Torture

Past couple of days have been torture. I still cry when I think about what happened. I still cry when I see his pictures. I still cry when I think about everything he is going to miss in my life and my daughter’s life. But it’s like I am torturing myself now. I am thinking about things that I can not change. I am wishing I’d called more, texted more, visited more. Remember the series Quantum Leap? I’m wishing life was like that and Sam would leap into our life and keep my dad here. My mom posted something about she wished they’d took a sick day that day then dad would still be here. We all are torturing ourselves right now, I guess. Then I think, maybe things happened exactly how they were supposed to. If my dad hadn’t been the car that man hit, then he would have hit the car that rear-ended dad. So, the man would have killed someone else. He would have destroyed another family. Maybe that person just had a baby or recently married. So, maybe dad saved another person. Saved another family. My family are fighters. We are ready for the fight it is going to take to put this guy away. There are going to be multiple lawsuits dealing with insurance and money. Plus, there are going to two separate criminal charges. This fight is going to take up to three years. I know my family is ready for this heartbreaking challenge.

I found a necklace that I ordered for myself. My daughter told ex about a necklace that she wanted. Ex asked her if it was a gift for me. She said no. Ex told her that in that case it could wait. He said he would “maybe get it. Sometime. lol” That is not funny! How dare he behave like that! He apparently never even asked my daughter how she was during the entire time she was over there. WHAT A PIECE OF SHIT. He is a “good dad” to girlfriend’s kids. My daughter pays the price. She had to go to their basketball games all weekend, and she got none of her homework done. How can this be okay?

So, I bought her the necklace. I helped her with her homework.

Ex is fucking up. I am tired of cleaning up his mess with our daughter.

Yesterday was my daughter’s band concert. Ex asked her if she was singing at the Christmas concert. – I don’t know if he thought she was in choir, or if he was trying to be funny. But it really annoyed my daughter.

The concert was hard. I’d invited my parents to come a few weeks ago. They were planning on coming. No one planned on dad being gone. I sat alone. Surrounded by all these couples and families. I fought back tears. Ex brought girlfriend and her kids. I fought back anger. Girlfriend texted my daughter during the concert. WHAT THE HELL? Why is she now trying to be friends with my daughter. Why didn’t she make an offer four years ago when ex was screwing both of us?!?

After the concert, we went out to eat. Of course, they were there too. Luckily, I didn’t have to look at them.

Missing My Dad

I’m still in shock that he is gone. I haven’t really stopped crying. I forgot to eat for 24 hours. When I finally ate, I got so sick. I had my ex to help me tell our daughter. All three of us cried in the parking lot.

I took off work yesterday to go down to be with my mom and siblings. I went to get all the personal stuff out of the car. I threw up. I completely broke down seeing the sight of the car, and all his blood.

He was killed on impact. One driver hit him head on (police said this driver tested positive for drugs) and another driver (who was following way too close) ran into the back of the car. I’m glad he did not suffer.

I hate that Thanksgiving was the last time I will ever get to see my dad. And that visit wasn’t that good. I wish I could go back and hug him and tell him how much I love him.

People are asking me what they can do to help. I don’t know. I want my dad back. I want to talk to him again. I want a box of tissues and a hug from anyone, honestly!!

I am walking a fine line of how much do I allow myself to grief and how strong do I have to be for my daughter and the family. I forced myself to cook dinner last night. Neither of us ate more than a few bites. I almost wonder if it would be tacky if I asked all these people asking what they can do to help, if I asked them to bring food/dishes over that I could just heat in the microwave.

Lost My Cool with Ex

I messaged my ex this morning to find out what time he was bringing my daughter home. ┬áNo response. About twenty minutes later I try calling him. He would not answer. About forty minutes after my text, he texts me and says it’ll be about an hour. I decide to go to the store. It’s been almost two months since I’ve actually been shopping. We were extremely low on food.

I hate spending money. Everything is so expensive. Then the store only has two cashiers available. I spent more time standing in line then actually shopping. It is finally my turn and some random stranger comes up and starts grabbing items out of my cart. WTH? I get this person was trying to be kind, BUT don’t touch my stuff. Don’t invade my space.

Really put me in a bad mood by the time I get out of the store; I’m already annoyed. Then my daughter calls me. Not five minutes later ex calls me. I tell both of I am heading home now. They are both calling to figure out where I am, because for once I’m the one that is late for drop off/pick up.

I get home, and ex is sitting in my driveway with girlfriend and her kids and my daughter. I’m still annoyed. I get out of the car and start grabbing bags. My ex approaches and is just standing there.

I knew something was up.

