fear

A Dominant with a Heart

heart

i’ve not journaled for a few days as i’m trying to wrap my head around something. A week ago, Maximus went to the cardiologist for some chest pains that He’d not been telling me about. This was pretty upsetting to me as we do have a principle of “over-communication” in our contract, that applies to both of us, and He’d not mentioned a thing. i only found out when i overhead Him talking to the cardiologist on the phone the day before (i wasn’t eavesdropping, He was talking loud enough in His office that He could be heard in mine).

Maximus still didn’t really relay what was going on, said it was just a checkup and repeat stress echocardiogram, so i didn’t go to the appointment with Him. Mistake. The cardiologist was waiting in the wings to go over His echo and pulled Maximus in for an immediate consultation afterward. Turns out there were some changes from His last echo. He still went way over the maximum (that’s the competitive nature of Him), but things were different on the echo itself. Maximus left the cardiologist with an appointment for an exploratory cardiac catheterization and potential stent placement between Christmas and New Years, along with cardiac meds.

i heard about it over the cell phone while He was driving, in between lots of appointments. It was not a good conversation, i was confused, He was anxious and upset. He didn’t get home until 10 PM after planned Christmas shopping and dinners with His daughters, and we had a lot of conversation about what had been going on, what was happening, miscommunication, anxiety, etc. We’re better now, but it was a difficult day.

i’m so frustrated, though, and i know He is too. Maximus is in stellar shape, swims miles every day and eats healthy (He’s been consistently vegan for the past six months after His last stress echocardiogram, and Had been mostly vegan since i moved in two years ago). We thought we’d be able to keep His heart healthy with dietary changes, but it didn’t work. Everything i’ve read, every conference i’ve been to over the past eight years touts this as being the case. And it didn’t seem to work. And i don’t understand why. And i’ve heard about problems with stents clogging up and needing to be replaced. But i’m not an ass, i don’t want to not do something Maximus needs because i just don’t like it–if He needs it, He needs it. i just need to understand what is happening.

So i have questions for the cardiologist. i wasn’t there at His impromptu appointment and didn’t get to ask them. Fortunately the cardiologist understands and will do a phone consultation with Maximus and me a few days prior to the appointment.

Just have to be patient until after Christmas to ask them…

Categories: 24/7, cardiac, fear, relationship, vegan | Tags: | Leave a comment

Spidey Senses

my-guts

i’ve always had strong gut instincts. my radar goes off almost immediately if i encounter something or someone that might be a problem. i have learned to honor that, through trial and error! And Maximus has learned to pay attention when i tell Him my guts don’t feel right about someone or something. Perhaps it’s all my years in public safety, but “Spidey senses” are legitimate!

We recently had a man come to our door who was so creepy that i refused to open it and got Maximus for assistance. In fact, before we figured out that he was there for a reason and not someone who’d cased our property, a neighbor confirmed our feelings when he arrived at her house. Turns out, after lots of research and police reports, he was legitimately there for an appraisal for our insurance company, but honestly, a super creeper. We’re still pursuing formal complaints on this man, who arrived with fully unzipped pants, shirt half pulled out of his waistband, crawling through our bushes, looking like a whacking-off peeping Tom.

i have relied on my gut instincts in the lifestyle, in addition to researching people, especially when i was flying solo as a single female. If we have been in contact to meet and have exchanged some information, emails, etc., i have searched them out. i’ve/We’ve not met with people based upon findings of my research and gut feelings, and we’ve left meet-ups based upon my tingling spidey-senses. We’ve even left play parties because of this. There is an old adage, “If there’s a question, there’s no question” and i believe this. If you have a question about someone, if they make your spidey-senses go off, if there’s something you just can’t put your finger on–leave, get assistance if you need it. Your gut is telling you something for a reason.

Categories: BDSM, fear, Instincts, intuition | 1 Comment

Shame-Based Rage

Image

The last type of rage i experience is Shame-Based Rage. This is to a lesser extent, and related to the shame i feel after the times i have exploded in sudden abandonment rage. i get horribly embarrassed and feel humiliated by my actions, beat myself up internally. Only once has this been the sole type of rage event for me, but it is a secondary issue in episodes of Abandonment Rage.

