Are you all ready for Part 2? Here we go.
After the bawling and crying subsided (the sort of crying I was doing could realistically only have lasted 15 minutes max. Otherwise I’d have passed out from sheer exhaustion) and SCL admitted that he really hadn't thought the whole "I want to end our relationship through" (Note: then WTF are you saying it? Don’t you realize that this is the MEANEST THING YOU COULD DO TO ME?), I really wanted to understand what was going on with him. Where was all of this coming from? So I put on my compassionate partner hat and listened.
Now I have to confess something. I am not perfect. Shocking, I know! Back in the fall I did something really stupid. I read SCL’s journal. It was a desperate, albeit pathetic and invasive, attempt to understand what was going on in his head when I suspected his heart wasn’t totally in the relationship. (Maybe I should've just thought of ending it then rather than invading his privacy. The fact that I felt his heart wasn't in the right place would have been reason to say that I was done.) The snooping is not something I’m proud of. And here’s the thing about snooping: whatever you find, you can’t say anything about. It’s pretty much the worst idea in the world unless you by chance happen to find something really great that affirms your relationship. Do not count on this ever happening. In my case, I found just the opposite. I saw the negative side, the dark side, the doubting side, and while I didn’t want to believe it, it was right there in front of me.
Eventually the guilt overtook me and I confessed to SCL that I’d done it. He was FURIOUS with me and rightfully so. I broke his trust, and I really felt like shit about it for months. I gingerly brought up some of the things he wrote, but he obviously didn’t feel like he needed to answer me. I had invaded his trust, and what right did I have to question anything he said? So, I let it go. I tried to forget about it. I never brought up anything I had read.
So, when he told me the night of our "why are we living together" conversation that he’d read my journal, things changed. First, I didn’t really care that he'd done it. I think it’s fantastic that someone would actually find me interesting enough to actually to take the time to read my journal (clearly I am affirmed by this; I’m a blogger who writes about my life and gets excited every single time there’s a new follower!) It was fair that he’d done it, I guess. I’d broken his trust, why shouldn’t he break mine? It was at that point that I thought to myself, to hell with it. I really didn’t care anymore about pretending I didn’t read what he wrote. I wanted the truth. He was being brutally honest about everything else. Our relationship was going down the toilet in front of my eyes, so I had to just go for it. This was my chance.
“Is this about her?” I asked. “Her” being the girl I read about in the pages of his journal, the girl of his past, the girl he seemed to still be thinking about, the one whose pedestal I knew I’d never quite reach.
“No,” he said.
I asked again, “Is this about her?” I asked. “Have you been talking to her?”
And then it came. “Yes. She wrote me yesterday.”
I wanted to scream. I wanted to go find this stupid girl and give her a piece of my mind. I wanted to scream at SCL, “GET OVER IT ALREADY! SHE IS A FANTASY! NO WOMAN WILL EVER LIVE UP TO THE ILLUSION IN YOUR MIND!” Instead, I listened. I asked questions. And for the very first time in our entire relationship, I truly felt SCL was being honest with me. He let me see the note she wrote, a letter that pissed me off with its façade of trying to be respectful of the fact that he was in a serious relationship with me—but also making it a point to say that she still has feelings for him. Don’t even kid me with that line, sister. Women know these things, and she knew what those words would do—they would give him hope that she still loves him, too.
After he’d told me more about her and how he felt, I told him that the way I saw it he had three choices.
1) Cut off all contact with her.
2) Try to have some kind of normal friendship with her (i.e. let me meet me, see that she is a normal person with flaws and everything.)
3) Dump me and go pursue a relationship with her.
Of course I’d hoped he wouldn’t choose the last, but I couldn’t deny it was a choice he could make.
Let me just say I don’t think this woman was the cause of our break-up. Not that it helped. But I do think that SCL’s inability/unwillingness/whatever to let her go was a barrier to him truly loving me and committing to me. I can’t blame her for that. That’s his burden to bear. We all have baggage; this is some of his.
I'm wondering how other women would react to hearing something like this—that she is second best in my man's heart. Honestly I sort of felt good because FINALLY he was sharing with me openly. Emotional stuff aside, in the moment I took it as a step toward real honesty between us and a way to begin rebuilding our relationship on a solid foundation of trust. Maybe I should’ve known better. But I will say that I did everything I could, including being there for him as he admitted his love(?)/feelings for another woman, to be a supportive, loving, compassionate partner no matter what. I thought we could work through even this as long as we were honest and communicated. I didn’t think it was the end of us, but rather a new beginning. I wanted it to be. And deep down I truly believe it could’ve been if that’s what he had wanted.
That's what hurts the most--that I was such a loving, caring, compassionate partner, that I was willing to help him work through even this and whatever else came up, and he still didn't want me anymore. What a loss for him, I know. But it's also a huge loss for me, too--to have my love rejected like that. I know, I know what you're all thinking. But let me just quote Kelly Clarkson and say"That's how I feel right now/ So just let me be."
