I think this coaching insight from my last model is super insightful. “Anytime we notice ourselves falling into the trap of wanting other people to be different than they are, it is only because we think that we would get to feel better if they were acting different.”
I understand this intellectually and am often able to apply it. However, it’s been coming up on for me a lot the last couple of weeks. The latest example is with my boyfriend. We have been seeing each other for 4 years. We broke up three times for 1-2 months each time. I think he displays many personality traits associated with narcissism, but he is not completely lacking in empathy.
He complains that I don’t give him enough attention and that he wants me to spend more time with him, but not on a schedule, on a weekly basis depending upon how he is feeling. He lives 1.5 hours from me and I do 90% of the driving. I want to see him every weekend with one weekend off a month and go in to see him sometimes in the middle of the week.
A couple of weeks ago he decided we would have every other weekend off, and just announced it in steps without really discussing it with me. This brought up paranoia for me about him sleeping with other women. (He told me he slept with about 8 women while we were broken up.) We have been arguing more lately.
The latest was that I was driving to his house on a Friday. (We both had our second dose of vaccine about three weeks ago.) He told me how happy he was that Governor Tim Walz of Minnesota is lifting the mask mandate. I immediately think they are both stupid; there will be a spike and more people will die.
We start arguing and debating. I explain to him what I think, but it definitely got heated. I tried to just stop talking to him while I was driving, but he wanted to keep talking. He winds up getting mad and getting off saying we will talk more when I get there.
When I get there it continues to be tense. He wants me to apologize for starting a fight, which I don’t want to do because I think he started it. He eventually says he wants to break up and wants me to leave. He has done this a couple of times before where I did leave and one time we did break up, but we wound up getting back together, so I didn’t leave and waited it out.
We went out to lunch with his family the next day, which went well, but I wound up feeling deflated and disappointed as soon as we got there. I wish things could even out with us. And I don’t want a break up right now. I am starting a new job and would like things to stay the same for a little bit.
Now he doesn’t want to see me this weekend (every other weekend off). He says he wants me to be submissive and not argue or disrespect him. He says I am treating him badly. I think I am kind and patient with him, but I sometimes lose patience and my temper because he is so difficult and ridiculous. I definitely think he is treating me badly, acting like I’m an option, and disrespecting me and my time. I definitely want him to change his behavior so I can feel better.
C: Spending the weekend off from R
T: He treats me badly
A: Think about ways to fix it, remember situations where I think he has treated me badly, imagine being alone, think of things I don’t like about him, cry, buffer
R: I treat myself badly
C: Spending weekend off from R
T: Well, now I don’t have to drive and can do things I want to do this weekend
A: Rest, go out to dinner with my brother, do things I need to do, think about other stuff, appreciate myself and my friends and family, give him space
R: I don’t drive to the city and I do things I feel like doing
I feel like the coaching is often resulting in me being submissive, letting things go, and resolving stuff in this relationship. I feel clear that I want to keep seeing him. And I want him to change his behavior, which I know, logically, probably won’t happen.
Thanks for reading my super long question. 💕