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Good Luck and Godspeed :-)

Perhaps there is light at the end of the tunnel. Or maybe life is never the same after limerence. Read how others have coped with limerence in the longer term. Please feel free to post your own accounts of journeying through limerence.
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LHeart
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Joined: Wed Aug 10, 2016 11:58 pm
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Good Luck and Godspeed :-)

Post by LHeart » Tue Sep 20, 2016 3:38 pm

The LO who brought me here leaves today, so it seems like a good time to update. I'm going to call him Lucas, which is not his name, but I need to call him something besides "my LO," because that's not what he is anymore.

It stopped.

I want to say it was bound to stop, since I've known since the beginning of June that he was leaving. That hard boundary let me open myself more fully to the feelings I had for him. I knew that if nothing had happened between us by mid-September that nothing ever would, and I also knew (okay, knew-ish) that nothing was ever going to happen anyway. But otoh, you never know, right Limerence, you asshole? And I did have an LE that lasted from 1989 to 2016, so, no, it was not bound to stop. But it did, and thank god.

I think I mentioned that I forced myself to a version of LC back in June. That was based on a conversation he and I had where I realized that, mature as he is, he is not as mature as he seems, and that I could not trust him to draw the boundaries he said he would draw. I told him many times that if he was uncomfortable with anything I wrote, that he should tell me. He agreed to this and did so within his ability, but I didn't realize that he might not be very good yet at recognizing discomfort as discomfort. I know it took me a long time to distinguish emotional discomfort from just being awake. So I backed off a lot. I stopped initiating conversations almost entirely, and when I did initiate, I kept it relatively impersonal. I'd send a photo or a link to a news story. When he texted me, I would respond with warmth and friendliness, but with as little emotional investment as possible.

I think I was helped by my previous experiences overcoming LEs, specifically JP, which I did intentionally, and my high school LO, M, who, after all those years, turned out to be just boring af. Even at the beginning with Lucas, I recognized that I was in the midst of another "crush," and that I would eventually get over it. I was also helped hugely by being here. Just the ability to speak of it openly and to explore my background and my emotional landscape was enormously helpful. So thank you, David, and thank you, everyone.

In being able to explore my emotional landscape, I came to recognize more specifically what this LE was all about. I'm not ready to talk about that yet, but I have been walking toward my fear, and that's the best any of us can do.

One other thing that helped was *drumroll* disclosing to my husband. I did that a few weeks ago. Just for background, he is the son of a psychiatrist, so he's not new to these topics, and, crucially, neither of us is the jealous type. I started off by telling him that I had been in a difficult emotional place lately, and that in working on it, I had discovered that there's a psychological condition that seems to fit what I have been going through. I said that the condition is thought to stem in many cases from insecure parental attachment and/or childhood trauma. I told him that the condition shares a lot of similarities with addiction, but that rather than ingesting a substance, this addiction took the form of an involuntary fixation on and obsessive thoughts about an individual. I told him that for many people, the fixation involves romantic interest, but in my case as in many others, these thoughts were very superficial and frankly distressing and unwelcome. I explained as best I was about about dopamine production and connected it to the dopamine issues that come with my ADHD. At this point, he said, "And your fixation is on...." I immediately said "Lucas." He was entirely unsurprised. He asked me if I was going to run away with him, and I said, "Pfft. No." Because...no. I could say with assurance that I was not going to run away with some college kid. I then told him that I had been participating in an online forum for people suffering from this condition, and I asked him not to do any research on it, because I had had to be very honest about my relationships and I needed my privacy on this. He said that he didn't even know what this condition was called, and I told him that I knew that, and that I had deliberately held back the name. He was okay with that, and he'll respect my privacy. We had to stop talking then, but later that night, our kids were being a pain in the neck, and he said, "Look here: if you run away with this guy, you're taking these little punks with you." Heh. So I haven't talked to him about it since then other than to occasionally say "I'm feeling bad about that stuff we talked about" or "I'm feeling better about that stuff we talked about," and he nods thoughtfully and doesn't ask questions. So he is not an outlet for me, but not having to conceal my negative emotions or their source helps a lot. The breathing room helps a lot. And I know this wouldn't work for everyone, but it worked for me.

I'll continue this later. As of now, my relationship with Lucas is very good. I saw him last week, and for the first time since this all started, I felt good. Like, really actually good. He's such a great kid, just amazingly bright and centered and real, and he's going to do great things. It is such a deep and genuine honor to have been able to guide him, and I am very glad to have reached this place of balance with him.

