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Why do I still battle insecurity about men? Last week was five years divorced. My life has turned out to be mostly happy, lots of growth, new opportunities, in almost every way, it's more wonderful than I ever imagined 10 years ago when I first started posting here, my life shattered by ex's infidelity. I've had a couple of relationships since the divorce, my confidence has grown so much, I generally feel good about myself, except for the occasional low evening.

I have a new boyfriend, a wonderful person. He is very spiritual, very kind, very thoughtful. That's some of the good stuff. The uncomfortable is that he was a local radio personality back in the day and is a writer now, so he maintains an active social media life, has a public persona, Facebook, twitter, etc., and he has many female friends. I find this very difficult. He's never done anything to give me pause, but when I see comments on his Facebook wall from female friends, none of whom I know yet, I feel this empty, hollow place in the pit of my stomach. It feels like panic and despair.

I used to follow him on Twitter, but after seeing a remark about a female friend being 'hot,' I unfollowed him. We discussed it, and he was very kind, not defensive, understood my concern and said he believes that my feelings were appropriate, and that he won't be posting like that again. His online persona is sort of an 'out-there,' outrageous personality, even though in person he isn't really like that.

Tonight a female friend, Kathy Somebody, posted on his FB wall, "Happy Valentines' Day, A." Again, I felt my stomach drop out of my body, fear, panic. When we talked on the phone later, I asked if I had anything to be concerned about, and he said, no, that she was just a classmate from back in high school (although, honestly, what comfort is that? That old high school friend thing creates affairs all over the place!). And then, he sighed.

It was the sigh that did it. Now I'm sure he's annoyed with me, tired of me being insecure, wondering if he wants to bother staying with someone so needy.

I really love this guy. Sometimes I feel so strong, so capable, and generally, when I am with him (and even when I'm not) I feel so free of insecurity. He is so attentive, so reassuring, and he's made a place for me in his life to an amazing degree. That's because he is so strong spiritually, so healthy emotionally. But also because of that, I'm afraid I'm trying his patience badly. Or even that I've already used it all up. I'm very frightened and worried.

We've been dating for four months. I'm an empty nester, and he's never had kids. I know the tone of this post makes me sound about 15 years old, but actually, I'm 47.

Tia for any advice.

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Originally Posted By: Angelbreath
I know the tone of this post makes me sound about 15 years old

Actually not at all, just the opposite. It would be the teenager who would say "ah come on, don't be so controlling, they are just friends"... And it would the mature person like yourself, who has been burned and cheated on, who knows that calling opposite sex friends "hot" or exchanging "Happy Valentine's Day" greetings with them is a very slippery slope.

I would say that is not at all a sign of insecurity, but rather a sign of you knowing what you won't put up with. Nothing wrong with that.

Personally, I dated plenty after my divorce, and I did not invest any time in women who had loose boundaries or "clingons" (old flames or other male friends who sort of clinged on in the background). I am sure a lot of them were great ladies, I just had no interest in sharing.

I eventually met a woman who had the same views on such things as I do, and I am very happily married to her. Again, this is not at all insecurity, it is in fact security in knowing where you boundaries are. And they are good boundaries.

AGG


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Hi, Angel. I agree with with AGG. You sound wise, and perhaps a bit world-weary, but that's okay.

At the risk of sounding insulting, can I do just a little "reframing" here? You've been dating 4 months. Rather than say you love him, how about saying to yourself "I feel in love with him." Or infatuated?

Of course, you are insecure about this relationship. It's only 4 months old. You two are still observing and evaluating each other, and you seem to have your feet on the ground.

This could be a good time to sit back and see if someone who has a public persona is a good match for you. You may find that YOU want to throw him back.

I breifly dated a smoker. I really liked him, and the smoking didn't bother me. But, my dad has lung cancer, and was a smoker. Dad will die from the cancer unless something else kills him first. I'm also widowed. I knew I couldn't be seriously involved with the gentleman as much as I wanted to be. (Did I mention he is super sexy as well as being a good man?) If I fell in love with him, I'd be living in horrible fear of him dying and I'd nag.

I hope this helps. making any serious committment, even to yourself.


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Originally Posted By: AGoodGuy
Again, this is not at all insecurity, it is in fact security in knowing where you boundaries are. And they are good boundaries.

AGG


Amen to an awesome post, AGG.

Angelbreath, this is not your "insecurity," but your instincts telling you that you are in danger. I would heed that warning.


"It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena.." Theodore Roosevelt

Exposure 101


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Originally Posted By: AGoodGuy
Originally Posted By: Angelbreath
I know the tone of this post makes me sound about 15 years old


I eventually met a woman who had the same views on such things as I do, and I am very happily married to her. Again, this is not at all insecurity, it is in fact security in knowing where you boundaries are. And they are good boundaries.
AGG



Same thing with me. Your boundaries are fine and as GreenGables says you might be finding that YOU want to end it. The fear in your stomach is normal....we all want a relationship to work out...but you don't want to go through the heartache of adultery again.

