My fiancee and I had our 1st major fight

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salad
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18 Jun 2021, 3:53 pm

After I fainted yesterday from hiking I woke up to find myself in the hospital. I learned that my fiancee panicked and fainted herself, and when she woke up she was angry at me for pushing myself too hard and with tears streaming down her face told me she was mad at me for almost killing myself. I think thats dumb since I wasn't trying to kill myself, im just someone who naturally pushes myself and thats ingrained in my nature, and since then she's been upset at me.

During this time ive had a lot of time to think about things in my life and ive realized that too many traumas reside inside of me haunting me and occupying space, and many people own space in my head. I was abused by my father as a kid and witnessed him almost kill my mom once, as well him kidnapping me as a kid and trying to take me to Russia with him (my dad is Russian). He eventually divorced my mom, served jail time, and was gone from my life, but his memory and scar hasn't left my psyche. That inner fear, visceral powerlessness and terror has that source from that

That feeling of inner terror and powerlessness got worse when I was in Palestine during the most violent episode in their history, the 2nd Intifada:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Second_Intifada

There I witnessed with my own eyes the powerlessness and weakness of my people being shot at and killed, imprisoned, kids tortured, etc and that was the 2nd major scar in my life that hasn't left me

And the 3rd major scar in my life happened last year when I challenged a giant, probably 6 ft 4 minimum, gang member to a fight after he attacked my cousin. Being cocky and feeling like my martial arts was enough to win even though I had just come out of rehab not long ago I underestimated how much my injuries in 2017 ruined my body and I got beaten and ragdolled and basically violated like never before in that fight, leaving me with head injury that has destroyed me.

Ive resigned myself to therapy to move past these scars, but in this free time I began to read a little about a Rape survivor by the name of Thordis Elva:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thordis_Elva

who found peace, closure and healing only by confronting her rapist and that's when the bright idea popped in my head: the only way to truly move forward and find peace is to confront the scars in my life one by one; yes, that means confronting my father (not my current dad but my abusive biological one) and looking him in the eye and standing before him without fear; going to Palestine and looking the soldiers in the eye without hesitation wearing the Palestine flag draped on me defiantly to show they won't cower me; and finding the gang member who beat me and showing him im not scared of him

When I told my fiancee she grew livid and blew up at me. She thought I was crazy, suicidal, and she wanted me to abandon this. I felt hurt and angry by her lack of support. When Thordis Elva traveled half way across the world to confront the man who raped her, Tom Stranger, her parents supported her. I wish she stood by me and supported and validated my resolve as my own way of moving forward.

She told me she knows what PTSD is like since she had her village wiped out and that the solution is to move forward. Only she isn't me. I don't want to let others own me and scare me. I dont want to let things be terrifying symbols that I have to avoid. my fiancee is scared to even see a plane because it reminds her of the plane that blew up her village by airstrike. I dont want to live the rest of my life in fear and terror with these things owning space in my head. Therapy can help me after, but therapy by itself isn't sufficient. For me to regain my honor, I have to find the things that scarred me and show them I'm not scared and that im not a coward

My fiancee and I couldn't see eye to eye on this so she stormed off with my sisters to give us time to process this on our own.


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enz
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18 Jun 2021, 4:08 pm

You’ve got your fiancé, family, friends

No one wants you to go to Palestine with a flag around you including people on WP



DW_a_mom
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18 Jun 2021, 6:25 pm

She is scared for you. And she is scared for herself, that she could lose you.

These are signs of love and concern.

To reach a point in a relationship where you are each capable of trusting each other’s choices and judgement unconditionally, especially when terrified, will take time.

Even then, sometimes a partner will know their other half well enough to know they need to be talked out of an idea, instead of supported.

I think this is probably an area suitable for you two to confront in joint therapy together.


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18 Jun 2021, 6:46 pm

Confronting a trauma head-on doesn't mean confronting the perpetrator. It means confronting the demons inside you, and the emotions that they create. People with PTSD are their own worst enemy because of the rage cycle, the guilt / shame, and the nagging desire for revenge. It's more important to clear your own conscience, challenge yourself on a personal level, and learn methods for self-soothing, than it is to pursue the past. Many articles will romanticise the stories of people who confront their antagonists, but they seldom remind people that their own mind actually plays that role.

Your primary responsibility at this time is to heal the physical scars of everything you've been through. After that, you've made a commitment to your fiancée and to yourself that you will begin to heal the emotional trauma you've each experienced. Both of those steps involve you being in America, at her side, rather than consuming yourself with anger and flying back to Palestine. That would be understandably traumatic for her, as she's already lost everyone she loves. She wants stability and permanence in the relationship. I think you owe it to yourself and to her, to focus on trauma recovery in America so that your fight / flight instinct isn't so easily triggered in the future.



salad
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18 Jun 2021, 7:19 pm

IsabellaLinton wrote:
Confronting a trauma head-on doesn't mean confronting the perpetrator. It means confronting the demons inside you, and the emotions that they create. People with PTSD are their own worst enemy because of the rage cycle, the guilt / shame, and the nagging desire for revenge. It's more important to clear your own conscience, challenge yourself on a personal level, and learn methods for self-soothing, than it is to pursue the past. Many articles will romanticise the stories of people who confront their antagonists, but they seldom remind people that their own mind actually plays that role.

