You know how exciting it is to do something naughty and almost get caught by the police? Hot damn! It’s downright titillating! I have news for you. It’s far less of a rush when you actually do get caught. Naked as a jaybird. Mid coitus. Surrounded by 3 cops with flashlights. Oh God…
Needless to say, things with the Bitter Poet have not been boring. Thankfully the police around here are very understanding of grown men and women who are caught screwing on the top floor of a parking garage at 2am, and they let you go with a jot of your name and a stern but embarrassed glance. My life flashed before my eyes. My entire career – POOF! Gone! My reputation – BANG! Destroyed! $75,000 in student loans for NOTHING!!! You’d think at that point I would have stopped my evil ways, but no. We were nearly caught four times more. Luckily those situations were not progressed enough to cause trouble, but it was too much. I was being an idiot and it had to stop. So I brought the Poet home. That’s right Ladies and Gents, I took a man back to… Dun. Dun. DUNNNN… My parents’ house.
At first I was nervous. It had only been a few weeks and things were progressing very quickly. And yet… it was nice. It felt good to have some family-style normalcy back in my life. It felt natural. He was sweet to my Ladybug and not at all hesitant to get naked in the mortifying mess that is my room. (Seriously. It looks like a pignado spun through (not to be confused with a sharknado, which involves considerably more blood).) And the best part of all – he could go for HOURS. I had done it! I had found another Superman!! Things were GREAT!!! Then I started to freak out a little. Things were too great. My daughter started asking for him and said she loved him. He was coming over or we were going out nearly every night. One night he looked at me with such adoration that I felt a panic rise in my chest. WAIT! This is too fast! What are you DOING?! I tried to tone down the romance and do some good ol fashioned fucking, but it didn’t help. I was too far down the rabbit hole.
Thankfully he was just as aware of the absurdity of our instantaneous familiarity. I was giddy to see him, but he said he was over too often. Yes, yes you are! Let’s slow it down. And that’s when I realized… I was falling in love with him. It had only been a month, he didn’t want to be my official Boyfriend yet, and I was already using the L-word in my mind. Holy. Shit. It’s one thing to merrily skip along and declare you would marry the pretty new boy you found, but to actually mean it? Jesus.
Still, things were going swimmingly. We like all the same things. We have the same sense of humor. He’s witty and charming and socially intelligent. My friends adore him and found him so attractive that it actually made me a bit jealous. The only time we argued was over his hesitancy to let down his walls and tell me about himself. We were together so often, I didn’t even have time to blog! I was happy! I’m sure you can see where this is going. Happiness is fleeting, dear readers. So fleeting.
A few days ago something changed. We went from snuggling on the couch watching American Horror Story to screaming at each other every moment of every day. He arrived one evening with a terrible announcement. He had an STD. Luckily we had been safe, but he was not handling it well. He was extremely stressed out and was taking it out on me. I didn’t like it, but I was understanding. His life is hard enough as it is. He lives in his car, for God’s sake! But then it happened. He unleashed a level of crazy that was heretofore unprecedented. The Bitter Poet accused me of dating him in order to get employment through a corporate spy who hacked his computer and contacted me.
How did I manage to do this again? The man I married turned out to be a bipolar schizoid with narcissistic personality disorder. Captain Douchebag also has NPD. Are you kidding? I traded that in for this? Persecutory Delusion Disorder? SERIOUSLY?! I was literally sick to my stomach as the reality of the situation set in. All that talk about the world being out to get him was not just bluster. He really, truly believes it. He honestly thinks people are conspiring against him to keep him from getting employment, and I was sent there by unknown third parties to prove I had the leadership skills to ingratiate myself into his life. You know, because that’s what makes a good counselor of children. I tried to reason out a logical chain of events, but I couldn’t manage to come up with anything that could make such a delusion seem the least bit plausible. I discussed it calmly with him but he stood steadfastly by his accusation, unswayed by reason. After he left that night I cried, and the next morning I called my cousin, the psychologist. Her initial reaction was RUN!!!, but from a clinical perspective she agreed that I should try to get him some help. After all, I loved him. If a member of my family started spouting conspiracy theory and suicidal ideation I wouldn’t give him the finger and leave him to his own devices. That’s not what you do for the people you love.
