Self Hoovering Post Relationship


I suppose I’ve felt it coming on for some time now, but I really didn’t think I would do it.
It’s been just over one year since the last time I took a peek at my Borderline Personality Disordered ex-girlfriend’s Facebook profile. As part of going complete no contact (NC), I knew I had to stop checking her Facebook. The breakup of our relationship left me heartbroken and looking for answers.

You may not be familiar with the term ‘hoovering’ or, the ‘hoover’ (pronounced and named after the vacuum). A hoover is when your Borderline ex makes an attempt to draw you back into the cycle (relationship) with them. Remember, you were once a source for them, and in difficulty, they may come back to you looking for more (sometimes a very long time after the relationship has ended). A self-hoover is when you break no contact or nc, and contact or check-up on your Borderline Disordered ex. That’s what I did.

The only way to make any progress in healing from such a difficult breakup is to remove every trace of them from your life and focus on yourself. Constantly checking my ex-girlfriend’s Facebook account to see what she’s up to, if she has new friends, or if she has started dating someone else is not only juvenile, it is quite masochistic. I needed to move on. No longer trying to find out about her and what was going on in her life allowed me to do that.

Oddly, for whatever reason, after one year of not checking up on her, yesterday I self-hoovered. I logged into my Facebook account and looked her up. She hadn’t blocked me, but I could no longer see her wall postings (probably a good thing). I suppose I was a bit shocked to see that very little had changed. She had pretty much the same friends listed and hadn’t even changed her profile picture. There was no clear indication that she was involved with anyone else either.

What did I learn by self-hoovering? I learned that I’ve healed quite a bit. It seemed very odd for me – familiar, but odd. I did not feel the slightest bit of hurt or upset. I did miss her, but not terribly so. I have moved on, far from where I was just a little over one year ago. I suppose the lack of any significant information, such as her getting married or the like, may have resulted in some pain for me. I’m going back to no contact; no more trips down memory lane for me. I guess I was lucky this time, not all self-hoovers end so well.

Comments 11

  • I have struggle VERY MUCH with this. I still regularly “cyberstalk” her, checking her multiple social networking profiles. Every single time I wind up regretting it, as it causes me so much pain in remembering her. Yet I continue to do it, almost impulsively. Is there any more advice you can give to get me to man the F up and get over her?

    • Reego – I had the hardest time with this too. It’s only natural to seek out answers when the person you loved suddenly, and completely, changes. The only advice I can give you is to stop checking up on her. There is no easy way to do this, you just have to do it. It took me a long time (months) before I got it clear in my head that each time I checked up on her I felt worse. You have to get angry to an extent. This person fooled you, lied to you, and ultimately treated you like garbage. You have to admit to yourself that each time you check up on her, you give her the power back.

      Understand this – you will not start to heal until you stop checking up on her. You have no control over this situation. There is nothing you checking up on her can do to provide you with the answers you seek. IT IS HARD TO DO, BUT YOU MUST DO IT. Take your life back – it is the only thing you can control in this situation.

  • Reego, FreeToBe,
    No longer checking has definitely helped me in the healing process. Occasionally i fail but it doesnt sting as much. I just wish i could cut that part of my life out of my brain for good. Its f-ed up that we think so much about someone who hurt us so badly, especially since they were probably narcissitic too and never felt anything for us.

  • Even if you check up, or God forbid, pick up the phone and call, everything that comes out of their mouth is a lie, distortion or manipulation. So, any information I get is nul and void. My relationship with my BPD, I now look at it as one big lie. And that helps a lot.

  • Logan Said:
    “My relationship with my BPD, I now look at it as one big lie. And that helps a lot.”

    This is how I perceive my ex-bpd as well. I was sold a fantasy. I was even told all the bad things that had happened were because of the 6 year old little girls problems, NOT my Ex.

    In reality, the little girls problems in many cases were directly due to her mother’s BPD. The child is the one that showed easiest. All that toxic energy got funneled on to the child and eventually me.

    A year of my life wasted on a lie. The only good thing, the child is out of her daily care and has made incredible improvements. There is currently litigation to try to block my ex-BPD from dragging the child back into her chaotic life and undoing the good things that have been done.

