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post #31 of 46 (permalink) Old 09-24-2019, 04:55 PM
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Re: Let's talk about limerence

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I don’t disagree. It’s commonly reported though, and an interesting topic to explore without just discarding it wholecloth.



Sex and rationalization is a powerful cocktail.
Honestly, I'm not surprised that people who cheat would try to skirt responsibility for their actions (by blaming it on the "fog").

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post #32 of 46 (permalink) Old 09-24-2019, 05:38 PM
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Re: Let's talk about limerence

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Honestly, I'm not surprised that people who cheat would try to skirt responsibility for their actions (by blaming it on the "fog").

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Sure, I think that’s the root of it - rationalization and ego protection. It’s part of how someone can do some very bad things and still think they are a good person. We all are the heroes of our own story.

But it is interesting. I’ve discussed it with a few people, and I can say that they honestly seem confused by their own behaviour.

The psychology of it is fascinating.
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post #33 of 46 (permalink) Old 09-24-2019, 05:56 PM
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Re: Let's talk about limerence

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But that is (I think) one serial cheater discussing their journey with other serial cheaters. Is that right?

Doesn’t invalidate the point you are making. I just wonder if it is true of every cheater in the same way. Whether it was as true the first time you cheated as the last.

The very fact you discuss it suggests you had a need to understand it. Is that fair?
My perspective is that of one serial cheater discussing cheating with other cheaters, yes. Not all were serial cheaters, but most were.

According to the accounts of affairs I've been privy to, it does seem to be fairly consistent between 1st and last.

Most discussions weren't about understanding the reasoning for the affair so much as determining what to do about the affair and/or the primary relationship. To tell or not to tell, to start, stop, or continue an affair, to stay or leave, how to go about it, etc. An awful lot of "Person turns me on so hard! I know I shouldn't/shouldn't have, but I really want(ed) Person and..."

Most figured they wouldn't get caught. The rest figured getting caught was a possibility, but the affair was or would be worth it.

The rest of the discussions have been talking about why a marriage ended or is ending. You know, they typical "Yeah, I was married 6 years, but s/he divorced me." "Why?" "I had an affair with the babysitter." "Well, why the Hell did ya do that?"

Follow the evidence where it leads and question everything.
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post #34 of 46 (permalink) Old 09-25-2019, 06:11 AM
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Re: Let's talk about limerence

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My perspective is that of one serial cheater discussing cheating with other cheaters, yes. Not all were serial cheaters, but most were.

According to the accounts of affairs I've been privy to, it does seem to be fairly consistent between 1st and last.

Most discussions weren't about understanding the reasoning for the affair so much as determining what to do about the affair and/or the primary relationship. To tell or not to tell, to start, stop, or continue an affair, to stay or leave, how to go about it, etc. An awful lot of "Person turns me on so hard! I know I shouldn't/shouldn't have, but I really want(ed) Person and..."

Most figured they wouldn't get caught. The rest figured getting caught was a possibility, but the affair was or would be worth it.z

The rest of the discussions have been talking about why a marriage ended or is ending. You know, they typical "Yeah, I was married 6 years, but s/he divorced me." "Why?" "I had an affair with the babysitter." "Well, why the Hell did ya do that?"
Thanks, I appreciate your candour.

I guess I would have thought that the first time there would be some emotional conflict (“I want this but I shouldn’t”) and over time you would get more used to things and just accept it for what it is. Is it that you never felt the conflict, or that you always felt it? Edit to add...or does my question show I don’t understand?

Last edited by Wazza; 09-25-2019 at 07:17 AM.
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post #35 of 46 (permalink) Old 09-25-2019, 07:50 AM
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Re: Let's talk about limerence

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I'm not following this. How does trying to keep that original spark alive create bad things? Are we living in a zero-sum world so the best we can hope for is a compromised mediocrity in which nobody gets hurt but nobody feels great about their marriage either?
context of the limerence feelings after an affair.

keeping those "good" feelings a live in the memory is how a WS back
slides and the affair restarts

also limerence works against having remorse for the wrong that they did
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post #36 of 46 (permalink) Old 09-25-2019, 07:52 AM
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Re: Let's talk about limerence

There once was a man from Nantucket.... Oh sorry I read that wrong.


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post #37 of 46 (permalink) Old 09-25-2019, 04:33 PM
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Re: Let's talk about limerence

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Thanks, I appreciate your candour.

I guess I would have thought that the first time there would be some emotional conflict (“I want this but I shouldn’t”) and over time you would get more used to things and just accept it for what it is. Is it that you never felt the conflict, or that you always felt it? Edit to add...or does my question show I don’t understand?
Some feel the conflict and it fades over time. Others never really feel it.

I, personally, was not very conflicted. I can best describe my own conflict as short lived, few and far between, twinges.

*twinge* "What you're doing is largely accepted as morally wrong."
*twinge* "According to how you were raised you are committing grievous sin."

Most of the people I talked to that did have conflict were primarily conflicted about their marriages as opposed to their spouses. As in, they weren't concerned with their spouses one way or another, but they were at least somewhat concerned about "the marriage". It's like they were content with their lives as married people, but not with the person they married, if that makes any sense.

