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A Message from Michele
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Re: If I knew where I was going I'd lose my way [Re: Fogg] #2902080
08/15/20 03:57 AM
08/15/20 03:57 AM
Joined: Feb 2015
Posts: 1,886
Right where I need to be
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Fogg Offline OP
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Fogg  Offline OP
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Right where I need to be
Deja, thereís just so much to dating I just donít understand. Having been out of it so long, on top of never really having experience before hand. A friend set me up with my ex-w, I married her, then divorced and single since then. Itís good to hear others have similar struggle, makes me think there are others out there and it just is a numbers game of sorting through them. But that just sounds awful at the same time. I guess a positive is With each wrong person you interact with, you learn a little more of who you are and what you need from a R.

Talking to and even dating multiple people at the same time really does feel very disingenuous. It likely is is it just how dating works now, but I havenít wrapped my head around how I feel about it. Mostly because I know I have challenges mentioned above with getting attached to people, and I see where taking to several people might give me space to really understand how I feel about someone without the rose tinted glasses. At least at the very beginning.

I wouldnít say your example was ghosting. Ghosting to me is when you disappear without word, where you may have had expectations of another date and the person was going to ďget back to youĒ but never does. You clearly told him you werenít interested and he wouldnít accept that. To me it sounded like you did exactly what you should have in that situation and really enforced your own healthy boundary.

Iím doing alright now, I always push through without the ADís and get to a comfortable place. I think there were times I could have taken them and avoided some unnecessary suffering, but at this point Iím just doing so much better in life itís not really a concern I guess. This last year of counseling really has been significant for me in many ways and now thatís itís nearly over Iím just starting to really recognize the extent of how much Iíve changed and grown over the last year. Iím also excited because I was told a good deal of the healing takes place 6-9 months after itís over and it doesnít end when IC ends. Plus, my current IC is looking for someone else I can shift into to work on interpersonal relationships and this last week I really understood how much I struggle with them.. Iím anxious but excited. Iím sure thatís very vague on what I mean with,, but Iíll explain more at some point just to log it and get thoughts


Accept what is, let go of what was, and have faith in what will be
Re: If I knew where I was going I'd lose my way [Re: Fogg] #2902084
08/15/20 06:42 AM
08/15/20 06:42 AM
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Not too vague...lol. I think I know what you mean.

Re: dating multiple people. I get the theory behind it for sure. I think I can talk to multiple people at the same time with not too much difficulty. I can also meet multiple people as well. But once I get to the second date with someone (this is rare...I have to really click with someone to get there), I start to feel uncomfortable. I know that technically there isnít anything wrong with it but it just feels wrong. I really would prefer to focus on one person at a time even though I know that probably leaves me more vulnerable to being hurt (as in my latest fiasco).

I watch a lot of YouTube videos of relationship and dating experts. There are so many doís and donítís and contradicting advice. It gets really confusing. Hard to be genuine with someone when you are trying to keep all of the rules in mind. Starts to feel like a game after awhile and sadly, I am just not that good at games. Part of me feels like giving up but then another part of me canít imagine being on my own for the rest of my life. I just feel better when I am in a relationship and a partner to someone. I am also super affectionate so I miss the physical closeness as well as the emotional closeness that relationships provide.

My biggest challenge, I am quickly learning, is in managing my expectations of other people and not expecting other people to act the way I would. That definitely gets me into trouble. I also take people at face value and am way too trusting in what people say...despite having been married to someone who lies more often than not. I am just really honest so it still surprises me when I run into people who are not.

Great to hear about the work you are doing with your IC and that youíve been making a lot of progress. Iím curious about your thoughts on interpersonal relationships. What do you think the struggle is for you?


Me 51
H 46
B/G Twins 11
SD19
Legal SA - January 2019
Divorce filed - June 2019
Divorce final - November 2019

Together 14 years
Married 12 years
BD1 - May 2014
BD2 - September 14, 2018

Re: If I knew where I was going I'd lose my way [Re: Fogg] #2902095
08/15/20 02:51 PM
08/15/20 02:51 PM
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Ginger1 Online
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Iím sorry about your experience Fogg, and it is clearly no reflection of you.

Before OLD, ghosting wasnít as prevalent and people werenít so disposable because we used to meet someone in a group, a friend of a friend, at school, in town, etc. people knew people and they couldnít get away with just ghosting someone. Now itís easy. No ties, no image to keep up of a decent person.

