Monday, December 28, 2009

A Winding Rambling Update


In no particular order -
Christmas - I had a great Christmas. Munchkin was super excited about presents and had to be reminded often about the real meaning of Christmas. Bugaboo was most interested in the wrapping paper, but got into the toys once they were assembled. Munchkin's big toys were a pogo stick, roller skates and an art easel. She has inherited her daddy's artistic ability and is quite good at drawing. Bugaboo got an inflatable ball pit with balls that he delights in throwing everywhere, lots of cars and trucks and a train set. I got a scrapbook table and some other odds and ends. Husband and I bought a Wii as a family gift and have been having fun with it.
Renovations - my sister and her crew are visiting this week. It's always tight adding 5 extra people, plus her dog. So we decided to make the finished part of our basement into a rec room. I went to Roses, Big Lots and the Dollar Store. Spending just $150 made a huge difference. We now have throw rugs on the floor. One is a princess castle and the other is a racetrack. I bought a "coffee table" which is really 3 fabric bins with a table top, on rolling wheels. Perfect for holding blocks and games. I moved all my old papers and stuff onto 2 shelves and organized the desk and my scrapbook stuff. This freed up 4 shelves for games and the kids' toys. I bought two $10 lamps (plastic) and two $10 endtables (PVC pipe). No worries about people putting drinks on them - and I don't care if they get beat up. There is a pull-out couch, a space heater and a big bean-bag chair. Now it looks really homey. I hung old curtains and put Munchkin's easel by the window. Her table and chair set is down there too. It is a great play area and will feel less like a basement when we have visitors.
Visitors - my sister and her crew arrive tomorrow. My sister and BIL are not getting along well. They are sort-of separated. For economic reasons, BIL is living at home, but in their basement. He works second shift and weekends. So he stays downstairs until my sister leaves for work and the kids are off to school. When they get home, he has left for work and doesn't get home until they are in bed. On his one day off, my sister goes to an evening Bible study. On his other day off, he takes the kids out and does something. It is working for them, but difficult during the holidays or when the kids are off from school. They are in counseling - individual and family - and trying to work on things, but not sure of their prognosis. Anyhow, they are all coming down to visit. Sister will sleep in the guest room with her daughter; BIL will sleep in the basement with the two boys. My mother is supposed to come too, unless the weather gives her an excuse to skip out. I last saw her this summer. Mom last saw my sister 2 1/2 years ago. My sister's kids barely know her. The youngest was 4 last time he saw her and hardly has any memory of her. It's going to be awkward for sure. Mom is coming Wed and staying to Thursday (she can't possibly take any time off work after all). I have a therapy appointment set early next week to deal with any fall out.
My Marriage - well hunting season is over which means Husband's attitude should start to improve. He's already talked about how committed he is to finding a job now. We continue to do our own things. My being off from work for the holidays equated to him spending several evenings and one full day hunting. With Bugaboo's lack of good sleeping habits, we haven't shared a bed or bedroom in 3-4 months. Husband keeps talking about sleep-training Bugaboo but hasn't yet - I'm not pushing it. Husband continues with the negative talk, put-downs and talking to me like I'm stupid. The day before Christmas Eve I told him that I was tired of things the way they were and we needed to make it through the holidays and then seriously decide where we were going with our relationship. Husband says he's draw a "line in the sand" and that he is "not changing." I can appreciate his honesty. I guess the ball is in my court now to deal with things as they are or do something about it. The thought makes my head spin.
My Health - I'm tearful a lot. Not sure if is depression or just my sucky marriage, or what. I'm sad a lot, so that makes sense. I've gained well over 50 pounds and have doubled my clothing size. Come New Years Day I've resolved to eat better and lose weight (long with millions of other people). I need to work out more - exercise does help my attitude. On the day after Christmas, Husband left to go hunting. I took the kids to see the new Alvin Chipmunks movie. In my attempt to make a bottle really hot so it would still be warm 1 hour later at the movies, I used boiling water. The bottle bag burst and I spilled boiling water all over me. I now have second degree burns across my stomach. Ouch! They have blistered. I went to the health clinic today and was given care instructions. The practitioner cautioned there might be scars but seriously, who am I going to be baring my belly too?
Situation - I'm on the outskirts of a situation where I see an elderly gentleman acting inappropriately with some pre-teen girls. I've made my concerns known to the appropriate people. I've run a background check (clean) on the guy. I've talked with the parents. My friend had a run-in with this guy and her daughter. Grew appropriately concerned and has limited/stopped contact. She shared her concerns with the appropriate people too. Everyone else thinks we're over-reacting and this guy is just a lonely man who is acting as a surrogate-grandparent to these children. The situation freaks me out. I've had nightmares about my suspicians being proven true. There isn't really anything else I can dob but keep my eyes open, keep my kids away and pray.
Extended Family - I received a card from one step-sister; emails from my other step-sister and step-brother. Nothing from the "boys" - not even an email. My grandmother sent an email to sister and I saying that she was only sending out cards to a few select people. Guess we weren't one of them because I didn't get one. I did get a small email acknowledgement of the gift card I sent her. My great-aunt sent me a wonderful card with a long-handwritten note. That was nice to get.
And Now - back to work. I work today and part of tomorrow. Then off the rest of the week to be with family and celebrate New Years.
Hoping All my Blogging Buddies have a Wonderful New Years and that
2010 is a Great Year for All of Us !

Friday, December 25, 2009

Merry Christmas




I wish you and yours the best during these Christmas holidays!

Monday, December 21, 2009

Beautiful Christian Sister

I saw this recently and had to share. I love the message.

BEAUTIFUL CHRISTIAN SISTER

By Maya Angelou

'A woman's heart should be so hidden in Christ
That a man should have to seek Him first to find her.'
When I say.... 'I am a Christian' I'm not shouting 'I'm clean living;'
I'm whispering 'I was lost, Now I'm found and forgiven.'

When I say.... 'I am a Christian' I don't speak of this with pride.
I'm confessing that I stumble and need Christ to be my guide.

When I say... 'I am a Christian' I'm not trying to be strong.
I'm professing that I'm weak and need His strength to carry on.

When I say... 'I am a Christian' I'm not bragging of success.
I'm admitting I have failed and need God to clean my mess.

When I say... 'I am a Christian' I'm not claiming to be perfect,
my flaws are far too visible, but God believes I am worth it.

When I say... 'I am a Christian' I still feel the sting of pain...
I have my share of heartaches, so I call upon His name.

When I say... 'I am a Christian' I'm not holier than thou;
I'm just a simple sinner who received God's good grace, somehow!

Pretty is as pretty does... But beautiful is just plain beautiful!

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Two Perfect Days


This picture is from our trip to the park very early this morning. It started snowing yesterday morning. School closed early and Munchkin was sent home. I picked up Bugaboo and came home myself. We bundled up in our makeshift snow clothes. After all we don't get enough snow to keep boots and snowsuits handy. Plastic bags over socks work in a pinch.

We play in the snow. We sled down the small hill in our yard, throw snowballs and laugh. When we go in, we start a fire and warm up. I nap in the chair with Bugaboo.

It snowed all night. We woke up to 8 inches of fluffy white stuff. Munchkin was awake before 7 am, insisting I said we could go sledding first thing in the morning. I guess I forgot to clarify it needed to be daylight first!

