Yours, Mine, and Our Time.


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My ex-husband is very stuck on this concept of “his time” with the kids. If they contact me, it gets him in a irked. If I go to a game or event that one of the kids are in (and I get there before him, which means he always sits far away from me…when I get there after him, I cut the problem out entirely and just sit near him and newly Wife of the Same Name) and one of them wants to sit next to me, he throws a fit and tries to tell them no because it’s his weekend. Even if I just ask them if they had a good weekend and did they do anything fun, he accuses me of “interrogating” them.

An example – a few nights ago during one of his 5-8 visitations, our daughter texted me that they weren’t going to be going to an event that our boys were involved in. I told her thanks for letting me know, so I didn’t show up and end up being the only parent with no kids there. So I mentioned to EX that I wish he’d have let me know they weren’t going, even though I was going to go late, I could have had my mom pick them up since she was going to the same place. My daughter came home after this and was upset because her dad and Wife of the Same Name decided to lecture her about letting me know the whereabouts of MY OWN KIDS. They told her that it was her dad’s time and that they were the adults there and should be allowed to have that time. She tried telling them that she told me so I wouldn’t show up to the activity and not find the kids, but they didn’t listen.

90% of the time anymore, I try to stay out of issues that occur when they are at their dad’s. I’ve found that when I try to do what I think is the right thing and let him know when there are issues, it makes his paranoia worse and he becomes obsessed with keeping our kids’ lives with him, secret. I’ve tried explaining to him that the only part I want to know is anything that affects them or me, but he doesn’t seem to get that concept. Instead, when I told him that our daughter came home, feeling that she had been wrongly lectured when all she wanted to do was let me know they weren’t going to be somewhere I was supposed to meet up with them, he responded this:

“Lectured may be a strong way of putting it. She was reminded that she is not the parent and it is not her place to inform you on every move I’m making when it is my time with my children.”

His children. His. That went through my heart like a stake. Wasn’t this the man that I was in a relationship with for 16 years? I had three children with him…and now they are his. He spends less than 20% of their time with them…and now they are his.

The thing is, I would welcome him to join in their lives a little more. If they want to contact him or he them during the other 80% of their time, MY time, I am more than happy to have that happen…but it never does.

The last time I checked, it was his and my life that separated, not the kids. They go back and forth, but that is their life. They live that with both of us and, although he and I are separate, that’s their continuous life. I just don’t know how to get that through to him.

Dating. And Stuff.


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I’ve apparently acquired some additional trust issues from my last go around in a relationship. Extreme mistrust of anything anyone I date says. I have a lurking fear that they are misrepresenting themselves, in the same manner I felt VDO (Ex-boyfriend) misrepresented himself throughout our relationship. I question anything and everything, looking for verification. It’s sad that someone who professed to love me so much could do so much lying to me. It’s even more sad that I knowingly stayed a part of it for so long. I stayed with someone who hated themselves so much, they couldn’t even be true and faithful in heart to someone who had so much to give them. I’d have given him anything and indeed, he took so much for granted from me.

I met up with someone who seems pretty great, from what I can tell. We met over a random Words With Friends game, of all places, just through idle chat. He’s absolutely adorable in person, seems to be very motivated and a hard worker (a huge change from my prior relationship), he’s respectful, he goes to church, and even has the appearance of that “bad boy” look, without actually being a bad guy. However, I question it at every turn and not because of anything he’s done. We’ve messaged pretty consistently through the past month (10/8). When I finally hinted that I was comfortable enough to meet up with this, well essentially a stranger, he suggested we meet up for coffee – totally giving me an out if I wanted and also keeping me comfortable by keeping it at a very public place. We were there for almost an hour and a half. Chemistry. Immediate chemistry. There was no air of desperation, no concern about how far we’d get, just spark…a definite click, that I’d felt via text, but it was much more noticeable in person. Oh, I want this. Oh how I want this to be real. He says what he is and what he believes with no feelings of deception. For the first time in a long time, it feels like a man with no hidden agenda.

