SO! In my last post (read it first if you haven't) I sort of alluded to the fact that I often "manipulate back." Last night after I published I went to the forum and read an awesome comment by Alicia.
I love Alicia as much as I can love someone I've only met online. Check out her blog.
Anyway, she talked about how much she hates it when someone doesn't agree with her 100%. In my response to her on the forum I said
"Alicia- I'm having such a hard time with this. I get all kinds of crazy anxiety with my husband doesn't agree with me. I want to talk all night, until I'm blue in the face, making fantastic points and presenting mounds of evidence to demonstrate my rightness. And he still doesn't agree. And then I crumble into a pathetic heap and cry and cry. I don't know how to let it go. Every night for the past week we've gone to bed in awkward tension because we're so STUCK. I've at least stopped the pathetic sobbing, but inside my heart feels empty because I am sure we are doomed if we can't AGREE ON THIS!!!"
Then it hit me that part of the reason this is so hard, is because I've been a master manipulator myself. In the past when Pete didn't agree with me I would do exactly what I described above. I would cry and sob until he had no choice but give me some kind of concession. Without acknowleding that what I was doing was exploiting HIS guilt, I did at least recognize that I needed to stop.
Which I have. I have stopped trying to manipulate back. Which means it goes unresolved. And that is what is killing me.