And Iíve been at this dating thing for many many many many years and I still donít get it, and I still stink at it. But Iím getting better in realizing very key things that help me move forward.

Just remember, you are the prize

Re: If I knew where I was going I'd lose my way [Re: Fogg] #2902107
08/15/20 07:02 PM
08/15/20 07:02 PM
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Massachusetts
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i kinda like the no image to keep up as a decent person because - hear me out - weeds out the trash very quickly.

xo


M 20+ T25+
S 15.5 (BD)
BD 4/6/15
H moved out 4/24/15
D Final 12/23/16
When God gives you a new beginning don't repeat the same old mistakes. It's 2020, anything could happen; eat dessert first!!!!
Re: If I knew where I was going I'd lose my way [Re: Fogg] #2902123
08/16/20 01:57 AM
08/16/20 01:57 AM
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No doubt Bttrfly...no doubt. smile


Me 51
H 46
B/G Twins 11
SD19
Legal SA - January 2019
Divorce filed - June 2019
Divorce final - November 2019

Together 14 years
Married 12 years
BD1 - May 2014
BD2 - September 14, 2018

Re: If I knew where I was going I'd lose my way [Re: Fogg] #2902142
08/16/20 01:42 PM
08/16/20 01:42 PM
Joined: Feb 2015
Posts: 1,886
Right where I need to be
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Fogg Offline OP
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Deja,

A few years ago I was looking into advice also (my IC suggested I look at it again) but I got the same impression. It felt like a set of rules to follow and almost like a game. I see the logic behind some of it but it really feels like it shouldnít work that way. I guess until I actually try it I really wouldnít know. I struggle with the honestly of things and people following through with what they say. I think thatís why it annoys me so much when someone says they will get back to me but never do. Just send a message and be done, how hard is that? Iím probably too trusting of people also, when they say something I take it as the truth. As for the interpersonal stuff, it was just a foreign concept to talk about with my IC. She had 3 categories of how we balance the health of these relationships. Basically what came form it is I almost ignore the first and thirds category and instead prioritize ensuring the relationship remained positive. Which means I never ask for help, I rarely balance my own needs and I just avoid conflict. I realized something my manager at work frequently pushes me to do, and itís something I struggle with, is offloading work to others and asking for help. Ill end up just doing things myself instead of offloading something because I hate inconveniencing others. I end up mentoring people in our group and I really am the go to person for getting something fixed now. I think I have the respect of everyone in our group and they trust me for advice,, so I float between most of the projects there with my hands touching everything. My manager is basically setting me into more of a supervisor role even though that role doesnít exist. However, thereís one project Iíve still managed almost on my own with no help for 4 years now and when that project has work to be done, Ill end up just doing the majority of it myself. Also, if thereís any resistance from the person Iím asking something to be done, even if it is literary their job, Iíll do what I can to just get it done myself instead of risking the awkwardness/confrontation. Itís not all the time, but enough where these things slow down what I could be doing. This certainly stems from my past with my parents and ex. Being abandoned and never accepted means reaching out and asking for anything makes me feel ill automatically be rejected. Feelings of worthlessness and being unloveable tie in with that. So in most my relationships I carry those thoughts and it keeps be from asking for or even expecting my own needs to be met.

Ginger.

That thought ďyou are the prizeĒ is elusive for me. I may have held the belief and really believed it 10% of the time a couple years ago. I might be closer to 40% of the time now. I guess itís getting better, but still needs work. I think the one thing that keeps me sane is knowing even if I have shitty experiences going forward with dating, Iíll still learn a bit about myself with each experience.. Even if itís more about my own preferences or what I would and wouldnít accept from a partner.


Accept what is, let go of what was, and have faith in what will be
Re: If I knew where I was going I'd lose my way [Re: Fogg] #2902150
08/16/20 02:52 PM
08/16/20 02:52 PM
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That thought ďyou are the prizeĒ is elusive for me.


Look - itís a mindset that many of us have when dating - ď will he like me? Will he pick me?Ē

But it SHOULD be - ďIs he worth of my time and affection? Does he have the qualities Iím looking for in a partner?Ē

Our neediness and insecurity (and lifetime of being fed Prince Charming fairytales) sets us up for this.

