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Re: Topic 2: "Stop chasing your partner away!" - Building Trust [Re: Sim54] #320845
10/27/13 10:38 PM
10/27/13 10:38 PM
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AlTurtle Offline OP
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Still sounds like you are on a good path.

Sorry for any misunderstandings. I tend to approach a relationship (even one that is over) that is being described to my by PreValidating both people. That prepares me for meeting the "other" partner some time in the future.

But given that many people kinda link "validation" with agreeing, they can easily experience my PreValidation of their partner or ex-partner as "invalidating" them. Never my intention.

Anyway, I like your thoughts about the narrowness of the bandwidth of email and forums. I'd much rather meet face-to-face or at lease phone-to-phone.

Hang in there.


Principles are simple. Applying them is a tough U-Do-It project. Go 4 it!
Al Turtle
Re: Topic 2: "Stop chasing your partner away!" - Building Trust [Re: AlTurtle] #320891
10/28/13 06:44 AM
10/28/13 06:44 AM
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Sim54 Offline
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That's interesting. I can see that I am still trying to make my ex wrong here. I think that that is an issue. although I can understand why she sees things the way she does, I still think she is wrong to do so, and that, with more data, she would naturally change her mind about me, and see me, and us differently. It's a kind of 'if only' statement in my head.

I guess that her refusal to talk about us, when I bring it up is a defence against my trying to force, coerce, or cajole her into accepting my view of us, over her view of us.

Something I've been thinking about: how can a discussion about getting back together be win/win, if one person doesn't want to get back, and one does?

Re: Topic 2: "Stop chasing your partner away!" - Building Trust [Re: Sim54] #320900
10/28/13 12:21 PM
10/28/13 12:21 PM
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Originally Posted By: Sim54
That's interesting. I can see that I am still trying to make my ex wrong here.


Ding! Ding! Ding!
By Jove, I think he's on to something big!

Originally Posted By: Sim54
I guess that her refusal to talk about us, when I bring it up is a defence against my trying to force, coerce, or cajole her into accepting my view of us, over her view of us.


That is certainly how it sounds to me.

Originally Posted By: Sim54
Something I've been thinking about: how can a discussion about getting back together be win/win, if one person doesn't want to get back, and one does?


Well, once you can pre-validate, then validate (understand fully) exactly what it is and why they don't want to get back - meaning what it is about you and your behaviors that cause them to shut down or run away - you can choose to address and alter those behaviors. You have to show them, and prove to them convincingly that your behaviors, beliefs, feelings about/toward them have changed before you'll achieve that successful conversation. At least that's what I think.

Let's see what Al says..

Best luck!

Re: Topic 2: "Stop chasing your partner away!" - Building Trust [Re: Sim54] #320919
10/28/13 02:41 PM
10/28/13 02:41 PM
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AlTurtle Offline OP
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AlTurtle  Offline OP
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Originally Posted By: Sim54
That's interesting. I can see that I am still trying to make my ex wrong here. I guess that her refusal to talk about us, when I bring it up is a defense against my trying to force, coerce, or cajole her into accepting my view of us, over her view of us.
Me, too. I had to keep trying that "force, cajole, etc." stuff till she proved to me that those tactics would never work. Why would anyone want to be in a relationship with someone who wants to "prove them wrong? or bad or stupid?" Why would anyone want to go back into a relationships where their partner wants to prove them wrong, bad, stupid, etc. And then I asked myself, how to I learn fast how to not come across that way.

Originally Posted By: Sim54
Something I've been thinking about: how can a discussion about getting back together be win/win, if one person doesn't want to get back, and one does?
Pretty easily. Make it dialogical - always.


Principles are simple. Applying them is a tough U-Do-It project. Go 4 it!
Al Turtle
Re: Topic 2: "Stop chasing your partner away!" - Building Trust [Re: AlTurtle] #321059
10/28/13 09:27 PM
10/28/13 09:27 PM
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Sim54 Offline
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What if the reason they won't come back is something that happened, that can't be undone?
She fell pregnant by me 10 weeks after we first started sleeping together.
We had an abortion, and she has resented that, I believe, ever since.

