People I work with, along with close friends, are now commenting daily on my weight loss and are actually getting concerned, though all I can reply back with is that it’s just from stress, though I leave out the “from the abusive life I’ve lived in for so long and am breaking free from each day”.  I just want this torturous part of my life to end.  I mean, I think 30+ years of physical, mental, and emotional abuse, mainly as me on the receiving end, though also being the one to dole it out from time to time, is really taking its toll on me.

This has affected me physically, as I go into an almost anorexic state of eating when I feel the pressures of my emotions encroaching on my brain, and I lose my appetite when I am anxious more so than eat when I should or even when I try.  When there is severe anger that results in bitter and dramatic lashing out and doling out pain purposely, I lose any appetite for, sometimes, days on end.  In the last year I have lost nearly 30 pounds, and I don’t want to lose anymore, though what can I do when I’m finally trying, and succeeding, in shedding of the mountains of effects of abuse that went on for so long, and he finds some way to get into my brain, fucking my head so hard that I almost feel physically disoriented.

Why?  Why does the timing always come on the heels of my happiness?  Does he do it purposely or is it just a very stunted defense mechanism that he finds is most effective?

I had, probably, the absolutely best week and weekend of my life, other than the standard “best” times of my wedding and 2 of the most wonderful children I could have asked for in so many ways, and he just had to try to bring me down to his level with judgements that cut me down so much that, yet again, I was nothing but a worthless slut that simply slept with any man she could and was a spoiled brat that wouldn’t accept what he wanted to give…his love and affection.  I was a quitter and continually just lead him on.

But wait!  He doesn’t want to get a divorce and even before he asked for an outright answer prior to actually accusing me of sleeping with someone recently, he was the one that “made out” with another woman from his own past, which turned into, when speaking about the make out session a 2nd time, getting oral sex from this woman, which then turned into, when speaking about the make out session from a strange first topic that was tied to it, he “made it to 3rd base” with her when I finally asked crudely and bluntly “So, what, you finger fucked her?”.

So, he did all but actually penetrate her, which he said he just couldn’t do because of his feelings to me (being his legal wife), which all happened within a week and a half of finally meeting each other for the first time in so many years, and he has the audacity to make accusations that I had slept with someone else and tell me that I am still continuing to be a cheater?

I fucking hate him some days.  It’s mind fucks like that which drives people to insanity and if they don’t know how to deal with it, end up believing some of the awful insinuations that are thrown out there but never directly confronted.  Then the “perfectionism” comes into play during conversations, making sure to deflect more and your attention is diverted to repeating what you said in some specific way that is more correct than originally stated.

He is a master at this, and after I finally was able to physically put distance between us when I was living with a friend in another city for a few days a week a couple of years ago, I became determined to get myself and our children into a safer and healthier situation, otherwise I feared that they would end up repeating the same cycles for possibly the same amount of time as me, if not more.  My job as a parent is to teach them how to make it in life and survive so they can hopefully thrive.

I didn’t realize that the 12-step support group I began to attend 18 months ago for one reason, would open my life up in ways to see the entire situation of my life with more clarity and a determination from the absolute depths of my soul.  I felt, day by day, that I was more of a warrior in a way, planning on attacking the toxicity that was slowly killing not only her, but the family she created and had always wanted.  I knew it would take time, patience, planning, and trying to grow stronger each day to make it to the end, where her new life would begin, though I had not even come close to thinking it would end up like it has so far.  The most surprising things have been both emotionally and physically draining, as well as emotionally and physically energetic.

I realize that I’m still allowing him to control me in some ways, but I will not let him, as I am not as weak as I once was, and I will continue to get stronger as I can see reality for what it is and I refuse to focus on things that distracted me from the realities before me.  The cliché of how the best revenge is to be happy is definitely one I seem to come back to, as this is how my life seems to have always been – every time I have something good happen, either my mom or my husband was there to pull me down in some way.

One of the most recent moments of just how insidious those soul torturing belittling and condescending words can infuse your entire being happened when I went out with friends to sing karaoke.  Why I didn’t realize it then, but realized it after he verbally beat me down the next day calling something I did inappropriate and attacked the character of someone I care about, who happens to be male and likes me, and all I could see was rage building within me, and the clarity of why I did, or better didn’t do, in trying to sing came to the forefront during my insomnia afterwards.

I get up on stage every so often within the last 4 years and read my poetry, which is a way I show the absolute pain I’ve been through, as well as the hopes and joys that really only occurred within the last 6 or 7 years, and is my soul written out in an artistic form that is open for interpretation, as a way to still keep my soul hidden as only I know what memories those poems invoke for me and I don’t have to speak about them as my poem will speak for me once to cover so much.

If I can open my soul up that way, then why the Hell can’t I get up and sing a song in front of, most likely drunk, people instead of simply belting songs out in my car or in the comfort of my home?

