Facing the Fears

I need to stop avoiding. I’ve been super busy lately, and I think I’ve been using it as an excuse to avoid facing my feelings. I know facing them makes life so much better (not always easier, but better), but it is just so hard.

Sometimes I am afraid of what I will see. What I will learn about myself. Because what I learn could completely throw me. To be honest, there are still some questions I have written down that I’m  not ready to ask myself, because I’m just not ready for what I might see in the answer.

But I can’t avoid everything I’m feeling. I know that not every answer is going to be so hard to face. I know that some answers will bring relief. But I have seen so many things on my journey that have torn at my soul and ripped at my heart, that it is so hard to face the questions, even if they might be easy.

But I know that if I ignore the questions and the feelings and just let them fester that they will become a void that threatens to swallow my life. And I don’t want to go through that again.

I don’t want that.

It’s strange to realize (and I didn’t realize until right now) that I am more scared of having my life taken over by the PTSD than I am of fighting it. Of facing those fears.

And for some reason that makes me feel strong.

I’ve been fighting tears all day, but now I don’t feel weak letting them fall. Because now it’s not the PTSD scaring me into crying. It’s me choosing to stand and  face the feelings that I’m afraid of instead of the PTSD chasing me down and making me Its victim.

It’s me calling the shots. It’s me taking the control.

Yes, it’s going to be hard to face these emotions, but I’m not letting them make me a victim.

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Thinking about Work

One thing I’ve been thinking a lot about lately is work. I left my last job in October of 2011 because my PTSD had gotten so severe (now that I think of it, I think I was in a ‘self-neglect’ phase) that I was almost suicidal.

My job had started off really well. I was a bookseller at Half-Price Books and I was really loving it for the first few months. For the first time I had a full time job that I was enjoying and I was even making friends. My boss really seemed to like me and she and the other managers had been giving me good reviews. I was highly optimistic about my future there.

I’m not exactly sure what went wrong or when. We were dealing with a ton during that time. Rob had just been diagnosed with bi-polar disorder and we were adjusting to the new life that comes with that diagnosis. In addition to having to learn to manage the bi-polar, Rob was also taking full-time classes AND working full time. I was trying to help Rob as best as I could adjust and was helping him with his classes to lighten his load. With both of us working full time we hardly ever saw each other, especially because we often ended up working opposite shifts or having different days off. Also, we moved in July and in August my parents said they couldn’t take care of my dog anymore so he needed to come live with us, but a few days after him getting here the apartment people told us he wasn’t allowed so I had to make hurried arrangements to move him back to my parents house and pay for them to care for him. Oh, and also sometime during all that we had to battle fleas.

So I slowly started slipping into my ‘self-neglect’ phase, but I was trying so hard to fight it. I started seeing Sheila every week and that seemed to help for a while, but I guess not enough. My boss-Ginny- started treating me oddly. She switched my schedule, along with a few other workers, around to shifts that she knew we didn’t want. She stopped talking to me in the break room. Anytime I spoke to her she was curt and seemed irritated with me. I had no idea what was going on. I tried to give her space and just do my work. Then she started criticizing everything I did. When a customer was rude she scolded me for not being a better employee, even when the same customer had given several other employees problems just moments before. Things like that just kept happening. And I had no idea why.

I asked some of my co-workers who I was (am) friends with, and they said that Ginny just did that sometimes. She just seemed to go through stages where she tried to get rid of people and to just hang in there, she would stop eventually. That it had happened to them.

But it hurt, I felt like I was being singled out for no reason. I felt bullied. One day she called me into her office and said that my attendance had been poor and if I called in again I would be put on probation (oh, I forgot to mention that during this time my migraines were changing and I was being heavily monitored by my doctor, and my grandmother had been suddenly admitted to the hospital for heart failure and was not expected to make it through the night so I rushed to see her. Surprisingly she is still alive today.) I really think that conversation was the final straw for me. I went on my lunch break and cried hysterically in my car for the entire hour. I felt awful. I knew that my attendance wasn’t exemplary and I needed to do better, but the PTSD immediately made me feel trapped. I just wanted to do my job, but every second was a struggle.

I fought through the next week, minute to minute, crying most of the day even while working. Trying desperately to hide it from my co-workers and the customers. Trying desperately to shove my feelings down. But they just got worse. Every day I walked into the store I felt more like a caged animal, starting to go insane, wanting to scream and tear at the bars. One night I talked to Rob and told him how bad it had gotten. I had been keeping a lot from him, especially about Ginny’s treatment of me, because I didn’t want to say it out loud. I didn’t want to admit how bad it was. But I couldn’t handle it anymore. So I told him I needed to quit. I didn’t want to, but I needed to. I finally got my courage up to tell Rob how broken I was and that I had let it get too bad. So bad that I needed to leave my job. That I was sorry, that I wanted to fix it, but I felt the only course of action was to quit and regroup.

