Tuesday, December 8, 2009

A Change in Plans

I had planned to publish a post today on the Entitlement of this country and how it is affecting family life in a negative way but it just didn't feel right to do that today - maybe I'll post it later this week. I can't talk about entitlement, or warn of its dangers, when I am struggling with the very same thing right now.

As I have said before, NFP has been a blessing and a cross for me to bear. I am aware of the cyclical changes in my body which helps ease my mind about some symptoms that would worry others. On the other hand, even with my treatment of healthy diet, exercise and progesterone cream (natural because synthetic can cause some bad side effects), I cannot get rid of two of my symptoms - fatigue and irritability. For those of you who know STM, my luteal phase is all over the place on some cycles. There is a definite temperature shift but it doesn't always stay up. It is also the phase I have the most fatigue and irritability. I know it is from my cycle, but that doesn't make it any easier for me or my husband to handle.

Off the pity train and on to the confession part. Even though God has blessed me with the knowledge of my body to the point where I am at peace with it and what God gives me each day, I tend to get a bit demanding. I fall into the bad habit of feeling entitled to help. Okay hubby, you don't feel like crap right now so I am entitled to your attention and support. You need to love and care for me! Even though I don't say it that bluntly, I know my attitude is selfish in desiring love and support without wanting to even try to think about how to show love in return. It's the Jenelle show and no one else is as important. I've gotten better about turning to God in my pain, but my emotional issues are another story. I never stay in the ultra-selfish mode for long, but it is long enough to cause damage to myself and my husband.

Needless to say, I'm frustrated that these symptoms aren't going away. At this point I'm not looking for medical advice but I would love some pointers if you know how to diffuse a tough emotional situation. Any tips on how to stay away from selfish emotional temptations? Like a quick prayer or saint to learn about who had similar temptation?


  1. I'm the same way with my husband. its not right and I always feel guilty but somehow I rationalize it since I have to bare the physical pain of children (or cycles) he should bare the physical pain of being nice to me and putting up with me.
    bad logic, I know. and I know I shouldn't but sometimes I'm too hard on myself too and I need to lean on him for support.

    as far as "tricks" to diffuse emotional situations, I'm horrible about this too! the best I usually do is diffuse it in the moment by physically distracting myself, but then I always bring it up later, so its only like a half solution.
    this past Sunday, however, I had success! I had an emotional trial in mass of all places and I was able to just literally offer any injustice and suffering I felt up to God. I've tried it before and it works like 50% of the time, but I think since I was in mass and was just staring at His presence I was completely able to override the emotions. I didn't even bring it up later. Until now of course :)

    if i had any other advice i would offer it!

  2. I have had the same experience in Mass before and been fine. It is the remembering to say a quick one liner to God before demanding something from my husband that is the problem. Especially since my hubby is great (as I'm sure yours is) and knows I need support and will offer it if I give him a chance.
    Knowing that we, as women, are created by God to be receivers of love (not demanders) helps me when I feel guilty about accepting so much help on my bad days. If I receive his love (and don't demand it) than no one has to feel guilty and everyone feels special - my husband desires to protect me and that includes pain.

  3. "Okay hubby, you don't feel like crap right now so I am entitled to your attention and support. You need to love and care for me" You sound a lot like me. Except that sometimes I *am* that blunt.

    One thing that has been very helpful for me is to recognize when I am feeling negative emotions due to a physical issue rather than the situation itself. So I might feel upset with my husband over X but if I think about it I realize that I am really only upset because I feel horrible and X is just what I have found to latch onto.

    A huge problem for me is being clingy. I am fine when I am healthy, but when the pain of cramps were a part of daily life I simply felt needy *all* the time. Since I have been doing much better I am more aware of the fact that so much of my emotional issues are tied directly to the physical and I make a point to explain things to my husband clearly. I will let him know when I am having cramps so that he can know what to expect. And then when he needs a break he can let me know as well. :-)

    It is good to get as much spiritual benefit as one can from suffering, but in terms of solving the problem nothing has worked for me like recognizing the fact that the emotions reflect my body's sickness rather than my spirit's. Then I can move on and offer my emotional suffering to God along with the physical.

    I am far from perfect, but that is what has worked best for me so far.

    I really appreciate your honesty and you've inspired me to go out on a huge limb and post about my situation with endo and the times that I would ::gasp:: recommend that Catholic women use hormones.

  4. Well since we are on the subject of cycles, it does help that my husband is "in the know" Unfortunately, this month I missed a few days when I was supposed to be using my progesterone cream and we both noticed. I was tired and moody and my temperature was not staying up like it should.

    If it makes you feel any better about your "huge limb" my NFP-only, Catholic OB/GYN recommended I go on the pill as one of the treatment options. You can read the whole story of that at: http://24andprolife.blogspot.com/2009/08/fun-update.html

  5. I actually just went through your archives reading your story. Forgive the stalkerishness?

  6. that's fine...our stories seem to overlap a bit so hopefully that means we will learn from each other?