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 Post subject: Re: My Value Is Based on How I Make Him Feel
PostPosted: Fri Mar 12, 2010 1:06 pm 
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Joined: Tue Dec 29, 2009 11:45 am
Posts: 396
Location: Pacific NW
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Last edited by dmd1002 on Fri Jul 16, 2010 5:23 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: My Value Is Based on How I Make Him Feel
PostPosted: Fri Mar 12, 2010 10:55 pm 
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Joined: Sat Feb 14, 2009 4:01 pm
Posts: 2235
Location: Denmark
Joe wrote:
Have you been diagnosed with other PD's? OR is objectification something an OCPDer can have too?

I have only been diagnosed with OCPD, and as far as I can see all my symptoms fit into that diagnosis.

I have heard of OCPDers doing the objectification many times, so I think is a trait of ours too.

We are just better at it than all others.. We are the perfect objectifiers... :lol:

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Morten

OCPD - Only Contemplating Potential Disasters

Here's a short story on how I control my OCPD: http://ocpd.dk/Beretninger/OCPD_uk.pdf


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 Post subject: Re: My Value Is Based on How I Make Him Feel
PostPosted: Mon Mar 15, 2010 12:47 pm 
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Just wanted to echo some of the thank yous for Morten. You really provide valuable insight for us SOs / ex-SOs.


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 Post subject: Re: My Value Is Based on How I Make Him Feel
PostPosted: Mon Mar 15, 2010 11:18 pm 
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Location: Denmark
exlookingforanswers wrote:
Just wanted to echo some of the thank yous for Morten. You really provide valuable insight for us SOs / ex-SOs.

Thank you :mrgreen:

_________________
Morten

OCPD - Only Contemplating Potential Disasters

Here's a short story on how I control my OCPD: http://ocpd.dk/Beretninger/OCPD_uk.pdf


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 Post subject: Re: My Value Is Based on How I Make Him Feel
PostPosted: Tue May 11, 2010 6:45 am 
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Joined: Sat Jan 16, 2010 1:14 pm
Posts: 86
A very interesting thread indeed

I once said to my ex ocpder ' Cant we start to be a bit more affectionate with each other & start treating each other with a bit more TLC ?' She replied 'It just doesn't work like that'.

I took this to mean that in her mind that her love\affection is distributed as part of a ' Reward Scheme' she
operates

Has anyone else encountered this ' Rewarding' or ' Punishing' policy??


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 Post subject: Re: My Value Is Based on How I Make Him Feel
PostPosted: Wed Jan 26, 2011 6:17 pm 
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Joined: Thu Feb 19, 2009 1:12 pm
Posts: 71
Hello All,

I haven’t been here in almost a year. I pop on every once and a while to read posts, but that’s rare lately. I came back today to post, however, because maybe I can offer some insight that will help someone out there. Even though I didn’t post a lot, I got a lot of insight and comfort from the board and so maybe I can give some back now.

So, just a quick update…my OCPDH (diagnosed in Aug ’09) and I have been separated since Jan ’10. After we separated, I got a great job offer in another city that is about 200 miles away from where we lived. Because we have a DD, I discussed it with OCPDH and decided to take the job and move with DD to the new city. The plan was for OCPDH to move to the same city as us when he could. So, that’s how we’ve proceeded. DD and I moved here in August and OCPDH just came in January. We don’t live together, however. OCPDH is staying with some wonderful friends. According to the psychologist, OCPDH needs to start his own life, make and be responsible for his own choices, and set and achieve his own goals for there to be any improvement. So, in my mind that means we live separate lives for the foreseeable future. Getting him to be proactive about a job search was exhausting, but thankfully, the same friends who opened their home also worked on finding him a job. So, my OCPDH with a master’s degree and an, almost, Ph.d. is in an entry level job at a big company, but he is actually enjoying it thus far, and I’m proud of him. It’s not ideal, but it’s improvement. I have no idea if we’ll reconcile or divorce. With a new city and a new job and a new school for DD, I can’t make that decision right now. Ok, so that’s my quick update.