He listened to me. He asked if he could do anything to help. He was supportive but I could tell he was antsy about me quitting. Later that night I came downstairs to see him crying. It felt like I had been stabbed. I felt like I had let him down. I knew that I had made a mistake. I knew I shouldn’t have let things get as bad as they had, that I should have said something sooner, but it was too late and I had to deal with things as they were. And I knew he was worried about money. But I couldn’t go back. But I couldn’t hurt him either.

I hugged him and told him I was sorry. That I would make it work. To forget what I had said. And I tried to bury it. To push it down.

And the next day I went to work.

I cried most of the day in the back room while working with the stock. I had to take a Lorazepam just to walk into the store, then another one at lunch. I think I took another 1 or maybe 2 during the day too. I know it was a ridiculous amount of medicine. And I was still on the verge of a panic attack the entire day.

After work I dropped something off to Rob at his work and I mentioned to him again that I needed to quit my job. I told him my day was awful and I couldn’t do it anymore. I don’t remember what he said but the gist was that we couldn’t swing it. I nodded and as I started to drive away I burst into tears. When I got home I took off my work clothes and threw them on the floor by the door. I wanted to be as far from my job as possible. In my underwear, I went upstairs and crawled into bed where I sobbed, literally sobbed, until I got a text. And then another.

They were from Sheila and my mom. I guess Rob had seen my face as I drove away, because he immediately got in touch with them, letting them know he was worried about me and that they should contact me. It was good he did. I wasn’t planning anything, but I felt so trapped. I didn’t feel as if I had a way out of my life. I texted with Sheila and talked to my mom, and when Rob got home we decided that quitting Half-Price was the right thing. I called the next morning and quit. My mom came up and returned my name badge so I didn’t have to go to the store, and I spent the day crying and trying to pull myself together.

That was my last job. I had thought that it would be impossible to keep a job with the PTSD, that eventually they would all make me feel trapped. But now I have the possibility of a future without PTSD. I could have a job. But I’m still scared. I know that some (most?) of that is residual from Half-Price.

Sheila and Lori have suggested taking the job thing in little steps. One step that I thought of is to make a list of things that I want from a job. Here is what I have so far.

My Job Should

  1. have a greater purpose than money
  2. not fill more time than my time with Robby
  3. still allow me to go to church

Basically, I want a job that means something. I don’t want a job just to have a job. I’ve worked at Kroger and Walmart just to earn money and it didn’t work out. I want to go to work each day and feel that what I do is important and makes a positive impact on the world. I would love to teach somewhere.

The second requirement is harder to explain. I don’t mind working. Rob already works 40hrs a week, so I don’t see him then anyways. I just don’t want to work opposite hours of him all the time because then we would never see each other and our relationship would suffer. Ideally, I would only work 1-2 shifts opposite him.

Finally, I want to be able to attend church. If not every week, then at least most weeks. Church is very important to me and I love not only going, but teaching there as well. I don’t want to lose that from my life. I think it is something I really need.

I don’t think my list should be too hard to fulfil, and I hope that it helps me find the right job. Because I do want to work. I just want to find the right work.

Broken Now Instead of Destroyed Later

Right after losing Jamie, I talked to (and yelled at) God a lot about why He took our baby from us. I knew he had a reason, but for the life of me I didn’t understand, and I didn’t agree. Every one I spoke to about this said the same thing, that ‘someday’ we would understand. But I felt so betrayed by God. How could He do this to us? What possible reason could He have for taking away our child? Were we being punished? Had we done something to deserve this pain? For months on end we talked and prayed, questioned and cried. Every time a person said ‘someday’ it felt as though a bitter knife was driven a little deeper into my heart. I blamed myself for being a bad mother, I blamed God for being unfair. I hated myself and I especially hated every pregnant woman I saw. And I still miss Jamie. I would still give anything to hold Jamie in my arms, to kiss that little face. I still wish that things had turned out differently. But I think we’ve reached ‘someday’.

When Rob and I went through our rough patch in August, we had a lot of heart to hearts, and one of the things we talked about most was Jamie. We both agreed that we never really processed losing Jamie, or accepted that loss. We both just tried to push past it, to tell ourselves that if “this” happens, then the pain will stop. We talked about how much we missed our baby, and how losing Jamie broke our hearts. We talked about how not mourning together ripped us apart and in many ways broke us. And, hardest of all, we talked–honestly–about what could have happened if we hadn’t lost Jamie.

