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4/14 Interactive Board: Codependent Partners

3/23 Interactive Board: He's Changing... I'm Not...

3/1 Interactive Board: D/s Lifestyle

1/14 Interactive Board: My Purrrfect Husband

12/12 Interactive Board: What if He Could Have Changed?

10/23 Interactive Board: Quandary Revisited

8/24 Interactive Board: Quandary! What's Going On?

7/20: Dr. Irene on cognitive behavior therapy and mindfulness

6/12 Interactive Board: Unintentional Abuse

11/7 Interactive Board: Is This Abusive?

12/29 Interactive Board: There Goes the Wife...

11/4 Interactive Board: A New Me!

10/8 Interactive Board: Seeming Impossibility

9/8 Interactive Board: My Ex MisTreats Our Son

5/1 Interactive Board: I feel Dead - Towards Him

4/26 Interactive Board: Why is This So Hard?

4/19 Interactive Board: I Lost My Love...

4/7 Interactive Board: Too Guilty!

Doc@DrIrene.com

Comments for Brian's Story

Comments for Brian's Story

Material posted here is intended for educational purposes only, and must not be considered a substitute for informed advice from your own health care provider.

Courtesy of Dr. Irene Matiatos   Copyrightę 1998-2001. The material on this website may be distributed freely for non-commercial or educational purposes provided that author credit is given. For commercial distribution, please contact the author at Doc@drirene.com

B1: Submit
Date: Monday, April 16, 2001

S1

Dear Brian, Thank you for your story. I know it took lots of courage to say what you said, let alone to face all you had denied. I also "escaped" from my husband. I went through much of what you are going through now. I couldn't believe how much I had closed my eyes! Like you, I fell apart. Lost almost everything, including my young son. I am still trying to recover that loss today, two years later. Even with all that I gave up, I do not regret leaving the successful crazy person I was married to. No more designer clothes for me, but who cares! I have my dignity and self-respect. I like that. No. I LOVE that!!!!! I think it has to be even more difficult if you are gay. Nobody understood why I left that "wonderful" man "who gave me everything." I got support from my neighbors and the new people who came into my life as I was able to talk more and more about what I had been through. Please continue to believe in yourself. It gets easier. It gets better. God Bless you.

B1: Submit
Date: Monday, April 16, 2001

S1

Hi Brian. I am a woman in a very bad lesbian relationship. I have been reading Dr. Irene's Site for a long time but have never posted. I feel uncomfortable about my sexual orientation and fear being rejected. 12 years together and Im not OUT except to very close (gay and lesbian) friends and family (took 8 years). Can you believe it? Do people really belive 35 year old women are room mates? Thank you for your story. I hope to have your courage one day. I knoow I have to leave before one of us kills the other. Thank you also for the gay and lesbian page you put together. The links helped me very much. Lora

B1: Submit
Date: Tuesday, April 17, 2001

S1

Brian! I'm so happy to hear you are doing so well after all the drama. This is a very cool site and posting is a great thing! Golly I'm glad Al Gore invented the internet!! *L* Keep posting, it helps.. and reading, just reading these posts has been very beneficial to me and my situation.. We all want a "normal" relationship, with no drama.. We all NEED a "normal" relationship, with no drama. We all DESERVE a "normal" relationship, with no drama. Good luck Brian! Kesha

B1: Submit
Date: Tuesday, April 17, 2001

S1

Dear Brian

Thank you for your story. I have similar problems of mistaking 'consideration' and 'caring' for going overboard in my desire to make others feel good. I had no idea this was an actual problem until I came to this site, and still have some trouble distinguishing healthy caring from unhealthy caring. I don't want to stop contributing to society and giving to others.

Like you said, if someone else had depicted my relationship, I would have known things weren't right, but I felt I could handle it and help him to learn. I really felt that my love could overcome his pain. This fine line between help and enabling is really difficult to see sometimes. I may be wrong, but it seems that the very same "help" given and appreciated by one person, might be "enabling" to another.

Dr I said: <<I fully understand you are coming from a position of consideration and nowhere imply I need your permission; yet, you need to be aware how your over-concern is experienced by those who take responsibility for themselves and look for no assurance. >>

This is hard for me to completely "get" because I too, often feel that I may be imposing, and really don't want to.

