One of the major hurdles that my BS (Heart) and I have faced in these last 5 months is the question of "why?", and like so many other things, it's multi-layered and textured to the point that every time I think I've answered it, it doesn't seem to be the right answer. While I still lack a thorough, concrete answer for "why?", I definitely am starting to understand the breadth of what I have done:
- I have failed to honor multiple promises, namely: my wedding vows, my honesty, my promise to myself to never hurt another or cause another suffering, my promise to support Heart through anything and everything (the last one being of pivotal note today).
- When confronted with adversity, my response has been, prior to D-Day, to run away like a coward and force Heart to confront the problem herself and alone. Conflict Avoidance pays particular note into this one. This includes dealing with our child, with whom I failed to set boundaries (because I lacked them myself).
- Because of this, when I was conflicted with anything regarding Heart, my self-care tool was typically pornography/online sexual role-playing, which is a result of my Sexual Addiction.
- I also found what I thought to be a 'kindred spirit' in my boss, and because I lacked proper boundaries, I allowed my relationship with her to become a LTEA. My boss essentially became a platonic spouse-replacement
[Evidences: confiding in former boss - including details of arguments and conflicts with Heart at home, letting boss fill accompaniment roles in public venues like movies].
- All my resentment (at myself, my failures, my depression, my inabilities to cope, and the minor conflicts I might have otherwise dealt with by Heart in an adult fashion) channeled into my feelings toward Heart. She became an adversary that I was forced by circumstance to live with.
[Evidences: treating Heart poorly and with disdain, not talking to Heart about my problems or feelings, realization (now) that all of the items I complained to other APs about Heart were actually things *I* was doing]
I ran away from problems, including my own problems with Heart. I made them all *her* problems via projection, and then resented her for it. I gave myself permission to seek forms of consolation other than Heart because I had no/poor boundaries, and when I allowed those to consume me, I gave up on ever seeking anything positive with Heart.
I ruined 6 years of her life because I couldn't handle myself effectively - which is a piss-poor excuse for ruining someone's life.
One of the things I've noticed that has changed since D-Day and subsequent events is that I lack the same level of over-inflated ego and self-confidence, particularly in the areas of being able to set boundaries and trusting myself to magically "do the right thing." I don't trust myself any more, and I must therefore treat myself as suspect in almost all matters.
The nice thing is the unintended implications I've already experienced as a result of this. I'm not reliant/expectant of anyone else to get done what I need to get done, including chores, work, discipline, and so forth. I'm more eager to take care of the day-to-day struggles, partly as proof to myself that I *can* actually do these things self-motivated (something I've definitely struggled with my entire life).
Furthermore, I've noticed an extreme reluctance to 'write checks I can't cash,' meaning that I don't discipline our DS for anything I wouldn't expect myself to be able to follow through with. If he's notably dishonest, I am far less afraid to discipline him and correct him on it than I used to be. I don't let him run roughshod over me without recourse.
I've also thought more about how I word things and what I say, making damn sure I don't make any promises I won't be able to keep. This especially comes up at work when I'm asked how long I think projects will take me when I'm not even certain what the end result is going to look like.
I hope Heart reads this and sees what I've been struggling with today. I understand what I've done - I've abused her for 6 years without relent. It's damn near impossible to trust someone who's been an abuser for 6 straight years.
Almost as importantly, I hope that people who read this might offer words. I don't know or expect any particular flavor of words, but I do hope that this serves to inspire something from the community.
My fondest hope would be that this somehow inspires someone who hasn't come clean or bothered to understand their own motives to really dig deeply into themselves for these kinds of answers. They are never straightforward, nor are they ever simple. They are often a complex latticework of bad things working in concert in the worst possible way.
If you've read this, thank you.