I'll try to make this brief. Try being the key word. ;)
My mom has her own issues. Being the only female alongside her in my family, I usually got the short end of the stick once I hit the tween years and started thinking for myself. Along came XNH.
He was 24. I was 16. He looked younger and I knew my folks would have a fit if they knew how old he was so I didn't tell them. He told me he wanted to marry me on our very first date. Of course, I thought that was strange, but hey...he was a man. A MAN was interested in little, young me. Yea. I didn't think it was as sick then as I do now.
Anyhoo, after 3 months, I told my folks it was either let me marry him or I'm going to move out to live with him. I was still in high school, too. They caved and let me marry him.
XNH and I remained married for 11 years. 11 awful years. As soon as we were married he became insanely possessive. I'd have to perform sexual favors in order to go off with my friends, give him my entire paycheck, check in all throughout the day, you get the drift. Finally, I'd had enough.
Enter XN. Before I actually left XNH, I started meeting some girlfriends for beers after work on Fridays. XN owned the bar. I'd known who he was for years, but we'd hardly ever spoken aside from a casual hello or drink order.
To think back on it, it's like he sniffed me out on purpose. I was a fresh face that was becoming a regular. The regulars and bartenders liked me 'cause I'm a friendly gal. XN picked up on this and started turning on the charm. After a couple of months he earned my trust a bit so I started opening up to him about how unhappily married I was, and that I was going to leave, just waiting for the right time. XN turned up the charm even more.
When I did leave XNH, XN backed off a bit to make sure I wasn't going back to XNH. When he was certain I was not, the charm dial was turned all the way up.
Holy shit! What a whirlwind romance!! He said ALL of the right things. Wined me. Dined me. Made love to me and made me feel like I was so special. He made me feel safe, secure, beautiful, smart, all of it. Sure, there were some little red flags here and there, but I was in a total stage of euphoria!! No way was I about to give that up!!
XN stated from the beginning he didn't want to ever get married. I was still jaded and I responded in kind. Over the next two years, he would bring up the topic of marriage quite a bit. I was so in love. Soooo soooo sooo in love and hoped beyond hope he would ask me to marry him.
We dated for a year and then I moved in with him. After our first year of living together, on Christmas Day, he gave me an engagement ring. I was beside myself and felt like the luckiest woman on the planet! We were still very much into one another then.
Almost immediately, the next day perhaps (I don't exactly recall, but it was fast), he started with the criticisms. They were subtle and not often so when I'd hear them I'd be so shocked. I can take constructive criticism just fine, but these were not constructive. They were flat out insulting. When I'd ask why he said what he did he'd say I didn't hear him correctly or he didn't mean it.
Over the next two years, the frequency of the criticisms increased. The sex decreased. Giving in the bedroom had always been mutual. All of a sudden, I'm the only one giving. It came to a point where he started rejecting me. I was rejected so many times that I'd stop bothering. I asked him why he rejected me so much and he stated, "Because you want it."
I was still totally crazy about this man and would wrack my brain. What did I do wrong? What did I say? What did I not say? Why does he find me so unappealing? What's wrong with him? Anything I found enjoyable was shot down. Any time I praised him he'd respond with, "Damn right! That's because I did it!" Ugh!
Then the silent treatments started. At first they would only last a day. As time wore on they'd turn into days, then a week, then the last time was two months. Each time, I'd end up crawling back apologizing. How sick I was!
In March of 2010 he flew us to the Caribbean. I thought that this would be great. We could finally bond all over again. WRONG! He humiliated me in front of total strangers in freakin' paradise by stating he'd never marry me. When I gave him back the ring he said the engagement was all in my head.
I knew it was over then, but was still in denial. I clung to the idea of the relationship making it for another year and a half watching it crumble all around me.
My daughter approached me and told me she wasn't comfortable in the house anymore, that he looked like a zombie whenever she saw him. He wouldn't talk to me. Wouldn't talk to her. Wouldn't look at either of us. So, we packed up and left.
It's been almost 3 weeks. It's still very hard. I feel like I'm grieving his death and in a way I am. I'm grieving the mysterious death of the fake guy I fell in love with. THAT is the guy I still love, not the monster that occupies his body now.
Hopefully, by this time next year I'll be in a much better frame of mind. Not obsessing. Not crying. Not questioning.
Not walking on eggshells every day has been a great start. :)