One Year Later

I’m so excited to say I have almost completed the first year of my life, abuse free.

There has been no one here to hurt me.

There has been no one here to own me.

The fall-out has been so much harder than I thought it would be. There is so much recovery to be had. There have been new bad coping mechanisms gained. There is still so much pain.

I have often asked myself, is it worth it? My kids are broken. Is it worth it? The pain is still intense. Is it worth it? You drink too much now.

It is worth it.

Honestly, if the pain remained the same forever, I’m pretty sure it would still be worth it. The pain of being alone, of trying to move on, is so much better than the pain of someone emotionally torturing you.

My kids. My kids give me so much pause. They have been introduced to such raw, confusing pain in the past years. The only thing  I can do is pray and trust God. The only thing I can do is hope for the best. I gave them the best example I could…leave. Don’t stay with someone who hurts you that way. It sucks that the example wounds them in so many new ways, but the decision really came down to this….which way is better to wound them? To suffer silently and watch them embrace the same kind of relationship in their own future? or to break free and hope that that’s the lead they will follow?

It’s such a crap game.  Who wants to play a crap game with their kids lives? But, still, these are the choices I had because of the life I’ve lead, and I can only hope they choose better than me because I eventually chose better for myself.

Drinking too much. Ahh, drinking. I hate it, but I do it. It does truly kind of own me right now. It numbs the pain but stops me from truly dealing with it. The most I’m doing is delaying the inevitable while gaining a  habit that could destroy my life in a zillion other ways. I did start going to AA meetings, which I love, but I haven’t taken the plunge into not drinking yet. Sometimes I feel like my life is a plethora of bad coping skills. I seriously embrace one after the other…pain sucks, ya know? and I really like answers to it sometimes. Easy ones.

So, I don’t think I’ll drink forever. I can see how it’s affecting my life. I procrastinate a bit, but I’m pretty close to jumping on the wagon. I have gained too much to throw it away on a stupid habit. So AA is the probably the way for me. I’ve already met some pretty awesome people there.

So, back to the point? My life a couple years ago…living with a man who hated me for fun. Who emotionally neglected me because it made him feel powerful. Who pitted me against other women because that’s what makes him feel loved and desired. Every minute of my marriage almost was intense, searing pain. The pain of rejection. The shock of betrayal. The desperation to be loved, knowing my worth but not understanding why he rejected it with such ferocity.

To never be shoulder bumped again…

to never be subjected to months of cold silence….

to never be afraid that I’m not good enough anytime a reasonably desirable women shares my space.

The fallout? Worth it.

Fuck him.

I’ll heal.

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Alcoholic in the making, right now.

 

I am concerned about the way I am dealing with my pain.

I am drinking too much.

Whenever my kids are gone.

Before this, I didn’t drink. I have often struggled with addictive behavior but have also always overcome it rather easily, by myself. Drinking was never particularly appealing to me. I would binge drink when I was younger, but that was always about fitting in, about being a party girl. I pretty much have barely touched alcohol in years until…now.

I’m in so much pain. I just want an escape. I am not one to do illegal things…I am not one to do illicit things…so at some point in the past several months, I decided to try drinking, to see if it just made me feel better.

It does.

And of course, it escalated

First, it was once in awhile.

Then more often.

and now, every chance I get,

I think about it often.

I look forward to it.

Have I ever sounded more addicted?

It makes me feel free. It makes me feel able.

And all the while, I’m completely aware that I’m walking into a trap.

But I don’t stop.

It has infected me.

Because it’s the only damn thing in my life that makes me feel good right now.

https://dailypost.wordpress.com/prompts/infect/

 

 

 

 

 

Abrupt

Abrupt

The first time your face changed

from fine to hate to distaste

Abrupt

the first time you put your hands on me

my fault, you said, now get away from me

Slow

your climb back into my good grace

admitting nothing but your love for me

Slow

the time it took to dawn on me

that this is how things were going to be, always

back and forth

but never really moving

never really changing

you talk and talk, but always stay the same

Abrupt

the time it took  to decide to leave

even with planning, oh so carefully

I was done, we were done, in what seems like a heartbeat

Now I’m free

and hoping to find peace

https://dailypost.wordpress.com/prompts/abrupt/

 

 

 

https://dailypost.wordpress.com/prompts/abrupt/

An Anger Problem

An anger problem.

You lie to yourself. You probably always will. You rewrite history, saying, “my wife thinks I have an anger problem.”

Of all the ways I could describe you and the way you abuse, that is the least among them. I think it is the easiest for you to deflect. You are generally a more controlled person. You can be volatile, but it’s not nearly as prevalent the other ways you would choose to hurt me. You ignore all that other so you can minimize your guilt to a much smaller thing, a shoulder shrug, a thing that barely happened.

An anger problem.

I don’t think that.

