Who Is That Girl I See Staring Straight Back At Me?


So, after posting last night about how my husband was so supportive and understanding that this illness isn’t ME, we had a confrontation.  I was so “hyper” yesterday but I got nothing accomplished.  I didn’t clean the kitchen as he had asked me to, i only did one load of laundry that didn’t even make it into the dryer until about 9pm.  I fell asleep around 6pm and woke up at 9pm.

We each did our thing for a couple of hours and then he asked me if I had called the lawyer that had emailed me.   I told him that, no, I hadn’t.  I was too anxious to call and wanted to do a little more research, plus I had been given advice from a couple different people and wanted to look into it more before I called anyone since it is such a big deal these days to talk on the phone with people I don’t know.  So anyway he goes into this tirade about “what’s wrong with you? What’s going on?  Why are you getting worse instead of better? You used to be able to do these things.  You need to have a purpose, or goals. It seems like you are just coasting, you don’t have anything that drives you.”   and I told him ” I don’t need that.  I don’t have that NEED to accomplish something, to always be doing something, to challenge myself.  I am ok with just BEING.  I don’t feel guilty or bored or isolated because I’m not working.  I feel guilty because I am not bringing in an income,”    What I didn’t say is: beyond that I am SO glad to not have to force myself to put a smile on my face and pretend that I’m ok for the benefit of others who don’t even truly care about ME.  To the people that I’m just a number/name on a payroll ledger.  They don’t care about my problems, unless it is affecting my work, and even then they don’t care why, except they want me to do better, because everyone has their personal issues but you have to put them aside when you come to work.  I AM my personal issue.  I can’t leave me at home when I go to work.

He said that he is afraid that I am becoming agoraphobic, because I don’t want to go out and do things.  But really it is just… we don’t have any money.  If I go out, I will spend money, so I try to keep myself from going places where I know I will spend money.  I am not AFRAID of going out, I just am worried about money, and it makes me feel guilty to spend money, knowing that we have very little at the moment.

There are so many things I wanted to say to him, each one running through my head.  But instead I clammed up and just sat there looking at him trying not to cry too hard.  I felt like if I tried to explain he wouldn’t understand and it would make things worse because I am not good at explaining THIS to him, because he DOESN’T understand.  He has that drive to FIX things, to FIX me.  But you can’t fix something if you don’t know how it works.

He is worried about my involvement with this group.  He thinks that I am picking up the symptoms of others in this group and that is why I have gotten what he considers as “worse”.  I actually feel somewhat better than I have in a long time, with the exception of the past few days because of what is going on with the SSDI denial and everything.

He wanted to know why I listen to everyone else except him. Why I listen to a bunch of people in a support group who couldn’t possibly care about me as much as he does. Why I didn’t listen to him.  I told him that I do listen but he makes me feel guilty and he comes of as condescending instead of supportive.  Every time we have one of these “talks” I clam up, which is what I did when I was a kid and my dad approached me in much the same way.  It always had this underlying accusatory tone.  And I always just sat there and took it, I didn’t say a word and kept my head down and waited for it to be over so that I could back to my room.  People always take this as shame or acceptance, it lets them think that they are right and I have nothing to say to refute their accusations.  This happens to me at work too.  It’s like I am paralyzed and can say nothing at all for fear of having it thrown back in my face.  For being seen as defiant.   I have been this way my entire life…as far back as I can’t remember… Just because I am taking medicine doesn’t mean a lifetime of maladaptive behavior is going to disappear in two months.  It may never disappear, it is so deeply ingrained in me.

Why can’t people just accept me the way I am?  Why do I have to conform to their definition of “normal”?   He said something to the effect of “what happened to the girl I first fell in love with… she used to be so full of life”  What I didn’t say to him is… the girl that he first fell in love with had spent the 2-3 previous years being promiscuous, bi-sexual, smoking pot, drinking, failing out of school because I just didn’t WANT to be there.  Pushing away the people that I cared about the most and that actually CARED about me.

