Piecing things together

Sideways

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Wondering if there is a way to freeze my account.
Don't forget you can put threads on Ignore for a while if that helps you manage. Gives you that STOP moment before engaging compulsively sometimes.

It may be that taking time out is helpful, but also finding a balance of what works (which is especially hard when 'what helps' changes from one week to the next!), because you did mention this:
Trying to listen and check in more.
and definitely I agree with that. Internal checking in and journalling about it is super helpful to me.

ETA: You're not a monster, k? Feelings aren't facts.
 

HealingMama

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Small victories I guess? Somewhere else on the internet someone followed me to other subforums to comment judgmentally and I just replied that they don't have enough information to assess things accurately and blocked them. It's a victory because I normally get triggered to hell, and I did have a feeling but I had other feelings too.

My happiness matters more than correcting some stranger. I used to never block people no matter how much they bothered me, but the last few days I am turning a corner so that I feel that my happiness actually matters and because of that, I am creating spaces where I can feel better.

My therapist seems to think it's a really big deal that I got a unicorn for my child part. And that space was made for another more adult part to go enjoy the drum circle this past weekend. The person that posts here the most is overly controlled, overly responsible, and no fun. We want more fun, and we want her to make more space for it and are grateful that she is trying to do that.

I'm supposed to, like, carry my new stuffed unicorn around with me and make space to play with it. I feel so self conscious. I also feel like a cliche, look it's the dissociative person with a little cute stuffed animal for the child part.. but it's what came from inside my system and they were very clear that this is what is needed and I can feel that I am loosening up around the edges... I am leaning into joyfulness just a little more...

I am so very scared of fun, joy, play... it is not a space that we are used to experiencing. Even our "play" is really just coping skills - yoga feels good but it's not really "fun." It's almost like an obligation to keep the body functioning.

Interesting the thread that I am taking a break from... reflects all the positions that I have taken myself. I'm selfish... he's selfish... I'm crazy... he's irresponsible...we're toxic and should break up... we should learn better communication skills and learn to accept each other more.... I posted wondering if I was out of line or had a reasonable desire. Without the history, the desire is reasonable. I don't blame him for not wanting to be available, but then I'm not the part that got so upset either. I got especially upset at somerandomguy's post, I always looked up to him and it feels yucky to know that he is judging me so much. It's good for people to be honest but sometimes it feels shitty. Especially in this situation because clearly... if I could see it differently, if I could act differently, I would. I am, as quickly as I can. From my current vantage point it feels like I am being called selfish for something I can't do anything about because if I could I would! I don't know, I got so overwhelmed I don't even remember what he said was selfish. I think it's about staying and wishing my husband would change.

More and more I wonder if my fear of happiness is a huge part of the problem here.

I just read this:

When people have experienced early childhood trauma their emotional play circuit is affected. Neuroscientist Jaak Panksepp, says that mammals are born with seven emotional circuits that are hard wired into our brains. If as children we are not able to engage in healthy ways with our parents or caregivers through positive facial expressions and vocalizations then our emotional circuits get stuck and don’t work correctly. When circuits are not able to flow in healthy ways we are affected in negative ways by feeling distrustful towards others, fearful to get close, shut down emotionally and not able to share both good and bad emotions with others.
The Power of Play for Trauma Survivors — Vancouver Wellness Studio

I feel weird telling my husband system things as inevitably at least one of us doesn't want me to, and he really hasn't been "safe" for a couple of years now - but he means to be, he wants to be, and nobody is perfect. I won't get evidence of imperfect people trying to be careful if I don't give them chances to be considerate. My T was telling me to interact with the unicorn more and I can feel that giddy girl inside of me so happy about this wanting to play... but I am stopping myself. I want to get through this but... if I do not feel safe then it's not going to happen. (Apparently that's also how the nervous system is wired.) If I think he is going to enter the room unexpectedly and laugh at me for playing pretend with a bright pink stuffed unicorn then I won't be able to get into that space. So I told him I am supposed to be working on some homework that might look really silly and to please not laugh at me if he comes across me doing it.

I told him I am supposed to work on not being so afraid of play. He said that he is very happy to hear that is a goal that I have right now. My husband grew up with good natured teasing, practical jokes etc, and I just cannot handle any of that stuff, I am sure he would like if there were more space for it.

Oh last night we actually got to joking around! I was talking about how great my new vacuum is and he was talking about how terrible it is and I playfully tried to vacuum his shirt and he shot water at me from the kitchen sink. It was nice.

I really do not know how to actually PLAY with something though. The closest I know is board games (not like Yahtzee, like nerd/geek games) which requires a lot of intellectual processing. I do not believe that's the kind of play I am supposed to be trying to do.