Your primary responsibility at this time is to heal the physical scars of everything you've been through. After that, you've made a commitment to your fiancée and to yourself that you will begin to heal the emotional trauma you've each experienced. Both of those steps involve you being in America, at her side, rather than consuming yourself with anger and flying back to Palestine. That would be understandably traumatic for her, as she's already lost everyone she loves. She wants stability and permanence in the relationship. I think you owe it to yourself and to her, to focus on trauma recovery in America so that your fight / flight instinct isn't so easily triggered in the future.


In my psychology class titled "General Psychology 101" I remember learning about the human brain and how it has certain cognitive biases in how it integrates and perceives informational stimuli. One very crucial aspect of the human brain was its desire for closure, which is why as humans we fill in the gaps of circles with part of it shaded as a visual bias

The same can be applied metaphorically. Humans also crave and need narrative closure. Whether we like it or not us humans are creatures of narratives whose lives are complex multifaceted stories interwoven with themes that ideally should strive to reflect growth and progress, freedom and justice, but above all else purpose. To know I've suffered hell meaninglessly, had my life and pride and honor desecrated, and my life ruined fills me with rage I cant overlook. What good is a story if its themes are negated by cowardice and inability to confront the past??

My emotions to these events arent the problem, the problems are the events. I'm reacting with sense and rationality and my thirst for closure is natural especially when the main themes of the story I strove to live by is one of honor and pride, which I cant have feeling too afraid to confront these demons.

Everything I'm doing is for my fiancee. I dont want her to love a coward. I want her to love someone strong and brave and reliable, someone she can feel safe around, someone who can protect her. The fact that I'm still a coward towards my father, towards the Israeli army, and towards the man who almost killed me, is the opposite of where my story's direction needs to go. I want my fiancee to be with someone who is fearless, unencumbered by trauma, and who can protect her without worry.

I want to show her that these traumas dont have to scare her and that there is a way to confront the past and conquer it.


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18 Jun 2021, 8:10 pm

Don't think you can solve this by yourself. You're going to need psychotherapy and I strongly urge you not to prematurely commit to any course of action that seems like a good idea. Human beings can construct pretty sounding fallacies whose illogic they cannot see on their own. Besides that, you are living for two people now, so you need to take another party's feelings into account. A previous comment suggested joint therapy with your fiancee. I think that's a very good idea.

But for now, rest, sleep, and don't prematurely commit to anything.


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18 Jun 2021, 9:01 pm

I know you want to go confront the people that left you scarred. I felt the same way when I was younger. Sometimes I would dream about it and how to get revenge. This did nothing but add stress in my life and I didn't need that. I also learned the hard way to forgive not only others for what happened in my life, but myself as well for dwelling on negative events in my life. An inability to forgive almost lead me down a path to self destruction.

I think I will be the one that sides with your wife here and say let it go. Learn to forgive and move on. You can remember what happened and use it, but don't allow this to occupy your mind in a way that builds up negative feelings like hatred or anger.


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salad
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18 Jun 2021, 9:19 pm

aspiemike wrote:
I know you want to go confront the people that left you scarred. I felt the same way when I was younger. Sometimes I would dream about it and how to get revenge. This did nothing but add stress in my life and I didn't need that. I also learned the hard way to forgive not only others for what happened in my life, but myself as well for dwelling on negative events in my life. An inability to forgive almost lead me down a path to self destruction.

I think I will be the one that sides with your wife here and say let it go. Learn to forgive and move on. You can remember what happened and use it, but don't allow this to occupy your mind in a way that builds up negative feelings like hatred or anger.


My intention isnt revenge but closure and healing. Also some of the things I suffered and witnessed I dont have the strength to forgive. Not everyone deals with trauma the same. What works for you may not work for others like me.


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18 Jun 2021, 11:30 pm

salad wrote:
Everything I'm doing is for my fiancee. I dont want her to love a coward. I want her to love someone strong and brave and reliable, someone she can feel safe around, someone who can protect her. The fact that I'm still a coward towards my father, towards the Israeli army, and towards the man who almost killed me, is the opposite of where my story's direction needs to go. I want my fiancee to be with someone who is fearless, unencumbered by trauma, and who can protect her without worry.

I want to show her that these traumas dont have to scare her and that there is a way to confront the past and conquer it.