Shame is both a feeling and a belief. It is an unpleasant feeling of being totally exposed to people’s criticism, where the person  can come to believe that they are somehow defective, broken, flawed, damaged. The instinctive reaction to a moment of shame is to flee, run away, or hide, to become invisible so no one can see your flaws. While running away makes the person feel safer, it triggers a self-defeating spiral where they feel additional shame for fleeing. However, in shame-rage, the person tries to get rid of the feeling of shame by giving it to someone else–dumping all their anger on someone else.

The time i experienced Shame-based rage was during a dinner with Maximus and The Englishman. Maximus and i had confided in The Englishman about our relationship and difficulties i was having as he had overheard a Skype episode where i had raged at Maximus in December. The Englishman started to, what i perceived, lecture me in front of Maximus about how i needed to trust Him and that He loved me, something we had worked out. The Englishman didn’t have all the information and i felt i needed to defend myself from this onslaught, ambushed. i started to feel my emotions take over and in effort to calm down and not rage, i excused myself to the car to breathe. As i was sitting in the parking lot, a man from an adjacent car started banging on the car window and yelling at me, i have no idea why. i locked my door, put my face in my lap and he went away. Soon i heard the driver’s door open. i assumed it was Maximus, so i sat up and leaned into Him for Him to hold me–however, when i opened my eyes, i saw it was The Englishman and i exploded inside, felt invaded in my safe place. i yelled for him to leave me alone, ran out of the car and ran down the street. i ran and ran and ran. i was angry at Maximus for sending him out to me–my assumption as to what happened. Eventually i settled down and decided to go back to the car, however, when i returned, Maximus and The Englishman started yelling at me from the restaurant entrance. As i didn’t want to see The Englishman again at that moment, i tossed my stilettos and beautiful necklace Maximus had purchased for me at the car and ran away again. i tried to get a cab from an auto shop to go home as i had left my cell phone in Maximus’ car, but they never called one for me. Eventually i returned to the restaurant where Maximus tracked me down in His car, frantically searching the area for me, and i got into His car only when The Englishman left to another restaurant. i was furious with Maximus, thinking He’d sent The Englishman to shame me more, accused Him of sending “a rapist to rape me some more!”, screaming at Him. At one point i ran from the car, telling Him i was going Home and we were done. After i sat and breathed for a few moments, i returned to the car and He drove me home.

At those moments, all i want to do is run. Run fast, far, away from my shame, away from the hurt, away from, what i feel, are critical eyes, embarrassed, humiliated.

9 Steps to Tame Shame-Based Rage

1. Make a strong commitment right now to gain control over shame-based rage.

I’m so there!

i, gabriella, promise today to quit raging. Specifically, i will refrain from raging against anybody, especially the people i love. If i feel personally shamed by something others say or do, i will step away until i gain control over my urge to attack. i will use no excuses to justify shaming, blaming, or treating others with contempt.

Part of this is that during discussions or when i feel overwhelming emotions starting to build, i need to let Maximus know that i need a break. There are times that i have run away without telling Him this and walk away, which prompts Him to ask me to come back and not walk away from Him–i usually return and fail to tell Him i’m needing a break, which further accelerates the situation. i have to own my commitment to communicate my needs.

2. Follow the shame-rage trail back to your own shameful thoughts and feelings.

These are not caused by what someone else says, even though it feels like it, it is based upon what is going on inside my head. No one’s blaming me, they are discussing things because they care, so don’t take this personally. This will be extremely important as i work to eliminate raging as it will require me to discuss these things with Maximus, with a counselor, and with the two of them together–i will feel intense shame, guilt, remorse, and i need to manage that without letting it take me over.

3. Discover how you temporarily get rid of your shame by raging.

My shame gets aimed at Maximus. When i had the episode with The Englishman, i blamed Maximus for allowing The Englishman to ambush me, which was not true. He never sent The Englishman out, He was stuck inside the restaurant trying to figure out what was happening and trying to pay the bill for a very expensive dinner we had ordered. He could not run out after The Englishman, He could not go out to me until He had dealt with the bill.

During episodes of abandonment rage, i call Him the things my shame was telling myself about me. i’m attacking Him as if He is my shame.

4. Reclaim your shame to break the shame-rage connection.

i have to accept that i feel shameful, that i have behaved in a manner that is causing me to feel embarrassed and humiliated in front of the person i love. i need to own it and i need to deal with the abandonment issues that trigger the raging that makes me feel ashamed.

