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Old 03-14-2006, 08:15 AM
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Default In a healthy relationship but I'm slipping back to my old ways

this might be long sorry

I'm not sure how I came so Co-dependent but I became one and one with a hard core addict. We met where I was 18 and here I sit at 36 trying to undo all the things that I allowed myself to do.It took me years to get to where I want to be and I am at times. I tried to follow him thru his addiction and it turned me in to addict myself. I got out of that by getting pregnant (she saved me) but then I found myself excepting things that I would have never before. He was my nightmare come true but I wanted him to be Knight like he was in the beginning. but over the years I got away from him with help ( thanks Mommy). then after being single for years I met Louis (he brought me here) and this relationship was worse than the one with Eric. I did not find the power to leave him until he was a year in to his prison sentence. I did and I started to work on myself, reading Co-dependent No More and Women who Love to much. and doing things for me that I would have never done before. I went out with someone that was not my type (I thought) but we turned into friends like I have never had with any man. He wanted nothing from me but my friendship, it was wonderful to beable to go out and be with some one that paid for things and just was a good guy all the way around. The problem now be comes ME. There are days when I find myself slipping back into my old ways of thinking. My new boyfriend does not have addiction with drugs or anything like that. I get scared of things and want to turn away from him. We have been together a year. Where is the pattern that I all ways followed it is gone and I'm left here wondering what happens next. My ex Eric is in county jail for not paying support on our 3 girls. and I find myself making excuses for why he did not pay and I find myself wanting to help him.. Save him we all know the drill. I fight the feels to do this by getting angry with him all over.The catch is I dont want him back in my life in any way. I want to have a healthy relationship with my new guy but it seems like I'm holding back something, something is missing but it is not Love or anything like that..I really think that it is I cant fix something that is not broke...And I feel the need to do just this.It is just so frustrating. I dont want to lose my new man but I'm worried that I will just push him away. I have tried to explain what Co-dependent means but he just dont get it!
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Old 03-14-2006, 08:34 AM
JJsPenPal JJsPenPal is offline
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i know what you mean. i was a party girl for a long time. i always found myself attracted to drama and fixing screwed up guys . i spent my whole life with druggies, drunks, or emotionally screwed up dudes. my whole self esteem and self worth depended upon how i was being treated by them. there was always the short honeymoon (fun, great sex, that falling-in-love-thang) and then the shock and pain of the reality of dealing with an addict or alcohic. my life became about getting them to "love" me again. it was twisted. i did this for 20 years in varying degrees of grossness.
it was hard to settle into a stable, calm, comfy relationship when i met and married my husband.
i've been married 9 years. he's my friend. we didn't get married because we were in love. we got married for immigration reasons. but we were very close friends and it grew into something deeper over time. we share a tiny bit of passion. he's reliable, he's generous, he's stable, he works, pays the bills, gives me shoulder massages when i was the dishes, keeps the house clean, comes home on time, would never cheat, etc.... am i madly passionately in love with him? nope. but i'm also in my mid 40s now. i'm tired. i'm tired of dealing with incapable men. i'm tired of feeling like garbage when men are wreckless. i'm tired of struggle and drama. so, now, i have settled deeply into something much less exciting and i feel safe, i feel sane, i feel content. and this is so much more a better life than the rush of living in chaos with all those other so-called men. am i bored? yes, sometimes. would i trade this life for my codependent past? for 24-7 butterflies in the stomach? no.
you deserve peace, quiet, contentment, comfort, friendship, stability, consistent care. it doesn't matter if it's not passionate. in the end, when we're little old ladies and they are shriveled up old men, the passion is long gone but the friendship remains. you seem to be doing a great job at modeling a healthy relationship for your daughters. that is incredibly important!

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Old 03-14-2006, 08:42 AM
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JJspenpal But the passion is there. He makes my heart skip beats but you are right there is no Drama unless it caused by my past. Which happens to all ways come back to get me. I guess learning to live a new life is hard, this relationship was not Rush Rush like the old ones. He does not live with me and really does not want to so there is something. I just feel lost in this relationship but I dont want it to end. Cause I love him!! He is good for me and the he says that I was sent to him from God...
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Old 03-14-2006, 08:46 AM
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it's fantastic!!!! you have something so wonderful with your new man. it's natural to want to help your ex because helping him seems to help your daughters. but exactly what kind of help does eric need and what kind of help do you want to give him?
what would happen if you left eric alone right now? would he sink without you? if so, could you get your new man "in on the plan" to help out eric? can you guys do it together so he doesn't feel jealous or afraid?
you said you are "scared of things" and want to turn away from your new bf. can you pin point what you're afraid of? can you pin point why you feel you need to put energy into eric?