****

me: What, dude?

ex: Can I have her back at 5pm?

me: Uh, why?

ex: Because we are going swimming.

me: Who the hell is “we?”

ex: Girlfriend’s family got a hotel, and we’re having a family get together.

****

Okay, by this time I am really annoyed! Why do I have to give up my time for girlfriend’s family?!?

I chew ex out for waiting until the last minute to talk to me about this plan. Of course my daughter wants to go swimming. But I am the time that has to plan. I have to be in control of my day.

I’ve always hated the “fly by the seat of your pants” characteristic of my ex. I would fool myself and think that it was wonderful because we were complete opposites. Maybe like ying-yang. I tried to make it a positive. It’s not. It’s a negative. He is worse now because girlfriend is the exact same way.

I told ex it was low putting me in that position of being the bad guy if I don’t let my kid go swimming. It is shitty of him to ask for me to give up my time with her for him to take her to be with girlfriend’s family.

Fine, whatever.

I’m so mad that he didn’t even ask if I had plans. Just automatically wanted to come get her, without offering me additional time.

My kid decided she didn’t want to go because they would only swim for maybe an hour, not worth it. So, ex was mad at my daughter for changing her mind because he got “yelled at” for no reason.

I did not yell or scream. I did speak harshly, but never yelled.

Got to hear about my daughter’s time at their house… apparently they got more dogs and they are not housebroken. Plus, the Christmas tree fell over. My daughter had to pick it all up. I asked where was everyone else? Ex was at the store buying girlfriend a new Christmas tree – aww, how thoughtful. I’ve been asking him since September to come and look at my heat in my house. I can’t even get that from him!! Girlfriend and her kids were sitting on the couch. Are you kidding me?!?

Am I being unreasonable?

He wants me to give up my time so she can be treated like Cinderella?

Text From Ex’s Girlfriend

Yesterday morning, ex’s girlfriend sends a text to my daughter.

Now, keep in mind this woman has been around my child for the past four years. She refused to put a picture of my daughter in her office with ex and her children. She doesn’t buy my daughter anything when she buys her kids something; whereas, ex always buys her kids something. My daughter sent her a friend request, which girlfriend still has not accepted.

Get the picture?

So, she sends my daughter a text, which means ex gave another person my daughter’s phone number without her permission. That did annoy my daughter. She read the text to me. Girlfriend asked for my daughter’s opinion for the best Christmas movie to watch while they put up the Christmas tree.

My daughter loves Christmas. She would watch Christmas movies everyday and keep a tree up all year, if I let her.

A part of me was glad girlfriend was FINALLY including my daughter. Low doing it by text when she was with me. The texting better not become a problem. I mean really, the question could have waited until ex picked my daughter up.

Not to mention, the damage is done. My daughter is a smart kid. She rolled her eyes when she read the text and asked why is girlfriend being nice now. Excellent question!! What is she up to? She trying to become “mom?” She stepping into that step-mother role?

I also have girlfriend’s number. A small part of me wanted to text girlfriend and say thank you for including my child. Another part wanted to go into mamma shark mode, and text her to ask why is she texting my kid?

So, guess I will try to take the high road and do what is best for my kid. Be supportive.

***

Alright, I must repel guys. I’m very convinced that I really do. Finally had one message me. We exchanged a few messages and then silence. Boy, I’m not going to message you.

Same with another one. We had a great conversation going until he asked what happened with my last relationship – which would have been the serial cheater. I responded. He read my message and then silence.

So, apparently guys find me attractive. It’s my personality or my past that runs them off… hmmm…

A Slight Break in the Darkness

Not going to lie, this week has been an emotional roller coaster. Ex proposing to girlfriend – even though I’ve expected it for years, I didn’t know how I’d handle it – has been a little rough. Tuesday, I was in tears. Left me feeling so confused and emotional. I started doing a little research – apparently, there are “stages” that one goes through in this situation. I looked through, and see it made more sense of how I’m feeling:

