I have discovered something new to feel guilty about. Yay!
It is really starting to bother me now.
I have been getting super close to hubby in the past few months. Sharing everything. And he started sharing with me too. Turns out he has been holding back on me, pretty much forever, for fear of adding to my pain and burden I carry around from childhood abuse. Now this is understandable, but it makes me sad and guilty too, and now I want to be there for him like he is for me.
Last week I couldn’t be there for him. I was down in the deep dark place, that is one step above despair, where I question my worth and fight the urge to give up and disappear. While I was fighting that battle, I relied heavily on hubby to do what I could not. I expected him to be perfect, and take care of every task I dropped. I expected him to listen to me endlessly.
The thing is, he pretty much was perfect, and went on tirelessly, even went to work after 1 hour of sleep because we were up all night talking. He is so there for me and devoted to supporting us. I could not have made it to work like he did, but since I work from home my schedule is flexible.
I want to be there for him too. He said he had a rough day at work last week, and I cut him off, told him I could not listen. I remember this day. I actually put my hand up and asked him to stop talking, that I was already overwhelmed and unable to take any more. That was the day I snuck upstairs to cry in the shower. I was hurting and barely functional that day. I was unable to think of anyone but myself that day. Although I did still make meals and do a few easy tasks, I did not connect to anyone. I did not spend the day in bed or on the couch. My bad days are not as bad as they used to be. And I used to be really proud of that progress, until I reframed these thoughts and think how unfair it us to hubby.
If hubby ever cut ME off like that, I would be devastated. But for him, he knows he has to accept that. Even more, he is learning how to pull me back to him. The night we talked all night, I had been suffering for a few days, torturing myself with thoughts that I am not good enough and never will be. I did not realize he saw my pain this time, and was trying to be ‘normal’. Laying in bed, he reached for me, held me so desperately, and whispered, “Don’t pull away too far this time, ok?” It was like a million butterflies all over me. He cut through to the current me. I was not intentionally pulling away from him, and was not aware of it. I was going into my protective zone, which still isolates me. I did not know how much I needed his help. His words, and powerful touch, zapped me out, and allowed me to speak my mind. And wow, a lot of ugly stuff came out. The little girl in me was hurting. That’s the best way I can explain this. Once in a while, the little unloved girl in me needs to be heard – and loved. Once I acknowledge this, grieve for that unloved girl, and get needed love from hubby (and myself), I can move on.
I’m trying to accept how wonderful he is, this hubby of mine, and accept that I’m getting better, and accept that it is ok to expect less of me than him. He said it is like if he gets the flu, I know I can’t ask him to run to the store. So it is like sometimes I get an emotional flu, and can’t handle any more, so he knows not to expect it. I will try not to add this to my guilt, and instead use it as motivation to continue healing, so I have more to give back to my hubby and kids. I want to be stronger for them and be there most days, not just on really good days.
- PTSD or Just a Bad Memory, Who Cares What You Call It (roots2blossom.wordpress.com)
- Building Up the Inner Me (roots2blossom.wordpress.com)