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A random insight or just goofy thinking?

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josiep posted 6/14/2019 09:57 AM

Or perhaps it's been said a million times and I somehow didn't catch on. But it occurred to me the other day that the big difference between people who end up as BS vs. those who become WS (generally speaking, of course).

I believe a BS, generally speaking, are able to love other people more than themselves. And those who become waywards with no empathy are not able to love anyone else as much as they loves themselves.

The worst thing about my AHA! moment is it's hard to hate someone who's only doing what comes naturally but they find it easy to come to a place of hating us even though we're all doing what comes naturally as well. But now that I think about it, I know my XWH knew I loved him more than life itself and he enjoyed that. And people like him never question it, I'm guessing he thought that me loving him that much made me happy.

So my fellow passengers on this path through H*** is to listen and believe the advice that so many of our fellow "recovered" posters give when they say to take care of yourselves, eat healthy, drink plenty of fluids, exercise and most of all, start finding ways to love yourself and make yourself a priority.

I went whitewater rafting the other day and I'm damned proud of myself. I'm old and overweight but I held my own and it really helped me feel better about myself. So maybe now these extra pounds I put on in the last 5 years will take a hike when I quit catering to them.

DIFM posted 6/14/2019 10:07 AM

And those who become waywards with no empathy are not able to love anyone else as much as they loves themselves.

I think the critical distinction is in bold in the above quote.

A fWS that has a full measure of sincere and deep empathy is a valuable and rare thing. But it is the thing that distinguishes what we think of as the typical cheater vs the cheater that is an equal partner in the reconciliation process.

Numb41 posted 6/14/2019 10:21 AM

Well done to you josiep! Whitewater rafting is on my bucket list.

This is also something that I have been thinking about, but I try not to, as it causes so much pain and confusion To think that our WSs love/loved us in the only way they possibly could...that is heartbreaking This is common with WSs with NPD, you love this person so much, but you canít stay and when you do finally get the strength to leave- it feels like you giving up a piece of your heart....hardest thing that you will ever do in your life.

OwningItNow posted 6/14/2019 10:45 AM

I believe a BS, generally speaking, are able to love other people more than themselves.

Do you think this is healthy? Also, is there any third option, someone who doesn't love themselves more and doesn't love others more?

Justsomeguy posted 6/14/2019 10:45 AM

I think empathy is the key. My STBXWW lacked it in spades. Her family never modelled it for her, so I guess she never learned it. I hot sick our first year if marriage and only had enough strength to get to work each day and then back to bed. I paid Bill's and tried to take care of myself. She told me I ruined her first year of marriage which should have been special. When I was suicidal, she dropped me off in front of emergency and went home. I got a long list. So when I think about WS's I think selfish is the most common . That's why I think most marriages either divorce or get to meh. I dont really think true recovery is possible in all but rare cases.

josiep posted 6/14/2019 14:21 PM

I believe a BS, generally speaking, are able to love other people more than themselves.

Do you think this is healthy? Also, is there any third option, someone who doesn't love themselves more and doesn't love others more?

Of course it's not healthy but it explains why so many of us BS's all write the same stories. It's because we have that trait, that unhealthy trait, that I believe is part of what draws us to them.

And I hate that I have to keep saying it, but I'm speaking in general terms. But I do see a pattern among many of us and our stories and I think the loving others more than themselves have a chemistry with those who need someone like that. Looking back, I didn't even like my XWH's personality most of the time but I was sure crazy about him anyway.

hcsv posted 6/14/2019 14:39 PM

The word that has come to mind so many times since this shit storm started was "capable". He just isnt capable of so many things, thoughts, feelings that many of us take for granted as just part of our nature and empathy is a huge one.

OwningItNow posted 6/14/2019 15:15 PM

I do see a pattern among many of us and our stories and I think the loving others more than themselves have a chemistry with those who need someone like that.

Ah, yes. I see it too and write about it, but it gets some people angry. It is perfectly human to see others much more clearly (first) than we see ourselves, but most BS will be able to go on and on and on about the WS lack of empathy without realizing or admitting that we were the other half of the deadly combo, the type of person that apparently didn't mind their lack of empathy (even covered and excused it) until they were cheating on us.

