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Re: What to do?

Posted: Tue Nov 20, 2018 4:06 pm
by NoDayDreaming
LisaTranscending wrote:
Tue Nov 20, 2018 3:52 am

just....the advice from the guys on here... what the fuck is this?. "revenge, sex apps, punish her, she's a parasite, she's not 100 % who she was or who she is supposed to be."'

excuse the fuck out of me...what kind of shit is this? this isn't insight...this is male wounded ego. this isn't helping Stephen with his broken heart, it's just putting another's broken heart turned bitter all over the poor guy.
I apologize again.
i was naive thinking what helped me may help another soul.
I'm sorry I posted here. Will not happen again.

Re: What to do?

Posted: Tue Nov 20, 2018 4:15 pm
by LisaTranscending
Jack I was a bit over the top in my reaction. I apologize and don't mean for people not to speak their truth. It looks like I answered what appeared to me to be "Judgmental" with my own brand of Judgmentalness.

I was thinking about that word. Judge...Mental...

we judge the mental state of others applying our own mental state. it's pretty interesting how we human beings do this, only to get all tripped up in the process of praising or defaming.

I know in a forum such as this we are trying always to soothe and help the person who comes in and tells the story from their perspective. but let's not forget, there's always another perspective, and that perspective can't just be discounted because we never get that side. and not to say that the story we get from a poster isn't realistic or a true account. but what we can't know (even of our own mental states) is how much hand we have in the story by our own shortcomings. and that's where the opportunity for growth lies.

I hope to never discourage anyone ever from posting anything they truly feel or believe, but always with the bent towards unwrapping it and looking at what it might be. and please challenge me because I am so off the mark sometimes, it's not even funny.

Re: What to do?

Posted: Tue Nov 20, 2018 4:40 pm
by Stephen
I've been getting a wide range of advice from people on all sorts of topics related to my broken marriage. I've sought them out and while I don't agree with all of them, I do understand everyone copes differently. I appreciate everyone's input and advice. I'm thankful for friends, family and even total strangers who take time to listen, empathise and support me in my pain whilst I try to understand the best I can what happened.

I'm obviously an emotional person, I can't just shut off, let go and move on from something or someone I care about. I try to understand every possible thing and in every possible way. It's mental torture sometimes because I know it can be futile, but it's just how I work. I do find men will more often turn to the tough guy thinking of "If she doesn't want me, I don't want her", or the revenge/punishment route. I don't believe it's my place to seek revenge or to punish anyone for a choice they've made. I don't find that helpful and don't see how it would make something that is already so negative any better. I understand and agree in the "why do you want to be with someone who doesn't want to be with you? logic", but I'm still trying to figure out what happened there. It was only months ago that we wanted to be with each other and while I believed in that bond we had, she was letting go without warning to be with someone else. Suddenly, the person I love and trusted more than anything abandoned me and just like that the future I looked forward to is dead. She never had to be with me to begin with, but she chose to for seven years, she committed to me and we had a good thing going. I struggle to understand why anyone would want to leave someone who loves, cares and treats them well. Why would you want to leave something good?

I'm happy so many people I've asked agree that I'm not being unreasonable in waiting to sign the paperwork until I'm ready and 3 months isn't much time. I wish my wife was more understanding of that and wasn't in such a rush to finalise everything.

Re: What to do?

Posted: Tue Nov 20, 2018 5:18 pm
by CrushedSO
LisaTranscending wrote:
Tue Nov 20, 2018 3:52 am
Stephen wrote:
Sat Nov 17, 2018 2:55 pm
How do you let go of someone you love so much?

just....the advice from the guys on here... what the fuck is this?. "revenge, sex apps, punish her, she's a parasite, she's not 100 % who she was or who she is supposed to be."'

excuse the fuck out of me...what kind of shit is this? this isn't insight...this is male wounded ego. this isn't helping Stephen with his broken heart, it's just putting another's broken heart turned bitter all over the poor guy.

by the way, the wounded ego isn't just a male problem, but testosterone tends to exacerbate all that crappy brain thinking. sorry for you males, but it's glaring misogyny and anger foisted on Stephen, whose probably having to grapple with his own load of it from being rejected.

