What’s Worth Fighting For?

MM has an interim separation agreement and is working on the first draft of his final divorce agreement.  He had conciliation (like mediation) and court last week and he and his soon-to-be-ex-wife reached an agreement.  I can’t believe it.  A little more than a  year ago, (376 days ago, but who’s counting) as I’ve been blogging, was d-day; 12/14/09 was the last day we spoke until January 21, 2010.  I can’t believe what has transpired in a year.  I can’t believe when I think of that time, it STILL takes my breath away and I can’t breathe.  I still can’t believe the hurt and yet, MM had conciliation on Monday, December 13 and then drove 4 hours to come to see me.  We were together on 12/14 and I thought about where we were last year . . . but I said nothing.

We’ve been talking about Christmas and New Year’s eve.  He has agreed with his w that she would have the kids for Thanksgiving and he would have them for Christmas – starting Christmas eve through the end of the week.  He has asked me to bring my kids to his state for the Christmas.  I’ve waffled about it especially because my kids are tepid to cold on the idea.  He called me Wednesday, after his shrink appointment, to tell me that his therapist thinks it’s not a good idea.  There is certainly a part of me that agrees but I was angry.  We talked about it and I got angrier.  We decided to wait until we were together this past weekend to discuss it further.  He had mentioned, as I previously blogged, that he was considering going to his parents in Florida for either Christmas or New Year’s which engendered some bad feelings from me.  I tried, unsuccessfully to keep them at bay.  The reason:  historically MM, his W and kids would go to Florida from the day after Christmas (which happens to be his birthday) until New Year’s day.  Since 2007 we have emailed, texted, spoke while he was there and I was in my hometown.  Last year, he was “exiled” to Florida – without w or kids for 2 or 3 weeks (we still haven’t talked about what happened, and not sure when/if we will) and yet, he couldn’t/didn’t speak, email or text me while he was there.  I emailed him; I texted him.  My phone was blocked; my emails were blocked.  I want to vomit when I think about that time and how I felt. 

Finally, we are able to be together on his birthday and on New Year’s and he’s talking to me about FLORIDA!!!!!!  He’s telling me that he agrees with his therapist and Christmas isn’t good so he’s going to Florida!!!!  No discussion about his birthday, no discussion about meeting his kids, no discussion about how we’re going to do that.  Oh yeah – he thinks that sometime in January he’s going to bring his kids to my home and stay for the weekend.  That’s how he is going to introduce us.  ARE YOU KIDDING?!?!?!  I wanted to slap him.  I wanted to use his head for baseball practice.  I wanted him to leave; to walk away from me; to never see him again.  And for some reason, my brain lacked a filter and I told him that.  I am angry and hurt.  My kids know him.  He stays in my apartment, he’s vacationed with us, he spent Thanksgiving with us and his kids know what about me?  Nothing.  Zero.  Zip.  Nada.  He said that his therapist said that the kids would feel badly if they saw that he had a relationship with my kids.  I cut him off and told him that he has no relationship with my kids – they know him, they tolerate his presence, they can co-exist but he doesn’t have a “relationship” with either one of them.  It wasn’t nice of me to say, but it is true.  It was also mean and hurtful for me to say it.  He said to me later, in a quiet voice, that he would like to have a relationship with my kids and would I help him develop one.  It broke my heart.  I felt that I had won, but at the price of being vicious and cruel.  Sometimes I don’t know when to stop myself. 

He told me that we only get one chance to make a good impression with his kids and he wants to do it the right way.  I told him, that no matter what he hopes, I have no illusion that between his soon-to-be-ex-wife and her mother, that the kids will not want to be around me, will not respect me and will forever think of me as the reason why their parents got divorced.  I’m the whore, the bad guy, the reason.  I also told him that his reluctance to introduce me or talk to his kids about me, makes me wonder whether he and I are going to have a relationship down the road.  The biggest reason not to introduce someone to your kids (and believe me I researched this up the ying yang) is that they might not be there in 6 months.  Where the hell am I going?  If I stuck around this long, where am I going to be in 6 months or a year from now?  My best friend asked me today if I thought that I was going to marry MM, that there is no doubt in her mind that he wants to marry me, be with me forever, but I have never said the same about him.  Why is that?  Am I scared to do it or do I think that “marriage” and “forever” are best left for fairy tales?  Meeting his kids puts me in the “forever” category.  I get that.  It’s not that I’ve wanted to meet them as much as I’ve wanted MM to ASK me to meet them, to beg me to meet them, to set up a meeting without me nagging.  It’s not the same when you have to ask. 

