Need a dope slap

iVillage Member
Registered: 11-22-2011
Need a dope slap
13
Sun, 01-27-2013 - 12:20pm

So, as you know, big concert last night, the annual benefit concert at my church. xAP, I knew, would be there with new GF, playing in the band I used to share with him. Dress rehearsal Friday night, gig Saturday night. Spoiler alert: Nothing happened, really. I stayed far away from him--in a polite not-calling-attention-to-myself way. But he did come over where I was sitting reading a book and drinking coffee and wished me luck on my performance that weekend, and I said thank you.

Right before I left with H for the actual gig last night, my father called me and we had a very painful conversation (he is losing his cognitive abilities and is really angry at me and my brothers for wanting him to move into assisted living--that's another whole depressing subject). So I wasn't in a great mood on the drive over. And we drove into the driveway of my church and had to wait as xAP and GF exited their shared car and crossed in front of us headed for the meetinghouse. I burst into tears, finally. Fortunately my H knew about the conversation with my dad, and he knows enough to know that I have avoided xAP for over a year, and he knows enough about why. Put it that way. I got my act together and wiped my face and went and washed up before I joined the rest of them.

Other than that, the only really bad moment was while some other band was doing a sound check and I looked across the room at him, and xAP was looking at me. And he waved, on the down low. And I didn't. I just looked for another half a moment and then looked away.

Got through the gig just fine, it went well. Went to the after-party, and he was there, with GF. They stood next to each other the whole time. Whatever. I mingled and had booze on a very empty stomach. And left with H.

Now I am obsessing that I should have waved back to xAP. I know this is stupid. I don't want him to think I'm deliberately being mean to him. But I guess I am. I don't want to be anywhere he is. I'm terrified he will start coming back to church regularly (his GF has recently started showing up at choir, and I'm afraid he will follow--and there are only maybe a dozen of us in it, and I have many many memories of Meaningful Glances being exchanged between the alto and the tenor sections--Oh, God, I'm not sure I could take that).

I hate his guts and I guess I still care about him and I have been doing so much better in the past almost 14 months. But it's so hard to see him. Makes me want to write him and say--What? I'm sorry I didn't wave back to you. I just have a very hard time being in the same room as you. Please don't come back into my life, i couldn't bear it. But I hope you find happiness.

Yeah, maybe I mean some of that.

Anyway, I expect I won't write him. What would that get me? Anxious waiting for a reply, guilt at breaking nearly 14 months of NC, and there's nothing he could say that would make me feel better.

Right?

but should I have waved back?

J@sus H. Chr@ist.

--Bird

 

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iVillage Member
Registered: 01-18-2010
Sun, 01-27-2013 - 12:42pm
Bird, Old friend....Sorry to hear about your dad. I have been gone for months and months and I come back and I read this post from you and it sounds like something I read months ago. Not that you have not obviously progressed. Your a vet...congrats! But you know the answer to those questions. I wish that you could avoid this guy all together...always. You are often put in a position (or it seems) where you have to see them, him and her together. Is there a way you can avoid this in the future. Its like it takes you back... No you shouldn't not have waved back, no you should not reach out and yes, you did the right thing and a step further would be you avoiding the man. Had you waved back..the can of worms could that could have been opened. You lookin away was you saying...NO...I am not an option for you anymore. Its been over. The door is closed and will remain closed. Who cares what he thinks? Your a stronger, smarter and better person now. He no longer dictates your days or nights...reel in your strength. You got it. This was a small hiccup....continue on and sing....not literally....you know what I mean...
Luvin
Yo Soy EL Capitan de Mi Vida
Avatar for wClarity
Community Leader
Registered: 11-04-2012
Sun, 01-27-2013 - 12:57pm

Sorry, but I am saving my dope slap for ivillage.  I found this thread and Luvin's thread after scrolling down, clicking on see all threads, scrolling down and clicking on next...it made we want to burst out crying.

NOOOOOOOOOOOO...you need not have waved back.  You had already exchanged pleasantries with his good luck.  Anything further is just playing an old, tired game.

In my opinion, it seems you might have to get back to the drawing board...back to basics.  Start honing those avoidance techniques once again, as it seems you are not quite ready share the social circle.  

I imagine having spoken to your Dad may have compounded your sense of loss, but your concern about having waved or not is a concern.

What do you think?

