Author Topic: My Story It's A Wonderful Life  (Read 1253 times)

Offline xyzcf

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My Story Re: It's A Wonderful Life
« Reply #20 on: January 07, 2020, 06:05:53 PM »
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Funny how the uncomfortable threads sometimes push you forwards.

Push you forward? Or add unnecessary stress/pain from turning his crisis into something that was "wrong" in your marriage?

When I finally got through the depression caused by the end of my marriage, I didn't recognize or "like" the woman I had become. Back to therapy, which as you know focused on mind/body work...2 years of intense therapy that took the pieces that were floating around my head and bit by bit brought them back into my body.

When I started recognizing xyzcf again, I started to feel at peace.

I will never be the woman I was before bd, the wound is too deep to completely heal from. It took so many years and I think that is normal for the trauma that it causes to some LBSers.

My therapist used a pictorial way of explaining to me, a spiral that moves on a slant upwards...although there are times when I go backwards down the coil, as she told me, and I have found to be true, I have done enough work that I don't go back far...and then I continue moving forward and upward.

The holidays are also a time when we reflect what once was. You are moving forward treasur but in my experience, sometimes analyzing the crisis/the marriage/the relationship needs to stop, because sometimes there really isn't an answer and we exert way too much energy trying to understand why and how we somehow contributed to their crisis.

Disclaimer, these are 100% my feelings and mine alone. Each of us see the world through different lenses. I know what finally worked for me, to get me over the constant "wondering" and allowing myself to be ok with the way things are today.
"Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see" Hebrews 11:1

"You enrich my life and are a source of joy and consolation to me. But if I lose you, I will not, I must not spend the rest of my life in unhappiness."

" The truth does not change according to our ability to stomach it". Flannery O'Connor

https://www.midlifecrisismarriageadvocate.com/chapter-contents.html

Offline Nerissa

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Re: It's A Wonderful Life
« Reply #21 on: January 08, 2020, 06:12:46 AM »
Xy, you’ve said pretty much what I tried to say in my post and by pm to Treasur.  Holidays were a thoughtful, yearning period.  Sometimes we really are ok and have done enough on the bits that needed it and it really is about them.

Offline gman242

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Re: It's A Wonderful Life
« Reply #22 on: January 08, 2020, 06:44:21 AM »
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the crisis/the marriage/the relationship needs to stop, because sometimes there really isn't an answer and we exert way too much energy trying to understand why and how we somehow contributed to their crisis.

I think we all hit that point and I can understand those on the forum that feel being here only prolongs dwelling on things. I liked the term RCR has on the website "analysis paralysis". It's all too easy to read other threads, compare, contrast and so on. I think maybe it's good to take breaks and realize you don't need the training wheels any more and it's ok to go ahead and live for a while. If and when you do reach a point that'd you'd like to stay on the forum, I think that's fine and understandable as many friendships have been made here over the years.

Following along Treasur!

Offline Milly

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Re: It's A Wonderful Life
« Reply #23 on: January 08, 2020, 03:49:37 PM »
I think we can all get stuck in analysis paralysis at various points but after a while, we come here for company, to hear about our friends, at least that's how I feel. I'm 5 plus years in. On the one hand, I wish I were not here posting and I'm a little jealous of those who disappear off the forum, however, I'm moving forward with my life and still enjoy coming here. My kids have all left the house now and I'm living alone after many years of having a house full, so perhaps it's just that I'm missing company. But even that is a good enough reason to come here as far as I'm concerned. We are good people just listening to each other and trying to move forward as stronger people.

I'm lonely now, I accept that, and I come to HS to speak to my friends. When I come here, I find I'm always learning stuff. Of course, I would rather be sitting around a fireplace with cosy couches, some Prosecco, and talking in person to real humans, but I can't have everything in life.
Married 1989, together since 1984 
BD May 2014,
D25, D22, S15
OW Physical Affair same one. He and she said she turned 34 the month of BD. She turned 52 this year.

Online Standing Strong

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Re: It's A Wonderful Life
« Reply #24 on: January 08, 2020, 03:58:23 PM »
HAHAHAHAHAH, Treasur.......

You know that for some people I have songs that play in my head when I see their name/avatar....

Now when I see you I'm going to think:
"It's a Wonderful (Beautiful) Life.... Waaaa-Ooohhhh..... it's a Wonderful (Beautiful) Life..... Ooooohhhhh".