Trust your boundaries.

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Originally Posted By: MelodyLane
Angelbreath, this is not your "insecurity," but your instincts telling you that you are in danger. I would heed that warning.

Wise words from a very wise lady. Angelbreath, you would do well to heed her (and your instincts).


Preach the Gospel every day. When necessary, use words.
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Angel,

You don't sound insecure at all. If you are not comfortable with all of these female friends, then that may be telling you despite how you feel about him, that he isn't really the one for you.

Personally, I would not be real comfortable with a GF having lots of men friends that she is in constant contact with.

And I totally agree with all the posts prior to mine. They are right on the mark. Trust your boundaries and enforce your boundaries.

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Someone with strong boundaries is important. I remember being caught up in an ea due to having weak boundaries. You trust your gut and never feel bad for reaching out and testing this before fellow mbers on this site.


Me: 44YO FWW: EA IN 2005-2007 EXPOSED MYSELF IN 2006 NC SINCE 2007 WAS MARRIED FOR 18 YEARS
HIM: 47YO EX WH: PA WHILE DATING, CALLING PROSTITUTES WHILE MARRIED, PROBLEMS WITH PORN(CONFESSED ALL THIS IN 2006 WHILE ARGUING)SEX ADDICT
DSX3:13,14, & 15
DDX2: 18 & 11
SEPERATED IN 2007, DIVORCE FINAL 2009. EX WH REMARRIES IN SEPT 2010. I WILL NOT MARRY AGAIN UNLESS THE MAN IS OPEN TO MB CONCEPTS.
LEARNING FROM MY PAST MISTAKES & LOVING MY KIDS
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I agree with the responses you've received. Rather that YOU trying to adjust to HIS ways, how about waiting for the person that subscribes to MB principles because they get them? You have learned a lot from what you have been through, it's only natural you don't want to see the same old scenario played out. That's not immature, that's wise!


Enacting life's lessons into positive change... .
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AGG I want to tell you that I always enjoy reading your posts. There is so much wisdom there. All of you guys are SO smart and helpful. I am amazed every time I visit this board.


Me (BS): 41
Ex (lying cheating piece of dirt): 43
Kids: 12 DD, 6 DS
Married 17 years
I filed: 9/25/10
Divorce final: 10/4/11
He remarried: 10/15/11

My current status: Healing a little more every day!
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Originally Posted By: prissanna
AGG I want to tell you that I always enjoy reading your posts. There is so much wisdom there. All of you guys are SO smart and helpful. I am amazed every time I visit this board.


Thanks Prissanna, that's very kind of you. I don't know about wisdom, though, I think it's mostly experience smile. Sometimes it's the best way to learn, even if a lot of it is a "let's not do this again" type of experience smile.

AGG


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Originally Posted By: AGoodGuy
I don't know about wisdom, though, I think it's mostly experience smile. Sometimes it's the best way to learn, even if a lot of it is a "let's not do this again" type of experience smile.

That reminds me of something I once heard:

Originally Posted By: An old saying?
"Judgment comes through experience. Experience comes through bad judgment."


Preach the Gospel every day. When necessary, use words.
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Thank you all for your comments and insights. It's so wonderful to have a supportive place to go, and kind ears to listen. Thank you. I've given your words a lot of thought. I'm not yet sure what I want to do, or what God is leading me to do, but I do know that I want those two things to be the same.

At this point, I can only say that I feel disinclined to live my life in fear of another affair. And I seriously doubt anyone's ability to prevent another person from doing something they want to do.

Love to you all. Angelbreath.

P.S. I would've posted under my old username, but that was a few computers ago, so I've long lost my password. My old name, however, was RoseRed. Wow, that was a long time ago.

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Originally Posted By: Angelbreath
At this point, I can only say that I feel disinclined to live my life in fear of another affair. And I seriously doubt anyone's ability to prevent another person from doing something they want to do.


Angelbreath, and that is the best reason to marry someone who has the very best boundaries. You are wise to be discriminating. Good luck! smile


"It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena.." Theodore Roosevelt

Exposure 101


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If he's worth it, he will understand your insecurities (we all have them) and will be there helping and waiting for you to overcome them. I agree that your 'insecurities' could just be warning signs that he is not right for you - I would have never thought that until I read all these posts. I love coming to this board and reading these posts because everyone here is so helpful and knowledgeable!


Me (BS): 41
Ex (lying cheating piece of dirt): 43
Kids: 12 DD, 6 DS
Married 17 years
I filed: 9/25/10
Divorce final: 10/4/11
He remarried: 10/15/11

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Originally Posted By: Angelbreath

The uncomfortable is that he was a local radio personality back in the day and is a writer now, so he maintains an active social media life, has a public persona, Facebook, twitter, etc., and he has many female friends. I find this very difficult. He's never done anything to give me pause, but when I see comments on his Facebook wall from female friends, none of whom I know yet, I feel this empty, hollow place in the pit of my stomach. It feels like panic and despair.

