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The Slow Burn of NC

A tough thing to do - the pros and cons
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Watchmaker
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The Slow Burn of NC

Post by Watchmaker » Wed Oct 02, 2019 3:56 pm

It’s only been 2.5 weeks since you rejected me and NC began. But it feels like it’s been 2 years.

I keep pulling up our texting thread (which I have to scroll way down to find now… it used to always be one of my most current threads). I keep staring at your contact picture. How unbelievably beautiful you are. I keep trying to think of something to say to break NC. I keep starting to type something, but never actually send anything. Dangerous, considering that one accidental touch of the screen could accidentally/inadvertently send a message.

But I keep imagining what could I text to you?
  • “How r u?”
  • "How are your kids doing in life/school/sports?"
  • “Did you ever tell your SO about my madness?”
  • “Hey, I was doing (xyz) the other day and it made me think of you!”
  • “I’m so sorry for disclosing, still feeling like shit, and I really f’d up ☹”
  • “I hope you feel like I’ve been respecting your boundaries since you told me off.”
  • “Do you hate me? Is the whole entire friendship (even if only platonic/neighborly) over forever?
  • “I’m sorry to hear about your Dad. I hope he gets the treatment he needs and gets well soon.”
  • “I hope you can forgive me. Would you please give me another chance at friendship?”
  • “It hurts so bad that you’ve rejected me, but you want to continue being friends with my serial cheater SO.”
  • “It is insanely awkward when we’re at our mutual neighbor friend’s house, and you show up and we avoid each other and avoid eye contact, etc.”

I keep re-reading our whole text history (only a year’s worth, since I had the damn history limit set on my smartphone.) We were such prolific texters and had epic threads. You would open up to me about your marriage, family and life. You would text me on vacation. You would text me late at night and into the wee hours. You would send me pictures of you and your family. You would remember my birthday (even though it is the same as your Dad's, it always felt amazing to hear from you on my birthday). You would counsel me, encourage me, pray for me (and I for you). We would laugh and have LOLs at the neighborhood gossip, or just finding something amusing and distracting to make the day go by. You would reach out to me when you needed something. You would even be flirtatious. You would let me care for you, and help you with certain things... but not too much, as you're a proud woman and don't like to take handouts and gifts, etc. And I exhibited and matched all these same behaviors and more - in my texting to you.

I wish I could tell you about my health updates. I wish I could tell you about how my daughter is growing up. I wish I could tell you about how I’m pursuing IC. I wish I could tell you about how my SO just disclosed her 4th affair to me, and how I’m kicking her out. I wish I could tell you about how we’re in MC and hoping it won’t be too little, too late. I wish you would choose friendship with me over friendship with my serial cheater SO.

But I went and screwed up everything by disclosing, weirding you out, making you uncomfortable, offending you, etc.

And the ‘girls club’ is a force not to be trifled with – how you stick together and stick up for each other (often flying in the face of reason, logic, justice and equity)… but we’ll save that for another thread/post some time.

I wish I could tell you about how I discovered this thing called limerence and explain more about the psychology of things.

But then again, I struggle thinking that LE is all about me. It’s really hard to delineate or demarcate between being deceived vs. being confident. To me, it is/was NOT all a lie or a mirage… to me, I have NEVER felt such love, care, lust, interest, attraction, connection with someone like I did/do for you LO.

I was genuinely interested in you, your life, and your welfare. I genuinely care for your family, your parents, your children… your health, your happiness (I guess I messed with your happiness with my LE). NRE?... I don't know if 5 years later still qualifies as being 'new'. But from my perspective, the relationship energy just grew and grew. To me, I've thought for a long time now that it may have been love at first sight with you. From the very first moment I met you, you were glowing and had this light. I felt something in my soul from day one.

It seems questionable for everything to be relegated to limerence only. But I do know: it is the very nature of a blind spot that everyone else around you can see it but you.

In my heart of hearts, what did I ever want?... What do I really want?... Not consummation… not home-wrecking… not riding off into the sunset… not disrupting the trajectory of our lives and families, etc. I want your friendship, validation, support, encouragement, laughter, happiness, flirtation, affirmation, nearness, presence, etc. And all these things I want from you, I also want to give to you and provide the same to you!

