The Care and Feeding of Fear – Part Two

The first part of my series of posts about fear can be found here if you’re interested.

Yesterday’s post ended with me talking about how during our recent three week separation, Fear once again almost had me convinced – yet again – that CBG and I would be better off going our separate ways.

Fortunately, I didn’t listen to her.

During our pillow talk conversation on Sunday night, I very clearly let CBG know what I need from him: Reassurance. Even though he knows that there’s nothing to reassure me about, I asked that he do his best to respond to my needs. ‘Cuz the moment he gets defensive or frustrated or irritated with me for listening to Fear, that’s when she pounces. She points her ugly finger and yells, “See?!!” It’s all the validation that she needs. And it’s when she gets validated like that, my friends, that she’s particularly powerful.

I am well aware of some of the times when I most vulnerable to Fear. One in particular (when it comes to my relationship) is after CBG and I have spent a terrific weekend together. I so often walk away from those weekends without a plan for how to deal with Fear. I have found that she is most dangerous when I’m not paying attention, not prepared. So asking CBG for reassurance to help me during this time is huge for me.

Communicating my needs has always been a tough one for me. Particularly since ending my marriage. It’s so hard to know what is a legitimate need in a relationship, and what is just codependent bullshit that I still haven’t been able to shake. Maybe I shouldn’t need that reassurance from him, I don’t know. But he listened to what I had to say, and even though it’s only been a few days, he’s been doing a good job with responding to that need.

It’s such a balancing act…figuring out the difference between healthy and unhealthy needs in a relationship. My marriage was completely unhealthy. I’ve said it before, but in many cases, I didn’t know where I stopped and he began. A healthy relationship needs to be about two separate, whole people sharing their lives together. It’s difficult for me to sometimes know what a truly healthy relationship is like.

And one thing Fear is worried about most is that I’m going to find myself in another shitty marriage.  She’s got every reason to be scared of that one.

3 Responses

  1. I too am learning the line between healthy and unhealthy. Even still, sometimes fear convinces me that I have no idea that THIS relationship is even healthy.

    Still, I feel better in this one than all the rest. And I guess that “line” is determined by us two, as a couple, than what “society” may deem as healthy.

    So, keep on communicating and learning. And CBG, keep on responding. Eventually the ebbs and flows will seem like natural currents and not a riptide pulling you apart.

    Much love to both of you.

  2. wow, I never thought of it that way – a line between unhealthy and healthy (insert anything here – fear, sadness, stress etc). It IS actually a lot closer than it seems, that line. I am glad you two have discussed it more, you two have a great bond.

  3. […] The Care and Feeding of Fear: Part Three Posted on November 22, 2010 by mommasunshine **This is my final post on the subject of Fear. If you need to catch up, the first parts are here and here. […]

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