It’s easy to tell myself that life would have been perfect, but the truth is that’s probably not real. I had a really hard time being pregnant. I felt like I wasn’t in control of my own body. All of a sudden there were so many things I couldn’t do, food I couldn’t eat. I was feeling things I had never experienced and couldn’t stop and couldn’t take medicine for. Feeling out of control is a huge trigger for my PTSD, and so many things about being pregnant were making me feel out of control. When I started bleeding at 9 weeks, I was put on partial bed rest and told not to lift anything. Rob, being the sweet and loving man that he is, did everything he could to take care of me, even carrying my purse, but to me it felt like all of a sudden I had lost my power. Now instead of having a few restrictions, I wasn’t allowed to do anything. I was frustrated and even resentful that I was having to go through this, all I wanted was to be pregnant, but be able to live my life normally. When we had our honesty talk, we realized that those feelings wouldn’t have just gone away. In fact, there is a very real possibility that they would have gotten worse. That could have, in turn, caused issues with the pregnancy and delivery. It would have

The scariest thing we talked about was postpartum depression. I was told by my therapist that I was at very high risk for postpartum depression due not only to my PTSD, but also to the fact that I have depression. What if I had abandoned Rob and the baby? What if I had started cutting, or even killed myself? What if I had hurt the baby?

What if I had killed our baby.

I know I could never have forgiven myself. That would have destroyed me. In all honesty, I probably would have killed myself once I realized what I had done. That would have destroyed not only me, but Rob, and our relationship. Rob recently told me that even when I was pregnant, the thought of me with postpartum being home alone with the baby terrified him. Even then, something inside him was afraid.

I will never be glad that we lost Jamie. I will never stop missing or stop loving Jamie. Jamie is our miracle baby, and I am so thankful for the time we got to spend together.

We believe that God took Jamie home so soon because He wanted Jamie to be a light in our life. A reminder of our love and happiness. He took Jamie so that we were broken now instead of destroyed later.

Telling the Story

I start EMDR therapy in 3 days, and I am getting really scared. I know that in the end it is the best thing to do, but reliving all of this is going to be awful, and I’m scared. I’m trying to be brave, but every time I remember what I am getting ready to face, I feel like I am six years old again. Rob and I talked and he held me while I cried. He told me how proud he is of me and that he is here for me. And I feel a little better. Someone commented on my post from the other day and told me a little bit about what they went through that led them to EMDR therapy, and I realized that I have never really shared my story with you, the reader.

So here it is. I don’t remember everything that happened. I don’t know if it went on for days or months, or what time of year it was. This is what I do remember:

I started 1st grade in 1993 at Butlerville Elementary and my teacher was Mrs. Beel. She was pregnant, so most of the year–at least it seemed like most of the year to a six year old–we had substitute teachers. My class was small, maybe fifteen of us, and between church and kindergarten I knew almost everyone. I don’t know if I knew Matt from before or if I met him in first grade.

Back then I was the popular girl. I was a gymnast—had been since I was 2 years old—and was very outgoing, athletic, and pretty. I was a happy little kid.

When I was in kindergarten I had a ‘boyfriend’  named Nathan, and at our school’s skating night at the local roller rink he won a bracelet for me. It was made of three little gold hearts joined together and I loved that bracelet more than anything.  I was so smitten with the idea of being someone’s girlfriend, and to me, that bracelet was a symbol to the world that I belonged to someone. That someone loved me.

When I got to first grade,Matt was the popular boy and I thought he was the coolest person I had ever met.

And he liked me.

It just seemed like the thing to do, so we started dating. He held my hand. He bought me a gold necklace with a little red heart that I wore every day. He was my man. I remember sitting in class and he would pretend to shoot all the other kids so we could be alone.

That should have tipped me off right there.

I wanted so badly to be grown up. I was fascinated by this popularity I was experiencing and wanted to live in that world forever. I went to gymnastics, played with my friends, and was Matt’s girlfriend. I thought I had the world. I remember being so unbelievably happy.

It started slowly. He would sit next to me at the little table in class when our teacher would read us stories and we would do our work. He used to put his hand on my thigh, and to be honest I liked it. It made me feel special. Over time, his hand crept higher. It went up my leg, under my shorts, and inside my panties. It felt nice. I felt shivery and special. This was something new for me. Eventually his hands ended up inside my shirt too. He would have me lean forward and put his hand through the sleeve of my t-shirt in order to touch and rub my chest.

He did all of this at school, during class.