She told me, that she went through something similar with a previous boyfriend, they broke, and then got back together some years later.
She told me that the abortion hung over the relationship, and coloured how she saw him, and because of that, she could never come back to me.

I told her I would happily have a child with her now, but she said that she wanted to do that with someone else, and have a clean slate.

I can't change this.
I wish she could see how trust worthy I am, now. She knows I've moved on, she said she thought I'd moved on further than her, even, but she still won't trust me.

I think a lot of her trust issues are not even about me. She was abandoned as a child by her father, and her step father too, and screamed at by her mother for just existing.

I don't think I can help her with this. She won't even let me close now.

I left her originally because I wasn't ready for a relationship with her, nor anyone. She clung, I ran. I went into therapy, to heal, and come back to her, and now, over 3 1/2 years later, she simply refuses to even discuss it.

I have been so careful with her, until this trip to France, and then, I collapsed. I couldn't handle any more rejection from her. How can I even stay in contact with her, and do what I need to do, to convince her I have changed, when I can't stay strong in the face of her rejection of me?

I am contemplating getting her out of my life for good, and forever, deleting her from facebook and skype, blocking her, and just trying to move on.

I can't honestly see any other solution that could change things.

Last edited by Sim54; 10/28/13 09:57 PM.
Re: Topic 2: "Stop chasing your partner away!" - Building Trust [Re: Sim54] #321072
10/28/13 11:13 PM
10/28/13 11:13 PM
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AlTurtle Offline OP
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AlTurtle  Offline OP
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A couple of thoughts.

Originally Posted By: Sim54
What if the reason they won't come back is something that happened, that can't be undone?
She fell pregnant by me 10 weeks after we first started sleeping together. We had an abortion, and she has resented that, I believe, ever since.


To my way of thinking, everything you two have done cannot be undone. The thing that makes this potent is that our brains don't forget. As a "survival trait" we remember the past more or less forever. This attribute has complications. Such as needing to get over things (learning, embracing mistakes, grieving, Making Amends, processing resentments, etc.). I think it is very useful to get good at these skills.

Originally Posted By: Sim54
She told me, that she went through something similar with a previous boyfriend, they broke, and then got back together some years later. She told me that the abortion hung over the relationship, and coloured how she saw him, and because of that, she could never come back to me.
Well, that's her current logic, as you are aware of it. Maybe she blames her boyfriend for the whole thing. Maybe she doesn't yet know how to grieve the loss of that kid. Maybe... guessing.

Also you quote her as saying "never." She may have said that about her first boyfriend. I am used to the idea that we all are in "little child" states when we say, "ever or never or always, etc." Real life changes a lot.

Originally Posted By: Sim54
I am contemplating getting her out of my life for good, and forever, deleting her from facebook and skype, blocking her, and just trying to move on. I can't honestly see any other solution that could change things.


Then go for it! We all need the right to decide to "move on." I respect your decision. Either it will be the "right" decision or you'll "learn" from it. Either way you win.


Principles are simple. Applying them is a tough U-Do-It project. Go 4 it!
Al Turtle
Re: Topic 2: "Stop chasing your partner away!" - Building Trust [Re: AlTurtle] #321108
10/29/13 06:51 AM
10/29/13 06:51 AM
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Sim54 Offline
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That's what I thought, when she said never. Her exact words were: 'I can never sleep with you again, I can never be with you again.'

We had just spent the previous 3 days getting close, having fun, some hugs, and non sexual touching, and then I held her in the morning and my intention was sex, and I scared her. I know I did this, and I haven't done anything like it since, but she hasn't stepped closer to me again.

When she said 'never', I thought to myself, why do you say that? There is no such thing as never ever. I can't stand next to never. I wanted to walk away then, but she reeled me in again, and I allowed myself to be reeled in.

Now, she does nothing. We have chatted a bit, by instant message, but always started by me. She didn't respond to my apology letter. I have learnt yet again that opening up and expressing myself to her leads to rejection and coldness.

The reason I hesitate to 'move on' is that I have tried to in the past, with her, and with others, and I have always regretted it, and it has always damaged the relationships further.

