I bought it.
I bought the lie that he was different. That he didn’t drool and lust over sluts. That he had values. That he was basically honest. I knew he was lying about his crushes. I knew he was lying about lusting over other women. I just told myself those were little white lies, no big deal. He didn’t act in so many ways like a ‘typical guy’ so it was easy for me to overlook the obvious signs.
I knew, and had accepted, that is how men were inside. Visual. Sexual. Easily aroused. I was OK with crushes on other women. I was OK that he found other women attractive. I was OK that sometimes he would be physically aroused by someone else. It happens. Biology is like that. But, I also knew that people, including men, were fully capable of not ACTING on those urges.
But he kept lying about them, to convince me he didn’t have them. To convince himself he didn’t have them, when he knew damn well he did, deeply, and how he had indulged them for years.
So why would I think he was being honest about the big stuff, if he was always lying about the little stuff? About what he wouldn’t do? About how he felt about anything sexual? I already KNEW he was pulling the white lies and cover up and glossing over how he felt about women,how he viewed women. So why would I think he was telling the truth about fidelity? For him, at any rate. It was important for OTHER people, but not HIM. So, when he said that he was going to look at other women, in that odd, angry voice, I took that as a good sign? That he was being honest? Who was I fooling? That was downright WEIRD. CRAZY. And I took that to mean that he was able to be honest about his maleness, but in reality it was just totally off kilter.
It is my own damn fault.
I wanted to believe, so I did. Is that trust? Or just stupidity? I told myself that he glossed over the little stuff, but he meant it about the big stuff because he kept saying so. He had been there. He knew the cost. I guess it goes the other way. If they lie about little stuff, they sure as HELL will lie about the really BIG stuff.
Vaska. (ruffling his hair, so familiar and intimate, right in front of me, and he doesn’t stop her.) Suzanna. (flirting openly in front of me, and he never stops her.) Braden. (Openly obsessed with her, ignores me, totally engrossed with her right in front me, I am invisible to him) ‘I went to have a beer.’ (huge red flag, when he didn’t call before that event, and I did the freak out thing rather than take the hint – been to a strip club? porn binge? I wonder) Rejecting me when I wore lingerie. (that should have been a HUGE red flag, I should have run then, but I didn’t understand, and confusion is a great manipulator) Making fun of, dismissing, my needs and desires and wants during sex. (so I would quit asking, so he got to have control, his fantasy, after all) So frequently ‘adjusting’ himself. (Constantly aroused, looking away with a distant look, fantasizing away) ‘I don’t masturbate.’ (that I’ll admit to) ‘Yeah, I only think of my partner during sex, too.’ (Um, your fantasy porn partner? your latest favorite porn video?) ‘I went to a bachelor party once at a strip club. I didn’t see the appeal.’ (Huh? Outright lie.) ‘They say they aren’t married in the SCA, so it doesn’t count. That isn’t right.’ (Envy? Spite? Smoke and mirrors?) ‘I haven’t had any urges.’ (If they believe me, that is all that matters. I am a GOOD boy. Really. See how sober I have been! Tell me how good I am!) (That is a TOTAL lie! No urges, WTF???? If he is still in such denial, when I have the evidence right in front of me, then he is in complete addict mode. No sobriety AT ALL! Not emotional, not mental, not physical. damn damn damn damn damn damn damn)
I thought he was a responsible adult with a youthful side.
I guess I cannot be blamed not to see that he would give in to all his lusts and his impulses with lame excuses rather than talk himself into doing what he SAID he wanted. Because he didn’t really want that after all. He only kinda sorta wanted that. He REALLY wanted that sex. He REALLY wanted to do whatever he felt like whenever he felt like it. That is why being alone is safe. No one to tell you what to do. No one to be accountable to. Not even yourself. Values are good words, but if no one is there to see, then it never happened. What she doesn’t know won’t hurt him. I didn’t see that coming. Lies, yes. Letting me down, yes. Not living by a set of values? I will have to see. I need to examine if I accepted lies about that, too. Did I see that he didn’t have any real values? Well, he lied. I don’t know. I don’t know. I thought that was what he really DID have. I thought that, which is why I married him.
Was I fooling myself, because by then I had invested enough emotionally that I HAD to be right? Was my rational thinking about him as a potential partner really just a rationalization?
I valued him. But he didn’t have values. He never valued me, for me.
I would like to think better of him. I would LIKE to think he sees the value in change. I would like to think he has a solid plan to deal with his addictions. I would like to think he working from a point of truth, and learning how to be even more truthful. I would like to think he intends on making it right, and is working diligently toward that critical goal. I would like to think he is a hurt human, thrashing around in his pain so that he hurts other people. Empty and wounded and desparately trying to fill that hole. Playing out scripts burned into his brain from his painful childhood and his bad coping skills and his loneliness. Fear makes people do terrible things. That would be compassionate. That would kind.
That would be foolish, given the truth I know now, given the behavior of addicts, given his past and present behaviors. He hides his activities with increased skill and frequency. He tells half truths, and rationalizes deceit and makes the ‘truth’ fit his impulsive desires. As far as I can tell, he only white knuckles it for a couple of months, bargaining with the addiction, looking at the soft stuff to ‘take the edge off’, until he goes full tilt, and then lies and lies and deceives and denies again. And again. Anything to maintain his addict supply, them and me.
And that I can lie to myself, and give people the benefit of the doubt who haven’t earned it, and be so gullible.
I am so tired. His addictions and his drama are exhausting. Great way to keep me distracted, too tired to notice what he is doing or thinking or sneaking. I don’t feel well and have no strength today. I hurt and hurt and hurt. I cannot have MY life revolve around HIS addictions. He has controlled and manipulated my fate far too long. I have given him far too much power, and he has taken far too much advantage of what I offered in good faith. Huge double standard. Cruel double life. Anything he wanted, but no one else had better do ANYTHING that might hurt him. He will never be able to be a ‘normal’ man anymore than an alcoholic can be a ‘normal’ drinker. And things about his internal desires that once I might have had the strength and devotion to listen to, to help him face, I don’t know if I can stand that anymore. He has gone so so so so so so so so far over the line.
Maybe I will feel better, stronger, another day.