Slowly Moving Forward

So, the unhelpful anxiety has died down and now I can really start to process things. Sadness without anxiety is still not great but so much easier to deal with.

I mentioned that whilst we were in agreement on most things there were some things we tacitly disagreed on. I don’t think we will ever reach common ground on why I became depressed. To her, I think, it was purely and simply spontaneous internal depression that was always going to happen. To me I reacted to some of her behaviours and being unable to understand why her norms did not match what I thought were reasonable I lost my reference points and became depressed. In other words there was cause and effect. Some of my own behaviour after I became ill was very poor and I understand why she would resent that and that she had every right to do so. We just don’t agree on the starting point. Does that matter? On the face of it not at all. Even if we did agree now it couldn’t change what happened and it would make no difference really to her life or mine in the present. Yet I still struggle with what I see as an inability to see cause and effect.For me, if one particular incident had not happened, things would have followed a different path. It is impossible to know what that path might have been but I’d hope it would have been less painful for us both. My lasting impression is that she feels that the relationship became untenable because I became depressed. My view is that I became depressed because the relationship became untenable. I don’t know for sure that is her view because we didn’t specifically discuss that but it remains my strong impression. Again, does that matter, does it have any material effect now? That particular point really does seem to matter to me. It has always been a feature of mine that if I see something that I think is unfair and unreasonable I have to go at it and I find it very hard to let go. This is something else that possibly goes back to childhood when I feel it was impossible to put my side of a story to my father. In moderation it’s probably a good feature but sometimes in some circumstances it is unhelpful and probably quite damaging. It is one of my traits I’m finding hardest to adjust.

I have another regret from Monday. One that is only indirectly related to the long lost ex. The person she told me had died recently was a bit of a unique character. One of those larger than life characters. You couldn’t help but love her even if you tried not to. She was a person who flitted in and out of my life but knowing she is gone is no less telling because of that. The last time I had contact with her was when she delivered a very strong telling off to me and it’s only now dawning on me why that was. I’m not in touch with anyone else who knew her now. I missed the opportunity to share a moments grief with someone else who knew her. This was because I was so stressed about the forthcoming conversations I blanked it out to avoid distraction. I deeply regret it.

It’s funny how people view mental illness and how scary they find it. As well as often misunderstanding it. I happened to mention to someone of similar rank at work that I was feeling a bit low and it would have been good to have a night off to chat with my OH. Because he knew my history with PTSD it obviously rang an alarm bell for him. A whole train of things then happened which ended with a senior officer phoning me because he was concerned that I wasn’t really well enough to come to work that night. I’d only mentioned that I was feeling a bit low! I’ve previously had a longish spell of sickness after 2 operations on my back following an accident at work. If I’d mentioned my back was a bit sore today would the same thing have happened? I very much doubt it.

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2 responses to “Slowly Moving Forward

  1. Samantha Ritchie

    I hate the way people react to mental illness, especially with regard to work; so different from physical illness. People doing that nearly destroyed my family. I identify totally with what you say about, if you know something is unfair you cannot leave it alone. That is such a big feature with me; I HAVE to do what I know to be right, and everyone has to know that, and I CANNOT rest until I’ve resolved this. I wonder if this is just another feature of anxiety? However, someone found something for me recently which I am now finding so helpful: ‘the opposite of control is not chaos; the opposite of control is freedom’. So I CANNOT control other people’s ideas about things, even if I know they are not ‘right’. So I can be free, not by changing their view – which I have always thought would bring me freedom/peace – but by not trying to control their ‘wrong’ view. Maybe that is where you need to come from with regard to your ex and the way she sees your eventual break-up? You cannot control her view of it, so free yourself from that tyranny… somehow!!! Also, the fact that I am not responsible for how other people feel has come as a HUGE shock! Maybe that’s a factor, too.. You’re so brave to open up about this, and so strong. Thank you. Stay well x

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