Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Distraction and Disaster

I dropped off on reading WWRWW for about a week, but after last night I was looking for some guidance so I cracked the book open to where I left off last time. Per the eerie usual the message was exactly what I needed to hear, not just for guidance moving forward, but in explaining what happened. 
The deep work is a lot like sexual arousal. It begins from ground zero, accelerates in plateaus, becomes sustained and intense. If the plateaus are interrupted harshly, you must begin all over again. There is a similar arousal tension in working with the archetypal layer of the psyche. If the tension is interrupted, one has to start nearly from scratch. So, there are many bones on the road, juicy, nice, interesting, savagely exciting bones. But somehow they cause us to be carried off into an amnesia, to not only forget where we are in the work but to forget what the work is at all.
And then: 
We begin to understand that this process of remaining conscious, and particularly not giving in to distracting appetites while trying to elicit psychic connection, is a long process, and one that is difficult to hold to. We see the wily little dog trying his damnedest. Yet it is a long way from the deep archetypal unconscious back to the conscious mind. It is a long way down to the names, and long way back to the surface again. Holding knowledge in consciousness is hard when there are snares along the path. 
And finally: 
The little dog learns the names of the women one more time and races back to his master. He ignores the feast on the road and the enticing smells from the bush. Here we see the consciousness of the psyche rising. The instinctive psyche has learned to curb itself, prioritize, and focus. It refuses to be diverted. It is now intent.
But from nowhere a dark thing suddenly jumps out at the little dog. The black stranger shakes the dog and shouts, "Tell me those names! What are the names of the young women so I may win them." The black stranger does not care for duality or the finer points of the psyche. To him the feminine is a possession to be won and nothing more. 
The black stranger can be personified by a real person in the outer world or a negative complex within. It does not matter which, for the devastating effect is the same. This time the dog engages in unrestrained battle. Whether male or female, this occurs in outer life when an incident, a slip of words, an odd thing of some sort, jumps out and tries to make us forget who we are. There is always something in the psyche that tries to rob us of the names. There are many name robbers in the outer world also.
Forgive that you may not know all the background behind these paragraphs. If you are familiar with the book, she is deconstructing a fairytale as it relates to archetypes of the psyche. Without knowing the particulars of the fairytale, I think you can get the gist. 

For me it brings a rushing clarity to the hurricane-like emotions and memories I was pummeled with last night. It was so fierce at its peak I thought I might bash my head into something to make it stop. 

I had become distracted again from my deeper self-knowing, separated again from instinct. I had numbed down in light of Roi's recent renewals to commitment in recovery and his resulting moodiness and proclamations of wanting things to work. To compensate I attended a lot of meetings, read a lot of blog posts, and sought a therapist. All good things, but without listening to the deep instinct I was lost. I wandered off the path. 

I had extinguished the light, letting darkness and confusion come in again. I tried to find an outside source of light, exhausted myself researching the links between emotional abuse, addiction, relational trauma, betrayal trauma, PTSD, etc. Tried listening to the voices of others instead of my own. My inner predator was aligning with the outer black stranger, setting myself up to be robbed of my "names". 

Last night that inner voice was angry and wanting to be heard again, beating against the dark, screaming to be let out, to have the light turned back on. 

I'll continue to go to meetings, to go to therapy as soon as my preferred therapist has an opening, but in the meantime I have to be vigilant against distractions and name robbers, both internally and externally.

I Should be Writing

Instead of pacing the dark hallway upstairs; a ghost who can't find peace. Instead of kneeling on the bed moaning and crying. Instead of scratching my forearm with semi-sharp tools. Instead of twisting on the inside like a tortured and trapped animal. 

I've been to a lot of meetings lately, and while they give me some relief it does nothing to validate the cause of the pain I've kept silent for so long. Everyone is calm at the meetings, aside from the occasional "share" turning to quiet sobs. I share, but only a little. More than five or so sentences and I feel my throat tighten. If I let it loosen I'll only scream, unable to put the pain into coherent words.

I've read about people who suddenly remember childhood abuse they had "forgotten", how it comes out of nowhere one day while doing the dishes, or at a therapy session, or while playing with the kids. A spinning, dizzying assault that the mind just decides it's time to release. No heads up, no warning, no time for preparing. 

It doesn't make sense, what happened here is recent. I've been living it as an adult, but under the circumstances of financial dependence, I was burying a lot. Too much, and it's all rushing in at once, roaring hurricane-like in my head and sending me into fits. Eventually it subsides, leaving my skull aching and hollow, my guts compressed, and somewhere I can't locate I feel "it" rebuilding, gathering itself up. 

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Lonely-ish Holiday

Facebook. Again. It struck me as I checked in with FB this morning that most of my friends have holiday plans that include friends, family, AND significant others. Per the usual, Roi is somewhere else on this holiday, as he is most holidays (except Christmas). 

It bothers me a little because there's something about it that's so obviously and glaringly wrong and says so much about our "relationship". At the same time, I'm glad to be alone to do as I want without having to be triggered because we're at a party or a beach. I'm glad I don't have to be miserable in that particular confusing sucky way. 

I'm going for a bike ride today. It's gorgeous weather. Just right for bike riding and we are blessed with long paved trails just around the corner. After that a graduation party which I'm ambivalent about. Parties for me, with or without Roi, have become difficult. I'm not good at small talk, and maybe I'm not even very good at relaxing and having a good time. I'm too serious for my own good far too often. But I'm going to make myself go, if for no other reason than that I've missed too many celebrations because of some addiction drama playing out in my realm. I've lost too much. 

So I'll go, and I'll try to smile, try to relax, try to celebrate in a friend's small life victory and be happy about it. 

Just for today. Tomorrow can suck it.

Friday, May 27, 2011

Endless Looping

I made several phone calls to therapists the other day and I've heard back from most of them. There is one in particular I want to see because she offers Neurofeedback, a treatment I've found helpful in the past to deal with ruminations, but also with my already present hyper-focus ADD which makes trauma worse. My mind needs to focus on big problems, and if there is trauma present in my life, my mind will happily focus on solving it. Trouble is, without an end to the "outer predator" inflicting trauma I can get stuck in an endless loop. Neurofeedback trains my brain directly to calm down a little, to get back in my body and out of my head, and I'm suddenly able to take care of all the little tasks that need tending to. 

I know that whatever else I do, if I can't stop the endless looping and tend to those tasks, I'll never be able to leave or decide to leave or take the steps to leave if it's what I decide. 

Roi is on his little getaway and reports that it's very good for him and he's able to work well but he misses me. I can't say it back. I don't miss him at all. I wish he would stay away forever. No break-up, no abandonment, just disappear -- dissolve like smoke in a gentle breeze. 

