how do i stop paranoia ruining my relationships? - The Student Room
On the other hand, if the issue of jealousy isn't resolved, your relationship will inevitably fail. Feeling “not good enough" makes you hypersensitive to every interaction .. "I'm all for acting as if you're grateful and you will be grateful," he said. Things are fine but im convinced their not. the only thing that is wrong is me The amount of times I've text my boyfriend 7 times (each one getting more angry. I am being driven mad with paranoia, convinced that my boyfriend is fed I'm convinced he's bored and its driving him crazy, he gets so cross.
Could I have been right each and every time…I am sure I am not. It feels that I have the paranoia to start with, and then hang that on a convenient person. If I'm in the wrong mood then whatever happens I can create a great fiction around it with no evidence at all I need help to unlearn it. An example - the phone is a problem for me, and when I'm in the low mood any sound of a message coming in is like a little electric shock. She has offered to let me pick it up at any time and look but I refuse.
A year ago, I let it get to me so much that I checked on her phone a few times. I stopped and told her I had done it and have never so much as looked at it since, and very much regret doing it. I will not go back there, that much I do know, and I have not gone back there even when my fears have been very strong.
If she is unexpectedly late, or takes longer when out than expected, I worry. If she seems a bit quiet, I worry. These are ordinary things, and she has a right to have friends and message them, be late, do something or go somewhere not planned, feel a bit tired and so be quiet, and not have that seen as a sign that she's up to something.
I hate to do that to her, and to make her feel that way. How do I train myself to think in a different way, and get this Iago in my head to shut the hell up? Strategies to stop my paranoia and jealousy running away with itself, and creating a film in my head which starts to feel like a memory, not an invention.
How to see the best in things, the million prosaic explanations, not the worst possible story? To deflect a thought, and move on in a more positive way. Anything, really, other than what I have. My life is good, and I have people who love me. I should be happy. But I am really, really miserable and worst, it's through my own invention. If you're not in a place to afford therapy there are workbooks online, can't search for you right now unfortunately. Are you currently receiving therapy?
If not, go back. State up front that this is your problem, maybe even print this question out and bring it with you or send it ahead of time. Outline what success looks like for you not being worried about the phone, being less jumpy, etc. While you work on getting back to therapy, something that has helped me immensely is scheduling time to worry.
Throughout the rest of the day, if worry thoughts come up, you put them away and tell yourself you can worry about it at the scheduled time.
Go back about your business. Eventually, you might find yourself sitting in your worry chair, annoyed that you still have 15 more minutes and can't leave until your worry time is up. At first, it helped me to envision those worries as dropping off a conveyor belt into a box.
This imaginary box was marked "things to worry about at 6pm. It was designed for people with a particular diagnosis, and has been shown effective for trauma survivors.
Our group therapists all talked about how much they think everyone should be actively taught these skills. There's emotion regulation, mindfulness, distress regulation, and interpersonal effectiveness. The key to this kind of therapy is practice. You work on these skills when things are easier, so that when you are faced with a difficult thing, the skills are comfortable and easy to reach. Someone is also going to drop in and suggest Gift of Fear. So yeah, maybe read that too.
But talk to your therapist about that first, I think. Give you the time and distance to trust again or know for sure, that you never will. You should see a qualified relationship therapist specialising in infidelity. You clearly need more tools to resolve this and restore your relationship than what you have to hand now, and seeing this as a problem that is yours to solve alone isn't going to get you there.
You have to have self-confidence to put your trust in someone else. Your trust might be repaid with a cheating spouse, but that's the risk all couples have to accept. That's how it usually works. Your lack of self-confidence is YOUR problem.
Projecting it onto your old lady is wrong and not fair to her and if you keep it up, it will become self-fulfilling. Listen to your own advice, wise up, and knock it off. Your wife is hurting you by continuing to behave deceitfully and secretively after an emotional and possibly physical affair. Her affair is not your fault. Her behavior is not your fault. If she gets defensive when you open up to her about what's eating at you, she is hiding something more and she is feeling guilty about it.
NONE of these things are your fault and if she is saying or doing things to deflect blame off of her and onto you, your wife is failing you as a person and as a partner.10 Thoughts that can Destroy Relationships
Let her be in charge of your behavior, and stop trying to control what is not yours to control. Even if you were the most locking and amazing partner ever your wife could still have cheated on you. That's a failing in her, not in you. Don't treat it like it's the other way around. Ultimately what this boils down to is that you and your wife have never worked on resolving this together. Why does the burden f healing and forgiveness fall solely to you?
It has to be a joint effort for a marriage to survive after infidelity. It sounds like you feel so responsible and so guilty for your wife's transgression that you have absorbed what should be a dual effort and made it only yours. You should keep going to therapy, and specifically seek out counselors who can do CBT and EMDR for you to help you make sense of what has undoubtedly been a traumatic incident in your life.
