Learning How to Breathe

I came home from Sugardope Sunday. The Husband was home. (He’s not actually my husband, but I call him that because we’ve been together eight years now. We never married.)

He looks at the TV. He says I should sit down. CNN is on. I think, “He’s going to tell me about the captured US soldiers on videotape.” And I think to myself, “I already know this.” So I say “I already saw this just this morning.”

And he turns to me and says, “I’m moving to Texas.”

“I’m sorry,” I laugh, “I thought I heard you say you were moving to Texas?”

“I’m moving to Texas. J and I are getting married.”

And I say “Oh.” just like that. There’s no crying or swearing. Is this happening to someone else? This is weird. I’m here. I’m looking through my own eyes. I can see myself. But I’m not really here.

At this point, you should know that J is an ugly woman with terrible teeth. He went to Texas and had an affair with her about a year and a half ago. A few months later he brought her to a conference I help run and flirted with her constantly. That was a little embarrassing.

And he says, “I want to be a father to our child.”

And I say, “We don’t have a child.”

And he says, “J and I have a child together, a daughter.”

And I say “Oh.”

So I do the only thing I can at this moment. I throw up.

I’ve been washing that stain on the carpet for three days now. It won’t come out, no matter what I try. I’m out of carpet cleaner. I might try bleach next. I think I’ve gone a little insane, trying to get that stain out.

We were going through what I called “The Cold War.” Two months after we bought our house, our relationship just…stopped. Everything stopped. I thought it was just a rough patch. But I wanted to stick with it as long as I could. Because I loved him. Stupid me.

I never told anyone about how rocky things were between us. Not my friends, not his parents, no one. I couldn’t speak of it. I was so embarrassed. I was a failure. I don’t know why, but I can speak now. I have to. It’s like a poison in my system that I now have to purge.

Maybe I knew this was coming. But I didn’t want to face it. God, I’ve had so much crappy shit happen to me lately. I just need to catch a break.

Please, I just need to catch a break.

I’ve called in to work and told them I’ll be coming in tomorrow. They heard what happened. I’m not sure how. I have to go in and do some work. I know it won’t kill me, but it sure feels like it will.

I know some of you have sent me email. And I’m sorry I haven’t responded. I can hardly operate email now. I’m still learning how to breathe again. If I can just learn how to breathe again, I’ll be all right.

I’m not sure this should be in the Pit. There isn’t a lot of swearing, but I might like to come back later when I’ve learned how to speak again.

And then maybe I’ll swear. Or scream. Or break something.

Or maybe I’ll just learn how to breathe again and take it from there.

Let’s make this Pit worthy:


That being said, I’m sorry for what you’re going though. Let’s hope he gets his manhood hurt on those horrible teeth you say “J” has.

That’s a very sad story, Stephi. I’m really sorry. :frowning:

Although it’s no comfort now, in a few years you’ll look back at the break up/throw up day as the day things got better, not the day they got worse. And don’t worry about how you think you should be feeling – it’s OK to be in shock and just act normal for a while. Don’t force yourself to be angry or sad before you’re ready.

That is a very deep sadness Stephi. Nothing that I say will make it easier. None-the-less, know that you are in my thoughts.

Sending warm thoughts your way.

Wow, sounds horrible. The guy has serious problems, and “J” will eventually suffer the same horror most likely. My sympathies.

Stephi, darling, get him out of the house NOW.

And I will help you find yourself a golden retriever, just like we’d been discussing. I have a few leads on that for you. You have my email address - when the breathing gets easier, drop me a line, I’ll get you all set up.

As for the twit, he may think, right now, that him moving to the US to marry a US citizen is a piece of cake, but it’s not. He’s looking at around 6 months of wait to get the visa to go. He can’t go in on a visitor visa and just marry.

Curious Canuck, Ladydisco (mr ladydisco too, no doubt) n’ I can also kick his ass. I’m SO tempted right now. SO tempted. Probably all of the Montreal crew would pitch in, too.

Let me know if I can do anything, okay?

You mean you didn’t kick him out when he said this? If there ever was a reason to kick someone out, this is it. I’m a little confused here.

One day at a time, Stephi. We’re all here for you whenever you need us.

Oh goodness, you have my sympathies, Stephi. I’ve been through a similar, but not totally analagous situation recently. But I have at least some idea of how you must feel.

I’m forcing myself to get out more and have stopped taking the high loads of crap that I still get from the ex. I’m not very good at giving advice (and even worse at accepting it), but try going out of your way to treat yourself nice.

Best of luck.

Isn’t it amazing how easy it is for some people to stab you in the gut and think nothing about it? I’ve had some pretty nasty experiences with ex’s in the recent past (not quite as bad as yours, but pretty close) and the best advice I can offer is to forget him. I mean, really and truly forget him. Any time your mind flashes back to him, just start saying “Forget, forget, forget.” over and over. Don’t dwell on him for a second, don’t think of the good times, don’t think of the bad times, just keep repeating “forget” until your mind focuses on something else. Otherwise you’ll drive yourself insane with the “coulda, woulda, shoulda’s” you’ll be thinking of.

