My younger son has suggested I go back to school and get a degree in psychology. He thinks, perhaps, that I like to talk about this situation of being married to a sex addict, a secret keeper and a liar if you will, betrayer of our marriage, a little too much? I don’t know. I don’t talk with him about it unless he brings it up. He stood by and watched the trauma for far too long. Or maybe he wants me out of MY house? He has a love/hate relationship with sharing his feelings and he does like to use me and his father as guinea pigs for his own ideas. I suggested he get a degree in psychology, but that exasperated him as I’m pretty sure he thought I was avoiding his point entirely.
I mainly “talk” about this unique/apparently not so unique (but often hidden) concept of being married to a sex addict here on the blog, but I do think about it a lot. I am not excited about going back to school at 54 years old, but I have pondered the idea quite a bit, especially after the boys graduated high school. We live very near a college with a well respected masters of psychology program and I have actually, over the years, thought about applying. I do not need another career at this juncture. I have worked, hard, since I was 14 years old. I have had a fulfilling job as COO of our company for about 14 years now, lifting our company out of the depths of the recession and helping good ole Blue Eyes make the most of who he is, and in the arena of business, he’s pretty amazing. I do, however, on many days feel like I missed my calling. I truly believe I was born to be a teacher or a therapist.
One thing I do think is true, is that therapists who have experienced the same kind of trauma that their patients are suffering from, generally speaking, make more compassionate counselors. I do not, however, think that I am ready to counsel others on surviving this ordeal. Here on the blog I am right there with everyone else. I am making my way through. I have zero education on how to professionally manage a traumatized spouse or an addict or anyone else. I do understand betrayal induced PTSD, and I do believe I understand addiction. I grew up with a sister diagnosed with Borderline Personality Disorder at 30 years old. Her coping method was also addiction. Until her eventual diagnosis, we all muddled through what turned out to be a whole lot of dysfunction. They say her first trauma event was when she was less than a year old. Many trauma events followed. Who knew? Not my parents, that’s for sure. Not me. I did the best I could at taking care of her for many years as we traveled back and forth between our parents’ houses. She was only diagnosed after she attempted suicide.
I have learned a great deal over the past nearly four years about betrayal trauma, but I am by no means an expert on anything. I would like to learn more about how all the experiences in our life set us up for a trauma event, or a betrayal trauma event later, the good, the bad, and the ugly. Not to mention the brain function of it all. Are some predisposed to addiction or mental illness? Science lately would have us believe we are pre-wired. One of my mantras since I was in my 20’s is that along with everything else required in schooling our young, typing and therapy should be required subjects. Both for very practical reasons. I think we assume that we as humans are created with some supernatural ability to deal with all the shit that goes on in our lives without any kind of guidance. Like parenting. Wow. Our bodies are mature enough to have children when we are still children ourselves. There is no set manual or guide. Each human is an individual and deserves to be treated as such. There is a lot of shitty parenting going on out there. I’m sure if you asked my younger son right now, he would throw me in that pot. We all do the best we can, but when messed up people are raising human beings, things can get quite ugly.
I have always, at least as long as I can remember, been interested in the psychology of birth order. I do think it plays in along with many other factors in terms of how we interact with others as we grow. So I guess what I am getting at here is that I do have a pretty compelling interest in psychology. Maybe I should go back to school for that masters degree? What do you think?