Line in the Sand

A72E248C-B0F6-4503-9306-84BA5BF15076While each of us are unique and different, which is a good thing or life would be boring, so are counselors in their sessions. With that being said, that also would be boring and definitely useless, if not.

Just recently while seeing my counselors, I have been observing more, such as their counseling techniques, office system/files with notes about me and their surroundings.  Somewhat, okay comparing my last one of four years to present ones.  While a lot deals with the OCD in my life and my organizational skills, one drives me insane. Do I say something or let it continue to make me question them. I believe I need to speak up or there will be a wall of distrust and chaos within. We have that right to do so, as clients, as there must be trust.

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I have had and a total of five counselors in my life. Each one was good in their field and just what I needed at the time and still. As a client, I also have a right to end counseling, which I did with my first one back many, many years ago.

At that time, I enrolled in a New Life Live, a Christian workshop for women. This weekend workshop was to help women understand and gain strength and healing due to issues in their marriage due to porn usage with their husbands and the betrayal felt. Maybe a one last-ditch effort to save their marriage and self-esteem which was slowly dying within myself.

As nine of of us women from all over the United States gathered in this small office area, it became evident we were all in a battle. I was amazed how many traveled the distance in order to survive.  Desperate housewives.

09321795-BA50-40AE-940A-E4196E4476B7Afterward, I was probably the closest in mileage, only forty-five miles away, I decided to start counseling sessions with the leader/counselor. I did, on a monthly basis, if not twice a month. Unsure if I really gained information to grow but at least I could talk freely and feel safe to talk. I had always kept my marriage problems silent to the point I was suffering. Shame. This workshop and counseling was my effort to take care of me, unknowingly because I thought it was more my marriage, that I now know.

After about a year, my husband was invited to join and reluctantly, he did. The first session, within minutes, sitting on her couch together but not touching, she asked him if he felt he needed anti-depressants. BAM, right out of the shoot. No doubt, I was shaking my head yes but if not, my mind was screaming, YES. This counselor has his number, so I thought.

Months went on with couples counseling, individual, etc. It was one session when she, the counselor said to me with him in the room, that any woman would love to have him. In my mind, it came a screeching halt and shock on my face, as in a movie scene. What? I knew at that point, I had lost the battle. He has won her over with his calm demeanor, his porn usage and lies. My self-esteem, confidence and desire to even exist became less than before. It’s all my fault, I am the bad wife, I caused his porn usage and continued heaping the negative thoughts.

As we went yet again and again, it was this one night that I had had enough. While I did not say anything, my shock and boundary came into play, it had to.  While discussing issues at hand and making himself look good with her, now I see he won her over more so and now she feels all motherly with him.  He speaks, saying, ‘I don’t love her and I don’t think I ever did.’  I just turned toward him and said, WOW! FA895C6C-FB8A-40F4-91D3-DC25E21DACBE

It was a long, quiet drive home filled with anger in the air.  Rightfully so. With that though, I found my voice, not in a screaming manner but authoritative. I am done. I will not make your appointments, do your laundry, cook for you (another story in itself), and whatever else. My focus was on our children from that point forward. He just could not figure out why I was so angered over that and threw it up in my face that I took it out of context. 800BDEF7-0FA3-48BC-AE93-2587C1A502E9Seriously?!? Just stab me in the back, I’d heal quicker. Those words should never be said to a wife.  Ever!

8CEF791D-3B26-491A-BAC7-7465D3F0A30FThe counselor on the other hand wanted to meet with me more, which I declined. Soon after, he left going to her, too. No push from me so he won’t; plus, he won.

He won alright, no real marriage. He can continue on with his selfish ways with porn, believing he is all that because the counselor said what she did to enforce his behavior.  I’m the bad one in this whole scenario and Satan played his games mentally with me.88e6b2cf-66aa-4544-8dee-66d3712a8abe.jpeg

Those were dark days and sadly years for me but… had it not been, I would not be where I am today. I learned that I was caring for me, even if I felt numb to life and was physically putting one foot in front of the other. I was setting boundaries, as I deserved more even while I battled negative thoughts that it was all my fault. Plus, courage to keep my head up and move forward when I would had rather died and be done with life. Through the mental torment, I had to trust the Lord but even then, I felt He did not love me either.  Unlovable.

Don’t give up, keep your focus and trust the Lord to carry you through the craziness of life. He knows your name and He knows where you are.  I had to fight, not physically but spiritually, mentally and emotionally.  9F612C2F-1B60-4EDB-9F23-3D203477A1A0

While my faith in a counselor wavered for some years due to that situation, I did not give up.  I picked up my big girl panties and found another, just for me.  I am better today and stronger emotionally, physically, mentally and spiritually than ever due to help from great counselors and trusting the Lord.  My faith increased, as He was all I had to cling to in the midst of the battle.

