DISCLAIMER: I took my eight month old son and left my husband with the high hopes he would action his growing alcohol dependency problem and we could return. Currently we’re in the beginning stages of court proceedings so despite anonymity, being mindful of what I’m saying is crucial. All real names of individuals will be kept confidential. My husband will be referred to as either Husband, Jekyll or Hyde (his very prominent alter egos) and I will refer to myself as Wife. Throughout this process I have attempted to keep this as private as possible, moreso to protect Hyde. However, it is becoming rapidly clear a smear campaign had been ensued against me and doesn’t look like it’ll cease anytime soon. So I’m breaking my silence on this publicly, I will tell the truth, avoid slandering and I will provide necessary back up. Court proceedings are public record and so my voice on this should be too. It is not my intent to sensationalize this, in fact I’m quite humble about it – it’s no secret that many couples go through a bitter, heart wrenching divorce but this is my individual story of love, loss, betrayal and indescribable emotional pain. It’s time I’m heard.
DAY 3: Haunted by the Past
I open my eyes in the morning with the usual feeling of not wanting to face the day. I look around and I see walls, cold white walls. I feel free but trapped at the same time, it goes hand in hand with my love-hate relationship I have with my new apartment. I’m alone, very alone, but I want to be. Except I’m not really alone, the baby is in the room next to me and he’s beginning to wake. I can hear his sweet and gentle cooing as he groogily adjusts to a new day and begins to gear up for the excitement that it’ll bring. He is what keeps me going, he is what warms my heart, he is the reason I do get up.
It’s Halloween and the irony is evident – my life feels haunted, haunted from the past, haunted from that growing feeling I know something ugly is to come.
I met Husband only three years prior, we bonded instantly due to our shared skeptic cynicism towards the world though as I often told him the day I met him I could see he was not a happy man. Still I fell in love with him and quickly, I was able to see what was at his core despite that he was hiding it from the rest of the world – a gentle and deeply sensitive person. Our dating phase wasn’t filled with that temporary euphoria one often gets when you’re consumed with discovering a new relationship. It was actually quite turbulent, it could’ve been considered a red flag perhaps but the flip side was that while we fought hard, we also loved hard and I loved being in those moments where I felt my existence was all that mattered to him.
It became rapidly apparent a minor drinking problem pre-existed, but I’m not the alcohol cop and when confronted he said he had it under control. Aside from a DUI from a couple of years back, I wasn’t worried. He had a job, home, car, all seemed to be in order.
Within a year I sold my home and moved in with him, we became engaged shortly thereafter, were married less than a year later and pregnancy followed immediately. Husband’s parents who I’ll refer to as Papa A and Mama B are what I’ll refer to as “interesting” to be polite. At first glance they appear to be a wholesome genuine family but upon closer inspection they are overbearing, insecure, jealous people who do not do much regular interacting with people other than with themselves and their children because they pass judgment on almost everyone and Papa A in particular has many riffs with many people. They know no personal boundaries when it comes to Husband and his younger sister. Early on when Husband and I were seriously dating there was an incident where I spent the night and we went out the next day. Upon returning Mama B was cleaning Husband’s room and ensuite bathroom, I found that to be odd as that seems like an incredibly personal space to be cleaning up for your adult child. In addition, my personal items including birth control pills were scattered all over his room that had all been put away by her, I instantly felt violated.
It took Husbands parents a number of months to be accepting of me as they were hung up on Husband being with someone from his past. Through the awkward moments there was a brief period of time I enjoyed their company but that didn’t last once we were engaged. Slowly his mothers jealousy and his fathers control took over and I’m very resistant to both, and when I become resistant to something my biggest flaw rears its ugly head: reacting with my mouth. It was only a matter of time before tensions escalated and Husband was being placed directly in between his wife and his parents. At first Husband did his job and stood by me but it wasn’t long before that changed.
