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Purging for me was both freeing and terrifying. I was trained from very early days to never touch "her stuff". After she left and I was packing I could only do so much before I would start shaking and have to stop. And there was sooo much of it (you may recall the freezer stories) and that was only a minor portion.

She's been gone 2 years now and I only got rid of the (almost) last of the stuff last weekend. It did feel good to toss that moth-eaten green chair that she used to pile her clothes on into the landfill. But it took an effort. I still have a spare kitchen table that I'm trying to sell.

One side effect of this though is that I also purged a lot of my own stuff like kml mentions. I got rid of roughly 1/3 of the clothes I had and a bunch of stuff from the workshop and garden shed.

Other than what got boxed up for my ex, the bulk of it went to charity, some was set on the side of the street with a "free" sign on it. Theoretically I could have sorted / pre-purged stuff for her but I just couldn't bring myself to sort "her" stuff or make what I figured would be wrong decisions so it all got tossed into boxes. As I wrote to her, I packed things I didn't want around me in a life without her.

There were some laughs like when I found lovely embroidered pillow cases mixed in with a large pile of pickle dishes. D26 remarked "well isn't that where everyone keeps spare pillow cases?" laugh And finding ancient paint brushes in the freezer was amusing too.

We tell people here to purge and make the home "their's" but for some of us even beyond saying goodbye to the memories, there's more to struggle through.

As I tell people, I didn't know I was living under a cloud until I walked in the sunshine.

I remarked to my lawyer that even to me it seemed odd. Me, a moderately successful professional. Nearly 6' tall. Outwardly confident. Her - 4'11" and dumpy - outwardly meek and overwhelmed. But she had power over me and I was terrified of her disapproval. My lawyer said that she'd seen this dynamic before although until my ex blew up during the last meeting about how she felt she wasn't getting enough respect I don't think she believed it.

SIL1 was visiting last week and she remarked that there are pretty much no feminine touches left in the house. It's not a "man-cave" - but to me - it feels like home 'cuz that's what it is.


On BD
H52, W50
T27, M26
S21, D23
BD-9-Mar-16
D-15-Jan-18 Final-19-Apr-18
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Purging was probably the single greatest and most cathartic experience for me. My XH packed everything he "wanted" and set off for all points north and basically left me with my stuff and accumulations from our time together that he no longer wanted. I didn't waste a whole lot of time and I took great pride in throwing away all the personalized cutesy couply Christmas ornaments we'd lovingly selected each year on our anniversary to add to our Christmas tree. I also delighted in taking down all of our couple and wedding pictures and some of the frames I kept, but most of them went to the local thrift store. A very few items were given to the girls (at their choosing, of course) and the rest went to the dump. Oh my word what a glorious experience that was. I did it as I moved out of our marital home to a smaller home of my own. I did it again when I moved from that home to my current home and while most of "him" was gone by that point, there were still a few things that I was holding onto that got the boot in that move.

Today, I have held on to some gifts he gave me: nice jewelry, a lovely collection of ceramic cows (I'm a farm girl, after all...what can I say?), and pictures, mainly because I know the girls will want them some day, but other than that, there isn't much in MY house that even reminds me of him.

Yes, purging is good. smile I'm a HUGE fan!


Me 52, H53
Bomb drop 9/29/2014
Divorce from XH final 12/17/2014
Marriage #2 12/31/2019
5 adult (step)daughters (3 from XH's first marriage, 2 from current H's previous relationships)
6 grandkids
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The great purge. The G would not move out and despite him saying he hadn't much stuff. It was everywhere.

I had to pack his stuff after he left because he was taking so long to collect it. It was torture and traumatic he would turn up unannounced and collect stuff. It was very hard as he raged at me. I texted him "What is it about I do not want to see you again do you not understand?" Make it happen.

It was deliberate abuse and it was threatening and designed to intimidate. There is no doubt in my mind on it at all.

The G bought me gifts before we got M but afterwards they were bizarre things like hand warmers and lampshades. Cutey stuff never came my way. There was no romance at all, only rages and awful accusations.

I still struggle with feeling insignificant and ugly. Above all ugly and rather worthless. I know it's complex PTSD, but knowing what it is, taking extreme care, walking to the pain, none of it makes it stop.

I know I am out of danger but yet I still feel unsafe. My life was threatened. And yes I have had counselling and have been through an abuse programme twice. I have trained to help others, taken active steps and am taking a full on legal course to assist me. But I still feel unsafe. I believe the G is capable of killing me and he has said he will. I think he has done it before and that thought that admission is in my head. Once you know you cannot unknow.

Writing it down or saying it out loud make it seem far out. Far away, unreal but it is reality. One of my support team was counselling an abuse victim who was stabbed by her ex after being hit with a claw hammer. That ex is out on bail and visited the hospital to 'apologise" and ask the tormented to 'drop the charges or get them dropped.'

So what I want to purge isn't physical things or belongings. It's the thoughts, the feelings and the trauma. The trauma of a forced oral cop which may mean that sex is going to be near impossible as a loving experience. The verbal abuse which makes it impossible to recognise and love my body. The emotional abuse which leaves me with full blown anxiety in front of supermarket shelves.

I am not the only one, I am here to say do not repair an M or R based on abuse. Repair yourself as that takes real courage.

The triggers are not in the stuff left behind but in the implanted triggers in the mind. Some of it is very humorous and some of it is pathetic.

It is that I wish to purge, and by my higher spirit I will. I will face each one head on and although I am afraid of my own shadow. I will face it down.

It makes no sense to me at all. But it will gradually come together. I sense I will only be free when the G is truly gone and I am sure he isn't coming back. That may mean I will have to take legal action to do it. I am learning how.

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Freedom is just another word for nothing left to loose.
V 64, WAW


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So my next challenge is to clear away the Cobwebs in my brain because I am enough.