I'm pretty sure he's been sober of all three of his addictions for probably four weeks or so. I have no proof, just circumstantial evidence. I trust how I feel about it. Yet it doesn't make me happy, or at least as happy as he was hoping. For one thing, of course I don't trust it to last, not given the history. I've hoped too many times and I'm tired of that game. I'm tired of being Charlie Brown and him Lucy in the whole, "I swear, THIS time I won't pull the football away", game. Tired of opening myself, letting my guard down, only to find out it was all a ruse. 

Addiction beng a sickness or not, the effects are the same as any other form of emotional abuse and I'm not in the mood to forgive it or excuse it. There are so many amends to be made, and he's still not in that space of feeling like he needs to make more amends, and I'm still firmly in that place of needing serious and thorough amends before I'll even consider opening the doors so much as a sliver.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

In Which I'm Disgusted with Myself

Last night Roi wanted to spend some time together before he left. I wasn't very into it feeling a little raw about his trip, but I obliged. Perhaps I should not have, but I wasn't looking to punish him either. I couldn't really sort out my feelings.

We were laying on the bed talking, or rather, he was talking trying to be nice and say nice things. Things I don't particularly trust and I was just trying to breathe. I was staring at the top shelf of our built-ins and my eyes settled on a black binder which I assumed was my collection of photos I developed in college. I felt like looking at them so I pulled the binder down. Only it wasn't those photos, it was a collection of writing I did in the two years following my divorce.

I opened to a page that started, "why can't I get over D?"; my stomach lurched. I took the binder downstairs to read it. I turned page after page after page of me complaining, whining, and pining over my failed marriage, my abusive ex, and the two men I fell for in the aftermath. And suddenly I'm seeing myself in a new light.

How long have I been letting my life be defined by who I'm in relationship with or not in relationship with? How much have I given up of myself? Who am I?

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Trigger - Road Trip

Roi feels he needs to get away so he's leaving tomorrow for a week. He's going to visit a friend who I more or less trust so I'm not particularly concerned about Roi's acting out any more radically than the usual low-grade acting out. 

But generally, Roi has used his "need to get away" as a convenient tool for acting out, most of which I only have circumstantial evidence of, but enough that I am convinced despite his denial. He denies everything I don't have direct evidence for. 

Additionally, we are dead broke at the moment and he's claiming we're going to end up in line at the food kitchen if something doesn't change soon, so it seems a little irresponsible to be taking a trip that won't add a LOT of expense, but will add some. 

Lastly, it just rubs me all kinds of wrong ways because it's more of Roi taking care of Roi, which I get you need to do in recovery, but historically Roi taking care of Roi didn't stop the acting out or all his accessory (emotionally abusive) behaviors.

I actually want him to go because I want some time to myself, but I don't like all these ways I feel about this nor the fact that no matter what words I use to bring it up he'll just twist it to try and make me feel guilty for feeling how I do.

The In-Betweens

Last night I was pretty devastated after the meeting. I cried in a stranger's arms with more strangers milling about, I cried outside in the dark as more people approached me to tell me their story, or to just reach out a hand and lay it on my shoulder or my back. I cried all the way home. I cried when I got home. 

That's more crying than I've done in the last 4 years combined. 

But I felt better during the meeting, and I felt better during the Sunday meeting, and I feel better when I write here or when I'm reading WWRWW or when I'm working on my creativity 12-steps. Still, nothing is happening during all the in-betweens. I'm not working, not in my work with Roi or on my own side work. I do nothing in-between my recovery work. Everything has come to a grinding halt and I feel my life like a big warm beast breathing in the dark, silent and still except for the rhythmic breath. 

I don't know how to wake it up, how to get it to move, how to bring back its energy. 

Monday, May 23, 2011


I promised myself I would go to meetings, and so I set off after dinner to attend one. Only I copied down the information wrong and ended up walking around in the drizzle looking for a meeting that wasn't going on. Once I got wise to my error I looked up my next available option which turned out to be 45 minutes away from my location, and I would be at least 15 minutes late. I decided to go anyway, but was more like 30 minutes late. 

The topic was "getting to higher ground", or essentially learning how to take care of oneself and be happy despite the presence of an addict in one's life. 

"Figures", I thought ruefully. The shared story was written by a woman who learned how to find happiness even in the face of her husband's non-stop drinking for the remainder of his life. At the end of the story, he dies, but she felt the two of them had lived a "mostly happy life". 

I can't even fathom it. Not possible. I shared briefly that the very reason I was there at this meeting so far away from my home was because I'm seeking higher ground, but right now I'm feeling that every step I take up is met with hands gripped on my ankles dragging me back down. That I couldn't even fathom living out my life with an active addict when I think of all the ways he makes his problem my problem. That it didn't seem possible, or even right, to consider staying in it -- not what with all the accessories to addiction my addict presented. 

I admitted that it all seemed improbable, but nevertheless, I was here to take steps. 

Later another woman shared and spoke of her son, and something in her story resonated. Her eyes met mine, and we held for several long seconds and exchanged sad smiles and near invisible nods. 

When the meeting was over, she made a beeline for me and told me she had been the victim of abuse in her first marriage. "You don't have to stay", she said. 

My hand flew to my mouth and a black bile rose in my throat...the tears, instant. "Can I hug you?", she asked, and I nodded. Her touch was warm, firm, and she held me there, held my pain, held my body as the others cleaned up only inches from where we stood. 

The tears didn't stop for 45 minutes.

The Universe is Such an Awesome Bitch Sometimes

After my last post, I decided to look up the Buddhist teacher I told the story of. I know he travels around teaching so I looked for his calendar of events. He won't be near me for some months, but as I was reading about the program I'd be able to attend, my eyes suddenly locked on the date range and I had a little moment of synchronicity. The date range falls exactly on the 3-year anniversary of my double-trauma. It starts one day before and ends two days after, so if I attend this program I will be in the middle of a protective container with a resonating teacher when the date passes. 

In Search of my Teacher

There was no meeting I could get to on Saturday, but I did go to one on Sunday. I was a little pissy because I was made to be late by mutual disrespect for my schedule by both Roi and Lexi. Nothing overt, nor intentional, it just was as it is. (Note to self: keep working on stating my needs clearly.)

Sunday is the only s-anon meeting, so I opted to go to that. When I walked in there was only one other woman there. I recognized her from the meetings I had gone to before. She opened the meeting formally, but after that we simply "shared" back and forth. It was pleasant and easy and I suddenly felt like, "yeah, this is okay". 

We went over the normal scheduled end time and I had to suddenly end it because I needed to get the car back home for Roi so he could go to his meeting. We ended with the serenity prayer, and since it was just the two of us, she took both my hands in hers. 

