would be, because you are capable of love. You’re a normal person who can’t just turn off love and commitment on a dime. It will take time to grieve your loss and betrayal, even if he was a jerk.

If you focus on not having any contact with him and make that a priority, you will feel better sooner.

AJ:
My guess is you are dealing with a Borderline and this would explain his feelings of abandonment. Borderlines need your full attention, constant reassuring of love, and always love compliments. They lack a sense of security and often no matter how much is offered they are out of touch with reality. He needs therapy for sure. The reason his first marriage did not work is probably because of the mental abuse he inflicted on his former spouse. He will do the same to you unless he gets help.

There is this married guy. Who I met at a party. He started to call and visit me. When I realised he was married I told him I would not date him. And tried to shake him off. He seems like a good friend and gives good advice. I am trying to keep my distance and dont want to be rude cause he has been nice. I really dont want him visiting me , but its like with slightest excuse he wants to pass by and I have to keep making excuses. I dont mind keeping him as a friend but he will push the romance. An acquaintance who knows him says he is a terrible flirt, but wont leave his wife, He has made a play for her and was seeing another friend. I don’t want to be rude because he is somewhat important in our community. I think I will have to do a complete no contact, he cant take a hint!

Alabaster
He’s not “a good friend and gives good advice”. He’s a predator. That’s his schick, his gimmick to get his foot in the door. You already know he’s a liar, a conman, and a whore. No married man spends time being “friends” with a woman other than his wife. There’s always a hidden motive. You’re his target. Going NC is a good idea. Otherwise you are in for far more than just a fling. There is no way to describe the pain he will put you through and in your community, he will ruin you. Do your best! I wish I knew what my ex was before I nearly lost my life to him. All those wasted years, just so he could feel like a “WINNER”!!!

Thanks for your very frank reply, NotWhatHeSaidofMe,
It was a wake up call. I will have to do no contact and shake him off, for the final time. He is a relentless pursuer and he sees me as a lonely widow. I think sometimes as women we see the signs but ignore them. I am finding that I am attracting alot of these types, men with no honourable intentions. Where are the nice sincere guys , dont they pursue women too? Or do we have to go sniff them out from some far way place!

Alabaster
After my divorce was final, I was also very vulnerable. (well, I was vulnerable before too, but refused to be “friendly” because as a married woman, it was inappropriate). I met a neighbors friend, a guy who raced bicycles. We started to hang out. He had a bike accident so I went to say hi during his recovery. He was taking pain meds and the side effect loosened his tongue. He made some very crude remarks about not to bitch that his dick didn’t work. We weren’t even having sex so I got defensive and said that’s not why I was seeing him. I asked why he was seeing me. He TOLD ME! All divorced women get a settlement. He saw no reason that my ex couldn’t support him too, that it would be getting back at my ex twice, once for me and making him pay for the new man in my life.

You are right. SO many have NO honorable intentions. They just identify a vulnerable woman and zero in for their own scam.

I will say, I met some very nice divorced/widowed men through my volunteering. They are retired executives who wanted to keep their hand in the field but not take on actual projects. After the bike guy wake up, I didn’t trust myself to date, I wasn’t ready. But I think next year, I might test the waters again. They aren’t sexy salsa dancers but they are very intelligent and love cultural pursuits, which is just fine with me.

As an aside, I refused to see or talk to bike guy. I told him that I wasn’t ready for new friends. And didn’t want him as a friend either. He called me a bitch. I didn’t care. That pain killer he took had a side effect. He didn’t remember the conversation! That convo was like God protecting me. Hmmm. I think it was ZANAX?

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