About 8 am we bundled up and drove, slip-sliding, to the nearby park. Husband told me I couldn't possibly sled down the one steep hill. "You Southerner!" I replied. I hopped on the sled, put Munchkin in front and whee ...away we went, squealing all the way. I think I screamed just as loudly as Munchkin. Bugaboo didn't much like the sledding but he did enjoy throwing snowballs and watching everyone. For awhile I forgot I am mid-30s and played like a kid. That will hurt tomorrow!

We came home and Bugaboo and I came in to hot cocoa (me) and warm milk (him) . We sat in front of our huge picture window, enjoying the sun, and watching Munchkin and Husband build a snowman. Then we got sleepy so we went in and napped on my bed, with the sun streaming in the window. There is something magical about napping in sunlight reflecting off snow.

In another hour, I'll go out and take a turn shoveling the drive, while giving Munchkin another run in the snow. Husband will start a fire and we'll snuggle up with hot chocolate and homemade chocolate chip cookies (I can be domestic sometimes). We'll giggle at Bugaboo standing up so proud of himself and encourage him to walk. Later we'll tuck two exhausted kids into bed.

It's a great day.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Sigh of Relief


He got one - a deer, that is. With a gun this time.
I'd like to think the whininess and pouty-ness will end, but I know better.

Last night he announced he was going to use the $$ his parents gave him toward Christmas to pay for before/after school care for Munchkin. That way he could go hunting. I told him Wednesday and Thursday were no good this week. He starts whining about how the weather might not be good Tuesday (today). I told him the weather was not my problem.

After repeatedly asking me if I was sure Tuesday would work, and my repeatedly telling him that I would not object to Tuesday (what he really wanted was for me to give him my blessing and be happy for him going Tuesday), he decided to go.

So then he asks me to email Munchkin's teacher that Munchkin will be in before/after school and should not be put on the bus. I tell him he can do it. He says, "but I can't." I told him very calmly that I was not going to stand in his way, but I was not going to enable him either. He didn't like that very much.

We yelled back and forth and I finally said, "Look I hate you and hunting and I am not going to enable that any more."

He thought I said I hate YOUR hunting. There is a difference in my opinion. I don't mind him hunting. I hate the way he gets and hunting - his obsessiveness.

So anyway, he usurps Munchkin's time on the computer to try to email the teacher. Why he didn't just handwrite a note and put it in her folder, I don't know. Instead of logging my account off, he clicks some button ends up on my Enola account. In the subject part of the message he writes "Munchkin will not ride the bus."

So he sent the teacher an email from "Enola" listing my blog address. Great....now the teacher knows my blog name and that I'm crazy.

Husband said he thought my attitude "stunk" because after all, he did cancel his job interview to stay home with a sick Bugaboo. First of all, I was in court or I would have come home so he could have gone to the interview. Second of all, it makes no sense for me to jeopardize my job so you can go to an interview for a job you might (or might not) get. Third of all, that is your JOB as a PARENT. You don't get some sort of reward or sticker for that. So when he said he earned the right to go hunting I was livid.

He'll want to tell me all about the killing tonight. I don't want to hear it. When hunting becomes less important than family I might show some interest. Until then I'm not interested.


Sunday, December 13, 2009

Friday, December 11, 2009

Random Friday Vents

My mouth still hurts from where I bit the out of it after a root canal. The protective skin coating is off and it's raw. Ouch. My jaw still aches too. I really miss coffee but it hurts to drink it.

Munchkin's sedation dentist procedure was moved up to TODAY. I'm glad it is getting done with. I hate that I'm not there and I'm on pins and needles waiting to hear. But Bugaboo is sick with a fever. Well he had a fever yesterday. None today but daycare has that darn 24 hour rule. So Husband is taking both kids with him and I hate being stuck here at work.

(He just called and "it was tough" but she did "okay." She was crying that she wanted Mommy but I told her about the movie and she was better)

Daycare found someone to purchase our spot from Dec 28 - Jan 16. We keep Bugaboo at home and they pay to use our spot. Great since Husband is unemployed and the only reason I haven't pulled Bugaboo completely is that I'm afraid of losing the spot permanently. Except now Husband has a second interview on Monday and they're talking a Jan 1st start date. UGH!!! Him possibly getting a job is great news. Now what about daycare? Luckily I have a friend that offered to take him starting Jan 4th but I hate to ask that of someone. Grrrrr


Husband thinks that because I wrote him a letter "unrestricting" his hunting that he can go all the time and I'll just twist into all sorts of shapes accommodating him. I have tried to be accommodating - paying for daycare for Munchkin so he could hunt all day; cancelling an attorney event we were to attend; rushing around on a court day to accommodate him. What do I get? A pouty, juvenile, foot stomping baby who whines because he (1) missed a deer, (2) didn't see a deer, or (3) shot a deer but couldn't find it. Well guess what? I'm tired of your crap. I put it in writing and am giving it to him to discuss with his Therapist. What is my incentive to accommodate your hunting more? I don't get a thankful, grateful, happy husband in return. So screw you - I'm taking Munchkin and we're going to the movies tonight (a reward for surviving the dentist). Sorry that interferes with your hopes to hunt yet again (4th time this week). It's not on the calendar (despite repeated requests) so I'm going on with my own plans. Plus I just can't stand to be around you right now.

I'm bummed that Husband's interview made it neccessary for him to cancel his therapist appointment on Monday and that he couldn't reschedule until after the holidays. I might have to kill him before then.

I'm tired of crazy clients making threats. We have 4 people on our 'watch list' now that have targeted my group.

Munchkin has been on her best behavior since I "threw out" her gingerbread house kit last weekend. The Elf on a Shelf has been working wonders too. I have her convinced that Elf reports to Santa about her behavior every night. I wonder how I can incorporate this into all holidays. If she is really good this weekend, I think the Elf might bring her a new gingerbread house to work on.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Dental Nightmare


After jaw surgery, braces, appliances, and numerous fillings, I have had to adjust and learn to cope with dental appointments. They are not easy. I certainly miss my xanax, but given that I am still nursing, that is not an option.
Munchkin and I both started with toothaches last week. She has six cavities in her mouth right now. The poor thing inherited my weak enamel. Neither Husband nor I are thrilled with her pediatric dentist. She doesn't explain things very well, including why the need to rush and fill baby teeth. She just wants her money up front and then delays with giving us the paperwork so we can process the claim.
So we decided to try making an appointment for both me and for Munchkin at my dentist. He is great and his daughter (also a dentist) is wonderful too. Off we go. Husband meets us there. I go in my room and Husband and Munchkin to theirs next door.
My dentist comes in and explains that things are worse than expected. I need a root canal. Good news is that he can do it right then. Hmm.....go home and live in dread till the next appointment BUT plan ahead and take the xanax with plans to just pump and not nurse ... versus...get it over with now. He promised to numb me extra good. And to extent I trust any male and any dentist, I trust him. He lets me loose to go check on Munchkin while he sets up.
Lo and behold, Munchkin needs a mini-rootcanal. I forget the technical name. But it is a molar and since it is hurting her, we need to preserve it. If it gets pulled, then we have to have a bridge type thing put in to keep the spacing until her grown up tooth comes in. They don't use sedation there. So we talk and decide to try.
I go in and am getting numb and I hear Munchkin crying. The assistant leaves and comes back to say it was just munchkin getting numb but she's okay now. Okay, I want to cry when I get numbed too. So I'll try to relax.
We are almost done my stuff - which was not so so bad, when I hear more crying and screaming and "I want my Mommy!"
I come out of my chair. The dentist gets to a stopping point and lets me go. I go in there and they are trying to drill. She's numb and I know she can't feel it, but the vibrations and sounds are too much. Husband is trying to reason with her. The dentist and I lock glances and the dentist shakes her head. We're done. I grab Munchkin and the dentist gets us a referral to a pediatric dentist next town over that will do sedation dentistry.
The dentist was great. She told me that she would work with children that are doing "cooperative crying" - crying but relatively calm and cooperative. But she was not going to hold a child down or force anything. All that did was traumatize children and teach them to fear dentists.
I carried Munchkin back in to sit on my lap while I finished up. She didn't much like the drilling noise when they were working on me either. But I tried to be really brave and not clench up while they did it.
The dentist praised Munchkin a whole lot for her getting so far. She got a game and then a milkshake on the way home.
I have an appointment next week to finish up the root canal and do another filling. Munchkin has an appointment in two weeks with the pediatric dentist for hers. I also have pain meds to take for the next few days since the pressure on my jaw from dental procedures is tough for me to handle. I'm still drooling too.
I certainly don't wish pain or discomfort on Munchkin. But I am so glad I was there when she called me and needed me. I am glad she knows she can yell out for "mommy" and that I'll be there. I'm glad she knows that I (and her father) will stop unnecessary procedures and look out for her best interest. I'm glad she knows that we will not hold her down for dental exams. I'm glad I'm able to get over my fear enough (or cover it up enough) to be there for her.
I wish my mother had been able to do that.....

