Tearing at the Fabric

Of the space-time continuum


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Don’t listen!

To those damn butterflies. They lie. All that excitement and the awesomely addictive flappy feelings…it’s a trap!

I fell fast and hard for Roger. I resisted.

But poorly.

I was bowled over. Swept off my feet. I had never even had sex with anyone before, thinking I was smart. Selective. They needed to be ABSOLUTELY amazing. Trustworthy.

I needed to be madly in love, and madly loved. I needed to be 100% certain that this man would never, never, never hurt me.

Ha!

I moved in with him after knowing him just five weeks! FFS.

I don’t move in for fun. Moving in together is my marriage. I was never going to marry, I’d decided that after seeing my mother’s utter and complete heartbreak at the end of my parents’ marriage.

Drown those fluttery mothafuckas!

Drown them real good…


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Five years

My oldest friend, my former BFF, sent me this today.

Yes, it’s a truly awful photo.

But, it means it is five years minus a week since my life imploded.

I took myself off to my daughter’s city for a few days, and on my return, I told Roger I was healed, that thesis, that research, that hard slog, was my healing from his long affair with his ex GF, my supposed friend, completed.

And he told me he was leaving me.

For some widow he’d met on Match. FFS!!!

I had no idea.

He’d told me how much he loved me – forever – how proud he was, this day, five years ago.

All bullshit.

He’d been hooking up with other women, via the online dating apps for at least two years. The entire period of my Masters research. Including during our romantic trip to Argentina. A couple who’d never been able to afford travel, we’d started. It was awesome.

But all bullshit.

This makes me really emotional.

I had terrible dreams, and little sleep last night. All of Trinket in Roger’s long, lean arms. Him telling her how much he loves her, how he’ll never hurt her, how she’s the only woman for him, soothing her. I woke and vomited 🤢

Yep. Five years later, he can still make me spew.

I hope that bitch realises he has done all that soothing, given all those kisses before. That he convinced me he’d changed. This is his pattern. I’m sure he told Leanne all the same soothing, gentle bullshit.


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Misunderstandings…

…And the power of communication.

I was really feeling quite despondent last night. I thought BG was being negative, handing me a shopping list of things to check/things that were wrong regarding the new building lease.

We managed a really good talk this morning. He did back off last night, seeing my face fall. I know I have to do due diligence yet. Was just excited at this good possibility. He’d had a late afternoon flurry of demands from staff, just the usual problems, but in a barrage. All at once.

I could see him pacing around the club when I arrived, looking most agitated. And he was stressed about a function we had to attend as sponsors…so I went over to be with him, all high with fear and excitement, expecting to be lavished with praise, support and love. Getting instead, don’t pay for that, check this term, what about….??? was a big letdown.

I went to bed before him. He stayed up watching sport, when I needed a cuddle. But was not going to be needy girl.

He snored and fought some huge verbal battles during the night, and I shifted to the couch. He woke up all concerned. I had pretty much convinced myself that I needed to end things with him. He sat naked with me, asking if I was okay.

I said, “I’m really worried about us.”

“Why? What have I done? I’m sorry.”

I struggled to get the words out. But gently explained that I felt pretty concerned that he was riding roughshod all over my accomplishments, and I’d been here before, and it felt unhealthy. He said, “I know. I’m sorry. I messed up. I realised it, and tried to back pedal but it was too late. Please don’t paint me with the same brush as him. I do care. I am proud of you. I was in a bad headspace, and didn’t realise you came to celebrate. I’m a dick and I apologise.”

I replied that I know he isn’t Roger, but my guard is up waaaay high about this stuff. Some green flags seemed to be turning red!

And he admitted for the first time to a small amount of disappointment/resentment that I am opening this business alone. We had talked about joint ventures…I asked him about his feelings before I signed up. He was positive and encouraging. And he owns his lack of commitment to doing anything new. His fear of failure is a big driving force with him. I worked that out a few years ago. I felt if I waited for him, we’d still be waiting.

Anyway, long, good, real conversation. Which inevitably turned to sex. He always worries he’s going to lose me over this. I just homestly told him, if everything else is good, I can manage. But it does mean when we are struggling, the thoughts about my higher drive always ramp up.

Ultimately, he talked again about how unhealthy his relationship with sex is. It was a thing you did, working in hospitality, after a few drinks, and a stupid gane of pursuit. It isn’t a deeply intimate thing for him. He shows intimacy in other physical ways. I know this. I know that I’m “too good/nice” to fuck good and hard, or even seduce slowly, devouring each other. He’s never equated sex with love. It’s been Wham! Bam! Thank you Ma’am. Loads of one night stands and drunken hook-ups. No need to learn skills, understand where all the buttons on the console are, just a lot of point and shoot! Lol.

