A married person cannot be friends with an LO

A common and understandable desire, can it work?
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Rothko
Posts: 243
Joined: Sun Oct 12, 2014 10:01 pm

Re: A married person cannot be friends with an LO

Post by Rothko »

Wyldgirl wrote:Rothko, I have a similar question for you as what I posted to STR up thread... Have you and LO,discussed how you will stay in touch and do you think you will a) follow through with that and if so, b) go no further?

I feel for you. If my LO disappeared right now I would probably implode with feeling unresolved. Even though I haven't disclosed and won't do so, I feel I need him around to see me through the whole gamut whatever that is. If he were gone I worry I would be left with the limerence forever. However, you sound much further along than I am in coping with it all, and I'm anxious to hear how it goes for you. Here's hoping for diminished anguish and genuine healing.
Hi Wyldgirl- thanks for the response. We've said we'll meet for coffee now and then, and we've swapped numbers, e-mails etc (she's on facebook but never uses it, so that's out unfortunately). Nothing specific arranged in terms of how often etc, but I think we're unlikely to see each other more than 2 or 3 times a year at the absolute most. My plan is to drop her a text every month or so at first, but I'll reduce that if it's clear that it's always me initiating. Do you think that sounds reasonable?

I'm hoping that such a reduction in contact will be enough to reduce my limerence to the level of just a nice little crush that I can indulge myself with now and again but not really think about too often. When I've done NC before for a few weeks at a time, the limerence has reduced so I'm hoping an extended period of NC will see it gradually fade away.

In terms of coping with it, I have moments when I'm calm, in control and quite calculated in terms of what steps I'm taking to help myself out. Actually writing it all on here is therapeutic in itself and gives me something to refer back to, because there are times when I'm not as composed as I might appear to be...I lie in bed awake for hours sometimes making stupid hair-brained plans about how I'm going to disclose to LO and indulging in pointless fantasies about what it would be like spending my life with her. Yet there are other moments when I have these little epiphanies- only today, LO was telling me something about her daughter and how she was planning a makeover for her bedroom. And this is the life that the limerent me wants to intrude on, I was thinking...a little girl's world turned upside down when Mummy has an affair. I have the same thoughts when I'm sitting here late at night and can be jolted out of some daft limerent fantasy when one of the family photographs on the wall catches my eye or I hear the children upstairs.

One of the techniques I picked up from the wise people on here was to see the limerent me and the actual me as two separate entities. I'm the one who sees the reality of the situation and behaves appropriately and respectfully. That limerence dude though- he's a bloody nutcase...I try not to listen to him! :)

Wyldgirl
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Re: A married person cannot be friends with an LO

Post by Wyldgirl »

One of the techniques I picked up from the wise people on here was to see the limerent me and the actual me as two separate entities. I'm the one who sees the reality of the situation and behaves appropriately and respectfully. That limerence dude though- he's a bloody nutcase...I try not to listen to him.
:lol: so true! I think of LM ((Limerent Me) as a little cartoon devil on my shoulder, prodding me with a pitchfork. But I'm not sure that always helps because it prevents me from accepting that it's all potentially my responsibility to control - that I am not the helpless victim of LO or some devilish outside force. Or am I?
My plan is to drop her a text every month or so at first, but I'll reduce that if it's clear that it's always me initiating. Do you think that sounds reasonable
?

That sounds reasonable and also quantifiable. What happens if and when she responds? Thankfully my LO is uncommunicative except in person so I don't expect long texts, emails or Facebook likes from him.
I'm hoping that such a reduction in contact will be enough to reduce my limerence to the level of just a nice little crush that I can indulge myself with now and again but not really think about too often
.

That was how my limerence started - a nice little crush. I am not sure if for me, getting back to that would be enough, or if it would be like that smoldering ember waiting to reignite at any moment. I feel like stamping it out altogether is the only safe route for me. But right now I feel like I am barefoot and unable to stand the burn of doing it! :(

STR
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Re: A married person cannot be friends with an LO

Post by STR »

Wyldgirl wrote:Nax, I too think it's odd that marriage somehow creates an automatic barrier to friendship with the opposite sex. There's an underlying assumption that we can't be trusted to mind ourselves. But then, I look at what has happened to me and wonder "can I be trusted!?".
Up until the point when my LO told me that she didn't think of us as "friends", I had assumed that we were friends, and more generally, that I (as a married man) could be friends with single (or married) women. But I had only been thinking of the issue from my perspective. e.g. "Can I maintain a platonic friendship with a woman without developing inappropriate feelings for her or without upsetting my wife?" Maybe the answer to those questions is yes, and maybe it's no.

Since the time that I had the big conversation with LO, I have started to consider our relationship from her point of view, as well. In her case, she is a young, single, attractive female who confesses to being lonely and in search of the right guy to marry. From her perspective, the fact that I am a married man means (1) that I am not available to her (not that she is interested in me), and (2) that she has to be concerned about what other people (i.e. my wife) think about the quantity and nature of time that she spends with me.

From her perspective, every time we meet is an example of a single woman spending time with a married man, which (from what she has said) is not 100% comfortable for her. She has to worry about me becoming too attached to her, and about her becoming too attached to me.

So it is from that perspective that I think she was operating when she said that we aren't (and really cannot be) "friends", at least not in the sense that she is friends with single people. There are constraints on our relationship that both of us want to honor, and those constraints apparently mean (in her mind) that she can't treat me the way that she treats other friends....