The reason I am in this hole is because I decided to leave my ex, as I couldn't give her want she wanted. I needed therapy. At the time, I told her, 'I need to go away and make some space in my head and my heart and this isn't a permanent breakup.' Two weeks later I came crawling back in a panic, regretting it, and telling her I wanted to come back. From that moment on, the power dynamic changed, and she rejected me, and it has stayed that way for 3 1/2 years. I am still trying to get her back after this long, and so I fully regret trying to move on then. I doubt I will feel any better about trying to do it now.

I have huge issues with letting go (image stuff I guess).
It takes years.

I fear the learning I will get from cutting her out of my life is 'don't you remember? DON'T do that!'

I have tried to make amends with her: lovely birthday dinner, holiday away, without actively bringing up the past, which always triggers her, so, I just tried being different from how I was. It doesn't seem to work. I don't think she trusts it.

Well, I'm pouring it out on the page. I don't expect answers from you, but I need to put it down.

Thanks for your help.

Re: Topic 2: "Stop chasing your partner away!" - Building Trust [Re: Sim54] #321122
10/29/13 01:06 PM
10/29/13 01:06 PM
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Miranda Offline
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Sim,

Sounds like you got involved with someone who has serious unhealed abandonment issues. And then you abandoned her. Yes, yes, I know you told her it was temporary. I'm here to tell you, doesn't matter what you said, it was what you DID that counts.

Look, my DH has the same issue. I left him once. He chased me, relentlessly until I came back. We worked through it, but I know one thing for sure, I can't ever even give the APPEARANCE that I'm abandoning him ever again. It'll break us.

You didn't come back when she pursued. I would be willing to wager that unless/until she deals with HER abandonment issues, there's NO WAY she can take you back. You aren't going to be "safe" for her, no matter what you say, because what you SAY is never as telling as what you have DONE.

You can't fix this for her. Nothing you do will help unless/until SHE works on the issue. Because in order to PROVE to her that you are safe, you have to be let in. And she can't do that because you've already proved you aren't safe.


When we open to this moment and don't judge it or try to change it, even when we're suffering and wish it were otherwise, we tap into the spaciousness of mind that allows us to move forward skillfully, with discernment and joy. -- Sharon Salzberg
Re: Topic 2: "Stop chasing your partner away!" - Building Trust [Re: Miranda] #321226
10/29/13 09:12 PM
10/29/13 09:12 PM
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Sim54 Offline
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Miranda,
Thanks for your frank comments.
Pretty much everything you say is on the nose.
Except, she didn't really pursue me after I left. She did for about 10 days, and then, I 'caused' a fight, and said some mean thing, and that shut her down. To this day, I think I did that deliberately to get the space I needed. We spoke almost everyday after we split. I was as gentle as I could be with her (apart from that one mean comment). I was always there for her, tried to let her down gently, and also not just disappear. But yes, you are right. She has huge issues from her childhood and she still hasn't had therapy for them.

I experience her as in huge denial about the severity of her problems.
I know deep down that I have to get away from her, but then, I just abandon her again. I could stay stuck here for a long time. I want to talk to her, face to face, and find a way to separate from her as gently as possible.

I find her hard to understand though. She doesn't trust me, but at other times, she get's so close to me, curled up, asleep with her hand in mine, or coming away on holiday with me. I asked her if I was such a crappy boyfriend, and you don't trust me, then why am I still in her life? She can't answer that question.

Yes, I can't fix this for her. I know that talk is cheap. I have tried to SHOW her that I have changed, and she can see it. She has acknowledged it. She knows I have, but that just throws up another block. Now SHE has to change, and she is too scared to.

Letting go of her is so hard. I do love this powerful, fragile, sensitive, cracked woman. She is a rare person, very special, with a huge heart, and an angry determination in her.

I am very afraid to let go, but I have learnt that those things we fear most, have the most to teach us, so whether I like it or not, that is where I have to head.

Thanks again.

Re: Topic 2: "Stop chasing your partner away!" - Building Trust [Re: Sim54] #321255
10/30/13 07:47 AM
10/30/13 07:47 AM
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Sim54 Offline
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Al, I'd be curious what you think about what Miranda said?
I know it sounds like 'making her wrong', but I do understand that my ex makes sense right now. I agree with Miranda, that I can't become a source of safety for her, because I need to be let back in to able to show her.