I’m the opposite. Probably demi-sexual. I need love to feel deeply sensual and wantonly sexy. And the closer I feel to you, the hornier I get.

It’s a giant challenge!

But. This was an exceptional talk. We discussed mental health, sex, hopes, dreams, expectations, what does supportive look like/feel like. I told him how hard I am finding it to talk candidly with him. Not because of him, but because I am struggling to identify and name my feelings sometimes. And top of my list is always that I don’t ever want to hurt him.

He did have one frustrated moment where he said about my past, “sometimes I feel from all of this unsaid stuff, the way you go quiet and withdraw, that you are never going to get over him.”

That took my breath away (what little I have, with this pneumonia!) My first instinct was to defend myself. Shout, no! That’s not true!

Instead. I shut my mouth. After a few minutes, I said, “there’s some truth there. I don’t think you do ever “get over” this stuff. But I know he’s not who I loved, and I also know I love you. It has left deep, painful scars. Sometimes the trauma is briefly visible, I’m sorry, I try to tuck it away quickly, out of view.” And I liked his reply.

“Yes babe. I see those moments. When you withdraw. And I’m sorry you have that. I also know my own damage. I just bluff my way through that, and yours is more painful. It silences you. Like sharp pain makes you suck in your breath. I hate when I feel like I triggered it by doing something wrong.”

Oh fuck. He he gets it. Because he’s felt it. He told me he gets really anxious about this stuff, because Chrissy said she loved him all the time, and then she was gone. No discussion. No warning. No honesty. He’s scared I will lie to him, too.

I tell you, trying to do this in your 50s is fucking insane!

So much baggage.

But, I do like how open he is to me. He’ll answer anything. He tells me the warts and all stuff of his past. He’s kind, caring and loving about my crap. He wants to make this work, and he knows that takes effort, it doesn’t just happen.

And, bonus. Great sex after all of that! Initiated cautiously by him. But strongly encouraged by me! See? Connection makes it BETTER! 😜

I’ve done a pile of homework. Opening a new business bank account. Downloading manuals and checklists. Filling in what I can in spreadsheets. The sun is finally out. The dogs are on the furniture, in the sun.

Whaaaat? Get off the ottoman, big dog! I am curled up, about to have a nap. Tomorrow it is revised budgets and business plan. Making a bank appointment. Writing my resignation letter…

BG just phoned. A bit upset. He was planning on coming over. Instead, at my insistence, he rang Andy, one of his best mates. He’d called earlier in the week and BG was a bit busy. Glad he called him. Turns out, his business is in trouble. He’s downsizing, restructuring. It means they will have to sell their stunning home and land up the coast with the elevated, 180° views. When he called, he and his wife were over in the nearby town, looking at smaller houses. He was asking if I’d mind if he went to Andy’s. Lol. Mind? Bloody hell mate. Get your arse up to your friend’s place! Beer and mate therapy required!

More Nana napping for me. Time to chill, rest, try to recover.


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Trauma. How not to repeat the mistakes of the past

This!,👆

I need to make good decisions going forward. I know my trauma caused so much indecision previously. This meant I stayed, in good faith, and got further abused.

I always thought I was strong, and fairly intelligent.

But I stayed. Thinking I could fix things. If only I tried even harder. Loved him as much as ever. I really did love him very, very deeply. That he would see my efforts and “reward” them with deep, faithful love.

Yeah, right. Dumbass.

I felt like the weakest, most stupid person.

But, trauma makes you this way. Rog never understood or accepted that I was deeply traumatised by his actions. By his lies. By his making my life’s work, love and commitment a farce.

I AM strong, and do have half a brain. Apparently. Validated for me by the academic achievement. It’s pretty sad that I needed that, and I’m very aware that there is “book smart,” and “street smart.” But I did need a way of saying to myself, you’re not as stupid as you seem. So, one man made a fool of you. But that was because you gave yourself to him. You trusted him implicitly.

Never again.


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What if he changes? For her.

It’s something every betrayed seems to fear.

What if he changes, and stays faithful, is genuinely lovely, as lovely and loving as he appears, for the affair partner?

That must mean it was all my fault. I was so unlovable, he just HAD to keep cheating on me.

I have even had this suggested to me by former friends. “Oh, it’s okay, you are both happy now.” Translation, he found his twu wuv. You were but an inconvenience, swatted aside for the sparkly glitter, the burning amazingness of his soulmate(s). 🤢🤮

FML.

