The last few days the feelings of terror lurks around me, in me. When I sense my body, pain shoots through me. It is a pain that is difficult to describe, it is not like back pain or foot pain or a headache, it is an existential pain, a deep, all consuming, stifling pain that makes me shudder. I feel disgust and so, so, so ugly. It is probably shame, yet that feels too adult as a logic. The disgust and the ickiness is me in those moments, there is nothing removed about it. My body wants to snap shut, twist into a safe ball and hide in bed with my toys, but I have to get where I am going or do what I am doing and I just have to grit my teeth and distract myself from it quickly.

When I get reminded that God is my saviour and that with him I am strong, the relief comes. In those moments it is truly difficult to know this, but tonight, I know He has my back and it gives me solace and quiet comfort.

Husband thinks I am strange

Uh oh. Husband finally caught on that I am not who I seem to be… it has been seven days and lots of us have been out and he knows it, but just doesn’t know when ‘I’ will be back and normal again. I can’t necessarily give a time, date, or location as to when it will happen either. Something just usually shifts and I snap back. Just feels a little more intense this time. When I feel like this, I prefer to be left alone, like i don’t feel married to him and he just doesn’t get that. Of course, he doesn’t, I don’t wish to sound too selfish. I would prefer we just had a ‘platonic’ relationship for the time being. Kissing him is gross, there are too many kids out to want to do that and I just would prefer to hold hands or cuddle you know or sometimes not even do that. Just go to bed and read or do work.

All in all I am pretty well functioning and when people are out to be protective or whatever, then things get done and I am pretty motivated to do life. Not sure what the other option would be? Curl up and die. At least this way I am safe and no one can hurt me, because I guess I don’t feel as much as the others. I don’t mind by the way, it is what I am used to.

Hope the husband thinks I am okay after all this and can go along with the ride. He might give up and leave me. He is mostly worried I will have an affair. I told him I wasn’t out to sabotage anyone, i just needed to be out to safeguard things for a while. Truth is, I am not interested in sex or relationships with people. I prefer to be by myself and just work and keep busy.

Facial Hair as Trigger

My husband and I fight mostly about two things: his (adult) kids and his lack of attention to grooming. Tonight, I will discuss the latter. Firstly, he hates shaving. As a woman I shave the relevant bits almost daily so I don’t really get the gripe. It’s kind of like Nike says, you just do it. Now I don’t mind the light beard that he adorns, however I do like some attention paid to how long it gets and overall presentation. I get that the hipster men have made beards the new zeitgeist, though don’t get me started on that. I just think it is a cover for lack of real manhood… oops, did I say that out loud!

Back to hubby. So every 10 days I am usually subtly suggesting he goes for the trim, tidies up a bit, and he nods and agrees but days later, it is just growing fiercer by the minute. And now, I am starting to get obsessed. The pattern is, we are travelling along great, madly in love and I think he is beautiful and funny and sexy and I let my guard down and then I do some therapy work and the memories or emotions creep in and all of a sudden some protector parts are out and we go home and we start looking at the husband more objectively and all of a sudden he isn’t that beautiful or funny or sexy and his clothes are starting to hang and he looks like a hobo. Shite, they think, who the hell did we marry?! This guy doesn’t take care of his appearance, he is scruffy, he doesn’t care about himself, let alone me (or us). So I mention the hair again and he says he will do it, but this time is acting a little aloof and there is a tone there I am reading that perhaps he thinks I am trying to control him… again… mmh… so I get resentful and narky and this time a little more insistant and passionate with the pleas. I may even come across threatening. ‘I won’t shave for a month’ I think, or I tell him that I aim to please him by looking good, doesn’t he want to do the same for me? It seems like he doesn’t, and I start thinking that I have attracted someone who thinks their worthless, which of course makes sense, because I am worthless and I get what I deserve. The stinking thinking sets in and I am all alone in my head and it is not pleasant and I don’t like this man and I don’t want him to touch me or look at me, I just want to run and be free from all this bullshit and trivial stuff and I am embarrassed this is happening, and I just wish he would solve it all by actually shaving and trimming his freaking beard. That is it. That is all I need. And then finally, after smoke is coming out of my nostrils, he does it. And he does an average job mind you and I have to fix it up, and I get angry again because I am not a barber and I just wish he would do it properly. At 54 years of age, I mean come on people!!!