The Lord will meet you where you are.  Trust Him. 💕7AEF5CAE-4893-4666-8CA6-716FB3CE222B

Journey of Life

947F91A9-B1D8-49C6-8138-5C2EEA15DF62Here I am, home from my counseling session and so thankful of having such great counselors as I deal with life. I would not be where I am today had it not been with each one.

Mental health awareness has been quite visible lately in the news and on Facebook of not denying or keeping your head in the sand that it does not exist. It does. Look around and listen to the news, there is mental health issues of all levels around us. Some being hidden by a mask or fake smile and those that are down right out there and may cause issues.

Why is there such a stigma of counseling and sadly in the church making people feel shame in going? Many years I secretly went to counseling almost an hour away to avoid my church and members from knowing I needed help. You know, those that will say I did not have enough faith in God. Those that will bring shame, which is why I went out of my way to go. No more!8DDBBD6E-CF15-41B4-BEFC-5BD3D2AC9032

I found myself, as I was leaving my counselor’s office the other day and several women were in the waiting room. I couldn’t help but think about them and wonder why they were there, too. Did they feel shame being there or did they just accept that they, too, need help. For a moment, and to be honest, I felt a judgment of them, just as many would and have in the past and/or in our experiences. Wrong! I captured that thought quickly realizing I just walked out of a counseling session. I am no better than them and we all need to support one another. It’s that stigma that latches on.  I’m sure others have had that of me.  While that quick lesson allowed me to see both sides, I politely smiled and wished them a good day. As we make these appointments and deal with life, that is self-care and much needed for me, you and others.  It’s okay!

We all have issues. Even counselors, doctors and so forth. I totally recommend seeing a counselor for issues or just to stay in tune with life and healing for yourself of past, present and for the future.  In my case, it started with marriage but nowadays it is to help me grow and heal some much-need broken places in my spirit, soul and body. I am a better person with counseling. Not having a spouse to relate to and cry on his shoulder or my close friends that do not live near, I have my counselors. Yes, counselors.

For this period in my life, I started with one to help me get over my last counselor of four years that left due to health issues.  We were dealing with abandonment issues in my life, yet I was abandoned by her. While not her fault, still it was and is still hard some days. Talk about a double whammy! Plus, I have another counselor to help me move forward in life, not so much focus on past counselor. Both have been good for me in my journey right now.  It’s been a good thing.

A2D1DCB8-345F-4FBF-9E47-A34CDC8843BAJust with my last appointment, she said that a poem reminded her of me of my past counseling experience, which I will share. Perfect. Again, I have had the best and thankful for what each one has done to help me grow, understand life, and even understand myself.

So, if you are considering to go see a counselor, do it. Give it time so each one can get familiar and build a relationship.  If after a time and there is no connection, change your counselor but do not quit taking care of you. There are some really good ones out there. Just know YOU MATTER and YOU are worth it.DE7BECC3-28B7-4B8B-83B3-C9265B356DA0

Just FYI, there is a lot of information on Pinterest regarding mental health, groups on Facebook and Google searches, too.

Lost Love?

 

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The other day, I got off the telephone at the office with an attorney about a case but ended up talking about our families, etc.  Knowing he has small children and having a busy law office covering many counties in this area, we got on the subject of taking time to breathe but also making sure his wife, the mother of his children is taken care of, too.  In his honesty and regrets, saying he has failed in this area while building his law firm.
I find it funny how many people and professionals such as this attorney will call into our office and this happens.  Perhaps they just need encouragement and the Lord is allowing me to do just that, which I like doing.
I know from experience that mothers lose themselves as they tend to the children, the school work, the groceries, cooking, housekeeping and you can AF45D6F0-AAB1-42D1-BBA8-E70BFCC8B7B9name a lot more I am sure, too.  They go and go and give and give and soon they are bankrupt, nothing to give at all  As the children grow and become more independent, it gets somewhat easier but then worry sets in moreso as they are driving and making decisions, etc.
B1069B56-9333-4128-A77F-96A5ECC798E6Just with this nice man who has been great to deal with in our business relationship to where we can talk about our families and such matters, I encouraged him that he needs to dote on his wife more.  It is time to take date nights that have fallen by the wayside.  Take the children to a family member or friend and maybe trade off times with other couples to do the same.  Anything!  Make it happen. A Google search has all kinds of ideas, from no cost dates to very fancy and expensive.
From experience, I was the one who made all the plans and did not want to bother anyone to watch the children or money was tight or whatever excuse and our marriage was hindered.  The kids left for college and we are left looking at each other like strangers.  The status of, I do not know you anymore and I am too tired to care to know you.  No interest was shown and now no interest to try on either side.
I have heard this over and over of how couples will lose themselves.  The wives with the children and tending to the home, etc., while the husbands are working and involved with sports.  Both are great things and necessary to do but if you forget each other during the process, what good is it.  One night a month, take those kids to a sitter or hire one and go out, if just for dinner. Your marriage relationship is worth it.
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Life is hard and pulls each one many ways but you must, whether you are the wife or the husband, pull yourself back in and grab the other one, keep the relationship real and alive between you both.  It’s not just about sex, it is time together.  Too late for me right now and others in the same boat but maybe not for you and your marriage.
If you have advice or tips on how to make marriages, especially with children better, please comment so others can read and get ideas.
To love and to cherish.
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Black & White

