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#232531 - 06/22/08 07:28 AM Partners Seeking Closure of Survivor relationships
indygal Offline
Member

Registered: 06/22/06
Posts: 439
Yeah, it's me, hi there - for those of you who recall - and hello to those who don't know me from a rat's ass - or care -

I had an epiphany today that I felt was so significant I thought I'd come on here and post that others in similar situations might weigh in, as well as offer a subject for survivors to think about.

Like so many other women who've found themselves in a relationship w/a survivor, I found it difficult to end the relationship when it was clear it wasn't going in a positive direction.

And like a song that hits the top of the charts so the stations can't seem to find anything else to play, he and I kept doing the routine of on again, off again, back and forth, confusion at its best.

The past few days I've been trying to word it so I could tell him, let me go, let me be, I have gone on with my life, even tho he seems to think I haven't. Yes, I still have feelings, I always will but I am very realistic about what's possible and him and me right now is not an equation with a solution.

In fact, he's been so rude lately it was like, I no longer gave a flying f*ck if he got help or not, I did my best, I walked away several months ago (when I left this site) but I knew what I needed, deep down inside, was closure. I just needed to hear us both agree it wasn't going to work, that he needed to deal with his issues, or not, but as it was, it wasn't going to work. Up to this point all I ever got was everything was my fault when we were together but if I stayed away he missed me. Enough to drive anyone batty.

I've been pushing harder and harder and brought up the MS website again last week. Don't know if it did any good but from experience he rarely misses even a syllable of anything I say to him.

Then today, I glimpsed the pain, the agony, the defeat. He said he was sorry, he couldn't talk to me. Just like that. He was sorry; the pain in his voice was palpable. I haven't heard that, well, maybe ever from him.

Afterwards, I was just a bit miffed. It's like, but I NEED CLOSURE DAMN IT!!

Why can't I have just this little bit of consolation?? CLOSURE!! I just need that, ok?

Looks like I wasn't going to get it and all day I've pondered about it.

Then it hit me - of course - survivors couldn't stop the most horrific, terrifying events in their lives (except perhaps in extremely rare circumstances when they finally grew up but even then the past was still with them). They couldn't stop, put an end, to the worst nightmare anyone ever imagined - how could they be expected to put closure on a so-called "normal" relationship? ever?

No wonder so many women are so perplexed about our relationships and their status, our status, go or stay, work it out, leave it alone, whatever!!!

OH MY GOD!!

For all the posts I've ever seen on here, I've never seen one about this and I certainly hope people will respond because I think it's really important. I can see how the partner, in this case, me, would just wander around aimlessly for some time perplexed, indecisive and hesitant to let go when the guy cannot decide either. Given how close we usually have become before we learn about the csa makes it even more difficult.

ok, I'll stop here. I really do need closure and hopefully, this post is going to help me get me back on track. At the very least, it will give some folks something to think about.

Sorry guys, yes, if you weren't aware of it before, it's also maybe something else screwed up in your lives. Just look at it this way tho, knowing about it gives you amunition to deal with it, ok?

Indygal

_________________________
my avatar is one of the Battle Angel characters, fighting the good fight.

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#232538 - 06/22/08 09:49 AM Re: Survivors and closure in relationships [Re: indygal]
KENKEN Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 09/25/07
Posts: 762
Loc: NOTHERN COLORADO
Indygal,

There was a time a few months back that my GF, at that time did post here and did communicate w/you. I do understand what you are saying, loud and clear. It was evident to her many months ago that our relationship was never going to survive. We both thought that the Love we had or thought we had for each other would endure. That was not the case and she did move out and o n with her life 3 months ago. She wanted a normal relationship. To a survivor I certainly didn't know and still don't know what normal is. How could I? My life was and will never be normal. I am dealing with my CSA, I will always deal with my CSA. My GF couldn't deal with me and that is/was ok. It takes very special people to understand or care to understand and be strong and willing to deal/put up with us survivors. Sometimes I think back it would have been easier if she didn't care about my fears/emotions/feelings/ thoughts. I was good to her, but she wanted to know my every thought. And that I don't even know about myself.