  1. Shock. My shock was that he actually did it. I mean after being with her for – let’s pretend they’ve never broken up – four years. “Us” being done for three years. Him telling me he is never getting married again. Him talking so negatively about girlfriend. Yes, I was shocked. Monday, when I found out, I didn’t feel any emotions – I was actually numb. That was my shock.
  2. Jealousy. Yes. Jealous she got a better proposal – I’m sure a nicer ring, haha. Jealous that he gets the “family” life and I am still fucking alone and single as hell. Jealous that ex’s life is moving forward and I feel stuck. Except it’s not like I’m stuck in concrete. I’m stuck in quicksand. I try to get out and I get pulled back down, deeper than before.
  3. Anger. I am angry. I don’t who I’m angry at though. I’m hiding my sadness with anger. I went to work today and someone asked where my daughter was. I said with ex. They were very surprised because apparently they seen girlfriend’s “big announcement” on social media, and was surprised they would want my daughter around. WHAT?! FUCK YOU!! Apparently, my daughter didn’t even see girlfriend last night. Ex and girlfriend hid in the bedroom all evening. I’m angry that I have to send my daughter over there. Why can’t she stay with me? At least when I have her we visit or play games, something!! My daughter asks me each time if she has to go over there. It is so heartbreaking.
  4. Relief. I am ready for this stage. Apparently in this stage you are relieved that you are no longer with ex. He is no longer your problem. I’m so afraid that I will not hit stage for weeks, months, or even years. I know it being the holidays is going to make this so much harder. I’m alone for the holidays. All I can do is cry. I tried talking to my mother about it, and she changed the subject. I tried talking to a friend about it, and she changed the subject – think because she seen I was fighting back tears. I mean, I get my ex is toxic. I GET THAT. So why am I not relieved that he is going to marry girlfriend?!? Because I am afraid he will no longer financially support our daughter. I suddenly feel like second best. I know I’m the one that filed for divorce. I know I’m the one that finally said “enough” when I found out ex was with me and girlfriend. So, why do I feel like I am trash? Why do I feel like I’m not good enough? Why do I feel like I did back during the divorce and after I stopped seeing ex three years ago? Why can’t I realize there is nothing wrong with me – it’s him. It’s always been him. NOT ME.
  5. Strength. This stage talks about after being petty and angry; after all the emotional roller coaster is over you realize you are stronger than you ever thought you could be. This will be true – I know what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger. However, as I’ve said so many times before, I’m tired of proving how strong I really am.
  6. Appreciation. You’ll appreciation life and where you are in life.

Of course, depending on which site or article you read there are other stages, but these are the ones I came across the most.

Writing this has been through tear-blurred vision with some pauses for complete and utterly break-down, hard sobbing. I know ex is not good for me. I seen him today – he didn’t even acknowledge me – I looked at him and didn’t find him attractive. I was hurt that girlfriend’s youngest kid was wearing a shirt of ex’s that he’d given me back in high school. I hope my soul mate is out there. I just hate that I’m still alone. I was faithful to ex – he was the cheater. Why do I get punished for my faithfulness by still being single? Why is it the man that never wanted to get married again is now engaged? Why is it the man that never wanted more kids – especially daughters – because he didn’t want to deal with hormones is engaged to a woman with three daughters? Why is it the man I was married to was a workaholic during our marriage, now takes vacation days all of the time?

Online dating hasn’t really helped this week. I had a zombie appear. He is now blocked. I get getting busy and not replying for a few hours or even until the next day. BUT it has been 14 days. Boy, please. I know what happened. He found another chick and when that didn’t work out, or he got a piece of ass, and then decided to make sure I was still on the back burner. I am worth more than being some guy’s Plan B. *block*

Positive thing with work – I got a fourth job. I am so excited about this one. Great pay. Could really open some doors. It will probably be after the holidays before I get to sign my contract and everything, but I’m still very excited.

 

Expected Rainbows and Song Birds

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Six years ago I filed for divorce. I have went back and forth wandering if I made a big mistake by filing. Wondering what is wrong with me. Wondering why ex wasn’t content being with me. After our divorce was finalized five years ago, I stayed with ex. I still believed I had made a big mistake. We didn’t live together anymore. So, if we did fight then we could be away from each other. I was dating my ex again. Our relationship was the best it’d been in years.

Four years ago, I was blindsided. I went over to ex’s house and there was another woman sitting on the couch next to him. Her kids were sitting in the floor playing with my daughter. I honestly did not know what to do or say. I left. I went to the store and tried to focus on what I needed from the store. Ex called me and asked if I was okay. I asked him if he was seeing that woman. He told me yes. How could I have missed the signs?

Worse part is, I continued to see him. My ex is like a drug. I know he is bad for me, but I was addicted. I had to go back. I could not live without him. I did not know how to live without him. I continued to sleep with him. I knew he had a girlfriend. Apparently, she would not have sex with him so that was what I was for.

In my head, I excused his behavior. We had been together since high school. Maybe if I let him see what else was out there then he would realize that he still loved me. I lower my self worth. I made myself more “available” for him. I did oral for ex all of the time – even though I hated doing oral on him.

I was happy to see that chick out of the picture. But I was more aware of signs after her. I noticed ex’s behavior for a few weeks and asked him if he was seeing someone else. He lied to my face and said no.

