Tuesday, 18 November 2008

Part # 28

My blogging buddy, Melissa, who authors Balancing the Scales has written a new post in which she explains that it is her ED talking, and not her rational self. I found that admission incredibly brave. Or was it that the fact that she could 'realise and acknowledge' that I envied?

There are a number of arguments, harsh words, worries, anxieties and fears which are borne from the ED for me. My husband differentiates between 'me' and 'Annie-under-the-influence'. He can see that when I am not consumed (if you will pardon the weak pun) by anorexia and its concomitant neuroses, I am loving towards him, pro-active, hard-working and (relatively - I am a woman) reasonable. But when I am listening to that Gremlin, I weaken, turn vituperous, malificent and vindictive. I must be a horror to live with. Although he acknowledges this difference, it isn't always easy for him to remain objective, which is perfectly understandable whilst under attack.

The ED spoke to me quite loudly tonight - not for long, admittedly, and I was strong enough to not react verbally - but upon my return from taking my daughter to the Orthodontist, Ian informed me that he had his first counselling session booked, for December, through our Doctor's surgery. He has had to wait for approximately six weeks. I was informed, right from the outset, that I could be waiting six months, and thus, it would be better for me to go private. So, scrimping and saving, we have done. I have a 15 mile round trip; Ian has less than a mile round trip. I have 16 years of ED problems and its side-effects; Ian is screwed up by me, my behaviour and my tempers.

It broke my heart. I felt let down by my GP, whom I have always revered, and also, very, very jealous and bitter. My ED wanted to spit at Ian: What the hell is wrong with you? You frigging left me! You wanted me back in your life! I did so and NOW you can't cope! Get a grip!!

I am also eaten away inside by anxiety over the forthcoming weekend. 'The Other Woman' is finally getting to meet Beth. Beth has succumbed/acquisced/agreed because she wants to see her cousins performing in a pantomime. The ex informed her, unceremoniously, on the back of a placatory email from me, that 'The Other Woman' would also be accompanying them in the two-hour drive. So, the first time in five years that Beth meets her will be in the claustrophobic environment of the car.

I'm probably, in all honesty, more wound up than she is. I feel so bitter that, over the last five years, I have been made out to be 'The Evil One'. Many a time and oft, without evidence, the ex has claimed that I had affairs which led him to stray towards my 'friend'. It could not be further from the truth. I sought out friends when he wasn't, or wouldn't make himself, available; yes, one was 'her' husband, but he was as lonely and disillusioned as me and we found that we laughed long and hard together, shared the same interests, could talk to each other without recrimination, commitment or condition.

It feels, in all wallowing self-pity, that they have come up trumps again. My faults towards my first marriage included nurturing my own life: getting a highly-paid, respected job for the government; being a freelancer for international mags; running a charitable theatre group; acting in a semi-pro drama troupe...and making good friends outside of the ex's work colleagues' wives. I was told, by Expats International, before I expatriated, that to do so took a 'Pioneering Spirit'. I took that statement to heart and swore that NOTHING would stop me throwing myself into my new life and environment wholeheartedly. So I did. And even after the ex had told me to 'Get A Life', it didn't sit well when I took him up on the offer.

What does a cornered rat do? It bites back. Anal was cornered; threatened by me, so it would seem from his bullying, aggression, belittling and threats. Unfortunately, although outwardly I would fight tooth and nail, inside it killed a little more of me.

When we divorced, in December 2005, I naively assumed that was it: I would never have to tolerate any more of his bullying, control or dictat. I have never been more wrong in the whole of my life. Divorce has led to the most inordinate amount of manipulation, twisting, coercion, demands and unhappiness than I could ever have envisaged. He plays the girls as pawns, constantly. I attempt, so hard, NOT to play these stupid mind games, but when he garbs my 13-year old daughter in a hooker's outfit (low-cut, clingy black satin, barely skimming her backside, coupled with 'f*ck-me' patent leather 5" heels) and I protest; he puts the phone down...I just bang my head against the brick wall with frustration, bewilderment and desperation.

And what does it make me do? 

It makes me obssess about food. It makes me ponder cutting, purely for release. It makes me feel low, sometimes almost suicidal, as I feel such a frigging failure, and so bloody impotent that I wonder if it will make any difference me being here or not (and that is NOT a statement to engender sympathy: it is purely what goes through my head). It also makes me regret so much, feel so weary, so defeated, and so desperate to escape.

I don't feel particularly strong at the moment, to be honest. I feel very, very turmoiled; as though my stomach has partaken of a salmonella bug: it is rumbling, hurting and annoying me. Just like my head and my thoughts. 

I want to be alone for some time, to think, ponder, assimilate and get my head around everything. I rarely have this solitude. Even now, as I write this blog, I am being asked about spellings, mathematical equations, English translations for m├ętier, and I would like to get this out. But that is just bloody-minded selfishness. Because they need me and I must be there.

I want to lose more weight. That's the simple and honest truth. Because I feel like my grip is going. I need some grip. I am not doing well, am I? 


