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Re: Sometimes... [Re: Orchid2] #407323
04/03/16 01:33 PM
04/03/16 01:33 PM
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wiser_now Offline
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More and more and more I realize how utterly and completely blessed I am to have a husband who loves me and accepts me and allows me to be me in all my me-ness.

I wasn't always so lucky ... my first husband and I conflicted about everything. I remember this, too. Those were the years I sat in the dark on the bathroom floor, sobbing. Not to say there weren't good times. Not to say we weren't in love. Not to say the marriage was all-bad. Not to say. Not to say. <<<this is why I understand you, LG, when at one turn your marriage is struggling and the next it may feel... not so bad.

Sometimes... all that's left to do is breathe. Breathe, LG.


A happy marriage is a long conversation which always seems too short. --Andre Maurois

Re: Sometimes... [Re: wiser_now] #407497
04/06/16 02:58 AM
04/06/16 02:58 AM
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LadyGrey Offline OP
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I just had a conversation with my dog Truman.

As an aside (and I can do this because this is a blog) my husband wanted to name the dog Truman. I think it is fine name for a dog and assumed it was because my husband admired President Truman. But no......Truman is on the list of the greatest war criminals of all time.

Welcome to my life.

Truman brought me my son's dirty sock that he left on the floor. The dog did it in that prideful way that retrievers have with their heads tucked back and low -- you just know they are chortling.

I praised him for bringing the sock which he had already chewed up. There are those who would find fault for my failure to discipline the dog, but hey -- they aren't my socks. My socks never get chewed up because they are unavailable.

Encouraged by the response, he searched and found another dirty sock. Not chewed up but same approach.

Same response.

I felt Truman because it was clear that he wanted something from me that I couldn't figure out how to give him.

That's how I feel about my husband. He wants something from me -- friendship and intimacy -- and I'll be damned if I can figure out how to give it to him.

I twist myself into pretzels trying to make him feel safe and loved, but the concessions on my part never seem to end and my world gets smaller and smaller.

I try to look at that as the price of admission, and maybe it is.

Maybe it is.

it is.

it

is.

Wow. That's more self realization than I was up for on a random Tuesday night.


Bidden or not bidden God is present.
Re: Sometimes... [Re: LadyGrey] #407534
04/06/16 02:53 PM
04/06/16 02:53 PM
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Fiddler Offline
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Originally Posted By: LadyGrey
I twist myself into pretzels trying to make him feel safe and loved, but the concessions on my part never seem to end and my world gets smaller and smaller.
You have no idea why he never feels safe and loved by the "pretzel."

And you have no idea what else to try that might work out better for both of you.


"Grant me the serenity to accept the people I cannot change, the courage to change the one I can, and the wisdom to know that one is me."
Re: Sometimes... [Re: Fiddler] #407571
04/06/16 06:41 PM
04/06/16 06:41 PM
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LadyGrey Offline OP
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Originally Posted By: Fiddler
Originally Posted By: LadyGrey
I twist myself into pretzels trying to make him feel safe and loved, but the concessions on my part never seem to end and my world gets smaller and smaller.


You have no idea why he never feels safe and loved by the "pretzel."

And you have no idea what else to try that might work out better for both of you.


Ok, I'll play. grin

I think he is aware of my tendency to go along to get along and then harbor resentment so when I do things for the sake of the marriage, he doesn't experience those things as love.

I think he is unaware of how scared I am of him and his power. I used to argue for a living. He used to win for a living. There is a subtle distinction. So I'm not as honest as I should be and he isn't as kind as he should be.

I think my fear of him is the biggest impediment to intimacy. It's not him -- it's me. I don't have any idea how to get rid of the fear. It is entrenched over 40 years and seems immune to rational analysis.

I think he's been a guest in my home. I treat him accordingly, expecting nothing from him just as I would a guest.

I think I capitulate too quickly in discussions that seem to always deteriorate into a debate on who said exactly what when. He wins all the wars of attrition. The real issues never get reached.

I think he is too critical of me and that feeds my fear.

I think he tries to control me and that enrages me.

I don't have any idea how to fix any of that.


