The Climb Continues

It seems like so long ago. But it still feels like yesterday.

Some things have gotten better, some have gotten worse, and still some have stayed the same. I was thinking about it one night and I have been giving myself the “you’ll heal with time” speech for a really long time now. So I decided maybe I need to figure out exactly how long it usually takes PTSD to “go away”. Because by now I should be seeing the light at the end of the tunnel at least, right?

Well…….it would seem as though it doesn’t just “go away”. My brain is actually physically different now than what it was 7 years ago. Can you comprehend that? An adult brain can actually change (contrary to what we were always taught in school) and the physical nature can be changed through continuous trauma. It took me awhile to ponder over that. I don’t have a laundry list of symptoms that will just magically get better with time. I have a list that I have to live with and figure out how best to live with them and keep them from affecting my life so much.

What’s gotten better? The frequency of severe panic attacks. The fear of falling back into the “victim role” as it applies to “him”, of feeling like he could take back control of my head with just minutes alone with him. A lot of the unhealthy coping mechanisms. The way I see myself as a person with value and worth and most of all, a whole lot of strength and determination.

What’s gotten worse? The depression. The overall inability to handle even the smallest crisis. The tolerance I have for the self destructive thoughts that I used to be able to talk myself through because I knew they’d pass. The inability to think clearly when faced with difficult decisions. The desire for isolation. The uncontrollable detachment from myself and inability to “snap out of it”. Dissociation.

What’s stayed the same? The startle response. The fear of him returning or wanting to see his children. The inability to be in crowded places. The feeling of being a chastised child or feeling talked down to when it’s probably in my own head. The feeling that he was right whenever my ability to be a mother falls short of his expectations. The feeling that I will never again be “happy”.

PTSD can be made better or worse depending on the support system that holds you together. That explains everything when it comes to me. I have very little and I wish I was just “being dramatic” as i was always told. However, it’s a fact. I have had to develop the mentality of doing it all myself. If I come to depend on someone for assistance with anything, there is no back up plan. (simple example, I sent my son to a school where he doesn’t have a bus option and his friends mother was all too overjoyed to take him and pick him up everyday. Until her child started getting sick and her only reason to leave was to have to get my kid.) And then mine got sick and I apparently texted her after she had left her house. What I got felt too much like being “fussed at”, and it’s not worth feeling that way. But that’s just a simple example, even when you can’t do it all perfectly, you still have to do it perfectly.

So fuck it, I’ll continue climbing this mountain alone.

Open Letter to the Rest of the World

It seems as though I have people in my life that think I write this for them. Well, I don’t. I’ve been told stop writing everything and “move on”. Stop talking about it so much, it really just needs to be put in the past so you can “move on”. Yeah, what an asshole, you need to drop him and “move on”.

I have a crazy idea, how about shut up and let me grieve and hurt and “move on” at my own pace and just support me while I do. I didn’t realize I was on a time limit. I didn’t know that after 4 1/2 years, that a few months would be all I needed to just “move on”. And still……..nobody understands. Does anyone seem to get that he can smell my loneliness and desperation for interaction……and makes it that much harder for me to “move on”.? It only serves to further isolate ourselves. Do you want to know who I talk to MOST, my husband and his EX-wife!! <<<< how fucked up is this shit?!? The ex that he was telling all of our business to, the ex he tried to go back to more than once, including the month we started fertility treatments. The ex that he swore he only discussed their son most of the time, the ex that didn’t bother to tell me any of this. He created the perfect triangulation and she was a willing, although unknowing perfect flying monkey. And THIS is who I talk to most because I have her son. And him because well, he’s my husband, and I don’t have a plethora of people on speed dial. I’m kinda pissed off that everyone has the nerve to tell me to “move on”. Is this when I am given the proper time allotment? I need to know. This is my first split from a sociopathic, manipulative, lying, asshole. I’ll know the rules better next time.

I still go through spells where I can leave and then spells where I can’t leave these walls. He mocks me, tells me I don’t have anxiety or PTSD; cause I was just as abusive. It “went both ways”. And here I am again……..almost the same nightmare, but at least it’s not all the time, right? And here I go, questioning if I’m the crazy one. I call him out on lies and he makes the million dollar “you’re a nutcase” speech to convince me that what I’m seeing is wrong.