Sunday, December 6, 2009

But Mommy, all the bad guys are black......

I told my daughter it was time to go to church and to get moving. She started whining about leaving her piggy bank money out and that the bad black guys would come get it.

"What?" I asked. "What did you say?"

"The bad black guy robber will come take my money," she repeated.

"Black guy? Why would he be black?" I asked her.

"But Mommy, all the bad guys are black," she explained in that exasperated tone of voice that conveys, "don't you know anything?"

I took a deep breath as my mind raced to think where on earth she had gotten such an idea. The news? Her grandparents?

I tried to explain that bank robbers, and all robbers, came in all shapes, colors, sizes and sexes. She kept shaking her head, "No." She kept explaining, "They are all black, Mommy. All of them."

Husband came in and we both tried to explain to her that all black guys were not robbers and all robbers were not black guys. We weren't getting anywhere. I kept asking where she heard such a thing. She replied, "the news....and Martha speaks."

"Martha speaks?" I asked. Martha Speaks is a cartoon. One of the few I let her watch because I actually think it teaches some good things. Had I been wrong?

"Yes mommy. The robber was all black. Head to toe. Like that mask thing Daddy wears when hunting."

"Huh? Oh wait? You mean a ski mask? Like a hat that covers his face?" I asked.

"Yes Mommy," she sighed, rapidly losing patience. "The one all the bad guy robbers wear. With their black shoes, black pants and black shirts. Oh and black gloves. Then the black mask. All the bad guys are black guys. So no one can see them."

"Ahhhh," I said, the light finally dawning, "so you mean the bad guys WEAR all black."

"Yes Mommy,that is what I said," Daughter explained. "Do you get it now?"

Yes I get it. My adult mind assumed the worst. I forgot that kids are supposed to be innocent, and that mine are. I forgot that they aren't growing up in a house where people are judged by skin color. For a minute there, I wondered where I had gone wrong in teaching her. Then I learned it was me who had gone wrong in assuming the worst. I'm glad I was wrong. I get it now.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Boundary Crossing


Sister and I took a very long walk while at her house. It was a great time to catch up. One thing we discussed was boundaries and the inevitable crossing of the line that occurs. We talked about the fact that she and I are very similar and have trouble enforcing our boundaries.
I have had to learn to set boundaries. Rules and boundaries stir up a whole myriad of emotions. On the one hand I feel the need to have rules. On the other hand, I wasn't allowed to have boundaries growing up so I'm not sure what is appropriate and what is not. When my boundaries were crossed and I commented, I was laughed at. So I retreated and backed down. I still do that.

If you've been reading long, then you know the gun saga. If not, then the brief version is -- DH thinks guns are necessary for protection. I'm not a huge fan. Before we had kids, he kept a loaded gun in his dresser or on a closet shelf. When Munchkin started to walk, we made changes. The first issue was when I found Munchkin playing with the gun cabinet keys at 18 months. The keys were in the open gun cabinet door. She was interested in the keys. I was mad the cabinet was unlocked and unattended. DH & I had words and I told him it was unacceptable. Years later I found an unloaded rifle in the basement where he put it instead of putting it up after hunting. I told him if it happened again, there would be no more guns in the house. Then there was the big incident where I found a gun (he claims for protection). Husband and I created a written contract which we negotiated and signed.

So with first incident I make clear is that no guns are to be left out, unlocked. He then crosses the boundary by leaving an unloaded rifle out in the basement. I confront him and he defends saying it was unloaded and Munchkin isn't allowed in the basement unaccompanied at that age. I relent. Then there was the huge incident where he left the weapon unlocked in his dresser drawer. Boundary crossed again. He wanted a second chance. I made the contract with him and urged him to buy any gun safe he wanted. He finally bought a gun safe.