Husbands drinking was at a steady pace until he got a job that enabled him to work from home, then day drinking began and our problems escalated – I was halfway through my pregnancy at that time. Around the time I was seven months pregnant during a fight with Husband, I found myself being accused of being mentally ill by his parents. These accusations were made blindly with no thought or concern on how that would’ve affected myself or the grandchild I was carrying. Husband seemed to side with them and our fights only got worse, he would ignore me for days on end. Hyde was in full force, I could’ve got hit by a truck and he wouldn’t have battted an eyelash.
This paralleled with the increase in drinking, he was drinking and driving a lot, lying about what he was doing when he was really out drinking and the more concerned I became of it the more noise I made to his parents. I’m not one to air my business but this required attention and I was not enough to help Husband. They all acknowledged there was a problem but at the same time didn’t take it seriously.
We pulled it together for the birth of our child and came together as husband and wife for a short time. I incredibly miss those days and think about them often. I found myself pregnant five months later that unfortunately ended in a termination due to it being ectopic. Then a month later I returned to work, and that’s when things unravelled. The responsibility of our child levelled out and Husband couldn’t handle it. He was drinking daily, at least once a week I would come home from work and he’d already be intoxicated, at least once a week he would be visibly intoxicated and drive. When brought to his parents attention I found myself being threatened by Papa A (attached), and being blamed for Husband’s drinking. Husband did not stick up for me. This led to a world of mistrust, growing resentment and lack of respect. We spoke horribly to each other, we treated each other horribly and he was showing signs of mild physical abuse by throwing things at me or pushing me a handful of times. This was all while a beautiful happy little baby was playing alone in another room. I had to leave, this was no longer an environment a child should be exposed to. My heart was hurting, I was delaying the inevitable: choosing between my son and my husband.
The last month I was at home was relatively quiet, there was still strong tension and fights that lasted in silence for days but I began to let go of the pain his parents were causing me. I did not react when I was excluded from their Thanksgiving, I did not react Mama B literally would not move out of my way when I went to hold my son, I did not react when Papa A phoned my father like a stalker repeatedly in one day hoping to meet up alone with him to allow him opportunity to slander me up and down (my father shut that opportunity right down), I did not react when Mama B would not allow my husband and I to have a moment alone when he was hospitalized from high sugars due to his type 1 diabetes. Husband and I still showed each other that we had the ability to love hard, he came through on my birthday, he told me repeatedly how much he loved and missed me when he was gone away for a weekend, and a strong level of intamacy still existed – he even inquired with me if we could start trying to get pregnant again just 12 days prior to separation.
The final week was torturous, anger, silence, drinking, I couldn’t do it anymore. He needed help, I pleaded with him to get help while I was looking for apartments (attached) and he wouldn’t acknowledge. He knew I was leaving he just didn’t know when and didn’t seem to care. I did it three days ago when he was at a wedding, a wedding I was supposed to meet him later in the day at. Even though it was time for my son and I to go I struggle to this day thinking about him at that wedding possibly looking around for me hoping I would show up even though we hadn’t talked (other than in text) for a number of days. I was generally the one that kept us glued together, but the bottle of glue was now empty. I knew he would feel beyond betrayed.
Yesterday I sent him and his parents a lengthy email explaining my separation – I made it clear I have no intent to divorce, that I would wear my rings proudly and expressed my dreams of completing our family with more children, but I am mad and I expressed I don’t want our son exposed to Husband until he acknowledges what he’s done. I haven’t heard from Husband at all.
Tears are streaming down my face as I’m getting my sons cute little Halloween costume ready but I pull it together and go into my sons room. There he is smiling ear to ear, happy as ever to see his mama as if his surroundings are not any different and I am instantly warmed. I hug him tightly, thankful for my husband for giving us this tiny amazing human and in this moment I’m hopeful my husband will do the right thing and bring our family back together. With that thought, I head out of the room with my son and feel ready to face the day.
Next Up – Day 10: Service of Urgent Motion Materials