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I have become obsessed with the idea that a past female

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flatmate of my boyfriend is...
I have become obsessed with the idea that a past female flatmate of my boyfriend is somehow still in my boyfriends thoughts. He used to mention her alot when they were living together- saying things like "Ah, ... is great, she doesn't care about anything" but stopped when he realised how upset I had become because of it.
The girl was very territorial and gave all the boys lots of attention. I feel as if I'm not been told the truth or something. One night we were out in a group and she was there and he says to me "why don't you wear shoes like ..." I felt compared and that he wanted me to be more like her. He says that he never had any interest in her like that.
Sometimes he says things that make me feel he thinks that he is talking to her when in a conversation with me - like one time I put on an accent and he says "oh, that's the (whatever accent) coming out in you now." The thing is I'm not from there, her relations are and that accent couldn't come out in me because I'm not from there. Another time I asked him what my sisters name was and he names this girls friend. I've started to analyse alot of what he says. Its ruining our relationship. I have gotten very down lately over it.The other thing is that I recently discovered that I had been abused by a relative and my boyfriend helped me work through this. These obsessive thoughts that he wants her or vice versa is getting to much. They are not in contact any more and haven't seen each other in 6 months. Ordinarily, I do have trust issues but this is ridiculous. My mother was very territorial and used to boss me around and hurt me alot. I have moved to a different country to my boyfriend because I couldn't take thinking about this anymore. I don't know whether I should just give up on the relationship. I really love him and he is committed to me. I keep on asking people about this and have lost my confidence. Am I paranoid or am I using this obsession to help me not think of the hurt of the abuse?
Submitted: 8 years ago.Category: Mental Health
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Answered in 14 hours by:
6/20/2010
Mental Health Professional: Sarah, Psychologist replied 8 years ago
Sarah
Sarah, Psychologist
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 143
Experience: Chart'd Psych, 12 yrs exp. English prisons, Clinical Hypnotherapist, EMDR Therapist, BPS, HPC reg'd.
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Hi,

Thanks for your question. Firstly I think you have done well to recognise that you have this issue and that it has become a large factor in your relationship. That might sound odd, but to recognise and to accept that something is causing a problem can be the hardest part in terms of getting it sorted.

I am wondering, as are you in your last sentence, whether the issues of previous abuse and this concern about another girl, are connected - but I wonder whether, rather than a distraction (as you suggest - which could be possible - but were you concerned about this other girl before you were told you were abused? In which case, it couldn't be a case of distraction solely for that purpose) - I wonder whether the issue with the girl is triggering all sorts of stuff held in your subconscious mind, possibly linked back to the abuse. Because we are often not consciously aware of what our subconscious mind is carrying, you may not be consciously aware of any links.

When something highly emotional occurs, it is possible that memories become lodged in our subconscious mind, along with subconscious beliefs about ourselves, which can cause distress at a later date. For example, a child who experiences turbulance and fear on an aeroplane may, without their knowledge, harbour a subconscious belief that "I am not safe if I fly". The fear may be unknown until later life when the person chooses to travel on an aeroplane and experiences strong emotions/panic/anxiety - without perhaps even knowing why. The aeroplane experience is triggering emotions that have remained in the subconscious mind for the sole purpose of protecting the self - this is the subconscious' role in life - to protect us from harm - even though sometimes this can therefore appear irrational.

On a conscious level there may not appear to be an apparent link between abuse from the past and anxiety about a past girlfriend of a current boyfriend, but the beliefs often revolve about how we feel about ourself and your inner beliefs about yourself (that you may not be aware of) could be being triggered by your boyfriend mentioning this girl.

If you feel this may be a possibility, or even if you are unsure but are willing to give it a go, I suggest that you contact a local EMDR therapist. This stands for Eye Movement Desensitisation and Reprocessing, which is a therapy that releases past emotions and beliefs from memories that have been stuck in the subconscious mind. You do not need to be consciously aware of what they are in order to benefit from this therapy as you would be guided on how to unravel it in your subconscious mind. You do not need to talk about occurances in any detail to your therapist if you don't wish to. It may bring up memories of past abuse that you may have supressed and therefore have no recollection of - but they can be released and let go of, leaving you in a much more positive place and confident in yourself. It is therefore an emotional therapy - the idea being that the emotions are released for the final time, so I suggest that you give this some considerable thought and maybe search for more info on it on the internet. You will be able to find a therapist local to you on the internet too.

I see you have tried hypnotherapy, which also works with the subconscious mind - I would say this therapy is still worth a try.

I do hope this info is useful enough for you to pay for - and if you are happy to do so, please press the accept button. There has been a problem with my account for a while so if you get the message 'no question to answer', I would be most appreciative if you could email *****@******.*** and let them know as they are dealing with it and if you could ask them to pay manually.

Many thanks, ***** ***** Wishes, Sarah

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Sarah, Psychologist
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 143
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Experience: Chart'd Psych, 12 yrs exp. English prisons, Clinical Hypnotherapist, EMDR Therapist, BPS, HPC reg'd.

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