As I drove home I reflected on my tendency to go things alone, to not turn to others for help. It's classic I suppose, the wanting to believe I am strong enough on my own, the not wanting to burden others, but most importantly the deep shame I feel over having let my life go so far afield and the resulting feeling that there is no way back now. It's too late. Some part of me knows this is foolish and prideful and it is "her" that I try to listen to in order to move my body to a meeting or to schedule time with a therapist. 

But it's also not having met a therapist or potential sponsor yet that resonates deeply. Someone with deep intuition who can see things clearly, can see what needs to be said, what needs to be done, and how to work with me. A soulful and vajra-like spiritual advisor who can cut through my resistance swiftly and skillfully. 

I once met a man, a Buddhist teacher, with whom I found this resonance. I was strangely drawn to him from the moment I came into his presence, and after a day or two I walked straight up to him and requested some time with him to talk. I had no idea what about, I just knew I needed to talk to him. He smiled and offered that we go for a walk the next day at lunch, and so we did. We sat together a short way down the road, and within minutes I was crying in great big gulping sobs. He told me three things. I, like him, carried deep wounds from being in a relationship with a deeply wounded person. I had an attraction that was "almost unholy". I carried myself with an edge, and I needed to soften.

The first and second needed no explanation, but I later asked him about the second thing he said because I was unsure of what he meant. He explained that I carried myself almost like a rock-star, like someone with supreme confidence, and with an attitude of not being willing to behave for anyone, and it scared people. And perhaps it attracted to me those who wanted to take some of this for themselves, or those who wished to steal it or squash it or challenge it.

I was stunned that he had been paying that much attention, and more stunned at the thought. It has haunted me for some time now. It is this that I seek. The teacher that sees through me, into me, and knows which things need turning, tweaking, growth, nurturing, and which things need to be softened, quelled, or thrown out. The teacher whose advice I can trust.

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Teeny Tiny

I read somewhere that looking at Facebook can lead to depression. "How can that be?", I thought, but it was explained that looking at photos and reading updates about everyone else's wonderful life can make one feel they don't measure up. 

A few of my friends on Facebook always look beautiful and happy, it's true, but mostly I didn't look at their stuff unless I considered them a close friend in which case I was privy to the less than perfect aspects of their lives AND was genuinely happy for their triumphs and the photos that made them look like a Hollywood star. 

But lately, Facebook IS depressing me. But it's not really Facebook, it's the realization of how small my life has become. How utterly teeny-tiny my world is at this moment. I have few friends I keep any regular contact with as a result of my gradual and relentless drawing away from others. My work is at home and with Roi so nothing of my own there. And all hobbies and exercise have received fatal blows too. 

Most of what I've trimmed and slashed is typical and predictable for someone in partnership with a sex addict, but the exercise thing...that one caught my attention the other day as I couldn't find anything to wear in my closet that didn't reveal the bulge around my middle. Exercise for me has never been a chore, never something I forced myself to do. I've always been active; biking, hiking, swimming, running, etc. I let Roi take that from me too. 

When I was subjected to him staring at another woman while I was sitting with him, or when I would discover a list of erotic massage providers or private dancers on his computer or phone, I started comparing myself to them. They were always younger and much much prettier than I was. They were also exotic, and dark - everything I am not. But instead of trying harder to keep up, instead of killing myself at the gym or going under the knife, or making any effort whatsoever to make myself more attractive, I started unconsciously doing the opposite. I lost interest in taking care of myself. 

I thought this lack of self-care was a self-esteem issue, but it occurred to me the other day, when I again felt that resistance the moment I contemplated a work-out, that some part of me was rebelling. To my own detriment, but rebelling nonetheless. A part of me was saying "fuck you" to Roi. A part of me that was saying, "I am so much more than a nice ass and tight thighs". A part of me that was saying, "Look at ME, the real ME!" 

Besides Roi's habit of continually searching for the physically perfect woman, he also had the nasty habit of telling me how much better I could look in the future. Like the time I bought a new bikini, put it on and strutted around so proud of how good I looked for a woman in her 40's and that I even COULD wear a bikini. He laughed and said, "Yes, you look hot. And just imagine, if you work out how much hotter you'll be." 

Of course I thought it was a shitty thing to say, and told him so, but I didn't take into account how these little seeds of self-doubt he was trying to plant were really little tiny bombs implanted in my brain, and they would go off later when I least expected, often silently. I didn't account for how much damage was being done little comment by little comment. 

And now, when I see my friends on Facebook relaxing in a hammock with their loved one sipping a cold beer on a lazy Sunday afternoon, or graduating from law school, or volunteering, or all sweaty after a long bike ride, or hanging out with friends, or enjoying their family, I see it now. I see the big gaping hole of blackness in my life, and from it emits a long howling of pain I cannot soothe.

Saturday, May 21, 2011

My Cat Soothes Me

With her tiny little cat bones and her tiny little cat skull and her warm belly that she loves to press against mine, most especially when I'm writing. 

And I want to be her right now. To be free of human concerns and angst. I mean, don't get me wrong, she has her angst. Mostly it involves concern over food running out, how long food will take to travel from her human's hands to the floor, ham, and scotch tape. The rest of her time is spent looking for the next awesome place to take a nap. 

I could live with that.

Friday, May 20, 2011

Where it Gets Ugly

Roi has taken off the kid-gloves and donned a pair of boxing gloves with embedded spikes. 

We've had one couples session so far, and during that session therapist asked him how much responsibility he felt he owned for the problems we're having. He calculated and came up with somewhere between 70-80%. This was news to me since his party-line has always been we share the damage 50/50. I saw this as denial on his part, but nevertheless I was willing, perhaps too willing, to examine my behaviors, and I did so exhaustively giving myself thorough soul-whippings for all my wrongs. 

Trouble was, as long as I was willing to try to own my part, he was perfectly happy using this against me to make me feel guilty in ways I had no business feeling guilty. Like when he was lying about something and I felt like something was up, he would insist that I question what I was feeling suggesting that I was being paranoid, over-reactive, self-centered, or just plain crazy. And I would oblige, retreating from the truth in order to check in with myself to see where I might be behaving exactly as he was suggesting. My gut would usually win and I would dig for the truth. I'd be angry when I discovered that my original feelings were true, but I was mostly angry that he had manipulated me in order to protect his lies and that's the part that he's just never gotten. It was the insult added to injury, and more importantly, it was a huge sign that he wasn't anywhere close to active recovery.

To him, my anger was out of proportion to the original infraction, but he wasn't factoring that I was angry about how it would go down, how he would throw me under the wheels of the crazy-bus from start to finish, and the cumulative effect of all the crazy business on my psyche. 

