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“I never stopped loving you”


This post comes on the heels of an earlier post, where I discussed how a husband can have an affair, and claim to still love his spouse.  It’s crazy making, right?

As I mentioned in the above-linked post, this was something my husband used to say to me all the time when I was hurting.  He knew I felt unloved in his actions, so he reassured me that he had never stopped loving me during his affair.  It made me sick to my stomach, and almost hurt more.  Was this his twisted idea of what LOVE is?  Is showing love to me going out and creating false email addresses designed to sneak around behind my back?  That isn’t love to me.  Is showing me love going out and finding pleasure in the arms of another woman?  That isn’t love to me.  Is showing ME love, buying a hotel room in order to penetrate another woman, while I struggle at home to get the kids home from piano lessons, get dinner made, homework checked and kids washed and ready for bed?  That isn’t love to me.  But for him, it meant something different.  It meant that he had merely compartmentalized her, and kept her and their relationship in a separate box from the one in which the rest of his life resided.  He was able to open that box and visit it, and then when he was done, he could close the lid, and open his usual box.  They were never open at the same time, so when he was in one box, the other was out of mind.  Although, I would wager a guess that while I may not have come to mind while he was with her, she certainly came to mind when he was with me, and that is because she posed  continuous threat on our relationship, something I could never have done to them, as I was in the dark, kept in a box, with the lid on tight.

Nothing would infuriate me more than my husband saying the words “But I never stopped loving you”.  It was like a kick to the midsection.  Left me breathless and confused.

One day, as we drove back from therapy, on the way to picking up our children, he said it again.  I screamed at him in the car, trying to help him understand that those words are empty and hurtful, not helpful as he had hoped they would be.  He wanted me to say “Oh!  I understand you did this, but you still LOVED me throughout, so I should actually be happier about this than I am!”  That wasn’t my reaction.

At the end of my rope, as we drove, I tried to help him see it from my perspective.  I had to find a way for him to see my position on this.  Seeing my position meant standing in my shoes, and since I hadn’t cheated on him, I had to take him on a mental journey through part of my experience.

Now, he was driving at the time, otherwise I would have asked him to close his eyes.  Instead, I asked him to vividly picture the words I was going to convey. It needs to be said that in my line of work, I work alone.  I do not have employees or colleagues, and I work for myself.  And so I began:

“There is a man I work with.  He is tall, muscular, athletic and fit.  He makes me laugh, and has a great sense of humour.  He and I have been working together for about 6 months, just he and I, in my small office space.  He and I, spending so much time together lately, have been sharing more and more details of our lives with one another.  I have learned about his family.  I have learned about his likes and dislikes, and he has learned about mine.   Our friendship has grown stronger over the past few months, and we have taken to grabbing lunch together on most days, instead of splitting up and resuming work at the end of our lunch.  He has opened up to me a great deal, and shared some very personal details of his life.  I too have shared details about mine.  I think he appreciates the reciprocation, and it helps us as colleagues to open up to one another, as it makes us better work partners, not just strangers who have to be there, but want to.  A few weeks ago, while we were having lunch, his hand brushed mine, and I didn’t pull it away.  He turned to me, to gauge my response, and we looked at each other and knew.  The attraction that had been building between us over the past months was unavoidable.  As he looked into my eyes, we both felt it.  Moments later, I felt our lips touch, and we were kissing.  It was the passionate first kiss that everyone remembers.  My head was spinning with the excitement, as it had been years since I’d had that experience…” I looked over at my husband as he drove, and his brow was furrowed in either intense concentration on the words, or he was angry at being put through the exercise, or the content was bothersome.  I couldn’t tell, so I continued.  “Before long, I found myself wishing we were somewhere more private, where I could fully and completely express myself and my affection for him.  I asked him if he wanted to get a hotel, and he agreed.  We agreed to meet there, and take separate cars so that we were less obvious, in case we ran into someone we knew, and I needed to be available at 3:30 to pick up the kids from school.  I wouldn’t have had time to return him to his car back at work, and vice versa.  I fantasized throughout the entire drive about what was about to happen.  Would he find me attractive naked?  What did he look like naked?  Is he a good lover?  ‘Of course, he must be’, I thought, considering his sexual energy.  The traffic could not move fast enough to satisfy my hunger, and soon I had parked the car, and was running into the lobby.  He was already at the desk, making the arrangements.  He had obviously driven faster than me.  He must have been as excited as I was.  We hurried through the check-in process, giving fake names, and a credit card number.  As soon as the plastic key card entered his hand, his eyes met mine and he smiled.  This was really going to happen.  We rushed for the first available elevator. Truthfully, I would have taken the stairs to the 21st floor, it didn’t matter, but thankfully, it only took seconds for the elevator car to open.  Speed walking through the hallway, he held my hand tightly.  His hand was sweating, and I could feel his rushing pulse.  It matched mine.  We fumbled clumsily with the key card in the lock, and finally the door opened.  We crossed the threshold and the door slammed shut behind us.  The next moments are a blur as we peeled off one another’s clothes with an excitement that I had long since forgotten.  Revealing his body to me, and mine to him, we became ever more excited, and he kissed me.  Before I knew it, we were on the bed, his gentle caresses on my neck.  What followed was the most amazing and extraordinary sexual experience I’d ever had…”  I looked over at my husband driving, and his knuckles were white on the steering wheel, his jaw clenched, and I continued. “He gave me the most intense and body-consuming orgasms I’d ever had, over and over again, until we both fell onto the bed together, in a breathless and sweaty pile, our hearts racing, and our bodies satisfied.”

