But it really isn't a big deal
But it really isn’t a big deal. You know how it starts. Slacking off on brushing. Or maybe you don’t floss like you should. But it isn’t a big deal. You go to the dentist and get the cavity filled along with a recommendation to floss every day and brush at least twice a day.
Then comes some warning signs: that jarring feeling when you drink something cold. Biting down causes a jolt of pain.
So you compensate. And stop eating on that side. You keep telling yourself it isn’t that bad.
After all, it’s no big deal to just chew on one side. Except when the food gets over by that one tooth and you bite down and the pain goes from 1 to 25! Then you swear to call and make an appointment.
But the pain dissipates and you get busy. And life is mostly normal.
It really isn’t a big deal.
Then one day you wake up and the pain is dull. And you get busy.
Then the pain is worse and constant.
You call the dentist but they don’t have anything available for a few days.
And the pain increases. And your irritability increases. And your productivity decreases.
And then you sit in the dreaded chair, which you have been avoiding all along. And she taps the tooth, the pain shoots to a 50 and the tears starts to flow.
Root canal. Now you embark on a journey of the actual root canal procedure with the temporary filling, then back to the dentist for their temporary filling and getting the tooth prepped for the crown (2.5 hours and for me, worse than the root canal itself), then back in for the permanent crown fitting and adhesion.
Can you tell I just had one? My 3rd actually and this one was the worst. And it got me thinking…
When I talk to wives about working with their husbands as they heal from their past sexual trauma, one of the first things I hear is “But it really isn’t a big deal.”
So I came up with this analogy of oral hygiene to relationship awareness.
I KNOW It’s not comfortable to deal with the -ICK- of past sexual trauma and it would be nice to just forget about it and not deal with it.
But, are you aware of the underlying greater effect of not dealing with it directly, when it is easier to manage and handle and truly may not be causing big problems now?
By sharing with your husband, even if it doesn’t seem like it is necessary now, gets him on the same page with you. You can give him context of why you feel certain ways about certain things. Why you aren’t a fan of him rubbing your leg. Why you have a hard time snuggling. Why you can’t watch CSI or NCIS.
Do you know what is probably going on in his mind?
- Not knowing why
- What did he do to cause it
You are married to your best friend and you both have fun and enjoy each other’s company. So why bother bringing anything up?
I’ll give you two reasons.
1. FOR YOU.
2. FOR HIM
1. FOR YOU: If you haven’t share openly with your husband EVERYTHING, and you are doing ok, it may be hard to comprehend why you need to talk about it now.
You’ll miss out on the massive support you may receive. If you have invited your husband along side you, sharing the difficulties, the struggles, your feelings, you get the bonus of someone 100% backing you, like no one else can.
You’ll miss out on the ability to trust and love deeply. If you have invited your husband along side you, you can take steps to trust him and allow yourself to be vulnerable with him. Which then creates confidence and an experience of trusting, helping you to take baby steps to trust other people again.
You’ll miss out on the grounding he may offer. As sexual abuse survivors, we often have lots swirling around in our heads and sometimes, what we believe isn’t true. If you have invited your husband along side you, you learn to trust him and his perspective. So as you share your feelings and struggles, his perspective can help ground you in truth and support you in making decisions.
FOR HIM: You may believe that he is just fine. But I have it on good authority- my hubby and the other husbands we have worked with have confirmed this- they love you deeply but don’t know what to do to help you. And they are not fine.
He may be be confused by your behaviors.
He may misunderstand something you say but doesn’t know what to say to get clarity.
He doesn’t know why you are feeling what you are feeling.
He is uncomfortable with what he considers to be an over reaction by you but doesn’t want to upset you more by addressing it.
He is wondering what he has done to cause you to act and react they way you do.
Are you compensating, knowingly or unknowingly, for what isn’t a big deal to you but is to him?
He loves you, believes you, and supports you but may be at a loss how to express it.
So take this invitation to make it a habit to share EVERYTHING with your husband.
Both of you will gain benefit and you can avoid the pain and trouble of damage control later on.
No need for a root canal for your relationship. Just smiles of contentment.
If you are still not sure if you want to join forces with him, check out our free one hour masterclass for wives and let us know after that.