I know that things haven’t been ideal and now we are here – the holiday season – again.  What I want is to get rid of the bad memories that are plaguing me this time of year.  So many have blogged about the holidays – when you are the “other” you don’t get that time.  Now I’m not the “other,” I’m actually the partner and I still feel like the “other.”  While I don’t think that this is a good time to meet his kids, I want to have been asked.  I wanted him to want me to meet them.  I’m angry or sad that whether he did or didn’t, he said nothing until I pushed him.

I spoke to MM tonight.  He has his kids.  They’re both sick.  His soon-t0-be-ex-wife has enrolled them in an after school program for 2 days a week at an exorbitant cost of over $1000/month.  Now they’re sick.  MM picked them up this afternoon and brought them to his house.  He was whining that the kids are “home sick” and the home is going to be sold in less than a month.  His daughter complained that the tree wasn’t big enough and not as big as the one that “mom got.”  The ornaments are the old ones, and mom got new ones.  So MM is sad. Depressed.  And lucky me, he shares it.  That’s a bit tongue in cheek – I’m glad he shares it but angry that he thinks I can be sympathetic all the time.  It taps me out.  It’s taking its toll on me.  I can’t listen to it all the time.  I don’t want to hear it anymore.  I’m tired.  The fight that we always have is that he sees the glass as half empty and I see it as half full.  You chose how you live your life.  You can choose to be happy or to be sad.  He seems to make a choice that sucks the life out of me.  I’m tired.  Tired of always being on the receiving end of his questioning, his gloom, his sadness.  I want him to call me and say, while today was hard, it was worthwhile; that he’s excited about the future, as difficult as it’s going to be.  As Dr. Kelso (“Scrubs”) said: Nothing worth having is easy.  And as Andrew Carnegie is accredited with saying: Anything in life worth having, is worth working for. 

Where do I fit in?

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4 Responses to “What’s Worth Fighting For?”

  1. infoacct2003 Says:

    Susan,

    I accidentally found your blog and have been following your story ever since day one. I have read all your posts and all the comments, but have never commented. However, as I read your last post I felt compelled to comment.

    In no way do my comments intend to be cruel or judgmental, but I would like to note some observations I have made in the last year. In my line of work I have dealt with many people on both sides of the affair fence and there are always central truths and you touch on most of them (I am not a counsellor).

    I apologize if this is long, but I have been thinking about this for a long time…..

    Here is goes –

    #1 You Won: Okay you won, he left his wife…from what I can read you are still not happy. Remember your post, early on, when you wrote about how you were going to break it off and then his W found out and everything hit the fan? A question for you – now that you won why don’t you break it off now? Here is the thing – you really did not win and you blog about this and allude to this fact. His W dumped him and he came to you. He did not choose you. Don’t you ever wonder what would of happened if his W kept him. Oh, we know that remember the “however, comma…” email.

    #2 You will always be Second – you blog about this too. Again, I am not trying to be mean but his kids and exW will always come first (and don’t forget his parents). Just because he is with you he has not shown you that he even considers your feelings, desires, or wants you part of his life (I mean the whole like with parents and kids). I guarantee it that this will always be in the back of your mind and every time you fight or you feel like this it will come up. You are setting yourself up to be feel like the OW for the rest of your life.

    #3 You are smarter and stronger than him. You have blogged about this too. Your friends and kids have encouraged you to dump him because he is not your equal. Another question – why would you want to be with someone you think is inferior to you? Isn’t a relationship supposed to be a complimentary not codependent? Another question regarding this – what are you showing your kids? I do not know the ins and outs, but from what you wrote it appears you are showing them that you are settling for less than desired. They are watching you and I know you do not want your kids to settle for less so be an example.

