Friday, August 10, 2018

Since You Stayed


Unless some extraordinary circumstance I might feel the need to report here suddenly happens, my learning arc with respect to the married-man affair of the past three years appears to have come to an end. I doubt I'm going to have much new to say, so I'm closing out this blog. Because Chi knows where this is, I'm going to leave my last post as a message for him, in case he ever wonders. I've made it my policy that I can't speak to him unless he speaks to me, so this is the only way I can speak to him.

Dear, sweet Chi,

I don't know how likely it is that you will ever come here to read what I've written about our relationship. Quite possibly the answer to that is, never. But if you are here, you're thinking about me, it's probably safe to assume you miss me and you're looking for clues about my feelings, and I want to leave you something so you'll know.

No, I am not angry at you. Yes, yes, yes, I still love you. No, I do not think you are worthless, I do not hate you, and yes, I will still talk to you. 

A year ago you chose, once again, to stay in your marriage, even though you were still deeply unhappy. I assume you are unhappy still or you wouldn't be here to read this. Since you stayed and I never heard from you again, I hoped that would be because your wife woke up finally and you reached a new understanding and a happy new beginning for you both. Not because I'm angry or unhappy with you or sick of you or because I don't want to see you ever again; but since you didn't choose me and you're still in that house, I want it to be for happy reasons and not unhappy ones, because that is what would be best for you.

But that doesn't appear to be the case, if you're here.

I want you to know, first and foremost, that I will always speak to you if you speak to me. If you're in trouble, if you're lost, if things are bad and nothing else is helping and you don't know what else to do, I'm here and you know where to find me. I will never steer you wrong, and I won't let you do anything you already know from the last time we spoke.

I want you to know that I love you very, very much, and when you never spoke to me again, that has been one of the saddest things that has ever happened to me. Unless you and Rory turned over a new leaf and you're actually happy, of course. If that happened, I'm happy for me because I'm happy for you.

I want you to stop running yourself down and punishing yourself over what happened. Yes, the ending of our love was very sad for me. But, I learned so, so much! I learned about love, I learned about affairs, I learned about you, I found out I can read astrology and tarot, I learned about Rory, and most of all I learned about myself.

I learned I still had serious emotional problems that needed fixing. My marriage with Simon was so happy I never would have known this if he'd lived, and if you and I had tried to stay together, I still wouldn't have known it, and would have behaved in ways that would have doomed us as a couple. Since you left me, I had the opportunity to learn this and to work to heal and better myself.

That is what all relationship is about, but oh, especially when there's an affair. I did my work, I'm still doing my work, and I'm going to keep doing my work. 

It's my job.

If you're here, I'm assuming it's because you don't feel a bit special at all. I want to tell you once again that you are. Yours always was a beautiful kindred intellect and a sweet, funny, beautiful spirit, and it was a privilege to know you and to be with you, even in the limited way and for the limited time that we had. Only in your difficulty addressing your own emotional issues instead of everyone else's have you disappointed me. In every other respect, you and Simon have always been everything that I wanted. I suspect I will never meet anyone like of either one of you ever again.

But, that's not my job. Getting well is, and that's what I'm doing. I've learned that I need to be a lot less relationship-dependent, and that the best thing for me would be to fall in love with my work, not other people. So, I'm off to do that.

I'm easy to find. You know where. If you're stuck, if you need help, if you miss me, if you need advice, you're always welcome. Should I actually see or hear from you again, it will be a wonderful surprise and I will be very, very happy. Please know that.

I said no to seeing you on a regular basis before because I knew it would lead to a real, full-blown affair if we did that. I didn't want that because I knew it would be bad for you. You would never get healthier if we did would use me to hide from your problems some more and only get worse. And I would never, ever, ever, ever do anything that would cause you ultimate harm, or that I knew would not be in your highest good. 

Popular wisdom says that we other women should stay away from you married men because we're hurting the wife by taking someone else's man. As if you are Rory's property, and your main job in life is making her happy, along with all the other Looky-Lous who observe your relationship from the outside, and believe they know the truth about it when they do not.

Sweetheart, living as nothing but an emotional and financial service station to other people is not your job. She has an much of an obligation in your marriage as you do. You're a human being, and you deserve some standards of decent treatment. You had forgotten that, or, to put it more accurately, you never learned that at home in the first place, and that was why I made the decision to step in to begin with. That, and unhealthy reasons, detailed in this blog, which I have since remedied.

If "the wife" doesn't wish to be hurt by the arrival of a third party, she needs to work on herself as hard as I've worked on myself, which is one of the reasons I wrote this blog. Affairs don't happen because people are being willfully ugly or mean. Affairs happen because three people didn't get well from three sick childhoods.

I want more than anything that you heal from the way you grew up. I want more than anything that you come to know yourself as a deeply good and worthy being. That's your job. Quit distracting yourself by running yourself down, cleaning, watching TV, doing volunteer work, and embroiling yourself in the problems of those close to you, and embroil yourself in your own childhood problems instead, so you can achieve this work before you die. That's what I'm doing. If you show up here, whatever else happens, I am going to require that of you. That's what I'm doing myself.