The reality is, it is extremely uncommon. Very rare. These people don’t change.

But. Even if they do, you have to try to remember, they treated YOU like 💩. Even if they are God’s gift to Schmoopie.

So why does it matter if they treat Schmoopie like a queen?

Because it feels personal. That they didn’t love you fully. Therefore you must be seriously lacking. It stabs my heart even typing that. I did everything I possibly could to love that man well. I put him first. Every time, until he was exposed as a cheater. He was who I invested in. I saw that as my primary, most important relationship. Yes, the kids are important. But they grow up, have their own lives. Your partner, your love, is forever.

Ha! Yeah, right.

This research shows it’s all smoke and mirrors anyway. Once a cheater, always a cheater, proven by peer reviewed research. Someone who cheats is far, far more likely than not, to cheat again. And a proven cheater is three times more likely than a previously faithful partner, to cheat. Remember, Roger cheated on me on more than one occasion, with more than one woman. Hookers, exes, online hookups, whomever he could get easy access to. This was not a one time, sorry cheater.

And someone who is betrayed, is twice as likely to choose another cheater.

Far too many of us don’t ever fix our picker. Roger specialised in seeking out single women. He knew their vulnerabilities. Easier prey. No husband to out perform or have any guilt about. Just a little mouse, to sweep off her feet. To pour that sweet, sweet love bomb gunpowder into.

I’ll never forget the time he told me that he felt no guilt about Leanne, because he wasn’t stealing someone else’s wife or girlfriend.

My jaw still hurts from hitting the ground so hard!

Anecdotally, I knew this, from childhood. I knew that if someone feels that boundary, that hard line, is so easily crossed, it no longer holds any meaning. Any power. If it ever did. It’s just a line to step over. Not any kind of force field, protecting the relationship. If you put your dick in someone else, the primary relationship is no longer (or never was) sacred. You and your stupid faithful body and mind are forever desecrated by that act. I’m not, nor have I ever been, anyone’s special most precious thing. Worth protecting at all costs. The fact he had zero interest in any of my medical procedures, for the HPV and cervical cancer it created, tells the full story of how valued I was to him. My value was as a free labour unit, a broodmare and nanny, and a convenient sexual outlet. That is all.


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Felt like a looong weekend

My girls came.

So fab.

Just love having my kids around.

Cooked me dinner and made cocktails. I’m a lightweight after almost a month off drinking.

BG came. He’s been so helpful. We did loads of jobs. Planted trees, split firewood, carted woodchip from my tornadoed (like torpedoed?) trees. Including a trailer load for my Dad’s rose garden.

My heifers are due to calve on the 30th. I’m checking them closely. The two empties made incredible money. $1900 each! Just enough to pay for trees and the excess on my insurance to fix the fences…

I’m struggling. I am struggling with BG.

He’s the nicest man. And so helpful.

But. There are some big issues. Too many to list. Too personal to describe.

I know we need to have a serious talk. Timing is everything.

Ugh. Wish I could describe it.

And I so badly don’t want to hurt him.

Man.

Thanks Rog. I wouldn’t have to be here without your treachery. No way on earth could I have done to you what you have done to me.


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Depression. Some new research findings.

I was diagnosed with depression in my third year of affair recovery. I was eventually referred to a psychiatrist by my psychologist.

Bringing out the big guns! He was a very professional, very caring man.

Of course, he prescribed SSRIs for me. We upped the dosage three times.

Nothing.

Then we tried another. Upped the dosage to the maximum again.

Still nothing.

So, he told me he was going to try me on “old-fashioned” tricyclics.

Again, nothing after several tweaks.

Except I gained 9kg in a month.

If I wasn’t depressed before, I bloody well was now!

So, I lied.

Yes. Much better thank you.

And went home and started weaning off the meds.

Using antidepressants coincided with my normally robust libido waning.

Badly. Getting off the meds helped me address the libido problems, too.

I tried to let the therapists know that I didn’t think I was depressed. The psychologist eventually agreed, saying she thought I was instead dealing with complicated grief. She found that a difficult diagnosis because even clinicians were thinking this (at the time) fairly newly identified condition was linked with death.

No one died.

Just my old relationship. Complicated grief wasn’t an obvious thought.

So, reading this article tonight, made sense. It now appears that meds are unlikely to work if you are not suffering from severe depression.

I am firmly of the opinion that I am once again dealing with complicated grief.

I’m a strong person, who knows her own mind. But this is a pattern that I know about myself.

Thanks to being in love with a serial cheater.