I will admit right now that I was the girl that went through the guy's email and texts. The first year I knew my husband (before we were ever official) I wanted to be with him but he was pretty much busy being a GUY and doing whatever he wanted and keeping things casual. Ugh, it sucks. You see a message or a text from a girl and you are SHAKING but you can't do anything because if you do then they know you were snooping. It. Sucks. Bad.
I think you're right about SCL's inability to really let this woman go and that harming your relationship. And frankly, whoever this woman is, she obviously doesn't respect anyone's boundaries. I've been through that too.
I don't have much advice about this because I've been through all of it and never really figured much out. But I will still say that I think getting all this out will be SO good for you. And maybe it'll help you get closure.
It was really hard to admit this mistake to him--and now to the world. The thing is, I tried to bring up with him some of the feelings of insecurity and doubt I had a number of times, and he could never reassure me. I always felt like something was missing in our relationship--a feeling that I was his #1. That alone should have been enough for me to realize something was wrong, but I didn't want to see it. I wanted to hear it from him.ReplyDelete
Yes, I'd still love to give this woman a piece of my mind.
"The fact that I felt his heart wasn't in the right place would have been reasons to say that I was done."ReplyDelete
i think that's the part you have to focus on. you knew it was wrong for you all along.
It's hard to accept that, though it's the most important thing TO accept.ReplyDelete
And damn, grammatical typo. Fixed that! (Thanks for pointing it out!)
I agree with livin wide. You shouldn't have to live in someone's shadow!ReplyDelete
"Yes, I'd still love to give this woman a piece of my mind."ReplyDelete
You are putting the blame where it doesn't belong. Granted, what she did wasn't cool, but the fact that he was so quick to jump ship for her speaks volumes about his character. If it wasn't her, it would have been someone else.
Fast forward 6 years and you are married with small children. He meets a young woman who gives him the attention he wants because you are busy taking care of kids, the house, him...everyone but yourself. Is that the husband you would want?
Blaming the other woman is sooo easy. "She made him do it." "He would have been loyal to me if it wasn't for her."
Yes, this sucks and sucks big time. But do yourself a favor and find the man who knows there are other woman out there, but would rather be with you than anyone of them.
Believe me, she did you a favor.
Anonymous, thank you for your thoughts. Let me just say that while I am upset that she did not respect the boundaries of our relationship, I have not blamed her. Feeling angry about a break-up is a normal part of healing. Having thoughts about revenge, justice, etc. are normal, too. It doesn't mean I'm blaming her or plan to actually contact her.ReplyDelete
This blog is as much about my own emotional transparency, sharing my ups and downs, as it is about my own understanding. I think if you read my other posts you'll see that I hold him completely accountable for his behavior. Wanting to give her a piece of my mind or blaming her is certainly not at the forefront of my thoughts. I think if you read on, you'll see that.
And I disagree that she did me a favor. I understand the sentiment, but it's still not a very helpful thing to say.
"And I disagree that she did me a favor. I understand the sentiment, but it's still not a very helpful thing to say."ReplyDelete
I met my ex-husband at work. Everyone was well aware that the two of us were dating at the time. A woman decided that she was interested in him and decided to go to his desk every morning and flirt with him. He allowed this and we eventually broke up because of it and I had to quit my job. Needless to say, I did not like what she did and would not (at the time) thought she did me a favor.
Fast forward and he and I got back together. Eventually we married, had a child and eventually we divorced. He is the same selfish a-hole who allowed some other woman to interfere with our relationship many years ago. The "other woman" exposed him (not intentionally on her part) and I should have learned from that incident. That's all I'm trying to say.
Anonymous, I'm very sorry about the heartache you've experienced. I hope that you have found/are finding healing in this situation. Thank you for sharing your story. I hope, too, that I can be spared the pain that you've experienced. Sending hugs your way.ReplyDelete
Thanks for the support. We divorced a while back, so I'm well past that event. Live and learn...live and learn. : )
I wish you the speediest recovery. You are young, professional and have a lot going for you. You'll do great!
Thanks, A! Thanks for the encouragement. Means a lot.ReplyDelete
I discovered your blog this morning. I wanted to say thank you for sharing your feelings. It is exactly what I'm going through too and it is such a comfort not to feel alone. I am inspired to possibly start my own anonymous blog just to have a way to vent and process all that's going on. Thank you... You have no idea how much what you're doing means.ReplyDelete
Anon, I'm so glad that the blog is helping you. And yes, I encourage you to do your own blog! It is the best way to vent and get some love from a wonderful community. If you ever want to chat more, send me an email thenonstudent (at) gmail (dot) com.ReplyDelete