It's come to my attention that one of my real problems is that I don't believe in myself, so I try to escape into relationships and other people's problems instead of finding the courage to actually finish something, and then go out into the world and risk and try with my writing, instead of wishing and dreaming while I tell myself it'll never work.

Correcting that issue in my behavior is where I'm going to be.

If you're here because things aren't working and you're in absolute despair, come find me. You know I'll always listen and have some thoughts.

And if you don't come find me, always remember me as fondly as I will remember you.

I love you forever and ever.

Friday, August 3, 2018

The Most Horrible Two Words In The English Language

Never. (I Wish.)

This month has been an occasion for much worry and unhappiness on my part.

I expected him back sometime soon. The astrology accurately predicted this last time, and this time, well...

Out of five transits that specifically mention an affair, one has just now finished. One more finishes at the end of August. Two more are over in two months. The other goes through 2020. The thing is, these transits are H-U-G-E, spanning all three charts. And after they're over, more take up where they leave off, and they talk about the triangle all the way through 2023. In all three charts.

Last October, the astrological indications that I'd see Chi again were pretty subtle. I only had one clue. There were others, which Alice Portman found straight away, my teacher Kay and some of the more advanced students in my class found right off, and Anne Ortelee obviously saw but either grossly misread or chose to lie to me about.

This time, any idiot can see all these. They clonk you right over the head, especially if you have all three charts to look at.

But...I haven't heard from him.

Not that I can go ahead and have an affair with this person. THAT would be distinctly terrible and would impede the healing of all involved. No, the only thing this corner of the triangle can legitimately do, if approached once more, is demand that the other two corners of the triangle go back to childhood and heal from their respective codependency issues.

So, why the fuck do I even want to SEE this person again??? I know that right now, we can't have a relationship.

Because if he misses this date, he's probably going to miss all the other ones, too. Because I know the history of the situation, and I know enough to see that, barring a change of therapeutic community, the chances that ANYTHING has changed in that marriage are zero. Because I know the ultimate outcomes, and I want hope. Because I now know the most horrible two words in the English language:


I don't want to say those words.

Don't get me wrong, I've come a long way since I was widowed. I used to be terrified at the thought of being alone, like a dog with separation anxiety. Now, I'm alone and I'm okay.

I just miss Chi.

Some people just have this wonderful quality of their minds and souls; it just shines out of them. Simon was like that, and Chi was like that. And we were compatible. I miss him, the inner essence of this person. That sweet, gentle, cute, adorable person who just had that way about him. That's how it goes: that person who gets you and you get him. They always have the way. That person who was so funny and alive and curious and intelligent, that person who did everything and knew so much about so much.

(Well, the healthy parts of him, that is. If a person is reflexively yessing you, pretending and acting as if everything is okay in the relationship while secretly they're unhappy about one, then two, then three, then oh, ten million things, while complaining to strangers behind your back and triangulating other people in while you have no clue anything is even wrong...that bit is codependency and that has to GO. No one wants to be LIED to, no matter how bad the news. Even if they think that's what they want at the time.)

The rest of him. That's what I miss.

But he's not back. The tarot: Let's see...ten of swords. Three of swords. The Tower. The Death card. The World, upside down of course. Hm. What else have I been getting that I hate? Five of cups. Six of swords. Look up some of those. None of them are good.

Last October, I discovered that the astrology was right and the tarot was wrong. They got good cards because they were in marriage counseling, I guess, and we got horrible ones for obvious reasons, but the report I got from that time was nothing like the rosy tarot cards they got. This time, I don't know. I said no last October. Maybe that's the reason the tarot cards will be right this time. Or, he's dragging the aspects ALL the way to the end, like last time. (Many mutable signs. That's typical. These people deny problems til they're almost literally ready to slit their wrists. And this I can vouch for.)

But I have to face the possibility, no matter how sad I am, that This. Is. The End.


1.) Grief. I guess one thing that's happened here through all of this is I've put off saying goodbye for three years. It hasn't made it any easier. When I think of never seeing Chi again, I'm just so sad I can barely stand it. I wanted to get to know this person in ways I didn't get to. I wanted to stick out life's ups and downs with this person. I wanted to experience this person's presence.

I will say, I wanted the positive potential of this relationship, and not the negative. And I know what both are. And I'm grieving that there's no chance of the positive now. (The negative I can do without.)

I don't want to replace him and Simon with anyone else. If I can't have Chi, I'm fine. I don't want some nameless, faceless generiguy. I don't want someone just to have someone.

I'm willing to acknowledge that some other man as special as Chi and Simon were probably exists on the planet. If he turns up, I guess I'll know then, and that will be that. But I can't imagine him, I don't want him, and I'm not looking for him.

If I can't have Chi, fine. I'll just become a little old lady all by myself, thank you, and that will be okay.

But I'm sad. To think that I'll never see him again.

I'm so sad.

2.) The cards keep talking about the need for planning. I only recently realized that may not be about the relationship. I need to plan the rest of my life, now that I'll be spending it alone. I keep seeing the need for measurable goals. And I know that as far as things like my writing and my website, yes, I do have a few, and I have gotten some stuff done. But I spend far more time mooning and being miserable than I do on establishing any of the things I'll need to make some pretense at a career marketing my writing.