“So, tell me”, I asked of my husband while he drove, “where exactly in that situation was I loving you?”.  My husband’s eyes filled with tears, and he finally understood.  “I wasn’t”, was his reply.  “I was never loving you or showing you love in those moments, if I was doing something so selfish with someone else like that.  I wasn’t loving you at all”.

My husband got it.  He never again told me “I never stopped loving you”, because he realized that while he may have never stopped FEELING love for me, for those moments that he was deceiving me, he wasn’t LIVING his love for me.  For the first time in our recovery, my husband stood in my place, and felt the horror of what I was feeling.  Knowing that the pain and anguish he was feeling as a result of a made-up imaginary exercise had caused him such hurt, he knew that mine must be so much greater, and at that moment, he felt what it felt like to stand in my shoes, and the ugly view I had from where I stood.  From that moment, he invested himself in SHOWING me he loved me, and it has made all the difference.

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A fate worse than death


I lost my mother last year. Her death was the most significant death I have experienced thus far. Sure, I’d lost my grandparents, but your grandparents are two generations removed from you, and let’s face it, we expect them to die at some point. Our parents’ death presents a new challenge for us as children. For the first time, we start to see our own mortality, and we are ‘next in line’. My mother’s death was hard. It is still hard. I miss her often, and sometimes find myself talking to her as I work through something. I’ll be making a recipe, for example, and find myself saying out loud to myself: “Ok mom, if I don’t have any eggs…I would substitute it with…..?”, or ” Mom, I wonder whether you would like this?”. She never answers, of course, and so far there have been no signs that she is ‘around’, but I keep waiting for one.

My mother’s death, has been one of the most difficult emotional challenges I’ve had to face. Trying to rectify all of the feelings pent up over 30+ years, trying to sort out all of your feelings, make amends, make apologies, live with the apologies you will never be able to receive. Not to mention the fallout that comes from a family shattered by the absence of the one person who held it all together. My mother was the cook, the holiday planner, the birthday rememberer, the gift-buyer for my children, the one who would watch TV, hear about a new toy, game or gadget for kids, and write it in her little journal to remind herself at the next gift-giving opportunity that she wanted to do that for her grandkids (if she didn’t lose the journal, or forget where she’d written it down, or that she’d written it at all). My dad relied on my mother to be his appointment-maker, his personal secretary, his gauge of social correctness, his social convenor, his organizer, his….everything. When family members were on the “outs” she would place herself in the middle, trying to make peace, and then creating social situations to bring them together. I swear, before my brother had children of his own, the only relationship I had with him, was through my mother and the events she would create for us. Without her, I am left to create them, and maintain a relationship with those who remain. She was, without a doubt, the glue that held us together. Without her, I face losing everyone else unless I step into her place and be the glue that once again holds the pieces together.

