Are there variations of limerence without romantic feelings?

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cloverfairy
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Are there variations of limerence without romantic feelings?

Post by cloverfairy » Tue Sep 05, 2017 2:30 am

Sorry if this is long, please bear with me as I'm confused as to what my DH was actually experiencing. We moved house 7 years ago, but for about four months DH had to stay with one of our sons until his job transfer came through. The distance between here and there was not overly far so DH would be here with me on days off and holidays. However, unknown to me he'd had suicidal thoughts at work as he was desperate to be with me. A young coworker allowed him to confide in her, but this was all kept from me. DH swears there were no feelings for her then, and didn't think of her when his transfer came through. It's clear that some kind of trust and friendship had developed though as they had got chatty. Anyway, a few months later she sent DH a message via fb to see how he was doing and he replied. I didn't know about the few messages after the first one though but I'm told they were generally about work. After about 10 months she went offline for about a year while looking for a new job. And that was that according to DH.

About 8 months later DH's sister became ill and a young coworker was sympathetic to him- it seems to me the circumstances were much the same and there seemed to be some similarities in age and hair colour but I think eye contact was made again. Anyway, what I didn't know was that he had started obsessively searching her on fb every day and Googling her. A week later she told him she had cancer - I wasn't told any of this. And apparently he became fixated on it and would obsess about how to deal with it. Within this time, as he had depression, he sought CBT. Again, he kept this from me, but I now know this obsessive thinking was covered during one session but the continued fb, etc, searching and profile visiting continued for at least 6 months until end of 2012-early 2013. However, DH told me there were absolutely no feelings for them at all.

The obsessing stopped as soon as the original one returned and was back online and messages re-commenced. Three months later and DH was now obsessively searching and googling her. As with other one, she too had 'a problem' that he needed to obsess about and within 6 months (early 2014) he had gone into limerence over her. His limerence lasted one and a half years and everything was text book (including a change to his appearance as he had with the other one. With previous 'no feelings' one, it had been improved personal hygiene). He disclosed to his LO in mid 2015 and was rejected and the searching/social media visiting dwindled but didn't fully stop.

3 months later, DH lost a close relative and yet again another young coworker was sympathetic towards him, and once again he saw something in her eyes and began the obsessive searching. She too had 'a problem' that needed to be fixated on - but as with first, it was like limerence but without any romantic feelings at all. And again, changes were made to his physical appearance (weight loss). This one was obsessed over for about a year until everything came to light and I discovered everything about his depression, therapy and fixations plus lots of other stuff about helping people (mostly other female coworkers)

It has all shocked me to the core as we were such a close, communicative couple for our entire 27 years married (DH was 49 when this rollercoaster began). What I'd love to know is what was going on with the non limerence? How come all had similarities, situational similarities and all had 'problems' that I can only assume he wanted to fix for them, and all were obsessively searched/googled, etc, over and over, but only one (the original trigger) became the LO? Is it possible for variations in limerence to not include any romantic feelings?

JohnDeux
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Re: Are there variations of limerence without romantic feelings?

Post by JohnDeux » Tue Sep 05, 2017 4:26 am

cloverfairy wrote:
Tue Sep 05, 2017 2:30 am
Is it possible for variations in limerence to not include any romantic feelings?
It sounds like for most of your communication he was very open with you, but for this particular part of his life, he chose to keep it from you which is interesting. Dorothy Tennov who coined the word 'limerence' might have adhered to the notion that condition is, by definition, romantic in nature, but there have been some who express feelings of mutual contempt for someone who becomes an "LO obsession". So even though LO...."Love Object"...connotes a general romantic inclination, there are various forms of love/attachment that might instead be triggered by the condition that many have described here, even if the romantic one is the most common form. So I personally agree that limerence....the obsessive fixation....might certainly be able to occur without the romantic feelings. The fact that his personal hygiene and other aspects improved concomitant with the LE is a bit confusing in this regard, but going with his confession for a moment, I think it's possible that a mixture of shame and "rescue" were at work,....the shame preventing him from confiding in you during these times, the rescue part more obvious as he must have felt rescued and the rescuer in these interactions over time. His age is pretty "mid-lifey", so that is quite common for the triggers to have a powerful effect. Will leave it there,....hope you find good information here that may be of help to you....and to him.

cloverfairy
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Re: Are there variations of limerence without romantic feelings?