Then the part of me that VDO clearly violated and bruised throughout entire relationship, my trust, jumps into overdrive. Although there is no indication that I shouldn’t trust, it feels like a part of me never will. I know I need to let that go. I need to give everyone the benefit of the doubt and not just assume that because I was foolish enough to stay in a relationship with someone who repeatedly manipulated me, who emotionally cheated on me, and who took me for granted, used my resources, then left…doesn’t mean everyone will.

My life is out of my hands and being led by a higher power. I just have to trust in that. Well, that and karma is a bitch for those who behave poorly.

Netflix and Chill.


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The story I heard from my mom when I was a kid, about what dating was like, was a lovely tale. Unfortunately, I found out when I was old enough to date, it had become extinct.

Dating was supposed to be exciting and fun. In the tales from my mom, men and women each had their clearly defined roles. It almost sounded like a beautiful dance; he asks her out, she accepts and gets all giddy, they spend the night at dinner learning about each other, maybe a walk to and from the car hand in hand, with a sweet kiss goodnight at the door. It seems that’s not enough anymore. Trust me, I’ve had my share of first dates and they are nothing like that. Here’s how it really goes:

First, if I don’t actually intimidate the guy because I’m self-confident and successful and don’t play down my intelligence, the guy will ask me out. Will it be sweet and romantic? Nope. Will it even sound like a date? No again. He will ask me out in a very non-committal way, so it leaves me questioning if it’s really a date or if he’s just bored and wants a pretty face to stare at. I’ll meet up with him at his place (yep, that’s right, he doesn’t make the effort to pick me up) typically with a layered outfit on that could go dressy for a nice dinner or casual for just movies at home. (On a side note – movies at home is NOT a first date, that’s a booty call which doesn’t work on me.) He’ll look a little crestfallen because I’m not dressed up like a tramp, with my triple D’s hanging out, then will decide that maybe he should just take me out for dinner since his casual “Netflix and Chill” (a euphemism if you’re not aware of, you should Google) clearly didn’t work. We go to dinner, actually have that excellent conversation where we get to know each other. The “date” ends in him dropping me off and I exit his car. No walking me to my car, or kissing me goodnight. He just drops me off like I drop my kids off at school and tells me to have a good night. It’s not that he’s not interested, I can tell he is, it’s just he labors under the misapprehension that just because I didn’t throw out some cleavage or kinky innuendo, the date is a loss because he’s not going to bed with me.

Let me get this out of the way for those of you who may be thinking it – I’m the furthest thing from a prude. I like sex. A lot. However, you don’t get that right away. You don’t get to know my inner most personal feelings, fantasies; you don’t get the full package on the first date. In fact, there’s not a magic number that you get all that either (which has led to some very disappointed 3rd dates).

So where did we go wrong?

I’m not going to give you the typical answer. It’s not all the man’s fault. It’s both men and women. We’ve forgotten what relationships are composed of. We’ve forgotten how to appreciate and be appreciated by someone else. We’ve been so programmed by “happily ever after” that we try to rush to that part in the book, without actually reading the book. We’ve forgotten that, in reality, the book is the best part. The book is where you fall in love and have all the kinky sex stories, which leads to the happily ever after.

I’ve had men talk about my body like a just a mass of organs that they want to “get with”, before they’ve taken me out on a date, let alone even laid a hand on me. The way I get around this is by changing the subject. I give them the opportunity to think about what they are saying and maybe revise their approach. Rarely does it work. In fact, more often than not, they will push even harder, then they just fade off, thinking I’m not interested. That’s the part where they are wrong though; I’m interested in them, but I’m not interested in getting to know them through that.

Women have fallen prey to this, thinking that’s what they have to do to keep men interested. In fact, there is some truth in this. I’ve watched men chase “easy targets”. I’ve also watched that never turn into meaningful relationships and seen both the man and the woman not seem to understand why. They’ve changed their role in the tale from being alluring and mysterious, to being promiscuous and acting out of their comfort zones.

We have a fairly substantial divorce rate, here in America. I should know, I contributed to it, falling prey to the “you have to be married” myth and made someone who was a good fit be the right fit when he really wasn’t. With divorce rates climbing quickly, when will it be time for us to take a hard look at that and question why? What step are we failing at? I’d venture to say…all of them.