I have had therapy for my issues, and whilst not 'fixed' I am vastly improved. I know that she would improve massively as well, with therapy, and she knows she needs it, but at the same time, is hugely resistant to it, and I think doesn't feel any great impetus to get it. That saddens me. She doesn't seem to see how much her issues have sabotaged her happiness with her boyfriends, and continues to do so.

Re: Topic 2: "Stop chasing your partner away!" - Building Trust [Re: Sim54] #321259
10/30/13 12:02 PM
10/30/13 12:02 PM
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Sim, you sound "on the fence," what a bad feeling. Have you read When to Fold 'Em. If that's what you're ready for, it's a much gentler thing than No Contact.


"I have everything I need." and "I am exactly where I am supposed to be." ~Louise Hays
Re: Topic 2: "Stop chasing your partner away!" - Building Trust [Re: Sim54] #321289
10/30/13 03:15 PM
10/30/13 03:15 PM
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AlTurtle Offline OP
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Originally Posted By: Sim54
Al, I'd be curious what you think about what Miranda said?
I liked her post and while I remain a bit more hopeful, I think her conclusions are fine. The focus on your ex's therapy/recover etc is a fun one. I believe we are all built to recover. The question is always a) recover by what path and b) how long does it take. I said something to a friend yesterday. "There are two for sure things in life: recover and death. I think the issue is which comes first and what can we do about it." We certainly can chose do things that likely will speed both up or slow them down.

So I think there are things you can do to help speed your ex's recovery.

Originally Posted By: Sim54
I know it sounds like 'making her wrong', but I do understand that my ex makes sense right now.
Making who wrong? Miranda or your ex? I think Miranda is fine and like her writings. Come to think of it, I'm not sure what you mean by "making her wrong."

Originally Posted By: Sim54
I agree with Miranda, that I can't become a source of safety for her, because I need to be let back in to able to show her.
I'm not quite where you are. My thinking is more "at this point what are the things I can do that would likely move my ex toward safety - her Lizard being relaxed?" At this point I would just gladly give her space, work on yourself so that you more likely do reliable safe-making things in the future.

Remember, she's got a whole section of her brain working on her safety. And it is telling her "Safety means staying away from you." Gladly giving her space is a lot about "being a source of safety at this point." You are working in concert with her Lizard.

If you two have contact, then there would be other instructions but they would all be toward reliably doing safe-making things.

Building theories about what your ex can or can't do is a low priority for me. I would do it, but not stress it. Focusing on what you can do is critically important.

Originally Posted By: Sim54
I have had therapy for my issues, and whilst not 'fixed' I am vastly improved.
Between my marriages I did a great deal of therapy (years and years) on myself. While it did help me enormously, it didn't do much about the relationship skills that I have never learned and that my therapist couldn't teach. I think of 1992 as the year when I came to the belief that I was just as screwed up now in relationship as I had been in the word troubles of my first marriage, perhaps 15 years before. Lots of sadness about those 15 years lost.

Originally Posted By: Sim54
I know that she would improve massively as well, with therapy, and she knows she needs it, but at the same time, is hugely resistant to it, and I think doesn't feel any great impetus to get it. That saddens me. She doesn't seem to see how much her issues have sabotaged her happiness with her boyfriends, and continues to do so.
I hear you and your beliefs about her. I also hear what sounds like a lot of caring/love toward her. That's great. I also hear the sound of a "fix-it guy," like me, who probably needs to learn better how to integrate your desire to "fix-it" with practical "respect" for the other. If you don't come across as "repectful first" then most of your attempts to "fix-it" will be at best wasted and at worst they will slow down the recovery process in your partner. I learned this the hard way. Sigh!