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Freedom is just another word for nothing left to loose.
V 64, WAW


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I am loving this, and reading everyone's answers and thoughts too.

For all of us, finding ourselves again after everything we've been through, is a slow process. For those that have been through something along the lines of what you've been through V, I think it can be harder still perhaps.

But there is also much joy to be had in rediscovering ourselves and finding new aspects of ourselves which make us even more who we are now. I'm very slowly starting to feel solid and safe in myself. That's something I've never felt before up to now.

I'm not quite sure how it happened. I think it maybe started with me trying to put as much emotional distance as possible between myself and XH after October 2015.

I think I did that by finding small things to focus my attention on (painting my front door, chatting with the lady behind the counter for a few minutes whenever I went to do some grocery shopping, doing some work for a couple of hours here and there alongside other people). The only thing I told myself was that I had to be fully present while doing those things, even if it was just for literally two minutes. And then I had to stop and find something that I was grateful for in whatever I had done.

I think that focussing so much on my inner journey so early on had the effect of creating something that was alive and new in me. Even though at the time, it was the smallest seed and I think that only I could notice it.

I remember that I completely lost touch with how I looked. I mean, I would still turn up at work with clean, ironed clothes, brushed hair and makeup on. But I couldn't have told you how I looked, or felt like I related to that side of myself.

I think I was shocked back into that side of myself three or so months after October 2015, at Christmas/New year time, on a night out. It was something a work colleague said to me, a passing comment. That's maybe when I started on my journey to try and inhabit my physical being more, and learn to love and appreciate that more.

I think that slowly exploring and pushing the boundaries of that side of my being, (which was something I'd never done before) has led me to appreciate how strong I can be. Talking about physically here, not emotionally, or mentally.

I still suffer from pain from the back injury that I had when things got super bad with XH. The physio I had was straight to it, and got pretty much instantly (actually a good while before I understood), that it had been caused the the huge amount of stress I had been under.

That was in December 2014. Three and a half years on, I wake up in pain every morning. And I feel so stiff round my midriff just as a matter of fact that it feels like I'm wearing a steel corset.

Anyway, I think I feel a lot more comfortable in my physical being than I have done for many, many years. I am aware of, and appreciate what my body can do, more than I ever have done before in my life. I try and look after it as much as I can in as many ways possible.

It's helped me reconnect with myself in all sorts of ways, but it's also helped me develop a new relationship with myself.

I want to say something else in answer to what you said about facing your own shadow. But I'll gather my thoughts a bit first. And it might even make more sense to read that post first, and then what I'd written above.

Anyway, sending you hugs and strength today.


Me: 48, XH: 42
T: 18 years, M: 15 years

EA/PA 1: 6/2012
EA/PA 2: from autumn 2012-present

BD: 5/2013
ILYBNILWY BD & left: 10/2015

OW conceived: 8/2016
Born: 4/2017

H filed: 7/2017
D final: 28/12/2017
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I am waking again with night terrors. Thinking someone is walking about in the upper part of the house.

Of course if I check there is no one there, just old rafters creaking in the heat. But I have these nightmares that are so vivid that the G is up there and he won't leave as he is claiming squatters rights.

It's 3 in the morning. This time I woke thinking I was being force fed some drugged food, so lucid.

Vivid? IC says this stuff is healing but it's very unnerving.

V


Freedom is just another word for nothing left to loose.
V 64, WAW


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Wow. That must feel really scary. Would you feel better if you had a dog, or security cameras, or a nanny cam upstairs? I'm just thinking of something that would allow you to wake up and know, "No, he's not here" so you could go back to sleep?

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Indeed - from your own support for me with my own dreams I know how unsettling this can be and in my case that's without the overt danger that you feel.

I had yet another one last night myself but relatively mild and so obviously not real (a dragon was a cast member) that I was able to just roll with it. I do have S23 wandering around the house at all hours (made himself chicken ceaser salad at 2:30am)

((V))


On BD
H52, W50
T27, M26
S21, D23
BD-9-Mar-16
D-15-Jan-18 Final-19-Apr-18
I am a storyteller. The story may do you no good.
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Kml I like the idea of a nanny can so I ordered one, a Wi-Fi model.

Thank you Andrew for your support. Dreams are normal processing and it's a good stage as it starts the next stage of recovery. You are ahead of me on the road of recovery.

I didn't wake until 11 am after waking 4 or 5 times last night.

Today's challenge day 30 is to go in my shorts into town to collect the mail. First the house then the village and now town.

I am thinking about doing the Wim Hof program for 12 weeks. The oxygen advantage, to get rid of this last bit of weight.

V


Freedom is just another word for nothing left to loose.
V 64, WAW


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I have been so triggered over the last few days. Clearly the body issue is a really big open sore.

Still a wound.

My anxiety is off the scale.

Haven't slept much and my house is a pit. Needs a day of washing and ironing. Andrew I need your skills.

One pleasurable thing though is the tailoring think.

I bought some new clothes, I also have a pile of clothes that need some professional tailoring done. Beyond button and minor repairs although there are plenty of those.

I have a really bad client case I have let fester it is on my conscience a bit as I usually meet all my obligations. So this isn't like me, every time I open the files I get triggered very badly. No excuses this has to be tackled. Last few times I puked with fear.

I have absolutely no idea why. It isn't a complex case. But I keep avoiding it.

Tomorrow, Monday etc.

This has to be done, I am going to be an adult and whilst I am doing it I will evaluate why this is so triggering.

I make mistakes all the time so not sure why this is so troublesome. But I got that G voice telling me I am incompetent and stupid.

So open sore issue 27 of 100, nasty client paperwork trigger.

V


Freedom is just another word for nothing left to loose.
V 64, WAW


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