Posted by: Marie | September 13, 2010

(399) Going crazy with patterns

Post #399
[Private journal entry written on Thursday, March 18, 2010 – 2pm]

I guess my little parking lot confrontation this morning got to Mark. He sent an email a few hours later:

No silent treatment, just disappointment.

I wish you all the best as you seek other avenues for your healing process.

I have been out of town for the past 10 days and was preoccupied with people and needs that were present. I did not check my email until today. I will be happy to bring your book to the next networking meeting or we can set up a time for you to come by my office and pick it up.

Again, I truly wish you all the best.

Of course, no apology, no taking responsibility, just the insinuation that my behavior is disappointing to him, that he is above all the conflict, that I’m being unreasonable . . . that, obviously, the needs to which he was attending were way more urgent and important than my needs . . . how dare I get upset that he disappeared and left me hanging for two weeks . . .


I spent a few minutes trying to craft a “reasonable” and “above it all” response like:

– I can understand how that could happen
– I hope you had a good trip
– I’m glad you are back

Then, I realized that I was doing what I always do . . . I was trying to ease the pain of the person creating the pain.

I’m not going to get pulled into his drama anymore. I don’t even want to have him as a piano student . . . he can inflict pain on some other teacher, I’m not signing up for more.

I have lost all respect for him.

I just want my print-out back . . . it is a dissertation written by a woman in South Africa on the use of hypnotherapy in the treatment of the aftereffects of childhood sexual abuse. It covers many very interesting topics including how sexual abuse affects a survivor’s perception of God.

I downloaded the document from the web and then paid about $30 to get it printed. I loaned it to Mark almost two years ago.

It is a huge document and he said he would like some time to read it. I knew I wasn’t going to have time to read it anytime soon . . . and, I still have the .pdf version if I wanted to look up something in it. So, I wasn’t in a hurry to get it back from him.

Now, I want it back so that I can cut ties with him. So, I kept my email response clean and simple:

I am available to swing by your office next week (Mar 22-26) during these timeframes:

Mon – 8:30am – 2:00pm
Tue – 8:30am – 12:30pm
Wed – 10:00am – 4:00pm
Thur – 8:00am – 4:00pm
Fri – anytime

Let me know what works for you . . .

I think it is interesting that Mark didn’t respond to my March 5th “notice of intent to quit” until I sent the “the silent treatment?” email and until I confronted him in the parking lot – in other words, when my behavior became “unreasonable”.

As long as I was being cool and rational, he ignored me.

Maybe he needed to ignore me until I started behaving badly (which I predictably did) so that he could then play the role of the martyr – he could then be blameless and above the fray. I mean, the poor man has to deal with the dramatic antics of this crazy woman . . . he is doing the best he can, given the difficult circumstances.

Or, maybe he ignored me simply because he was out of town and busy with other priorities. However, this is not the first time I’ve seen this pattern with him.

It no longer matters in this relationship because I’m not going to associate with him anymore.

But, that same pattern can be seen in other historical relationships of mine, especially romantic ones. My calm attempts to initiate reasonable negations turn into annoying nagging which then turns into raging bitchiness . . . and the poor, blameless men are stuck dealing with the crazed ranting and raving of an insane woman . . . and when I can’t take any more, I leave . . . and then the hapless men can say, “See, she left me – it is all her fault!”

I may need to look at why that pattern exists.

Ah . . . deep breaths. Deep breaths.


  1. I’m glad that closure is on the schedule — you need a and deserve it. It will be interesting to see whether that same type of pattern persists with Edward — or whether he is a very different choice for you, with different results.

    • Hey, David –

      Well, a repeat performance would be my pattern, but Edward brings his patterns (helpful ones and harmful ones) into the relationship which can shift my experience if I let it.

      Thanks for the supportive words!

      – Marie

  2. Marie, even though Mark treated you badly, you are also seeing your pattern….so that’s pretty good I’d say.

    I know men can be pretty awful, manipulating just as you say. The woman is insane, the man is all sweet reasonableness…yep, been there, done that and got the t-shirt!

    You must have been really looking forward to a new start with Edward.

    • Hey, Ellen –

      I appreciate the empathetic and support words! Thank you!

      – Marie

  3. I think this pattern happens a lot. People needing to get angry or jump up and down to get attention, then being told they are being childish or whatever.

    I’ll be interested to hear what happens as you reflect on this some more.

    • Hey, Evan –

      I, too, think it happens a lot. I’m not sure why . . .

      – Marie

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