This past weekend I attended my eldest son’s wedding. I have been divorced from his father for 26 years. Since our divorce my ex has remarried (23 years) He was seeing his second wife while still married to me. That of course, resulted in my decision for the divorce.
Last year he divorced his second wife, but not before cheating on her too (Karma is wonderful). He has been with still women for two years or more. Rumor has it he was seeing her for longer, no proof of that.
I am always amazed by those divorced couples who still remain as friends or talk often. Once our children were old enough, I no longer contacted him. I pretty much stopped when our daughter turned 15. I never called him and he never called me. At the wedding it was awkward at first, his girlfriend often stared at me. What really got under my skin is watching their PDA’s when she thought I was looking. I was out of the corner of my eye. Asking myself questions like “why would he want to start over again, having a 6-year-old stepson. What is he thinking? How did this all happen?”
He & I wouldn’t make eye contact, it was that uncomfortable feeling. Trying to be where they are not, trying not to look at them for too long, because I tend to stare in disgust & judgement. I knew that I wanted to try and look my best. We acknowledged each other when we first arrived, taking photos was awkward. My parents, especially my father, who refused to be photographed with my mother didn’t stand together in any wedding photos. Somehow, I agreed that I would take photos with him and my son & DIL. We knew to stand on opposite sides. Just a bizarre feeling. BUT.
That wasn’t the most bizarre thing to happen to me that night. What was bizarre was actually having a conversation with him after the ceremony. The groom, our son actually caught us talking and let us finish. He never interrupted or address it until he was talking to his little brother on the phone. So what was the conversation about? Bullshit. It was all about bullshit. It almost turned ugly when he bought up the idea that our daughter was not ours. However, going back in time I did question it, then recalculated the time-table and there would be no way she could be anyone else’s.
He went on to say how he is happy with himself, that he had always been there for his kids. This one really got me. That his third child, who he raised from birth to adulthood, by his second wife. He looks me in the eye and says “He will always be first, because he lived with me…I treated all my kids equally. I was always there for my kids.” I truly wanted to punch him in the throat and knock him off the porch of the venue. I took responsibility for the majority of the break-up. Like saying “I regret never having faith in you or in us…for not trusting you to provide for us.” Blah blah blah.
There was more said but it was all so dumb. He just kept saying how he tried, but I just walked out. That he is happy and that everything is in the past. We were joined by our partners and we quickly went our separate ways. Later in the evening, after he had several shots and lots of beer, he caught me alone. “Cat, I wanna let you know how well you look, you’re taken great care of yourself and your legs are still fucking amazing.” I smiled and said “thank you, ” gently touching his shoulder as I walked away.
We said our goodbyes and we left the venue since we were not staying for the next day luncheon with his entire family. Even though I get along very well with all of them. We needed to return back to Illinois. Upon getting home, logging onto Facebook, just to upload wedding photos I find a message.
X: Hi Cat sorry I missed the chance to say goodbye, or at least see ya later. Thank you for all that you said to me it really did mean something to me, take care and I hope to see you and X again, maybe we could all get together for dinner some night.
Me: yes it was great seeing you and your girl once again. Sometimes we just need to say something so that we can move forward. However, i think being back with your family brings it all back for “us”…it was kind of our beginning. lol. we just weren’t strong enough I guess. anyway…that would be great, lemme know when ever you wanna grab a bit to eat. enjoy your vacation. wishing you a great time
X: Thanks I would enjoy getting together to catch up, tell X I said hi and I am sure we all have enough in common to have a great conversation. I will be in touch to let you know my schedule to see when it work out for us all to get together.
Me: yes. I’m sure we can find stuff to talk about…travel, guns, motorcycles, movies, music. keep in mind that X is an “old guy.” lol I’m off for the summer. just lemme know…
Lemme say this … NO FUCKING WAY will I ever sit down with him to have a shared meal with him and his girlfriend (soon to be his third wife).
What is the motivation that is pushing him to have dinner with me?
What’s the point? What conversation could there really be? He stated in our conversation that he always wanted to be friends with me. WHY?! Don’t tell me it’s because I’m the mother of his children.
I truly do not understand ex spouses that are still friends or can even communicate more than necessary. After the kids are older, why talk to your ex? About what? I guess because of my BPD, I have split the relationship for so long that I can’t reverse it. I don’t want to be friends with him. It’s not because I’m bitter, it’s because I was honest with myself about my marriage to him. I never loved him. I merely used him as an escape. I got caught up in the lie that I created for myself. My BPD was at its purest back then. He triggered all my symptoms. At the tie I couldn’t leave, I couldn’t be rejected or abandoned. I did everything I could to prevent that. Stuff I’m not proud of.
I will admit to fucking with him. For saying things to him that I didn’t mean, that I had not intentions on ever meeting for dinner. It’s so difficult to change the core of who I am. When I am around him, it’s like I am that mentally ill person all over again. Falling into old patterns, but I have grown a bit since then. After 26 years, he still tries to justify his actions and validate himself to me. Where as I merely attempt to feed him bullshit to keep him pacified and calm. Bottom line I am just trying to process his behavior, along with mine.
How has your life been effected by your illness(es)? Some ideas are: relationships, career, school. It has changed so much since I divorced my first husband. He brought out the worst of my symptoms. The realization that I can not reason with an alcoholic. I forgot that he has been drinking actively since he was 16 years old. Being in remission, in recovery is the best thing ever.