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Magical World

Wouldn't it be lovely if, with just a twitch of the nose, life, or any aspect of it could be changed. Instead, positive changes always seem to involve tremendously hard work, determination, and endless setbacks. How lovely it would be to have the powers of Samantha Stephens.

Friday, September 08, 2006

Counseling 2: Fourth Session

Darrin and I went together to this session. It was weird. Both of my therapists have assumed that I tell my deepest, darkest secrets only to them. When I've told them I tell Darrin everything, I get a token comment of approval with underlying currents of disbelief. Darrin laid this disbelief to rest. He was amazing. He told Therapist that there was very little that he and I did not discuss. He was aware of most of my issues, my fears, my past. Therapist looked at me and said, "You weren't kidding when you said you two talk about everything." I said I rarely "kid" about anything. I just laugh all the time, so people don't take me seriously.

Therapist said that usually, when he works with couples, they learn ways to improve communication. Darrin laughed. Then he told Therapist that if we (Darrin and I) hadn't known how to do that for most of our marriage, we would not be married today. That comment gave Therapist the opening he'd been waiting for. He asked Darrin question after question about our mixed-orientation marriage. I sat back and listened as Darrin gave his perspective of living with a same-sex attracted, abuse victim. It felt as though the subject of their conversation was someone other than me. Darrin painted me as courageous, heroic, generous. He said I was strong, faithful, and he told Therapist he felt blessed that I was his wife. He said that because of my past and my feelings of SSA, he felt that our marriage was stronger than most. We worked through issues most people never face. Darrin said his love for me was strengthened each time I overcame another obstacle and remained steadfast in our marriage. He compared our marriage to those of our parents. My parents have been married for 43 years. Darrin's mother and step-father have been married for sixteen years. Darrin said, in his opinion, our parents really didn't have the kind of love and intimacy he and I experience, because they don't know one another. They've grown used to each other. They live together. But they simply tolerate differences because they aren't strong enough to confront and work through them. We have to work through our differences if we choose to stay married. There is no other choice.

Therapist said to me, "I'd be interested in hearing why you chose Darrin, and in how you got to the point where you felt that you could be intimate with a man." I said, "That's a pretty personal question." Therapist laughed, and Darrin gave me a dirty look. "Well, it IS!" I told him. So I went back to my lovely teen years, when I had the horrifying need to hurt young men emotionally. Therapist said that made total sense, and was actually a healthy reaction to the abuse I'd suffered. Interesting.

I told Therapist that I decided when I was about 16 that I wanted to be married. So I'd read everything I could about homosexuality and same-sex attraction. Then I'd drawn my own conclusions, and worked toward what I wanted. I told him I knew that wasn't the norm. But I was finished agonizing over who I was, and I developed a method which helped me cope with feelings, and deal with them positively. When I met Darrin, I knew he was one who would work within the parameters I'd set for myself, he'd be willing to help me grow, he had the patience and the love necessary to help me work toward my goals. Therapist asked me if I was attracted to Darrin, initially. I sad no, but attraction is a fleeting feeling that doesn't last. There are deeper feelings that DO last.

Therapist asked what types of things had made me certain that I wanted to marry Darrin. I told, for the first time, of the "tests" I'd put him through. Darrin had never been aware that I was testing him, so this was something new for him to hear. Darrin came through the testing period with flying colors. Even in the temple, when I told him I thought we should call everything off, he gave the right answer.

Therapist asked how long it had taken before we were able to be comfortable in intimacy. Darrin estimated about six months. I didn't answer. There are still times when it's not comfortable. They're rare, but they still exist. Finally, I spoke of this. Darrin was a little surprised. He asked if it was connected to the crying thing. I told him that the two things were unrelated, but equally uncomfortable.

Therapist believes that, even though I've been able to reconcile my feelings about my abuser, to some extent, and about the abuse, to a smaller extent, that I haven't reconciled all my feelings about men, in general, and I haven't even begun to search out why I'm still insecure and afraid around certain women. My assignment for the next session is to explore my feelings about the Lord, especially his role in the creation of my body. I'm supposed to discuss this with Darrin.

I have to say, I really don't want to do this. Of all the things I've been asked to do, I believe this one might be key in helping me heal, but I'm afraid of what I'll discover. I'm afraid to explore. I'm wondering if I'm afraid to heal.

2 Comments:

  • At Friday, September 08, 2006 2:13:00 PM, Blogger Loyalist (with defects) said…

    Your words rang true for me. You also gave me a goal to desire for - an open communications. I don't want my marriage to turn into comfortable roommates who tolerate our differences.

    Thank you

     
  • At Friday, September 08, 2006 3:22:00 PM, Blogger Unusual Dude said…

    Thanks for saying that Loyalist. In spite of my just posting how in love I am with my wife on my blog (and yes, I still am without question), my marriage is far from perfect and I realized that I too want better communication with my wife. Samantha, I found myself a touch envious of that aspect of your relationship with Darrin - the fact that you absolutely know practically EVERYTHING about each other. Maybe it's because we've only been married a handful of years, and that aspect is still to come. But thanks for a good example to work towards.

     

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