So, as far as closure, I don't know how you should do it. I can only say for me, I am happy that both of us were strong enough to know and understand that it/relationships cannot endure only on love. There must be TRUST AND FORGIVEING> and in my relationship we had neither for each other.

Ken

_________________________
I AM A GOOD PERSON, I AM A GOOD MAN

From the Movie: Antwone Fisher

***WOR ALUMNI SEQUOIA MARCH 2008***

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#232541 - 06/22/08 10:14 AM Re: Survivors and closure in relationships [Re: indygal]
Liv2124 Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 08/02/06
Posts: 159
Loc: New Jersey
Indygal,
Excellent post. I've wondered how things were going for you after you left the site months ago.
I agree with you on the closure aspect. I would find it difficult myself. I think, being in a relationship with a survivor, we become accustomed to the volatile ups and downs that seem to happen at a moment's notice, without warning. Everything could be going fine and something triggers him and then enters the anxiety,mood swings, nausea, etc. What was okay for 3 years might not be okay tomorrow. It always leaves me staring and him and asking, "What is this REALLY about?!". Nothing is ever what it looks like. Nothing is ever easy.
And the rudeness? Yes, I've been there too. There has been a time or two when I've been tempted to slap the silly out of him. There have been times when I've been told that everything wrong between us is my fault and other times I've been told that not everything is about me. Batty is an understatement at best.
I push the MS website, I push the therapist, I push medication. (Although, recently, he agreed to medication and is giving it a try.) Like your guy, things I don't think he's hearing me say come back to me at a later time. He doesn't miss anything either.
You've been crystal clear on what you need and want from this point on, but it's not what he wants to hear.
Always,
Liv


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#232738 - 06/23/08 08:47 AM Re: Survivors and closure in relationships [Re: Liv2124]
indygal Offline
Member

Registered: 06/22/06
Posts: 439
thanks to both of you for your insightful replies.

I'm trying to write out to myself what I feel about all this and what I need him to understand. Then will see how much is left, if I've emptied the pot, so to speak.

a lot of this is about guilt on my part - I just can't help feeling guilty - that if I could have done just x, y, z, he would have understood, believed, and started the healing process.

I know this is unrealistic but I think a lot of people probably feel similarly. We always want to know - did we do enough? can I go now, have I really done my best or am I just too tired to do anything more?

I hope some other folks will respond to this. Honestly, I do. I hope I wasn't too cranky in the first post, but really this roller coaster makes me very tired.

Indy

_________________________
my avatar is one of the Battle Angel characters, fighting the good fight.

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#232769 - 06/23/08 01:27 PM Re: Survivors and closure in relationships [Re: indygal]
Trish4850 Offline
BoD Liaison Emeritus
MaleSurvivor<

Registered: 10/15/05
Posts: 3280
Loc: New Jersey
Hi Indy,

At the first therapy session I was invited to with my b/f, the T asked me, "what if it doesn't get any better than this?" My long reaction to that question at that time, is another story, but one of the things I said was that I had no intention of leaving my b/f. I love him, he's a good man and I want him in my life for a long, long time. I also said that if he feels he can't do this (our relationship) then he would have to tell me so, 'cause I didn't plan on going anywhere.

The T then told me that expecting my b/f to tell me such a thing, truth or not, was asking a lot of him. I was a bit shocked and asked her why. For crying out loud we were both adults in our 40's so I don't think it's too much to ask for some honesty, especially if we're talking about the survival or not of our relationship. She looked me squarely in the eye and told me he wouldn't be capable of it. He would have no ability to be the one to walk away. He would push me until I finally had enough and walked away, but he would not be able to stand up and say this isn't good for me, so we're done.