Now, here’s the thing about my ex, he has a specific facial expression that he makes when he lies. I have seen that expression millions of times. He thinks he is fooling me – even now he still lies to me.

He told me she was just a friend that needed help fixing her dishwasher. I should have seen everything wrong with that lie. You don’t want ex fixing anything. He gets angry and throws things and then usually breaks things even more. I continued to stay with ex. I needed him. I loved him. I needed him to love me.

I actually did not know about girlfriend until three-years-old. That means they were together for an entire year while he was still with me.

One day, my daughter started crying. I asked what was wrong. She said “dad told me not to tell you.” What?!? I find out that ex had taken my daughter to this woman’s house for sex and then told my daughter not to tell me. He lied to me. He was teaching my daughter to lie to me. I was pissed off beyond words.

When I confronted ex about, now current girlfriend, and if they were sleeping together he got the biggest shit-eating grin on his face. I do remember sleeping with him again after that, why I do not know. I needed that drug. I seriously thought I did not deserve better. I felt like I was doing the right thing for my family. I cried and hated myself every single time we had sex. I felt cheap and dirty.

I wanted to know about this woman. She had stolen my man. She was around my daughter. I wanted to know her.

Ex would not tell me much about her.

Even after I completely broke things off with ex, he would not tell me about this woman. He would not allow me to meet her. He was sneaking her over at night and then pushing her out of the house before our daughter would wake up. My daughter caught them and ex told her she was making things up.

I wanted – still want – a good co-parenting support for my daughter. I wanted ex and girlfriend and I to be civil and be able to hang out with each other for my daughter’s sake.

Honestly, I really did want to be friends. Even though I hated ex and did not trust him. I was more angry at him than at girlfriend. I mean, he was with me and telling me he loved me yet still shopping around – just like during our marriage.

I don’t know who to really be mad at in this situation. I mean, I was angry at myself for being so stupid and continuing to sleep with him and let him treat me like a crazy person. I was angry at him for not having the balls to talk to me like an adult. I was angry at him for using me. I was angry at him for not being faithful. I was angry at girlfriend for messing with another woman’s man. I was angry at both of them for trying to replace me in my daughter’s life. I was angry at both of them for not wanting to set up a successful co-parenting/support system.

I don’t know who is to blame, really. I blamed myself for a long time. Some days, I still blame myself. I blame ex. I know you cannot steal a man that does not want to be taken. I know he was always looking for someone else. I blamed girlfriend for messing around with someone else’s man. I know it was like a game for both of them. For me, it wasn’t.

I tried meeting girlfriend – the first time she would not get out of OUR bed and meet me. The next time she made out with ex in front of me. I mean, I don’t know if it was like to prove to me that she won and I lost. It was gross. I wanted to tell her that he cheated on her with me. Actually, I still want to tell her.

Back then, I really did feel like she won and I lost. Now, I look at the “prize” and think what a shitty thing to win in a horrible mind game. She can have him. I am done with that drug.

Just like with anything addictive, I think about what-if. I used to smoke cigarettes. That was a very hard habit to break. Now, the smoke makes me sick to my stomach. I used to self-injury. I do think about falling back into old habits, but I have to remember that I am a role model for my daughter. Same thing with ex. I think a part of me – deep, deep down – does still love him. I’m not sure if I actually love “him” or do I love the idea of being in a relationship and having a man in my life.

It has been one challenge after another. I have hit rock bottom during some of those challenges. I stayed angry at both of them and myself for so long. I have remained bitter. I still think ex plays mind games with me. I still think he gets off on making my life hell.

I know his opinion of girlfriend and her kids. I know he has told me she is easy and has been around. I know they have broken up multiple times and he still goes back – maybe she is his drug. I know he has told our daughter he is only with girlfriend because her kids need a dad.

Those kids have dads. They see their dads. He needs to be a dad to his own daughter.

Ex has brought girlfriend and her kids to my house. They do not get out of the car. But he would never tell me where she lived. I thought it was important that I know because my daughter was over there so much.

Before I met girlfriend I imagined what she was like. I pictured a cute blonde and very thin. Not knowing where she lived or what the house looked like, I pictured his cute, picture perfect house with a white picket fence.

Things are not how I pictured. Ex always gave me hell about my weight. Ironically, since girlfriend has been with ex she has gained a ton of weight. I have heard her speak before. Her conversation bored the living hell out of me. Honestly, all I heard was “blah blah blah.” I wonder if girlfriend and I tried conversing again if I would be less bitter this time – that last time was three years ago.

