Alone in the fight

It has been a difficult and trying week.

People around me are hurting.

I am hurting.

It is a struggle.

A week and a few days ago, I recognized and verbalized something I have known for a long time. I want to get a divorce. I told my husband that this would happen, if things do not change.

I have no hope they will change.

I’ve started to give up.

And, it hurts. It hurts to know that I am not loved the way I wish I could be loved. It hurts to imagine a life without him.

Most of all, it hurts to know that I will hurt him.

Saturday, I began to feel overwhelmed. My anxiety started to creep in and I could feel it filling me up. My legs were shaking, my stomach was upset. I felt close to tears.

I needed closeness. I needed a hug. I needed to talk.

Not about what is happening. Just to feel human. To connect.

I cannot get this from my spouse, in my own home.

I cannot get this from my family or my mother.


I sought out a few friends. But…lots of people are busy. Life is hard. Life is busy. I totally understand.

I turned inwards. I curled up, hugging myself, trying hard to give myself what I need. I lay in bed, all evening, willing myself to just be enough.

…It never works.

The voice inside my head constantly reminds me how lonely I really am, when it comes down to it.

Sunday, I woke up early and went to church. I sat in a pew, alone, and closed my eyes, trying to feel close to this spirit and God that so many people experience and feel loved by.

I felt sadness. Melancholy.

I came home and spent hours in my garage, repainting some furniture, desperately trying to pour my anxiety and loneliness into a project.

I spent the evening with a friend. I drank too much wine.

Alcohol and Ativan…those have been my two drugs of choice lately. They calm me. They take the weight away.

I am not abusing them. I am using them the way adults are allowed to use them.

But I am sad when I realize that I feel happier and more real when I have a drugged buzz than I do right now.

And then…today.

Today was a day full of imagery.

I drove to work, my mind completely on other thoughts. I remembered the first boyfriend I ever loved. The one who made me feel loved.

…Until he didn’t. Until he broke my heart and hurt me in ways I knew and feared.

I drove to work, crying, as I remembered that I promised myself that I would never do that to another person.

Yet, here I am.

And I began to feel trapped.

I could picture myself sitting, arms wrapped around my knees with my head down. Blocking out the world, the way the little girl in me so often does. So often did.

I am not happy in my marriage. But to get out, I have to crush someone. How could I ever possibly do that?

And then the realization…I can’t.

And, so, I am trapped. Trapped in the unhappiness. Trapped in the loneliness. Trapped in the loveless marriage.

Panic began to bubble up. I took deep breaths.

I arrived at work. Headed to a required training.

And, out of nowhere, the panic escalated. Sweat started on my forehead. My stomach dropped away. I felt shaky and hot. My breath came in quick gasps that I forced myself to slow. I stared at the wall, forcing deep breaths.

The panic attack passed. But a few hours later, it washed over me again.

I felt ill. I absolutely felt that hopeless need to be taken care of. I needed to talk. To tell someone.

I texted my therapist. Called a few people. It was another busy day.

I needed comfort. 

I didn’t have any. And I am not skilled enough to believe what I say to myself.

I drove home. Hands clutching the steering wheel. Sweaty. Mind wandering.

Out of nowhere, I had the strongest visual of yanking my steering wheel and rolling my car. What would happen? My hands were willing me to do it.

My brain argued.

It felt like an out of body experience. I felt still and focused on this visual, all the while continuing to drive down the highway at 70mph.

Finally, I shook my head, forcing the terrifying and morbid thoughts from my head. It’s been awhile since I’ve had that thought…in fact, the last time I ever entertained such an idea, I was a broken hearted 18 year old girl, desperate to regain the love I had lost.

I would never have acted on it.

Never. I am too selfish to really hurt myself.

I don’t want to.

But it scares me that my brain can so easily imagine it.

It scares me that I can so quickly lose my self value. My hope. My desire to keep going.

To be honest…I don’t really know what I am even saying in this post. Mostly, I just needed to talk. I needed to tell the computer page what happened. How overwhelmed I am feeling.

Because, if there is one constant in my life, it is that–really–I am alone in my fight. I can only rely on myself. I have others andI love  them. 

But I have to be enough.

And, when you are the type of person who so desperately desires connection with another human, that is a hard thing to admit.

I’m not enough for myself. Or anyone else, really.

But I also don’t know how to change that.


7 thoughts on “Alone in the fight

  1. stepbackandbreathe33 September 25, 2017 / 10:12 pm

    Those intrusive thoughts, they are scary as hell. But at least you know you won’t act on it. It’s tough though, for sure. I’m sorry you are so miserable right now. What you are going through is heartbreaking. I wish there was a way for me to help you, even though I don’t know you personally. Just keep talking it out however you need to. And if those scary thoughts come back with a vengeance, please talk to someone you trust who can help you. Even if you think they are too busy. No one is ever to busy to keep a friend from hurting themselves. Hugs to you!


    • Erica September 27, 2017 / 10:32 am

      Thank you. I am okay in the loose sense of the word. Not suicidal. Just really struggling.


      • stepbackandbreathe33 September 27, 2017 / 11:01 am

        I understand. I’ve totally been there. I’m sorry you are struggling right now.


  2. artyplantsman September 26, 2017 / 3:40 am

    I’d like to help too. I don’t know you but I do recognise those feelings and my, mostly female, friends would tell you I’m a good listener. I don’t want to think of you feeling so alone – it is horrible. Please get in touch if you want to talk, even if just by email.


  3. Luftmentsch September 26, 2017 / 12:18 pm

    I’ve been reading this since you liked some of my posts. First, I don’t think it is selfish not to commit suicide, doubly so if you have children. It’s much more selfish to kill yourself actually (speaking as someone who has been suicidal).

    It is very hard to be alone and want connection. I have not been married, so I don’t know what it feels like to be in a loveless marriage, but I do know what it is like to be lonely. I get on reasonably well with my family, but they are very different people to me and can’t meet all of my needs. And family relationships are different to romantic ones anyway. Anyway, I didn’t mean to go on about myself, I just want to say that I mean what I say when I say that I think you’re going through a really tough time and you should try not to beat yourself up too much about it. Intimacy is a basic human need, like food and shelter.

    Did your therapist reply to your text? I think it might be a positive thing that you are thinking about divorce, but I don’t want to say too much only knowing you from blog posts. Maybe your therapist could help you understand your feelings.


    • Erica September 27, 2017 / 10:35 am

      She did respond. She’s pretty great. I’m taking a mental health day and I’m going to see her today. I’m not suicidal–I think it was just one of those moments where the idea of it was very strong and overwhelming. Who would notice? Who would care? That’s why it is selfish for me…and I also totally recognize how unhealthy those thoughts are…it’s just controlling my mind that is so difficult.


      • Luftmentsch September 28, 2017 / 12:04 pm

        I’m glad you’re not suicidal and that your therapist is there for you.

        I don’t think it’s selfish to want people to notice and care about you. For what it’s worth, I would notice and care if your posts weren’t in my reader.

        If I’ve learnt one thing from having OCD thoughts, it’s that no one can control their mind, including having thoughts of violence, whether against oneself or others. Every self-help book I’ve seen on OCD says this. The question is what significance we put on them. Lots of people have passing thoughts of suicide like you had. One should try to just dismiss them as thoughts and not to read too much significance into them, otherwise they can turn into obsessions. This can be hard though.


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