Post # 1
I would like to thank everyone who understood where I was coming from in my last post for the advice. I also learned some hard lessons from others as well, so thank you for that. After thinking long and hard and giving it my all again, I have come to the conclusion that in spite of it all, I really love him and want nothing else than to make it work.
This happened after another big fight and me ready to throw in the towel again, but we FINALLY had the much needed talk that we desperately needed and that I’ve been pretty much begging him for. We talked more about his PTSD and his triggers as well as my wants and needs. He’s agreed with that I rarely ask him to do things I want to do because I have taken his PTSD into consideration since the beginning. He’s agreed that he needs to be more outgoing for me, which is not very often that I need to be out. I have explained to him that as the Summer time rolls around, the weather is beautiful and the last thing I want is to spend all of it cooped inside. I explained that it doesn’t always need to be a grand extravaganza every time we go out. Even if it’s just a walk around the block or a picnic at a park to enjoy nature. And even if we did do something involving money it doesn’t always have to break the pockets. And, of course I can go out and do things on my own, but I would love for him to be with me sometimes. After this followed an amazing date night where we went to dinner and had drinks, got to listen to a live band, and then went to a movie. I was a little annoyed he fell asleep during the movie, but I was more happy that we were together and not just me having another date night alone.
I did find out that he has bad anxiety, which he never told me about before. I thought he was just opposed to being out in general because he always just told me a solid “NO” whenever I asked. Without solid reasons. This started to create resentment in me. I found out that he gets horrible anxiety and the jitters and shivers when he’s out around people, especially strangers. I am glad he finally told me this as it gives me more insight to his reasoning and makes me not feel like he is just selfish and against me and everything I ask
In this regard, not much has changed except that he is willing to be more outgoing for me. He even started suggesting things to do without me having to ask him (going to the zoo, going shopping and out to dinner). And I am still doing what I have always been doing which is us spending time inside, quality alone time together, listening to music, watching movies, cuddling, etc.
We also revisited the talk about marriage to which I reiterated to him that it wasn’t to be engaged overnight or start wedding planning now. It was only to have an initial talk about future marriage to see what the future held in general. The first time I tried to have the talk with him he was dismissive in his response. This time I am relieved and happy that there is a future of marriage with him and I can rest my nerves that when he is ready to discuss it more we will in the future. Again, I am well aware our relationship needs work, and I am so glad that we finally had this talk and on the right path.
Post # 2
futurebound : you say you are more understanding of his anxiety, but you still went out on a date night. Is he in treatment? Just before I started treatment, I had about three buildings that I would get out of my car and go to, thankfully one of them was work. I couldn’t go to the grocery store, I got out of my car at a car wash and I literally thought I was going to die because they wanted me to go into a building I had never been in before. I literally thought I was going to pass out and die.
No amount of persuading was going to take that anxiety away from me. If I went to a new place with my partner in the midst of my rock bottom anxiety, I would be uncomfortable and anxious the entire time.
I guess it’s great that you finally had THE talk after a massive fight and he agreed to be more outgoing or whatever, meaning he’s agreeing to change who he is to appease you.
Unless he gets treatment, his outgoingness won’t last long. My anxiety got worse until I landed in treatment
Post # 3
Also, as for falling asleep during the movie, do you have an idea of the physical toll that anxiety can take on you? I’m assuming he was anxious given what you’ve said, when the anxiety dissipates, you are completely bone tired. Tired to your absolute core
Anxiety causes a physical response, your heart starts to race, your chest feels tight, you’re breathing fast. When the anxiety starts to fade, your body is exhausted from running on that
I don’t see a lot of sympathy for him on your part
Post # 4
Sansa85 : He is not in treatment currently. He is just dealing on his own the best way he knows how. The treatment he was in he said the medication made him hallucinate so he stopped it. And this date night happened because he suggested it. I told him I was going to a movie on Saturday, well prepared to go alone. He wanted to go with me. I didn’t ask him to go or pressure him or anything. He told me before we met up that he had the shakes but he loosened up after he had a few drinks and was feeling much better.
Post # 5
futurebound : aaaaah, he self medicated his anxiety shakes to loosen up. I would encourage him to start treatment again, talk therapy, cbt, can be helpful for him and they don’t involve medication
Post # 6
Sansa85 : I have always had sympathy and even more when we had the talk. And now I will just let him know when I am doing something and he can decide if he wants to join me or not. I will no longer push and pry or pressure him. That way it will be his own decision and not me trying to force him to do something he doesn’t want to do.