I remember being puzzled by the girls that had men running after them, plying them with gifts when I was 20. They werenít prettier than me. They werenít nicer than me. What they were was - disinterested. They sat back and let the men prove themselves to them. They weighed who was most willing to pursue them - and they let them. The men knew they had competition for the girlsí affections and they stepped up their game.

I still donít want to be like them, but we could learn a few things. They believed that they were the prize and we should too. Any guy who is REALLY what we want will believe that about us as well. We donít need to be with men who think weíre second rate or ďgood enough for nowĒ. Instead of thinking ďPick me! Pick me!Ē we should be focusing on ďIs he kind enough? How does he treat the waitress? What do we have in common? Are our goals and values similar?Ē

Look - the very fact that youíre here means youíre a person of intelligence and insight, with a capacity for self-examination and for love. Those are very valuable things.

Re: If I knew where I was going I'd lose my way [Re: Fogg] #2902151
08/16/20 03:12 PM
08/16/20 03:12 PM
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What KML said...for sure. I still struggle with that but Iím working on it.

Wow Fogg. You really have done some work, havenít you? Those are great insights. So you are half way there. You know what it is that is holding you back and now you just have to change your behaviour. That is by far the hardest part. If insight was all we needed, this site would not have as many people on it as it does...lol.

My challenges are around managing my expectations (as in not having any). When I let them get too high, I end up sabotaging myself as I start to act on my emotions instead of using my brain since I always know what I SHOULD do. But when I get too emotional, instead of telling me to hold up and take a breather, my brain comes up with justifications for my feelings. Such a hard habit to break but Iím working on it...intensely.

Anyway...keep up the good work Fogg!! You are doing great. (((HUGS)))


Me 51
H 46
B/G Twins 11
SD19
Legal SA - January 2019
Divorce filed - June 2019
Divorce final - November 2019

Together 14 years
Married 12 years
BD1 - May 2014
BD2 - September 14, 2018

Re: If I knew where I was going I'd lose my way [Re: Fogg] #2902198
08/17/20 04:23 PM
08/17/20 04:23 PM
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What KML said word for word - and kind of what I was saying. Make it about you. OLD is hard for guys and itís a number game - so the good thing is that you are getting dates. (That alone can be really hard for men) but yeah - when your on the date view it as a night out - not an interview for the woman you are going to grow old with.... that alone conveys the message of detached.

I think I was successful at dating because I was so desperate to escape my life of single mom and just have fun with someone - that it Ended up making me more appealing. I kept things light when it came to relationship talk but deep with topics I found interesting. I think thatís the trick.

In general , I tended to not worry about whether someone likes me. So maybe if you can turn off that part of you that takes it personally? And work on confidence and being ok with yourself.


M: 42
H: 43
Twins age 5
WAH in summer
Re: If I knew where I was going I'd lose my way [Re: Fogg] #2903195
09/06/20 05:25 AM
09/06/20 05:25 AM
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Fogg Offline OP
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kml, Deja, Juju. I spent some time thinking on what you were saying with dating. I think I understood it, but I just wasn't sure how I put it into practice. I did a little testing since then. There was one woman I was talking to around the same time I read this. I really tried to shut down my brain and just enjoy it for what it was, without attaching too much to it. I enjoyed talking to her and we had a virtual date scheduled for that Saturday. The day before she actually cancelled and sent me a message saying she wasn't in a place to date and wished me luck. She was talking care of her parents, and her mother was going through chemo and surgery in a few days. I thanked her and told her I appreciated her letting me know and wished her and her family good luck also. I think looking at things like I was just having fun helped a bunch, and that didn't bother me much. I actually was still on the dating apps and had started chatting a little bit with someone else at the same time, which I'm sure helped too. That was 2 weeks ago, and a lot has happened since then with this one. I got her phone number pretty quickly and we went out a date a few days later. I'l be honest, I wasn't looking forward to the date at all that day. I was just so tired and didn't want to invest any energy info what dating took, but I went anyway to keep things moving on me being open to dating and having fun. We had a good time, conversation flowed really well and she talked a lot. I realized from future conversations that's one of her coping mechanisms, she talks when shes nervous and doesn't like awkward silence. While I wasn't super attracted to her then, there were things I did like about her. Physically, personality, values. I kissed her at the end of the first date and it felt comfortable. The other people I kissed in the few dates I've had the last several years always felt really awkward and wrong, but this was different.