One of the greatest, most romantic and tear jerking poignant expressions of devotion I’ve seen in film is from martial arts movie “Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon”. The great warrior returns from his zen/transcendence endeavors atop the mystical mountain. He entered a place of enlightenment that even his masters never told him about. But when he achieved this zenith experience, he felt ultimately unfulfilled and lonely. He realized he didn't want to do life without the woman he loves the most! So he left transcendent bliss to go back and declare his love for her. As their dangerous adventures ensue, he is eventually struck by a poisonous dart by his adversary. In his dying breath, he finally declares his love to his woman.

And what he says… is so amazing. He says something to the effect of (I’m paraphrasing): “I would rather be a ghost floating by your side for the rest of eternity than to be without you.”

I didn’t want all the rejection, misery, home-wrecking, loss and destruction. All I want is to be in each other’s lives; by each other’s sides.

But alas, it seems all is lost and I’ve ruined it forever.

Interestingly, I am now processing some layers of anger with you. Though I may not have a lot of ‘right’ to do so or to be so. I’m sure maybe the ‘majority’ of anger could really be directed at myself. I messed things up so big time and made you miserable in some ways. But prior to that, I know the friendship was brighter and more mutually helpful. I really hurt and offended you. At the same time, you’ve proven yourself quite effective and skillful at hurting me. I still feel pissed from time to time at how you scolded me in front of my daughter... then again, I did deserve it as it was in the height of my LE. Some of this anger should also be directed at myself. And - truth be told - I can't help but wonder if you were leading me on, using me, taking ego boosts, and if certain of the attention I gave you was fun for you until it wasn't (as others on this forum have pointed out to me). Can't help but wonder about some of these things. If so, that is indeed angering. Call me crazy, but to this day, I SWEAR there were some times where you'd lean in and make bodily contact... I'd SWEAR there were a few times where you leaned over to show cleavage and even struck a pose or two (when you knew I was watching/staring). They say it takes two.

I may have some things to be angry about, but nothing to stay angry about when compared to how smitten and enamored I've always been with you. I’ve always seen and known your faults and flaws – the halo effect never had me completely duped and deceived. We even had some strong disagreements/arguments and ‘broke up’ a few times over the years, only to again resume the friendship even stronger.

But I’ve never been into someone so much as you. I still don’t believe it was attraction and emotional attachment only, and/or projection issues and fulfillment/replacement of unmet needs from SO only. I believe there was real friendship, love, care, interest, etc.
Last edited by Watchmaker on Tue Oct 22, 2019 5:39 pm, edited 1 time in total.
M, 42
LO F, 36
LE began 5 years ago, or this year (not sure)
Disclosed to SO

"The watchmaker works all day and long into the night
He pieces things together, despite his failing sight"

L-F
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Re: The Slow Burn of NC

Post by L-F » Wed Oct 02, 2019 7:07 pm

.
Last edited by L-F on Sat Oct 05, 2019 6:15 am, edited 1 time in total.
If only we'd sit with the void too... then perhaps we won't need to fill it once we get over the fear of its existence. L-F

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Re: The Slow Burn of NC

Post by L-F » Wed Oct 02, 2019 7:16 pm

If I didn't feel I could share with SO then I'd be questioning if I was in the right relationship.
Last edited by L-F on Thu Oct 03, 2019 11:40 pm, edited 1 time in total.
If only we'd sit with the void too... then perhaps we won't need to fill it once we get over the fear of its existence. L-F

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NoDayDreaming
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Re: The Slow Burn of NC

Post by NoDayDreaming » Wed Oct 02, 2019 9:15 pm

Watchmaker wrote:
Wed Oct 02, 2019 3:56 pm
But I’ve never been into someone so much as you. I still don’t believe it was lustful sexual attraction only, and/or projection issues and fulfillment/replacement of unmet needs from SO only. I believe there was real friendship, love, care, interest, etc. I wish I'd met you first, before we met our SO's... is that wrong/evil to think and say?

Am I insane or normal? Or a typical blend of both?

Am I delusional?