Unfortunately it’s not so simple. “You should get counseling.” ”Okay!” It’s especially complicated when the person is otherwise a really great guy and the crazy is well-hidden. I began to doubt myself. Maybe he was just stressed out and exaggerating. Maybe he was just trying to freak me out. Maybe it’s not that big a deal. He seemed to have conceded that I was not using him for my own personal gain, so he wasn’t really crazy, right? I saw a glimmer of hope. I even went so far as to hash out the pros and cons of continuing our relationship. He’s charming, sexy, perceptive, intelligent, determined, funny, creative, tantalizing, and good, and I love who I am when I’m with him. It would be worth the effort. I could live with a man who was only bats 15% of the time. He could get counseling, change his faulty thought patterns, accept that he is competent and lovable, and we could get through it! But alas, what we had was gone. That brand of crazy was replaced with hateful accusations rooted in reality. He began obsessively fixating on other men in my life, telling me I was obsessed with black men (my supervisor in particular) and with my ex, Superman.
As my readers well know, I am not obsessed with black men. I talk about sex all the time and they never come up. Random German tourists? Yes. Brits? Yes. Men who have a fondness for literature? Yes. My attraction varies, but it isn’t based on race. As for Superman… well, there was no getting around that one. I had not recently been obsessing on him (and I really wondered when I had said anything at all) but I definitely have in the past. I was madly in love with him – or possibly an ideal of him – for a long time. The more I’ve thought back over the past few months the more I realized we had very little in common and our future together would have been quite boring. It has been so easy to while away the hours talking with the Bitter Poet – a stark contrast that made the inadequacies of our relationship all the more evident. But Superman did something very precious to me. He loved me and taught me how to love myself. He is essentially my first true love. My relationship with my ex-husband was rooted in self-loathing and desperation. He ground me down and stomped on my soul until I believed no one else could ever love such a disgusting, ugly beast. Superman saved me. He ultimately broke my heart and left me a shattered mess, but through every trial and crisis of self-esteem I have been able look back on the love in his eyes and hear him say that I am beautiful. No makeup, thirty pounds heavier, and still I was beautiful. He may not be the man he used to be (lying, cheating rat bastard that he is) but I will always be grateful that he was there when I needed him. God places people in our lives for a purpose. I may have left broken and bleeding, but some piece of me had been healed by his kindness.
I obviously couldn’t explain my wistful melancholy to the Poet without making it sound as though he was right. Especially not when he was foaming at the mouth about it. But I told him the truth. I loved Superman once, but I am not in love with him anymore. If he was to show up on my doorstep I’d slap him in the face. He was the one man I thought was Good, and he proved me wrong. The one guy! I could never forgive him for that and I could certainly never trust him again. I don’t want a life where I’m constantly worried that he’s lying and cheating. Especially now that I have found someone I can connect with so organically. Being with the Bitter Poet is like hanging out with my best friend. He’s like a living, breathing stress-reliever. Or at least he was.
The accusations and blatant hatred continued for days. I endured it, battled against it, and ultimately succumbed. He said I’m too dominant. I don’t listen to him. I’m not attracted to him. He’s second best. His dick isn’t big enough (?!). I don’t want him anymore. I’m only luke warm toward him and he deserves a woman who is obsessed. The sex isn’t good enough. I don’t respect him. I view him as relationship material but he only wants to be seen as a sexual beast – a warrior who eats the heart of his enemies. WTF?! I dealt with ALL THAT CRAZY and was still going to trust him to house-sit during my vacation. I leave for a week-long cruise in the morning. I had asked him to stay at the house and feed the cats while we’re away. I really thought he’d be reliable enough, but of course he wasn’t. Shocking. Another man who lets me down. Thankfully I have a few good friends in my life and Big Sue was there in a pinch.
This afternoon, after meeting with the Bitter Poet for another talk, Ladybug and I left the playground all smiles. We had resolved the crazy and called a ceasefire. I was SO relieved. But an hour later I woke up from a nap to find the crazy was back and he was furious with me again. Over NOTHING. That was the last straw. I put up with more than any sane woman would. Enough is enough. If he was that determined to get me to dump him, then so be it. He won. I threw up my hands. He tried calling me. He said we just needed to talk. He sent text after text. This isn’t what he wanted. Finally I caved and gave him one last phone call. Do you know what the source of all this carnage has been? This. Blog. He found it. He knew I had a secret online diary and chose to violate my privacy and read it. The entire thing. I knew I never should have told him it existed, but it feels dishonest to write about people behind their backs. Besides, I am rather proud of it and wanted to be able to discuss it with him. I figured a guy who was so rigid about his own boundaries would respect mine. I was wrong.
So here I am, back at square one. Again. I really thought I may have found my soul mate this time. We were like peas in a pod. My daughter loved him. My parents respected him. It could have been my happy ending. But those don’t really exist, do they? Life is not a fairy tale.
Still… a part of me believes. One day my Prince will come. Surely there must be some man out there who is not threatened by a strong woman.
Where is Joss Whedon when you need him?
The Silly Girl
Image retrieved from http://mimiandeunice.com/2012/07/18/life-is-painful/