So then last week I discover he is leaving the gun safe unlocked at night. Boundary crossing. I noticed it when he did it. I shut it and told him not to do it again. He says he puts his keys in the safe so he'll never forget to lock it in the mornings. He says he's in the room when it is unlocked so it's okay. But I know he doesn't always need his keys first thing in the morning. I know 90% of the time he ends up on the couch or downstairs because we're switching off baby duty. I know that the kids love to crawl into bed with me (or him) and that they can reach the safe. I know Munchkin tried to access the safe recently because we keep her money inside it too.

~~~~screech~~~~

I just let him violate my boundary, cross the line, break his verbal and written word. My thinking was that it was a "little" issue because I discovered it immediately and he quickly agreed not to let it happen again.

Two nights later I had a horrible nightmare that Munchkin was standing on the bed looking out the window and noticed the safe open. She wanted to count her money (we keep it in the safe until it accumulates enough to put in the bank) and moved the gun to count the money. The gun fell and went off, just missing Bugaboo who was playing on the floor. Horrible dream. Not outside the realm of possibilities though.

I'm not sure what to do now. Do I give him one more chance? I already have, really. Do I go back and insist the guns get out? Do I talk to him and let him know he crossed the boundary and while I may have let it slip, it's weighing on me?

Sounded like a good topic for this week's T session. So last night I discussed that with T. As well as the fact that Husband has still not enforced the rules with his parents. His father promised to build a gun safe and put his guns in it. He has one safe, but insists he needs some guns in the basement - they hang on the wall now.

I sat down with Husband last night and handed him the written agreement to review. He denied it being a violation and tried to argue a loophole. I tried not to act all "lawyerish" but pointed out that it was really clear that this stuff wasn't allowed. He finally conceded it might have been a gray area, and that he had read the contract to see if he could argue his point before doing the actions. I managed not to blow a gasket at that. I suggested next time there was a gray area that he discuss it with me. I told him I would not tolerate my boundaries being crossed again. I also told him that it would be wise to discuss things with his folks when he goes in this week because Christmas is coming and he surely wants to take the kids to his folks' house then (which won't happen if the gun issue isn't resolved).

So he's going to have to talk to his parents which will be really difficult for him. But he has his T's number so it's on his plate now. We'll see what happens.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Thanksgiving with my Family


I wrote about the fact that my step-sister was invited to Thanksgiving dinner at my sister's house. We read on facebook that there were some problems with the visitation exchange of her daughter. So we wondered if that would effect the plans.
We never heard from her. Sister and I were not terribly surprised. I'm not sure if it is the habit of not depending on others or what.
We later heard that she got "caught up" at an event with her friends. That's all we heard.
I was a bit disappointed. Only because it would have been nice to see her and catch up. Honestly, the biggest thing was my desire to fish for information about her relationship with Toilet and things that I remember. Some of it I'm sure she told me before, but I was so "out of it" as a child that I would like to hear it again.
What I found really interesting was my mom's reaction to the news. Sister told my mom that Step-sister was invited. My mom initially said, "Sister you just need to put your foot down with Enola and stop letting her invite people." I don't know where that came from, except that I have met up with some people at my sister's house before. But Sister never cared. I think it was just the first thing that came out of mom's mouth. Sister said Mom shut up when Sister said it was her idea. But Sister could tell Mom was pissed.
It's not like Toilet has a relationship with his daughter. I think Mom was afraid of what we might learn and how it might affect things with her. I wonder if she told Toilet and what he said.
I find it interesting to see the reactions of mom and other family members when we dare to break the childhood rules of "don't talk to anyone."

Monday, November 30, 2009

PSA - Foaming Toothpaste

PSA - Public Service Announcement

We travelled to my sister's for Thanksgiving. It's nice going to her house because I don't think twice about using her towels, shampoo, hair dryer, etc. It sure cuts down on the packing.

So we get there about 10 am and after driving all night, I really want to wash my face and brush my teeth. I head up to the bathroom and somewhat, bleary eyed, start to brush.

Gag, yuck, blech

This toothpaste is foaming toothpaste.

As you begin to brush its invigorating Micro-Active Foam releases thousands of germ killing bubbles that shower your whole mouth- teeth, gums and breath.

Iso-active™ transforms into microfine foam during brushing, penetrating hard to reach areas to thoroughly clean the whole mouth and soothe the nerve.


Basically this stuff grows in your mouth. It is reminiscent of getting my mouth washed out with soap as a child.

I have issues with a strong gag-reflex as it is. Sometimes it makes teeth brushing difficult. This stuff is horrible though. Even a tiny little bit grows and grows and grows in your mouth. I kept spitting and couldn't get it rinsed fast enough. I really thought I was going to gag/choke on the stuff.

So a PSA for all of you survivors or anyone with a strong gag-reflex, do not try this product at home -- or anywhere else.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Blog Carnival - Prevention Issue

The Blog Carnival Against Child Abuse is up here. Be sure to check it out.

And Happy Thanksgiving everyone!

Monday, November 23, 2009

Road Trip - connecting with New - Old Family


I leave tomorrow night/Wed morning at around 2 am for my sister's. I am super excited. We've found that leaving at 2 am works well. The kids go to sleep and generally wake about 6 am which gives us almost half the trip under our belt before we stop.
For the last two (or maybe three) years, my sister and her crew have come down here for Thanksgiving and we've gone to my in-laws. This year we're doing it differently. We are going up north to her house. Then they'll come down here for New Years. Husband has not missed a holiday with his family in a long time so that has taken some adjustment on his part. It's been 4 1/2 months since I've seen my sister and my niece/nephews. Far too long in my book. I don't like going this long without a visit.
We're planning on an early turkey dinner to accommodate my BIL having to work. Then we'll do dessert with my step-sister. I wrote about her here. I got curious one day and looked my step-siblings up on facebook. Their last name is extremely unique. Lo and behold there they all were.
The oldest is seven days younger than me. The middle is 2 years younger than me/6 months older than my sister. The boy is 5 years younger than me. He looks exactly like his father. He's a junior so they have the same name too. That took awhile to get used to. I'm still taken aback when I see him.
The oldest and youngest live in another state near their mother, who is still married to the guy she married after Toilet. The oldest has two children. The youngest just got married. The middle one, who I'll call Marie, and her daughter live near my sister. We found out she was going to be alone for Tgiv and invited them up. This should be interesting.......... I told my sister that we probably would have to call Toilet by his given name.
The two youngest have zero contact with their father. The oldest sends cards and pictures on occasion. Interesting to see how the oldest (me, oldest step-sister and oldest of dad's adoptive kids) have all fallen into the same roll of maintaining some sense of family at all costs. I wonder what Toilet thinks of the pictures - his oldest is dating a handsome African American guy. She has two adorable children, both are bi-racial. Will he see past the color of their skin to see that they make a wonderful looking family? Will he see that the children look like their mother/his daughter? Will he have any pangs of longing for being cut out of their lives? Will he think dirty thoughts about the children?
I'm excited to see Marie and her daughter. She does not have contact with her father either. She said they were supposed to get together about the time Toilet and Mom moved down here, but he never called to set it up. She said she got tired of forcing the issue and gave up. Marie and her daughter look just like her mother (Toilet's ex). I wonder if that has anything to do with it.
I wonder if Toilet has seen pictures of his youngest - his namesake. At first glance I thought he wasn't too bad looking. Then I saw a picture of him without a baseball cap. Poor kid is prematurely balding just like his dad. And boy is he the spitting image of his father. It's hard for me to see pictures of him without a hat. When his name pops up I have to take a deep breath. I told him I'd never call him by his real name - always by his nickname.
Sister and I told each of the kids that we have no contact with their father. When pressed I used my standard "he's not appropriate to be around children and it is not safe or appropriate for me to have him around my children." They've not pressed the issue, which alone tells me what I need to know.
I wonder what we'll discuss at my sister's. I wonder if word will get back to my mom. I'm not open with my mom. I don't lie, but I don't offer information either. My sister doesn't hide things. So she'll tell my mom who we met up with. Now that ought to be interesting. Mom tells Toilet - hey my kids had Tgiv lunch with your kid and here we sit all alone in our house. I could feel sorry for them but I don't.

Friday, November 20, 2009

My Turn - Confession


Confession - I am one of those pre-teen screaming high pitched girls trapped in a 34 year old body. I pre-ordered tickets to New Moon. I did, at least, have the sense to recognize that I'm too old to see the midnight show and am waiting until 7 tonight. I'm really excited!

It started when I was on maternity leave and looking for something to read. A friend told me I had to get into the Twilight series. I wasn't interested. She said it brought back all the good and innocent childhood love feelings. Bored, I decided to give it a try.
Four books and one movie, about $80 later, I was hooked. I never buy hardback books - heck I rarely buy books anyway. I usually borrow them. I never buy movies either. But I own all of these.

So why the craze? Why the question - are you Team Edward or Team Jacob? Let me try to explain for you non-Twilight fans.
Edward is a vampire. He is tall, handsome, flawless body. Because he is a vampire, he has cool, pale skin and low body temperature. He is the ultimate romantic. He is very intelligent. He has a great head on his shoulders. He is into the arts and even writes his girlfriend a love song, which he plays on the piano.

