I can’t procrastinate this weekend

Here in the UK it is officially “May-day” bank holiday weekend. I have had to cancel my camping trip so I can deal with everything that I have neglected at home. I haven’t been keeping up with any housework and there is a mountain of odd jobs that I have been putting off since January.

I still haven’t build the Ikea furniture to replace what my ex smashed up over Xmas and New Year.

The biggest motivator for me now is that someone will be visiting my house to make sure I am worthy of adopting a rescue cat (i.e. I am not a complete savage and there are no other pets in the household).

The lady from the cat rescue charity will visit 1pm on Monday and I don’t want her to see my house in this state. I look around and this not who I am but I haven’t had the strength or will to keep on top of things.

So anyways, I am going to do it this weekend and have put together a massive to do list to finish for before she arrives.

Here’s my to do list:

  • Build ikea wardrobe and drawers (to replace what my ex smashed up)
  • Clear the front driveway of weeds and rubbish
  • Clear the back garden of weeds and rubbish
  • Remove mould and mildew from the bathroom ceiling and tiles
  • Deep clean and vacumm the rest of the house
  • Take all waste (including broken furniture) to the recycling center / local skip

Someone has offered to help me with building the Ikea stuff. This is the guy I went on a couple of dates with. I told him why I have cancelled my camping trip this weekend and since then he has become determined to, in his own words, be “alpha male” and just come over and help me.

I’ve turned down his offer. I have been truthful about it and my reasoning is, my ex is the reason why my life has ended up in such a mess and I should really fix it myself.

It doesn’t feel right for me to let another man, a man who I hardly know – swoop-in and clean up the mess left by the shit-head that abused me.

I am so overwhelmed by how much I need to get done this weekend but I need to take my power back.

I need to do this alone.



Under Pressure

The creepy mug has been retired and I bought a new one.

I was on a date last night. It went well but I am pretty sure I was crap company because of how tired I was. I am under a lot of pressure at work. Aside from the tiredness, I found myself talking shop a few times and I made myself cringe.

For me, this entire month of May will be one of the busiest and most tiring months. But this was by design and I don’t deserve any sympathy.

I did it to myself.

I am heading up a number of high profile technology projects that involve changing the way the company operates. There is a lot at stake.

My last 3 years of employment was spent planning what exactly needs to happen this year. I have been engineering and shaping the environment and getting all of my proverbial “ducks in a row”, before being able to start the work.

The project deadlines are aggressive. I will have to drive the projects, lead the people, steer the meetings, manage expectations and argue the toss with other decision makers, every step of the way. This is also by design.

I have a really intelligent boss who is supportive but my team is incomplete. The projects have started but people have jumped ship, so I am still recruiting and adding new people to the team. I have had to take massive risks to keep things moving.

I need to finish what I started and I can’t fuck it up.

I am now in a state of paranoia and obsessing over ways I could fuck things up. I need to find ways to offload some of the pressure and at the very least, not create new problems for myself.

Not fucking up equals working harder.

I need to be prepared to work longer hours and sacrifice my social life. I am asking myself if I should even be dating anyone at the moment. I can only be partially invested in starting a new relationship and don’t know if it is wise to start something that I can’t maintain.

Not fucking up equals staying SAFE, in every sense of the word.

The elephant in the room is my PTSD and whether or not I should even be dating whilst still in recovery from domestic abuse. Can I trust myself to make better decisions and keep myself safe?

Don’t get me wrong – going on dates has been a massive milestone in my recovery journey. I feel much better than I did when I started the blog but I am still a shadow of my former self. I am still scared of men.

These projects have been 3 years in the making but I did not plan to start my projects whilst smack-bang in the middle of the most traumatic phase of my adult life.

Not fucking up equals, being scared but not showing it.

What makes all of this worse is the years of trying to earn credibility at work going down the drain. My boss and many of my colleagues know about the abuse. He made sure of that when he sent an angry email to my colleagues.

They know what he is, that he is known to the police as a danger to women. They also know I was too scared to bring him to justice and I dropped the charges.