My cousin who was just in town--a recovered codependent and adult child of an alcoholic--BECAUSE SHE DID HER WORK--once said that any time she caught herself saying, "I don't have any choice," she knew she was in her disease. Similarly, every time I catch myself mooning over this recently ended past and not doing my work, I'm in my disease.

Now, look at this. I have a Grand Trine in my chart, between Chiron, Aries, 8th house, my Sun and Moon (which are conjunct), Leo, 11th house, and Neptune, Scorpio, 3rd house. (Interesting, because that's two fire signs and a water sign. Normally a Grand Trine is all three planets in the same element.)

A Grand Trine denotes talents you have that all work together. These come very easily to you, so easily you can become lazy and never do anything outside the trine, or never get very good at the talents because you think you don't have to work at them. Sun and Moon, my ego and my emotions, especially subconscious emotions; Chiron, the Wounded Healer (hence the name, "Chi"), and Neptune, planet of blurred boundaries, intentional or unintentional deception, transcendent experiences, and artistic talent.

Sound like a "fixer" personality to you? Like an enmeshed codependent, perhaps?

Hey, I come by it honestly. I was raised by an enmeshed codependent, raised to think I could blur boundaries and make others decide to heal, and not only that, but that it was what I should do!

I'm beginning to think that when I'm just sitting here stuck in wishing for this relationship back again so I can tinker with it some more instead of doing other parts of life--like setting goals for a career, for example--I'm "stuck in the trine." Talented at being in enmeshed relationships, and having lived in one or another of these for most of my life, I'm trying to go back to where I'm comfortable, instead of striking out where I'm not comfortable: Being all by myself, developing my talents and putting them out in the world to succeed or fail. I want to sit here and yearn for the relationship instead of working. Yeah, I know a lot about emotional problems, relationships, and mental illness, but just sitting here yearning for the relationship instead of making something marketable out of what I know is just practicing my disease. Which I know full well all fucking three of us need to recover from.

The last thing I notice is, as my instructor pointed out to me in class the other night, I have no air signs in my chart. I wonder if this has something to do with all of this.

I think it might. For those who are curious, the elements have to do with aspects of your character, how you approach things, what you're good at and what you're not. Fire is that go-getting energy that gives you an idea and makes you want to get started on it; earth is homey and sees to practicalities, and water is emotional, empathic, and sometimes blurs boundaries between yourself and other people. Air is about objective analysis. Air is about logic and intelligence and the use of the mind. I have no air in my chart, so I'm attracted to air, which is the element Chi has more than anything else in his chart. And often, when we don't have something, instead of making the effort to develop that, we try to marry it instead and make the other person "be" that quality for us. (Simon had a nice balance of all the elements in his chart. I have more fire than anything else.)

The thing I initially found most attractive about both men is they were so damn smart. They were so worldly and mature, and I felt like I didn't know anything about anything next to them. Had I read (fill in the blank)? No. Had I ever seen (fill in the blank)? No. But they did, and I admired them so much, I was just in awe. And they were successful in their careers, and I felt like I'd always be a failure in mine, to the point I was seriously concerned about becoming a professional bag lady. Does air have anything to do with success in a career? I think you need all four elements to make most careers go well, but seriously, why don't I want to brush relationships aside and concentrate on getting somewhere writing?

Because I don't think what I have to say is important to anyone, and even if it is, I don't expect the world to treat me well. I expect to give it everything I've got (and establishing a writing career is more WORK than anyone would ever, could ever guess) and the world will just dump me on my ass again. I expect bad luck, because I've had way, way, wayyy  more of that in my life than I've had anything else. Would that make me, everything I've lived, and everything I know and have tried to share worthless, or would it just make me feel worthless? Or would it just make me poor?

I'm trying to understand that it would just make me poor (once I'm too old and sick to work the career I have now). It doesn't have to confer a value judgement on anything else I am, do, or have.

Would someone gifted in objective analysis have a far easier time internalizing this as the truth, I wonder? Because if I did, I might not have so many hopeless feelings that drive me away from working on the career I want, and back to the trine to sit there and feel hopeless about a dead relationship instead, thinking relationships are the only way I can feel happy.

3.) Reasons I need to motivate myself.

(And any time I have motivated myself to do something I really didn't want to do, it was because I saw what would happen to me if I didn't. It was terrible, and I was scared, so I dug in and got it done out of fear.)

I see what will happen to me if I DON'T get out of the trine and find another focus for my life. It's part of my getting well. Even if Chi were here, if I didn't get out of the trine and change my focus, I'd just be all mired in his problems, overfunction for him, and ruin his health and mine.

When Simon was sick, I was overwhelmed, but I was in my element, helping another person. And I knew what I was doing was worthwhile to someone. I had an ear out for what the needs were, and I was coming up with ways to take care of those. I was trying to find ways to juggle all the responsibility, and I got lots of positive feedback from everyone around me, who saw I was doing a difficult job well and with love. And that was what I wanted to do. He was sick, and I wanted to help. That works well when a person is physically ill.

When a person is emotionally ill, however, this is all backwards. A cancer patient, as he dies, needs you to do more and more and more. A recovering codependent needs to do more and more himself, even though he thinks he can't do it and is asking you to do it for him instead, and telling you how great you are while you do it...just like my mentally ill mom. But your actual job is to have balance in your life and be out there happily pursuing your own goals, not fretting over the codependent, enmeshed in the relationship, and smothering. I have to do this job if I have that relationship in my life.

