Archive for the dealing with ex’s Category

Mean Girls and Motherhood

Posted in awakening, blended families, dealing with ex's, Mothers, Parenting, parenting after divorce, raising daughters, single moms, single parenting with tags , , , , , , on April 26, 2016 by sexandthesinglesoccermom

Tonight I got cyber-slapped and it stung.

Noticing my blog views were crazy, off-the-charts high, I wondered what was going on. So I opened up my app and looked at some of the referring websites. One in particular seemed strange to me, so I followed it. What I found was a nasty surprise.

Mean girl syndrome can, apparently, last into middle age. I won’t go into a lot of detail about what I found there, except to say that it was a nasty critique of my blog and even worse, what they perceived as my failings as a human being and as a mother. Followed by lots of others jumping on the bandwagon. The person who began this has a slanted, peripheral, yet weirdly connected view of my life. They also clearly have a lot of issues with me personally.

Ironically, you might even say I got the ball rolling in the mean girl cyber world. Approximately 4 years ago, I posted something in my blog that reflected my most petty thoughts. They definitely weren’t a reflection of my best self, nor the person I wanted to be. However, despite removing them as soon as I found out the subject of the blog had read it, the damage was done. The hurt could not be apologized away.

Today, I’m the recipient of petty thoughts and meanness and it feels bad. Yet…hard to cast stones when I had to learn that lesson myself. I can wish all day long it was different and that the individual hadn’t chosen to perpetuate the cycle. But in the end, the words we put out into the world move in ways we can’t always control and can sometimes have ramifications we can’t predict.

So today, rather than continue on with the she said/she said drama game, I would like to offer an apology again. That thinking my blog, years ago, was anonymous enough that she wouldn’t find out and it allowed me to post things I’m not proud of. N0 excuse for putting it out there, but it was a powerful lesson to relearn. Once we put it out there, we can’t control it anymore. I’m sorry for the pain it caused and for the ways in which it is still living today, despite removing it from cyberspace years ago. I’m not proud of it and I wish I hadn’t done it.

The truth is, I’m flawed and I’m continually trying to battle those flaws. As anyone who’s read this blog will clearly know. Those who know me and read it see such a fuller picture and so my flaws are forgiven by them.

They see a mom who has been honest about her struggles with depression and the ways in which heartbreak has sometimes triggered that. They also see a mom who never lets it prevent her from taking care of her kids. They see kids that can witness a mother struggle with depression and sadness, a mom who cries sometimes, and realize that it’s okay to struggle. The victory is in the ability to continue doing your best, day after day, and getting up to face the world. They’ll see a mother who never gives up, who is always there for them and who works through her feelings rather than stuffing them. Do I lean on my kids too much? Perhaps if you only know me through my blog, you might read about my wise twelve year old who says something profound about love and life and think she has to constantly care-take me. If you know ME and my children, you’ll absolutely know that I’m teaching them that empathy and compassion are vital in human relationships and that sometimes we need people and sometimes we are needed. Is my child giving me a hug or telling me I just haven’t found the right person wrong if she finds out a relationship ended? Is she care-taking and having to be the adult? Have I overshared if she knows I’ve been involved with someone and that it’s ended? As I found out tonight, clearly there are some who think so. That’s ok-they get to make those decisions for themselves and their kids. Or maybe they’ve not been single, with kids. Who knows?

I know I’ve never dragged men in and out of my children’s lives. I know that in eight years of being single, they’ve met one of my significant others that I was involved with for two years. My children are sacred and so is my time with them. When I have them, it’s their time. When I don’t, they have known that I date.

And yes, I perhaps talk about my feelings a lot in this blog. That’s sort of why I started it. 🙂 It was a place for me to process and be vulnerable about things I struggle with. Clearly, the problem with vulnerability is that it leave you…well…vulnerable.. That’s ok too. There’s been plenty of times when I read something vulnerable someone posted and felt so soothed, because I could say “Hey! We’re all human beings. We all go through shit sometimes.”

As a single mom, I don’t have all the answers. There are days that I feel like my girls and I could take the world by storm, because I feel like as a mother-daughter team, we’re invincible. There are other days I sit and cry at the end of it, because I’m scared I’m screwing it all up and I just wish I had some support.

That’s the thing: I don’t have all the answers. I don’t expect other mothers, birth or step, to have all the answers either. We’re in this because we have been granted the amazing, terrifying, exciting and sometimes heartbreaking privilege of guiding amazing human beings into adulthood. The most beautiful and difficult challenge one could ever take on. Whether you carried the child in your body for nine months or you fell in love with the child’s father and the child and became part of their lives later.