I think “anger” is a tool in the toolbox you use to control people. I think you love a good rage, where you get to stomp around and act dramatic, your voice cracking, offended and saintly as you put someone in their place.

I think you act stupid and vengeful and petty. I think you have never known a good relationship, that you don’t know what life is or could be about, that as long as you function the way you function you will never know the depths and riches of just enjoying another human being for who they are, and I don’t think you give a damn about any of that as long as you have control over your own little world.

I think you’re sad.

I think you have a selfish problem. I think you have an I-would-throw-you-all-under-the-bus-to-better-serve-even-the-most-pathetic-and-smallest-of-what-I-feel-my-needs-are- problem.

I think you liked to neglect me because it made me chase you.

I think you liked to pit me against other women because it made you feel desired.

I think you liked to minimize my accomplishments because you felt like they highlighted that you never tried.

I think you tried to make others dislike me because you’re not capable of real relationship yourself, and if you couldn’t have it, then neither could I.

I know you disrespected me a thousand different ways because you have no idea what a human life is worth. I know you spit on what is sacred, you trample over people who would help you, and you tell yourself and anyone who will listen vacuous lies so that you never have to look too closely in the mirror and see what you really are.

No, my dear, I do not think you have an “anger” problem.

 

 

Plain Ol’ Loneliness

I feel like I’m sliding off the rails lately.

I feel like I’m sliding off the rails for more than one reason, but one of them surely is that I’m lonely. Loneliness doesn’t look like what I expected. I expected loneliness to look like missing him, like desperately needing romance in my life, like hating being around other couples because they remind me of what I don’t have. I scoffed at that because I knew that I wouldn’t miss him, and I’m not the type of girl that needs romance in her life to thrive. I was kind of right about not liking to be around other couples, though. Sorry, guys. I know you’re not trying to make me feel like I just got stabbed a little in the chest, but, well…

Loneliness looks like me wanting to hang out with a guy. (Insert eye-roll here). Of all the asinine things. I have such a hard time owning up to it because it feels weak and anti-strong-female, but it is what it is and what it is is the truth.

No offense, awesome girlfriends who are rallied around me at this hard, hard place in my life. But I really, really miss the opposite sex. I want to hear guy opinions, lean on a guy chest, laugh at his jokes, binge watch The Office with him, smile a knowing smile at him when he enters the room.

I want to cook for someone who appreciates my cooking, because my kids sure don’t.

Eh.

I know I’m not remotely ready to be messing around with romantic relationship right now, but honestly, I would kill for one of those teenage friend zone type relationships. Like, someone of the opposite sex that I can go do fun stuff with, watch those episodes of the Office with, sit close on the couch with, and then at the end of the day…nothing. He goes home.

They. Are. Everywhere.

So, the thing that is driving me crazy about my life right now is that there are literally abusers everywhere. I’m so damn sick and tired of dealing with them. Tiptoeing around them. Placating them.

Maybe this is true for everyone, that they have a lot of abusers in their life? I kind of doubt that, but who knows. Y’all tell me. I know why it’s true in my life. I was raised by an abuser and then repeated the cycle.  My mother is an abuser. My exes are abusers. I’m not sure if my first ex’s wife is abusive, exactly, but she’s loud, convinced her rough way is the only way, and dismissive of those who feel differently. I don’t know her motivation well enough to qualify her as an abuser but she sure isn’t always super pleasant to deal with, especially in my vulnerable, hurting, sick of a-holes state that I’m in right now. I even have an abusive cousin that I have to deal with in an on-again, off-again kind of way.

The thing that frustrates me about most of them (sans the cousin) is that I can’t really get rid of them.

My mom, is, my mom. I guess I could just cut her out of my life. I have before. But I feel responsible to her. Honor your parents and all that. The thing that sucks is that I am completely miserable around her. She is super toxic. She gossips vilely, about everyone. No one is exempt, and no one deserves balance. She depersonalizes and villainizes every single person she’s decided not to like, and that is almost everyone.  I try to redirect her the best I can, but it’s so draining and vile. A long while ago, I decided to introduce movie watching during our time together(right now, she has an invite to come over once a week for dinner). I thought a movie would deflect talking. So what I got instead is two hours of her screaming at whatever characters she doesn’t like and saying things about how she hopes they get beat up or die or whatever. How is it that I hardly drink?

The cousin I mentioned is this super manipulative alcoholic that’s been perpetually homeless for pretty much his whole life. He had a hard childhood. He did. But he banks on that hard childhood to not grow up, to abuse a number, a large number, of people along the way of his own life, to do the rounds and go from person to person doing what he can to get them to support him for the moment. He has impregnated at least three different women that I can think of. The last one he knocked up he hooked up with because she was supposed to get some money from the government, a couple of thousand dollars, that he wanted to get his hands on. He knocked her up in the process of all that. He has never held a job. He’s been in and out of jail his whole life. He tries to use physical intimidation with anyone he thinks is scared of him, and guilt trips with everyone else. The thing that blows me away is that this guy has had chance, after chance, after chance, to start setting his life straight, and all he has to show for it is another story about how the world’s out to get him, and a request for the next thing he needs from you. When you don’t deliver what he wants, he gets all pissed at you and super disrespectful. He threatened to kill my brother one time. He stood outside a window at while the same brother was inside McDonald’s eating with his family, flipping him off and such. What kind of idiot?