rejection isn't some male or female goes both ways. I can't say who handles it better or worse at the core of a person, but I'm willing
to say from all the stats on violence and revenge that males play out against females when rejected, you males have a heavier burden to bear be it chemicals, socialization or whatever the hell it is that makes you act out against your rejection more violently than females, that can't be denied.

why do you rail against a person for changing? what is the crime in a person not staying the same? what exactly is her crime? she doesn't want to be in the relationship any that some kind of crime? that you must exact some kind of revenge now on her?
is a person not entitled to want to leave a relationship?
what about that maniac who killed his entire family that got four life sentences today? he wanted to have sex with some new woman at work and he didn't want to deal with the old what does he do? he murders them. all of them.

people change. everything is constantly changing, evolving and sometime the rug gets pulled out from under us.

your wife doesn't have zero feelings for you. she stopped relating to you. when or how this happened isn't some great and mysterious cosmic event. it's two personalities who somehow got disconnected. how is it that one person is disconnecting while another person is completely oblivious to it? well, that's not possible. if you were oblivious to it, it just means you didn't want to face it. the underlying root cause of that denial is part of the disconnect. it's not your fault. it's not her fault.

why blame?

find out where your personal contribution to that disconnect lay. it's just not possible that one person goes AWOL while the other person is happily and madly in love.

if you will never heal. if you blame, you will never find out where your role in this plays out. Stop blaming. start going inside.
the best place to learn about truth or even have a chance at getting at to go inside.

it's not lonely there. it's not empty there. that's where all the answers are. stop looking to her for answers. stop looking at the past relationship for answers. those answers are not there. find the answers to all these questions in yourself. your truth. your strength. keep looking...but look in the right place.
I stand by the parasite comment. It was meant as a living being taking from another while causing harm to the host with no regard for the host. I’m sorry that offends you. If Stephen was a Stephanie and her husband was doing what his wife is doing, he would be a parasite too. Gender doesn’t matter to me.

I’ll also stand by my anger. I’ll own it. I stand by my narc side getting angry with Stephen for sensing weakness, for what I perceive to be him not standing up for himself.

I’ll even stand by the stupidity and pointlessness of my ego wanting to reply and clarify. That’s me, perfectly imperfect.

Re: What to do?

Posted: Tue Nov 20, 2018 10:39 pm
by Stephen
CrushedSO wrote:
Tue Nov 20, 2018 5:18 pm

I stand by the parasite comment. It was meant as a living being taking from another while causing harm to the host with no regard for the host. I’m sorry that offends you. If Stephen was a Stephanie and her husband was doing what his wife is doing, he would be a parasite too. Gender doesn’t matter to me.

I’ll also stand by my anger. I’ll own it. I stand by my narc side getting angry with Stephen for sensing weakness, for what I perceive to be him not standing up for himself.

I’ll even stand by the stupidity and pointlessness of my ego wanting to reply and clarify. That’s me, perfectly imperfect.
It's too late, you already apologised. =)

Re: What to do?

Posted: Wed Nov 21, 2018 2:12 am
by CrushedSO
Noooooooooooo! :D

J/k Stephen. I know you’re a good man in a lot of pain and I empathize with you greatly. I also think there are things you could do/have done to make this a bit better/easier for yourself. I’m all too familiar with letting emotion take over. Being stuck in pain.

In my reply to Lisa I meant I stand by what I said about your wife’s actions. I didn’t say parasite to hurt you (and I do apologize if my choice of word did hurt you). I didn’t say it because she is a woman. I said it because she is destroying you and couldn’t give two shits. She feigns concern and kindness only to advance her agenda to obtain what she wants from you.

Lisa was triggered by that, and some other things some male posters said and that’s totally fine. I can say in my case that it wasn’t just some male ego wounding, it was from being hurt and going through that experience and looking back and seeing a lot of things I did that prolonged the pain. It was also frustration at seeing a pretty decent human being continually hurt by a person who cares nothing for that decent human being’s well-being, caring only for getting what they want. All while that poor soul can’t see it through the fog of despair, or can see it but is in a state where they are powerless to stop it. That old familiar pain. I’ve been there too.

