Login
Questions or Comments!
admin@frumsupport.com

Get FrumSupport News! Join our mailing list.
Email:


Search

Navigation:

 Tehilim List  < Refresh >
TOPIC TITLE: Letting Go
Created On 6/15/08 11:00 AM
Topic View:

View thread in raw text format


stacey
Junior Supporter

Posts: 15
Joined: Mar 2006

6/15/08 11:00 AM
User is offline View users profile

I have written before about dependence issues, and really quite a few other areas which I realize is really about self - esteem. I used to be too much aware of my ability to almost choose my response to any question or need by someone else that would be personally expressive of who I am, and base my response on an arbitrary choice between many options. Sort of disassociatively. Always a people pleaser and fearful of not being accepted, I, like a chameleon, intellectually choose a most effective response to questions as simple as, what do I think of (whatever)?... after thinking about it I would choose what would be most witty, most effective, or most guarded in a dignified way in order to avoid it, and sometimes even without communicating, just by being silent, with no response at all. This has brought to fore many identity issues, questions of who am I? What do I really think, believe, want?

I found a fabulous solution to this head banging dance and from a young age, and that was, in relationships. When I am in a romantic relationship, I can be more focused on his needs, be effective at "loving him", and just move on day to day. Love develops but it has always been about him, his needs, wants etc. When it ends, and most always it is by him, I can't let go, push to keep it, and sometimes this lasts for months. Even though I know that this relationship which I am in usually develops into an unhealthy one, a co-dependent one where I need him to depend on me, and usually ends awfully, I still want it.

So, the reason I am writing now, is Im 33, have been in a relationship for 3 years...! We are both frum, but have compromised on halachos like yichud to be together. (And sometimes others as well) The nature of our relationship has become like brother and sister, (he has no family, and mine lives a distance away), where there has hardly been anything romantic (at the beginning there was, and then it dwindled, after which I pushed it to continue and now he is dependent on me for a lot of things and reasons entirely unromantic...) but at first I for months had stayed with him, sleeping on his couch, and on his floor next to his bed just to be close to him. And he wanted me to because we were becoming close, and it was hard for us both at that time to be alone, and maybe most importantly, he began needing me.

Different than the others, he still needs me and accepts the co-dependency and could for many years to come (he has trouble with functioning in many ways, depression, work and I have filled a need for him which he appreciates, and also believes that I am the only one he has ever loved and has never told anyone else that he loved them... etc.) - but we both sense that this closeness began due to my "having weazled" my way in, he sometimes jokes. We have absolutely no healthy intimacy, because of the nature of our co=dependency I guess, and because I never played the game probably, (I started staying the night almost immediately) coupled with his awful and consistent habit through the years of at least weekly sessions of "going online" as we call it, chatting erotically and exchanging photos with perfect strangers. After which, we sometimes will be physical, to my disgust that I allow it, but even this is rare. When I ask him to hold me ordinarily he usually says that he can't for whatever reason, occasionally he will ease on this but honestly affection and the physical are basically non-existent. I just feel like Ive aged a million years with him, and he wont marry me. Even with all this he would continue with me because he loves me and needs me around (weve probably spent about 30 nights apart in the 3 years that we have known eachother... all Shabbosim together, all chagim etc.) and I also of course can't resist this and also would stay, except its been 3 years, I would like to get married, and I want to be with someone where it is a give and take and my needs are not looked at as too difficult to please, and where the man will want to love me, be tender to me and committed to me, and is capable of all these things.

So, help! Where do I start? How do I cut? How do I cut myself off to start fresh again? How do I spend time alone without being lonely? How do I get to the point where I can begin a relationship in a healthy manner?

Do you know of any (very good) therapist (non-social worker) that can help me? Or maybe a woman's support group?

Thank you for your attention, and the long email, and your resource,

Stacey

To answer your first question, I am in therapy though I don' t think it is such a great shidduch. I hold back a lot because I do not trust her training in psychology to analyze the issues, she is a social worker and only working for 3 years, and she has been more judgemental about what this says about my Torah Hashkafa than about the psychological issues here.
 
