Limerence and fear?

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qwerty
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Limerence and fear?

Post by qwerty »

Dear all,

I've been posting about my story and what's happening with my wife here:

http://limerence.net/forum/viewtopic.php?f=61&t=6441

On several occasions she has told me about the kind of relation she has with the LO.

- He lashed out at her and called her a liar after he found out she went with me to her country during Christmas, after which he was controlling her phone to make sure she does not contact me.
- She described him as full of "testosterone", "very controlling". She said "I know it's not good for me."
- She said she is attracted to people she is afraid of, and I think she meant the LO.
- The LO left the country and was supposed to be away for many months. Yesterday she contacted me very scared and crying saying that the LO is unexpectedly coming back to the country very soon. She said she was happy he was away and she could have the distance to find herself again, and she is very upset he is coming back. She said she has many red flags about it.
- She said "What I have with LO is based on that I suddenly get extremely extremely scared".

It's so difficult for me to wrap my mind around this. How can she say she loves this person and at the same time she is so scared of him?? Why is she still willing to see him?? Honestly I'm now scared she might be at physical risk :(

Is there anyone here that has any insight into this?? How does limerence and fear work together? I can understand fear from losing the relationship but this seems to go beyond this to fear of being attacked??

MrSpock
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Re: Limerence and fear?

Post by MrSpock »

qwerty wrote:
Wed Mar 11, 2020 6:48 am
Is there anyone here that has any insight into this?? How does limerence and fear work together? I can understand fear from losing the relationship but this seems to go beyond this to fear of being attacked??
What I can tell you is that, very unfortunately, we are wired to orbit around whatever is familiar. The impact of our early childhood experiences cut so deep that, regardless of how morally, functionally or ideologically wrong they could be, we'll still try to re-live them. Over and over and over.
If as a child she lived in complete fear, and, that was trigger by her parents, then she would, at some point, sub-consciously pin to people that recreates the familiar feeling.

The way out of this sort of prison is a lengthy, painful and necessarily guided process. The kind you walk with a very good therapist.

You're wife childhood has been traumatic. Even more so that many of the stories I've known. At this stage, what she needs the most is support and understanding (which I know you are giving her)(but, as you've been told, provided you give yourself support and understanding first).

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WishMagick
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Re: Limerence and fear?

Post by WishMagick »

Yes. I understand this. I was afraid of my father growing up. He had anger issues and he physically abused my brother. In front of me. He wasn't as bad with me, but he took "spanking" to a whole new level. He would whip us with his belt as well. I used to walk on egg shells as to not upset him - because he would blow up over anything!!

I found myself in an emotionally (and mildly physical) abusive relationship for 6 years.

And I find myself stunned, and then turned on by my current LO's cold, masculine/aggressive side.

I find that I have sexualized a lot of my issues. I have always preferred to be "thrown around" by men because my brother was also really rough with me growing up.

But I am much more aware of this now and I am trying to reprogram my husband to be more gentle with me, because that is what I truly want.
I'm now limerence free! Mindfulness & Traditional spiritualism was my "cure".
"Being spiritual has nothing to do with what you believe and everything to do with your state of consciousness."

marko
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Re: Limerence and fear?

Post by marko »

She doesn't love him, she is trying to love herself. Somethings in the LO remind us of certain things. Maybe we think we can heal them, maybe then us by this act. I

I don't know why this one person became a focus to receive acceptance. A little wasn't enough, it was not fullfillable. I always wanted to be popular, through her I became the cool kid--I finally made it and it was like a drug. I think my reaction would have met her rejection so that had she gotten mean, I would have doubled down. We also wonder and continuously wonder what is real, finding things fake don't sink in, we ask "really?". This is very irrational, that comment makes sense to you as any reality to us.

qwerty
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Re: Limerence and fear?

Post by qwerty »

Thank you all for your replies.
MrSpock wrote:
Wed Mar 11, 2020 11:58 am
The way out of this sort of prison is a lengthy, painful and necessarily guided process. The kind you walk with a very good therapist.
My wife started therapy yesterday. She told me it went fine and they agreed on weekly meetings. She also agreed to couples therapy, although I'm not sure what her goal would be out of it at this moment. I told her I think it's best she spends sometime in individual therapy first before we start couples therapy. Ideally, I don't want to start couples therapy until she can think clearly and knows what she wants (what I wish for is that she breaks it off with the LO before we start). But I'm happy that she said therapy will be her highest priority right now.
WishMagick wrote:
Wed Mar 11, 2020 5:45 pm
I found myself in an emotionally (and mildly physical) abusive relationship for 6 years.

And I find myself stunned, and then turned on by my current LO's cold, masculine/aggressive side.

I find that I have sexualized a lot of my issues. I have always preferred to be "thrown around" by men because my brother was also really rough with me growing up.

But I am much more aware of this now and I am trying to reprogram my husband to be more gentle with me, because that is what I truly want.
I see... It's great you have gained awareness of this. I hope it will also be possible for my wife. I think it's hard for me to imagine it, since I don't have a similar experience...

I have actually experienced something once, possibly limerence. It was in my late teens, too long ago for me to clearly judge... but I had an intense attraction to someone who was emotionally unavailable.. However the attraction was not sexual. That was the only time I've experienced this. It was a bad experience for me and when it was over I was happy it didn't lead to any long term thing as that person was in fact very toxic to me.

In many aspects she was complete opposite of my wife. She was very cold and distant, extremely focused and goal oriented,... while my wife is very loving, emotional, impulsive and directionless. My therapist thinks the link between them is that both were not able to provide with the emotional support and sense of security that I needed.