I recommend you stop drinking altogether (not saying you drink too much, just that it’s a good time to keep a clear head), get as much exercise as you can and try to find some authentic men and women you can bond with and do some new and fun activities with. You will come out of this, but it will take effort and hard work. If you do it right you will come out stronger than ever before.

When I was where you are, I wallowed in that on and off for a few years. I drank, I slept around, I treated women poorly and became worse off through all that, not to mention I hurt some good women. Hurt people hurt people.

Re: What to do?

Posted: Thu Nov 22, 2018 3:47 pm
by MrSpock
Hi Stephen,
Stephen wrote:
Sat Nov 17, 2018 2:55 pm
How do you let go of someone you love so much?
Not that I have an answer, but I had to ask myself and seek an answer to that question myself more times than I wish I had. Although so far never for such a long term relationship as your marriage.

What I did was to try to figure out what the question really is to begin with. That is, what is love? And what else is there? This is an ancient question and it only takes a quick view at wikipedia to see that we're still far from finding a sufficiently complete answer. In particular, if you read enough, you'll quickly find that even the terminology is a disaster, and words such as "love", or "intimacy" mean different things depending on the context. However, despite the inherent complexity of the topic, coming up with a sort of working model of interpersonal relationships has helped me attempt to answer questions like yours and figure out what to do when these don't go the way we wanted.

So, bear with me... the next part is rather long, but I promise it has a point and will try to approach an answer to your question. Keep in mind these are my personal views, even if I put them here somewhat formally.

In my view, Love is Universal such that there are not different forms of love, but instead different forms of relationships in which love (THE love) expresses or manifests differently.

The three most significant forms of intimate interpersonal relationships are romantic, filial and friendship. There are several possible decompositions of these intimate interpersonal relationships, but the one that follows is the one I like the most:

Intimate interpersonal relationships are a process (an ongoing dynamic system) which, fundamentally, seek, establishes and maintains a bond or connection between (two or more) people. Such a connection is fueled by a composition of Love, Intimacy and Reciprocity. And in the special case of romantic relationships, Sexual Desire.

Sexual desire here does not just mean the desire to have intercourse or other forms of actual sex, like sensual kissing, but the desire (i.e. need) to connect/bind with that other person that results from sexual attraction, which itself can manifest in any way, from physical to emotional to intelectual. Going head over heals from watching someone recite the alphabet can be an example of sexual desire, even though there is no "sex" involved. At the root of sexual desire is our brain singling out that particular person as a fitting mating partner.

If the fundamental outcome of the "process" that is a relationship is connection, then it clearly requires reciprocity. However, what is reciprocated by each partner determines the form, or type, of the relationship. For example, if both partners reciprocate sexual desire there is a romantic relationship, but if only one does, then this could be an asymmetric friendship.
In this view, without any form of reciprocation, the relationship either doesn't start or ends.

Intimacy here refers to opening up and sharing parts of our inner world. There is intimacy (as defined) in all three major types of relationships, even though the term usually (miss) refers to sexual intimacy, which itself is sharing our sexual emotions through sensual physical contact or other form of sensual interchange.

In this decomposition, Love here refers to the often called ideal, platonic, or universal love. The fundamental key in my view is that we express or manifest this single true, universal love in all forms of relationships, from the 3 major ones I just described to the relationship with, say, an object or the environment. I prefer to think of Love as being in itself of one kind, but expressed differently in the different types of relationships, as opposed to think of different types or forms of love.

The reason I prefer to think of love that way is that it allows me to characterize it, regardless of which type of relationship it manifests into, as the Esencial Virtue by which the one who loves actively thrives to maximize the welfare of the one who is loved. Here love is a verb, not a feeling. And, in and of itself, is unconditional and one-sided. What might be called "feeling of love" is the awareness of the desire to, or commitment to, and execution of the thing which is to love.
To Love, and to be be loved are different, complementary views on the direction of the action of love. And as any other action, we condition the act of loving however we choose. For example, based on whether we are loved back or not.