Bidden or not bidden God is present.
Re: Sometimes... [Re: LadyGrey] #407579
04/06/16 07:27 PM
04/06/16 07:27 PM
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Originally Posted By: LadyGrey
Ok, I'll play. grin
smile

Originally Posted By: LadyGrey
I think he is aware of my tendency to go along to get along and then harbor resentment so when I do things for the sake of the marriage, he doesn't experience those things as love.
So perhaps he might view honesty as being a more effective expression of love?

Originally Posted By: LadyGrey
I think he is unaware of how scared I am of him and his power. I used to argue for a living. He used to win for a living. There is a subtle distinction. So I'm not as honest as I should be and he isn't as kind as he should be.
So you have never felt safe enough to share with him the extent of your fear? You mention "honesty" and "kindness" as if they were mutually exclusive - is that how you see them?

Originally Posted By: LadyGrey
I think my fear of him is the biggest impediment to intimacy. It's not him -- it's me. I don't have any idea how to get rid of the fear. It is entrenched over 40 years and seems immune to rational analysis.
My experience as well indicates that there is no way to analyze feelings away, least of all fear (which comes from the lizard, as you are no doubt aware). The only thing that has ever worked for me is to identify the underlying thoughts and beliefs beneath the fear and to question them. While they too are relatively immune to simply changing, once identified they can be cross-examined as to their veracity.

Originally Posted By: LadyGrey
I think he's been a guest in my home. I treat him accordingly, expecting nothing from him just as I would a guest.
And that has been working for you.

Originally Posted By: LadyGrey
I think I capitulate too quickly in discussions that seem to always deteriorate into a debate on who said exactly what when. He wins all the wars of attrition. The real issues never get reached.
So when the conversation descends into who is "right," you feel you have no choice but to go there with him.

Originally Posted By: LadyGrey
I think he is too critical of me and that feeds my fear.

I think he tries to control me and that enrages me.
Is he aware of how this is received? Are you 100% certain that what you receive as criticism is intended as such? Are you 100% certain that what you see as "control" is also what is intended?


"Grant me the serenity to accept the people I cannot change, the courage to change the one I can, and the wisdom to know that one is me."
Re: Sometimes... [Re: Fiddler] #407584
04/06/16 09:08 PM
04/06/16 09:08 PM
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EarningIt Offline
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I don't want to take away from your conversation with Fid, but I want to interject about your Truman analogy. I thought it was perfect.

Since you mentioned your negative self talk, think I'll mention mine.(maybe I'll start a repository thread)

It's always some variation of "I'm not doing enough"

Recently I was in a one of those luncheon conferences of a couple hundred people. For some unknown reason I started envisioning thought bubbles over everyone's head with their self hate talk in them. It was simultaneously relieving and saddening.

Last edited by EarningIt; 04/06/16 09:08 PM.

Remember to hope.

Re: Sometimes... [Re: Fiddler] #407588
04/06/16 10:16 PM
04/06/16 10:16 PM
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holdingontoit Offline
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Originally Posted By: Fiddler
Is he aware of how this is received? Are you 100% certain that what you receive as criticism is intended as such? Are you 100% certain that what you see as "control" is also what is intended?


He probably does not experience it that way.

Maybe he experiences it as being correct and not understanding why he can't convince LG that his proposal is by far the best for both of them. To him, the only problem is his failure to explain to her the myriad benefits of his position, so he keeps trying different ways to convince her until he succeeds. The real problem is his inability to accept the possibility that his analysis is flawed, or that perhaps what is best for him is not best for everyone else, or perhaps that some outcome that he sees as positive is not perceived to be positive by all those affected.

Maybe he does not want to control LG, but he wants to control the outcome. Maybe his sense of fairness and his self-image as a "good guy" prevents him from doing what he internally perceives to be forcing LG to do things his way. So he has an obsessive desire to convince her that what he proposes is in HER best interest, so that he can congratulate himself for only ever doing things that LG has agreed to do. The problem is that he cannot perceive that his relentless "convincing" is actually bullying and that the "consent" he has obtained from her is coerced and thus not truly voluntary.

Or maybe as LG says, he is driven to "win" at everything he does. So once she disagrees with him about anything, his obsessive desire to win forces him to continue battling with her until she concedes defeat.

Maybe if she validates him sufficiently, they can work together to get him to overcome whatever mechanism is driving him to engage in these behaviors which destroy LG's love for him. Or at least destroy her sense of safety around him. If I were LG I would try that approach. But I would not hold out much hope that it will succeed.