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Old 03-14-2006, 09:01 AM
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See I know that if I leave Eric alone he will be just the same as if I tried to help him. If I help he will only cause pain. He is 40 years old and cant seem to understand that he needs to help himself befor he can be anything to anyone else. The girls have seen enough pain from me trying to help him and when I do he only brings me down. My new man does feel sorry for him in some ways but he all so sees how hard it is on me doing this by myself. He feels more for the girls than him.
I guess maybe I dont feel needed by him (new Man)cause there are not the same issuse as I'm use to dealing with. We have never really been in even arguement but I do feel love from him. so much that it scares me. I all ways ended up hurting myself. I guess I'm just scared that he will find someone more like him on the same playing field or something like that. it is just not like the other relationships that I have had in the past. So there is no pattern to follow..I'm scared that I will push him away some how.
As for putting enery into Eric I think that it is just something that I have all ways done so it is normal for me. I have went behind peoples back to help in the past but not this time.I guess I just dont want to go down that path anymore. When eric was out running the streets it was like he did not really cross my mind unless he called. Now I find myself thinking things I could do to help him but I know that I cant this time, cause he had all ways had help and it never really helped him out.
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Old 03-14-2006, 09:11 AM
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got it. so now, you need to find a way to break from your past. if it was me, i'd do a spiritual ritual and turn it all over to a higher power and renounce it. ask god to take it away but also be willing, very willing, to give it over and give it up to god.
in your favor, you are really in touch with your feelings and you recognize your weaknesses. that's a great start. you said eric will sink or swim with or without you. that's your answer. he doesn't need you and you don't need him or any other man to need you. your children need you. let your children fill your need to be needed. if your children needing you isn't enough, go volunteer with elderly or disabled or homeless kids or other truly-in-need persons who truly need you too. i imagine though, you have a full plate with your kids. a man should want you but not need you. a man should be more of a support system than another kid to raise.
let eric go and let your new bf take care of you for a while.

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Old 03-14-2006, 09:17 AM
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I have tried to give over to a higher power but it scares me in some way that I have not figured out yet. I know that I need no man to need me but in my sick head it is good to be needed not just wanted. If that make sense. Yes my plate is full with the girls but there are days when they dont need me as much they are growing fast. But I get the joy and sorrow that comes along with all of that.
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Old 03-14-2006, 09:22 AM
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i gotta leave for work now. i'll get back to you later. spend some time trying to pinpoint your fear...that will help get you your answers.
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Old 03-14-2006, 09:33 AM
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Thank you JJ
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Old 03-14-2006, 05:02 PM
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everyone else, please comment here!
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Old 03-14-2006, 05:10 PM
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amylynn, how's your day going?
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Old 03-14-2006, 05:16 PM
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I know the feeling, too. Amy - look back further than your history with Eric. Look back to your parents and their parenting. One was probably distant, possibly narcissistic. My counselor explained it as mistaking the longing for love for love itself. If you're at all like me, then you're trying to fill up a hole that is in the past (an obviously impossible task), with the feelings of the present - trying to make someone love you by always being there, always, in effect, begging to be noticed and treasured for who you are. It never works; not because you're not worthy of that notice and treasuring, but because those of whom you ask it are incapable of it. That's the trap - the person we've been trained by is not capable of that, but taught us (because all children are genetically programmed to make themselves dear to their guardians - it's how infants survive) how to keep on trying in the face of absolutely no reward.

