Monday, March 25, 2013

Moving On after Adoption and Divorce

I had planned to work on my Parenting Blog today. Working on my blogs  and talking to other parents,  adoptive parents, and parents of special needs children has been one of the few ways I have found support over the past 10 years. I have found a great deal of hope when my words, or my support has helped another parent, in the stressful situation I can relate to.

There was a time, not that many years ago, when I was confident and believed I had a life that could be the perfect example of a loving couple providing adopted special needs siblings a stable home and loving family.

It is hard to tell now, if I was imagining something that was not real, or if the reality around me just changed. Either way, it has now been 3 years since I had to make the choice to work on my marriage or bring my daughter home from residential treatment and hope for the best.

The good thing is that children are resilient and as much as my mommy dreams were to be a family united with a mom and dad, the divorce statistics are what that are and marriages fail. I could spend years writing all the ways that I feel about this whole situation. I write pages and pages about how it was not my fault. I could write a book about the relationships I have experienced. I could do a lot of things with the experiences I have endured. I could blame everything that is real and did go wrong on others and spend my life suffering in this pain and loss.

I have about 5 different book titles about the choices I have had to make with Husbands, boyfriends and life in general. I am saving those books for when I have finished my college... I will be able to write them with the "Letters" after my name, and therefore be more credible in the advice I have to offer others. It seems that I have been nearly constantly in some kind of therapy or counseling since 1986. The interesting part is that 90% of the therapy and counseling session I have attended have been FOR someone I love or loved and the issues or problems they had in their lives or brought into my life.

The only "therapy" that has been helpful for ME personally, was DBT (Dialectical Behavioral Therapy). If you have never heard of it don't feel bad I had not either until 2010. Right when my second marriage was failing.

From: An Overview of Dialectical Behavioral Therapy
Dialectical behavior therapy (DBT) treatment is a cognitive-behavioral approach that emphasizes the psychosocial aspects of treatment. The theory behind the approach is that some people are prone to react in a more intense and out-of-the-ordinary manner toward certain emotional situations, primarily those found in romantic, family and friend relationships. DBT theory suggests that some people’s arousal levels in such situations can increase far more quickly than the average person’s, attain a higher level of emotional stimulation, and take a significant amount of time to return to baseline arousal levels. 
I am an emotional person. It is how I found myself twice divorced. My emotional intensity comes in handy for many situations. It was my emotions that made me want to become a mother again, when my biological children were nearly grown. It is my emotional intensity that accomplished nearly every goal I have in my life. My father used to say, "Everything is Always the Most Important Thing in Life for De Anna." And, that is probably true about me. If I am involved it is because it is the most important thing for me.

It all works very well for me, until I have to share my life with someone--who does not feel I am important or a value or if I make a mistake. Then, my world falls apart and I live in an intense world of feelings alone. Usually, needing the person I share life with more then they are able to be needed. My feelings are real, deep, and big and when I make a choice in Love and later find the one I loved does not still have an intense love for me--my world falls apart.

That's how a person like me--smart, able, and willing to go the distance--seems to always end up being the only one in the relationship still holding onto the passion and love it started with. Long after the other person in my life has grown past the emotional intensity of love. There I am, still feeling it, and living it, and loving life as I know it. Only to turn around and discover I am the only one of us still living the intensity of love--with someone who has moved past the intensity and onto the routines of life.

Remember, I can write books about how these other people did me wrong and hurt me in ways I will NEVER get over, but right now that doesn't help anything and I am still too emotional to write a rational book about the ways I have been hurt by others. It is never only one persons fault it take two to have a healthy relationship, It can take one to walk away or not care about the relationship anymore. But, it takes two to make it work--giving and taking and working past problems.

I could spend the rest of my life looking back and thinking of the ways I could have reacted differently or said or done something different. I could spend forever reviewing where I went wrong, how I could be blind and not know the emotional relationship I was in--was not the same for the person I loved and built the relationship with. I have learned no matter what I feel, in the end it makes no real difference if the person I love has changed their feelings for me...or become complacent with the relationship in general.

All I know is that on Friday I have to go to a hearing, about the finalization of divorce. Again. Two failed marriages and four children effected by a broken home. This was Never the Dreams I had in mind and certainly not what I had planned 10 years ago when I chose to become the adoptive mother of special needs siblings on my 40th birthday.

The past three years have been hard and I have been as strong as I know how to be. The past 3 years are the farthest from the dreams I had when Everything that mattered was my love for my husband and our building a family together. This outcome was simply not a possibility but it is my reality today.

I was going to write in my parenting blog today. I was going to write about Distress Tolerance and the skills that can be used to help a person through it. DBT was amazing therapy for me because of the skills I learned. Or as I actually found, because of the skills I have always used and didn't know what to call them or that I even used skills. I may still write that blog today because I will be using these skills today intentionally.

Because, today I need to ACCEPT the fact that I am alone in life and I am going to be fine and I am a good mother if that is the legacy of my life I can be happy with that being all.

1 comment:

  1. I give you an applause for your spirit to keep moving because of a divorce.


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