Thursday, June 16, 2011

i don't feel well

I think very well, but i don't feel well at all. 

Physical sensations i perceive just fine too.  It's not that kind of feeling i don't do well. 

And i have emotions, or rather, maybe, i have moods. 

In fact i can be easily overwhelmed by emotions or moods - i cry at sappy commercials, at news of crisis half a world away, at very happy things also.  On the other hand, I get irritated and angry easily: noise, kids bickering, the talking heads on TV ranting, people in real life behaving poorly, all can set me on edge and rile me up. 

These are the kinds of emotions we have to learn to control or hide growing up, and as adults.  Maybe even moreso now.  It bothers him when i cry, especially if there doesn't seem to him to be a reason for it.  And he has especially wanted me to learn to get away from the irritation and anger.  It makes me snippy and unpleasant to be around and - well - angry. 

So I have gotten better at letting things roll off, at tuning out the irritants, at not tearing up, at closing off the emotions. In some ways this is good - my mood swings are not conducive to a peaceful, pleasant family life.  And it is not useful to let myself be battered around by things that are not directly related or really important to me.  Especially since my mood ends up impacting everyone else around me.

I wonder about the being honest part of all this though.  I do think I hide emotions more now than before.  I don't know where the balance point is; i wonder how much i'm supressing feelings vs. really being better at just not being moody.  Am i tuning out important, relevant things also?

I am not what you would call, "in touch with my feelings."  I live in my head, not my heart.  Situations and events that are close and important to me - I respond to logically and analytically, not through feelings.

I have a friend who, every once in awhile, will ask me how i feel about things, not just what i think about them.  And often i just don't know.  Or it becomes immediately clear that i have a much better idea of what i think about something than how i feel about it. 

And i think, or - I have a feeling - that a there are parts of our dynamic that need to be more about feelings than thinking. 

Thinking leads to questions.  I wonder why he did that?  I wonder what his goal was with that?  What should i read into this?  How does he want me to respond?

How does he want me to respond?  Maybe that's the issue.  Instead of just responding, i first try to figure out how i ought to respond. Or the response that tries to come to the front gets all tangled up in the logical brain before it has a chance to just happen. Feelings just are, they are an honest reaction to things, they are not subject to 'could' or 'should' or 'ought to.'

So i think, or - I have a feeling - that a there needs to be a lot more about feeling than thinking going on.

And i want to be able to feel more of it all.  A lot of it doesn't make sense logically, so the experience must be in the feelings. 


  1. " Feelings just are, they are an honest reaction to things, they are not subject to 'could' or 'should' or 'ought to.'"

    This is such an important piece to the puzzle, but such a hard thing to remember in the moment. Thank you. Feelings stay such a scary thing when this thought process is missing.

  2. well, this certainly strikes all kinds of painful nerves...

    Personally, I'm very good at having feelings.
    I just stink at coordinating them with other people's.

    Here's one that always got me:
    same guy -
    situation #1 - "You should really learn to control your feelings."
    situation #2 - "Why won't you just let go of your feelings?"

    Am I wrong to be confused by this?

    No answers, just a whole lot of commiseration...

  3. Hi greengirl,

    I relate a lot to your struggles with this emotions business
    For me it's about learning slowly but surely to understand where those feelings are coming from. Managing reactions is one thing, but suppressing emotions not so much helpful from my experience. Inevitably I boil over at some point. Everyone has a need for validation in a relationship. It's how we go about expressing ourselves that we are responsible for. Tough at times, but worth it to keep at it.


  4. greengirl,

    This is an interesting post, a very unique way of looking at the subject. Would it be appropriate to say "I hope you feel better soon"?


  5. In my life, expressing/restraining my anger or frustration or even sadness does not go down well. Men don't know what to do with these emotions or holding in of emotions. They need information. I am encouraged to say what I feel: "I am angry." "cindi sad" That opens the door to expressing the emotion further. "Y cindi sad?" So, the negative emotion is communicated but in a way that is controlled and manageable.

    Don't for a moment think that this is easy or that I can always do this. If I contain an emotion (and I still sometimes do that, feeling that my emotions are so very secondary to the events of the day), then the emotion gushes out quite inappropriately later down the track.

    My therapy has taught me too that emotions *must* be expressed and that 'I' (or cindi) statements work best.

    (Note to self: remember this advice!)

  6. Mina,
    Yes - scary and also - there is protection i think - of me, of him...Probably a lot more too. It's one more of those things that i think i conquor then it reappears.

    Do you think he realized how totally contradictory he was being? I think i need to get a handle on having/allowing and recognizing the feelings first - then worry about coordination. Thank you.

    I think you're right - supressing is not helpful - but yes - i need to learn how to tell what's important and what is just a distraction.

    Of course - and i hope i can learn to as well.

    I think that i am no where near this far into understanding or being able to do this. I will try to write about it more - but i have so much trouble even identifying what i feel that i can't begin to express it. Obviously - this isn't a useful way of being and i need to find ways to work on it. Thank you.