I would see ex hold her hand and kiss her. I would feel so jealous. I would hate them both. I would hear about everything they did together and with the kids. Again, I would feel angry because ex never did that with my daughter or me.

I know every relationship has a honeymoon phase.

I know things are never as they appear. I know it is easy to make the relationship look happy and both parties to hide the truth.

Ex moved in with girlfriend. I told him he had to tell me where she lived. Our paperwork states I have to have current phone number and address for ex at all times.

I finally got girlfriend’s address.

Ex is currently on orders across the country. My daughter’s belongings are at girlfriend’s house. Last night, she needed something that could not wait. I told her to call her dad to make sure girlfriend was home – since my daughter does not have a key to the house – and I would drive her over there to get her things.

My daughter led me to girlfriend’s house. I pulled up to this house. I expected this gorgeous home, white picket fence, birds singing, and a rainbow above it. Instead, I wasn’t impressed. The house was nothing special. The yard was neglected. The cars – most of them were ex’s – but the one’s that were girlfriend’s were dented. There was no white picket fence. No gorgeous rainbow plastered in the sky above the house. Honestly, if I did not know who lived there and just judging by the house and surroundings I would guess an old woman. If I was taking my daughter trick-or-treating, it would be a house that I would probably just pass by – that would be the house that would give out the popcorn ball or that gross candy in the black or orange wrapper.

I wander what happened with ex and girlfriend when he called to tell her that I was bringing my daughter over.

I did not get out of the car – there was no point. I went there to let my daughter get some things, and that’s what I did.

Hopefully another step in the right direction. Proof that I am still continuing to heal.

***

Oh, update on the 24 year-old with online dating… Yeah, he did not make the cut. I had to block him. He last longer than most. Good conversation. But he was way too needy, and clingy. Maybe that’s why he was looking for an older woman, to mother him. Ha, sorry, I’m the wrong chick for that. But, maybe looking for a younger guy would not be completely insane. I mean, age is just a number, right?

Daydreaming

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I have always been a daydreamer. Growing up I would daydream to escape. I would imagine moving to a different school where I wasn’t picked on and bullied. I would imagine having a group of friends that I could depend on and do things with.

When I started dating my ex-husband, I would try to imagine what life would be like – what I actually wanted our marriage to be like together. I would daydream to keep myself company on the nights that he was working or during the times he was deployed. I would also find myself daydreaming during times he was there – I would get lost inside my own head even during sex. I would trick myself to believe it was great. I would daydream about this wonderful sexual experience with my ex.

Even now, I find myself imagining a life I wish I had – especially when I’m trying to fall asleep at night. Don’t get me wrong. I love my daughter. I love my life. But, I still find myself wanting, wishing, and dreaming for more – a new relationship, a better car, when I no longer struggle with money, a day ex and I can co-parent like I want us to for our daughter.

Then I feel like I am failing, because 1. I’m not “content” with what I have since I am daydreaming; 2. I’m not achieving what I “wish” to have. This makes my energy and motivation fly right out the window. All I want to do is sleep. Crawl under the covers and disappear until everything is how I “wish” it would be.

This weekend, I stayed in the moment. I enjoyed my weekend. Ex is deployed for a week or two. I have my daughter the whole time. We watched movies, talked, drew pictures. We laughed. I don’t want to daydream my life away. She is growing up so fast.

At work, I stay in the moment. I want to do the best I can. I enjoy my job.

But, later today I will find myself still daydreaming.

 

 

“Home” and Dating in your 30’s

Last night, my daughter played in the band at her first football game. It was great – brought back memories, I was in band too. Funny thing, they played the same songs we played when I first started marching. Her hair was down – usually it is in a ponytail since her hair is down to her waist. After the game, she made a comment that she wished she’d put her hair in a pony tail but she’d left a pony tail holder at home. She was with ex the night before. So, I am not sure if she was referring to girlfriend’s house as “home” or she meant my house as “home.”

Honestly, I wanted to ask. I secretly hoped she meant my house was “home.” But I kept my mouth shut. I could not question her. What if she did mean girlfriend’s house as “home?” Then shouldn’t I be happy that she feels comfortable enough to refer to that house as “home?” Should I be hurt if she doesn’t refer to my house as “home?” Maybe I’m being oversensitive.

I did ask her about her room at girlfriend’s house. I want to support my daughter and her life with ex. I want her to feel like she can tell me anything. I don’t want her to think that she has to hide her feelings – good or bad – just because it has to do with ex and girlfriend. I really don’t want any more surprises like the church conversation.