But I definitely have to do this job if I don't have a relationship in my life. Otherwise, there I am, stuck in the trine, not developing my talents and my will and bravery to risk and try in the world, crying and crying because I don't have a relationship, most likely a sick one, to hide from the world in. It was fine with me while Simon was sick, because I was most likely to fail as a writer anyway, I didn't want yet more horrorific disappointment and letdown in my life, and now I could just take care of him. I had a family, and of course that was far more important.

Not so when you have a codependent. That person needs to become emotionally undependent on you,  not more dependent, and overcaretaking in that relationship results in its unfortunate demise. As our bad transit legs so terrifyingly point out. That's what's happened to Chi and Rory's relationship. Too dependent on each other for the wrong things.

I've said it before, I think life took all my relationships away so that I'd have no other choice but to grow in this area. I mean, now I have NOTHING else to do.

And it looks as if this relationship is gone forever, and I never will see him again.

Grieving because the person is a real loss in my life is legitimate.

Staying stuck in grief so I never have to do anything else, isn't. Basically, everything I used to have in my life is blasted all to pieces, and nothing is left that really mattered. I'm busted all the way down to nothing now, and the only thing to do is start all over again and build a completely new life from the ground up. 

Sometimes, when people are gone, they're gone.

What happens when we just cry forever? I'm supposed to grow up and find a completely different focus for my life. Apparently one that doesn't involve any people, not for the foreseeable future, unless they're agents and editors, perhaps.

Hold me to it, okay? I have no wish to become permanently mentally ill, here. Oh, and what happens once I'm too old and sick to drive all over the state for work anymore? I need a way to have another source of income. If I don't change my focus, I'll never develop that, and I'll be living in a tent on Social Security. (At least, until the Republicans finally abolish it.)

Since I have no real reason anymore to expect Chi back again, I guess this is the next to last post in this blog.

Thanks for reading. It's been nice knowing you.

Friday, July 27, 2018

Ethics in Astrology, Book Two

Recently, I was going through old astrology notes when I (re)discovered something scribbled in the very back cover of my astrology notebook.

Get this, taken directly from my audio recording with Astrologer Number One:

“Yods denote a relationship you’re not supposed to be in. If you have a yod, you asked the universe before you were born not to let you get stuck in that relationship. ‘Stop me if I go here, don’t let it happen.’” When the whole situation was WAY more important, and what we’re ALL supposed to learn from it, was WAY more complicated, than that.

If I hadn’t been so distressed by what I heard, if I hadn’t been so sure this couldn’t have been correct, I would never have learned what I needed to from this, and might very well have sought out another codependent and made the same mistakes, blindly not knowing why this was all happening to me and why I was so unlucky.





I ask the reader to kindly google “Yods in Astrology” and see, no matter what astrologer they’re reading, if you can find A-N-Y notes that read even remotely like that. Thank God, when I heard all that, I knew it couldn’t be true and I kept on looking for the truth. (You can see my own research on yods and on my situation in particular in prior blogs.)

I cannot believe this person told me that. Good grief. Either she’s poorly trained by an absolute idiot, or she feels morally entitled to put any spin she wants on what she’s reading, based on her personal feelings toward the situation involved.

Finding this, it’s more clear to me than ever that this person had her own personal bias—due to her own personal history—and that’s clear from her comments on her own Facebook page. Add that to the gobbledygook she spewed at me about the sixties and such that had NO bearing on my own situation at all and wasn’t the least bit helpful, and I truly have a bone to pick with this person.

I hate to use the word “quack,” but she sure did honk like a duck. And there’s some duck down drifting down on my head.

Clearly this person has her devotees who love her. I truly wonder why at this point.

All I can tell you is, if you are hiring an astrologer, explain your situation up front, and then make like a jury selection lawyer and ask them point blank if they have any negative experience that might bias them in the reading of your chart. Before they start the reading, so that if the answer is yes, you might be able to cancel and get at least some of your money back. (In my case, that was two hundred smackeroos.) You don’t want this to happen to you.

Be careful out there, and Don’t Step In The Duck Doo.

Friday, July 20, 2018



Since the time for the predictions is rolling around, and I haven't seen hide nor hair of Chi, this is the time I'm starting to get worried. To the point of upset, to the point of obsessed.

And that isn't okay. Obsession is painful. Obsession obscures everything else that might have been good in my life. Obsession increases the chance of doing something DUMB. Obsession means I won't be happy with anything other than the outcome I wanted. And that outcome, as far as my eyes can see, isn't happening.

Astrology. What a double-edged sword. What I've discovered helped me feel better, in that I saw that stepping into this in the first place did something beneficial in this person's life--at least in terms of showing him that what he was dealing with wasn't normal and that he could actually have a relationship in which he was treated differently. I once had an hour-long panic attack because of my ethical qualms in doing this. AND I have seen, thanks to last October, that I don't have to hate myself for what is normally a horrible, horrible, horrible thing to do. He needed it. It was beneficial for him...although it did usher in a period of, um, change in their relationship. In that sense, being able to read charts has been helpful.