He would say, "for all your anger, I might as well do the crime if I'm going to do the time" (and worse, this is what he would tell his friends too without filling them in on the full story). In his mind he has never cheated on me, never come close to the "serious" infractions of other guys he meets in the rooms who've slept with multiple women, or frequented prostitutes. And yet, that's not how his addiction leans with or without me, actually sleeping with lots of women, so holding this up as something noble is just insulting.

So tonight, he admitted to me that when he was angry at me yesterday that he started planning to go to New York. He is more than aware that New York is the site of my deepest pain in relation to him. A source of deep trauma that hasn't been healed. Earlier he had recommended some ways we could approach each other without it diving straight into war. Just tell him how something makes me feel. So I did. I told him that him going to New York is painful to me. Up went the walls, and out came the big guns, and it ended with him forcefully telling me that if this continues it's game over and I haven't even seen how bad things can get.

He also pulled out the 50/50 number again and said HE talked to a DIFFERENT therapist ("one who knows me well" he said) and THAT guy thinks he's not so bad and I've got equal problems. I promise you, this guy doesn't know Roi as well as he thinks, and he doesn't know the whole story. It doesn't matter, everything I've said, everything anyone else has said, his understanding about the trauma, it's all out the window now that he's been validated by this other guy.

Good thing I wasn't letting hope back in. Yet I worry what he's going to do before I get the money together to leave. There's not much more I can withstand.


I've taken a multi-pronged approach to my recovery that includes this blog, Your Sexually Addicted Spouse by Barbara Steffens, online recovery support, Women Who Run with the Wolves, and another recovery book with clear tasks focused on recovering creativity but a general recovery book nonetheless. Roi and I are seeing a couple's therapist, and I'll be adding therapy and neurofeedback in the next few weeks. 

So where are the meetings? I go to those here and there too, but I'll be the first to admit, commitment to meetings is lacking. Two major issues keep me from committing. First, and especially for s-anon, everyone there is too raw and without a good stretch of recovery under their belt, at least around here. Walking into those meetings means I'll sit with a handful of women who are new to the trauma, and sometimes I just can't deal with their pain. The other major issue I have is that the minute I hear any of the readings all I hear is how this is my fault, and considering that every addict in my life has used this tactic to escape accountability it just feels wrong. Plain wrong. Every cell in my body starts screaming, "get the fuck out of here, DANGER!" 

What is lacking in recovery for those affected by addiction in their loved ones is a recognition of the NEW trauma. That feels dangerous to me because it is just another group of people telling me to stop listening to my instincts. 

Put another way... the addict engages in behavior that is not normal according to standard human codes. I'm not even referring to the substance (whatever it may be) abuse, I'm talking about all the behaviors that surround the addiction in order to protect it. Lies, deception, gaslighting, manipulation, emotional abuse, bullying, boundary crossing, etc. Normal people have emotional responses to such behavior that include confusion, disorientation, anger, sadness, etc. So the addict is taught to restore his/her behavior to be more in line with "normal" human behavior, while the affected parties are taught to ignore the standard responses and learn how to act, in a sense, abnormally. Detach, let go, and don't be affected by the behavior of someone you hold dear, or at the very least someone who is in your immediate circle of influence and whose behaviors affect your life in concrete ways.

Having studied Buddhism, this advice isn't all bad. But the way it is presented is. 

I know there are those who would read this and think, "her intellect is getting in the way", and perhaps it is. Still, having suppressed by instinctual feelings for the sake of love and hope has resulted in a lot of wreckage in my psyche, so for now this is where I am. Unwilling to let others tell me that I need to once again turn away from what my gut is telling me. 

Thursday, May 19, 2011

This is New

Apparently Roi has entered the oh-my-gosh-this-is-what-feeling-is-like stage. I've read that addicts coming into genuine recovery start to notice their feelings, especially their bad feelings, having removed all the addictive coping behaviors previously used to escape from them. Roi's been increasingly irritable over the last week, especially when he's just engaged in some positive activity that is supposed to help such as going to the gym. 

Where before he was never the one to get pissy or angry (which only served to fuel MY anger more) he is now quick to ignite. Not that he's raging, but that he's got zero patience for what's bothering him. It's interesting but not pleasant. 

Meanwhile, I escaped his bad mood and went to the bookstore for a few hours where I got sucked into the book, "Get Me Out of Here", a true account of a woman healing from Borderline Personality Disorder in her words. It is riveting, and a little terrifying. I once read the symptoms of BPD and ever since have been worried that I'm walking around with this disorder and don't know it, because, you know, the crazy don't know they're crazy.

I'm going to be seeing a neurofeedback therapist in the next few weeks (as soon as I get word on the status of my health insurance review) and I think I'm going to bring this up with her. On one hand, Estes and Marion Woodman explain my rage in a way that makes perfect sense, and stuff I've read on PTSD as well as in relation to being in partnership with a sex addict also explains the rage AND the remedy, still...

There's more work to do. This growth and recovery thing is kind of exhausting.

The Light Goes Out

It's getting downright eerie how every time I open WWRWW there is right away a sentence in the section I'm on that perfectly describes and explains where I am in the present.

Yesterday I was feeling like I had lost my footing. That the progress I was feeling had disappeared. I tentatively posited that it may be related to Roi's stepping up in his recovery. I didn't ask him to do this, he did it on his own, but I'm sure that my moving toward leaving helped prompt it. Either way, I was intuiting that this action on his part was not jiving well with my progress. It would suggest some hope that he'll find genuine sobriety and become a better person -- that the lying might stop, the acting out, the selfish behaviors. 

His amping up on recovery was coinciding with my amping up on "seeing the truth" for what it was, but his new actions changed the truth I was seeing and interrupted my being able to process my feelings about it. 

Last night before bed I picked up WWRWW where I had left off and two pages in, this: 
Women who try to make their deeper feelings invisible are deadening themselves. The light goes out. It is a painful form of suspended animation. 
Precisely describes how I'm feeling and why. My deeper feelings about Roi involve hurt and the wrong-doings that led to that hurt. He was my outer predator, but I hadn't been willing to fully face that before because I kept holding on to hope. When I washed the veils of hope away, entered the Killing Room, and saw the carnage for what it was, I was building the psychic energy required to fight back, to save myself. Roi's new dedication to wellness introduces hope again and I don't want it right now. But because it is there, I've suppressed everything again, and now hang out in the dead zone, painfully suspended. 

What next, is the question. 

I must go back to the Killing Room and find my own bones, collect them up, and move them to safety.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Marion Woodman on Rage

Thanks to Jen for introducing me to Marion Woodman.

Dead Zone and Why Do I Open My Big Fat Mouth?