I also want to say that the women's center that had the drum circle seems like they work hard to cultivate a sense of emotional safety for everyone and I should probably spend more time there. Get some support outside my family, and maybe have a different type of fun.

I talked to my therapist about how I do not remember what we are doing from one session to the next, how I get foggy about whatever was discussed... and it feels strange like I do not have a coherent narrative for what is happening. She basically said that we are making space for more parts to come out, so that we can learn about each other and how to cooperate with each other, because that is my original goal. And that my system seems to know what it needs, how to get itself to the next place, how to time things, so she is just making space for the system to do what it is trying to do, and does not believe that more structure would be useful even though it is me the part that usually posts here who is wanting all that structure, deadlines, boxes to check. And this all just confirms for me that what I suspected is the thing, I am getting out of the way better, so others are getting more involved, and when they are more involved I am not processing anything like I do when I am fully here, even though I do not go away, I am not in full control and so I do not have the same kind of recall.

I am going to post a pic of my unicorn because I am proud of myself for listening so well to what was being asked of me. Now I understand better why people say they get presents for everyone in the system!
 
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HealingMama

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Uni for Harmonic Resonance
 

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HealingMama

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Sitting here thinking of reasons to end my marriage and someone in my yoga group sends us all a message about their "core wound" of abandonment that started when their parents divorced at the age my child is now.

I know my husband well enough to know that he would not proactively maintain a relationship with our child. Not consistently. He can care but things are out of sight, out of mind.

So leaving means that I am basically guaranteeing my son will have abandonment issues which is something I've worked so so so hard to shield him from in myself. But staying I am teaching him to put up with anything and everything for love and I'm not sure that's better.

I dunno maybe it's a trade-off. I accept having to be a caretaker for an adult man and he accepts needing to be my caretaker emotionally. He's said before the two of us put together make a whole person and there's something to that.

However it's also not healthy to be undifferentiated like that. We both need to grow up.
 
I am basically guaranteeing my son will have abandonment issues
No, you're not. That's black and white thinking.

Maybe he would have abandonment issues. Maybe he wouldn't. Maybe a breakup would actually improve his life. But there's no way to know.

You cannot live your life in fear of what others will do or become.

I realize I'm being harsh. I'm sorry. I wish someone had been harsher to me during my first marriage. In any case, I will butt out from here on out.
 

HealingMama

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No, you're not. That's black and white thinking.

Maybe he would have abandonment issues. Maybe he wouldn't. Maybe a breakup would actually improve his life. But there's no way to know.

You cannot live your life in fear of what others will do or become.

I realize I'm being harsh. I'm sorry. I wish someone had been harsher to me during my first marriage. In any case, I will butt out from here on out.
Nah this isn't harsh. What you said in the other thread was harsh though.

Kinda hard to grow up abused and then "not live your life in fear of others" kwim? Working on it though. I wish I had some way to see what the alternative timeline would look like before I step onto it.
 

HealingMama

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I can try an experiment. What happens if I stop compensating at all. I stop asking, reminding, complaining about how much attention or communication I receive? I've tried this before but it's been a while. Maybe more of me can be on board as an exercise in determining how safe my partner is objectively and how viable the relationship would be without the influence of my tinkering and reacting like... Maybe I can pull all that energy towards something else. I feel like I would have by now if I could but I also just don't think I see anything clearly and this is the part I have control over to determine what is from the past but no longer happening in the relationship, what is my own PTSD getting triggered, what is just his baseline this is the level of partner he's going to be without any effort from me... And can I be with that for the rest of my life on balance and if so how can I let go of wanting changes that won't happen?

My host self is so exhausted this can also be a way to help her heal, back off some, make room for others to have more time and maybe some playfulness which we very much want and need. So let's stop talking about this dumb grownup stuff already and have a good time.
 

HealingMama

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I've been rejected from multiple places this week. I would reject me too. Seeing someone trapped in a problem and not solving it but repeatedly complaining about it is annoying.

I got in trouble in my ADHD group for asking for solutions when I'm not supposed to do that there. I got in trouble here. I have been received lukewarm at work. Another place I visit online I was rejected there too. Lots of push back. I don't know how to deal with it.

I'm supposed to write a paper for yoga class that is partly based on the concept of the golden shadow. The parts of self that we project onto others and see as positive qualities that we don't allow ourselves to feel. I thought about some political figures who stand up against authorities that align with injustice. They stand for what is right. And they are empowered but use their power for good.

