Thursday, March 5, 2009

Need Some Help

Me, I'm ok. M...not so much. In fact, I am pretty damn worried about him.

For me, work has reached pre-pregnancy levels of frenzy and activity and honestly doesn't give me much time to think about anything else during those hours. Which is probably good. I am jumping on the train today to go get this balloon pulled out of my uterus and I am guessing I am going to feel even better after that happens. And lostintranslation just informed me that I am the recipient of not one, but 2 blog awards (thank you!) so, I'll get on those ASAP.

But M - he is sad. Sad. Sad. We've talked about this before, these fairly regular bouts of melancholy. This is not that. He has convinced himself that his job (that he loves) is on shaky ground (new editor-in-chief, new ways of doing things which essentially amount to weekly reports of what you have done over the week and a subsequent staff meeting to talk about those tasks - all of this imposed upon an office that has been editor-less for over a year. No. It's not going well.)

That lack of job security is not made any lighter by the daily barrage of news coverage of the recession, human interest stories of people losing everything and that mantra, have you heard it? that seems to be everywhere coming out of every set of lips, I HATE it:

"Well, just be thankful you have a job...."

Sorry. I think this is an awful, awful thing to say. To anyone. Even to yourself. Because it opens the door to so many negative things. What? It's OK that someone or someplace doesn't value you or the work you do? It's OK to be asked to do twice as much in half the time for a portion of the money? And you should say, "well gosh, thank you sir may I have another?" NO! It is not ok. It is what is happening for a lot of people right now.

But that does not make it ok.

So, work. That's one major stressor for M. Of course, missing the girls, thinking about the girls, thinking about what could have been with the girls, the pain of the absence of the girls - this lays the foundation for every Sad. Every day. Worry about what happens next. If anything will ever happen next. The idea that we may always and forever be childless - That makes it so much worse. But what really has me quite worried is this new emotion, expressed only last night.

That he is feeling utterly and completely alone.

As in, totally abandoned by friends and family. Completely without anyone to talk to or reach out to. I know this isn't true. YOU know this isn't true. Closer to the truth is that M has always been a very private person, not all that willing to talk about things that affect him most deeply, (you may have even been the recipient of a snarl or a yell if you tried to ask) and people remember that and try to respect that (or at least not get yelled at). But what I heard last night was honestly a cry for help. One that my words cannot soothe, and my rationale puts no dent into.

This is not the M. I know and love. The person who used to frustrate me beyond belief because he always used to believe that things would work out. Now, he is overwhelmed by a cloud of bad luck, which also includes pretty much every electrical appliance or piece of technology he loves and relies on crapping out this week. ("Everything I love is just systematically being taken a away from me.....")

It seems, while I may not want to talk about it, M wants to. Very much so. With anyone who will listen.

That's not to say that he is going to open his heart to you. But he NEEDS to know that people ARE here. Have been here. And want to know how he is. Please, if you know M. in real life, take a minute or two and drop him a line, give him a call, shoot him a text. (Not all today, please, because he will become suspect. And please, please, PLEASE don't mention that you read something on my blog) but sometime this week, next week, next month. Anytime, really. The hurt doesn't go away. We just get better at hiding it.


Anonymous said...

I don't know M (or you) but I hope things improve and the funk $#@!'s off.

Bluebird said...

Oh, sweetie - I *wish* I knew M in real life so there was something I could do to help. It's almost worse, in a way, to watch those we love struggling. Especially those we are used to being the strong ones. It's so hard to know what to do for them - especially guys, I think. Is there anything we can do to help you right now, too?

I so hear you on the job situation. No, it's not enough to be thankful to have a job. Yes, that's a very good thing right now, for which I'm thankful! But that doesn't make everything okay. I've been complaining of being exhausted lately - worked to the core. My family says to me? "Well, thank goodness for job security!" Um, yeah.

Two Shorten the Road said...

Aw, I'm sorry he's feeling that way. Is he the type who would go talk to a pro about his feelings? It sounds almost like an anxiety issue, the feeling of being alone. (It's a common disorder in my family.) I hope he starts to feel better soon. And even though the economy's crap right now, it can't hurt for him to at least *look* for new gigs, right?

lostintranslation said...

Oh, that's tough. I don't have any real words of wisdom, hope some of his real life friends will be able to take a 'long walk on the beach' with him. It's so hard to see your man down, I always get very sad when that happens (luckily not that often). Give him a good hug and hang in there. Thinking of you.

Somewhat Ordinary said...

I'm so sorry your husband is hurting and feels alone. I know it must be tough for you as you are still mourning as well. I wish I knew you guys because I would let him talk to me!

I SO agree with you on the job situation. I was laid off and had to take a job that is pretty much beneath my level of experience and that I have no interest in. Anytime I bitch and moan about it people say that I should be thankful that I have a job. Well, yeah I don't want to be out of work again, but I'm not content with doing something that sucks so bad. And, while I'm in a better place than some others it doesn't make this situation any easier.

Lori Lavender Luz said...

Holding both you and M in my thoughts. You and he are being supported by people who care about you.

annacyclopedia said...

Like Bluebird, I wish I knew you both in real life so I could do something constructive. I will be keeping M in my thoughts and prayers and hoping he finds some outlet for what he's going through and some way to know that he is not all alone.

Mick said...

