I have always loved the irony of his sister declaring that he deserved better than me. Yes, I was wrong and crazy and she was so sorry he was so miserable. She begged him to leave me. Begged him!
Let’s see- he has been a fairly shitty father and partner. He’s been more interested in watching television than in participating in our lives. He sucks all of the oxygen out of the room with HIS needs and all others can go fuck themselves. He’s got “anxiety issues” and “PTSD” and “social anxiety”. Oh hey, let’s add excessive drinking to the list now.
I spent holidays alone. I made cross country trips with the kids all by myself. I took our kids to see his side of the family. I took care of 99% of anything having to do with the kids- school drop offs and pick ups, extracurriculars drop offs and pick ups, conferences, homework, signing papers and logs, writing checks for lunch money and pictures. You name it, I did it. I fixed his plate for him every night. I made breakfast every weekend, or at the very least I would run out to get something. The few times I would go out with friends I made dinner for him or picked something up for him instead of making him fend for himself and the kids. I did his laundry. I hung his damn clothes up and put the rest of them away. I shopped for clothes for him. I made his doctor’s appointments, psychiatrist appointments, therapy appointments, and went to them with him. I picked up his prescriptions. I took in his dry cleaning. I spent countless hours in the hospital with him because, you know, every illness was a major disaster. I moved all over this country for him, supporting him in his career. I was his biggest cheerleader. Did I forget something? Oh yes! He CHEATED ON ME WITH HIS COUSIN!
But somehow he deserves better. I am the one doing him wrong. Perhaps I didn’t put his food on his favorite plate. Perhaps I didn’t use the laundry detergent he preferred. Hell, I suppose my biggest fault was that I simply did not and would not pretend that he hadn’t done what he did! How DARE I not forget his “little” emotional affair? How dare I continue to be hurt by the fact that his entire family was stabbing me in the back? How dare I?
This is the funny part. After twenty years with this guy I had come to believe I owned part of this, that perhaps there was something I could have done differently. Currently, there have been many times I wondered if there were things I could have done differently (like not moving my ass across the country for him this last time!). But as a wise, dear old friend pointed out to me, “Listen, I think a lot of what he says is bullshit. I think he was messed up long before you came along. You just kept him sane for 20 years. Hat’s off to you! Most wouldn’t have stuck around. You should be proud of yourself. Not blaming yourself.” Hell, my own daughter has said, “Kudos to you, Mom; I don’t know how you put up with him as long as you did. I’d have left him long ago!”
Yes, let’s see how long dear sister and enabling mommy and his gold digging whore manage to keep him sane now that I’m no longer in the picture.