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Chlor

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About Chlor

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    Member

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  • Your relationship to the individual who died
    Fathers girlfriend
  • Date of Death
    4/6/19
  • Name/Location of Hospice if they were involved:
    Na

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  • Your gender
    Female
  • Location (city, state)
    Upstate ny

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  1. Hi Rae, Thank you for responding. Im sorry that you also grew up with the pain of parental rejection and also glad that you have siblings who could share and validate rhe experience. In my case, its just me and my sister, who is still cared for by my mother and has some similar traits to yiur sister. After our father died, my mothers willingness to throw me under the bus for my sister became so extreme and egregious that it became undeniable. Even though she still lies about it to this day. The stuff you wrote about him using me as a placemarker until he could get what he really wants was really hard to read. I dont want to believe thats true. And yet he he's done nothing to disabuse me of this notion in almost a month and so I need to accept this painful reality and do what it takes to learn from the experience qnd move on. Thank you for this enciuragement. It really helps. And for the TedX videos. If what he wants is his ex, I know youre right that Im lucky things didnt go farther than they did before that became impossible to deny. And that hes not trying to string me along with breadcrumb contact. As you can see, I have been second choice my whole life. I get that if I am ever to be in a happy relationshop with someone who is truly devoted to me I need to learn to choose myself first. The problem is that I dont think its a coicindence that I have repeatedly been shut out or left behind by people who I love deatly and who claim to love me in favor of someone or something else that is somehow existentially more appealing than I am. I really dont want to spend the rest of my life alone and loving myself.
  2. You guys are amazing, sharing yourselves so freely and caring about me. On one level, it's comforting to know that this experience counts as normal. But on the other hand, the sadness that you all share is gut wrenching. How could it be that there are so many people out there who suddenly do this cruel sort of thing to those they claim to love! Originally, I came to this board hoping to find happy ending stories where the griever comes around so that I could learn more effective ways to support my beloved. But there is not even one. Instead, I learned that I need to let go, stop second guessing myself and thinking about whether or not he went back to his ex. In other words, I need to let go of hope. I need to move on. I know you guys are right and the faster I do this, the better it will be for me. Not being a quitter, this does not come easily at all. I love and miss him so much. My brain tells me that, obviously, he does not feel the same way about me because if he did he would be with me today. My brain tells me that this behavior proves that hes not good for me, that he would have run back to the ex eventually anyway. But my broken heart just wants to erase this chapter, chalk it up to his grief, find a way to forgive him and fulfill the plans we had together. My heart doesnt want to give up. I realize its not reasonable, but thats the struggle. The question now is how to get heart and head on the same page? Grieving the end of this relationship in some ways seems more complicated than grieving a physical death, which is finite. With physical death, you are challenged to accept the unacceptable. Society acknowledges the loss with support and rituals of mourning. There are stages to go through but it's definitely over. You are not left wondering what happened and whether there is still a chance for a future together. Your friends don't give reassurances that its not necessarily over. You are not telling yourself, if I handle this the right way, he will realize his mistake and come back feeling stronger than before. Kayc, thank you for pointing out that some men dont act this way. You may be right but I wonder how much of that is because of who they are versus how we relate to them. In my case, I do find my beloved to be emotionally open and caring. What is it about me that ultimately made me less valuable in his eyes than his ex? Thank you for this, Rae. It is better to have loved and lost than never to have loved at all. As for the orange and red flags, I was aware of his attachment to his ex. This past year, he has been very reassuring of his feelings for and commitment to me. I believed him when he told me he was all in with me and I did not have to worry that he would leave me for her. His words and behavior suggested this was true, until it all changed and it wasnt true anymore. Lesson learned. In the future, I will trust my gut and not tolerate that sort of dynamic again. Vandal, Im so glad you were able to maintain no contact and seem to have found peace after 6 months. It does seem like you helped her in life but ultimately her unresolved issues had to be handled on her own. In my case, unfortunately, my beloved's unresolved issues seem to be with his ex. I dont know if they got back together or not. But I do know that this has been going on for many years before he met me. I think that for a while our relationship may have given him a sense of resolve and hope for happier future. But I cant know for sure because that all that changed once the