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tip for patience? dealing with cranky SO?

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hexed posted 8/13/2013 18:37 PM

Patience is not my strong suit. Empathy is one of them but apparently only for a little while.

There was month long job transition during which time I thought I might have to kill him b/c he was so edgy and unpleasant.

Now there is month of training overseas for the new job. Unfortunately this training takes place in the middle east.

TG does not handle change well. TG also struggles with PTSD from multiple tours in Iraq. He says he's fine with going to where the training is but the nightmares have returned in the last few days and he continues to be 'sharper' with his words and actions this week as he gets ready to leave on Thursday.

I love this man so much. Part of me wants to just wrap him up and hold him tight and part of me wants to tell him to behave pleasantly. I know that I'm being really unfair. It not that he's really done anything or directed any of it to me. He's just generally not himself and generally unpleasant.

It is not fair for me to bring it up right now but I sure could use some tips for improving my patience and dealing with him.

HURTAGAIN1981 posted 8/13/2013 18:49 PM

All I can really think of is just trying to take some deep breaths when you feel your patience is wearing thin, or maybe walk away for a bit and leave him to calm down, maybe you can pop to the shops or out to the garden until you feel a bit less agitated.

Amazonia posted 8/13/2013 19:39 PM

Part of me wants to just wrap him up and hold him tight and part of me wants to tell him to behave pleasantly

Personally I'd probably tell him exactly this. You understand why he's acting the way he is, but it still isn't fair for him to treat you poorly.

Sad in AZ posted 8/13/2013 20:27 PM

Take Ama's advice; it's spot on. I was married to a police officer and adhered to the policy that I should never let him leave the house angry because I might never see him again. It's a form of emotional blackmail.

He will probably always have PTSD, but he shouldn't be able to treat you shabbily for the rest of your lives. You can let him know kindly.

Amazonia posted 8/13/2013 20:29 PM

Also, I was thinking about this after I posted, letting the behavior slide, honestly, it's enabling in many ways. And enabling does not help the ones we love to heal.

reclaimingmyself posted 8/13/2013 21:45 PM

Just another perspective about what may be prompting his unpleasant behaviour. I was a military spouse for almost 3 decades and I learned over numerous deployments and separations that it is quite common for things to be somewhat tense and unsettled before they head off. It seems to be a coping mechanism to enable them to leave.

Things usually calmed down a couple of days before the actual departure - I think the reality of the situation sinks in and you don't want the last words between you to be anything you'd regret.

hexed posted 8/13/2013 22:25 PM

Thanks for the advice and perspective!

We aren't at the point where theres been many harsh words between us though our dynamic is outside of our normal.

I don't think that the PTSD will ever be gone completely. Both my Dad and Step Dad are combat vets from courtesy of Vietnam. They both still have things pop up from time to time. I brought it up as perspective given the circumstances.

I have been thinking about 'enabling'. That may be more of my what point am I being a doormat? At what point have I gone beyond tolerant of him going through a rough patch to co-dependent? When is it fair to say 'Enough is Enough! quit being such a crank?

RM may be spot on. He leaves Thursday morning. Shortly before I got on the plane this evening I received some very sweet texts from him. Much more normal.

Either way, I'm trying to find that balance between "I understand" and "If you're going to act like a turd, go lie in the grass!"

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