Now for some insight. When OCPDH was diagnosed, he fought it totally. He was so mad at me and at the psychologist. He picked it apart and analyzed all the reasons why the psychologist was wrong. I thought he’d never accept and internalize the diagnosis. Well, after living apart for 1 year, I think he’s had some major realizations and it seems like he’s actually trying to seek out more info on OCPD and understand himself better. Anyway, the other night we had probably the most honest, open conversation we’ve ever had. Of course, they are just words, and I need to see action before I change the status of our relationship at all. However, they were new words, and not the same old tired dribble. So, here’s his (and mine in some cases) insight into his OCPD that maybe you can see and apply in our own relationships:

1-He told me about affection “rules” . Apparently, not only did he have express rules for loading the dishwasher, but he also had secret rules about how I was to show him affection. For example, he would tell himself (who knows if it was conscious or subconscious??) that if I (his DW) hugged him at this defined point in time, then that meant that I loved him and if I didn’t hug him at the right time, then that meant that I didn’t love him. Even if I hugged him later on but not at that right time, I didn’t love him. Certainly, all or nothing thinking is at work here. To give another example he also said that he felt loved whenever I brought him lemonade while he was mowing the lawn. If I didn’t, then he would decide I didn’t love him and shut me out. Now, he never told me he wanted lemonade while mowing the lawn. So, this litmus test of my love was never communicated to me. Also, even if I brought him lemonade while cleaning the pool, that didn’t count. So, when I failed him, he would “put up walls” (his words) and then he’d say “well, I’ll take down the wall only if she does ‘y’.” When I wouldn’t do “y” (because I didn’t know to do “y”) he would put up more walls. So, we just got further and further apart. We didn’t really fight because we didn’t talk or address anything bad. If I dared raise a concern about the distance I felt between us, then he assumed that I didn’t love him. So, I was conditioned to just accept the miserable treatment and keep my mouth shut. He says he now recognizes that his way of thinking was messed up, but whether he can stop himself from that type of all or nothing thinking in the future is the real key.

2- He recognizes that he’s “a-motional” meaning unable/unwilling to express emotion. When I would talk about any hurts I felt or any pain he caused, he would be (and still is) completely unaffected emotionally. His responses were so robotic and, frankly, cold. I can remember sitting in the marriage counselor’s office (months before we went to see the psychologist who diagnosed him), and I was crying and the counselor said to him, “You might want to put your arm around your wife and comfort her.” When he did, it was so forced and lacked feeling. Even his “happy” emotion was (is) almost fake…like an act. His “happy” emotion is a high-pitched, animated, voice with lots of body movement. It’s like quiet contentment doesn’t exist. Of course, the lack of shared emotion really ruins intimacy. He said that he feels emotion but “doesn’t have the words” to express it. He’s very well read and very intellectual, but when it comes to emotional intelligence, he’s at the bottom of the scale because he can’t tap into how he’s feeling or read other people’s feelings very well. It seems he feels things, but when he can’t identify and classify them, he tries to ignore them. I guess it’s like everything else OCPD. If the OCPDer can’t control it 100%, then it gets (in his words) “pushed so far to the back burner of life that it’s like that issue doesn’t even exist.” He’s loathe to attempt what he can’t control and do perfectly. Given that expressing emotions is something he’s not comfortable with, he doesn’t even try. Emotions, like other things he can’t control, are ignored.