Solutions? There are none. There are decisions.
Re: Sometimes... [Re: holdingontoit] #407593
04/07/16 12:20 AM
04/07/16 12:20 AM
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LadyGrey Offline OP
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That was very helpful hold. It reminded me that all people make sense all the time and I need to figure out why his bullying behavior makes sense to him. I hadn't thought of all of those explanations.

I'm not giving up. I know a lot of well meaning folks think I should, but I won't. Solidly content people have a certain magnetism that I intend to take into my role as matriarch.


Bidden or not bidden God is present.
Re: Sometimes... [Re: Fiddler] #407598
04/07/16 12:33 AM
04/07/16 12:33 AM
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LadyGrey Offline OP
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Mysterious Duplicate Post.

Last edited by LadyGrey; 04/07/16 12:41 AM.

Bidden or not bidden God is present.
Re: Sometimes... [Re: LadyGrey] #407599
04/07/16 12:40 AM
04/07/16 12:40 AM
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LadyGrey Offline OP
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Originally Posted By: LadyGrey
Originally Posted By: LadyGrey
I think he is aware of my tendency to go along to get along and then harbor resentment so when I do things for the sake of the marriage, he doesn't experience those things as love.
So perhaps he might view honesty as being a more effective expression of love?


Good question.

Do you think it is true that honesty is a more effective expression of love?

I sure don't.

I grew up in the greatest rug sweeping family in the history of rug sweeping.

Originally Posted By: LadyGrey
I think he is unaware of how scared I am of him and his power. I used to argue for a living. He used to win for a living. There is a subtle distinction. So I'm not as honest as I should be and he isn't as kind as he should be.
Originally Posted By: fiddler
So you have never felt safe enough to share with him the extent of your fear? You mention "honesty" and "kindness" as if they were mutually exclusive - is that how you see them?


I think it is how I see them.

Originally Posted By: LadyGrey
I think my fear of him is the biggest impediment to intimacy. It's not him -- it's me. I don't have any idea how to get rid of the fear. It is entrenched over 40 years and seems immune to rational analysis.
Originally Posted By: fiddler
My experience as well indicates that there is no way to analyze feelings away, least of all fear (which comes from the lizard, as you are no doubt aware). The only thing that has ever worked for me is to identify the underlying thoughts and beliefs beneath the fear and to question them. While they too are relatively immune to simply changing, once identified they can be cross-examined as to their veracity.


OK,

1. I'm afraid of him because I am afraid of angry men to an unhealthy degree.

2. I'm afraid of him because when we met when I was 15, my whole identity was wrapped up in being his girlfriend and if he leaves me, he takes my identity with him.

3. I'm afraid of him because he knows how to take that one fact that I wish I had never told him and skewer me with it.

4. I'm afraid of him because he exercises his power over me by criticizing me.

5. I'm afraid of him because he seeks to restrict my autonomy and I'm more scared of that than anything, including my mother.

6. I'm afraid of him because his disapproval represents catastrophe and I'm kind of done with drama.

I could go on but that will give us a starting point.

Originally Posted By: LadyGrey
I think he's been a guest in my home. I treat him accordingly, expecting nothing from him just as I would a guest.
Originally Posted By: fiddler
And that has been working for you.[/iquote]


It actually kind of does....you aren't expected to be intimate with a guest.

Originally Posted By: LadyGrey
I think I capitulate too quickly in discussions that seem to always deteriorate into a debate on who said exactly what when. He wins all the wars of attrition. The real issues never get reached.
Originally Posted By: fiddler
So when the conversation descends into who is "right," you feel you have no choice but to go there with him.


I'm working on this one HARD.

Originally Posted By: LadyGrey
I think he is too critical of me and that feeds my fear.

I think he tries to control me and that enrages me.
Originally Posted By: fiddler
Is he aware of how this is received? Are you 100% certain that what you receive as criticism is intended as such? Are you 100% certain that what you see as "control" is also what is intended?


If he isn't aware, he isn't listening.

How hard is it to stop criticizing someone? I did it with my grown kids and they are a far more tempting target than I.

I don't know about the criticism but I'm 100% sure he wants to control me.


