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Dr. L
Dr. L, Psychologist
Category: Relationship
Satisfied Customers: 1165
Experience:  Licensed as a Psychologist and Marriage & Family Therapist.
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I have a very elusive guy and complicated situation. This

Resolved Question:

I have a very elusive guy and complicated situation. This person and I have been in love for 6 years. We come from very different backgrounds and have different goals in life. He was my first love and the connection between us has been like no other. There has always been a compelling force driving us together despite the facts that all the odds have been against us. Things didnt work out when we were together and I tried everything to get over him. I dated other guys, tried to forget about him, and even married someone else (who it didnt work out with). Here I am 4 years later still not over him and we are still in each other's lives. He says he still loves me and wants to work things out, however, whenever he has the opportunity he never takes it. This is very pathetic on my part, I know, however, I just dont see a way out. This may sound silly but my best friend is a psychic (literally, and shes never wrong) and she says that we will be together someday when we are old. It will be hard and toxic but at the end we will find happiness. I dont know your opinion on psychic abilities, but from my perspective it is accurate and should be taken into consideration. I dont know what to do because I cant move on and dont even know if I should. I dont want to experience any more disappointment or waste anymore time if this is impossible. And if possible please dont give me the traditional, "You just need to move on" answer, because if that was an option I already would have, trust me.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Relationship
Expert:  Dr. L replied 1 year ago.

Dr. L :

Hello,

Dr. L :

I would like to help you with your question. As you wrote, this does sound like a complex situation.

Customer:

yes it is and I dont know what to do

Dr. L :

Part of what seems to keep you tied to this man is the "first love" experience. Our first love is like no other..there will never be another relationship that matches the uniqueness - freshness - intensity of that first attachment.

Dr. L :

The picture you have formed about that time in your life and the emotions you felt are so burned into your experience that you use them to measure other men and other "loves".

Dr. L :

Likely there is something very, very different about this man...so different...so intriguing...so mystifying that you keep coming back to him...and vice versa.

Customer:

Yes I agree and he and I are both very passionate people. I think I will always be looking for that intensity and not be satisfied until I find it agian. And yes I am so attracted to his being because he is so different and intriguing

Dr. L :

From my 30 years as a psychologist, what I see in couples is a "right time" "right place" for that relationship to be successful.

Customer:

So your saying that maybe this isnt the right time or right place and things will just naturally work out in the future?

Dr. L :

By that I mean, that we must be at the right time in our life for the relationship to work. In your case, you were married at one point so that would not have been the "right time" to be in a relationship with this elusive guy. By right place, I mean that you have be in the correct frame of emotional and mental health.

Dr. L :

Yes...that is what I am saying precisely.

Customer:

I do see what you are saying it makes sense. He and I both have our issues...

Dr. L :

Your psychic friend has said that you will be together when you are older. That "older" just means "not today" in my view. But...perhaps you may see that differently.

Dr. L :

Yes...and until those issues are cleaned up it might not be the "right place"...

Customer:

I don't know how I see it... I do know that I am just really afraid of having it not work out... like what if I work on my issues and he doesnt... lol is that something irrational to worry about?

Dr. L :

On the contrary...that is something very reasonable to consider.

Dr. L :

I think it is a very common thought...and a very critical thought given that you want to be able to commit to him at some point in your life...

Customer:

So what would be the most reasonable thing for me to do then? work on my issues.... and maybe just expect disappointment since I cant control what he wants?

Dr. L :

I encourage you to work on your own issues so that when you are able to come together with him you will be in a healthy place.

Dr. L :

As to expecting disappointment...no...that's not a good plan...that's self-defeating.

Dr. L :

Can you tell me why you would want to expect disappointment?

Customer:

I've always expected disappointment since I can remember because 1.- something my mother has always done and I picked up on and 2.- I feel like it wont hurt as bad if it doesnt work out

Dr. L :

Okay. I understand the seeds of this thinking. I also understand that it's a way to protect yourself. However...when you take this approach to life it is self-defeating as you are setting yourself up for failure. Rather...if you take a life approach that says...sometimes things will go very well, sometimes things will go fine, and sometimes things will go sour...you are 1) being more realistic 2) inviting hope into your life 3) preparing yourself for all contingencies.

Dr. L :

How does that sound?

Dr. L :

http://www.popularsocialscience.com/2012/12/27/the-self-fulfilling-prophecy/

Customer:

It sounds like a change for me which would be challenging but I am willing to do it if it will bring more happiness and less anxiety

Dr. L :

Please take a look at the above...I think it will shed some light on this subject...

