Silence. To fill or not to fill? That is the question

1 The two sides of silence

Silence can be menacing or silence can be peaceful. Silence can be comforting or silence can make you really uncomfortable and so you blurt your stuff into the silent room because you can’t stop talking!…..breathe…. Silence. To fill or not to fill? That is the question. In marriage number One I was married to someone who could not bear the silence. Music. Tv. Nervous laughter. Small talk. Anything to stop that silence. Now I realise that he feared silence. And so did I. In marriage number 2 silence was used for control. A common psychopathic trick. The silence is unsettling. Only the sound of those eggshells cracking underneath your bare feet.


The sound of silence

What is silence? There is no such thing. I love to sit in nature – but nature is far from silent. If we ever find ourselves somewhere completely silent (usually on holiday if we take a trip out somewhere desert like and hot) we panic. We rush to fill it! It’s possible to go through our entire day listening to music in shops, at home with the tv as background. Constant noise going into our brain that we don’t even register. All this subliminal messaging. Next time you are sitting in a nature (and if you never do, start to!) try this anchoring activity. Sit still. Switch off your phone. Make sure you are sitting alone. Close your eyes and notice 5 noises. Then stretch your hearing to hear those noises at the edge of your hearing. What are they? This activity helps you to anchor yourself exactly where you are – and you realise how much noise you simply blank out.

The sound of grief

The pause

One of the things I never had with PTSD following abuse was an off switch. Or a pause. If I had been able to press pause then I wouldn’t have made rash, impulsive decisions that harmed me and my family. But I try not to think in ‘If only’ mode. These hurried impulsive decisions are all part of reaction to loss of any kind. If you are going through a loss PLEASE pause before any major decision. This pause helps us to regroup our tattered and shredded minds. The loss exploded our thoughts. Take time to survey the wreckage of your life without panic (if possible.) Don’t numb it. Listen to that silence. It’s always the most silent AFTER an explosion. Pause for thought. I wish I could press pause on my life and replay it right this time. But that is another ‘If only ‘ thought and I said I didn’t listen to them….


The power of silence

Silence can be used for manipulation. Pregnant pauses after your comments by friends and colleagues hold judgement or shame. Refuse to accept those judgements. The silence after a physical attack is the worst sound in the world. All that silence as we come back to the real world after disassociation and assess our bodies for the physical damage. In these moments, silence can actually be triggering. Then we have the silence of friends after our loss. Do they really not know what to say? Or are they protecting themselves from feeling uncomfortable by ignoring us and how we feel?

Silence can shame

Touch talks

Silence can be incredibly healing and life giving. Silence by someone’s bedside when they are very ill or dying can make them cry. This is because if we hold someone’s hand and sit in silence with them, WE ARE WITH THEM IN SPIRIT. Touch talks. I learnt this as I sat with my father whilst he died. That silence was a powerful comfort to both of us. Next week, take time to notice the types of silence around you. Name the silence. Seek it out. The positive kind.

Alice Smith 2019

l oss #grief #survivor #domesticabuse #domesticabusesurvivor #lifecoach #coach #midlife #writer #narcissist #coercivecontrol #dating #menopause #forties #fifties #wisewoman #empowerment #wellness #mentalhealthawareness #mentalhealth #women #dating #marriage #divorce #relationships #love #death #soul #spirit #shamanism #lostandfound #recovery #mentalhealthrecovery #ptsd #selfhelp #enlightenment #femalewriter #poet #sober #sobriety #silence #anchor #deathofaparent

Published by 361one

when I write I am a king. Listen to more at 361 live podcast

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