Post by cloverfairy » Wed Sep 06, 2017 2:26 pm

Thanks for your insight on this. Yes, it's all very confusing and bewildering as to what was actually happening. I do believe there were attachment issues and DH was attached to the non-romantic LO's and it was related to rescue and saving. He maybe didn't become limerent over the second one as the first one had reappeared at the right (or wrong!) time and was able to resume contact.

It was definitely textbook limerence with the original Lo trigger. He'd gone through cognitive dissonance as he'd removed his wedding ring and I was to blame. I remember in his confession after D-fat that he said he'd fallen in love with her, and that it 'just happened', and that it was emotional love, and that he depended on her and that she'd saved his life. I'm not sure if he meant when he'd felt suicidal or if he meant during the limerence as he can't remember very much about it.

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David
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Re: Are there variations of limerence without romantic feelings?

Post by David » Wed Sep 06, 2017 2:40 pm

CF

My expereince of working with many couples where one is obviously in limerence land, because of shame / not wanting to hurt their SO or some other factors, they deny their romantic feelings towards their LO. With the level of obsession you describe, I suspect your SO fits into this camp. Addiction comes with truckloads of shame and is the reason many here dont disclose to their SO, although I believe this is a necessary part of us growing up and taking responsibility for our own growth.

I have learned there is nothing wrong in developing feelings for others that are not our SO's, after all we are instinctual animals - its how we act on these feelings that matters.
"Until you make the unconscious conscious, it will direct your life and you will call it fate." - C.G. Jung

For confidential Relationship Coaching, Couples Counselling & Psychotherapy see http://loverelations.co.uk

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LisaTranscending
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Re: Are there variations of limerence without romantic feelings?

Post by LisaTranscending » Wed Sep 06, 2017 3:16 pm

David I sent you a pm to retrieve my password. doesn't seem to be working. will you send it to me. thanks

marko
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Re: Are there variations of limerence without romantic feelings?

Post by marko » Thu Sep 07, 2017 4:41 pm

As to your question, yes, and equally perhaps no. Then again it may not matter--to you yes, but not to the SO. Confused, well that desperate internal grief and wanting to rescue someone (probably self as well) surrounded then by extreme guilt over not you is hell. Romantic thoughts for me were minimal, but she was attractive as well. Had I considered her ugly, then I don't know, but I was also escaping a bad marriage and mid life crisis as well--so romance for me at times became intense, then would fade. One day I thought she reciprocated romantically and darn near died. It was part of the soothing fantasy that produced happy chemicals, but in reality was terrifying. Really a mental illness that mimics infidelity, bit can also include that--tough confusing stuff.

My LO was a concerned helpful worker. She also had a BF which also didn't bother me. Romantic fantasies sometimes were sexual, but mostly early high school crush feeling. Just wanted to be admired by this person mostly. A fix for self through another person.

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Re: Are there variations of limerence without romantic feelings?

Post by David » Thu Sep 07, 2017 9:17 pm

LisaTranscending wrote:
Wed Sep 06, 2017 3:16 pm
David I sent you a pm to retrieve my password. doesn't seem to be working. will you send it to me. thanks
:)
"Until you make the unconscious conscious, it will direct your life and you will call it fate." - C.G. Jung

For confidential Relationship Coaching, Couples Counselling & Psychotherapy see http://loverelations.co.uk

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JellyBean
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Re: Are there variations of limerence without romantic feelings?

Post by JellyBean » Thu Sep 07, 2017 9:33 pm

marko wrote:
Thu Sep 07, 2017 4:41 pm
A fix for self through another person.
Love this Marko! So true.
Just call me LF, short for Limerent Friend.

DelusionGirl
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Re: Are there variations of limerence without romantic feelings?

Post by DelusionGirl » Sat Sep 09, 2017 5:09 am

.

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