This forum is NOT a Safe Place.

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Acrobatica
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Joined: Tue Apr 10, 2018 6:02 pm
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This forum is NOT a Safe Place.

Post by Acrobatica »

I am writing this post to warn others that to post here is to risk being shamed for any detail you share. Since limerence is very much wrapped up in shame, this is akin to kicking someone while they are down and it can feel extremely painful. You will also then be told it is your fault for being "triggered." This is a common gaslighting technique. (Please look up Gaslighting. Dr. Ramani on Youtube and Shahida Arabi on Psychcentral are excellent sources - but there are many.)

One of the things that I learned through therapy is that I thought any pain that I was in was my own fault and took full responsibility for it. So if someone slapped me, I thought I had earned that slap. If someone called me selfish, I thought it was because I was not putting that person's needs above my own, as I had been taught to do since birth. If someone called me too emotional, I thought it was because I was too emotional. In short, I took on all problems that others (read my ex and my mother) had with me as my own and desperately tried to fix myself. Until I just couldn't do it anymore.

I learned this because in therapy when I would say something that someone did that was hurtful, in a matter of fact way, my therapist would cringe a bit and make a tiny face. And I would stop and think, why did she just make that face. And then I realized that I just said that someone had done something profoundly hurtful to me and I was acting as if it did not hurt at all. This is a coping mechanism for those of us living with someone who cannot handle other's emotions because they cannot handle their own.

So after years, I have finally started to feel pain, actually feel it, instead of just intellectually recognize it, when someone says something painful.

And after years, I finally recognize that it is not always my fault when someone says something painful to me. The cure is not to fix myself for them, but to understand that this is about that person and not me.

This is why I so profoundly disagree with the advice commonly given here to look inside. For me, it was fundamental to realize first, that there are people who thrive on other's pain, who seek to control, and who want to keep others down to elevate themselves. Call it whatever you want, narcissism, bpd, pyschopathy, cluster B, lack of empathy, assholes, but these people exist and when they criticize you they are doing it for themselves and not to help you be a better person.

Then, and only then, can we look inside and see why we are so vulnerable to these kinds of people. First, any discussion of narcissism will say that many of us are susceptible. There is usually a love-bombing very pleasant stage at the beginning. But some of us are more susceptible than others. And that is likely because we were raised by someone who has these dark qualities. We have associated love with abuse. And that is likely why we suffer so much in our relationships.

I believe that much of the limerence discussed on here, that is limerence where there is an actual relationship, platonic or not, with the LO, is a trauma bond with a narcissist or other personality disordered person. Look it up.

I am very sorry to see that David appears to want to let this forum proceed as an unsafe and harmful place. I am doubly sorry to see that L-F has doubled down on her advice to "look within" and do the "heavy lifting." The way out of this, and it is so very hard to do, is self-compassion. Re-parent yourself. Forgive yourself. Love yourself. Look at your own actions with curiosity and kindness. Realize it is normal to feel pain when someone does something to hurt you. You can not fix them. But you can remove yourself from the situation. That is why NC is the best advice.

And I am now recognizing that I am doing the thing I like to do, which is watch out for others. But alas, I cannot help those who seek out this forum in pain, without realizing that by opening up to people that they think will finally understand them, they will subject themselves to further shaming and harm. After having done an enormous amount of reading and research in psychology in the past four years -- my real job is college professor -- as far as I can tell, much of the advice given on this forum, the advice to look within and that it is all our own fault for getting triggered in the first place, is not within the norms of standard psychology theory or practice. It is more akin to the Christian pro-marriage forums that see marriage as a covenant and divorce as a failure, without the Christian language. I no longer see divorce as a failure, but as an awakening and a self-commitment to a better future. Some marriages are certainly worth saving. And I do believe that this avenue should be fully explored first. But some marriages are not.

I am, thus, also taking my own advice that when a person or group of people seek to do harm, I cannot fix them. But I can remove myself.

There are many good people here. I will miss reading your stories and travails. And I wish you all much healing, good fortune, and happiness.
Pandora
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Re: This forum is NOT a Safe Place.

Post by Pandora »

Acrobatica wrote: Mon Jul 27, 2020 4:44 pm After having done an enormous amount of reading and research in psychology in the past four years -- my real job is college professor -- as far as I can tell, much of the advice given on this forum, the advice to look within and that it is all our own fault for getting triggered in the first place, is not within the norms of standard psychology theory or practice. It is more akin to the Christian pro-marriage forums that see marriage as a covenant and divorce as a failure, without the Christian language. I no longer see divorce as a failure, but as an awakening and a self-commitment to a better future. Some marriages are certainly worth saving. And I do believe that this avenue should be fully explored first. But some marriages are not.

I am, thus, also taking my own advice that when a person or group of people seek to do harm, I cannot fix them. But I can remove myself.

There are many good people here. I will miss reading your stories and travails. And I wish you all much healing, good fortune, and happiness.
That is a very interesting insight re: Christian advice.

I'm sorry to see you go - to be honest, I read a lot of your threads and didn't even bother commenting because I thought 'She's done a lot of work and had an incredible journey, and I have nothing to offer her'. Which was really a self-absorbed kind of paradigm, so I apologise for not being supportive of you. You've been one of the giants of the board for me, and I'll miss you! You've been very honest about your struggles and journey and taken very courageous actions, and I think you're a beacon of hope for those that need to take similar steps in their lives.

Best wishes! :ymhug:
I'm not here to be a creep,
I'm just feeling complete.
Take me home.
Acrobatica
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Re: This forum is NOT a Safe Place.

