Am I kidding myself?

A common and understandable desire, can it work?
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AnnieKaye9924
Posts: 311
Joined: Sun Mar 24, 2019 8:22 pm
Canada

Am I kidding myself?

Post by AnnieKaye9924 »

Backstory: LO is a coworker, best friend for years. Both married, high school kids. He’s not a narcissist or anything, otherwise good, upstanding person. Doesn’t play games with me, seems to genuinely care for me. He confessed feelings to me last year. He was so obsessed, said he was thinking about me all the time, checking email constantly, very, very preoccupied with my reciprocation, would analyze my thoughts, actions, words, etc. He was clear that he wanted a physical affair. Was very straightforward & open with me about his attraction & thoughts about this. I like him too, found him attractive, at least crushing on him. But his feelings were super overwhelming for me as I’m anxious-avoidant. We hugged, held hands, made out a few times & that’s as far as it went physically. There was no talk of love, leaving spouses. We decided to go back to normal friendship.

Now we are back to being BFF & I’m deep in the throes of a LE, found this site as I was desperately searching for what was wrong with me. Have done a ton of reading & research. I understand LE. But looking back at his behavior, he seemed like he was as well, first. But I can’t be sure.

Now I’m miserable & anxious, hypervigilant, jealous, possessive, etc. I don’t even recognize myself! Despite the fact that we spend TONS of time together & text often as well. This LE is entirely in my mind, on the outside on the surface things seem perfect. He always reaches out first, always asks me to take lunches & breaks together. We do not talk about what happened between us.

LE is supposed to last 1-2 years. Is this true for scenarios like mine? Can people get over a LO while in contact? He doesn’t act like any of this is bothering him at all, but of course I don’t act like it either. I’m pretty sure he would hide any feelings to avoid upsetting me. Pretty sure he would be shocked if he knew how miserable I am.

Does anyone think this friendship is possible or salvageable? I just want the anxiety to go away & go back to friendship. I don’t want to blow up my life, leave my job, lose a close friend, make things weird for our families, etc, if I’m just in a temporary phase.

NoDayDreaming

Re: Am I kidding myself?

Post by NoDayDreaming »

i'm pretty sure you can't pretend it didn't happen and go back to a regular friendship. this is the holy grail of limerence, many tried (myself included), and few succeeded.

i'm personally a big proponent of open communication. what stops you from asking him all those questions?

AnnieKaye9924
Posts: 311
Joined: Sun Mar 24, 2019 8:22 pm
Canada

Re: Am I kidding myself?

Post by AnnieKaye9924 »

What stops me? Great question. Being rejected mostly.

1. When we are together everything seems normal & platonic. He seems completely fine & not bothered by our relationship. But I do also. I am afraid that I will bring this stuff up & he will tell me that he has completely moved on, is not even thinking about it anymore. It has been almost 4 months! I feel absolutely crazy for still being obsessed.

2. We’re both married.

3. What if he’s seeing/pursuing someone else?

4. I am the most conflict-avoidant person EVER but he is not. Can someone really hide their feelings that well for so long?

AnnieKaye9924
Posts: 311
Joined: Sun Mar 24, 2019 8:22 pm
Canada

Re: Am I kidding myself?

Post by AnnieKaye9924 »

daydreamer wrote:
Thu Apr 11, 2019 3:25 am
i'm pretty sure you can't pretend it didn't happen and go back to a regular friendship.
Thank you. Part of what is killing me is that I feel like I’m being “forced” to minimize my feelings. There was this thing that happened that sparked this absolutely tremendous emotional reaction in me & I'm not talking about it, just behaving as if it did not happen. It is making me CRAZY.

Bridget
Posts: 270
Joined: Sat Mar 09, 2019 2:18 am
Gender:
United States of America

Re: Am I kidding myself?

Post by Bridget »

Oh, Annie, I’m so sorry for the suffering you’re experiencing. I know what it feels like and I wouldn’t wish it on anyone.

I don’t think you’ll be able to save your friendship with your LO, especially since he expressed inappropriate feelings for you not long ago. Nothing good will come of it. That sucks, it’s not fair, but there’s nothing you can do about it but try not to succomb.

Perhaps you can tell him you’re beginning to have deeper feelings for him and you need LC. There’s no shame in admitting these feelings. He said the same to you just months ago, so he should understand. And if he’s really a friend, he will support your need for LC.

Good luck. You are not alone.

AnnieKaye9924
Posts: 311
Joined: Sun Mar 24, 2019 8:22 pm
Canada

Re: Am I kidding myself?

Post by AnnieKaye9924 »

Bridget wrote:
Fri Apr 12, 2019 2:37 am
Oh, Annie, I’m so sorry for the suffering you’re experiencing. I know what it feels like and I wouldn’t wish it on anyone.

I don’t think you’ll be able to save your friendship with your LO, especially since he expressed inappropriate feelings for you not long ago. Nothing good will come of it. That sucks, it’s not fair, but there’s nothing you can do about it but try not to succomb.

Perhaps you can tell him you’re beginning to have deeper feelings for him and you need LC. There’s no shame in admitting these feelings. He said the same to you just months ago, so he should understand. And if he’s really a friend, he will support your need for LC.

Good luck. You are not alone.
Thank you so much for your kind words, even though this is not what I want to hear. I’ve had LE before but I never disclosed & it just eventually passed. The reciprocation this time has made this AWFUL, just AWFUL. I cannot remember ever feeling this level of anxiety, jealousy & possessiveness.

I know logically that I do not want this man. That I could never trust him, that I would always be worried he would become obsessed with someone else.

You are right, it does feel like suffering. What makes it worse is that the suffering temporarily subsided when I’m with him. It is scary to think of what will happen if I do LC & I don’t have that “relief.” Making that decision to do it is so rough.

NoDayDreaming

Re: Am I kidding myself?

Post by NoDayDreaming »

AnnieKaye9924 wrote:
Fri Apr 12, 2019 2:20 am
What stops me? Great question. Being rejected mostly.
i dunno, for me, the rejection, while very painful, was the beginning of a recovery.

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