Jacob is a werewolf (more accurately a shape-shifter). He is bigger and broader. Warm-bodied. Dark hair, darker skin. He is hot-blooded with a temper to match. He is fierce. He's the consummate "bad boy."

(Edward on left ---------------------- Jacob on right)

Jacob is more physically appealing to me. Something about him being akin to a big teddy bear. There is a scene where Bella is stuck in the cold woods and Jacob uses his wearwolf warmth to wrap around her. Hmm a personal snuggly blanket. I've also always been attracted to dark hair, darker skinned men - the six-pack abs don't hurt either.

I like Edward's personality better though. I'd really like to morph Edward's personality into Jacob's body.

So Husband and I were talking about this movie and he asked why the obsession? He noted that he doesn't usually see women drooling over "half-their age-men" like this. Why the difference between this movie and others?

The difference is this - while I appreciate the six-pack abs, that's not the real attraction. Johnny Depp is supposedly the sexiest man right now. Blech. A hot man with zero personality does nothing for me. The real attraction in this movie is the theme of the Protector.

Jacob and Edward fight to protect Bella. While they both are in love with the same woman, they can put that difference aside to protect her. They fight for her. They are tender in their protection of her. It is that which is attractive to me.

I want the idea of a man who will stay up all night (like Edward) watching me sleep. Just sitting in the corner protecting me. I want a man (like Jacob) who will wrap themselves around me to keep me warm when we are stuck outdoors. I want a man who will take me to romantic meals. I want a man who will sing me lullabies that he has written just for me. I want a man who will ferociously attack the goons in the alley that try to hurt me. I want a man who will lay down his life for me.

The other attraction in this movie is Edward's family. They aren't related in the usual sense. They are a group of vampires brought together because they have a common bond in staying hidden in society. But they are the true sense of family. The fight for each other, pick on each other, but would die for one another. It's that bond that is also attractive.
Lastly, this brings back good childhood memories. Back when romance was innocent. Back when being attracted to boys was a giggly, flighty thing. I don't have many (any) memories of that. But sitting through these movies is pretty close. This movie is about innocence. There are no sex scenes. There's no raunchiness. It is about pure, sweet and innocent love. The kind every young girl fantasizes about (if they've not had those fantasies destroyed). It makes me connect with what could have been.

So where will I be at 7 pm tonight - watching the latest in the Twilight series. I'll be one of those high-pitched squealing women in line with my pre-ordered ticket. Yee-haw!!!!!!!!

Sunday, November 15, 2009

He Got a Deer - or did the Deer Get Him?

I got the call about 8 pm Saturday evening. I had just thought to myself, "he either shot a big deer or is running late." When the phone rang, it was not a number I recognized. I answered and it was Husband's voice saying, in broken up fashion, "hit...deer...buck...truck...side...road....can't drive it....called 911." I kept saying, "are you okay?" Over and over. He kept repeating his words. Finally I yelled at him, "Shut up - are you okay?" He answered me and said he was fine. Then I could focus on the rest of his words.

I loaded the sleeping kids in the car and took off to drive the 20 minutes to the crash site. Husband was driving down the interstate going about 70 mph. The buck jumped the guardrail and Husband hit it (or it hit husband) straight on. The air bag deployed and somehow, by the grace of God, Husband was able to avoid hitting anyone else and get the truck off the road without hitting the guardrail. He tried to flag people down, but several other vehicles hit the deer too. They
were able to drive their cars up to the service station where the trooper took their info.

Husband finally flagged someone down who helped him call a trooper (Husband's phone had flown somewhere in the truck and he couldn't find it) and me. This very nice guy and his wife waited there with Husband until I got there. Husband said it was very scary having cards whiz by going 70-80 mph. He was worried someone would hit the deer carcass and swerve into him. But he couldn't risk darting into traffic to move it.

It looked worse in the dark last night. But really it's
just the front end and bumper. No engine or transmission or radiator damage. The tow truck came and took it away.




This morning revealed that the truck is not totalled as we feared. Our insurance company has been awesome. Today we went and purchased replacement car seats. Apparently they need replaced even if no one is occupying them. Tomorrow we get our rental vehicle.

So today the jokes were flying - you got a big buck, huh? Did you keep the rack? Now that's an interesting way to ground up your venison!

I'm just glad Husband is okay. He was pretty shaken up after we got home. We're both thankful the kids were not with him.

So the score is - Husband 0; Deer 1

Friday, November 13, 2009

Family


With facebook I've been able to catch up with lots of childhood friends, and even some of my relatives. I get to see pictures of them and their families. Recently I've become more conscious of the feelings stirred up when I see the pictures.
I see pictures of families laughing - not those forced smiles that appear in my family photos.
I see the same people in the same photos through the years - not changing faces every year as new boyfriends, girlfriends and others come in and out of my life.
I see candid shots - instead of posed and forced pictures.
I see holiday shots with parents having fun - not the look of "how much longer must I pretend to like these people?"
I see pictures of parents and kids partying and having a great time, without the knee high stack of beer cans that appear in my family photos.
I read captions where kids poke fun of their parents and parents poke fun of their kids in a absolutely funny fashion - not the sarcastic mean comments that would appear on my photos.
I see families hugging, arms thrown around each other, laughing and obviously caring for each other - sometimes rabbit ears or faces made behind someone - not the "oh my gosh do I have to touch them" pictures of my family.
Sometimes the photos make me laugh. Sometimes they make me cry. Often they make me wish I could leap through the photo into that family.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

I Know what I do NOT want to be when I Grow Up

I spent a good part of yesterday crying in my office. I'm having to cover for a child welfare attorney who is out of the office. I didn't expect to have to do much other than sign a few documents. Instead I got pulled into an emergency meeting first thing yesterday morning.

Two babies, one not much younger than my own. A call to EMS because the youngest is found unresponsive in a bathtub, where the #^(&% parents left he and his sibling unattended. Who the hell leaves two children under 2 in the tub alone? The baby was airlifted to our children's hospital where he is in a coma with a 1% chance of survival. I got to work on the paperwork, and see the pictures of this adorable little baby on all sorts of tubes.

There are the complicated legal and medical tidbits that serve to distract me for a few minutes - no evidence of water in the lungs, so what happened? If he didn't drown, what caused it? Can we prove the parents did it? Is leaving a child alone in the tub alone enough to take custody (I decided it was). Parents want to take the baby off life support, so do we take custody before then (in which case we have to make the DNR decision) or leave custody with the parents and let them be responsible - do they deserve that responsibility? Will it haunt them the rest of their life like it will if I have to do it?

All I can say is hug your children tight. Be very thankful to those that have the calling to work with abused children - it is definitely a calling and not something I want to do. If you're the praying type, pray for this little one. There was a slight improvement over the night in his condition. The next day is critical. And remind me that murder is not legal so I need to keep my hands off the parents.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

I Could...I Should...

I could write about...I should write about...

  • Husband's first and second therapy appointment - and the progress (or lack thereof)
  • The major differences between men and women - I'm talking Grand Canyon size chasms here
  • three pediatrician visits in two weeks - ending with flu shots for everyone, antibiotics for Bugaboo, and the start of a long winter
  • finding out Husband went over his cell phone minutes again. Last month it cost us $66; this month $103.
  • how my language denigrates dramatically when I'm pissed
  • how sick kiddos mean no sleep for mommies
  • the pride felt when you attend your first parent-teacher conference and learn your Kindergarten child is on a first grade level and the top reader in her class
  • how much saying "you're sorry" sucks after you've name-called
  • how you realize your marriage might just be worth saving when your husband shows concern for you -- and when you catch your son having a "daddy snuggle" moment and then see your daughter and husband playing outside.
  • how you're grateful your husband has massive patience to play endless games of imagination when you are tired after the second time.
  • how sometimes it is a very good thing murder is not legal.
  • how a day in court makes you realize just how disrespectful people have become, all in the name of "tolerance" and how you just can't tolerate skimpy clothes in court, name calling, uh-huh instead of yes sir, cell phones going off in court, hats on head, sunglasses on heads and just plain rudeness.
  • how snuggles with an adorable baby can cure just about anything that ails you.
  • how open and honest communication is hard, hurts and just plain sucks -- but is necessary sometimes
  • how when you point a finger at someone else, you really do have three pointing back at you.
  • how days of hearing about parents that do drugs instead of caring for their children, have more children when they can't afford to care for the ones they have, and who lie down with dogs and then whine when they get fleas -- have caused you to become quite jaded.
  • how hearing your child mimic your attitude is a real eye-opener.
  • how you wish your husband would hear his words from his children - those don't sound so good either
  • how people that try to respond to every situation with humor are really annoying
  • marriage really does take a whole lot of work
  • being imperfect really sucks - no matter what another person does, you've done some wrong too. Comparing levels of wrong doesn't ever result in a good outcome for either person.

Saturday, October 31, 2009

Blog Carnival Against Child Abuse

October's Edition is up HERE. October's host is Lynda at In the Best Interest: Child Advocacy Law. Check it out.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Finding the Balance

I managed to get in for a T session today. I needed it. I was looking forward to getting some help in figuring out where the balance is between playing the "hall monitor" and "total hands off."

