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What does this indicate?

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KBeguile posted 7/3/2013 21:10 PM

Every time I see Heart go from moderate pleasure/joy/happiness to depression/anxiety/rage, it kills me inside. I think of all the damage I did to get us here - 7 years' worth - and how what I'm doing now really can (and probably does) feel like "too little, too late."

Lately, I've had this sensation more than not. Almost every day for the past two weeks, I've watched her either start the day miserable or wind up that way by bedtime. I know I'm responsible, because it's my actions and my lies and my hatred and my betrayals that got us here.

I'm just starting to worry that her continued returning to depression, rage, and hopelessness is indicative of her underlying desires to quit pursuing R, only she won't allow herself to because of DS. Even a harmless outing to Chili's the other night had me wondering, "Is this the occasion where she finally calls it quits with a clear conscience, and she's just trying to take me somewhere public so I'll make less of a scene?"

Is this what the road to D/S feels like? Or am I reading too much into something that's perfectly "normal" for the BS to suffer at this period of time out from D-Day?

I just want to do what's best for her now. I've already done everything I could to be horrible to her, and I hate myself for it even to the point of loathing re-tracing the same steps out of the fear that what's changed inside my brain will undo itself and I'll go back to being the same hateful little troll of a man I used to be. Granted, that beast didn't have boundaries and hadn't confronted a lot of the issues you lot have helped me with, but I still fear it in the back of my brain. And I hate that I know I have that potential - it makes me sick to my stomach and angry and depressed all at the same time.

tl;dr - Heart now pretty much has at least one spell a day of depression/anxiety/rage/hopelessness, and I don't know what to do about any of it; wondering if this is what D/S comes from, or I'm reading too much into it.

5454real posted 7/3/2013 21:36 PM

only she knows what she is thinking. ask her and then listen to her response. IMO you are too focused on outcomes..

the only true control you have is over yourself. continue to work on you. show her that you are becoming a safe person.

remember two to five years.

no stop sign, hope you didn't mind

Unagie posted 7/3/2013 22:21 PM

KBeguile listen your last DDay was in March. There is no her returning to depression and rage...she never left. You must think of this in time frames that will help you remember it hasn't been that long. Every day of this journey feels like I ran a marathon none stop for a week. Exhaustion is common and just wanting it to end is as well. She has a right to the emotions she is having but you are still focusing everything on Heart. When you don post about your personal journey you have made breakthroughs but you still stumble. That's to be expected and yet I still feel instead of focusing on those stumbles and correcting them you turn back to how Heart feels. It is important to be there for her and talk to her if she needs it from you but it is equally important to keep the work going on yourself. If you're worried about her then ask her if she would like to talk or vent or be left alone to work through her own emotions. Stop trying to see the end or you'll burn out before your a few steps away from the start.

aesir posted 7/3/2013 23:18 PM

At this stage it may not be so much dropping into depression, but climbing out of it more frequently, and perhaps feeling secure enough to be able to show the signs of depression and rage when they are felt most strongly. In the early panic stage, you have no idea how strong the urge to hide emotions is, especially when showing them feels like it will make things worse.

Gotta agree, let go of the outcome. If you focus on the outcome instead of the goal, fear can take over and it can become a self fulfilling prophecy.

KBeguile posted 7/3/2013 23:31 PM

You're right, Unagie, and she imparted that much to me as well this evening.

"Fix yourself. I don't want this happening again."

To that end, I just spent half an hour or so meditating on our patio, seeing if I could possibly tease out any more of the 'building blocks' that led to my behavior.

Here's what I've gotten so far:

- I picture these elements of my psyche as engines and other components strung together with belts, the engines turning the gears on the other components so that they run.

The two main engines I have are "narcissistic tendencies" and "rejection of (unfit, psychologically abusive) mother." The Rejection Engine powers a component that, for a long time, made me seek out attention from especially older women/girls, then to a lesser extent older men, then to an even smaller extent girls my age. These were, in essence, supposed to replace my FOO, which I perceived as being broken. My experiences in high school led me to chain that component to the component of "being the center of attention," which is primarily powered by my NT Engine. I learned to read people and try to predict what they were expecting me to say/do. I called it 'empathy.' This led to extreme external validation needs.

