I relate to the OP, in that I can picture that happening to me. That level of agitation is what I would feel inside in a similar situation. It seems to be that I get these sensations running through my body when I'm getting ready for conflict stemming from a really unfair situation.
I think I'm scared of really wounding someone even when they damn well deserve it. Any extremely strong emotion that I don't welcome and repress will manifest itself physically. It used to be distressing for me because it would come out of nowhere... But now I know what to expect and I don't judge myself for having those things coursing through me and it seems to be less distressing for me.
It's a strange, super-bodily experience though. I don't usually feel things intensely through my body. I know it means something though and I listen better to it these days and try to use it to navigate all of my relationships more evenly.
There have been a few instances where I've felt it, I remember running into my ex BFF one day (horrible, dramatic, messy ending to the friendship) and my knees just buckled. It hurt so much to see her and I knew she was hurting and embarrassed too.
Also, once at a friend's wedding where I was forced to be in the room with the ex of my then BF. She had talked all kinds of things about him and us, just couldn't get over him at all and then became fixated on me. Anyway, she kept wanting to sit near me wherever I would go. And I knew if I just didn't keep ignoring her, if I said one word I would have exploded in the middle of our mutual friend's reception. I had to go outside and just lean against a wall for a bit because I was soooo angry. (I ended up letting her have it a few years later in a very cool way, after she still kept talking about me and mine, she never bothered us again. That felt good and right).
Mostly what happens for me is uncontrollable shaking, it must be because a shot of adrenaline goes through my system, my heart beats so fast and my teeth chatter and my body shakes, it's very strange.
With regard to cutting people out of my life... I don't think I have the heart for doorslamming anymore. The last time I tried to push someone away and was supremely harsh, I saw this look in his eyes that just killed me. It made me feel really bad. That was always my go-to tactic when I had to make things end. I'm a little concerned about how to cut someone out of my life now without that.
I would distance myself from the person to sort my thoughts and I may or may not maintain my ties after my long thought process. On one hand, the person is close to me and people "make mistakes" so I wouldn't typically see them as a "bad" person. On the other hand, if the relationship had a general outcome of "toxic" energy then I would have to end the friendship. Do the benefits outweigh the costs? Is there a fair amount of reciprocity? Is the situation going to improve? Is this relationship helping me to grow or is it holding me back? Underneath it all, they may be awesome people but sometimes one has to cut his or her losses.
That is how I approach that sort of situation in my own personal life.
I relate to the mental anguish and powerful physical symptoms associated with situations like these. I've had times when I started to shake (teeth chattering and all) much like Violaine described out of anger and distress. I'm used to strong physical symptoms when I'm really distressed, unfortunately - I tend to suffer from nausea and fatigue and backaches but yeah, if confronted with a really agitating situation I have found myself shaking or feeling something which I assume is like road rage (almost like I could hit someone.)
I have mixed feelings about cutting people out. I can think of maybe three times I've tried to doorslam someone. They all got back in, but all the situations are different. One of them got back in when he came back and apologised years later (albeit somewhat indirectly, but then we were able to talk about it.) He had hurt my feelings badly and I had dreams about him for years. I thought he didn't care but some stuff got back to me through the friend grapevine to indicate that he did much more than I'd thought. So we re-entered each other's lives but things had moved on and changed so much that we weren't going to be more than acquaintances. At least amicable ones, which is good. It wouldn't be more now than a once a year Facebook message or something.
Another was a female friend I doorslammed, explaining to her in detail why I was doing it...! We were both reacting to things badly at that time. I should have told her how I'd been feeling about where our friendship was going before doing something that extreme. She kind of slowly clawed her way back in and ultimately we discussed it and things are ok again. I just need to be careful about communication pitfalls with her but otherwise things are fine.
Another was a guy friend who'd hurt my feelings badly on several occasions and just generally shown a lot of mixed messages, lack of care and general tendency to be a user. When I tried to doorslam him he came back and apologised (actually, that happened more than once with him...) and I was so touched that I wrote it all off. However, a few months later it fell apart (sort of) when I realised he was using me for free therapy and called him on it. There was no doorslamming - in fact, I probably tried a little too hard to leave the door ajar. If anything he came closer to doorslamming me, though it was more like a mutual decision to just let things drift apart. He did ask me to his leaving party before he left the country and I went to be amicable, but I don't think there's much trust or desire to maintain things left between us.
I didn't doorslam my ex boyfriend, as it just wasn't practical at the time because we saw too much of each other for unavoidable reasons. But now that we live in different countries the door has just kind of quietly closed. When he tried to friend me on FB a couple of years ago I didn't respond. He's not quite dead to me, but fairly close. I have no interest in ever having him in my life again and don't feel much over it. I think by the time I got through all the pain over that there was just absolutely nothing left except maybe a very faint resentment. There are a few other people, mainly in that same city/country, who I feel similarly about though they're not exes or ex-best friends. I just realised in retrospect that there was some crappy behaviour and disrespect from them, I feel no liking or respect for them and wouldn't want them around at all. Although, saying hello politely wouldn't be a problem, and if forced I'd do that with the ex too but hopefully as briefly as possible.
I'm in another "mutually drifting apart" situation now and would prefer to keep the door closed on the person, though it wasn't a slam. I don't think maintaining them in my life would cause me anything better than pain and discomfort. I'm still having dreams about them and a certain amount of distress and preoccupation with the situation. It's hard when it feels like there's uncertainty and unfinished business, which there tends to be. I would really love to wipe my memory sometimes, especially because when someone is on my mind, everything - but everything - reminds me of them, especially anything we enjoyed together, experienced together, discussed or joked about, etc.