Follow the evidence where it leads and question everything.
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post #38 of 46 (permalink) Old 09-25-2019, 05:07 PM
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Re: Let's talk about limerence

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Some feel the conflict and it fades over time. Others never really feel it.

I, personally, was not very conflicted. I can best describe my own conflict as short lived, few and far between, twinges.

*twinge* "What you're doing is largely accepted as morally wrong."
*twinge* "According to how you were raised you are committing grievous sin."

Most of the people I talked to that did have conflict were primarily conflicted about their marriages as opposed to their spouses. As in, they weren't concerned with their spouses one way or another, but they were at least somewhat concerned about "the marriage". It's like they were content with their lives as married people, but not with the person they married, if that makes any sense.
I think the concern over "the marriage" is one that is dismissed too easily on TAM. I'm not in love with my spouse, I haven't been for a long time. If I'm fair (and I try hard to be fair) I would have to say that I probably was OUT of love with him by the time I married him. It's one of the main reasons I was able to be kinder toward him than he deserved after the cheating bomb he threw into our marriage. It wasn't until I had an affair myself that I could actually say I knew what it was to be truly "in love" with someone.

Marriage involves so much more than the two people at its center. It's a partnership that encompasses the responsibility of children, financial commitments, and the friends and extended family that surround that unit. I was reminded of this when I recently attended the wedding of a cousin on my H's side. I was there with all of our children, H, and his cousins that I have now known and been loved by for over 30 years.

My H and I are working together to pay down debts and shore up retirement funds. My youngest is in college, but still living at home, as is his elder sister. It's the only home any of my children have ever known. If I were to press for divorce now, all those ties - emotional and financial - would have to be severed or at least severely strained. It's enough for me right now to be informally separated. I'm living most of the time elsewhere, but I can still go home on the weekends. That concern over the marriage is why I'm willing to be patient. I do miss being in love, but not the limerence part. That's torture. You should never feel like you can't live without someone else.
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post #39 of 46 (permalink) Old 09-25-2019, 05:10 PM
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Let's talk about limerence

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Originally Posted by Marduk View Post
Sure, I think that’s the root of it - rationalization and ego protection. It’s part of how someone can do some very bad things and still think they are a good person. We all are the heroes of our own story.



But it is interesting. I’ve discussed it with a few people, and I can say that they honestly seem confused by their own behaviour.



The psychology of it is fascinating.


I know why that is (i think). When we are WITH someone, we change, adapt, certain characteristics in us become more emphasised than others, depending on who we are with. We can even adapt and change our thinking perspective (sometimes dramatically so). We don’t live in a vacuum.
Ever heard the phrase “you made me the person I never thought I could become?” That explains it for me.

OTOH: “I just want to be someone who would let me be myself”. I don’t believe this is possible. It is possible to be with someone who would ‘let you be’ but being ‘yourself’ is a bit of an illusion (because there is no ‘yourself’).

I don’t really know who I am. But I like myself when I am with person x, y or z (although z makes me become a bit of an obnoxious asshat ).

What I mean is, that the whole fog thing, is basically that. It’s like gravity; it affects both objects (subjects). It’s further influenced/enhanced by hormones (to facilitate bonding).

That’s the reason I used to get depressed because I wasn’t 100% sure that with me, my wife was the person that she wanted to be. I ache experienced other sides of her, when she was with other people (school friends etc). She is not like that with me. Most of the time, she is a mother and a wife, sometimes a lover and a woman...I try to encourage different sides but I am not capable to stimulate everything. She can never be with me like she is with her girlfriends (not of an airhead).

Same with me: there are sides of me she doesn’t really know or doesn’t see (unless I can get her to a certain frame of mind). It’s probably ok. (And it presumes that I know of all my sides...which I don’t).
Dunno if that makes sense.
But it is not so obvious to me which one is ‘fog’ and which one is ‘reality’.



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post #40 of 46 (permalink) Old 09-25-2019, 05:20 PM
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Re: Let's talk about limerence

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I know why that is (i think). When we are WITH someone, we change, adapt, certain characteristics in us become more emphasised than others, depending on who we are with. We can even adapt and change our thinking perspective (sometimes dramatically so). We don’t live in a vacuum.
Ever heard the phrase “you made me the person I never thought I could become?” That explains it for me.

OTOH: “I just want to be someone who would let me be myself”. I don’t believe this is possible. It is possible to be with someone who would ‘let you be’ but being ‘yourself’ is a bit of an illusion (because there is no ‘yourself’).

I don’t really know who I am. But I like myself when I am with person x, y or z (although z makes me become a bit of an obnoxious asshat ).

What I mean is, that the whole fog thing, is basically that. It’s like gravity; it affects both objects (subjects). It’s further influenced/enhanced by hormones (to facilitate bonding).