Chemistry and sexual attraction are two very different beasts. Sexual attraction is, in many times, immediately noticeable. Chemistry, however, can take time to uncover. If you just want sex (which is fine, as long as both parties are aware that’s all that’s wanted), sexual attraction is all you need. If you want mind blowing, utterly gratifying, knock your socks off sex – you’ve GOT to have chemistry. Which means both parties have to put in the time and, when done right, “the time” is an amazing dance of getting closer to someone, the building of attraction, and the anticipation of “the act” which leads to a mind blowing, physical and emotional connection.

I’ve had a one night stand. While it was incredible and did scratch a few itches that had accumulated over the past year in a lackluster physical relationship, it wasn’t the whole package. It wasn’t as kinky and meaningful and amazing as true love is. So, for the time being, I will continue to search and be disappointed, I may even scratch that itch a few times more, but I will not settle for just being someone’s “Netflix and chill” girl.

Dating. With a Vengeance.


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I am most definitely not ready to be in a relationship, but I’m having fun while practicing. ;)

While part of me longs to be back in that comfort zone of loving someone, just one person, the other part of me still says “not yet”. Quite thankfully, the one person I’ve seen more than just once, is very understanding of this and has put me in the right place. The friend zone. He even said to me that he really cares about me, but can see that I still hurt and still need a little space so, we’ve already gone out and whatever, now he wants to wait for a bit. He basically said to me, “let’s go reverse and just be friends. When you’re ready – pursue me.”

I like that idea. It makes me feel more in control of everything going on, whereas in my last relationship, I was made to feel I had no control and was supposed to sit back and wait, putting everything on hold. I think this guy must know what he’s doing, because since he’s told me that, I’ve honestly had no interest in continuing to date like I was…with a vengeance. I’ve even entertained the thought of pursuing. Just not quite yet, but I’m almost there.



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Forgiveness. What a vital thing to moving on. After my divorce, I had to push hard down that path to finally get to the point to forgive EX. It took even longer for me to forgive myself.

Anytime someone hurts you, there is the natural inclination, I believe, to want revenge. To want ill will toward the person that hurt you. I fall to that same feeling, initially, after any kind of relationship break up – even those that are with friends and family. I think as I’ve aged though, I realized that the only way to move along is to truly let it go.

So here’s what I’m letting go. I’m forgiving myself for allowing people to use me and take me for granted. I’m forgiving myself for making bad choices in relationships, for staying in ones where I gave more than I ever received, and for not getting out of them when I needed to.

As for forgiving the other people in them – I forgive them for being to blind to what they had in front of them. For the opportunity to be kind, which they passed up. I forgive them for not being capable enough to be in my life. Even when the timing seems perfect, sometimes it is definitely not. Time heals everything.

And all of that is okay. It’s okay for me to go through a process and it’s okay for me to forgive, even when I still hurt.



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I think the most difficult thing for me to keep in check since being divorced is the anxiety. Not over the divorce or even the kids. It’s the anxiety in being judged. Every single move I make feels like someone else is looking at it, just waiting for me to slip up and do the wrong thing.

Let’s take Facebook for example. A handful (and thankfully only a small handful) of times since the almost 4 years I’ve been divorced, I’ve posted a completely innocent post about something random, only to have someone take a screen shot and send it to my ex. Unfortunately when they send it, they give their own commentary or spin on it, then he’s upset because it’s always unfavorable because people just like to start problems. Instead of asking me if I meant something by it or what something means – he automatically will assume it’s about him. This happened earlier this summer when a “friend” on Facebook screen shot a post I did about missing the kids (they were on vacation with him) and counting down the days until they were home…and texted it to the Fiance of The Same Name. It was a mess. However, I do always stand my ground when I’ve done nothing wrong and I posted on Facebook (then sent him a screen shot of my own, so there was no question about it) how much I didn’t appreciate someone twisting my words and that if they were looking to hurt me, fine…but when they do stuff like that and make up things that make it difficult for me to co-parent with my ex-husband, they are hurting my kids and that I wouldn’t stand for.