BUT...unfortunately for me, I could also see the best possible outcome of our relationship. And it was one that I would have been very happy with. This has been unfortunate for me, because now I want that and I'm anxious about it.

I keep going around and around about this. Right about now, Rory has some pretty big transits showing she's being borderline abusive to Chi again. (Nothing she hasn't done before, sad to say.) And this was to be the occasion of her entire next year, which I took a look at this week and found...shocking.

She has exactly one out of twenty-four transits that talks about happiness in her intimate relationship. ONE. A couple more talk about being of retirement age, and about happiness in things she's doing in the outside world. The rest, and I mean ALL the rest, are talking about great unhappiness in her intimate relationship, the fault mainly of Rory herself, and fully twelve out of twenty-four transits and progressions talk about somebody in the relationship having an affair. (Three guesses who that is.)

Correspondingly, only three of twenty-two transits and progressions he has speak of any kind of peace in his intimate relationship. ALL of the rest describe great unhappiness, and five specifically point to an affair starting.

Of mine, half are talking about being the third party in an affair, cautioning me to watch my behavior and stay out of power and control. In the other half, I'm all alone, and half of those, I'm sinking into ennui and despair about it. The other half of the alone ones show me finding a creative purpose for my life and being content with just that.

That last is, well, a happy enough ending, I guess. Things, as you can see, could be a hell of a lot worse.

But, thanks to astrology, I have our Davison, which shows me that the happiest of endings here was indeed possible (once possible?) and of course when you meet someone you are that compatible with and love this much, you want that ending. (At least, I do.)

This is the bad side of being able to read for yourself. Now I sit here and point at that happiest of endings, and go, "But how do I get there?"

Here is where I start to second-guess myself. What if I had said yes last October?? Well, if I had, I would have virtually guaranteed the affair starting right around now, because we would have been speaking regularly and in contact.

But I said no. I had the chance to say yes, and I said no. 

Does that mean I can never be with this person now, because I heard from him again and I said no?? Was that my only window, and now it's over and that's the end, because I could have said yes then and I didn't??

In that case, am I sorry I said no?

Yes, because I love and want this person and that may have been it, my last chance!

But...wait a minute...

WHY did I say no?

I said no because I saw in the astrology, and I knew from the past, that if he had me to complain to and fantasize about, he wouldn't W-O-R-K ON HIS CODEPENDENCY. He wouldn't engage with his problems. He'd simply use me as an escape and as a complaining outlet, and he wouldn't get better. Clearly, that would not be the best outcome for him, so I bit the bullet and did what I knew was right. I did what I knew would be best for him.

Besides, I knew that there would only be one reason I would have said yes to that. Because I saw that he was sniffing around again, and I was trying to tempt him away from Rory once again. In other words, an unhealthy exercise of power and control, which I am expressly advised NOT to do, and which I completely see the wisdom of. 

These two VERY good reasons were why I said no last October. AND ALSO...

Looking ahead to this year, I could see that I stood an excellent chance of getting him back again no matter what I did, so I bet big. I placed a BIG bet that if I did the right thing, I would get him back anyway...which made doing the right thing a whole lot easier. If I really believed then that if I did the right thing, I'd lose him forever...I'm not so sure I could have done the right thing.

So now I've done the right thing...and I'm doomed to lose him forever no matter HOW shitty Rory acts from here on in??

Wow. Life IS unfair.


So now I find myself in a tailspin. When was I supposed to see this person again, anyhow?? The last time was pretty easy to extrapolate. The markers I used last time were clearly obvious to me. I'm trying to pin down how my teachers did it, and I'm afraid I'm just not good enough to be able to pin anything down to any specific month. Some of the same kinds of things are active again, but that's over a period of time and I don't know how to pin anything down any better. All I know is, if it's March 1st and he's still gone, he's probably gone forever at that point.

And I keep doing this to myself and it's miserable. Why do I want someone who puts me through this???

I had to think long and hard about that. 

One answer, and this one I know. (Besides that, it's also clearly spelled out in the astrology.) And that is, I DO NOT HAVE CONTROL.

I've been over this before. I. HAVE. NO. CONTROL. OVER. THE. OUTCOME. OF. THIS. SITUATION.

Just like I have no control over what my mother did and whether she got well and ever treated me better or not, I have no control over Chi and whether he will ever get well and treat me better or not. As with all problematic love relationships, this one mimics, absolutely perfectly, the old childhood struggle to get my mother to act better and treat me, a tender, vulnerable young child, the way I needed and deserved for her to treat me.

(So does Chi's with Rory and Rory's with Chi, come to think of it. That's why we're in the triangle to begin with.)

I have one and only one legitimate area of control: If the relationship shows up again, look to see if it appears healthy or not. If not, say no. (That's what I did last October.)

Last year I accepted that. This year, I have to bring myself back to the fence and accept it all over again. Because I lived a childhood that taught not only that it was GOOD for me to try to control other people's decisions to heal or not heal, but that I COULD control other people's decisions to heal or not heal.

And I can't.

The only person who can decide to heal is Chi. And if Rory does, too, I lose.

(At least two of us would be happy that way. An almost acceptable outcome.)

The other problem I see is one of willingness.