The question is: does someone who lacks empathy ever partner up with someone who doesn't have too much empathy? We need to spend time figuring out why we have so much, too much empathy for our WS.

[This message edited by OwningItNow at 3:15 PM, June 14th (Friday)]

AbandonedGuy posted 6/14/2019 18:53 PM

But josiep, my ex-wife was able to love not only herself and me, but also the other man! She just had so much love to give, she was brimming with it and it was spilling all over the place.

Superesse posted 6/15/2019 00:14 AM

But this is such a fascinating question...OwningItNow, josiep....

Do low empathy couples exist out there, and if so, are they fairly happy? What about the opposite? Ever hear of a high empathy couple? I have to say, I probably haven't.

It is an important point to figure out, because our personal perceptions tend to get validated by what we read here and what we know from real life, but if we knew 'couple differences in empathy' were randomly accounted for, as it were, then we would just be able to relax and say "I don't actually attract THAT!"

On the other hand, if this "opposites in empathy tend to attract one another" is a real principle, that says something verrrry important to us.

I hope this doesn't seem trite, but I have heard and read the old saying "opposites may attract, but like with like has the best chance of success." So why don't people act like they understand this going in, if it is already an old saying?

cocoplus5nuts posted 6/15/2019 08:29 AM

I really wish people would qualify their statements. I think you all are talking about CoD BSes and possibly NPD WSes. Not all BSes are CoD and not all WSes are NPD.

My fch did not love himself. He hated himself. He felt like a failure and was at the lowest point in his life when he cheated. He was disgusted with himself for cheating.

I do not love others more than myself. I do not put others' needs before mine (except my kids). My fch thought (thinks?) I'm selfish because of this.

I do agree that empathy is a huge thing. I do have a lot of empathy. My fch does not. That is something about hom that really bothers me, makes me wonder sometimes if I married the wrong person

josiep posted 6/15/2019 18:00 PM

I really wish people would qualify their statements. I think you all are talking about CoD BSes and possibly NPD WSes. Not all BSes are CoD and not all WSes are NPD
cocoplus

But it occurred to me the other day that the big difference between people who end up as BS vs. those who become WS (generally speaking, of course).

And I hate that I have to keep saying it, but I'm speaking in general terms

The subject title is asking if this might be an insight or is it just goofy thinking. GENERALLY SPEAKING, of course.

It then morphed into whether it was healthy for a person to love others more than themselves and about empathy levels of partners. The point I was trying to make, and clearly failed, at least with you, is that many of us BS's follow a certain pattern very much like what we see with many WS's. It wasn't a criticism, it wasn't written in stone, it was simply a thought that might lead to self-reflection and help me in my healing. But most of all, to help me be a happier and more balanced person going forward.

[This message edited by josiep at 6:14 PM, June 15th (Saturday)]

josiep posted 6/15/2019 18:02 PM

I think the critical distinction is in bold in the above quote.

A fWS that has a full measure of sincere and deep empathy is a valuable and rare thing. But it is the thing that distinguishes what we think of as the typical cheater vs the cheater that is an equal partner in the reconciliation process.

You're absolutely correct but I was more trying to sort out what it is about some people who make them more prone to becoming a BS.

I know it will never make sense to me but I also want to do my very best to "fix" anything about myself that's keeping me from being emotionally healthy and happy.

josiep posted 6/15/2019 18:12 PM

Ah, yes. I see it too and write about it, but it gets some people angry. It is perfectly human to see others much more clearly (first) than we see ourselves, but most BS will be able to go on and on and on about the WS lack of empathy without realizing or admitting that we were the other half of the deadly combo, the type of person that apparently didn't mind their lack of empathy (even covered and excused it) until they were cheating on us.

The question is: does someone who lacks empathy ever partner up with someone who doesn't have too much empathy? We need to spend time figuring out why we have so much, too much empathy for our WS.


Owning it Now

Excellent question and I don't know the answer to it. My XWH has remarried and from what little I know about her, I don't think she has empathy either. After all, how could she have in view of what she did to her husband of 24 years?

