Trying to begin anew.

Submitted by diamondsoul22 on
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I just got back from a two week mindfullness retreat in France not to long ago
It was wonderfull. Uncomfortable at times on an emotional level, but I'm so happy I went

I made an attempt to reach out to a therapist today. We spoke briefly, and she said she'll return my call later

I'm gonna try my best to seek support.

I think If I keep waiting and hoping and trying to work on myself nothing is really going to change in the relationship department.

as far as the guy I was seeing last month, I don't really no what to make of it at this point. He invited me over to his house last night but I didn't go...not sure whether I made the right decision or not.... There's alot of fear and also pride that motivates my decisions.

There's a possibility I may bump into him at some point in the future as long as I continue to keep eating at my favorite place where he also frequents

Wish me luck with finding a good therapist


Although I haven't seen the

Although I haven't seen the guy I was dating last month in several weeks- our connection, for reasons that I'm having trouble really getting to the heart of, disintegrated- Now I just feel left with an obsessive thougts about him. The conversations and thoughts In my head constantly revolve around him. It's hard to really let go. I attempted to gain some closure with him a couple of weeks ago by reaching out to tell him how shitty I felt after our last encounter, but maybe my need for control sabotaged the attempt. I don't know if I'm the one with the problem, or him. I can never tell. Of course i have a problem.... but does he have a problem to? or is it just all me?

he is one of the owners of my favorite place to eat. My thoughts constantly revolve now around whether I'm going to see him when I go back to eat there. Fear of being in pain if I see him. disapointment, but also relief if I don't see him.... I don't want to stop going there to eat because of him but I don't want to go there because of him either I really enjoy the food and the service

i will go to see another therapist tomorrow and I'll go to my second Coda meeting. I went to a love avoidant meeting yesterday.

I'm trying my best but its hard to be in this place of feeling like I need to make a decision or take action and not knowing which way to turn.

Maybe you are a love addict

I'm a sex addict; i.e. it's the sex part that I obsess about, get caught up in and act out with. I find it helpful to treat my sexual obsessiveness as an addiction.

But I know some people who identify themselves as love addicts, and your mental process (as you described it) fits that description. So early in the relationship, and you're way too focused on the intrigue; what does he think about me? Is he going to accept me? Reject me? Should I call him? And this is injected into each encounter with him, and every moment in between; even after he's disengaged for weeks. It's causing you to be externally referenced; i.e., your internal experience (emotions, feelings about yourself, etc) is determined by what this guy does (or doesn't do). Most guys will feel that, experience it as some form of neediness and be scared off by it.

I think you could benefit from thinking about the "love interest drama" as an addiction and treating it as such. In other words, view these behaviors which you already know to be unhealthy as "acting out" and just try and go a day without doing them. Then try and go two days; i.e. "one day at a time". I recently saw this on this forum and found it helpful in my own attempts to control acting out behavior ( Maybe you already saw that. In any case, try replacing those behaviors / thought patterns with more healthy ones like, what can I do by myself or with friends that will feel good and make me happy? What can I do to take care of myself like exercise, eat well and meditate - all things that will reinforce your sense of self-worth without referring to someone else's feedback. Give it some time.

CODA meetings are a good place to work that. You could also check out SLAA - there might be people there who you relate to more directly with respect to the love interest drama. Certainly having the support of a group of people who you feel you can trust is a very good way to work on these types of things (in my experience).

I'm not a psychologist, and I don't know you. But from following this thread, I'm just giving you my read from what's on the page. It's not about labeling (i.e. love addict), but about finding a useful model for understanding and changing behaviors you don't like. If it fits, then the good news is there are well understood methods for approaching this sort of change. Therapy can be a good way to gain insights, make breakthroughs, etc. But for some people (myself included), I sometimes just need to pursue good old fashioned behavior modification to get results.

i think i really have trouble

i think i really have trouble addmiting that I'm a love addict or a codependent or anything. It's very hard for me to clearly perceive let alone accept the reality of what is occurring in my experiences.

I do often feel like I am very externally referenced. it's often challenging to just be one with my experience. Instead I'm imagining my experience happening through his eyes or somebody else's.

But I don't know how much harder I can try to be better or do more

I think I'm doing everything I can. I'm going to 12 step meetings, trying to find a therapist, attending a weekly meditation group... going to cultural events I enjoy. If there really is an addict in me then I obviously can't control it and I can't force my self to change or be different. I guess I need to try to really practice self acceptance

Maybe going to the restaurant

despite your discomfort, and behaving normally by just enjoying the experience, would be good cognitive behavior therapy for you. No expections except to enjoy the food and be pleasant if he shows up. If you can learn to do that, you may also find you're ready for the next "lesson," whatever that may be. Biggrin

Thanks for that suggestion

Thanks for your feedback and encouragement Marnia .

I went to my mindfullness meditation practice tonight. I'm glad I went. I was really greatfull for the good energy and peace I felt in the room. I think having some sort of structured spiritual practice is a good focal point for me to revolve the rest of my schedule around.

It's so difficult not for me

It's so difficult not for me to revolve my thoughts around this guy as I go about my day to day tasks. imagining how our interactions would play out when and if I bump into him. these thoughts are relentless.

That's really helpful information

Those kind of pesky thoughts are like OCD. They give you a slight neurochemical reward of anticipation, uncertainty, arousal, and anxiety. All of which fire guessed it...dopamine.