In order to accept the outcome that Chi and Rory grow together and become happy again, and I never see him again, or they don't, but he just doesn't respect himself enough to leave because he still feels as if everyone else's feelings are more important than his own (this is unhealed codependency, folks), I have to be willing for that outcome to happen.

And I'm not.

I want my fairytale, goddamnit!!!

No, I don't want everyone else's lives ruined. But, I don't want to be the instrument of ruin, either. Then, I simply have to accept that the only way I get my outcome is if, A.) Rory continues to be the same old Rory--she sure was last October--and, B.) Chi gets healthy enough that leaving looks like the only option.

And I have ZERO control over either of those. Zero, zero, zero.

So I might as well stop scanning those horoscopes and overthinking last October. This has already been decided for me.

All I have to do is accept it, and be willing to live another outcome than the outcome I wanted.

Because it very well may be that next spring rolls around, and I'm still living here in the outcome I didn't want. This outcome I'm not happy in.

And there won't be any recourse then, just like there isn't any now.

How can I make myself stop hurting, and make myself willing to live the rest of my life just the way things are now?

Do I even get a consolation prize for doing the right thing? Like, do I get someone else?? Not that I can see. Not 'til I'm sixty-five, if then.

Clearly, I'm supposed to become happy without Chi, without any romantic male partnership ever, ever again. I'm supposed to be willing for that to happen, I'm supposed to learn to be happy with that.


That is a very tall order.

But it kind of looks like that's the way it's going to be.

And I'm very sad. That's just the way it is for me. I am very sad.

Because of our Davison--correct in the case of me and my husband, correct in the case of Chi and Rory--I see that we really could have been very happy together. If we BOTH were willing to do the work.

And I hope one day I won't feel this way about it anymore. I am too sad.

I have learned a lot, and I have become wise from this experience. I'm just so, so sorry I had to lose this man in order to do it. The price of wisdom is just too high, sometimes.

I would have been SO much happier the other way. Provided the guy actually got healthy enough to be in a relationship with me, and I felt solid enough in that knowledge.

But I don't control that. Chi does.

What I control is, do I get well from this or not? Can I become happy again, no matter what happens?


Friday, July 13, 2018

We Other Women Have A Grave Responsibility

Past, Present (and Future?)

Once upon a time, mostly as a therapeutic exercise, (before he showed back up again last October), I wrote Chi a goodbye letter. It had a lot of wonderful points in it. Maybe I will post that up here sometime as well. One thing I remember from it, and from that time in general, is the sense I had of making sure I was treated right and not screwed over, and this idea of how much better I was for him than Rory. Boy, what  a difference a little insight makes. 

What I know now is that an affair is the result of not one, not two, but three people not recovering from some pretty significant childhood wounds, and that in looking at it the way that I had (which, let's face it, is the way ALL us "mistresses" view The Battle Over The Married Man), I wasn't seeing all the stories in the situation or all the aspects of it there were to see.

In being so sure we're the Right One and She Isn't, or in being so wrapped up in making sure we're treated right and not used or hurt (and those are good things to be looking out for, to be sure!), many times we aren't seeing how what we do is actually harmful, not to the wife--that much looks obvious but is debatable in some situations--but harmful to this suffering person we're calling the love of our lives. 

Make no mistake, if the guy we're with is stepping out on an established relationship, he's not doing it because he's healthy. He's doing it because he's got some pretty serious problems, and if we can step back enough to see what those are, it makes our own path, in terms of what's highest and best for all three parties, a lot clearer. If you read the second post in this blog and look at the attitude I had then, then contrast that with my new, revised goodbye letter, you might see what I mean.

Dear, sweet Chi,

I just want to reiterate one more time how glad I was to hear from you, how much I value you in my life, and how glad I am we met. Maybe that sounds a little weird considering, but I've learned so very much in the years since our relationship took a turn towards the more serious. 

I love you and adore you as much as I always did. However, I have learned a lot, and if you'll bear with me, I'm going to take you on a couple of side trips through things that happened to me while we were apart, in order to illustrate a point or two. By the time I get to the end, I promise this will make sense. 

Side Trip One: Jane. Of course you remember Jane. If you read my blog, you'll know what happened with her, but if you don't, I'll try to be brief as I summarize this. You know I "inherited" another writer's group when the previous owner stepped down. In trying to attract members, I, unfortunately, invited Jane. (I thought better after I did this, but too bad, she remembered and came anyway.)

Of course you remember how she acted. Well ... I started out thinking she had improved. I'm sorry to say that, after giving off that impression for a few months, she got worse than she ever had been. Others in the group got treated to every sentence beginning with, "I'M published," and, "MY editor said," and "I've done blahblahblah so *I* know." She would talk on and on and on for twenty minutes without ever stopping for breath.

I kept hoping she would get it and alter her behavior, so when people complained, I made excuses for her. Secretly I was afraid of confronting her, because she was so much like my mother, I knew how she was going to react, the same way no one else wanted to confront her because they knew how she would react: stunned, tearful, and hurt, of course, because she was so nice and after all, she IS published and therefore knows more than anyone else. They counted on me to rein her in, and I didn't have the skills to know how, so I sat there and watched one member after another drift away, while I hoped if I worked with the difficulty, she'd change. 