3-He recognizes that he’s 100% conflict avoidant. I know some OCPDers rage, rant, and yell. Mine is afraid of his own shadow. He is so adverse to open conflict that he is probably one of the most passive aggressive people I’ve ever met. If you upset him (break a rule or hurt his feelings) he won’t yell; rather, he will quietly shut you out, disapprove, and ignore you. He will also never tell you straight up what upset him. Conflict wasn’t allowed in his house growing up. His mom can’t stand it and she insists of not discussing anything that might provoke disagreement. She’s shut me down before when I’ve tried to disagree with his dad on something. Everything has to seem perfect in their house (more on that later). So, OCPDH can’t honestly express himself. I’m pretty sure I’ve never gotten an honest opinion from him (aside from his opinions on art and literature b/c he fancies himself an expert). I certainly have never gotten an honest opinion regarding our relationship. I’ve realized that it was always me going to him saying, “we have this issue and here’s how maybe we can solve it” or “here’s my thought on this potential move in life” and it seemed that no matter what I said, he just “yessed” me. His typical response was “uh-huh,” but he didn’t really believe it or act on it, and in some cases, he actively worked against me as I tried to solve our problems. So, he’s never been honest with me about his thoughts and opinions. Heck, all this “self realization” stuff may not be honest. He may have just figured out that it’s what I want to hear. I don’t expect that he’ll sit there and pour out his feelings every day. I don’t want that, but I do want to know his real thoughts and opinions,, which he is unlikely to give. In addition to being so conflict avoidant, he’s also incredibly emotionally fragile. I think this makes sense…he avoids conflict because he feels like he can’t emotionally handle it. Previously in our relationship if I said the slightest thing to upset him, he would shut down and not talk. I remember once we were going to eat and he was underdressed, so I suggested (before we left the house) that he put on slacks instead of jeans. You would’ve thought I called him horrible names. He was so upset that he barely spoke to me after that. I guess he was so devastated that he wasn’t perfectly dressed or that I saw him make a mistake (even though it wasn’t a mistake). Well, since I stopped allowing his disapproving silence to control me, he has gotten used to my saying things (pointing out the hurt he’s caused me). So, he says he recognizes now that he’s not comfortable giving opinions or talking about things that might cause conflict, and he claims he’s working on it. Also, he says he wants to be emotionally strong, but I just don’t see him ever being comfortable with even civilized conflict. Only time will tell.


4- Here’s his funny realization…he says he’s scared of me!! :roll: I’ve been trying to better understand where this fear comes from. From my discussions with him, it seem these are 3 options: 1-there is no fear, he’s just trying to manipulate me and make me feel guilty (i.e. “oh no. He’s scared of me, and I better try harder to be nice to him”); 2-that he’s scared of me because to be in relationship with me means we HAVE to talk about things that cause conflict (money, sex, family, etc). Given that he’s petrified of conflict, that fear translates to being afraid of me; or 3-he’s not really afraid of me; rather, he’s afraid I won’t love him anymore. This goes back to the perfect family issue. The Sunday Science thread talks about OCPDers not having (feeling?) unconditional love. I asked OCPDH if he felt loved unconditionally by his parents. He said “no.” He said he felt like he had to please them and, moreover, he could not take any risks or do anything that was outside the approved box his parents created for the family. He said it was implicitly communicated that to be a member of the family, he had to do “x” or behave “y” and if he didn’t, his parents would shut him out. So, he learned to do “x” and “y” perfectly, and he got it in his head that as long as he only attempted those things he could do perfectly, he would be ok. He says he didn’t feel perfect because he knew in the back of his mind that there were major parts of his life that he was ignoring, but he thought that focusing all his attention and energy on the things he did perfectly would make up for whatever he was ignoring (all or nothing thinking again). So, even though his professional life fell apart, he thought that cleaning the kitchen more would make up for it. So, we’ve discussed that maybe he’s afraid of me because he feels like if he can’t do what I want him to perfectly, then I won’t love him. He’s afraid of disappointing me because he’s afraid of losing love. Yet, he sabotages himself. Also, he said that b/c of the all or nothing thinking he ends up not even wanting to attempt any type of emotional growth. His thought is, “if he can’t grow perfectly in every area, then there’s no point in trying to progress in any areas.” Really fascinating.

So that’s it. Four nuggets (chunks??…I know I write a lot) of insight from some recent conversations. Maybe some of y’all see the same behaviors / reactions in your own lives.

_________________
DESTINY:You were meant for me. Perhaps as a punishment.
-Dr. E.L. Kersten


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 Post subject: Re: My Value Is Based on How I Make Him Feel
PostPosted: Wed Jan 26, 2011 7:17 pm 
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Joined: Sat Jan 16, 2010 4:40 pm
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Katiemacsmom,

Really good stuff, especially the part about thinking one has to be perfect to gain their parent's love/approval/attention/affection. That was certainly a common thread for me. I believe Francie has posted something alone the same lines. Children are prone to magical thinking---if I do "x," "y" will happen---and thinking everything is their fault. Once that track gets laid down, it takes an awful lot of work to deviate from it. It's like you learned to walk backward as a little kid and then you grow up and realize that everyone else in the world walks forward.

