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David Akiva
David Akiva, BA, MA,
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 167
Experience:  Counselor; Behavioral Consultant
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hi my names chris im 25 years of age, my girlfriend of 2 and

Resolved Question:

hi my names chris im 25 years of age, my girlfriend of 2 and a half years left me and now had a 1 night stand with one of my best friends.... a couple of days after we broke up so clearly were speaking and planning while we were together... im lost upset angry this only came to my attention just last night and im emotionally drained cant sleep... head is going a million miles an hour please help!
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Mental Health
Expert:  David Akiva replied 2 years ago.

DuddyH :

Welcome, I'm a professional counselor and behavioral-consultant. I'd like to chat with you for a few moments to better understand your question and the situation you're describing. Do you have a few minutes to chat?

DuddyH :

You've been showing as "Standing By" on the chat screen for almost 15 minutes. That's ok. You must be busy with something else right now. I have some ideas that I'm pretty sure will be helpful to you as part of my answer, but I would like to ask a few questions first....

Customer:

hello sorry i was on the phone

DuddyH :

No problem. Good you're here...

DuddyH :

Convenient for you to chat right now?

Customer:

yeah it is

DuddyH :

Thanks....

Customer:

can you help me?

Customer:

what other details would u like 2 know

DuddyH :

First off I am really sorry to hear that you are going through this right now. It must be very difficult for you. I'm going to try my best to provide you with a strong practical answer.

DuddyH :

well..

Customer:

ok

DuddyH :

Do you mind telling me about where you want to go from here? Is it about learning more about how to get over a break up? Is it about attempting to recover from an affair together?

Customer:

both would be great i have alot of emotion running though me at the moment

DuddyH :

Well what can be very helpful in a situation like this is priortizing emotional recovery on your part and then addressing the relationship status once you're strong again. Does that make sense?

DuddyH :

Are you still there?

Customer:

yes

Customer:

yes it does make sense

DuddyH :

Thank you. In many cases when there's been an affair like the one you've described, what's really needed for full emotional recovery is basically a "grieving process." That is, to grieve the loss of the old relationship....

DuddyH :

It may be that you do decide to do the work of saving your relationship in the future together. But even if it gets really strong and healthy then, it will sure not be the old relationship anymore...

DuddyH :

The key here is for you to realize that this a "process". It's not fun and it doesn't feel good at all as you've described....

Customer:

yeah

DuddyH :

It's kind of like having a bad flu or cold, you have to take care of yourself properly and get it out of your system....

Customer:

i just want to get through this point of hurt.....

DuddyH :

Do you have good social support from family and friends who really love and care about you?

Customer:

yeah i do have a few friends, it hurts knowing i have to tell them this... its embarrassing and im not the type of person to ever lie....

Customer:

family is small but they do help

DuddyH :

Well if they really care about you, your friends will be there for you. It can really help to talk to people who care about you and want the best for you, that you live you're best, XXXXX XXXXX healthiest life. If they do, it's worth it to get over that initial discomfort and talk to them about it.

Customer:

the break up i could deal with i was doing fine.. but to see such betrayal from a good friend and the person that i loved do that to me hurts to much

Customer:

yeah they do do that for me and its good i just get this feeling i keep repeating myself to them and feel as tho its not healthy for me to keep repeating the situation 2 my friends

DuddyH :

Well that may have to be the focus of your grieving and recovery. It seems you may have to grieve the loss of both relationships. Again, they may have re-build potential, but that takes work, intention and tailored effort.

DuddyH :

You need to get as strong and healthy again as you can to effectively address those questions.

DuddyH :

You need to get the right rest, eat really healthy, exercise daily (dr. permitting etc) and stay away from drink (or drugs) until you are completely back to normal and healthy.

DuddyH :

You also need to stay away form people and situations that/who are not positively supportive.

Customer:

yeah

Customer:

just with the sleeping thing i struggle with because it keeps going through my head and i cant get much sleep

DuddyH :

I strongly recommend that you really research the "grieving process" so that you know what to expect and how best to cope with each stage.

DuddyH :

Can you tell me more about family support?

Customer:

well i just have my mother who listens and does try to help and will always be there for me

Customer:

my dad yes im sure will do anything for me but have never been the type to open up all my problems to

DuddyH :

Ideally you hang out with family in these first days, go for walks together and talk, get fresh air and be together. But again you have to feel comfortable and positively supported, that's what they mean by "social support"

DuddyH :

Well...

