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Need Advice - Growing Close To a PTSD Sufferer

Discussion in 'Supporter Discussion' started by butterfly40, Mar 19, 2007.

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  1. butterfly40

    butterfly40 New Member

    Hi all... I need advice from people who suffer from PTSD or there partners on something that I can't seem to figure out on my own. In the past few months I have recently became very close friends with a man who has PTSD from sexual abuse as a child. I care very deeply for him and want our relationship to further but not at the cost of his recovery. I am married and having a lot of issues with my husband, that I have sought counseling for. I don't want this man because I feel I can help him, I know only he can do that nor do I want him because I pitty him. I want him because of him. He makes me laugh, I can talk with him honestly about anything and I feel like we have so much in common. He is a gentleman, he has a lot of integrity. However he tends to send mixed signals like he wants a relationship with me but then he turns and pulls away saying he only wants a friendship. I do not understand a lot about the illness, but I have read a few books pertaining to partners of PSTD, so I have a basic understanding of it. It seems to me that his self esteem has been so shattered that he can't believe that I am willing to do this for him. I get a feeling that he wants to share his feelings for me, but is afraid too because he is afraid of getting hurt. He has trusted me with a lot of talk about his childhood abuse and what has led him to this point in life. He definitly knows how I feel. I have made it clear and have actually even told him I would give it all up for him. I really don't know what to do or even what to ask to get him to share his true feelings for me. I really need some advice here... anyone?
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  3. becvan

    becvan Queen of the Blunt! Premium Member

    Hi Butterfly.

    I'm going to be very blunt here. If you care for him deeply, then stay away from him. You are married and are having issues and you want to develop an intimate relationship with a man that has PTSD at the same time? The only thing this is going to do is f'k him up further. That is not care, that is being selfish.

    I realize you may not see it that way, nor recognize it, but that is the worst thing you could do. You emotional needs need to be met by you. Being in a marriage and having an emotional affair is only about you and neither your husband nor this man.

    As much as this might sound cruel or be painful, you need to cut all contact with this person. Otherwise you are going to create a mess. Sort yourself out first, then build relationships after. Just don't drag others into the middle of your marriage.

    I hope you see this as it's meant. Not an attack, but personal experience with how nasty this situation would get.

  4. Andrea42

    Andrea42 Active Member

    WoW! I had to respond to this...

    Bec, you couldnt have said it better. I completely agree with you.
    It doesn't sound like you realize whats going on here. Be careful. You say you are married but with issues? and that you got counseling for? I guess i am wondering what the results were if any? or what happened with that? Do you want to be married? I am a bit confused. Maybe you can explain how you feel about your marriage or what you want to happen...I dont think its a good idea to be in both relationships...

    If you want to start a new relationship with anyone other than your spouse, you should get a divoce first. Nothing hurts more than being betrayed in such a way (i would know) plus like Bec said, it sounds like you are trying to fill that "need" at the moment, but if you seriously think about it, you will probably end up hurting this new guy with PTSD too becasue you want it for all the wrong reasons it seems... PTSD has alot to offer (being sarcastic). Of course he makes you laugh and you feel as if you can talk about anything.... You are not happy with the person you are with... But it also sounds like (and i am only guessing and correct me if i am wrong) you dont know him for too long... Just be careful, You wouldnt want to hurt people you care about. If you like him that much be there for him and listen...but make sure you do whats right with your marriage as well whether its divorce or taking a break (that you both understand the rules) or working things out :)
    well i cant say too much because you didnt say much...but from experience being with someone who has PTSD is hard and it requires alot of support and understanding (which unfortunately sometimes i dont even have) so its hard.... but then again i have been with my husband for 5years and i am not going anywhere.
  5. jods

    jods Well-Known Member

    Hi Butterfly

    To be honest with you, walk away from this friend.
    Find out who you are & what you want to do about your marriage. Don't think that leaving your current situation with your husband to be with this man will make your life better because your friend makes you feel special.

    Being with someone that has PTSD is hard work & can take a toll on the sufferer & the people around them. You really need to think about what you really want out of life. Seeing your friend & being there for him is one thing but living with them 24/7 is another. It's hard & heartbreaking & it can really show you a side of life that you may not want to see or be able to deal with.

    I know it may sound harsh but unless you have lived with someone that has it, you could not even begin to imagine the reality of what it is like to actually live with someone that has it.
  6. butterfly40

    butterfly40 New Member

    Thank you all very much for your responses. I guess you were right Andrea when you said I didn’t really give a lot of information just a brief breakdown. I know I made it sound as if I only knew this man for a few months but in fact I have known him for a few years and have recently became close friends with him. (sharing our personal lives, the PTSD etc.)
    I totally agree that I need to decide if I want a divorce or a “break” and it should not be based on my friend. In fact, I am leaving my husband based on 23 years of trying to please him and forgetting about what I want out of life. This is one of the things I want to gain from counseling is a better understanding of what I want.
    I do know that my friend has a lot of the qualities, aside from his PTSD that I would like to see in any of my future relationships.
    I am really going to take your advice and continue to only be a close friend and listen to him and enjoy his company until I get my life in order then maybe down the road who knows…
    Thanks again for your help
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