Tag Archives: alone

Empty nest

Empty nest

I picture myself dying of cancer, the rosie dream is that one is surrounded by loved ones, but in sneaks the reality, ‘Mum I’m busy this weekend I’m having dinner with my girlfriend and her mum’, ‘works been tiring this week’, ‘I’m going skiing with dad’ my children’s lives, the people who have meant everything to me for the last twenty years, have other priorities, much more interesting temptations.

 

I know in reality my death will be empty and alone escorted to the end by the long blip of the heart monitor.

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Living as a Chattel

Freedom not ownership

The other day I realised that living as a Chattel gave me certain freedoms, ironically as a Chattel by definition is being someone’s property/slave. 

Let’s be clear I do not want to be a Chattel and hate this Victorian law that labels me as my ex husbands property until I remarry, he settles or either of us die (although he can do what he likes).

However there are certain perks, the primary one is I don’t have to be anyone else’s chattel, I can not make the same mistake again. No rushing into marriage or co-habitation for me. My codependent and romantic nature cries out to be some bodies ‘the one’, but my chattel status removes my ability to form a committed relationship, so I don’t have to commit, or worry if I’m sure or doing the right thing and neither does a lover. The stakes are so high I can live in a permanent state of never having to risk being owned by anyone else.

I could remarry and lose the stake in a business I helped set up but I’m not going to give away what’s rightfully mine for a marriage that despite my commitment could be thrown away by someone else’s wandering cock, like last time. I don’t have young children and won’t have more, so the need for marriage isn’t there. I admit my conditioned nature of social norms sometimes dreams of marriage and happy ever after but my chattel status squashes that down to an uncomfortable niggle. People change and I’m not sure if I want to or need to take that risk again. My chattel status gives me (and any lover I have) the perfect excuse to never address the future, to live in the moment. 

When your options are reduced life becomes simpler, freedom? Why would I want that? 

So you want a divorce? 20 thoughts.

So you want a divorce? Some tips if you have kids on how to keep it amicable from someone who failed. Do as I say not as I do! My biggest regret about my divorce is that we couldn’t keep it amicable. Written from the female perspective as I am, but I’m sure you can adapt it however your relationship is made up and balanced. 

1. Don’t post anything on face book or other media. Delete your account or at least post nothing. Your ex will grow resentment (yes they’ll find it even if blocked), your kids won’t understand that your fun without them isn’t a reflection on them or why you are being snide about dad. If they are young they will see it soon, it’s out there, just don’t. 

2. If you have the money be generous, if you don’t be grateful. Split it in half if it’s been a long marriage. 

3. Make a final settlement, otherwise you (or your new partner) will always resent paying or receiving and not be free.

4. Don’t ask your ex for help, no light bulbs changed or cakes made. It’s over.

5. Try to avoid lawyers, at least as much as possible, you have to legally disclose how much you have  to them and they seem to be able to make their fees exactly that! A good lawyer means one who’s made amicable divorces in the past, not a Rottweiler that will screw your ex.

6. Don’t text, email your ex anything but facts about the kids. No calling them a moron or sending emotional emails about ‘winning’ the divorce. Yep he did!

7. Do text them lots of info about your kids, so they know about sports days, the cat dying and events and what’s going on in their lives. Kids are terrible at coms. Schools are generally pretty hateful and uncommunicative to dads in my experience. 

8. Be prepared to lose most of your friends, don’t worry it leaves spaces to make new genuine ones. 

9. Be final. No getting back together and then splitting. It will break your kids hearts. 

10. Don’t play games and get mean, no starving ex to get them to sign (yes he did), your kids will suffer and you will only look bad. 

11. Don’t stop access to kids, for any reason apart from their safety. Set up a good routine.

12. If you disagree with something for kids, like phones, you can tell that to ex but you can’t stop it. You can’t micro manage their world with your ex anymore than your ex can manage yours. 

13. Try to work around arrangements, lives are complicated but you can say no, sometimes making an ex husband take responsibility for the time he has his children and finding his own care arrangements can help the kids see daddy cares. Try to give notice.

14. If you do alternate weekends try to make it a pick up after school, then whole weekend and drop back to school. That way you get a chance for a proper relaxing weekend without home work and meals to prepare. He gets to do meals, homework and washing with kids and bonds through that (it really is the little things that count), the kids get a great role model of capable dad and the bond is stronger. 

15. Don’t send messages through kids, they get forgotten/missed and the child is drawn into your fight. Try to acknowledge messages politely so everyone knows what’s happening. 

