30 April 2009

Q&A: Who Do You Talk To?

I decided to post this question that I got months ago...I found it as I was going through some old emails, and thought it could be useful.

Q: What I'm curious about is who did you talk to? When going through all the crazy mixed up feelings at home, and then putting on a happy face for people, it gets frustrating that I don't know who to talk to. I'm not necessarily wanting a divorce from my husband, but we definitely have some problems. All my friends are super happy and blissful in their marriages it seems like. Also, I don't necessarily want to be husband-bashing. I don't want my friends or my family to know how unhappy I am at times. I've considered counseling, but right now I can't exactly afford it.

A: I think this is a really good question. First of all, I think EVERYONE WHO IS MARRIED probably feels like this at some point. Marriage is (unfortunately) between two humans. Which means there will be times when human tendencies come out, and those times can leave us feeling frustrated and like we want to vent. I agree that husband-bashing is not a good idea, but that sometimes we feel like talking to someone. For me, I definitely talked to a therapist. However, if that isn't an option, maybe an ecclesiastical leader (like a bishop). But I think that would be more for serious things, not just everyday husband annoyances. (Or wife annoyances...even though we all know that wives are perfect. haha. Sorry if that comment offended my one male reader. I'll do a woman bashing post sometime to make up for it).

So, since family and friends are off limits (thanks to the rules of No Husband Bashing) and if a therapist and/or a church leader are not options, I would say make friends with a journal. My journal has been a life saver for me. Venting, crying, anger, fear, insecurities, frustrations...write it all down. Writing is very cleansing, very cathartic. Well, it is for me. You're all shocked, I know. But writing in a journal is a great way to vent and let off steam without breaking the confidences of your marriage. It's also a great way to put things in perspective. You can write it all down, and go back the next day and re-read it..and lots of times the things you were frustrated about don't seem so bad. My journal was my saving grace through some very dark times, and it still is.

Only now I call my journal "Have Joy."



Melissa said...

This is something that I struggle with and I find that I want to turn first to family, because they are my closest friends. BUT in doing so almost always creates more of a problem and affects their opinions and feelings toward that person. . . .So although, this might be an obvious answer, I know it is something that not only I, alone struggle with, and that is that we should turn to and talk to the one person who can not only help us but can also give us comfort that no one else can. That person is our Heavenly Father. If we increase our faith that He really is there and hears our prayers, we will not only develop a greater relationship with Him, but we will have the strength and the comfort to make it through those hard times. . . .and that is something NO person in this world can offer. I've spoken to therapists and bishops, and although informative, it has always left me still lacking. Try it, take that leap of faith and speak to your Heavenly Father next time you feel like the weight of your issues are too much to bear alone and you need someone to talk to. :O)

Somewhat disagree... said...

I agree that therapists, bishops, journals and praying are all great resources, but honestly, sometimes it just is not helpful or suitable when all you need is a little venting and a pick-me-up.

While I agree that it is not OK to constantly bash your spouse, I do believe that having a friend or two that you trust to vent to every once in a while is usually enough for some of the minor issues.

I have two neighbors that I thought had the "perfect marriages." One day, I was just down in the dumps, and decided to confide in one of those friends. Turns out, her marriage is not perfect, and she and her husband have some of the same challenges I was facing, and I learned that ONE, things were not as bad as I thought and you can have some of these issues and still have a happy marriage and TWO, I felt so much better to get it off my chest and move on. All of a sudden, it just didn't bother me as much.

Now, I have two friends that I know I can go to, and they can go to me when we are frustrated. Sometimes, we agree with each other and laugh about it and move on, and others, we kind of put each other in check. And we still all love and respect our husbands, and don't even think twice about each others' husbands.

I think you just really have to understand your intent. If it's just for some venting and a little girl-to-girl support, then I think it's healthy, and sometimes it can be very helpful, but there is definitely a line that you can not cross, and only you can know what that is.

Anonymous said...

I too agree that sometimes it's nice to go to other people, but I also think it's very important to avoid husband bashing. If you need to vent about your hubby, why not vent to HIM? I know it may not be the same, but if you're having problems with him, go to him! I'm not saying you absolutely can not vent about your hubby, but I think there is always going to be a strain if you're bashing your hubby behind his back (and maybe not necessarily bashing, but you get my point!) I think a journal is a great place to vent as well...I should do that!


Just be happy. It's not THAT hard... (hehe, I'm totally kidding! If only it were that simple...)

Anonymous said...

I feel like marriage issues should be kept in house - therapist probably, bishop maybe. I don't like going to friends or family. Too much baggage for future reference. And one word about bishops, or pastors - they are probably not trained to really give you the kind of counseling/therapy you need. They are just humble guys, trying to do their best, but imperfect in their advice for marriage problems. Go to them if there's big issues involved that would border on abuse, neglect, infidelity, etc. but the best bet is probably a therapist. Sometimes takes a while to get the right one, they all can't just give you an antibiotic and you're ok. I think too many of us run to the bishop to solve our problems and then we possibly put too much weight on their words - right at this moment I have a friend, in the middle of a divorce, who announced on her blog that she was going to Aruba with a friend b/c her bishop told her to! Her exact words were "I am putting myself in the hands of Bishop ______." What it sounds like he actually said was, yes, Sister Blahblah, you need to take some time to ponder, pray and meditate in a peaceful atmosphere. She heard...Aruba.

On that same subject - sometimes it's time to call 911 and we call the bishop. Or the Relief Society president.

However, having said that, close, close friends who have your best interests at heart - YOUR best interests - can be a vital source of comfort, just to talk things out. We all need people in our corner. I second the notion of journals. Saved my life too. I have been floundering big time and I felt a prompting to read my journal, from last month, last year and I could see progress, I could see feelings I had forgot, I could see things that needed attention.

Have Joy © 2013.

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