MelissaS said...

bravo for saying you want to lose more weight. it's huge to say and to a big audience. some part of you knows that's wrong. listen to her, whenever you can.

i torture myself when others wrong me. usually with red wine. then i feel worse. what's the point?

you're handling everything else with strength and wisdom -- it's no wonder you want to crumble at some point.

re; ian's therapy. i'm assuming your private counselor has some experience with eating disorders? if so, it's important that you see a specialist and probably not important that he does. the most important thing is that YOU get excellent care. and it will really help if your partner is getting good care too. but i can understand why you're pissed off!!!!!

i hope you keep writing about what's going on with you. your honesty is amazing and will help get you well.

now, i must go pack or i'll be heading to california in the raw.

take care and lots of love

Anonymous said...

I'm wondering how you are and yet thinking you are probably doing better than you think.Thanks for all the support these last few months.xo~hope

Mars said...

frustration can get the best of us. I know. I've done some rather drastic things. but perhaps try channeling the frustration into more positive things, or at the very least, not destructive ones. I used to dye my hair different colors everytime I got frustrated.


Bob J said...

"...I want to lose more weight. That's the simple and honest truth. Because I feel like my grip is going. I need some grip..."

Hang in there Kiddo !

You would not be the first one who's thoughts turn to...well...the need for "behaviors" when times get tough and doubt begins to intrude.

Blah blah blah : I know it takes more than "having a perspective on things" to break this cycle, but at the same time....it doesn't hurt.

Also...it's not like you are somehow "worse" than those folks who give you such fits. So...you should be the one to fall apart, and not them ?

Personally, you still get my vote as the objective one.

Hang tough. I suspect your children know who they would choose to be with if they had to make a choice.


Karen ^..^ said...

I agree with Melissa. It is huge that you've admitted the desire to lose more weight. Lets examine why? You feel a loss of control from that home wrecking whore who Beth is feeling forced to spend time with. You can feel her claustrophobic pain for having to spend two hours in the car with her. You are seething with injustice that the ex assmunch has predictably painted YOU as the transgressor in that relationship.

Ok, lets put it in perspective.

The homewrecking whore did you a favor. Lets see... She took that abusive asshole away from you. She is as pathetic as he is. No matter what, Beth will never love her the way she loves you. She cannot possibly have any respect for her. She may come to grudgingly like her, and that is ok. But you know for a fact that you come first with Beth.

The car ride:
We both know, as mothers, that we feel our children's pain more acutely than they do. We just do. More often than not, they don't have as hard a time with it as we think, and it is best to let go and let what happens, happen. It will play out the way it is meant to, and no amount of stressing will change it. So relax. Beth will not be in any danger. She will handle it just fine. She sounds like a very smart girl who has her head on straight. You've done good, Mom.

The ex ass: Part of his defense mechanism that enables him to function is that he lie to justify his disgusting actions. He denies having hit you. Ok. He denies that he cheated on you, but lessening the blow by saying you cheated on him. Predictable and boring.

he has to say that otherwise the full impact of what he does and how he treats people will cause him to go crazy. He cannot function normally unless he lies. Simple. I'm sorry to say this, my dear friend, but you married your mother, with a penis. It's true.

It amazes me how few people truly own up to their responsibilities in this world. Those of us that do? Are reviled, persecuted, blamed beyond our responsibility, and looked down upon. So be it. I'd still rather be me than them.

because what are they? desperately unhappy individuals who need to hurt others in order to continue to function. If they do not have you to hurt anymore, and when they run out of people to hurt, guess what? They cease to exist. It is terribly important for an asshole like that to hurt people. We can remove ourselves from that line of fire simply by turning the tables and calling their bluff.

Fear is what is happening to you. Fear of the unknown. Fear of loss of control. You'll be fine. No need to punish yourself.

I think you are doing well. You don't. But if you were on THIS side of the computer, you would think, Oh, wow, that is progress, look at the hard things she is admitting. She's getting to the root of things, all right.

Best to you, and much love to you all.

ania said...

karen ^..^?

That is surely one of the most practically helpful, well thought-out and supportive comments that I've read in a long time.

Wow, what a good buddy you are.

Lala said...

This has taken me a long time to write as I had to frame it and I still don't think I can convey what I feel about your posts.

Hold on Annie - I've been reading both of your post sites & all I see is a beautiful & witty person who is a wonderful Mom & wife and professional person .

Don't let the "assno's" take you down... you go and get them back and eat them for breakfast!!!

You have given me an opportunity to look at a lot of issues - food & family, relationships, etc that I battle, repress... in a way that I can deal with them without the "interventions" I so wish to avoid(just me).

But you are giving me courage to ask for help, too :)

Your recent post on your Mom (and others, but usually your Mom posts)...I just bawled 'cause it was too familiar and the relief..no longer I felt alone. Its an issue I've had to deal with all my life & I think a reason I started my initial issues about eating and food.

