• With some advice from forum veterans, I’m splitting this LONG story into 3 parts
• This is part 2
• Here is the link to part 1: viewtopic.php?f=45&t=6128
• Here is the link to part 3: viewtopic.php?f=45&t=6130
• Please chime in with your wisdom, insights, observations, questions!
So here is this gorgeous sexy woman (my LO neighbor), full of light and life, giving me lots of attention, affirmation, validation, friendship and even some light ‘friendly’ forms of ‘harmless’ ‘surface level’ flirtation (if there is such a thing)… at a time when I was hurting and hungry.
This addiction/condition/disorder is all me, it seems. In terms of whether there may be any reciprocity from LO attraction, emotional, or otherwise… I highly doubt it… but they say it takes two to tango… Is it possible only 1 party is responsible for all the energy concerned? Not sure if maybe I have a blindspot concerning LO’s complicity because of the halo effect. And also, I think she may be an avoidant attachment type, whereas I am an anxious attachment type, which I wonder if that would be a classic incompatibility scenario.
But she was involved in ways like:
- Giving me a lot of attention in different ways
- Calling “heeeeey/hiiiii” from across the street a few times
- Standing/sitting close, sometimes a little body contact (very subtle; not overt) leaning in to look at something on each other’s phones (like oh so close to her bum coming up against my package area… or sideboob contact - would drive me absolutely bonkers to no end)
- Some light sexual innuendo… cracking jokes, puns, texting silly GIFs of characters in underwear
- She had this body language and the way should would posture and hold herself sometimes… hard to explain… Again, nothing indictable that was clearly overt… 50 shades of grey, I guess you could say. One time I was following her into her house, and I swear she struck a pose with the slightest twerk of her ass, like she was posing for a split second?... Swear there was one time she was intentionally bending over and showing me her cleavage and down her shirt, etc… She would sit on the ground/floor a lot… she would wear these shorts (Ah!)… also wears a lot of tight yoga pants… times on the floor/ground where she would even lay down/lay out and you would swear it was communicating something sexual – I’m I some crazy sicko perv imagining this and making it up?!? Was this all in my head, or was something really going on?
- We have both texted each other while on family vacations (she once sent me a picture of herself in a light dress on the beach, holding her daughter, while on her family vacation). I texted her on my family vacation, and was also texting my LO while on my 20th anniversary vacation with my SO.
- Other picture texting (NOT racy, or sexting, but pics of each other with SO/family/kids).
- She confided in me, told me about her background, her fears, her FOO issues, secrets, personal life, SO’s issues and how she feels stuck and trapped in her verbally abusive marriage – some days wishes she could leave (what is an attracted guy to do with such personal things being intimated?).
- Asking each other to pray for this/pray for that.
- Shared a few cries.
- Get each other our favorite candy on birthdays.
But nothing terribly overt that I can think of. These are mostly mild it seems… maybe a few ‘moderates’. Though some of these can be ‘severe’ for many a dude.
Not sure if much or any of this would qualify as LO ‘leading me on’. And I never really came onto her. Again, nothing terribly overt. But maybe it’s that unspoken/unexpressed energy that builds up the tension and makes us pine and wonder?... the curiosity for reciprocity part of limerence.
It wasn’t until my SO shared about her 3rd affair that something SNAPPED for me this year. I’m not sure if I was already previously limerent, or if it finally just happened this year. Or did I simply enter into latter/peak stages of limerence? As David says in his introductory video, it is as if something has HIJACKED THE BRAIN. In my googling to find out what the hell was happening to me, I immediately identified with limerence and the INVOLUNTARY/INTRUSIVE aspects.
I’ve been in a crash course of reading this forum nonstop for almost a month, and so much resonates – it makes one feel a bit more sane knowing others share the plight – the struggle is real!
In Q2/Q3 this year, the LE just exploded, multiplied and snowballed. Specifically, the timeline of the continuing narrative below is now the last 4 weeks or so (late August till present).
