How to “safeword” a relationship

I’ve been spending a lot of time on other aspects of my life lately that I’ve been neglecting this blog for eons it seems. What important stuff? You ask. Well, you know, saving money and loosing weight. As it turns out, they kinda go hand in hand. Eat less, weigh less. Anywhoozly, that’s not what I came here to write about. Use of a different kind of safeword in any relationship shall be my main focus today.

Life will always have its ups and downs. Year 2020 is the year where life decided to play a joke on us all. Endured loads of changes since March. By now, you’d think I should adapt to all the changes that were thrown at me, but as it turned out, I had a straw that broke a camel’s back moment this past weekend. I shut down. There wasn’t any shouting nor lashing out, I just went silent. I hid in our bedroom, spaced out, and all the problems that were bothering me, just for a brief moment, went away. I usually spend that time chatting with Dad. But I didn’t want to alarm him that something went wrong, so I just went poof for twelve or so hours. Dad, being who he is, was naturally displeased with my decision. We spoke about what had happend, and as I came to realize today, I may choose to “safeword” in those situations with Dad.

There are constant daily exchanges between Dad and I. Despite him living thousands of miles away, he pretty much knows about my schedule and whereabouts majority of the time. He wanted to make sure that I am in a good place before he goes to sleep. Any problems that came up during work tend to melt away as I chat with him on my way home. Apparently, there is this nonstop engagement that I sometimes need a break from. Didn’t know that it could happen, but it happened. I was afraid to tell him I wanted to disengage so I could have more room to think and sort out my thoughts and emotions. I didn’t want him to worry and I certainly didn’t want to draw his attention. I felt vulnerable, but at the same time I was afraid of myself for lashing out or saying something wrong to offend…I ended up worrying him. Felt bad afterwards and now I learned a better way to go about that problem.

Dad mentioned that in those situations, all I need to do is to alert him that I needed a safe, quiet space to myself. Trust that he will respect that quiet space. When I feel ready to talk, he will listen and offer help when needed. He said that is akin to safeword in a scene. That simple gesture will alow me the space to breathe while not alarming him. We can then regroup later and talk about what had happend. This same concept can be applied to my relationship with Hubby. That way, I can avoid making mistakes in heat of the moment and communicate in a more effective way afterwards. Shall definitely give it a try the next time when I feel like shutting down. Can’t promise I’d do it all the time, but I will try.

Now to make things less serious and slightly more light hearted, I shall think of a funny safeword for those situations…

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