|from where else? Bing|
Trusting your gut.
Many of us do it without giving it a second thought. Maybe you did it last weekend when you made your football picks. Thankfully, my Giants didn’t have to play and I was saved that humiliation. I can’t say the same for this week.
Let’s take it a bit further. Perhaps you trusted your gut on your way to work this morning and you left a few minutes early. You don’t really know why, but your instinct told you it was best to walk out your front door five minutes earlier than normal, so you did. You didn’t question it. You just got in car and left. Maybe you avoided a traffic jam. Or even a car accident. You’ll never know.
Many moms understand this on an even deeper level. A mother’s instinct, that gut feeling, can tell you something is wrong with your child. It can scream at times. It alerts us before something has happened to our precious little ones.
Then, there are people like me.
I managed to screw up my God given gift. Not through any fault of my own though. Mine was a wreck thanks to relational trauma caused when I found out about Devin’s sex addiction. The PTSD from the trauma caused me to become hypervigilant. I acted on every suspicion I had about Devin.
I never allowed myself time to relax and settle back down. I lived in an almost constant state of anxiousness. If I suspected Devin was surfing porn, I’d run to the computer and check. I’d spend hours wasting away trying to dig up some kind of evidence of him looking at porn or having an online affair. That led me to forums on sex addiction and betrayal. I kept myself in a negative mindset.
Then, Devin would do something completely innocent but to me, it was a red flag. I’d be back at the computer again. Wasting my time and energy. Every time I closed my laptop, I felt sad and defeated. Sometimes, I was even disappointed I didn’t find anything. At least if I found something, I wouldn’t have squandered away so much time for nothing.
Eventually, it dawned on me. I couldn’t trust my gut anymore. I lost the ability to know when something was “off” with Devin. Those of you married to an addict know they have “tells.” Things they do or say when they are headed down the wrong path in their recovery.
When I wasn’t able to quiet my mind enough to calm it, I knew things had to change. I stopped being hypervigilant. It was a difficult journey for me. It meant entering a world of not knowing. Not knowing what Devin was or was not doing was frightening. It meant learning how to trust. I had to begin placing my belief in him and in myself.
I had to hope he would come to me when things were headed down a slippery slope. I also had to believe that I could trust my gut.
In time, my gut instinct came back. I could see clearly when Devin’s recovery wasn’t going as well as it should be. I trusted my instincts and talked to him when I felt it was necessary. Each time it’s been for good cause. Then came the time I hoped for, he came to me.
I think it’s okay to trust. It’s also okay to verify, with your spouse’s knowledge…none of this spyware crap unless you’re both on board with it. To me, if you’re spying on your spouse because you’re afraid they’ll act out again or because they’re not working they’re program then you need to have a serious talk with your spouse. Not spy on them. You’ll just drive yourself bananas. If they want to act out, they will. Not to mention, you’re expecting transparency from them. Shouldn’t they get it from you too?
Devin and I have an agreement when it comes to trust but verify: If I have a feeling he’s surfing, or I trigger and it results in me looking at any of his devices or tracking him on his phone, then I tell him within twenty-four hours.
Although, I can’t recall the last time I’ve done either of those things. My gut instinct has been very calm. I like it that way.