Doing Well Except For..

posted 3 years ago in Married Life
Post # 3
Member
490 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: July 2013

@TakeTwo:  Therapy is hugely difficult.  Kudos to you for seeing a therapist and working on what you need.  I’m a child and family therapist and it is so hard to talk to someone about your problems and let them in when you have learned for so long to shut others out.

I haven’t gone through any where near the trauma that you have, and I still find it hard to be vulnerable and let someone in like that.  It’s easier to hold people at arm’s length because then it hurts less if/when they let you down.  I am guilty of doing this with my husband as well.  We haven’t always been kind to one another, although we have both done a lot of growing as both individuals and a couple in the last few years.  Part of that has just been getting older.  We met and started dating when we were 20, and neither of us anticipated our college romance to be the one that stuck. 

What’s different now is that we both invest.  When I’m mad and emotional, sometimes he apologizes just because he knows I need him to and I can’t be the one to do that in that moment.  When he’s upset, sometimes I just have to take a breath so I don’t get defensive and shut him out more.  The more I do this, the easier it gets.  I think overall it just takes practice and a commitment from both people to trust each other enough during those times.  I find when my husband gives a little, it is monumentally easier for me to give a little too.  My first instinct when there is a problem is to freak out and shut down.  When he gives a little bit and swallows his pride a little, it gives me the confidence to do the same.  He’s had to take the lead on this and has been willing to do so.  Remembering that even when you are upset is what is getting us through that.  And knowing that we both want the best for each other and our marriage.

All of that said… I would suggest the best thing to do right now is take those baby steps toward each other when you can.  Go to him when the little things happen, to practice for the bigger things.  It may feel emotionally safer for you while you learn to let him in more, and will also feel validating for him.  My husband isn’t a “talk about your problems” kind of guy, so a lot of times I feel like he doesn’t care about the small things that bother me.  He actually does care, and sharing these little things with him helps me feel safer for the bigger things.  For him, this has also meant not trying to fix every small thing and sometimes just letting me bitch, which is hard for him.  I frequently say, “sometimes I just need you to listen and not make it better”.  Sometimes I just need to be upset and that’s ok.  That has been difficult for him because he doesn’t feel those emotions the same way that I do.  Letting someone really love you and see all of the crap that you think about yourself is HARD. 

Anyway, I don’t know if any of this is actually helpful to you but I hope some of it was.  Good luck to you and your husband, I tell my kids at work all the time that figuring out the problem is half the battle!

Post # 4
Member
3570 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: September 2011

Therapy takes a long long time and is very hard work.  I think if you keep at it, you will eventually be able to have the relationship with your DH that you want to have.  I would consider working on self esteem?  Being vulnerable is hard, but you deserve that love from your husband and I wish you could embrace it. 

Post # 5
Member
9412 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper

@TakeTwo:  Love is always a risk. No one wants to be hurt but in order to have a true intimate partnership you need to be willing to take the risk. I’m not sure what the answer is – you need to come to the decision on your own. 

Post # 7
Member
2696 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: May 2014

I go to therapy regularly and I can agree that it is no easy task. Therapy is revealing and hard and stirs up your feelings to bring heartache to the surface so that you can deal with it. Kudos  to you for going to therapy and working on your relationship.

Post # 8
Member
5222 posts
Bee Keeper

@TakeTwo:  If you guys are still having issues and especially resentment from prior things ( you mentioned before you were engaged), then maybe BOTH of you would benefit from couples therapy. 

As far as allowing him to love you– you’re only hurting yourself by having these walls up. Life is a lot more enjoyable and fulfilling when you allow yourself to let other people in, and conversely, kick them out if they start acting like an ass. Shutting everyone out only leaves you lonely.

Post # 9
Member
33 posts
Newbee
  • Wedding: April 2013

I first want to give you a hug. It sounds like you’ve got a husband who is trying to grow and be there for you, so that’s a great foundation. 

 

Regarding counseling, have you ever tried EMDR? it is something that I was exposed to recently. It is very good at dealing with past traumas, and is said to be easier and more effective than traditional talk-therapy. It is something to look into anyway.

 

I like the previous poster’s suggestion of starting small. I don’t really have any other advice on your specific question, but I just wanted to reply to suggest EMDR if you haven’t already heard of it.

Post # 10
Member
2838 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: June 2013

Couples therapy sounds like a wonderful idea. Especially for folks who are dealing with trauma, it can be very hard to trust. (And even worse if your trust has been broken in that relationship before.) But trust is an important part of love – trusting that your husband will be able to deal with your “bad” feelings. 

Building that trust takes a lot of time and patience. So does working through things in therapy. Be patient, keep working on it and know that peace will come.

Post # 11
Member
851 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: July 2013 - The front lawn of our church

@MrsPanda99:  +1

You have to make the choice to open up to him and trust him with your feelings. I understand from your post that this must be incredibly difficult, but I think that it is vital for your relationship. I wish there was a simple answer for you.

Post # 12
Member
9412 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper

@Mrs_Amanda:  +1, exactly. It is very hard for me to trust people and so I am quite selective with it. However, I would never enter into a marriage without this vital piece. My family, a select few friends, and my life partner have my trust (though to varying degrees – friends don’t come close to anyone else).

Post # 13
Member
4440 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: June 2013

I have a serious and well-hearted question…

 

Why did you say “yes” and marry him knowing very well you still had resentment towards him? Has therapy or anything been helping?

 

I commend you for speaking up, and I’m sure you’ll get a ton of opinions and different point of views…take the good with the bad.