C24AF4A8-F0EC-4893-BD4E-E75CAD79656EUntil about four years ago, I did not have a clue about Aspergers.  Since, it has been eye opening and firsthand experience, I have found.

Years upon years of struggling within my marriage, not understanding why we were not on the same wavelength,  plus our conversations were and are always black and white, saying the same thing but different ways.

While other issues came into play, too, just dealing with many times the confusion I felt, shaking my head and just seeing a cycle in routines, brought craziness to my mind, I finally decided to see a counselor.

Walking through her door, convinced I was going crazy in this marriage, she was able to put two and two together quickly, mentioning Aspergers of my husband.  I did not know about Aspergers and what I thought it was, I figured it was a child issue, not a full-grown adult.

Still week after week in our sessions while I poured out years of frustration to her, the same response.  Fine.  I will go research and see just what this Aspergers deal is that she mentions to me.

Oh my gosh!  Besides all the research, I found a book that clearly identifies what I have dealt with for years.  My counselor had him pegged from the beginning.  This was like a lightbulb moment in my life.  Plus, I am not crazy. Now some may question that comment.  lol   I am a neurotypical (NT) wife with an Asperger (AS or ASD) husband.

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Being in such a relationship, the neurotypical spouse may start to feel as also having Aspergers because you are in their world so much in order to relate.  That’s crazy enough, but true.  Still, it is the shaking your head moments to figure out which one you are, at times.  Today was one of them.

I thought it was interesting that soon after we solved the mystery, my counselor had attended  a workshop on Aspergers.  Two couples.  One couple newly married and knowing of Aspergers, which the husband had, they could accept and deal with differences.  Going into the marriage fully aware.  The other couple, married for years and learning of Aspergers, the wife was so done with this marriage and the Aspergers, which her husband had.  This skit she watched and told me about, made her think of me and guess which couple?  It is hard and it is a lonely life together.   Just a side note, women can have Aspergers, too.

While my husband has been a good provider for our family, some are not.  He is a nice man but has his quirks. Don’t we all?  Aspergers or not.  There is good and bad.

While I have a clue now what is happening, I think my understanding has helped but it is still hard and still lonely.  Just knowing for me now, I feel that ‘I get it’ when something odd is done or said and am more understanding of him.

Perhaps you know someone that might seem somewhat odd, is very intelligent and notice a lack of social skills, etc.  Perhaps, this could be what is going on.  My husband knew he was different than others and would often say, he is one french fry short of a Happy Meal but never knew why.  While that phrase is funny, it is really sad because it has affected our relationship.  Now knowing himself of having Aspergers, that is not of interest to him, which is typical, too.  I just shake my head and shrug my shoulders, as I would want to know more.F8942BD6-7791-4DB2-9206-E109DA9DAD15I have recently worked with a guy for years and my co-workers would state that he is odd.  Yes, he is but I understood him and the reason why.  Aspergers.

664f4e88-4904-4617-882f-c6bd7a128a14-15865-000003a53111bd92This book is very interesting and mine is underlined, highlighted and all marked up, just like my Bible.

While my former counselor and I were able to move on to other areas in my life, after determining Aspergers was what I was dealing with, it was a Godsend to have her.  I was blessed to have her in my life, and I know without a doubt that the Lord knew I needed her.8E1FED02-9CEB-4A34-A7AE-D82DB646EA89

Please know that there are many private Facebook groups available if you or somebody may need support in this area.  There are many books available along with Google and YouTube to gain further information.  Research!  I fully support and encourage counseling.  Aspergers is on the spectrum of Autism.

Hope this may help someone. 😊

 

Dumbfounded

F215FCA7-FBA6-4303-A3E8-0555B9025311Once upon a time…

All the good stories begin like this and what little girls (and boys) dream of but life happens and we just live, but not so happily ever after.

How many are just living but not really happy? That could be anyone, young, old, single, married, divorced.

flat editable vector illustrationJust today, I was reminded by the dumbfounded look I received when trying to mention a simple suggestion, not nagging, but found myself wanting to throw up my hands. I have had this look too many times through the years that makes me feel stupid. Either I am not verbalizing correctly or he is not understanding me. I give up, usually walking away with frustration and complaining under my breath.  My voice remains quiet as we exist under one roof, yet again. Not 316D7FC5-956D-4061-B755-963E4B9DC343worth losing my energy for such a draining moment that repeats each time. All I can guess is that this is just his Aspergers way of comprehending.  Lord, give me strength.