ex started coming around when he was vulnerable. I do know that I cant help him resolve his feelings for her and the whole dynamic is toxic for me. I grew up in a family where my sister was and still is preferred over me. Of course the family, my mother in particular, always denied this. They would say "we love you both the same" and I would feel guilty for thinking otherwise and for the resentment I felt. It is easy to lie to a child. As I grew up, the dynamics became much more obvious in extremely hurtful ways that everyone else in my family could see. I wont go into detail about this but I will say that the silver lining in seeing the truth is knowing that my childhood pain was based in reality and not in my jealous imagination. To bring it back to the issue at hand, I see now that, whether they got back together or not, being suddenly ghosted for another woman totally plays into my unresolved family issue. But Im not sure that this kind of trauma can ever be resolved. We just go on living. I do maintain a relationship with my family of origin but it has boundaries. We are not close. As I write this out, Im sure this is a big part of why Im having so much trouble letting go. Once again, I am the girl who is not chosen. He loves me but I am not the one. Blah blah blah. The child inside me still desperately wants to rewrite the ending with this guy. But I think we all know it would not be different . The best I can do is recognize this trigger as a giant red flag and run when I see it, with this guy and in the future.
  3. Hi Vandal, Thsnks for chiming in so compassionately. This is a club of kind hearted people that you never want to join. You hit the nail on the head. I have more light each day but waking up in the morning still sucks. You can replay the past and it seems so sweet until you realize that its based on a sham. No matter how they acted toward us previously, their behavior shows that we didnt mske them that happy and they didnt actually love us as much as they claimed, certainly not as much as we love them. Because if they did, they would want to be with us, pure and simple. Have you heard from your ex at all in 6 months? I got one apologetic text message 2 weeks after he retreated, then nothing. I still cant wrap my head and heart around how they can just drop someone they claimed to love so much, someone they waited their whole lives for, without even looking back. Their behavior may not be our fault, but we allowed ourselves to believe and invest our hearts in a sham. At least thats what I keep telling myself. Because theres no other way for me to understand this. Yes, there were red flags during the relationship. But we seemed to get past them and so I trusted him with my heart. Obviously, it is not worth anything to him. I know I need to respect and value myself first but Im afraid I will never trust again.
  4. Thank you both for your patience and support of me letting go. And for sharing your own stories of coping with loss. The denial and bargaining aspects of grieving this relationship have been maddening, which is not surprising given its vague ending and the complications of his grief/my impending divorce. Its all too much Closure will come when I not only accept that it is truly over but that I want it to be. I appreciate all your help to recognize this mans own problems as separate from mine and to focus on healing myself. I may sound like a broken record, but you really have helped. I am getting there a little more each day.
  5. Im not interested in having a break-up talk.
  6. Again, thank you both for caring enough to so thoroughly support and encourage me during this difficult time. I seem to really need it because Im all over the map these days. Is this what grieving a relationship is all about? Sometimes, I feel stronger, especially after re-reading your messages. During these times, I can focus on my own future happiness with the knowledge that, since he has shown his true colors as far as the ex is concerned and his capacity to betray me, it won't be found with him. But then at night, all the questions come back. I wake up in anguish. I dont know for sure that he did go back to his ex or even whether he thinks we broke up. I reread his message to me and find different meanings in it. For example, what "things" is he referring to and does he think that there is still an "us" to recover? I will paste the contents below: "I'm sorry. Everything this year was everything I told you it was, everything we talked about. It was great. I hope things are not to bad , or ok in your situation. I am ok and then I am not ok. I am just as worried about [other son] , he lost his brother, good grief. We are working together, talking alot. I of course did not anticipate these things happening and I'm sorry they affected us negatively. We can talk some time" Last night, I caved in and answered. I simply wrote "I dont know what to say". Its the truth and it doesnt give him access to any info about my life or my feelings. Luckily, he is not on social media at all so there are no ties there to sever. And I already changed his name in my contact log to "remember your worth". I guess Im not yet ready to block his number entirely. Maybe soon. I know you guys are right that I need to let go and focus on whats best for me. On what brings me happiness. Why is that so hard? Especially since he has brought so much hurt, it does not make sense. Another concern is that when Im in pain, suddenly my marriage does not seem so bad. I have to work to remind myself of all the hurt and alienation I experienced. All of that was real and Im looking at spending most of the summer at home alone again. Why is it so hard for me to keep it real?
