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» Scarleteen Boards: 2000 - 2014 (Archive) » SCARLETEEN CENTRAL » Relationships » Post-Break Up Syndrome

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Author Topic: Post-Break Up Syndrome
Natalie H
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Hey, Scarleteen, I'm having some post-breakup issues.

My ex boyfriend (broke up about a month and a half ago) has graduated from my school last year. But my friend told me he showed up to the homecoming dance, and today I saw him hanging around by the bus porch after school. He didn't see me, but I saw he was looking around for someone and I can't help thinking it's me.

Anyway, whenever I see him after we break up (it was a rocky relationships, very off again on again) I feel physically SICK. Like my stomach will cramp up, and I feel like I have diarrhea, and I'll wanna puke all at the same time. Seeing him today really shook me. It's a lot worse now than all the other times, I think because

A) I know for certain this was the last break up now that I'm a lesbian.

B) Since he graduated I just figured I'd never have to deal with this again, like I never thought I'd see him again.

C) Because it was the last break up, I don't want him to see me and think we might have ANY chance of getting back together, and if he is showing up for that reason I want him to stop because he needs to get over me and move on.

I know him showing up could have ABSOLUTELY NOTHING to do with me, because he has some friends at my school still.

But I can't help but be paranoid about this. It's really bad, like once and a while I'll walk in my room in the dark and worry for a half a sec he might be there, or sometimes it'll get so bad I'll look in my closet and under my bed to make sure he isn't hiding anywhere. Sometimes I get creeped out thinking, 'What if he's watching me right now?' I once even had a dream he was sending my anonymous texts saying he was watching me while I was sleeping by a window. In my dream I left my room looking for help, and when I walked back into my room he was sitting on my bed and I was paralyzed with fear, when I woke up I felt like I couldn't move for a good few minutes.

I don't know what's wrong with me. I really don't want to be in his life anymore, and I don't want him in mine, not even thoughts of him. I wanna put him and our relationship behind me. I feel like this paranoia and physical reaction are signs that I'm not over it yet.

I guess I'm asking what I should do about this. I REALLY don't want to be feeling sick every time he shows up in my life, and I know it must be unhealthy to this he's stalking me when all logic says he isn't. What's your advice?

[ 09-22-2010, 06:15 PM: Message edited by: Natalie H ]

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Bicycle? I prefer a homocycle.

Posts: 118 | From: Houston | Registered: Aug 2010  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Natalie H
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Just fyi, I'd like advice not only from the Sexperts, but from any person on here that has any helpful words. Specifically if you have ever gone through similar issues after a break up, that would be great.

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Bicycle? I prefer a homocycle.

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coralee
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I went through a similar situation once. I don't know about your situation, but my ex took up a lot of my life. So after the breakup, a lot of things that I was used to just suddenly went away, which can be unsettling for anyone. It helped to keep myself busy with things that felt meaningful to *me*, not things I did in the relationship. For me that was hanging out with friends a lot, watching tv, taking my job more seriously, listening to music. Just realizing that my life was about more than my ex lessened my anxiety.
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Heather
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Natalie: I want to also check in with you to be sure that you're accounting for the fact that per your posts about this relationship, there was more going on here than you just realizing you were lesbian. Like we talked about, there were clearly some ooky dynamics in this relationship in general, as well, which are very likely a big part of your feelings around this.

When you had your breakup, do you feel like you two adequately shut the door this time? Do you feel like anything was left unresolved at all?

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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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Natalie H
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No, I think it was pretty mutual. We both were ready to let go, him mainly because he'd seen this coming from a while back, and me because, well, I was doing the breaking up.

I really don't feel any unresolved tensions. It's not like I wanna talk to him or anything. In fact the exact opposite, I want us both to pick up the pieces and move on. I think he feels the same way, actually. Anyway we'd already had a big break up talk before the actual break up. The only thing that's unresolved is that we agreed to try and work it out, but I pretty much decided after that that there was nothing TO work out.