:-)
Last edited by LHeart on Thu Oct 20, 2016 7:58 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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David
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Re: Good Luck and Godspeed :-)

Post by David » Tue Sep 20, 2016 4:06 pm

LHeart wrote:
One other thing that helped was *drumroll* disclosing to my husband. I did that a few weeks ago. Just for background, he is the son of a psychiatrist, so he's not new to these topics, and, crucially, neither of us is the jealous type. I started off by telling him that I had been in a difficult emotional place lately, and that in working on it, I had discovered that there's a psychological condition that seems to fit what I have been going through. I said that the condition is thought to stem in many cases from insecure parental attachment and/or childhood trauma. I told him that the condition shares a lot of similarities with addiction, but that rather than ingesting a substance, this addiction took the form of an involuntary fixation on and obsessive thoughts about an individual. I told him that for many people, the fixation involves romantic interest, but in my case as in many others, these thoughts were very superficial and frankly distressing and unwelcome. I explained as best I was about about dopamine production and connected it to the dopamine issues that come with my ADHD.
Im so glad you managed to find the courage to share your LE with your SO and your description of Limerence to him is eloquent, succinct and on the money. I feel limerence's breeding ground is secrecy and shame and the more we talk the more we are released from these shackles.

Interesting you married the son of a shrink :-? I do wonder about shrinks. I spent 2 years as one so feel semi qualified to judge them all as nuts :)) Actually i think many are trying to heal their own wounds vicariously through their work, just like so many others in the caring professions, myself included
"Until you make the unconscious conscious, it will direct your life and you will call it fate." - C.G. Jung

For Professional Coaching / Therapy see http://loverelations.co.uk/limerence

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JohnDeux
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Joined: Mon Feb 24, 2014 11:42 pm

Re: Good Luck and Godspeed :-)

Post by JohnDeux » Tue Sep 20, 2016 5:01 pm

@David: " Actually i think many are trying to heal their own wounds vicariously through their work...."

Just to second that from observation. And to add William James's decades old caution to the therapist:

"The great snare of the psychologist is the confusion of his own standpoint with that of the mental fact about which he is making his report. I shall hereafter call this the ‘psychologist's fallacy’ par excellence." -- wiki entry, Psychologist's fallacy.

@LHeart: "... I have been walking toward my fear, and that's the best any of us can do."

A brief statement that nevertheless belies the difficulty of the task. And you are right and I am glad that you have an SO with whom you may or will be exploring these fears into the future.
"Pay no attention to that man behind the curtain...."~ The Wizard of Oz

EXlfjb
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Joined: Mon Sep 12, 2016 10:12 am
United States of America

Re: Good Luck and Godspeed :-)

Post by EXlfjb » Tue Sep 20, 2016 8:29 pm

David wrote:
Interesting you married the son of a shrink :-? I do wonder about shrinks. I spent 2 years as one so feel semi qualified to judge them all as nuts :))
:)) =))

I concur! The moment I discovered this, was the moment I realised there is no such thing as normal.

LHeart I loved reading your post. I'm so glad you are in a good spot with this. And glad you have been able to share with your husband. I shared my story with my husband though at the time didn't use the word 'limerence' due to not fully understanding this 'condition'. Though being the kind of person I am, I trudged through it healing myself along the way. I tend to research just about anything and everything in terms of how to fix this brain of mine, yep, I'm a DIY'er.

Though this site is still helpful to me because I will no doubt learn more about what others experience, as well as, more about me I'm sure.

:ymhug:

Wyldgirl
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Joined: Wed Jan 14, 2015 1:22 am

Re: Good Luck and Godspeed :-)

Post by Wyldgirl » Thu Sep 22, 2016 6:52 pm

Wow, that's the quickest turnaround I can recall on the forum. All credit to you for your honesty and hard work.

Also, JohnDeux - shades of The Alienist! "The fallacy, damn it all"...

LHeart
Posts: 104
Joined: Wed Aug 10, 2016 11:58 pm
United States of America

Re: Good Luck and Godspeed :-)

Post by LHeart » Thu Sep 22, 2016 8:00 pm

Thank you all for your replies and your support. I have a more detailed discussion of my last meeting with him in the works, but I wanted to say that yes, I worked hard, but I wasn't starting from scratch. I've gotten through LEs before, and this one was so powerful and strange that I knew from the start (intellectually, anyway) that it could not possibly be about him. And yes, honesty had a lot to do with it, not only here on the boards but with my SO. Being able to speak openly and without inhibition about our common experiences has been...if I were a theist, I would say a blessing, but since I'm not, I'll say a great good fortune in my life.

More soon.

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