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  #1  
Old 08-29-2013, 07:37 AM
AlwaysGrowing AlwaysGrowing is offline
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Default How do you get over insecurity rooted in past relationships?

I have a great relationship with my husband. He is supportive, understanding, and amazing in just about every way. I am the best me when I am with him, and he thinks he is the best him when with me. I have no trouble telling him when something is bothering me and resolving it. I have very rarely felt anything more than a tiny twinge of envy when it comes to him being with other people, due in no small part to him completely understanding and accepting my current boundaries and our constant talking about everything.

Besides him, I have a history of falling for people who can't give me what I want/need. By that, I mean my first poly relationship was with a married woman who wouldn't even tell people who knew we were sleeping together that we were romantically involved as well (apparently it's ok to be bisexual and a swinger but not biromantic and poly? IDK). Then came the guy who wouldn't tell any of his family/friends about me because then they'd want to meet me and I may let it slip that I'm married. Then the woman who was really into me, as long as I'd come to her place and didn't expect to leave the house.

Mixed in there were some relationships that just ran their courses and some that didn't work out due to lack of chemistry/other normal reasons.

I have been seeing my boyfriend for about 7 months. We started out just talking, very friendly, while he was going through some stuff with his wife. Once they were more solid, he asked me out. I was a little wary but after another month or so, we had our first date. After a bit, he and his wife realized they had no romantic connection at all anymore and decided to divorce. While it was sad, he wasn't heartbroken because they'd both realized it'd been over for a while. They still talk a few times a week, and we've gone on quite a few double dates with her and her girlfriend.

Now, a few months later, things have settled and I am starting to feel my old insecurities creep in from past people treating me like I'm disposable. I don't feel like he's making as much time for me as he was, I don't feel like he's talking to me like he used to (which shouldn't surprise me since we weren't romantically/sexually involved then), and I am just feeling.. Unsure.

Whenever I voice my concerns, he tries to help. He offers all of these amazing supportive things. He follows through without about 75% probably, but then falls into the same routine until I bring something up again.

Deep down I know he cares. I don't know to what extent (we've never said "I love you" nor do I know if I feel it), but I know he wants me in his life and wants me to be happy. I just don't know how to accept that as it is and not worry about the future. I don't know if I see any long-term potential based on general personality differences, but for the most part I am enjoying the relationship while it lasts. I'm just starting to think it won't last much longer unless I get a handle on separating my shit from past experiences from the things that are going on now.

Any advice?
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  #2  
Old 08-29-2013, 08:15 AM
dingedheart dingedheart is offline
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Where's the line between past experiences and insecurities and wisdom and guidance.?

Is this a case of gut telling you one thing head or something else telling you something else that creates this internal conflict ?


What is your ideal long term goal in terms of romantic partners go ?
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  #3  
Old 08-29-2013, 01:22 PM
GalaGirl GalaGirl is offline
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What is your need?

Quote:
Deep down I know he cares. I don't know to what extent (we've never said "I love you" nor do I know if I feel it), but I know he wants me in his life and wants me to be happy. I just don't know how to accept that as it is and not worry about the future. I don't know if I see any long-term potential based on general personality differences, but for the most part I am enjoying the relationship while it lasts. I'm just starting to think it won't last much longer unless I get a handle on separating my shit from past experiences from the things that are going on now.
Based on that it seems to be something like...
  • I am worried about the future.
  • I want to know to what extent he cares about me.
  • I want to be treated well and not "disposable."
  • I want to know if there is long term potential here.
  • I need (belonging? inclusion? reassurance? security?) in this relationship.


If it is somewhere in that ballpark?
  • You could ask him to what extent he cares about you at this point in time and if he sees it deepening or not over time.
  • You could talk to him about how you prefer to be broken up with. So it is respectful and not "disposable." You could ask him to reassure you that if it came to that on his side of things... he would break up with you in your preferred method and not like you are disposable. (You could ask him how HE would want to be broken up with if it came to that on your end of things.)
  • You could invite him to build toward something long term. So you can know there's long term potential here -- because you both agree to try to build toward that and share the same goal/hope for the relationship.

Maybe having the answers to those could help alleviate your worries.

HTH!
Galagirl

Last edited by GalaGirl; 08-29-2013 at 01:26 PM.
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  #4  
Old 08-29-2013, 05:22 PM
bookbug bookbug is offline
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While your bf was not heartbroken over the loss of his marriage, it is still a huge change in his life. A person wraps oneself up in the routines of daily life with another person, and it is going to be a stark change when it's gone. He may just be preoccupied as hell, and no reflection on you or how he feels about you.
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  #5  
Old 08-30-2013, 02:02 AM
AlwaysGrowing AlwaysGrowing is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dingedheart View Post
Where's the line between past experiences and insecurities and wisdom and guidance.?

Is this a case of gut telling you one thing head or something else telling you something else that creates this internal conflict ?


What is your ideal long term goal in terms of romantic partners go ?
I'm not sure where that line is. That is probably something else I need to learn.

My long term goals tend to depend greatly on the relationship. With this particular man, I don't see us ever cohabiting or anything like that. So, the goal would be to just have a loving relationship where we see each other regularly (right now, I'm enjoying at least twice a week, but I am comfortable with that lessening if necessary).

