Tearing at the Fabric

Of the space-time continuum


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A bit of fluff. Or is it?

Last night, one of my oldest friends, Bella, invited me to a function, to celebrate both of our recent birthdays.

Well, she invited me, to celebrate mine, but hers was a couple of weeks ago, so I was celebrating her, too.

It was an industry do. And that works, I’m currently in a parallel industry. We, as kiwi breeders, were being wooed back to Flemington, to the Melbourne Cup carnival. The 18 carat gold Cup, worth AUD275K is on tour.

Yes, we got to hold it and pose for photos. I hate photos, so here it is, without my ugly mug (see what I did there?) to ruin the shot!

Chit chat, champagne, and lots of discussion regarding her wonderful work trip to the UK ensued.

Then we two left the function room and ate at the Italian place the function had been held at.

It was a nice midweek diversion.

I asked Bella how her and her husband’s new venture is going. They recently had a nasty, tricky “divorce” from his brother’s family, and their joint business of many decades. I’m so pleased for them, especially her lovely husband, who, after so much hard work, gets to steer his own ship, finally.

Then Bella asked me abiut BG. “You guys good? He’s such a nice man. I’m so impressed with how he just fits in, and thinks the world of you.” I was understated in my reply. Saying we are good, just work in progress.

Then she enquired how my business is getting on. So I filled her in on the latest news.

Which is that I am viewing a probable temporary lease for premises near my under construction permanent base, and have also taken the bull by the horns and approached a local franchisee to chat regarding her experience running a pop-up prior to her new premises becoming available, on Friday. Things are moving fast. I am going to have to pull finger and get my budgets sorted. That part is quite daunting with smaller, less luxurious, temporary premises throwing my plans a bit. All a work in progress.

Bella leaned back in her chair. “Wow Paula. Just wow. I’n in awe of you. Look at you. Just growing and glowing. Not many women I know have been through what you have, and come out the other side so positive, so quietly driven to succeed and take a risk, but also, just so up for anything. Most at our age just sit licking their wounds. But you. You’ve never let this stop you, or make you bitter. Quite the opposite. I’m so proud of you! I know you’ve been through hell. But you are always up for a laugh, with a big smile on your face. You’ve been really brave.”

Bella knows. She knows how heartbroken I am. How I truly, deeply, madly loved Roger with everything I had.

She also knows he never loved me like – in her words – I deserved to be loved, in return. She probably has no idea that I am still utterly broken and ache so badly inside. I hope not. I try to present well in public!

This is a woman who is an ex fuck buddy of Roger’s.

Before me. And later, whilst we were separated briefly, before our children were born. She is still in touch with him. I avoid talking with her ever, about him. Or even alluding to him. I know she catches up with him and his whore when she is down their way. They are old friends.

I am one of those people who has had to learn to accept praise graciously. I used to cringe, downplay, twist myself to avoid that kind of spotlight. However, now I try hard to sit gently with it, attempting to accept praise, squishing my inner “you’re really not good enough, you know,” voice down.

I don’t need her praise.

But I am aware that it is given in good faith.

That when she hugged me (we’re really not big huggers – especially her, I’m learning to try to accept physical touch) that it was genuine, warm, and not just something you do. So many huggers are just being polite. That isn’t us.

I know I sound like a cold fish, by saying that. But I have a very strong startle reflex. It started after I was raped. I don’t love being touched, especially unexpectedly, by people I am not close wirh.

During the weekend, BG came into my room as I was in the bathroom. And I nearly hit the ceiling. He got a fright at my extreme startle response, laughing and apologising. And it zoomed my body’s memories back to the startle response I had to Roger surprising me with unexpected touch at any time after his affair with Leanne. I was so on edge. He thought it was funny.

It didn’t feel funny.

My flight response was turned up to max. I didn’t trust him not to hurt me.

Within all of that personal fuckedupness, I am incredibly tactile with the people I love. Physical touch, skin to skin contact, sensual kissing and sex in every excitng, mildly depraved form, that works for me.

And that is my current struggle. BG loves to touch and be touched. Skin to skin. Head and shoulder massages, etc.

But even our kisses don’t have any real fire or depth. Rog was such a good kisser. BG is quite chaste in his. And, he’s a receiver. Not a giver, sexually, and with touch/massage, etc. His Madonna/Whore thing hasn’t improved at all. He never makes a move on me.