I have a lot more information and skills to know how to deal with it now. One of my most effective tools to deal with this near debilitating grief is this blog.

In this, I have an outlet, a healthy tool to deal with this agony. So, thank you, to everyone who still reads, still comment, still care. I love you all xxx


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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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Super fucked off

My job is doing my head in.

One of the worst days in a while today.

Bloody sick of doing the right thing, then getting ridden roughshod over by a control freak boss who seems to think working for free for bad payers is good business.

Because they are “impressive,” or the idea of rubbing up against the semi famous. Ugh. Stupid. So, so stupid.

Then blames me when cash flow is not great. When I tell her point blank that we should no longer do work for these users. Whom I chase and chase and chase to pay their bills. I mean, I’m really good at my job. Good at getting us paid. I have shortened overdue creditors down hugely. I instigated prepay and paying large deposits before any services are offered. I culled poor creditors, only agreeing to work for those whose credit is great. I’m GOOD at this!

Then she lets a guy who hasn’t paid us in six months – who is overdue to go to debt collection, but she won’t allow me to follow procedure and send him – drop horses off today. Without an appointment. Without a deposit paid…FFS.

Not only that. I know she is shit at paying staff on time if I don’t press her, don’t organise payroll (not my job!) to be paid. She was travelling, and I knew how she would skive off, if I didn’t preempt it by sending payroll through before she left. She isn’t mean, just unrealistic about lower income earners.

Got roasted for it today.

Roasted for ensuring our fabulous team were paid on time. She already put these guys on monthly payroll, when no one wanted that. If she didn’t pay on time, their rent, their car payments, their daycare, that would all bounce.

Faaaaaaaaark!

So, BG asked me how my day was. And I replied, shit, hate my job.

Then he said he’d ring me. I said no. I’m shit company and pissed off. Don’t call me.

So he rang.

Fuck.

Tried to jolly me along. I don’t do grumpy these days. Life is too short. But I’m bloody grumpy tonight. Tired. Sick of this damn cold. Sick of being taken advantage of. Sick of it all.

Once, Roger would have held me tight. Soothed me, joking around and calling me his Snooks. I would have melted and felt comforted.😭😭😭

Instead, I’m fucking full of resentment!

I had a life I loved! We worked super hard when we were young. We built a good future. By now, I “shouldn’t” have to work this hard. Feel so mad at Rog. He doesn’t have to work this hard. I’m scared. I’m scared I will have to be this anxious about my financial future forever. My assets were halved. I’m desperately playing catch up…

I made the mistake of telling BG I was resentful. Mad at Rog, the FW.

He thought it meant I wanted to still be with him.

Ugh. NO!!!! I’m just mad tonight that everything is so hard. And that is why I didn’t really want to talk to him.

Why did I pick up the phone? (Hint. It’s because I’m still a people pleaser, and didn’t want to be rude…)

FML.


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Therapy

Sleep has evaded me again recently.

I haven’t slept through the night since DDay #1.

Not even once.

Lately, really bad again. Once I finally fall asleep, usually around 1am, I usually don’t stay asleep past 3-3.30. I might doze a bit. But never fall properly asleep again.

As I lie here, I draw on some of the tools I have in my kit. Things I was taught, or had reiterated in my multiple goes around the therapy merry-go-round.

No shit, Sherlock!

Anyway, it also kind of amuses me. That I was incredibly loyal, faithful, loving, and honest-to-a-fault (he didn’t like that I didn’t love the way he made unilateral decisions about our business, home and future, I was supposed to just shut up and accept that.) I was the hardest working, most selfless partner I knew. I was dedicated to “us.” I never wavered there. Even during the pre-affair (that I knew of, anyway) times. When it was hard, I never seriously considered leaving. I certainly never considered fucking someone else!

We knew. We knew I was loyal and hard working.

He commented on it often. Talked about “the spoilt bitches,” the women around us who were kind of like trophy wives. Entitled. Not required or encouraged to have careers. Certainly not waking early in the morning to milk cows, feed calves, carry heavy loads, while parenting and maiding! He said he had the real deal. That I was the best. Great way of embedding my work-ethic-that-worked-great-for-him! Dance prettier, bitch!

For the last year or so I have had a cleaner come to my house once a fortnight for a couple of hours.

And I still feel massive guilt about it. I’m not supposed to have that kind of privilege. Do it yourself, Paula!

I’m the one traumatised and having to work daily on healing. On trying to recover and lead a meaningful life.

While he got to just turn the page.

Next!

Living his best life…having a Trinket to suck his dick, no doubt clean, shop, etc…after annihilating mine.

Life. She’s a funny bitch, right?