Even something as simple as texts. We had a group text going for soccer recently and the coaches texted us about a practice and said that a parent needed to stay for a short meeting afterwards. The practice happened to fall when I was taking the kids on vacation. I knew EX was out of town when that text about the meeting came through so I simply responded that the kids and I would be on vacation, but hopefully their dad could make the meeting. Even though he was on a float trip, he still took the time to text me “there’s no ‘hoping’. I will be at the meeting” and then went on to ask me how would I feel if he texted something like that about me. I was lost. It wouldn’t have affected me at all. I tried explaining that I knew he was out of town, so it’s not like I was going to text and ask him if he could go, so I was simply stated that the kids and I would be gone and possibly he could make it.

Things like this happen more often than I’d like, so it feels like I’m under a constant microscope, trying to make sure I act/do/say the right thing. Not just from him either. Sometimes when I am just venting to my family, one of them will get onto a kick and become pious. I have to remind them that the things I talk to them about are not general knowledge and I actually vent to them so I’m not telling other people and get back to him.

With my kids though, it’s the most difficult. EX and I have very different parenting styles. When they come home from his house and tell me stories – like how they are not allowed to close their doors, or how Fiance of The Same Name walked in on them while they were in the tub because she wanted to make sure they were using the ceiling light and not the lights above the mirror, or how they are only allowed to use 3 squares of toilet paper…I can’t help but to be honest with them. I can’t tell them that I feel those things are fair. I can’t let them think that it’s okay for people to treat them that way because what happens when it’s not their dad doing it and it’s someone else. I want them to stand up for themselves. I want them to have privacy and respect others’ privacy. So often, in those situations, I will tell them that I agree, it is unfair or not the right thing to do. I’ve tried telling EX that first (in the hopes he would apologize and take back some of the insane rules he’s told them through the years) but that doesn’t work. So, I have to give my kids the confidence that when they feel things like that are wrong, they are correct. However, from time to time, this too comes back and bites me. One of the kids will mention this to him and he’ll get upset. Again though, I stand by what I did or said to the kids.

This all comes at a toll though. Stress. Added stress upon added stress. As if divorce and co-parenting and everything else wasn’t enough, I have to watch my P’s and Q’s like a hawk. Even when I think I’m doing well, something always seems to pop up that was misjudged.

I often feel like my life is on the edge of comfort and security, teetering into unrest and upset at the slightest unseen breeze.

I also know that some of that I need to get better about just internally managing. I need to focus on the fact that I am really doing nothing wrong, even though it may be perceived that way, and take comfort in that.

Some days though, like today, for no reason – I just feel like I want to puke.



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So, it’s been about a month and a half since total singledom again. I think the one month mark must be something men mark in their calendar when they are looking to date someone after they’ve just gotten out of a relationship. It must feel like the safe time to ask a girl out. I had held out hope for a very brief time, but dead air was all I got when it came to the ex-boyfriend. What a horrible way to end such an amazing relationship. I’m sure that will haunt him someday. Karma will, at least.

So I went on my first almost date Monday at lunch, oddly enough. I had a quick text from an old guy friend that asked me to lunch. I didn’t think anything of it until the conversation at lunch. He said that he didn’t realize that I was single again, right away, but once he did it took him all the strength he could muster not to call me immediately. He said he knew I’d need time and he was hoping it had been enough time, then asked me out for the next weekend I didn’t have the kids.

Now, all of the sudden, it seems like random contacts throughout the years are calling. Since then, another old acquaintance of mine (a research chemist I had met during my time when I returned to college a few years back, prior to this time and my MBA) just sort of appeared and asked if I wanted to go out with him sometime and have lunch. I accepted and we’re meeting up on Monday, during the holiday off. Then one of my coworkers mentioned to me that they’d given my email to their brother – whom I met a few years back at a company party (really interesting guy; he’s a graphic designer). Sure enough today, that email popped up as well.