I think the loss of anyone is significant. But, the loss of a parent ranks as one of the most stressful and painful milestones an adult child will face. Inasmuch as I love my mother, and miss her, and her death has affected me, I can say, without hesitation that my husband’s affair was more painful. In fact, I would do my mother’s death over and over again before I would EVER want to face the pain and devastation my husband’s affair has brought into my life. My father is now aging also, and I honestly believe that he could have died along with my mother — in fact my entire family could have been wiped out, and it wouldn’t have held a candle to the loss that came from the discovery of his affair. Many times I wished I had died. Losing my life, ending my existence was often considered as a less painful state than living through the pain, the humiliation and the trauma of that experience. I contemplated death a lot during that first year. At one point, I took a handful of pills, intended for pain conditions, and hoped that I’d fall asleep, or get sick, or never be the same. I wanted something to erase me, or at least the memory of the event. In those times, even the thought that I would be leaving my children didn’t matter. I reasoned that they would be “better off” with no mother, than with a depressed shell of a woman, always angry, always on edge, permanently stressed out, tired, exhausted from the emotional gymnastics dealing with the affair required. I wound up with what resulted in a horrendous hangover. Flu-like feelings, nausea, severe fatigue from the pain meds…but no death, no hospital, no do-over. I don’t even recall my husband being upset with me about it. In fact we never really talked about my “failed” attempt. I guess in his mind, it wasn’t anything that would have successfully killed me, but it doesn’t change my intent at the time. It is a pain I can’t describe. I never contemplated ending my life when my mother’s ended, and I won’t when my father’s will end. It just, isn’t. the. same.

Fellow blogger Samantha Baker recently commented on a blog post, indicating that she’d written a blog on this very topic, so I wanted to link to it here.

Her point is a very valid one. You expect people you love to die. You don’t expect them to deceive and betray you. The very people you count on to love you, look after you, and care for you, you don’t expect to turn on you, actively seek out ways to indulge in activities that cause you harm, or sneak around behind your back, humiliating you for their own pleasure and benefit. When we lose a loved one, it is final. They aren’t coming back. We grieve it, we move forward, we put it behind us. With an affair, the process doesn’t have an end-point. We are always left wondering if it will happen again, we attend therapy sessions where we pick apart, analyze and re-hash the details of the affair, the pain, the marriage, the trust and the loss. When someone dies, although it is painful, you are never left wondering if they will die again, and you will experience this again. With an affair, that simply isn’t so. It is not embedded as a constant fear in your mind, akin to now have Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. The triggers and fears remain, long after disclosure. When my husband used to be late coming home, my first thought was that he was in an accident, and I feared for his safety. Now, I wonder if he is sleeping with someone else. My husband purchased a device to track his whereabouts, and sometimes it is inaccurate. This morning, for example, it emailed me to tell me he had left the zone around our home that I had demarcated as “home”. I should have received an email within 30 minutes telling me he had entered the zone called “work”. I didn’t get that email until 11:30, four hours after he’d left. My first thought: he was in a hotel with someone, made up the meeting he was supposedly in, and has just now arrived at work. It plagues you forever, and never goes away. The trust, as you knew it, is now gone. Perhaps it should be. That blind trust was naive. It was fantasy. I now live in reality.

Give me the choice, and I choose death. I would much rather experience the death of a loved one. At least they didn’t intend to die. At least they didn’t die with the selfish intention to cause me harm and suffering. Death isn’t selfish, it isn’t gratifying. Their death is anticipated, and we spend our time with them knowing that one day…it will be around the corner. I never, when signing my marriage certificate ever considered that I was signing up for this. It wasn’t on my radar. I was unprepared. It has caused an unimaginable pain and void in my life.

The other difference worth mentioning is that when one mentions that someone has died, people rally for support. People ask how they can help. People feel sympathy. No one turns around and blames you for the death. No one tells you that they died because you weren’t enough. No one asks you to look at how you contributed. Someone’s death isn’t an embarrassment to you personally and doesn’t bring you shame. Unlike a death, we suffer in silence. We try to keep it quiet. We feel shame for our husband’s affair because of society’s unfair assumption that it happened as a result of a shortcoming in US when really it was a shortcoming in him. We weather the storm, telling few, crying quietly when we can steal a private moment, or screaming uncontrollably when we feel safe to express how we feel. Its just easier to grieve a death.