When I met my husband I stopped all of that.  He wasn’t in to partying or sex per se.  He treated me nicely, and didn’t degrade me, or expect me to put out.  So I began conforming into this “nice” girl that his family would approve of.  Hiding my past as much as possible…and in the beginning they still didn’t like me… So I tried harder.  I lost who I was before that.  I don’t know who I am.  All my life it seems that I have been trying to fit the role that someone else has cast me into.  Trying to be everything to everyone.  To be what I think they would want me to be.

The past couple of years have been really hard.  That reckless and destructive girl that was inside of me has been trying to make her way out.  My husband seems to feel like he doesn’t know me anymore.  And the truth is:  He never really knew ME.  I don’t even know ME, so how could he possibly.  He can’t even begin to fathom how dark and twisty it is inside my head.  I think I must just be unconsciously stuffing it all down.  I have been doing it for so long that I don’t know how to stop it, I don’t know if I want to stop it.  I am afraid that there is an ugly monster inside of me just waiting to claw it’s way out.    Maybe it’s my inner child?  I think of it as my inner demon.  What else could it be?  Children aren’t supposed to be so messed up inside.

It’s funny…  I have taken so many of those online personality quiz things.. and I always thought it kind of cool that I never get a straight result..  I have had them come back as “You are a chameleon” and other such things.

The truth of it is though is that I DON’T know who I am, so I change to fit into my environment.  I change to blend in, to be how people expect me to be…and I go along with it.  I think that I have stopped being that way at home.. and that is why I have been so many problems at home lately.  I have taken down the mask, removed the veil, and am just ME.  I don’t know if I like her… or even in my family likes her.  WHO is she?

“Reflection” By Christina Aguilera from Disney’s “Mulan”

Look at me,

You may think you see
Who I really am,
But you’ll never know me.

Everyday,
it’s as if I play
A part.

Now I see,
If I wear a mask,
I can fool the world,
but I cannot fool my heart.

Chorus:

Who is that girl I see?
Staring straight,
Back at me.
When will my reflection show
Who I am inside?

I am now,
In a world
Where I have to hide in my heart,
and what I believe in.

But somehow,
I will show the world what’s inside my heart,
And be loved for who I am.

Who is that girl I see,
staring straight
back at me?
Why is my reflection someone I don’t know?

Must I pretend that I’m
someone else
for all time.
When will my reflection show,
who I am inside?

There’s a heart that must be free
to fly
That burns with a need to know
the reason why

Why must we all conceal
What we think
How we feel?

Must there be
a secret me
I’m forced to hide
I won’t pretend that I’m
someone else
for all time.

When will my reflection show
who I am inside?

When will my reflection show
who I am inside?

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~ by falloutmommy on May 14, 2009.

One Response to “Who Is That Girl I See Staring Straight Back At Me?”

  1. There isn’t anything I can say to you that you will listen too. No advice, thoughts, concerns, or hopes. They fall on deaf ears because for some reason you relate me to your father. You view me as judgemental, stereotpyical, and uncaring. For some reason you have put me in an authoratative position over you and because of that everything I say you resist and rebel against. This used to be how I was. I won’t say I wasn’t these things when we met.

    Over the years I have grown soft and caring. More understanding and passive. I’ve tried for years to get you to let me in to your life. To your mind. I believed that if you saw me as your peer or a friend… maybe you would actually talk to me.

    You tried to explain yourself to me before. I didn’t listen. You tried to reach out to me before. But I pulled away. You tried to help me understand before. But I jusst stared at you blankly.

    When I wanted to talk to you last night it wasn’t to yell at you. Or berate you. Or say you are stupid or invalid. It was to express what I’m seeing in words and thought. To explain things from my point of view and what I am seeing.

    To quote Les Mis. “If I speak I am condemed. If I stay silent I am damned.”

    I’ve tried the silent thing before and it doesn’t work. I can’t sit in silence and watch you spiral downward. I know I can’t say anything without you hating me for it. Without being seen as judgemental or not understanding.

    It is hard for me to confront you. It is hard to voice my concerns without you seeing me as the devil. But to do nothing…

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