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Obsessed with ex (7 years ago!)

(21 Posts)
Helpmefindaway Sat 05-Sep-20 09:37:49

Regular with NC for this.
Please help me out of this.
I think about him every. single. day. It has got to a point where it is ruining my happiness, my relationship with dp and even my parenting of dd. I am so consumed with it. Obsessed with his life and what he is doing. I know logically it’s not right. I know I have a problem. But I don’t know how to stop. I just want it go away and I am terrified it never will now and I will live the rest of my life unhappy. None of my family and friends have any idea about this. My dp knows it affects me but doesn’t know the extent of it. He is a saint for putting up with this.
Has anyone had any experience of this? I am seeing a counsellor but only had 2 sessions. I have returned to work after 2 months off (deep depression after he had a baby with new wife), so I am now struggling to attend the sessions. I am hoping she can do them on an evening.
Please don’t tell me to stop looking, stop thinking about, it’s part of life....
Believe me I have tried. Really really tried. I am desperate and need help.

OP’s posts: |
penguin81 Sat 05-Sep-20 09:54:32

I' sorry you're feeling like this. I have had a similar experience, and it's never gone away for me, but have hope. Have a read up on limerance if you haven't already xx

shreddednips Sat 05-Sep-20 12:49:27

Oh I'm sorry OP, that sounds really hard. If it helps, I had a situation that was a little like yours where I had an ex that I just hadn't moved on from for ages. We were quite young when we were together, I think it was just a case of us meeting at the wrong time and circumstances as we were very well-suited and I always felt sad about it. It lasted for years, but eventually it just sort of melted away without me realising. I still think fondly of him, but not in a pining for him sort of way. So perhaps this will happen for you too even if it seems impossible now.

It sounds like you're doing the right thing by having the counselling as it sounds like it's not getting better on it's own. I'd stick with it- I've had therapy for different reasons and found that you feel a bit worse before you feel better because you're discussing all these difficult feelings and bringing them into the open.

shreddednips Sat 05-Sep-20 12:53:45

I do think though, having just reflected on it more, that you need to find a way of stopping looking at his social media or however it is that you're getting updates about his life. It sounds like that's really hard for you to do, perhaps because it feels like permanently shutting the door and that's scary, but could you try doing it even just for a couple of weeks and see whether it helps? I think you need to be a bit firm with yourself about this aspect of it or it'll be hard to move on. I mean that kindly.

Unseeliequeen Sat 05-Sep-20 15:52:44

Delete your social media.

It may be hard to stop thinking about him but you could stop checking up on him.

Also if you go over all of the "good" memories of him start to remind yourself of the bad ones. Your brain just needs a little rewiring and by thinking about and checking up on him constantly you're teaching your brain that he's a very important task when he's not. Start to slowly but surely replace those habits and rewire your behaviours.

Also don't be so hard on yourself, you're not abnormal. You're just a human who got hurt and sometimes we cling to that hurt. It's time to close the book and start a new chapter.

Unseeliequeen Sat 05-Sep-20 16:11:36

Take back self control.
When we rely on validation from others, when we believe ourselves incomplete or ruined without someone, we deny ourselves power.

And long after we have been hurt we continue to hurt ourselves.

You've been betrayed, heartbroken, crushed. You are one of many. You are not the only one.

It's one of life's ironies that heartache, loss & pain can bring about the most beautiful changes and growth in ourselves. When we meet life's challenges we can become better than before. All is not lost.

You can flourish and be happy and fulfilled again. It won't happen over night but if you continue to follow his life it won't happen at all.

You've got this!

rvby Sat 05-Sep-20 16:58:28

Have you seen the gp ? You may have a form of OCD or anxiety, if so, its possible that a short course of medication might give you enough breathing room to break the cycle of obsessing about this man.

Medication wouldn't be the answer in and of itself, more a way to temporarily interrupt the signal, giving you a chance to have some intensive therapy and change some things while you have that reprieve. E.g. easier to break social media habits when you are feeling bolstered and strong.

Ultimately there are things in your behavior, including your habits of thought, that are keeping this guys memory alive for you in a way that's hurting you. If you can get on top of those behaviors, you'll have a chance of increased happiness.

In the counselling you've had so far, have you already told the counselor what your goals are/what the issue is? Where are you in therapy?

BlackLetterDay Sat 05-Sep-20 17:03:48

Was there some kind of unresolved trauma associated with him?