Oh, that’s right.  It’s probably because I’ve been told since I was a child that I was not good at singing whatsoever, even when I was in choirs within our church and during middle school.  I think my husband’s criticism of my singing hurt the worst because he would make sure I knew that, since he sang in an A Capella/barbershop chorus and was in choirs for a longer time than I had, that he knew more than me to be judgmental and critical of my pitch or tone, under the pretense of trying to make sure I didn’t make a fool out of myself and to get better at singing.  I have been told, while trying to lightly sing in the vehicle with him over the years, to just stop singing, as it was too hard to listen to. Oh, there are so many times and ways he told me how horrible I was at singing, and how he didn’t like me trying to sing at all, that I get embarrassed if I sing around anyone other than a few trusted people.

When I would go with him to his practices, I would sit there in awe of him, and I would praise him often outside of the practices as well.  I know my one downfall in this scenario is that I was a 19/20 year old girl on the heels of past family and relationship trauma, and I was a bit too clingy to him being of drinking age and wanting to go out with the group after practices to a bar to socialize a bit.  I tried to make up for it by praising him and requesting that he sing around me more often, though I wasn’t wise enough to know that some ways of requesting are more harmful than helpful, and I think my requests of singing something other than his chorus songs, to sing me something more contemporary, as it would show off his talents in a way I rarely had gotten to see, though I think he felt that I was attacking him, and it may be that I wasn’t as clear in communicating then compared to now (though I am sure I can still learn more ways to communicate clearly and concisely), even though I never meant it other than encouragement.

So, I was at the bar with some friends recently, and I had 2 people who care about me a lot try to get me to pick a song to sing.  Granted, that night, in and of itself, was quite emotional and probably for another entry, which left me feeling just a bit more introverted than extroverted as I was earlier, and I just had this nagging thought that I didn’t want to embarrass the ones I cared about so much, so I just didn’t want to take that risk or put myself out there like that.  I couldn’t let myself give that part of me to be possibly attacked and used against me like it had been for so long before.

I broke down in tears when I came to that conclusion in the shadows of the night that I stared at for so long alone the night after the bar and shortly after my husband’s latest confrontation with me.  It is a hard habit to break those, almost automatic responses and defense mechanisms, to let yourself live authentically to the world, and while I’ve made some strides, I have at least one more first step to make now…

I won’t let him do that to me anymore, because even though we are legally married, I keep being reminded of why I knew, but tried to deny it and work against it for years, that I did not want to be married to HIM and began my journey that has come to where I’m at now.  The journey has a lot of bumps to go over, but I know now that they are not mountains, as I thought they were at one time, and for that, I am grateful and I am looking forward to finally getting up on stage soon and actually sing a song around a crowd, and be glad I finally found the courage to do it and not worry if someone wanted to criticize me or say that I do not sing well at all and should not try again.  I have been around enough nights of karaoke over the years to know how people react to other people singing, and I know I’d rather get some drunk laughs or praise, or sober helpful hints or small signs of support, regardless of how well I did in their opinion.  I know that, in all reality, most people do not treat others they way I allowed the most important people in my life to treat me, and I am finally ready to just do it.

Ironically, what he does not realize is that for all the character attacks he threw at the man who has spent time with me most often lately, it is that man who has touched me quite deeply by treating me with more respect and courtesy than I have received in years.  He, probably unknowingly, is the inspiring me to let myself stop living and looking in the past in more areas in my life than I had already consciously chosen to move forward in prior to actually spending any time with each other past occasional messages within the last few months or the one or two yearly social functions we had attended together years ago.

My friend asked me to pick one of two songs, and while he sang the song I chose, I was delighted to receive an impromptu serenade for part of the song, along with him coaxing me into joining him for a few measures and a kiss before he went on to end the song and left me blushing, to be totally honest.  My great friend that was with us leaned over to me after the exchange and said, “I’ll be the first one to say it, ‘Aww…’ and I mean it in a very good way.”  In those short moments, a memory of that time in history, along with how I physically and emotionally felt then, will forever be seared in my soul.  It is a moment I can hardly describe, let alone the rest of that night, but I know it was such a positive impact that no matter what is said to discredit him, this man has proven that, as an imperfect human, he has more class and puts in more genuine effort than the man that was attacking him, and that’s all that matters to me.  I learned a lot from the mistakes I have made and the struggles of my marriage, let alone struggles of growing up, and the one I think is most important now is to listen to those around me and take heed to what they say…

They remind me of where my passions are and when I am truly happy.  They remind me that they are looking out for me, and if they believe that someone or something may be unhealthy, they will tell me, so I should take their support as genuine and notice the reality of what they say, or even don’t say.

Yeah, I think that karaoke will have to be a “to do” one evening fairly soon…all thanks to you.

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I talked to her last night for about an hour and a half, quite peacefully, and intimately as well, which opened my eyes and heart to keep things moving towards peace as far as my efforts were concerned.  She was the one that reminded me that at some point we have to stop being enablers.  I do not think she knows just how ironic that statement is in my life now as I have woken up enough to see my enabling behaviors that I need to keep under control, for many reasons, though most important was for the sake of my soul.

