I wanted to thank all of you for your supportive words these last few days. I feel like so many of you have been very protective of me and my feelings and reactions to this situation. It is such a warm and fuzzy feeling. That being said, I didn’t realize there would be so many strong opinions and feelings over this. I appreciate everyone’s perspective, and– maybe for the first time in my life– have seen how it is okay for people to see things differently, and discuss it in a kind manner. I truly hope that when I have disagreed with anyone on this that I have done the same, and that everyone can continue to disagree in a respectful and kind way.
I wanted to explain my perspective on things, where I stand as of now. I have been emailing with Bea this weekend, and it has helped a lot. I still feel very shaky where she is concerned, and hurt, betrayed, angry, sad. Even with all that, I do get the sense she is still here and not going anywhere. This sucks, and I wish it hadn’t happened, I wish I could erase it all. Or at least, erase knowing what happened. But I can’t do that, and either can Bea.
The way I see it, I have four choices:
One–I can pretend everything is fine, and continue in therapy as if nothing happened. That is an old response; one I have used often, if I didn’t want to lose the person who hurt my feelings, and it is something I learned in childhood, but it is not healthy.
Two— I can throw my hands up, run away and never look back. This, too, is an old response. I run from conflict, and I run from tough feelings in relationships. I don’t want to do this anymore. A while ago, I said I wanted to work on understanding relationships and not being so frightened of them.
Three— I can talk to her, confront her, face it and then leave, having had some closure. This wouldn’t be an unhealthy choice, by any means. But it doesn’t feel right to me, at this moment.
And finally, there is option number Four— I can confront her, talk it through and hope that things can be repaired. This is where I am at. It feels healthy to me, and as if there is a lot of potential for growth. I have never– honestly never– told someone they have hurt my feelings and then saw it through. Last year, in October, Bea hurt my feelings. I never directly told her, but she knew, by the things I said. She attempted to discuss it with me, and I refused. I completely shut her down. I pretended I wasn’t hurt, and that hurt was buried fairly easily. That is how I have always dealt with conflict and hurt feelings if I still wanted that person in my life. This, now, is an opportunity to do something different. It’s a chance to confront the hurt feelings, the person who hurt them, and allow that person to repair it. And, it’s a chance to do so with a safe person. Because even though I don’t feel like she is really safe right now, in this moment, a part of me recognizes that she hasn’t changed, and somewhere, deep down, I still believe she is safe.
It’s extremely vulnerable making to do this, and so much harder than I ever would have thought. There are a lot of old feelings coming up, a lot of old fears. I grew up in a household where conflict was avoided at all costs, and if not avoided apologies were accepted no matter what your feelings really were, and the issue never brought up again. The idea that it is okay to bring this up again and again, week after week, in session or email or a phone call, is overwhelming to me. It feels like it can not be true. It’s not something I have experienced, and a big part of me wants to experience being able to talk about the same thing as many times as I need to.
I know at some point, I am will need to talk about hubby’s words. Right now, I’m too shamed by them and hurt. I’m not sure what to believe about him anymore, and I feel very lost and out to sea without an anchor. I am confused and hurt. The things he wrote are so different from the things he says to me. I don’t know what is the real hubby anymore, or where my marriage really stands. There is obviously work to do there, in my own therapy to work through my feelings about this and maybe in therapy with him, at some point. I just don’t know right now. The only thing I can do right now, is to have perfect Alice run the ship when it comes to my marriage. There is a distance between us, and I’m not sure if it is me, or him, but it makes me very sad.
I know many of my readers disagree with me, and see things from a different perspective. That is okay, and in my opinion it is a good thing. We need other’s perspectives. It’s part of what allows us to see all sides of an issue and make informed choices. I know many of you would make a different choice than I am, and that’s okay, too. I don’t think there is a right or wrong choice in this situation.