And I’ve started to stop initiating. Therefore we are sitting in a sexual void.

I don’t know if this has a solution. I don’t know if I have the energy to try to convince him (anyone?) that I’m completely fuckable. That I am sexy “enough.” I felt that so much with Rog after I knew he is a cheater. That I am not sexy “enough.” It’s all bad karma for me. I’m the fat, ugly girl no one lusts after….

Why should I have to try so hard? When he won’t even make an effort to make me feel desirable?

I’m tired of this dance.


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Bruises

I got a migraine late in the afternoon at work, yesterday. So frustrating as my girls are here, and were planning on making me a wonderful dinner and cocktails.

Instead, I came home and lay on the couch, planning on trying to sleep it off.

I didn’t sleep. My thoughts swirling about the day my boss saw I was wearing long sleeves and a high neck, at the height of summer and took me aside, questioning me gently. “Has something happened?”

She knew what I was going through. She had been engaged to a cheater. She told me years earlier that it made her crazy. She would drive by his house, late at night, stalking him, etc. She knows the mindfuck.

That day was after Roger ripped my dressing gown off my emaciated body, and I was knocked unconscious briefly, on the bathroom floor.

All because I called him on his lie. About having Trinket stay the night in my home. When I had issued a legal letter stating that she could not set foot on my properties.

The clothing was to cover the bruising.

She insisted on photographing the bruising to document the abuse. I found the file yesterday and choked back tears. She wanted me to press charges. But I was traumatised, shaking like a leaf, terrified.

I am shocked. Shocked I let him scare me, hurt me like that. And related to this comment about safety. “Home.” (Hell, I wrote a Masters thesis on this topic!)

“I just happened upon the final scene of the final episode of Outlander after having been on hiatus from watching since DDay OCT 2017. Jamie and Claire are lying in bed at night during a thunderstorm. He rescued Claire from her kidnappers and she is visibly covered with bruises. He asks her how she feels and she says, “Safe.”

I realized that is all I have ever wanted in a relationship and something I never had, and could never have, with someone who
lies and cheats.

I also realized I am covered with bruises, from my former husband, but they are invisible.

Yes.

The far more damaging bruises have been the invisible ones.

Those physical ones were nothing. I think that was part of my psyche in being unwilling to press charges. Like, hey, so I’m black and blue, but take a look at my heart!

I only want to feel safe. I’ve been seeking safety my whole life.

After my childhood “home” inploded.

After I was raped by a “friend” in my home.

After my “friend” fucked my love for a year and a half in my homes, sometimes while our children were also there.

After I was diagnosed with STIs after only ever sleeping with my darling, forever.

After he cheated again.

Trinket, and all the other online dating hook-ups over that two year (give or take) period he was secretly shopping for my replacement, as I worked my brain off, studying. Trying to heal from his treachery. Thinking he’d possibly had a character transplant and a douche tuck…

After all, going back to an cheating ex is like vomiting and eating it back up.

I think I always felt that. During those years we were trying to fix what he broke.

Trying to find how home could ever be “safe” again after his taint. After he broke me.

After we lived in homes that his family believed they were entitled to, that I was the interloper in.

After he moved me to a home that ultimately was our downfall. That I NEVER felt safe in.

My home here is the first “safe” home I have had in my entire adult life.


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Traumatic birth

I was lucky with my birth stories, really.

However, I just read an article on traumatic birth, and I know that there is stuff that I gloss over.

Our first was born in the main base hospital in my region. An ambulance transfer, as my waters had broken prior to admittance to our local birthing unit, and I laboured through the night, requiring lots of pethidene for the pain (posterior presentation, spine on spine, so painful) and was only 2cm dilated 12 hours later. I vomited constantly. So was dehydrated and so drugged I couldn’t think straight. My birth plan was abandoned because I had no lucidity to remember it.

I was admitted via ambulance staff, alone, definitely not lucid, and scared.

Things went reasonably well. Lots of people in and out of the delivery room, I avoided the Caesarian I had been admitted for.

But was left with an enormous episiotomy to repair.

And yeah, that repair caused sexual problems for me for quite some time, probably up to two years, at least.