Eventually, only three people were left: me, Jane, and a self-published author named Judy who put up with Jane because she knew so much about self-promotion and she got a lot of ideas from her. But, strangely, the nicer we were and the more we put up with Jane, the worse she got. She snubbed Judy at book fairs several times and was just plain rude and horrible to her a couple of other times.

Finally, we sat her down and spoke with her. I told her that everyone else was gone, citing her behavior as the reason, and if she drove one more person out, I was going to have to ask her to leave. I outlined several areas on which I would like her to work. One was talking over other people for twenty minutes at a time, one was the boastful bragging, and the last was starting and maintaining arguments. (Jane now does not believe in ever using the word "was," will introduce grammatical errors into her work rather than use that word, and started not one, but two, thirty minute arguments about the use of this word.) So, we spoke and it looked like this discussion went well.

Sometimes Jane was okay, but mostly we saw the same behavior. Judy and I were thinking about just disinviting her permanently, when the following happened:

One day Jane came into group with a story she was submitting to a contest at a magazine. By this time, we had a new member, Nick. We all read the story and had the same comments: Good story, but it's a knockoff of Jurassic Park. Nobody will ever publish this.

Jane was furious. (Well, rather, she was humiliated, which then made her furious.) She brought in a copy of the rules of the contest, which made it clear that, believe it or not, she had actually done what the magazine had asked for. We were all flabbergasted. (Wouldn't you be?)

Then she started an email war with me because I had not somehow divined what the rules of the contest were and I thought she was stupid enough to submit a Jurassic Park knockoff to a magazine. Of course I defended myself--who would ever imagine a real magazine would actually run a contest for Jurassic Park knockoffs?? (Clearly, someone is desperate for readership.) I got the response that she was so hurt by my assumption about her that SHE was going to leave. Since all was lost anyway, I let her know some of the complaints others in the group had had with her behavior. Jane went, Don't worry about me, I'm just fine, but you're harsh delivering critique and you're not a kind person anymore, the way you used to be.


Here I was, starting out with no friends at all after Simon died, losing all the new friends I'd made in order to baby her, and in return, she showed complete and utter oblivion to the facts and kicked me in the teeth. Gee, thanks, Jane. We don't have any new members and I still haven't met anyone new to have as a friend, so I essentially lost all my chances at building a new life with new friends, in order to coddle a person completely unable to step back and reflect on her own behavior, who kicked me harder and harder the nicer I was to her.

The coda: After this, Jane contacted Judy to return her last set of pages to her. Judy met Jane at a restaurant to pick up the pages. Completely forgetting all the times she had been rude to Judy (probably because she had no idea she was being rude), Jane asked Judy to keep trading pages over email. Judy said no, but she was still half an hour getting out of the restaurant, even though she only stood at the table and didn't even sit down. Why? Because Jane monopolized the conversation and gabbled and gabbled and gabbled at her for half an hour. RIGHT after I'd just told her six people left our group telling me they were sick of her not knowing when to stop talking. (And she'd responded by saying, "But people always interrupt me and that's rude!" To which I'd said, "But you talked at them for twenty minutes and no one else at the table could say anything.")


Side Trip Two: My mother. Of course you know about my mother; you read most of the novel I wrote about that situation. 

Right about this time, I started speaking to my brother again (sort of), and noticed my mother posting on his Facebook page. It was mentioned that she was back in counseling again and had been for a while, and I started to wonder if I had actually done the right thing in cutting her off over ten years ago. People can change, I thought. Once upon a time she said nothing was wrong with her and she'd never go back to therapy, I thought. It's been ten years, I thought. Maybe time had made a difference. 

And then my cousin in Florida private messaged me. Did you see this? she said.

It was a family picture my brother had posted of the Christmas after we had each gotten married. That was the Christmas both of us were on the outs with our mother because of some very outrageous behavior on her part. We had both gone to visit our uncle and grandparents without her. My brother had posted the photo up with a comment about how it was of happier times.

My mother had been molested by my grandfather. This came out while I was in high school, and we had many conversations about it while I was in high school and college. I had been very supportive of my mother then, and I was up until I had to part company from her due to her outrageous behavior just prior to the Christmas in question. Seems like she'd remember the many many many conversations about it we'd had. I even went to one of her therapy sessions with her!

My mother had posted on that photo that everyone in it was her enemy, because they had disowned her because she disclosed that my grandfather had molested her, and that she thought my brother should take all such family photos off of Facebook. She did not make this comment private.

I did some surfing around and saw that she had done this to a number of photos I was in.

I posted on one of them and said that no, that was NOT the reason, and on another I posted that she really ought to think before she posted on Facebook, because a post like that said a lot more about her than it did about anyone else.

I next heard from my cousin in Florida, who told me my mother had replied with so much blistering invective and graphic details about the molestation that my cousin couldn't even read it all. She warned me about it and advised me not to read it. I went and looked because I was curious (I had read similar from Mom before in emails), but even my brother had written, "I know," below my comment and taken Mom's down.


So now we're at the end of these little side trips, and I'm going to use them now to make my point.

My point is how oblivious these women both were to their own behavior. How they kept doing the same thing over and over and over again, even when it was not doing anything helpful for them or anyone else. Neither one of them is able to step back very well and consider any other points of view, or that there might be some other way of looking at the situation. Even when people got more and more direct in pointing out what was wrong, they couldn't see anything but what their own feelings were telling them was reality.