The irony, for me at least, is that as I have begun to put my foot down with enabling in many ways, she gives me ideas of what I can do to stop it while she is enabling in ways I just can no longer do and will only continue to impede on his growth and health if she cannot do what I had the courage to do, so to speak.  She, who could not do what I did while she was married, out of fear and such dependence, is oblivious to the mirror she should be looking at, instead of his or mine.

I love her as if she is true family, and we have had some wonderful times along with some painful ones, so I do not intend to sound as if she is awful, because she is not.  She, though, is definitely one I learn a lot from in some of the most unexpected ways, regardless of whether she intends a lesson or not.  However, that does have its disadvantages, as they may not always be the best things for the type of person I really am, whether positive or negative.

One thing she said that hit me hard last night during that time, other than the statement about stopping the enabling, was the fact I seemed so much more calm and relaxed than I had been frequently within the last, oh, I don’t even know how long anymore, and she didn’t specify a time length either.  She also said how nice it was that we weren’t snapping at each other every single time we spoke.  The final confirmation as to how I should be acting, came when she confessed that, when I picked the kids up from her house her initial statement that it had been a pretty good weekend wasn’t totally the truth, which I had wondered by the way she looked, sounded, and even acted that night when I spoke to her then.

Little does she know just how difficult it can be to not lash out in some way to the comments and interactions that happen, not only between him and I, but between her and I as well, because some of my thoughts can be so sharp and brutal, that I would be seen as, and teeter on being, a truly vengeful woman.  If I give in to the thoughts, I would be giving further validation of what was, and is not, reality, and for the sanity and serenity of my life, that is something I just cannot do. 

The fact that our children have already picked up our habits in a way I would have never wished on anyone, is what helped me realize that I must take a really steep high road throughout the “bad guy” reputation I have to accept as part of placing healthy boundaries, was what took the proverbial cake, in a way, for I knew before I even had children, I would not let them repeat the same misery I had known, whether it is the abusive ways I had lived through as a child, or the abusive ways I lived as an adult. I do carry guilt for not realizing sooner that I already had let them live that life and was grooming them to live it as either the abuser or victim as an adult until it invaded not only my dreams, but even during my most lucid states.

I now have to enable in one way, giving of myself that I may not truly want to, because I know I’m strong enough to stand my ground when it needs to be.  My boundaries are more firm than they have been before, especially once I was able to look at the entire 35 years of my life on a large scale to analyze and find something that made sense.  The pieces started to come to into focus while I was in the hospital with my daughter for those 5 days years ago, and I began truly looking for my soul, because I knew I was feeling the same as I had in my relationship with my mother when I was younger, though I was a capable adult that did not need someone else to survive.  I wanted to know why I felt like I was a child again that was beginning to believe she really was not able to live up to the expectations and questioned her own abilities that were being pushed to the side, even though she didn’t know what she could do differently because everything was so vague.

I felt so scared during the time our daughter was struggling with her health, and emotional waves just over took me to the point of a deep enough hole that I had an overwhelming urge to truly connect with the ones I loved in case someone’s time ended sooner than I would like.  When I reached out for the one that swore, and still swears to this day, that he’d be there for me if I really needed something, he turned me away and made excuses for his rejection, minimizing the reality that I was at an emotional breaking point and needed help of some sort.  I thought I needed my husband, but what I have learned is that I needed a life partner as much as a friend, something I had tried to make what our marriage was based on.  I had assumed his view of a marriage was the same as mine, though as I was reminded many times to never assume, as it makes an ass out of you and me, here I am deciding it is time to stop being an ass, because I am tired of him hiding behind me like that. 

I have taken the brunt for long enough and am determined to put the things I have learned since then into practice, because I will not take blame for doing enabling things that divert the attention from where it is truly needed and help him project things on me.  I was and am tired of being a dartboard for him and simply done with being an easier target to avoid things he does not like within his own mind. In essence, I am done being a victim of a bully that I love unconditionally by trying to control things I couldn’t, which was done because of his inability to handle uncomfortable and painful things.

I refuse to feel like that ever again, and while I feel guilt and shame for not being strong enough sooner, it truly is motivating me more than anything else, because I refuse to let our children live the life and feel the way I allowed and perpetuated any longer, simply because I had guilt for abandoning my own family before and swore to not do it again, and the fear of what might happen if I just did it again.  I cannot and will not, even if I am not perfect, I am striving for progress, not perfection, at keeping myself and my children healthy, including communicating of boundaries and respect…of that, you can take to the grave with me.


He admitted feeling lonely, missing someone to hold, and confusion about a current situation with a friend he was dealing with.  A sadness filled his words and as much as I wanted to comfort him, I had to choose my words carefully, since I actually feel less lonely within the last month, than I have in the past 7 years or so, at a minimum, and the reason for the opposite feelings was one of the issues that had caused so much conflict between us for so long.