16. Regular child sharing is great, as a woman it was my first taste of freedom for years and I learnt to value it, if you poison your child about ex they will not want to go and you will be exhausted and fed up of asking friends for a favour. 

17. Pay your maintenance when it’s due. 

18. Don’t speak ill of ex, it’s hard as we naturally need to alienate them to allow us to move on, (who wants to moon on about someone whos rejected them!)but your kids love them much as they love you, if you alienate the children have some very confused feelings. 

19. Make your new partner understand that you may not appear to hate you ex, but you will never be together again, reassure them. 

20. Be honest about your assets, including the bullion and the old stamp and the designer number plate. This is the mother of your children. Remember karma. 

Free (5)

People started asking why his name wasn’t on the Christmas card. He hadn’t wanted anyone to know, so this was the first most people had heard of the break up. 

She was invited to a New Year’s Eve wedding. He had the kids so she was going alone to the evening do. She realised as she got dressed in her new slimline figure that she was free. She could wear what she wanted and say what she liked and behave in anyway for the first time in 25 years. As she dressed she reflected that before he would tell her what to wear and and while she put her makeup on he would be telling her what she should say. She would drive so he could drink. This time her friend had offered her a couch. 

She wore a tight black satin dress with dark makeup to hide the tear stains and new gauntness, as she walked into the party she felt the men looking at her. She saw their eagerness when she said she was newly single. To someone so fragile the flattery was completely seductive, a lad 10 years younger than her gave her plenty of attention but she had been warned he was a philanderer. She didn’t care, it’s not like she wanted anything serious, and heck he was fit and charming whilst her ex was a fat bolding accountant. As Big Ben hit 12 they only had eyes for each other and a passionate embrace and swapped numbers as he left. 

The party carried on and I could pretend the next didn’t happen but it did. A spliff went round an already drunk set of stragglers. This was new to her but life was being reinvented and when you get that low you are free to try anything. She was off her head, someone started kissing her and she responded. He walked her to a barn and there was a fumble but even in her state of intoxication she managed to say no and it went no further than a bit of a grope. She left and sat for most of the rest of the night talking to a lovely lady beside a fire pit. 

 

In the morning she could not recall his face and don’t think she ever knew his name, not even embarrassed she was so full of self hate she didn’t care.

Christmas heartbreak (4)

Its Christmas Day he asked to come for the day to be with his kids. 

She cooked for them all and in her head this was the deadline if he hadn’t decided by now she had to. He’d had plenty of time to think and if a family Christmas couldn’t persuade him to come back what would? 

After lunch the kids were playing and he wanted to talk. She asked if he was dating and he said yes. Shock. Oh – Have you slept with anyone else? – they had been childhood sweethearts and as far as she knew had never had anyone else – he blushed and said of course that’s what dating is about these days. 

Her world was crushed again and something died in her that moment. 

He asked if he could come back for Boxing Day. She said no.

The first few months after he left (3)

Over the next few months the bottom fell out of her world, she spent most of the day’s crying. 

Her sons 14th birthday was in 10 days and she had arranged a go-carting party for him. He said he was coming too, she spent so much energy gathering herself for the torture of that day.  

She fantasised that he would see what a happy family they were and turn around and say sorry, he’d been an idiot let’s make up. But nothing happened.  

She asked if there was another woman, he said no. Another wave of days over took her. It was a month till Christmas. She booked some counselling with relate but it wasn’t till new year. She found a lawyer. She worked on the house renovation she was doing. The plan had been to move in the new year and she focused on that. By Christmas she had lost two stone in weight without trying.  

Her friends were supportive and she had her first night out as a single mum just before Christmas. With her weight loss and devil may care attitude she danced the night away. Some bloke took a fancy to her and danced with her, oh she was so flattered, after her complete rejection that she thought what the heck and when he tried to kiss her she didn’t say no. Wow it felt amazing to be desired again, but when a friend pointed out he had a wedding ring on she was mortified and ran away.  

She sent out the Christmas cards without his name on and her new address, the first most friends knew of it, as he hadn’t wanted anyone to know.

I can’t do this anymore (1)

‘I can’t do this any more’
‘If you feel like that you had better leave’.
‘You mean the spare bedroom or …’
‘No. Just go’.
He left, it was probably their third or fourth major argument in their twenty five year marriage and still no raised voices. With the gift of hindsight she realised the argument a couple of years before was when she knew it was over, he had explained that he was only staying for the children. She thought it was just a blip. Now she realised he couldn’t even do that. She still loved him. He had been out the night before like he often did these days and when he got home she had complained that he never wore his wedding ring. She cried all night and in the morning they had this four line conversation and it was over.