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I think I'm broken

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Eranda posted 8/31/2013 06:25 AM

I was sitting in my car earlier today, waiting to pick up my daughter and her friend from a movie. I was fiddling around with my phone, and I came across an article about success in marriage.

It talked about how your spouse has to be your best friend, and how you have to love deeply.

And I realized... I don't think I can do that anymore.

I don't mean that I don't want to, or that I can't bring myself to do it. I mean I think I'm incapable of loving anyone. At all.

No, I don't mean my children or my family- I'm fine with that. I mean romantically.

I cannot even imagine ever feeling like that again. In fact, I can't even imagine what it would feel like. It's like that part of me is broken and disconnected from the rest of me. It used to be there- but now it's not anymore.

This is the weirdest feeling- like I've had surgery and it's been removed. Just... gone.

I'm not upset about it, or worried. When I think about it, it just IS. Like I'm looking at it from outside myself and saying "huh. used to be there, but now it's not".

Every man I see seems strange, and slightly menacing. Dangerous. Not worth the time or effort. Not interesting in any way.

I'm old enough to know that I have a future, but I can't picture anyone else in it- because I can't picture myself even being patient enough to try to care about someone.

It's just... poof. Gone. This is weird, and new for me.

Lately all I want to be is alone. I don't want to talk to many people, I keep to myself at work. I have stopped carpooling for a while. I am relieved when the day is over and I can get in my car and be alone again. I come home to my empty house and it makes me sad and happy at the same time.

I'm not sure what to make of this, but I feel like something important inside of me is irretrievably broken, and that maybe it will never come back.
And I'm not sure I even care.

How weird is that?

[This message edited by Eranda at 6:27 AM, August 31st (Saturday)]

Bluebird26 posted 8/31/2013 07:00 AM

It's not weird. I feel exactly the same way. I crave peace.

I have no interest in dating or finding someone else or having to deal with the hurt again. People think I'm strange

Maybe in a few years this will change but right now I'm ok with being alone forever.

nomistakeaboutit posted 8/31/2013 07:05 AM

Yes. This is basically how I feel, too.

Part of loving romantically is releasing control, trusting and becoming vulnerable. Uhhhh...right now and as far as I can thanks.

LearningToRun posted 8/31/2013 07:17 AM

From my reading, I recall this disconnected feeling is one of the stages of grief. I think it was in the book "rebuilding after your relationship ends"

Don't worry, it's normal and it passes. And one day you are making out again like a teenager.

Ann124 posted 8/31/2013 07:18 AM

Well written Eranda, I feel exactly the same way. And I don't find it to be a "bad" feeling either, not weird or anything of that nature

cmego posted 8/31/2013 08:07 AM

I felt like that in the beginning. Every now and then that "lethal plane of flatness" hits, but it is rare and fleeting.

But, the others are right, when you are healed enough, and the right person walks into your find you can care about someone again. I find it to be different, I am more cautious, but in a way...I respect a good relationship even more now.

Eranda posted 8/31/2013 08:21 AM

Hey guys, look at my member number- I'm an old-timer. Registered here in 2004.

I've been divorced since 2005. Have a had a number of relationships since then, two serious ones (one almost 5 years, and one 2 years).

So this is not due to not being "healed" from infidelity- that happened a LOONG time ago...

I just ended my second post-divorce relationship, and this is how I feel.

So... it's not related to hurt from the infidelity/divorce. This is just how I am now, I think.

Helen of Troy posted 8/31/2013 08:30 AM

I just ended my second post-divorce relationship, and this is how I feel.

Is it possible you're grieving the end of this last relationship? even if it's not infidelity related.

hexed posted 8/31/2013 08:34 AM


I love and live differently now than I used to. I'm far more analytical about it in my relationship. Why? because I know now that it takes a heck of a lot more than love to make a relationship work. And maybe that's what people lump in together to mean 'love deeply' is that everything and respect too.

I don't really know. I just know its different now and it is what it is.

Williesmom posted 8/31/2013 08:37 AM

Yep, after my D I was in this mode for about a year. I called it sexually and emotionally dormant.

For me, it's a self-protective move.

inconnu posted 8/31/2013 08:46 AM

So... it's not related to hurt from the infidelity/divorce. This is just how I am now, I think.

So, maybe you've had all the relationships you were meant to have. Or maybe this is just the aftermath of getting out of an emotionally draining relationship. Maybe this is the way you're telling yourself to take time for yourself, and focus on what brings you joy.

It's your life, hon. Feel what you feel. Take the time to distance yourself from the end of this last relationship. If you still feel like you want to be alone and not around other people, then maybe there's an issue you might need help working through. But for now, it sounds like to me that you just need some down time, and time to recharge without other people around to drain you.

SBB posted 8/31/2013 09:13 AM

Part of loving romantically is releasing control, trusting and becoming vulnerable. Uhhhh...right now and as far as I can thanks.

^^THIS for me. But it is also that I think I'm content with never risking it again. The payoff wasn't that great.

I think I'm going end up being the biggest love of my life. I think I am supposed to be.

TBH I didn't really risk it the first time. I thought I was I was safe because....I don't know.... I was never fully vulnerable. He was safe to me because of that.