I do not think he is ready to hear how lonely I really was for so long, as words he spoke to me when I mentioned it over time come back to the forefront, reminding me I should have been thankful that he wasn’t just out drinking and cheating, sitting at home with me instead, and claiming I was too needy and clingy.  While I agree that I should have been, and was, thankful that he was in the same home as me, it was always a conflict within me as to why I felt so lonely, even while being grateful in many ways for his presence.  It took me a long time to get to the point of being able to put it to words, and when I tried to explain it a few years ago, continually trying to find other analogies to help him understand, though it was met with his defenses going up again.

After living with him so long, then spending time away from each other for business trips before, as well as after, our daughter’s hospital stay, I came to the unnerving realization that I felt lonely most often when I was in the same vicinity as him, though I had only barely looked at the full depth of that to figure out why exactly, about 7 years ago.  As I dug deeper into my heart and soul to find clarity, what I came to know, without any shred of doubt, that, for me, the often shared quote regarding being alone was the point blank truth of what it really means to be lonely.

“I used to think that the worst thing in life was to end up alone.  It’s not.  The worst thing in life is to end up with people who make you feel all alone.” (attributed to Robin Williams most often)

We had painstakingly ceased to stop truly interacting, other than the dance of conflict and then shutting down and coming together again for a short time, to then repeat the process, and I began to feel as if I was simply a piece of comfortable furniture that brought him peace and contentment.  I felt taken for granted.  I felt that I was in a home with a visible ghost that could not, or would not, communicate with me, and I could not touch the soul that I could see.  I felt as if I was bound by obligation to deny my needs and desires, especially when I asked directly, and was shunned in many ways, of which, the worst seemed to be just the silent rejection of ignoring.

So many things that left me to come to those dramatic conclusions of how to explain the dire loneliness I felt, and regardless of what examples I could use to express how often he shunned me and left me alone without even leaving my presence, I felt guilt for needing something he seemed not to need, and that which seemed to be too difficult for him to put forth effort for very long until we slipped back into what he felt was a comfortable routine.

I felt my self-confidence take on a two steps forward and one step back routine and I truly questioned how awful I must have been to have my own husband ignore actually interacting with me in favor of fantasies within television and solitary video games, going so far as to not even notice on many occasions standing in front of him naked, trying to gain his attention.  It eroded my self-worth, feeling as if I was not worth breaking away from anything, even for a few moments, for physical, let alone emotional, connection from someone I thought was a soul mate and professed the same in return.

I knew he struggled with depression and low feelings of self-worth, though it truly seemed as if no matter how many compliments I gave or how often I told him I wanted him, physically or emotionally, he was a hole that kept getting deeper and sucking more of me down with him.  He showed all the signs of depression, including a more withdrawn demeanor, so I tried to be as compassionate as I could, though to hear the venom from him when I would ask for some small form of letting me into his life and soul telling me that I was being too nosy and that men don’t discuss their feelings, among other shunning remarks, I got wore out and began to move to feeling angry and indignation at him pushing away the one person who swore to be his best friend forever.

It was so lonely to be in the same house together, yet he was in another room spending hours relaxing with some form of electronics, and would get upset with me for interrupting his time of relaxing.  I was shunned from having general conversations, especially if during a television show or while he was playing a game, then when a compromise was made that I could speak with him during those times, he wouldn’t actually break away from what he was doing to concentrate on what I was saying.  I felt like I was just background white noise to him, and when I would ask, especially when discussing something I felt was important, for him to acknowledge me and look at me from time to time instead of reading or typing at the same time I was speaking, I was accused of even more neediness and unrealistic expectations.

It broke my heart, and my soul, so I began to learn how to comfort myself for a time.  I would go to bed alone, more often than not actually, longing for him to be with me, and I would cry myself to sleep, then feel shame when I was told the next day or later that he came to bed after I was asleep but couldn’t wake me up to cuddle, let alone anything further.

I admit that I did every single thing I could think of to get the intimacy my soul was aching for, not simply physically, but, again, emotionally and in a way, spiritually.  The more I tried to be intimate, the more he pushed away, for reasons I still am not aware of, and honestly, the reasons are not as important now as they once were, for if they are comfortable to him and something he does not want to change about himself, then there is no reason for me to continue to wish I knew and let it be.  With that being said, though, I know without a doubt what it is I need, and a very strong bond of intimacy is what I need.  If he could not, or would not, let go of whatever it was that was holding him back from connecting with me like I needed, then I had to let go of him instead of trying to chase him and entice him to move towards me.