It was now a full-fledged obsession for LO with matrixed layers – a real web was woven. LO was the first thing on my mind upon waking, and I’d fall asleep thinking of her. I would feel something just seeing her car pull up to park in the driveway. Seeing her in makeup and hair done, I’d gasp where her beauty just takes my breath away. Just seeing her silhouette would give me a rush…. Just hearing her voice or laughter would get me high… I could previously go a whole week, riding the wave of a high from something as simple as a text, call, or in person conversation. But now I needed it daily, and then seemingly multiple times a day.
Pure addiction; plain and simple!
I began incessantly walking around the block – partly because I was going insane and exercise is something constructive to help try to collect my thoughts, but also partly with the hope that I might see LO, and ‘get a hit’. Literally: every time my phone rings or a text alert sounds, my heart skips a beat, wondering/hoping it’s her.
Then I REALLY got triggered with the news that LO and her family were selling their house and moving away.
The limerbrain kicked into an even higher gear, and the behavior I’ve been manifesting lately seems to be in danger of getting out of control. I began sort of stalking her, finding excuses to bump into her (the attempts for engineered run-ins and comms became daily at this point), texting, calling, trying to get her attention at neighbor hangouts. But my timing was so damn bad, with so much of her time and energy being consumed by being in crunch time for packing up her house and moving. In the recent weeks, when I did get to speak with her, it was extremely awkward, as I would get choked up in her presence, with pre-ugly-cry face.
In recently discovering about limerence from much Googling and Youtubing, I suddenly realized that I was now faced with the prospect of losing my current favorite dopamine source… Or it becoming severely limited as opposed to daily neighborhood proximity (my office desk/window directly faces LO’s house, and I see their every waking movement). It has absolutely felt like inevitable and impending heroin withdrawal. I deleted some (not all) photos of LO, and it felt like the hardest thing I ever did, like I was flushing the drugs down the toilet before having weaned. A sad, sorry, pathetic sight… it was like I had to cut off my hand or something.
I was now really beginning to unravel.
I was in and out of tears and crying spells. I stopped eating and losing weight (maybe down to 1 meal a day max). I took walks (probably hours and miles worth in a day, so much so that I developed a foot pain problem). I began to sob like a little girl… sitting at my desk at work (I work from home). 10-15 minutes straight at a time: weeping, slobbering, drooling, gut-wrenching travail. I got so consumed with thoughts and emotions that it was impacting both work life and home life. I became increasingly more emotionally unavailable for SO and DD. Unstable – breaking into crying while in public, walking around the block, driving the car, shopping at the store, talking with others.
OCD behavior skyrocketed, like constantly looking out the windows, to track LO’s comings and goings. Frequently descending upon her/interrupting her when speaking others – friends/family visiting, or her convos with other neighbors. I felt terribly insecure and jealous of seeing LO with other neighbors.
She began ghosting me and shutting me out, which was EXTREMELY hurtful and painful to me. I was pinging her to try to connect for a call or in person. Her text replies began to be one word “thanks”… or the thumbs up icon…. or no reply at all. Finally, she said texted saying she doesn’t have time and is stressed and needs her space and doesn’t have time to hang with everyone like she used to.
Only she was hanging and talking with Every. Single. Other. Neighbor. in our crew/circle of friends… except for me. Ouch!
I finally caught her on the sidewalk one day and she was open enough to talk for a few. I got to ask her about things, and she said I was getting creepy and over-protective. She is NOT a confronter. And she said her SO said she shouldn’t say anything to me, but instead keep the peace. But she told me anyways – telling of how taxed she is. She also took asserted that she’s thought of me as a brother, and how we’re ALL friends in the neighborhood. I told her sorry, and how I was very fond of her, and how I got triggered by them moving thinking I’d lose another friend. “You’re cool, it’s fine” she said. I asked her if I can still text or call, or if she wanted NC. She said it’s ok. She gave me a (seemingly) friendly fist bump (or was it a weirded out fist bump?).
(stay tuned for part 3 of this story)