  7. Rae, thank you for this. I'm sure yiu heard this before but you are wise beyond your years! You're right. He has kept in constant contact and she has been waiting in the wings all this time. If I ever had a doubt about it, her emotionality upon meeting me is proof enough. Early in our relationship he told me that he needed to completely cut her out of his life, no contact whatsoever, in order to focus on me.. I felt that he should do this when he is ready. As a married, I felt it would be hypocritical of me to pressure him. Plus, I really believe that strongarming him to cut her off would not stop him from contacting her if thats what he wants to do. If anything, the taboo would only make her more tantalizing in his eyes. I wanted him to choose me of his own free will. As our relationship developed, he lead me to believe she was out of the picture. Until a couple of months ago when he accidentally sent me a text that was meant for her. It was q perfectly ordinary, non romantic bit of communication. But still. In any event, I think youre right. He engaged me in a romantic relationship, even though he knew I was embarking on a divorce and knowing full well that he was waiting for the right moment to go back to her. In fact, he still keeps his wedding ring in a tray on his bedroom dresser. Shame on him. Focusing on this really helps me understand how and why he is not good for me. And that helps me to keep my gaze forward. I am starring to come out of the haze - have been able to concentrate at work and enjoy dance practice. Now the challenge will be to avoid getting sucked back in. . After 2 weeks of no contact, I just received a text message from him. It was not very coherent, contained a couple of apologies. For example e did not expect "these things" (whatever that means) to happen and is sorry it negatively affected us. It ended with "we can talk sometime". I cant tell what he is looking for from me. And each rereading only brings a fresh swell of pain as I imagine him back with his ex and looking for exoneration. Or to keep me as an option. He wont get either from me. So what ireally is there to say? I got all the closure I need 2 weeks ago during our phone call when he said he had feelings for the ex. And from my online conversations with you both. I hope I can stay strong on this.
  8. Just a quick note to thank you both for your generous and good counsel. Ive had a busy day today but hope to follow up tomorrow with a longer message. For now, please know that I am fortified by your words of support. Today has been the first somewhat functional day in a long time.
  9. Hi Kayc, The issue with my marriage is that my husband has never been all in for me. He lives for his next gig and that has taken precedence over anything happening with me or our family. It has been a source of pain, loneliness, and shame for more than two decades. In short, we never really had a life together. I and my children have been sideline acts, where he drops in when theres nothing else happening. It makes me feel like property. Ive been yearning to share my life with someone who excited to experience it with me. The fact that I fell in love with another man is a serious problem in and of itself. The timing of his sons death and his subsequent retreat really stinks because it took place at the very same time that I finally starting acting to make my move.
  10. Thank you, KayC for the supportive comments and the link. I read everything and feel a lot better so far tonight. Although my position in life is not ideal, even problemmatic, my heart is pure and I didnt do anything to hurt him. I cant say the same for him. Youre right, I did nothing wrong. He pushed me away when I tried to protect and care for him and did nothing to protect my heart or our growing relationship. Perhaps he is justified in getting rid of his married girlfriend when stuff gets real. But he promised he would nit leave me for his ex and its hard to imagine how he would ever respect me in my future singledom if I were to engage with him after something like this. So I need to find some kind of closure that I can stick with. The support Im getting from you, Rae and the other people who share their stories have been so healing. I am forever grateful.
