We all have trigger points. The most common ones I see around the blogging world are about sexual assault and abuse. This post isn’t about those triggers, it’s about the incredibly personal ones I have and the ways in which mine are often set off.
Yesterday, I would say I came as close to having a meltdown coupled with an anxiety attack as I have in years. I almost forgot what anxiety attacks feel like it’s been so long but I digress.
What triggered such a response in me? Texts from the Ex-Boyfriend. Truthfully, it’s not what he said, that was completely average – he’s almost done moving into his new condo and he just got back from a trip to France. So why in the world would something like that provoke the reaction I was having?
Because we were supposed to move in together. I even remember where we were when he asked me.
Because we’d actually talked about taking that trip.
Because somehow he’s hurt me so deeply and he gets to just walk away and live life as though nothing happened.
Because this is a pattern in my life. My mother, my father, friends and boyfriends – people I’ve let in to my life and my heart who leave me worse for the wear and go on to be happy and have or do the things I want.
Rejection, abandonment, trust – those are my triggers. Action or inaction, words – even those couched in the best of intentions – can rip open old wounds and flood me with emotions that I have tried to control, tried to rationalize, tried to make sense of.
Lately, all three have been triggered by various people, in various ways, to varying degrees. Unintentional, to be sure but triggered nonetheless. And I’m the first person to admit that things that trigger me aren’t always rational – cancelling plans leaves me feeling rejected and undesired, which leads to me extrapolate that I’m not worth the time. Saying you’ll call me later but then I don’t hear from you for days erodes my trust and again makes me feel like I’m not worthy and in romantic situations that I am unloveable.
Being unloveable. That is something I have struggled with for as long as I can remember. And for me, the fact that I could never make the Ex-Boyfriend love me that has scarred me so deeply that I don’t know how to heal. The rejection, the abandonment, and the lack of trust between us it was perpetually triggering these responses when we were together and even moreso now that we’re apart. (Yes, I know this means that for me it was an unhealthy relationship to be in. I’m fully aware of that now but it doesn’t make it hurt any less).
I am terrified that I won’t be loved. That I don’t deserve to be loved. That somehow along the way I got broken and I don’t know if I can be fixed anymore. I want to be loved and I want to love. I really do. And I loved the Ex-Boyfriend in a way I haven’t loved anyone since the Gay BF (before he came out). All the ups and downs, the manipulation, the push-pull from both of us – it left me confused and hurt and much more vulnerable to my triggers than I was before.
The wounds that he left on me have never healed.
I feel as though, right now, I am so raw and so fragile that one more trigger, one more misstep and I won’t be able to handle it.