Since my husband subscribes to this blog, and will read this entry, he should probably know:

You do this to me again, and you will be staring at the back of my head as I walk away with our children. There will be no hesitation, and there will be no tears. Having gone through the pain that I have suffered from your actions, if you were to put me through this again, you wouldn’t be worth shedding a tear for, and I would be gone. Im not doing this again. There are no second chances. Case closed. Just so we are clear. I’m just sayin’.

Perspective


Sometimes it takes me a day or so to mull things over.  Some time to massage the details, and then come up with how I really feel. With the events of the other day having sunk in,  I think I have it.

I feel great.  Really, I do.  This has been a nightmare 2 years, and for those who have never experienced this, I really hope that you never do.

I am sure there are readers who’ve read through this blog, the details of the hurt and the struggle, and whose first thoughts were “Why the hell are you choosing to stay with a scumbag who cheated on you?”, and you wouldn’t be wrong in having those thoughts.  Those thoughts echo the very thoughts that I would ask myself when I woke up in the morning and stumbled to the mirror.  I can understand the confusion my decision brings to others.  I can also understand the anger it likely brought to those close to me who didn’t want to see me hurt, again.  I know that my mother held a great deal of anger towards my husband – he betrayed her little girl.  He betrayed our family.  He disrespected the vows that he took when we married.  Sadly, my mother passed away before she would ever rectify those feelings with him.  My mother was also reacting out of transference because she too was betrayed by my father – several times.  To her, it was something that was destined to repeat, so to watch me stay caused her angst.   Until you experience this firsthand, you have absolutely no way of knowing the decision you will make in the aftermath of an affair.  6 months before my husband revealed his affair, a friend of mine told me of hers. She had slept with another man behind her husband’s back.  I was sick.  I was disgusted.  I thought to myself that if that ever happened to me, I would walk.  And then it did happen to me, and I stayed.  Some may view my decision as ‘weak’.  Others will view it as “strong”.  It depends on how you see things – the perspective you have, informed by the experiences you’ve had.   Relationships are complex. They can’t simply be dissected into even little pieces, each of them a small reflection of the bigger picture.  No, instead they are messy, the edges are jagged, and the components that make up the whole are very complicated.  It is never as easy or as straightforward on the inside as it appears on the outside.  It goes to show that you really can’t judge a situation until you have been in it.

Looking back over the last couple of days, since the legal matters were all tied up, I feel a tremendous sense of relief.   Yes, I was initially quite angry at the thought that this whore would be receiving additional money from me, money she doesn’t deserve, money that comes out of the mouths of MY CHILDREN, and straight into her pockets so that she can continue to remain unemployed, living off the hard work of others, feeling entitled to it because she pushed out a baby…oh wait, no she didn’t – she had a c-section to preserve the integrity of her vagina. Shallow much?   It’s right up there with her fake breasts which I’ve heard really aren’t anything to write home about, which look awkward, and which don’t fit her body at all.  I guess her physical fucked-upedness has just met her mental fucked-upedness. I think it’s always a good idea to be consisent, don’t you? 🙂

After receiving countless emails from those who read this blog from all over the world, I’ve been given such support and a positive outlook, and I can’t thank you enough.  I loved Pippi’s comment on the last thread that mentioned that yes she has our money, but so what?  We will make more.  She is right.  It is only money.  It isn’t something that can’t be replaced.  It is meaningless.  She can’t have our love for one another.  She can’t have our bond.  She can’t have our family.  She can’t have our happiness.  We are immune to her.  The financial impact will be minimal in the end, and will simply stop the legal bleeding that has been going on for months.  The payout for her is massive.  $27,000.00 is more money than she makes in a year in her job.  She, as seems to be the case with many of these low-life mistresses who see $$$ and decide to put out, she is a low income earner.  Hell, I earned more money in my part time job in university than she does in her professional job.  My salary today is well over 20x what she is capable of earning.  Why is that important?  I mention this only because the financial impact of what she has received (and I don’t say the word “won” because she hasn’t won here), is not that severe.  We will manage just fine, and in the end, would have paid far more for the same end result: having her OUT of our lives.  She is now just a yearly set of cheques made out in advance, and a yearly tax review.  On a day to day basis, she will no longer grace our dinner table conversation, although I am certain we will still enjoy the jokes at her expense.  They are too funny to pass up.