((hugs))

Clarity

Community Leader,

Ending an Affair Support Board

iVillage Member
Registered: 11-22-2011
Sun, 01-27-2013 - 1:56pm

Yeah, it is a concern. And I dreamed about him last night, for the first time in months and months. That his cell phone ended up in my laundry basket. (?) Same guilty feelings. I have been doing so well.

I do avoid him at all costs--I have avoided going to the coffeehouse at my church, even when it's an act I like, because I know he volunteers there. I have tried to reconnect with some of my old friends in that band, and that part has been fine. I guess I'm just surprised at how much it set me back to see him, and with her. Maybe in my heart of hearts I hadn't believed they would really stay together. What a dog in the manger I am.

It's just me wanting to control other people's perceptions of me--which I think is a major part of A behavior.

Hopefully a day or two will pass and I can put this behind me. I have a lot to look forward to, after all.

--Bird

 

Avatar for wClarity
Community Leader
Registered: 11-04-2012
Sun, 01-27-2013 - 2:24pm

Yeh....that 'other peoples perception of me' is a common thread I see a lot.  Why is it so important?  Why do we need the validation of another dysfunctional person?  Why do THEY have to validate us?  Is it because THEY rejected us?  So, we keep trying to undo that?  

Just thinking outloud here, Bird.

Check this out...see what you think...does it fit?

Quit Seeking A ‘ Rejection Retraction’ | Baggage Reclaim by Natalie Lue

Community Leader,

Ending an Affair Support Board

Avatar for ratherbeme
iVillage Member
Registered: 04-23-2010
Sun, 01-27-2013 - 4:09pm

Bird,

There is only one reason it would make a difference. Thats if you were hanging on, waiting and hoping.

If you really were done, and it was dead, you wouldn't care what he/she thought. You would be at the old indifference place and you aren't, so.................?

Tighten up the sails, and stay the course.  It will come. It will happen. Time heals.

If it doesn't happen on auto pilot, then you will have to take more drastic measures. KWIM?

You have tempted the forces that be, and you get rocked every time you step in the ring.  Do you really expect any thing different?

Be careful. You have the right stuff in you, you can do this.

I know you can.

Rather....

We only miss what could have been. I know I don't miss what it really was.

iVillage Member
Registered: 05-16-2011
Sun, 01-27-2013 - 6:25pm

Bird, I am sorry that you have had to deal with these feelings.

I understand the whole perception thing and it sucks when we still have this teeny part of us that cares what our Xap's think of us. I also wonder if we never really rejected our Xap's, then the first time we do, all the guilt and what do they think of us, start to come in.

Even though I ended my A, it was mutual. We ended with the 'Always friends, I will always care' yada, yada and so when he messaged me late last year and I gave a very blunt warning off, he was probably hurt as I had never ignored him before. After the initial feelings of anger and hurt had worn off from his attempt to contact me, I felt very guilty that I had been so blunt in my response and started wishing I had been more gentle. But what type of message would that have been to him. It would have been confusing and if there was a small chance that he would have taken that as a 'welcome back to my life', then all the hard work I had put in to my marriage and myself would have quickly faded back to the what if's, and maybe to a flirtation with something that still is never going to be.

My inital response was the right one because my first thought was self protection and when you didn't wave, your first response was also self protection. Go with that one as that is the one that didn't give a second thought to jumping to the line of self protection. It didn't think and play with it, it didn't consider how he might perceive it or how it would make him feel, you did what you needed to do to protect yourself. And as RBM always says, time, time, time. In a few weeks, you will be glad you responded the way you did. You will put this behind you and be grateful that you gave no signal whatsoever that you are feeling at all friendly towards him. A wave could quickly become a hi, to a full conversation and then a place you don't want to be at again. Much better he think you don't care then the alternative.

(((HUGS)))

The core of who you are is not always obvious to everyone. But to believe what others may believe of you can cause you to deny yourself, the wonders, of who you really are.
iVillage Member
Registered: 05-16-2011
Sun, 01-27-2013 - 6:25pm

Bird, I am sorry that you have had to deal with these feelings.

I understand the whole perception thing and it sucks when we still have this teeny part of us that cares what our Xap's think of us. I also wonder if we never really rejected our Xap's, then the first time we do, all the guilt and what do they think of us, start to come in.