It is still painful to keep him at an arm’s length, because I always wanted to be close to him, yet he was a ghost of something undead always within my presence, ready to lash out when I began my travels of being comfortable enough with myself to enjoy being alone without feeling lonely more often than not.  Jealousies became even more frequent as I began moving towards something healthier and I shared my time with others instead of being a comfortable chair he would notice was gone, though never sat in it, if it was more animate.  I still try to put forth effort, though through as long as this has been an issue between us, I became more detached, though not any less full of love and support.  These concepts and discussions have created more conflict than I ever intended, especially when I wanted to know what I could do to better the situation so he didn’t feel jealous and speak our needs and wants instead of the unspoken expectations we kept failing to meet.

I am unsure how to be supportive as he travels a new path and see how, so far, it leaves him feeling lonely, unloved, unwanted, and confused.  I hold back a lot from him in the short times we speak, for while I want to be supportive, there is a part of me wanting to remind him that i had felt the same way for an even longer period of time than he has, though I felt that way while I had someone as my husband living with me every day.  The pain of his jealousy, while at times it was possibly valid, more often than not, he failed to see how often he was the one that shunned me and took me for granted which paved the way to be comfortable doing things on my own, enjoying more solitary time away from him, then moving towards realizing that others actually wanted to interact with me and be intimate when he didn’t want to (or maybe couldn’t because of his own inner conflicts), so his jealousy should have been a red flag to look towards himself and find a solution to change things from both sides of the coin, not simply my own.

Give me true solitude, and I enjoy it very much, with only a few twinges of loneliness when I realize I want to share some moment with someone that isn’t there, rather than being in the same house day after day with someone that doesn’t want to share many moments with me and shuns my wanting to share with them as well.  At least when I am alone, I have only myself to rely on to gain comfort from loneliness, sometimes by putting forth extra effort to reach out to someone that may not be very easy to connect with.  However, it seems more preferable than when I was with him like I was before; if I needed or wanted some comfort, he turned me away, so I had to comfort myself while explicitly being told I could not reach out to the one right within my reach without much effort.

 


“It’s too bad that’s the way you see me sometimes…” in addition to a few other statements I noticed, were a way of reaching out to feel better about himself, as in he was reaching for compliments and to feel wanted.  I believe we all tend to do this passive-aggressive move from time to time, though it felt over the years that, as time went on, my attempts at complimenting him and showing him that he was wanted, felt like they became wasted efforts, as his self-confidence dwindled, while insecurities and pain turned into resentments and grew more frequent.  It was a frustrating thing for me, because even I knew deep down, now that I can reflect, I had my own insecurities that swelled to the surface and took on a form that I didn’t acknowledge or handle in a way that was healthy either, and included manipulation of some severe degrees.  I even manipulated his family in attempts to avoid certain conflicts and feelings of failure in regards to being able to have what I wanted in life.

At some point I became someone I didn’t want to be, and I felt like I was a caged animal, so I intentionally set about the wheels of motion that has led me to be where I am now.  I became selfish in many ways, yet in others, I actually was still loyal, and that is where so much of my pain resides, even now, when something triggers the memory or brings the anger I had been trying to release up to the surface again.  The few honest confessions from him the last few weeks, especially, has left me going from controlled rage of indignation, to holding onto a thread of hope that the man I thought was hidden deep within him would finally be able to shine on the world.

The first one that comes to mind is how he described one of his female friend’s ex, which in summary came down to this, “He was kind of a douche.  He couldn’t hold down a job and she was working to support him by working 2 jobs and finally she just couldn’t take it.”

He did notice my facial expression change a bit after I initially heard him say that someone was kind of a douche, since I am not used to hearing that phrase come from him, and then I heard the “why” the guy was a douche, which was the bit of the woman working 2 jobs, and she kept it up for 2 years, but she just couldn’t take it anymore.  I kept my composure and didn’t really say anything, which was a good thing, because I think things would have taken a turn for the worse if I said what was frantically running through my head upon soaking in what he was telling me.

“If you think he is a douche for that, then what do you think you are?  Do you realize I never once called you anything like that and yet you feel it’s something I need to get over and you avoid the reasons I have now been working 5 years holding down 2 jobs?  Oh, you think you get to give her a ‘you should never have to do that’ and emotionally, let alone physically, comfort her about her situation but continually refuse to truly apologize to me for doing the same thing?”

Bitter?  You bet your ass!  However, I chose to not be passive-aggressive or spiteful even though I wanted to very badly lash out at that moment and pass along the pain he just dealt to me back at him.  It was tough, but I did it, and I even confronted the pain a little bit later, trying to communicate that the statement stung, and tried to simply say that her situation, for that specific scenario, is eerily similar to what I went through and stuck through for 4 years before really standing my ground and becoming what was, and may still be, seen as even more reason to claim I was giving up and not trying.

I am not sure if he really understood that even though I feel pain about our situation and hearing about something similar to someone else, I wasn’t trying to bring up or hold onto the past, per se, but looking there to find the underlying reason of why hearing or discussing the facts brings about so much venom between us.  Looking at my initial reactions and how I tried to calmly discuss it a few minutes later, I was able to see that the reason I was hurt so much was the denial of individual and mutual realities, which has brought about resentments between the both of us.

