Monday, August 27, 2012

If it takes two to tango ...

... then it only takes one narcissist and/or personality disordered person to push you down to the floor so they can then dance all over your face wearing heels or steel-toed boots depending on their gender.

Photo Credit: lemonadedivorce.com

What am I talking about? The tired old divorce advice for achieving an amicable divorce:

It takes two people to create and maintain a cycle of conflict and only one person to end it.  

For the past 6 or more months I've tried very hard to put this theory to the test with the STBX (or Douche Canoe, rather).  I've spent time focusing on the future for our son, working to let go of our hostile past, and in doing so we were finally able to negotiate our now court-ordered parenting plan and visitation schedule.  In addition to that, I've offered the STBX additional time with our son, not in the court-ordered minimum schedule, and I've regularly sent him pictures, videos and updates on a weekly basis.

In return, I've had him make threats to petition the court to enforce a provision prohibiting my co-habitation with any member of the opposite sex that I'm not married to (he gave up on that, thankfully), I've been insulted, my boyfriend has been insulted, child support has been threatened to be withheld on two occasions and both times he only paid it after I've e-mailed and/or texted inquiring about it much to his displeasure (he retorts that I'm harassing him, of course) and, in addition to all of that, more recently I've had him threaten to file for a contested divorce less than a week after agreeing to move forward with a property settlement agreement and just one day after paying my attorney $750 to draft it for us.

Clearly, I'm not getting back what I'm giving and the conflict isn't ending any time soon.

Lesson:  It takes two people to create and maintain a cycle of conflict and only one person to end it if and only if both of said people are sane and reasonable. 

A narcissistc, borderline and/or sociopathic person will never cease and desist. It doesn't matter how amicable and reasonable you try to be. It just doesn't.  These types of people will continually make unreasonable demands and they will fight you tooth and nail to get revenge no matter how nice and cooperative you try and be with them.

Sadly, I fear the STBX will never be able to move on and the "get back" at me attitude will go on forever and a day. What is appalling is that he and I both know the truth as to what led to the dissolution of our marriage and, although I made plenty of my own mistakes throughout our relationship, I am not the spouse that deserves to be sought after for revenge. He knows it and I know it. Our marriage counselor that we went to for four months knows it. His own parents know it and mine most certainly know it. If anything, I deserve to be let go in peace once and for all and our son deserves two parents who can both move on and be, not only amicable, but respectful and cooperative to serve his bests interests.

I've never been more glad to have court orders in place that protect my son and I from having to be subjected to his hostility any more than necessary.  During the last year or so, that was the best decision that I ever could of made.

If you are divorcing someone like my STBX, don't get your hopes up that it will end in an amicable settlement or that you might ever be able to be friends one day.  If you are divorcing someone with a personality disorder, or someone that is just a plain old douche canoe for that matter, neither will ever happen.  Douche canoe's thrive on conflict as a way to keep you immersed in it so that they can have power over you.  The best piece of advice I can give you is this:

Disengage and protect yourself and your children. Get detailed court orders immediately as a preventative tactic. Especially if there are children involved.

I used to think that I was the source of conflict because whenever it came to me and the STBX, there was always conflict.  Always.  Through the past year and a half, since long before I left him even, I've learned that he is the source of conflict no matter how I behave.  Knowing that gives me back any power he may think he has over me with his behaviors and it makes my life a hell of a lot easier.

Thursday, August 23, 2012

When she disappears without a word ...

Hellooooo!

I know, I know. I've been kind of a blogging slacker lately. I've had a lot going on!  I hope you'll forgive me and I hope I haven't lost half of my readership by not posting all summer long.

C-Man and Mommy enjoying summer
Frankly, I'm kind of a hermit in the winter and I spend a lot of those dark, cold hours hiding out behind my computer screen. Once it gets warm though, and the days start getting longer, ... you're hard pressed to find me staring at my laptop screen past regular working hours.  That's just how I am and this is as close to an apology as you're gonna get from me. This is my blog of course, and I do babble here for me first and foremost. A concept I think I may have lost sight of a few months back ...

Anyway ...

I've also been taking some time off from actively processing my divorce and all that went into that, so that's another reason why I sort of went on blog-strike without any warning or notice. In case you're out of the loop, back in April I started dating someone (known as James Dean here) and what we have together has progressed into something so amazingly wonderful that I have just wanted to focus on the "here and now" with him without having my divorce baggage dragging around behind me and weighing me down.  Blogging regularly was forcing me to keep my divorce and the STBX on the surface of my emotions on a regular basis and in order to truly move on from that, I just had to take a break for awhile.  Looking back over the last few months I am 150% positive that deciding to pause the blog for awhile was one of the best decisions that I've made to date on this starting over wonderful journey.

I love my James Dean so much I could just bust, I swear.  I won't though, because that would literally be horrific and gruesome. Ew!

But I do love him more than I ever thought I could love anyone after what I've been through over the last few years.  I can't even begin to explain what it is like to finally be in a relationship where there is mutual respect, compassion and empathy for one another.  We've been head over heals for months now (read: practically inseparable) and it just keeps on getting better and better.

<3 Phenom and James Dean <3

What's most amazing to me is that we've never even once had an argument or fight.  For me, relationship-wise, that is just remarkable. I think after years and years of bad relationships, I've learned to associate the adrenaline rush that comes from fighting with romantic passion.  Now I know how confused and misguided my thought process was and how that sort of thinking may have been part of why I married the wrong person in the first place.  I mistakenly thought the constant arguing with the STBX meant we were passionately in love.  Or at least passionate.  Wrong!  Fighting with someone and never being able to see eye-to-eye does not mean you have a passionate love. What it means is that your relationship is defunct. End of story. Lesson learned.

I have some great ideas for this blog as I try and get back into the swing of things with summer winding down. I still have an awesome book review and giveaway coming up and I have a whole series that I would like to share with you surrounding parenting plans, visitation schedules and interference with the same from an ex-spouse and I also want to talk about separation agreements. A whole other reason as to why I've been away from blogging regularly has to do with all of those issues because they have each come up with both the STBX and James Dean's now ex-wife over the last four months. There is a LOT to talk about ... so, stay tuned!! (Please? Don't make me beg ...)

Damn, does it feel good to be back or what!!??!!
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