But your wife needs to go to marriage counseling with you.
How do I stop being so paranoid in my relationship? - jealousy paranoia suspicion | Ask MetaFilter
If she's not willing to go, or if she goes but doesn't put in any effort, you must be honest with yourself about deserving better than that. She may have left your marriage a long time ago, and nothing you do will bring her back.
She has to want to come back on her own, and so far it doesn't sound like she's been fulfilling her end of the bargain by doing right by you. She created this environment where she violated your trust, so it's only natural to not entirely trust her. You can promise forgive, but you can't ever promise forget.
I'd show her this AskMe. You two need to be very very open with each other about how you feel if this has any chance to work. You have to come clean about your suspicion and she has to know it. Maybe you really can't as a couple get past it.
But the only possible way you can is by laying it bare. Tell her that you don't want to be paranoid, but you are. Tell her you don't like that the result of you feeling this way is that she hides more which exacerbates the suspicion.
If talking just the two of you doesn't solve the issue, then you need to have couples therapy, bringing in an impartial third party. You had an emotional event that triggered it, which happens to be infidelity, but that's just a red herring.
The standard cbt therapy, self care, maybe medication rules all apply. Honestly, I had several of these events happen before I finally noticed the pattern. They were all completely legitimate and bad things, my worries were justified, it was how the worries manifested and consumed me that was the real issue.
I too sense you and your wife who is not a criminal, who undoubtedly had reasons for emotional cheating, maybe making it a mutual responsibility Good luck, it hurts, I know. What I mean is, I think your wife is going to have to be involved and play a part in this situation to have it solved.
You say she has been patient, but I think she needs to do more than just be patient to help your relationship survive this. Maybe that means couples therapy. Maybe that means the two of you take a break from each other for a spell. Maybe that means the two of you have a very long, very difficult, very honest conversation about the past infidelity that seems to have never really been resolved. Maybe that means that for the next while she is extra communicative of her plans, what she's up to, etc.
The problem with infidelity is that we can want to forgive, we can want to forget, we can want to move on You say you've settled for it, you've settled for her explanation that it was just emotional, you've settled for her assurance that it wasn't physical.
I don't think you have settled for those things at all. It sounds like you are in a pretty intense tug of war between what you WISH you could do forgive and forget and what is actually happening your hurt, upset, betrayed, you don't trust her anymore. I don't care that it has been a couple of years, there is no time limit for how long you can be upset over infidelity.
I'm not saying she is an evil person. I have no idea what lead to her cheating, but there were probably contributing factors.
Have you two dealt with those? Maybe if the reasons behind the affair were addressed you would feel less insecure in your relationship. You are not okay with the fact that your partner had an affair, and that is okay and understandable. You don't have to be okay with the fact that she cheated. You don't have to be okay with the betrayal.
The fact that she says it was "just" emotional, not physical, doesn't have to make it better or easier. However you feel about this, that is okay, but be honest with yourself about how you really feel. For some people infidelity is a dealbreaker, even when they wish it wasn't.
It is possible that her affair has broken your trust in her so deeply that you may not be able to repair it. Then again, you may very well be able to come back from this. The problem is that you don't know because you two have never fully resolved what happened and what led up to it. Maybe I am being unfair, but I think your wife needs to be doing a hell of a lot more than just being patient in this situation.
To me, cheating is a complete deal breaker, and a huge betrayal of trust. I believe there is always a moment where a person decides to either give in to an affair or to address the issues in the relationship that led to them looking to another person in that way. There is always a choice. No one is ever helpless against giving in to infidelity.
There were likely existing problems in your relationship that led to her cheating on you, that falls on both of you to fix, but she was the one that had the affair. She was the one that looked at your leaky dam of a relationship and then drove a wrecking ball through it. I think that she needs to be much more aware of the part her actions played in your feeling and behaving this way now, and that she needs to do more to help your relationship work through this.
The responsibility of healing your relationship after this cannot fall on you alone. Best of luck, friend. You are in a very very difficult situation. I mean, I'm pretending I had an emotional affair and told my boyfriend, who now is having trouble trusting me, understandably.
I do think that therapy and stuff would help, but she did make a mistake, and it is okay to want comfort from her when you're worried or upset in the relationship. The problem is not just your reactions to things; it's that fact that you are suffering in a way your wife may not really understand, and she needs to understand it if you guys are gonna make this work.
This shitty thing happened. You are hating having to deal with it. Your wife has been trying to do the right thing giving you access to phone, etc but you hate SO MUCH that you have to deal with it that any kind of dealing with it makes it worse ie, you react so negatively to having ever looked at her phone, even though she expressly invited you to do so in an attempt to reassure you.