Reply
   
Quote
   
Top
   
Bottom
     



gad
Senior Supporter

Posts: 1458
Joined: Jan 2006

6/16/08 2:33 AM
User is offline

I know that you wrote to Dr. Lynn, but I thought that I would post the following resources in case they are helpful.


nefesh 201-384-0084 http://www.nefesh.org/index.cfm

relief 718-431-9501 http://www.reliefhelp.org/profile.htm

yitti leibel helpline an anonymous hotline staffed by frum therapists.
718-435-7669
chicago 1-800-help-023
lakewood 908-363-1010
cleveland 888-209-8079
also branches in baltimore, detroit, s.diego, toronto

ohel 718-851-6300 http://www.ohelfamily.org/

echo 845-425-9750



Hope to hear good news.
 
Reply
   
Quote
   
Top
   
Bottom
     



stacey
Junior Supporter

Posts: 15
Joined: Mar 2006

6/16/08 10:37 PM
User is offline View users profile

Thank you very much. I appreciate it. I appreciate the insight,

Best,
Stacey
 
Reply
   
Quote
   
Top
   
Bottom
     



gad
Senior Supporter

Posts: 1458
Joined: Jan 2006

6/19/08 3:16 AM
User is offline

You're welcome, and I hope that you will have good news to post.
 
Reply
   
Quote
   
Top
   
Bottom
     



Dr. Lynn, Psy.D.
Psychologist

Posts: 914
Joined: Feb 2005

6/26/08 11:55 PM
User is offline

Thanks, Gad. As you know, I am not always able to respond as quickly as I would like.
 
Reply
   
Quote
   
Top
   
Bottom
     



stacey
Junior Supporter

Posts: 15
Joined: Mar 2006

7/9/08 1:19 AM
User is offline View users profile

Hello Dr. Lynn. I was wondering if you would have any tips in how to be alone and strong after depending so much on this person for your world! I have such tremendous feelings of detachment.

Thank you!

Stacey
 
Reply
   
Quote
   
Top
   
Bottom
     



gad
Senior Supporter

Posts: 1458
Joined: Jan 2006

7/11/08 7:03 PM
User is offline

Until Dr. Lynn is able to respond, I'm taking the liberty of suggesting that perhaps it would help if you spoke to people.

Perhaps just calling up former acquaintances or meeting them and talking to them, it could help to create a social circle which could be supportive.
 
Reply
   
Quote
   
Top
   
Bottom
     



Dr. Lynn, Psy.D.
Psychologist

Posts: 914
Joined: Feb 2005

7/14/08 11:36 PM
User is offline

I agree with Gad that having a support network of friends/family is really important and helpful to weather time spent alone. In addition, I think it's a strength-building skill to be able to tolerate being alone sometimes, so you don't always feel you HAVE to be with someone. I wrote you a pm with some initial suggestions.
a lynn
 
Reply
   
Quote
   
Top
   
Bottom
     



stacey
Junior Supporter

Posts: 15
Joined: Mar 2006

7/27/08 12:28 PM
User is offline View users profile

Hello everyone. I cannot handle this, honestly. We have tried not talking on the phone, not seeing eachother. Lately he has been the one to call me. He feels miserable about a million things so Im pulled to see him. Now, he says the attraction is back, and I need him so much, that Im back to square one. Then, the next day he tells me the same thing - he cannot commit, because of his problems and issues, its good that Im dating... (I actually have been starting to see someone who actually has potential for marriage.._)

Please, strategies. How do I not quell under pressure? How do I remain strong? How do I set boundaries that I can keep?
 
Reply
   
Quote
   
Top
   
Bottom
     



su7kids
Senior Supporter

Posts: 485
Joined: Nov 2006

7/27/08 1:04 PM
User is offline View users profile

I personally think that you need to decide if you really DO want to break ties with this person. It seems like you cannot have a "half way" relationship with him, and its not healthy for you, OR him, for that matter.

