What Does Trauma Feel Like?
It's not easy dealing with the affects of my husband's pornography use and abuse. Just yesterday, he came to pick up the kids and I saw him from the window. He looks the same. He's walking around just like nothing happened. It's extremely traumatic. Because that normal looking person walking around out there is the same person that just destroyed my world.
For me, emotional trauma feels like being punched in the face by someone who I thought was going to pass me chocolate. They look nice. They have chocolate in their hand. They tell you they love you and they want you to taste the delicious chocolate, and then out of nowhere, they punch you in the face. For no reason. And then they blame you for being controlling or difficult. I'm sometimes plagued by frightening memories. When my husband said them, I brushed them off and thought, he's crazy, he doesn't mean that. But after nine months of being separated, it seems he was not being crazy. He really did mean those hurtful things he said. And then I realize I was living with an abusive man for seven years who didn't feel respect or compassion for me. The anxiety and pain are overwhelming at times. There are times when I feel like I'm in emotional or physical danger. Other times I cry and I can't stop. Trauma is not depression. It's not codependency. Metaphorically, because I suffer from trauma, I'm now afraid of chocolate, people with chocolate, hands, etc.Trauma Triggers
In trauma last night, I reached out to my sponsor. I surrendered my husband's perceptions and behaviors. I still can't believe after five years of sex addiction counseling, my husband didn't know what to do. That's the most traumatizing part - what happened after the arrest. He didn't even attempt to repair, using the do not contact order as an excuse. S-Anon has saved my life, and IF I work the program, it saves me from obsessing about these troubling thoughts. As you can see, I'm still struggling now.
Surrendering means that I give these concerning issues to God to worry about, so that I can live my life. Stopping the pain is my own responsibility and that's what I'm working toward.