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#407884 - 08/25/12 12:24 PM Expectations & Rasing the Bottom
Haps Offline


Registered: 07/06/12
Posts: 89
Loc: Ohio
I talked with my sponsor about being hurt by my ex here recently, and she brought up that my own expectations have let me down. Theoretically, I agree. In practice, I'm confused a bit.

How does one manage their expectations, especially with regard to a Survivor?

I'm also interested in hear more about "Rasing the bottom".

I know I'm not perfect, but I cant seem to shake the idea that I have to give up expectations.

Thoughts, anyone? :: cough :: Scotty? Martin? :: cough ::

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#407885 - 08/25/12 12:55 PM Re: Expectations & Rasing the Bottom [Re: Haps]
northernflicker Offline


Registered: 08/19/12
Posts: 88
.

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#407893 - 08/25/12 02:34 PM Re: Expectations & Rasing the Bottom [Re: Haps]
Valkyrie Offline


Registered: 04/27/12
Posts: 167
Um, ditto all the above....

Gentlemen...?

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#407896 - 08/25/12 02:46 PM Re: Expectations & Rasing the Bottom [Re: Haps]
Obi Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 12/28/09
Posts: 1308
Loc: kansas
the only thing i can say about expectations, and this applies to everyone not just survivors and supporters here on ms....

be prepared to be disappointed....



anyone can have their expectations... we all have them, in many forms of our daily lives...

i expect to get the meal that i ordered, and paid for, when i go to a restaurant... etc...

but as with everything, there will always be a time when our expecations do not get met..

you also can't expect a fish to climb a tree... that would 1. be unrealistic expectations and 2. would make a smart fish feel incredibly stupid ( used as an analogy )

so.. that still leaves the question that was originally asked...


the reality is not, to have, or not have expectations.... however, it's more in how we deal with the results from the expectations we place on others....

we can praise them when they accomplish the expecations... and when the expectations aren't met, we do our best to support instead of being frustrated and irate... not an easy thing to do, i will admit....

but like i said.. no matter how many expectations we put on others, they will not all be met... it's part of being human..


Edited by Obi (08/25/12 03:00 PM)
_________________________
live another day. climb a little higher.

my story

my vlog

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#407897 - 08/25/12 02:52 PM Re: Expectations & Rasing the Bottom [Re: Haps]
Valkyrie Offline


Registered: 04/27/12
Posts: 167
Thanks, Obi...I can understand that...

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#407898 - 08/25/12 03:06 PM Re: Expectations & Rasing the Bottom [Re: Haps]
Obi Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 12/28/09
Posts: 1308
Loc: kansas
you're welcome.
_________________________
live another day. climb a little higher.

my story

my vlog

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#407906 - 08/25/12 05:33 PM Re: Expectations & Rasing the Bottom [Re: Haps]
Esposa Offline
F&F Greeter
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 10/19/11
Posts: 678
Loc: NJ
I agree with Obi but I also think that sometimes we codependents get our expectations lowered further than we could ever imagine - and then we support a situation that is destructive without even realizing it.

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#407912 - 08/25/12 08:07 PM Re: Expectations & Rasing the Bottom [Re: Haps]
traveler Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 02/07/06
Posts: 3357
Loc: somewhere in Africa
as a survivor, i find that expectations are one of the most difficult things for me. by "expectations" i mean unspoken standards that are desired - not clearly defined standards that are mutually understood. part of it is that so many times expectations are vague and unspoken. my wife and i are both disappointed or devastated when her expectations for me are not met or when mine for her are not met. but sometimes it is a fuzzy area - where neither of us has defined the expectation. if you haven't said what you want/expect - don't be surprised if you don't get it. some of my lowest times are when i have failed to meet an expectation - that i was totally aware of. then i feel guilty and inadequate and kick myself and wallow in blame and self-condemnation and then get angry about how i didn't know what the expectation was - so how could i read her mind - and that distances us farther... and sometimes it is so unrealistic that there is no way i could ever live up to it. like - "act normal." or "think the same way about x as i do." so - communication is the beginning... sometimes that would clear up a lot of misunderstanding.

