Advice needed

iVillage Member
Registered: 02-17-2014
Advice needed
Tue, 02-18-2014 - 12:52pm

Two years ago I got out of a bad relationship. It was good at first even amazing and we were the best of friends. We were engaged and then everything just suddenly went wrong. He became very manipulative and everything. I eventualy decided to walk away because it was becoming very unhealthy. He guilt tripped me everytime I hung out with friends and he refused to hang out with his friends. It just become extremely bad. I have spent the last two years rebuilding who I was because for so long my life had become about him. I had let him manipulate or well at least given into his manipulations. The last two years I have rebuilt myself around my education, working out and being healthy, and my family and friends. I have not really dated much in the last two years. I dated a little this last summer and found out that guy was using me to make another girl jealous

Anyways, everytime I date or even really think about it my walls go up. I get kind of freaked out about the whole thing. I know that is due to a number of factors. Those factors are 1. being scared that I am going to get into another bad relationship and be crushed. Even though I walked away from my ex he had practically abandoned me before I walked away because he started blaming me for everything in his life and would ignore me and want a break and I put the stop to that. 2. I am scared of losing myself again. I lost myself in my relationship with my ex. 3. I still sometimes think about the good times I had with my ex and miss the ways we were best friends. 4. I am actually scared of getting attached to someone again. 

I don't know what to do because I feel myself pushing guys away even before the second date. Dating just sends my walls flaring up high and just red warnings in a way. I think its from being scared and I don't know how to get over that. Part of me thinks that maybe its from not dating sooner from rebuilding myself around everything else but having a guy to share my life with. Before my last relationship, I was never really scared about putting my heart into dating someone or putting myself out there. I had a few boyfriends before the relationship that ended two years ago, though none of them were as serious. I just really good use any advice because I don't want to miss an opportunity to let someone great into my life but I don't really know how to stop myself from putting walls up because it just seems to happen. 

iVillage Member
Registered: 02-08-2011
Tue, 02-25-2014 - 9:37am
At least you can be thankful that he showed his manipulative side before you got stuck in a worthless marriage and that you had the insight to recognize it, then the strength to walk away. Huge congratulations for that. Many people just stay in disastrous relationships, wasting their life, while dreaming that somehow it all will change.
But now you are stuck in a holding pattern. The therapy suggestion is a good one to work through that a bit before going forward with dating. Otherwise, people with trust issues often protect themselves unsuccessfully by either...
1. Sabotage the heck out of things or withhold any closeness until the other person leaves thus fulfilling a dysfunctional self-fulfilling prophecy
2. Have "a relationship" with someone far away so that basically everything is a made up fantasy since there rarely would be real time spent together with real situations
3. End up with someone else with the same bad patterns as the ex and try to change/fix the bad pattern in them
4. Go from casual encounter to casual encounter in a void until either eventually earning a discount rate at the clinic, die of a related disease, or end up in some lunatic's freezer.
So yeah, in my opinion, therapy is a better route. Everyone needs a tune up at some point in their lives.
Avatar for sabrtooth
iVillage Member
Registered: 12-03-1999
Wed, 02-19-2014 - 1:45pm
Get professional counseling.
Avatar for xxxs
Community Leader
Registered: 01-25-2010
Tue, 02-18-2014 - 11:35pm

It sounds like it is time to enjoy being you.   Do not date for a mate but for a good time.  Learn to compartmentalize.  There is not need to commit to anyone except to have fun with them.    Almost everyone goes through a time when they allow themselves to get lost in a relationship.  When that happens one can say they have made a mistake.  The first thing is to be one with yourself.  hold back some of the emotion and your sprit energy just for yourself.  Do not date just one but several or many so no one takes up your time.  So no serial dating.    It will take time to armour yourself.  But it is worth it.