Post by Acrobatica »

This article does an excellent job of encapsulating why the advice often given on this forum, to look within, is actively harmful advice.

https://blogs.psychcentral.com/recoveri ... tic-abuse/
David
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Re: This forum is NOT a Safe Place.

Post by David »

Acrobatica wrote: Mon Jul 27, 2020 4:44 pm So after years, I have finally started to feel pain, actually feel it, instead of just intellectually recognize it, when someone says something painful.
Feeling our pain is what is needed for our healing. The pain of grieving. We need to look within to see where that pain emanates from - usually childhood trauma in order to work through this pain. That is what I mean by heavy lifting. I am pleased for you Acrobatica.

As for narcissistic abuse, the question we should be asking ourselves is "why was I attracted to one?"

I wish you well on your future travels.

David
Purchase the 20 part video series on overcoming limerence for just $49 - see https://limerence.thinkific.com/courses/healing-limerence
Acrobatica
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Joined: Tue Apr 10, 2018 6:02 pm
France

Re: This forum is NOT a Safe Place.

Post by Acrobatica »

David wrote: Mon Jul 27, 2020 5:54 pm
Acrobatica wrote: Mon Jul 27, 2020 4:44 pm So after years, I have finally started to feel pain, actually feel it, instead of just intellectually recognize it, when someone says something painful.
Feeling our pain is what is needed for our healing. The pain of grieving. We need to look within to see where that pain emanates from - usually childhood trauma in order to work through this pain. That is what I mean by heavy lifting. I am pleased for you Acrobatica.

As for narcissistic abuse, the question we should be asking ourselves is "why was I attracted to one?"

I wish you well on your future travels.

David
But to ask why we are attracted to one, we must first acknowledge that it exists.



And I now know the answer to that question. It is because my mother was one. That was my first experience of love. That was my first experience, period. It was the imprint. I will always be attracted to narcissistic behavior. I know that deep now. But I can now recognize that it causes me pain. And I can now recognize that I can not fix her, my ex, or my various LOs.

Or this forum.
David
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Re: This forum is NOT a Safe Place.

Post by David »

Acrobatica wrote: Mon Jul 27, 2020 6:13 pm Or this forum.
True, we can only fix ourselves
Purchase the 20 part video series on overcoming limerence for just $49 - see https://limerence.thinkific.com/courses/healing-limerence
Cookie
Posts: 1190
Joined: Wed Sep 27, 2017 4:08 pm
United States of America

Re: This forum is NOT a Safe Place.

Post by Cookie »

Acrobatica wrote: Mon Jul 27, 2020 6:13 pm
As for narcissistic abuse, the question we should be asking ourselves is "why was I attracted to one?"

But to ask why we are attracted to one, we must first acknowledge that it exists.

And I now know the answer to that question. It is because my mother was one. That was my first experience of love. That was my first experience, period. It was the imprint.
Huge point here and what seems to be a fundamental difference on this forum.

Are we supposed to arrive here already knowing this connection?!? Well dang...that’s a tall order.

I’m in my 50s after 30 years of this and am only now turning the corner. This wasn’t because of “blame” and “finger-pointing.” This is because I was raised (sort of) by a narcissist, abandoning mother and did not realize that I’ve been in a cage and keep handing the keys to the wrong master.

Yes, my behaviors are my responsibility. But Jesus, why cut members off for exploring their origins on here?!? Not all of us have the benefit of finding the right therapist (mine have been awful) or the disciplined ability to self-recover by watching YouTube videos.

We should be allowed to talk on here in WHATEVER WAY helps ourselves and others—providing that it’s not personal attacks and abuse. Who knows what part of a conversation might help another member turn a corner?! As with counseling, the point is to discuss what’s on your mind.

/end of rant
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L-F
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Re: This forum is NOT a Safe Place.

Post by L-F »

OOTF forum is more suited to dealing with narcissistic abuse.

This forum is more of a SELF help one - aka looking in the mirror.

Once we realised we can't change LO, or SO, the only person we have left is the self.
Limerence is an addiction to romance based on insecurity. LF
L-F
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Re: This forum is NOT a Safe Place.

Post by L-F »

And just to add, there's a huge difference between:
SELF help techniques, and
Therapy

Huge difference. If anyone wants to know more about therapy, ask David.

I had to learn to sit with my feelings before I could progress down the healing track, as David has mentioned in his post.

All the best Acrobatic on your healing journey.
Limerence is an addiction to romance based on insecurity. LF
Cookie
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Re: This forum is NOT a Safe Place.

Post by Cookie »

L-F wrote: Mon Jul 27, 2020 7:53 pm OOTF forum is more suited to dealing with narcissistic abuse.

This forum is more of a SELF help one - aka looking in the mirror.

Once we realised we can't change LO, or SO, the only person we have left is the self.
I would ask you kindly, are you the authority here who decides what this forum is for and what it's not?

I realize there are other narcissistic abuse forums and was a member on one for years. It never got me to the point that this one has. Why? Because this one helps make the connection between that old abuse and ongoing (or new) limerence issues.

I have no problem looking in the mirror. But there are sometimes faces there besides my own, and it helps to stare them down. They have been part of forming my SELF, and acknowledging that has been crucial in recovery. I have no false illusions of changing *anyone*, but if you understand the concept of mirroring, seeing others also helps us see ourselves.

Members can be extremely helpful to one another in connecting the dots, especially if they cannot afford to pay a therapist/counselor. And if this is not the place for that, David should tell us so.
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