What would it be like if we actually supported each other? Instead of cutting each other down with petty criticisms designed to make one person superior and the other inferior. Everyone needs to vent sometimes. But maybe…just maybe…if you tried to see that person as a human being who is doing their best, instead of as an adversary you need to have others rally around you to tear down, we could do an even better job parenting these amazing kids we’ve managed to have brought into our lives.

So…I’m going to keep writing my blog. Which is scary, because I’m making myself vulnerable. By doing that, I know you may use the opportunity to try make me appear small or one-dimensional to others. You may use the chance to pick apart my flaws–trust me, you’ll find them. You may mock me and use it against me. I’m still going to keep writing my blog. I hope you don’t. I hope that perhaps we can just band together to work on behalf of the human beings in our lives, who love us both.

However, that is up to you. It’s up to all of you. Be the light or be the darkness…which, yes, one of my flaws is a tendency toward the melodramatic when I write. Sue me. 🙂 I was part of the cycle and I’m really hoping the cycle ends with me. Mothering is hard, whether the babies came from your body or not. Amazing…and hard. Why don’t we try building each other up?

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My Super Power: Introspection To The Point of Insanity

Posted in anxiety, Dating, dealing with ex's, intuition, Relationships on December 7, 2014 by sexandthesinglesoccermom

So, due to a triggering event, I have now replayed my last relationship in glorious Technicolor several times. I’ve gone through rage and pain and a semi-acceptance and back again. I met up with an old flame turned friend and he commented, “That relationship really fucked you up, didn’t it? ”

Yes. Yes, it did.

My brother and his wife recently purchased a new mattress to help their back pain. They decided to go with “extra-firm”. After a night of sleeping on what amounted to concrete with  thin padding over it, my brother exclaimed: “Buying that mattress made me question all of my decision making skills.”

My last relationship amounts to a really bad mattress purchase.I now question all of my decisions and wonder if I’m capable of making a good choice romantically. My faith in my intuition feels pretty fragile and risky.

I’m dating someone. He’s smart and funny and perceptive. He likes me a lot and I enjoy spending time with him. I’m also completely terrified. I’m petrified of hurting him or being hurt, so I know at times I come off as reserved and distant. I’m trying to honor my need to go slowly with realization that part of this is just fear from my past, but it’s challenging.

When I realize I’m overthinking whether or not I’m overthinking, then I start to go just a bit crazy. We’ve been dating a grand total of 6 weeks. That’s no time at all, so surely I don’t need to make some big decision. Right?

Meanwhile, the specter of my last relationship haunts me and I’m terrified of becoming D. I have no plan of stringing someone along for months just because it’s comfy and I don’t want to be alone, but there is still a tiny voice in my head chanting “Figure this out quickly so you don’t hurt him!”

Sometimes my introspection drives me a little bit bonkers.

Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind

Posted in anxiety, dealing with ex's, eternal sunshine of the spotless mind, stress with tags , on November 12, 2014 by sexandthesinglesoccermom

In the past, I’ve blogged numerous times about D, the ex who broke my heart multiple times and over whom I spiraled into a terrible depression. It’s been two years since our last encounter and it’s really only within the last year that I’ve started to feel at peace. By peace I mean that I no longer go into panic attacks when I come within a 5 mile radius of his house. I don’t weep over what happened or wonder what’s wrong with me that allowed him to treat me the way he did.

He is still the only relationship where I’d love to pull an Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind and eradicate any trace of him from my memories. It’s the only relationship where even time and distance hasn’t create a sense of bittersweet acceptance. The deep pain and anger I experienced over the course of knowing him negated any happy memories. No other relationship has such a lasting negativity for me. With time, the lens through which I see how things happened and choices he made has become even more clear; the clarity doesn’t soften the experience in a positive way or make me feel more kindly toward him.

Is that perhaps why the Universe is taunting me by throwing him into my path? Despite blocking him and his girlfriend on social media so that I would hopefully NEVER have to hear anything about either of them, I’ve had several pictures of them drop into my newsfeed because of mutual acquaintances. Now, it appears they’re going to invade my professional life as well. Should specific decisions be made, I’d have to deal with one of them on a near daily basis. I’m in a unique position professionally of having most of the people I deal with be part of my personal community as well, so they would be invading my world.

All I want is for them to stay as far away from me as is humanly possible so that I can continue on my path of healing and peace. Why the FUCK does that not seem to be an option?

I’m struggling a lot with this possibility and trying to breathe through the stress. I have enough on my plate without allowing this man, who took up space in my mind and heart far longer than he deserved, to bring me more grief and worry. I will face whatever comes and try to find the lesson and growth opportunity in it. That’s my goal for tomorrow. Today, I’m just really, really angry and stressed out and wanting to stomp my feet that I have to deal with this at all.