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Why do I care? How do you stop speculating?

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PhantomLimb posted 7/28/2013 11:30 AM

Yesterday I heard through the grapevine that (x)WS has moved to a new department at his place of business-- the same office he was debating transferring into when we were talking R and he needed to get away from OW (coworker).

And word is that the OW no longer works there at all. Like, off the directory nowhere to be found doesn't work there.

That makes a total of three (or maybe four?) people who have quit since my WS started this job (he's lost two secretaries, me and now perhaps OW). And two other people in the office who still refuse to work with him at all/have reported him as "difficult" to HR. ("Difficult" appears to be code for he wants everyone to do things his way and he ignores everyone else's opinions, even if they technically outrank him.)

Of course all of this is second or third hand and may be distorted (e.g., he could have simply moved his office to a new building). Someone could have pegged the wrong OW.

But, if it is true, I find it somewhere on the continuum of mildly interesting and WTF. I think I'm fascinated because, on one hand, it reinforces how out of the loop on his life I really am-- even after only a couple of months (of course, add the A onto those months and his double life and I've been out of the loop for quite some time! at least 6 mos!).

I also think it could signal that something major has gone down. She wasn't a subordinate so, technically, if they had a relationship, it was "fine" and not something that would get them fired. Besides, even if that wasn't the case, I can't imagine they would fire one and not the other. She's in the middle of a divorce and has a kid, so I can't imagine that she would just up in quit, unless there was something major going on like a breakup between them or they decided to live together/she's pregnant or something along those lines and she needed to hide it for the purposes of her own D.

As you can see, my imagination is going wild with speculation.

I need advice on how to avoid letting these things bother me. I'm still maintaining NC, I'm still asking people not to tell me stuff. I've unfriended him, I've blocked him from other social media (like IM). I'm doing my best to continue to work on myself, etc etc. I've personally ruled out R under any circumstances. My IC is a specialist in grief and trauma and is helping me work through completely breaking my bonds with WS and grieving the loss.

I'm not seeing IC again until Thursday and will talk to him then about my reaction to this... but, in the meantime, how do I get to a place where I'm not tempted to speculate about what happened here (again, if it's true)? Why do I even care?

Any tips on how you got yourself to a place where your WS's life was no longer a point of interest for you?

Maybe I just need to admit to myself that the downside to NC is that you have to deny the very human desire for finding out their lives are falling apart without you.

[This message edited by PhantomLimb at 11:47 AM, July 28th (Sunday)]

Feeling Consumed posted 7/28/2013 11:48 AM

I have struggled with this same problem every day for 2-1/2 years! I think I have done this for so long that I am actually starting to get numb. I think numb is a good place to be as far as ex-ahole is concerned.

I put this same question out there in one of my past posts and all the advice I got made a light bulb go off in my brain - this is an addictive behavior, like trying to quit smoking. It's so hard to quit, but we know we have to because it's very bad for us. It's the same problem - not only do we have to fight the addiction, but we also have to figure out why in the hell are we wanting something that is so bad for us? At least with cigarettes we know it's the nicotine pulling us in, but I have no clue whatsoever what is pulling me into the addiction of thinking about ex-ass and wondering what is going on with him.

I think part of it is a disbelief that this really happened to us and so we are always looking for some kind, any kind of closure and maybe when the shit hits the fan for them we will feel that we had our closure.

Revenge is also something I have to struggle with to keep out of my mind. There are so many ways I could mess them up (not physically, I'm not that tough :) but sneakily screw with their heads. I could do this, but something tells me to take the high road and not do these things.

But like I said, all this shit flying around the inside of my head all the time is really exhausting me to the point where I am starting to feel drained and numb. I hope this stays with me and I hope you can find this point way quicker than I did.

Ashland13 posted 7/29/2013 20:00 PM

I find that the things I don't have answers to are the things that stay in my head the most or the longest. I understand that some things I will never know and some things I asked not to.

Yes, thoughts like you have remain in my head as well and I get angry at myself for the wasted time and effort. A counselor told me once that it's an anxiety issue, like OCD kind of or post traumatic stress disorder-related, and likened it to a puzzle piece that won't be found.

When I find myself thinking of them, though, it is with hopes of their failures, or wonder if what he did turned out worth it and things like that. I too, continue to have a grapevine and am slowly trying to turn it off.

I heard recently that nearly Exh has visited "friends" without my knowledge with DD and it may be his right, but it made me feel very awkward and strange, because the friend took a really long time to tell me and he never told me at all. I don't want him in our world anymore and it felt sneaky, so you see, the grapevine goes on and on.

I hope something major like a break up has gone on.