Principles are simple. Applying them is a tough U-Do-It project. Go 4 it!
Al Turtle
Re: Topic 2: "Stop chasing your partner away!" - Building Trust [Re: AlTurtle] #321332
10/30/13 09:03 PM
10/30/13 09:03 PM
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Sim54 Offline
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Lot's to ponder here.
To clarify, I was talking about my ex, not Miranda, with the making her wrong statement. I meant that it is easy to analyse someones so called psychological issues from a distance, with limited data. It can often sound like 'making someone wrong'. For example: Oh, she has anger issues (when she is screaming in frustration at not being listened too) or someone has abandonment issues (when they just don't want to be with someone any more). :-)

I do think Miranda's analysis is pretty close to it.
My ex has a long history of picking emotionally damaged men, and trying to get them to love her. For a long time, I hoped she would stay single, and do the work she needs to do to move past that. She now seems to be doing that. I have to remember that one of the ways in which she is healing is learning to not make the same mistakes, and to take her own safety seriously. Keeping me out, is one of those things. So, I am happy for her.

I think I read somewhere that one of the components of co dependency is the desire to fix the other. It comes with an if only statement: if only I could get them to stop doing a, b, or c, or could help them fix issues 1, 2, or 3, that are keeping them from loving me, then I would get my dream relationship.

It's funny you suggest my giving her space. Space was the buzzword of our relationship. I was the avoider, she the clinger. I was constantly asking for space, and usually taking it in very not safe ways, by simply disconnecting and withdrawing from her. My parents commented on how clingy she was. She would literally hold onto me all the time, always needing some physical contact.

Of course, the world works in lovely ways, and now shows me what life was like for her. I get to experience wanting closeness with someone I love, and being denied it, and so, I get to 'walk in her shoes', and learn new skills.

Well, I think that everything is going forward in the only way it can. Things are better for both of us. I am not pretending to be her friend right now, and well, there is some healthy distance.

I have no expectations about anything. I am learning.
I am practising with people I meet, trying to notice when I slip into Master talk, etc.

And yes, I was/am, a fix it guy. My ex is a fix it gal. We loved nurturing each other, often with food. I am trying to let go of it. There is some joy in watching someone struggle, and cheer them on from the ropes, but NOT getting involved. In a way, it's much more rewarding to see someone figure it out, especially when you love them.



Thanks for your thoughts and have a good day.


Oh, and NED, thanks for your comment. I don't think I have to do anything much here. I don't think I need to do no contact, I just have to change how I am feeling about all this, and let go.

Last edited by Sim54; 10/30/13 09:04 PM.
Re: Topic 2: "Stop chasing your partner away!" - Building Trust [Re: Sim54] #321333
10/30/13 09:09 PM
10/30/13 09:09 PM
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Sim54 Offline
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Oh, the bit about not being able to be a source of safety for my ex, was because of what Miranda wrote, that I can't prove my trustworthiness to my ex unless she lets me close, and she won't do that, because I can't be trusted. My ex is comfortable with me in lot's of ways, travelling with me, for a holiday, sleeping in the same room as me, undressing in front of me, sharing a bed with me in the past, so, in lot's of ways, I don't scare her, but anything that hints at more, scares her. Oddly, whenever I do something safely, or behave in a trustworthy way, that pricks her fear more. Like, she expects bad behaviour from me, and my behaving better, doesn't fit her view of me, so that is not predictive behaviour, and she gets scared. She was like this when we were together.

Her fear is extreme, and she once told me she doesn't trust anyone.
Poor thing.

Re: Topic 2: "Stop chasing your partner away!" - Building Trust [Re: Sim54] #321386
10/31/13 03:03 PM
10/31/13 03:03 PM
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AlTurtle Offline OP
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Hang in there. Still sounds as if you are on the right path. That fear thingy. Lots of people discover they have been "Lizard active" all of their lives. Pretty common to hear that. Yeah and I think it's sad.

Oh. also. It is interesting that people can share things that are just sentences that help them get clear. Mirroring and just listening are useful skills. Once had a guy weepingly tell me "no one ever listens to me." I mirrored. Had I not known how I might have foolishly said to him, "Hey, I'm listening to you. What am I? Chopped liver!"

When someone says to me, "I don't trust anyone." I am apt to say, "Gee, that sounds sad." and to think "Wow, he/she is trusting me by sharing that."


Principles are simple. Applying them is a tough U-Do-It project. Go 4 it!
Al Turtle
Re: Topic 2: "Stop chasing your partner away!" - Building Trust [Re: AlTurtle] #321432
10/31/13 09:08 PM
10/31/13 09:08 PM
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Sim54 Offline
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Funny, for the first time, I mentally pictured what mirroring that guy must have looked like
Guy: 'no-one ever listens to me.'
You: 'so, you think no one listens to you?'

