Tag Archives: love

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? 

Gay rights will help hetrosexual human rights

Becoming a chattel

 

Two women (or men) fall in love, they are 18 and penniless.

Three years later they marry.

They both work but also start their own business. 

At 27 they start a family and decide that one will give up her career to bring up their family in the way they both want. 

Business goes really well. One works full time while the other rears the growing family and supports her partner in the business. 

At 45 the partner that works in the business full time has an affair and wants to end the marriage. 

Now what do you think happens

Their assets get split equally and both move house.

The partner who has control of the business gets a big mortgage and continues a very lavish lifestyle. The child rearer can not get a mortgage so lives frugally within her means.

But what about the business? The partner that cheated keeps the business while the other now non-skilled partner gets a payment each month from the business. The court decides 4% of the business profit. Which is just enough to live on, the cheating partner gets to keep 96% of a thriving business.

The law dictates that the partner that now owns the business can have intimate relationships and remarry without any consequence. The non skilled partner can only co-habit or remarry if she forgoes her monthly payments from the business (that she helped set up and enabled the controlling partner to succeed at whilst having a family as well). The controlling partner could opt for a final settlement but that doesn’t make financial sense, this way she has a loan that might just dissapear and has no interest.  She also gets to control her ex’s life.

That is the law as it stands today for hetrosexuals. I don’t think gay people will stand for this in their relationships. 

This happens in hetrosexual relationships because in uk law today women are regarded as chattels when they marry.

 

Chattel definition

n.

1. Law An article of movable personal property.

2. A slave.

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.

She nodded as he lied to the children (2)

It might seem strange after such a short conversation to know it was over but she did. She told the kids dad had gone on another work trip, the kids were not phased he was always doing that. She met a divorced girl friend in the supermarket car park after dropping the kids off who just held her. She asked if he was on drugs, had a brain tumor or another woman. 

‘No no no he just doesn’t want me anymore.’

She googled what to do and decided that he had to decide if it was over and called him, he said it was but wanted some time to think about it. How long she asked? Six months he said, maybe more, she was thinking more like the weekend! She said if he needed that long he had to tell the kids. He agreed and came round in the evening and told the kids lies while she nodded.
‘It will be amicable’
‘I still love your mum’
‘There’s no one else’
‘If we split up everything will be divided equally’

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.

Shades of Grey, Bitter Lake, Actions and consequences

My last blog documented a mini melt down, but I’m calmer now and I see things clearer. My son is 18 and I have to let go, for want of a better way to say it I have to care less, I can’t change the the love I feel but he’s not my responsibility any more.

My partners son who has some learning difficulties fell off my off road sidecar yesterday and has a sprained ankle. When I say fell, it was more of a step, and today I have resolved to renew my campaign of ‘actions have consequences’ with him. My partner was driving and feels guilty but the truth is it’s the lads actions of stepping off that caused him pain. Because of his condition too much is let slide and other people suffer the consequences of his actions. This time he is. For example I have to clean up when he spills sugar all over the table at breakfast, when actually he is quite capable of cleaning up himself or taking more care in the first place. His condition isn’t black and white, just because he has a few problems doesn’t mean he can’t do anything and he needs to be taught by his parents that actions have consequences. But I too need to remember that my actions have consequences.

I watched a brilliant film (twice) recently called Bitter Lake, it attempts to explain the mess of Afghanistan and that area. It talks of how past politicians presented ‘the problem’ as black and white, good and evil. It seems to me a lot of war is cast in this light, whoever we are, whichever side we are on, we are sold a war, or reason to war as we are the good and they are evil. My divorce too became like that. I’m certain it was for my ex too, I’m sure I was demonised as much as he has been, this demonising enables us to act in a way that would previously have been unthinkable. We need to keep in mind that there are so many shades of grey in any conflict and it’s not so simple as black and white, good and evil.

rejection

My son spends more and more time with his rich narcissist dad. He doesn’t bring friends home to me, I can tell he’s embarrassed. I see pictures of him on Facebook with his friends partying at his dad’s house. I’ve got to the point where it hurts so much I just want to say to him go.

It’s money, his dad has a city centre mansion, loads of parking, a hot tub, all I can afford is a home in a town half an hour away with a bad reputation next door to the pub. Of course he is embarrassed.

I’m crying because I know I have to let him go, his dad can give him so much convenience and luxury. Abu Dhabi formula one with a pass to the Pits… I watch as he checks the sell-by dates of things in my fridge, my poverty means you eat things a few days past but he’s proud to admit he’s a foodo, he only eats the best. I had a chance for a few days away from a kind friend but refused as my son was home, now he’s off to dads as it’s just more convenient more logical. I missed that chance.

He’s got a few days at half term with me, but he’s in college doing extra classes, because he missed so much with holidays with his dad, I’m sure he’d have stayed with his dad but he’s away on his second ski holiday this year with his new family.

I am fed up, upset, crying, my ex sent me an email telling me he had won a year ago. He was right. I hadn’t even realised it was a war but I see now, he who has the money to buy what they want wins and I am a peasant squirminly accepting what crumbs my kids offer. What if I say NO? What if I live a life where I do what I want?  It doesn’t matter I take what’s offered but should I be brave and say to my son, it’s fine stay with your dad, it’s much more logical not to have the commute as your exams approach? It’s a sticking plaster, I’m hurting so much it might be easier to let him go with one last rip.