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RealSupport, Psychotherapist
Category: Mental Health
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Experience:  MHT-MHRS-MS-MA Integral Psychotherapist & Life Coach
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I was married for 19 years, and now have been divorced for

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I was married for 19 years, and now have been divorced for 4. According to my ex, we broke up because we became more like roommates. I know I became more distant due to financial troubles and her medical issues, which required rest, and medications. Now that we are apart, we tend to be communicagting better, almost to the point that I look forward to hearing from them. I feel that this is not right, but I dont seem to be able to move on because of this old relationship...any suggestions?

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

Hello, I am Rafael. Thanks for asking your question - I'm here to support you. (Information posted here is not private or confidential but public).

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

I am sorry to know about this challenging and conflicting situation in your life.

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

The scenario you depict is not uncommon. Many times couples who face overwhelming difficulties around finances and/or medical problems, could find themselves unable to keep taking good care of their marital relationship. If even one spouse feels hopeless because of lack of fulfillment, from limited intimacy to lack of communication, then romance, passion and compatibility could get deeply undermined. I'd say that many times couples are victims of their own poor coping, what unhappily use to lead to unhappy endings.

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

They once the pressure from those stressors have not been pushing you, and expectations have been based on mutual and willingly offered respect and sympathy, you find yourselves able not only to share but to enjoy the connection you had before and that seems to have been renewed, now that such serious issues are not between you. Some times divorced people get back together, wiser and stronger after such crisis and long term separations, since they value what was meaningful and real between them beyond the issues that damaged the relationship. Other times, they are able to build wonderful and healthy friendships, while each build new romantic lives and families.

There are times when they get confused and conflicted when facing feelings of attachment and expectations incompatible with their current lives, responsibilities and expectations. If you feel this is your case, that you and/or your ex-wife are undermining present live-s because of current sharing, then it would make perfect sense to face reality and work on setting better boundaries and limits, for you to only share what appears to be healthy and positive for both of you, and in case keeping such sharing continues to limit your lives in any way, then you would need to commit to work on making further changes, what would start by considering professional counseling or psychotherapy, for you to process what happened between you, improve necessary skills to cope with changes in your life, and take consistent actions to rebuild it around romance and passion with another person, if that continues to be a core longing for you to feel truly fulfilled and happy.

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

Please reassess your feelings, core expectations and longings around this person - relationship, and from there work on taking consistent actions to create the reality you want and deserve. If this process require you to get professional psychotherapy, please do work on finding a good professional, since you do not want to afford i=unintentionally limiting or damaging your life nor her well-being.

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

Does it make sense?

Customer:

It does make sense. I know that I have been hung up on this woman because she was who I considered my first true love. In addition, I have witnessed first hand some of her destructive tendancies, such as mirroring her girl friends, and getting into behaviors that they consider OK, even if they are conflicting with what I perceived as her core values. Because I try to keep my friends and family from making mistakes, I will often advise against these actions.

Customer:

Thank you, XXXXX XXXXX am currently looking to defining the roles that we both can agree upon moving forward.

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

You're welcome.

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

Thank you for replying. then It seems absolutely necessary to work on taking actions in full consistency with your core belief and value systems, since you do not want to keep self-sabotaging, once what you truly want and deserve is a fulfilling and healthy relationship and life, and for that clear boundaries and limits, as well as space should be set. I support you and feel hopeful these changes would become a reality with your work and the right support.

Customer:

After your initial comment, I decided to write out my feelings toward this woman. As part of my process, I have come to several realizations. First, since she was my perceived one true love, I have been behaving in ways to maintain the relationship, although they have been on her terms. Sometimes this behavior may have bordered on stalking. Now I must force myself to define the relationship the way I want, so then I can move on with my life. I cannot close this chapter in my life with her, due to closing of old debts and our children, but I can make myself move to be less dependent and to seek out a new relationship.

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

Absolutely, it sounds realistic and proactive. Most times we attach not to what is real but to the expectations and dreams we create about people and situations, then it is pain what pushes us to wake up, in order for us to heal, grow and move on wiser and stronger. I hope you a very powerful learning and healing process while working on yourself coping with this situation.

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