For me, it was a door that was never closed because the core reason(s) we got into so much financial problems were never addressed so we could try to find a solution to the problem, not just cover it up.  I don’t like confrontation, though I knew even years before, that confronting things did not need to be an all out war, and if the perceptions were open enough, it could be seen as an understanding and finding a solution that was more of peace, than victor or loser.

I tried, I really did, though at a certain point, I stopped trying because I was trying to carry him along on moving forward and he was slowly losing the momentum to move forward, and he drug me back.

Ironically, he did that literally, as well as figuratively, when it came to me trying to help him sleep in bed as his sleep apnea was worsening as he continued to gain weight.  He would get upset with me for tying to wake him from sleeping in the living room on a chair, and it would sometimes take me an hour or more to roust him so he could lay down in bed instead of rocking forward and backward and his head fall back and forth almost in a whiplash like fashion.  I worried so much about his health, that his apnea would wake me up in the middle of the night, which became so frequent that I had to face reality for what it was, and we had no life insurance, one thing we cut back on prior to me getting a 2nd job and, the fact of the matter is, we kept the full load of cable and spent in a way we never should have.

I felt guilty for allowing the life insurance to be dropped, because his health was spiraling out of control, and it was a subject that he didn’t like about himself, which therefore was a land mine field if you dared to even tiptoe near it.  Talk of his weight, not even to ridicule, but to genuinely express concern, was met with disdain and anger.  Talk of his sleep and my manipulative tactics as well as directly confronting it was met with resentment for trying to control him.

I admit, I was trying to control him, though I thought it was what was best at the time, because I was concerned and didn’t want to see him suffer as it seemed like he was.  I manipulated him in many ways, tying every known method I could find, to try to take care of him and keep him from a fate I feared he was nearing every day.  It does not matter what my intentions were, because no matter the intention, it was not right of me to try to control him like that.

Even though I can look at it like that, it still brings me pain to know that he views me so negatively and feels I gave up or did not try hard enough, especially within the time frame he gave me, of at least the last 4 years.  I saw the last 6 years, especially, as trying harder than I ever did before, even though I did have my times of yes, giving up because I needed the break from sheer mental, physical and emotional exhaustion from trying to hold it all together and control things I couldn’t and shouldn’t have controlled.

At some point, yes, I said that if he was not willing to do the one thing I asked him to do to help us find solutions to problems that had been and continue to be the exact same problems wrapped up in different topics at times, but always the same core issues at the heart of it, by going to marriage/couple’s counseling with me to have someone unbiased helping us mediate and learn to communicate the difficult things instead of being so abusive to each other, then there really was no marriage and I wanted a divorce.

My asking and stating what my deal breaker was has never been done by manipulation and stated multiple times before I filed for divorce, even documented and saved electronically.  I tried…yet the fear and guilt of losing the one true thing I always wanted, a real family that stuck together, is what kept me in the habit for so long.  No matter how bad it got and how I didn’t want to be married to my husband any longer, I wanted the family unit together as much as I wanted to breathe, though as I let certain distractions in life to over take me, I began to realize that, in the silence, the reality was that I focused so much on saving my marriage and trying to cling to a family, that I didn’t pay attention to the fact that I was on a path of destroying it in some very unseen ways.

It was then that I knew I needed to change directions and focus on what the reality was, which all seemed to have really come to a head when our daughter was in the hospital for 5 days being evaluated for failure to thrive.  Those 5 days put my whole world on it’s side, and I knew, without any shred of doubt, that it was time for me to do some serious soul searching if I was going to give our children a healthier life than what I had.  I began my journey there, and it is hardly over yet, with even more to be learned as I continue to move forward from the past I let get out of control by trying to avoid it instead of dealing with it in a healthy way.

 


I cannot seem to get his words out of my head for very long, before some new circumstance or discussion drags the bones from the grave and I repeat the process all over again; optimism, criticism, avoidance, pain, anger, sorrow, apologetic, guilt, and forgiveness, as well as denial thrown in to cause more confusion.

The first thing that hit me very hard was an emotional night around each other, discussing things that were painful, and I asked about his potential new love interest that had been a topic of discussion off and on for the previous year or so.  I thought his facial expression belied a profession of nothing had gone on other than “hanging out”, though the possibility of an intimate encounter had been offered, yet I let it pass without pressing further.  I just had a feeling that he wasn’t being totally honest with me, which is something I have emphatically stated as something I needed in my life multiple times over the years, but especially within the last 2 or 3, certainly.

Then there wasn’t much said until I sent a joke to lighten the mood that had been brewing horribly for a while, and it ended up actually being a reality, when it wasn’t intended to be. That might have been my manipulative tactic back due to some statements I had felt were guilt inducing and manipulative he stated previously within the previous weeks that I did not deal with at the time, including asking about me taking our children on his custody time in a way that, if I said no, would possibly come across or used in a way to state that I was saying no because I didn’t care about our children or some other form of twisting reality, and I wasn’t going to continue that game. I’m not sure if that was really the reason, though due to the emotions I had openly shared to him in one way or another, I can see how it was, even though it was not meant to be anything other than sharing my honest thoughts about the current situation.