I couldn’t bear any pressure on the back of my vulva, so rear entry positions were an absolute nightmare for me. I had extreme pain if I needed to insert even a tampon. I thought I was sexually damaged for life. Only just over five years into being a sexually active person.

I now believe it may have been the scar tissue being reopened and repaired again, from the very messy rape injuries I had. I was stitched up then, from the gaping tears my rapist ripped into my genitalia. Maybe the cutting through that caused difficulties in the healing from the episiotomy?

And so, reading this, made me want to vomit.

And admit to myself that I did have some residual trauma from birthing. I have mostly told myself I was lucky. And I was. Three healthy, great kids. And nothing compared to some of the stories I have read!

You don’t hear much about birth trauma until you’ve experienced it yourself, then all of a sudden, women you’ve known for both minutes and years open up about the horrendous things that happened to them. Some are too terrified to have another child. Some have suffered crippling post-partum depression and post-traumatic stress disorder. Some can’t even use a tampon without experiencing a visceral reaction.

That tampon reference got me. Oh fuck. Yeah. That made me tear up, and the hairs on my arms and the back of my neck stood on end.

And people wonder why I wanted home births. I had the second and third at home, without the trauma. I am not advocating this for everyone, but it was what I needed, and I’m so grateful I did, as I think those birth stories were healing for me. I never required another drug, nor vaginal stitch, birthing at home. I had PND after the first, but never again, after my home births.

And then my blood ran cold, thinking about the terror I had about large penises.

And how I nearly passed out in fear, seeing BG naked and aroused for the first time. The very strong urge to literally jump out the window.

When you put the pieces of the puzzle together, you start to see the patterns so much more clearly. The veins of trauma that run through my life.


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No contact

I’ve had people ask me about Roger. And talk to me about his new life. Like I know – or want to know – anything about it.

Or care.

And they seem upset that I don’t engage.

But why? You loved each other. For over thirty years. Surely you can be friends?

They just don’t get it.

He broke me. He’s a terrible person. An abuser. He put my health, wellbeing and life at risk.

And yeah. People don’t get that. If I said that, they would think I am being extreme. Bitter.

But it is my truth. And I hate that I loved him so much. What does that say about me? Co-dependent much???

I used to have this wonderful life. This fabulous love story. I was convinced, without a doubt, that we would be one of those sweet old couples, loving each other forever. Hand in hand. Snuggled up close. Tender. Loving. Even a bit inspirational.

But, that was taken from me. As Chump Lady explains.

As painful as it is, that your children or your extended family, want a happy family narrative, that everyone still loves one another and wishes each other the best — that’s not possible. NOT because you’re Uncivil, but because he is an abuser.

Period. Full stop.

Because he’s a person who defrauded you, risked your health, betrayed you and terrorized you. Your reaction to that abuse, is to avoid him, because that’s a natural, normal, healthy reaction.

This explains why I hate just running into him like I did a few times recently after two years of the relief of no contact. Why my body buckles when I have to see him. Why I have panic attacks worrying that his whore will show up to something I am attending, with him.

And I know our old friends, who knew us as ‘so in love,’ don’t get it. Judge me as uncivil, unforgiving, bitter.

It’s none of those things. He abused me, and my trust. I feel the same way when I see my rapist on TV. It makes me buckle. These men abused me.


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Unhealed trauma

Wow!

I mean, yeah, of course, but, wow!

I don’t think I had “childhood” trauma, but definitely was more deeply affected than I admitted/knew by my parents’ shock divorce, obviously by the vicious, tearing rape by my friend’s friend, and yeah, also about my first attempts at making love with the first boy I loved. Where it 🍆 just didn’t fit! 🤦‍♀️. We tried, off and on, for a very long time.

I thought I was broken. Not capable of being penetrated. This is where my deep and very real fear of large penises kicked in.

I know it sounds like a joke.

But I was TERRIFIED of meeting someone with a big dick.

And guess what?

Yup.

The day BG took his pants off, aroused already, holy, holy fuck! 😱

I froze. I actually nearly ran from the room.

I did tell him, when we started making love, to be slow and gentle, as his is a LOT bigger than the only penis I had ever had inside me.

To be honest, I’m sure that is what every man probably wants to hear, but he looked a bit coy, and was amazingly careful.