  11. Wow Rae, once again, thank you for caring and sharing so much of your own life. What was it like for you to grow up with a Dad who is like that? I keep re reading your message because you touch on so many important points. And I agree that the way he is treating me is not good for me and that I need to find my own closure. When I read your words and can really accept this position, my level of distress goes down a lot. During these moments, I can breathe a little. Also, from this vantage point, I start to imagine how his ex must have felt being kept in his back pocket for 8 years. Her behavior toward me is a clue that she has been strung along but also that she is manipulative herself and likes to control him. There must be a reason they did not get back together all that time. Unfortunately, Im not able to hang strong in that position just yet. Like it or not, my heart waits and hopes he will come back. That the sweetness of the love we shared will carry him back to me. I guess the other piece that keeps me hooked is the question about whether my marital status is a viable mitigating factor. Although he promised to wait for me and I was taking active steps to free myself, it definitely put limits on our relationship. How could he not be confused about dating a married woman, especially at the worst time in his life when what he really needs is a steady partner? On the one hand, he definitely knows I am not confused; my heart has been with him 100%. I made myself totally available after his son died. But my staying overnight was a personslly risky proposition that I was willing to take but he was not comfortable with. Also consider that death is a family matter. After a more than a year together, most his family and friends knew me. But they do not know that Im married. So we dancer around that dirty secret, never daring to be physically demonstrative in front of others. In the days after his sons death, he started officially introducing me as his girlfriend, even in front of his ex. But I wasnt bold enough to hug him or kiss him in front of others as I wanted to . He needs and deserves a partner fully at his side without controversy. As much as I yearn for it to be me, that could only happen with a certain subterfuge. His ex was free for that and he engaged her to do so. He knew what he was doing but he was also taking care of himself. In short, my big regret is that it took so long for me to take action with my marriage that I wasnt available enough to support the man I love in his hour of need. And once I finally make the move, it will be too late. Of course, once I became fully available, he might have left me for his ex anyway, even if his son were alive. Theres no way to know. So, for now, all I can do is assume they are together and move on. Im jealous and I hate this.
  12. Thank you, kayc, for the suggestions and fir sharing your experiences. Ive been re-reading your's and Rae's responses as well as messages on other threads and it is really helping me to shift my focus away from regret about how, because of my marital status, I actually am worth less because I could not truly give him the kind of steady support he needs and deserves, to what is good for me. Maybe the intensity of grief serves to hasten the inevitable by washing away the griever's BS to reveal their hidden truth. I realize that he has kept this particular ex in his back pocket for 8 years and this would not necessarily change once my status does, even after our relationship moves forward. I remember when he was in the initial throws of grief he told me that he could only focus on the most important people in his life. Everything else felt like intolerable chatter. Initially, it seemed that his sons death was drawing us closer. But once the ex fully stepped in (he invited it) that fell away fast. I became chatter. Im sure he really did love me. But he loves her more. Maybe the balance would be different under different circumstances, but maybe not. Rae, thank you for pointing out the red flag. Its actually a dealbreaker. Right now, whats good for me is to move forward with my life. Let go of this man but keep the lesson, which is that I really need to cut ties with my marriage as I do want to be available to love. Making sense of this helps to take the immediate squeeze off my heart. I was able to actually enjoy time with friends last night. Im looking forward to being able to focus on other things. One step at a time.
  13. I just want to chime in and express my appreciation for all th thoughts expressed in this thread. Especially validation for the fact that we acted with love and didn't do anything to deserve such treatment. Im beginning to see that, although this type of behavior is not uncommon with grief, it is not a rule. Some people grow closer to loved ones through sharing the experience. We, the brokenhearted, would do anything to support our loved one. The rejection reaction seems indicative of underlying problems with our partners that would probably have come out over time. We tried our best to be good to them; it can be hard to accept but Im thinking that they are not good for us.
