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"You have made me a keeper of vineyards, yet my own vineyard I have not kept." ~Song of Solomon.
How true that is of my life.
I am reading the book "Hidden Victims, Hidden Healers" by Julie Tallard Johnson. When I first started reading this book, I thought it was all going to be over my head. But I pressed on further into the book. Boy, am I glad that I did. This is a wonderful book that contains "an eight-stage healing process for families and friends of the mentally ill."
On the back of the book it says "Hidden Victims will help you realize that there are alternatives to common patterns of coping. You CAN care for your mentally ill loved one without losing sight of your own needs."
If you get the chance to read it, please do. I am feeling a bit better, more peaceful after beginning the book and reading ways to cope.
I am a long way from well however and the waves of depression sweep over me from out of no where. It is the most awful feeling that I have ever felt. I feel like falling to my knees and begging for comfort and peace.
M. is trying to help me. It is taxing on him, but he is trying. I am afraid that sometimes he is overwhelmed with my problems. But frankly, I have no where else to turn. I am trying to focus internally and find peace there.
If you pray, please add me to your list.
M. and I walked in the rain last night. It was a reflective time and we had a good talk.
I told him that the pdr. said that maybe he doesn't know what I need when I need it emotionally. She suggested that I ask for what I want. ( a hug, etc...)
He responded that he DOES know what I need, just feels he cannot adequately give it to me. I said by adequate does he mean that he just can't do it or just not do it good enough? He said "Both".
Ahhhhh, ok. I said, Don't worry that it won't be good enough, I will take it! he smiled then.
Also, I told him that I know this is not his fault. it is the illness and the medication. He said that makes him angry when I say that because it sounds like I am thinking of him as a mentally ill person.
I don't always think of him as a mentally ill person. I know the real him, the man, the love of my life. He's there. I can seperate the delusions, paranoia, the depression. That is the illness. BUT when I don't get the emotional closeness, the support, the love that I need...it turns into muddy water. The illness slips over onto the realtionship that I have with the man. And that is where my depression comes in. The feelings of grief and loss. The terrible pain.
He says to remember that there are a lot of things I do get from him. Look at the whole picture. This I will have to try to do better on.
Slowly but surely we are uncovering all the layers that this illness has covered up within us.
The cure to feeling trapped in a relationship is to realize you have a choice. I have a choice. This is what we talked about in therapy yesterday.
I have not felt that I had a choice before in this relationship. There are so many things that tell me I have to stay. Love, Kids, finances, the illness, my commitment to my marraige vows. I have been married more than half my life. And dealt with sz. for the whole marraige. Do you leave someone who is sick? He, who certainly can't help it and didn't deserve it? Do you leave someone who you have slept next to for 21 years? And for what? To live alone? Be alone? So that I can "feel" better?
Dear Lord this is so confusing.
The decision that I have made for today, this week,...LOL...is that I am staying. I am not strong enough to go. I cannot trample people on my way out the door and that is exactly what would happen. I would lose half my family (inlaws) that I love very much.
But what the therapist wants me to remember is that I have a choice, that if for some reason down the road I change my mind, that I can go if I need/want too.
We also talked about the emotional/physical intimacy that I crave and do not get. She suggested that I ask for a hug, tell him to put his arms around me, tell him what I need to hear and feel. This sounds so revolting to me, so needy, to have to ask for what is rightfully mine or should be. I give these things out freely, but don't get them in return. Her reasoning is that even if you have to ask for it, it is better than none at all. This is going to take some getting use to.
But I guess I have to work with it or stop whining, right?
My med dr upped my prozac, so we will see if that works after a while.
I just know that something has to change in my head and my heart. The pain is too intense to ignore.
Yesterday was hell. I did finally put my finger on something and was able to tell m. about it without him becoming defensive. It seems that everytime I try to talk to him about the pain I am in or the problems I am having...he like shuts down or puts this barrier up between us. Of course, my first reaction is well he just doesn't care, which in turn pisses me off. So yesterday I just flat out ask him "Why is it that you cannot comfort me? Tell me that I am going to be ok, that you are willing to help me?" He says "I have to distance myself from your depression or you will bring me down too."
So there you have it. He cannot help me. Cannot support me. I KNOW this is not his fault. Really I do, I know that it is the medication and the disease combined that make for flat emotions and self centeredness. But it sure doesn't make it hurt any worse. To be honest it makes me very sad, angry, disappointed. I feel like I have been there for him for nearly 21 years and now that I REALLY need someone to lean on, someone to put me first on their list, I don't have it. I can't have it.
How long can a person possibly feel this damn bad. It is like torture. There is so much pain and tears within me that I don't think I will ever be able to get it out.
I wish someone would just tell me what to do. Make decisions for me that would make me feel better. I couldn't make a decision if you paid me.
I know what I want. I know I can't have it. So what should I do.? Go after what I want and destroy about 10 people(family) in the process? Or stick this out and play the cards I was dealt?
I hate this.
I have been listening to a lot of music lately. Seems to ease my mind. I really enjoy the group Train. They have a lot of quirky lyrics:) Even my hb likes it.
I used to enjoy country music, but dang it gets so depressing that I can't listen to it anymore. Anyone else feel like that?
Hb is very suspicious of me lately. Always asking what I am doing, where I am going, who I am talking too, etc...This is new and stems from the fact that he thinks I am having an affair with my brotherinlaw. Not true. Like I have the time or energy to have an affair. If I did...which I won't...but if I did it wouldn't even be for the sex. It would be for the emotional things. Having someone to hug, appreciate, smile at, talk to, understand. God, I miss that.
I am still going to the pyschologist. She is very relaxed and relaxing. Very easy going and doesn't make me feel like she judges me. She listens and says all the right things. I really appreciate her and feel so much better after I spill it all out to her.
She seems to think that we can get our marraige back on the right track. I am not so sure. At this point I feel like a sister more than a wife. I love him very much, but it isn't the same. Maybe even "normal" marraiges feel like this? Weve been at this marraige thing for 21 years, do I want to spend the next 21 feeling the way I do??? NO freaking way. I am sure it will take time, but I sure hope I can get some of the old feelings back. It hurts too much to live like this...but I am trying to work as hard as I can on it.
I hate the heat. Much prefer winter. Just needed to get that off my chest!
We survived the trip to the relatives and had a good time. Only one major blow up amongst the siblings...not even worth talking about. Let's just say that mental illness and depression is very prominant in their family. Some are medicated and some are not.
I have been putting up with a lot of verbal crap from M. the last couple of days. I try my best to ignore him, but it does get to me sometimes. Really, I try to be a kind person. That is hard to do sometimes.
More later, gotta get to bed.
Hi everyone. Hope you all enjoy a relaxing fourth of July. We will be going to hb's families house for the weekend, so that will be fun.
M is doing ok for the moment. He is still weaning off the seroquel and so far, so good. He is not sleeping nearly as much during the day, which is nice and seems to sleep fairly well at night.
I am feeling better. I am feeling better about myself. I think the reason for this is that I have taken charge again and started making decisions for me, not everyone else. I had let 'me' slip away and everything else took the spotlight. One of the bad things is that now that I am feeling a little better, The things that I am missing are now more prominant. I guess I am more aware of myself, my needs and my wants. It will take a while to figure out what to do about that.