It's been a tough few days. For some reason I'm losing my footing. It could be the days on end of rain which never works well for me. But if lack of sunshine were the only thing the solutions would be simple.

For months I've been becoming more and more dysfunctional in my work, but these last few weeks I have been borderline non-functional. Last week I clocked zero hours. For someone who wants financial freedom this is counter-intuitive self-sabotage. At the same time, my work is with him and for him. I can't separate it in my head. Still, that doesn't explain it fully because I have my own little side gig and that has been suffering too. I can do nothing but a few chores and read and write, mostly on this topic though I'm doing writing elsewhere that is unrelated. What work I do get done is forced and painful. One email to a client and I feel impossibly exhausted and drained. 

That "dead zone" that Estes talks about in WWRWW -- it's like I entered the killing room, saw what I needed to see there, but when I came out I got stuck in the dead zone around it. A place that is totally without light, without sound, without feeling. There is nothing to get hold of here. 

Meanwhile, Roi has stepped up his recovery to a meeting a day, working with his sponsor, and participating in a daily email group for sex addicts. I see visible changes, and to be honest I think this may be contributing to my having fallen into the dead zone. I don't want hope right now. Not now.

On a different, but always related topic, Kyd has come to stay for a few days. When he's here his girlfriend is often here too, and I get to see them interact, and I'm becoming increasingly disturbed by what I see. Nothing horrible, but an emergent pattern. They rarely fight, and have never fought in my presence. Mostly they talk, wrestle, play, watch movies, and joke around. It's the joking that's bothering me. Kyd tends toward those "jokes" that are semi-insulting. The kind of jokes you find in emotionally abusive relationships. I see no other evidence of overt emotional abuse. Other than the joking he treats her kindly, compliments her, listens to her, and generally obviously cares about her a great deal. 

But this need to poke with barbs wrapped in the scapegoat of a "joke" is problematic for me. It means that he needs to make sure she stays attached to him because he is the one who will define her. Even compliments, if this is the dynamic, are part of this. He often talks about how she says he treats her better than any boyfriend she's had, or how he supports her and encourages her. He wants to secure himself as her everything, he wants to secure himself by defining her. 

I tried to talk to him about it. Told him that I see that sometimes she doesn't always seem to like his "kidding around" and I gave him a recent example. He explained it was because she's a Pisces and this means she sometimes takes things too personally. WTF? 

It didn't go well after that and perhaps I should've known better. We're now giving each other a wide berth while we let the words between us settle. When he rejected wholesale my suggesting this was mildly emotionally abusive, I dug my heels in, which in turn prompted him to do the same. Nothing was accomplished.

I have no idea what to do about it, so I guess I do nothing. 

Monday, May 16, 2011

The Animal Groom

I lied. Reading WWRW always ends up giving me something to say. 

If you've been reading here you'll recall that I have dreams/nightmares with the continuing theme of "what it is is not what it seems". 

Here is what the book gave me tonight: 
The animal groom character is a marker in the psyche, symbolizing a malevolent thing disguised as a benevolent thing. This or some proximate characterization is always present when a woman carries naive presentments about something or someone. When a woman is attempting to avoid the facts of her own devastations, her night dreams will shout warnings to her...
Over the years, I've seen many women's dreams with this animal groom feature or this things-are-not-as-nice-as-they-seem aura. 
If this continues I will have to declare this book as the best recovery book I've read.

Nothing Much

I'm always a little flabbergasted when the need to write isn't overwhelming me since it seems to be my natural orientation generally, not just here. But there it is. 

I filled out a blogger form to let them know they lost one of my posts, possibly one of my best posts. There wasn't a space to tell them that I'll probably never forgive them. What a PR nightmare, but Google is a little too big for their britches so coming down a notch or two for a few days probably can't hurt. 

See how I'm babbling about Google? Sigh. Sorry it's not more compelling folks. I have lots of thoughts, they just don't feel like coming out on the page right now. Not for any dark reason, I think my mind just wants a little rest is all. Away from here I've been doing a lot of other writing including some heavy journaling as part of a project. 

I'm off to read another chapter of Women Who Run with the Wolves. If I could put the thing in a blender and drink it, I so would.

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Black Secrets

Sometimes coincidences feel a lot more like direct messages from the Universe. Earlier today I commented on a post and expressed the importance of proper understanding of the effects of sex addiction on the partner. I talked about, in particular, the toxicity to my soul of keeping his secrets. You'll notice I've not talked even here of specifics. 

(For anyone's imagination that might go there, no it doesn't involve minors or violence.) 

Later I picked up Women Who Run with the Wolves again and opened to the page with the heading, "Secrets as Slayers". Yeah. 

Here's an excerpt:
This problem of secret stories surrounded by shame is that they cut a woman off from her instinctive nature, which is n the main, joyous and free. When there is a black secret in the psyche, a woman can go nowhere near it, and in fact protects herself from coming into contact with anything that will remind her of it or cause her already chronic pain to crest to an even more intense level. 
This defensive maneuver is common, and, as in the aftereffects of trauma, secretly influences women's choices in what she will or will not undertake in the outer world: which books, films, or events she will or will not involve herself with; what she will or won't laugh about; and what interests she gives herself to. In this sense, there is entrapment of the wild nature, which should be free to do, be, look into whatever it likes.
And then:
The keeping of secrets cuts a woman off from those who would give her love, succor, and protection. It causes her to carry the burden of grief and fear all by herself, and sometimes for an entire group, whether family or culture. Further, as Jung said, keeping secrets cuts us off from the unconscious. Where there is a shaming secret, there is always a dead zone in the woman's psyche, a place that does not feel or respond properly to her continuing emotional life events or to the emotional life events of others.
The dead zone is greatly protected. It is a place of endless doors and walls, each locked with twenty locks, and the homunculi, the little creatures in women's dreams, are always busy building more doors, more dams, more security, lest the secret escape.
The secret always finds its way out, if not in direct words, then somatically, and most often not in a way that it can be dealt with and helped in a straightforward manner. So what does the woman do when she finds the secret leaking out? She runs after it with great expenditure of energy. She beats, bundles, and burrows it back down into the dead zone again, and calls her homunculi -- the inner guardians and ego defenders -- to build more doors, more walls. The woman leans against her latest psychic tomb, sweating blood and breathing like a locomotive. A woman who carries a secret is an exhausted woman. 
I am breathless.


Saturday, May 14, 2011

Not Cool, Just Sayin'

Just so you know Blogger, I'm still sulking that my Rotten Meat post has vaporized into the ether-space.

Thursday, May 12, 2011


No, not of the 12 kind variety. 

I searched online today for apartments and jobs. The prospects are mostly grim. I live in an area high on cost of living, and low on average salary. This is mainly due to the region being home to several college and universities so the professor salaries push the real estate costs up, and the abundance of students means that most jobs are in the service industry and low-paying. I did submit my resume to one promising looking position. 