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Liza Jane

Peace is the result of training your mind to process life as it is, rather than as you think it should be. ~ Wayne Dyer


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 Post subject: Re: My Value Is Based on How I Make Him Feel
PostPosted: Wed Jan 26, 2011 8:13 pm 
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Joined: Wed Apr 07, 2010 12:17 pm
Posts: 1935
Location: SoCal - 5 yrs moved out/4 1/2 yrs broken up w/6 year live-in with OCPD b-f.
Congratulations on the new job, and the growth for DH. Whether you decide to stay a couple or not, emotional growth/awareness on his part will be good for him, and for your DD.

Funny, what I'm seeing in your DH's affection "rules" something very much like OCD superstitions - you MUST check the door lock excatly five times, etc. If you bring lemonade HERE, it counts, but THERE, it doesn't. :roll:

The unwilling/unable to express emotion (other than criticism, that seemed to be expressed quite easily) was one of my deal-breakers. I don't expect a man to be able to read my mind, but when I would say, "I am scared/sad/feeling down, and I need a hug," I needed a real hug, not a wooden, robotic going-though-the-motions-but-I-hate-this hug. There was often a touch-me-not vibe quite similar to what many with autism express.

The unloved as a child business - I know many OCPDrs here have expressed that. I wonder - in some cases, was the expression of love not there because of OCPD or other issues with the parents? Or, perhaps, the unconditional love was there but not perceived by the OCPD child?

In any case, am so glad for you that your life seems to be moving in positive directions, for all three of you.

_________________
And the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom. – Anaïs Nin
Follow the latest Scoop: http://www.scoop.it/t/iso-mental-health-wellness
OCPD SO info: http://perfectlyawfulusa.blogspot.com


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 Post subject: Re: My Value Is Based on How I Make Him Feel
PostPosted: Wed Jan 26, 2011 8:25 pm 
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Location: OBX, NC, 'Murica, Earth, Milky Way, Local Galactic Group
Super post, Katiemacsmom. Well worth our the months to hear from you. And demonstrating that long times may be necessary to achieve true shifts in OCPD.

Quick comment on Nugget #1. These "rules" remind me of OCD in their almost randomness of conditions required for easing anxiety, in this case for feeling loved. Also in the nature of a task assignment and the precise conditionals. The desired actions are fairly rational, but not in the conditions attached to them. Spurious.


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 Post subject: Re: My Value Is Based on How I Make Him Feel
PostPosted: Thu Jan 27, 2011 2:33 am 
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Joined: Wed Jun 16, 2010 1:03 pm
Posts: 41
Hi to my support group,

I read this entire thread starting from last year forward. It was bang-on and packed with rich content from katiemacsmom, Morten, Joe, and everyone who contributed. I nodded affirmatively at each entry--raw, accurate, and insightful.

Bravo for you, Katiemacsmom. It is great that your husband acknowledged the OCPD, got a job, seems happier, and can discuss the self-talk and beliefs that undergirded his behaviors. That is interesting that his therapist indicated that he needs to be by himself. Your household has entered a new cycle of growth and change. Thanks for sharing the update. It was refreshing news.

Last month I divorced a rigid OCPDer who demonstrated the behaviors described on this website and in the textbooks. I was habituated to verbal and emotional abuse for 20 years. My value was predicated on how I made him feel. I was told repeatedly that it was because of me that he was in a bad mood, irritated, and angry. I had no idea he had OCPD.

Picture a satellite view of a massive hurricane, complete with its rotating eye over my daily functioning that occurred once I left. For the past month the whirling in my mind has abated. The upheaval of leaving has trickled to a much smaller scale. I question if I am dreaming as I cannot believe I left. If it was not for having a competent therapist who witnessed the whole one-sided relationship and pleaded for me to leave him, I would still be obeying all his rules while he was guided by illogical thoughts. I have to admit that I am better off in the long run but still in shock. Leaving was abrupt but long overdue.