Bidden or not bidden God is present.
Re: Sometimes... [Re: LadyGrey] #407600
04/07/16 01:15 AM
04/07/16 01:15 AM
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Monterey, CA
Fiddler Offline
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I very much appreciate your willingness to engage in this dialogue. I have always admired your willingness to be honest - sometimes brutally so (with yourself mostly), "rug-sweeping" upbringing notwithstanding.

Originally Posted By: LadyGrey
Do you think it is true that honesty is a more effective expression of love?

I sure don't.
So then it's not possible that it would be the case with him?

Originally Posted By: LadyGrey
Originally Posted By: Fiddler
You mention "honesty" and "kindness" as if they were mutually exclusive - is that how you see them?
I think it is how I see them.
So then you don't believe it's possible to be both honest and kind. Presumably in the context of different points of view - I don't think that you would find it hard to be both honest and kind in a "no-problem" area. Or would you?

Originally Posted By: LadyGrey
...you aren't expected to be intimate with a guest.
And you are content being married to a "guest"?

Originally Posted By: LadyGrey
Originally Posted By: fiddler
So when the conversation descends into who is "right," you feel you have no choice but to go there with him.
I'm working on this one HARD.
It's certainly a challenging proposition, especially with longstanding patterns. I believe it's absolutely worth the effort.

Originally Posted By: LadyGrey
I don't know about the criticism but I'm 100% sure he wants to control me.
What makes you so certain about this? Has he expressed it as such?

Originally Posted By: LadyGrey
How hard is it to stop criticizing someone? I did it with my grown kids and they are a far more tempting target than I.
The most difficult thing about stopping criticism of others is, in my experience, ending self-criticism. Your mileage may vary however....

I would like to address these one at a time, if you are okay with that. There is a lot here, and I do believe it can be useful to tease each one apart a bit. If you're willing to go there with me of course.
Originally Posted By: LadyGrey
1. I'm afraid of him because I am afraid of angry men to an unhealthy degree.
Can you recall a recent specific interaction you had with an angry man (presumably your husband)? Where were you and he, what were you each doing and saying?


"Grant me the serenity to accept the people I cannot change, the courage to change the one I can, and the wisdom to know that one is me."
Re: Sometimes... [Re: Fiddler] #407604
04/07/16 02:06 AM
04/07/16 02:06 AM
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Originally Posted By: Fiddler
I very much appreciate your willingness to engage in this dialogue. I have always admired your willingness to be honest - sometimes brutally so (with yourself mostly), "rug-sweeping" upbringing notwithstanding.




Agreed. Your straight-forward communication is something that I love about you as well.

Re: Sometimes... [Re: Blair] #407606
04/07/16 02:54 AM
04/07/16 02:54 AM
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SmilingWife Offline
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Originally Posted By: Blair
Originally Posted By: Fiddler
I very much appreciate your willingness to engage in this dialogue. I have always admired your willingness to be honest - sometimes brutally so (with yourself mostly), "rug-sweeping" upbringing notwithstanding.




Agreed. Your straight-forward communication is something that I love about you as well.


Yes I heart LG.

Re: Sometimes... [Re: Fiddler] #407608
04/07/16 03:08 AM
04/07/16 03:08 AM
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LadyGrey Offline OP
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Originally Posted By: LadyGrey
1. I'm afraid of him because I am afraid of angry men to an unhealthy degree.

Originally Posted By: fiddler
Can you recall a recent specific interaction you had with an angry man (presumably your husband)? Where were you and he, what were you each doing and saying?


We have been together for almost 40 years. The incidents are innumerable on both sides.

I do recall one time when he threw a glass of wine in my face in front of some friends because we didn't agree on educational policy.

I was SO humiliated. I quietly got in my car and went home. I didn't mention it for a decade, nor did he.


Bidden or not bidden God is present.
Re: Sometimes... [Re: LadyGrey] #407611
04/07/16 03:22 AM
04/07/16 03:22 AM
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Originally Posted By: LadyGrey
Originally Posted By: LadyGrey
1. I'm afraid of him because I am afraid of angry men to an unhealthy degree.

Originally Posted By: fiddler
Can you recall a recent specific interaction you had with an angry man (presumably your husband)? Where were you and he, what were you each doing and saying?


We have been together for almost 40 years. The incidents are innumerable on both sides.

I do recall one time when he threw a glass of wine in my face in front of some friends because we didn't agree on educational policy.