Do you respond this way to other shitty situations in your life? Freak out at the prospect of dealing with them? Refuse to deal at all if you can possibly avoid it? If that rings true for you, I concur with the person upthread who says this reads more like an anxiety issue.
Strongly recommend counseling for the two of you. If the pattern I described resonates with you, you may find yourself surprised by how much your avoidance has been undermining your marriage all along. You are wise to recognize that it needs to be addressed.
Suffice to say that if you are unable to cope whenever something stressful arises in your marriage, that gives your wife absolutely no room to address problems that are evident on her end, and that's exactly the kind of situation that drives women into emotional affairs.
Or why she's angry when you are afraid. Couples counseling sounds like the winner. Both of you need to sort this. I don't see how you can deal with anxiety except by starting in a fact-based world.
Couples counseling will give you a starting point and with that foundation you can address your issues. I ask because if the jealous feelings are something new, then maybe you should listen to them. If you've always been inclined to jealousy, then going to therapy would be more useful.
You have a right to be paranoid.
4 Ways to Avoid Suspicion and Paranoia - wikiHow
I have zero tolerance for affairs. Perhaps you are someone who has zero tolerance either. There is no reason to stay with someone if it's making you miserable. The question is whether you have issues trusting her in particular after the affair or whether you have trouble trusting in general. If you were in a new relationship, could you trust that person or would the same issues arise?
If you think you could trust a new person, then I don't see a reason to stay married to your wife. Like you, I could consciously see that the paranoia was profitless and hurtful, but kept letting myself fixate on those feelings, and that put my partner through the wringer for quite some time. Nothing clicked for me until my therapist told me that trust is, to some degree, a choice.
That I was chasing my tail by indulging these paranoid fantasies instead of making either hard choice A open myself up to my partner again, or hard choice B leave. That what I needed to do was to sincerely decide to trust him again, or not, and then stick with that choice. I think your use of the word "unlearn" is apt. When that awful feeling came up, it became for me like the moment when you realize you have some lousy song stuck in your head so you put a different one there instead that you like.
I reminded myself that I had decided to trust my partner from now on. I reminded myself of the reasons I knew that paranoia wasn't healthy or positive. In a few months, I stopped getting the awful feeling, and time and love did the rest. Lies of omission are lies. I'm uncomfortable with the fact that she is not keeping you informed because she fears your misinterpretation. That is the entire problem. Here is what honesty is, in a relationship, IMO: If someone has had a thought times and it's relevant to your relationship, it gets said.
If someone has a crush, or there is a new important friend, or someone is struggling at work, it gets said. When your wife had an emotional affair, you saw that she was capable of not keeping you fully informed. There was something going on in her head and in her life that took up probably thousands of her thoughts per day.
All that, days after days, weeks after weeks, and she never shared it with you.
Signs His Paranoia is Ruining the Relationship
Knowing your partner is capable of not keeping you informed It shows that she is still the same person, at root, who doesn't understand what it is to be fully and transparently honest consequences be damned. Sure, nobody is perfect in this. This small exercise will help you let go of the old bricks and remind you that past pains are not indicative of present possibilities.
Inventing problems in our mind and then believing them is a clear path to self-sabotage. Too often we amuse ourselves with anxious predictions, deceive ourselves with negative thinking, and ultimately live in a state of hallucination about worst-case scenarios. We overlook everything but the plain, downright, simple, honest truth.
When you invent problems in your relationships, your relationships ultimately suffer. Insecurity is often the culprit. The insecure passenger does not trust anyone else to drive. They feel out of control.
They imagine that the driver is not paying attention. Or they may even fantasize that the slight jolting of the driver stepping on the breaks is a sign of doom via an impending collision.
They freak themselves out by assuming that the visions they have invented in their mind represents reality. What you need to realize is that there are normal idiosyncrasies to any relationship.
5 Ways to Stop Feeling Insecure in Your Relationships
There are ups and downs and mood changes, moments of affection and closeness and moments of friction. These ups and downs are normal. Wanting to be absolutely close and intimate all the time is like wanting to be a passenger in a car that has no driver. Read The Road Less Traveled. Stop focusing on the negatives. Imperfection, however, is real and beautiful. The quality of the happiness between two people grows in direct proportion to their acceptance, and in inverse proportion to their intolerance and expectations.
No meaningful relationship will always work flawlessly all the time. Being too black and white about the quality and health of a relationship spells trouble. There will always be difficulties present, but you can still focus on the good.
What you need to do is look for signs of what is. Having an appreciation for how remarkable the people in your life are leads to good places — productive, fulfilling, peaceful places. So notice their strong qualities, cheer for their victories, and encourage their goals and ambitions. Challenge them to be the best they can be. Every day, acknowledge just how amazing they are.