As requested in your posts, I am praying for you. Chicagohope how is it going?

Thanks to you for your help and for increasing my insight. I could not of had the strength and made it this far without you.

I am looking forward to great things and a new beginning in 2011.

Jill


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 Post subject: Re: My Value Is Based on How I Make Him Feel
PostPosted: Thu Jan 27, 2011 10:15 am 
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Congrratulations Katiemacsmom. it is much better progress than I have seen


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 Post subject: Re: My Value Is Based on How I Make Him Feel
PostPosted: Thu Jan 27, 2011 7:39 pm 
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Wow...First, thanks for all the sharing and discussion on my most recent post. I hope it's been helpful to others, as I know it's been hepful to me. Second, holy freakin' cow...I need to get out of this relationshp. I went back and read the whole thread from start to finish, and it was almost a full year ago that I was saying things like:
katiemacsmom wrote:
He seems to have made progress (still meeting with his psychologist), but his progress still just manifests itself in words. He's now willing to talk about how he feels (and how he felt before), which is great because it's progress, but it's still just words. I'm looking for actions (i.e. conducting an extensive professional job search to put his master's degree to use, addressing other financial concerns, and taking action to address some specific things in the past I've said I need or would like in our relationship). So, DH's words are gentler and more insightful, but still just words.

Ok..isn't that the same stuff I just wrote yesterday? That he's talking more, but it's still just words? In moving to our new city, he didn't execute a job search. Our friend got him a job AND he only took our friend up on the offer after I nagged him for 3 mos to accept the friend's help and get a job so that DD could have her dad in the same city. I was the one who had to push him to submit the resume to our friend!! There's nothing wrong with letting someone help you at all, but what chaps me is that OCPDH had to be pushed to do the resume. Also, there's been no progress on the emotional or physical intimacy. He's not tried to get closer to me emotionally or physically at all in the last 11 mos. I know we were separated, but OCPDH kept claiming he wanted us to reconcile. I always said I'd be open to reconciliation if I saw change...so it seems that if he really wanted to reconcile he'd try to change the lack of emotional / physical intimacy. In the last year he hasn't asked me out on a date or asked to spend time with me. I think any time we've spent together has been me initiating and planning. I'm still trying to create this relationship out of nothing. Grrr. It's the same old story.

And how about this one from last March:
katiemacsmom wrote:
Finally, we talked about his feelings for me. DH says (much like other OCPDers here) that he does love me and is capable of love. However, he never expressed it to me (or had an extremely hard time expressing it) because opening up to someone and loving them means examining yourself and your feelings. He was not willing to experience his feelings b/c then he’d also have to come face to face with the failures that he was trying so hard to repress and avoid. To just follow up on the whole “he only values me when I make him feel good bit” he admitted that it was easier for him to focus on my bad qualities and failures (and to allow me to think there was something wrong with me) than have to examine himself, his own feelings, and own failures. As I understand it now, it’s all a defense mechanism (a really big ‘ole nasty defense mechanism) that he punished me for trying to break down. My OCPDer (obviously) was so unable to ever handle being wrong or making a mistake that he tanked our personal relationship and his professional development just so he wouldn’t have to deal with the fact that he has faults. It’s mind boggling, honestly (I know you all understand how I feel).

It's like my post last March and my post yesterday are two sides of the same coin...same song different verse. Both posts dealt with him telling me why he couldn't / wouldn't be emotional with me, yet, no change in whehter or not he is actually affectionate or expressive to me. And what about:
katiemacsmom wrote:
Anyway, I'm still trying to be open to him b/c now he readily admits he has faults and he's still working on himself. I appreciate that. If there’s any way I can feel something for DH again, then I’m open to it. So, I’m not moving on just yet.

So, almost a year later I'm still trying to be open to him and still waiting for action. Wow. Is he just telling me these things to string me along so that I'll stay with him? Does he really have any intention of actually putting into action these words he's told me (almost verbatim) 11 mos apart?? It's funny even after all the hurt, I still believe his words. Didn't my post just yesterday say "only time will tell"? Well, I think maybe 11 mos has told the tale.

