That stuff I need to say

It seemed like there was a theme to my blog, right? That’s me wanting to have organization and something to hang together. What I struggle with is there are other things I want to write about, but I am afraid. Afraid of comments, afraid that however I am feeling right now will not be how I see the world in 20 years. That I may have an opinion now that I won’t later. That is why I have never liked debate or discussing certain topics with people that i know feel strongly one way or another. That someone is going to point out an angle I didn’t think about and “catch me” in a contradiction, but isn’t that the point? The fear in my stomach of being told I am wrong hurts. Why do I feel this so strongly and physically? Pit in the stomach. Dagger in the stomach. Why do i want to just retract back to how things were moments previously. Like it never happened. I want to write about how we can all be more understanding of each others’ differences yet I can’t accept my own ironies/hypocrisy. It kills me to know there will be a someone who loves human interest stories and how people can totally change. the one who loves stories and how people change. Afraid of making a spelling or grammar error (which we all know shouldn’t hold anyone back from writing, but being a editor makes this very hard to stomach.) And hard to write while I can’t help editing my own words as I go (which gets me nowhere with nothing to show for it). Lately I am realizing that sharing my writing is never going to happen unless I make errors. That to be error-free is not possible. But this still stops me. I hate it. I listen to Glennon Doyle who seems so much like me and how I think and wonder how she pushed herself to share her writing on a blog. It is one thing to make yourself sit down and write and another to put it out there…waiting for criticism. And I am sure she has critics, but it sure as hell doesn’t seem so. How does she do it? I am in awe of her, but I know it isn’t all roses for her.

I want to write about the emotional abuse I experienced in my (now-defunct) marriage. See! I even use self-deprecation to refer to the fact I am divorced. Shame embedded. As I type these words, I can’t even believe that status. Factually, yes. But even with the higher numbers of people divorced, there is still a lot of shame with saying you are divorced. Like you didn’t “get” what marriage is about. Like I missed something. I still feel I missed something. Is there some secret everyone is keeping from me? Like those things about pregnancy and childbirth, and menopause that no one tells you about, hemmorhoids, pooping on the delivery table, the mesh undies stuffed with pads.

Even though it was the right thing for me to do per myself and anyone I know and love, having been divorced still makes me feel that I failed one of life major milestones. And I did so well with all the others before – school, job, friends, family. Always one of the best students. I can learn. What can I learn from someone who doesn’t want to learn about what anyone else feels or cares about?

Like I am failing my children. I know I am not – I know that if I hadn’t left I would have failed my children by not being true to myself. By letting someone else control me like a marionnette on strings while I am thinking it is all me and how I actually feel. I still feel like I am missing something about how it is all supposed to work. I am not so naive to think marriage/relationship is a bowl of cherries/perfection on a daily basis, but I yearn to know what it is like having an argument with someone and then coming back and really feeling they still love you and want to respect your views even if they don’t agree with you. Feeling empathy from another. Like anyone who is divorced made a mistake they should have known better about. Who knows better with this kind of situation? Everyone goes into marriage hailing it as this institution that is supposed to be a certain way (based on what you see with your parents and Hollywood’s depictions). But how do we know what is supposed to work? It seems like a “figure-it-out-as-you-go” thing, which i guess should be said about marriage, but in my situation, I never realized we were not figuring it out together. I was made to believe we were doing/deciding things together. It was how he saw it and I just had to get there by listening over and over and feeling like it was a “we” thing. By him explaining it another way. I wanted to understand his angle so badly to elicit peace and tranquility/rectify the situation that I convinced myself what he was saying made sense. Isn’t this the definition of gaslighting?

The way you see your family members being married, characters in books/movies. Hollywood doing it. When I was in the depths of my misery, I kept wondering – do people really stay married for 50 years to say they were married for 50 years? To have that Golden Anniversary party? And they put up with this? This NOT being any of the classic divorce reasons. yes, that would be something to be proud of, but not if it sucked. Not if you lost yourself and didn’t know yourself anymore. Anyone on the outside of a divorce immediately of the main causes – adultery, substance abuse, domestic abuse. What about financial and emotional abuse? Stuff that can’t be seen by your friends and family that you so wish could reach in and rescue you. That you can sit around with girlfriends and bitch about your partners, but how can you tell that someone has a serious relationship issue going on versus “marriage is not easy.” How would you know that her husband checked her credit card statement every month while she had to stand over him at his computer. Line by line analyzing her expenses. But I was called over in the “most casual way” “Can you come here for a sec?” And that they were all grocery store and gas (Read: stay-at-home mom) and it STILL had to be discussed. The fact that the review process existed was a lack of trust, not working together on our finances. How can you make someone feel guilty for spending too much when they don’t even buy themselves anything? Am I wrong to take it personally that he went over my expenditures in the name of “household budget”? He sits at his desk to “drive” while I pull up a chair to “go over stuff” together. But it wasn’t really together. Teacher/pupil. Parent/child.

I would get financial gifts from a relative and he would make me pay all my pro-rated housing expenses from it before I could use it to buy myself something.

How can I write about this from a comedy standpoint? Is self-deprecation healthy? It feels good when people laugh – you get the validation/camaraderie, but is it good for your psyche? Your confidence in being who you need to be? Or is self-deprecation just perpetuating self-abuse?

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