The nice guy always finishes last. You hear that quote over and over again, but I never realized how true it was until I was divorced. I like to think I’ve always been a nice person. I try to always treat others how I would want to be treated. When someone seems upset, I try and give them the support they need. At work, when I pass people in the hallway and ask the most reflex of questions, “How are you?”, I actually stop to listen because I want to know.
This general concern and caring has also seeped over into how I treat my ex-husband. Our divorce wasn’t really one of hate, rather our marriage reached a point of indifference that was impossible to recover from. I spent the 5 years prior to the divorce always being the nice person and always coming up last. I think one of the worst things about being that person is that you’d never lie to anyone–except yourself. You have to lie to yourself in order to be so nice and supportive to a spouse who so obviously doesn’t cherish you.
One might think that, post divorce, the Nice Ex would become bitter and angry, then decide to not be the Nice Ex. At times, I almost wish that was me. I almost wish I could return his manipulative words and actions. I almost wish that I could make him feel as worthless as he sometimes makes me feel. Of course, then I realize that I don’t need to do that…he already is.
Hey…I said I was still the Nice Ex, I never said I wasn’t bitter or angry. ;-)