Oh God. I know exactly how he feels. It's really important to know that there are people out there who REALLY care. Makes me sad just thinking about it.

"Think yourself lucky you've got a job," I agree with you. That is a crock of s*it.

Give your husband a 'manly' pat on the back from me :-)

Kami said...

Oh, I feel so bad for M. He has no escape from his grief when work is a chore. Would he consider being a guest blogger or start his own? Research has shown that bloggers are happier because (they surmise) they have an extended social network.

I know my husband could relate to a lot of what M is going through. He had a good job when we were trying after Ernest died, but he has had those horrible jobs too that just suck the life out of you.

You are in my thoughts, as always.

Anonymous said...

so strange. M has been on my mind lately; even more than you...isn't that weird? i will email him soon; maybe drinks next week even; depending on how ya'll feel. (cringe. did i really just say ya'll?) oh man we can totally talk about how my dream job, and big idea, has been stolen...,8599,1882569,00.html?cnn=yes hah. sorry. lame humor. for realz though, drinks on me if you are game.

Dani819 said...

You know, I keep hearing, and am beginning to witness for myself, that as grief gets a bit softer for the moms among us, the dads get hit hard, as if they can finally allow themselves to feel some of what's been lurking there all along. I am so sorry to hear that M's in a funk- hope that those who read this start to reach out.

Anonymous said...

This post describes how my DH has bene lately, it is so hard to see the one who was always optimistic, just be so utterly tired and worn out emotionally.
I petitioned for IRL friends to please step up and call my DH, ask him how is doing, go get a drink, whatever it takes. It is helping and I hope that your sweet M, can get some much needed support.
It crushed me to see my DH just so lost, we just cant help each other all the time, we are both grieving, and scared that we will be childless forever.
I am thinking of you and M, please know that we are here, let M know that we are here. Much love dear.

Barbara said...

I agree with Danielle, It's as if they have been holding on for us to feel stronger so that they can fall apart for a while. Maybe that's what he needs?

Counselling or a blog? My blog has been my lifeline. Some sort of outlet.

Wishing you both wellness.


Skerry said...

No help from me, but I did want you to know that I check in on you daily and I continue to keep you and M in my thoughts and prayers.

dana said...

I'm sad for M.

And you. It's an altogether different kind of pain to watch this happen. Going thru it now w/ my dh.

I hope his friends, family and those he's close to step-up and help him. Even those of us who are the most private (am one of them) need others at our worse times - just to know they're there helps. As others have suggested, perhaps a blog as an extra outlet to "put it all out there"?

The job issue is bullshit. I finally knocked down that mantra on Thursday and my "fight or flight" reflexes kicked in....turns out, in my case, the fight was worth it. Hang in there, M.

I'm sorry I'm not much help. But I will keep you both in my thoughts and prayers. *hugs for you and M.

Cara said...

The "Just be glad you ...." statement is so hurtful. Fill in the blank with anything: have a job, can get pregnant, didn't know them better, hadn't set up the nursery...etc.

They all suck and all those people deserve to be punched!

xoxo to you and M.

chicklet said...

We have friends who are going through some pretty horrible shit, and he got like M did. So she took to emailing and calling his friends and telling them he needs them. They then stepped up. It didn't solve everything, but she took it into her own hands because men are stupid and wont' ask for help, and won't offer it more than once. The emotional stuff they avoid. So she pushed them that he needed it. So what you're doing is good here.

nancy said...

I wish I knew M and I could help.

Crazy suggestion, has he ever thought of blogging? Blogging and staying anonymous may be better for him so he can "get it out" yet still remain private. I know it's an oxymoron to say that, but getting to write it all out totally helps.

teeny question ... you sign your blogs as "m" and you talk about "M". Are you two just both Ms?

Anonymous said...

"just be thankful you have a job..." this is what i hear from my bosses more & more often - so familiar and is too sad…
I hope things are to improve for M soon; it's a blessing you have each other.

Mrs. Spit said...

Support group? I'm not a support group person - or at least I didn't think I was, but Mr. Spit found it enormously helpful, which surprised me, as he's so private as well.

I'm sorry. Men, if they get any attention and support at all are believed to be largely peripheral to the entire baby loss process.

Queenie. . . said...

I hear you on the job stuff--thanks for voicing that. I've been feeling the same way.

Would he blog? That might help. Or therapy? I know that people just don't know what to say when you've lost a baby, and this sometimes results in them saying nothing at all. I'll be it's compounded if you're a man, because society is so much less inclined to provide a lot of emotional support to men. I hope he gets the support he needs.

m said...

you guys, thank so much for your help and your suggestions. Job anxiety seems to have subsided a little. That helps. Going to a professional (therapist, counselor, et al) was not a suggestion that was embraced BUT I think I MAY have gotten a small "well, maybe" at the suggestion of acupuncture to relieve some of the tension, grief and stress.

Having M start his own blog got a hearty guffaw. As you can see, he's not one to share his feelings, even anonymously. Which is so ironic since he is probably the most sensitive, empathetic sorts I know - male or female.

Friends and family calling has helped a LOT. A great deal. I hope it is something that can be sustained. We have made more of a concerted effort to say YES when people invite us out. Less time on the couch and more time engaged in life seems to be another step in the right direction.

Once again, thank you so much for your kind words and your advice. It all provided a very nice intro into conversations we needed to have.