You can try a therapist who works on self-parenting, or anyone who works with damaged children. And you can just mull over thinking about the tape that plays in your head when that "you're just not up to my standards" silently comes up and you try to prove you really are. I haven't thrown the tape away yet, but I hear it less than I used to. And when I don't hear it, I don't have anything to prove, and I don't feel needy. Good Luck!
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Old 03-14-2006, 06:09 PM
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Im glad you read that book Women who love too much. Have you thought of reading it again ? Ive read it probably four or five times now. That book was the beginning of my transformation. I read it while I was pregnant with my son and I had been clean for just about a year at that point. The issues that make you need to be needed are different for everyone but you obviously found something in that book that you recognized. Try reading it again and maybe you can get another step closer to clearing the confusion.
I sometimes think that co-dependency is a lifetime addiction just like any other addiction and even if you not 'using' anymore you are still an addict and you have to take the steps 'one day at a time' !!!
You obviously have come a long way to change things and the fact that its only been a year you can not expect yourself to be totally rid of old ways of thinking. You are doing fine and just keep going in the direction you are.
Have you considered buying a book about co-dependency for your boyfriend and asking him to read it ?
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Old 03-14-2006, 07:27 PM
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...you may still need to heal from something in your past...or deal with something from you past...after my guy went to prison and had a chance to think and reflect about his life and because he was sober, he could see and feel his pain more clearly...he told me that no matter how much I loved him...no matter how good I was for him...no matter if I was his gift from God...I could never heal his pain...or make the hurt he felt go away...it was something he had to do himself...I felt really bad at first because I didn't realize the power of his pain and what it did to him...a pain/hurt I couldn't touch no matter what I did...his healing started with his assaultive offenders class and beginning to understand himself better...his pain was his abuse as a child...which I knew about but did not how strong the pain was controlling his life...he tried to feel better with drugs and alcohol and that didn't work...prison most likely saved him because he was sober and he did begin to heal a little bit each day...not that you have the same pain or used drugs/alcohol but by him healing himself...he finally can say that he likes/loves himself and knows now he is an okay person and he deserves the best of the best no matter what...maybe you think you do not deserve the best...maybe you have some pain inside you that you need to heal...just an idea...going through this with him was a powerful impact on my life...
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Old 03-14-2006, 10:26 PM
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nimuay I'm pretty sure it has nothing to do with my parents part of raising me. I guess you could say that it could be that my mother was codependent with my aunt her youngest sister. All ways picking up behind her and when I was about 18 I started to hang out with my aunt.But I was all ways helping her out of jams and things like that. I know that I had a good child hood got attention from my mom and my dad. I really dont think it is that i feel needy but I want to feel like I'm needed not just wanted in some ways. I have alot to try to figure out and I have to realize that it is not going to happen over night or over a year I guess.When I look back to when I first met Eric I was totally my own person but after time I was not like that anymore. Some where I lost who I was back then but now after everything that I have been though For the 1st time in along time I like myself.


Witchlinblue You are right I should read that book again. I have tried to explain it to him but i have a hard time. He was here the other night helping with a slumber party (really hiding) and I showed him the book and left it with him in my room but I'm not sure if he really looked at it or not.


DenimBlue I'm sure that I have alot of pain that needs to be healed but when I start to let of the pain from my relationship with Eric I find myself wanting to help him ever more when he is in trouble. It does not make sense to me. Eric and I ended so long ago that the real reason for the pain is buried some where. Now when I feel pain from our relationship it has more to do with the kids.But I'm not sure if you would call it pain or anger!! I'm very angry with him over issues and that is not healthy but I'm not sure how to let of the anger...

JJspenpal My day went well. I had it off of work. I went and seen my new man tonight. It seems like he can tell when there is something deep inside of me that is bugging me. We talked alittle bit about me being distant from him for a few days but I know that this is something that I can handle as soon as I figure out how. I just made sure he knows that I love him and that we are just fine.
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Old 03-15-2006, 08:29 AM
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amylynn,
glad you're doing okay and that your man feels safe and secure in your love. sounds like you two are going to work it out just fine!
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Old 03-15-2006, 10:43 AM
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I would like to suggest a good read..."the language of letting go". Also, I think the other one is "Love is a Choice". Both were very very helpful in my own co-dependant therapy. I hope you feel better soon
take care
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Old 03-15-2006, 06:25 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JJsPenPal
amylynn,
glad you're doing okay and that your man feels safe and secure in your love. sounds like you two are going to work it out just fine!

Thank you JJspenpal. Well I made it though another day and have not done anything codependent so far. I have good days and bad days. Today was a good day!!! Again thank you for checking in on me. It is helpful to know that I'm not alone in this. Even if at times I do feel like no one would understand.....
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Old 03-15-2006, 06:25 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gagirl770
I would like to suggest a good read..."the language of letting go". Also, I think the other one is "Love is a Choice". Both were very very helpful in my own co-dependant therapy. I hope you feel better soon
take care
Thank you for suggesting these books I will look in to get them!!
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Old 04-04-2006, 07:16 AM
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Well it has been a minute or so sense the last time that I posted in this thread... Well things are going well for me and my new man.. We are taking steps forward and it is not scaring me as much as I thought that it would. It feels good to be really Loved for who I am not what I can do for someone..

As for my ex the only way that I can deal with all of it. I have to keep my anger to wards him. It is only thing I can find to keep me from being so Codependent towards him. Or I just try not to think about all of the things that I could do for him.. He made his bed now he can lay in it!!!
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Old 04-04-2006, 09:34 AM
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AmyLynn I am so glad you are finally experiencing being loved for who you are!!!! Keep strong and true to yourself!!! HUGS!
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