I know there are many marriages and relationships that struggle in one way or another. I have heard too much from many to believe otherwise. I am not alone. Even some people/couples that appear happy, write sweet posts on Facebook, sit on a church pew together and seem to have it all together.  Sad but happens.  Life happens.

I do know and have had to dig my heels in to keep going forward when at times I’d rather dig a hole and crawl in it to disappear, but I must keep my focus on the Lord.  He knows my name and He knows where I am.

So if you are reading this and just existing, know that the Lord loves you, He knows your name and He knows where you are. Trust Him in the process.

086A81D4-74F8-4A8D-ADCC-AEB2BD3F162ATaking care of you also is very important. You matter!

True happiness will only come with knowing the Lord and trusting Him. What happens day in and day out, and around you, happens. With all that, we must go to Him. Sometimes, asking Him what to do and for His Favor or if things went south, for His Forgiveness. I have been on both sides of that many times. His Grace and Mercy is forever.

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So Done, So Stuck

B55D7BA5-C109-42D4-90E4-EBF70E1617E4Tonight, when going out for a walk, I was reminded just how blah my marriage is and has been. Returning from my walk, him sitting on our porch reading his sci-if book, the same. No nothing! No joy, no expression, no emotion, no comment. Nothing. Like a living dead man.  In his own little world. I realize I deal with Aspergers with him, which I learned about just over four years ago from my former counselor.  To know that, helps knowing I am not crazy but living this way, can make one crazy. It is a sad, lonely life. For better or for worse, the wedding vows echo and will be told, while trusted ones that know my situation say, leave.

If you are wondering why I stay. Financially, I stay, as most wives do. Before and still, it’s because of the kids. Stuck.

To daydream of having a man to talk to and share that will understand, have empathy, to touch my face and wipe tears as they fall, to laugh and act like kids sometimes, to grab me and kiss or hug me for no reason at all but because he enjoys being with me, loves me and tells me so. Fun, I want fun and I need laughter whether in daily living, at an amusement park or in bed. Is this being unrealistic? Marriage or any relationship has its good and bad days but… every day, every year?

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To daydream about walking out the door and never return has not come for awhile but tonight it did. Leave it all. Just get in my car and leave. He can have it all, the house, savings, full benefits, bills, etc. Realizing, I have spent too many years to help build what we have and I am entitled to fifty percent of everything, I won’t just leave.  The thought of preparing to split everything fifty-fifty, sell our house, etc., I will have to do it and arrange all the details, as he won’t.  Nothing!  My body just aches of the thought of the burden I have carried and will carry to make this dream come alive. I’m tired.  So, I sleep and another day comes of the same.  Easier to dream of leaving it.

To daydream of just being free. I can breathe.

I have held on this far and I will continue. I have to trust that the Lord is allowing me to heal in areas to get strong within myself and one day, make my dream come true of having nothing of a marriage to having a life free of being and feeling drained.  I am taking care of me in my own life spiritually, physically, emotionally and mentally.  It has taken me years to be where I am.  Life of joy and purpose is returning to me.

Lord, hear my cry, see my tears, read the words in my writing, I know you know my name, where I have been with this and where I am. I’m tired. There has to be more.

A great book if you or someone you know is dealing with Aspergers.

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Knock, Knock

998E1F4C-1650-4780-A4C0-D4A9A20C7193Do you ever daydream about, perhaps winning the lottery and what you would do with the millions of dollars?  Sometimes, I do and no doubt you do, too. It is just fun.

My other daydream I have is that one day somebody will come and knock on my door, offering to buy my house and property.   Of course, the dollar amount would need to be just right.  Would I?  Yes!  Enough money and I’ll be out next week.0AE6E12E-4E5F-4593-A5F2-61A88272D4AC

Crazy enough, I know of a family that had this happen. Actually, if there was a house I loved and knew I could afford, etc., I would knock on their door and offer my price for the family to sell and leave.  Perhaps if I won the lottery, if only I played and won, I could do that.  Again, just fun. Daydreaming at its finest.

7168C60E-AA8F-4FEA-B353-54549ED27767Yesterday, being April Fool’s Day, I sent pictures of a small, cute house, and several rooms inside, all coordinated that fits the character of the outside and of my personality to my sister with, ‘Look what I did!’  With Google, you can do anything.  The dreaming came alive even more.

I love my house but being an empty nester, I don’t want or need all this space.  The yard is bigger than I want and even for my husband nowadays as age is creeping up on both of us.

So to dream, the escape of what is or of what could be is my happy place. 😎