I imagine saying that in my mind, and it didn't seem weird.
:-)
So far, the thought of mirroring someone felt really clunky and insincere.

I'm kind of itching to try it out with someone around me, just to see what it feels like.

At the moment, if someone tells me something personal and painful, I tend to wait to let them finish, but occasionally I will interject with something like: That sounds bad or that sounds like a tough thing to handle, etc.
I might also ask for clarification on what the feeling is: Where in the body, what exactly does it feel like, etc, and if it's something I've experienced as well, I may tell an anecdote of my own experience, but I'm aware that I don't want to drag it over to me all the time.

On a side note, I came across this woman writing about her communication style, and how it differs from the norm in Canada. If you have a minute, have a read. I thought of you when I read it, as it seemed provocative.

Amd now, A brief moment for sociolinguistics

Re: Topic 2: "Stop chasing your partner away!" - Building Trust [Re: Sim54] #321440
11/01/13 12:21 AM
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AlTurtle Offline OP
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Took a look at the article. My guess is that when I am playing tennis or hockey and I think things are going in a dangerous direction, I shift into the curling mode. I avoid the fisticuffs mode at all times. smile


Principles are simple. Applying them is a tough U-Do-It project. Go 4 it!
Al Turtle
Re: Topic 2: "Stop chasing your partner away!" - Building Trust [Re: AlTurtle] #321616
11/03/13 05:46 PM
11/03/13 05:46 PM
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uncertainone Offline
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Quote:
When someone says to me, "I don't trust anyone." I am apt to say, "Gee, that sounds sad." and to think "Wow, he/she is trusting me by sharing that."


I always think, wise choice and good start. Now move forward to stop looking at that as a constraint and realize trust in yourself is all you really need to enjoy people for what they offer rather than rely on them for what you can offer yourself to begin with so won't need from others. smile

Last edited by uncertainone; 11/03/13 05:47 PM.
Re: Topic 2: "Stop chasing your partner away!" - Building Trust [Re: uncertainone] #321688
11/04/13 02:09 PM
11/04/13 02:09 PM
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Miranda Offline
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Miranda  Offline
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Trust in yourself is really the only trust that works. If you don't trust yourself, you wind up nervous all the time waiting for someone ELSE to fail to do for you what YOU should be doing for yourself, imo.

Of course, as always I might be full of crap...


When we open to this moment and don't judge it or try to change it, even when we're suffering and wish it were otherwise, we tap into the spaciousness of mind that allows us to move forward skillfully, with discernment and joy. -- Sharon Salzberg
Re: Topic 2: "Stop chasing your partner away!" - Building Trust [Re: Miranda] #321714
11/04/13 03:38 PM
11/04/13 03:38 PM
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AlTurtle Offline OP
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AlTurtle  Offline OP
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Originally Posted By: Miranda
Trust in yourself is really the only trust that works.
I happen to agree with this one, Miranda with the addition of a bit of a definition of Trust.

Seems to me that the word Trust is used pretty abstractly. That bugged me,

When I defined it as Trust = Safety = Lizard Brain being relaxed = Lizard Brain being into Playfulness (not competition), Mating (playful joy producing), Nurturing (spending energy on people's well-being), Creative Work ("following your Bliss" even at the simple level), then a reliable definition of "trusting yourself" became possible.

"Trusting yourself" became "taking responsibility for keeping your own Lizard in that state of Safety" inspite of what the world or others throw at you.

So, we are born into the world needing others to provide this Safety. Somewhere over childhood we are designed to learn those skills of Safety for ourselves - learn from our Caretakers. And as we become older we apply those skills on our selves first and on others also to create and maintain an area/room/field of safety for ourselves and others close to us.

For most of us this is remedial learning cuz our Caretakers where humans and thus not too perfect. Doing their best, they may have done fairly poorly providing Safety and teaching us how. smile

Tis what I believe.