I am glad I have come to this place.  It feels new.  It feels like I’ve arrived.  It feels like I’ve survived.  I feel like I’ve won.  So…..”Yay me mother-fucker!”*

*Yay me is an expression the OW used quite often in her written tormenting emails to describe how she would prevail over me, and how I would be suffering in the days to come, but she would be unscathed.  Yay me was her way of inflicting pain and torment.  Today, I offer it back.  Eat it bitch. 🙂

Stronger than ever in the wake of his affair

Stronger than ever

 

 

A breakthrough towards happiness


I have just had a breakthrough….and it has NOTHING to do with my husband’s affair.  Well, that is not completely true. this discovery has provided me with answers to so much in my life, that it will have tremendous impact on my marriage moving forward, my relationships, my self-image, the way I see the world.

I posted a few weeks ago about some huge fallout that happened while my family and I were away on vacation.  Within a one week period, I lost my lawyer, was angrily dismissed by a long time family friend, and estranged from my aunt’s life completely.  It was as if a bunch of people close to me were all killed in a plane crash at the same time.  POOF, they were gone.   I also learned that my mother was capable of a deceit I didn’t believe could be possible – from a mother.

I’ve been to therapy 4 times since the last post.  Twice with my individual therapist, and twice with my marital therapist.  Before I’d even set food in their offices, I had started researching the internet for mother-daughter relationships.  I wanted to know more about the deceit that can happen, the betrayal, the pain, the complexities.  What I came across was something absolutely amazing   I came across a site that talks about emotional invalidation , a form of psychological abuse whereby someone continuously invalidates the feelings and experiences of another person, denies that events happened, recreates history for them, minimizes their pains, their hurts, and makes them feel faulty for having felt them in the first place.  It is one of the most vicious forms of emotional abuse, and I’d never heard of it, and yet I have lived it my whole life.

When I say that stumbling upon that site was amazing, it is an understatement. It was completely transformational for me.  In reading all of the ways that people can be invalidated, so many of them were familiar to me.  My parents were both that way, my mother most of all.  Throughout my life and childhood, I’d heard about 85% of the things on the list, things like: “you are so overly dramatic”, “why can’t you just be like _______”, “why do you always have to be so hard to deal with?”, “that never happened”, “you have a very vivid imagination”.    All my life, I’ve had this tense relationship with my mother, and I didn’t know why.  I knew there was something odd, and I knew she was never wrong, but now I have a term for what has been happening.  Ladies and Gentlemen, I have been invalidated emotionally my entire life.   There, I said it, and it felt great.

Well that is just the tip of the iceberg.  Knowing that this has been happening, I started to feel angry.  I started to feel sad.   “Why would she do that to me?”.  I started to feel sorry for myself, “Why can’t my mother love me for who I am, and accept my feelings?”.  I’ve always lived with a hope that maybe someday, she would see.  Maybe someday, I would be able to find a way to talk to her that would turn things around.  I just needed to find the magic method of making her hear me.

Sitting in my therapist’s office yesterday, with my husband at my side, I told him about what I had learned about ’emotional invalidation’, and how I really felt as though I understood better why I do the things that I do.  For example, as a result of all of the years of not being heard, my feelings not being accepted, my reality being rejected and replaced with her version of events, I find that I do not ask for what I need from people.  I take care of things myself, and don’t ask anyone for help – ever.  In my world, asking for things, and sticking your neck out claiming that you NEED something means that you are going to have your neck cut off.  You will be ridiculed for being ‘needy’, and then you will be told that your feelings don’t matter.  There will be put-downs, cloaked in claims of being ‘concerned’, and insidious comments that injure but that can all be denied under the guise of “we are just trying to help you”.

