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Alone and going through trauma therapy

(32 Posts)
AnaMaleka Thu 22-Dec-16 16:46:45

I'm going through intensive trauma treatment for adult stuff and things that happened to me as a child. My DH is a very sweet man, but it turns out he's got Aspergers and as a result he's completely unempathic. He's kind, but he literally doesn't get what I'm feeling, especially after a therapy session (weekly for over 1.5 years). He's also asexual and also has no need for any touch, other than holding my hand.

We're working with a psychologist (once a month, he won't go more) for the Aspergers.

I just feel so terribly alone. I live abroad and a few people know what's going on, but I can't just turn up on their doorstep crying because they have their own lives.

Today I realized that the abuse I witnessed my (younger) DB receive from my mother when he was aged 3 and younger MUST have happened to me too. The therapist is as sure as she can be that given what we know happened, and how I am, it's very unlikely that the intervening periods were happy. I know other things that happened to me ("D"M fucking boasted about them!!) when I was 6 months, 18 months and then I have a clear memory from aged 4 or 5.

I just want someone to hold me and tell me it will all be fine, the nightmares will go etc and that I'm ok. Instead I have to be jolly for Christmas.

lovelearning Thu 22-Dec-16 16:52:17

Today I realized that the abuse I witnessed my (younger) DB receive from my mother when he was aged 3 and younger MUST have happened to me too.


He's also asexual

AnaMaleka, does this concern you?

AnaMaleka Thu 22-Dec-16 16:58:17

Love yes, only because I'm not. At all. He was very shy when we got together and always said it was shyness. He did, occasionally, want sex, but basically after we had kids he has completely stopped and is now realising it's not shyness.

lovelearning Thu 22-Dec-16 17:00:23

I'm not

That's a deal-breaker.

AnaMaleka Thu 22-Dec-16 17:09:01

I know. But I live abroad now and need to stay in this country (not a bad one luckily!) for the kids and don't have enough money yet to live separately. I'm studying towards something but niw that I need to stay, I also need to learn the language to a professional level. I can do it, but it takes time and energy (and money)..
..and I just want a hug and someone to understand and want to listen. I can't talk about my life because he finds it too upsetting.

Meemolly Thu 22-Dec-16 17:19:29

I am so sorry you have been through this and I just wanted to send my support for the help you are getting in trying to work through all of this.

lovelearning Thu 22-Dec-16 17:21:49

need to stay in this country


AnaMaleka Thu 22-Dec-16 17:55:34

Got to go out back later

AnaMaleka Thu 22-Dec-16 21:00:41

Meemolly thank you. I needed that.

Love because my DH couldn't get work in the U.K. as his industry is slowing down there and he's from the EU, so doesn't want to move there with Brexit hanging over. He's got decently paid work here with a certain amount of job security and so for the kids to be near their father, which I want, I need to stay.

AnaMaleka Thu 22-Dec-16 21:01:10

..and I've no intention of moving to any other country with him!

lovelearning Thu 22-Dec-16 21:44:19

I've no intention of moving to any other country with him

AnaMaleka, please consider leaving your husband and bringing your children back to the UK with you.

Accommodation and living expenses would be provided for you and your children on arrival in the UK, so that need not be a concern.

AnaMaleka, do you want to come home?

OopsDearyMe Thu 22-Dec-16 21:53:10

Darling, I was married to someone who WS diagnosed aspergers during our marriage, I know exactly how yiou must be feeling. I too am about to embark on trauma counselling, but could never have done so whilst married to him. I understand how lonley you must be feeling and personally I had to leave the relationship. It became to painful to stay.
I think you need to try and find a friend or other family member to support you through this.
You know though that you have to experience this pain, to get over it. Try as best you can to remember it is not a pain that will be endless and it is worth it for the end result.
I hope that the psychologist helps your relationship wit your partner.

OopsDearyMe Thu 22-Dec-16 21:54:46

I cannot tell you to leave your husband, may I ask how he is with the children?

Empress13 Thu 22-Dec-16 21:59:26

What exactly does asexual mean? Is it no intimacy whatsoever? How is ge with DC does he hug/cuddle/kiss them? The rest of your life spent in a sexless / non intimate marriage is a hard one - are you sure it's what you really want? We only get one life you need to live it.

AnaMaleka Thu 22-Dec-16 22:44:22

Love - who would provide that?! But I think I'm ok here. It's just becoming fluent in the language that's a pain. Oh and if Hard Brexit happens...

But anyway, I can't just leave. He has to give written permission or I could bribe for kidnapping the kids, under some Hague convention. But I don't want them growing up in a different country to their father.

Oops - good to hear from someone who knows the loneliness, although wish you didn't!

I am (after years reading Mumsnet!) preparing a way for us to divorce AND for me not to be in a dire situation AND (fingers crossed) for it all to remain amicable.

As for how he is with the kids, he's very good. Very involved and always has been. They're still young so I think it's easier now than when they make more emotional demands - which is part of what I'm trying to prepare for via the psychologist. There have been times when he's not understood crying because of pain rather than protest, but those were in one hand and he always takes on board what I say about that.

AnaMaleka Thu 22-Dec-16 22:53:24

Empress - it's different for everyone, but in this case it's pretty much as you describe it. He gives me a peck on the lips to greet and say good morning/evening (and literally just a peck). I might get a hug once or twice a week - but it could be none.