Post # 7
Sansa85 : I have mentioned it before but he is stubborn and adamant and content with how he is coping now. I feel like we have fought so much that I am burnt out fighting and crying like a little child and just giving up when things don’t go my way. I am prepared to go through this with him. None of this has been life threatening or endangering. I just have to suck it up to the times he just doesn’t want to and live with it.
Post # 8
So he is not in treatment, gets severe anxiety when you go out, and your solution is to have him want to go out more with you? I mean, its not just a lack of sympathy, you two are just completely incompatible. If you like to go out and do things and he doesn’t, you two won’t work together. If you are devolving into gigantic fights to even have a conversation about your future, you two just aren’t compatible. He needs to get into treatment and needs a girlfriend that helps him through his issues and not just forces him to go out more. You should be encouraging him to get help for the PTSD and the anxiety, instead of forcing him to be more “social”
Post # 9
Based on yuor last post, I’m not entirely surprised you want to stay with him, but I am a bit surprised you came back here to tell us all about your decision.
This still doesn’t sound healthy. All of the points made by PPs in the last thread still stand. As a fellow sufferer of anxiety, understanding/accepting you have it is only the first step. You knew he has PTSD before, still thought him not wanting to go out was “selfish,” but then you find out he has anxiety ON TOP OF PTSD, and now you can see he’s not being selfish?
You’ve never been solid and you’ve broken up/got together “a hundred” times. It should not be that hard. I think you still have marriage fever and just don’t want to see your time with him as “wasted” to cut your losses and find a healthier relationship. It’s not a fun concept, but it is far better than continuing an unhealthy relationship because of the sunk cost fallacy.
Post # 10
futurebound : Im sorry but your update makes you seem very selfish. This man clearly has anxiety issues and PTSD and instead of encouraging him to seek healthy treatment, you want him to go out with you and then he self medicates (which is a great way for him to become addicted to alcohol or other substances) just to make it through the evening.
Im going to agree with others and say that you two are just not fundamentally compatible. You are a social butterfly, he has PTSD. Those two things dont mesh. Sure, right now he is trying to appease you but it wont last forever because his condition precludes him from making a lasting change unless professional treatment is involved.
You are adamant about going out and doing things even to the detriment of his mental health. As someone who suffered from and was treated for PTSD, going out can be like walking through a battlefield. I once heard a car backfire outside of a theater and before anyone knew it I was on the sidewalk in a fetal position. Luckily I didnt self medicate and I got treatment. It would have been very easy to drown my anxiety in alcohol and become an alcoholic.
46% of people who suffer from PTSD use some form of self medication be it drugs or alcohol to cope. Your date night is a perfect example of how self medicating starts. Person with PTSD has to go out and to cope they begin drinking or using drugs, then it starts happening at home, before leaving the house. They begin drinking just to leave the house, before you know it they are drinking all the time to cope with the stress and anxiety.
You apparently arent aware of how serious his condition is or worse you just dont care.
Post # 11
There are 7.53 BILLION people on earth….why are you trying to make something work with ONE person that clearly doesn’t work?
Post # 12
- Wedding: September 2018 - City, State
Sansa85 makes a number of informed and excellent points. It sounds like things are calmer for the moment, but I don’t get the impression you are seeing eye to eye yet. You just got answers you liked better out of your discussion. I’m still not seeing much genuine sympathy from you, just a desire to mould him into the partner you need that is going better than expected. The actual, long-term solutions are going to require treatment for him and tremendous growth for both of you. (Getting into your own therapy wouldn’t be a bad idea, honestly.)
But best of luck to you both, I hope you both end up happy.
Post # 13
Thank you all again. Him and I will be fine. I have been doing even more research on PTSD and he has been more sensitive to my needs as well. Like a relationship should be. Compromise. And I have compromised a lot with him. And we are in a great place right now. Thank you again 😁.
Post # 14
So your bf tried one med for anxiety, had a bad side effect and quit treatment. There are other meds.
Anyone struggling with PTSD belongs in treatment with a properly trained expert. There are specialized treatments (EMDR, i.v. Ketamine infusion, in particular) that have been empirically proven highly successful in treating PTSD.
This not something your bf can fix on his own. And you can research till the cows come home.
The most loving thing you can do is encourage him to get into therapy with a trauma recovery therapist.
Post # 15
sassy411 : I am completely aware of this and I think he is too but he’s been content with weed and alcohol and basically not being around people if he doesn’t have to. He goes to work and the occasional hookup with his cousins, but that’s about as far as he likes to go in social situations. Here and there if he’s in the mood to be out he will come out. Like our date night last Saturday. I didn’t ask him to come out, I only informed him I was going out to the movies and he offered to join me. It was his own decision.