CRUEL TO BE KIND

I had a bit of a revelation this past weekend. Perhaps somewhat overdue revelation but I had it (finally) and it’s put me to shame.

A discussion about something Cole related with my husband turned, as it often does, into an argument. I took my frustration out on him and got nasty. It’s my M.O. – not one I’m proud of but it happens a lot when we get into these emotional conversations. I think a lot of people do the same, and it is a learned style of fight that got passed on to my by my mom and brother. Hurt the ones you love.

The revelation I came to, is that my frustration when discussing difficult things in my life, is that we’re discussing difficult things in both of our lives. Shared frustrations, concerns, fears, anxiety, and stresses. When I talked to friends about these things, I have an outside opinion to bounce things off and to bring in different views. When I discuss things with my husband, the frustration is that we’re both in a similar place and it doesn’t help to remove me from where I’m stuck.

I’m not sure if I’m expressing that properly but in my head it makes sense and it struck me that it’s the root of some of the anger I direct at him. He can help me resolve some things because he’s looking for the same resolution, and I can’t necessarily help him. Sometimes you need a trusted or knowledgeable outsider to provide perspective and insight.

While I know that my fighting style is cruel, and not appropriate, especially when aimed at my partner, someone I love, this recognition I had gave me cause to reflect on my misguided anger in a way that I haven’t before. It gave me a deeper awareness of my failing. When I’m hurt, worried, concerned, or even appropriately angry, it’s not useful or helpful to deflect it upon someone else, especially someone who is often sharing the same emotions and therefore doesn’t need the additional burden of my wrath.

We’re going to fight still, everyone does, but I’m really going to make a bigger effort to stop to better understand the whole of a situation and what might really help to resolve it before I lash out.

Maturing can be a real bitch sometimes, especially when the mirror reflection is of someone were not proud to see…

2 Responses

  1. Beautifully written. I’m 38 and this has insights into my frustrations with CP I’ve never put into words!

  2. I’m not sure you aren’t being harsh on yourself though? Is this your real feeling or how you feel you ought to be? Whenever I hear ‘burden on others’ in the mouth of a disabled person promising to do better for the sake of others I hear the Victorian sainted cripples we are all so urged to be if we want to be popular…. …
    If you have a disability anger may be misdirected but it is about a real frustration with the way people act and often they deny that able bodied actions can be toxic for us.
    Even the most loving able-bodied partner does NOT know ‘what is best for us’ which is what we often hear.
    I spent many years trying to be who my family wanted to see, the sainted crip who was grateful for a wonderful and caring husband and who sat there very quietly. That’s not who I am and it wasn’t what was going on, either. I suffered over a decade of abuse because my husband didn’t see his family were abusing me, and so my anger with them was quite justified, the world for us is far from perfect!

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