I was SO humiliated. I quietly got in my car and went home. I didn't mention it for a decade, nor did he.



How did you not mention it? You woke up the next morning and asked him how he'd like his eggs?

I don't get this. So much of your life with your husband I recognize....but the rug sweeping I don't get. It didnt occur to you to say to him the next day, "how dare you?"

Re: Sometimes... [Re: LadyGrey] #407612
04/07/16 03:24 AM
04/07/16 03:24 AM
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Originally Posted By: LadyGrey
We have been together for almost 40 years. The incidents are innumerable on both sides.

I do recall one time when he threw a glass of wine in my face in front of some friends because we didn't agree on educational policy.

I was SO humiliated. I quietly got in my car and went home. I didn't mention it for a decade, nor did he.
Okay, so in that moment when your husband was angry and threw wine in your face, you were afraid. In that moment, with wine on your face and your husband angry, were you in any danger?


"Grant me the serenity to accept the people I cannot change, the courage to change the one I can, and the wisdom to know that one is me."
Re: Sometimes... [Re: Fiddler] #407614
04/07/16 03:43 AM
04/07/16 03:43 AM
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I would feel like I was. Because if he would do something that outrageous what wouldn't he do? Its like there's no line he wouldn't cross. Like he's got no control over himself at all.


When we open to this moment and don't judge it or try to change it, even when we're suffering and wish it were otherwise, we tap into the spaciousness of mind that allows us to move forward skillfully, with discernment and joy. -- Sharon Salzberg
Re: Sometimes... [Re: Miranda] #407622
04/07/16 01:33 PM
04/07/16 01:33 PM
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I don't think LG felt any danger because other people were around. The embarrassment may have trumped all other emotions at that time. The rugsweeping comes naturally due to her upbringing.

The wine in the face reminds me of my parents and one moment. Dad introduced me to golf. One time my mother wanted to go with us. I was 12. They used to golf together before I was born. The first hole, the approach shot to the green, my mother was having difficulty hitting the ball. My father told her to pick up the ball and let's go. You are too fat to play.

What I witnessed that day did not truly impact me until adulthood. At that moment, it was my dad yelling and putting down my mom. A natural thing during my upbringing. This moment was never brought up again until for some reason, I started remembering it vividly again when my wife was noticing all the badgering my mother would take.

I bring this up because of the rugsweeping. I'm not sure if my dad was trying to control her? I think it was more showing his dominance. To add to this, my dad's way of showing contrition was telling everyone that my mom is a saint. He never confronted any of the mistreatment, just that my mom is a saint. He treated all his wrongdoings as if they never happened and that everyone could just move on because he did. My sister has turned out identical to this.

I apologize if this became a threadjacking post. I meant it to be short and sweet and emotions spilled out. I love my dad, but I am not proud of the way he treated my mom, but my mom never stood up to him, for whatever reason. To this day, she places guilt on herself for not taking care of my father well enough in his final year or two. She did everything.

I don't want to see LG turn out like this either.

Re: Sometimes... [Re: Fiddler] #407640
04/07/16 03:40 PM
04/07/16 03:40 PM
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LadyGrey Offline OP
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Originally Posted By: Fiddler
Originally Posted By: LadyGrey
We have been together for almost 40 years. The incidents are innumerable on both sides.

I do recall one time when he threw a glass of wine in my face in front of some friends because we didn't agree on educational policy.

I was SO humiliated. I quietly got in my car and went home. I didn't mention it for a decade, nor did he.
Okay, so in that moment when your husband was angry and threw wine in your face, you were afraid. In that moment, with wine on your face and your husband angry, were you in any danger?


I suppose that depends on how you define danger.

Certainly, I was in emotional danger.

I didn't mention it because I was so embarrassed. Like I must have said something really outrageous to trigger such a response. I didn't look at it so much that he had done something wrong, but that I had said something really wrong. I thought I deserved it.

I filed it away under "reasons to watch your step around husband." He never did it again, but I don't know if that is because he was never triggered, i.e. I was "good" or because he controlled his response when I was "bad".


Bidden or not bidden God is present.
Re: Sometimes... [Re: LadyGrey] #407641
04/07/16 03:48 PM
04/07/16 03:48 PM
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Great question!

Originally Posted By: LadyGrey
He never did it again, but I don't know if that is because he was never triggered, i.e. I was "good" or because he controlled his response when I was "bad".