Conditions to love are orthogonal to the virtue of love, and by definition are constrains we set upon the act of loving. Whether any set of conditions are justified or not is separate. What happens is that from our (perhaps inevitable) self-centered point of view, the act of loving is an act of trade, and we decide to love in terms of its return, such as being loved back. The interplay between "to love" and "to be loved" spans an spectrum that goes from complete selfishness (want to be loved without loving) to complete altruism (love with any need to be loved). As usual, the key lies in the balance: to love AND to be loved back. However, that equilibrium does not need to be reached as a simplistic real-time trade and can be, for example, the result of a long term investment. That is, I can love, which means, I can actively seek the welfare of the one I love, such that in time, the one I love becomes capable and willing to love me back. Additionally, we usually seek to be loved back, that is, from the target of our love, but is conceivable and sometimes even practiced to trade outgoing love for incoming love regardless of who we receive it from as the means to maintain the equilibrium.

This equilibrium between "to love" and "being loved back" is present in all three major types of relationships. But, romantic relationships have a critical additional component: sexual intimacy and desire. It is this component which gives romantic relationships its special depth and unique characteristics. One of them being exclusivity: while monogamy as a relational strategy can be considered to be a social, cultural and/or regional construct, the exclusivity in mating parters has its root in biology: there is period of time in which the offspring needs both their parents fully committed to each other instead of seeking out a new partner. This is the reason why in the early stages of infatuation we idealice the object of our affection so extremely; that's our brain making sure we don't have eyes for, and run away with, anyone else to secure the survival of the offspring.

Because of the special characteristics of the biologically-driven sexual component, a romantic relationship is a very complex dynamic system, whose equilibrium is much more difficult to maintain than in any other type of relationship. That is, is much much easier to stay in a faulty filial relationship, or in a friendship, which is why is so, so much common for romantic couples to break up than it is for friends or family to go apart.

We maintain multiple relationships, specially one with our very selves.Thus, there is a dynamic equilibrium within any given relationship but there is also a separate, but highly related, dynamic equilibrium among all our relationships (with our very own relationship with ourselves in the center). In this sort of "global" equilibrium among all our relationships, a romantic one carries a special weight due to the biologically-driven exclusivity trait (which in turn translates into monogamy in most cultures).

In any normal intimate relationship, of any type, we Love our partner, meaning we actively thrive to maximize their welfare. And we also expect and seek to be loved back (hence the dynamic equilibrium between loving and being loved). However, in a romantic relationship, its sexual component, rooted on attraction, adds the force of desire. Because of that, within a romantic relationship, we don't just Love our partner, we want them as well, often even more so. We have to have them, to align with them, even to sort of merge with them. And this wanting and needing is not at all the same as the expectation and even demand for being loved back that is present in all intimate relationships (including a romantic one, but separate from the sexual desire). Have in mind that this sexual desire out of which we "want" our romantic partner, does not mean wanting to have sex, it means the more subtle, involuntary, possibly painful need of them (which, again, is essentially different from the universal need to love and be loved).

So, now to your question...

Allow me to rephrase it like this: "How do you let go of someone you love and WANT so much"?

If you consider Love to be as I characterized it above: as manifested in the continued action of maximizing welfare, is easy to see that there is actually no conflict between loving and letting go someone. In fact, parents do that all the time as kids grow up and eventually leave the nest.

So, what really gets in the way of letting your (ex) wife go is not loving her but wanting her, which itself is rooted on the biologically-driven sexual desire that is the defining factor in your (romantic) relationship with her.

But then, how do you let go of something you want so badly? I'd have a Nobel price if I knew the answer to this one :D .

What I do is identify instances of the exact same problem everytime it shows up. From letting go of a piece of chocolate to keep my diet, to letting go of the disappointment when something didn't go the way I wanted. Then, exercise letting those easier ones go, so that I can eventually develop the skill to let go of something really big, like LO for instance, which deep down I still can't, but not because I love her, as in fact I do, which in itself motivates me to stay the hell out of her life so she can be happy with a working and healthy relationship with someone else, but because I want her for me, which is something else entirely.
Stephen wrote:
Sat Nov 17, 2018 2:55 pm
I try to stay busy, I try to occupy myself with things to distract my thoughts, but it's not working very well. Everything brings up a memory and it seems to dominate my thinking. I know it's not right and I know it needs to stop, but how? I feel so sad all the time. So alone even when I go out with people. Nothing is making me happy and I feel so stuck.
In my rather long and perhaps complicated first part of the post, I tried to make it as clear and complete as possible the fundamental difference between loving and wanting someone.
Based on what you wrote since your first post, which I followed closely, it seems to me that you WANT her, perhaps even more than how you love her. I know this is harsh, and probably not what you want to hear, but you are stuck, and I believe this is the reason.

