Boundaries Anxiety

Struggling to work on my Boundaries homework for a class that I am taking on Wed nights, the material is written by Drs Henry Cloud and John Townsend, knowledgeable men/authors. I can't determine if it is my anxiety or "brain fog" that makes me feel so confused as I attempt to answer the questions and end up questioning myself as to whether or not I understand the question. It could be that I am tired of reading to understand things and yet I don't think I can stay the way  I am because I am lonely and fearful of relationships, not fearful of others so much as fearful that I will again choose someone unhealthy and I couldn't bear to go through that again. Does this make sense to anyone?

My marriage ended in 2003 and I have not been in another relationship since, though I've admitted my loneliness to God and others - it is the wrong reason to begin dating. I welcome the insight of others who may have had the same issue at one time as I hate feeling confused.

6 Replies

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  • From my personal experience, being in a bad relationship is worse than being alone. 

    Loneliness is sad, but it's also survivable. Bad relationships are often damaging.

    One of my counselors once advised me that when things felt confusing, to wait to decide a course of action until things got clear again. I've found that helpful, myself.

    I had an ex make contact with me and want to resume connection. I turned that down. For me, that was the right decision. Trust had been broken too badly in that case. And I am unwilling to set myself up for that pattern to repeat, when I do not see change in the ex's behaviors. Had I seen healthy changes, I might have felt differently, but they just were not there. So no. Not again, for me. Once was too much.

    I have alternatives that work for me. I am active in a local organization where I have made friends and enjoy social contact, without having to be part of a couple. I also enjoy gardening, and programs at our local library, and local street festivals. So I have found ways to be OK on my own. For me, those are healthier choices.

    I wish you success in finding choices that are healthy for you, too. It's fine if yours are different from mine. My wish is that whatever turns out is nurturing for you.

    Regards, Murrday

  • Thanks Murrday for your response. I appreciate your insight and experience being shared with me. I think my issue may be forgiving myself for the mistakes I made in the past - my partner repeatedly told me that "if you leave me for any reason, you will live on absolutely nothing because I will kill myself before paying you support." I found the courage to leave and not immediately but four years after the separation he did indeed end his own life on a payday. Under direction of my lawyer, I returned the cheque to his estate. I've had lots of counseling/trauma therapy but the experiences I've had I'm just now starting to understand were deliberate choices and that makes my head spin so fast I feel sick.

    I am blessed with many friends and participation in community groups, too. Just sometimes feel overwhelmed with the various dimensions of PTSD

    Again, thanks for taking the time to comment.

  • Overwhelm is a familiar feeling to many of us here. Not that we would wish it on anyone, but since we are coping with it, it can help, knowing that here, we can talk through the feelings with others who understand them from also having felt them.

    Remember (and I need to remind myself too) that even the most intense feelings do pass, in time. We can get through this.

  • Thanks Murrday!

  • Hi. I rarely come on this forum because its so upsetting to see how often people find themselves in destructive relationships as I have. Its sad that we decide that being single is the only way we can cope with life. 

    I wish you well, your story is similar to mine.

  • Thanks Wallyb, your comment reminds me that others struggle and have had similiar experiences.

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