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Triggering 12 years out

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FaithFool posted 10/8/2020 15:56 PM

Piggybacking off another thread about PTSD, I had a panic attack last week that took me back to 2008/09, D-Day followed by moving into a just-renovated-for-us dream house that he brought the last OW to for sex and a sage smudge (she was Indigenous and didn't approve of mixed-race couples, my ex being Mexican...) before we moved in.

All was revealed about two weeks prior to our move-in date, and we were maxed out financially so we had no choice but to finish the move. It was the LAST place I wanted to be.

A year after we moved in, he moved out, and I spent another year there alone before selling it.

That fall/winter of 2009 was devastating. I was doing a ton of yoga classes at the studio across the street (a the college where I worked, trigger city hello...) and what got me through the worst of those awful months was a woman who sings kundalini mantras in Sanskrit. I had three of her CDs and had them on repeat pretty much the whole time.

Fast forward to now and I always make a point to avoid playing that music from my computer now. HOWEVER, last week I put my ITunes on random and she popped up.

Right from the first notes of that song, I went into a deep panic attack, feet first down the rabbit hole. In my mind's eye I was back in that empty house, rattling around all winter, coming home after work to the porch light and not much else.

I struggled to breathe for about 10 minutes before reaching for a 12-year-old prescription of Ativan that was mostly scraps and dust. In case you're wondering, it still worked, or maybe it was just the placebo effect, but it calmed me right the fuck down in short order.

I resisted the urge to go out and get a bottle of wine because that's the other thing that got me through that awful time, by the box.

I did some cannabis oil before bed and was able to get off into a good deep sleep. The next day I was completely drained.

I've conquered a fuck-ton of triggers over the years (and this shit is all bundled in with my mom passing away the following winter) but it's obvious that I have to avoid the pan flutes and meditation music for life lol.


[This message edited by FaithFool at 2:33 PM, October 19th (Monday)]

TheKarmaTrain posted 10/8/2020 17:23 PM

Our stories are similar. I caught mine in a cliche affair with the 27yo who worked for him. This was 5 months before we were to move into the dream house we renovated. Up until that day I literally thought I had the perfect life. I moved into the dream house (without him) and am still here. I"m 6 years out and incredibly happy although I still have a trigger here and there. They don't come often but they can hit hard. I think it's just a normal part of what we've been through. You heal with time and learn how to be happy again, but it's the absolute worst kind of betrayal. And I don't think you ever fully get over it. And whenever he does something crappy and selfish to my kids (which is basically regularly) it sends me into a rage regardless of how long it's been.

FaithFool posted 10/8/2020 21:48 PM

And I don't think you ever fully get over it.

I agree. You get through it and move on.

This was really out of left field for me. I've compartmentalized this particular thing and the sense memory just kicked the door down in a heartbeat. But I figure I released a big part of it with this episode and hopefully if it happens again it won't have the same affect.

cantaccept posted 10/9/2020 18:31 PM

So sorry that you triggered from this. Hate that unexpected kick. I am not quite 12 years but still get the unexpected kick. No advice, just a hug if you want it.

You have been an inspiration to me. A role model! Honestly, the fact that you still trigger makes me feel normal. That does sound selfish. I guess we just do our best as we can and accept the shit when it appears.

Just ride the wave and know you are not alone.

FaithFool posted 10/9/2020 22:10 PM

Oh cant, I will take that hug (damn I sure miss those...) thank you! That means a lot.

[This message edited by FaithFool at 10:11 PM, October 9th (Friday)]

BearlyBreathing posted 10/9/2020 23:18 PM

Those memories burrow so deep. A smell, a sound, a taste.. they can bring back 50 years. Sadly, they don’t discriminate and only bring good memories.

Sounds like you handled it like a champ. And there is another approach— take back that music or activity. But only if you feel it is a loss to not have them in your life.

Onward indeed, FF.

thisisterrible posted 10/9/2020 23:41 PM

Our time frames are similar: I found out about the A in March 2009 and by July of 2009 he had moved out.

I can't believe that at this far out I will still occasionally have something that puts me in a funk for a day or two.

So I have no words of wisdom or advice, but I can tell you that you're not alone and hope that makes you feel a teeny tiny little bit better.

FaithFool posted 10/10/2020 00:15 AM

So I have no words of wisdom or advice, but I can tell you that you're not alone and hope that makes you feel a teeny tiny little bit better.

