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What are your triggers? People, places, smells, or sounds? Have you learned how to set your boundaries? Or do you know what your boundaries are?

by AvantGarde » Sat Aug 12, 2017 6:11 am

It seems like I'm ready to get myself out there again. Been thinking a lot about it and trauma shouldn't be an impediment... Actually, seeing how Bill is so special to Ducky, Jemane's hubby, Shawn's wife (not sure if I'm allowed to say her name in public), all of your supportive spouses, made me believe in love again. I don't think anymore that having a mental illness is a burden to the ones that love us. So.. I'm willing to give it a try.

Relationships for me have always been triggers, but I haven't had a relationship since becoming stable so I don't actually know if it's still a trigger. Hence posting in this section and not in general questions.

I still have a bunch of problems to work through but it seems that my attractions no longer go to hot guys or guys with childhood trauma who end up abusers. Also, I no longer believe intimate relationships are all about sex... So that's the progress I've made so far.

I know that most of us here are married or are in relationships, and I have a few questions (I feel like a 14 yo who never matured in relationships really).

First is how do you lay it out in the open that your mental health is a priority to you, when issues in the relationship come up? How do you lay your boundaries?

Second.. How did you know the person that was in front of you was right for you and not just about sex/family influence/not wanting to be alone/etc factors?
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by Spm24 » Sat Aug 12, 2017 6:45 am

Yes AG you can say her name here in public. I do it from time to time depending on the situation. Other times I just call her my wife out of convenience.

We still have a few problems with mental health being a priority. We are getting better as times go by. She tries to get me to be cheerful when I am not able to do so. She knows that I need times sometimes. Usually when it does not work for her she asks me where Iggy is. That is he sign to me that she understands that I need time. Tracy is very understanding that my needs for mental stability comes first.

I tell her when I am able to that my health comes before anything (except for the love I feel for her).

The laying the boundaries is a hard one for me. I have never been good with boundaries my whole life. She is the one who sets the boundaries that she follows when dealing with me.

I knew the minute I set eyes on Tracy that I loved and cared for her deeply. It might sound silly but my heart fluttered. I can still picture her opening the door and me laying eyes on her. No I do not remember what clothing she was wearing. But I do remember she had curly hair.

As to it being about sex. Well..ummm. not totally :lol: . But all kidding aside I have not had that desire due to medication. Even with that being the case we still love and cherish each other. Family influence neither of ours has any. Not wanting to be alone. I had already figured I would be alone. For many reasons. I hope this helps you some. My meandering answers as always....
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by AvantGarde » Sat Aug 12, 2017 6:49 am

It is very helpful Shawn, thank you :) Your answers are always good, no worries.

I have a hard time with boundaries too, I'm learning them slowly but seems that I'm still unable to set them without either being submissive or getting explosive.. But I guess time will tell how I will handle it in the future.

Thank you again.
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by Lovehope » Sat Aug 12, 2017 7:12 am

Sounds like you've made a lot of progress and have been working really hard. Thats awesome.. give yourself props for that.

As far as making my mental health a priority goes, my husband has seen me at my worst (full blown mania 4 months into our relationship). So I'm lucky in that way because he gets it most of the time. He knows if I don't take care of myself first that I'm screwed. But sometimes he forgets, especially since we got full custody of my stepson. I've been depressed and I had to remind him that I can't be involved in all the drama with his child's mother and I need him to support me too. It's about us together forever, we have to be there for each other. I remind him by telling him I need breaks too.. and he just says "go... I got it". I'm very lucky. Once you find the right person they will love and support you unconditionally.
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by Spm24 » Sat Aug 12, 2017 7:15 am

You are welcome AG. If my experiences can help you they have done what I wished them to do.

That's all you can do is work on yourself and see where the future brings you.. I am sure when the time comes your boundaries will be set and in place...
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by AvantGarde » Sat Aug 12, 2017 7:24 am

Thank you Lovehope, that brings me both hope and love :D ahah
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by AvantGarde » Sat Aug 12, 2017 7:26 am

Sorry Shawn, was eating a sandwich while you replied :lol:

Yeah, it's been quite a ride. It's been 4 years since I was able to be with someone. I even decided to be single my entire life so I wouldn't be a burden. I think my tdoc and friends are right and that I should aim for a 'normal' life.

I think a future of solitude and isolation from fear of getting hurt again won't bring me no good.
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by Duckysmom » Sat Aug 12, 2017 8:43 am

I was stable when I met Bill. We knew each other for three years through work. As you read in my other post, he let me know how he felt about me in a rather dramatic way only after we were no longer associated through work. I took our relationship slowly after that, no sex, getting to know each other more emotionally intimate before we became physically intimate. I figured if he was looking for sex, he would give up and go away. But I fell in love with him through that time. No big bomb going off in my head, no lightening strikes. Trust was a big issue for me after my previous relationships. I didn't trust my own choices with men. And I didn't trust men. The trust came, the love grew. He made me laugh again. He was proud to be with me. He did silly little things to let me know he was thinking about me. Like buying me cheese cake because that's my weakness when it comes to sweets and bringing it over just to drop it off and give me a kiss.

The day he asked, "When do we take this to the next level? I love you." I sat him down and told him about my PTSD and BP and how there was always a chance of an episode. (I had already mentionship the BP casually and he hadn't reacted.) I had to take care of my mental health first. I am not an easy person to live with when I hit my highs or my lows. I told him about my childhood trauma (no details) and my possible flashbacks. Then, I bolted out of the room and went on my balcony to have a cigarette. I expected him to run like hell. He walked out on the balcony and said, "You don't scare me. My mother was an acute schizophrenic. There's nothing we can't get through." And he proved that when we had a date scheduled and my PTSD kicked in and I called him crying, saying I didn't want him to see me like that and I couldn't go out. He showed up anyway, with take out, a movie and lots of love and compassion. We talked, we ate, watched the movie, he said I was beautiful even when I'm the blubbering mess he found waiting for him when he got there. He said if he couldn't see me at my worst and be there for me, to support me, he didn't deserve my best.

I know I got lucky. I have never felt this loved before. We have code words. I have one for him for when I'm feeling not right in my own head. He has one for me when I'm not acting myself. And there's "Pink" when I start getting snappy and irritable for no apparent reason. He used it just yesterday.

I guess, I'm taking a long way of saying, go slow and give it time. You may know instantly that you are not a match, but you may not know instantly that you are. Yet, again, maybe you will. Bill says he did with me, but he didn't want the appearance of being unethical while we were supplier and customer. That would have been really frowned on at my job and probably cost me my job.

You have said before that you have issues with hypersexuality, so I really recommend you go the slow, controlled (not controlling) route. Love is worth the wait.
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by AvantGarde » Sat Aug 12, 2017 8:54 am

Thanks Ducky :) Exactly what I needed to hear.

About the hypersexuality, it's very under control for 4 years now. I had a few almost impulsive wants but didn't act on it, me and my tdoc worked hard on that. He's actually worried that I'm not having enough sex now :lol: That's fresh!
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