We talked about the decision I made with hunting (see post here). I told Husband that I was not going to go out of my way to schedule things when he is gone, but neither am I going to try to schedule everything into the one weekend he might be around. T said it was a good plan - to put everything square in his lap. Now I need to be sure that I don't react with anger when he leaves for hunting or returns. Not to get caught up in his struggle with whether he should go or not. Not to make the decision for him. But also not to run around ragged, making up for the cleaning and other things he would do if he were here. He needs to figure out how to make up (if possible) for what he misses when gone.

We talked about the pornography and my struggles with finding a balance between playing hall monitor and letting stuff run rampant in my house; between feeling like I'm overreacting and things aren't really that bad versus under-reacting and this is going to blow up in my face. We talked about how my past and childhood is blurring with the here and now. How I'm afraid to let my past totally dictate my reaction now, but am also afraid to ignore it.

We talked about what I have said and done so far. Set up some guidelines and set-ups that might work with the computer. It puts the responsibility back on Husband but gives me the ability to look and see what he has done if I need. T said that based on what I've said/done so far, I'm reacting outwardly appropriately.

My thoughts are going a bit overboard. But that's to be expected. We talked about the differences between this situation and my childhood. The reasons why I'm getting them all jumbled up and why this is throwing me for a tailspin. She made me feel okay with the fact that this inner war is going on, but also reminded me that my Husband is not Toilet. T has met Husband several times and she "knows" him pretty well through my years of telling her about him. There have also been group sessions where she's met with him. She reminded me that he has a good heart and loves the Lord. I need to trust in that - but not blindly.

I think the lesson here is to let my feelings be what they are, but to check them with my head. To let my head reassure my heart that there is a reason I married Husband and that he is getting help and reaching out. I need to remember that he is not Toilet and is not "destined" to follow some path into becoming Toilet's evil twin. I also need to keep an open eye and not ignore facts either.

We'll see how this goes...........

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Torn - and a Decision

I've gotten lots of comments, and some direct emails with regard to my recent blog posts. I appreciate everyone's thoughts. I especially appreciate those men who have written to tell me they've struggled with pornography too. And the women who have written me about facing this situation.

On the one hand, I worry I'm over-reacting because of my childhood issues. On the other hand, I worry that because I didn't react strongly enough (my perception) to the pornography as a child, that my failure to react led to a worsening of the abuse. See the dilemma? I'm talking with T later this afternoon.

Husband had his therapy appointment yesterday. He's minimzing - I believe he thinks that because he's talked with a few guys at church and been to one session, that he's okay. Besides I've got blocks on anything, so he's good, right?

Husband is totally in denial on the hunting. Or maybe it's not denial. He has listenened to all I say. I wrote him a very non-confrontational letter. He admits the points I make. He just doesn't see the big deal. Today he asked, "isn't it better for me to make a choice, than for you to dictate rules?" I could have argued about being a dictator of rules. But I chose a different tactic. One I'd been contemplating a bit.

I told him no rules. No holds barred. He can hunt wherever and whenever he wants. All I ask is that he write it on the calendar, and if it is when I am working or have plans (per the calendar) that he make child care arrangements. I'm tired of being seen as the dictator. I can't force him to choose me or the family. Let him choose what he wants.

Don't get me wrong - I'm not going to play second fiddle or allow my family to be usurped by hunting either. But when a co-worker and I were discussing being hunting widows, she mentioned finally giving up. She said, "you know what? Things run smoother when he's not around. The kids and I have more fun. There's less tension. We can enjoy time more when we are together, and the kids and I are really close."

She has a point. I love spending time with the kids. It's his choice whether or not to be a part of this. If he wants to go off and hunt, rather than hang out with the children and I, then so be it. His loss - not mine. And if he chooses to hunt all the time, and I learn to cope as a single parent, well ........ Ultimately he is responsible for the relationship he forms with me and with the children. I can't force him to enjoy the activities the kids enjoy or to do them. He'll have to face the consequences of his choices later. All I can do is be the best wife and mother I know how.


Tuesday, October 27, 2009

I Blame Pornography - Lighbulb Moment


You have to have read this post here in order for this to make sense. As I wrote that post, I had a sense of de ja vu. I looked back and voila, I have written about porn - Toilet connection before. I have also written about my reaction and how I think he liked it. I know now not to blame myself for how I reacted - it was a child's innocent curiosity. But I also know that Toilet was looking for someone that would stay silent and I did. In my mind, I blame pornography for the abuse. I see it, and my reaction, as the catalyst that started it all.
Husband came home last night to say that he found out someone else in his church group is struggling with the same issue. He talked about how it's very common and other people have done worse. blah blah blah
I talked with Husband very calmly this morning. I told him that I was not the person he needed to be talking to about this. If he wants to discuss plans to ensure it doesn't happen again, that's fine. But I can not be the person he talks with about what he's learned in counseling and how others struggle. All I hear is excuses. All I hear is "it's not that bad" and "everyone else is doing it." I told him to talk to friends about that. He again told me not to talk to anyone. I told him very calmly (can you tell I had counted to 10 and done deep breathing first?) that I would not be silenced - that I had spent my entire life being told to shut up and keep quiet. After walking away and coming back, I told him that I was not going to be taking out billboards or going around gossiping, but that if I needed to talk to someone, I wasn't going to refrain from doing it. He'd prefer (of course) if I stick to my "unreal" (AKA online) buddies and not anyone he might have to see (like my sister). Too bad for him. I am not going back to the old way of life of trying to remember what everyone knows and what version of reality I need to be remembering with which person.
He said he definitely didn't want his family knowing. I'm not planning on telling them. His cousin is supposed to stay at our house this weekend since she's working over the weekend at the plant location near our place. I told Husband I wasn't planning on telling her - but that I wasn't planning on hiding the fact that we have separate bedrooms or aren't exactly the happiest couple on the block. He'll just have to deal.

The Past Coming into the Present



I got a call at work mid-morning. Husband had been offered an interview - it couldn't wait until tomorrow. The issue was that Bugaboo had a low-grade fever and we kept him home. Plus Munchkin had a day off from school. What to do? I came home - will make up the hours someday this week.

Husband called me on the drive to the interview, to tell me that the insurance investigator was stopping by the house in 15 minutes, instead of early evening as he previously told me. This is someone from Munchkin's daycare about her broken foot. Daycare told us he was rude and obnoxious. I made the comment to DH - "you are sending a strange man to the house to meet with me, alone?" He didn't see an issue - he was with the insurance company, after all. I ran around and picked up, finished nursing Bugaboo, changed out of my lounging (not suitable for company, around the house) clothes and debated calling DH back and demanding he change the appt. But he had handled a situation. He claims I always second-guess him and I know that's what would get thrown up at me.

After DH came home, he asked about internet availability at the library. I told him there was but he might need to apply for a card. He said that he needed me to teach him how to access our email - a temp service is emailing something to fill out and he needed to get it done for a morning interview. I informed him the email password had been changed. He said well you can just get on and get it up for me.

This is too much. I can't win. I don't block it - it's my fault. I do block it - it's my fault. I help him and I'm mothering - babysitting him. I don't and I'm inhibiting his job search. I DO NOT KNOW WHAT TO DO!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~
When Mom and Toilet were first dating, we spent weekends at the Berlin Farmers Market. It is an old, warehouse-type creepy dark indoor and outdoor flea market. The creepy of creepy hung out there (can't believe it has a website now). No shirts or shoes were required. We could afford stuff there. Toilet not only let us stare as long as we wanted at the pretzel conveyor, but bought us some too. There was a magazine stand - I don't remember Mom being there, but she must have been at least some of the time. Sister and I got to look at Teen Beat. Toilet looked at porn. We stood there side by side looking at our magazines. He'd make comments.

Toilet always wanted to know if I thought Mom would like something. "what do you think your mom would like?" We'd go by the lingerie shop and he'd hold something up to me - think your mom would like this?

I remember Toilet joking about some magazine he picked out for her - Big Men or something. He'd walk down the aisle with his brown paper bag. He'd put my magazine in with his and make me carry them both. We got home and it turns out the magazine was for men seeking men. It was a magazine for homosexual men. The comments and jokes he made were awful.

At 10, I went into Mom's room and dresser for something. I knew better than to go through her stuff. I found sexual toys and a ton of magazines. Sister and I looked through them. Apparently we left the drawer ajar. Mom yelled for going through her stuff. Toilet caught me in the hall and asked me if I learned anything. I smarted off - "yeah I learned men have hair down there." There was a weird look in his eyes. I think he liked my smart-mouth response.

One summer about a year later I was on a camping trip with Toilet and Mom. Sister was with Dad. We went hiking. I was a bit ahead with my dog. I heard giggling. Mom and Toilet were flashing each other and taking pictures. I found them later. Mom acting like a porn star.

There were porn movies. A friend and I put one in one time. Didn't put that one quite back right either. Mom said nothing. Toilet told me in an evil whisper, "it's okay - just put them back. Your mom wouldn't like it." It was our secret.