  14. Thank you Kayc and Rae for your very thoughtful and loving responses. Its helpful to hear from both sides of this dilemma. In fact, this particular ex-wife (shes the last of 3 - they share no children in common ) has interfered with all of his other relationships since their divorce 8 years ago and its sonething Ive been anxious about all along. Our relationship seems to have lasted the longest and gone deeper than the rest. Not long before his son died, sweetie sensed my anxiety and promised he would never leave me for her. He explained his girlfriends over the years were really good women but he did not love any of them; its harder than I realize to find someone, that its taken years and years to find me and thats not something to be taken for granted. I am so special, good for him, etc. And so I let go my anxiety, opened my heart completely and trusted him. Since I havent heard from him in more than a week, I think Rae is right and I can assume he decided to go back with the ex. And that hurts so much more than a total retreat which, knowing him, seems unlikely but is still remotely possible. I am a very strong person who can handle the all the moods and walls that go up with grief, except being left for the ex. Maybe it would have happened eventually, even if his son was alive and well. But thats also impossible to say. Im still chewing on whether his grief can be a mitigating factor. My friends all say that he isnt accountable for crazy reactions during these initial weeks; that he and the ex divorced for a reason; give him time and space, which I am doing, and he will return. Then I remember and believe in all the love he professed and get hopeful. But that hope also keeps me attached to an outcome with him. And so the pain rushes back in force each time I look at my phone and see that he has not contacted me. Because, truly, I have waited a lonely lifetime to meet a someone that I love and with whom I want to share my life. Thats him. Clearly he does not value me the same way. And thats truly devastating. Even if he does come back around, how could I trust him? If I reengage with him after being devalued in this way, could he possibly respect and treasure me as I deserve? Please forgive me for sounding like a broken record. These are the questions that keep spinning like a tornado in my mind. Obviously my hearts desire is for him to return to me. But I know you guys are right that I need to focus on my own healing. I believe you both that time will help. In the meantime, what else can I do make that happen? Im so tired of walking wounded and I need my strength to deal with my marriage, the dissolution of which will surely come with its own grieving process.
  15. Greetings, I decided to reach out to this community after reading most of the stories of love and loss that are strikingly similar to mine in many ways. First of all, I would like to convey that I am so sorry that any of us has to go through this kind of pain. It is almost relentless; the feeling that I cant breathe, cant focus, waking me up at night, squeezing my heart and cutting me off from any sense of joy. Is this what grief feels like? Before I share about my situation, I would also like to ask that you try to suspend judging me for aspects of my situation that some may find objectionable as my heart is pure with love and so broken by loss. Ill start with the controversial stuff. Im in the process of separating from a long term marriage that has been troubled for decades. Over the years, we developed completely separate lifestyles, which reduced the amount of fighting but resulted in estrangement. His passion for performing arts keeps him singularly focused on the next gig and life on the road while I maintained stable employment and raised the kids on my own. As the kids got older, I developed my own interests and connections that kept me busy but at the core lonely and ashamed of being a married woman , always alone, essentially living a single life. I longed for a partner to share my life with. Aside from the usual fear of change, the main factor keeping me from breaking up the household is my younger child (I have 2). She is now 19 and recently went through a serious rebellious phase where I almost lost her. Given all that she was into, Im lucky and grateful that she lives at home, is doing very well now, and going off to college in a couple of months. The family unit has been an important a stabilizing force and Ive been reluctant to break up the household before she moves out. So, thats the background. This story really starts almost a year and a half ago. I met a man on a group excursion overseas. We met on the bus and natrually spent most of the time on the trip together - activities. meals, travel, etc. No hanky panky. Looking back, I realize we instantly fell in love. On the last day of the trip, I told him about my situation and that I couldnt be more than friends until after my daughter moved out. Upon arriving home, I felt a deep shift nside of me. Being married felt intolerable and I began exploring how to make the break. Try as we might, this man and I could not stop thinking about each other. We kept in touch almost daily and would see each other for dinner, activities, etc. The connection felt so intensely sweet that, even though we had not taken things to the next level, we could not help but express our love for each other. In addition to the sweet sweet emotional connection, we had so many common interests and tendencies that we enjoyed every moment together and could communicate on a level I never experienced before. Even difficult discussions were positive experiences. For the first time in my life, I could talk about relationship problems with a man and have us both come away feeling enriched having learned about ourselves and the other person. This is the aspect of our relationship that I value the most. So we went back and forth but our love deepened further each day as I worked to find a way out of my situation. We started making plans for the future that we were both excited about. I explored many options before finding a lawyer that laid out a good plan. I was all set to have the conversation with my husband a couple of weeks ago while my daughter was on a class trip abroad. Then something unthinkable happened. 