_________________
DESTINY:You were meant for me. Perhaps as a punishment.
-Dr. E.L. Kersten


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 Post subject: Re: My Value Is Based on How I Make Him Feel
PostPosted: Sun Jan 03, 2016 2:54 pm 
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Posts: 27
Morten wrote:
Joe wrote:

When your wife was not meeting your 'standards' and not doing things ' your way' how did it affect your Romantic feelings towards her? Did your feelings diminish ?


Most of the time she was merely an object, so if she ”malfunctioned” I quickly began thinking of replacing her. I think it is much like when you car is giving you trouble. You need it in order to get to work, but if it is constantly in the shop, you will think of getting another car. Life would be more peaceful without “car aggravations,” but then again you can't really do without one.

Joe wrote:
2) Did your wife not meeting your standards ever make you question the relationship? Did you ever think ' I am unsure if i want to continue this relationship because this woman and her behaviours are not for me?

Every single time.



I came across this reading through posts and wow this explains why my ocpd bf changed so many girlfriends, all those in the past 20 years were 3-6 months dating, didn't live together, h never married, and he is 55. And at times he acts like he should swap me out because I am the problem, he has no issues.


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 Post subject: Re: My Value Is Based on How I Make Him Feel
PostPosted: Mon Jan 04, 2016 10:34 pm 
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Morten wrote:
People around me are mainly objects. As long as they suit my purpose, I keep them near. The minute they are less useful, I lose interest. And if they fail to live up to my standards they cease to exist to me.

When you make me feel good, I can make you feel loved. If you are a nuisance I will make you feel like the lowest of the low. And please do not take this as an attempt to excuse my behavior, but before I realized my OCPD I had no idea I was doing it. But my wife have a million examples like the one you mention above. If she did something for me, I would throw her a bone, so to speak.

I believe the behavior is also linked with the catastrophe thoughts. "She knows how I like the laundry folded. Is she doing it wrong to annoy me. Yes, she doesn't like me anymore. OMG, she's thinking of leaving me. Oh no. No, no, no she has found someone else. My world is falling apart. NO NO Why are you doing this to me."


I know this is an old thread but, this was chilling to read.

But when I really think about it a little further...because I'm trying to understand this based on my non perspective it is quite difficult. When I apply what I've learned about autism and how autists view other people, it is pretty similar to what Morten is saying in some cases, and that helps me understand it in this post as well.

It stings to think my OCPDexH saw me as an object, but in some ways, I did kind of sense that. When I was physically "in his way" for example. And the way I saw him discard people who weren't useful to him anymore, and cling to people who benefitted him in some way. These benefits were sometimes normal and emotional in nature, like keeping certain friends around because the benefit you get is the fact that they are loving and supportive. He was truly loving and supportive to them, too. But other people, I saw them cease to exist to him and that was always concerning to me. And other people I saw him cling to for what didn't seem like healthy reasons.

Yet...it is simply the way his brain functions. It is not something he chooses. He is not aware there is any other way to see things. He lacks normal theory of mind and empathy skills, so of course people are objects to him until he humanizes them...which takes a deliberate action on his part. Otherwise, people remain objects.

Very enlightening and still a little chilling but I'm trying to integrate all I have learned in the past year and understand my reality better...so even if chilling, still very important to know.

Young children, some people with PD's, and some on the autism spectrum, view other people as either objects or extensions of themselves. This is quite fascinating really.


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 Post subject: Re: My Value Is Based on How I Make Him Feel
PostPosted: Wed Nov 30, 2016 8:59 pm 
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Morten wrote:
When you make me feel good, I can make you feel loved. If you are a nuisance I will make you feel like the lowest of the low. And please do not take this as an attempt to excuse my behavior, but before I realized my OCPD I had no idea I was doing it. But my wife have a million examples like the one you mention above. If she did something for me, I would throw her a bone, so to speak.


There's a balance to that... a reciprocity, a kind of justice.

Granted, it is not 'unconditional love', but let's be honest here... outside of mythologies about all-benevolent gods, nothing is.


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