Everyone has been supportive but the inevitable consequence of his actions is how they now perceive me.

Knowing what they know, how can they not think that I am damaged and incapable of handling the challenges ahead of us this year.

No wonder my boss has been pissed off with me. I feel like he is concerned and all this is causing him stress. Or was he? Am I just paranoid? I don’t know.

I can’t stop obsessing about this stuff.

I have to be focused. I can’t make mistakes. Everyone is watching me now.

Shit it’s 7pm and I am still at the office.

I wanted to jump to my death

Towards the end of the relationship I had thoughts about killing myself. This was the first time in over a decade that something like this had crossed my mind.

My brother and his wife asked me to organise a 7 day trip for the four of us to stay in a cottage, somewhere rugged and beautiful.

As I sifted through the hundreds of properties on AirBnB, some of them had some pictures of the surrounding landscape so I could visualise the experience. The property we went for is coastal and the listing included gorgeous pictures of the nearby beaches and cliffs.

I started imagining the inevitable that either one of us, myself or my brother or his wife would end up pushing his buttons and the trip would turn sour. I imagined a scenario whereby after an awkward confrontation, he and I would have to go outside for a “time out”. We find ourselves walking along one of the nearby cliff edges. My thoughts then moved on to the tears and feelings of despair that he’s upset my family and there would be no way of reconciling. I imagined how I would feel if this happened. I wouldn’t be able to forgive myself so there was no option other than for me to die so I jumped off the cliff.

I was suddenly fantasizing about suicide which absolutely terrified me. I told him about it – not fully – just the jumping part.

He didn’t bat an eyelid.

At the time, I think I told myself that perhaps he thought I was lying or something…I don’t know. When I think about it now, about his blank stare, I try to remember if there was ever a time he showed any kind of genuine regard or concern for me. I tried to remember any relevant facial expressions, body language or words. I am finding it difficult, he rarely ever made eye contact with me.

I always ached for him to look into my eyes so I could see that he loved me but he wouldn’t.

I do however remember some actions that showed me he really cared – on a couple of occasions, when I was sick.

There was one time when I was really sick with a nasty nasty cold. I was in so much pain and I started weeping. He immediately stood up, put his shoes on and drove to the shop and returned with a bag full of medication, vitamins and chocolate. I saw the shopping and wept even harder, this time from gratitude. The fact that he did something utterly caring and nurturing for was something I craved so badly and in that moment it was there.

The time before that I was sick with a UTI and he behaved in a similar way. It was when I was at my weakest physically that he really showed up for me. He was tender and he genuinely made me feel protected, looked after, like he really did loved me.

I miss that guy.

Nearly two months on from the breakup and my feelings about him are still so very complex. At night my dreams about him are sweet and loving but during the day the intrusive thoughts run wild with his nasty words, the mindgames, manipulations, his unpredictable outbursts.

My complex feelings are confusing and draining my energy. I’m so tired.

How is it possible that the traumatic events are persistently and uncontrollably playing back in my mind, yet-a big part of me is still deeply in love with him?

Why does that part of me see nothing wrong with letting him tear down my world, until the only thing left for me to do is to take my own life?

Trauma bonded

The GP prescribed me Propanolol to help with the anxiety.

My counselling session on Friday was a very difficult one.

I’ve reaslised that I have become extremely hyper vigilant around men. I explained to my therapist how how the subtle displays of aggression from men leaves me feeling anxious and paranoid. They advised that I am experiencing the effects of trauma and it can come and go like waves.

I have been really out of sorts and I feel like I am unraveling. Intrusive
thoughts, anxiety and bouts of depression. Some days are okay. Work and gaming
are useful distractions. But then some days I am completely disoriented or
crying like the drop of a hat.

I was with my brother and his wife this weekend. We went to see the new Dumbo movie which was my favourite Disney cartoon when I was a child. I pretty much cried from start to finish. My sister in law was like, “I don’t understand why you were crying all the time”. It was her birthday and I was really struggling to keep my shit together.