So, yeah. By leaving I will be increasing my expenses three-fold and likely cutting my salary in equal measure. My original plan was to stay until Lexie had transferred to a 4-year college at which time I would be able to relocate out of the area. But as I face the truth I simply cannot stand being here. Every cell in my body is ready to take flight.

Meanwhile, the "transition" for Roi will leave barely a hair out of place. He keeps his home, his business, his income, and all stability. He inflicts pain and feels none.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Dreams and Glorious Relief

This morning before I woke I had a long, rich dream. I was in a foreign land, starting my life over. I spent most of my time in an open market square filled with colorful people and things and sounds. I smiled a lot. I felt as if I were floating on a serene cloud taking it all in. 

In the dream I was attending classes at a college. In the hallway one day I ran into a man and felt an instant attraction. He was unlike anyone I had previously been attracted to, but there it was. He was a medical student, and when we crossed paths for the first time he was wearing scrubs. His dirty-blond hair was just this side of shaggy, the mark of someone whose work was more important than his fashion. His aura was rugged and buoyant. 

We spent the next couple of days attached at the hip when not in classes, enjoying each other immensely, though no physical intimacy passed between us except for the way our heads would touch, or our hips would bounce off the other's as we walked along laughing and talking. 

We shared one class, and I assumed we would sit together, but instead I saw him at the front of the class sitting with another woman, and what's more, he seemed as intimately close to her as he had been with me these last days. Their heads touched as they talked and laughed. 

I tried to leave the class room, but realized I couldn't. 

The dream ended there, and it's not terribly shocking is it? Another dream about "what it seems is not what it is". Except I woke up feeling calm. My mind had unclenched. And it was glorious! 

Though this dream runs along a recurring theme of duplicity, there was something different. I didn't feel so overwhelmingly shocked at this man's duplicity so much as I felt an "oh". Simple as that. It is the same message of duplicity, but with a slightly different message and I can't help but feel that my painful work has indeed freed my deeper inner instincts to once again do their job properly. They are pulsing strong, taking the reins, and I am being returned to my own center.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

"It's Bad"

Two "take-in" appointments today. One with the therapist Roi made an appointment with. I could see that she wasn't sure she could help us. I could see that what she saw was as bad as I think it is.

Then the dentist. Through this whole mess my health insurance has been spotty, and I haven't been to the dentist in three years as a result. Things are in bad shape, and my dental coverage is limited. It won't cover the root canal I'm going to need or the three other fillings.

The Universe keeps sending me the same message, and I am listening.

I can feel that my mind is "preparing the ground" to leave, to clean up this mess, to heal, and to put it behind me. To disentangle, to find my voice and use it. I'm a little impatient that the "action" part isn't quite there yet. I want to feel motivated to start packing boxes, look for a little place, work to save the money, and look for another job, but it isn't there yet. 

And yet I know that the inner work that's happening, a force all its own, is indeed preparing the ground, and I trust it.

Monday, May 9, 2011

Trigger Fest

Nowhere else to dump this. 

After the nightmares last night, I woke up with a cold. HALT should really be HALTS to include sickness.  

So I'm sick and feeling the blah of a cold and Roi informs me he's going to get a massage because his back is hurting after helping a family member move out of her dorm. Most relationships? Big deal. Of course go and get a massage so you can feel better. 

Relationship afflicted by sex addiction? Partner who has a history with "erotic massage"? TRIGGER. 

I know the place he's going and I know it's reputable and holistic, not seedy. But STILL. Trigger. Just because they're professional doesn't mean Roi will be. Doesn't mean he won't be naked under a towel with a woman's hands all over his body. Doesn't mean he won't let the towel slip or be triggered himself. Doesn't mean he'll talk to me about it, or call his sponsor. Doesn't mean this won't set off his acting out. 

The whole week has been filled with triggers, and I've mostly been managing them reasonably well if you count that I've showered, worked, spent time with my children on Mother's Day, and haven't been picking fights with Roi. But they're there and they're building. His frequent absences all week, his wearing shorts (yes, it's warm -- so what?), his locking his computer or taking it with him, his utter lack of talking to me about what IS going on, that it's Spring coming on Summer and the beaches are opening.

All things in my life that were once non-issues or even things to celebrate and be happy about. Before my mind was hijacked. 

There are no easy solutions to dealing with these triggers. I'll meditate and breathe and probably give myself a warm bath with a good book, but I can't help seeing all of that effort as frankly, unfair. I did not turn sunshine and shorts and massages into nightmares.

Killer Cows

Last night I had two nightmares.

In the first I was on a farm, and naturally there were a lot of cows. By day they were the sweet, slow-moving, dull-witted creatures we know. At night their eyes glowed red and they were determined to take my life. They were swift, cunning, and murderous. 

It sounds comical, I'll admit, but the meaning is obvious. 

In the second dream I was standing at a bus stop in the city with Roi. I thought he was right behind me, so when someone was pressed up against the back of me inhaling the scent of my hair, I thought it was him. I moved to pull away and as I felt a strong hand slip over my mouth, and a strange voice in my ear, I knew it wasn't Roi. He pulled me out of the line and was attempting a sexual assault right there on the street. I could see Roi who had fallen behind in the line because he was distracted by his trance-like staring at another woman in a short skirt. He clearly had an erection. He was also clearly oblivious to my attack happening just feet away. 

Not so comical, but the meaning is again clear.

Sunday, May 8, 2011

To the Hurting Mothers

Mother's Day is officially over, but I want to send this message anyway.

To the mothers that had to smile through the pain this Mother's Day, I bow down to you with the deepest respect and love. I know many of you here who are mothers, but live with the pain of your partner's sexual addiction, OR as the mother of an addict. 

For you I wish soothing salves and love. Be well. 

Saturday, May 7, 2011

Inner and Outer Wrongs

Several years ago I was in a car accident that was without a doubt the fault of the other driver. He crossed my lane of traffic right in front of me without warning. I ended up with a back injury that radically altered my day to day life for close to a year. Thankfully I healed fully under the careful care of a Network Chiropractor who was also a Buddhist nun. 

When I was able to drive again, I noticed an unexpected impatience with other drivers' careless and thoughtless behaviors on the road. If someone was going too slow, or made an honest mistake, I was as patient as I had ever been (for the most part), but if someone didn't use their blinker AND they were driving aggressively, an anger would surge through me. 

The driver who had injured me had been both careless and aggressive. I know this because of his behavior on the road, but also because after the accident he tried to blame-shift the accident to me, and as I logically rejected each of his attempts to blame me, he would change his story, looming over me and getting louder. He was not only refusing to be held accountable, he was trying to throw me under a bus in order to do it.