My first H did similar terrible things - threw "bad" meals across the room, for example, and I have a hideous story about him writing on the wall in lipstick I'll tell some day -- not today and not here.

I totally understand not talking about it afterwards. We (1st H and I) did exactly the same thing. I *wanted to* talk about it but was shut down so many times I just stopped trying.

Even given your FOO story, do you remember a time where you tried to talk to your husband about stuff -- in the very early days, perhaps -- and what happened?


A happy marriage is a long conversation which always seems too short. --Andre Maurois

Re: Sometimes... [Re: LadyGrey] #407648
04/07/16 06:50 PM
04/07/16 06:50 PM
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Originally Posted By: LadyGrey
I suppose that depends on how you define danger.
Usually being afraid implies that there is some kind of perceived danger. We're trying to deconstruct "I'm afraid of angry men" here. So in that moment, you were afraid because of a danger that you (or your lizard, to be more precise) believed was threatening you. What I'm encouraging here is to take that one specific incident and peel back the layers of thoughts and beliefs that were underlying the fear.

Originally Posted By: LadyGrey
Certainly, I was in emotional danger.
Even in that moment, then, you weren't in fear of any physical harm. Help me understand what you mean by "emotional danger."

Originally Posted By: LadyGrey
I didn't mention it because I was so embarrassed. Like I must have said something really outrageous to trigger such a response. I didn't look at it so much that he had done something wrong, but that I had said something really wrong. I thought I deserved it.
This is, I believe, a clue as to the source of your fear. In that moment, it makes sense to have come to these beliefs. Do you have reason to believe that your friends saw it the same way? That is, were they likely thinking something like "Boy, she really deserved that, she had it coming!"?


"Grant me the serenity to accept the people I cannot change, the courage to change the one I can, and the wisdom to know that one is me."
Re: Sometimes... [Re: Fiddler] #407651
04/07/16 07:11 PM
04/07/16 07:11 PM
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Posts: 4,655
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LadyGrey Offline OP
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LadyGrey  Offline OP
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Originally Posted By: Fiddler
Originally Posted By: LadyGrey
I suppose that depends on how you define danger.
Usually being afraid implies that there is some kind of perceived danger. We're trying to deconstruct "I'm afraid of angry men" here. So in that moment, you were afraid because of a danger that you (or your lizard, to be more precise) believed was threatening you. What I'm encouraging here is to take that one specific incident and peel back the layers of thoughts and beliefs that were underlying the fear.


I think at that moment I was more surprised and embarrassed than scared so maybe that's not a good example. It was just so shocking because we were discussing educational policy and who gets twisted up about that? The only explanation I've ever been able to come up with is that I was "winning" and he wanted to shut me up. It worked.

I have seldom been physically scared of my husband.

To give another more benign example, one time I got a speeding ticket (I really am a terrible driver) and I tried to hide it because I was scared of his anger. When he found out, he was furious about the ticket and the cover up. Since I was clearly in the wrong (although I don't think going 80 in the Texas panhandle is really wrong) there was nothing I could say. I felt I had to sit there and take it.

Originally Posted By: LadyGrey
Certainly, I was in emotional danger.
Originally Posted By: fiddler
Even in that moment, then, you weren't in fear of any physical harm. Help me understand what you mean by "emotional danger."


I was scared of what he might do next that might make me feel even worse. So I Fled.

Originally Posted By: LadyGrey
I didn't mention it because I was so embarrassed. Like I must have said something really outrageous to trigger such a response. I didn't look at it so much that he had done something wrong, but that I had said something really wrong. I thought I deserved it.

Originally Posted By: fiddler
This is, I believe, a clue as to the source of your fear. In that moment, it makes sense to have come to these beliefs. Do you have reason to believe that your friends saw it the same way? That is, were they likely thinking something like "Boy, she really deserved that, she had it coming!"?


I don't think my friends knew what to think. I am certain they didn't approve of his behavior because who would?

I think this plays into my tendency to be the victim. Rather than fighting back, I will figure out a way that I was in the wrong and deserved the treatment.

I think my family of origin issues are also at play. I think I always knew on some level that my mother was unstable and was terrified my dad would leave us with her. My dad worked ALL THE TIME, but when he came home he often blew up for various reasons. So I didn't have much safety as a kid.

