I’ve talked about this before. Just for the record I cleared bringing up some of these issues with my wife.
About fourteen years ago, my high school girlfriend, "Micky,"left me, not to mention the state we lived in, taking her daughter and our son with her, to be with a guy she’d met on AOL. It was a fairly ugly breakup, and I felt betrayed and exploited; I was also angry that I was not going to be able to see my son, who had been born ill; I’d dropped out of college so I could get a full-time job for the health insurance. But all I ever contributed was health insurance, and maybe playing with the kids; I was never a dad to him during this period in any real sense, that is, I was never truly supportive or responsible. I’d always prioritize my desires and whims over the kids needs.
Anyway, in the wake of Micky’s leaving, I decided that to just fuck as many women as possible, but never to get involved again. I did that for a while. Then my son got ill, and Micky returned to the south for his treatment and for family support. I realized then that I didn’t have forever, that my son needed me, so for a while I threw myself into being a dad and trying to be more than health insurance and the occasional $100 for a month’s groceries. I guess on some level I wanted to get back with Micky. So I worked hard to win her again, but my son died anyway, and Micky told me that she blamed me and never wanted to see me again.
I fell into a deep depression, and the way I got out of it wasn’t good. I decided that it wasn’t enough to fuck around. All women except for my mother and sisters were lying whores, so I wanted to hurt them as well as fuck them I proceeded to do that just. I lied for the sake of lying; I cheated for the sake of cheating. I’d seduce women by pretending to be their friend, and stretch that out for as long as possible, so that when they finally realized I was betraying them, it would hurt more. I was never physically abusive, but that’s not because I was a mensch. Partly it was because I was a cowardly pussy who didn’t want to risk getting arrested. Partly it was because being just psychological abusive was the heart of the plan–making the woman doubt herself and her worth and sanity.
At the zenith (or nadir) of this I met a woman I’ll call Lynn. I met her at an AA meeting, though I am not an alcoholic; I used to go to 12-step meetings to find vulnerable women. Lynn was a lesbian, but had been raised to believe that homosexuality was the worst sin imaginable; self-loathing was probably part of the root of her addiction. To my way of thinking back then she was very good prey, because she was trying so hard to be straight that she would put up with endless shit in pursuit of that; also she was very pretty but didn’t believe she was pretty, which meant I could enjoy the sight of her for its own sake but also could exploit her poor self-esteem for my own amusement. Lastly, whenever she finally got a clue, it would be all the more devastating for her, I thought.
So we started going out (incidentally I was violating the terms of our group by dating someone I was supposted to be sponsoring) and eventually moved in together. I was attentive and faithful for long enough to make her feel at ease, and then I started cheating. As you might guess, it was a festival of emotional and verbal abuse that involved her doing a lot of things she didn’t want to because she was terrified I would leave her.
Something strange happened in the course of this. Because, while Lynn was in many ways unwell, she was GOOD in many ways: compassionate, multi-talented, beautiful, funny. I became more and more aware of what a great person she was when we lived together, and I stopped seeing her as pinata. I fell in love with her, which involved hating myself (or, more accurately, realizing that I hated myself) because of the cruel things I was doing to her. When she eventually got healthy enough to decide to leave me, I was equal parts devastated and relieved. Devastated because at that point I no longer intended to abuse her, but relieved because I was afraid that I might if she stayed, and afraid that that abuse would be physical as well as the other stuff.
After she left I went into therapy for sexual addiction and other issues. I have never cheated on my wife, and I plan never to do so. I phrase it that way because I believe it’s dangerous to say I WILL never do so, as making such a blanket statement ignores my history and my strong tendencies towards addictive, abusive, and manipulative behavior. So I say I PLAN never to, i INTEND never to, because I must be cognizant of destructive and evil patterns in my life and history.
ETA: I no longer believe that all women are lying whores. When I used such phrases above, i intended to capture my thoughts and belief back then. Please don’t take anything I wrote above as an attempt to justify or rationalize my evil behavior. Grief for my son cannot justify it; nor can being dumped, or being depressed, or being an addict. I am responsible for everything I did, and what I did in those days was wrong.