****

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I have decided I suck at dating and flirting. I don’t know if I was ever very successful at flirting. I mean, in high school I also had a boyfriend and guy’s were interested. But, let’s face it, they were probably only interested because there were rumors about me being easy and ex calling me “condom queen” did not help. FYI, I never had sex in high school.

Then I started dating ex our senior year. I didn’t have to flirt with anyone except for him. Now, honestly, I think occasionally I do still catch myself flirting with ex. Maybe it is just habit? Maybe deep down I still love him?

I had two guys message me – well that were not scammers – yesterday. One, I have tried chatting with this guy and I have blocked him over and over and over. He continues to make a new profile and messages me again. He doesn’t work. He drinks and does drugs socially. He is a porn addict. The second guy, we exchanged messages. He told me about his likes. I responded. Guess it wasn’t the response he wanted because he told me I don’t sound very enthusiastic. hmm… no, I didn’t. Honestly, I wasn’t. I mean he likes spending time with friends and family. He goes bowling and plays golf. WTH am I supposed to say to that? “OMG, THAT’S GREAT! TELL ME MORE, PLEASE!!”

I’m socially awkward. I laugh at weird moments. I text “lol” when I don’t know what else to say. I don’t share or open up too much right away. I’m afraid of how I may come across if I do start talking/texting. For example, there was one guy I’d asked for a picture to make sure it was the same person and he asked if I wanted a picture of his face or penis. I joked “typical male, always looking for the opportunity to show IT off.” He blocked me. Hmm… guess I need to work on my joking/ flirting skills.

I also don’t know how to catch their attention if I message first. I mean, what you see is what you get. Figure if my pictures or profile doesn’t catch your attention then I’m not going to waste my time. So usually I send the lame message “Hello. How are you?” Or, if they have something interesting in their profile I’m respond to it.

Wish dating was easy like when I was a teenager. Now, I have to worry about liars, cheaters. I have to think about what is best for my daughter. I have to worry about my safety. I have to be paranoid of STDs and pregnancy. Dating in your 30’s is not fun.

I Still Think About Him

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This time last year, I reactivated my online dating accounts, again.

I was done taking a second break from online dating.

I had taken a year-long break to continue healing. It was time to try online dating again.

I had forgiven myself for sleeping with – well, let’s be honest – a stranger. I thought of it as a life lesson, and really it was what I needed to stop loving ex. What’s the saying? “The best way to get over a man is to get under a new one.”

So, after a year away from online dating drama, I decided to try again.

I really did not expect too much when I reactivated my online dating accounts. But, a year ago, I got a message from a guy that was going to give me another major life lesson.

I know what red flags I ignored with this guy – trust me, I have replayed every conversation we’d ever had over and over in my head. But at the time, I over looked all of the red flags, because I really thought I was being way too jaded. Yes, I had been hurt by the guy that slept with me, asked me to be his girlfriend, and then ghosted. Why take out that anger and paranoia on the next guy?

A year ago, I received a message from “Rick.” He did not send the typical message “hey babe” or “hi sexy.” He sent a message: “Hi. How are you?”

Wow. Great grammar! It definitely caught my eye.

I over looked the fact that his profile name was a single letter, “R,” and that he only had one profile picture. He did tell me his first name, and he sent me additional pictures of himself on request.

The first weekend that we started talking was a drill weekend. He was military. He was real military – he talked just like ex. A lot of his mannerisms were so much like ex – think that was another reason I overlooked so many red flags. I might have still been in love with ex, and this guy reminded me of ex.

At first, we just chatted casually. I was looking for just someone to chat with – not to date; not to have a relationship with; just someone to chat with. I let my guard down and started opening up to this guy – again, since he reminded me so much of ex it felt right, familiar, and comfortable.

He quickly wanted to video chat. It was refreshing to have a guy that wanted to video chat and talk on the phone – not hide behind text messages. He lived in another state, but his kids and military base were in the same state as I.

We arranged to meet in person after chatting for three months. He drove 3.5 hours to come see me. I thought this is amazing! A guy willing to drive 3.5 hours – one way – to come hang out with me has to be pretty special, right?!? I mean, why would a guy waste that much time if he was just wanting sex?

The first time we met up, we only got to spend about thirty minutes together. We ended up making out – not my proudest moment, I know. But I felt comfortable with this guy. We’d been chatting – video chatting, texting, and talking on the phone – for three months. Two weeks later, we arranged to meet up again. I wanted to have sex – I hadn’t had sex in 18 months. I am the one that asked – my heart about pounded out of my chest. I was so scared, nervous, and worried that I would be turned down. He, of course, did not reject me.

We met at a hotel – I did not want anyone at my house. The sex was AMAZING! However, I ended up having a horrible anxiety attack. He did not run for the hills. He stayed. He called and made sure I made it home safely.