So I go to bed angry and I give him all I got. ‘One thing’, I yell, ‘One thing I need from you and you cannot give it to me. Why, when I tell you it makes me feel worthless and like a piece of shit, do you procrastinate and not do it?’. ‘I did it two weeks ago’, he defends himself. ‘People do it every single day’, I am fuming. ‘I am not like other people’. ‘No’, I say, ‘no, you are terminally unique of course’. He ignores me, he thinks I am in parts. Well I probably am, but he is not helping. Dammit, why can’t I let go of this resentment and fall madly in love with him again. I have to wait a few days or maybe weeks and I am not sure what it is that eventually gets ‘me’ back to ‘me’…. until the next cycle.

Infuriating I know. If I apply the AA 4th step way, then this is how it looks:

I am angry at my husband because he doesn’t take care of his personal appearance. I don’t want him to be some Nancy boy or look at himself in the mirror more than I do, but I do want him to trim his beard once a week and brush his teeth twice a day and shave his hair every fortnight ideally.

It affects my self esteem, personal and sexual relations, pride.

What did I do to get the ball rolling? I am not letting him be who he wants to be. I am being prideful and vain. (It makes me angry just to write that by the way).

Character defects: Fear, shame, guilt, self centred.

Taking this one step further now and using this to connect with my parts… What does this trigger in my inner world?

I am scared of him when he has too much hair, we don’t like it, it makes us scared and we think he will hurt us. We think he is more friendly and young when it is short and nicely kept and he doesn’t look scary.

Sometimes I wish my husband would understand what a drama his procrastination creates inside me, but then I feel selfish and embarrassed for making such a big deal about facial hair. Blah!


image taken from kayiniafrika.com

image taken from kayiniafrika.com.

I had a part named ‘Black’ who came out tonight in my prayer ministry session with Patricia. She was full of hatred; that is all she knew. Patricia told her that feeling joy and being happy was a decision. For Black, that decision felt dangerous because to feel joy and happiness meant denying the pain that she felt and pretending everything was normal, when it wasn’t. Kind of like the abuse, play happy on the outside, but really when the doors are shut, the real personalities come out to play and they ain’t nice. Better to feel the hate, live the hate, be the hate than to live the lie. But Patricia said that the hate didn’t serve anyone and the only one it was hurting was Black. I think Black knew that deep down, but still it was hard to consider letting go. Patricia said that all God asks is that we make a decision, and that He will do the rest. The Bible asks us to be obedient and to make the decision to forgive and that is all we need to do. I understand that because I believe that there are spiritual principles that govern the world – on the earthly and the non-earthly plane – and forgiveness is one of these. In order to release souls and allow people to break free from the bondage of self, we must forgive. Black gets this too and so decided to commit to Jesus. Believe me, when I (she) had to say the prayer, it was like pulling teeth. She could have resisted and stopped the process anytime, but she didn’t. Turns out now she has a new name, it is Sunny. Black doesn’t feel very Sunny yet, I guess that might take some time. Either way, she did crack a smile, though there was such great sadness underneath.

Lost my voice

I recently finished a book Ritual Abuse: What It Is, Why It Happens, and How to Help by Margaret Smith. It was very insightful and I actually found myself for the first time, identifying strongly with what was written. It has taken me some time to be able to connect with material about ritual abuse, I think because I have had so much internal disbelief and denial. Still very much there.

Margaret Smith relayed a writing exercise she practiced, in which she detailed all the things that would happen to her if she remembered her abuse. So I thought that I would try the same thing and listening to my internal voices, here is what I wrote:

  • My teeth will get smashed in and I won’t be able to talk
  • My neck will be broken
  • I will die
  • No-one will believe me
  • It will be scary
  • I will cry
  • I will have bad dreams
  • I will be sad
  • I will have to feel icky feelings
  • I will need to sleep lots
  • I will need to draw my memories and write about them
  • I will need to speak them out loud.

I wrote this on Friday night and then Saturday I started feeling under the weather, by Sunday morning my throat was very sore and then yesterday I started losing my voice. Today I can hardly speak, I went to the doctor and found out I have laryngitis. Point is, I wonder if this is a psycho somatic reaction to what I wrote? I had had a week off work so it wasn’t like I was run down or anything, however things have been full on for some time now, so I know I had reached breaking point, incredibly exhausted and in and out of depression. Perhaps this is the last of my illness before i regain some strength (I hope). I just can’t help but think that this is related to what I wrote. I want to speak out, I am willing to speak out and remember, but to do so I fear comes at a real cost.