There were days when I got tired of him touching me; I wanted to learn but what he was doing was distracting. I remember one time I wouldn’t lean forward so he could put his hand in my shirt and he got really mad at me. He told me that this is what boyfriends and girlfriends do. He told me I had to let him. And I did.

I don’t know how long it went on, but I do remember that I started trying to avoid him. Him touching me started making me nervous, and him getting mad and telling me that I had to let him scared me. I started trying to sit across the table from him instead of right next to him. But all my friends said we looked so cute together and I always ended up right next to him. Right where I didn’t want to be. I remember being scared. There is a home movie of me in my leotard and tights showing off for the camera how I could take my tights off without removing my leotard. In the background you can hear my dad saying how he should show this video to Matt. To this day I can hear the fear in my voice when I tell my dad no. I was six years old and I was fighting a battle no one should have to face. I was trying so hard to be the perfect, popular girlfriend and yet my every instinct was telling me to run. Like I said, I don’t know how long this went on. I have all these memories but it isn’t one coherent memory, more like flashes. I do know that I started getting mad at him for getting mad at me all the time. It seemed like no matter what I did, or let him do, it was never enough.

So I started doing things to purposefully annoy him, hoping that he wouldn’t want to spend time with me. I remember one night my dad and I were at the elementary school after hours for a parent teacher conference and he was there too with one of his friends. He was listening to a Walk-Man and had his headphones on so when I said something to him he couldn’t hear me. I reached over and pulled the headphone away from his ear, repeated what I had said, and let the headphone snap back in place. The next day at school he told me that I had broken his headphones and I now owed him fifty dollars. When I got home I told my dad what he said to me, crying because I knew I didn’t have the money and because I was so frustrated. I don’t remember how the whole thing got settled, but we never replaced his headphones. After that we just kind of fizzled out.

It was a year or two later that I finally realized what had happened. One morning I crawled crying into my mom’s bed and told her what had happened. She asked me some questions and then called the school. I don’t know what she said, but I don’t think I went to school that day. I later found out that he had been forced to go to a day-long therapy appointment. We weren’t in the same class together, but when I walked into my classroom the next day, everything had changed. There was this feeling of hostility and anger focused on me that I didn’t understand. It turned out that he had told everyone what I had said and that I was lying to try and get back at him for breaking up with me in first grade. They all chose him. Every single one of my friends thought I was a liar and from that day on they had nothing to do with me.   Only one girl, Brittany, stayed by my side. She didn’t stand up for me, but she didn’t ostracize me. To this day, she is the only person from that class that I still speak to. In one day I lost all of my friends. Everyone hated me. I truly believed I was wrong to have said something. So I didn’t say anything else.

 

I learned to be okay being alone. School became torturous for me. I didn’t have any friends and I had gone from being the most popular kid in class to being an outcast freak. I started to turn inside myself. I thought that if I didn’t look like I used to then no one would ever do that to me again. I thought that if I made myself invisible then no one would notice me. I thought I needed to change because I had brought that on myself. So I changed. I became quieter, I kept eating, and I tried to quit caring. I went to school where I said nothing, and I came home where I sat in front of the T.V. and ate cereal from the box. I started gaining weight. I no longer had a gymnast’s body and I was okay with it.

I started trying to hide inside myself. I suppose that as a kid I couldn’t handle what had happened, so I tried to cope as best as I could. And so I ate. I remember coming home from school and instead of playing with the dogs or going outside I would sit in front of the tv for hours. Just sit there and eat. Cereal mostly. There would be times when I would sit down with a brand new box of Cheerios and when I got up it would be empty. I hadn’t even realized I was eating. All I knew was that I was safe. I could hide in the show, in the reality that wasn’t my own, and for a few hours I would feel safe. But in my little bubble something would always break through—my mom telling me to stop eating, my dad trying to get me to go outside, or even my sister just wanting to change the channel. And every time that happened I lost the tiny piece of safety I had clung to. It was like being abruptly woken up. Almost like I was in a deep sleep and someone shook me awake, back to the reality I was trying so hard to escape. But I could never escape. I never stopped trying. I kept eating, kept gaining weight. I thought that if I didn’t look like I did, didn’t look like a girl, then no one would ever do that to me again. I thought something about myself had made me be a target, that I had somehow brought the situation on myself. And so I just kept eating.

I went from an extremely fit little girl to an overweight shadow.

Food became my one safe thing in the world. My entire world had been taken from me, and food was the one thing I had control over was my food. Eating made me happy. Well, not happy, but I actually felt something when I ate. The rest of the time there was nothing. It was almost like I felt this void inside of me and I thought that if I ate enough then I could fill that void. That I would get better. But I didn’t.

