I’m not sure it’s OK to spend so much time processing. But, I have tried to listen to myself and honor myself and give myself empathy.
Weirdly, I have been watching Glee, the first season on Netflix. This show began around the same time that my X left me. Well, it started just before, but he hated it, so I barely enjoyed it. Then he left, and Glee was the way to express my pain. Every song was like a way for me to cry.
So, here I sit, watching season 1 over again, and I am still crying at those songs, only I’m not nearly as upset as I was, it’s more like memory crying. It’s helping me remember the real pain I was going through, and to give myself empathy for that pain. I don’t think my X will ever understand love, and what it really is. I’m not sure I do, but I sure loved who I thought he was. And I was crushed when I found out he wasn’t that person. I really wanted him to be that person. I wanted him to be the man I loved, with all my heart.
2 years later, I know he wasn’t that person. I loved an illusion. He is still pretty messed up and still probably lies about me and who he perceives me to be. But, I don’t really care anymore. Or, rather, it’s the only thing left that bothers me, if I’m going to be honest. I wish, often, that I’d like to talk to the girlfriend and his friends that he’s made, so they will know who I am. I’ve been coming to an acceptance that will never happen the way I imagine it. In the spirit of inviting my feelings in, I’ve been exploring those feelings. I talk to these women in my head, K and E, and tell them my side. I agree that this is stupid and a waste of time, but I am honoring this need and conducting these talks as if they were really happening, so I can process it and get over it. It goes like this:
K: So, I want to know why your marriage didn’t work out, he’s such a great guy, we’re amazing friends and I really don’t get how you can let a guy like that go.
Me: Well, there’s more to the story. I am not sure what he has told you about me.
K: It’s not important. He says he felt unloved all the time.
Me: I highly doubt that since he never tried. He just kept finding other relationships instead of actually talking to me about his issues. He cheated and blamed me for it. Bottom line.
K: Well, I agree that married people shouldn’t cheat but..
Me: But what? Would you have dated him knowing he was married and living at home? Apparently lots of women will do that. I guess men, too, what do I know? All I know is I was doing my very best and going through a LOT of crises, but instead of being there for me, he was fucking other people. Nothing pretty or good about that, and there is NO excuse for it. I am not telling you he is a bad person. I won’t say that. I am telling you what happened. One day I caught him again, and he left, saying that he chose to leave anyway. He said he was in love with her and he left. He told my daughter she’d like it better there and she could go with him!! He and I said a lot of nasty things, too. My daughter is still pretty traumatized.
K: But why did he cheat so often. What did you do that made him?
Me: You don’t make choices for other people. I was not to blame for what he did. He chose to find other women through our whole marriage rather than actually be with me. He has a pattern. He sleeps with someone and decides he is in love with them. When the flush of new wears off, he gets sick of it and realizes he’s not in love. The only reason I lasted is because I had his children in a vain attempt to keep him. I should have known when I asked him early on if he’d leave me if I didn’t get pregnant and he didn’t really answer it. He would have. The charm had worn off, but he wanted children more than me. So he was willing to get those kids at the price of my happiness, and his own.
K: So, he says you kept seeing each other for months afterward.
Me: We were both very confused. I wanted him to love me, but he wanted sex.
K: So he used you? That isn’t like him.
Me: Yeah, actually, it is like him. That is him. He uses and leaves. E is doing the right thing, not getting more involved or living with him. I think if she did, he’d sleep with other women.
K: He’s a great friend though. He’s so good to me and the kids.
Me: I’m sure he is. I am not telling you anything but what you wanted to know. He asked me once if we could be friends. I decided we can’t be. Maybe when the kids are grown up we can get along, but I am not interested in being friends with anyone who could cheat on his wife and walk away from children who needed a family, most especially Eli. So as good as he might be as a friend to you, he was not a good friend to me and he hurt our children so much, and me so much. He was cold, heartless and mean. And he hates to know that about himself, but what he did makes me never want him as a friend. It would be one thing to realize after trying and counseling that your relationship is not working, but to fuck other people, tell them you loved them, etc, and knowingly leaving your children who need you, especially your autistic kid. It just makes him scum in my book. I’m glad he has friends, and I don’t begrudge you that relationship, but I can’t be and will never be a friend to a person like him.
I know, it’s not a real conversation, and it will never happen. But for now, it satisfies a part of me to tlak that out. I can fulfill a wish without actually hurting anyone and help to heal myself
K nor E will ever ask me. They think I’m the bad guy, and that’s OK. My children will prove that I’m not a bad person in any way. If they’d like to talk to me someday, fine. If they never do, fine too. It does bother me that a friend of his that I was once friends with too, thinks there is something wrong with me, but you know what? Again, not my issue..she doesn’t have to like me for me to like myself. This is a very important thing for me to get. It’s OK to honor my feelings of wishing to impart the information from my side. I know that it would not help anything to do so, and no one needs me stepping in and telling them how life is. They can live their own, and I will live mine. I’ll figure this out.
I invited the feeling in, I have been playing with it all. It does indeed help.
I like taking care of these emotions, it clears stuff out, it makes me more open to the world again and a lot less sitting inside myself freaking out about not being able to talk to these people and defend myself some how. I don’t need to, really. I just need to work it out for myself and get past things. It frustrates me at times that it takes me so very long to work through things, but you know what? I’m doing that instead of pushing it aside and moving on with all my baggage.
The other thing that I had to invite in this week is my feeling of resentment that men can walk away from their kids at age 47 or whatever, and have NO problems finding a relationship because they don’t spend all that much time with their kids. Most women don’t really mind a couple of young kids because they know that they don’t have to parent them or even see them if they don’t want to. But this is not the case for me. I’m 46, fat, and I have young kids, one of whom has autism so won’t be moving out, ever. Men at my age don’t want to date me. I have too much baggage (this term bugs me too..they are children). A man believes that I wouldn’t have time for him, plus they barely look at a woman who is fat in the first place, not to mention that my autistic kid is intimidating to them. I don’t look at dating as a commitment, but I don’t really know how men see it. I may be totally wrong about this since I haven’t really tried to date for a long while, though.
Luckily, I don’t want to date right now. Every so often I wish I could be held and rocked a bit when I am emotional, but I’m not really in a place where dating would work for me…I still have work to do on who I am and where I want to go and I’m not altogether sure how to date since I spend 80 percent of my time with my kids. I don’t know much, huh? Oh well!! I am learning to live happy alone. I think this is a necessary skill everyone should learn. I wish I had when I was younger, but better late than never!
So that’s the result of letting those feelings in and hanging out with them. You should try it sometime!