Last edited by LadyGrey; 04/07/16 07:13 PM. Reason: quotes!

Bidden or not bidden God is present.
Re: Sometimes... [Re: LadyGrey] #407664
04/07/16 09:45 PM
04/07/16 09:45 PM
Joined: Nov 2010
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Fiddler Offline
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Originally Posted By: LadyGrey
I think at that moment I was more surprised and embarrassed than scared so maybe that's not a good example.
This realization is a part of why this kind of process can be valuable.

Originally Posted By: LadyGrey
It was just so shocking because we were discussing educational policy and who gets twisted up about that? The only explanation I've ever been able to come up with is that I was "winning" and he wanted to shut me up. It worked.
In that moment, this is what you were believing, and that is what you now believe as well. Can you absolutely know that it is true that he wanted to shut you up?

Originally Posted By: LadyGrey
I have seldom been physically scared of my husband.
"Seldom" suggests that there have been at least a few times that you were. What I'm attempting to do is to inquire into the belief "I am afraid of angry men."

Originally Posted By: LadyGrey
To give another more benign example, one time I got a speeding ticket (I really am a terrible driver) and I tried to hide it because I was scared of his anger. When he found out, he was furious about the ticket and the cover up. Since I was clearly in the wrong (although I don't think going 80 in the Texas panhandle is really wrong) there was nothing I could say. I felt I had to sit there and take it.
So being in the "wrong," you see the sense in his being upset. Given how you prize honesty, you would probably feel the same way if the positions were reversed. So you understand and perhaps even empathize with what he was feeling.

Now, what was the "it" that you believed you had to "sit and take"?

Originally Posted By: LadyGrey
I was scared of what he might do next that might make me feel even worse. So I Fled.
I thought you drove home together (albeit "in silence")? Thinking back to that moment, was there something in particular you believed he might do and were afraid of? And did he do something next that you felt threatened by?

Originally Posted By: LadyGrey
I don't think my friends knew what to think. I am certain they didn't approve of his behavior because who would?
So is it possible that he was the one who should have been embarrassed?

Originally Posted By: LadyGrey
I think this plays into my tendency to be the victim. Rather than fighting back, I will figure out a way that I was in the wrong and deserved the treatment.
And you are content with this approach.

Given what you have described about you FOO, these kind of defense mechanisms are not only understandable, but in a sense almost inevitable. Are you okay with that millstone ever tied around your neck?


"Grant me the serenity to accept the people I cannot change, the courage to change the one I can, and the wisdom to know that one is me."
Re: Sometimes... [Re: Fiddler] #407676
04/08/16 01:24 AM
04/08/16 01:24 AM
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LadyGrey Offline OP
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Fiddler, you remember in algebra where they provided you with constants for the equation? If you changed the constant, the whole equation changes.

One of my constants is being threatened and it's uncomfortable.

But I do think this is an important process for me to go through so I'm going to carry on if you are willing.


Bidden or not bidden God is present.
Re: Sometimes... [Re: LadyGrey] #407679
04/08/16 01:49 AM
04/08/16 01:49 AM
Joined: Nov 2010
Posts: 6,208
Monterey, CA
Fiddler Offline
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I love a good math analogy! smile



Originally Posted By: LadyGrey
One of my constants is being threatened and it's uncomfortable.
Inquiring into beliefs, especially long-standing ones, can be excruciatingly uncomfortable. I certainly don't wish to have the process create it to the extent that you feel the need to check out of it entirely. Having said that, I am every ready to back off if that is what you wish.1

Originally Posted By: LadyGrey
But I do think this is an important process for me to go through so I'm going to carry on if you are willing.
I am certainly willing and very much appreciate and admire your willingness to continue despite the discomfort.

When I inquire in this manner, I use an uncomfortable feeling as the starting point to delve into the underlying beliefs I have that cause distress. And in every case, I have found that the cause of my distressed feelings comes down to something I am believing - my "story" as it were. And it does suck at times to let go of beliefs I may be clinging to, especially with regards to judgments of others.

I can't unpack your stories - only you can do that.
_________________________________
1I was going to suggest a "safe" word, but that seemed kinda creepy...


"Grant me the serenity to accept the people I cannot change, the courage to change the one I can, and the wisdom to know that one is me."
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