How do we give up on what we want?

Unfortunately, we had very specifically evolved to fight, almost obsessively, for what we want. Whatever that is and whatever the reason for wanting it. And though it might look like simple selfishness, we are built up to do whatever it takes to get what we need/want (which is sort of the same), because long ago our very survival depended on it. Consider for example that now your are here suffering for how your (ex)wife run to another men out of her own will, but in the prehistory, you would have to fight almost all other males to keep her. So a part of this a imprinted in your brain.

For whatever reason, I spend my life wanting the girl I can't have. Now I'm married for 20 years, and regardless of the fact that we love each other very very much, I seem to have little to no desire for DW, which means I don't "want" her in the way I always wanted women, and now I find myself wanting someone else instead of DW, and having to let go of that, as I always had to.

While I'm very well aware that in your case, what you want is not just your (ex) wife but the life you built together, and for so many years, I believe that in essence, it's the same problem.

In order to develop the skill of letting go of the things I want but cannot have, while wanting the things I don't seem to want but do have, I've been speeding a lot of time reflecting on the value of things.

What's the value of everything you and your wife built together? is it the "thing" that was built, or is it the experience of having built it? And if it is the experience, aren't experiences always in the past? And can (past) experiences be lost? or they persist forever as the imprint they left?

I'm trying more and more to see life as a process in which we accumulate experiences as opposed to things or relationships.

If you could do that, then all "those memories that everything brings up", would not be seen anymore as something you now lost, but as something you once did and made you who you are now.

Finally, and I know this is also something you don't want to hear, but:

Not signing the divorce papers, which reflects that you still won't accept what is happening, because you still WANT her as your romantic partner and you are not yet willing to let her go, which is totally separate from you still loving her, which you could still do even if she moved on to another romantic relationship, by starting a different relationship with her from now on, is itself a weight that is holding you back and down. The resistance to sign the paper is itself part of the reason you are sad all the time, nothing makes you happy and staying busy doesn't work.

I'm 100% positive, absolutely sure that the moment you sign those papers a HUGE load is going to instantly come off your back and you will finally start to move on and you won't be completely stuck the way you are now.

Hope that helps Stephen.

Re: What to do?

Posted: Thu Nov 22, 2018 5:30 pm
by L-F
To summarise Mr Spoks eloquent post... let go of expectations and you'll be a happier man.

You feel love, not think it...

Re: What to do?

Posted: Thu Nov 22, 2018 6:13 pm
by LostAgain
Yep,sign the papers and let go.
You are the one who is being held back and with luck love will find you again sooner than you think.

Re: What to do?

Posted: Mon Dec 24, 2018 10:57 pm
by Stephen
Hello everyone,

Just wanted to take a moment and wish you all a happy holiday season and healthy new year! I appreciate the support of everyone who has helped me in the past few months try and make sense of all that has happened. It's been unquestionably the most difficult thing I've gone through in my life thus far, so thank you.

Things with my wife have remained largely unchanged. Lately, she has been texting me much more frequently. The messages are mostly all about her and what is going on with her work and little tidbits about other things in her life. She doesn't ask what I've been up to, what I'm doing, planning, etc. I'm highly suspicious of her motive so I try and not read into this too much. She has not asked about signing the papers in over a month, but that can be part of her motivation with the sudden "nice" texts I've been getting from her. I'm just continuing to work on myself and what I want to do next.

One question I want to ask is about re-writing history. I've heard some very interesting things from my wife that simply never happened and aren't true. Other things that have been exaggerated or made to be something very different than they were. It's obvious she is re-writing history to justify her actions. In your experience does that wear off at some point? First, I would think it's difficult to convince yourself of something you know isn't true, but if you somehow manage to, wouldn't it eventually catch up to you when reality sets back in? Has anyone every experienced this from either side?