Then there was the next day where my brain had seemed to soften it’s bitterly cold grip of my heart, feeling that maybe some of his resentment towards me had begun to melt just a little bit and just a bit safer to be who I really am as a person towards him.  Another joke to lighten an emotional statement of appreciation for something other than his icy demeanor, as of late, and the door seemed to open just a little bit more, even if only a centimeter or two.  I made the mistake of grabbing onto that just enough to let other things affect me just a bit too much.

I then received an unexpected message when he knew I was finally out socializing for the first time in weeks, taking a break from working non-stop on things around me that seemed to be reminders of the ghost I seemed to be surrounded by, even though the presence wasn’t of someone dead.  I did not do it to hurt him, as far as changing things and cleaning things that had been neglected for many years, though it was for other reasons, one of which included purging some resentment I had that was originally brought about by the guilt he laid on me for so long.  His message was one that seemed sincere and he genuinely was reaching out to me.  Then his jealousy came through, yet again, and I received another manipulative message that he wished he had such a large social circle to engage with and flirted suggestively that I could return home to get attention from him.  I should have ignored it, though I didn’t, and commented that having a large social circle really wasn’t what it seemed like it would be cracked up to be.  I used an analogy that I’d rather run around with 4 quarters in my pocket, rather than 100 pennies, as if these represented the number of friends that give me, metaphorically speaking, the same amount of attention in the end.

The next day he contacted me again, asking a question that baited me into answering whether or not I made it home at all the night before, or whether I had stayed somewhere else and couldn’t answer his question honestly.  I admitted that I had not gotten home yet when I answered him, and he sounded dejected and said he didn’t figure on the fact that I might not be back home the previous night. I know his reactions of disappointment hit me when, a few hours later, I found myself sending him a picture of a neat picture of a flaming skull, the background was red, the skull faded with the background so all you really see are the black voids of a skull, and yellow hued flames dancing on it.  His statement, after an admission of the picture being very cool, was one which he would consider, if I said it now as he did, as manipulative and guilt inducing.

“It’s too bad that’s how you see me sometimes…”

I knew it was manipulation, though I thought I would play along in a way, just to keep some peace even though I knew I was enabling and playing the codependent part again. He fails to remember, or doesn’t accept as the case may be, the reality that he is just as manipulative as me, and we have this abusive habit that I am desperately trying to break free from.  I’m tired of the habit…

I am ready to change this part of me, because it is too unhealthy for not only me, but our children as well, and I cannot teach them how to be healthy if I continue down a path of holding onto such unhealthy habits, which will be passed down to them.  I choose to learn how to do things differently, because I will not be a slave to any label, when I know that I don’t like how I am as a person because of that label.  I do not have to be “too independent” or “too set in my ways” or “too codependent” or “too emotional” or “too serious” or “too anything” if I choose to not be one extreme or the other and strive for balance and maintaining health, instead of throwing it away because I would rather live in the comfort of not trying, because of the fear of failure or not doing something perfectly.

 

Emotional Waves

August 8, 2011


I can’t seem to write out my thoughts, which has been the easiest way for me to express my life, and now it makes me wonder just what the Hell is going on with me.

How do I say that I am in pain…feeling such sorrow and loneliness…yet feel hope and love?

How do I say that I am scared…yet feel so confident?

I am so very nervous about being vulnerable, yet I ache for the comfort in knowing that I can be totally and utterly vulnerable.

Maybe my goals and aspirations are too lofty, but carrying the burden of all-too-real responsibilities is taking its toll on me.  I was too lost at one point to even realize I had such dreams, and in those dreams were pieces of me…my heart and soul were scattered there…and while I tried to conform, I gradually lost my passions until it seemed as if I was only a shell of who I once was.  Then again, I’ve grown older since then as well, so some feelings of losing myself may be that I actually became a bit more mature and wiser.  At least that’s the way I chose to think of it during the darkest moments to keep the morose thoughts at bay.

Dark thoughts and feelings, including resentment, replaced a bit of the shreds of my being that were drifting away in the breeze.  I’m amazed and disgusted, looking back on it now, that I was barely much more than just a shell of what could even remotely be considered a human being.  I was hurt enough that my soul seemed to be drawn out of my body excruciatingly slow…a torture I wish on no other.

I was an inanimate object, the easy target of ridicule and shame for a time, then came the insidious rejection without so much as a word.  I felt so completely used and violated.

I often question which one hurts the most – the slaps, punches, chokes, pushes, screams, sarcasm, rage, and belittling remarks, or the avoidance and denial of what brought the psychosis to a head.  I am still ashamed that I gave in to going down the road of playing an abuser and a martyr to match the intensity and, in a sense, passion of the relationship, and only for a small moment in time, just to try to keep the peace, did I give in to the avoidance and denial.