So we had a second date, and a third. 4th is a couple days from now. Second date was a lot better than the first and the third date was just awesome. We went out geocaching and just driving around when the sun was setting, a lot of kissing here and there and things were just so comfortable between us. We text a decent amount during the day too and I've learned even more about her and how she ticks. Shes even talked more future stuff and asking lots of questions to understand compatibility and see what I like and don't. The conversation of kids even came up when she was telling me of her work and how she travels and how that could impact kids later down the road. It felt like it fit so I explained my one thought on when I would consider involving kids if something got serious with someone I was dating. It felt like a really early time to say it, but I figured the things she was talking about were just checking for future roadblocks and deal breakers, and I know a lot of people don't agree with waiting that long, so I wanted to make sure she knew it now and she would either anticipate it or walk away knowing it wasn't for her. Basically I told her I wouldn't consider it until the 9 month mark. (real range would be 6-12 months, but I didn't say that). She is more comfortable at the 3 month range, but said she would accept and respect my thoughts on it if things got to that point. At some point after that she brought up the topic of sex and that she get attached too easily with it and needs for that until things are more serious. With more talking I've learned shes had a decent amount of partners and many of them were very short ones where they never started a relationship. So slept together after a couple dates and then it ended quickly. Shes not been in a full relationship in 6 years now, but shes slept with people around 10 times in that same period. Shes also had 4 major relationships in her life and slept with 19 different people total. She told me that after learning I had only been with 1-2 people in my life (second wasn't full sex but I still count it as something). I think it surprised her and she was anxious it would bother me. I don't judge her on it but I do think there is a slight insecurity with my own lack of it, so I wonder if I'll end up being judged if we get there and feel like I don't know what I'm doing. Small part of me is insecure anyway, I have another part that isn't and knows I have some skills that wont disappoint.

Anyway, she asks a lot of "is this a dealbreaker" type questions and wants to hear reassurances. Shes also always wondering what I'm thinking and wants to hear the positive things I might be thinking about her. Shes had some issues with a prior FWB that she fell for that never wanted more, and now she wants something different than her past experiences. Shes very open and shares whats on her mind. The one thing that has happened through all of this is I have intentionally avoided asking questions to "reassure" myself that she likes me. Because of the advice above and trying to believe it myself. I've told her a couple things I am insecure about, but I kept it very light and I mostly just enjoy the conversation and we talk. Its fun, but I think there's a good chance we will be sleeping with each other in the not so distant future and I would then be in a relationship. From the way shes talked shes just waiting on me to push it there. She said something like "just make sure you like me before you do it", so my reading of it is its more in my court than anything. Our second date we went on a hike in a nature park and it started to downpour, so we just said [censored] it and did it soaking wet. Again, amazing date and had fun. We got rushed by the park ranger closing the parking lot so I could only kiss her for a bit. Afterwards I said I learned my lesson and said should have done it earlier at this other place. She was surprised and didn't realize I was thinking about it there, because at the time she had wanted me to in that same spot, and several more. Basically shes not been sure on if I liked her and wanted me to do more, buts just waiting for me to make the moves. But she frequently says she feels safe with me now and comfortable, and says she knows but the way I talk to her that I'm not like the guys shes experienced before.

Oh, and a big thing I have noticed is we have both experienced abandonment in the past from our mothers but have almost opposite coping mechanisms from it. I keep people away and avoid talking to feel safe, whereas she talks to people to feel safe and ends up letting them in too quickly hoping they wont leave. There are other things I'm still gathering info on to understand her

I think I likely put too much in here, I was trying to get to a point of something I'm thinking and I'm just not sure how to explain it. I do really like her now and I think there's a high probability a relationship will start, but that "shut down your mind and just have a good time, you are the prize" mentality being switched on so much makes me a little anxious because there are still the opposite and old way of thinking lingering under the surface. I'm still heavily looking at things in the "I'm enjoying this and seeing where it goes. if it ends tomorrow I'll be fine, I'll jump back on the apps and try again because no one is "the one" and there are plenty of fish in the sea". Thanks for listening, sorry for the long post.


Accept what is, let go of what was, and have faith in what will be
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