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Triggered by SO

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sweetcrusader posted 5/6/2014 22:51 PM

How do you handle it when your SO triggers you? This has never happened before... I've actually never triggered on anything since XH and I separated, and when I did, it was always based on an event. This was brought on by feelings. I had a rough week, and SO was out of town. He was as supportive as he could be through phone calls and texts, but his time available to me was really limited by the work he was doing. I was feeling a lot of loss and abandonment, which should have been directed towards my job (I have a difficult situation at work, which resulted from me giving up my job to be a SAHM when I was married. I moved to part-time work with the same company, with the understanding that I could return to full-time later with no loss of status. But after I decided to D, they let me return to a much lower-paying position and have now told me that I have to reapply and compete for my old job even though they have a position available and I'm trained and ready to go. I also lost my seniority and vacation time). But I instead directed those feelings towards SO, which hurt him because he really was making a point to include and support me even though he couldn't be with me.

And ever since, I've been lost in a slew of emotions. I've been really confused, and it's taken me a long time to sort out which feelings are based on what is actually occurring vs ways that XH treated me in the past. I haven't been this much of an emotional trainwreck since those dark few months after D-Day. I've found myself lashing out at SO and engaging in really horrible, hurtful self-talk. I'm more rational at the moment, but I've really lost it a couple times over the past few days. It's like I just can't see reality. All I can see is my hurt, literally to the exclusion of everything else.

SO and I took a breather for today, which really hurt at first. Now that I'm rational again, I can see that he was taking steps to protect himself and give us both time to regroup. It was probably the best thing he could have done. But I've suddenly lost a lot of trust in myself. I knew I wasn't 100% healed, but I no longer hold any anger or resentment towards XH. I've been able to trust another man, and we have a stable relationship with mutual respect and good communication (except this past week... ). I think I'm okay now, but I'm terrified of this happening again. I hate feeling out of control and irrational, and the worst part is that it took me a day or two to even start seeing how out-of-touch my reaction was with what was actually occurring between SO and I. Honestly I'm embarrassed, too. I acted very childishly and selfishly. How can I work though this and lessen the chance of another trigger like this?

norabird posted 5/7/2014 00:53 AM

(((((Sweet crusader)))))

I think triggers take everyone unawares. Apologize and explain your SO. Forgive yourself, indulge in self-care, and talk about this in or get back into IC.

It's all a learning process. No one is free of issues. And learning yo manage our own is trial and error sometimes.

Ann124 posted 5/7/2014 07:55 AM

I also agree that you need to talk to your SO about the trigger the whys the hows etc ... Your SO may surprise you and be the most supportive person that you have ever met.

I also had some issues with triggers and cell phones ... It took me a while to build the courage to talk with my SO and it was a great thing I did.

sweetcrusader posted 5/7/2014 11:41 AM

We did get a chance to talk this morning, and I think this time he actually heard what I was saying. Unfortunately, my actions have triggered him a bit (he had a really awful split from his XW, who was likely unfaithful and did crazy things to try and manipulate him), so we've been a real mess of emotions run amok. We both left today's talk feeling good, and that's the first conversation in a week where that's happened. We still have a lot to talk about, and I still have a lot of working-through to do... But maybe we can just reconnect for the next couple days and take a break from the confusion and misunderstandings. This has been really rough on both of us...

sparkysable posted 5/7/2014 12:04 PM

What is the time frame between your D-day and when you started dating your SO?

sweetcrusader posted 5/8/2014 06:59 AM

Sparky - I'm going to give something of a long answer, because I think the situation in't quite black-and-white.

It was about a year fom D-Day, though XH and I had been growing apart for a while before I found out about his year-long affair. XH is a sex addict and is very lost as far as knowing who he is and what he wants. About 4 or 5 years ago, I started to explore who I am, and found that he wasn't willing or able to pursue any of my interests with me. I'm not even sure he liked who I was becoming; my mom always said that she thought he felt threatened by my independence... He had no real interests of his own, outside of sitting around watching movies. And sex, of course. :/ Although I'd probably have stayed with him had I not found out about the A, he was never the kind of partner I've learned I needed. And through our MC and my IC, I've come to recognize that it was never a healthy relationship, even in the beginning.

SO is actually a friend who grew into more; we've known each other for almost 10 years through work. I wouldn't be ready to start a new relationship with anyone else, and I wasn't looking for one when he and I started connecting in a romantic way. If things between us don't work out, I have no interest in dating or looking elsewhere. I'm good just being by myself. Right now, we're just taking things slowly and enjoying the fact that we share many interests and activities. After so long doing everything by myself, it's very nice to be able to truly share enjoyment and hobbies with someone who gets as much joy out of them as I do.

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