That’s the reason I used to get depressed because I wasn’t 100% sure that with me, my wife was the person that she wanted to be. I ache experienced other sides of her, when she was with other people (school friends etc). She is not like that with me. Most of the time, she is a mother and a wife, sometimes a lover and a woman...I try to encourage different sides but I am not capable to stimulate everything. She can never be with me like she is with her girlfriends (not of an airhead).

Same with me: there are sides of me she doesn’t really know or doesn’t see (unless I can get her to a certain frame of mind). It’s probably ok. (And it presumes that I know of all my sides...which I don’t).
Dunno if that makes sense.
But it is not so obvious to me which one is ‘fog’ and which one is ‘reality’.



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I agree. I would add to all of that by saying that sex is more powerful than we are. Sex is hundreds of millions of years old. It’s hard wired into us for longer than we’ve been humans, longer than we’ve been mammals.

We are animals with a thin layer of neocortex that gives us fantasies that we are more, but we’re not. All of it - including the stuff that makes us think - is there for one reason: to get laid.

That whole engine is really good at deluding that thin layer of brain cells that getting laid makes sense, is deserved, is ethical, or is just plain worth it.

The only real boundary is a sense of integrity.

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post #41 of 46 (permalink) Old 09-25-2019, 05:25 PM
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Re: Let's talk about limerence

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I agree. I would add to all of that by saying that sex is more powerful than we are. Sex is hundreds of millions of years old. It’s hard wired into us for longer than we’ve been humans, longer than we’ve been mammals.



We are animals with a thin layer of neocortex that gives us fantasies that we are more, but we’re not. All of it - including the stuff that makes us think - is there for one reason: to get laid.



That whole engine is really good at deluding that thin layer of brain cells that getting laid makes sense, is deserved, is ethical, or is just plain worth it.



The only real boundary is a sense of integrity.


You mean the drive to have sex/procreate...Yes most definitely.
But it’s not just that...there are many other things hard wired into us that are much more powerful (and where rationalisation lags behind): survival instincts, and most things to do with procreation and ensuring passing of genes...Instincts towards offspring etc.
It’s scary, once you start taking the lid off...what is there left of ‘us’? (That we have full control over).


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post #42 of 46 (permalink) Old 09-26-2019, 07:59 AM
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Re: Let's talk about limerence

The real questions should be "How do I maintain limerence in my relationship?" "Can I control my behavior so that limerence, once waned, will return willfully?"

I say YES.....


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post #43 of 46 (permalink) Old 09-26-2019, 11:04 AM
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Re: Let's talk about limerence

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You mean the drive to have sex/procreate...Yes most definitely.
But it’s not just that...there are many other things hard wired into us that are much more powerful (and where rationalisation lags behind): survival instincts, and most things to do with procreation and ensuring passing of genes...Instincts towards offspring etc.
It’s scary, once you start taking the lid off...what is there left of ‘us’? (That we have full control over).
I agree with you.
"what is there left of ‘us’? (That we have full control over)".....our behavior and understanding of natural instincts.
There seems to be a bit of pessimism in your statement.
We have control of who we are and how we act. "Freewill"
To become the best one can be is to control "natural instincts" as much as we can and that's not 0%.
You can effect another's limerence upon you, by your behavior.
Knowing who picks who to pass their genes on with, and why....well that's the control we have.

Although we not all rock stars, I understand why rock stars get selected.


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post #44 of 46 (permalink) Old 09-26-2019, 12:37 PM
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Re: Let's talk about limerence

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The real questions should be "How do I maintain limerence in my relationship?" "Can I control my behavior so that limerence, once waned, will return willfully?"

I say YES.....
Some days, the only thing that keeps me going is the belief that limeence can return to my wife. If (although I’m recently trending towards when) I give up on that, it will be tough to stay married.

Last edited by Casual Observer; 09-26-2019 at 01:39 PM. Reason: typo
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post #45 of 46 (permalink) Old 09-27-2019, 04:08 PM
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Re: Let's talk about limerence

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For those of you whom have had affairs, please explain the emotional/feelings you were going through to create the fog of limerence.

How long did it last?
What did you think about?
How did it feel?
Did it interfere with your day to day living/commitments?
Did you realize what was happening to you?
When did the cloud lift?

I thought this thread might be useful for BS as a further way of identifying cheating in their marriage.
You don't have to be a cheater to feel limerance. I'm told you only need to be emotionally immature. I must be. LOL. I've felt this many many times.

It can last for years, with on and off breaks. I still fall into that felling when pretending to love my x-wife for our "Charade." (See thread on that.)

It feels fantastic. If only it could last! When you are feeling it you do think that maybe it will never end. Not this time. Even if it always ended before, you think, no, this time it is the real thing. This time it will last.

Yes, it interferes with day to day living. Everything but your lover becomes unimportant.

Like I said above, yes, you realize what is happening to you but you think this time is different. Or even when you don't go that far, you think, it is worth it. You think, sure, this is not real, this will end badly but right now, I'm going to enjoy it while it lasts.

It typically ends suddenly. For me anyway. Something happens to jolt me back to reality and I'm like, "Wow, what a wild ride that was! Glad to be back though."

Then you try to fix the damage.
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