Responsibility

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January 2010

I am surprised at how long it has been since I wrote in my journal. Lots of things have happened and although there have been a few times I thought about writing in my journal I didn’t because somehow things seemed to right themselves.

Danny has been off with severe depression since September last year (we did renew our vows in August and it was lovely.) He went to counselling and his counselling helped me in that I do understand that I am in the acceptance phase: What happened has happened

It has made me feel and react a certain way and that is just the way it is. I understand why or what has happened is natural and I don’t beat myself up over it; in the same way I understand why some people are like they are. But I still make a choice (for example to step away from it) to protect myself; and I don’t beat myself up over that either!

Rosie

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Reflection Here & Now

Much had changed, and we had renewed our vows, all shared in my book.

We had a wonderful honeymoon in France and when we came home I collected my company car and Danny did the reunion tour for his band: I supported him.

But when it was all over in the October Danny had a breakdown: he was sent home from work because they could not trust him on the train tracks. It was as if he had been living on adrenalin for so long, and after we renewed our vows he felt safer in the knowledge that I would stay; so the adrenalin dropped and so did Danny.

Danny was absent from work for over six months. He had to see a psychiatrist twice a month and he could not return to work until the psychiatrist had signed him off as fit for work; even then he was not allowed back on track for another four months after returning to his duties.

The psychiatrist asked that I attend one of the last appointments with Danny. I had never asked Danny to tell me everything he had discussed at his appointments; I had come to realise that we cannot know everything about the person we love; even though we think that we have that entitlement: we don’t. None of us will ever know what is going on inside someone’s head and through all of this I learnt that I didn’t need to: it works both ways.

Danny had told me some of what had been discussed and it was clear that a lot of the problems that he had been experiencing were because of ‘The War’; and his own insecurities in keeping me. Insecurities that I had played on in the early days after war broke out. I look back even now at some of the things that I did, at how much Rich worked to keep me whilst constantly living in fear, and although I understand why I did them at the time (because I had been driven insane) the sane me of here and now would change them if she could.

When I went to that appointment and listened to the psychiatrist as he explained to me that one of the things that played on Danny’s mind was when I wrote in my journal: because Danny always thought that I was writing about ‘The War’ and planning my escape. I was shocked, because I didn’t realise that Danny still felt that afraid; and I knew then why the psychiatrist had asked me to go with Danny to one of his appointments:  to help me understand that I held Danny’s mental health in my hands.

It seems like a big responsibility to put onto someone who in fact had their own heart broken by the man who they now had responsibility for; but the biggest lesson I had learnt through all of this was how strong I was, and how that strength could impact on others and I did not begrudge that responsibility. I knew it was one of the lessons that life tends to throw your way.

I love this man: a big, gentle man; who had faced every fear to keep me and I respected him for that. I did not want to destroy him.

My husband (and I am sure many others) cannot ever forgive himself for what he did; I wish he could. Although we can both see that it made us better people; Danny let himself down: more than anything he cannot take away the pain he inflicted on me, and for that he still dislikes himself every day.

On the tenth anniversary of The War’ I pulled up outside our house in France only to hear a record that Danny would put on that made him cry (the Bee Gees ‘Love me’) I instantly knew that he had been crying. When I entered the house Danny came down with a smile and I said “How long have you been crying darling?” He smiled and looked at me and said “Ten years!”

I felt so sad because I didn’t want him to feel that way. Danny is one of those men who was truly sorry, would do anything to make it right; but to him the only way to do that would be to go back in time and change it; which we all know is something that he cannot do. This is one of the reasons that I wrote this book:  If you are reading it I would guess that it is because it resonates with you; in the same way that the books that I bought at the time resonated with me.

At the time of ‘The War’  I did not think that Danny had any ‘right’ to be hurt or upset, after all it was ‘all his fault’; but now I know, having been through it, that people make mistakes; and that some would do anything to change what they had done but, sadly, they cannot.

What I hope I can help people understand is you have what you have now, if you want it to work you have to work with that; not what you had, not something where you have the ‘right’ to be upset but your partner doesn’t, not something where you make someone ‘pay’ forever; because if that is what you want to do then your relationship will not survive.

I got to a point, as you can see from what I had written, where I knew that I had to work with Danny or lose him. I also got to a point where I was not prepared to let the negativity of what happened destroy me, our relationship or our family. I had to make that choice and I used everything that I had learnt whilst on that ‘Sea of Despair’ to help Danny and I, and so did Danny.

 

Rosie

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13 comments

  1. I agree with everything you’ve said here. I do wonder, given the specifics of my husband’s infidelity, if real forgiveness is something I can achieve. I hear everyone talking about it and I “get it” and I have no desire to make him pay forever or to harbor ill feelings in my heart. Hopefully that’s evident from my writing. That said, at least at this stage, I feel like the most I may be able to offer one day is acceptance of what he did and the sincere acknowledgement that he is working hard to be a different and better husband and man than the one who did those things.
    xo

    Liked by 2 people

    • I asked myself way back what is forgiveness? I told Rich I forgave him many times, but I came to question what it really was so how could I forgive him if I didn’t know?
      For me over time forgiveness is exactly what you have just said: acceptance, I accept what happened, where we are and the consequences of what happened; and I live in the here and now acknowledging all the things that Rich did to keep me; the way that Rich has evolved and in the here and now loving the man for that. For me my friend that is forgiveness. Didn’t someone say once that to forgive you have to start with forgiving yourself. Perhaps what they meant was forgive yourself the anger, forgive yourself the sadness forgive yourself for all the things you feel; and writing that isn’t that acceptance?
      I hope we meet up one day.
      Moisy

      Liked by 3 people

  2. You know, in a weird way what you write has always great relevance for me.. I am sure I am not in the minority here 🙂 Thanks again

    Sometimes you know that you need to take responsibility but you are so tired going through all the shit (for no fault of yours). Coz you are so tired so bitter so angry the voice that says ‘hey whatever shit is happening you need to buckle up and move on’ is just so feeble. I was in that space since last few days.

    Reading blogs like yours just helps that voice grow stronger..

    The funny part about all this is that you have this great opportunity to truly understand your own self. How I wish, I wouldn’t want this and was really okay with my previous life, but you got to make do with what life throws at you, isn’t it?

    I am taking baby steps to recover. to accept that this has happened and there was no space for this but yet it still happened. God this is tough, but I have this self belief that I will come through stronger.

    PS: I’d like to meet you all too. We will keep the gender equality in check too 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Absolutely! I truly believe that life shows you the way, whether we like it or not, as the great M Scott Peck said in ‘The Road Less Travelled’: ‘We’re not doing the driving!’ Although we think we are. That ego driven voice in our heads always shouts over & above that quiet reflective voice of reason & one of the things I learnt from all this was how to shut it up! Small steps are the way to go, because then you won’t beat yourself up when you don’t reach that unrealistic target. I hope we can all get together one day, I think we would need to count ‘the cad’ in because he has done so much to learn, and Jack. ❤️❤️

      Liked by 1 person

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