Doing better. I think.
Hubby and I have been talking as much as we're able. His work schedule is a mess at this time of year, and my schedule's been way off because of my kid's job and transportation needs. But we have made some progress.
Hubby still doesn't completely understand the PTSD stuff. He's known pretty much since we met that I have PTSD because of past abuse, and that the abuse (the emotional/verbal component particularly) was ongoing for over 30 years between my mother, my grandmother, and my first husband. But sometimes he doesn't grasp that it isn't something I can "just let go of and move on", and he doesn't get that there's no point trying to be rational to get me out of it. When I have an anxiety attack, at some point I can say, "Okay, that doesn't make sense. That (whatever I'm anxious about) isn't likely to happen, and if it does, the worst case scenario is something I can handle." That works unless it's one of my random attacks, when I just feel anxious and don't know why. But even with the random ones, I can say "Okay, I feel anxious and I don't know why, but I do know it will pass."
With PTSD, that doesn't work. I can't say "That isn't likely to happen," because I've been triggered by something that reminds me of something that DID happen. So obviously if it happened once, it might happen again. It IS likely. It might not be as likely in the present moment, but it happened before and it was something very damaging, not something I would be able to handle if it happened again.
It's a learning curve for Hubby, but he says he wants to learn so that going forward, he'll be less likely to say something hurtful or upsetting and will be better able to help me when PTSD issues crop up. Which I know they're going to. I've lost huge chunks of the first 36 or so years of my life; I've blocked things out because they were more than I could cope with. So I don't know what might trigger me, because I don't know what memories exist that could be triggered.
Guy has been hugely supportive through all of this. He doesn't have PTSD either, but he understands it better because he's better able than Hubby to put himself in someone else's shoes. Guy just listens to me talk, reassures me, reminds me that I'm loved and wanted now, and tells me he wishes he were here to hold me.
Guy is still seeing the woman he met on OKC. They've only gotten together once since their first date, but they've been talking. When Guy told me he was seeing her the second time, I said, "I'm glad you're having fun, just don't like her better than me." I said it jokingly, but also because I do sometimes need reassurance. A large part of the emotional abuse I was put through involved being told over and over that I was nothing. I was worthless. I was useless. No one would ever love me, and I didn't deserve to be loved. So even though I know consciously that both Hubby and Guy love me as unconditionally as anyone can love someone else, those fears from my past, and those *words* from my past, keep coming back to haunt me. Fortunately for me, both men understand that and are willing to give me as much reassurance as I need. And I try not to ask for reassurance unless I'm really struggling.
Guy says he doubts he'll be seeing the other woman any more after he's finished his current project for work. He won't be wicked far from her, but it'll be about two hours as opposed to about 15 minutes, and he doesn't want to have to drive that far. (Plus gas costs...) He plans to maintain a friendship with her, but that's about it.
And I'm going to get to see Guy next month! Best Friend took me out to dinner on Wednesday for a belated birthday present. I was talking about how I really wanted to be able to see Guy in August, and was trying to scrape together plane fare, because after that I wouldn't be able to visit him until spring 2015 at the earliest. Which would mean I wouldn't get to *see* Guy at all until then, unless either he manages to come up with money to come out here, which seems unlikely, or unless his job sends him back out here earlier in 2015. Best Friend knows how important Guy is to me and is very supportive of the relationship, so he loaned me the plane fare!
Me: 45, cis-het female, poly
Hubby: my husband, 42, monogamous
My daughters: Alt (age 20) and Country (age 17)
Guy: ex-boyfriend, occasional confidant