Posted by fxckfeelings on March 28, 2011Share This Post
Despite being one of the most intense emotions in the world, love is not something you should take personally. You’re wired for it, in the deepest parts of your brain, just like penguins and meerkats. Even in the wild kingdom, the resulting attachments seem extra intense, unhappy, and/or joyful. If you need to share your tortured feelings, go ahead, but at some point, shut up and figure out how to manage the hurt. Re-stimulating the love-fixation centers in your brain by venting your feelings won’t help you control them, and, instead of mating for life, you’ll end up moaning alone in the emotional wilderness.
I am in love with a man who is married and has 2 children. He left his wife and family and wanted to live with me, but then I had a miscarriage and then felt I could not live with him. He has since gone back to his wife and I feel so awful.
What gets lost when you feel awful about a love gone wrong is that love often goes wrong. You didn’t beat the odds, but most people don’t. And most people weren’t as up against it as you were.
What you need to do now is remember that you had goals of your own before you fell in love. It’s your job to think about where love is likely to go, even when you’re crazed by it, so you’ll be prepared for moments like this.
Of course, retaining your rational mind while you’re in love tends to wreck the poetry and ruin the sad intensity of anyone’s love song. To many people, particularly those of the younger persuasion, mixing love with due diligence reviews and strategic thinking seems to make that love, and thus life, meaningless, flat, dull and boring.
I feel, therefore I am, has been the cry of romantic poets and singers for at least 800 years. If good poetry were the point of this relationship, you’d be a bestseller. This isn’t the case.
Nevertheless, your problem isn’t lost love, it’s lost self, and you need to get it back before you define your life as a sad decline from forbidden, joyful passion, ruined by dark feelings, triggering endless memories, regrets, and yearnings before you get another chance…to do the same thing all over again.
You probably don’t want to hear this, but the fact that a guy will leave his wife and 3 kids means he’s not a good risk for sticking with you when the going gets tough. If your goal was to find ways to get him back, you’re asking the wrong person, because a guy like this isn’t worth fighting for.
Yes, you may feel you should trust a love that is powerful enough to pull him from his domestic security to your side, but don’t. Don’t ever trust love; trust character.
So the bad news is that you have a broken heart, it will happen again if you don’t learn more rational ways to manage yourself, and learning those ways will make you feel even worse (because heartache, at least, makes you feel alive). The additional bad news is that you have no choice. The good news is that you can get stronger if you get smarter.
So, assuming you’re finished with crying, take this as a learning opportunity. Your long-range goal is to become less addicted to love and more focused on finding someone who is good for you and likely to stick around. Odds are, it won’t be easy, but it will certainly be worth it.
“I feel awful and can think of nothing that doesn’t make me sad; but I know I am capable of love and can make it last if I’m more rational and luckier in my selection. I feel hopeless; but I’m determined not to let my feelings shape my beliefs or decisions.”
Why should I get suspicious about my perfectly nice husband after 25 years of happy marriage and 2 kids? The trigger was seeing him have a conversation with an old girlfriend at a college reunion 6 months ago. There was nothing bad about their conversation, but I couldn’t get it out of my head, and I still can’t. Since then, I’ve started quizzing him about old relationships, how he feels about women at work, what he’s doing when he’s out of the house, and he’s starting to get hurt and irritated. My goal is to figure out why I’m doing this before I ruin my marriage.
When you want to stop a bad, hard-to-control habit, don’t ask why you have it. You’ve got a jealousy demon inside that wants an endless amount of reassurance, and it will do anything to get it, even if it drives your husband crazy and away. You’re possessed, and that’s all you need to know.
Since exorcism isn’t really an option, you’ve got to tame the demon before it tears up your life. Don’t ask yourself how you became possessed, because, while you’re mind’s away, the demon will play.
So, unless you know a nutty priest, give up on why and start thinking about how, as in, how you’re going to stop the bad behavior without changing the urge behind it.
Your goal is to accept the fact that your brain is torturing you with doubt and jealousy. While you can’t make the feelings go away, you can manage them by distracting yourself and keeping the demon trapped—by sewing your mouth shut.
You can learn management techniques from others, as long as you are willing to stay on topic without venting the demon’s bottomless need for the understanding, sympathy, and reassurance that make up his basic diet. Sympathy stimulates a demon’s appetite, making it harder for you to stop another round of husband interrogation that leaves you both miserable.
Medications sometimes help, but only if you’re trying to manage an intractable impulse; they’re not a cure and, if you want too much relief from them, your demon will seize on that goal and run with it.
I wish there was a better answer, but the roots of bad impulses are a mystery that’s as old as time. As long as you accept that it’s not you but a demonic impulse that’s ruining your marriage, you can stop being emotional and start taking control. If you don’t, there’ll be hell to pay.
“I’ve got to stop asking my husband to stop me from being jealous or I won’t have a husband to be jealous of. I’ll never understand why these feelings hit me or how to make them go away. I’m sure I didn’t cause them. I will be proud of what I do with them.”
More advice from Dr. Lastname