Don’t make the mistake of deciding for your fiancé what type of you she needs you to be. If you believe you are doing everything for your fiancé, then she deserves a say in how you do it.

Also, recognize that the moment you start thinking “I want to show her” you have moved out of the “for her” territory and into the “I need” territory. We can construct all sorts of arguments in our heads as to why goals are for our partners, but without the partner’s buy in, it can’t be. Actions taken to prove oneself to a partner say much more about ourselves than they do our partners, and often result in a person doing things that actually harm the relationship. It is extremely easy to believe we need to mold ourselves into exactly the opposite of what it is our partner’s love about us. Just … don’t. Talk to her, don’t decide for her.

All of which is why I think couples therapy is appropriate right now. You both have a lot of heavy stuff in your past, and navigating through it all is going to include some work on your own, but also work together. She deserves to be at least a small part of your journey. Nothing can really be “for her” if she has no say.

You two have the opportunity to share an incredibly beautiful love story. I read so much promise in some of the things you say. But here, with this, you are trapping yourself into goals and assumptions that I believe could be very destructive for both of you. So, please, don’t try to navigate this on your own.


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salad
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18 Jun 2021, 11:52 pm

DW_a_mom wrote:
salad wrote:
Everything I'm doing is for my fiancee. I dont want her to love a coward. I want her to love someone strong and brave and reliable, someone she can feel safe around, someone who can protect her. The fact that I'm still a coward towards my father, towards the Israeli army, and towards the man who almost killed me, is the opposite of where my story's direction needs to go. I want my fiancee to be with someone who is fearless, unencumbered by trauma, and who can protect her without worry.

I want to show her that these traumas dont have to scare her and that there is a way to confront the past and conquer it.


Don’t make the mistake of deciding for your fiancé what type of you she needs you to be. If you believe you are doing everything for your fiancé, then she deserves a say in how you do it.

Also, recognize that the moment you start thinking “I want to show her” you have moved out of the “for her” territory and into the “I need” territory. We can construct all sorts of arguments in our heads as to why goals are for our partners, but without the partner’s buy in, it can’t be. Actions taken to prove oneself to a partner say much more about ourselves than they do our partners, and often result in a person doing things that actually harm the relationship. It is extremely easy to believe we need to mold ourselves into exactly the opposite of what it is our partner’s love about us. Just … don’t. Talk to her, don’t decide for her.

All of which is why I think couples therapy is appropriate right now. You both have a lot of heavy stuff in your past, and navigating through it all is going to include some work on your own, but also work together. She deserves to be at least a small part of your journey. Nothing can really be “for her” if she has no say.

You two have the opportunity to share an incredibly beautiful love story. I read so much promise in some of the things you say. But here, with this, you are trapping yourself into goals and assumptions that I believe could be very destructive for both of you. So, please, don’t try to navigate this on your own.


You are much older than I am, thus I would be a fool to ignore your vast experience and wisdom over mine. I still plan on doing everything I said above, however right now my resolve is on hold and as we speak I am searching for a competent couple's therapist to help us sort this out.

I dont want to agree with you but wisdom and experience is something I lack and you have vastly more than I do


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19 Jun 2021, 1:11 am

salad wrote:
DW_a_mom wrote:
salad wrote:
Everything I'm doing is for my fiancee. I dont want her to love a coward. I want her to love someone strong and brave and reliable, someone she can feel safe around, someone who can protect her. The fact that I'm still a coward towards my father, towards the Israeli army, and towards the man who almost killed me, is the opposite of where my story's direction needs to go. I want my fiancee to be with someone who is fearless, unencumbered by trauma, and who can protect her without worry.

I want to show her that these traumas dont have to scare her and that there is a way to confront the past and conquer it.


Don’t make the mistake of deciding for your fiancé what type of you she needs you to be. If you believe you are doing everything for your fiancé, then she deserves a say in how you do it.

Also, recognize that the moment you start thinking “I want to show her” you have moved out of the “for her” territory and into the “I need” territory. We can construct all sorts of arguments in our heads as to why goals are for our partners, but without the partner’s buy in, it can’t be. Actions taken to prove oneself to a partner say much more about ourselves than they do our partners, and often result in a person doing things that actually harm the relationship. It is extremely easy to believe we need to mold ourselves into exactly the opposite of what it is our partner’s love about us. Just … don’t. Talk to her, don’t decide for her.

All of which is why I think couples therapy is appropriate right now. You both have a lot of heavy stuff in your past, and navigating through it all is going to include some work on your own, but also work together. She deserves to be at least a small part of your journey. Nothing can really be “for her” if she has no say.

You two have the opportunity to share an incredibly beautiful love story. I read so much promise in some of the things you say. But here, with this, you are trapping yourself into goals and assumptions that I believe could be very destructive for both of you. So, please, don’t try to navigate this on your own.