lee
_________________________
As my life goes on I believe somehow something's changed
Something deep inside...
I've been searchin so long to find an answer
Now I know my life has meaning
Now I see myself as I am, feeling very free...
When my tears have come to an end I will understand
What I left behind: a part of me. Chicago


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#407919 - 08/25/12 09:32 PM Re: Expectations & Rasing the Bottom [Re: Haps]
Country Offline


Registered: 02/29/12
Posts: 642
Loc: Alabama
I am a survivor and I will say this.... I know I am not one of the best at writing long and detailed replies so bare with me...

In my recovery I know that their are expectations that my wife has for me. As her husband it is important to me that I meet her expectations. First she is my friend and I meeting her expectations on that level?? Second she is my wife. I have already devastated my wife when I have the one night affair. I felt and still do feel shamed and devastated by my actions. It , to me is unforgivable, but somehow she forgave me. My T asked me the other day if I forgave myself for doing this to my wife and I looked at her like " are you crazy" and answered no. I think that every person has expectations and I think that when someone is going thru recovery what can be expected realistically?? That is more I an individual question I think. Everyone recovers differently. Take sickness and surgey for example. What level of surgery or sickness did they have ? As survivors we were abused differently. Some more some less. Some suffered severe brain trauma and some have physical trauma issues too. My father in law had a knee replacement and swears it was the worst thing ever. I spoke with another man who had both knees replaced and he said it was the best choice he ever made. One question I would like to ask is this one question. If your spouse has cancer in the brain what would be an expectation ?? To just heal or would it be more?? This to me is just like a brain disease. We have been distorted. In my case I choose to heal and recover and please God and my wife " no matter the cost". I hear some men say they can't sleep good at night , I hear some say that they can't go outside, I hear some say that they can't be intimate or have normal sex. These are all individual men with different issues but one constant issue is that the brain has been affected. For me, God has helped me as well as my wife. I said this to my T yesterday, " I am responsible for my actions and my abusers were co-conspirators also". But now I think that has changed since I faced this and have realized my faults and what the way I did things were because of my abuse. I don't know what my wife expects from me except to heal and get better. She is my partner. We are on te same team here going for the same goal and without her support WITH me I know that there is NO way I could have came this far. NO WAY. I just hope that one day I can be man that she can be proud of. I rambled and this probably don't make any sense to anyone. My mind just goes 90 to nothing sometime and I lose my thoughts. I hope you find the answers you need. I am on my iPhone and I am sorry for any typos. I do not proof read so sorry.
_________________________
Ephesians 6:13

Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand.

Ephesians 5:25

Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her

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#407932 - 08/25/12 11:49 PM Re: Expectations & Rasing the Bottom [Re: Haps]
CdnDW Offline


Registered: 08/24/12
Posts: 105
This was my status today on fb.... "Life is a journey, not a destination." Of this I need to remind myself so I can find patience and celebrate our small successes along the way. We will never be "done" or "complete" but always slowly growing... faster still if we shine light on one another instead of shrinking in the shadows of expectation.

This is what I learned from discussions here that I have read over the last two days. Already, being a part of MS has helped me to process and accept.

Thank you.
_________________________
I am not your rolling wheels, I am the highway
I am not your carpet ride, I am the sky
- Audioslave

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#407962 - 08/26/12 06:29 AM Re: Expectations & Rasing the Bottom [Re: Haps]
Lancer Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 07/13/12
Posts: 901
Loc: Florida
Hi Haps --

As a survivor I don't know if this helps since my expectations are usually more focused on events and outcomes than people, though they don't cancel each other out. My red flag is if I'm focused on a particular outcome. And it's still a conscious effort to let go of those expectations. Takes practice.

I think what has helped me often is when the unexpected happens and it turns out better than anything my little brain could have imagined. I don't have a crystal ball. I don't have the benefit of knowing all the contingencies which can conspire towards an end.