~~~~~~~~~~
Porn = Toilet = abuse = throw up

He makes decision about insurance which I don't like. So I can stay quiet and deal with the uneasiness of a strange man or object and get accused of second-guessing him. I can't win. I try my best but I can't. It makes my anxiety skyrocket.

When I put the lock on the computer I feel like his mother. When I refuse to help him access the computer, I feel guilty (trigger). When I get guilted and give in, I feel majorly triggered.

I had finally gotten to where I could tolerate his eating crunchy food in my presence; tolerate him walking in the bath while I'm brushing my teeth; pass him in the hall, without panicking. Now I feel like I've been set back a year or more.

I got an appointment with T on Wed. If I can survive DH wanting to discuss everything after his appointment tomorrow I'll make it.

And now I must escape to to another rroom because he is inhaling potato chips in a mouth open lip smacking way that is making me vomit.

Monday, October 26, 2009

Co-dependency Nightmare


I have always hated the term co-dependent. In my eyes it was a weak sniveling person like my mother. As I read these books though, I'm realizing that I have some major codependent traits -
* trouble identifying what I'm feeling
* minimize or deny how I feel
* difficulty making decisions
* judge everything I think, say or do as never good enough
* do not ask others to meet my need
* value others' approval of my thinking
* do not perceive myself as lovable or worthwhile
* value others' opinions and feelings as my own
* attempt to convince others of what they should do/feel
* become resentful when others don't let me help
* freely offer advice and direction
* have to be needed to have a relationship with others.
Blech that sounds harsh. Some of the traits seem opposite and appear to conflict with others, but I can see how they are at work in my life.
Right now, I'm stuck in a co-dependent nightmare of trying to figure out where the line is. The apparent solutions to one issue conflict with the apparent solutions of another issue.
On the one hand - shut off the cable TV, internet, etc because Husband isn't working. Let him see that his salary is important for us to have these things. And that you have to be putting forth effort to have them.
On the other hand - will it force him to seek out other ways to find pornography? Will it further the "mommy syndrome" he seems to have where he wants to play the little boy role?
Husband wants me to check out the bank balance to see if his unemployment check cleared. I remind him he can call the 1-800 bank number. He comes back and says it gives only the amounts, not who the deposit is from. So do I look it up for him? Do I turn on the computer and put in the password and sit there as a hall monitor?
Husband wants me to put in his unemployment claims so he can get paid for the week. I say No and point him to the phone book. He can't find the claim number, just the local office number. Do I let him figure it out and risk losing the check for the week? Do I look up the number and give it to him? Or do I put the claim in for him? Do I put in the password and let him do it?
I ended up checking the bank balance online and filling out the claim for him. I hated doing the claim because I put in his answers which was "available for work" even though I know he put Jan 1st on some applications. I told him I was not comfortable furthering his deceit but he said it was "just on that one application."
I'm not sure there is a "one size fits all" answer. But I made an appointment for myself on Wednesday to try to get some help with it.
Husband and I talked a bit last night. He is all over the place. From "everyone else does it" to "it's not that bad" to "I'm glad it was discovered" to "God wanted it discovered" to "I can't talk to anyone about it" to "you knew this was a problem" to "why are you so surprised, you had all the clues" to "you should have known this would happen when you taught me to use the computer"
We talked a bit about how pornography is the result of an underlying issue. He recognizes that it is probably self-esteem. But then goes on to say "well I told this guy no this week." He thinks by doing one thing "right" that he is "over it."
I tried to open up a bit about how this is touching on my triggers but he wasn't receptive so I shut down. I think I might try to write a letter. I don't have to give it to him. But it might help me.

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Ramblings

After a night of flashbacks, panic attacks and finally drugged sleep, I'm not very coherent. But I wanted to take a moment to update and to thank everyone for their comments.

After work yesterday,
I ran by the Christian bookstore and bought two books for women whose men struggle with sexual addictions. So far they are pretty good. I'm struck by two things. First, how many abusers start out with pornography, and how from a woman's perspective viewing pornography is just as bad as having an affair.

I went home and Husband was wrapped in a blanket on the couch. He didn't move. Didn't talk. I went into the bedroom. I had called T and thankfully she was able to squeeze me in. I told Husband I was going to meet with her. He looked a little odd about that.
She and I talked about what to do - block computer, cancel internet - is that controlling or helping? Since so much is from his need to be "mothered" I have to be careful not to take control and do it all. Decided to password protect the computer (done) and let him figure out how to do the Employment stuff on the phone or in person. Cancelled cable except channels 1-19 which are just local (no more TLC, HGTV, or A&E for me). Not so much for the X/R rated stuff but because he doesn't need to sit around and watch TV and not work. If he starts watching soap operas all TV will be gone.