I felt like this guy had potential.

I still ignored the red flags, because I had convinced myself that he is making an effort. In one month, we’d met up six times. That is a lot of traveling – most of those times we didn’t even have sex. We would just hang out and talk. He was the type of guy that would hold a door open for you and then would slap your ass as you walked through the door.

I fell in love with him. I told him I loved him. I wasted seven months on him. Still ignoring the red flags.

What red flags did I ignore?

  • profile had one picture (which it was a full body picture, and he was wearing a hat and sunglasses. I later found out it was a much older picture of him, too.)
  • username was a single letter
  • he refused to add each other on Facebook
  • he would disappear for several days at a time and then reappear as if nothing had happened
  • he continued to tell me that he did not have a girlfriend
  • he never called me by my name
  • he refused to have a relationship, or even give us any type of title – dating, bf/gf, fwb.
  • he continued to repeat that he had never cheated on anyone
  • he talked about other women (even after we’d just had sex, he would talk about other women!)
  • He would not tell me his last name for a very long time (it was about four months of us chatting before he told me his name, which I’d already knew his last name – I’d already found him on social media. I just wanted verification from him.)

Why did I ignore all of these red flags, plus more?

  • I thought he had potential.
  • I was tired of online dating drama, so I was settling.
  • He reminded me of ex – the man I thought was my soulmate.
  • It was nice to have someone to chat with again.
  • THE SEX WAS AMAZING, and he made me feel good about my performance in bed.
  • He made me smile.

In May of this year, he was at AT for two weeks. We’d planned on meeting after the two weeks were up. I was going to introduce him to my daughter.

We’d planned on meeting on Sunday. On Friday, I had a feeling that something was not right. I could not ignore the feeling. This feeling was too strong. In two days, this man was going to meet the most important person in my life and I had a weird feeling about him.

I’d searched for him on social media before – his profile was extremely private. He did not have a picture of himself on his profile. He had a common name – there were SEVERAL guys with the same name. I found him after a few months of us chatting – so I knew his full name (even middle name). I did not disclose this information with him though.

This day, though, I continued to search. He had slipped up and posted something publicly. I could see it without being on his friends list. I looked at the comments and there it was – a red flag that I could not ignore:

A woman made the comment in response to a meme he’d posted. She said “lol. that’s my man! love you, babe!”

I clicked on her profile. Her profile picture was a picture of her with RICK.

It was an older picture. He had changed his hair style and facial hair. He had gained weight. But it was HIM.

I screenshot the picture. I texted him and asked him to call me when he got a chance.

A part of me still wishes I’d waited for his call. I wish I could have heard his voice and his reaction. But, I could not wait. I had to ask right then. I sent another text:

****

me: fuck it. I’m going to just ask right now. Are you seeing anyone else?

him: no, why?

me: you are dating or having a relationship with any other females?

him: no, why?

me: hmm… funny, because I found a picture of you with a woman.

him: I haven’t taken any pictures with any women. Are you even sure it is me?

me: it sure as hell looks like you.

him: it must be a very old picture, if it is even me.

****

Okay. I was getting nowhere with him. I messaged the woman.

****

me: hi. you don’t know me, but I have a very strange question: is that your boyfriend in your profile picture?

her: who are you? why do you want to know?

me: is his name Rick?

her: how long have you been sleeping together?

****

Our conversation continued for several minutes. I told her how long I’d been seeing him. She told me they had been together for three years. They were engaged. I was not the first chick he had cheated on her with. I apologized to her; I did not know he was with anyone. She said no hard feelings towards me.

I sent her screenshots of my conversation with him to prove it was Rick I was chatting with – I had his picture and his phone number. I showed her screenshots of him telling me he did not have a girlfriend and he was not seeing anyone else.

Then, I sent him screenshots of conversation between her and I. I told him “look I made a friend.”

I did not he hear from him after that.

I did continue to hear from her for the next several hours. She told me he was ignoring her; she was also trying to text and call him.

About six hours later, I receive a message from her. She said that he apologized to her for cheating. He said he wasn’t going to do it again. Said that he had told me that he did not want a relationship, or to even see me. Said he was not interested in me, but he was afraid that I would kill myself if he rejected me.

WHAT?!? THAT ASSHOLE LED ME ON AND THEN SPUN THE SITUATION AROUND TO MAKE ME LOOK LIKE A CHARITY CASE!

Made him look like the hero – yes, he had cheated, but he was keeping some poor, depressed chick from hurting herself because she couldn’t have him. HA! What an ass…

I was so mad. I was more mad at myself than at him. I had ignored red flags. I had let myself fall in love with this guy.

