You do not act to intentionally harm a WS; you act to intentionally take care of yourself and your own needs as the priority at this time. Which you absolutely deserve. And your need for safety says, "All avenues of contact with OW including clubs, jobs, and connections are over." If your WS claims you are punishing him, you know where your feelings fit on his priority list. Imagine the future slippery slopes that this continued selfish thinking will lead him down! Yet again! Do not allow this. Stand up for yourself.
Yep. I totally agree. Yesterday I was feeling especially unsettled all day. I kept asking myself what was bothering me and it finally clicked. Last night was the first time he was scheduled for check-in duty at the theater since last week when he took her phone call on the way home. The thought of him going back, especially after she called to ask if she could be there sometimes (a bull-sh** excuse to call him), had me triggered. It seemed too painful to sit here on a Friday night while he was off at the theater where she could possibly show up.
So, when he got home from work, I told him I had been thinking about what would make me feel safe and protected. I told him my IC advised that I need to set my boundaries and leave him to honor or ignore them, it's on him. At the same time, I would be remiss if I didn't clue him in on what would make me feel safe. I told him that his volunteering at the theater was too much for me. It's a job that they used to do together. She could still show up, even though he and I both told her not to. And, the time spent driving back and forth is when he answered her call last week. He's also cast in a show that is scheduled to start rehearsals at the end of the summer (postponed from last fall due to Covid). I told him I may ask him to resign from that show as well. He's been cast in yet another show that is supposed to begin rehearsals next spring. That one was already postponed from this year due to Covid (which he brought home to us from the three rehearsals they had). I told him I "might" be OK with him doing that show, depending upon what kind of progress I see since it's still a year away.
He immediately went into defense mode. He said, "OK, but I can't just cancel on them tonight. We don't even have enough people signed up. They'll resent me if I cancel now. Blah blah blah." After a few more exchanges, he picked up his phone and said, "Well let me see what I can figure out." He said they had two people and could pull in some ushers if necessary for the check-ins. He sent an email letting them know he couldn't be there. He said, "OK, I'm not going tonight just like you asked." I said, "Yeah, after a lot of back-and-forths and excuses." He said, "I want to make you feel protected and safe, but..." I said, "I can't deal with buts. I told you how you going there made me feel. Instead of telling me you get it, you understand, you want me to feel safe, you'll look at the list and figure it out, you pushed back. That tells me you still don't fully get it." We had a long discussion after that. He agreed that he should have started with, "I get what you're saying. I'll figure it out." He says his brain snaps into "analytical mode" and starts churning through the logistics instead of addressing my emotions first. He said interpersonal communication skills are one of the things he wants to work on with his IC.
We're both signed up to volunteer tonight and see the show for free afterward. I told him I would agree to go and do it, although being there might not be easy. He took his name off the list for tomorrow and is making sure the next two weekends are covered without him. I still don't think he truly "gets" my trauma. I think he's avoiding it so he doesn't have to feel it himself. He has his first IC appointment on Monday and our priest friend is supposed to call and check in with him this weekend. I'm really not trying to rug-sweep this, and I'm not allowing him to either. I know that he is a deeply flawed person. I've always known that, just not to this degree. I can't expect him to suddenly wake up and right 60 years of wrongs in one fell swoop. I know it will take time. I just need to stay vigilant in expressing what I need and what I will and will not tolerate.
In other news, the new couch is here! I insisted on dumping the old one after he said they had sex on it. That piece of crap is gone. It's out of my house. I'm sitting on the new one and thoroughly enjoying its comfort!