Sitting across from my therapist, I told him that with my mother dying, I really felt the need to make this right.  I wanted to talk to her, to show her how she has impacted me.  I want the apology.  I NEED the apology.  I wanted to know why she would allow others (my aunt) to send me such hurtful things, and not protect me as a mother should.  How can she watch people dismiss me, walk away from me, not support me, and not feel the need to jump in and defend me?   Why does she choose not to care about me?   His response was shocking and eye-opening, and would give me the key to my childhood in one sentence.  He said ” your mother isn’t choosing to not give you the love you need.   You crave this as if you think it is possible.  She doesn’t do it not because it is a choice.   She is incapable of doing it”.  He then told me to look up mother daughter relationships online with a specific focus on narcissism in the mother.  “My mother is a narcissist?” I thought.  My first instinct was to defend her…until I read the previous link, and it was like reading the script of my life.   The description was uncanny.  It reduced me to tears.  The dissonance it created within me was immensely powerful.  I was simultaneously relieved and horrified at the same time.  At times, the pain of reading through it was unbearable. I had to take breaks, and yet I couldn’t pull myself away from it.  It was like a drug – I had to read more, to know more, to understand more.  I spent the next 9 hours combing through the website, and its related links, except for a short break taken for dinner.   I went to bed last night with the most complete picture of my childhood I had ever had.  What I knew was amyss, and broken, without an understanding of why now made complete sense.

If you took the time to read the previous link, my mother does triangulate my brother and I.  She selected her favourite, what they refer to as “The Golden Child”, and that was my brother.  She cast me as the scapegoat in the family, paints me as flawed and difficult and then smears me to others to provide herself with support.  She cloaks her comments as “concern”, and martyrs herself impeccably.  She is never wrong, I am always wrong, and I have never in my life ever heard my mother apologize….to anyone.   I mentioned in a previous post how my mother had taken the furniture that was willed to me by my grandmother as her own, claiming that it was “too nice for someone so young to have”.  This is a classic example of how a narcissist violates boundaries and takes the scapegoat’s things without their consent.  She tries to make me look crazy to others, something she has done just this week in numerous emails to friends and family claming that “my daughter has lost it and needs professional help”.  Because the narcissist is so careful in how they injure and so careful to paint themselves as caring, compassionate, and loving, people on the outside won’t ever believe it.  They’ve been told numerous times how flawed the child is, how needy, how irrational, how hysterical, how difficult….and when the child (me) protests the treatment and screams out “Look at ME for who I am, talk to ME, help ME, love ME”, it feeds into everyone else’s fixed false beliefs that “There she goes again.  Her mother was right about her, it is always about HER, she is so selfish, so needy.  How dare she do this to her own mother???  And now, with my mother on her deathbed, and my distancing myself from her and the pain she causes feeds, my distance feeds the beliefs further. I must be insensitive. I must be uncaring.  I must be all of the things she has claimed me to be.  How dare I…. It is the perfect lose-lose situation, and I’ve been carefully trained for this role my entire life, without even knowing it.  Until now.

With this knowledge, I feel like I am now armed with the tools to heal my past.  Even though I want to sit down and make it right, I now understand that this would be futile.  A narcissist will never see fault in their actions.  A narcissist can’t open up to see another’s viewpoint.  It would simply end up with me presenting myself for the slaughter.  I simply have to do two things:

  1. Grieve for the loss that I never had the mother that I wanted – that I deserved.
  2. Prepare myself for the upcoming grief of losing my parent and the resulting emotions that will arise in others close to us
I struggle with whether to talk with my father about this.  He isn’t a narcissist….but he has been married to one, and in being so closely involved with one, he has had to adapt and take on a role that he is likely unaware of.   Part of me wants him to see this from the outside so that he can have a better view of me…he’s been tainted by her for many years, and has come to believe much of what she says about me.  I want him to know me.  When my mother dies. I want one of my parents to finally know me, accept me, care about me.   But, in reading about narcissistic mothers, I’ve also learned that alongside each narcissistic mother is an enabling father.  He has to take that role in order for their marriage to survive, and sadly, it makes him incapable of seeing the problem because he is living inside the bubble.  I also don’t want my father’s final memories of my mother to be sullied.  I don’t wish for her to die with judgment form others.  Maybe, in a few years….maybe we will talk about it.  Until then, it is my issue to heal within me .
If you’ve stayed with me this long, thank you.  I know this post wasn’t about my marriage, the affair, the mistress, or the infidelity….it was about me, my life, my family and the person that it has created.  The person who is recovering from the affair with scars from her childhood which inform how I cope…and how sometimes I don’t.  All I can do is make sure every day that I love my children completely, and be the mother to them that I never had.  It stops here.
Thank you for reading.