I must have been terrible company. I only had one bottle of Corona, hardly touched my pizza, cried for approx 180 mins and walked out of the cinema with mascara and eyeliner all over my face. I didn’t even realise how bad I looked until we arrived back at my brothers house and I was handed a baby wipe so I could clean up.

I thought about him a lot during my drive back home – nothing in particular, just random memories rushing through my mind. At one point I did think about how I would spoon him and fall asleep (I was the big spoon), and then my mind wandered to the night he smashed my bedroom furniture. That was last year, the 16th of December. I know the date because recorded that incident.

The recording of the 11th of January is a from another incident. I think that was the time he smashed my TV and went AWOL for a week. I am not sure – I can’t remember exactly, I don’t want to listen to it.

On my drive home, I wondered if I would ever have the courage to listen to the recordings again. I thought about what it would be like to publish his emails and the recordings online and to disclose his identity so that his blog readership could see that he was a danger to women. But no, I wouldn’t dare do that.

I then thought about all the ways he can get revenge on me. He made it very clear to me that he gets revenge on if anyone who fucks with him.

If he wanted to hurt me himself, the easiest thing he could do would be to hack me. He even gloats about it on his blog, claiming that it would be very hard for him to resist doing this to anyone who pisses him off. It’s worth mentioning that he wrote that blog post the same week that the police removed him from my life. But he didn’t have to warn me off – he had already secured my silence before writing that post. I had already told the police that I was too scared to charge him because of what he might do.

He could do a lot worse than hack me.

He joked a couple of times about setting my car on fire if we broke up. He buys his drugs from the dark web and one evening he showed me this “services” area where you can pay for people to do bad things for you.

He made a big deal about all the ways which earning lots of money is advantageous due to the power it would give him specifically.

We were watching the American Crime series about the OJ trial and he said: “This is why I am going to be rich baby. Money buys you good lawers…you can get away with anything”.

He isn’t OJ-rich at the moment but he does earn a lot of money and has a pattern of spending it impulsively on whatever he wants in the moment.

I will keep my mouth shut.

I wish I could stop thinking about him…erase everything from my mind.

So this is what PTSD feels like.

I’ve been summoned by the law

A pink letter from Queenie, summoning me for Jury Service – again. A bit strange because I did Jury Service less than three years ago.

I got a feeling of dread when I saw it.

I really can’t cope with anything like this right now. If opening the summons letter triggered me, how can I deal with listening to a victim’s statement?

I couldn’t even go through with charging my ex. The police told me it was time to nip it in the bud. They knew about him and they disclosed to me that he had done this before. With one of his victims, his method’s to control and abuse her were creepily identical. She was much like me – was braver than me and was able to get a non-molestation order against him. I am absolutely terrified about what he might do to me if I did anything like that. The thought of having to speak in court with him there, still makes me feel sick to my stomach.

There is just no way I can willingly set foot in court right now but I am ashamed to say that I might not have any choice in the matter.

I have had another letter from the law this week , a Notice of Intended Prosecution for driving over the speed limit. I am really disappointed with myself. I have a clean lifestyle, don’t take drugs and not even much of a drinker. Driving safely is important to me because I was hit by a car when I was 7 years old. It took me till I was in my 30s to get a driving license because I was terrified of driving.

That night I was on my way home from my brothers house so I know that route really well. I have done a lot of long distance driving since the breakup. At times I just don’t feel safe on my own so I have been driving long distances, either to my brothers house or to the countryside somewhere – anywhere that is far away from my home.

I’ve been slowly drowning since the moment the police took him away. I’m trying so hard to pick up the pieces but it feels like I can’t even cope with basic adulting.

I still haven’t sorted out the replacement furniture that he destroyed. There are big IKEA boxes in my hallway and it tears me up every time I see them, yet I don’t have the strength or will to do anything about it.

I can’t even trust myself driving now.

He’s done a real number on me. He isn’t even in my life anymore but is still destroying me, my material world, my security and my independence.

I better stop writing soon. I need to post my response to this Notice of Prosecution, and then wait however long to find out how I will be punished.

I need to get my life back on track.