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» Got Questions? Get Answers. » SCARLETEEN CENTRAL » Relationships » Getting over

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Author Topic: Getting over
noviasq45
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Exactly one year ago today, I broke up with my boyfriend of almost two years. Since then, I have not found anyone else attractive. I tried dating a girl, then realized that I could not love anyone else except him. A few weeks ago, I ran into him, after he had not responded to me since our breakup. I wanted to kill myself when I saw him(I don't anymore) because I knew when he looked at me that he had gotten over me--that I was nothing to him anymore. Even when we were dating, I felt that way--he would not talk to me unless I wanted to talk about sexuality, at least in the months leading up to our breakup. I still dream of him. How do I get over this? Will I love another person?

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noviasq45

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Heather
Executive Director & Founder
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At this point, with loss and grieving -- which is what you are dealing with -- the general advice would be that if you are feeling pretty much the same as you did right after it happened, it may be time to seek out some help.

Have you considered looking into some counseling?

If you are not open to that, and want to DIY this, have you found it helpful to just set dating aside for now,and focus on both the other relationshios in your life, and the other things in your life you are, or have previously felt, passionate about?

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Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
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Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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noviasq45
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I am currently being counseled, and I'm wondering if there's some switch in my brain that's just turned off passion? I know that the proper term for that is "depression", but how do you turn that switch on and stop obsessing over something ancient?

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noviasq45

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Heather
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Well, before we go there, what is your counselor saying and advising? What work have you done with them so far, and how well do you feel that has been working for you?

Mind, depression is not a switch we can just turn off or on, as I am sure your counselor filled you in on.

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Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me • Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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noviasq45
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My counselor says that this grieving is normal and that it will take a long time. With her help, I have am winning the battle with suicidality and self harm. However, I have lost faith in romantic love and men in general, and have given up questioning my feelings towards love because I see that activity as futile, as I do not feel as passionate about my life as before, and do not see myself as worthy of a healthy long-term relationship (if such a thing exists). The only person I want to be with in that way is my ex-boyfriend. I have no friends otherwise, and do not feel comfortable boring my support system of adults with the same old story. I see myself greeting raped in a dark alley, or having a string of one night affairs if I lose 30 pounds and my big mouth. I want to change, but I have no confidence in what awaits me on the other side of that.

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noviasq45

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Heather
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Do you mean ANY kind of long-term relationship, or only romantic relationships? And yes, healthy relationships sustained over time exist, but you likely do know that, you are just feeling the burn of something gone south in a big way right now.

You know, it is okay NOT to be in or be pursuing romantic or sexual relationships, for any reason. It sounds to me like something that might help here is just giving yourself permission to leave those be and focus on other parts of your life, and other kinds of relationships, for right now.

I am not sure where things like you seeing yourself being raped are coming from, or how you want me to address that (but a headsup there, as a survivor of assaults, there are some ways of talking about assault I am not usually up to doing, so if that is something big for you, and I am not the right person to talk about that the way you want to, we can likely find a volunteer who can). But if you mean you are feeling like rape is what happens when someone is outside a romantic relationship or feeling bitter, please know that has nothing to do with rape.

Is your counselor helping you when it comes to working on forming other kinds of relationships,like friendships?

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Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me • Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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Heather
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Can I also ask why you broke up with him? Seems like some clues about moving forward might lie there.

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Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me • Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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noviasq45
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I broke up with him because he was yelling at me via text. It was a heat of the moment thing, and I had been feeling inadequate in that relationship for quite some time, due to him informing me of liking another girl and going long periods of time without communicating with me at all. The reason I am not pursuing friendships is because they are a great source of stress for me, as well as being another form of human contact in which I have lost faith.

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noviasq45

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noviasq45
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As for the rape comment, it was an ill wish upon myself, an awful thing that my brain confused with love. I apologize for the error.

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noviasq45

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Heather
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So, as I understand it, you broke up with him because you did not feel good in the relationship when it was going on, and then he treated you poorly per the yelling.

That given, I'm wondering if you have a handle on why you feel like you are having such a hard time detaching yourself from a wish for a relationship that...well, either it sounds like you never had, if it's a good relationship you want, or a wish for a relationship that you felt crappy in?

Am I also getting it right that, in general, you have struggled a lot with ANY kind of relationship you felt good in, be it friends, family or romantic partners? If so, is the person you are seeing addressing that with you?

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Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me • Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

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Sam W
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Hi novia, I hope you won't mind if I add a few thoughts here.

First, have you brought up these feelings about relationships (both romantic and friendships) to your therapist? If so, have they suggested anything?

As far as the breaking up, you are allowed to end relationships for any reason. It sounds like the one you were in was not meeting your needs on a few levels, so leaving is understandable.

When we leave unsatisfying or unhealthy relationships, the temptation to feel as though we've somehow failed, or will never find anyone we care for as much as the person we left is quite strong. Those feelings and fears are real and, as your counselor mentioned, grieving for something that we've lost is an OK process. But leaving one relationship is not proof that happy relationships are out of your reach forever. It just means that a particular relationship didn't work out the way you hoped it would. That can suck, but it is, ultimately, survivable.

I want to second Heather's advice to take this as an opportunity to focus on doing things that make you feel happy and fulfilled, as that may help you feel as though passion is coming back into your life. I don't want to downplay how hard doing that might be, especially if you are recovering from (or still struggling with) feelings of self harm. This is where I think your therapist may also be able to help you. Have you two discussed ways for you to explore or reconnect with activities that make you feel happy?

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noviasq45
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I do not know why I am still feeling the burn of that relationship. To answer your question, Heather, I did not always feel neglected when I was seeing him; in fact, there was a long period of time where it brought the most joy to my life. I have struggled with friendships--I had one friendship of mine end with court mediation, as my friend sent me death threats via email. Another friendship ended when they made me choose between them and another person. These multiple encounters have left me with a strong sense of failure. My therapist says that the only way I can cope with these feelings of loss of interest is to do those activities, that they will become more enjoyable the more I do them. As for the feelings of failure, I have started putting myself out there to people, despite my strong sensitivity to risk. I initiated a relationship with a girl which shortly ended after I realized my lack of attraction to her, and to people in general. I do not know which will hurt me more: isolation from other people or the pain that they might cause me if I open myself up. I know I should allow myself these relationships, but I tire of suffering like this. Happiness, my counselor told me, is a fleeting emotion, not a more permanent mood. What I look for is a better sense of participation in my life, which may lead to feelings of joy somewhere along the road. How can I stop suffering, or feeling these emotions of pain? How can I succeed in relationships when my record sucks? Will I ever find people I am not disgusted or afflicted by, that I do not feel inadequate by? How can I enjoy my sexuality when the only person that arouses me is a dream of a man that no longer exists?

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noviasq45

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Heather
Executive Director & Founder
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These big questions really sound like questions best put to your therapist. Have you done that? If so, what was their feedback?

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Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen
About Me • Get our book!
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

Posts: 68208 | From: An island near Seattle | Registered: May 2000  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
   

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