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Posts Tagged ‘ex-boyfriend’

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Spending time with all of my family and friends this Christmas has reminded me of how much I’ve missed them in the last few years. I have great family and great friends and I can’t believe that I actually let someone talk me into believing that these people were less than wonderful…and were not worth being around. WTF? It’s crazy how easily we can become brainwashed into believing falsities when we are blinded by what we believe is love. But, on the other side of this is the question: why would someone that loves you point out all of the faults/imperfections of your family and friends to make them all seem substandard in your eyes? I think about this a great deal.

As I sat with my boisterous aunt on Christmas Eve and helped her polish off our 3rd bottle of wine, I reflected on all those times that my no-longer-significant other pointed out how rude and obnoxious she was. But, wait – wasn’t he the rude and obnoxious one for pointing out my aunt’s faults in the first place? I think so. Sure she’s loud, sure she can be obnoxious…but, shit, I think we ALL have that tendency at times. I love my family and friends, faults and all…isn’t that really what it’s all about? Nobody is perfect and most of us know we’re not. I feel bad for people who are raised to believe that they are superior to everyone else. They are just being set up for a lifetime of disappointment. It’s sad that some people are so intolerant and judgmental and its even more sad that someone like me (pretty much tolerant of any kind of behavior) would turn from my family and friends because I was swayed by someone like him.

Luckily for me they are my family and my friends and they would stand behind me no matter what. So, as I slowly gather them back into my circle I tell them all how sorry I am for what I’ve become, for how I’ve ignored them and shut them out of my life. They understand and they respond, “We are just glad to have you back.”

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I am an addict. That is a frickin’ hard statement to make about oneself. I’m not addicted to alcohol, food, drugs; no…this is much more complicated. I am a love addict. At first I just laughed when I heard about this type of addiction but the more my therapist and I explored the subject, and the more I read on the subject it became clear that this is what I am suffering from. Don’t they always say that the first step to healing is acknowledgement? Well, that first step is a doozie! You want to deny it, fight it at every turn, or laugh it off. I want to give a ton of thanks to Don’t Date That Dude for posting Are you Addicted to Love?” because finding and reading that post gave me the first inkling that I am indeed addicted.

As I answered “yes” to all of the questions on the blog, I began to sob in disbelief. I’ve always known that there was something ‘just not right’ about my relationships, but it was very hard to own the fact that I’m addicted to love. Even harder was the fact that this addiction was caused by some lack of connection/nurturing from my childhood. My parents are great and I couldn’t imagine that they had done anything wrong in their child rearing practices. After all, there are three children and why did I, the first born, end up like this? It turns out that it is not just all about how my parents raised me, but has to do with my personality and my perception that at some point in my early life I felt abandoned. It could be that my Mom was so busy raising three kids (with a span of only 2 years between each) that I, as the eldest, felt somewhat left out. I was always very clingy and needy and I have very vivid memories of my Mom brushing me off – literally – she’d have to wrench me away from her leg. Or other times when she’d say, “Just go play with your sister and stay out of my hair!”, when I was whining and needing to be with her.

So, now, years down the road I am struggling with this addiction. It is not only an addiction that occurs between myself and significant others, but has occurred between myself and my daughter.

You see, a love addict searches for something outside of the self that will provide them with emotional and life stability. The experts liken it to a fantasy (similar to a childhood fairy tale – maiden being rescued by a handsome prince) and when that fantasy fails to be their reality the addict eventually reverts back to childhood abandonment issues.

For me, my last relationship became skewed and was based on “whether or not he would leave me”. Everything seemed fine until he started a new job which involved overtime and weekend hours. It became all about me – how would he have time to spend with me, wasn’t I important any more? I was making more and more demands on him and no matter what he did I was not satisfied. I was convinced that he didn’t want to spend time with me and was dedicating his time to his work so he wouldn’t have to be with me. When I felt my needs were not being met I became resentful and angry. I felt abandoned. I knew I should have been happy, but wasn’t. I was in a relationship but felt very alone.