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Bicycle? I prefer a homocycle.

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Heather
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Did you let him know you'd decided that?

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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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Natalie H
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Well I texted him while he was at work and told him we should break up. That was the final thing about it really. He didn't seem surprised by it and he didn't even fight, the only other time we spoke was trying to figure out when to give each other out things back, and he never tried to get me back or anything, so I think he came to terms with it. I did too.

I didn't even think about him much until I saw him that day at the bus porch. Even now I'm not really thinking about him, except I wanna deal with this issue now in case he pops back up again.

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Bicycle? I prefer a homocycle.

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Heather
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Yeah, breakup by text, especially with a long-term relationship and people not ...well, way younger than you, pretty much is not the best call and basically assures you or the other person won't fully feel resolution. I'd posit that feeling the way you did in seeing him and thinking about this may also then be a reaction to you having basically done a breakup-via-avoidance, rather than something solid and much less passive.

My best suggestion would be to figure out a way to do this better and in a way where you could both really feel that door being closed, for real. I'd suggest arranging a meeting in person for that.

[ 09-23-2010, 09:19 PM: Message edited by: Heather ]

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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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Natalie H
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Oh, geez, Heather I really can't. There's no freaking way. I already hurt him enough, you know, so going back and RE-breaking his heart seems like overkill.

Anyway there's no way he'd ever agree to it, in fact I doubt he'd ever speak to me again unless it was gonna lead to us getting back together. The only reason he WOULD speak to me again is to get back together, and every other time we broke up that would be the reason.

We've broken up countless times before, in many different ways, but this I think was the one with the MOST closure. That afternoon where we talked and I came on here saying I told him everything and we were gonna try and work it out? That was after we almost broke up right then and there, in person. We came very close, in fact it'd probably be better now if we had done it then. We got everything out of the way, no loose ends, and I think it was probably the best break up I ever had... except we didn't break up then. We waited a good week until I was absolutely sure it wasn't just PMS and I knew for certain I was really gay and I really wanted out of this before the actual break up, which was the texting.

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Bicycle? I prefer a homocycle.

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Heather
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You know your limits and his better than mine, so if you tell me that's not possible, all I can do is accept that. (And suggest that in the future that's probably not the soundest way to split with someone serious.)

But I think it also means that you need to, also, including accepting that this will only be so resolved. You can certainly do a little more work on your own with feeling resolved, like journaling, some kind of other creative work, or just giving this time, but if you can't/won't talk to him in person about any of this, there's really little to be actively done to better the situation, you know?

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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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Natalie H
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Ok, I see. Well I supposed I could vent out some of this anxiety into art if I need to. It's not like an OVERWHELMING issue in my life, this only happens on the rare occasion that I see him, so I know I'll manage. I just hoped you'd have some psychological insight into why my body would act this way.

If I do see him again, I think maybe it would help if I just walk up and talk to him, kinda face my demons, you know? It's better than hiding from him and feeling sick. I think you're right that talking to him might help, so I guess I'll try it at the next opportunity.

I just really hope he wont think it'll lead to more than just closure. I've offered before for us to be just friends but that's never been an option for him, it's all or nothing.

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Bicycle? I prefer a homocycle.

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Heather
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Well, I'm not a therapist nor your therapist, so I can only offer so much. But I do know that when you first started posting here about this relationship, you seemed very reluctant to talk about some of the other big issues clearly part of this relationship BESIDES you being lesbian, and pretty much stayed reluctant.

You may still need to really address those issues in some way, either with this person or just with yourself, maybe with the help of a counselor or other person who can give you some coaching in that.

I also didn't realize you broke up via text, which I think is an avoidance issue, personally, and probably about you and/or this guy avoiding really dealing.

But too, it often takes people some time to process a breakup, even when it's wanted, and having a range of strong emotions about it is not unusual.

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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: 68290 | From: An island near Seattle | Registered: May 2000  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
   

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