That's an Ace of Base song (just in case you didn't know).... swap the Beautiful for Wonderful......  ;) ;D 8)

Now where is Thunder? I need to change the channel......
"Thunder..... feel the Thunder....." *boom* *boom*  "Lightning and the Thunder..... Thunder"

 :P

-SS
W - 38
M - 42
Together 24 years, M 21
No kids
BD - 27th April 2019

Offline TreasurTopic starterTopic starter

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Re: It's A Wonderful Life
« Reply #25 on: January 09, 2020, 06:56:27 AM »
Grace and me are having an adventure in the garden together. Which is how I found out that Grace likes running and can now scrabble over the higher fences lol. She likes to go on a brief sortie and then come back to the table where I am sat with a chatty miaow and then off again. Like a toddler really. And she finds seagulls rather eye-opening but likes dried leaves. She really IS a very chatty cat though. :)

It was my dad's birthday yesterday. He would have been 80. It was not a good day for me.

But today is better, sturdier.

I remember reading somewhere on an another thread ages ago that there are Choices and Mistakes and Events which are neither for an individual. And often all that distinguishes them is what we believe about them at the time and what we look back and see they produced.

That sounds such a simple thing doesn't it? I think it is.....and it is a also a difficult thing that is maybe very important.

We struggle as LBS initially bc we see our spouses making Choices that we believe are Mistakes. We keep smacking ourselves against a wall trying to get them to see that. But mostly they believe they are Choices. And they are right. And we are right initially too bc of the consequences for us. With time, either one might change their beliefs I suppose depending on Events outside our control or what the Choices/Mistakes produced. I honestly believe though that this Choice vs Mistake dance is a pretty fruitless one where most LBS/MLCers just shout across the wall trying to persuade the other to see it their way. And that some of the 2x4 stuff here about detachment and validation is really about pushing the LBS to accept that their spouses reality is now fundamentally different from their own or from what it was before. That it helps to stop doing that if only bc it is fruitless and exhausting lol. Which means accepting perhaps that things might turn out to be either a Choice or a Mistake but it's too early to tell for either the one. And that it could be both but for different people. I have no idea if the fruit produced by my xh's Choices post-BD (and NOT choosing is also a Choice or Mistake of course) will turn out to be things he believes are Mistakes. Some of them were Mistakes in the short-term for me certainly bc I didn't benefit from them. It is just as possible that with time my beliefs might change too, I suppose, when time shows more fruit to judge them on.

But I didn't want to talk about the MLCer, but about us.

My last sticky bit of PTSD stuff, prompted by another thread, is about what I believe now that gets in the way of my own recovery. As I posted on that thread, essentially it is the residue of what I believe now bc of how I reacted to the trauma....the trauma of the trauma if that makes sense. I doubt that I am on my own with this conundrum lol. Why does it matter for our healing imho? Bc what we think then shapes what we believe and whether we see something as a Choice or a Mistake (or even an Event for which we are not responsible, maybe for which no one is directly responsible). So, as an example, my father's cancer and my mother's dementia were both Events....nobody involved Chose them and they were not Mistakes. How we all responded to those Events had plenty of Choices and some Mistakes, I'm sure. But they were Events. It would be faulty thinking to believe that it was about me or that I caused either.

Yet, the trauma of trauma brain seems to have a story which sounds a bit like.....these terrible things happened all at once, leaving me alone and overwhelmed to the point when I felt I could not stop them or cope with them.....so I made some Choices that were probably Mistakes....which means I am incapable of coping well when uninvited and unanticipated things happen....and the world is full of those things...so I can never feel confident or safe enough again....which means I am permanently impaired so I am even less capable than I used to be before so........And round we go in a big spludgy sort of 'I'm afraid I can't cope now like I used to which means I am stuffed forever' belief lol.

I will dig my way out of this last bit bc I am well enough now to know it isn't entirely accurate and that it isn't a set of beliefs that serve me.  :)

But when I was overwhelmed, I could not have seen that. I could not have realised that I can challenge what I believe and sometimes should bc traumatised or depressed brains lie.
A link that Velika posted https://www.thisamericanlife.org/682/ten-sessions talks about Stuck Points and how looking hard at those beliefs can help people recover from life-altering events. That it isn't about the feelings but about what we believe bc of the experience that we did not believe before. About ourselves, others or the world. And which may not be true either. ::)

When I look back at the last few years....gosh, at my life actually....there were Choices, Mistakes and Events true enough. But it is important to not confuse one for the other imho. As I'm writing this I am musing on what - other than the consequences of time - separates Choice from Mistake? Mostly I think it is about how honest I can be with myself about my own motivation or intent. If I do my best but an Event or others Choices turns a Choice into what looks like a Mistake now? Idk it doesn't seem to carry the same sting or even offer the same lessons bc usually I would have made the same Choice based on the information I had at the time.

A lot of recent debate about causes and effects and priorities, as well as different POV on what LBS 'should' be doing or believing, seems to me to be right on the Choices, Mistakes and Events dartboard......

So my musings for the New Year are about encouraging us all to kindly separate Choices, Mistakes and Events as part of our own recovery. Oh and to give you a mental picture of a small grey cat running at full speed down a long stone path in the sunshine and then pausing to miaow triumphantly to her chuckling human  :). Grace was definitely a Choice.  :)...but prefers Mozart to Ace of Base I'm afraid, Standing!

