Excerpt from Licking Honey Off a Razor Blade by Valerie Grimes
A book on alcohol dependency and alcohol addiction written by a hypnotist
Chapter 8 A Visit to the Suburbs
Getting over someone is always a process, like drug detoxing. The mental, emotional and physical aspects rarely align themselves quickly. Mentally I knew I wanted to start to spend more time in my own world; emotionally I was lacking in attention and affection, and physically I was experiencing the effects of the internal conflict in the form of some digestive issues. But rather than ending the relationship like most people encouraged me to do, I kept trying new things. I thought that if I could bring him to my home I could get the emotional needs met while stabilizing myself mentally.
However, I wasn’t sure how to present the idea to him, as he rarely consented to anything that was different. I needed to say to him: I want to be in my home where I am comfortable, so if you want to see me, that is where I’ll be. But instead I gave him an ultimatum. I would argue, “You never put an effort into us,” rather than, “This is best for me and my well-being.” And I also didn’t want to run the risk that he would say, “Fine then you be there and I’ll be here.” So I opted for blaming him for not putting effort into our relationship. It worked. He said, “Yes I’ll go.”
I was getting more confident about what I wanted and asking for it, even if it was in a-round-about way. However, I gave in slightly when he refused to drive himself to my house. The only effort he put in was coming downstairs to my waiting car. At least he was willing to go into an unknown place, which was scary for him.
At my place I got to see this scared side of him in full view, when we walked in to my home and announced, “I don’t like it here.” He was clearly uncomfortable in unfamiliar surroundings. He needed to feel safe and he didn’t anywhere but on his couch.
As usual I did my best to create a ‘normal’ experience, we went for walks, did yard work, went to the park where he pushed me on the swing, we danced, cooked out and then climbed up on the roof and ate dinner. Normal enough?
In an effort to disrupt the weekend so I would get to my breaking point and he could go home, he became disagreeable, unrealistic, and demanding. We made three trips to buy alcohol in two days and he demanded my constant attention.
That breaking point came when we were both sleeping. I heard a scream accompanied with extreme pain in my thigh. The scream was his; the pain was from his fist. In one of his nightmares, he drew his fist down onto my leg. I screamed at him, which scared him more. He cried and curled up like a little boy. I consoled him as I began to get oriented. I realized he didn’t mean to hurt me, but shit, this guy was dangerous.
The next day I was up at six AM to walk my dog, trying to be quiet and not disturb the sleeping bear. I tip-toed around, but it was hard to be that quiet when there were things I wanted to do, like use my bathroom, get my clothes out of the closet, brush my teeth. He kept tossing in bed, groaning and putting the pillow over his head, mumbling about how in the hell was he supposed to get any sleep.
At 11 he was still in bed. I left for the gym, and when I returned he was up drinking beer and cooking tacos. He looked so proud of himself, but it went down hill. After he made the food, he didn’t want to eat, needed more beer, and when I refused to pay for it, he got a little scary. So I suggested it was time for him to leave. Of course that meant I had to drive him home. We argued unproductively the entire way mostly blaming each other.
Later that evening he called and said we could make it work and that he did feel safe with me, but uncomfortable not being in control, and he promised he would be more aware of my needs. So, I tested him and asked him to meet me for a hike, he declined said he was busy with laundry. I hung up on him.
He left for Austin two days later, and I didn’t talk to him for a week. Then I got a message: “I love you please come back to me.”
I responded, “We don’t get along.”
“Life sucks without you.”
“Maybe your life sucks with or without me.”
I was so conflicted, I felt terrible saying that to him and so before bed I called a left him a sweet message to clear my conscience. Besides, he was out of town I didn’t have any control over him and didn’t want him to have a reason to meet someone to take my place. I was possessive of him and still very much wanted us to be together permanently when he was better. If he could just allow me to help him release the fear like I did for my clients. Each week I would always share stories of the successes my clients were experiencing in the hope that he would ask me to do the same.
One day he did consent to hypnosis but couldn’t stay focused as he said my voice was too soothing and turned him on. I ended the induction and walked out of the room, “You’re impossible Sal.”
He called after me, “Is that what you would say to a client?”
“Of course not, they are paying me and they are serious about getting help so they wouldn’t say that in the first place. You clearly are not ready for my help.”
He admitted, “I’m not, I just did it for you.”