To My Husband’s Girlfriend

One would think that phrase would be very hard for me to type. And that the computer screen would be obscured by the tears that should be steadily flowing from my eyes. Maybe because you’re not the first “other woman” in my marriage, the Jerry Sringer-esque nature of the phrase isn’t foreign to me. Maybe because I’m finally sitting down to write again and opening the valve which has to remain firmly in the off position so that I can do things like go to work, and interact with other humans without being a blithering mess, my heart knows that the teeniest fraction of pain will be released in these words, so tears aren’t needed. Or maybe its just that I woke up crying, and cried in the shower, and cried driving home from work, so my tears are on pause.

As these things go, affairs that is, the other woman shouldn’t be the main focus of anger, in my humble opinion. I know my husband, and I know how he pursues what he wants with laser focus, when the object of his desire is a new woman. I’d like to say it’s just because I was that which he pursued, but unfortunately it’s also because I know the lengths to which he’s gone in the past in pursuit of a new flavor, a new high, to satiate his addiction. You’re the new heroine, so, I was prepared to let you off the hook for any culpability in this steaming pile of bullshit. I actually felt sorry for you because, barring a miracle, you will someday be in my shoes, because the addiction started long before I was in the picture. But then you answered his phone when I called. With a fake English accent, laughing in a way that suggested you were mocking whomever was calling, knowing it was me, you answered the phone. 3 times you answered the phone. The 3rd time you’d miraculously lost your accent. Imagine that. And you told me that my husband didn’t want to speak to me, and hung up on me. In that moment, I knew everything about you that I need to know.

As if the lack of not just class, but decency and maturity you’d demonstrated by answering his phone wasn’t enough, you then thought it a good idea to send me a text. A text in which you told me that my husband has spoken in praise of me, and “the time he spent with” me as you so quaintly referred to our 11 year relationship. I’d type word for word what you wrote in the text, but, you know what it says, you wrote it.  I have to say though that the hands down best part of your text was the part that said “I hope we can mutually agree to let the past be the past” etc. You actually thought it would be a good idea to say any words, and those words in particular, to your new boyfriend’s wife. As if you are any part of “we” where my husband and I are concerned. It was those actions, and those words, that let me know you’re not simply some chick who got duped by the charm of a sex addict looking for a higher high. You’re an active and willing participant in ensuring another human being gets REALLY hurt, and a marriage comes to an end. He shouldn’t have let you answer his phone, or text me, but you shouldn’t have wanted to.

None of that is the reason though that I’m writing this. I’m writing this to say to you, while you may have my husband now, and while you may think he loves you and you him (of this I’m not sure, but he does like to move fast, as most addicts do) I got the best of him, and you, and he, and a divorce, won’t change that. And nothing short of full-fledged recovery will ever make it possible for you to know the person I knew, who is nothing like the person whose phone you answered. He has had to compartmentalize so many events, and recreate the facts and details of parts of our marriage so that he doesn’t have to face his own pain, and so that he can say to you and anyone else who cares to listen that the only reason we are still married is “point finger/blame Michelle/blah blah blah.”

I know he’s given you his new party-line about how the reason he’d cheated on me previously was because he became insecure about our age difference, but seriously, even if there was an iota of truth to that, why would you want to be with a man who blamed his wife’s age, of which he was well aware from before the day they met, for his infidelity, and for his now suddenly wanting to get divorced? I get that he’s all like, oh my God, in a band, and charming and what not, but, why do you think he tried to keep your identity hidden from me? Why does anything need to be hidden, if neither of you are doing anything wrong?

You and others can of course could flip the script and ask me why I stayed married to a man who cheated, a lot. I’ll happily say to all of you that the reason is multi-faceted, and the largest part of the answer is not “I loved him” but rather “I’d hoped I could love him enough that he’d get healthy, for himself, and me.” I also couldn’t, and still can’t completely, shake the images of the beautiful man, the man you’ll never know, I met and married, and things he said he wanted to do, and did do, in an effort to get healthy, for himself, and us. But do you really think that he just somehow couldn’t divorce me all this time? Or can you fathom that he actually does still love me, but I moved away because I felt I had to, but we still didn’t intend to divorce, and that you were there, and you don’t really know him, for good and for bad, and that you’re happy to play groupie. You’re easy. You’re new.

While you probably don’t know that while you were being the groupie at his shows, he was calling and texting me that he loves me, and misses “his wife” and that he’s lost without me, and doesn’t know what to do. You might have even been screwing him while he was saying those things to me, I don’t suppose I’ll ever know nor do I suppose it matters. All that matters is, he has chosen addiction, he has chosen you, and that I have to move on. Based on everything I’ve learned about you, you fit right in to the life he’s created for himself since he moved back to Michigan, and it’s that life and those choices that brought his addiction to new lows, so, have fun with that.Have fun being the small voice in his head that tells him you want to answer his phone when his wife calls, to which he listens.

Maybe I’ll thank you someday for being a part of the reason I’ve lost hope that he’ll get his shit together. For now all I know is that I really dislike you, and who he has chosen to be. And I really fucking miss the man I met, whom you will never know. I got the best of him, and you are getting not even a shadow of that.

 

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