Hi, my name is Watchmaker, and I'm an addict.
sorry man, it's a delusion alright. i felt all of that and more. she was the God figure for me and i made a whole religion around her. now, one year later, i'm laughing of myself how crazy i was. i still have feelings for my XLO, BTW, maybe there is some true love there, but there is no delusion, no obsession, no addiction. there is also no contact and that's the key.

venting your emotions here or in your journal is very helpful. you are on the right track. it may not be a bad idea to transition from the LE addiction to a softer addiction. i was addicted to this forum at the beginning of NC, not so much anymore.

BTW, i met her before my future SO (long, long time ago) and she rejected me then and now, no difference there.
I'm limerence free and I'm not afraid of it anymore. I learn something new about myself and life everyday. There is hope and so much more. NC works. Be free, be happy! In retrospect, LE was about the best thing that has happened in my life.

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Watchmaker
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Re: The Slow Burn of NC

Post by Watchmaker » Wed Oct 02, 2019 9:44 pm

L-F wrote:
Wed Oct 02, 2019 7:16 pm
If I didn't feel I could share with SO then I'd be questioning if I was in the right relationship.

Yep.
Last edited by Watchmaker on Fri Oct 04, 2019 3:12 am, edited 3 times in total.
M, 42
LO F, 36
LE began 5 years ago, or this year (not sure)
Disclosed to SO

"The watchmaker works all day and long into the night
He pieces things together, despite his failing sight"

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Watchmaker
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Re: The Slow Burn of NC

Post by Watchmaker » Wed Oct 02, 2019 9:46 pm

daydreamer wrote:
Wed Oct 02, 2019 9:15 pm
Watchmaker wrote:
Wed Oct 02, 2019 3:56 pm
But I’ve never been into someone so much as you. I still don’t believe it was lustful sexual attraction only, and/or projection issues and fulfillment/replacement of unmet needs from SO only. I believe there was real friendship, love, care, interest, etc. I wish I'd met you first, before we met our SO's... is that wrong/evil to think and say?

Am I insane or normal? Or a typical blend of both?

Am I delusional?

Hi, my name is Watchmaker, and I'm an addict.

venting your emotions here or in your journal is very helpful.

I hope so, cause that's what I was thinking/assuming.
M, 42
LO F, 36
LE began 5 years ago, or this year (not sure)
Disclosed to SO

"The watchmaker works all day and long into the night
He pieces things together, despite his failing sight"

Bridget
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Re: The Slow Burn of NC

Post by Bridget » Wed Oct 02, 2019 11:53 pm

Watchmaker wrote:
Wed Oct 02, 2019 3:56 pm

But I’ve never been into someone so much as you. I still don’t believe it was lustful sexual attraction only, and/or projection issues and fulfillment/replacement of unmet needs from SO only. I believe there was real friendship, love, care, interest, etc. I wish I'd met you first, before we met our SO's... is that wrong/evil to think and say?

Am I insane or normal? Or a typical blend of both?

Am I delusional?

Hi, my name is Watchmaker, and I'm an addict.
WM, I have a different interpretation of the "LE isn't about the other person" concept. I know my feelings for my last LO were more than about sex and projection. The relationship started like any one between two friendly work colleagues does, and we did start to become real friends, but then the LE took over and my brain started doing that thing it does when you start projecting and becoming delusional. I think the real connection I felt with this person combined with his attractiveness and friendly attention to me was the fuel that exploded into an LE when combined with my history and brain chemistry.

I have no doubt that you really cared for your LO, just as I do for mine. But the LE is all about us and our issues and we have to accept that our LOs can't make everything better and can't even live up to the expectations we have of them. The only human who can satisfy the deep hurt and need in you is you. The only human that can bring me my happily ever after is me.

FWIW, everything you write above (minus the specifics), I have written as well in my journal. I'm sorry; no one wants to hear that. But I do wish some one had told me this 9 years ago because it might have stopped me from trying to be "just friends" for so long.

Prayers to you.

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Re: The Slow Burn of NC

Post by Watchmaker » Thu Oct 03, 2019 2:49 am

Bridget, as always, thanks for your encouragement and wisdom.

Bridget wrote:
Wed Oct 02, 2019 11:53 pm


I think the real connection I felt with this person combined with his attractiveness and friendly attention to me was the fuel that exploded into an LE when combined with my history and brain chemistry.
Bingo. This definitely resonates.