From everything I've read, narcissism leads to sexual deviance because of entitlement, and I would have to assume that I was no different, especially during my post-teenage years. My primary focus was BDSM with older females (that lovely combination of narcissism/entitlement and detachment from mother/FOO), and I was fairly angry when people didn't immediately accept me in the community despite what I felt was an adequate learning background in the subject (much as I have exhibited here from time to time, it seems).

The sexual deviance led to an internal realization of brokenness, because I felt I had to cover up in order to keep giving the appearance that I was 'red-blooded, all-American boy that Mom wanted to be a preacher some day.' I learned to lie fairly well to cover my own tracks. My own judgment calls would constantly shift in favor of hiding my own embarrassment, rather than giving people the truth and honesty they wanted and deserved. Protecting myself and my constructed self-image were more important to me than being honest or dependable.

So many years of these practices went on that I became almost comfortable in them. I still knew the things I was doing were deviant and not culturally-permissible, but I surrounded myself with people who at least supported those kinds of choices, so I deluded myself into being at ease with the choices I had made. I still hid these particular practices from people whose opinions I valued and whose validation I sought, but once they learned of my deviousness, I would admit some level of defeat, and eventually things would go back to some kind of status quo where I could be comfortable again.

I became quite accustomed to how to hide these things from the people around me that I just naturally carried this horrible tendency into my relationship with Heart. I didn't want her to see the 'broken' me; I wanted to be 'perfect' for her, just as I had wanted to be 'perfect' for so many people whose opinions I valued and validation I needed to thrive. When she started questioning me and/or not giving me what I felt like I deserved, I started seeking validation and support outside our marriage. I even deluded myself into thinking that I was doing this for 'the right reasons' (such as wanting to fill out more of my sexual fetish BINGO card - ugh) and had help in the form of my LTEA, who supported my distancing myself from Heart and pursuing my own selfish goals (and was also incredibly Narcissistic to boot).

My life, in short, has been a constant thrum of those two engines, tethered together: Narcissistic Tendencies and External Approval (from Rejection of Mother/FOO).

What have I been doing to those ends?

I started small. I carefully mete my conversations with unfamiliar people and familiar people, but in different ways. I use my boundaries (never had them before) to think carefully about topics in conversation and when things have crossed any particular lines that I am not comfortable crossing.

I don't medicate myself with porn. I don't spend all day looking at it or fantasizing about it.

I try to carefully gauge when I am thinking too much of my own needs and not taking into consideration other peoples' needs.

Most importantly, though, I am getting used to living within boundaries I created for myself because it helps me define who I am and who I want to be. I have learned to communicate better with Heart, and as a result, I do 90% of my conversing in a day with her, either through text, phone calls, email, or face-to-face. Because of my being able to open myself completely to her (I admit even the dumbest things I'm thinking about at any given moment), I don't have the drive to open myself to anyone else. I don't seek approval outside of our house, and I am very vigilant for the times that I start to speak as though I'm seeking someone else's approval and/or as though I feel entitled to something.

I used to just assume everyone in the world was wired the same way as I am/was (narcissism), but I can see now that there are a lot of people who have their heads on a LOT straighter than I do. It's that desire to be clearer-minded and more thoughtful of others (while not completely supplicating to others in order to try and gain their affection) that helps me now, and because I spend a lot of time conversing and dealing with Heart, most of my attempts to be thoughtful fall to her. Just numbers, there.

I do apologize if I seem like I rant and rave too much about "what can I do for Heart?" type-things when I should be doing more work on myself, but I've ignored and fought against her for so long that I feel it imperative to do more to stabilize, fix, and heal the damage I've done to the relationship. I suppose it would all be for naught if I were still damaged on the inside, though. Point made.

SandAway posted 7/4/2013 07:34 AM

As the others said, your less then 6 months out from DDay and recovery takes at least 2 - 5 years - sometimes more depending on the length of the A.

Remember what we read in "Things that every WS needs to know"

What you’re seeing in your spouse is a normal reaction to a life-changing event.

Your spouse needs to grieve for as long as it takes in order to recover and heal.

You can be a positive influence on their recovery.

That first year is tough (2nd is pretty tough too). Heart is going through so many emotions everyday. Her pain is real and she has to feel it in order to heal.

Go back and read the post "How much does my BS hurt?" I gave it a bump. Read the letter in there. I bet when your reading it you can actually hear you BS saying the same thing. I know when I just reread it, I could hear my BH's voice...

Hang in there.

KBeguile posted 7/4/2013 11:11 AM

Thank you for bumping that. It has been a while since I read it.

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