Sunday, March 11, 2012

To a Man I Promised

This is more of an obligatory post, from my troubled soul. Normally if brought up, I would call this a closed subject. No one wants to bring up their past continually, relive it every time they get a chance. (well, I know a few people who do. But not me.) However, I have found that when something I'd like to deal with is struggled through on this blog, it brings closure to my mind and the matter is laid to rest.

Many things will probably never be understood to our full satisfaction. I know there are people, who I care about, who are left not knowing what happened in the event of one certain relationship that was supposed to last a lot longer than a year. Even for myself, and him, some things won't ever make sense. Not everything is black and white when you blur the lines with something as muddy as a breakup. If I could whip out a full confessional, and know that we would both only speak truth as we reflected on our history together, then I would be more hopeful for all the questions being laid to rest. But we are human and individuals, and too complex for a simple explanation. We may not even realize the amount of blame we each share in this situation. But I do my best to own up to my share of faults. There are more than faults, though, to break a contact such as marriage.

Family. This is the big one I want to address. Yeah, it's a really uncomfortable topic. I know my family is crazy. And very human. And a lot of the time, hard for you to put up with. But your grandma once shared a piece of wisdom with me that hit home, though she might not like the way I took it. She said that a partner may talk poorly about his or her parents in a moment of frustration, but the other partner must never talk badly about the same. You respect your partner's family even if they make you angry at times. That didn't happen. I always felt the need to 'lose my family' to make you happy. You really insulted my mom and sisters, and they reacted to that. In a really dramatic way. It forced me to make a choice that I regretted, and still do. You degraded my family to a place that I'm still working to heal.

And you told me that your family was the only family you would allow to see our kids, should we have them. That hurt. Your family has it together a lot more than mine, you insisted. Yeah, they seem to. But I was a foreigner. Some of them really tried, I know and it hurts to know that. Because as much as I appreciated the efforts, I always felt judged. I was the pretty one, but not smart like Kathy, not successful like everyone else... Nothing I did was right, and I heard about it. I'm not a confrontational woman, and I'm usually judged for that by women who are. It was a painful process, trying to earn my way into a group of people who obviously thought I was wrong for you. I guess they were right.

The men of your family were another story. I respect very few older gentlemen, and your dad and grandpa were among them early on. I grew up longing to trust men in the father role, and that was hard to come by in my childhood. I didn't feel judged, except by your brother, but instead I actually cared about your family because of the kindness I was shown by the fathers. So when you told me that your dad instantly blamed me for everything when he had heard nothing yet? Yeah, I was more than a little crushed. But that's an easy fix, because I was a fool to let my guard down and I can put it right back up.

Next: the Navy. This one seems to be a big one too. I kept hearing that boot camp visibly changes you physically, mentally, and emotionally. I scoffed a little because I went in older than your typical 18 year old recruit. I expected to gain some muscle, maybe improve some work ethic, but that was all. As we can both admit, that was not the case. I gained confidence in myself that I never, ever had. Confidence that you don't understand, and it scared and angered you. I came out if those 8 Weeks with a sense of purpose, direction, pride, and integrity. One if the first things I realized was that the things I'd been letting go in our relationship needed addressed. You didn't like that. I think if you had been able to go through what I did, things might have been drastically different for you. I wish you could go to boot camp. What I have from it, I want to see so badly in you.

Because that was another huge detriment. You talked so badly about yourself, I really felt you needed more help than I could offer. Your insecurity was such that I list all my guy friends and any close friends because of it. You felt threatened by girl friends even, that I would chose them emotionally, when you needed to be all I could ever need. That's not healthy. It also made it hard to see you as an equal. When you would say I was so much smarter than you, and more popular, and better in every way, it just made me sad, that you couldn't value yourself, and the more you enveloped that attitude, the more true it became. You let yourself go, and I saw the lack of motivation, caring. You didn't care about your grades, your social life, anything, as long as you didn't lose me. I can't handle that responsibility. I can't be what you needed. I don't want to take the blame for you doing out of college, but you handed me that blame anyway. And when you lost motivation that I had never lost, even when going through what most people would call hell, it almost made me feel stringer than you. Which is an awful thing to feel when you want your partner to be a man.

I guess there are other factors, enough to write a book. But those are the ones that I never confronted that mean the most and have been on my mind. I want so much to move on, and for you to have that luxury. That's why I dealt with the issue so firmly a few months ago. The carrying on was pulling us both into a depression. And you were becoming something I never knew you had in you. Something cruel, fake, and really hard to watch. I hope that you can work out your problems. When I told you, several times, how I was afraid things wouldn't work out, you assured me it was worth the risk to you, that you would let me go if it didn't work out, and that you only hoped we could at least still talk once it was over. I don't know. It could take years to be over. But at least for now we can take advantage of being young. And seize new opportunities. Both of us.