Wednesday, August 31, 2011

suffocating mud

Lately I've taken to hostility with Roi. It has a different flavor than anger or resentment, though one could see how the latter could manifest as the former. This is less about, "you hurt me", or "why can't you just be well?", or "I want my amends dammit", and more about, "get the fuck out of my way or I will hurt you". 

Roi sober is better than Roi not sober, but not by much. He's oblivious of his own feelings, completely disconnected between what he's feeling and what comes out of it. He exhausts me. Every conversation is loaded, and even if I let go of 99 out of 100, it takes work to let go. 

Whatever "recovery" I have under my belt so far is still not enough to stop the relentless draining throughout the day, so I walk into another room when he comes in, take long baths to avoid conversations, and cut him short on just about everything. At this point I have to wonder why he would even want to try. 

This on Facebook: "You will NEVER leave where you are - until you decide where you would rather be."  Rocked me off-center and I thought, yes. I've known this is my big obstacle. Having let this relationship, this work take me so far off course of myself that I don't know at all anymore where or what is next, having no plan except, "out". Of course there's the quaint notion of putting one foot in front of the other - hardly comforting considering where that's led me. I'm aching for, needing a plan and the lack of one leaves me feeling stuck in a suffocating mud. 

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

sometimes therapy is just 'meh'

And other times you find yourself like a half-dead fish gasping for air while being gutted alive. Everything, everything, tilts on its axis and you see yourself in the world in a different way and you can scarcely believe it. 

The realizations come without warning, breaking in waves over the breast bone. It fucking hurts, like chest-cracking open-heart surgery without anesthesia. 

I knew before I went in that I was looking for the connection and interplay between multiple emotional abuses in childhood and my fucked up relationships. It seemed obvious. It seemed...simple. Of course, of course I'm somehow playing out those abuses repeatedly. It's in all the textbooks. 

Therapist decided today was the day to tickle at my random thoughts, to gently nudge here and then there, to turn me again and again to face down particular corridors and walk to their end and open the doors I found there. Doors linking past and present. 

There was my frustrating need to expend energy on getting people to give me permission to be. Why if I knew someone was wronging me and they refused to see or apologize or make it right on their own was I so determined to batter myself up against their wrong thinking repeatedly? Why expend so much of my valuable time and energy getting them to see? Why the need for their permission to feel hurt? Why the need for them to have the right view so I could move on?

All people? Or certain people, she asked. 

Certain people...people who are consistently mean to me (even if they are sometimes also nice, generous, giving). awareness...a truth is coming up and I feel like crying. 

I'm one of those people, I think. I look at Therapist with a rising shock in my eyes. "I'm repeating the abuse...I'm repeating it because I want to come up with a different ending, and I think I CAN come up with a different ending. If I can get one bully to see their error I can relax, that's what I'm thinking. It's so predictable." 

No, it's still not that obvious. There's more, and each new revelation strikes its blow, swift and precise. Therapist says nothing now, she sees she doesn't need to. 

"I was a good child, and these people, they punished me because of it. My caretakers, my peers, they wanted to make me feel awful not because I was bad, but because I was good and open-hearted." 

It's true. As a child I was a little ray of sunshine. Talkative, brave, kind, curious, sweet, sensitive, and pretty. I was stubborn as hell, but I wouldn't hurt a fly. And for whatever fucked up reasons, my caretakers and peers took it upon themselves to make me feel as bad about myself as they possibly could. Seemingly without remorse.

"What you're describing sounds like evil", Therapist said. I heard those words through the pounding rush of revelations, it barely registered, but I felt myself nod slightly through tears.

Therapist asked me if I felt any anger or rage. Yes, I have a lot of rage. "Sometimes the rage comes through because we have moments of knowing how wrong it is", she said. 

All of this. It manifests in various ways. I repeat the abuse hoping I can undo the evil this time. I take on the burdens of others hoping that kind of good will be appreciated. But instead my strength gets used, ABused. My ex-husband, when we were splitting and he couldn't bear to be alone started an affair before we were properly separated. His excuse, "you were always the strong one". 

Bottom line, I can't fix this problem from the inside. 