Even though I ended my A, it was mutual. We ended with the 'Always friends, I will always care' yada, yada and so when he messaged me late last year and I gave a very blunt warning off, he was probably hurt as I had never ignored him before. After the initial feelings of anger and hurt had worn off from his attempt to contact me, I felt very guilty that I had been so blunt in my response and started wishing I had been more gentle. But what type of message would that have been to him. It would have been confusing and if there was a small chance that he would have taken that as a 'welcome back to my life', then all the hard work I had put in to my marriage and myself would have quickly faded back to the what if's, and maybe to a flirtation with something that still is never going to be.

My inital response was the right one because my first thought was self protection and when you didn't wave, your first response was also self protection. Go with that one as that is the one that didn't give a second thought to jumping to the line of self protection. It didn't think and play with it, it didn't consider how he might perceive it or how it would make him feel, you did what you needed to do to protect yourself. And as RBM always says, time, time, time. In a few weeks, you will be glad you responded the way you did. You will put this behind you and be grateful that you gave no signal whatsoever that you are feeling at all friendly towards him. A wave could quickly become a hi, to a full conversation and then a place you don't want to be at again. Much better he think you don't care then the alternative.

(((HUGS)))

The core of who you are is not always obvious to everyone. But to believe what others may believe of you can cause you to deny yourself, the wonders, of who you really are.
iVillage Member
Registered: 12-13-2010
Mon, 01-28-2013 - 9:57am
Hi Bird, Your post resonated with me. I too have ignored XAP, not replied to any of his fishing attempts (and, as you may recall, there were lots of those!). And, each time I used to ignore, I experienced guilt, wondering if I was “hurting” him, wondering if he would think poorly of me, or get angry with me. And, it was clear that he wanted to continue to have a relationship with me, maybe even if it was just going to be “friends”. But, I couldn’t do it. I got to the point where it was too hard to even see him at yoga or other places where we would see each other. I quit my yoga (THAT was hard but I have since found another studio where he can never “find” me.) Any contact with him left me empty, frustrated, confused, angry and hurt. So I took the necessary steps to stop exposing myself to that hurt. I basically disappeared. Haven’t seen or talked to XAP for almost six months. Your situation is much like those that have to work with their XAP’s. It appears that your paths will continue to cross from time to time given the nature of what you do and where you do it. So, maybe it would help if you did some reading in the Healing Library about the rules of LC. In the meantime, just breathe through this and give it some time. It was just a bump in the road. We will all have those from time to time. Somebody once said that it’s not a good idea to fly over the speed bumps in our life at a high rate of speed because we do more damage than if we just take it slow and cautiously navigate our way over the speed bump. Be gentle with yourself. But keep going and don’t give any more thought to any contact with him. You will never get what you need from this man. So keep movin’ forward girl!! ~Sunrise
iVillage Member
Registered: 01-11-2013
Mon, 01-28-2013 - 11:01am

Hi, Bird! I think you did the right thing by not waving to him too.  It would have only given him the wrong idea.  I know it must be hard to be going along with life and doing so well and be thrown this setback.  It's great that your performance went well, great job to keep it all together!

Hang in there,

Tam

iVillage Member
Registered: 02-03-2012
Mon, 01-28-2013 - 3:06pm

  Okay..I couldn't resist. Googled laundry basket in dream dictionary...so here you have it...To see a laundry chute in your dream suggests that you are not allowing others dictate how your should look or act.  Your mind is your own. Alternatively, it signifies exploration of your subconscious and/or acknowledgement of your negative emotions.  and cell phones...says you are open and receptive to new ideas OR you are having trouble understanding something or communicating with someone.

So chica, you may interpret that however you wantSurprised.

I've been thinking about power..our internal power lately. You know..I saw this news cast on some Brazillian jujitsu dojo..and at the end the newscaster stated, "Wow..countering bullying with power not punches. I like that." It sort-of stuck in my mind.

Because for many of us, the affair was a form of emotional bullying (on both parts whether we acknowledge it or not) We fell emotionally  betrayed, deceived, whatever...and we throw our own "punches". And I think that what we are doing when we stay away, is reclaiming our power. Refusing to play anymore..refusing to throw our own punches (however those verbal, emotional punches may look out) And in reclaiming our power? We are alleviating some of the emotional bullying in our lives.

So continue your journey and just be you. There is a huge amount of power in you Bird..don't shy away from it!

  The difference between who you are and who you imagine yourself to be, is what you do.

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