Anyway, I tried to help him out for a long time. I didn’t really get that he was abusive. I knew he was an alcoholic. Everyone gave him crap about it, so I figured I didn’t need to. If he came around asking for cigarettes or money or a ride, I gave it to him. We(my almost ex-husband and I) did a decent amount for him, actually. I think the reason why he started getting pissy with me was that he had asked to stay with me and I said no. He never actually confronted me, which I find hilarious, but he blocked me from his facebook. It took me like a year to figure out, because I don’t follow his page in the first place.

Eventually, he re-added me, then got angry at me again, and sent me some stupid messages.  I told him off this time. Like a typical abuser, he tried to deny/lie/minimize his behavior, and I pretty much told him, Come with respect, or don’t come at all. But really, I’m done with him.

He still tried to contact me recently about something he wanted from me. I deflected him. I don’t know if he’s eventually going to get that it’s not happening here, or if I’m going to have to spell it out for him and deal with the fallout.

I’m always trying to avoid fallout with these people, desperate for peace. Desperate to avoid them siccing other people on me (mom), trying to humiliate me(cousin, ex number 1, maybe ex number 2), ultimate guilt trips(my ex 1 threatened to kill himself, my mom blamed a suicide attempt on me, the cousin is always threatening to kill himself to get stuff from people), whatever. There is always some horrible  price to pay for not toeing the line an abuser sets out for you.

Ex number one is much of the same. He is super vulgar, super power hungry, and always looking for a fight. For a long time, I was decently willing to oblige him. If you’ve read my blog, aren’t surprised by this. Years ago, my breaking point was when we actually got into a fight at our son’s school. As I left, he stood in the parking lot, screaming at me that I was a whore. I decided that day I was done fighting with him, and I haven’t since. Mostly, I have figured out how to handle him, and other than that, I avoid him like the plague. It’s not that I haven’t stood up to him when I had to. He’s super lazy and hates working. He would let child support rack up until they were ready to throw him in jail, and then ask me to drop it. I did, twice. The third time, I said no. I told him the hard truth-gently. You deal with it. It’s between you and the courts.

Now, these issues are coming up again that make me feel afraid. My son is turning eighteen. He has severe developmental delays and is vulnerable. My ex already got super pissy about child support maybe not ending because my son is still in school. My ex wants to share guardianship with me, which I’m highly uncomfortable with. I don’t think what’s best for my son has ever or will ever be on his radar. But my son as a source of money? Sure. My son as a pawn to use against me? Excellent. A court battle to gain control if I do a thing to work against his wishes? God, yes, please. He would love it. So, here I am, trying to figure out how the hell to navigate this, and it’s just so frustrating.

He stood in my house a couple weeks ago bragging about how when a restaurant makes his food wrong a couple of times, he will go in and smash the food on the counter and smear it around. The thing that blew me away was how these places kowtow to him afterward. It would generally get him kicked out, but then they would send him free food coupons! One time, he did it where his wife worked. Whenever he went back in afterward, they would go get her to make his food! Talk about special treatment.

When I processed all that information afterward, I thought, what an excellent example of successful abuse. Entitlement-You can’t make his food wrong-at least not more than once.  Punishment/Justification-You made his food wrong, he gets to punish you for it. Reward-he acted like an jerk and you gave him free food coupons. That’s definitely the power and control he was seeking.

It’s messed up because his rough around the edges wife is the one who actually takes and cares for my son on his weekends. She is also the one who will fill in for doctors appointments and things when I can’t. His dad sure isn’t going to do the work. I am entirely sure that if he didn’t have a wife to caretake our son for him, he would be much, much less a part of his life. I have often joked with my spouse that she should’ve been his dad.

My soon to be ex is probably the mildest of all of these. We are working together fairly well through the divorce and child support proceedings, although I have no doubt he’s painting himself the victim and me the evil witch to anyone who will listen. He has a highly manipulative way of telling things to other people to make me look like the bad guy, without actually saying anything inflammatory. They get all pissed off and given the chance, they’ll disrespect me. He, of course, claims innocence, cause he never actually said anything, did he? I’m very careful to remind myself he’s no friend of mine, no matter how jovial he acts to my face. I also am constantly concerned about the effect he will or is having on our children.  Mostly my angst about him has to do with them. He is a narcissist, and I am well aware that when they stop feeding whatever his emotional need has at the moment, he is very capable of turning on them.