And a lot of times those feelings actually came from something parents and family had done a long, long time ago, and not from the reality of now. 

My other point is that I've observed that, when a person was like this, it didn't matter how nice I was to them, or how hard I tried, this way and that way and this way, to help. They always turned on me, and I got kicked in the teeth no matter what.

I've observed that I tend to attract this kind of person over and over, and I never seem to learn my lesson.

Well ... this time I've learned. 

I'm not saying I don't love you. I do, very much. I'm not saying I don't want to be with you. I do, very much.

What I am saying, is I've learned that I need to pull way, wayyy back, and watch for signs of this happening.

Are you going to be yet another of these people who can't achieve any kind of self awareness or perspective on your situation other that what old childhood feelings and old childhood shame and old childhood guilt are telling you is just like the way things have always been? Because all those feelings come from sick parents, and sick parents never leave a child anything good. Yet they model to the child that it's the child who is wrong.

I'm aware that this is a very tall order, but it doesn't look like you've made a whole lot of progress with this as of yet.

I can't tell you what to do.

In order for me to feel at all comfortable with the idea of us as an eventual couple, however, I would need to see you doing some work with your early childhood, about the atmosphere in your home growing up, and about what you decided as a young child about how lovable you were, what relationships are like, what your responsibilities in a relationship should be, and how you're supposed to feel in a relationship and how that's supposed to come about.

It would seem that you've spent an awful lot of time in the past three years worrying about fixing other people's feelings and not enough time on fixing your own, an awful lot of time worrying about how your life looks to other people and not enough time worrying about how it feels to you to live your life, an awful lot of time trying to solve other people's problems and not enough time trying to solve your own.

I love you very much, but I have to say that I don't care if you're married, divorced, or widowed, this kind of approach to life's problems and people's feelings is a recipe for disaster.

We've got some very tough problems, here. I'm going to be looking very hard to see what your approach to these problems looks like. Have you learned anything from the past three years? Are you going to be my mom or another Jane, unconsciously recycling symptoms over and over and over, accepting them as The Truth and never stopping to think about why you're doing things and whether your reasons hold water or not? Or are you going to be like me these past three years, reading and journaling and researching and working and learning and flying high, high up into a bird's eye view of problems and how they came about, and how else you can look at those problems in order to make wise decisions?

Because I'm here to tell you, I'm done with my mother and I'm done with Jane. I'm fifty years old and I will not tolerate another person in my life who lives the way they do. I can't. I've suffered enough damage from unconscious people who run like robots on old childhood feelings and just can't see themselves at all. Who just can't see that they need to take a step back from what they've always thought and felt, and research what happens in healthier families and how healthy people look at the same situation. 

Mom/Jane kind of behavior is a trust-killer, a relationship-ruiner, and a life-destroyer. I've worked extremely hard while we were apart to identify old childhood programming I always thought was the truth, and to stop and think so I can figure out what's destructive before it hurts me or you any more.

I don't work this hard for someone who cannot or will not. So it's up to you to decide what kind of work you are willing to do, and whether the therapeutic community you are now in is helping you overcome your problems ... or just helping you recycle them.

I have some great resources if you are interested. I will not tell you what to do.

It's entirely possible that even if you do make some changes in your therapy and acquire greater insight, you may still decide you want to stay in your marriage and keep your family the way that it is. People do, every day, even when their marriage is not satisfactory and they have no reason to hope that it ever will be. 

The important thing, and the thing I will be looking to see, is that the decisions you make are made from a heart that's truly at peace with everything those decisions mean, and not a heart that's letting itself be abused or taken advantage of, resentfully saying, "I've made my bed and now I have to lie in it." To my way of thinking, health might sound something like, "I know Rory is the way that she is, and I'm just going to stay with her and love her anyway the way she is." If you can truly do that, do that, and more power to you. A lot of people could not, but only you can decide what's right for you, and what YOU will TRULY be happy with.

If YOU are TRULY HAPPY with any decision you make, then so am I. Don't worry about me. I have lots to do, and I will be fine.

I will not be happy with any decision that sounds like, "I have to because so-and-so will blahblahblah." That's not a healthy decision made by a healthy heart based in healthy reasoning. Keep working until you can make a decision the RIGHT way ... the healthy way.

I love you and I needed to let you know this. Any relationship I agree to will need to be a healthy one, or one grounded in solid work in therapy with a decent chance of becoming healthy. I still love you, but I need to see a good, solid working attitude that's willing to dive into some codependency resources and information about healthy families, and think more objectively about the past three years and your situation. If I see unconscious Mom or Janelike behavior, I'm outta here for my own good. 

And that doesn't mean I don't love you. I'll be very sad about it, but what it means is I won't repeat ill health anymore. If you mean to keep repeating ill health, you don't need me in your life. You can stay home with Rory or pick any idiot off the street and keep being codependent and stuck in low self esteem.

My world is a place to work hard and get well. A person with that attitude has the attitude I stick with. If I don't see that ... well ...

I love you and I hope you choose health.

But I can't make you. (That would be codependent.)


Big difference, huh?