It’s cool. When one of the “experts” finds some spare time, they can fill me in on the rules. And then I guess I’ll easily glide right into “moving on”.

The Power Of Guilt

 There are days I wake up feeling guilty. I have to think hard for awhile to come up with a source for that guilt. Guilt for me has always been a confusing emotion. It’s like a bad heartbreak and you just want it to stop. If you can get the source of the guilt, it’s easily fixable. I don’t know if it’s like that normally.
I’ve lived four years with that being used against me completely, and continue to live in a guilt ridden, built up world. I hate feeling guilty. With a passion.

I remember nearing the end of all I could take anymore (and this was one of his over-used phrases) he said “I’m tired of your apologies. I could wallpaper the house with your apologies”. I’ll never forget the look he had when I said “yeah, cause I’ve apologized too damn much!”

I always felt guilty; for being too needy when he had such a bad childhood. For needing his help when he was working hard at a degree that would help us all in the future. For ordering pizza two+ nights a week (yeah, I was bitched at many times for that one)

But now he’s playing Mr. Nice-Guy. And every conversation leads back to how he’s been “cold and hungry and his knee is tore up from walking and he’s been standing on the street with a sign”……..he’s easily gained 15 lbs. Go figure. But I feel guilty. Because I’ve been warm and fed and no street signs, ect.

My stepson wants to go live with his mom,  He says “he wouldn’t want to live there if his dad was here. He’d want to stay here with his dad and siblings.” “Now he’s going back to an unsafe situation because of your need to be in control.”

So where does that leave me……..feeling guilty. He won’t get involved, because “I kicked him out and made sure to make it impossible for him to have anymore say in what happens to his son.” He still has custody, he could hold his ground and help me with his mother. But it’s more fun to play pitiful victim.

He can list all the things he’s done to change (I don’t have that talent, I’ve tried) and how I’ve done nothing, I won’t even acknowledge my part in the demise and continuing demise of our marriage. Now I feel guilty. Am I being too hard?, should I be trying? He got a minimum wage job, doesn’t have a car or phone, and reminds me often that I have a few extra phones. So now I feel guilty. He is after all my spouse, should I provide him a phone?

He hasn’t even been served separation papers. He hides and then I get bitched at for trying to have him thrown in jail…….what the hell is he talking about? (child support I assume) But now I feel guilty for something I didn’t even know I was doing. I am getting too snippy about my stepsons parents in front of him, so then I feel guilty. I take his iPhone away and he uses it to text her all day, now I feel guilty.

I was told (many times) by my darling husband that you only feel guilt when you have a reason to feel guilty. So………what I’m doing must be wrong cause I feel guilty, but my gut says don’t you dare walk into that trap. I get pissed at him (he is a chronic liar) but he’s so convincing that he’s being honest that now I feel guilty for accusing him of lying.

But that’s his weapon. Guilt. Why am I so sensitive to guilt? And he’s very good at it. For every issue I could point out, he can counter it in a hot second with a more pitiful issue or downplay my complaint to the point where I feel guilty for even mentioning it.

Rent is high- at least you have a home

Kids are driving me nuts- yeah, I really miss my kids

Cars acting funny-at least you have a car

You called me a whore-you shouldn’t have acted sneaky

I didn’t leave for days-I always was honest about where I was and what I was doing

So was I- but you lied that one time when you claimed to be going downtown and weren’t at work

Cause I couldn’t tell you the truth-you weren’t really going downtown, you just said what came to mind first.

You were in my face and I was scared- you can’t keep holding the past against me. OR you weren’t scared. You were intimidated, there’s a difference.

My gut tells me he’s lying about where he’s at, what he’s doing, who it’s with……but he’s SO convincing that in the end, I feel guilty for jumping to conclusions.

Maybe I should hire a PI for just a few days if only to prove to MYSELF I’m not completely crazy yet. And maybe, just maybe, find out that my “gut instincts” (that have been lost for so long) really are back and reliable.


