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 Post subject: My partner's ill ex is dependent on my partner!
PostPosted: Sat Nov 27, 2010 1:43 am 
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My partner of six months has an extremely ill ex who phones many times a week in tears of loneliness or in need of cigarettes, dog food, money, or sugar. Every time she phones, my partner spends 10-30 minutes trying to calm her down and the only thing that works to get her off the phone in a reasonable state is for my partner to promise to stop by as soon as possible. The ex is an alcoholic, prescription drug addict, is physically ill, mentally ill, suicidal, and recently had a stroke. My partner and her had a 13 year relationship but broke up two years ago. She verbally, emotionally, and physically abused my partner for 11 of those 13 years. My partner's neighbors, friends, and family all attest to how awful this ex was to my partner.

Every time this ex contacts my partner, it upsets me because it upsets my partner!! Anger, tears, worry, and sadness are experienced by both of us whenever this woman phones. When my partner visits her to give her money, cigarettes, dog food, etc., the ex is sometimes so high on prescription drugs, or drunk, or both, that she falls into her food face first, or falls into walls and furniture. Her dogs urinate and defecate in her apartment and my partner went over to shampoo her carpets. The dogs had fleas and my partner took them to the vet, paid for it, and bathed the dogs. Yet, despite my partner's willingness to do these things for her, she comes home stressed, tense, concerned, angry and upset. Then I get stressed, tense and concerned to see my partner in such discomfort!

It hurts me to see my partner hurt because of this woman. I have no concerns that this woman will ever be in a romantic relationship again with my partner, but the relationship they currently have is so unhealthy for both my partner and I. I've had many conversations about the situation with my partner. Partly why my partner is trying to appease this woman is in case she tries to get half of my partners pension when it comes through in April. Also, this ex is expecting her new partner from England to fly to Canada to take care of her. So when these things happen, then my partner will cut ties with this woman. But three months ago the English one was denied entry into the country due to lack of return ticket nor money to purchase a return ticket! Now the English one is broke and doesn't know when they'll make it to Canada after all.

There is so much twisted thinking and questionable emotions going on in my mind (and subsequently my body). I love my partner, everything about our relationship except this ex is comfortable and loving. In a way I think my partner is being too loving of this other woman, like a mother to a sick child, for my stress-maximum!

I'm hoping someone out here in BPDR can offer some insights or opinions or any thoughts or reactions to my situation. I'm so confused in how to think or feel about it all because of the nature of the ex's health and their lengthy relationship. I'm almost proud in a way, of my partner for being a decent human being to another human being, I just wish it didn't hurt us both so much to be involved with this ex at all.

Some additional info that may factor into the facts of the situation: my partner and I met in our DBT group; there's a 21 year age difference between us; we're both women; she's my first female relationship of any kind; my family recently cut ties completely with me (at our negotiations) thus leaving me support-less; I'm very physically ill myself and waiting for surgeries.


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 Post subject: Re: My partner's ill ex is dependent on my partner!
PostPosted: Sat Nov 27, 2010 9:23 pm 
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Summary of the above: I'm hoping someone out here in BPDR can offer some insights or opinions or any thoughts or reactions to my situation. I'm so confused in how to think or feel about it all because of the nature of the ex's health and their lengthy relationship. I'm almost proud in a way, of my partner for being a decent human being to another human being, I just wish it didn't hurt us both so much to be involved with this ex at all.

Today and tonight my partner cried and hugged me because she's feeling so sad for letting me down. I don't feel like she's letting me down; I'm letting her down if anything! My physical pain and incapacity for most household tasks are worsening daily. There's so much twisted thinking and grief and pain, because we're both dealing with our mental and physical healths (she is being tested a second time for MS) yet there is so much love.

Insight from anyone would be so so appreciated. Thank you!


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 Post subject: Re: My partner's ill ex is dependent on my partner!
PostPosted: Fri Dec 03, 2010 6:09 pm 
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Hi guys, please help me on this... and update on the situation: the ex is now in intensive treatment at a local hospital after overdosing trying to kill herself. my partner was the one who called the cops after being on the phone with the ex and recognizing the cues of when shes going to attempt suicide. the ex has two dogs, which my partner and i got and took to my partners dad's house. the ex's girlfriend from the UK may or may not even know any of this, but now my partner is trying to raise funds, and contribute herself, to paying $1000 to fly the ex's girlfriend here. they keep breaking up and getting back together online, i don't know how serious the relationship is at all. in trying to let the ex's family know what happened, my partner phoned the ex's sister, and it turns out that she now has hep C (likely from one suicide attempt by the ex when she cut her wrists and her sister touched her blood)...