But because of the Aspergers, it's not just physical intimacy, it's also a lack of emotional intimacy. I cannot discuss how I'm feeling, unless it's a very short overview, or I'm happy.

And I believed this was at least partially, if not fully, my fault until this summer when my eyes started to be opened.

He's affectionate with the kids. Thank goodness. He's playful with them, and he's very thoughtful and in a kind way. We'll see how it goes later ones their needs change. And the upside to his condition is that he's emotionally very stable (he doesn't get angry very often), so he's really like a rock for them so far. I'm a bit more up and down.

AnaMaleka Thu 22-Dec-16 22:54:32

Oops - good luck with the trauma therapy!

pklme Thu 22-Dec-16 23:02:39

I'll post more tomorrow, but flowersflowersflowers

I was in similar boat with DH.

Much better now. Hang in there, get lots of virtual hugs here!

tinkywinkyshandbag Thu 22-Dec-16 23:15:01

Very sorry to hear all this. As a therapist I'm curious about the trauma therapy- what sort of therapy is it? weekly for 1.5 years is a long time. Do you feel like it's helping? Is it moving you forward at all?

lovelearning Fri 23-Dec-16 05:47:32

who would provide that?!

Social services in whichever local authority you approach.

preparing a way for us to divorce

AnaMaleka, you are stringing your husband along in a marriage that you are planning to end.

That's not fair on anyone.

AnaMaleka Fri 23-Dec-16 06:34:44

Pkl thanks! All hugs very welcome!

Tinky it is along time, but it is also moving things on incredibly quickly (comparatively) and dealing with the root of problems, which no other therapist has. It's a combo of EMDR and talking. The adult trauma is pretty quickly dealt with with EMDR and the childhood, literally from infancy onwards, just takes a bit more time, is very hard, but I can't believe I haven't had the EMDR option before, because it makes a huge difference.

Love I'm not so certain it's that straightforward when you comeback after living overseas for a number of years. I know people who have had to take out private health insurance for the just for the first six months because you're not covered by the NHS.

And my DH knows my thoughts, even if he doesn't understand my feelings, as does his therapist. This is someone I love and respect. I couldn't string him on. The Aspergers diagnosis is recent (the traits obviously not) and I've lived in hope that if I'm just a little better or nicer he'd want to listen to me or share more and the physical side would pick up too. Through the diagnosis I've discovered that that's very unlikely to happen. But, I'm giving it a chance AND discussing all our options, with the understanding that if it doesn't work out, we want to remain on as good terms as possible, because we like each other and it's better for the kids, none of which will happen if we're fighting about custody and finances. So it's very difficult, but we are starting to (just at beginning) get things set up so that in case of divorce or separation, we would only have to deal with the pain of that and not the nightmare of lawyers or mediators.

But all of that is INCREDIBLY difficult to discuss and think about,especially on top of everything else. But not doing it, or even just getting divorced now would actually be harder. And after how my childhood went, I want my children to have two parents who at least get on even if they can't be a couple.

pklme Fri 23-Dec-16 06:52:07

I was like you, having therapy, struggling in lots of ways and feeling unsupported by DH. (Not the same level of trauma history though).
I kept waiting for our marriage/communication to improve, reading different books etc.
I realised that I was going to sink if I depended on him for emotional support. Once I realised that I couldn't, it became easier. I accepted that I needed to be self sufficient in that way, and became much more resilient because I was no longer feeling constantly rejected by him. I wish MN had been about then, as the support would have really helped!

Fast forward 10 years. We realised that he almost certainly has aspergers. He has started to learn some of the skills and be aware of some of his tendencies, which has helped. I can point out to him when he is being a bit inflexible, and that in itself helps him adjust. We are together, a unit, although with some missing elements! But he is totally reliable, loyal, never intentionally unkind. He has never read a book on marriage, aspergers, relationships...Grrr. But his financial planning is impeccable.

So it depends what you want. He can almost certainly be trained to hug, but don't try when you need one, as your emotion will overwhelm him. Practice while you are calm, he will be able to apply it while you are not later!! Happy to pm if you want to talk about this more privately.

AnaMaleka Fri 23-Dec-16 06:56:12

Have to get up and got kids today so back later.

lovelearning Fri 23-Dec-16 09:21:42

you're not covered by the NHS

Does anybody know of a case of a person being refused NHS treatment on these grounds?

AnaMaleka Fri 23-Dec-16 12:41:01

pkl I've been asking him for hugs and explaining how to do it, but it's just never the same as when I'm feeling really down and someone spontaneously giving me one. It feels like he's ticking off a box.

And I've been working relentlessly for about 8 years trying to find work arounds (usually being me changing something about myself) and the bottom line is that I need someone who "gets" me. I have no other family, and because of where we have lived, limited friends nearby. I'm not sure that he's ever going to be able to "get" me..but I'm holding on to a shred of hope for now!

love I know, it's a weird thing. I don't know anybody who has been charged..but I DO know people who are not moving back when they might, because they can't afford to pay for treatment in the UK that they're getting for free in the country they're living in (or covered by the NI contribution equivalent). When you've got little money, going through a divorce and/or have mental health problems, the thought of moving country with young children and the possibility of medical bills really is too much to take on. And I know people personally that this has affected.

But I want to stay near my children's father, because he's a very good father!! And the most important thing in this is that we do what is best for the children first and foremost (which doesn't mean sacrificing ourselves, but taking them away when there's another possibility isn't something I could do).

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