Eric and I have been married 10 years. Some might say we are opposites, but I like to look at us as balance, yin and yang. Now, you have to understand my Eric – he is quiet, steady, rock solid, doesn’t say much, and has a rather dry, dark sense of humor. Prefers spending time with books over most people.
Yesterday I asked my husband – so, what’s it like being married to someone who is chronically depressed? How does that look for you day to day? In true Eric fashion, he looks at me, and he looks at the clock and says, that is quite the question to ask 10 minutes before I need to get ready for work, LOL. Maybe that was subconscious, if I bring up this tough subject now, he will only have 10 minutes to comment. Our subconscious self can be pretty smart.
Eric says he has gotten pretty good at reading the air around me. But he never really knows what kind of response he will get, so he will test the waters with something short, like good morning. From that he can gauge where I am at. He feels he has to carefully measure everything he says so as not to get a nasty response, or the “tone of voice” that he truly dislikes. He said he often goes to his “flat” place – neither high nor low, just flat. I have always liked that we can sit in silence, not being someone who is good at, or enjoys “small talk”, but I now realize it might also be that he isn’t sure who I am at the moment, so being flat, or silent is safer. So kinda like walking on eggshells, eh? Yep he says. On some days that might have elicited a barrage from me, but I hit my pause button and really thought about what he shared. I thanked him for his honesty, and told him this isn’t fair to him. Eric is one of the most loving people I have ever met, he said I love you when you are good, and I love you when you are not so good. Isn’t that how it’s supposed to be. Indeed my husband, it is, but I fall way short of that ideal.
This has continued to reverberate in my mind resulting in some pretty deep disgust at myself, and how I treat my husband. I acknowledge that I have a disorder, a disease if you will, that sometimes I can control, and sometimes I can’t. However, that does not mean I get the right to be unkind, or hurtful. I am putting this in print so I can remind myself of my resolve to be kinder, and when I can’t to use my words to say how I’m feeling. To put into words that this isn’t a good time for me right now. I’m going to work on words or phrases that I can use instead of lashing out.
I am a work in progress. I will also try to be kinder to myself. Progress not perfection, as my dear departed friend Dan Bigg used to always say.