Here I sit eating Ben & Jerry's Fudge Brownie ice cream trying to self medicate.
My former mother-in-law past away about a week and a half ago. Out of respect for her and my father-in-law, I attended the first viewing. This had to be one of the worst experiences of my life.
For 45 minutes, which felt like hours, I cried, first over her then out of total humiliation. Relatives of the family, friends of the family, whom used to greet me with open arms, all treated me as if I was not welcome there. They ignored me or gave me dirty looks or looked right past me.
A couple of people caught my eye and tried to retreat in another direction but when caught in the flow of traffic, they were forced to come my way and talk to me. I had not seen them since their daughter-in-law/sister-in-law decided to drop me as a friend for reasons I still do not understand. Wisely so, they did not mention her or the "fight."
One relative, out of 20, did walk over and acknowledged ME for MY loss. The loss of the person I referred to as mom for over a decade. He actually asked me how I was doing? and then asked if I was married yet.. to which I responded "God no, once bitten, twice shy." He said it as if he knew the answer was yes as if maybe he had heard a rumor, which would not be surprising in that family, that I left my husband for someone else and would obviously be married. I was not offended by him, in fact, I was very impressed that he treated me like a human being who has pain just as the others in the room did. I will never forget his kindness and authenticity in caring about my feelings.
My former father-in-law was genuinely thankful that I had attended. That was what mattered. I needed to say goodbye to her too. I think she thought very poorly of me in the end and I was bitter about many things with her as well but it was important to say goodbye. Being at that viewing just made me realize that I am no longer part of that family, which my in-laws always reassured me that I would be.
No decent pictures of me were up on the boards of over 100 pictures. I was at so many of the events that the pictures depicted but they skillfully found those that I was not in, I often took the pictures.. maybe because I never thought I fit in. OR maybe because Gene never"cleaved" to his wife. Never.
I was often told I couldn't say anything because I might hurt my mother-in-law's feelings. She was always fragile but yet all I ever heard was how "strong" she was. I spoke my mind a little too often and she made "comments" but always TRIED to stay nuetral, but only if her husband was around.. interesting...
My "opionions" were me just "butting in" because I cared. When she kept telling me she was passing out at the pool, didn't eat all day and maybe had a two bites of something at night and then saved her eating for the weekend... I was concerned. When she would drink - and not eat - which was a regular occurence, she would say crazy things to me, and when I finally broke down in tears to my now Ex, he said something to his dad about her - maybe she was anorexic and she needed help.
Well, little did I know that she would hold it against me for years to come. 7 years later she "passive aggressively" - she was a passive agressive PRO - she made a crack about me saying she was anorexic. It was obvious to me at that moment that my gut feeling about her feelings for me, were accurate.
I did not trust my gut so many times in that NIGHTMARE marriage. I always felt like I was being talked about by my sister-in-law and her friends. Her sister-in-law was WAY more in the family than I - the daughter-in-law- was. It was hard to take. It used to rip me apart inside. I could tell stories for days as to how on the "outside circle" I was.
What was even more painful, which I've let go of now, was the fact that "sue" my former sister-in-law dropped me like a bad habit after the divorce - not 100% at first, but now for sure. BUT the part that kills me is that when my Ex was dating this girl, "lisa,"before me for 8+ years, she stuck around after they broke up. She was still "sue's" friend. She was invited to parties, she hung around the friends still... it caused me and my Ex soo much trouble. I felt like I was not accepted and Sue was not that nice to me for the first couple of years we were married. I still have not figured that one out?? But then we became good friends.
Sue continued inviting "lisa" to the family parties, we ended up inviting her to our wedding out of feeling like it didn't bother us! Lisa still sent cards to my in-laws, my ex even cried over her after running into her at the bar one night. Here she was, his ex-girlfriend, and everyone welcomed with open arms in front of me long after we had been a serious couple... I tried really hard to make the best of it, but now looking back, I wish I had said something. I did say plenty to my Ex about her and that it was hard for me to constantly be around her but he never put his foot down. IF ONLY, he had stuck up for me, for US, from the beginning and said "you know Sue, I can't control who you are friends with, but it's hard for me and my wife to continue being around my Lisa so if you are going to continue to invite her to everything, we will not be attending." IF that would have been the kind of man he was, I think we would still be married.
I got walked on in my marriage and the more I said nothing, the more it overwhelmed me.. which then came bubbling out and it seemed as if I was an opinionated bitch after while I think. I was simply frustrated. How is it that I was part of the family for 12 years and I am not invited to anything now, but his ex-girlfriend was invited to every functionLONG after the break-up. His new girlfriend will never have to experience what I went through because I will never be at the parties making her uncomfortable, making her feel like an outsider, making her feel unaccepted by the family. How lucky is she. THey will think she is great, because he now has learned, I hope, to stand by the woman he chooses. Not leave her for the wolves. I am still bitter. I wish I could say I am all healed. It has only been a year since the divorce was final but I am desperate to move past it all.
When my dad was dying, I stayed up all night with him for nearly a week straight, rubbing his feet, rubbing his head, trying to get him to sleep, be comfortable for as long as he could be, whether minutes or hours. I was exhausted. I had been working 60-80 hours a week right before I flew down to be with him. So years later I find out what my gut was telling me for so long, My now Ex was with another woman, getting his penis sucked. Sorry for the Crudeness, but it is fact. He was "sleeping over" with another woman. Intercourse, I will never know. Since my dad died in Louisiana and we were all here in MI., I had a "memorial" service for him at my home. Well, the woman he was having an affair with showed up.
So when my ex was dealing with the funeral of his mother, I should have been more compassionate. I was told I should bite my lip and help him even though he was being ridiculous with changing the schedule for the kids everytime I blinked... well even though I should have been nice, I was very bitter. I was bitter because of the affair and his lack of support in my dad's funeral, because of all the rotten things she insinuated about me, I say insinuated because she was "passive aggressive." She could say many things without actually saying the words. Her son learned well. He used this little skill my entire marriage. I still don't know what to do with all the feelings. They just eat at me everyday of my life.
The words he spoke to me the day before I filed "you're a worthless piece of junk." proceeded by spitting on the floor and saying "that's what I think of you," these simple words, JUST WORDS, did more harm than anything he could have physically done to me. I wish he would have hit me, at least I would have concrete proof that he abused me. There were so many things said but I will save them for another entry down the road. I have so much emotion to speak of, so many incidents that I wish to get out of my soul and put out into the world, via internet or whatever other source that allows me to let go of it. I want to grow, to move forward.
Thank GOD I am with a patient and loving man who allows me to feel safe. I never came close to feeling as loved or loving my ex the way I love Jonathan. I am so blessed. I hope the tears and the anger and the pain subside over time. I have great talents that need to be used. God has given me these talents and we should always do the best with whatever God grants us. God give me the strength to find the peace within. I love you Jonathan. I love you "my favorite boy" and "my favorite girl." you are all the reason I live.
Peace and goodnight.
divorce, ex-husband, ex-wife, inlaws, former inlaws, verbal abuse, marriage, family, parenting, children, relationships, love