Recently, My Wife has been allowing me to snuggle her in bed. This has caused a few problems I was unaware of. Well, I kind of knew about one.
First of all, she’s uncomfortable with it. She’s still not cool with me touching her but is in a “taking one for the team” mode. That’s the way I perceive things at least. I’m fairly confident of my viewpoint due to the evidence at hand.
• Her migraines have returned
• She is suddenly sick a lot
• She gets a “here we go” look on her face when o come in for a kiss.
My assumption was confirmed yesterday when I went for a kiss.
I went in for another, more meaningful kiss. She turned her head and it went to a hug. I don’t know that it’s ever coming back. It makes me feel like a failure every time you come in for a kiss because I know you want more.
As we went to bed, she conjured up the courage to talk with me.
Ever since I started letting you snuggle me in bed things have changed. Whenever you get up, to pee at night or for the day, I have to get up. You don’t just put your arm on me, you put like half of your body on me and I can’t get back to sleep. The only times I get a good night’s sleep is when you fall asleep watching TV on the couch. The thing is, I deny you so many things, I don’t want to deny you this too; but I have to have my sleep so I can workI just don’t want that to hurt you or cause any problems.
It DID hurt. I was incredibly sad. This was a major problem that had to be dealt with immediately. A couple of weeks ago this would probably have been the end of me. I was in an incredibly bad place and something like this would have likely pushed me over the edge. Things are, thankfully, different now.
My last therapy session covered this exact situation. I was now put in the position to utilize skills with witch I had just been armed.
Use them or lose them
An interesting result of conversations is they provide you with information- if you listen. Just the other day My Wife and I discussed how close we had come to the end of our relationship during my last “episode.” Armed with that knowledge, I have a really good idea of what I need to do in order to keep my family together.
Use my flipping skills or I lose my privilege to be in my family.
• Describe the emotion
• Ride the wave of the emotion
• Be non-judgmental of the emotion
Describe the emotion
Express how you feel about it
Ask for what you want
Reinforce the other person
be willing to Negotiate
My therapist also provided me with a tool that, at the time, I thought might never use. “Unless you’re actually dying or being physically tortured, you are going to be alright. Using Mindfulness, you have to remind yourself that ‘In this moment, I’m alright.’ You do it over and over until you calm down.”
I did all of those things in the span of 2-3 minutes.
I could feel the negative emotions building within me. I was moving from my “Wise Mind” I to my “Emotional Mind,” which is danger territory for a borderline. I had to stop that process and get back to “Wise Mind.”
“I’m this moment, I’m alright.” I said it over and over. Surprisingly, I calmed quickly. I was then able to proceed into the DEARMAN skill. I described the emotion, expressed how I felt, asked for what I wanted, reinforced My Wife, mindfully reinforced My Wife, and confidently negotiated with her.
There were a couple of tears but they didn’t even trickle down my face.
THAT was new.
I have no CLUE how she reacted to the situation. We haven’t discussed it. There have been a few bugs and pecks today. She even came to me and kissed my forehead just now. I do know I’m feeling confident and proud of myself.
That alone is a victory.