Now, instead of being invisible, I was a target.  Kids at school who had been my friends only a few years ago now teased me. I was the proverbial fat kid. That became who I was. I wasn’t Laura. I was Fat. And to a certain extent I was glad for the change. I could hide behind that label, hide within my own skin. I sort of felt safe. If they started treating me as Fat, could I become Invisible? And I tried. I started dressing very androgynously and I cut my hair short. I remember there were days I wouldn’t brush my hair and would purposefully wear loose clothing so I could hide behind this new front I was making. I got very good at hiding. With the added weight and the change in my appearance I morphed further into an almost faceless kid. I wasn’t invisible, but I was unrecognizable. By the time fifth grade rolled around it was nearly impossible to tell that I was a girl. I remember walking into the women’s bathroom at the local library right as a little girl and her mom walked out. As I passed them, the little girl said to her mom “Mommy, is that a boy or a girl?” I felt proud. I had done it. I had successfully hidden inside my own skin. I wasn’t happy, but I felt safe.

 

After I told my mom what had happened I was never placed in the same class as him again. At least, not until fifth grade. My elementary school was very small but the number of students had started to grow. When I was in fifth grade we no longer had enough room to divide each grade into two classes. My fifth grade class consisted of thirty students: all of the fifth graders, including him. I managed to make it most of the year unscathed. There were a few times he managed to torture me, but overall he wasn’t a big problem. My teacher, on the other hand, was and so my parents ended up switching me to Morrow Elementary  to get away from him. Morrow was another elementary school in the district, but at that school I didn’t know anyone. My teacher was amazing. He was kind and understanding of the scared fat girl and I started feeling at home in his class. I made friends and actually had a good year.

Sixth grade started and I stayed at Morrow Elementary. I was so excited to be with my new friends and enjoy my year. For the first time since second grade, I was happy to go back to school. But the school year brought about some changes that I hadn’t expected. I no longer had my kind Mr. Perkins for a teacher. Ms. Hill was my teacher for sixth grade and she was as far from Mr. Perkins as one could get.  She unbelievably strict, condescending, and unkind toward us as a teacher could be without getting fired. I starting getting quiet again and there became fewer and fewer times I was happy at school. Looking back now I most likely over reacted to the situation, but I was gun-shy and just wanted to protect myself. My favorite time of the week was when I got to leave Ms. Hill’s class room for a day and take a bus with some other kids to Maineville Elementary (the third elementary school in the district). That one day a week was reserved for the academically talented program (ATP). We got to learn algebra, do projects, and learn things just for the fun of it. Unfortunately, the kids from Butlerville Elementary were there too. Seeing them once a week wasn’t nearly as bad as being around them all the time, so I still loved ATP with Mrs. Cusick.

In junior high all of the elementary schools came together into one big school. Having students from all three schools thrown together was chaotic, but the Butlerville students were diluted enough that it wasn’t too big of a problem. Don’t get me wrong, junior high sucked for the quiet nerdy fat girl, but it was the normal level of sucking, and I did make some amazing friends. High school was more of the same, but I started coming into my own. I joined the marching band and got closer to my friends. I was happy again and I finally stopped gaining weight. The entire time I only had one class with him. The last day of high school came and I was over the moon. I had been accepted to my dream school and I was finally leaving this place that had been so hard for me to get through. All of the seniors were gathered in the auditorium and we were told to split into groups according to what elementary school we went to. Well, I went to two of them, so the teacher told me to sit with the one that I had gone to the longest. That meant Butlerville, and so I warily sat with all the people I so desperately wanted to leave behind. When I came over to the group and sat down in the back, several classmates turned to me started saying how I shouldn’t sit with them because I had abandoned Butlerville and I wasn’t a true Butlerville student like they were. I was amazed and so hurt.

After all those years they were still against me.

 

I want…

I’m trying to hold it together. I know that everything will eventually work out, but right now everything is a mess. I want to be happy for Melissa, and I am, but it still just hurts so much. I want to enjoy today with Taylor. We have such a fun day planned and I’ve been looking forward to it for so long, but I’m just so shaken by everything that is going on that I don’t feel emotionally stable. I don’t want to break down crying in the middle of the museum. I don’t want to get that call saying we aren’t pregnant and want to hide and cry but have to keep it together. I want things to be good. I want to be able to live my life. I don’t want all of this to knock me off my feet like it’s trying to do. I just want to be happy.

Talking with Tory

I needed to talk to someone who knew both me and Rob and would tell me the honest truth, so I sent Tory a message and we talked. It kills me that this might not end happily. I was sobbing as I was typing, and I just don’t know how to handle this.