Sunday, August 21, 2011

i was a child

I cook a dinner of fresh ravioli topped with a sauce supplemented with fresh veggies from our visit to the farm stand yesterday. Roi is out in the driveway fixing something on his motorcycle (for some reason I find it necessary to point out that said motorcycle is NOT a Harley nor one of those new "crotch-rockets", but rather an understated classic). 

I call out to Roi from the front porch that dinner is ready and he jumps to attention and hastily puts away his tools and something in my chest squeezes and stops for a moment. Roi is hungry, of course, but he's acting eager on my account. To please me. To do something right. The world tilts and shifts suddenly and here now comes across the yard a man who is loving me in the best way he knows how what with all his damage and while this doesn't incite something I could identify as love, it does make me tender.

It's not my fault he's been wrecked in the ways he has, and I should never have been a recipient of the fall-out. And his earnest bids for love are so ill-timed and over-done they can't possibly undo the betrayals and abandonment. But watching him "hop-to", earnest and child-like, I cannot in this moment hate him as I have. The early evening sun slants down through the tall oaks and pines softly touching his shoulders, his blonde head, and I hear him saying, "I was a child once".

After dinner he invites me upstairs so he can make his amends. He delivers them matter-of-factly, pulling absently at the tuft of hair on his chest as he speaks, the two of us lying side by side on the bed. He has an action plan, he intends to carry it out. I don't look at him, but instead at our feet stacked in a row, his baritone words vibrating through the mattress across the back of my shoulders. I am neither angry at all he has omitted nor softened by his commitment. I am simply perplexed at what comes next. I'm not sure what I was expecting; I hadn't bothered to imagine this moment.

I bring up honesty and we bat at the topic philosophically for a few minutes until that dissolves and then we lay there quietly. He notices that he is developing a bald spot on the side of his leg and I cluck in empathy over the plight of aging. 

Shouldn't I be crying, I wonder. Should this be so casual? Like a couple mechanically following the routine of their day after decades of marriage. 

Saturday, August 20, 2011

I have no title for this

Today I discovered that a big honcho in my industry is on his second divorce and already on to his next girlfriend. Younger and prettier of course. Meanwhile, everyone is all abuzz over the book, "Sex at Dawn" which is essentially about all the evidence that shows how we are not meant to be a monogamous species. 

Great news for the sex addicts of the world. 

I have all kinds of jumbled confused thoughts about the subject of this book. I haven't read it, but I've read damn near every review. I can't speak intelligently on the book or the subject both because I haven't read the book and because being involved with a sex addict has completely skewed my sense of my own sexuality or what I think about sexuality in general. 

And that's been pissing me off lately. 

But here's where I am today, and understand my point of view is coming from a place of wholesale exasperation with the whole business of sex period. 

So what if there's boatloads of evidence that we're a philandering species? That women will mate with as many men as possible (evidenced, apparently, by the size of the homo sapiens penis) and that men will do the same competing to make their sperm number one. 

There's also unshakable evidence that we're a murdering, warring species. Where's the book justifying that? Do we want to read that book? 

There's also plenty of evidence that it's in our nature to eat as much food as possible and for our body to store fat, but given our modern day conditions of abundance and processed foods, should we follow our biological nature or should we try to find healthy adaptations by applying our minds to the problem?

Is the idea of bringing back a sexual free-for-all supposed to be some kind of enlightened evolution? Do we honestly think it will reduce our suffering? Are we so naive to not realize that we no longer live in conditions where this could be functional or even enjoyable? For instance, at the time in our history when we were more sexually fluid we lived in smaller groups and shared resources where the number of potential mates was limited and our survival depended on the cooperation of the entire group, not just who we were sleeping with or who sired our offspring. For instance, birth control, because without it our ancestors could only have so much sex before the tribe would run out of food.

Our ability to have sex was naturally limited. Where will the limits be what with modern transportation and the population explosion and never mind the see where I'm going with this.

I don't disagree with the evidence. I disagree that we live in conditions that make a return to our past possible and therefore it's useless to present the evidence without also offering solutions. And in the meantime, people are gleefully devouring and discussing the book in hopes it will give them free license to toss out discriminating wisdom and give in to sloppy behavior because, after all, it's in our biology. 

So go on everyone, eat until you pop, screw everything that moves, and murder anyone that encroaches on your territory. It's in your biology, so it must be right.