I've not had success in quelling the surges of anger when someone on the road with me is driving like a jack-ass, but I've learned to recover myself more quickly, and I've realized that my anger is justified but I don't want it to extend more generally so I work to keep it in perspective. 

I get angry now at Roi a lot for what might look to someone like minor issues, and the anger flashes before I can contain it. But I've investigated this anger and it is clear that it is stemming from his careless and aggressive behaviors and his bullying of me to circumvent his accountability. Though his "aggressiveness" is often passive-aggressive, it is still aggressive.

We have two cars and three people in the house who might need them at any given time. Roi also has a motorcycle, so he is the only person in the house with two options. Lexie needs a car the most to get to her classes, and because she's a teenager and always has "places to go" and "people to see". Two days ago Roi had the second car for the entire day and I was effectively stranded at home. He'll be taking the car for the entire day tomorrow as well (and won't be here for Mother's Day, but that's another issue). As of last night he told me he would be spending the entire day today working at home to make up for lost time.

Per the usual, he came downstairs clearly ready to walk out the door without telling me where he was going OR asking me if I needed the car. When I told him I needed the car in an hour, he got huffy about it. He came back a couple minutes later and said, "Are you ACTUALLY going to leave at 11:30?", adding unnecessary emphasis on certain words. The words were a question, the tone an accusation. 

When I bristled, he said, "I didn't think it would hurt to ask."

I bristled more, angry at his tone and veiled accusation, and furthermore the attempt to not own the accusation for what it was. Is is part of a bigger pattern of his selfishness, his lack of care, his dismissal of my needs as important, and passive-aggressive bullying to get what he wants without being held accountable, and I've grown impatient with it. My anger flares and I shine a light on what is true and real rather than accepting his skewed coloring of the situations.

I describe this not to make excuses for my own behavior, but to examine what is wrong in my "inner and outer" world, and to find balance and honest "seeing". My anger is a clue to two things: that there is something wrong with my outer world (Roi's disrespectful and unkind behavior) and my inner world (my pattern of playing "nice" and expecting others to reciprocate and getting angry when they don't meet my expectations). 

So, JUST FOR TODAY, I'm going to pay attention to my real needs and state what I need clearly and let the rest go. 

As always, tomorrow can suck it.

Injury to Instinct

Another quote from Women Who Run With the Wolves:

Injury to instinct cannot be underestimated as the root of the issue when women are acting mad, are possessed by obsession, or when they are stuck in less malignant but nevertheless destructive patterns. The repair of injured instinct begins with acknowledging that a capture has taken place, that a soul-famine has followed, that usual boundaries of insight and protection have been disturbed. The process that caused a woman’s capture and the ensuing famine has to be reversed.

Friday, May 6, 2011

"These Sentences are How I Solve the Problem of Myself"

I borrowed that title from a line in this sonnet

As I revisit my writing in journals, here, and elsewhere, I see that I often revisit the "problem of Roi", which ultimately is the "problem of myself". 

In the codependent model, obsessing on the behavior of the addict is a sign of one's sickness. In the trauma model, and from my own experience, my visits to Roi's behavior is an attempt to get an accurate picture of what I'm truly dealing with. Especially given that I'm living and working with him. 

What he tells me paints a very different picture from what I see with my own eyes, and yet if I don't look with my own eyes, I begin to believe Roi's words. The brain is just wired like that. And this is dangerous to my well-being not because of the lies, which are bad enough in their own right, but because in order to protect his lies he also uses several crazy-making tactics that are deeply harmful to my well-being. 

Previous to now I would make a discovery, there would be a blow up, and then I would try to forget. In the interims between my checking up on the truth of matters, I would forget, but if Roi was acting out it meant he was also mind-fucking me in some way. Thus, my not being privy to or aware of his behaviors doesn't mean I wasn't subject to his other "abuses" which are subtle and complex. 

Gathering it all up and pasting the pieces together to get a full picture has been painful, rusty razor blades in the stomach painful, but it is also peeling away all the levels of deception and crazy and I feel my inner power growing stronger and grounding itself in the process.

These two passage from Women Who Run With the Wolves explain well what I've been through, and the path now: 

"The normalizing of the abnormal even when there is clear evidence that it is to one's own detriment to do so applies to all battering of the physical, emotional, creative, spiritual, and instinctive natures. Women face this issue any time they are stunned into doing anything less than defending their soul-lives from invasive projections, cultural, psychic, or otherwise."

"Yet, when one sees and senses thusly, then one has to work to do something about what one sees. To possess good intuition, goodly power, causes work. It causes work firstly in the watching and comprehending of negative forces and imbalances both inward and outward. Secondly, it causes striving in the gathering up of will in order to do something about what one sees, be it for good, for balance, or to allow something to die."

Different Shades

Roi lies, as most addicts do. No surprise there. What IS surprising is the depth and the persistent clinging to those lies, particularly for someone who goes to regular meetings (1-4 times a week), has a sponsor, and has been in "recovery" for some 7 years.

Toward the end of April, as you who read this tiny corner of the interwebs will remember, I went away for the day to spend time with family. I had invited Roi but he claimed he had too much work to do. He did in fact do this work, but a few days later when I got the report from his accountability software I learned he had viewed photos of a woman in a bikini. 

As I said then, in most relationships this would have been no big whoop, but it was highly triggering for me. 

When I was angry about it, his response was to say, "it wasn't porn", and "is your psychological life and all peace dependent on me?". 

A week or so later he left his phone downstairs when he went to bed, and while I wasn't in "scanning" mode, it was there, so I checked his internet browsing history and found a significant amount of porn from right around the same time he had viewed the bikini photos. 

Then later still I found he had downloaded videos from a site on an office computer, again, in the same time span. 

"It wasn't porn" was a lie in that it was a half-truth, or a skewed truth. No, bikini photos aren't porn, but he knew full well he had used two other devices to view and download porn. And his statement, "is your psychological life and all peace dependent on me?" was a cruel statement meant to make me feel bad while he was knowingly withholding the truth. 

I'm not an expert, but does this sound like someone in "recovery"?

Thursday, May 5, 2011

The Other One

I've been quite focused on dealing with Roi's addictions lately, and if you visit because you're looking for news on Kyd, here's a check in. 

I don't write about Kyd as often for a lot of reasons. He's my child, so I feel protective of how he's viewed here. I want the world to love him as much as I do. Also, I don't know a lot about what's going on in his day to day life now that he's not living at home. And finally, thank the Universe, there hasn't been a major event in a while. 