Sheila said that people with severe mental disorders rarely have lasting relationships, and average couples only have a 50/50 shot. I had never really considered the possibility that we might not end up together in the end. But it’s a real possibility. Because Tory is right. I can’t keep putting myself through this. There won’t be any of me left

 

  • Laura

hey, things are really not going well. Can you please read this: https://thingsineedtosayblog.wordpress.com/2013/08/ and maybe fb chat with me?

i really don’t want to talk on the phone, otherwise i would call you

  • Tory

hey. i read it. how are you?

  • Laura

miserable

i don’t want to go through this tory

  • Tory

i know you don’t. can you explain a bit more about what happened?

  • Laura

yeah. you know we’ve been trying to conceive for a while now, and i went through tests and medicine and we got the green light that we had a healthy egg and to try. Rob has had performance anxiety before and he said that he would work on it but he didn’t, and when it came time for us to try he could keep an erection (sorry for the penis talk). He kept saying he was stuck in his head and it was never as good as what he pictured in his head

  • Laura

I tried but nothing helped.

  • Tory

ok. a: that’s not something you can really fix or even affect.

  • Laura

And i suggested he call the therapist or do something, try and address the issue and he didn’t.

i know that, that isn’t the issue, i understnad that that happens

  • Tory

you guys have the same therapist, right?

  • Laura

yeah

  • Tory

what were his reasons for not talking to her?

  • Laura

i dont’ know. he wouldn’t talk to me

  • Tory

does he usually not talk to you about stuff that’s bothering him?

  • Laura

yeah, that’s the root of the main issue

he won’t talk to me

he won’t talk to anyone

he won’t admit that he has issues that need addressed. He keeps saying he is working through them but he’s not.

He goes to the therapist and just tells her everything is fine

He has said he is going to work on the porn addiction and he doesn’t.

he says he is going to do all sorts of stuff and he doesn’t

  • Tory

Laura, this isn’t a healthy relationship anymore. you both need to be able to talk to each other. and obviously that isn’t possible. he can’t kee doing this to you. he’s lying to himself and to you. over and over and over agin

  • Laura

i know and i hate it

i hurt so much

  • Tory

i’m proud of you for stepping away and going to the hotel. it’s exactly what you should be doing at this juncture

i know you do. i’m sorry you have to feel so much disappointment and hurt so much right now

  • Laura

i know it is. I just hate that I’m having to go through this. I never thought I would feel like this. I only addressed my issues because I wanted to be with him. Because I knew we were supposed to be together

But he won’t address his issues

  • Tory

i know you did. i know you worked really hard to be able to be with him and i know it has to be a slap in the face that he won’t do the same.

  • Laura

He says he is going to now, and i hope and pray he actually will, but I just can’t wrap my head around the idea that I might lose him

  • Tory

i’m going to be completely honest…i don’t really see you guys being able to fix something thta is so ingrained in his personality.

  • Laura

i am so scared that is true

  • Tory

i get that he is saying that he is going to work on his issues, but the disappointment he will bring if he doesn’t will just snowball until there is nothing left of you.

  • Laura

i know you’re right

  • Tory

i understand how much you hurt right now and how much you will hurt if this doesn’t work out, but i can also imagine how much you will hurt years down the road when this cycle continues. and that amont of pain breaks my heart

  • Laura

I never wanted this. I never wanted to fall in love, I just did. And part of me wishes I never did

because i can’t keep going through this

  • Tory

i know, and i know that when you met rob that you felt you had found your knight in shining, anxiety ridden armor. but he’s not so shiney anymore

  • Laura

i know. I feel like that guy is still in there some where though.

I told him I can’t keep going through this, that he has to step up and make the changes

  • Tory

i don’t honestly think you’re going to find him.

but you’ve told him that before

  • Laura

i just can’t accept that. i can’t.

  • Tory

then this is going to continue to hurt you over and over and over again

  • Laura

i just can’t make any big decisions right now. I know that there is a chance that this may not end happily, but I just can’t give up yet

and i know you are being honest, and i appreciate that. I need that.

  • Tory

i agree that you should wait to make any kind of decision. you are way too upset to make any kind of definitive decision. What i think you should do is entertain the notion that ending the relationship might be what you need to do for you, so that if it is what you need to do, you are prepared for it.

  • Tory

you need to do what’s right for you, and no one else.

and that might not be what’s easy or what you want to do right now, but it has to be the best thing for ou in the long run.

