Thursday, June 2, 2016

Learning to cope

Old habits die hard so it is so important to learn new ways to react when things happen. Too often I feel that I am doing well and then I fall into an emotionally vulnerable state. Something triggered that state of mind and for a long time, I didn't realize what was happening until after I had my own crazy outburst.

In my journey to become normal, I have found that a passive reaction is better. The reaction that I had become accustomed to was that of very inappropriate behavior that if I saw someone reacting in that manner, I would think of them as crazy. That is what became the norm for me and my family. This is not healthy. My son had told me that when he saw me react that way that he did not recognize me. I was not the mother he had grown up with all his life. These outburst did not start overnight. They became a way that I used to defend myself. I was done with the bad treatment that I had received and I was lashing out just like a wounded animal would. My coping mechanism was flawed and needed to be fixed.

I was afraid of being hurt again and I would lash out to make sure that I was not being taken advantage of. I was like a little two year old who throws a tantrum or reacts to being told no. I had to grow up and begin to act like an adult. The hard part of this lesson was that I had not had any demonstrate what proper adult behavior was.

I needed to get past the hurt and the grief that I held onto because I had been so belittled. I needed to face this grief and deal with it so that I no longer had the outbursts that were so unacceptable. Someone told me during the early days of my divorce that I needed to experience the pain and feelings that was swirling around me. At first I could not understand why it was good to experience the emotions when they hurt so deeply.

Little by little, these feelings began to make more sense. I began to see the triggers that sent me into the tailspin. I can look back now that the hurt is not so deep and I can see what was happening during those miserable days. I needed to experience the loss so that I could let it go. It was real. It was painful, but it is teaching me to grow up and act like an adult. I will not go back because I know that old habits would take over. I need to face the painful days and find a new way to cope with the things that were and still are my triggers. It is much easier when there is a no contact with the trigger, but can we guarantee we will never see that trigger again? Maybe, but not likely. I am learning to cope.

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