For example a friend of mine once commented that when she invited me out and I couldn't make it, I would apologize profusely and none of her other friends did this. This helped me realize that the apology was totally unnecessary and unwanted. I really don't understand where that comes from in me or why I did that. I don't do *that* at all anymore, but I'm still trying to understand my underlying thinking that leads me to that place.

Thanks again and I wish you the best

Asha

B1: Submit
Date: Thursday, April 19, 2001

S1

Hi Brian,

It is great that you are now climbing up your moutain. Isn't it funny that when we are at rock bottom we never believe we will be able to get back up and climb that mountain of recovery, but just at the right time the strength come forth.

I see what Asha is talking about being over caring. For me to this is a problem, so much so that I got in to confussion about GIVING vs People Pleasing, I think I now see the difference. My people pleasing was coming from my EGO the place where I needed approval. My Giving comes from my Higher Self, it is done out of the joy of seeing others smile.

When I was a child I would give a gift if I had done something others disapproved of and then it would surprise them and they'd be PLEASED with me. I never learnt to just give for the hell of it. I think it is confusing figuring out the CARING about others and not CARING for others.

Perhaps it is that we each need to care for thy self so as we are not people pleasing, BUT still giving spontaneously because of the joy we get out of giving.

BRIAN, Goodluck on your journey, and enjoy every moment of it, you DESERVE IT!! You are strong now, and YOU CAN TAKE CARE OF YOURSELF, and it sounds like you have mastered the difference between CARING ABOUT others, and not CARING FOR them.

YIPPPEEEE!!!!!!!!!!! YOUR REACHING THE MOUNTAIN PEAK.

Take care Theressa

B1: Submit
Date: Thursday, April 19, 2001

S1

Why does Dr. Irene tell Brian to forget what Patricia Evans writes about the abuser?

 

B1: Submit
Date: Sunday, April 22, 2001

S1

Brian is my oldest dearest friend in the world. We went to high school together, and we've been through several "lives" over the years. This story made me cry. Even though I walked with him every step of the way, there is no way I can know the true hurt he feels. I know he will be ok, and with support from professionals like you, Dr. Irene, he will be super. I love you, Brian. Sue :)

B1: Submit
Date: Saturday, May 05, 2001

S1

Bian, I was very touched by your letter and your very fine writing. Any employer would be fortunate to have you for your writing skills alone. Your letter expresses so many incidents that many people have experienced in one way or another. Some, like you, have managed to escape and some, like me, are still mired in confusion... some of that confusion stems from feeling that the situation is uncomfortable, but not bad enough to leave. If there is no physical abuse and there is still love, where does one draw the line? You were faced with a dramatic incident that told you it was time to draw the line. Some of us continue in limbo until something improves or something happens to make us draw that line and that line is probably different for everybody. All the best to you with your new life and thank you for sharing. As you have discovered, and I speak for myself as well, it is helpful to share with others who are going through similar difficult situations. Butterfly

B1: Submit
Date: Saturday, May 05, 2001

S1

Hey Brian, Congratulations on taking your life back! I too have a similar story, my marriage of 9 yrs ended 21 months ago and I've honestly never looked better or felt better - and it *continues* to get better day by day by day - my X also attacked my 19 yr old sleeping kitty cat, that was when God slapped me upside the head, my own "turning point" if you will......and my spiritual growth has been a never ending source of wonder and amazement at how the Universe (just as our angel Dr. Irene said) is never going to give us more than we can handle ---- there is an audio cassette by Deepak Chopra, the 7 Spiritual Laws of Success you may find enlightening as well, I listen to it often......best of luck to you my friend! Ginger (jenhibre@mindspring.com)

B1: Submit
Date: Wednesday, September 05, 2001

S1

Brian, Such strength you have. Keep it up buddy! Your words have made me take a hard look at my new relationship as well. Hopefully I can work things out before they get to where yours was. The link to Dr. Irene's bullet list of signs of verbal abuse was such an eye opener. I need to make sure I keep this in check and that my boyfriends realizes what he's doing to me. Thanks for the inspiration to better my life. Regards, John johndgray@hotmail.com