    Even if it doesn’t stop her, at least we can say we tried to protect that poor little girl.

  • I am learnign that the best thing to do is destroy every and all apsects of her in your life. I am going through a divorce with my BPD soon to be ex–she is only suspected and not diagnosed. I KNOW there are perosnality disorder issues as many of us come to research and discover on our own as we wrestle with closure and understanding. She walked out on me an dmy boy 3 motnhs ago and the pain has been excruciating. I will spare many details but I have been in therapy for 2 months trying to cope. She is a masterful manipulater and distortion artist. How could the women i once loved so much (mutually) and shared so much suddenly turn their back on me and betray me? As I started to say, remove all contact and do not have anything to do with them. We have to become the ones that “split” and see them as only bad because any ambivalence will tug at oyur herat strings and cack the door open for a shed of light or hope. Make a list of al the things that were strange, wired, concerning, abnormal, unloving, selfish or whatever and remember that. When you make this list you will also note the pros as well as cons. The pros are superficial—looks, s*x, looks, s*x,…looks, she had a sweet voice and innocence, I liked her intellignece (brilliance really) and she was fun to go to parties and weddings with. She seemed stable and nbice…but what else did she stand for??? Who was this woman I loved. Did I love her because she loved me? Did I choose her or did she choose me? How would you describe her character and personality and what she stands for to others? I looved Angela because it just felt right and I over looked alot of things because of how she made me feel to be with her. I also saw her as filling a void as a teacher who woud be a nice step mother for my osn who never really had a mom in is life.

    My point is, when we shed some of the emotional stuff that is ruling us right now and dive into a more intellectual understanding of why we were with this person it seems to illuminate (for me) my own needs, and shows me I did not even have much in common with this person. She offered security and was a missing piece to my puzzle, but I should have been more selective in choosing what I wanted vs letting myself be chosen. NO contact ever again and deny her any access to you. They can feel you wanting them and desiring them. Do not give them that satisfaction. You are stronger and bigger than this/her and will prevail. Yes, we might be gun shy in our next relationship, but stronger and more assertive too. I will be more prone to ask tough questions and dissapoint once in a while vs being a people pleaser and self saccrificing push over. No one likes those qualities anyway. Why do we act that way? to have people like us and affirm us. We need to project to the world and to the next partner: “I could give two shits if you like me and I am fine being who I am and alone. I am fine with that. We need to project onto others that we are confident and happy in who we are or else we will project neediness, hurt, and weekness. Those are not attractive traits.

  • I absolutely recommend not checking up in them online. As the other posters state it will only cause more and more pain and obessive thoughts. You must go cold turkey. When you get the sudden urge to check up on them go for a drive, to the shopping centre, do some house work etc. Do whatever you can to distract yourself whenever you get the irge to check up on them. In my opinion the compulsion to check is almost like the symptoms of OCD and other anxiety disorders. You actually feel compelled to check up on the internet. I won’t lie but it’s not easy to resist the urge. Dare I say it it’s like quitting smoking, or gambling, or drinking, drugs or any other addcition.

    Ultimately when you do stop you will feel healthier for it. As time goes on the irresistable urge does die down. Eventually it will come to a complete stop. May take many months to go away but it does go away. You need to become ‘obsessed’ about your own life eg; your job, family, health, finances, studying etc etc. Focus on activites that bring you joy, watching movies, hobbies, friends, social activites or whatever.

    Make no mistake about it people as the original poster suggests checking up on them online more than once or maybe twice is nothing short of MASOCHISM. Truer words were never spoken! Once or maybe twice will hurt you but more than that will delay healing very much. Like the other posters I’ve been there and done that!

  • Stop looking at her FB…I did. I started researching and realized how sick my girl was. She was stringing me along until she set up a marriage for herself. She blocked me on FB. I didn’t care to look but was curious and found out she moved on with some ugly mf. Well I didn’t bother her and she flew down to see me and she told me she loved me, etc…but I found out she was married. So I just told her to forget it. Now supposedly she is, “Happily married and pregnant,” I realized it doesn’t get better. She will treat him the same way she treated me…all the drama, fake illnesses, fighting, all the fake love, the cheating, lying, etc….drama. I am just afraid she will show up and act like nothing happend. She will come on her on terms and will come back when she needs me to validate her pathetic life.