  • Laura

i know

i know i need to accept that this may have to end. it’s just so hard to give up the person i love. To accept the idea that i may never get him back

  • Tory

i know. but is he still the person you love? people change and sometimes they CAN’T change back

  • Laura

i know

i nkow i know i know

i don’t know how to handl ethis

  • Tory

it sounds to me like you are handling it.

exactly the way you should. i know it isn’t easy, but you are taking the right steps

  • Laura

i hope so. I know it’s the right thing. i really do. Im just having a hard time accepting that this is real

i knew marriage wouldn’t be easy, that we would have troubles, but i never thought it could hurt like this

not even marriage, love. i didn’t know love could hurt this much

  • Tory

that’s the thing, Laura, marriage isn’t supposed to be easy, but it ISN’T supposed to hurt like that. the fact that it does should tell you something. And love is definitely supposed to be easy and should never hurt like that

  • Laura

i just hate that i opened myself up to this kind of pain

  • Tory

i know. but you can’t keep yourself closed off from the world, either

  • Laura

I wish I had

  • Tory

that’s not the solution. i know it feels that way, but it’s not.

  • Laura

i just wish i knew the answer. I could go through this so much easier if i knew we would make it. If i knew that in the end we would work this out it wouldn’t hurt so much now. I hate thinking that i’m going through all this hurt and pain and it might never get better

  • Tory

i want to tell you everything will be alright. but the fact is, it might not get better. i will not tell you what to do, i don’t know what the “right” answer is, but i do know that a relationship with someone who loves you shouldn’t bring you to your knees like this is

  • Laura

i know. i lov eyou tor

  • Tory

i love you too

and our relationship….completely healthy

if not a little strange

  • Laura

true

  • Tory

and when i say a little, i mean completely bonkers

  • Laura

very true

  • Tory

i hope i was at least a little helpful

  • Laura

you were

  • Tory

good. keep me appraised of the situation, ok?

  • Laura

i will tory. i love you

  • Tory

love you too. i’m really proud of you for taking that step out the door

try to get some sleep

  • Laura

thanks tory. i’m probably goign to pass out here pretty soon

  • Tory

good. good night

 

Things are not good

I had an appointment with my therapist today. I told her everything that happened this weekend. She was appalled. She said I had every right to be mad, that I should be mad. That I can’t let him get away with this. He needs to take responsibility. And he does. He needs to know how much he hurt me.
He’s been doing this over and over and he keeps hurting me. I’ve told him, and he does it anyways. It’s just like the masturbation thing: I told him over and over how he was hurting me and he didn’t listen. It wasn’t until we reached a breaking point that he changed. And I’ve told him that I wanted to work on this, that I didn’t want it to get to the breaking point.
But he didn’t listen and now we are to the breaking point.
I don’t want to live my life without him, but I can’t keep putting myself through this. I don’t want this to turn into an abusive relationship, but I’m scared that it’s headed that way. Not physically abusive, but emotionally. He’s breaking my heart every time he says he will do something or will change and then doesn’t.  I keep getting my hopes up and then my heart gets broken.
I am proud that I actually stood up for myself. There have been times before when I wanted to walk away and say that I’ve had enough, but I never did it. I was afraid that he would hate me. And I’m still afraid that he will hate me, but I need to respect myself enough to recognize that our relationship has become toxic. That needs to stop. When I was 6 I respected myself enough to walk away from a relationship that wasn’t doing anything but hurting me. Now I’m praying that by taking a step back now we can fix our relationship and I won’t need to walk away. Because I truly do love the Robby that I know is in there somewhere, but I can’t keep waiting around and hoping that he will change. He needs to make the change. Because it’s not just going to get better.
Earlier today he sent me a text asking if I was mad. I said I was mad at the situation but I hadn’t sorted out how I felt towards him. After my therapy appointment he sent me a text and asked how it went. Below is the message I sent back and the conversation that we had on Facebook. Right now I’m sitting on the bed at the hotel room, wishing we weren’t going through this. Wishing he was holding me. Wishing that I wanted him to hold me. I don’t want to lose him. I love him.
This is a long and very blunt messageand i hate that i have to write it but i do. I
sorted a lot of stuff out at sheilas. Yes i am mad at you, and things between us are
bad right now. I know we can get through this if we are both willing to put forth
the effort. I am willing but i dont know if you are and that scares me. We can email
back and forth now or use fb or just talk when you get home but i need you to
realize just how serious this is. I feel like im the only one in our relationship. I
dont feel loved and i havent felt loved for a while. I dont feel like you are
addressing issues we have talked about and that youve said you would work on and it
is damaging our relationship and it needs to stop because i am just about at my
breaking point. I booked a room at the extended stay on miller lane for 3 nights
because i dont feel ptsd safe in our house or with you. Im not going to go
 check in until after we have talked because i need you to know i am not doing this
lightly or because im giving up because im not. I just dont know if you are truly
willing to do whatever it takes to keep us together. I dont want to lose the robby
i love but right now youre not that robby. I want that robby back.
Facebook Conversation
Robert