Bridget wrote:
Wed Oct 02, 2019 11:53 pm


I have no doubt that you really cared for your LO, just as I do for mine. But the LE is all about us and our issues and we have to accept that our LOs can't make everything better and can't even live up to the expectations we have of them. The only human who can satisfy the deep hurt and need in you is you. The only human that can bring me my happily ever after is me.

FWIW, everything you write above (minus the specifics), I have written as well in my journal. I'm sorry; no one wants to hear that. But I do wish some one had told me this 9 years ago because it might have stopped me from trying to be "just friends" for so long.

Prayers to you.
In the interest of being self-aware, and hopefully mustering some humility in circumspection, I realize that I am a total newbie here. I hadn't heard the term "limerence" before a few months ago. So I am still in learning mode, etc. I like to think I am intelligent, and a quick study, etc. But I have nowhere near the experiential knowledge and time logged and insights as so many veteran experts on this forum. So I'm sure my blind spots are still raging in many ways.

I would add that I didn't really think in terms of the LO 'making everything better' per se, as much as I just wanted to do life with her, and be in each other's lives. Maybe to some, this sounds redundant, like I'm saying the same thing.

I'm not ultimately disagreeing that LE is about the LS's issues, etc. But I might ultimately say that sometimes there is more than meets the eye, the plot thickens, and it's complicated. Perhaps there is often a range of matrixed layers that form a complex tapestry of relational and emotional webs, etc.

Another thing my newbie, ankle-deep mind is still so far struggling to come to terms with or imagine is the idea or concept of being a serial limerent. Again, maybe my ignorance and blind spots are raging still at this time. But to me, I couldn't possibly imagine the breadth, depth and width of relational investment, emotional feeling, romantic attraction ever being equaled again.

But again, I'm sure many of you wiser veterans who have traveled the path before are probably nodding and smiling at what you must observe as my freshmen naiveté. This is just what I can feel/believe/see/imagine at this point in time.

I wouldn't ever want another LE again. And I wouldn't ever want another LO again... I only have eyes for her... if that makes any sense from my limerbrain.

I have much to learn, and I really appreciate how you (and many others) can tell us newbies some unadulterated, non-sugar-coated hard truths in love that we need to hear.

Oh well... here's to the journey! :ymsigh:
Last edited by Watchmaker on Tue Oct 22, 2019 5:41 pm, edited 1 time in total.
M, 42
LO F, 36
LE began 5 years ago, or this year (not sure)
Disclosed to SO

"The watchmaker works all day and long into the night
He pieces things together, despite his failing sight"

L-F
Posts: 2573
Joined: Fri Sep 29, 2017 9:55 am
United States of America

Re: The Slow Burn of NC

Post by L-F » Thu Oct 03, 2019 7:50 am

.
Last edited by L-F on Sat Oct 05, 2019 6:13 am, edited 2 times in total.
If only we'd sit with the void too... then perhaps we won't need to fill it once we get over the fear of its existence. L-F

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Re: The Slow Burn of NC

Post by Pattihopeful » Thu Oct 03, 2019 12:23 pm

I can relate to a lot of what you say. Our stories with LOs have some simialar threads in that we both disclosed and had a friendship of sorts. My LO is my boss so I am doing lower contact. It has been a roller coaster.

Before my disclosure, I thought he was at a minimum a forever friend who would always be there and I for him. The loss of that is a deep grief. I keep getting those deep ways of pain.

I can tell you, it is getting better. I am starting to see his bad qualities. You have been through so much and I am sorry you have the pain of LE on top of it.

Yes, they have some good qualities. But there is darkness there too. When I first joined here I fought the idea that LE was about me. But a lot of it is.

I am using LO to fill something in me that can't be filled. He plays a part too and likes the ego boost. We are both in need of healing.

It hurts when we disclose and the friendship ends. It feels like a break up because it kind of is. Right now, before you make any big decisions, remember your thinking is clouded by this deep grief. You will start to feel better. You will wake up and realize she is not the first thing on your mind.

Do I remember you saying you had an affair too at one point? I could be wrong so if I am, please forgive me. The reason I ask is you were talking about serial limmerance. Were you limerant then? Have you dealt with that?

I hope you are ok and know there are people who care.
Last edited by Pattihopeful on Mon Oct 07, 2019 2:35 am, edited 1 time in total.

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