DuddyH :

That's where what they call secondary social support comes in...

Customer:

ahuh

DuddyH :

That's when you get support by hanging out together with those you feel really loved and supported by. Go for a nature hike a movie (stick to healthy activities) you don't need to talk about your problems all the time.

DuddyH :

Back to primary social support...

Customer:

ok

DuddyH :

and the bad flew metaphor....

DuddyH :

When the fever is really high and you're weak and exhausted, it can't hurt to ask directly for a listening ear from the really supportive and caring family/friends.

DuddyH :

...and then shift into secondary social support mode as you get stronger.

DuddyH :

What are your top challenges right now? You mentioned sleep etc?

DuddyH :

Anger also.

Customer:

yes sleep is one .... yes anger....

Customer:

the thought of it happening runs though my head non stop

DuddyH :

Well anger is one of the stages in the grieving process. sleeplessness can come from the anger and anxiety, which is par for the emotional recovery course.

DuddyH :

And I should ask, are you are at risk for self harm etc?

Customer:

i do say it because i have never been this hurt... but i cant see my self doing anything..

DuddyH :

Good to hear. If things ever become unman-able (statistically very unlikely) then don't hesitate to get to your family doctor asap, ok?

Customer:

will do

DuddyH :

Now you mentioned anger and that's actually one of the main grieving steps/stages. Are you familiar with the formal grieving process have you studied it at school etc?

Customer:

no i have no idea about it

DuddyH :

Well let me get you a few links...back in a few moments...

Customer:

im sure ill find somthing with a google search

Customer:

ok

Customer:

i will take a look when i get the chance

Customer:

i have a question

DuddyH :

Now, I'd also like to provide you with a resource for learning and practicing the relaxation response to help you with negative emotions. The average person can learn to completely self induce a state of relaxation in just a few moments with daily practice....

DuddyH :

sure go ahead.

Customer:

if my x calls which most likely will happen should i be picking up or not

DuddyH :

How do you feel about the idea?

Customer:

like i know whats best for me is not too .... but the temptations there...

DuddyH :

For some that can be to hard to deal with for others it's much easier to do....

DuddyH :

In either case, many counselors will suggest that a person take a relationship break to avoid emotional triggers that block the grieving/recovery process.

DuddyH :

You want to be strong and healthy to make decisions and communicate effectively.

Customer:

yeah i know whats best and i will try my hardest to let it ring out .... i think this is best...

DuddyH :

That's ultimately your choice. You may want to send a letter or e-mail to let them know you are taking a break to recover. I've found that complete honesty is always the best policy, non of that "get your ex back" game playing you find all over the internet.

DuddyH :

It can also be very helpful to get things out in writing just like talking during primary social support. In fact I recommend that you keep a journal or diary and write out your feelings when they are too intense.

DuddyH :

Now let me get you that relaxation training resource. Feel free to ask any other questions in the mean time...

Customer:

ok thank you

DuddyH :

Now this is from the University of Arizona Counseling Center. It's not flashy but it's based on the best research in relaxation response training. It's also totally free with easy to use videos and audios. I recommend practicing relaxation as part of your pre-sleep routine and when every you start to feel angry or anxious about the affair: http://vcc.asu.edu/relax/index.shtml

DuddyH :

I also wanted to ask you if you have access to counseling? For example do you have an EAP program at work?

DuddyH :

Or if a student do you have access to school counseling services?

Customer:

no i dont but i have taken steps with my mother to look at counseling

DuddyH :

Ok. That can really help with the emotional recovery process. I always recommend cognitive behavioral therapy because it really works and is very cost effective. Let me get a quick link...

DuddyH :

Have I answered your question ok today?

Customer:

yes it has helped alot

Customer:

thank you

DuddyH :

You are very welcome. I really wish you the best in your emotional recovery. Take care, and please don't forget to press the green "Accept" button if you are satisfied with my answer.

DuddyH :

...

David Akiva, BA, MA,
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 167
Experience: Counselor; Behavioral Consultant
David Akiva and other Mental Health Specialists are ready to help you
Expert:  David Akiva replied 2 years ago.
I hope you're doing well. We had quite a lengthy chat the other day. I wanted to confirm that my answer was effective, and see if there were any other questions I might answer for you.

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David Akiva
David Akiva
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Counselor; Behavioral Consultant