5. Challenge the validity of the five core shame messages.

It’s time to replace negative self-talk with healing thoughts. Change:

  • “i am no good” to “i am good.”
  • “i am not good enough” to “i am good enough.”
  • “i am unlovable” to “i am loved and lovable.”
  • “i don’t belong” to “i belong.”
  • “i should not exist” to “i am.”

i need to be patient and kind to myself in this process. It is already a bit of a struggle here because as i have wounded Maximus so deeply and He feels poisoned, He has pulled back from me, which i have focused on as humiliating. This has changed our communication patterns dramatically, as text messages and phone calls have drastically reduced, bringing up feelings of loss, memories of abandonment in past relationships, and is extremely uncomfortable. it is easy for the self-talk of, “look what you’ve done” to start and i have fear in feeling emotions right now. i am so afraid of having another raging episode that i fear my feelings, wishing i could will them away, but realizing that it is natural and normal to have emotions, i just need to deal with them effectively. Healing self-talk during these times has been helpful.

6. Treat others with respect and dignity at all times.

This has a lot to due with the last paragraph. i have wounded Maximus; He is feeling pain and loss too, trying to both heal and protect Himself. i need to respect what He needs and realize that He’s not doing that to hurt me back. i respect that He is still here, that He did not end our relationship, and i give Him the benefit of the doubt. i will use the little things that return and celebrate them.

Potter-Efron suggests the Five As for ways to be respectful:

Attend: Take time to really listen and give complete attention.

Appreciate: Like what Maximus does and how He does things.

Accept: Maximus does not have to change, He’s okay how He is.

Admire: i can learn from Maximus. He does things with grace and skill. He has dealt with past abandonment which, in many ways, were so much worse than i encountered, and doesn’t resort to raging. i admire that and wish to learn from Him.

Affirm: i am so happy that Maximus is part of my life. i cannot imagine my life without Him. i want to celebrate our lives together and embrace GOT every day.

7. Give praise instead of criticism.

i will stop looking for something wrong. i will notice thoughtfulness, creativity, generosity, appearance, individuality, intelligence, and accomplishments and then give praise for it.

8. Surround yourself with people who treat you respectfully.

i do this and will continue to do this.

9. Watch for relapse signs that your shame rage is getting out of control.

i will monitor the self-talk and the feelings of anxiety that come with dealing with the aftermath of these raging incidents. When i feel them growing beyond simple emotional responses, i will work to calm myself down, breathe, not let the emotions go out of control, take a time out, ask for space, do something else to occupy my mind and feel fulfilled.

And never, never give up on myself. i can do this.

Believe that we will heal. Believe that we will be stronger together. Be patient in the process.

Categories: anger, balance, bat shit crazy, BDSM relationship, conflict, counseling, fear, rage, relationship needs | 1 Comment

On the Couch

onthecouch

i’m feeling better today, still reeling, but not as emotional. Maximus and i have touched base and i’ve been working on finding counselors. The priorities for counselors include, kink-friendly, deal with anger management, and have ability or willingness to do couples counseling via Skype due to our distance relationship. i would prefer to find a counselor who works with my medial insurance program, but it is less of a priority.

The counselor who was interested in helping us in January wrote back that she would like to work with us, so i am waiting for her intake forms to fill out. my hope is that i can work with her one-on-one immediately and we can include Maximus in by Skype when He’s not in town, and include Him in the office when He is.

i have been thinking about things and want to write these things down to capture them to bring to the counselor:

  • i need to figure out how not to let things trigger me into these angry outbursts. Why does this happen? Why can’t i stop them? Even at the time i know i shouldn’t do it but i cannot seem to stop it or want to stop it. i am horrified to realize there seems to be an endorphin rush in this while it’s happening, that i feel a sense of release during this and gives me a momentary flush of relief, but the reality afterward is horrendous. It’s like i’m expelling a monster, but i’ve aimed it at the person i love the most.
  • This only occurs in my relationship with Maximus…it’s not occurring in any other part of my life, not professionally, not athletically, not socially, not with my family. But it’s not Maximus, it’s something inside me.
  • i need to resolve the stuff from my second marriage that hurt me so badly. Maximus is not OneGuy, yet i am attacking Him for all the insecurities i have from that marriage. My marriage to OneGuy was full of mistruths, secrets, financial dishonesty, emotional abuse–Maximus has done none of these things, yet i treat Him as if He has. How do i get past this?