  • im still trying to figure out what in the hell, I did wrong, we were about to get married, mind you my BPD partner ive known most of my life, he always was a little strange, but he was my brothers best freind, I can trust him right? Well my BPD partner was seperated from his wife for 2 years and he ended up talking to me out of my marriage, and going back to our home town, happily ever after. 15 days of being together no drama, it was like heaven, mind you it took him 2 years to get control of me, but one day wakes up and goes back to his wife, lol, omg! I was in shock, but Ive learned alot through this, Im afrais he will come back and try again! Both me and my ex BPD partner grew up with the same crowd of people and friends, so everyones been telling me he is soooo unhappy with his wife and I believe he is using our mutual friends to spy on me, he put a keylogger on my computer, he cheated on me, and called my brother a child molester, his best freind! Ive been looking at his profile and he looks sick, like he about to have a nervous breakdown! And I feel sorry for him, BUT I wont ever do that again, whats werid is that I hear about all this rage, but he kissed me left and hass done the silent treatmen fro 4 months now, hasnt said one bad thing about me, only my brother? Im so confused and afraid he will be back, with a vengence, sorry fro such a long message its hurt and is scary, he was watching all my emails with this keylogger fro months before i found out, werid.

  • Eddy Out:
    Nineteen months ago I moved out of her farmhouse after six years of days of confusion, for the first two months I was a casket case, next two months I was a basket case. Then I researched and concluded she was an undiagnosed BPD and that when the waltz of closure to sum up 52,560 hours of total giving myself to her/us, however now I understand she was the puppeteer of the mayhem. Did it help that I realize she was BPD with my pain, hell no. Hell no, just the beginning of smoking cigarette which I quit twenty-five years ago, depression meds, and professional counseling; not to mention taking employment position that only a high school dropout would be offered “a tradesmen with four years of college”. Six months later she severed me with PPO court order, just because like all BPD they can’t face the music for lack of better words for closure. At first the PPO was a “Judas” deep stab in the back; I won’t go into detail how I supported her in all her “life drama’’, however after the initial shock it has helped me from self hovering. The mental pain has subsided, but occasionally, no almost daily I think of her or the companionship. That is when I have to remind myself of the heart ache agony, the depression, and how miserable my life was! The PPO is a blessing now for I use it as a crutch for NO CONTACT. I miss her, however there is a song of the sixty era by Johnny Rivers “The snake”[U tube], a woman finds a cold snake on the way to work, she takes it home and give it confront, when she returned home after work the snake is revived, however strikes her with venomous fangs and asked her why she so surprised, you knew I was a deathly snake… NC, NC, NC, oh yea, don’t listen to country music — Michigan–.

    David

  • Eddy Out:
    Nineteen months ago I moved out of her farmhouse after six years of days of confusion, for the first two months I was a casket case, next two months I was a basket case. Then I researched and concluded she was an undiagnosed BPD and that when the waltz of closure to sum up 52,560 hours of total giving myself to her/us, however now I understand she was the puppeteer of the mayhem. Did it help that I realize she was BPD with my pain, hell no. Hell no, just the beginning of smoking cigarette which I quit twenty-five years ago, depression meds, and professional counseling; not to mention taking employment position that only a high school dropout would be offered “a tradesmen with four years of college”. Six months later she severed me with PPO court order, just because like all BPD they can’t face the music for lack of better words for closure. At first the PPO was a “Judas” stab in the back; I won’t go into detail how I supported her in all her “life drama’’, however after the initial shock it has helped me from self vacuuming. The mental pain has subsided, but occasionally, no almost daily I think of her or the companionship. That is when I have to remind myself of the heart ache agony, the depression, and how miserable my life was! The PPO is a blessing now for I use it as a crutch for NO CONTACT. I miss her, however there is a song of the sixty era song by Johnny Rivers “The snake”[U tube], a woman finds a cold snake on the way to work, she takes it home and give it confront, when she returned home after work the snake is revived, however strikes her with venomous fangs and asked her why she is surprised, you knew I was a deathly snake… no contact and oh yea, don’t listen to country music — Michigan–.

    David

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