womanhood

a work in progress

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That said.

Because I don’t usually post content like this – I’d just like to say trigger warning here. This post is not to set an example or tell you how to do things. It’s just a story I’d like to share. I’m not the know all for these things. Truly not 🙂

I recently wrote a post on falling in love and being mostly happily married.
It got a fair bit of loving.

But then, the more loving it got, the more I wanted you to know.
Wait. There is also more to it all.

There are a few incredible things our marriage has survived.
You will likely raise an eyebrow.
Or perhaps you will think, “Why is she telling people this?”

My dear reader, I speak simply because it’s the untold story.
The one we hide.
The one we’re embarrassed about.
The one that doesn’t have a place in society unless it’s splashed on Page 3 or Who magazine.

It’s everyday people.
It’s me and you.
And it’s a lot more common than you think.

Our marriage has survived (and flourished in the lessons from):

  1. Self harm – 2 small visible marks on my wrist. 
    Even while I write this, I’m in fear. I don’t know if people want to read this. When I did it, I wanted to be heard. I thought this would make a difference. I thought it would send out a message.
    I was so wrong.
    It filled us with fear. V can’t bear to have a knife block in our home after this. I was struck with what sort of a mother I would become.
    But what I learnt?
    There is a way to speak. A way to be heard. A way to be understood. This isn’t the way. In fact it’s the opposite.
    It said, I don’t respect myself. 
    It said, I’m not level headed when I’m angry. 
    It said, this is the only way I know how to get attention.
    And I don’t want to be those things.
    It’s taken me on a path towards better health, less alcohol, less materialistic crazy consumption and general betterness.If this is you – I’d love to give you a virtual hug. I know the feels.
    Please talk to Kaylene. She’s whom I speak to when I’m in a dark place and she has gotten me through a shit load of stuff.
    Find help. Talking is a GREAT place to start. You have my love and this post is written for you. x
  2. Infidelity – a kiss and a bit more a long time ago. 
    Some would say this isn’t infidelity. I’d say if you saw how hurt V was, you’d disagree. This one has taken me much longer to understand. I’ve come to know there are a few things it could have been about. My little experience in these things. My title change from single to married and the struggle with it. But I think the biggest thing, how unsexy I felt at the time. To get sexy attention is really a ride. It can consume you, because you’ve been hungering for it. (Don’t get me wrong, V never told me I was unsexy, it just didn’t count if the compliments came from him.)
    Because I had always told myself I was unsexy and here was someone new telling me the opposite.
    Because I didn’t like my body and someone found it so very hawt.
    I know now, I’m sexy from the inside.
    Thank god I’ve been doing Reggaeton to keep it a little alive. I’m also from a fairly conservative background, so all these things feel wrong. And if you’re a rebel child, well you know where I was headed.
    Biggest thing for me – keep the sexy alive and well. Keep it alive in your bones, when you dance, with your man or woman and mostly, alive in your mind. Suppress it and it’ll spring up when you’re feeling a little bit randy or weak.
  3. Domestic abuse – V hit me (once). 
    Whoarrrr. V and I have discussed this before. Will we tell our children this? Do we tell our friends? Will they judge us? Me for staying, him for doing? Should I write it here? It’s pretty heavy and deserves a post on it’s own. I left him to take some time away and figure things in my head. I spoke to my counsellor just about daily. He did the same.
    We didn’t involve family or friends – some knew but we didn’t really open a conversation too much.
    When we came back, we came back on the understanding that we wouldn’t bring it up in arguments and fights.
    There were a few things going on for us – I tactically brought it on (yelling and literally telling him to do it) as much as he did. It was not our finest moment. But it did happen.
    For V, forgiving himself has been the hardest thing. I don’t know if he’s quite there yet.
    Since then, we have never gone back to that point. Or even near it.
    We know our tools to go back to.
    We know what is causing us to get angry.
    We know where it’s stemming from so we can nip it in the bud sooner.
    Because it’s not like we’re never mad at each other. If this is you – my heart is hurting for you. Trust me sweetheart, it is much more common than you think (and it goes both ways in a partnership). Us not talking about how to get through it, is NOT HELPING. If you want to leave, if you want to stay – both ways, there is a way.
    I’m not the right person to guide you through this, as much as I want to help with a coffee and a comforting croissant. Our counsellor helped us for this one. But just know, it can all get better. You can live a dreamy life where fights are a barely there thing. You can have a husband who knows when he’s getting angry and becomes self aware. You can be that calm woman who knows how to look after herself and what decisions to make. YOU CAN. And we won’t judge. xx

 

//////

Marriage for us keeps getting better and better.
It’s real. This is real.
I’m not here for show.
But I genuinely feel we’ve travelled a long way V and I.
We got help when we needed it and our marriage is so much better for it.

This one comes with so much love.

xx

K

_______________________

UPDATE
I had a friend of mine ask me about how V felt about this getting posted. I should have mentioned, V and I discussed this post about 3 months back. He and I have often talked about the merits of sharing such an experience and he simply said, “if it’s the truth, it deserves to be out there”. And then I wrote it, scheduled it and held my nerves in anticipation. When it went live, he got the email, read it and said to me, “that was beautifully written”.

After my chat with the friend, I’m thinking to do a V’s version of the post. It’ll be his thoughts on the post – and hopefully, I can give the boys a high five (as much as this blog is about womanhood – it most certainly isn’t anti-male) and some insights into how, the thinking and the after thinking.

xx K

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4 Comments

  1. Sneha

    Maybe I never met anybody as truthfully open as you are about your life. I think beyond these’ taboo ‘truths are other obvious fundamental white truths.. togetherness despite the odds, risking anything for growth in character and so much learning about each other … I admire your sincerity . Unlike so many people, you left no spaces in your lives for judgment by the society which is again admirable:)) God bless you both!:))

    • karishma

      Thanks so much Sneha. It’s a huge compliment to give me – and I’m grateful. I think together, we’ve learnt, evolved and changed and it’s only done us better. I wouldn’t be who I am now without him in my life. Without sounding too corny! xx

  2. Nicole Barnes

    …..after 15 years together our love is deeper than we’d ever known, that came from truth and also pain. One day over coffee, I’ll happily share. You know I am always just a phone call away gorgeous girl xx

    • karishma

      Wow – we haven’t really spoken about this much. I’d love to learn / get some advice 🙂 I’ll pop you an email / SMS and would love to catch up (I know it’s school holidays so guessing you might also be busy!) – but will persist 😉 xx K

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