Allie_m
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Re: A married person cannot be friends with an LO

Post by Allie_m »

Nax. I admire how you can go weeks without contact. I hope to God and pray I might get to this point. I'd love to be nonchalant about him. I've made some progress as now he's the first one to text daily. I've fought the urge to text him first each day simply as I can't stand the thought of him thinking I'm desperate for his attention. I'd love to be able to tell him of my whole obsession over him. Maybe one day when we get to the mutal friends bit (rather than just him wanting the friendship and me wanting more) I can tell him about this whole nightmare and we can laugh. It's coming up to 4 months now and I've no idea what's happened over the last 4 months. Christmas was a blur, as was the kids birthdays too. Feel like I'm just plodding through a fog and its him I can see. X

Rothko
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Re: A married person cannot be friends with an LO

Post by Rothko »

David wrote:
Rothko wrote:Knowing her and dealing with these feelings has really changed me, for the better I think, and I wish that I could tell her...but it just wouldn't be right to do so.
In one of our last conversations I did tell LO this. I also told her how we were both equally manipulative and both getting our narc supply off each other. I also told her why we cant be friends. The last bit of information she told to her SO and resulted in a death warrant on my head :o

It was just one of many conversations where i've disclosed with increasing honesty. None made any difference. I think we think this offloading is going to release us from our fantasy - my experience is nothing does apart from us doing our own deep soul work, finding compassion for ourselves and time.
Went well then? :shock:

The limerent me likes to think that if I disclosed to LO then she'd fall into my arms, gaze into my eyes and tell me that if she wasn't with her husband then she'd be mine; like something out of the movies.

However, the real me knows that she'd probably be embarrassed, feel really awkward and may be less likely to want to carry on the friendship- whatever her true feelings might be. Even if I told her I didn't intend to do anything about it, there'd always be the doubt in her mind that I could make her situation at home awkward somehow with a misplaced text etc.

So, I think my best bet is to put my friendship hat on, try out these new arrangements and work through it without ever disclosing my feelings. NC may come eventually through our interactions dropping off if we drift apart; it may come through me having to call time if my limerence doesn't fade and it's making me miserable; alternatively, everything might turn out well and the limerence could naturally turn into feelings of friendship.

The latter's obviously what I want to happen, but I'm prepared for either of the other outcomes too.

I felt quite anxious about this transition the other day- talking it through on here has been a Godsend, and I think I'm starting to prepare myself for the journey.

Rothko
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Re: A married person cannot be friends with an LO

Post by Rothko »

Wyldgirl wrote:
My plan is to drop her a text every month or so at first, but I'll reduce that if it's clear that it's always me initiating. Do you think that sounds reasonable
?

That sounds reasonable and also quantifiable. What happens if and when she responds? Thankfully my LO is uncommunicative except in person so I don't expect long texts, emails or Facebook likes from him.

(
If she responds then it clearly means she loves me forever, wants my babies and I'll go round to her house immediately and serenade her from the front lawn. :D

My LO is a bit like yours in regards to written communication- she's really chatty in person, a great conversationalist, but e-mails are a bit hit and miss. I think she'd be unlikely to welcome a long e-mail as well as she has the sort of job where she is sat at a computer all day writing stuff, so I'll definitely have more success with texting. In all seriousness, I don't expect we'll be having long text chats into the night or anything- I think exchanges will be friendly but brief, quite jokey, nothing intimate discussed, and will just keep me ticking along until we can meet face-to-face and talk properly.

At the moment it feels like LO is at the centre of my world-the bullseye- where she really shouldn't be. I don't want her off the board completely, but there's probably a vacant slot somewhere on one of the outer circles where she belongs. That's where she should have always been, really- she just took a wrong turn somewhere!

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Jess
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Re: A married person cannot be friends with an LO

Post by Jess »

Rothko- I hope everything goes as well as it can for you during this transition. It is oddly comforting for me to remember that anyone who wants to be in my life will be. Best of luck to your continued friendship :).

peanutbutter
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Re: A married person cannot be friends with an LO

Post by peanutbutter »

Rothko,
It might be possible. I am at the point where I think LO and I have an understanding. LC for me, at this point, is possible. I needed to experience a period of NC to get this. Good luck. Keep us updated! :)

Rothko
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Re: A married person cannot be friends with an LO

Post by Rothko »

peanutbutter wrote:Rothko,
It might be possible. I am at the point where I think LO and I have an understanding. LC for me, at this point, is possible. I needed to experience a period of NC to get this. Good luck. Keep us updated! :)
That's good news PB.

It's impossible to keep up with all of the stories on here (well it is when you've got an attention span like I have) but I always look for your updates after the drama of the retreat!

I might stop posting for a while after this week and throw myself into some project or other just to try and take my mind off Lo as much as possible. Although it definitely helps reading and posting on here, I need to distract myself from her completely. It'll be bad enough the first day I go back to work and she's not there- the empty chair, her coffee mug just sat there in the kitchen...oh God, I truly am pathetic. :lol:

peanutbutter
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Re: A married person cannot be friends with an LO

Post by peanutbutter »

Rothko, It will be difficult when you return to work and she is not there. I dont know about you, but I get a little sentimental at times. There are many things that I see that remind me of LO (his pen that he passed to me and I kept!). I know, its difficult to keep up with all the stories here!

I started NC after the retreat and have initiated NO contact since. I was very upset and angry. I needed a break to think clearly. But, my LO has continued to seek me out. It has not been easy with many ups and downs. I recently posted an update under "maintaining no contact". NC was exactly what I needed to break from the high, the craziness and anxiety. I still think of him a lot but I have learned to accept him for who he is and what we have. After our last conversation, I realize I hurt LO from NC and we have an unspoken understanding that we will be in each other's lives to a degree. We are both married, nothing else will happen, at least for me. I stopped analyzing why he wants me in his life, whether he just wants a "source of supply"(which I suck at), a good friend or possible crush. I may never know. That's o.k though. I feel a weight has been lifted off my shoulders with more acceptance of my feelings and this whole thing!

Good luck Rothko. Take it day by day!

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