… because …

Perhaps I should explain.

Yesterday saw my third face-to-face counselling session with Sandra.

There was discussion of whether I feel safe with my Wife. Emotionally safe.
Framed like that, I probably don’t.

Sandra asked about unconditional love.
I didn’t feel my Wife’s love is unconditional.
What are the conditions?
That my support for Her is universal and unquestioning.
That She always gets Her way?
Could I ask Her what the conditions are?
I would expect that question to be used as a metaphorical stick with which to beat me – it would be my fault that I assumed there were conditions and more assertions that I need to get fixed.

I wasn’t going to ask what the conditions are.


My Wife got home from work.
Her: How was your day?
Me: Challenging.
Her: How?
Me: We can talk about it later.
(I was in the middle of cooking supper for the family. It wasn’t the time to talk.)
Her: Ok.


… later …

Her: So why was the day challenging?
I had to steel myself to answer. Since seeing Sandra, I had resolved to ask what the conditions were. But I didn’t want to. And I knew why. And I knew that to say why I didn’t want to ask would be swinging a metaphorical stick at Her.
Me: My counsellor suggested I ask you a question, but I’m not sure I can, because I’m concerned about how you will react.
Her: … … … …
Not a word.
Not even an acknowledgement.

I realise that there were various things to unpack in my statement.

  1. I’m seeing a counsellor.
  2. I haven’t told Her until now.
  3. Presumably if the counsellor has suggested I ask a question, it’s a reasonable question.
  4. I am concerned about how She will react.
  5. I’m so concerned that I can’t ask Her a reasonable question suggested by an impartial, trained counsellor.

So not just one metaphorical stick then.

Silence …

And in my head, Edvard Munch picked up his paintbrush.


I should emphasise that my discussions with Sandra are not just about my marriage, although it is proving easy to get sucked back to that as a primary topic. We have talked about the fact that my Wife and I can’t fix Our relationship separately, and if We carry on as We are, there is only one possible outcome. If we are to fix Us, We should be seeing a counsellor together.

But that doesn’t mean there is no point in me continuing to talk to Sandra and there has also been stuff about me, and my thought processes. And I still feel obliged to examine whether I’m the arsehole.

And I have to concede, where I went into counselling with the expectation that it wasn’t going to be beneficial, my view is shifting. It might not be such a futile exercise.

One Response to “… because …”

  1. I’m glad you find it beneficial.

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