Ah I don't know. I feel like I just suck and everyone that cares about me ends up regretting it, and most people don't care because I don't know how to let them. I wouldn't care about me either. I feel bad for myself though because I work so damn hard and I still suck in all these ways and so much of it is me doing it to myself. I have no sense of perspective.

I wish I could go inpatient but I don't want to do that to my child, I don't want to have a bill for it, and I think it wouldn't help anyway. I won't fit in there, and I'll just feel rejected some more. And I'll be worried about how things are going at home the whole time. And there's another reason I can't ask for that which I am not comfortable elaborating on in a public space.

I just want to magically be a different person and have a different life. Except keep my son cuz he's awesome. I don't want to be stuck, help rejecting, yes butting everybody. I don't want to keep showing up places where I am not wanted and welcome.

I want to help others but then I feel like I am avoiding my own shit by giving advice etc. In typical overfunctioner fashion. So that's wrong too. Everything is wrong.

I can't talk to my husband because he will complain that I'm taking away time to spend with his other children, and he hates me anyway so I can't get much comfort there. I could call my mom but that's complicated.

How am I supposed to become the kind of person people want to be around when I feel like nobody ever wants me around?
 

HealingMama

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Tried to figure out my core relationship needs and came up with this list:

Safety (physical, emotional and financial)
Order (basic tidiness and general predictability)
Validation (feeling heard, seen and valued)
Respect
Domestic fairness
Transparency (not just honesty but open sharing)

Emotionally intimate conversation was on that list too but it's not possible without safety, validation and respect.

I think that is a pretty normal list isn't it? The safety one is tough when PTSD makes me see danger where there isn't really danger.

There's a lot that I could have done differently in my marriage, but the fundamental problem is the person I married isn't the person he was before I married him. I shouldn't have gotten married. People change when they think you're trapped. I know that's a very cynical thing to say, but it seems to happen to people a lot.
 

HealingMama

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Well my plans to just have a nice evening with self care aren't working so well. Feeling suicidal. There's all this love and joy in the other part of my house and all I can do is run away and cry and think about killing myself so I don't have to hurt this much, since I'm so unwanted anyway. I wouldn't do that to my child, but I'm tempted.

This man has such a huge capacity to love and I am not getting much of it these days. I get the grunt work of shared adult life and almost none of the joys. I don't get called beautiful. I don't see genuine interest in my life or trying to think of topics to discuss that will connect for me. He came home, said hi, said good job putting that piece of furniture together and then said he was going to go cook. Everyone else he asked about their day. Even the f*cking dog.

And I don't know how to lock my emotions down so I have no choice but to disappear or everyone see me upset and I don't want to ruin anyone's good time.

It's my own fault it's like this. Not entirely but a lot of it. I did this to myself.

And yeah there is a practical way out but that would or will hurt too, just in a different way. And it takes time. Here, now, I just see confirmation of all my negative beliefs about myself.
 

HealingMama

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Therapy today. Came out of it feeling a lot of grief even though we didn't talk about any losses. My therapist asked about my goals and how I feel about the relationship, and this is the third time we had this conversation. Each time I feel like I must be doing something wrong. I am supposed to spend the time before our next session noticing self judgment and black or white thinking that adds to my shame.

I said my goals are to feel better and to feel like my life makes sense. There are pockets of my life that make sense to me and some that don't. I want to feel more internally cohesive. I feel so scattered and incongruent. I told her I live my life zoomed in to the present moment, because if I zoom out much it feels like I change so much, my opinions and desires etc fluctuate. I can look back and not know why I did something.

For example, we had a marriage meeting last night, and I wrote the agenda blended with a different part than I was blended with for the meeting and I couldn't relate to the agenda, like, at all. I turned to my husband and said "this is what it's like for you isn't it, where I just seem drastically different all the time? That has to be very... something." He said "yep, it is very...something." I said you must really love me a lot. He said "I do." I can't imagine how hard that would be to exist around, if you are a single personality that feels more or less always like the same person, to never know what version of your partner you are going to see. I mean I feel like on the outside I do not change all that much - but my internal experience, motivation, coping strategies do. I have parts with different jobs and I don't connect to those jobs when I am not connected to those parts.

We talked about me feeling suicidal and basically there is a part that invites attachment and is open & vulnerable as well as a part that's very scared of those things, that comes in and acts from that fear by distancing, assuming, etc. That happened last night too, hubby has been much more affirming since the suicidal thing and last night I got in my feelings that he was changing back to how he was before and he said "I'm not though. I keep reaching for you and you won't accept it. This is the third time I've tried to reach out and connect today." And he was right. I would like to be able to receive the thing I say I want.

I haven't been doing a great job of checking in with my self the last few days. I need to get back to it. It does help when I do it regularly.
 
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