I remember an affair at nearly Exh's workplace, years ago, and he was fascinated with the details, but I was very nave, even more than now. The people both got fired and the company officers told their spouses. Nearly Exh had many, many details and talked of it for a long time.

FWIW, I find that the longer I can go with NC, the more grief and withdrawal I have. It's an awful paradox because all he does is fight with me, but IC said it may be left over maternal type feelings of wonder if he's all right and still alive and all.

I hope you will get to that point soon, PhantomLimb, where it doesn't matter, and I've heard it takes a long time. An IC I had has a nice idea, where she says to just let the thoughts come, but put a timer on it. She said by not forcing the thoughts away, a person can deal and admit they have them, but it's also necessary to begin to put them aside. And she said, very kindly, not to beat myself up when the thoughts come, because they are human. But they can be controlled.

roughroadahead posted 7/29/2013 20:22 PM

I am working on the same issue. Even with NC, I still wonder how he's doing. It is almost maternal, at times I feel like he's my sibling or a close cousin or something making terrible choices.

I also worry about MOW. He has certainly made his own bed, and he is 100% responsible for his choices. I know he's not very socially savvy, though, he's naive, and MOW is taking that and running. He's totally being used. I am working on the CoD aspect of wanting to fix it for him. I have accepted it is not within my control, but I still worry. When he does the waffling thing of never-quite-R ovetures, I always wonder what he's thinking or what's happened. I worry about MOW destroying his career too, because that was so important to Old Waffle. It is not obsessive in nature, but I feel pangs of sorrow almost for the way his life is now.

A big focus in IC is strategies to process these feelings and move on. It takes time, but I've made progress. I have to feel the feelings, but then remind myself that I can't control it, I can't change it, and to let things run their course.

PhantomLimb posted 7/29/2013 20:25 PM

FWIW, I find that the longer I can go with NC, the more grief and withdrawal I have. It's an awful paradox because all he does is fight with me, but IC said it may be left over maternal type feelings of wonder if he's all right and still alive and all.

I'm actually going through this today. NewMom was walking me through it on the 180 thread. Just had a lot of triggers this weekend with a baby shower and whatnot as well.

I know that I'm fascinated because I totally want to find out that she dumped his butt or he dumped her.

I have a friend working for him right now who isn't allowed to tell me anything. Grapevine (i.e. two girlfriends at lunch who can't keep their traps shut!) told me last week that he assigned her to the project he had been doing with OW. I was so angry at that-- the idea that he would put my friend in the middle of their sordid A. But, if OW left, my friend may have been assigned to the project to *replace* OW. I just don't know.

I'm going to talk to my IC about it this week. He tells me that when I start to get upset to spend 20mins writing about my thoughts and then to basically try meditating (shutting off my mind, just feeling my body and emptying my thoughts). I tend to do 20mins on SI a few times a day instead of power writing because I did so much writing during the weeks between DDay 1 and 2 that I filled up two notebooks! I'm tapped out!

If I had to boil it down, though, I just miss the guy and it blows. I spent so much time as a major player in his personal and professional life, not being able to share that with him anymore stinks. I knew he had been considering a move to that department all year. We talked about it a million times. To think he made the decision to go without me stings on some level.

[This message edited by PhantomLimb at 8:26 PM, July 29th (Monday)]

SBB posted 7/30/2013 06:45 AM

The 180 feels like this for all of us in the beginning.

I jokingly posting once:
"Hearing he wore white socks today = pain."

I meant it as a joke but its actually true.

The process of detachment feels unnatural, uncomfortable, frightening. You can't control your thoughts (sneaky fuckers they are) but you can control your habits. Change your habits and your thoughts will change.

They still sneak up on me sometimes - I have created a new habit of thinking about the last few horrid things he has done to my girls and me and it shifts my focus back to them and me. I start thinking about what I can do. I'm not repressing or dismissing - I'm replacing.

Breaking a habit is hard. Moreso when you are in pain like this.

NC means no grapevine - you stop the news before it leaves their mouth. I've been known to put my hand up in a 'Stop' motion and also to cover my ears. "Stop - I don't want to hear any more, thank you".

With some people it is the only way to stop it.

Work on breaking the habit rather than trying to understand why you're still thinking of them. You're thinking of them because you are hurting and detachment takes time, effort and practice.

Control what you can - try to manage what you can't and make a big effort to shift your focus to yourself, YOUR life, YOUR current, YOUR future.

It will become second nature if you work at it.

PhantomLimb posted 7/30/2013 06:57 AM

"Hearing he wore white socks today = pain."


This is perfect! I think I'll use it as a new mantra anytime I start to wonder about him.

Thank you for helping me feel like my curiosity is normal. :)

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