    I say all these things because I have secretly cheered you on and have hoped you would meet someone who loves you and cherishes you. I know your friends have tried to share their concerns for you too – guess I am just being a little more blunt. You blogged about ending your bad marriage and it looks like you are headed into another bad one. I know you have blogged about how you have seen other people will seeing him (while he was married) that should be a huge flag that he is not the one. I encourage you to love yourself first and find someone who loves you first too! It is almost 2011, I wish you great happiness in the coming year and hope your torment will be over soon. May you get all that you hope and wish for!

    Happy New Year!

  2. Susan Says:

    Thanks, info for such a caring and thoughtful comment. Nothing you said was mean, it was all truthful and honest. I appreciate you “cheering” me on.

    There isn’t anything that you’ve said that I haven’t thought about too and that hasn’t nagged at me. You’re right. Even more so than you know. I actually told MM that his going to Florida this year was another reminder that I am and will always be second. The feelings that it brought up in me were horrible, ugly, painful and not someone that I want to see myself as,nor the example I want to set for my kids. And not being chosen is something that will likely never go away. While he told me that he was going to ask his wife for a divorce so that he could be with me, they “agreed” to it when she raised it. I agree with your assessement. And yes, I have wondered, what if . . . she wanted to save her marriage, didn’t ask for/agree to the divorce. She told him years ago that no one had ever broken up with her; she was the one that broke up with all of her past relationships. So – she saw him in all of this, as the one that broke up with her, but that she was going to put the final nails in the coffin.

    I don’t know what I’m going to do. It’s a big decision and not one that I feel capable of making right now. I feel like this year has been one of the worst that I can recall – from d-day/no contact, through losing my job, to my ex-h owing me money/child support, to my former bosses maliciously contesting my unemployment (which they lost) and bad-mouthing in my industry (and funny, they are the ones that look foolish as everyone has told me about what they’ve done/said) and the list goes on and on.

    When I think of the relationship that I may or may not have with MM, it is more than I can even think about. And yes, the red flags have been flying high and strong. I expect to think long and hard about what to do. I am looking forward to a new year.

    I’m sure that I have more to say (and will say it soon), but wanted to respond to your thoughtful comments.

    I would certainly be interested in knowing a bit more about you and where you come to your knowledge. 🙂

  3. infoacct2003@yaho.com Says:

    Susan,

    Thank you for your kind words! I get my experience from working with couples and families on both sides of the affair; the betrayed and the betrayer. I have seen both sides; but the reason why an affair happens in the first place is usually the same – emotional and/or physical needs were not being met. Having emotional/physical needs met are so basic that most people will go to any lengthens to have these needs met – that is why people put up with horrible treatment, habits they do not like etc because having their needs met are more important than anything else. Most affairs start with communication – friendship and then moves on to physical. Have you ever met anyone who looked at another person, did not say a word, and then jump in bed with them? Anyway….I am a full-time, female pastor and I have seen many “affair” faces.

    Cheering you on in 2011!
    Happy New Year!!!

    • Susan Says:

      Info – I appreciate your words, your comments and your perspective. You are 1000% right. I believe that having those basic human needs met and fulfilled are our “raison d’etre.” I don’t know how a human being can live their lives without that. It seems so vacant, so sad. During my marriage, I had several affairs – emotional and physical. It was the emotional ones that rocked me to my core. And truth, the physical followed suit. I think that you’re right and that there many excuses why affairs happen but if we really stop to look at the reasons, they are all the same. My best friend’s father is a psychiatrist and he says that there are finite number of experiences. I’ve seen in these blogs, that is in fact the case. You raised some thought provoking issues in your prior post and I’m still grappling with them. I hope that as I move forward I can answer them with clarity. I feel blessed that I ended a bad, abusive marriage; I’m glad I experienced the pain of no-contact, d-day, etc. and I look forward to becoming a stronger, more fulfilled, better role-model both to my children and to myself. I know tha the road ahead is difficult, but I’m looking forward to it. What doesn’t kill me, undoubtedly makes me stronger. 🙂 I welcome your thoughts, your comments, your view points, your experiences. All of that will only help me in the coming months, years and experiences. I look forward to it. Happy New Year to you.

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