Q: I started stalking an ex-lover that broke up with me 4 months ago. I wanted to find out why he no longer loved me, and about his new girlfriend so that I could move on with my life and we could all remain friends. It started with numerous phone calls, e-mails and escalated to going over to his home. He got his keys back but I broke into his home when he was not there twice. I took a Christmas card that his current girlfriend gave him. I would never physically harm anyone in any way. I am sure that he will be getting a restraining order against me, if I dont get charged with breaking and entering. I can’t believe that I did this and feel sad and remorseful that I caused this kind of fear and harm to him or the new girlfriend. Now I’m going to be a criminal. What is wrong with me? I’m a F in my early 50’s and I don’t like who I’ve become. I’ve think I’ve been depressed because I had a job loss, an elderly mother who had a heart attack, an ex-husband who was ill, required my assistance and passed away, and my father who also passed away in the last 4 years. Then I lost the 7 year relationship. None of that excuses the criminal behavior. How do I make amends and how can I get better? I’m worried that I might be bipolar and have passive obsessive co-dependent behaviors. I want to know where I can go for help on the internet.(I will be looking for a local therapist.) I have been looking at stalker web-sites and am appalled at what I did. Can you help me in any way?
A: I’m glad you said that you are looking for a therapist and I hope you have found one. Stalking is never something to take lightly and can eventually lead to some very serious problems. I can’t really advise you on what internet sites might be good but I always recommend checking out credentials. If you are looking up general information you want to make sure you are getting accurate information. You may want to check out organizations such as the National Coalition for Domestic Violence or you may have luck finding some self-help books by experts in the area. There is a book highlighted on the site right now by Tom Butler-Bowdon titled 50 Self-Help Classics. If this is truly the first time you have ever done something like this it most likely is a reaction to everything you listed that you have been through recently. Although not helpful, my question would be, why haven’t you sought out help sooner? A person can only take so much stress before something gives. Hopefully you can find a good therapist to help you work through your grief and your obsession with this man. You need to find healthy ways to put your life back together and move on. I wish you the best of luck.