I used to follow him on Twitter, but after seeing a remark about a female friend being 'hot,' I unfollowed him. We discussed it, and he was very kind, not defensive, understood my concern and said he believes that my feelings were appropriate, and that he won't be posting like that again. His online persona is sort of an 'out-there,' outrageous personality, even though in person he isn't really like that.

Tonight a female friend, Kathy Somebody, posted on his FB wall, "Happy Valentines' Day, A." Again, I felt my stomach drop out of my body, fear, panic. When we talked on the phone later, I asked if I had anything to be concerned about, and he said, no, that she was just a classmate from back in high school (although, honestly, what comfort is that? That old high school friend thing creates affairs all over the place!). And then, he sighed.


Angelbreath. This is his lifestyle and it looks unlikely that it will change unless he changes his profession.

poor boundaries + opportunity = affairs


Choose your partners wisely. You are correct to question this relationship.
Best


ME: BW
HIM: FWH
Married 18 yrs
DDay 09/2008 and 12/2008

Recovered

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This is all valid and good thinking. The problem is that I have these issues with almost every guy I date, and if I don't, it's only because I'm not 'into' the relationship deep enough to be concerned. If anything, the fact that he maintains this public persona makes it easier for me to identify my triggers and respond to them. With most men, the triggers are so subtle that I can't really deal with them. After all, when your man refers to a woman at work in passing, it seems foolish to get up in my own head about it, feel hollow and lost, start acting crazy, and then find out later that said woman reminds him of his mom or is clinically annoying.

And bf is uniquely suited for me to work out these issues with. (Ugh, preposition - too hurried to fix that.) He has been through some big things in his life which pushed him into long-term therapy and self-reflection. He lives more consciously and deliberately than anyone I know. He understands me, instinctively, more than most people I've ever met--he can sense a mood switch in me in lightning speed, and he never wants to sweep any problem under the rug.

We do talk about my issues, when necessary, but I don't want our relationship to become all about my insecurity. I'm working on things, and talking about this on this forum is partly how I'm working on them.

I have noticed something, too. The other night I was at home, alone and late at night, and I realized that I hadn't heard an answer to a text I sent--nothing vital, just some remark. Instantly that horrid, creeping insecurity come over me and that little voice inside starting yammering away, "What's he doing? He's probably conducting lots of casual affairs with other women, probably pursuing that Kathy woman, sneaking around behind my back, etc., etc.,"

Now, I don't usually do things like this, but I decided that this wasn't me - this was a lie from the Devil, or at least, something that doesn't want me to relax and be content. Maybe just my own Fear. So, I just talked to it sternly, out loud, and told it/whoever to get the hell out of my head. I said I wasn't going to listen to that lying nonsense, that I know K loves me, and that Fear/the Devil/Whatever isn't going to make me sabotage my own happiness and K's, too. That feeling went away pretty instantaneously. Ten minutes later, it came back in a slightly different way, saying instead that K wasn't responding to my text because he has lost interest in me and is planning to break up with me next time he sees me. Again I spoke out loud and just said for that Fear to piss off and get away from me, that I'm a beloved child of God, who wants me to be happy and blessed, and I wasn't listening.

Again, that bad feeling went away, and to my amazement, it hasn't come back since - which has been about 5 or 6 days ago. Normally I don't go more than a couple of days without some kind of insecurity attack.

Thoughts? I'm nuts? I'm on to something? I need a long rest? smile

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I don't think you're nuts for thinking it's the devil messing with you.

I do worry about calling it "love" after a few months. You two are still getting to know each other. You love what you know, but you don't know much yet. Slow down.


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I read somewhere that sometimes we get so used to anxiety or fear that we can't function without it. Those are my words. It made more sense when I read it. I think it might apply to you though. I know with my ex, he kept me upset about something most of our married life. If he wasn't trying to upset me, I worried what he was up to. It was constant anxiety for me. My life is STILL like that. I think I enjoy worrying about something. I am trying to break that cycle.


Me (BS): 41
Ex (lying cheating piece of dirt): 43
Kids: 12 DD, 6 DS
Married 17 years
I filed: 9/25/10
Divorce final: 10/4/11
He remarried: 10/15/11

My current status: Healing a little more every day!
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Originally Posted By: Angelbreath
I'm nuts? I'm on to something? I need a long rest? smile


I don't think you're nuts, but I think you'd be nuts to ignore your inner voice or gut feel. Never ever ignore them, they are way more perceptive than you think.

As GG said, you have only been dating a few months, so give it time. OTOH, IMO, you should not be feeling gut pains after four months in a healthy relationship. You should be comfortable and safe. You won't know yet if he's the one, you won't know yet if it'll work out, but you should not be in pain or wondering.

I found that whenever I had such doubts, there was always a reason. Conversely when I met the woman I ended up marrying, from day one there was not a day when I had doubts or nagging feelings about her.

AGG


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