Quote:
Originally Posted by GalaGirl View Post
What is your need?



Based on that it seems to be something like...
  • I am worried about the future.
  • I want to know to what extent he cares about me.
  • I want to be treated well and not "disposable."
  • I want to know if there is long term potential here.
  • I need (belonging? inclusion? reassurance? security?) in this relationship.


If it is somewhere in that ballpark?
  • You could ask him to what extent he cares about you at this point in time and if he sees it deepening or not over time.
  • You could talk to him about how you prefer to be broken up with. So it is respectful and not "disposable." You could ask him to reassure you that if it came to that on his side of things... he would break up with you in your preferred method and not like you are disposable. (You could ask him how HE would want to be broken up with if it came to that on your end of things.)
  • You could invite him to build toward something long term. So you can know there's long term potential here -- because you both agree to try to build toward that and share the same goal/hope for the relationship.

Maybe having the answers to those could help alleviate your worries.

HTH!
Galagirl
I think it boils down to worrying about how much he actually care about me (is it more of a selfish "she's good to me, so I care" kind of thing or a genuine caring) and wondering what the future holds. There are so many things in transition right now that things have been very up in the air (scheduling, when we can talk, etc), and I really like structure. I need to feel like I am being made a priority in the midst of all this madness.

Quote:
Originally Posted by bookbug View Post
While your bf was not heartbroken over the loss of his marriage, it is still a huge change in his life. A person wraps oneself up in the routines of daily life with another person, and it is going to be a stark change when it's gone. He may just be preoccupied as hell, and no reflection on you or how he feels about you.
This is a fair point. I know he has a lot on his plate, and he doesn't talk to me about it much at all anymore. He doesn't want to "drag me down" when we do have time together. At first he was basically using time with me as a distraction, and I think it formed into a habit that he's having trouble breaking now that he's actually processed a bit and is trying to find a new normal.
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  #6  
Old 08-30-2013, 01:53 PM
GalaGirl GalaGirl is offline
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Quote:
I think it boils down to worrying about how much he actually care about me (is it more of a selfish "she's good to me, so I care" kind of thing or a genuine caring) and wondering what the future holds. There are so many things in transition right now that things have been very up in the air (scheduling, when we can talk, etc), and I really like structure. I need to feel like I am being made a priority in the midst of all this madness.
So... what behavior would you like from him?

To schedule a talk about what he sees the future might hold (at this point in time)?

To schedule a regular date each week/month? Or a regular email or phone check in each week if face time is not possible? Something else you like? So you can expect something scheduled?

If so... could ask him if he is willing/able to do that behavior to try to meet your need at this time.

Galagirl

Last edited by GalaGirl; 08-30-2013 at 06:10 PM.
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  #7  
Old 08-30-2013, 02:20 PM
opalescent opalescent is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AlwaysGrowing View Post
I think it boils down to worrying about how much he actually care about me (is it more of a selfish "she's good to me, so I care" kind of thing or a genuine caring) and wondering what the future holds. There are so many things in transition right now that things have been very up in the air (scheduling, when we can talk, etc), and I really like structure. I need to feel like I am being made a priority in the midst of all this madness.
I highlighted the above words to point out something.

Someone who is divorcing - even if a long expected, amicable break up - is likely to be utterly incapable of providing that structure or stability. Even if they want to. There is just too much going on mentally, emotionally, physically. Maybe in a year or two, he can be more giving, more structured. But right now? It's unlikely.

The fact that he agrees to give you more of what you want, does alright for a while and then goes back to old patterns - he is telling you through his behavior what to expect from him. And stability and structure is not what he can offer you right now.

It can't hurt to ask him for specifics as GalaGirl suggests. But I strongly suspect you have needs for importance, priority, and structure that he is currently incapable of providing.

There is nothing wrong with what you want - I want to emphasize. And there is certainly nothing wrong with asking for what you want.

But think about what you can handle, what you can tolerate if he cannot offer what you want and need. Can you stay with him with less structure, less priority in his life? Or do you need to move on? Think hard on this.
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  #8  
Old 08-31-2013, 01:37 AM
AlwaysGrowing AlwaysGrowing is offline
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Maybe he can't give me what I need, or even the basic minimum that I deserve.

More and more I am feeling like we're just not compatible.
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  #9  
Old 08-31-2013, 02:31 AM
GalaGirl GalaGirl is offline
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All the more reason to actually ASK and have the talk to determine if you are compatible at this time or not. Not guess.

You can do this.

Galagirl
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  #10  
Old 08-31-2013, 02:39 AM
AlwaysGrowing AlwaysGrowing is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GalaGirl View Post
All the more reason to actually ASK and have the talk to determine if you are compatible at this time or not. Not guess.

You can do this.

Galagirl
For the past 3 days, I have been trying to get him to talk to me. A serious, face-to-face, or at least on the phone (not via text) conversation. He has yet to determine a time when it would be possible to do that.

I'm at a crossroads. I either let myself care deeply about, potentially love, this man or I walk away. And I just can't give my heart to someone who seems so unwilling to try to understand how I work.

Maybe when his life is more settled, but right now... I just can't count on him for anything.
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