How Do I...

Discussion in 'Advice (Dear AE...)' started by Pretty Wingz, May 26, 2015.

  1. Pretty Wingz

    Pretty Wingz Member

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    How do I not punish the next woman for my ex's mistakes? How do I trust that someone new who I've just met won't run me into the ground when someone I knew for over 20 years did such hurtful things?
     
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  2. Just Me

    Just Me Well-Known Member

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    You give yourself time to get over your past before moving forward to the next woman. Then take your time to get to really get to know the next woman you're with before jumping into a relationship. Recognize red flags and listen to your conscience. Most the time if you're mind is telling you a person is shady, they are.

    And recognize if you're being a jerk to somebody because of your past experience, explain why you're a jerk and apologize.
     
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    greylin, Narley, rac and 1 other person like this.
  3. Pretty Wingz

    Pretty Wingz Member

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    Thank you for your response. I really appreciate it. Logically, I know I have to give myself time. I need to focus on myself so that I don't punish the next woman.

    I'm usually really good at not taking my pain out on others but I've never had anybody cut me so deeply so I'm worried.

    I have the patience of Job but I will admit that this last relationship really pushed me to my limit. Sometimes I feel like it will take nothing short of a miracle to love again!
     
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  4. rac

    rac Well-Known Member

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    Yes on giving yourself time. One day you'll meet someone and you will feel like you're ready, maybe ask yourself again if you are finally ready to move on. It maybe hard to trust again but eventually you'll get there. Believe me, you'll know when you are ready and you met that someone you will gladly take that leap of faith. You'll know when you are ready to face the consequences, that even if there's a possibility you will be broken again, you will take that risk because you know that whatever happened in the past is not as important as what's in your future.

    Just keep in mind that maybe the next one won't be the one... Like other things, it takes time.
     
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  5. Just Me

    Just Me Well-Known Member

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    how long have you been out of the relationship? If you don't mind me asking...

    It sucks when people you trust/love hurt you. You can't expect that you'll be over it the next day, 2 months, a year, or even longer; everybody's different when it comes to healing.

    I was in a fairly abusive relationship for a few years once, it left me pretty messed up for a while. I was convinced I would never be with anybody again after I left that relationship. But, seriously, who likes being f..king single?! At some point you just have to try again.

    Have you taken time to reflect on what went so wrong in your last relationship? What were some red flags that started early in the relationship that you can learn from? (extreme jealousy? Calling you out your name? Not letting you go out with friends? Controlling? Weird behaviors? How do they treat their friends/family?...) If you see any traits in your next potential girlfriend that remind you of your ex, and you can't handle it, maybe you have to accept that the relationship won't work and move on. If you're seeing your ex in everybody you're dating and it's making you act out towards them because of it; or if you're "taking [your] pain out on others". Then you're not mentally ready to have a relationship right now. Period.

    Have you processed your feelings towards your ex? (written down why you hate them for what they did? Talked to friends/family about how you feel? Gone to the gym and pictured their face on the punching bag. Gone to therapy?)

    When you feel like you've got yourself together enough emotionally to date again. Be honest and get to really know your potential girlfriend first. (I saw you posted about having troubles being in the friend zone? I guess in a way this advice will work for that too.) When you first meet a girl you like, flirt! Flirt! Flirt! And keep flirting until you get her number, keep flirting for a week or so and then ask her to have a dinner date with you. But never let the flirting go on for longer then a month without getting a date... or the flirting becomes banter and you go into the dreaded friend zone. After you've had the "what are your intentions/what are you looking for in a relationship" talk, if you two decide to get serious, be completely honest about how messed up the last relationship left you. Let her know that you might act funny at times because what happened in the past, and recognize when you're being that way. Communication is the biggest key in a relationship. When you catch yourself acting crazy, stop yourself, breath, and let them know how you're feeling instead of lashing out (or becoming introverted, whatever your deal is).

    Ultimately though, as much as your ex f..ked you up, you have to take responsibility for yourself. You can't blame your ex for ANYTHING your future girl will do. SHE'S NOT YOUR EX! Don't go taking your pain out on innocent people, it turns you into that monster and them into the victim...

    Sorry if that was a long ramble.
     
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  6. Pretty Wingz

    Pretty Wingz Member

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    Just Me, please don't apologize for your response. It was more than appreciated. Sometimes you feel like you have nobody that can relate and understand. So I am grateful for your words of wisdom.

    I've been out of it for almost a year now. She first cheated in 2009. I was devastated to say the least! I moved out and didn't talk to her or tell her where I lived for about 4 months. In that time she claimed to have ended things and appeared to be very remorseful and apologetic.

    Fast forward 5 years she did it again as if it didn't nearly cause me to take my own life the first time. Oddly enough, she broke things off with me. Go figure. So we're approaching a year since we split and I'm still feeling terrible. I've been to counseling, confided in friends and even strangers. But I can't shake these feelings. I think the biggest reason is because I didn't go no contact. I kicked her out and then the woman she cheated with ended up being physically and emotionally abusive so I bailed her out. That's me being me and putting her feelings before mine. I felt like I was being a good friend. I don't condone abusive situations but there's a part of me that wishes I had just stayed no contact and let her get herself out of the mess she made.
     
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  7. Pretty Wingz

    Pretty Wingz Member

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    Honestly rac, I know I'm too broken now to even entertain the idea of seeing someone else. It seems like time is the enemy but it can also be your greatest ally. Logically, I know one day I will be over this and look back and be amazed at the progress made. Emotionally, my heart betrays my logic!!

    I know one day I'll be willing to risk my heart again. But when I do get there, the last thing I'll be looking to do is u haul. Lol! I know I need to take time to work on me so that I don't repeat the behavior and so I can spot the warning signs. Thank you for your response!!
     
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  8. lorienczhiu

    lorienczhiu Well-Known Member

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    Solid advice so far.

    I think you can also be proactive when you're ready to date again. I would work to identify the things that trigger your worry and panic, and then figure out what actions a new partner can take to help avoid/deescalate those situations. It's totally okay to let someone know that because of past experiences, you need to be supported in a particular way, and that you're working towards trusting fully but you need a little help. Honestly, but the time we've been in a few, even non-drama relationships, we all have behaviors and situations that push our buttons, and it's okay to advocate for your needs around them.

    So in addition to working on a good dialogue with your inner voice, I think it'd be good to think about what gets your worked up and worried in the first place. What behaviors did your ex show that you might associate with her dishonesty and cheating? Are they things that it's appropriate to ask a new partner to not do, or do differently? If not, is there some check-in or extra care step you can add to help you manage your reaction?

    That way, as you heal, you can think about what will help you stay whole, even when that weak spot gets pressed on - think about it as physical therapy for the heart.
     
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  9. Eloise

    Eloise Well-Known Member

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    There's nothing worse than dating someone who says they won't give of themselves because of a past relationship. If that's were you are you aren't ready to get serious again. Just date for fun to take your mind off your ex. Eventually, you'll feel differently and be ready to trust again.
     
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