Thank you. : )

Anna123 posted 10/10/2020 08:38 AM

Music is a time machine.

Those R songs I listened to now trigger more of a 'Thank God I am though that' though in my case. I wonder if there was something else in the background bothering you? That was a big reaction.

FaithFool posted 10/11/2020 18:23 PM

Good question. I think it's because I only used this music as therapy during that time, it wasn't part of my regular playlist in 'before life', so it became very site-specific.

FaithFool posted 10/11/2020 18:39 PM


[This message edited by FaithFool at 7:58 PM, October 11th (Sunday)]

HappyTree posted 10/14/2020 12:28 PM

Triggers are hard to deal with but its good that you know what they are.

I had to call 911 on my dad 4 months ago. I'm still dealing with hearing an ambulance go by. Its hard because I work downtown so I hear sirens all the time.

One thing that helps me with triggers is to follow it with something positive. I know that Tik Toc gets a bad rep, but I really like it and within a minute I can calm down and feel better. So, try to find a coping skill that you can quickly access whenever you have a bad trigger.

ZenMumWalking posted 10/14/2020 15:57 PM

aww FF, I'm so sorry about your trigger. Those little fuckers can come out of nowhere and knock the wind out.

I know you're gonna be ok, but here's some strength, love, mojo, positive healing thoughts and hugs.


FaithFool posted 10/15/2020 14:30 PM

Thanks everyone! I really wasn't expecting it this far out, but it just goes to show you never can tell...

cass posted 10/16/2020 13:56 PM

Hey there my old (old age old but time old) S.I. friend from way back then in 2008/9, sorry to hear the triggers are still hitting hard at times. Music is THE most powerful trigger. It just has such depth.

I still can't listen to so much from that time. Could list 100 songs right now that I still can't listen to, but won't. Hate that they stole those songs from us along with everything else they stole - thieving rats!! BUT always more and more music we CAN listen too. Stay strong.


FaithFool posted 10/16/2020 23:55 PM

steadychevy posted 10/18/2020 19:46 PM

I never will understand how many stories there are about dream home, dream retirement, joint goals are attached to adultery. My XWW started committing adultery (not counting what she did before we married) when we were right on the verge of a major achievement in out marriage. The big dream was coming true. We were lining up to buy our ranch which we did and 6 years later the adultery was revealed.

The triggers that hit out of no where are particularly tough. I can prepare myself for those I know could happen. The surprise ones catch you and it takes some time and struggle to find your footing and deal with them.

As was said above, I don't think you ever fully get over it either. I had PTSD and treatment for it. The treatment is in learning techniques on how to deal with the bouts. Most triggers are minimized but they are still there. The surprise ones can hit very hard.

fadedrainbow posted 10/19/2020 11:50 AM

I am sorry that you still experience those awful triggers.

I'm 15 years out from and 2009 was the year I was divorced. What many do not understand is that it takes a long time to not only get unmarried after a long marriage but the recovery from infidelity betrayal is a long hard road. I also still grapple with unexpected triggers that throw me down the rabbit hole. I have learned over the years to climb out much faster and somehow manage to keep going. I don't post much but have followed you like others have mentioned. I appreciate your honesty always and I have to agree that there is a real possibility that I may not ever full get over 'it'. I look forward to the day that IF/when I do look back it is with a 'oh that , yeah whatever'.

FaithFool posted 10/19/2020 14:47 PM

@steadychevy It really has to be one of the most despicable things you can do to another person, walking them into buying a forever home while stabbing them in the back. I will never understand it.

@fadedrainbow, thank you, and yes, it does take a long time to 'get unmarried' doesn't it?

Williesmom posted 10/21/2020 11:51 AM

I have something similar, and I'm also 12 years out.

Before his A, WXH had quit smoking for several years. The night that I found out out all of it, he came home. When he opened his car door, a huge cloud of smoke rolled out. I said "you're smoking too?!?" He looked at me like I was the stupidest human on Earth.

So, my trigger is cigarette smoke. It instantly makes me feel ashamed, stupid, and pissed - all at the same time.

I don't know if I'll ever get over it.

ETA: Big hug for you, FF - you will totally rock it.

[This message edited by Williesmom at 11:52 AM, October 21st (Wednesday)]

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