Friday, July 4, 2014

I will live another day because of Eric.

I've written some doozy blogs before.  My admission of overeating, sexual assaults as a teenager, my late adult diagnosis of Bi-Polar 2 Disorder, my constant personal struggles as an adoptive mother of two behaviorally challenged autistic teens and recently the BIG ONE; the one people whisper about at parties or pretend it was a big misunderstanding while I  shake my head saying, "No, I did place the plastic bag over my head after swallowing two bottles of pills."  Yep, that's it, the blog about my suicide attempt - one of the last posts I wrote, which now in hindsight, was a silly effort in truthfulness after penciling in some humor towards the end.

While driving to one of my three psychiatrists this morning, yes - I now have three and they're all bickering among themselves over my diagnosis and the myriad of medications I should take, I wrote this blog in my mind.   Now when this happens, I know it must be shared no matter how painful it is to me or those who might relate to it, or by some chance, happen to be the central characters in it.  I have a private therapist; however, sharing my pain in writing is somehow more cathartic than all the latest group sessions, private office visits and tears shed during the past 5 weeks put together.  Perhaps this will help someone else out there in this crazy virtual reality world; someone as co-dependent as myself or someone as desperate as I am for love and recognition regardless of the self-destructive ways in which we seek it.

As mentioned before, I've always battled with my weight.  I've heard from an early age comments such as, "ugly, fat, stupid and worthless".  I grew up believing these words and eventually my body morphed into a very sad, fat and, what I conceived to be, a worthless individual.  I never believed I could achieve anything beyond average grades. My first serious boyfriend targeted me at fifteen.  He was a sexual predator and physically abusive. He forced oral sex on me at every opportunity.  He humiliated me but I believed I somehow deserved it and when his mother accused me of being a slut I believed that too.  When this boy beat me up on school campus, I had it coming.  I was worthless, I was no one.

When I told someone I loved and trusted more than anyone else on earth that a 60 year old friend had just sexually assaulted me, a sixteen year old, in his hotel room her response was simply, "Why would he do that to you?"  I felt as if I'd gone back up the stairs and let him finish raping me.  I was numb.  Her words tore through me and I heard them scream, "You're worthless! You're no one!"

As I walked through the boys' high school basketball gym during a break, I was invisible.  I was fat.  I thought I was safe.  The entire boys' cheering squad moo'd and oink'd at me as if I were a barnyard animal. They screamed, "SUEY!  Here Ms. Piggy!"  For the first time in my life I experienced visibility in a bad way. Needless to say, I didn't like it.  I walked out the back door weeping never to attend another school basketball game again.

Food started confirming the words.  Then, when I was fat enough, just obese enough, worthless enough, I was placed on a liquid diet.  Suddenly I became visible.  Boys looked at me differently.  They didn't harass me so much as they stared at me.  I found; however, I had some sort of control in these looks.  If I tilted my head a certain way, batted my lashes, said something provocative - I found doors literally being opened for me.  Was this so wrong?  Why?  Suddenly I had some control.  I was finding comfort in seductive glances.  I was receiving something...good.  What was it?  I was so very, very naive.

I fell head over heels in love for the first time with a young man who was internally battling his sexual orientation.  I just wanted someone to tell me I was worthy, that I was beautiful and loved.  Instead I gave him the only thing I knew how to give and he ultimately didn't want it - my battered, broken body.  In trying to find comfort I gave myself painfully away on a hotel bathroom floor to a drunk, homosexual boy fighting his own demons.  No love was confessed and no compliments paid just sneers from our other friends in the main bedroom who knew exactly why my boyfriend was giving himself false bragging rights.  I was suddenly a slut.

My loss of virginity moved on to greater defeats and humiliations.  Boys and/or men with whom I'd had sex hoping to find love and compassion but instead accused me of playing games, being dramatic or simply chose to take our relationship for granted.

Eventually a marriage disaster occurred in an effort to escape into adulthood followed quickly by divorce. I painfully discovered this when my ex-husband told me that he'd never loved me. Worthless, fat, stupid..oh those horrifying words.  The weight started returning again throughout our separation and divorce.

During the following years there has been my constant and truest companion, Eric.  He has loved me despite the tumultuous weight gain, gastric bi-pass surgery and painful aftermath.  He has loved ME not my thin body, not my sassy mouth or my DD cup size in a clingy pink sweater but ME.  How amazing this still seems.  He has put up with my manic episodes, temper tantrums, multiple attempts at going to sleep and never wanting to wake up again and yet he still loves ME.

This past year has been awful for us.  There's no denying it.  I have done some ridiculous things to find comfort.  I still seek out compliments from men.  I still crave the words, "beautiful", "love", "wonderful", "sexy" and admittedly not always from my husband, Eric.  He knows this, he's known this.  There's a void in me which needs confirmation from men that I'm lovely, that I'm worthy of affection and yet somehow it always backfires on me.  Men find me attractive, they flirt, I flirt back and then inevitably everything gets screwed up.  Then there's Eric.  My Eric.  He's beside me when these guys telephone yelling at me, or unfriend me on Facebook, or call me worthless, a slut, stupid...yet HE loves ME.  And for this, everyday of my life, I am grateful that I have someone who understands the deep sadness at my core.  Who understands me and why I do the stupid things that I do.  He also knows that at the end of the day I will tear that fucking bag off my head because I am not worthless, that I am worthy of HIS affection, I am HIS someone, and I will live another day because of HIS love for me.