I guess I think maybe they choose one extreme or the other and never in the middle.

I saved an article the other day but haven't read it yet but the headline was something along the lines of "Here's why it's hard to live with someone who's too empathetic." I'm holding off reading it because I'm out of the country with my grandkids to visit my son (their uncle) and I think maybe it's going to send my brain into a tizzy so I'm waiting to read it. But I think I'm going to find some nuggets of truth in there that I hadn't considered before. I think I did too much for him, was too accommodating. And that maybe stripped him of some pride. Not that it matters now but I still try to make sense of it all sometimes.

OwningItNow posted 6/15/2019 18:14 PM

I was more trying to sort out what it is about some people who make them more prone to becoming a BS.

Very healthy. Taking responsibility for your future is not the same as blaming the past. We couldn't know because we didn't know, but now we know so will do better.

pinkpggy posted 6/15/2019 18:50 PM

If I put myself first and truly loved myself I most likely wouldn't have ended up in an affair. I put everyone before myself and lost sight of who I was and my own self worth.

That being said, my kids will always come first. I don't think I could love myself more. But I think it's healthy to put yourself, your health, your mental state first. It makes you a better person over all. That's why on an airplane they tell you to affix your face mask first.

OwningItNow posted 6/16/2019 00:22 AM

I guess I think maybe they choose one extreme or the other and never in the middle.

So I work at a fairly large place and am social and know everyone, and I have a certain group of "friends" (really, they are more acquaintances) that I hang out with several times a year when they organize something. After I am with them, I always tell my H, "I know it sounds weird, but they are all fairly narcissistic. It's strange. Why would that be? Why would a bunch of narcissists be friends?" He usually says that it can't be true. But there is a lot of evidence of their narcissism. And my empathy means narcissists love me, so they make a point to invite me out (I have very strong boundaries with them, I have to) and I continually notice how self-focused they are--every time. And their egos are so fragile!

Then last week I ran across an article entitled "This is the only personality type that enjoys being with narcissists." You guessed it, it's other narcissists!!!!

So Josiep, I think your theory is right: I love you because you totally worship me, or I love you because you are so much like me," said every narcissist ever.

[This message edited by OwningItNow at 12:50 AM, June 16th (Sunday)]

cocoplus5nuts posted 6/16/2019 08:06 AM

Josie, "generally speaking" would make it a generalization, no, which is against the site rules? Instead of saying, "we," "us," etc., use "I" statements. Then, there's no issue.

We need to spend time figuring out why we have so much, too much empathy for our WS.

Speaking of empathic BSes, in general.

Maybe I need a tagline like sisoon's. "I get triggered by generalizations. " (That may not be a word for word quote.)

deephurt posted 6/16/2019 08:14 AM

What is it about a bs that will make us a bs? The only thinks is that we have cheaters as spouses.

Personally I donít see similarities in bsís that would ever mean we are destined to becoming a bs. That is all on our wsís

I agree that it sounds like your wondering if all bsís are codependent and all wsís Narcassists. I would say no but I donít know if the majority are because really I would think all narcissists would cheat anyway based in being a narc.

For the record my wh doesnít love himself. He hated himself before during and after his a. That has been a real struggle for him. He is selfish but he hates himself. I am not coming-dependent. At least all the tests and ICís donít day I am.

I believe all waywards are selfish but I also believe they all got that way for different reasons. They all require ego kibbles and i believe the reason is different for all of them.

cocoplus5nuts posted 6/16/2019 08:15 AM

I think it's healthy to put yourself, your health, your mental state first

This ^^^^^

I agree with everything pinkpiggy said. She described my fch. He put everyone else's needs ahead of his. Then, he felt like a failure because I still wasn't happy. Didn't matter that I've struggled with major depressive disorder at least since I was 15.


Anyway, I cannot take care of anyone else properly if I don't take care of myself first. I am very empathetic. I have always felt people the moment I am in close proximity to them. I didn't know what it was for a long time and felt crazy. I have to take care of myself or I just can't deal with others.

Can't remember what that had to do with the subject at hand now. I think I lost my train of thought.

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