I was really blown away by this and more than a little frightened. How would I be able to tell if he wanted out? He really doesn't push me away much, but occasionally it's there. So what do I do with that? How would I figure out the "normal" push-pull behaviors with the push that meant, "leave me alone forever?" It took a while, but I've calmed down since this happened 2 years ago and figured things out (I hope) but it was not easy.

The point of this post is that "closure" from your survivor friend may not be possible in the way you wish it to be for the simple reason that he's incapable of such action. If he pushes you away and you go, it's your fault. Yes, it was because of his behaviors, but the bottom line is that you couldn't handle him and besides, he knew that's the way it's supposed to be anyway, so what's new?

I'm sure the guys will correct me if I'm wrong, but I think a survivor can be just as incapable of being the one to say goodbye in a relationship as he is to being the one to initiate it. Both require a self confidence that survivors don't have, until the work is done to repair it.

ROCK ON........Trish

_________________________
If you fall down 10 times, Stand up 11.

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#232788 - 06/23/08 03:34 PM Re: Survivors and closure in relationships [Re: Trish4850]
NY Daisy Offline
New Here

Registered: 02/29/08
Posts: 183
trish, I think you are dead on,my H has over the course of 19 years together has threatened to leave and has pushed me away many times. He has never actually left. He usually even forgets he ever said anything or says, "saying your leaving and actually doing it are two different things."
Now that I have reached my breaking point with him, and explained that I just can't continue like this, his response is, " ok that's up to you. Let me know what your plans are, if you decide to leave I will not stand in your way." for many years I have on and off felt that he has wanted out, but did not want to be the one to end it. He does not want to be the "bad guy", it hurts me that he is so willing to let me go when I have fought all these years to have him stay.
As for closure, I don't think it is completely possible. For me I don't think my H can see past his own pain, to even begin to see mine,and how all this has taken a toll on me over the years.
Indy I know exactly what you mean about the guilt. I am struggling with the decision to continue and am trying to decide what is best for me. My H is in denial, and I feel so guilty for even thinking about it. I feel so selfish. I just cannot help someone who doesn't think he needs help. He thinks I'm the one with problems. It is all so hard. Don't beat yourself up, at some point you must do what is best for you,you deserve it. You tried your best and that is all anyone can ask of someone.
Best wishes, NY DAISY


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#232915 - 06/24/08 12:16 AM Re: Survivors and closure in relationships [Re: NY Daisy]
Brokenhearted Offline
Member

Registered: 08/07/06
Posts: 644
Loc: TX
I've been away for a time too...I ck back once ina while, like tonight...

Indy, first, welcome back and I'm wondered about you...

Wow...trish, I've been blown away - "he would not be able to stand up and say this isn't good for me, so we're done."

Is this similar to how they feel when they act out? Or cheat when they're married, even though they are risking everything? They just do not have that ability to stand up and say no more, it's bad for me???

Wow, what a parallel...

_________________________
Brokenhearted

It were better for him that a millstone were hanged around his neck, and he cast into the sea, than that he should offend one of these little ones.
Luke 17:2

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#233005 - 06/24/08 08:30 AM Re: Survivors and closure in relationships [Re: Trish4850]
indygal Offline
Member

Registered: 06/22/06
Posts: 439
Originally Posted By: Trish4850
The T then told me that expecting my b/f to tell me such a thing, truth or not, was asking a lot of him. I was a bit shocked and asked her why. For crying out loud we were both adults in our 40's so I don't think it's too much to ask for some honesty, especially if we're talking about the survival or not of our relationship. She looked me squarely in the eye and told me he wouldn't be capable of it. He would have no ability to be the one to walk away. He would push me until I finally had enough and walked away, but he would not be able to stand up and say this isn't good for me, so we're done.


wow Trish - even tho I felt pretty confident in my assessment of the situation in his being incapable of ending things the way one might expect, it's mind-blowing to hear that a T spoke on just this subject confirming it.

thanks so much for sharing this with us. in a way it seemed so obvious after thinking about it but at the same time, not at all.