Principles are simple. Applying them is a tough U-Do-It project. Go 4 it!
Al Turtle
Re: Topic 2: "Stop chasing your partner away!" - Building Trust [Re: AlTurtle] #321716
11/04/13 03:42 PM
11/04/13 03:42 PM
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Miranda Offline
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I think you put that perfectly, Al.

Expecting other folks to create a sense of safety for my lizard was NEVER successful. I'm the only one in my body, I'm the only one with all the good intel on this.

I've been working this angle for a while now, and have progressed into Lizard brain being relaxed, but haven't gotten to playfulness, mating, creative bliss etc.

So I've got a little ways to go, but I am a LONG way from the regularly appearing, frantic, thrashing, hissing, tongue flicking stage I started at. So good progress.


When we open to this moment and don't judge it or try to change it, even when we're suffering and wish it were otherwise, we tap into the spaciousness of mind that allows us to move forward skillfully, with discernment and joy. -- Sharon Salzberg
Re: Topic 2: "Stop chasing your partner away!" - Building Trust [Re: Miranda] #321735
11/04/13 05:50 PM
11/04/13 05:50 PM
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Northwest Washington State, US...
AlTurtle Offline OP
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AlTurtle  Offline OP
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Go for it!


Principles are simple. Applying them is a tough U-Do-It project. Go 4 it!
Al Turtle
Re: Topic 2: "Stop chasing your partner away!" - Building Trust [Re: AlTurtle] #333072
01/28/14 04:45 PM
01/28/14 04:45 PM
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Oedipus Offline
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Al,

I have been in a relationship with a widow for almost 18 months. She lost her husband close to 2 years ago. A big issue we are having is how to move forward telling her deceased husband's family we are dating. When we began dating she asked that we be discreet with our relationship since I worked with her husband and it had only been about 6 months since his passing.
We have told a small handful of people we are dating. One of the friends she told had a really bad reaction early on and this has added to her anxiety. The situation is compounded because the parents are understandably having a terrible time with the loss of their son. The mother in law told my GF last year that she (MIL) is not ready for my GF to begin dating anyone. She is very close with the ILs and does not want to hurt them. GF has told me she is not ready to tell the IL we are dating and does not know when she will be. Because she doesnt want to tell them we have not told many people at all. Although they live on another coast the fear is they might find out through someone by accident.
This is incredibly hard for me. Not telling people has put a strain on the relationship and causes me anxiety (Fear of abandonment). When we have talked about it GF has stated she sees us together forever she just needs the time and support to figure this out her way. As I am not the most patient person in the world I am trying to find practical ways to remove all pushing from the situation.
Ive asked her to participate in caring days with me. My hope is that we can find ways to create safety every day in each other.

Re: Topic 2: "Stop chasing your partner away!" - Building Trust [Re: Oedipus] #333078
01/28/14 05:15 PM
01/28/14 05:15 PM
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Northwest Washington State, US...
AlTurtle Offline OP
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AlTurtle  Offline OP
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Northwest Washington State, US...
Tricky situation, Oedipus, but a great one learn better boundary skills - always seems a good idea. I have a couple of thoughts.

Generally, I believe withholding information from people leads to trouble in the long run and so keeping your lives (you and your gf) secret from her family sounds like a bad idea. Perhaps they need to grow up a bit more (everyone does).

On the other hand these people are her family not yours and thus she gets first and last say on dealing with them. If she wants secrecy at this point, support, understand and validate her need for privacy. Be her team mate all you can.

Her friends "bad reaction" is more likely an example of Passive Master behavior on her friends part. Families can be ever so controlling and your gfs's response to her friend and be just good ole codependency stuff - which you'll have to deal with anyway.

And then there is you yet-to-be-learned patience and clinginess that has to be validated and learned to deal with on both your parts.

Lots of work. Sounds good. Go for it.


Principles are simple. Applying them is a tough U-Do-It project. Go 4 it!
Al Turtle
Re: Topic 2: "Stop chasing your partner away!" - Building Trust [Re: AlTurtle] #333083
01/28/14 05:33 PM
01/28/14 05:33 PM
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Oedipus Offline
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Al,

Thank you for the response. I'm glad you brought up boundary skills and I agree with you about learning better boundary skills.

In this particular situation can you give me some practical examples of what better boundary skills would look like from your perspective?

Thank you

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