As someone pointed out, there are expectations that are reasonable...i.e., in the States we drive on the right and expect others will do the same. Even then, things happen. Perhaps it's simply acknowledging that I'm not in charge of everything.

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#408040 - 08/26/12 10:28 PM Re: Expectations & Rasing the Bottom [Re: Obi]
Haps Offline


Registered: 07/06/12
Posts: 89
Loc: Ohio
Wow... definitely a lot of wisdom in these replies! Thanks so much! A lot to take it, but I didn't want to leave the contributions unrecognized. It's quite helpful.

Obi - Thanks a bunch. I'm not sure I expect my fish to climb a treat any more than he would expect his house cat to do long division.

Esposa - I think you're on to something for me. I've said and seen around here about living on scraps. I've been all too happy to do it. No victim this round, honestly, just myself being honest with myself. I stayed.

Traveler - I'm jealous. You seem to have a relationship that incorporates a great deal of respect and mutual-adoration, especially through the tougher moments. Communication is key, but I often find myself on the losing end of choosing to talk or listen. It's not there for me. I hope to find someone who wants it one day, though. smile

Country - Not rambling at all. If it is, I'm quite fluent come to find out! Always an interesting hypothetical. If he had cancer, I would expect him to take responsibility for his own situation to the extent possible. I'm not sure if I've made it clear here, but my guy is not seeking treatment for CSA (or anything within the past couple of months!), so it would be like saying "Oh, I have cancer.I don't really care to deal with that. Who wants to go to the gay bar?" Your comment is VERY helpful in my own realization that I can't be more involved than he is. If he's not interested in taking care of himself, I'm going to die doing it for both of us. (Yes, a LOT of people have said that to us supporters on here, but it's just starting to sink in a wee bit only just now.)

Cdn - I love the shining the light on one another idea. Very powerful.

Lancer - Very good point. If I look back, I gave up a lot of my idealistic thinking months ago to a good extent. I really do just want progress for him and for our relationship. I'm wondering if that expectation might still be a bit too high for where he's at in his recovery right now.


I guess I'm sitting back giving this a lot of careful though. It's over according to our last encounter. Finally. I have met SO many awesome people on here from both sides of the survivor/supporter front and heard so many survivors share so personally, that I might be romanticizing my P's own work and willingness to travel down that road. I really DON'T want this to end... I don't want it to be a reflection against those who are surviving and thriving. I really wanted this one to work out and to take the reins like I've seen so many here do. Oye...he's such a wonderful guy deep down, but the symptoms are too much today. 8 hours sleep, though... We shall see. wink

AND... I'd still love to hear other ideas and thoughts on this. I think this is something that will help me personally regardless of who I'm dating at the time!! smile

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#408135 - 08/27/12 07:28 PM Re: Expectations & Rasing the Bottom [Re: Haps]
scottyg Offline


Registered: 06/26/12
Posts: 253
Loc: Seattle
Originally Posted By: Haps
I really DON'T want this to end... I don't want it to be a reflection against those who are surviving and thriving. I really wanted this one to work out and to take the reins like I've seen so many here do. Oye...he's such a wonderful guy deep down, but the symptoms are too much today. 8 hours sleep, though... We shall see. wink

AND... I'd still love to hear other ideas and thoughts on this. I think this is something that will help me personally regardless of who I'm dating at the time!! smile


You're on your way but I agree with your assessment that you've got a romanticized view of a survivor's progress. That's ok. I've got a romanticized view of partners separating then realizing they are each others one true love and reuniting before it too late. Oh shoot me.

But we both need to take off the rose colored glasses. You DID take the reins. You are doing what is best for you and there is little else you can do. Partners have never taken the reins so they can ensure things would work out. Unrealistic expectations and a recipe for failure. They take the reins to regain control and sanity in their own lives. Sometimes this assertion of personal boundaries has the side benefit of raising the bottom for a survivor in denial. He may have a moment of clarity where he values the relationship over the comfort of dysfunction. Much of the time a new set of boundaries only fuels the alienation and self-loathing a survivor already inflicts upon himself. That is why our work here is never done.