 

PS – I love the letter idea you did.  I think we’ll do the same!

Post # 14
Member
3635 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: May 2012

@TakeTwo:  Would your therpist do some sessions with your husband there?  Is it a place that you feel safe opening up?  Maybe you can speak with him/her about the possibility of bringing your husband in once in a while so that you can share what you’ve been working on and give your husband a chance to be supportive and understand.  Lay some groundrules with him and the therapist about what you will and won’t share and what will and won’t be discussed outside that room. 

Sounds like you’re working at it, just keep working.  Marriage isn’t always easy.

Post # 15
Member
1373 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: June 2015

@TakeTwo:  First thing, kudos to you for sticking it out in therapy. You are very right, therapy does not “fix” things, it helps you fix things and it’s hard work! A lot of it. I went through some trauma as a child and went to therapy in my teenage years and I totally agree. Sometimes therapy is even harder than not dealing with it (at first) so you deserve some props for what you’re doing for your relationship right now! You ARE trying, so give yourself some credit (you deserve it!)

As for lettin him in, let me tell you it won’t be easy. It’ll be scary and overwhelming and sometimes you will wonder what the heck you are doing. You will laugh but you will cry more. 

When you come out on the otherside, you won’t be wondering what you’re doing anymore. You’ll know where you belong and that yore safe.

 I have a personal story I want to share with you. I dont talk about this phase in my relationship much because frankly, it stung ( a lot ) and it took me a while to come to terms with. But here goes:

When I met FI, we were both pretty miserable. The girl he had been chasing after for years, the one who always stayed just close enough to keep his hopes up was gone and with another man in another province. He was broken. I was broken too. But for some reason, something about him really drew me in. He didn’t want a relationship (I didn’t really either but I was changin my mind) and he made it very clear that even though we were very close, we would never BE. We commiserated over our misery together, he kept me at arms length and I ached with everything I had. I had finally found a man I felt I could love forever and he wanted no part of it. 

I wI’ll never ever forget the night that the girl came back. Just for a visit. He said everything would be fine and he wanted me to come over that night anyways. It was the ‘boy’ house and i always came over and he thought everyone would think it was weird f I didn’t come over because she was there. So I went. Worst night ever. Watching the person you think you love fawn over and take care of another (very beautiful at that) woman is torture. Plain torture. When I saw what I saw, I felt like I would never ever trust him with my heart. I couldn’t, not seeing tht love in his eyes for her. I went home and cried over my broken heart. All the tiny bits of trust I had starte to muster together for him were gone. Just vanished. 

Eventually, something in me changed and something in him changed. He confided in me that the night she was there, the reason she had gone to lay in his room with a headache (tht hurtlike a bitch. I had spent so many nights in that bed..) was because she knew he locwd ME and knew she had to take her claws out for the sake of his happiness because she was being ridiculous. She had a man back home and I guess she decided that even though she had always held onto a piece of FI, it was time to let the past be the past. 

When he told me this, he had a look of relief on his face. And I understood, for the frst time, that he never tried to hurt me. He was just hurtiig on his own and didn’t know any better than. He was suffering so much and I knew I couldn’t hold that against him, especially since she was HAPPY she said goodbye instead of sad. 

I started to see the lighter side, the brighter side. I decided to accept that no one comes without some suitcases to unpack. And thateven though I lost all my trust, I wanted it back. I think really wanting to trust someone is the first step.

I kept seeing him and one night he was about to say something and then he stopped. So I probed a little and he says “I think I might be in love with you” I just kind of stopped so he asked me what was up. I told him that I thought I loved him before but I was scared to love him now. I was scared he would always be waiting for her, that I was a consolation prize and eventually that wasn’t going to cut it. I told him that I would try, but I needed him to tell me I could trust him with my heart, wih my life really. I needed to know that he was goig to stand by me no matter what. I told him that I would give him my trust one more time bit I didn’t think I could do it again after. He swore that he would e there for me, never lie or hide anything and always be faithful. 

So I took the biggest leap of faith I have ever taken, and I trusted him. I believed every single thing he said. I told myself I had to, I had to give him this shot. He’s my one, you know? 

Its not easy and there’s no step by step instructions. You just kind of have to believe in yourself, believe in him and do it. Know in your heart that he wI’ll comfort you and let him. Open up to him, tell him your secrets laying in a dark room. Just be present and trusting. Tell yourself whatever you have to, just believe in it. Believe that you have it in you, believe that he won’t let you down, believe that this will work. Believe in the love that you share and the life that you have.

Since the say that FI told me I could trust him and that he loved me, he has not let me down. Not one single time. He has been here every step of the way; not once has he given me even the tiniest reason to not trust him. I gave him my trust and he is holding it very near. We’re going to get married! 

Theres something to be said for believing in a person. It helps you grow and it helps them grow. Together, you can both love each other, trust each other and be okay. You can be okay! You can move past the trust issues and work through it to a point where you just plain believe in him, the doubt does go away. Like I said some time ago in this novel I have managed to compose, it isn’t easy. It’s not all butterflies and rainbows. But you know that, this ist the first thing you worked through.

Let me say this: you need someone to trust, someone to share with honestly and openly. You deserve to have that support, let him try to give it to you. Letting myself trust someone with my whole being is one of the best things I have done for my own well being. I’m a better person for it, and I have joy now. I have the knowledge that I have someone, someone I could tell anything to, someone I could trust with my life, and that makes everything all right. 

Everything is going to be okay. Just let him in, open yourself wide and take the leap you have to. Everything will be okay. 

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