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Historical post: Abandonment and it's ugly side effects - Jan 17, 2016

Abandonment and it’s ugly side effects…

January 17, 2016 by julieannhowe

Friendship is a pretty hard thing to come by.  When I say friendship, I mean the real deal.  Those friends in your life, you probably only have 3 or 4, who may have been in your life forever, since you were a child, or even be new, but the bond is there and it’s real.  These relationships for me come with unconditional love.  They are people who, like my children almost, could do anything wrong, and it wouldn’t affect how I feel about them.   Not many people get that gift in my life.

With marrying a psychopath, and giving that unconditional love to a man who couldn’t feel or share the same feelings, knowing how I felt was a tool to use against me.  With my desire to be there unconditionally for him, he would toy with things, always throw out how he could just walk away, and threaten me with abandonment.   This should have been the first sign that the love wasn’t unconditional coming from him.

He legitimately used leaving as his primary way to deal with any situation.  I’m angry, we are arguing, and suddenly, I’m done. I’m gonna leave, I don’t need this, you aren’t worth this. He conditioned me to beg, to hope that I could overcome and accept what horrible things I had just done or said, even if they weren’t horrible, and even if I had a right to be angry.  He would make me feel as if nothing I do was validated or justified in any of our relationship.

After we finally split, I dealt strongly against those abandonment issues.  Every time I had any inkling of a relationship there was this underlying intense fear of the other person leaving.  It’s been a real challenge to over come these conditioned reactions and to know that not everyone is going to abandon me, especially in this society and the lack of real people wanting a real relationship and working hard to make one work, because truth is, almost everyone does abandon you.  There are those few that stay in your life,

for a long time, and deserve that position where you have that undying and unconditional love.

I felt as if I was doing pretty well to face my abandonment issues and I don’t feel like I put them on people as I once did.  If anything it does keep me more guarded in some ways, because now, after getting to know the 2016 dating world, it’s a real fear.  If I sit back and wait just a touch longer and don’t become emotionally involved, I can normally prove to myself that these people will bail.  Which is why I haven’t had what I consider a serious relationship in a long time.  It will take a lot for me to buy into the fact that someone will stay and once I do, I’ve allowed them in and allowed myself vulnerable to that pain again if they do chose to leave.

As I mentioned, this goes hand in hand with both intimate relationships and friendships. As of late I have really dedicate my heart in a friendship that will always mean the whole world to me.  It’s complicated in the sense that I will be the Julia Roberts chasing Cameron Diaz across the field trying to fix my sabotage to her wedding to the man I love.   I fell for my best friend.  To be honest, I wish I could take it back.  I wish I could erase it and treat the situation just like any other loveless, and uncaring situation.  I wish we could just be acquaintances. I however can’t erase how I feel.

With that said, I thought there was a general understanding.  While I hoped in the back of my mind that something great might eventually happen, it just meant the world to me to be around him and to spend time with him because we click.  He’s just so much fun.  I thought that no matter what he was worth the heart ache I might feel just to be able to have him in my life. For me, it was a price I was more than willing to pay.

I was faced with that inevitable thing this week, facing the idea of him with someone else.  The situation and the circumstances surround it were not any of my business and what did or did not happen again, were things I didn’t need to be privy to.  It was merely that point of facing a point in my life where I needed to start to emotionally prepare for that.  I had for other reasons thought it wouldn’t happen soon and that I would have some time to get to being okay with that, but it did happen sooner than I thought it would.  Again, it wasn’t what did or did not happen, it was the self awareness for me that it could.

In the moment, and oh how I wish I could take it all back, I chose to be honest when asked if it bothered me.  I answered yes.  Let’s be real, 10 years from now I might be watching him marry, and 10 years from now, with still little to no hope with being with him drilled into my heart over the years, that will still hurt.  I wouldn’t have missed it for the world, no matter how much I might be dying inside, just to see him happy and to see him smile.  Seeing his joy would have been worth any pain I go through. In that moment, if it ever comes, I will lie.

This is all new to me, and I didn’t know that I had to pretend to feel the way that I don’t.  I never thought he would want anything more that what I am and how I feel on the table, raw, and honest. As I said, I thought I had more time before I might have to face that reality, and maybe I still do, but now it doesn’t matter. I was already honest.

Now, I set, facing a possible outcome and I struggle to breath.  He is thinking about not speaking to me anymore because he feels bad because I was honest and admitted it hurt.  He is contemplating abandoning me, and our friendship, because he asked me a question and I answered honestly.  I am who I am, I’ve never lied about how I feel, and I’ve always made it clear that I chose to accept and deal with the consequences and the pain I might suffer so that I can maintain being in his life.  So I can still hold his friendship dear.  In payment for that, and for being the truest person I know how to be, I might be losing him anyway.

It is so hard for me, because nothing has changed. I have never said I didn’t have these feelings, or claimed to be over them.  I’ve never said I didn’t love him anymore.  I’m still me, feeling the way that I have felt for some time, in the moment.  Now, it’s a nuisance… something that is causing him distress that needs to not exist.  How I feel has now made me expendable.  What I am willing to do and who I am is suddenly something that is being questioned as bearable.  I’m not sitting on his porch, sobbing and begging for things to change.  I’m sitting in my home, quietly trying to accept and move past, and yet, answered a simple question.  I should have lied.  Now I know he is so willing to just cut me off because he cannot cope with what I have inside me, and for how I feel.  That has been made clear and I have to sit back and figure out how to deal with a friendship going forward that could very well be pulled out from under me at any moment.  That feeling of eggshells and abandonment is alive in my heart with those words.

Going forward I will have to always wonder how much I mean to him, and if something I do will be the slice that lets the rope break and the guillotine fall.  One of the last things he said was that we would talk later about all of it, that no one was cutting off or running away from the situation.  That didn’t make me feel any better.  As I cried myself to sleep last night I couldn’t help but think, that I would never tell anyone I love unconditionally that they may have just done that thing that ends it all, and that this situation is now clearer. I will never dangle my love for someone in the balances as a strategic movement to get a situation to change. I now have to decide if I can accept that being thrown at me each time something difficult comes along.  Words are just words, but words hurt.  I spent a marriage full of the possibility that any fight could bring about the end and finality to what anything we had built in trust and love.  Where do I stand, and what is it worth? I guess this is something I need to know.  I am worth a lot more than the threat of leaving.

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