Wednesday, 3 December 2014
Enough Rejection Already!
I carried my disgruntledness through yesterday and into therapy. I blamed PMT, but I also know that PMT has a sneaky way of uncovering the stuff that I normally swan above without giving it a second glance... so of course my therapist didn't let me off the hook for a minute.
She knows this space is to do with my husband. And it’s interesting – I am finding it so hard to write stuff about us. You will see already that a very small proportion of my blog currently gives our relationship any airtime at all. It’s not that the relationship isn't significant in my life – heavens... I have spent 20 years of my life in it already – it’s more that words escape me. Like the wounding and soreness that surrounds us is locked into a deep and dark ancient place where words struggle to find form. It feels like a big amorphous cloud settles over me when I think or try and write about him and the words are lost in the mist before I can grasp them and arrange them into any kind of cohesive sentence.
I have piles of draft blogs – started and abandoned after the second paragraph because it suddenly feels too hard to continue. To try and unpack the things, feelings, events that got us to this point. I keep feeling like I need to be giving you context and history so that you will understand where I’m coming from. But it just dissipates, like morning clouds being burned up by the sun. There, and then not there. Just a distant memory of something that hurt.
He’s now telling me that he doesn't want me to move in with him yet. He still wants his space. He wants our oldest son and his mom to live with him but not me. He says he does not find one ounce of compassion for me inside him and all he feels is anger when he thinks about me or has to deal with me. He can just tolerate the 20 min breakfast or dinner time and then he needs to be away from me – he can’t imagine having to live with me 24/7. In his head he is once more back in the space that I am completely to blame for our marriage breaking up because I fell in love with John. And he had no contribution to that?! His fucking a prostitute years ago or hiding his new relationship with his new girlfriend from me obviously don’t figure on the horizon. It’s all just me.
My shrink says Enough Already!! She cannot stand by and watch me take rejection after rejection from him. Funny – I didn't even see that. It’s like I've normalised that behaviour from him to the point where I let it go through me without process. I automatically move into ‘how can I facilitate his need?’ rather than ‘Ouch, Fuck You! That hurt’.
Shrink says “No! That is your home. You have been displaced from every safe haven you have and are still camping out on your father’s floor living out of your suitcase! As are your sons. All sharing a room together. No! It cannot continue – you have nowhere to call your own.” She says it's time I pushed my way into the centre of my family and home again. Even if I am so clearly not wanted and so unkindly rejected. My temptation would be to move to the edge: marginalise myself and get smaller inside myself because I need to feel welcome to be home. But Shrink insists - and I think she's right - that I am at risk of being edged out completely. And that serves no-one. I am the emotional core of our family. I hold us all contained and intact. Even though my husband has no sense at all about what that is and how it works, I need to remember that this is the value I bring to my tribe. I'm not just the provider and financial protector - I am the glue that binds us all. They need it. I need it.
My shrink also raised the possibility that my husband may never get past this space. That if I choose to move forward into the tribal village with him I may be forced to endure ongoing rejection and abuse from him. He has a tendency to get stuck in a place and not move. We can have deep conversations, therapy sessions, cataclysmic events and he seems to shift in the moment. But days and weeks later, if we should revisit the space, I realise he's back where I left him before all those interventions. I have to face the fact that he may choose to stay stuck here: hating me, blaming me, rejecting me, passive-aggressively abusing me. And I can't have that level of negativity in my life infinitely. So I will need to lay some deadlines and boundaries with him too. He really does need to shape up or ship out. I want a tribe raising my children, but not at the long term cost of my own sense of welcome and well-being in my own home.
So I am going to have a conversation with him that confronts this: that I'm moving back whether he likes it or not. And if he doesn't, well then he's going to have to move out and marginalize himself instead. The house is almost ready for occupation. We're going away on a family holiday in about two week's time. I think I will move us back in the few days between the end of our family holiday and my trip to Spain.
I'm going home.