Ghosts of the Years Gone By

Are we bored yet of my cheating saga?  I know, I know…..it’s old news.  But you see, that’s the thing, there’s layers to this drama.  It’s not a case that he got his jollies off, we ended and happy days, we both live our own future now.  There were a number of other players to this story and unfortunately, living in the same city, somehow we enter into each other’s lives once again albeit indirectly.

An acquaintance of mine I discovered recently had become good friends with one of the so and so’s that covered for my ex during his affair.  Now there’s a difference maybe between knowing about the affair and being too scared to mention anything because you don’t want to ruin someone’s marriage.  That, I can somewhat try to understand.  This was deception; phoning me and pretending he needed help with his broken car to get my ex out the house, kidding on they were getting together for my ex’s birthday and plenty more.  I asked for an answer from him when everything surfaced but like most cowards when called out on their lies, he couldn’t face me.  Infact the only time he’s had the audacity to try to get in touch is when he fell out with my ex and wanted the tapes I had of my ex in a compromising situation.

What my acquaintance does is his business yet I felt a surge of anger when I discovered their friendship.  We have daily interactions and whilst I respect him, ultimately he doesn’t owe me anything.  Speaking about it briefly with him, I felt that old humiliation resurface.  I cut the conversation short, feeling embarrassed at hearing my voice crack.  How they all must have laughed at me, I started thinking.

How they must all still laugh at me.

Once a Cheat, Always a Cheat?

Hearing about people cheat brings about an emotionally charged response from me.  Expected, no doubt, but I’ve also no doubt people underestimate how severe my repulsion is towards those that do it.  This past week brings me to my best friend who has entered into “talks” with a man who cheated on his wife.

She was nervous about telling me.  “I’m talking to somebody…..and you’re not going to like it”, she said in one breath.  My smile faltered.  He was somebody high profile who last year had cheated on his wife.  His wife upon finding explicit images exchanged between him and his female married boss, promptly went to the papers where her husband’s name was spared but the boss, not so lucky.  I suppressed, despite my inner self wanting to smack her, and listened.

He was remorseful.  She explained this wasn’t my ex who hadn’t held his hands up to anything but he admitted it all.  Surely people deserve a second chance if they’ve realised the error of their ways, she asked.  She wanted my advice as she valued me.  She wanted me to be straight.  She would cut it off if I didn’t approve because that’s how close we are….

I don’t approve.  In my head, all cheaters should be dumped in a pit and left to their own underground orgies.  To me, cheating is morally corrupt.  It’s not anything to do with the faith or faithless but rather to do with upholding good moral character.  Ir surprised me slightly as to how much internal emotion this conversation caused.

Things are tense between us.  I gave her my thoughts a couple days later and I won’t lie, I was emotional not logical.  We spoke again a week later.  It became clear to me that whilst she was hoping for my approval, ultimately it doesn’t really matter.  “Your situation can’t dictate my life”, she told me.

I’ve tried to understand what upsets me most about it all.  Perhaps I’m shocked that someone so close to me, having seen the repercussions from an affair, would consider entering into a relationship with the very person that caused that type of pain.  Perhaps I once again feel deflated by something I have come to realise; those who cheat carry on with life as normal, there are no real consequences.   But for those of us left in their path of destruction, it is us who continue to struggle with the consequences of their actions.

Boo!

I’ve only ever seen my ex once, briefly, as he tried (unsuccessfully) to hide from me.  It was about two years ago and I’ve never seen him since despite the fact that we still live in the same small town.  Truthfully, I am indifferent to him.  I don’t feel anything, neither hate nor love.

However I am in somewhat of a dilemma.  After a get together with a bunch of my rowdy cousins last week, we decided we would haul ourselves to some new activity centre nearby.  A friend of mine dramatically quietened over a coffee as I told her today.  “I hate bringing this up with you but HE works there now, my brother saw him when he went”.

What exactly am I supposed to do with that information?  The dilemma therefore stems from what I am expected to do versus what I really want to do.  I assume it looks rather dramatic to go now as though I am looking for a fight/trouble if I do.  On the other hand, why should I not go?  I didn’t do anything wrong and I  don’t see the point in spending my life hiding away from him.  I have no concerns about any residual emotions surfacing upon seeing him……….ok, maybe a slight niggle that I’ll be tempted to slap him but I think I can control it.  I do admit it gives me a great deal of satisfaction knowing where his life was to where it is now.

With that rowdy bunch behind me, I don’t think I will be the one wanting to hide anyway.

