Since the last major discovery that fateful day in March of 2011 I have vowed to trust my instincts. I have done well, for the most part, by using common sense and reason. Judge Judy taught me a few lessons that served me well. Still, I ended up in this most recent situation because I didn’t trust my gut. My head has gotten so muddled with trying not to be codependent that I’m not sure whether to trust my initial reaction to situations for fear that it is coming from an unhealthy place. I don’t want to be controlling, I want to let go, and I don’t want to live my life being emotionally tied to his decisions. At the same time, I need to protect myself from further hurt. I am living with a sex addict. So where is the balance?
I’m obviously still trying to find it. Where I am now is a perfect example. Mr. Mess said he was going to take control of his recovery. He had already been making his own therapy appointments and coordinating with me on our marriage counseling sessions. In May things were progressing, slowly but surely. We had one major fight, but were able to work through it in counseling and each learn a few things. So when he said he was going to leave his medication in his car to take every morning on the way to work and keep up with the refills, I stepped back completely. I decided that was his thing to take care of. I felt a tad bit more healthy, and reassured that he wanted to handled one more part of his recovery on his own.
In mid-June and through July when I started noticing little changes in his behavior I attributed it to work or stress or minor annoyances… you know pretty day-to-day stuff. He had also increased his prescription dose because he noticed it wasn’t having the same effect as before. I figured some natural fluctuations in mood and temperament were fairly normal with changing medication dosage. I wanted to ask if he was still taking his medication, if he had refilled it like he said he would. But I stopped myself. I told myself that was codependent thinking. That he said he was going to take care of it, and I needed to let it go. Refilling a prescription, picking it up, and taking the medication once per day is not difficult. I have been doing it for years and years. He is 47 years old. He can do it. He doesn’t need me to do it, he doesn’t need me to remind him. Treat him like the adult he is.
So I did. And every time I got that nagging feelings, I pushed it away. On the weekend when I didn’t see him take anything, I told myself I wasn’t watching him every minute so how could I know? When he had those “backward thinking” moments that were so common-place before his medication, I told myself not to worry about it. I pointed my finger at the fact that he had finally started regularly attending SA meetings to reassure myself. We went to Retrouvaille (which I know I never finished writing about – bad me), and were communicating pretty well in marriage counseling. There was a big lying incident around money and he definitely didn’t handle his emotions well there, but for some reason the medication thing never popped into my head. When he would react badly or blow up or have mood swings, the nagging feeling would pop back into my head. But I kept telling myself not to be codependent. Not to nag him. To try to trust… that’s what I have been working on in this marriage, after all.
Of course, that all crashed and burned around me. He stopped taking his medication right around the time he told me he was going to take care of it (within about 3 weeks). So I dismissed my gut instincts as fear and trouble letting go of codependent behavior. When they were really red flags that I should have paid attention to. Lesson learned – trust yourself. Don’t dismiss true gut insticts.
Telling the difference between the codependent thoughts and those flashes of concern over real issues is something I am still tweaking. I think I will have to go with Judge Judy and Buddha on this one… If it makes sense and agrees with reason and past history, then I will trust it. If, instead, it is based on irrational fear or isn’t in line with common sense I will wait it out. If it’s still there in a few days, I will take action and try to confirm or disprove it. One way or another, I will determine what to believe. I will not let anything cling to my mind unresolved for months ever again.
- Codependent Behaviors That Hurt Your Finances (wisewomeninvestor.wordpress.com)
- Being Self-Reflective (beingabeautifulmess.wordpress.com)
- The Stages of Codependency (fromdusttolight.wordpress.com)
- Codependent No More part 1 (fixatedonyou.wordpress.com)