Until I had children. By then it was too late. I used to wonder if I felt trapped by the kids. It was one of those ugly thoughts that good mothers aren't supposed to have. But it wasn't them - I felt trapped "to" him if that makes sense.

Only when I felt vulnerable did I start noticing (TBH, acknowledging) how far I had settled beneath what anyone deserved. This wasn't how it was supposed to be, not how it was supposed to feel.

I honestly cannot see it. I simply cannot imagine myself feeling vulnerable again. Much like I cannot see myself having more children.

I don't think that makes me broken in that way. I definitely was a year ago, and for the decade prior, years prior too.

I actually think I'm becoming whole. I think it will take me the rest of my life to get there in a "journey not destination" kind of way.

It might sound weird but I am still fascinated by men. I don't fear them. I don't find them menacing. I think a majority are soft and gentle and lovely. I think they are hard to read even though I feel I can get the noisy ones' measure pretty quickly it is the non-jazz handed ones that are harder to read and get to know. I just don't want to keep one. Not because of them - because I am infinitely happier this way.

better4me posted 8/31/2013 11:31 AM

It's like that part of me is broken and disconnected from the rest of me. It used to be there- but now it's not anymore
Part of what works for me is to focus on the "here and now" and not the future. So, if this is where you are now, accept it and try not to see it as "broken" just another emotion, another part of being human. It may not be forever, and even if it is forever, it may not be a bad thing or a good thing...just a thing.

I would think a little bit more about the isolation thing though...isolating from co workers etc. Research shows that people "do" better (are healthier, stay mentally sharp) when they have relationships with other people. That part sounds slightly more concerning to me than your not wanting/needing a relationship. with a man. Are there people you used to like doing things with? Is isolating healthy for you?

hexed posted 8/31/2013 11:38 AM

you've been in relationships for 7 of the 8 years since your D. Maybe you do just need some more time to heal from all of it?

phmh posted 8/31/2013 12:17 PM

As we say here all the time, too, though, it's not just time, it's what you do with the time. If you have been in relationships almost all of your post-divorce time, maybe you haven't healed yet.

But if you're happy with that, I don't think it's necessary to label yourself broken. If that's the way you want to live, good for you for recognizing that and not bending to what society says makes someone happy.

tryingagain74 posted 8/31/2013 12:33 PM

It sounds to me like you just need a break, not that you're broken.

I feel the same way, although I am not nearly as far out from my D as you are. I have a lot going on in my life with work, my kids, caring for my home, etc. The thought of bringing someone new into that really isn't appealing right now. I'm enjoying my space, and I love having silent downtime where I'm not expected to call anyone or to go out on dates. I just don't want that right now, but I think I'm still capable of loving someone... some day.

I think you are as well, but you just don't want to at present. You just want time with yourself, but we live in a culture that treats that as though there's something wrong with you. We're encouraged to socialize, go out with people, try to make new friends... while those are all good things, sometimes they're not always what we need at a given moment.

You're not weird. I'm sure that there are more people out there who feel the way that you do than you think. We just don't talk about it much in a society where people are hyper about coupling up... I mean, my D was JUST final two months ago, and a friend asked me if I've started dating again! I was kind of shocked by that... as though being single is some sort of illness that must be treated by dating.

Phoenix1 posted 8/31/2013 13:43 PM

I feel very much the same way, but I am perfectly at ease with it. I enjoy my solitude and there are many things I enjoy doing by myself. I do not believe I will ever trust again, and that is OK. I am fairly confident I will never marry again, and that is OK too. I had told my mother years earlier that if my H ever died I would never remarry as once in a lifetime was enough for me. She understood and said she felt the same way. So the divorce puts me in that same frame of mind. I enjoy my alone time, doing things I like to do. Some people can't stand being alone, like my WH. It won't be long before he remarries because he hates being alone. I may one day, in the far future, find companionship, but never marriage. That suits me just fine, and I am now looking forward to living my life my way and on my own terms. I see nothing broken or wrong with feeling that way.

tabitha95 posted 8/31/2013 15:42 PM

Some of that disconnect from people and wanting to be alone may be mild-depression or anxiety.

When I was suffering from extreme anxiety, I pulled myself away from a lot of people. It was too stressful.

Just something to consider.

caregiver9000 posted 8/31/2013 16:06 PM

just gone, like surgery. Yep, I understand that! But I am still "interested" in that I wonder if there is any level or even amount of time I would give to just the right mix of appealing? I have dated, had a couple of relationships. But like SBB says, the payoff just wasn't that great. I really like just hanging out with me and doing MY thing when I want.

If your reaction is anxiety induced and not just a place you have gotten to in your life, especially given the pulling back from carpool and other interactions with people, keep an eye on it. I have been told it is how agoraphobia starts. I believe it, because there are days I think, "wouldn't THAT be nice?"


ruinedandbroken posted 8/31/2013 20:57 PM

Yeah. I get it. I'm broken too. I'm absolutely sure of it. I have not dated since Dday 3 years ago. I can't bring myself to do it. And I'm scared to death of being alone forever. But idk how to fix the part of me that died. :(

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