But when I met my wife I did not experience limerence. It was a feeling of admiration, bonding, and responsibility that grew over time and I am very comfortable in calling it "love", while it's very difficult for me to call the first experience "love"... I guess what's hard for me to imagine is having this "love" feeling (not just attraction) towards a scary person.
I guess what really gets to me is when my wife says she "loves two men" while it's clear that there are two distinct types of emotions involved here... It just seems it's all mixed up in her mind.
marko wrote:
Wed Mar 11, 2020 6:13 pm
She doesn't love him, she is trying to love herself. Somethings in the LO remind us of certain things. Maybe we think we can heal them, maybe then us by this act. I

I don't know why this one person became a focus to receive acceptance. A little wasn't enough, it was not fullfillable. I always wanted to be popular, through her I became the cool kid--I finally made it and it was like a drug. I think my reaction would have met her rejection so that had she gotten mean, I would have doubled down. We also wonder and continuously wonder what is real, finding things fake don't sink in, we ask "really?". This is very irrational, that comment makes sense to you as any reality to us.
This is very interesting... My wife also feels she needs to "fix" other people... Maybe by converting a scary person into a non-scary person, she can overcome her childhood trauma?

I might try to hint at this to my wife and see if she can realize something about herself...

On thing that really strikes me is that she really wants to see me but she is constantly wondering if it's "morally right" for her to see me.. It never comes up whether it was morally right for her to have this affair. Although she recently apologized to me for treating me very badly... She also tries to defend the LO saying even though he knew she was married he was "reluctant", although from I see it's more like he is using this fear and moral shaming to control her...

marko
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Re: Limerence and fear?

Post by marko »

You feel the betrayal and feel guilty as hell. This also multiplies the need to escape yourself. Your point is rational, we are not. This irrationality oddly can't escape guilt.

JohnDeux
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Re: Limerence and fear?

Post by JohnDeux »

qwerty wrote:
Wed Mar 11, 2020 6:48 am
It's so difficult for me to wrap my mind around this. How can she say she loves this person and at the same time she is so scared of him?? Why is she still willing to see him?? Honestly I'm now scared she might be at physical risk :(

Is there anyone here that has any insight into this?? How does limerence and fear work together? I can understand fear from losing the relationship but this seems to go beyond this to fear of being attacked??
"When two people were conditioned, in-doctrine-ated, instructed, socialized, habituated, normalized and neurally “hard-wired” to sadomasochistic tendencies well before they met -- and they are both willing to race around a mutual Karpman Drama Triangle alternately playing Rescuer, Persecutor and Victim -- they're evidently more likely to keep racing around that thing." -- http://pairadocks.blogspot.com/2020/03/ ... -stay.html
"Pay no attention to that man behind the curtain...."~ The Wizard of Oz

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David
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Re: Limerence and fear?

Post by David »

qwerty wrote:
Thu Mar 12, 2020 9:45 am
Ideally, I don't want to start couples therapy until she can think clearly and knows what she wants (what I wish for is that she breaks it off with the LO before we start).
Ive been following your story qwerty and feel for you.

Couples counselling is pointless if she is still in contact with the LO. And Spock is spot on re the repetition compulsion that is unconscious in the vast majority of the population.
Do you want help with limerence from the founder of this site?
I'm a qualified counsellor, psychotherapist, medical practitioner and leadership coach.
To book a session see http://loverelations.co.uk/on-line-support-for-limerence-from-dr-david-perl/

qwerty
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Re: Limerence and fear?

Post by qwerty »

Dear JohnDeux,
JohnDeux wrote:
Fri Mar 13, 2020 1:12 am
"When two people were conditioned, in-doctrine-ated, instructed, socialized, habituated, normalized and neurally “hard-wired” to sadomasochistic tendencies well before they met -- and they are both willing to race around a mutual Karpman Drama Triangle alternately playing Rescuer, Persecutor and Victim -- they're evidently more likely to keep racing around that thing." -- http://pairadocks.blogspot.com/2020/03/ ... -stay.html
Thanks for sharing this. I only learned about "Karpman Triangle" today as another person suggested I look it up! This is really interesting.

qwerty
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Re: Limerence and fear?

Post by qwerty »

Dear David,
David wrote:
Fri Mar 13, 2020 6:41 am
Ive been following your story qwerty and feel for you.

Couples counselling is pointless if she is still in contact with the LO. And Spock is spot on re the repetition compulsion that is unconscious in the vast majority of the population.
Thanks for your reply. I really appreciate having this forum going through this... My wife has now repeated several times she is willing to go to couples therapy. I really want her to break up with LO before we do this but what if she keeps insisting? Is there any serious harm that could be done if we go to couples therapy while she is still seeing the LO?

I have made it clear to her that I want to go into couples therapy with the goal of saving our marriage. But I don't know what her goal would be. One time she said "If we are back together, would you like to go to couples therapy?" Later she said she cannot go to couples therapy now because she is "with someone else." Now she accepted going to couples therapy in order to "process our emotions." Then she said she wants it in order to "end this in the proper way".. It's not clear if she meant "end this situation" or "end our relationship"...

Sometimes I feel that she thinks at some point in the future we will be back together. I unfortunately have not been courageous enough to tell her I'm not going to wait for her forever...

I told her she should spend time in individual therapy first before we do it. I will also say that most probably couples therapy will require us to do some work outside of the sessions and otherwise it's not going to be helpful at all... and if she is still with LO then we cannot do this work.

On the other hand going to couples therapy with me is most likely to infuriate the LO and make him leave!

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