After my divorce, i realized i had lost my soul, my self. i spent a great deal of time learning to love myself again. i went to group sessions, sacred spirituality, tantra events, all of which helped me recover my soul. i was in a great place! i came to a place where i was happy and joyful and totally recovered, about me. i had come to a conclusion, however, that i was done with relationships and was best to be in love with me and have a strong marriage to myself. i never expected Maximus.

When Maximus told me He had fallen in love with me and asked what i thought, i replied, “i’m terrified.” i told Him i was scared of having a relationship other than with myself, that i had never expected to be in love with someone else again. But i did love Him, and i told Him that. my deepest fear was that i hadn’t done anything to prepare myself for someone else, but i thought i’d be ok–i’m so clearly not.

  • i want to be able to trust again.
  • my period started today. i don’t want to think that these outbursts are hormonally related, i’ve always thought that was a crutch. Maybe i need to consider that. Is this age? my early 20s were fraught with dysmenorrhea and migraines, controlled by birth control pills to manage hormones.
  • i DON’T WANT TO BE MEDICATED.
  • Please tell me this is not who i am. i can’t be this way any more. It’s destroying me. i’ve lost all confidence in myself. i’m destroying my relationship with Maximus.

i’ll have more to add. These are just things right now. i want to be prepared when i meet the counselor. i so want this to stop.

 

 

Categories: anger, balance, bat shit crazy, BDSM relationship, conflict, counseling, fear | Leave a comment

Fear

fear2

i recently came across The Submissive Guide, a website for mentoring submissives.  This site has a lot of great information, including articles, videos, and book reviews, but i discovered something great on the site–submissive Journal prompts. Sometimes i lack for topics to journal about and oftentimes i don’t know what i don’t know, so these prompts are great to get me thinking about things.

i signed up to get journal prompts delivered via email and the first batch came in yesterday. i decided to start with this first prompt:

“There is no shame in being fearful. It is only a shame to remain so.” – a grateful slave and Guy Baldwin, SlaveCraft.

i thought this was a very excellent topic, and timely for me. Relationship fears are something i struggle with, despite frequent reassurance from Maximus. i’ve not been very successful in marriage, having been divorced twice, and i carry fear of relationship failure around with me like i’m dragging an anchor. This anchor of fear does two things, first, it causes me to have a sense of disbelief that i am in a wonderful relationship with Maximus, and second, it causes me to yank on the anchor chain to test that it’s still there dragging behind me.

Disbelief

Maximus is truly the most amazing man i’ve ever been with. He is everything that i would ever desire in a partner, and more. i’m not saying this to butter Him up, but truly, He is kind, confident, honest, intelligent, accomplished, generous, humorous, fit, social, adventurous, communicative, sexy and sexual, trusting, etc., etc., etc. He is my biggest fan and i’ve not ever had that before in a partner. i am so proud to be with Him, to be associated with Him, and never ever believed i would find that in my life. i had pretty much resolved that i was done with committed relationships after my second divorce and just planned to have casual, sexual relationships without emotional attachment. Maximus changed that for me and i will be forever grateful that He did.

But i find myself with disbelief that i could find someone so wonderful, that finds me wonderful. i sometimes think it’s just a matter of time before He realizes i’m not what He needs or wants and ends the relationship. i’ve thought both of my marriages were “the one” and i was wrong–why would this be so different? i wait for the other shoe to drop.

Yanking the Chain

chainFrom this disbelief, i find myself acting out sometimes, testing my theory of disbelief. It’s not deliberate, mind you, but something i look back upon and see in hindsight and embarrassment. i push buttons, make assumptions, look for signs taken out of context proving my fear. And i hate that. It’s miserable for both of us when that happens.

And He’s still here. Not everyone would be.

A Shame to Remain So

What this quote means to me? It means i need to stop dragging this anchor of disbelief. It’s time to pull it up and sail freely and go where the wind takes us. It is shameful for me to wrap this chain around our relationship, restricting it and risking pulling it underwater to drown. It’s shameful to yank on the chain to test an anchor that doesn’t need to be set or dragged.

my anchor should be us, Maximus and me together.  my safe, my strength, my truth, not my fear.

anchor

Categories: BDSM, BDSM relationship, fear, submissive, submissive journal, submissive journal prompts, The submissive Guide | Leave a comment

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