To start with 😜

I also thought maybe I was overstating it in my mind. Maybe he was “normal” sized. But he has length AND girth. It was quite shocking.

Months later, probably a year, I discovered he had a reputation about his size, amongst his friends. A couple of the wives siddled up to me, to ask.

If the legend was true!

Jesus. What???

Not even sure how you answer that!

Of course, this was not asked sober. I just winked and smiled, knowingly. Then Ingrid, who asked first, told me that it was legendary amongst this crew.

When I later relayed the story to BG, he shook his head, and was really embarrassed. Told me about the incident, in his teens, with a girl in his Catholic boarding school dorm. And getting caught by one of his mates. Who is still a close mate to this day. Good lord.

Literally!

As he intimated, it made it seem more. Like, “The Legend,” is larger than the reality. (Pardon the pun.) And yeah, I can see it is dehumanising. Objectifying. It embarrases him.

But, it was genuinely a terrifying night. In a good, consenting way. Still a really difficult thing for me. In my 50s, one lover ever, whom I was totally, madly in love with. Then this very real fear of mine, materialising!

Back to the other points, though. I definitely tick all of those items on that unhealed trauma list. I would like to add that it wasn’t really a difficulty setting boundaries – although, my uber chill chick vibe might be (correctly?) read this way – I think it became more about difficulty policing them.

When I insisted after Leanne that he change his phone number (it was before I even knew you could block) to starve her of oxygen, when she kept covertly (by connection) threatening us, and our children, and overtly saying she was bringing her mother to meet with my inlaws, to let them know they were destined to be together, that scared the SHIT out of me.

Cut her off! Cut her access to us off!

Rog insisted that he needed to keep his number, to “manage” the bunny boiler.

Hmmm.

Also helped his need for ego kibbles, right? Not only was he continuing to get her attention, he fashioned himself as my great hero and protector by “cutting her off at the pass.”

Also made it REALLY easy to fuck her again, two years after he had “ended it.”

Riiiiiight. Good job on the boundary enforcement, Paula.

My problem is, I have no desire to be the Marriage Police. What a shit job that was.

So I “believed” him, let it slide.

I also hate that I was unable to see that his refusal to read about affair recovery, or get counselling was another violation of my boundaries.

I have lived in a state of high anxiety for 12 years now. I wasn’t that person before Leanne. Before I knew I am a chump. I used to be a far different person than I am today. I felt safe, connected, confident. I didn’t feel the need for much external validation.

I feel none of those things anymore. And yeah, am more socially “needy.” I’m aware of it, and work hard at dismantling the narrative of “not good enough” that now feeds my social anxiety.

That said, I am anxious about today. Anxious about re-entering my home town. The possibility of facing him yet again. Knowing he also has another horse racing in this region tomorrow. It’s likely he’ll be there. And surely the cunt will be, too. I preferred when I didn’t know much about these horses, and his current life.

No contact is the biggest tool for healing from relationship trauma.

I’ve been no contact with my former friend, of at the time, over thirty years, Leanne, for 12 years. It’s good.

It still blows my mind. This darling man, whom I loved and trusted completely, for decades (at least until he broke that unwavering trust, the love was still there) whose body I craved, and snuggled up with, at every chance, whose babies I conceived in deep love, gestated, and birthed with him, is someone I must avoid now. It’s super fucking crazy.

It still messes with me. I know it’s because I still love the “old” Rog. The illusion. So I don’t want to see the new one. Especially not with his whore. My mental health is too precious. Too hard fought for.

I know he doesn’t get it. He never had to fight for life, like I did. He never had to suffer, being rejected and discarded. He had several women clambering for his attention. He. Just. Doesn’t. Understand

Or really?

He just just care.

Better go shift my heifers, give Sunny, number 7, a big hug and scratch. Always helps ground me when I need it.

Thank God for animals, huh?

Sunny. She’ll be hungry…


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Sexual trauma

It has become very obvious that I am dealing with a partner who has some really deep, unresolved sexual trauma in his past.

I’ve felt there was something off, for a while.

I have spent so long unpacking my own rape, I got some inklings about this.

There are dozens of possibilities.