I still think about him. I still think about the red flags that I did ignore – I want to learn from my mistakes.

I find myself wondering if he ever felt any remorse for what he did to me. I find myself wondering if he really did stay faithful, or if he found another victim. I blocked both of them on social media, apps, and on my phone.

I worry that one day I am going to come across his profile on the dating sites again. What would my reaction be? Would I be able to bring myself to just block him without saying anything? Would he try to contact me?

I miss the conversations and the attention from a guy, but what I really miss is the sex.

He made me more jaded. He made me have even less trust in guys. He made me hate myself again.

Happy Halloween

Yesterday, I felt so bad for my daughter. She is in Junior High. They have a lot of homework each night. It is difficult, at times – nothing like what I did in school. It is all on the computer, which I get that is how society is today but come on! My wifi doesn’t work. So, we went to a second location. That wifi would not stay connected to her computer. She asked if we could just go to the school and sit in the parking lot. I told her no because I did not want a cop knocking on my window wondering why I was sitting in the school parking lot at night for hours. Finally, found a location for her to do her homework with good internet connection. She was working on algebra. I looked up a website to kind of quickly teach myself how to do it so I could teach her how to do it. She was catching on really quickly. So, I stepped away – I wanted her to be able to do the problems by herself because at school she would have to do them alone (plus she was not able to ask any classmates because they had all copied off of each other and my daughter said she did not feel right copying work). She was on the school website answering math problems and then I noticed she started going back to previous problems and changing every one of her answers. Wait!! She said no, what I’d told her was wrong. Okay. She finished the assignment. Since it is online the computer grades it right away. The grade popped up on the screen – very low grade – and my daughter breaks into tears. My daughter is a straight A student – has been since kindergarten. She works very hard for her grades. I told her to review the problems – turned out what I’d taught her was correct, but when she second guessed it gave her the wrong answer. While, luckily the teacher gives two chances when working on assignments. I told my daughter to just ask the teacher to open her second chance and do the assignment again, since she knows how to do it. So, during class today she should be able to redo the assignment. She was very disappointed in herself and in the situation because today the class is going to have a Halloween party.

Ex is on vacation this week. I thought it was to finish packing up his house. Apparently, girlfriend took this week off too. So, they are just goofing off all week. My daughter invited ex to watch her at tumbling last night. He hesitated and said he had a lot of work to do at the house, but he would try to be there. He did come. We really did not speak to each other. He sat there and texted – I assume girlfriend. I did catch him more than once looking at me – kind of creeped me out. My daughter had school pictures, so I brought ex’s his copies of the pictures. He laid them on the floor. When he left – he left before we did – he was still glued to his phone. He left the pictures laying in the floor, which I did not even notice. It wasn’t until my daughter walked over and seen something under ex’s chair. So, I’m waiting to see how long it takes for him to realize he forgot the pictures.

So, Happy Halloween!

Halloween is defiantly my favorite holiday. If I had the money, my house would be decorated and I would create a haunted house. I would make everything over the top. Well, I don’t have money so I just enjoy the spirit of the holiday.

In the past, trick or treating consisted of ex sitting in the car and my daughter and I going to the houses. After girlfriend entered the picture, it was her and her kids that ex would sit in the car and wait for.

The first Halloween that they were officially together was hard for me. It was technically ex’s day. I wanted to tag along. I did not want to miss out on my daughter trick or treating – they grow out of it so fast. I walked with girlfriend’s kids and my daughter while ex and girlfriend walked behind me. Girlfriend was dressed like a “sexy nerd” and had insane high heels. How I managed to keep from busting out laughing when she tripped in her heels on the sidewalk, I don’t know. The past couple of years, girlfriend hasn’t gone trick or treating with us any more. She will send her youngest with ex. Ex and that kid will trick or treat with my daughter and me. Then quickly after, ex will have to leave to go pick up another one of girlfriend’s kids.

The first year – two years ago – I was shocked that ex would quickly leave us and never even call or text to make sure we were okay or at least to make sure we made it home safely. Last year, I didn’t even bother with ex. He did meet up with us for maybe thirty minutes, but that was all.

This year is going to be bittersweet. My daughter is too old for trick or treating – her word, not mine. ha-ha. I told her it was up to her. I would take her trick or treating or we could just buy some candy and watch scary movies. So, today we are starting a new tradition – scary movie night to celebrate Halloween. She did dress up for school. She even asked if we could do a photo shoot after school of her in her costume and makeup.

I’m going to miss taking her trick or treating, but watching movies and having fun at home is going to be wonderful.