3 days before she was set to leave for her trip, we took his adult son out to dinner. The son was on home leave after 8 months of sobriery at rehab far away. It was to be his last night in town and we had a wonderful dinner together before going to our separate homes. The next morning, the boy was found cold in his bed with foam coming out of his mouth. At some point on the night, he relapsed and died of an overdose. When my sweetie told me what happened, I raced to him. His sons body was still in the house as well as several relatives, his sons mother and her husband. We hugged each other for a long time. Then the family set about making calls to tell people what happened. Every ounce of my being wanted only to take care of my sweetie. It did not feel right fir him to spend the night alone in the house where hours earlier he found his son dead. Ipacked an overnight bag, prepared to tell my family eveything. But he didnt want me to stay. Instead, his most recent exwife (they divorced 8 yeare ago) slept on the couch For the next few days leading up to the funeral the house was full of friends and relatives. He started formally introducing me as his girlfriend and I finally met the ex wife. It was uncomfortable at first as I sensed that she resented me abd felt competitive. I did my best to be gracious toward her and we seemed to get along well enough. Emotionally, my sweetie was all over the map. When everyone left and we were alone he would alternate between extreme love and appreciation, flashes of anger, remorse, etc. At the end of it all, he would tell how good I am for him and reassure me that I have his heart. At the funeral reception, he had several flashes of anger toward me about nonsense (ex I ate the brownie) but we parted on loving terms. It hurt my heart but I stayed strong when I was with him and my heart stayed with him 100%. I returned home feeling so wrought and like I could not continue living like this. In the morning, I had "the conversation" and broke up with my husband. At my lawyers advice, I had arranged a place to stay to be a haven where I could stay when things got tense without giving up presence in my own home. My sweetie did not know anything about my move. I didnt want to stress him out. But sonehow, as if by magic, he seemed to shift. He didnt want to see me again until the weekend. We kept in touch my text, but now I became the iniator and his responses were flat and devoid of love. After 3 days, we got together for dinner on Saturday. In person, it was affectionate and close. He shared about his feelings of grief and I told him about how I launched. I felt conforted in his presence that we would both be okay. That was the last time I saw him. He made plans for the next day that he would not tell me about. His messages were sparse and he repearedly cancelled plans to get together to talk saying he cant see me, was tired and couldnt focus. This went on for a week before I called him and asked what's going on. He said his exwife had spent a lot of time at his house and he us confused about his feelings, doesnt want yo get involved in my marital conflict, and he cant think or focus. He said that he had not gotten back together with the ex, nor had they been intimate, but he feels he needs to make q decision. I let himknow that I would not compete with his ex and so would stop initiating contact. The last thing he said was "I do love you". That was more than a week ago and I have heard nothing from him. I feel that he is lost to me. The grief, compounded by my own grief for his son, feels unbearable. Reading your stories, I see that it is not uncommon for a grieving person to shut love out. But still, Im devastated that he did not protect our relationship, which was beautiful and had a future. That he chose to shut me out in favor of his most recent ex (they do not share any children) who bickers with him and left him mostly because she did not approve of his parenting. I feel so broken inside. I know I need to move ahead with legally dissolving my family but hardly have the strength to function at all. I sleep on the ciuch at home, cant focus at work and keep making mistakes. I repeatedly replay all these events and berate myself for not making myself more available earlier. I am on pins and needles both longing for and dreading he will get in touch. So far, nothing. How does it happen that one day I am the most special person hes waited his whole life for and the next day nothing. How could he just throw me away? How can I go on? Sorry this has gotten so long. And for any writing errors and typos as Im using my phone for this post. Love and gratitude to anyone that has read this far and has any insight to share.
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