Originally Posted by Devaya
Attuned Mama, if you have any tips on how to NOT do the mental gymnastics anymore, I'd love to hear them!
Ok. Here goes.
I'm recently coming off of the biggest heartbreak/disappointment that I'm likely to experience in this lifetime. And what I've learned over the months is that Faking It IS Making it. I've had to train my game to create a new reality that is now true(although still a bit fragile).
With my Troll, he would say things that were way over the top and it was getting me all wired funny. Promising me marriages/babies I hadn't asked for, but actually wanted, with woefully inadequate or no follow-through on his part. It was a great big mess, I got baited HARD. It triggered all kinds of unmet needs that I didn't know that I had, and that was something of a complicated blessing. No doubt, I'm tougher and less naive now, and fully aware that I can go forever without a relationship if it comes down to that.
So. I had to do some important things. I had to choose to hold on to a cycle of written communication between us, rather than always deleting it every time one of us dumped the other. With that tool, I was able to use my mad liberal arts skills to seriously disable/deconstruct what was going on. Second, I had to dump him even though he was still tempting to me. I had to face my gods and really come to peace with some values that are more 'traditional' than I had previously practiced, but were my new reality. Mostly sexual stuff here, making the choice to tough it out on my own rather than acquiesce to his tempting, controlling demands. I watched conservative religious messages about the sanctity of my sexuality, and adapted them to my own spiritual faith. It was awesome, I felt like a total magical alchemist shaman over that one.
And I did it! There were times when I was SOOOOO lonely. I did it anyway, knowing that going down his crazy path would also make me crazy. Obviously, this particular relationship was saturated with emotional abuse on his end(I could go on, and you'd doubtlessly roll your eyes and lose respect for me). The fact that I put up with as much as I did showed me how many unhealed wounds I was still carrying. But my condensed advice is:
Watch He's Just Not That Into You, even though the characters are often shallow and alienating in their privilege, it has a lot of straightforward, honest advice. I usually can't stand films 'like this', but I would watch this one twice.
If you're finding that you try to fit the Square Peg into the Round Hole, get some counseling. Talk it through with a detached pro who can help you see WHY you, specifically, are trying to make lemons into lemonade without any sugar, or ice cubes, or straws, or glasses or a spoon.
Actively get/keep the rest of your life very full and interesting. I went back to school (not because of him, just because it was time), and seeing the first report card full of A's was pretty good. Then when Troll jumped on my bridge the next time, and still a tired-a@@ Troll with no accomplishments to show for himself, the shift was different. In my head was all like 'I can't believe this guy is even talking to me, I'm AttunedMama and I'm on the Dean's List while raising kids! Why don't I go ahead and really seriously dump him, like bridge burning and all' instead of my previous 'Well, I'm no better than any other of gods' people, life is hard, I'll have some empathy for this guy and listen to him bellyache like I'm some kind of free therapist'. Now it was like 'I can't believe I'm considering letting this guy distract me any further. Oh wait, I'm not really even considering it. Poof, be gone'.
Have a way to manage the 'adult' side of things. This is obviously tuned to your own personal needs. Maybe explore on your own a little new thing or two?
I don't know if any of this is relevant to you, Devaya, but maybe someone else can get a spark from it.
And oh yeah, reading and then starting to post in this forum is helpful as well. It's a great intersection of my maternal and personal needs, which add a whole new angle on the dating stuff. Troll didn't have a clue how serious it is to date a Mama, and seeing other Mamas here who get that w/o explanation gave me a lot of boost in a time in which I was very very vulnerable and dangerously close to getting stupid-hurt, or just wasting time. I can honestly say that I've rebuilt missing parts of my foundation, and while Troll was my catalyst, he can still bugger off, because he's a scumbag predator UAV. I would not be likely to tolerate crap again, because now I truly understand what I only previously knew intellectually: Being on your own is truly FUN and cool, and a relationship can round that out if it's not complicated and difficult. Maybe. But not with someone who's not calling you and really showing their a@@. Watch 'Casablanca' to see a complicated situation in which the female protagonist is seriously getting her heart stomped and its nobody's fault, and ask if you're willing to settle for less than a man who would let you go gracefully because it's the right thing to do, even though he's going to suffer for a very, very long time and could totally get what he wants and not even be likely to be blamed for it later on.
Ok, I'll stop now. Best wishes to all of us.