If you really really really do want to break times with him, you need to tell him -- regardless of his reaction -- and you need to stop taking his calls -- use caller ID or screen calls on your answering machine.

Block him from your IMs and break off. Its going to be very very tough to start with. Its going to hurt, and you're going to rethink it many times over, but besides your support network which also needs to become your new group of "the people I hang out with", you are going to have to use your personal strength and convictions.

Its almost like those "I you're the best for the job, no-one can do it as well as you. We can't do it without you.... etc" and then you say, Sorry I can't do it, and they say OK, we'll find someone else!!

It appears it may be best for BOTH of you to steer clear of each other. Just keep reminding yourself its for your good and his. If you're dating someone seriously, they probably won't like it that you have a guy friend either.

Don't sabotage your potential future happiness for this "codependent" relationship. You're worth more than that, I'm sure!

Good luck.


-------------------------
Proud Mom of 7, MIL to 3, Grandmom of 4!
 
Reply
   
Quote
   
Top
   
Bottom
     



stacey
Junior Supporter

Posts: 15
Joined: Mar 2006

7/27/08 1:37 PM
User is offline View users profile

Thank you. Im miserable! Im still with him, I have trouble leaving. He is sleeping all day! Its awful. The worse part is, that we have only relied on eachother so long, and I guess I hate the idea of being replacable.

Thank you for your words. I hope I can succeed. And I hope he will be OK without me. And I hope I will be strong enough to learn to be without him, sadly.

Thank you very much again for your response,

I do want a life!
 
Reply
   
Quote
   
Top
   
Bottom
     



stacey
Junior Supporter

Posts: 15
Joined: Mar 2006

7/30/08 4:37 PM
User is offline View users profile

Hello to everyone. I still am encountering such difficulty in leaving him, moving on. I really feel I need support and I feel that to be with others tackling these kind of issues would be helpful. I also would like to meet new people and forge new friendships. So, if anyone knows of a support group for co=dependence in relationships, in Brklyn, (especially Flatbush) I would love to know. (Women only of course)

Also, I would like to invite any emails from other women who may be struggling similarly to please contact me. I think I may want to start one.

Im 33, so, women in their twenties and thirties, to be in the same demographic... would love to hear from you...

IY'H we and all of klal Yisrael will ease in our individual and collective suffering, and thrive where we should and as we should as a people.
 
Reply
   
Quote
   
Top
   
Bottom
     



stacey
Junior Supporter

Posts: 15
Joined: Mar 2006

8/12/08 6:40 PM
User is offline View users profile

Hello everyone. I would like to recommend a fabulous book for women who have ever struggled with self esteem issues having to do with relationships. Its a self-help book to make you a little more aware of men, who they are, what they mean when they say otherwise, how they are not complicated at all... explains quite a bit.

Not a frum book. Written by writers of ... and the city. So funny, warm-hearted and somehow manages to remind you who you deserve and who you should just kick to the corner.

Strengthening.

Funny.

And maybe a little bold.

Its called "He's just not that into you." The No Excuses Truth to Understanding Guys.
By greg behrendt and liz ticcillo.
 
Reply
   
Quote
   
Top
   
Bottom
     

View thread in raw text format
FORUMS > Ask Dr. Lynn < Refresh >

Navigation:

The information in this site is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. FrumSupport disclaims any liability for the decisions you, the User, makes based on information on this site. By using this site, reading, viewing, posting or otherwise, you signify your assent to the Terms and Conditions of Use. If you do not agree to all these Terms and Conditions of Use, please do not use this site. FrumSupport may revise and update these Terms and Conditions of Use at anytime. Your continued usage of FrumSupport will mean you accept those changes.

If you think you or someone you know has a medical emergency, call your doctor, Hatzolah or 911 immediately. FrumSupport cannot and does not monitor forums and postings and cannot and will not pro-actively obtain help for users in need as FrumSupport does not have the funds or people power to accomplish such tasks and it will infringe on the anonymity of each user. Therefore, FrumSupport’s liability is limited by this paragraph and as further set forth in the Terms and Conditions of Use.