 

 

It’s raining betrayal folks, part two


In the aftermath of the lawyer situation, I’d been feeling pretty beaten up.  The last week had been spent with my husband as the middle man between two people who can’t get along.  He tried to play Switzerland as much as possible, fearing that losing his lawyer now, without another in our back pocket, would be messy.  To say that I was tired and emotionally drained was an understatement.   What follows is part two of the betrayal, except this time the lawyer has been removed from the story.  This time, it was an inside job.

My mother talks about me behind my back. She always has, although she will feign innocence if accused, and then quickly call me out as paranoid and tell me “life isn’t always about you”.  She always finds some way of putting it back on me.  I became aware of an email that my aunt sent to my mother in the days following a family visit that we had all had at my mother’s bedside.  My aunt, I should mention, lives in another country, and has seen me less than 10 times since she moved away in the 70’s.  To say that she knows very little of me would be accurate indeed.  In the email that my aunt sent to my mother, she expressed concern for me.  She had read on Facebook something I’d written about it being “Martini Monday”, and is worried that I might have a drinking problem.  I think that is a bit of a stretch!  She also expressed concern that I’d mentioned on Facebook that I’d been hit on by a Garbageman last week while wearing a new skirt. I joked that it must have been the skirt, and joked that this all transpired by 9:30am and I felt like I’d accomplished so much.  My comments were obviously facetious, and I was poking fun at the situation.  My aunt expressed concern that I am an insecure woman who needs male attention in order to feel complete.  Finally, I guess she wasn’t satisfied with my degree of sadness over my mother’s impending death.  She said that she was worried that my husband must have me on prescription drugs to dull my emotions in light of the affair.  Yes, my aunt had the information about the affair leaked to her from that family friend I mentioned in my previous post.  So now, armed with this ‘knowledge’, she is worried about me, thinks I am a closet drunk who craves male attention and is on prescription meds. It is laughable!  I decided that it made me uncomfortable that I was being talked about, and that her reasons for being concerned were false.   I felt I ought to reassure her that this was not the case, and set her poor mind at ease.

I sent my aunt an email, reassuring her that since I’d become privy to the email that she sent my mother, that I wanted to reassure her that my Facebook comments are jokes with my friends, not to be taken seriously, I do not have a drinking problem, I am not on prescription meds (although something tells me I should be after this week), and that she has no cause for concern.  At the end of that email, I also added that I was aware that my personal circumstances (the affair) were now known to her and asked her to keep those details confidential for me.

The email I received back was scathing.  Guilty people lash out when they are caught in their behaviour.   She estranged me in her email, telling me that I am killing my mother faster than her disease, that she feels sorry for me that I am so selfish, and stated that she does not like the person that I am.  She then said goodbye and wished me good luck in my life.  That was it.  I should also mention that she CC’d my brother on it, so he is now aware of my circumstances to.  So much for her keeping it quiet, she now outed it to my brother.

Now, I know where this all comes from.  I’ve mentioned it before that my mother and I have a less than stellar relationship.  She has never understood me or supported me emotionally.  She has always favoured my older brother, and when I’ve expressed concern about it, she pulled the “you are paranoid” card, and “it is not always about you” card.  She carries those at the top of her deck so that they are handy.  She has carefully maligned me to everyone she knows and orchestrated disfavour for me among her friends and close family members.  My mother doesn’t know who I am, or what I am about, but if you asked her, she’d claim to be the expert.  She believes that I am: selfish, rigid, inflexible, self-centered, egotistical, bitchy….you get the idea.  Her comments to friends over the years have slowly penetrated, and her martyr seeds of “woe is me, you won’t believe what my selfish daughter has done to me this time” have started to take root in people’s minds.  If asked, her friends would, even though many of them have never met me, say “oh her daugher is selfish and absorbed only with herself…that poor woman, she tried to hard to raise her right and look what this witch of a daughter does to her”.  I do detect cold chills from people at times who are friends of my mothers and are meeting me for the first time. I now understand why – they have preconceived ideas about who I am long before they ever meet me. She has made it her mission, in her need to see herself as a martyr and surround herself with support, even if it means maligning her daughter to do it.

So after sending this scathing email to me in which my aunt disowns me, she emailed my mother to let her know about what had happened and what she had sent to me.  My mother’s response to her sister in the wake of sending a hurtful email to her daughter?   Praise.

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