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You're not stupid Ľ milly

Posted by Tamar on January 26, 2006, at 19:04:30

In reply to I'm so stupid, posted by milly on January 26, 2006, at 16:10:54

> I just catch a glimps of what is possible to have, a changed me, and along comes a situation and I revert to type!
> having only just managed to interact with others again, I opened the door and there on the doorstep was a 'needy' parishoner asking for hubby (he's a minister)Unfortunately hes out and somehow I end up with over 2 hours of this guys problems. I'm hardly coping with myself let alone anyone else.

Ah, thatís difficult. Having a minister as a partner must be particularly hard when you have difficulties dealing with people. And two hours is a long time to listen to someoneís woes when youíre not feeling up to it.

> I certainly don't need the intimate sexual details of his failed marriage etc but i couldn't get rid of him and I feel REALLY guilty for wanting to but I'm not in a place where I can cope with this.

Iíd say thereís no shame in the feeling of wanting to get rid of him. Your husband is the minister. Unless youíre ordained too, you didnít choose to listen to the details of peopleís lives. You probably havenít had any training in that kind of listening. One of the most important things in learning how to listen to that sort of stuff is learning how to distance it from your own life, so that you donít feel too involved. Itís really hard to do that without training, and especially if youíve been unwell yourself.

> he kept saying how good I was to talk to but he didn't know that i couldn't 'hear' him I was concentrating so hard on not losing it.
> I'm so horrible

No. Youíre not horrible. Youíre wonderful because despite your misgivings and discomfort you really helped this man. Even if you feel you didnít hear him because you were concentrating on not losing it. It sounds to me as if he experienced two hours of non-judgemental attention from someone who was willing to sit still and let him talk. It doesnít matter that you couldnít hear him; it was a very good experience for him (if not for you). So give yourself credit for helping him, even though it was at enormous cost to yourself.

> Now I'm back to not being able to open the front door or answer the telephone and feeling unsafe in my own home

Thatís understandable. If I were in your position I probably wouldnít open the front door or answer the telephone. And thatís OK too. Thereís no law that says you have to open the door. If your husband is a minister, Iíd imagine that the best plan is to let him open the door when heís home and ignore it when heís not home. Itís extremely important that you feel safe in your own home, and you can gain confidence in dealing with people when you *choose* to go out. When youíre at home, let your husband deal with any callers.

You are a good person. Donít beat yourself up about this. You are allowed to look after yourself. When you are much better you will feel more inclined to be helpful to strangers who come to your house!





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