I wouldn’t want to sound overly optimistic and “jinx” anything when I say this but lately I have been feeling dare I say…better. Good Friday we had a talk, a frank talk and he revealed how down he has been feeling lately. It was an eye opener and it showed me that this was really not about me. His pulling away is about himself.
For those who have been following me since I started blogging in 2011 know that I had a lot to face shortly after my bad break up. The feeling of being “left” was one of the worst of the top 3 bad things that haunted me mentally and emotionally that year. It still lingers a little bit now and it reared it’s ugly head when he began to pull away. I felt like I was being “left” again and I wondered why. Why was he leaving? Why was this happening again? Why do “they” leave me?
Sometimes there are hidden blessings in heartbreak
As I sat in utter shock at the depths of his depression (he was finally telling me after countless inquiries from me) it dawned on me that no matter how much I would’ve tried or didn’t try his behavior was not a reflection of how he felt about me; it was a reflection about how he felt about himself. I finally got it. I didn’t do anything to trigger this response. I didn’t “lack” anything to make him “walk away” All the things I wondered for weeks.
Shortly after that bad break up in 2011 it became painfully clear that I was a supportive, loving, go above and beyond girlfriend to someone who was constantly depressed because he questioned his self worth and ability to be a man. An ability he equated with his ability to get an honorable job title to prove himself worthy to his critics (the worst being himself). To cover it up he perfected the art of putting up a front like he was positive and “ok”. Dare I face my feelings on a bad day he would ridicule me if I didn’t do the same telling me I was negative when in reality my bad days never summed up to his dark stretches that seen him turn into someone I didn’t recognize. Dr Jekyll Mr Hyde. I didn’t see it then because I was “in love”.
The wood that fueled one his most intense inner fires was his parents disappointment that he dropped out of college and they had no problems voicing it. Interestingly enough whenever he tried to do something new such as study marketing, work in insurance, or the last one (before the breakup) become a police officer they would ridicule his efforts. Well, I think the police officer role was the one thing his father was actually on board with but his mother wasn’t. Never under estimate the power of a mother’s influence on her son. Soon he began to doubt that too and pull away inside himself on his last dark journey.
I , on the other hand, was his ever present cheerleader encouraging him to go after his dreams, telling him not to listen to “them”, that he could do it anyway and that I believed in him. Anymore cheering and I would’ve been following him around with pom poms, a band and a short skirt (though the short skirt would not have been a problem).
Well when the relationship crashed and exploded, the proverbial house caught on fire then burned down, took out the forest and eventually the entire town I had a long talk with God and we decided that this was not going to happen again. I am a helper and I am a positive person who sees the glass as half full with the potential to be filled up. I think this makes me susceptible to being used and hurt by other people. So I have become guarded and observant of people to decipher their true motives when they enter my life. Now I look at my propensity to want to help in a different light. I don’t dish it out freely anymore. I can’t afford to be careless like that.
So as I sat and listened to him my heart still empathized and I voiced my support for his dreams but I noted what I said to him and how it felt to say them. Though it everything I said was all true I began to feel like this was all too familiar and my heart ached inside. I felt like something was pulling my arms to my side trying to keep them in place as I lifted my hand to stroke the side of his head the way I always did in the past. He used to like that. This time he sat silently for a moment then told me he had to go shortly afterwards. It confirmed that it wasn’t about me. It was about his vulnerability and his comfort level it. He’s depressed.
I don’t want this post to be dragged out and long. I’ve already been interrupted 3 times. I’ll come back to finish my thoughts….its getting late.