Bluntness100 Sat 05-Sep-20 17:08:51

How did it end. Did he end it with you? Do you want him back? Is that why you fell into a depression when he became a father. Is he aware of your Stalking and obsession. Do you have any contact with him at all?

user1481840227 Sat 05-Sep-20 17:49:42

You say you're seeing a counsellor after a deep depression and have had 2 sessions...but have you mentioned this guy at all?

I wonder would you be better off with CBT instead of a regular counsellor...or as well as counselling.

Or perhaps EMDR if you have unresolved trauma from the relationship.

ilovemycatanddog Sat 05-Sep-20 17:51:53

Were you married? Any kids?

DaphneBlake101 Sat 05-Sep-20 18:38:22

I could have written your post. I can completely relate - I feel like it's an obsession that I can't find a way to move on from. When I spoke to a counsellor, she said I had compartmentalised my feelings at the time of the breakup (almost 7 years ago and it was my decision! I have been married to someone else for 4 years now!) and now, for whatever reason, I couldn't shut it off anymore and needed to grieve for the loss of the relationship.

I take it one day at a time - when I feel an overwhelming urge to look at his social media or send a message, I tell myself I can do it tomorrow. Then when tomorrow comes, I tell myself the same thing so I'm perpetually waiting for tomorrow. I deeply sympathise - I feel so completely irrational over the way I feel and I think that's been the hardest and the biggest shock because that's not the way i am normally.

Helpmefindaway Sat 05-Sep-20 20:29:58

Thank you for all your messages. I am just reading them now as dd is finally asleep.
So much here that I needed to hear. To answer some questions, I have seen a gp and have started medication. I have wondered about OCD before but I do suffer with anxiety.
I have deleted all my social media accounts.
We weren’t married and didn’t have children. It was an 8 year long relationship and it was a traumatic, horrible breakup. I could go into detail but it would take me all night.
@DaphneBlake101 thank you for being so honest in your reply. I am sorry you are going through this too, it is horrible. But comforting to know I am not the only one/completely nuts flowers

OP’s posts: |
Helpmefindaway Sat 05-Sep-20 20:31:28

Oh and been very upfront and honest with my counsellor yes. I am praying this is going to give me that lightbulb moment

OP’s posts: |
TorkTorkBam Sat 05-Sep-20 20:48:04

I highly recommend self-hypnosis audios daily (or more frequently) to help you get past crisis mode, in parallel with the counselling.

Here is an example of something that might help. There are loads more on this site. Inexpensive, immediate download. Bloody marvellous in a crisis where you need to straighten your head out a bit.

CyberNan Sat 05-Sep-20 21:45:53


every time you find your self obsessing about him, make a conscious effort to distract yourself so you don't think about him anymore... hopefully, eventually you will stop looking backwards and start moving forwards...

make the decision that you will not allow your thoughts about him to rule your life anymore.

Kittykat93 Sat 05-Sep-20 22:02:33

Why is he an ex? Either you didnt want him or he didn't want you. Theres a reason you aren't together now op, it wasn't meant to be.

This sounds really difficult - you say your partner knows - I'm surprised he's sticking around as if I knew my partner was obsessing over their ex every day I'd be out the door. And you said it's affecting you parenting your daughter? How? That's not fair op. You need to get help for this and I think therapy would be a good place to start. This obsession could ruin your life and you could lose people close to you.

CoopsMalloops Sat 05-Sep-20 23:15:53

You have done the right thing in going to your doctor and starting on meds.

I know that it is hard now, believe me I have been there, there is a light at the end of the tunnel, just keep doing what you’re doing. X

Helpmefindaway Sat 05-Sep-20 23:43:33

I will look into Hypnosis. Thank you for the messages of encouragement. I wish it was just as easy as stopping as I would have done it years ago. I really am trying. @Kittykat93 you have t said anything I don’t already know

OP’s posts: |
RLEOM Sun 06-Sep-20 00:54:16

It sounds like it's become a habit to check his social media. You need to break the cycle and redirect your focus.

hastingsmua1 Sun 06-Sep-20 01:10:05

Why is he at the forefront of your mind?

Are you still checking up on him on social media? If so, I think you have essentially given yourself an illness as you’ve become dependent on checking up on him. You’re only going to get better once you commit to stop stalking him and have gone teetotal for a few months - you’ll naturally start to forget about him and the urge to check up on him will pass.

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