P.S. I'll remind you that I haven't read the book AND that I warned you I'm exasperated...just plain exhausted with the whole business of sex at the moment. Maybe I'll feel differently after I read the book.

Friday, August 19, 2011

and sunlight crashes in

Roi and I fought horrifically a few days ago. I was still coming down off the high from my week away (more on that later) (maybe) and he wanted to jump right into solving the problem of Kyd living with us and not seeming to make any moves himself to get independent.

The thing is, I agree with Roi. Kyd needs some boundaries and he needs to be accountable to us for no other reason than when people are connected to one another there's a certain amount of accountability. But I wasn't in agreement with Roi's approach which was to draw up a binding and punitive sounding contract. I objected to the tone, and the intent. He wanted my "feedback" which is code for he wanted me to agree with him so that he could feel ok with it. I didn't agree but I patiently explained my reasons and what could change in the agreement so I could get on board. I know Kyd, and I know addicts. Give them one little thing to argue over and they'll seize on it like a cat gnawing at a burr stuck in their coat. 

Each time I offered "feedback" Roi went back and rewrote the agreement, but he would do the exact opposite of what I recommended. If I said, "simplify" he added paragraphs. If I said, "explain the positives" he did, but then followed it by what he himself would get out of it. So I brought it to Therapist who chuckled softly to herself and sighed a little and then suggested that I withdraw from the whole thing completely because there was no way it was going to work. 

So like a good therapee I went home and calmly announced to Roi that I was going away for the day to think. Later I told him I shouldn't/couldn't be involved. And as he does when I try to take the sane route out he seduced me into conversation by seeming to be open to understanding what the problem was. And as I do, I took the bait and we were off to the race tracks where much hoof-pounding and whirling, choking dust clouds ensued.

It got ugly fast and ended with him concluding I was, as usual, insane and exhausting and maybe he doesn't have time for a relationship, to which I viciously responded that "fine, we'll see other people". Fine. FINE! I swept my body violently from the chair and made for the door barking over my shoulder that I was going to fuck someone else and enjoy the hell out of it. 

Ah me. 

I wish I could say my intent was only to shock and I didn't mean it, but no. My frustration at Roi's lack of amends (which he promised our therapist and me two months ago), his sexual anorexia of the last six months or so, and feeling so trapped with it all, is in fact leaving me to feel very vulnerable to the attentions of other men. It doesn't matter that I know how foolish it is. Christ, if I could act in accordance with my rational mind I wouldn't be here.

Nevertheless, it did shock Roi into a moment of clarity. And he was seemingly awed by the revelation of how damaged he is and spent a good hour speculating and explaining the root causes of his "personal defects".  It should be splendid. It should be a ray of hope. Only the words he spoke as though they were new I've heard a half-dozen times before.

Thursday, August 18, 2011


I've been too long without writing. When this happens I get overwhelmed about where to begin or how to cover it all. I get frustrated that all the beautiful or important things I wrote in my head are gone. 

I could talk about the recent Sisyphean battles with Roi or how Therapist recently said the word "narcissist" in a sentence about Roi. I could tell you about the blissful week I spent on a cushion in a shrine room surrounded by the noise of children all about. I could tell you how I quit smoking and if I had only known how much better my skin would look I might've done it much much sooner. I could tell you about some futile crushes I've developed recently (the Sensei, the tall Russian, and the goateed Matthew Broderick look-alike) and how obviously wrong and stupid it is for me to be extending any energy on such foolishness. 

But for today I'm just saying, "hello, yes I'm still here". Still here trying to crack the code of me. Still here in battle gear hacking away with a broad sword at the tangle of what's what in this relationship. Still mothering and laughing and sleeping in too late and sometimes crying and moaning on the telephone to the precious few who won't grow tired of my need to follow every thread to its end. Still kicking the shit out of a punching bag when I have the energy to. Still dancing to trashy Euro-pop and synthetic 80's tunes every time I find myself alone in the house. Still having moments of clarity and double the moments of confusion.

Still here. Still me. 

Wednesday, August 3, 2011


Not written much lately. Lost contact with that inner divine, replaced by responsibilities and the upward streams of practical life. It's annoying me.