For my own health I saw a surgeon yesterday to consult for removal of my gall bladder because of the pain ive been suffering for a year and a half and he said my pain doesnt sound like gall stone pain at all but to go ahead with the laparoscopy on monday and then he'd see me again in 3 months. at first he said 6 months and i broke down when he said that and then he changed it and said three. i cant imagine going through this much pain and nasuea for another 3 or 6 months!!! its so hard to remain positive and focused, but with being so sick i can't get myself out of this crazy situation with my partner and her ex. and i think i do love my partner. the relationship is truthfully great and amazing EXCEPT when she's stressed because of some sort of interaction with the ex. my partner takes it out on me and our dogs especially by yelling at them. they're just puppies, they make mistakes and are curious and sneaky but we're training them. but when my partner is in a bad mood everyone better be on their best behaviour.

omg i can't believe some of what i'm writing. let alone my partner's own percocet addiction. shes trying to combat it and is down to 6 a day. people, i come from a super sheltered childhood and ive never known anyone to try to kill themselves. my heart tears for this ex whose now in the hospital. largely i empathize with her pain for being so alone.

the thing that really got me was that after seeing my doc and saying he wont do a gallbladder surgery cus it doesnt sound like anything to do with my gallbladder or gallstones, I wanted to badly to take pills, cut for relief, crash my car, drink and drive... it was an awful 30 minutes in my car steaming it up inside crying and consoling myself. i was able to use a lot of self talk and breathing and definitely made it through that moment of crisis. (I am a recovering BPD, and with every acheivment like that i know i'm still on the right recovery path). with all thats going on im proud of myself for keeping it together thus far. my psychiatrist is aware of my pain situation and my dwindling attitude because of being so sick, cant work, etc, and now the ex situation... he keeps reminding me every week that i dont have to and cant make huge changes right now because of my health. i need my partners help.

ive reached out to a few friends and let them know about the situation, in case i do need to split and run from my partner... she keeps saying she loves me and me alone but theres something about her emotions and attitude and behaviour with her ex that SCREAMS shes not done with the relationship and never wants to be. if i put up an ultimatum, which i dont want to because thats cruel, she will negotiate with me a plan to she can keep seeing the ex and have me too....

urgh urgh... please someone offer some tools or tips or suggests or some support... i need someone to hear me and to offer a nod of support...please.


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 Post subject: Re: My partner's ill ex is dependent on my partner!
PostPosted: Sat Dec 04, 2010 6:04 pm 
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Hi Snowshine,

Your situation is really complex. It's hard to give a response without getting into your partner's, and her ex's behaviour, when I think it's important here to keep the focus on you. But I think it's priority, especially while you're depleted by your own medical troubles, to work on not taking your partner's behaviour towards her ex personally.

Some people in this world have made a decision to completely self destruct. It's so difficult on the people around them who care, and have healthy consciences, but especially difficult when that self destruction is used to manipulate one into a position of responsibility. But it doesn't sound to me like she's still holding on to her ex, in fact it's the ex who's still holding on to her, and your partner's trying to find alternative support for her so she can move away from that past relationship to where she wants to be: with you, 100% available. So taking that extra leap to her still being attached to her ex I think is a twisted thought. Sounds like she's just trying to do the right thing in a completely unfair situation.

I really feel for you. What I see is that right now your partner is being asked to be there for 2 people and she is trying to do the right thing by everyone. But it looks like she's really having trouble finding the right balance here, and right or wrong, that's the situation you have to deal with. Do you have other avenues of support that can help to compensate for your partner's lack of availability during your own time of need? If it's not there for you in her, then it's probably wise to look elsewhere. Unfortunately, when all else fails, when others are distracted and unavailable, we are the only one who can truly be there for ourselves. It sounds like you may have to step up to that plate at the moment, and I suspect if you do, you will be pleasantly surprised at how much your partner can offer you when she's not being pulled in the opposite direction that her very mentally unhealthy ex is pulling her in.

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~ Sarah


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 Post subject: Re: My partner's ill ex is dependent on my partner!
PostPosted: Sun Dec 05, 2010 11:15 pm 
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Hi Sarah,

Thanks for replying... It's nice to hear that it seems to you too that my partner is trying to do the right thing by everyone. It's one of the things I adore but it's hard when applied in this situation.

I really needed to get out the situation on this board, get someone to say something. I do have a few friends that I can confide in with this, but it's at the risk of misunderstanding the complexity of the situation, and the depression we're all familiar with that are involved.

Anyways, thanks... I really appreciate it, Sarah. I am doing my best to self-soothe and be there for myself, too. It's hard work but paying off.


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