iVillage Member
Registered: 04-13-2007
Tue, 07-30-2013 - 9:15am

I was watching a youtube video yesterday about the wife that throws a tantrum ( it is mind-blowing) and as i read the comments i realized that only people who have been in that kind of relationship understand the main question most people ask, why did he record that & post it on youtube. I having recently separated from someone with a personality disorder, i fully understood, and then it hit me... that is my baggage!

Any fan of 'how i met your mother' should remember the baggage show... how we all carry around baggage from past relationships, but how many of us actually stop and look at the kind of baggage we carry and try to work on it or around it or at least acknowledge it is there and understand how it will affect new relationships.

In my case, even though i will not be dating anytime soon, i still look and sometimes even have oppurtuinities present themselves, but i now look at women differently, through the prism of " is she hiding some psychological disorder?"... and at times i see things that may not even be there... I know all the stuff about projection & self fulfilling prophecies but for now that is my baggage.. because of my last experience, even a small disagreement handled the wrong way is enough to cause major red flags and sirens blaring in my mind.. ( maybe i'm the one that needs help Frown). but I also take stock of my baggage and figure to use this break from dating to fix some of that, so hopefully the next person i date won't have to deal with as much.... but I wonder is there some baggage of mine that i don't see.. and how would i find out, short of calling exs and asking...

So i ask the rest of you guys, what are your thoughts on the baggage we carry. how do you deal with your own? And how do you deal with the baggage your date may bring with them?

iVillage Member
Registered: 11-28-1999
In reply to: spartan117
Tue, 07-30-2013 - 11:16am

I think it's good to contemplate what went wrong in your last relationship so that you don't make the same mistakes or pick the same kind of people.  I think it's good that you want to take a break from dating because you recognize that having been w/ someone w/ a disorder now you're wary of everyone else.  My 2nd exDH has bipolar disorder so it took a while just to get back to feeling normal but I don't feel that I look at other people as if they are going to have mental problems.  I think time is a good healer.  I realized that I was doing better when I wasn't willing to go out with just anyone just to have a date.  I know that I ended up w/ the 2nd DH and there were certainly a lot of red flags that I ignored because my 1st DH left me and I probably had very low self esteem, so then I found a guy who really wanted to be with me and I focused on that and ignored all his problems, just hoping they would go away.  As far as baggage of other people, I think everyone has some to some extent, but some have way more than others.  I would probably avoid someone who has a lot of issues now--like 2nd ex (didn't know about his mental illness before we got married) but he also had issues of being abused by his father, molested by his uncle, etc.--you want to find someone who is emotionally healthy.  there are some people who had issues in the past but dealt with them and are now in a good place--I think you can tell when you get to know someone.

Community Leader
Registered: 07-16-2001
In reply to: spartan117
Tue, 07-30-2013 - 10:39pm

I think I was the victim of baggage with the last guy I dated, and he was only 28. When we met, he told me that he had "dated" a girl who lied to him about being married and having kids. It just hit me last night- several times during text conversations, he'd say "liar" in response to something I'd sent. I always thought he was just being sarcastic or joking, but now that I think about it, I don't think he was. I'm convinced that the reason he quit communicating with me with no explanation is he thinks I lied about something. I didn't, but that doesn't matter. The fact that he never asked me if he did think I lied is a huge red flag. I also know the woman he said he was "dating". Turns out, they weren't actually dating, but he thought they were. He ubruptly "ended" things with her, too. And she says they were just friends! I honestly don't think I have a huge amount of baggage. I don't tolerate being yelled at because of childhood issues, but I don't think anyone should tolerate that. I am cautious, but that's my personality, not because I've been hurt.