(trigger warning – divorce, abuse)
So I have been doing really good with avoiding confrontation with the ex and just leaving it all to the wayside. I have avoided getting in the middle of things with him and our daughter and have focused on supporting her and letting her therapist take care of what needs to be taken care of. And then yesterday happened.
I realized he didn’t make a payment for his share of our daughter’s medical expenses (which is a pittance of what I pay) and so I sent him a message asking and sent him some new receipts. He comes back at me in email (which he never does) basically telling me he’s all caught up and I am throwing some fake bills in there. So I tried to, as best as I could, gray rock my response and who knows where he will go from there. I’m dreading it. Who the hell wants to fight with the other parent just to get him/her to take care of their child. He does NOTHING else. I don’t ask him for anything else. Any extracurricular, AP tests, school fees, whatever, I do not ask at all. Nothing! He hasn’t seen her in over a year and has seen her a handful in the last 5! He lives 15 minutes away!
Yesterday, I saw pictures of him and one of his stepdaughters and that killed me. Not for me because I honestly, selfishly hope he never attends a single thing for my daughter again (selfish, I know) but I know that if she saw the pictures, she would be crushed because he has been horrible to her. Here he is looking like dad of the year with the older stepdaughter and he doesn’t even know a thing about my daughter. It triggered me something bad. Took me right back to where he could abuse and belittle me. The smugness in his face. And then to wake up to his email this morning. Took me right back there.
And just a side note – if he could be a good dad and give my daughter what she deserves and needs, I would welcome him with open arms to anything and everything. I have never excluded him. I have invited him to anything and everything. He stopped coming at around age 10.
I have been triggered in a way I haven’t been in a long time. I had a mutual friend ‘friend request’ me on Facebook. I do not know if they still have a relationship or not and I really liked her so I had accepted it. Today, I removed her. See, long ago, he had people spying on me and so it got to the point where I didn’t know who to trust. Enter K with the friend request and then his email this morning. Walls are back up.
I really hate that he has this affect on me after so many years. I hate that if I would have walked away from the marriage with bruises everywhere then people would get it but because it was mental/verbal and a lot of it was behind closed doors, people don’t really get it. I hate that I have allowed to yet again be taken back to that awful place. I hate that I feel all alone in this and feel like I have to suffer in silence. I hate that he can take out the same abuse on my daughter and again, no recourse. Thankfully there, she is at a point where she sees it for what it is. But it is so painful to watch her just want her parent to love her the way she deserves to and for him to pour salt on the wound anytime she tries to talk to him about it. Normally, I can rise above all of this and see him for what he is and not give him any power but today………I’m just not that strong today. I’ll try again tomorrow.