What really matters
Interesting that this topic comes today. Today should have been my 2nd wedding anniversary…I know it shouldn’t matter but it does, today is a really hard day for me because it’s a reminder about my failure. I didn’t choose the proper partner to have the life I wanted. I am not talking about financial, I am purely talking about emotional stability, a partner who was willing to sacrifice for the marriage to work. I haven’t talked much about my marriage in this journal, today I think I will.
My husband was a good man when I met him, He lacked the ambition to make more money which was tough because he made below minimum wage. I in no way expect a man to take care of me, I am always looking for ways to better my financial situation because I at some point want children, I want to be able to take family vacations and trips to the beach. I want my kids to play sports and go on field trips. I am not looking to having a life of leisure but I also don’t want to choose between feeding my family and paying for heat. Maybe that makes me materialistic, my ex husband seemed to think it did. We often fought about money, he would spend and spend without any regard to what future bills we would have. His mantra was “we’ll figure it out when the time comes.” As someone with anxiety that was stressful to me. I will admit it turned me bitter and angry, I looked at him like a child who couldn’t understand. I took care of the cooking, cleaning, managing the money, grocery shopping, Christmas and birthday shopping, laundry. He didn’t contribute much to the marriage, he then stopped having sex with me. He said it was because my attitude changed, and I suppose it did, I didn’t feel like I had a partner in life so I became angry a lot.
He started drinking, blowing through our savings, before I knew it I had to put groceries on our credit cards just to eat. The fights got worse, sometimes physical, we stopped sleeping in the same room. We grew to hate each other. I won’t pretend I did nothing wrong in the marriage I became resentful, I stopped trying because I felt like he was unappreciative and ungrateful. He refused to get help for his drinking, maxed out a credit card, taking money from our savings then accusing me of stealing it. He was verbally abusive, calling me fat and disgusting, telling me the thought of touching me made him sick. I did gain weight throughout our relationship, partly because of medical issues, partly from depression, either way this man was supposed to love me. I was never obese or inactive, I may not have been stick thin but I felt I deserved to be desired.
The no sex was the last straw for me, I had an affair. Was it the right thing to do? Absolutely not, do I regret it? No, I do not regret it, and maybe that makes me a horrible person. My husband never knew about the affair, I never wanted to hurt him but I was dying on the inside. When I filed for divorce he was hostile, he was angry and hateful. He said brutal things to me, as I did to him. We lived together in the home we bought throughout the divorce process, that was emotionally damaging to say the least. My Memere had died a week before I was supposed to move out and he was nice about it and let me stay a few extra weeks until the day before I had to move he said “let’s not forget you’re only still in this house because your Memere is dead.” Everything in me wanted to slap him for being so insensitive.
You may think I went way off topic here, but there was a point to me saying all that…the topic today is what really matters. Well last night I broke down into tears with my brother, feeling like a failure, realizing I went into debt for a man who loved his liquor more than he could ever love me. I protected our marriage (and I use that term lightly) for many years to only end up in debt, living back at home and divorced. My brother pointed out something last night to me…what really matters is that I survived it. I left before I had children with an addict, I had the strength to walk away from an abusive relationship which is something not a lot of women have the courage to do. I had family and friends who had my back every time I stumbled. I for once protected myself instead of the relationship and although I have a long road ahead of me before I will be financially, or emotionally stable, I am at least on the right path. It will be a tough road, I cry more than I would like to admit, I always cringe when someone asks how I am because I fear I will burst into tears but I know deep down I made the right choice. My brother who is younger but has always been very wise said to me last night “you get to choose how your life turns out Steph, don’t give up.”
*Forgive yourself for not having the foresight to know what now seems so obvious in hindsight*