None of it really makes any sense; it doesn’t seem logical or genius.  Some genius may truly be madness, but really, just how far mad does it have to get for it be considered utterly logical and bright?

Why did I venture out and see the world I had been missing?  Why, of all the times in my life, did I let his words push me over the edge?  Why did I find so much around me tempting, all while hearing the often said cliché, over and over, of “the grass always looks greener on the other side of the fence, until you make the jump and realize it is nothing but the same as the side you left, including the work it takes to keep it going”?

Unfortunately, the people who seem to say that the most are the ones that were discarded and still bitter, or simply believing in the fairy tale that they were so much better than the other person and of some better moral or ethical fabric.  What’s even more sad is the holier-than-thou statement is what ends up leaving battered spouses (whether physically or mentally) staying right where they are and they resign themselves to constant toxicity to pray that they never hear those guilt inducing words.  Oh, there are plenty of other disgusting comments said in reply to ending relationships specifically (especially marriage), and I could spend hours simply dissecting the manipulative tactics and bullying remarks that are most often more damaging than helpful, but that, my friends, is for another time.

I am absolutely not a saint, in fact, far from it, however, I cannot, and will not, take full blame as it was a partnership, no matter how toxic it was in all reality and what I brought as detrimental to the table.

Now my mind shifts to hearing the pain and shame in her voice that left me quietly sobbing.  No matter her downfalls, she does not deserve the troubling times she is facing, and I wish I could take the pain and stress away from her.  She is, after all, only my mother, yet I can’t simply snap my fingers and have it go away for her, no matter how much I wish I could.  Through all the pain we dealt to each other in the turbulence of our relationship, we grew closer and finally learned respect and how to love each other more deeply than I ever thought we could.

From her unrelenting anger and hurt that left me wondering how to even think I could be more than simply the devil incarnate, came me, as a woman, who has a hard time doing many things, but who has always ended up surviving, and in some cases actually thriving.  In hindsight, as I look at her through the eyes of someone walking in some eerily similar footsteps, including motherhood, her actions truly were understandable.  From her constant cries of betrayal and lies, came me, a woman, who tends to trust quite blindly and tends to believe in the possibility of forgiveness and change.  It’s astonishing to me that in the process of trying to be the complete opposite of her, I find so much in common with her.  I see myself purposely trying to find, and ride, that fine line between extremes, as I know in my heart and soul that there is so much of her that is worthy of praise, and so much of her that is worthy of forgiveness, as she did what she did for the sake of survival, not to be someone worth hating.

My true nature is very giving, yet I find myself at times, wondering if I am that way only to receive something in return.  I question my own motives occasionally, after all, most people question whether I am genuine at all in regards to my incentive for doing certain things.

Even though I am not a glorified soul, I am most certainly not a monster, so why do I feel like I am, especially when I actually speak from my heart and soul about my wants and needs?  Why, when I actually stand my ground, am i seen as something hideous and worthy of contempt?  Why, when I was opening myself like a book, were things so hard for others to take that I was left standing alone?

Does any of that really matter anyway?  I really don’t know if it really matters, but having so many unanswered questions haunts me at times…such as now.

Sitting here in almost absolute silence make my thoughts seem so loud, and they keep me from slumber this night.  The words born from these almost psychotic thoughts are racing and non-coherent; partial sentences that probably only make sense to me.

And now, I decide, that another time may be best for finishing these thoughts…


No, I’m not doing this the way most “normal” people think it should be done…so to Hell with what they feel is the “proper” way of handling a divorce…this is my life, and my soon to be ex-husband’s life, as well as our children’s lives, not theirs.

Since when did it become acceptable to tell others what “should be” done simply because that is what has been considered “the normal way”?  Why do some constantly ask specific dates of when things will be moving forward, as well as continually question what the next step will be when we haven’t even been able to communicate for years (hence the biggest reason for this dissolution of marriage), let alone discuss and come to compromises on one of  the greatest heartaches and senses of failure someone can deal with?

Since when did I ever truly follow what is seen as “normal”, anyway, and why would I chose to follow that path now all of a sudden?

When psychologists, psychiatrists, counselors, and self-help gurus cannot even seem to decide what is “normal” or “healthy”, why should I believe that what I have chosen to attempt would not work and be healthy?  I know what things I believe as harmful to my health and well-being, and even more-so for my children, so why not let me at least try what is a unique way of handling things and change directions when, and if, I see it going down the road of depravity and self-destruction?

Some of my motivation could be considered selfish or even simply stated as self-preservation.  While it can be construed that way, and there is some truth to it, there are many true altruistic reasons for the madness of this chaotic and self-reflective journey.

I am going through this blind, yet with eyes wide open and willing to change with the flowing tide in many ways…however, I know without a doubt that I cannot and will not back down from this exceptionally terrifying and exhilarating adventure that is probably long overdue…for both of us.