"We Became Parents and Fell Out of Love"

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Trevor's Turn

This is without a doubt the hardest thing I have ever had to go through. Yvette was my closest friend. I know Alison is raising Donovan by herself and I want to be there for both of them, but most days it's more than I can handle.

My nephew and I are so lucky that Alison loves him and that she's so ­happy to have a child. And I want to feel the same way, but sometimes it's hard. I love Donovan very much, but he also really reminds me of my sister, and I'll admit, right now that fact often makes me shut down. Alison will be playing with him or they'll be jumping around to music and she'll try to get me to join in, but I'm often not in the mood for it. I end up thinking about Yvette and feeling even more distant from Alison.

Alison likes attacking problems head-on. I'm more laid back. I put stuff aside to deal with later. I do that with my emotions and she can't stand it -- she can't stand that I won't talk to her about my grief and Yvette. It's a problem for her, so she attacks it and tries to "solve" it for me, and I retreat. We go around and around till she pushes too hard and I yell, "What do you want from me? Back off!" Then she's upset for the rest of the week.

She says I'm shutting her out, but that's not my intention. She takes it so personally that I won't talk about my feelings -- but I don't even talk to my best friends about personal stuff. Yvette was the only one I confided in, and that was partly because she knew not to push. Alison wants me to open up to her now that Yvette is gone, but it's just not how I am.

Then there's housework. To me, it's not something to get worked up about. It eventually gets done. Alison is a neat freak, but before we lived together she never made a big deal about the house. And if things got out of control, I just hired a cleaning lady. I think she starts in about it now because she can't deal with the way I've been acting since Yvette died. But I'll do housework -- I may not love it, but I'll take care of whatever Alison needs help with. She just has to tell me what it is. I feel like her real issue is me not being "the same person" she fell in love with. Well, she hasn't exactly been the person I fell in love with, either. Every time I do something she doesn't like, she jumps down my throat.

There are times I really think our ­relationship is over. But we've gotten this far, we've gone through so much in seven or eight months, maybe we can make it work...I don't know.

Continued on page 3:  The Counselor's Turn

 

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