Take courage from us behind you as I hope you take courage from us.

Mars said...

i know it's probably not funny, but what karen said about 'married your mother, with a penis' was funny in an ironic way. the image itself could be quite funny if it probably (and hopefully not) give you the shivers.

like the riddikulus curse on the boggart. think snape in neville's grandmother's clothes. with a huge vulture for a hat.

Annie T AKA Agnes Mildew said...

Dear All,

Thank you for all your comments - and welcome to Ania and Lala.

I appreciate all your words and support. It's great to get them: they are all so positive and keep me going when things get tough.

Just as a quick update for you, the girls went to meet with The Other Woman but lasted a grand total of two minutes, before running out of the ex's house. Beth couldn't cope with it and her sister stuck with her. I was very proud of Rosemary for having the balls to do that.

My mother has attempted to contact me. I have blocked her number from our phone, but the caller ID showed two aborted attempts at contact. This has bothered me, admittedly and I shall write more about that in the next few days.

I was taken into hospital on Thursday night; got out on Saturday. Not been too well. Trying to sort my head out better now, though.

Sorry for not addressing each of your wonderful comments. I shall do better in the future, I promise, but for now, thank you very much for continuing to read and support. It is very, very appreciated.

Annie T AKA Agnes Mildew said...

No, I have changed my mind! If you all have the decency to comment, I should have the decency to address each of you...what confusion! I have washed up, so my hands can move again now, having thawed out from the bitter cold in this room!

Melissa: Honesty does not come easy to me in my day-to-day life, unfortunately. It only seems to happen when I am writing. Saying the truth and writing it are very different for me. I discovered from my counsellor that Ian has been offered a brand new scheme which has been introduced in only the last two weeks, so I jumped the gun; I was not let down by my doctor. And Ian does need someone objective to talk to as I take everything he says as a personal slight at times. Even though he doesn't mean it to be like that.

Hope the trip is going well.

Hope: Good to see you here. As you can tell, things are up and down. But it's good to see you blogging again.

Mars: Hair dying can be very therapeutic, can't it? As can a simple change of hair style. Little things really can help. Cleaning helps me, surprisingly...and baking, even more of a paradox for an anorexic!

Bob: Thanks for your kind words. I didn't hang in there, unfortunately, but I am back to fight another day. And yes, the girls did make their decision - and decided it was all too much to confront TOW (The Other Woman). I was very angry at the ex for engineering this set-up and the poor way he had handled it. For weeks, both girls have been up and down, Do we go? Don't we go? They didn't go in the end...

Karen: The ex IS in denial. Even when the girls bottled going to the panto yesterday, he sent R a text message stating, "Sorry you couldn't come". There was no 'couldn't' about it. They could have gone, if he hadn't have been so selfish and bludgeoned his own way into things. Even the family therapist working with him and Beth said that it had been handled very badly by him. But who has to take the rap? The girls. Their responsibility. Their choice. Not that he put them into a compromising, very difficult situation. He gets worse with every week that passes. As Ian says to me, though, there is nothing we can do to control his behaviour: we just have to try to rise above it and be there for the girls. Beth now wants 'a break' from her father. She is heartbroken. She is making her decisions and they are becoming more and more steadfast.

Ania: Yes, Karen is a great buddy. Nice to see you here.

Lala: Thank you for your lovely words of support. I always get very mixed feelings when people say my writing resonates with them. In some ways, I am so pleased that it gives other people the feeling that they aren't the only ones, but in other ways, it breaks my heart that other people feel the same way. And for that, I am very sorry.

The best thing you said, though, and I wish you so much luck, is that it has encouraged you to seek help. I hope you get it, in spadefuls.

Take care.

Mars: Karen has a unique way with words, doesn't she? She never ceases to make me laugh with her insults!

Karen ^..^ said...

LOL, I'd just like to point out, that TOW (the other woman) rhymes with COW. Just thought I'd point that out. Heh. That is all.

Keli said...

I'm sorry to hear of your latest troubles, my dear! As for fathers and daughters and the grotesque OW, I can speak of personal experience, being about 16 when introduced to the Bitch with the Big Butt who wasn't nearly a fraction as attractive or kind as my own mother. I honed my "ignoring others" skills quite well, thanks to her, my younger sister tortured her as best as she could and my mother, in the long run, was grateful that the OW helped Mom to move in a far better direction.
Your mother, I think, has earned the right to be ignored by you as well, if I may say so.
And finally, truly, hang in there - the best is yet to come for you. I feel sure of it!

A great big hug to you!

Chunks of Reality said...

Hello my dear. I love the Gremlin, reference by the way. It's so appropriate.

I agree with Melissa. It's wonderful that you said you wanted to lose weight. In the grips of anorexia/bulimia I never talked about it...just acted. If I didn't talk about it, it was a secret and the more secretive it was the more difficult it was to not only face it but to stop once and for all.

You are a VERY strong woman. I admire you a lot. Don't beat yourself up...it's not fair to you.

*HUGE hugs*