Life is weird. It’s definitely exciting. That feeling of possibility I felt when ex-boyfriend had planned on moving here and we were going to start our life together in the same place has been replaced by the feeling of new possibilities. I’m cautious. I have learned a few things from my last relationship – namely not to settle for someone that was *such* a “fixer upper”, but that relationship also left me with a few good things. Namely hope. In hindsight, ex-boyfriend may have not really been what I wanted, but he showed me that I actually do want something. I want a functioning relationship where I feel secure and loved unconditionally. He showed me a great deal in our 3.5 years of things I don’t want – someone who is unmotivated to grow personally and professionally, someone who has difficulty thinking about how their life choices affect others, someone who has difficulty with commitment to the point of such low self esteem that they need to reach out to other women – not to cheat, but to boost their own confidence, someone who has some pretty self loathing addictions to overcome like alcohol and porn…and wow, I should have gotten away from that quicker. Just reading that, it really hit me.

So no more on him. No more indecisiveness and no more small thinking only inside a box. There were plenty of opportunities, but I’m pretty sure he’s convinced himself they weren’t there. Honestly, they aren’t there for him anymore.

Here’s to new beginnings. My life is going somewhere exciting, I just don’t know the destination yet.



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Ghosting. I had never heard this term until it came, quite appropriately today, across my screen in a Ghosting article on the New York Times.

I am being ghosted by ex-MOD. I think in return, I’m making sure to help him with that process by removing him where ever I can. I’ve taken him off everything of my kids (mostly for their protection, because he’s said some very misleading things to them – not bad things, but false promises), I’ve removed him from Facebook, I’ve even taken him off all my own apps, just so I don’t have to pass that painful reminder that he’s removed me without notice from his life.

What a messed up world we live in where, instead of dealing with our relationship ins and outs, we just walk away and disappear from them. What happen to human decency?

I think it first went away in my last relationship the second he stopped calling when he’d get his feathers ruffled. Every single time there was a conflict, he’d stick his head in the sand until I went chasing after his ghost.

I stopped chasing ghosts this time and found out how much of a ghost he could make himself. Walking away so cavalier from a close to 4 year relationship with a 7 word text. That shows me that his feelings were truly worth about 1 word for every 6 months. It also shows me that it wouldn’t have worked because throughout our entire relationship he was that way – always ghosting at the first sign of trouble.

That’s not how relationships work. They work because you are ever present, even more so during the rough times. I was going through so much and had difficulty focusing on fixing that issue (him ghosting) and forcing communication between us the last few months, that it ended. In hindsight, that shows me he wasn’t ready for a relationship like I was. It also shows me why such a nice, loving man was still single for all these years after his own divorce in his early twenties.

I’m thankful that I have the chance to move on and find a new Happily Ever After. I’m just sorry that, much like the ghosts in stories who can’t pass on to the ever after, he won’t be able to move on in his life with us either. Or possibly in his own, if he keeps that up.

Sometimes You’ve Gotta Laugh.


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Four years…yes FOUR years after the ex-husband has moved out, he walks into my home and states he would like to go through the CD’s.

I was slack jawed. I told him he went through them when we separated the stuff and asked what he was looking for. He says his iPod died and he’s missing a few CD’s and wanted to get them from here. So I asked which ones and told him I’d look. I had two of them and gave them to him.

It should have ended there.

In my defense, I’m just finishing up my first semester of my MBA, I haven’t exactly slept well since ex-boyfriend and I broke up, and I’m just, in general, exhausted. Single mom to three kids who tries to be Superwoman is tiring.

Instead of just letting it go, I asked him, ever so sweetly “Is there anything else you want to go through?” Only, he didn’t think it was so sweet. Instead he threw down the two CD’s, went off, then said “I forgot you’re perfect” (I’m not sure how that fit into the conversation). I suppose this was the wrong thing to reply, but I told him “thanks”. He then started yelling some more (and I, being slap happy, probably had a grin on my face which was totally inappropriate)…except then he started cussing. I stopped him immediately at his first bad word and said “Listen, that language is not allowed in our home and if you continue to use it, there is the door.”   He turned and walked out.

The kids were there and stared in disbelief. As soon as he walked out, Kid2 said “that was epic, mom”. They hate when EX goes off and yells for no reason, they hate when he’s upsetting or controlling toward me, and, most of all, they hate when he uses bad language.

Although I may have started it with my smart-alack comment asking him if he wanted to look through any other of my stuff, I feel I did teach my kiddos something; bullies can be stopped.