Best of luck to you. If you need an ear to chew on, feel free to e-mail me.

Dear god. Yes, Elenfair has it right, the Montreal crew is all over kicking his ass for you. Expletives fail me when it comes to describing the disgust I feel on your behalf.


I second the Golden Retriever suggestion…

Stop. Take the biggest breath you can hold.

Know what that was? Free air.

Think. No more Cold War. No more worrying about parents/ friends/ everyone else knowing what’s going on. No more beating yourself up because things have gone wrong. No more waiting.

Now you can get started on your life. Go.

Jesus H. Motherfucking Christ on a moped! That’s awful! I don’t really have anything helpful to say, but I hope things get better for you soon, Stephi

First of all, thank you all for you support!

LordAshtar Thanks you. You should see her teeth, it’s like a prison riot. I don’t know what he sees in her. But I’m not going to beat myself up anymore.

Giraffe I’m not sure how I should feel, it’s like I’m on the “Breakup Roller Coaster” Sometimes I feel so free, and sometimes I feel terribly lonely. I’m just taking it as it comes.

Khadaji Thanks. (I’m sorry, I can’t think of anything else to say.)

Thaumaturge People keep saying I’m better off without him. I know it’s true, but I’m still hurting.

lno Thanks. (I hope I spelled your username correctly this time!)

ElenFair I don’t know where he is now. He left Sunday night. I suspect I know where he is, and it was pretty much confirmed on the IRC channel I hang out on, (long story), I believe he is in Texas right now. I don’t know when/if he’ll be back. He has two floors worth of junk, he’ll have to collect them, but I’ve no idea when.

I’ll have to email/talk to you about it.

TeleTronOne Yeah, I’ve gotten the "treat yourself well advice from lots of people, the most notably, from his parents. He didn’t tell them. I had to. That was hard. Surprisingly enough, they are firmly behind me. Which is, weird, to say the least.

Tuckerfan I’m trying not to think of him, but how do you do that when everything in the house reminds you of him?

Daerlyn Believe it or not, I don’t want his ass kicked. Maybe I’ll change my mind, I don’t know, I think I’m just going to focus on geting my shit together.

LostCause I’m not sure I want to get a dog right now, because I’m not sure what my living situation will be in a few months. And I take pets very seriously, if I think I won’t be able to commit to a pet 100%, I won’t get one. I loved my dog, she was my baby, but I won’t do it if I don’t know if my situation will be stable or not. Now, a few months from now, once things get more settled, definately.

zoogirl Relief. I finally don’t have to pretend anymore. And it’s funny, but I couldn’t talk about it before, but now, everything’s just coming out. I’m scared, but hopeful.

OK, it’s 4 am I should get to sleep, big day tomorrow.[

Stephi, actually, i can believe it. And that’s ok (although should you change your mind, the offer remains open, but anyway).

Be well. Take care of yourself. It may not feel better, but will slowly start to affect you less. And maybe not get a dog right away, but go spend a few hours with Elenfair’s. I’m sure she’d be glad to lend you Zap to cuddle for an afternoon.

If you change your mind, just say the word and I’ll go to Ottawa. In re his stuff, just keep in mind that we are getting close to garage sale season.

Stephi, I’m so sorry. This is a low-down dirty shame, and there’s nothing I can say. But I will tell you how impressed I am with your decision to hold off on getting a dog. You got a good heart, babe- don’t ever let that go.

I second the Canadians: although I live in PA, I’d be more than happy to drive up and kick some ass for ya. Dopers have each other’s back. *Giraffe has it right on- the day he left is the day your world became a better place. {{{{Stephi}}}}

He’s a big pile of steaming ferret doo doo.

You’ve been liberated, Stephi! Go celebrate!

Bah, ferret doo doo isn’t that bad! Well, it can get nasty if I don’t scoop the boxes that often, but this guy was just plain vile to you.

Seconding what zoogirl and ivylass said though, you’re out of it now. Check out Breakup Girl’s advice columns (great for all relationships, not just breaking up) for more support, but one thing she repeats is that you need to think about the now, and about the future. Don’t regret the time “wasted” because it’s over now, you made it out! You got free of this jerk!

My sister had been engaged to a guy that was turning into a real loser - he’d quit smoking tobacco but then turned to pot, he kept losing jobs, he went off with his brother to Mexico on “vacation” while he was on unemployment, etc. After she finally broke it off with him and moved out, she said that she had feared we would think poorly of her for doing that, like she’d failed as well. I assured her I didn’t, that I admired her strength in getting out of a stable but bad relationship (as routine is sooo tempting to stay in because at least you know what to expect, right?) and going on with her life. She’s found a really sweet guy now, and he’d better be treating my sister right, but it certainly seems like it so far.