That's why your brain defaults to them. This is the same reason someone washes their hands constantly - they get a sense of fleeting relief from the "protection" it affords. In other words, these kinds of unhelpful brain loops are somewhat related to addiction. The person is "pressing a button in their brain" to get a dopamine release. Not unlike someone clicking endlessly to novel porn. Smile But of course the rush is a bit different.

Point is, you need brain training to establish a new loop...and let the old, habitual one fade. This means you can't indulge those thoughts. Just think of them as a drug you're hooked on and trying to quit. It also means you need to come up with constructive alternatives that you will use when that brain loop fires.

Read this:

And don't get frustrated. This will take time. But I'm guessing that when you stop getting your jollies from these fantasies, you'll enjoy life a lot more and give off more sparks...because you'll be getting your buzz from life, not fantasies. Make sense?

Yes. Makes alot of sense

Yes. Makes alot of sense Smile thank you for the encouragment. u know what's so funny, that I find myself looking foward to going to my one or two 12 step meetings a week just to get away from this part of myself. I'm at home not feeling motivated to do any of the things that I should do off of my to do list - I guess because there not as stimulating as these obsesive thoughts. I guess I'll go color a mandala or two and see if I feel better because the to do list probably won't get done any way Smile

Feeling somewhat crazy and

Feeling somewhat crazy and out of control. Like buzzed on an up swing. I did some painting today and it was very joyfull but have still been indulging very much in an OCD way. The endless loop....Im going to my weekly meditation this evening. Hoping it will snap me out of it

P.S. thank you for sending me the link from "the brain that changes itself" I read the book and I loved it. I think in fact I first heard of it on the forum. i would love to give it another read.

Be gentle with yourself

Yeah, we could all stand to read Doidge's book a few times. Wink It's such a good reminder of how important it is to choose where you're going...because your brain will (eventually) tag along. Fool

A fairly minor incident

A fairly minor incident occurred just a few minutes ago that brought up some anger. I'm in the botanic gardens doing walking meditation. And I guess that I was in the way of somebodies photo shoot for a sweet 15. I didn't realize it and the way they brought it to my attention was by saying " Lady, miss! Can you get out of the way". Along with the hand movment of a shooing motion. My automatic reaction was just to move which I did... To comply. But then I felt this wave of anger come up in me. Afterward. Because I didn't like the way I was asked to move I guess. I wish I had said "sure I'd be happy to move if you just say excuse me" but it was too late by the time I realized I was angry. These sorts of incidents have occurred in the past before where I feel less than human indignated. they bring on a feeling of shame and humiliation. Maybe I'm taking this out of proportion, but I know that I would never talk to anybody like that.

I think this is somthing I need to work on.... Giving other people an opportunity to treat me with respect as I attempt to live my truth

On another note I've been trying really diligently to keep up with my self care practices.

Sorry you got bruised

Learning to know what you're feeling instantly is a real skill. Just keep checking in with yourself ("What am I feeling?"). It'll get easier, and it sounds like you're almost there.

Feeling the restless ocd

Feeling the restless ocd empty feeling...nothing seems appealing to me.... Lacking motivation to see straight O really feel like I have an itch that I can't scratch

Gonna go color a Mandala and see if I get some clarity ......


Did it help? It can also help to crack open an inspiring book at a random page. Anything to reset your brain a bit. Smile

How's the therapy?

I had a slip today.... MO...

I had a slip today.... MO....I noticed this beginning with a desire to binge on junk food a few days ago. by this morning I was raiding the freezer for icecream like I was gasping for air. Then I just wanted more....

Is it realistic to set no pmo and eating sugar as a bottom line behavior?

I admit I just Didnt really feel like fighting these compulsions today

I have therapy today. So far it'goings pretty good. I like her. not sure if I'd feel comfortable talking to her about this though.

Only you

can determine your bottom lines.

If you cut out masturbation for a bit, what about replacing it with something sensual and calorie free? Perhaps a warm bath, or using a massager, or exchanging a foot massage with a friend.

I went to a 12 step meeting

I went to a 12 step meeting this evening. I'm glad I went. I felt very connected at this meeting

and I told my therapist about some of my compulsive behavior habits I've blogged about on this site

I slipped into another

I slipped into another masturbation fantasy episode.... started with the icecream.

I've been going to 12 step meetings and am gonna meet with my therapist on tues. this is my third therapist. But I think I found the one. She has a background in mindfullness practice and seems to have a great deal of experience in the area of co dependency and addiction.

at the 12 step meetings it's hard for me to fully be honest and open and I'm still not quite sure if I belong in these meetings...part of me feels like my issues are so minor compared to many of the things I hear of other participants going through; like I wouldn't be taken seriously. .but part of me wants to keep going because there's somthing I see in the participants there that I really admire: there honesty and vulnerability

Im coming to realize that I don't like my job anymore: it doesn't really fulfill me. What am I called on earth to do??

Getting unstuck is a messy job

My guess is that your life path will become clear after you get a bit more of this inner work done. Meanwhile, the job can act as a form of security. Don't think of it as a permanent anchor. Smile

Honestly, 12-Step programs often have most of their power due to the honesty and vulnerability you describe. So if you feel you're learning something by example, don't worry that you don't "match" the life stories.

I'm really impressed that you kept digging until you found a therapist that feels right.

Ignore the relapse...unless the trigger was useful in some way - in terms of teaching you what to watch the next time. It's the long-term brain changes you're after...not perfection.

*big hug*