Some people are toxic and you have to let them go or even slam the door. Some people it's not so much toxicity, but the emotional impact of keeping them around is not worth it. If they have behaved hideously you have every excuse to shut them out, but if it's more ambiguous (disappointed expectations, lower-level but ongoing hurtful behaviour, etc) it can be even harder in some ways. I'm wary about letting people back in though I guess a couple of times it has more or less worked out. I'm just at the point where I feel like if I have a gut feeling I shouldn't let them back in - even if they are not "bad people" - I just shouldn't. They will hurt me again, due to their insecurity and carelessness, and/or residual hurt feelings on my part.
Also, to get over someone (especially romantically) it's almost like I HAVE to dislike and resent them. I know that's not good, but I can't keep hanging onto the good stuff, it makes it harder. So there tends to be a long period of resentment and hurt and then - just nothing, which is blessed relief. But it obviously kills any friendship/relationship. If it's someone I was in love with or had strong feelings for I sort of go from the extreme of idealizing them and caring almost too much, to seeing everything they did wrong and dwelling on all the ways they hurt me. The Mr Darcy line in Pride and Prejudice applies quite well to me - "My good opinion once lost is lost forever."
I also kind of force myself to conclude that they don't care at all. The weird thing is, the evidence very much suggests that people want to keep me in their lives, with rare exceptions. They usually "want me back" in some form, eventually. It has surprised me with a couple of people because I myself said some pretty harsh and hurtful things to them when I reached that point. It seems there is something they miss but I get to a point where I think "that's their tough luck". Almost with a bit of vindictive pleasure, but I know it's to mask my own feelings of hurt.
In any case there is a huge amount of emotional fallout for me. It generally takes years before I can think of the person or anything related to them without at least some pain.
I question my own behaviour and my own motives so much when I reach this point. I wonder if I am disloyal and should have approached things differently, etc. The facts ultimately convince me otherwise because I have maintained many friendships for many years and am widely viewed as loyal. In fact, I know that sometimes I have put up with too much. But every situation like this that arises, even if there aren't many, I question myself agonizingly over what I and they could have done differently.
I had to rip it up by the roots and set it on fire and watch the last embers die out before I walked away.
“when one burns one's bridges, what a very nice fire it makes.” - dylan thomas
Originally Posted by Domino
How do you react to such a scenario?
once i've made a decision like that.
i don't waver. it's one of the few
times i'm actually very calm and
collected. shoulders back, chin up.
and i march on. it just happens
very naturally. because seeing me
out of control is something they'll
never ever see.
different story if i haven't cut them
out though. i'd be visibly scowling.
every normal man must be tempted, at times,
to spit on his hands, hoist the black flag,
and begin slitting throats.
I've noticed why I stay away from dealing with that certain type of person that is toxic and causes one to grin and bear it. It directly taps into me resevoir of overzealous and pandering Fe. Usually, my Fe is tempered by other functions and/or the enjoyment of who I am dealing with.
When I dread someone and cannot remotely relate to them, Fe becomes the greatest defense mechanism I've ever had. It's the only time I ever truly feel fake, and if my core had skin, it would crawl at how terrible it feels. It's like a Stepford Wife had taken over the entirety of my being.
I've heard that I seem absolutely fine with the person I'm actually seething toward. I've heard it looks like we are getting along swimmingly. It is both a blessing and a curse to have such a trait.
Originally Posted by Domino
This raises another aspect of the aftershocks: the toll it takes in collateral damages. You find yourself - almost like a stuntman - choosing how best to fall so that you can walk away - crawl away slowly, if you have to - because these sorts of interactions, these extinction level events, go through me like bullets. I take the pain they cause me, the pain they cause others, the destruction they wreck, into myself automatically, so I find myself throwing up the poison for days, weeks, months even, after these conflicts.
Exactly. I think it may be in ENFJ nature to tend to hate this a little more and take this a little harder than others may. We absorb it, all aspects of it, and there's no off switch because our people are us in ways. I end up seeing how much I can suffer through it before I make everyone suffer through the ripples it will cause, which still results in my suffering through the entirety of that a second time around. It's just powerful and the people who say "Why don't you just get rid of them" don't understand how bound and gagged we may feel in a number of ways.
Beautifully said. I think that's why I erupted about this person - they forced the amputation. I did everything to salvage it, but they just kept sickening, almost belligerently, deliberately. There's a deep resentment over their loss.
I often feel that it is a punch in the gut when I allow for so much and so much, recognizing the potential and the good, and yet they are unable to see the lengths I've gone and the worth. I refuse to tell people "If you are good by me, there will be a point where I will give you everything in my power to give", but it's exactly how I feel. I end up hurt when they can't read into that, when they don't understand it and constantly step in the way of it.
Do you feel you build up and up and up and blow? I find it hard to tell someone flat out and early on "You are fucking up, almost irreparably. Fix it because you will lose everything that is worth something." Instead, it builds over so much time and becomes a volcano of pain and disappointment that is more hellbent on turning them to ashes when it finally spews forth.
Hang on traveling woman - Don't sacrifice your plan
Cause it will come back to you - Before you lose it on the man
I think we vastly overestimate how much it matters to people who fuck us over when we cut them off. Once you realize you were not the end of their world, it's much easier to take care of yourself and stop things before you get so emotionally invested that your body goes off when you're around them.