Eating is definitely one of my compulsive behaviors. If I had a dollar for every time I said to Pete
"Just don't do it. Don't. do. it. Just don't."
Forget that, if I had a dollar for every time I THOUGHT those words...
Anyway, the best situation I could muster to help me relate was when it comes to food.
"Just don't eat a brownie for breakfast. Just don't."
So why do I? Because I either totally ignore the voice telling me not to, with complete apathy and utter disregard. Or I let the justifcations flow. I'll run later, I'll only eat half, etc.
I'm going to do a little role reversal. I'll make my point in another post tomorrow. Well my point should be obvious but I'll elaborate on it tomorrow. I know that there are flaws in my analogy, but bear with me for the sake of the point.
A little hypothetical backround for my hypothetical situation:
Suppose overeating began to have consequences in my marriage and family. Suppose I became grossly overweight and was unable to adequately function as an active wife and mother. Then financial obligations mounted as health issues arose. Pete and I decide I have an addiction and it's time for help. I begin seeing a counselor, attending meetings, dieting, etc. Here is a hypothetical day.
Pete comes home from work. I'm crashed on the couch with my laptop perusing Pinterest. Immediately his demeanor changes and I can sense his frustration. I immediately get defensive.
"How was your day?" he asks.
Hmm. I'm thinking. My day was crappy. It got off to a bad start because I skipped my workout because the kids were cranky and wouldn't leave me alone on the treadmill. So then I felt unmotivated and I ate three bowls of cocoa puffs for breakfast. But I really don't want to admit to any of that.
"It was okay."
He's trying to be delicate, he's learning about co-dependency too, but he can't resist.
"Did you exercise?"
I know he's trying to be helpful, to make me accountable. I know he loves me and cares about my best interest. But sometimes it feels like all he really wants is for me to be skinny. Well I'm just NOT going to be skinny again. That's unfair.
"No." I get up off the couch and stomp around the kitchen making dinner. He is definitely irriated. Irritated that I'm not doing my part, that I'm not "recovering." He doesn't see any progress. He feels discouraged and hopeless.
So that makes ME irritated. Why does he have to worry about me so much? Why can't he back off?
"So how about the diet? What did you eat today?"
UGH. This is soooo annoying. I can't even stand to be around him. I'm embarrassed. I feel like I suck. I can't do anything right. He'll never be happy. Why doesn't he just hug me, and tell me that maybe tomorrow will be better. Why can't he accept me? Forgive me?
We spend the evening in totally awkward silence. I can tell he's keeping an eye on me. Staying close, trying to be inconspicuous as he observes my every move in the kitchen.
"Do you want to go on a walk?" He asks.
Ahhh! Quit it! Quit trying to fix me! Quit taking ownership of my life! QUIT IT!!! I don't feel like walking. One stupid walk isn't going make me lose 100 pounds. This is a bigger problem than that. He really doesn't get it.
Deep down I'm feeling hopeless myself. Feeling like I'll never get better. I can't change.
I finally lash out.
"Just leave me alone. It's not like you're perfect. It's not like you ever exercise or have to watch what you eat. Maybe if you didn't put so much pressure on me I could change. Not to mention the fact that you don't really help me much with the kids. If you did a little more around the house I might have more time for exercise."
Change the subject, blame it on him, show him how frustrated I am.
It works. He fights back. He tells me I'm messed up for blaming him. He tells me I'll never get better if I don't live differently. He doesn't hold back. His words hurt. A lot. I feel like he doesn't even love me.
We go to bed, both of us angry and hurt. Both of us devastated about the situation we find ourselves in. Both of us hopeless.