Has anyone’s AVM ordeal (the symptomatic period or the recovery period) interfered with anyone’s relationship with their ‘significant other’ (whether it is a boyfriend or girlfriend, ‘casually’ dating, spouse, or partner)? If so, how have you effectively resolved or handled the situation?
Months ago, I had read that it is important to maintain relationships during the recovery process. (I have found that to be true. We all know that losing a relationship with ‘so called’ friends or other ‘black souls’ is often ‘hard’ (to say the least & put it nicely).) Although it sounds ‘selfish’, one DOES need time to ‘get a grasp’ on this (for themselves and for others) and that seems to have a negative impact on others (unintentionally offends &/or ‘alienates’ others, gives them the wrong impression or false assumptions, etc.). Anyone got any tips on how to deal with / handle this struggle? How does one make them understand this (‘the withdrawlness’) is not about them directly; rather, it is more about the time needed to cope with all this (the need to understand, cope with the feelings / emotions, find out how to ‘manage’ this by resolving emotional & physical ‘issues’, etc.)? Any tips (specific phrases - since men and women have their own language- a good example of the different language is the TV commercial where the daughter walks in and informs her parents that she just got accepted to a ‘good’ college and the dad interprets it as her saying ‘rich, expensive college’) on how to get them to ‘get’ (comprehend & fully understand) this aspect?
Although I have no problem (no negative views) on the aspect of people taking the necessary steps to ‘assure’ others on anything/something, I have NEVER been the type of person that can nor would ‘jumps through hoops’ very long to ‘prove’ something to others… and I find it even more so a ‘less tolerable’ task to engage in or endure now that I am recovering from a brain injury.
Case in point:
I dated a guy for a while (before my AVM injury ordeal) whom I ended up really caring about because he has a 'great heart'; however, I have UNINTENTIONALLY hurt him (which GREATLY bothers me) during my recovery period post craniotomy. I have a STRONG 'need to protect' and in my efforts to 'protect' him from being subjected to 'bull crap', etc. and my own 'self perservation' (in regards to 'salvaging' some dignity), I tried keeping him 'at arms length' to shield him from not being subjected to nor having to put up with any unwarranted bull crap 'treatment' from my mom. (I love my mom but my mom is not the 'sweet, cookie baking, nuturing grandmother' type.) Knowing that the people I care about were 'safe' (protected and shielded) allowed me the 'peace' and the ability to focus on recovering. (When I first got out the hospital, I really didn't have the 'energy' to 'shield and protect' anyone. Even now, I find it requires a lot of my unexpendible energy.) My attempt to 'protect' him didn't work, as it gave him the wrong impression & ultimately ended up pushing him away. (The pushing him away part isn't what bothers me, as I'd much rather him be happy and having fun instead of waiting around and having an 'injured' girlfriend; rather, it is the misconception - him viewing this as a personal 'insult' on his behalf - that greatly bothers me.) Even though I've tried to make him understand that it has nothing to do with issues stemming from him, he still takes this (my not seeing him) extremely personable. I feel so 'inadequate' now because of the 'limitations' (AKA: deficits) I have now. My 'withdrawl time' during my recovery is partly due the self consciousness that I have over my 'deficits'; which, in turn, I am trying to salvage my dignity. ('Self perservation' does naturally and automatically kick in; therefore, superseding all other things).
So how does one maintain the relationship while one is recovering? (I know 'communication' is the key to resolving misunderstandings but it is apparent that what I'm saying is being interpretted differently.) What specific things have you done to 'preserve' your relationship?