He was Catholic boarding school educated. He has two beloved older sisters and a long term cheating father. He was known as the sexual legend, with the huge dick, by the guys at school (something he gets very upset about. Either that. Or the fact that I’ve been told this information. I’m not sure which.)

That’s some rich territory to mine for the roots of what happened to him.

He is admitting to something, but isn’t able to talk about it. Yet. He also says he doesn’t even know if it’s true.

I gently replied, “in my experience with sexual trauma and rape, we don’t make things up.”

I repressed my rape for a few years. Wondered if it was real.

It was. The details are clear in my head. I know what happened. My brain couldn’t cope with the virginal, brutal, tearing rape by a “friend.”

So it filed it.

Until I could cope.

I think BG has something similar. I think toxic masculinity is part of the equation here, too. That he blames himself. That sexual abuse doesn’t happen to “real men.”

After a very emotional conversation on Friday night, where he panicked – badly – I left it.

We haven’t made love in a month.

Yeah.

This is not who I am. I am a very sexual person, and after my trauma from being cheated on and infected with disgusting diseases, I recovered. BG says he’s never been with anyone so sexually driven.

It could be taken as a compliment.

Or a slight.

I’ve been quietly supportive ever since Friday. It’s a crazy, busy weekend. Today is Easter Monday. And he confronted me this morning. I didn’t want to talk about this while he is under pressure.

But he eventually made me.

He knows he has to address this, to be with me. We talked kindly about how our intimacy is wonderful. He told me he’s never ever got this deep with anyone. And yeah, understandably he’s scared. It’s pushing him to go to places he’s avoided his whole life.

This is the stuff I knew, when I got involved with a never-married-no-kids-50-something. That whilst, most people say to me, Yay, no baggage, I knew there would be much baggage! Lol. You don’t get to these ages without baggage. Not having a long term partner means, not dealing with some stuff. No one to push you to examine your feelings. Your actions. Etc.

Watching Anatomy of a Scandal is amazing. Watching Sienna Miller play a betrayed wife, when you know her history as a betrayed fiancée, ugh. It hits hard.

So, so hard.

I see her processing those emotions I’ve processed. The looking at your man, not knowing who he is. The heartache. The unpacking of a whole life. The lies. The omissions.

There are no words to explain the experience. The utter agony. The battle to locate where you filed your core values, and stand up to the man you totally believed in and loved with every part of your being.

Whom you compromised for.

To say, no more. No more lies. No more surprises. No more pushing me into places I don’t want to be in. I need the whole truth. The omissions, the “protecting you” by omission bullshit. Stop that.

You are only sorry you got caught. You weren’t sorry when I didn’t know. You weren’t protecting me. You were protecting your relatively cushy life. Not wanting to lose a loving, loyal partner who cared enough about you to always have your back. To run the admin in your life. To feed, love, care.

Those things are apparently easily replaceable. You cut one loving, loyal partner out, whom you have shared decades of life with, and paste a cunt who doesn’t care about a loyal partner in her place. She gets to play wifey now.


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Do you still love me?

The question that proven adulterer James Whitehouse asks his wife, in Anatomy of a Scandal.

She looks at him. “If you’re still you. Then yes.”

Oh God.

How many times did I say that to Rog. My darling bear.

💔💔💔


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I did it

I am independent almost to the point of being self destructive.

I’ve known it for a while.

It wasn’t until after my darling boy, Roger’s affair with my “friend,” Leanne that I learned it was a trauma response. It started to be really big when my parents split up. My seemingly happy family was all bullshit.

Violent rape at the hands of a “friend” exacerbated it.

Being cheated on by my most beloved, and one of my oldest friends sealed the deal.

As a young adult, a child of parental infidelity and lies, lies, lies, I ran away to the furthest university in the land. And never accepted any help. Financial, or otherwise. I can do it. Leave me alone.

The below quote is so true.

This. Hits. Hard.

The inability to receive support from others is a trauma response.

Your “I don’t need anyone, I’ll just do it all myself” conditioning is a survival tactic. And you needed it to shield your heart from abuse, neglect, betrayal, and disappointment from those who could not or would not be there for you.

From the parent who was absent and abandoned you by choice or the parent who was never home from working three jobs to feed and house you.

From the lovers who offered sexual intimacy but never offered a safe haven that honored your heart.

From the friendships and family who ALWAYS took more than they ever gave.