Originally Posted By: Trish4850
The point of this post is that "closure" from your survivor friend may not be possible in the way you wish it to be for the simple reason that he's incapable of such action. If he pushes you away and you go, it's your fault. Yes, it was because of his behaviors, but the bottom line is that you couldn't handle him and besides, he knew that's the way it's supposed to be anyway, so what's new?


I think part of it is his desperation and obsessive need for control - he can't have me walking away without him doing so first but the only time he does try and end things he's in a temper and always comes back later remorseful and regretting things. He can't sit down and discuss what works and what doesn't.

Unfortunately, our situation differed from yours and others in that he hasn't take steps towards recovery and is unwilling to do so. Trish, I hope you do realize how fortunate you are in this regard - I never would have given up if he had been willing to work towards recovery.

Originally Posted By: Trish4850
I'm sure the guys will correct me if I'm wrong, but I think a survivor can be just as incapable of being the one to say goodbye in a relationship as he is to being the one to initiate it. Both require a self confidence that survivors don't have, until the work is done to repair it.


along with that is also a self-awareness of what one can do and cannot; these are life skills some of us take for granted, no doubt. Understanding our own limitations in one of the most valuable life lessons we can ever learn; with this comes the knowledge and understanding of whether or not a relationship has a future or is at least worth working on. I can easily see how I used my own experiences to determine this with him. From what I've learned about male survivors I can appreciate how difficult and even impossible, this might be for him.

Again, thanks Trish, for your post and insight. It's immensely beneficial.

all the best,
Indy

_________________________
my avatar is one of the Battle Angel characters, fighting the good fight.

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#233010 - 06/24/08 08:42 AM Re: Survivors and closure in relationships [Re: Brokenhearted]
indygal Offline
Member

Registered: 06/22/06
Posts: 439
Originally Posted By: Brokenhearted
"he would not be able to stand up and say this isn't good for me, so we're done."

Is this similar to how they feel when they act out? Or cheat when they're married, even though they are risking everything? They just do not have that ability to stand up and say no more, it's bad for me???

Wow, what a parallel..


Hi BH,

I have to say, when this epiphany came to me - I knew absolutely I was not alone. I thought immediately of you and your situation and Becky as well - don't know if she's still reading here or not. A couple of others, I don't recall their names.

I honestly think this does have a lot of parallels - including a survivor's life in general, not just between men and women, but less than suitable jobs, friends that aren't good for them, all around bad habits. I can see how perhaps there is a paralysis even of not being able to stop doing things one might want to stop but simply can't.

My (now former) bf for instance works in a profession that is certainly respectable but has nothing to do w/his education and even less to do with his own personal interests. Even he ridicules his job sometimes and it's frustrating to see someone with so much talent not even appear to try to find a different path.

How could it not be related to the csa? again, the worst nightmare one could ever imagine and one cannot stop it - one must surely be convinced one can never stop anything, that one simply doesn't have the power, or deserve anything else?

I can also see a parallel with battered women who came from battered childhoods, like myself. I'm not sure why I was able to fight my way out of it, but I often attribute the few kind people I knew along the way who encouraged me and nurtured my soul. Perhaps w/survivors the stigma is partly to blame? those who tried to tell no one helped? or because it was family? I don't know those answers and can't speculate any more right now.

Thanks BH for taking the time to post, I hope this discussion helps your situation even a little bit.

all the best,
Indy

_________________________
my avatar is one of the Battle Angel characters, fighting the good fight.

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#233013 - 06/24/08 08:47 AM Re: Survivors and closure in relationships [Re: NY Daisy]
indygal Offline
Member

Registered: 06/22/06
Posts: 439
NY Daisy,

what you describe sounds so familiar, sigh....

it's so amazing, isn't it? the patterns, after a while, they become so predictable even as each day we don't know what to expect.

thanks for posting, I appreciate it.

all the best,
Indy

_________________________
my avatar is one of the Battle Angel characters, fighting the good fight.

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