Trauma in the shadowSometimes I feel crazy!

Sometimes I act crazy.  Sometimes my responses and actions to stimuli don’t make any sense.  I am the first to admit that at times I am illogical.  Things that don’t bother other people can throw me off for the entire day.  I can become very emotional, almost distraught…..leaving those around me baffled at what just happened.  So what is happening to me?  TRIGGERS!!!

A trigger is a stimulus that reshapes the way we think and the way we act.  We know that traumatic memories are stored in a different part of the brain than non-traumatic memories.  The recurrence of these memories is difficult and virtually impossible for me to control.  The trigger sets off a memory tape that transports me back to the time of my original trauma.  I have more than 19 years of attachment trauma.  Trauma that happened over and over again during my marriage.

The recurrence of these memories is difficult and virtually impossible for me to control.  The trigger sets off a memory tape that transports me back to the time of my original trauma.  I have more than 19 years of attachment trauma.  Trauma that happened over and over again during my marriage.

I want to share a story about a trigger:

Yesterday my new husband of 10 months showed up at our house with a rug.

This rug belongs to his ex-wife, and for some reason he has been storing it for her.  I have asked him several times why he has one of her rugs.  Each time he says that she hasn’t had a way to come and get it.  He will send her a text telling her if she wants the rug that she needs to come and get it. Then life goes on and six months later I see the rug again.

Then life goes on and six months later I see the rug again.   We have had this same conversation about three times since we were married.

So yesterday he showed up again our house with her rug, and I was upset.  Did he not hear me the other three times we have had this conversation.

I ask him about the rug. I don’t want her stuff around I said.  He angrily went over, grabbed the rug and hauled it to the backyard and he threw it into a trailer that is on its way to the dump.  He texts his ex-wife AGAIN telling her that if she wants her rug she needs to come and get it.

This is the argument that followed:

Jeff: “I don’t understand what the big deal is.  It is just a rug.”

Norma:  “As long as that rug is at our house I won’t be here.”  (I meant every word)

Jeff:  Throws his hands in the air.

Norma: “Why do you feel an obligation to her?”

Jeff: “I don’t!  I don’t care about her, I don’t want to deal with her rug.”

Norma: “Than why do you still have it three years after your divorce?”

Jeff: “She doesn’t have a way to come and get it.  I am tired of hearing about this rug.  You keep bringing it up over and over again.  Are you saying that you are willing to leave if the rug stays here?

Norma:  I shake my head yes.

(The argument continued in this pattern.  I finally tell him I am not talking about it anymore.)

Does the conversation above sound familiar?  It is a rug, why am I so upset about her rugs?  What happened?

Explanation:

I was married to a sex addict.  Within the first 2 years of our marriage, he was out at bars pretending to be single.  I would sit on the floor at the age of 20 and I would rock back and forth trying to calm myself.  I didn’t feel that I could tell anyone.  I was all alone.

There were times when he was out at 2:00 a.m., I would call him to make sure he was okay and a woman’s voice came on the line and told him to hang up on me.

I have listened to my answering machine and have heard women who he met at the bar leave him a message asking him if he wants to hook up.

I have found pornography under my mattress.

I have found phone numbers in his wallet.

I have watched him check out women at the store, my son’s athletic games, and swimming pools.

This only cracks the surface of where I have been.

So if you really want to know why I can’t have another’s woman’s belongings at my house.  Look at where I have been.  Jeff’s ex-wive’s stuff is a trigger for me.  The rug was a trigger each time I saw it.  I don’t want it in my house, it transports me back to all those times when I was awake in the middle of the night rocking myself.  All those times I didn’t know where my ex-husband was or what he was doing.  All the women behind the perfume on his shirts.  The affairs! All the times that I wasn’t chosen.

So, for all the beautiful women out there that have a loss that has almost stopped your heart.  You are not alone.  You are not crazy.

I want you to know that I see you! 

 

Assignment for Healing:  Follow this link to fill out a trigger worksheet in the healing tools section of my website.

Photo Credit: Danny Molyneux. (2015, April 18). Shadows.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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