My dad was a big Choices guy. I think he'd like where I am taking my brain now lol.
« Last Edit: January 09, 2020, 07:06:22 AM by Treasur »
T: 18  M: 12 (at BD) No kids.
H diagnosed with severe depression Oct 15. BD May 16. OW since April 16, maybe earlier. Silent vanisher mostly.
Divorced April 18. XH married ow 6 weeks later.
Healing and growing found here https://littleplotbythesea.wordpress.com

"Option A is not available so I need to kick the s**t out of Option B" Sheryl Sandberg

Offline TreasurTopic starterTopic starter

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Re: It's A Wonderful Life
« Reply #26 on: January 10, 2020, 04:15:57 AM »
Musing on my thinky walk this morning about PTSD.
I think most LBS here experience some level of depression and/or anxiety after BD.
But not everyone gets PTSD which as someone PMed me is 'almost like a disability'.

So I was wondering why I think I did....

The best working definition of PTSD that I have found - that talks about cause as opposed to symptoms - is that you experience traumatic events that overwhelm your individual capacity and resources to cope with them....so it is pretty individual.

In my case, I had multiple events and losses including a couple of life-threatening ones in a relatively short period of time. And the losses also removed my core support system. And I was emotionally abused and devalued for a longer period of time, so the smaller hits kept coming for a couple of years after the big ones. I got PTSD bc I lost too much all at once (for me) and bc I had limited resources outside myself. Looking back, do I think I might have avoided PTSD? Perhaps.....by limiting my exposure to the smaller hits and by asking for help from others much earlier. So either reducing the exposure to new trauma and/or increasing my capacity by having a stronger support system. Maybe by understanding the risk of getting PTSD and seeing a trauma specialist earlier? Not blaming myself for any of this. It was as it was and I did my best based on what I knew....but it would be nice if others reading my story might be able to avoid normal anxiety spiralling into PTSD.  ;)

For any of you who believe you have - or did have - PTSD, why do you think you got it?
And do you think looking back that there was anything you could have done to avoid getting it?
T: 18  M: 12 (at BD) No kids.
H diagnosed with severe depression Oct 15. BD May 16. OW since April 16, maybe earlier. Silent vanisher mostly.
Divorced April 18. XH married ow 6 weeks later.
Healing and growing found here https://littleplotbythesea.wordpress.com

"Option A is not available so I need to kick the s**t out of Option B" Sheryl Sandberg

Offline Nerissa

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Re: It's A Wonderful Life
« Reply #27 on: January 10, 2020, 06:21:46 AM »
I would have been traumatised by the sudden  end of my marriage anyway, I’ve no doubt, but I compounded the damage to myself (and by extension my daughters since they need a stable parent) by trying too hard to save it.  I don’t regret that part exactly  that as he did stay in the home and was not openly seeing ow.  He was just mean. And it could have turned out differently as I think part of him wanted to stay in a way.

When he left I still was too stuck in the idea he would return and did not cut contact enough.  He came for Xmas and holidays. This isn’t in itself wrong if the lbs can cope emotionally but I could not and It kept my Adrenalin flowing, compounded the damage; kept me ruminating and not present to my life and family and friends  and lengthened the time I would need to recover.

I think now that if someone is saying and insisting they want to leave, the sooner that is accepted the better.  It just isn’t easy.

Offline TreasurTopic starterTopic starter

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Re: It's A Wonderful Life
« Reply #28 on: January 11, 2020, 12:38:47 AM »
I think you have put your finger on something important, Nerissa.

Some folks don't like the advice about detachment and reducing contact.
Maybe part of the reason it isn't a one size fits all is bc it depends on how damaging it is to the LBS at a given time. At a simple level, if we are doing things that hurt us, we have two choices really; to stop doing those things or to change our mindset so they no longer hurt us in the same way. Often I think we don't prioritise that bc we are driven by other beliefs perhaps that treat our distress as an acceptable price for something......

Interesting article here on the link between attachment theory and constructive therapy https://www.theguardian.com/science/2020/jan/10/psychotherapy-childhood-mental-health Which explains perhaps why a good IC can make a difference for LBS, why HS can help and perhaps why therapy doesn't work so well with MLCers in Replay but might work much later for some.
T: 18  M: 12 (at BD) No kids.
H diagnosed with severe depression Oct 15. BD May 16. OW since April 16, maybe earlier. Silent vanisher mostly.
Divorced April 18. XH married ow 6 weeks later.
Healing and growing found here https://littleplotbythesea.wordpress.com

"Option A is not available so I need to kick the s**t out of Option B" Sheryl Sandberg

Offline Nerissa

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Re: It's A Wonderful Life
« Reply #29 on: January 11, 2020, 05:31:18 AM »
That’s a fantastic article Treasur. Thanks.

 

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