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I need 2 x 4s, my heart won't listen to my brain

ratherbeacatlady posted 3/23/2018 19:00 PM

Hi. I don't post often. I respond to others from time to time. Reading the posts here frequently is the best way to regain my sanity when I feel it slipping away.
Overall I'm doing really well. I'm deep in therapy with a wonderful CSAT therapist who's helping me make sense of my STBXWH's baffling SA behavior. She's helping me become stronger so I am not a predator magnet anymore. And so I learn to have solid boundaries. I'm happier than I've ever been really. Sick a lot and had to stop working recently but still happier without my SA STBWXH around to pull me down into hell.
He asked me to keep the kids all this past week. He is claiming a conference out of town, the same one he's used as a front for god knows what before. (Even the confessions aren't to be trusted with him.) And I started having nightmares again a week before he left. He's living with me again in my dreams but we r always in the middle of a move. And the dreams are so bad this week I am in so much pain when I wake up. And the one last night - fucking snakes everywhere- I don't ever want to sleep again.
And the fucking worst is I find myself thinking I need to try and talk to him face to face. WHAT THE FUCK FOR I DON'T KNOW. I know better. I have maintained NC except for kids and finances for a year and a half, shortly after he moved out. And only text and email. No phone calls. No face to face.
I keep remembering the times he wasn't awful to me, when he seemed normal. Those times are few compared to all the memories of 18 years of sulking and being distant but still...they are there. I don't get how he can basically be 2 people, one is so selfish and cruel. The other, though rare, was just fine. Nice even at times. It doesn't make sense that that person never really existed.
My therapist says it's to be expected as a trigger. This conference, if that's even where he really went, is being held in the city where the first AP I found out about lived when we lived there. She didn't move very far away and would most likely go to that conference too. She was a MCOW so she is in the same business.
I have moved my focus from all the pain to my own healing until this damn trip or lie or whatever it is. And now my own mind is attacking me when I sleep.
I know if I try to talk to him he will just say something cruel to hurt me. What the fuck makes me want to speak to him dammit!?! I don't even have anything to say and I'm not so fucked up as to want him back. Shit no. So what this feeling is about I can't fucking say but it is accompanied by pain so deep that I haven't had to wrestle with in a long time.

ChamomileTea posted 3/23/2018 22:06 PM

I can imagine that it's really uncomfortable not to trust your sleeping brain. But from someone who hasn't been able to process the trauma during sleep, I've come to believe that the whole point of this kind of dreaming is to process the event. Your "organic computer" is sorting files. There's purpose to it. And for someone like me, who can't go anywhere near the trauma without sudden waking, it leaves one ruminating endlessly.

EMDR has helped with that. And possibly it could help you too. It mimics REM sleep and the processing we do while in it, but with the guidance of a good counselor, it's possible that you could sort those files without the loss of control you're feeling during REM.

truthsetmefree posted 3/23/2018 22:36 PM

I've come to believe that the whole point of this kind of dreaming is to process the event.

I agree with this completely.

I had lots of cheating dreams while still with stbxwh. Lots. Almost enough to call them premonitions. Since he has left, they have stopped. I rarely dream of him now. However, I'm still processing LOTS of stuff during my awake hours.

I'm not sure which way is easier. Either way, the only way out is through. I've found it helps when I give up the resistance and instead focus on just the allowing it as it is. Not just the events...but how my self is needing to process it. I think it is the resistance that turns pain into suffering.


josiep posted 3/25/2018 18:52 PM

I wish I had some words of wisdom or advice to help make it easier but, alas I don't.

But this is interesting and sort of scary for me because for the last 3 weeks or so, I've been having dreams that XWH wanted to get back together. And I honestly don't know what I'd do if he suggested it. For the most part, I say no way in Hell but every once in awhile I do wish we could finish out our final years together with all the memories of our 50 years. It is a huge dilemma and I hope the dreams are helping me get to the sensible side of Hell No.

ratherbeacatlady posted 4/4/2018 11:56 AM

Sorry it took me so long to thank you guys for your responses. I'm the migraine queen and it's been rough lately.
@Chamomiletea - thank you for suggesting EMDR. That makes so much sense now that I think about it. The dreams are traumatic. But at least, for the most part, I'm not having traumatic triggered thoughts all the time like I did at first.
@truthsetmefree - I had dreams like yours leading up to both DDays, like I'm psychic or something. Maybe these premonitions mean there is a part of my brain that can see past my denial and rationalizing mind. And I know you are right. The only way out is through. I have to just stick it out through feeling awful or it'll just get suppressed and keep me miserable.
@josiep - thanks for chiming in. You have really helped me before. I read your posts and gain insight from your wisdom frequently. And I have those thoughts too sometimes, of how nice it would be to get old with the person who shared my biggest memories - especially of the kids. I have always wanted so badly to have the kind of marriage where you grow into adorable old people together reminiscing about your kids and playing with your grandkids. It was such a huge dream of mine. It's been so hard to let that go. I also always wanted a kind, good man to be my kids' father. My dad never spent any time with me and occasionally verbally abused me. I think the idea of a good dad is a fantasy I have nursed all my life. I wanted to pick so carefully so they could have that
And now instead I'm worried about what kind of trauma he may expose them to as a result of multiple partners, embarassingly young partners, married partners. I envision some woman's husband coming to his place to kick his ass while my kids are there. Or 2 women finding out about each other and confronting him in front of my kids, or doing something violent to him in front of my kids.
The need to talk to him has faded thankfully. I've remembered that the person I wanted to talk to never existed.

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