Someone commented in one of my other post and asked if Kitten asked too much from me, and if she was being unreasonable. My first answer was immediately “NO” and gave the opinion that I should have just told her and communicated when she asked a lot. I believe that is true, but, I never once thought to say “No” to Kitten even when I felt horrible or exhausted.
I thought about the question through the night, and I guess I could amend my answer a little to “yes” maybe she did ask too much, but it isn’t that cut and dry. Who, in a loving relationship, hasn’t asked “too much” at the wrong time for the person they are with. Flip that coin, who hasn’t been asked by the person they love for something, and you say yes without thinking?
Kitten wasn’t asking for what was too much for us, when I was “ok”. She would asking for something that I loved to give to her. I said yes right away, and not think to say no. The problem is, she didn’t know I wasn’t “ok” enough to give it all. She asked if I was ok, and I would say yes. She would ask “what is wrong” and I would say “nothing”. Even if she knew, she hoped that me giving her the dominance would snap me out of it. I was hoping too, and not thinking that she deserved too know I wasn’t ok with me, and I needed to fix whatever that “thing” is.
I also know, if I had said “Kitten, I need to talk about this, because it is bothering me” she would never stop me. She would never shut me up. But I was afraid, for no good reason, to seem weak when she was looking for my strength. I had the right fix, I had her, and I should have given her that tool to fix me so I can fix her. I just needed to communicate.
As I start this “rise” like a phoenix, as this commenter put it, I do want to work on my communication in general. My therapist said that I am not one to say no to anyone close to me, when I feel they need me. I always will try and take care of them first, this is especially double with Kitten.
She said, after I unloaded stuff I didn’t even know still bothered me, that once I love someone, I will never say no to them because I want to take care of them and “protect” them. Even if they don’t need it, because I do need it for me. To feel like I am taking care of those around me. One of the scariest things for me, apparently, is not being able to take care of those I love, and not being able to protect them and “letting them down”. I need to work on saying “no” when I need to for me, even if some people don’t always like it. I need to be able to give myself that boundary, until I CAN say yes. It isn’t “no” forever, just right now.
She did comment that I felt a guilt for not protecting Kitten at times, even when she didn’t need it. That I needed too feel like I did, for me. That my core personality is that I am a protector, and especially with the distance, I needed to feel that more than I knew. I also brought up someone else close to me I couldn’t protect unexpectedly, and the therapist quickly point out how it related to Kitten and how it also effected my confidence. I think I always new my confidence was a little shaken when Kitten and I weren’t next to each other, but I was so convinced I was able to push through, I never discussed it.
I don’t think Kitten ever asked too much, I think I asked too much of myself when I wasn’t able to give. I know, in my heart, if I told Kitten what was going on or why, or asked for more time she would have understood. I didn’t, I didn’t want to fail her because I knew I had before. So I lied and said I could handle it, when I wasn’t ready.
It was nice to have that clarity, I know it may never change Kitten and I. I do wish I figured at least SOME of this out sooner, maybe it could have saved us. But I know where I want to get to as person, and I am going to keep striding for that. As I said, being the me I know I CAN be, is the goal for myself.
I also learned that I never really learned how to deal with my negative emotions as an adult. I had a job that had a lot of tough things to see, and I started at a young age. So, I did what I had too at the time, I boxed it away in the “I’ll get to that” file later and never dealt with it. While, it works for something,I used it for everything hard for almost 20 years.
Then, when I met Kitten, I started to open up about my emotions. I felt safe enough, open enough and things were amazing. I loved to feel the feelings I had and I was able to share so much of what I had boxed. I felt happy and safe and did open up more than I ever had.
Then, when things got harder and harder (as they do sometimes) I didn’t have a process for dealing with that. I used too, and now I was caught off guard because I had these negative things or bad things flowing around and I just started flailing. I didn’t know who to respond, or even why I felt that way.
So, I jammed a lot back in the box, only being so out of practice, I didn’t seal the box so it was leaking out here and there in weird ways, and it added to my stress and aggravation. I thought I had them sealed, then something would happen and I would just implode. I had never felt that way.
I should have just turned to Kitten, but I didn’t know how to reopen this leaky box in a way that wouldn’t explode all over us. I was also in this weird “I can’t have anything hurt her” mode, apparently, so I was trying to leak it out, and apparently the box just exploded anyways.
So, in my first therapy session, I learned that I need to let myself have a boundary when I need it. I need to explain to those closest why I need it at that time, and just be honest. It will fix it, drop the barrier and I can give more. I also learned that I need to just communicate better. That those who love me will never look at me poorly because I have bad news, or a problem. That they will help me.
Kitten called me after my therapy and asked how it went. I told her, the biggest parts we didn’t have a lot of time. I felt thankful that she called, and she knew I needed the call. I feel thankful she still cares about me and wanted to check on me. Even though all she is going through, and I know she is still, she wanted to make sure I was ok, and that honestly made my day.