B1: Submit
Date: Sunday, October 28, 2001

S1

Dear Brian: You are a hero, and a survivor, gongrats. I'm into a 19 yr relationship with a sex addict, mildly put, it's abusive, he is currently out of town, and I'm trying to figure out why I'm still here, I've done a fair amout of family of origin work, there was alot of abuse; my father is a rageaholic, lot's of verbal and physical abuse. Before this relationship I was in one with a man for 5 years, also a sex addict, I ear a magnet to attract them. I believe I'm codependent and a love addict as defined by Pia Melody, easy to say, but hard work to pull oneself out of, I'm going to COSA and SLAA, at time the pain is so bad that i feel totally lost, I have no idea what I will do when he comes back, life is hard right now and I no that no matter what he does (he's in denial so like all addicts in active addiction he will practice his addiction and do WHATEVER he has to to protect it)I have alot of fear, how will I live on my own and can I even leave, I wish there was some support in the gay community here in Seattle around these issues. My therapist says that sex addiction is rampant in the gay community, I believe it. I'm taking courage from you Brian, love and hugs john (jnyquist@lycos.com)

B1: Submit
Date: Tuesday, October 30, 2001

S1

Brian, Dr.Irene, etc... Thanks for compiling these web pages, specifically for gays & lesbians b/c they (we) think we have to be in "perfect, loving" relationships to prove to society that we are "normal". Brian, congrats on your realization, and positive changes that will be taking place in your life... I'm a 33-year old gay man who was subjected to verbal and emotional abuse from my mother. I haven't had many long-term relationships, and one of them was with a verbally abusive man! I'm just realizing that I must have some deep-seeded fears about getting too close and then being subjected to the unexpected rages that my mom broke into so many times in my ubringing. Although the abuse hasn't been apparant for a while, I still have to set boundaries in my relationship with her (in particular, monitoring the frequency of phone calls she makes to me) I have recently started group therapy to deal with these verbal/emotional abuse issues, and hope to have a mutually-loving, successful relationship at some point in the near future... Peace, CAS

B1: Submit
Date: Friday, December 07, 2001

S1

hey brian, power to you... i'm only a high school student and i'm not a lesbian but i have respect for you leaving that jerk. obviously you deserve better than anything he ever gave you, or didn't give you. keep up the encouraging attitude.

B1: Submit
Date: Sunday, February 24, 2002

S1

You shoulda stayed for the money...

B1: Submit
Date: Tuesday, May 28, 2002

S1

Yep, that's my life :)

B1: Submit
Date: Saturday, September 28, 2002

S1

Dear Brian, What a story, but many "kudos" to you for doing all the next right things to get out of those situations. I am in the middle {or the end} of a 7 year partnership with my current boyfriend. When we met I was 24 and nevr lived with another man in a full relationship. We fell in love, or I think we fell in love with the IDEA of being in love, and over a period of time, I think we both accepted where this has taken us because it was so very comfortable, despite both of our emotional and spiritual differences. We have lived togrether for 6 of those seven years, and I after a while I started a new job, met some exciting new people and started to drink alcohol on a fairly frequent basis....winding up in situations that were just not me at all. Looking back on those situations, I ask myself why? The answer is pretty self evident, becasue I wasn't happy....but again, things are comfortable and one doesn't like being confronted with giving up what makes that preson feel good. We share an apartment, 2 cats, furniture, checking and savings accounts, and crdit cards, and two cars. Over the past 8 months I joined AA, and maintained 6 months of sobreity before I had another drink.....maintained another month, drank again, and then 2 weeks. My boyfriend is so unwilling to see my side that I am an alcoholic, and always will be. He will not go to Alanaon, and feels that I should be giving more to him becasue of the pain that I suposedly casued him over a 7 year span. What I've bceome to realize that I will loose myself, if I don't find myself....and God, will pry from our clutches that which we can't let go of on our own. Last night was a turning point in our relationship, and I fear that becasue I am working on myself, I can feel what is going on with "US". Whenever there was an argument in the past, we would make up, make love, and...I'd drink. Becasue the reality of feeling insecure and emotionally retared was always in the back of my mind. So I work on myelf and I do all the next right things and become the person that I want to be.

B1: Submit
Date: Wednesday, April 02, 2003

S1

hay dude your gay and discrace to the name.

B1: Submit
Date: Wednesday, April 02, 2003

S1

hay i realy enjoid your story but i am having trubbels weth my boyfriend beeting me i need some edvice somone email me back at double_r_35@hotmail.com thank you so much for your help in this desrit moment

B1: Submit
Date: Tuesday, May 06, 2003

S1

Brian Anderson is gay