I once wrote a story when I was in HS (and how I knew about the relationship-troubles of a couple in their 20’s, I can’t even begin to guess) but the mystery of this story has stayed with me over many years. The couple was talking on the balcony of their tiny apartment in the early morning, and it wasn’t going well.

“The ‘disconnect’ was obvious, the sadness, palatable. The conversation ended, the man left the apartment and the woman quietly and solemnly went to get something from her clothes closet. Hanging on the opened door was a swatch of red velvet. She touched it’s softness taking in its beauty with her fingertips, as she had done so often during these days leading up to her wedding. It was to be made into a long skirt, worn with an old-fashioned blouse. But it hung there, unfinished.”

In the story the woman unfolds the swatch and realizes, for the first time, that it’s torn.

The weirdest thing however is that, decades later something eerily reminiscent happened. I was telling someone about the story and I stopped. I got up and went to my bedroom, opened my bureau drawer and pulled out a long piece of deep red velvet. Quickly I searched it, like a mother would search her child after a fall, for wounds. And there it was. On the inside of the material was a long, jagged tear. It had been the material I saved for my wedding dress when I was in my 20’s, a young hippie in love with a soldier.

Cue Twilight Zone music!

But it gets better. My partner and I have had some rough times lately. We’re cordial and friendly with each other and on the surface people would hardly notice anything was amiss at all. But underneath, we’re both trying to find our way.

This morning, he called me into the bedroom to show me something. He said, ‘Look, I fixed the tear in our bedspread!’

I looked with amazement. There had been a horizontal tear (no lie) that was over a foot long near the top of the spread. It was gone! This, from a man who wouldn’t know which end of a needle to thread!

I looked more closely and realized… the spread was turned upside down! The tear was neatly tucked away and out of sight at the bottom of the bed, hidden by the footboard.

As for me… I laughed.   I laughed harder than I had in days.

The Universe has a sense of humor, a big heart and many messages.

Counseling Success Gleaned from Disaster!

My DH and I had one last session with our female counselor.  The forthrightness I so admired in the first few sessions now seemed rather overbearing and ‘in-your-face’.  She was actually insulting toward me!  When I was trying to answer her questions, she would interrupt me and say,’You can’t say that!’ She said you don’t get to come in here and tell me what is wrong with your DH and tell me to fix him. 

Actually, what we were both seeking was a clear diagnosis and then a treatment plan.  The counselor said she wanted to treat this as a ‘marriage counseling’ session and we would ‘partner’ to solve our relationship conflicts.  The only problem is, we had been to Couples Counseling and had actually learned a tremendous amount of very useful information; especially information on how to communicate efficiently and respectfully… and BOTH of us knew that there were other OCPD issues that we needed help on identifying and dealing with them.  Ugh!  She got extremely sarcastic (if you can imagine a counselor doing that) and I just lost it.  I started to cry and we left the session.  

I called the director of Mental Health services for my healthcare HMO and put in a complaint.  They called back and interviewed both my husband and me.

We finally found another counselor who was suggested by this director… who was a fantastic, caring, knowledgeable individual who helped us tremendously!!!!  We have been working on our issues successfully for about a year.

I’ve been very happy!  My DH and I had worked really hard: we compromised, understood each other, relayed what we each needed in any given situation… 

It all was going really well, with only minor bumps that were smoothed-out relatively painlessly…. until NOW.  ;-(


The Proverbial Straw

I can’t continue counseling updates without giving a rather important update of a different nature. My OCPD DH and I had an argument on the way back from the airport recently (June 3) and before our 3rd counseling session (June 5th) which we still attended.

We had been arguing off and on, a lot. We hadn’t even been intimate for over 2 months which is actually unusual for us. Guess you could say things had been tense for a while.

Continue reading

Second Counseling Session May 2013

Our second session with our psychologist went as well as the first.  Well, actually, it even went better.  We started off being asked what issue we’d like to work on.  We decided to talk about my not being able to make any decisions in our house.  There’s a few more major situations that I feel we need help with, but we agreed that this was a good start.

We were asked to state how this situation made us feel and then the other person would paraphrase what they ‘heard’.  We had done this in a ‘Couples Workshop’ that we had joined a few years ago and had even used the technique a few times when discussing a hot topic.  So, we began… Continue reading

First Counseling Session

Wow! My OCPD DH and I had our first counseling session and I was totally blown-away! The therapist is a clinical psychologist with a PhD from Yale and no ‘shrinking violet!’ She did NOT use that touchy-feel-ly type of reflective listening technique (which I abhor). She actually ‘took names and kicked butt’! At one point she seemed a little snarky and afterward, she might have thought she had offended me. Continue reading

Boundaries are my life-line

I’m in negotiations with my OCPD (Obsessive Compulsive Personality Disordered) dear husband (DH) to become a full-voting partner in our marriage; specifically on decisions about home furnishings. Okay… This doesn’t sound like a very serious hill to climb but au contrare…It’s turning out to threaten our very relationship! Continue reading

Yikes! Can I truly believe these changes?

It’s been 21 days since I last posted here.

My OCPD DH and I were just (and I do mean ‘just’, as in… ’10 minutes ago’) making an appointment with a psychologist.  I had emailed my regular doctor and sent up a RED flag when things were going ‘south’ a few weeks ago, between my DH and me.  She made a referral with a clinical psychologist who is familiar with personality disorders but not specifically OCPD.  Ugh!! Continue reading