I just realized that I do not have any current strategies in place to help me deal with my husband’s abusive behavior. Sure I am working on this site and blogging, but HOPING he doesn’t call is not a valid strategy! At least, it’s not working for me.
A quick update: My husband is deployed now. His main source of contact is via Skype. The Skype ring now causes me to feel uncertain, anxious and wary. Just as Pavlov’s dogs salivated at the sound of a bell, I feel my heart pound and my thoughts start to race when I hear the Skype ring.
Why am I allowing myself to go into emotional spasms at the sound of a bell? Because the only thing I am thinking when I hear that bell is “Shit shit shit. What? What’s THIS call going to be like?”
And let me tell you, that feeling is no different from hearing his truck pull into the drive at 7pm. It’s no different from watching him drink beer after beer with his friends. It’s no different from seeing the pent-up expression on his pinched face while watching television.
The only thing I’m doing is bracing myself for possible attack.
HOPING “it” will be different, be better, be smoother, be anything other than scary does not work.
Hope can be a wonderful feeling leading to positive actions and thoughts, miracles, and even the motivation we need to move forward. But in this abusive situation, hope is anxiety-ridden. It’s become exactly the opposite of what hope should be.
So “hope” that this situation will change is not a valid strategy for dealing with abuse. Suck.
I just now set my Skype to “unavailable” and that is a valid strategy. I feel better already. At least now I don’t have to “hope” I’m not interrupted as I try to devise a better strategy.