She also suggested pulling Bugaboo out of daycare out for a week or at least a few days - pay for daycare to keep the spot - but don't use it. That way Husband has to take some responsibility. And she suggested I do some 1-1 things with the kids during evenings and weekends, so that Husband has at least 1 kid almost all the time for awhile. And if he is still unemployed over the holidays, keep Bugaboo out and let him have both kids for the two-week Christmas break. Even if I'm paying for the spot (to keep it and not lose it) doesn't mean I have to use it. I never thought of that. It's a good plan because he is not capable (at present) of juggling errands, housework, and the kids. He's enjoying staying home too much.


She said to give it a few days but then tell Husband two things (1) he's too good of a man to be acting like this and (2) I am too committed to our family to give up without a fight and that I was going to some man at the church to seek their help in reaching him. I'm going to have to use the shame to make him reach out.

Got home and there was a note on my dresser. It said, "Sorry about the computer thing. I have an appt with [his therapist] on Tues."

I'm grateful for that. Although I do note his apology is specific which is a deliberate thing for him - he usually just says "sorry."

Last night I cancelled the extended cable. I also
looked at the computer history closely (blech). I kept his note. T suggested I check our credit cards and bank cards. I did that. I looked in his wallet and will check the safe. The book cautions against becoming a constant hall monitor and I do not want to do that. But I need to know how big this problem is before I can tackle it. And the attorney side of me is compelled to document all this (just in case).

Everything appears to be "size issue" related - some female sites but nothing that appeared hard core.. So I definitely think it is an esteem thing, more so than simply a sex thing. But T also made me see that as he's gotten sucked into this more and more, his attitude has changed. Hindsight being 20-20 I can see that. And that could be causing a lot of our issues too.

T also suggested making the finances hurt awhile - so I'm cutting out going out to eat - that's his huge favorite. Just refuse to go because "we need to save $$" No ordering out either. I need to make his being out of work uncomfy. I need to make his sit around and do nothing for awhile and get bored. One so he feels his income does make a difference but also to make him want to find work.
I've been trying to keep things status quo so he doesn't feel bad about being out of work. But instead he sees things going on normal so why does his working matter? Again no motivation and a blow to his esteem.

Pornography and sexual addictions are a war. There are images everywhere. Men are so visual. Women in bikinis on baywatch become a problem. So things need to be super restrictive for awhile and then lessen up. It's like an alcoholic would never go to a party where alcohol was being served until they were far along in recovery. So I'll have to be cognizant of what I watch on TV, the magazines in the house (no more People magazine) and flyers we get (off the Victoria secret mailing list).

In the meantime, he's sleeping in the basement awhile. And I'm changing/showering/etc behind closed doors. I don't even want to nurse in front of him.

As for me, reading these books has reminded me that most abusers start out with pornography. And reminded me just how pornography played a role in my abuse. The flashbacks and nightmares have been intense. I want Husband to see what this is doing to me -- but I'm not in a place where I can do it without being confrontational or accusatory. And I sure do not want him trying to comfort me. I'm also still PISSED I'm going to have to talk about sex in front of other people.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Get OUT !

(TRIGGER warning - foul language ahead)

If you have ever visited Facebook, then you know status messages start out -- Enola is ________.

Today, mine would read -

Enola is nauseated
Enola is livid.
Enola is pissed
Enola is sobbing
Enola is having a panic attack
Enola wants a xanax

I came home after a long day in court. I called and offered to pick up Bugaboo. Bugaboo is switching up to the 1 year class and I'm trying to do some of the pick up so I can get to know the teachers.

We get home and the house is a mess. Husband has worked 3 hours in the morning at daycare. Didn't bring Bugaboo home to spend time with him (another rant) but came home, watched TV and waited for the heating repair guy to come. I got busy getting food on the table, helping Daughter with homework, feeding Bugaboo, etc. Husband went and talked with the repair guy.

I mentioned to Husband, in a very nice tone of voice that it would be nice to come home to a straightened house. I try really hard to pick up when he's been gone and is coming home. That prompted a litany of what he'd done all day. Which turned into a rant about money. And how he's not looking for a job and he doesn't care. And what am I going to do about it? Well.......


I said something not so nice - I said let's list house for sale. He said then what - pay $700 for apt. I said no - I'll get an apartment with the kids - you go to your parents. He said something about, "well my theory is true." He wouldn't elaborate then.

So I get Bugaboo ready for bed and he's putting Munchkin to bed. I go downstairs to log onto the computer to pay bills. Something odd comes up and when I go to click to my "favorites" I hit history and it's all these gun sites. So I'm mad, thinking Husband is searching guns all day instead of jobs. Click "full history" and oh no, my eyes.

That fucking bastard. This wasn't an accidentally stumbled upon a x rated site. This wasn't "I typed Dick's sports instead of Dick's sporting goods." That's happened before. This is searched out, googled it, sought it out stuff. He looked at that shit with my daughter's picture set as the background picture on my computer .

Of course it's my fault. I didn't block the sites. I didn't install controls. We've not had sex in awhile. I'm on the computer too much. I'm ignoring him.

He says he has an addiction. Okay, deep breath. I can understand addictions are tough. I tell him to get help. He shakes his head. I tell him he has 2 weeks to call his counselor. "Nope," he says, "or what?" I tell him I'll have to decide what to do and he says, "my theory is already proven. You're done with our marriage anyway. You're not sleeping with me and now you want me to move out."

I tell him I'm committed to working on our marriage. I'm frustrated with him. I reiterate (for the millionth time) that I do not blame him for being laid off. I do not blame him for not finding a job quickly. I do hold him responsible for his efforts which are slim to none. He's been out of work since Sept 25th and has contacted TEN places. He defends saying that he didn't look while getting severance.

Then he admits he's not looking to get a job right now. He doesn't want to take a job where he'll have to work holidays. He mentions that Daughter has two weeks off from school and would have to do before/after school and full day care. She's done that before - she's a daycare kid. And if he hadn't have lost his job, there wouldn't have ever been an issue about that. Plus I have time off.

When I point this out, he admits he doesn't want to work holidays. He wants time off. And...da da da.......he wants to hunt. He won't take a job because it will interfere with hunting. He's been putting on his applications that he is not available until January 1st. (forget about that fact that if this is discovered he'll lose unemployment for being "unavailable for work.")

Damn selfish bastard

So - talk about choices. He has now chosen hunting over me and our family. Being lazy over supporting our family. And porn over me.

I have talked about so much personal shit in counseling. The one thing I have never talked about is our intimate life. There's not enough medication for that. I can't do it. And now I'm going to have too. I'm going to have to talk about all this sex shit - probably with him in the room too, if he'll ever go to marriage counseling. I could kill him

I message my sister. She has parental controls on her computer and her husband struggled with this. She has books and resources. She's my sister and I need someone to cry too. I'll be damned if Husband sees or hears me crying. Sister calls me on the phone instead of computer messaging me. Husband brings me the phone and says, "Didn't take you long to run and blab to her." Guess I'm supposed to keep this quiet, huh? He says, "don't you dare go talking about this to people."

He didn't dare try to come into the bedroom last night. He's permanently on the couch for now. I did password protect the computer. I refuse to be the "hall monitor." I discussed it with my sister, and she, knowing my controlling tendencies, read me a passage out of a book she read when dealing with this shit. It warned about becoming the controlling one - putting controls on computers, TVs, mail, etc. Husband already wants me to mother him. I can't do it here. I did put a block on the computer because I can't stomach the thought of porn on a computer where I deal with pictures of my kids and scrapbooking.

I've got an email and will call as soon as lines open to my counselor.