I will leave you with this thought, Haps. Most survivors have been betrayed in one way or another by people they once trusted. That trust is gone but it can be learned again. Even though the split is official you can still foster his trust in humanity again simply by being you. Check in from time to time with your survivor. Ask about emotional progress, encourage, support in small ways. You do not need to become a monk who is waiting for a miracle, get back out there. Nor should you become his emotional dumping ground for when future relationships fail and he runs back all hurt. Boundaries Haps for you and him. Hope not expectation.

Maybe, just maybe if you remain a consistent influence bringing hope and support there maybe some part in his life you can play. Do not expect the change you want... just be willing to foster and accept his positive changes, whatever.

-SG
_________________________
I've got a bike you can ride it if you like.
Its got a basket, a bell that rings
And many other things to make it look good.
I'd give it to you if I could -but I've borrowed it.

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#408282 - 08/29/12 03:52 AM Re: Expectations & Rasing the Bottom [Re: Haps]
whome Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 05/07/11
Posts: 1734
Loc: Johannesburg South Africa
Hi Haps

Sorry aboiut the slow reply.

Bringing the bottom up is a form of tough love. To do this or achieve this, we remove all support from the person, we dont lend money, we then set down a stringent set of rules, and if they break them they are on their own.

For example if he is a heavy drinker, the rule is, you need to stop drinking and get help, if you come home drunk, you are out, when I toss your sorry ass outta here you are on your own, no money no food no anything.
Essentially it is yanking the carpet out from under them.
It is a really difficult way to do things but if their behaviour is really destructive then it is essential.

You need to set down the rules, you are the functional person in the house so you need to run things. He is not in control so you need to be.
I think that your T is a little mixed up though. What is wrong with having a dream, and sharing that with someone. Naturally you would make allowances for their wants and needs, but if your partner is of doing his own thing, then why should you be ok with that.
A partnership is just that after all, each makes allowances for the other, and sacrifices. One of the sayings I like about about a relationship is, if either one of you is not giving 100% then you are not trying hard enough.
You need to find the person that you wanted to be, rediscover your your dreams, and start to reclaim your life. His choices are to join you or not.
This is what bringing the bottom up means.

Hope this helps.
Heal well
Martin
_________________________
Matrix Men South Africa
Survivors Supporting Each other
Matrix Men Blog

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#408286 - 08/29/12 08:56 AM Re: Expectations & Rasing the Bottom [Re: Haps]
Haps Offline


Registered: 07/06/12
Posts: 89
Loc: Ohio
Thanks Scotty & Martin and everyone else. Very I Insightful and helpful.

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#408298 - 08/29/12 10:59 AM Re: Expectations & Rasing the Bottom [Re: Haps]
CdnDW Offline


Registered: 08/24/12
Posts: 105
There are soooo many posts in this thread that I like. Really helpful stuff. I had a discussion with my DH about boundaries... about the fact that maybe he gets pissy with me and acts like I am the bivgest nag and control freak when I ask him to do a little thing because he had his boundaries trampled and actuallu does feel out of control. Maybe sometimes he forces our kids to do "fun" things they aren't ready for (like jumping in the water when learning to swim, riding a roller coaster etc) because he never learned boundaries. He even pushes me on little things... It's subtle and minor things but they add up to him needing control. He didn't confirm or deny or reply to my comments, which is usual as he doesn't talk, but when I pressed for a reaction, he simply said he needed time to process. Who knew this could be a big game changer for our relationship. Knowing this about him already makes me more comfortable about some of his behaviour and trusting ... because I know where some of it comes from, I feel more confident I can diffuse a situation, put up a firm limit or know when to just walk away.
_________________________
I am not your rolling wheels, I am the highway
I am not your carpet ride, I am the sky
- Audioslave

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