I Haven’t Changed

That’s a lie.  Whenever people come out of some major life changing event and claim to be the same person.  It’s quite simply a lie.

It’s not possible to remain the same.  Is it so shameful to have been changed by life anyway?

I, for one, am not the same person I was pre-divorce.  Yes I do think I can spot a bullshitter from miles away but just because I think it doesn’t actually mean I can.  In other words, I’m more cynical of what comes out of people’s mouths.  I’m even more no-nonsense than what I used to be because frankly, I just wasted five years of my life and I can’t be bothered with games anymore.  I don’t like to depend upon anybody as I hate the feeling of reliance.

But change isn’t always negative.  I’m emotional and not necessarily in a bad way.  I’ve been exposed to one of life’s most intense pains and I can feel things which I never have before.  I take care of others because I don’t like to think of people being alone.  I love more because I understand true love better.  I watch out for my girls because I realise that it would only have taken one person asking the right question to have helped me out of a bad situation.  I try to help where I can because I was once that person in need.

Life changed me…….maybe it’s not all that bad.

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Tell me

I don’t want to hear how God is testing me.  That doesn’t make things better.

I don’t want to hear how marrying her means his affair wasn’t a fling.  That man has no capacity to love.

I don’t want to hear the lies they all spread.  I have the truth in tapes.

I don’t want to hear how he spoilt my life.  I believe my life holds more.

Instead, tell me how vile you find him.

Tell me she’s a fool and will last a year (at most!).

Tell me that he looks old and wasted.

Tell me that I’m worth my weight in gold.

For today, just tell me what I want to hear.

Closure

I don’t think closure will ever exist for me and that’s hard to deal with or atleast it was for a while.  I was obsessed for a long time about finding out why.  As an outsider it’s easy to say, “because he was a jack ass” but immerse yourself into the situation and it’s not as simple as shrugging it off with a choice word or two.

Closure in particular is made more difficult when you realise your partner has all the traits of a sociopath.  I hear you groan:  “here she goes with the ex-bashing”.  If you read my post; The Sociopath Next Door then you will understand and perhaps realise that I’m probably correct in the assessment of my ex.  I never managed to get a straight answer from him in the days after confronting him about the affair and that’s one of the many problems of having married a sociopath.  They are compulsive liars so trying to pin them down to the truth is virtually impossible and when cornered about a lie, they react.

I went as far as messaging him without telling any of my family.  I was desperate for answers which I wasn’t getting.  In my head, I knew if I got them then I could let go.  He strangely agreed but only if I met him.  I asked for a phone call.  An excerpt from the conversation we had below (excuse my ex’s bad spelling):

EX: “fact of the matter is that I dont trust you or anyone to do with you. Since none of you can keep to your word to begin with. I dont know who you got sitting with you misconstruing what I say and try using that against me. So hell no. If you wana talk, then you do it in a public place or wherever it is I can protect myself”

Me: “Forget it then. there’s no conspiracy on my part, just a way to try to end a chapter. ‘Cant stick to my word’, please don’t talk to me about sticking to my word.  Fact of the matter, I took it upon myself and messaged you on my own. Fact of the matter, many things that happened in our marriage I still haven’t spoken about to anyone. Fact of the matter, I honour my word and my commitment.  Those are the facts of the matter.  Anyway you’ve made it clear you don’t want to. I don’t have any other suggestion on how to put this to rest as I’m not prepared to meet seeing as I don’t know you now”.

I contemplated meeting him as I felt desperate but common sense prevailed.  The conversation carried on with him sending me religious links about punishment of the tongue and backbiting because he was infuriated with the blog (I was tempted to ask him if there was a religious saying about sticking your tongue down another woman’s throat but I refrained, I was on a mission afterall), him asking me what I wanted to know, me sending him a list of questions I wanted answers to, him bizarrely sending me more religious links, me asking him to answer the questions and be done, him asking for the questions again, me sending them AND EVENTUALLY………

EX: “Yeah, well unfortunately that I cant give you im afraid.  If your and your families actions hadnt been the way they were then maybe I couldve helped you on that, but right now, I aint gona even contemplate that notion in your head”.

Exhausted?  Yes so was I especially having spent four hours having that nonsensical conversation.  Closure became less and less important as time went on.  I rationalised after the above conversation; even if he did answer any of the questions I asked him, how would I know the truth from the lies?

I’ve never asked him “why?” again.  Maybe that was my closure.