Dr. L :

Very good. I understand that this is a change in your world view...and absolutely I think it will allow more positive energy into your life...and meanwhile minimize the negativity.

Dr. L :

Anxiety is about fear...and what you seem to have done is to have looked at life with fear rather than with hope or joy. Does this make sense?

Customer:

Do you think that there is significance to a relationship if people remain in each other's life even when things have gone sour and there seems to be no future?

Customer:

And yes it does make sense

Customer:

Looking at life with hope or joy always seemed somewhat irrational for me

Dr. L :

Yes...I do think there is some significance to that type of relationship. I think it is about a bond that was formed and the beauty of that bond.

Dr. L :

Okay...but then isn't looking a life with negativity and disappointment seem equally irrational?

Dr. L :

*at

Customer:

lol yes I suppose so...

Dr. L :

So...maybe your choice is between the irrationality of disappointment and the irrationality of hope.

Dr. L :

And...if you want to stick with an irrational view of life...it might as well be the irrationality of hope because hope has the possibility of joy, love, happiness...

Customer:

... and disappointment doesn't. I see what you are saying. By looking at life from a grim view I may be missing out on other possibilities

Dr. L :

EXACTLY. And those possibilities are likely sweet...

Customer:

So in regards XXXXX XXXXX relationship, I should just stop trying to move on and accept my feelings considering positive possibilities for us?

Dr. L :

Yes.

Dr. L :

You've been thinking negatively about your future with him...why not just let it be....see what unfolds...what might be around the next corner...

Dr. L :

It's like shifting the car into neutral and just coasting for awhile...

Dr. L :

With a smile on your face and positiveness in your heart...

Customer:

Good way to look at it.... It is hard for me to just sit back and not try to control though... It is my natural tendency to force solutions... but I guess that hasnt got me anywhere. How do you just trust that everything will be okay without action on your end?

Dr. L :

Good question! It's about trusting your own destiny...trusting that you WILL have a good life! When you wrote about your friend the psychic...I heard trust in what you wrote. You TRUST her...not start trusting yourself! Trust that you will find your way. Trust that happiness will be yours. Your tendency to control is about mistrust!!! That is, I've got to force XYZ to happen because I don't trust that it will happen on its own. That's really exhausting work. If you let go...and begin to trust your own destiny you are going to feel lighter, freer, less anxious...and certainly more self-assured.

Dr. L :

What do you think about this?

Customer:

Sounds like a solution to many of my issues.... how do I begin doing this?

Dr. L :

You already are!

Dr. L :

Your willingness to engage in this chat with me is your first step. You have acknowledged what has been going in the past. You are admitting that you want to change by beginning to look at life in a more positive way and to begin to trust yourself...

Dr. L :

What will help you is to listen to the messages you feed yourself...and to work to make those positive messages...can do messages, rather than can't do messages.

Dr. L :

Also, read the article I posted in our chat. That will give you more information about what you have been doing and give you insight into what to do differently.

Dr. L :

Another resource for you is:

Dr. L :

Feeling Good by Dr. David Burns

Dr. L :

This book will give you more insight into a positive approach to life.

Dr. L :

You can also ask friends, family, co-workers to point out to you when you are controlling or negative...that feedback can help keep you on track.

Dr. L :

You might consider journaling as a way to track your thoughts and experiences.

Dr. L :

How does this sound?

Customer:

Ok that sounds achievable. From your expericence, how long does it take people to completley change this pattern, or is it a constant battle?

Dr. L :

It won't be a constant battle...but it will take patience and perseverance on your part. I encourage you to ask others to help you by offering their congratulations when you let go and don't control situations. And...to encourage more positive thoughts and actions.

Dr. L :

Because it will feel foreign in the beginning..it will take several weeks before it becomes more natural....

Customer:

Several weeks is better than several years so that is encouraging

Dr. L :

But it WILL become more natural...

Dr. L :

It won't take years....but you might find yourself slipping from time to time...so be patient...

Dr. L :

Is there anymore I can help you with this evening?

Customer:

I dont think so for now. But I just want to comment that you have excellent insight and skill, especially since this was an online chat. I really hit the hammer on the nail and got down to the core issue. Thank you so much will rate you as excellent :)

Dr. L :

I appreciate your kind words.

Dr. L :

It was my honor to help you!

Dr. L :

Take care!

Customer:

You as well. Peace and love :)

Dr. L, Psychologist
Category: Relationship
Satisfied Customers: 1165
Experience: Licensed as a Psychologist and Marriage & Family Therapist.
Dr. L and 2 other Relationship Specialists are ready to help you

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