From all the situations when someone told you “we’re in this together” or “I got you” then abandoned you, leaving you to pick up the pieces when shit got real, leaving you to handle your part and their part, too.

From all the lies and all the betrayals.

You learned along the way that you just couldn’t really trust people. Or that you could trust people, but only up to a certain point.

Extreme-independence IS. A. TRUST. ISSUE.

You learnt: if I don’t put myself in a situation where I rely on someone, I won’t have to be disappointed when they don’t show up for me, or when they drop the ball… because they will ALWAYS drop the ball EVENTUALLY right?

You may even have been intentionally taught this protection strategy by generations of hurt ancestors who came before you.

Extreme-independence is a preemptive strike against heartbreak.

So, you don’t trust anyone.

And you don’t trust yourself, either, to choose people.

To trust is to hope, to trust is to be vulnerable.

“Never again,” you vow.

But no matter how you dress it up and display it proudly to make it seem like this level of independence is what you always wanted to be, in truth it’s your wounded, scarred, broken heart behind a protective brick wall.

Impenetrable. Nothing gets in. No hurt gets in. But no love gets in either.

Fortresses and armor are for those in battle, or who believe the battle is coming.

It’s a trauma response.

The good news is trauma that is acknowledged is trauma that can be healed.

You are worthy of having support.
You are worthy of having true partnership.
You are worthy of love.
You are worthy of having your heart held.
You are worthy to be adored.
You are worthy to be cherished.
You are worthy to have someone say, “You rest. I got this.” And actually deliver on that promise.
You are worthy to receive.
You are worthy to receive.
You are worthy.

You don’t have to earn it.
You don’t have to prove it.
You don’t have to bargain for it.
You don’t have to beg for it.

You are worthy.
Worthy.
Simply because you exist.

-Jamila White

Tonight, I actually called a complete stranger. To ask for some information and insight into this business.

It took me three days to gather the courage.

To call BG’s friend.

Because, you know, I CAN DO IT MYSELF!

Like a damn toddler.

But pleased I conquered this fear. He was amazing. Positive. Real. Encouraging. I feel invigorated.

But still fearful. Taking the steps I need to to secure finance, and be as informed as I can be.

I asked for help. Me. Lol.


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Flashbacks and triggers

I have periods where the flashbacks and triggers are pretty intense.

I am aware that this is happening a lot right now.

I know that my past, the violent rape by someone I knew and trusted, teenage experiences like sexual abuse and harrassment, and the emotional and physical abuse Roger put me through, for around a decade, have caused deeply engrained PTSD.

Trauma rears its ugly head more intensely, and more often when you are under pressure.

I have a million things going on right now. Doing due diligence, thinking about how to finance this business if it all checks out, going through the steps to see if I should sell a rental property (the one I wanted to sell, may not be the best option, these were 7-10 year plans, it’s only been three) worrying about how to keep up the pace of my frantic work schedule, and plan.

Add to that, the question a friend asked yesterday. “It’s been months. I bet you worry about BG being faithful to you when you can’t be there with him?”

No. I don’t.

Or, I didn’t. Until you asked that question! Cheers, friend!

Reality is, of course I do. I was duped for years by a serial cheater! How could I not think that it could happen again?

But I am a naturally trusting person (chump! See how easy it is to fool me!) I choose to believe he is not fucking around.

Yeah, I’m a special kind of stupid.

Roger hasn’t gone 8 weeks without sex, since he was 18 years old! He can’t. If we were apart for this long, he’d be fucking whoever he could charm long enough to get into their knickers.

That is an undeniable fact.

I know he has never been single. The brief moments he was, he was having lots of casual sex. He can’t be without his penis in a warm body for more than a few days. It makes me feel so used. I worry that maybe I was fooled at the beginning of our relationship. He said he was single.

So why did Leanne hate me so much? Hmmm. Why did he fuck her just weeks into starting a relationship with me? Yeah. Right. Face palm, Paula….

So very, very sad. That my six months in the UK (unknowingly, for most of that time) pregnant with our first child, I didn’t have, nor seek, sex with anyone else. But I know of at least six women he fucked during that time.

He had a new girlfriend the day after he left his Kiwi girlfriend, when he went to the UK on his OE.

