Today is our 13th wedding anniversary.
D & I.
I feel as though there is little to celebrate. No declarations on Facebook today. D has been dropping hints of late that he wants to see declarations of love from me, but I just can’t bring myself to do it.
Truth is, this here is progress. In the past, I thought just seeing out another year was cause to celebrate – but in the case of marriage, years together do not trump relationship quality.
D regularly threatens to leave me. He did just the other day when I tried once more to put my foot down and say he isn’t allowed to uphold his ban on finger clicking in the house. A & I are musical people; A is a drummer. We click our fingers in time to music, or just when we’re happy. It’s not allowed though. He claims it hurts his fingers. I’m not sure if it’s that, or the fact he got annoyed because he couldn’t click his own fingers. Shortly after he gave up trying to learn, the finger clicking ban was enforced in our home. It’s horrible for someone to start clicking happily, only to be cut short and yelled at that they’re clicking on purpose to ‘torture’ him.
I tried to stand up against that, in a reasonable way (for the 5th, 10th? time) and got told that he might just leave me then.
There is little to celebrate today.
I used to swear at D during arguments and sometimes threaten to leave, but haven’t done either in over a year. He still swears at me. I see myself in that behaviour, and it is disturbing to notice what a gigantic toddler my husband looks like when he behaves this way. A real turn-off.
Keep telling myself that I’m still far from perfect, and we don’t all change at the same rate. D just needs more time to grow.
Keep trying to pay attention to my own small victories – for example, each time I treat D or A in keeping with my intention during difficult situations. I’m definitely improving as a mother, which is strengthening the relationship between A & me. My improvements as a partner just seem to be widening a gulf between D and I though.
I’m not allowed to express sadness about anything. If I ever cry in front of D because I’m grieving, he says ‘You’re not allowed to do this’. He doesn’t touch me, just goes to the room and reads his comics. By doing this he’s taught A to also be derisive of people’s sadness and tender feelings. A has major blocks when it comes to identifying and feeling her own emotions – and that scares the heck out of me. D is allowed to behave however he wants, but A is not allowed to show any reaction to it or else D ups the aggro.
A couple of days ago I couldn’t see/walk straight when upright and so was stuck in bed. This is not unusual and part of my medical condition. As D was heating up my evening meal in the microwave I said something to him in a tone he didn’t like. When he yelled at me about it I apologised. He then went to his room to read comics, leaving me without my meal. This kind of thing is regular; withholding my care needs when I displease him. Makes me feel about 1 inch tall, and extraordinarily frustrated at myself and my body. I think he likes to have me feel helpless and dependent; to drive the point home that I ‘need’ him.
I have vague hope that there may be reason to celebrate our wedding anniversary, in future.
It would be nice to have a husband I could talk with about my concerns, hopes, goals, without defensive vitriol being served up to me. The extreme tiptoeing around topics and still being punished for speaking, is exhausting.
I won’t leave my husband now because I am too physically sick to have custody of A. My leaving would really screw things up for her. I believe my physical incapacitation was one of the best things that ever happened to D. When I try to stretch myself, go for a little walk up the footpath with A on a good day, D tells me I ‘can’t do it’. I used to believe him when he said he was just scared because of how sick I was in the past. Now I see there are probably more sinister motives underlying his disapproval of my healing endeavours. D is petrified of me becoming healthy.
I’m staying in this marriage, and trying really hard to heal myself.
We can only do that, though; heal ourselves. We cannot do other people’s healing for them. No matter what is at stake.
I love D. He’s my best friend. My only friend.
There is nothing to celebrate today.