The worry is less, but it's still there, and indeed there have been some recent triggers. Kyd has a girlfriend, and she's pretty sweet, if not a little flaky. They seem to get on well, and the longer they're together the louder those worry wasps in my head start to buzz. Closer bonding means deeper heart-break if anything goes wrong. Historically Kyd doesn't handle major change well. We haven't yet seen how he would handle  the major change of a break-up, an event that is deeply painful and difficult for the most stable of minds.

He also gave me the news that he's likely to get a job with the girlfriend's father. I don't know a thing about this man, but another weakness for Kyd is his relationship to male authority figures. You can see how my imagination sees a perfect storm brewing here. 

Most difficult of all is that if he gets this job, he'll be wanting to move home temporarily. A scenario as sticky as a bucket of cold honey. This is where the line between "supporting" and "enabling" gets real blurry, and I'm not much in the mood for blurry anymore. I want to support his efforts, but I can't make that decision alone. Lexie wouldn't feel comfortable with it, but might cave under his pleas and assurances of adherence to whatever rules and boundaries we'll need. Roi, on the other hand, harbors unspoken and unexplained resentments toward Kyd. It seeps out sideways whenever Kyd visits, but Roi says there's not a problem.

I see a rock and a hard place up ahead.

For now, Kyd is getting ready for his girlfriend's senior prom this weekend. We've picked out a gorgeous tuxedo and I'm going to shelve everything else as I admire my handsome son and wear what I expect will be an ear-to-ear grin.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

"Your Sexually Addicted Spouse"

This book came in the mail yesterday. It wasn't a surprise - I ordered it. "Your Sexually Addicted Spouse" is written by Barbara Steffens and Marsha Means and based on research Barbara did on disclosure as trauma. 

If I could copy the whole book right here I would, because simply quoting it is not enough. Before this blog I frequented forums, and I went to Al-Anon and S-Anon meetings, and I found myself repeating over and over that what I was feeling didn't feel at all like the symptoms of codependence or co-addiction. After all, I had lived through being married to a binge drinker and my own son had battled with his alcohol/drug demons so I had experience with addiction before. 

I suffered other various abuses and abandonments in my lifetime, but nothing shook me or hijacked my life so much as being in partnership with a sex addict. 

I tried to make myself believe in the codependent/co-addict model because it was the only model there was. Yet I would find myself questioning the analogies and -isms during meetings. Most especially at Al-Anon which I had to attend before there was an S-Anon meeting in my area. Eventually I felt like a broken record and I felt the disapproving stares as I would repeat my "problem" with the codependent/co-addiction party-line. 

Sure I had a pattern of getting into relationships with addicts. Sure, it must mean something. Sure I've got my own "issues". For sure I wasn't at the top of my game when I met Roi and got involved having already been weakened by the then two years or so of wrestling with Kyd's behaviors.

But the pain I was feeling was distinctly different than anything I had previously experienced. It was so shearing, so ever-present, and it was so radically altering my own behaviors and ability to function that I knew in my heart I was experiencing something wholly different from "codependence". 

Barbara and Marsha are working diligently to give voice to the trauma that partners of sex addicts experience, and I am so deeply, deeply grateful that there are not proper words to express it.

Monday, May 2, 2011

Sad, Just so Sad

Tonight I am sad. 

I think that's a good thing as far as healing goes. It means I'm not angry which is my default defense position. 

I started reading "Your Sexually Addicted Spouse" which takes the behavior of the sex addict's spouse/partner and shines the light of trauma on it. It is the FIRST thing I've read that I feel comfortable with. I finally feel validated and sane. 

Roi went to a meeting which was triggering for me. Not that he went to a meeting, but how we went about it. He also did two other things since yesterday that were highly triggering, and I decided to just address it all head on. Not let it stew and fester because I know he'll just lie, minimize, blame-shift, etc. Aaaaand, predictably, that's just what he did. 

Then I unleashed. I mean I just unleashed and didn't stop for three hours. At first it was just anger and arguing, and then I just said everything I was feeling and thinking, and everything I knew, and all the evidence I was looking at, and what it all meant to me. I cried and paced and chain-smoked and it just kept coming. 

He says he's calling a therapist tomorrow. I didn't express whether or not I would go but I will probably go. Not to save the relationship, but because there's a momentum now that I can't stop. A freight train of hurt hurtling right through me and all I can do is ride it. 

He's gone upstairs to bed, exhausted and claiming to recognize what all this has done to me and that he has a demon inside him. I don't particularly care what he feels. I'm not capable of that anymore. But sitting here now in the dark I feel an overwhelming sadness and grief. The trajectory of my life was radically altered and I'm left in my own body but not feeling at all myself. 

I'm sad that all my friends who went to the same kick-ass liberal women's college I went to are keeping true to their values and I'm not. 

I'm sad that I have a career I never wanted. 

I'm sad that I can't seem to pull it together. 

I'm sad that I keep forgetting appointments because I'm so overtaken with recurring thoughts. 

I'm sad that I'm not myself. 

I'm sad that I can't remember myself. 

I'm sad that I've been so deeply hurt and worry that I will never heal. 

There are so many things to be sad about it's overwhelming. I'm exhausted and hollow. 

Sunday, May 1, 2011

in which the real pain begins

It's been an interesting few days. After deciding to write a book, I promptly decided to NOT write a book, and then decided that no, I should really write this book but maybe I won't publish it. Then again, maybe I will. 

Such has been my mind since last Thursday. 

I also decided that I think the Universe sending me one of Roi's booty-girls was actually a reminder that I was on the right track. As if she was forcing me to look this whole ugly thing in the face over and over again and not forget about it for too long lest I retreat to denial and minimizing myself. Lest I cave to Roi's sorrowful shuffling around the house.

WHICH, I did. Sort of. I talked to him and then we watched a movie together. I was about to beat myself up over the whole thing when it occurred to me that it takes quite a bit of painful effort to remain completely blocked against someone you work and live with. I didn't cave, I just didn't feel like keeping my shoulder up against the door. I needed a rest from that. 

He offered to go to a therapist with me. I didn't respond. It's too late. 

I spent several hours gathering together all the scattered information and journal entries I've kept over the last 4 and a half years. Emails, forums, written journals (scattered throughout 4-5 notebooks), and computer documents. It's a lot of stuff, and revisiting some of it was heart-shreddingly painful. No wonder our brains minimize stuff, forget, deny, etc. I was reliving several traumas over again and I had to walk away from it many times, catch my breath, scream into a pillow, meditate, take a walk -- anything to keep my molecules from flying apart as they seemed to be threatening. 

And I've only just begun. I've only just located and gathered, but now I have to put it all into one document with dates to use as a reference for writing. 

I am in a terrible state of confusion about what I mean to do with this writing. All I know is that the drive for it is out of my control at the moment.