 

I’m here
  • Laura

    hi

  • Robert

     

     

    hi got your message sorry you feel that way. I do truely love and care for you and want to be in this relationship

  • Laura

    I”m just so tired of being disappointed. Of feeling like if I don’t do something then it’s not going to get done. I feel like everything I do I do for you, and that’s fine, I love you, but I don’t feel like I get anything back.

  • Robert

    I’m sorry. I understand what you are saying, I’ve been doing a lot of taking and taking advanatage of you being there for me.

  • Laura

    if you know then why are you doing it

  • Robert

    I don’t know.

  • Laura

    you need to figure it out.

  • Robert

    I know and I will.

  • Laura

    do you actually mean that? Do you actually have a plan, an idea? Or are you just saying you will to appease me and then let it slide?

  • Robert

    I plan on spending a lot of time talking to sheila and examining my life.

  • Laura

    when? at your appointment in 2 weeks?

  • Robert

    I will make time to get in before then.

  • Laura

    i hope so. You’ve said all this before and it never happens. I need to know that you mean what you say, and unfortunately I won’t know that until you actually do something.

  • Robert

    ok, so what’s the plan on the hotel?

  • Laura

    i moved money from savings. it was 210$ for 2 nights. I’m withdrawing 200$ cash just to have to feel secure and i’m leaving you the checkbook. I’m going to take the car too

  • Robert

    ok, that’s fine shouldn’t need the car unless I can get into Sheila’s in the next couple days.

  • Laura

    if you do then we will work something out. I think we will still do dinner with grandma and Todd on Thursday, but I’m going to go down to my folks alone on friday. To be honest, I don’t think you really want to be there and I need some time to decompress, plus I want to see them

  • Robert

    ok that’s fine

  • Laura

    And we need to decide what we are doing about trying. I want a baby, but not with our relationship the way it is.

  • Robert

    I want a baby too but agree that the relationship needs worked on first.

  • Laura

    ok. I think we will continue with the meds as planned but we aren’t trying. If things happen to line up, that’s great, but in all honesty I don’t see us having sex in the foreseeable future. I just don’t think we are at that point in our relationship anymore

  • Robert

    that is fiar

    fair

    I’m assuming I need to do the trash and the dishes correct?

  • Laura

    you need to do whatever you need to do for the next 3 days. I’m not giving you chores, or to do lists, you just won’t have me there.

    I can’t keep taking care of both of us.

  • Robert

    Ok

  • Laura

    i’m taking a laptop with me so we can talk some that way but I don’t think we should be texting all the time. If you have something you want to talk about we can talk, but please don’t talk to me just because you’re bored. I’m still going to go to choir wednesday

  • Robert

    ok, which laptop are you taking?

  • Laura

    i was going to take the work one, is that ok?

  • Robert

    That should be fine

  • Laura

    ok

  • Robert

    is there anything else?

  • Laura

    just that I love you and i really want us to be okay.

    do you want me to wait til you get home or just go now?

  • Robert

    I love you too and I want us to be okay. You can go now if you want too.

  • Laura

    ok. I’m packed. I’ll be leaving in the next half hour or so. I really hate this

  • Robert

    I hate this too, I’m sorry you don’t feel safe with me. I’ll do anything to change that. You are my kumquat and always will be

  • Laura

    I hope so. I don’t want to lose you. But I don’t want the relationship we have now either.

  • Robert

    i know. What are you going to do after 3 days?

  • Laura

    i don’t know. 3 days is Thursday. Dinner with my relatives, then I will go down friday, but i don’t know about thursday night. I guess we will just play it by ear

  • Robert

    ok

    have the cats been out today?

  • Laura

    they’re out right now

  • Robert

    ok

  • Laura

    i will put them away before I go

  • Robert

     

     

    ok thank you.

    i love you

  • Laura

    i love you too

  • Robert

    I can left you go if you want.

  • Laura

    it’s fine. I’m writing an email back to Melissa before I go

  • Robert

    ok, well be safe

  • Laura

    you too. I miss you

  • Robert

    I miss you too.

  • Laura

    I’m gonna go. Maybe we can talk later

  • Robert

    ok, i would like that.

  • Laura

    ok

  • Robert

    love you

  • Laura

    love you too. bye

  • Robert

    bye