And now the fun part…the withdrawal stage. Things got so bad for me in my relationship that I had to end it. He was a terrific person and I really gave him a run for his money. The hardest part is acknowledging that my addiction is the reason for this failed relationship. As with any addiction you have to quit ‘cold turkey’. That is not an easy thing to do. How do you tell someone you love that you cannot see them or speak to them? For me I just had to make it clear that I needed him completely out of my life. No contact. Period. You can imagine the pain it has caused. It’s like being an alcoholic and wanting that drink so fucking badly that it just kills you inside. You tell yourself that you want it, you need it and when you keep it from yourself you become so fucking angry and bitter. You start blaming everyone but yourself for the situation you are in. You know that you have to stay away but you think that having it will ease your pain.

So, here I go down the road to recovery. The most painful part is knowing that I’ve lost a very special and important person in my life. I’ve had to give up my best friend. The pain is so excruciating it cannot be described.

Even though this addiction has caused so much turmoil in my life and has made it impossible for me to have a healthy relationship, I look forward to moving on and healing. I know it will be a lot of work and will require a life long commitment – but I am worth it.

 

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Sure, everybody has a bad day, bad month, bad year…whatever. Isn’t it fair to say that sometimes we just deserve a break? Apparently, I am not getting that break. Now, I am not requesting any sympathy, nor soliciting donations, I would just simply like to tell this tale so I can get some things off my chest.

First, I break up with the boyfriend (I may as well have been in a coma for the last two frickin’ years), then the dog takes a flying leap at the window, smashes through the glass and slices his paw open (requiring stitches) and then the cat runs away (frankly, I can’t blame him, I would have run, too, if I could have). Okay…doesn’t sound so bad? Well, let me expound. The dog, my just-turned-one-year-old Golden Retriever/Yellow Lab-full-of-energy-and-determination, is required to have this massive array of bandages on his paw which he cannot get wet or dirty. Each time he has to go outside I must: 1) put the paw in a heavy duty plastic bag, wrap it with tape; 2) cover the plastic bag with a sock; 3) place yet another plastic bag over that and wrap it with more tape so it clings to his leg. Fun, fun, fun – and this procedure is carried out no less than 6-7 times per day. Just imagine how entertaining it is for me struggling with a willful, can’t-sit-still-for-longer-than-one-second pup, all the while getting tape stuck everywhere.

He also must take antibiotics three times a day and typically the last dose, which he takes at 10pm, causes stomach upset. The relentless vomiting all over my bedroom floor usually commences at 2am.

Three days after the bandage is applied he decides that he no longer wants it on his paw and rips it off. One more trip to the vet to get extra supplies of bandages and tape, and to have the wound checked. The good news – his wound is healing nicely, the bad news – the bill. Yikes. Oh, yes, and did I mention he is NOT allowed to run, jump, take walks, or otherwise be a dog for the next two weeks? Uggghhh! So, I am pretty much house bound when I really should be getting out and about trying to forget about “the breakup”.

The dilemma is how to keep him busy. I have now spent tons of money on bones, toys, and whatever I can think of to keep him busy enough to keep his mind off of chewing his bandages. Not to mention I’ve bought stock in Johnson&Johnson & Ziplock with all the medical tape, gauze, non-stick pads and plastic bags I’ve purchased thus far. Cripes, two more weeks of this!

The bandage on his paw must be throwing off his equilibrium because he has tipped over his water bowl twice in the last few days. The water pooled on the floor is unavoidable so he trots right through it necessitating yet another bandage change.

Somewhere in the midst of all of this we loose a cat. He has been missing for one week now – I think. Everything is such a blur, at this point I don’t even know what day it is. We’ve put up posters all over the neighborhood, but alas, no word about poor missing kitty. Luckily for me he was not my daughter’s favorite so she is not distraught, however, his brother misses him terribly and sits in the window waiting and wailing. Annoying.

Late yesterday afternoon as we are hurriedly getting ready for a Halloween party we get a call from a woman who says she believes she has our cat. We get our hopes up and run over to collect him only to find that it is not him, but his brother. She explains that she saw our poster and thought it looked like him. Apparently, she is legally blind because the two cats DO NOT look alike. She is pregnant so I spare her the kick in the crotch that she so obviously deserves and angrily return home.

No one has died (except maybe the cat), nothing has exploded, and my house has not burned down so I should be grateful. But I am feeling pretty shitty about being short one boyfriend, one normal dog, and one cat. I wonder if this story is over.

11/3/07 Update (not that anyone is reading this): the boyfriend is still “ex”, the dog is on the mend, and the cat was hit by a car and killed. Ugh.

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