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.


  1. Oh, honey-honey. This reads like one of my journal entries from 12-16 months ago. Being thrown under the wheels of the crazy bus (which, by the way, GENIUS phrase); "but at least *I* don't have intercourse with them" (ah, the Bill Clinton definition of sex); and perhaps worst of all, the recruiting of a clueless outsider to buttress the whole preposterous "she behaves badly too" insistence. It's just so UGLY and so made of wrong, and so hard to see even the depth of how wrong when you're up to the eyeballs in it. That you are seeing this so clearly is a HUGE achievement.

    I hug you impotently from afar. This too shall motherfucking pass.

  2. What's so fucked up and crazy though is that even now, even after all of it, when I hear him say, "well MY special SECRET unavailable to YOU or the whole story therapist thinks you're at least as big a mess as me", my mind starts doing that wondering thing. IS it me? Maybe I DO have BPD. Maybe I'm just so impossible to live with that I drove you to lie and treat me badly. Maybe I have been overreacting to this whole damn thing. After all, you didn't stick your thing in anyone else's thing. God I'm crazy.

    Bitter jokes aside...I had decided that I was going to tell "our" therapist that I'm perfectly willing to work on my stuff, whatever that might be, right after we clean up the wreckage and trauma. Because until such time, I'm just not willing to say that my anger is out of line.

  3. I've been reading you for a while now and you have been so incredibly helpful to me I can't thank you enough. Todays blog, and ones like the codependent, victim blaming, life changing for me.

    We are not perfect. No one is. But we are good people who deserve to be treated with respect, dignity and the utmost kindness. The men we invested our hearts in are sick and demented by addiction. I'm sorry to say that all the counseling in the world won't change that. The only way things can change is if our guy had a complete and total "heart" change and then made it their one and only mission in life to right the wrongs they committed. My guy isn't even close to that and I have decided to stop living in the world of what if, and focus on the world of what is. It's painful. It's not fair. We didn't deserve this.

    When we free ourselves of them, we will look back and wonder how we allowed ourselves to remain on that crazy bus, with the crazy bus driver, for so long. I'm sorry you are going through this nightmare. I'm sorry for me too. We deserve so much better than this.

    Godspeed my friend.

  4. Anonymous, thank you for commenting. In my early days of discovery, it was all so confusing. What was I looking at? I didn't even know. There were a few bloggers then whose writing helped me tremendously -- offered me a lifeline so that I knew I wasn't alone. Some of those women are now real life friends, and I am ever so grateful for them.

    Part of why I blog is for me, to tell MY truth in a space that is mine, to open up my voice and let it out. But I also tell that truth for others because I know there are many others out there who are struggling to figure this out.

    I wish you well on the journey, and please come back and comment. Share your thoughts.