That’s what I feel like, I’m just alone. And over something that should be easy…..I can’t find anyone to watch my kids so I can go to work. That’s why he was here all last weekend. I have a good job; and I’m about to lose it. Because of his bullshit. Now that I’m getting desperate he’s of course all kinds of helpful and ready anytime he needs to come keep them. All I keep hearing is “they won’t really fire you”. Ummm.!!! Yes! They will! And Christmas Day. I had to call out on a major holiday. Most people who ever worked know that’s a huge no-no. And I had to do it, first time ever. My daughter has paternal family 30 minutes away. And nobody could BE BOTHERED WITH HER ON CHRISTMAS DAY?!??

He knows I’m getting desperate and he already has a wedge in the door. He’s just waiting for me to cave and “admit” I can’t make it without him. All because nobody can or will watch two kids on a weekend. And that’s the problem I guess, everyone wants their weekends free.

Should it come to that point. Where I no longer have a choice. Everyone will look down on ME. Well it must not have been so bad if you let him move back in. Or you must enjoy it since you let him back. Or if he was that bad with you and the kids then why would you even consider having him come back. Truth be told, it won’t come to that. I’ll secure my kids homes and exit this life before I will ever go back to living as a mental hostage. (more than I already am)

I actually have a career. With benefits and decent pay (I supported 8 people, so you figure it out) I earned a college degree to get here. And my only problem is I CANT FIND A BABYSITTER?!? I feel like this is a joke. All of the “I’ll help you out anytime”…….most haven’t helped me out at all. I’m not one to beg and I’m not one to easily ask for help, but I’ve already passed that point.

I read somewhere earlier; I want to live, not just survive. And that’s where I am, just surviving.

Panic Attack #3

He was at the house this weekend watching two of the kids so I could go to work. I don’t like it and I don’t feel comfortable, but I have few choices. I came home after 12 hours of work and all I wanted was my routine. But it was all thrown off; he was in “my” chair, with the baby asleep (and of course she was up bright eyed at 4am) I didn’t want to talk to him. So I just came to my room and got in bed. I was texting a friend and I could hear his footsteps and he came to the door and with that damn same voice (I know you think that’s crazy sounding) he asked what’s wrong, what did he do, what can he get me, please tell him what’s wrong, why I’m not talking… me the fake puppy dog look of care and concern. I didn’t answer. But he stood there and I felt myself go right back to the nights of endless lectures. It’s a defeating feeling you can’t describe. I can almost feel my soul go hide, and I heard it all in my head, he’s fussing cause I won’t talk and he’s telling me all the great things he’s done today or he’s giving me the educated lecture on how adults are supposed to have a conversation and I needed to act like one and give him answers. I saw it all playing out in my head, just like the two times before. And he just stood there looking at me and I had already gone back to that place of feeling like death would be better than this. I finally said how long are you going to stand there? And he walked away. My heart pounding, my mind racing, my anxiety through the roof and I just wanted to run. It reminds me of that old show Quantum Leap. You’re right there one minute and something triggers the universe to instantly suck you into a whole different time and you see all of it playing out the way it had, except this time it’s in fast forward. I never understood until it happened to me. I didn’t see it coming. It’s been 3 or 4 months and I did not see it coming at all.


The Voice

There’s a certain tone he gets sometimes. It’s calm and rational. It’s a mix of concern and sad. It’s a higher pitch than normal. It’s sweet and caring. It’s attentive and always asking what’s wrong or can I get you anything. It’s a different voice than the one that he has almost everyday. From the outside looking in, it can appear genuine and caring. From the inside; that voice means danger. It means get the hell away and fast. It’s almost like that last warning sign he gives me. I’ll do what he wants and as I don’t, the voice changes gradually and becomes less caring and more demanding. It becomes less genuine and more controlling. It invokes fight or flight feelings. That’s the voice he has now. It makes you feel crazy, because you hate it and you know it means hell. But how is that possible when he’s just being so kind and loving? It’s yet another way in which you can questions your sanity. I’m tired of feeling crazy. And I’m tired of having to keep being reassured that I’m not.

Save Me

I gave the devil my hand and now he’s dragging me back to hell.

Only now I know what hell looks like and I don’t want to go.