I’ll never understand anyone who starts a “relationship” with someone whose spouse had no idea that apparently they were no longer a couple!!! It’s fucking mind blowing 🤯🙀🤦‍♀️

He just always had women. “Friends,” who I am now sure were often/mostly friends with benefits. Somehow, he has never gone more than a week or two without sex. He was fucking Trinket and me for those seven months we lived together. Despite seeing her twice a week, he’d be with me in between. (Yes, I was that desperate. That sad. I allowed that abuse. That disrespect. I’m immensely ashamed of how he abused me, my love, my trust, my disease ravaged body. My shock reaction to him cheating again was to keep making love with him. I’m really pathetic, ugh.)

So, because he is my point of reference, my one and only love, lover, the love of my life, my life partner (that really was how I thought. I had never been with, nor entertained the idea of being with another man, until BG) I do quietly, internally, doubt that any man will want me enough to be faithful to me.

Logically, I think I am worth it. I’m not unattractive. I’m (usually!) reasonably intelligent. I’m loving. I’m kind. I’m generous. I’m funny. There are loads of really attractive qualities.

But my heart is very broken. I feel unattractive, far, far less self confident, secure, because I was constantly replaced, so can’t possibly be what men want to covet, love, protect, desire…

It’s so fucked up.

Because how does a good brain overrule a totally shattered heart? A complete lack of belief that you ARE enough? That someone WILL choose to love you fully, and exclusively?

See why I was happy single???

I dunno. I work at it. Every minute of every day. I AM good enough.

You can say it. And say it. And repeat it again.

But, the damage of those lies, those broken promises, that faux remorse, those uber charming, insincere declarations of undying love…

They fuck you up.

For life.


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The noble cheater

Leaving me for Trinket, was framed as doing me a huge favour by Roger.

He’d hurt me too much, so he alone made the noble decision to fuck other people, to test drive them as my replacement. To “free” me. What a top guy.

So kind of him.

Like the letter writer, I was blindsided by one of life’s “good guys.” He was helping me by fucking other people. By having secret online dating accounts. By having secrets trysts with random women off those apps. By chatting, fishing for anyone to take the bait. All while I worked tirelessly at healing us from his choice to desecrate my life, my safe spaces of home, my trust, by conducting an 18 month long affair in the home I never chose, but needed, to feel safe in the world.

All of the most traumatic things in my life have happened in my homes. My supposed havens.

Rape.

Affairs.

Realising I had no say in my own life, but instead was merely a wife appliance, to be randomly moved to the next surprise location, shoved in a too tight space.

Being knocked unconscious by the man I adored. Because he brought another woman into my home to fuck, DESPITE ME GETTING A LEGAL LETTER DIRECTLY STATING THAT THIS WAS NOT TO BE DONE!

Then lied over and over and over, to my face about it. I had proof Trinket came and fucked my partner in my home. In the bed my children were conceived in. Ugh.

God, that was the most terrifying and confusing thing ever.

These events all took place in my homes.

Chump Lady replies to the letter writer thus

“Sometimes the hardest mindfuck of all isn’t cruelty, but faux kindness. I’m not arguing for cruelty, but it’s direct. You know where you stand. Faux kindness is a fog of impression management.

He agreed to go to couples counseling and then several days later HE decided he didnt want to work on the relationship because I “deserved better” and he didn’t want to waste my time in therapy when “the damage he did was too great”.

He should’ve been direct with you: “I don’t want to work on the relationship.” PERIOD. Full stop.

You do deserve better (OF COURSE YOU DO!) But you got whipsawed by his agreeing to go counseling (i.e., the damage is NOT too great) and then reneging. He’s set it up as he’s Only Thinking of You — he doesn’t want to waste your time, he’s damaged you too much — how noble.

You know what doesn’t waste your time? Breaking up with you honestly. “I’m sorry, I want to see other people. Please don’t move here. Please don’t invest further.” “

This⬆️

As I worked harder and harder, finding myself inches away from healing, he nobly stepped aside! Leaving me free falling off the cliff, when I threw myself into his arms, but he wasn’t there anymore. He watched me climb that mountain. Then side stepped me as I launched my heart at him, falling off the other side.

I’ll never, ever understand the cruelty of doing that to the woman who gave him every part of herself.