Sleep depravation sucks. Yes, another brilliant and grand pronouncement of mine.
I have been married to My a Bride for over 21 1/2 years. Before we separated I think we might have spent a dozen nights apart from each other, maybe less. Our first night apart, getting to sleep was actually very easy. I was emotionally and mentally exhausted, still in a major state of shock. Getting to sleep has become progressively more difficult as time goes by. I’m so used to her being next to me, I can’t get comfortable and calming down simply does not happen.
How does one remedy his insomnia in this situation? In my case I’ve been staying up incredibly late. Bedtimes of 3-4AM are not unusual. Saturday I never went to sleep. I was a wee bit fatigued.
It should come, then, as no surprise that my mental state began to take a major decline. I noticed I was becoming pretty sad last Wednesday. Friday I was nearing melt down. I was becoming convinced that things were not as I had thought in our marriage. When I went for our weekend hang out session she told me she thought we would need more time apart. My mind went in to instant panic mode. I sat there crying as she spoke; no boo-hooing or anything like that, just tears. A few minutes later she told me that our plan to reevaluate was a good idea.
Sunday was even worse. I was mentally, emotionally and physically exhausted. Knowing how tired I was, I just knew I’d fall asleep within moments of lying down. That didn’t happen. 2AM rolled around and I became nervous. 4AM came and I was in a panic. 5AM came and I gave up and started getting ready for the day. It was shocking that my mental state deteriorated further.
Our home is a 2 story house that was built in 1904. We live in Oklahoma and our house was built by one of My Bride’s ancestors that acquired this land in the land run. It’s old, big and creaky. I was present to take Son2 to some project he was running. As we were leaving I heard the floors creaking as My Bride walked to the door. She was leaving to have lunch with her family. She was about to pull away and I asked her to stop, I wanted to tell her something. When I finished she said, I really think we’re going to need more time apart. We can still evaluate on the 6th, but I’m pretty sure I’ll need more time. Panic mode returned in full force. My heart was pounding and my head was spinning. Somehow I was able to keep it together. We kissed and she drove off. 30 minutes later she texted I’m sorry for hurting you. being the strong, brave guy I am, I responded with, “I’m not hurting, I understand,” which was, of course, bullcrap.
An hour after she left for lunch we exchanged texts again. I said something about missing her and wanting to come home. She responded that she doesn’t want to hurt me and would write down her feelings later that night and send them to me later, when she had a chance. Being out with her family made it too hard to do it until then. Her needing to write these feelings and send them to me set alarm bells off. That panic I had been experiencing earlier was child’s play.
A few moments after receiving her, “I’ll send my feelings to you later” text, I hit the floor. I wrote the following to her: “If this isn’t going like you thought it was, please just tell me know. I’d much rather have my heart broken know then weeks or months later.” I told her that I’m incredibly confused. I don’t know what’s going on, what I can do or what I can say.
“I miss you so much and I love you even more, but knowing you’re hurting and still in serious pain makes me pause. I don’t want to hurt you any more but I am overwhelmed by my feelings of love, intimacy and desire. I’m missing you so much, I miss your touch. I miss being next to you. Hearing you breath this morning was so comforting. TOUCHING your body melted my heart. But then you tell me you’re nowhere near being ready to reunite. You even mentioned staying apart all through July. It devastated me.
I wish there was something I could say it do. I wish I could prove myself to you.
Your touch, look and kisses have such an affect on me. I want to draw closer to you, but I feel even further apart than before. I know you’re keeping your distance for you protection. It seems you won’t share any feelings or thoughts with me. I don’t know where things stand or if there’s any kind of movement at all.
It seemed things moved a little last weekend but immediately retracted. It even felt like things regressed a little.
I do not mean to press you or anything. I hope I’m not doing that. I just need some kind of affirmation.
Is there positivity happening?”
Once things are quiet tonight and I’m home I’m going to get all my thoughts written down types down and sent to you so that hopefully it will make more sense to you how I feel and what I’m feeling about everything.
“Is this a bad thing? If it is, please shoot me straight. I’m having such massive pains now. ”
She texted that she loves me. I told her it seems like there’s a “but” coming.
I just think things are going too fast with the separation. There are no big surprises coming, I promise.
She called a little later. She basically reiterated the earlier text. Things are moving too fast for her and she’s confused. I alerted her to my fears. You need to get done sleep. This lack of sleep has had a major affect on you. It took a few minutes for me to realize she wasn’t just trying to get off the phone with me; she was truly worried about me. I was asleep by 6:30.
I awoke this morning at 8:30. My mind was at ease and I finally understood what had happened. The extreme lack of sleep had caused me to go into an emotional panic. As my sister says, “Panic messes you up. Your head is spinning and there’s no way you can think clearly and make good decisions.” Panic plus sleep depravation equates emotional break down. My Bride wasn’t conspiring against me. She was keeping her distance for protection. She saw what had happened to me and didn’t want to engage me in major discussion, I might completely lose it.
We are separated. We are experiencing severe relational difficulty. Things got to a point that she felt it necessary to kick me out of our home. We are both in a constant state of confusion. Up, down, left and right are meaningless right now. Even with all of that junk going on, she still wants to take care of me. I still want to take care of her.
We both know that we love each other deeply. We both know we don’t want a divorce. We both want to grow old together. We both want to serve God together. We both want to help others when we get to the other side.
She doesn’t want to get together very often. She says that saying goodbye is too hard. I want to be with her as much as possible. She’s definitely correct though. Parting is incredibly painful for both of us. We reached a compromise. There will be 2 weekly interactions. Wednesday will be a mid-week catch up and we’ll have a date one day during the weekend.
We have both had huge progress during our time apart. I’ve had a spiritual reawakening and enormous mental breakthroughs. I’ve even acquired a couple of new tools for dealing with my BPD. My Bride has started to relax finally. She is getting good rest and spends unbelievable amounts of time at our pond with her sister. She even had 4 drinks last night. 4 drinks are more than she has EVER had at one time. Ever. She is letting her hair down and enjoying herself.
I don’t want to be away any longer. I think I’ve done as much as I can while being alone. She has just gotten started. She’s having a good time and smiling a lot. I’m pretty bummed that I’m not a part of her happiness. I’m certainly jealous of her sister since all the good times are with her. I wonder if her request for more time is to extend her good time period. I’m almost certain that’s a part of it. Probably subconsciously. Irrespective of her reasoning, she wants the time. Just like our separation, this is not my call. I have zero input in this decision. If she needs it, she gets it.