You are much older than I am, thus I would be a fool to ignore your vast experience and wisdom over mine. I still plan on doing everything I said above, however right now my resolve is on hold and as we speak I am searching for a competent couple's therapist to help us sort this out.

I dont want to agree with you but wisdom and experience is something I lack and you have vastly more than I do


I appreciate you taking me seriously when I suggest working through some of this with a professional and as a couple.

I know I can't tell you what the right answer is, but I do feel certain that it should not come from your mind alone, and that your fiance deserves to have a part in the conversation. Take her feelings seriously as you go through the process.

Also remember that people don't always get the right counselor match the first time. Don't give up if that is the case; try a different one. You should feel challenged in the process, but most important is that you and your fiance both feel heard.


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19 Jun 2021, 2:29 am

Dude, your life is oddly an infinite series of major events, fights and actions. It’s like I am watching a Chuck Norris movie.

Take a break, for f’ sake. Stay in your room for a while and watch animes or play games or have some intimate time with your lady or whatever.


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19 Jun 2021, 7:58 am

The_Face_of_Boo wrote:
Dude, your life is oddly an infinite series of major events, fights and actions. It’s like I am watching a Chuck Norris movie.

Take a break, for f’ sake. Stay in your room for a while and watch animes or play games or have some intimate time with your lady or whatever.

Salad, you write such interesting and compelling accounts of your past as well as the thought processes that govern you now. I would like to suggest that, when you are well enough, you print out some of these things you have posted here. They are part of your life story, and it would be too bad to have them get sucked down the vortex of the Internet's too-much-information.

I really respect how you responded to DW_a_mom, listening to her advice even though it's not what you wanted to hear. It's very mature of you to see her as older and wiser, and possibly bringing something relevant to your situation.


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salad
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19 Jun 2021, 12:58 pm

BeaArthur wrote:
The_Face_of_Boo wrote:
Dude, your life is oddly an infinite series of major events, fights and actions. It’s like I am watching a Chuck Norris movie.

Take a break, for f’ sake. Stay in your room for a while and watch animes or play games or have some intimate time with your lady or whatever.

Salad, you write such interesting and compelling accounts of your past as well as the thought processes that govern you now. I would like to suggest that, when you are well enough, you print out some of these things you have posted here. They are part of your life story, and it would be too bad to have them get sucked down the vortex of the Internet's too-much-information.

I really respect how you responded to DW_a_mom, listening to her advice even though it's not what you wanted to hear. It's very mature of you to see her as older and wiser, and possibly bringing something relevant to your situation.


There are a lot more interesting stories out there, in fact the only reason why you think my story is interesting is because I borrowed and imbibed many of the attitudes and characteristics of my idols whose stories actually are interesting, such as Malcolm X and David Goggins

I have no intention to write an autobiography, but before my head injury last year I was an author actually writing a magnum opus story that pretty much captures my ideas in one composite portrait. My fictional story is titled "Tales of a Gutsy" and its heavily autobiographical with each character including my protagonist representing different facets of my ideals, personality, aspirations and sense of self that comprise the entire spectrum of my being. My main character Ismael is headstrong, ambitious, a little egotistical and a little grandiose; my deuteragonist Rio is balanced, laid back, harmonious, and chivalrous; my prince and other deuteragonist is rigid, a perfectionist, punctilious, yet obsessed with the past that he lost; and my favorite character Cordero is gentle, pacifistic, supple, empathetic and deeply sensitive. I have a lot more characters but these are my foundation

Maybe one day I'll publish it


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19 Jun 2021, 1:44 pm

That's not the only reason I find your story compelling. It's just very well written, with a style that keeps the reader pulled along for the next segment.

It's a compliment, dang it - accept it!

You don't have to write an autobiography. It's just nice to save something like this for future use. The novel you outlined also seems pretty interesting, and I can see facets of your personality in each of those characters.


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salad
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19 Jun 2021, 2:30 pm

The_Face_of_Boo wrote:
Dude, your life is oddly an infinite series of major events, fights and actions. It’s like I am watching a Chuck Norris movie.

Take a break, for f’ sake. Stay in your room for a while and watch animes or play games or have some intimate time with your lady or whatever.


I dont know how to take it easy. From the moment I was born up until now I've only known fighting and struggle for everything. Quite frankly theres nothing more peaceful to me than struggling to overcome an obstacle and making it to the top drenched in blood, sweat and tears.

It's funny how you bring up anime when many anime, especially in Shonen, promote this type of intensity and competitiveness to strive for one's ambitions. Naruto and Dragon Ball Z are 2 that come to mind, but most anime are ridden with characters who are hot blooded and intrepid, with themes of grit and determination to strive amidst the fight.

My fiancee wishes I would cool down, but the fact that she fell for me the way I am says even deep down in her heart she admires and respects these qualities, even if she wishes I cranked it down a notch


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