Tag Archives: breakup

Don’t You LOVE When Things are Black & White?

There are so few things in this world that are so completely cut-and-dried as domestic violence = WRONG.  But over at the Brazen Careerist, queen of TMI (she once live-tweeted a miscarriage and talked about checking her cervical mucus during a job interview) Penelope Trunk has added domestic-violence apologist and victim-blamer to her resume.  In her latest post about the immaturity and selfishness of those that choose divorce, she jaw-droppingly equates divorce with mental illness and for those that choose this path due to domestic violence she posits that they just suck at drawing boundaries because it “takes two people to fight.”  Scoop your jaw off the floor because the worst thing about this is the fact that she has admitted, and has blogged extensively about being the victim of physical and emotional domestic violence in her own marriage, even going so far as posting images of her bruising at the hands of her husband.

“I am at a hotel. I think I’m dying. I have a bruise from where the Farmer slammed me into our bed post…The Farmer told me that he will not beat me up any more if I do not make him stay up late talking to me.”

I think that her premise, that divorce is too often entered into for reasons that are perhaps capricious and that people don’t work hard enough at making their marriages work, has a lot of merit.  My parents’ divorce is a shining example of this.  There was no “good” reason that it couldn’t have worked out except the two of them were miserable and refused to really work at it.  I admit, there are times, even though they are both much happier than they were while married, that I secretly judge them for divorcing.  There were no special needs children.  No homelessness or joblessness.  No illnesses to overcome.  No overt abuse.  Staying together for the kids only works if you do it happily and willingly.  Hanging on in silent but obvious misery until most of your kids are out of the house however, is not.  For situations like this, I fully understand why one might not be willing to give the parties a “free pass.”

However, it is inconceivable to me that someone like Penelope, who is in such a dire situation, who almost nobody would fault for ending the relationship, instead digs in ever harder and doubles down by calling the rest of us that bailed on abusive marriages selfish, immature, mentally ill, child-destroying shit-disturbers that are at least 50/50 to blame for our own abuse.  What her husband did to her was wrong.  I don’t care if she spit on him, called his mother a whore and set fire all his worldly possessions.  I don’t care if she is an impossible nag, or won’t put out, or calls him names.  There is absolutely NO GOOD REASON TO HIT YOUR SPOUSE.  Full stop. That’s it.  Period.  End of discussion.  Lest you think I am only talking about man on lady violence, this declaration is gender-less.  There are plenty of men out there that are hit, struck and abused by their wives.  That is so NOT ok either!  (This is a whole other blog post, but I almost feel WORSE for men that are victims of domestic violence because of the shame surrounding them from a cultural perspective).

I understand the need the people have to justify whatever fucked-up situation they are in.  I know because I myself was a domestic-violence apologist and a victim-blamer.  Now I can’t get into the psychology of why Penelope Trunk not only allows herself to be abused but also defends her abuser, assigns the blame for the abuse on herself and subsequently slams anyone that chooses to leave their abuser.  I’m sure it has something to do with her childhood of heartbreaking, breathtaking sexual abuse.  However, the fact remains that it is 100% OK to divorce an abusive spouse.  Black and White.  No apologies necessary.


Taking a Dump – The Ethical Way

Today I officially and, leaving absolutely no room for interpretation, gave the old heave-ho to this guy and this guy.  How do I feel?  Relieved?  Empowered?  Smug?  No.  I feel totally shitty and kind of shaken.  I mean, as exasperating as these two were, they were, at the core, truly nice human beings.  I dated each of them for roughly 2 months a piece, although in retrospect I let things go on for about a  month too long.  Why is it that I give so much latitude, benefit of the doubt and graciousness to those that dump me, but I have no such charitable feelings about myself when I do it to others?

Let’s face it – nobody wants to give out bad news to another person.  I HATE confrontation.  But I realized recently that I had stayed far too long in many situations, not just relationships that were doing nothing for me, or were even damaging me in some way simply because I was too afraid to speak up and assert myself.  Because I was so, so afraid of someone being mad at me or not liking me.  How in the world has it taken me almost 35 years to start getting over this mindset?  How have I been so deeply programmed by bullshit traditional gender narratives that I didn’t even realize I was doing this?  Am I not a kick-ass feminist?  It’s time I started acting like one for fuck’s sake!

It would have been pretty easy to pull the fade on these dudes.  I mean, even the most thick-headed and socially clueless person figures out after a few weeks of unanswered texts that the other person is just no longer interested.  Pulling the fade just isn’t my style.  It’s been done to me PLENTY of times and while the prevailing wisdom out there in the murky swamp of internet dating advice is that this is a perfectly acceptable way to end things, I just can’t bring myself to do that.  I may be a slut, but I try to practice my sluttery in ethical ways.  These fine gentleman, while ultimately not the right fit for me, gave to me their time, their hospitality, and occasional use of their lovely cocks.  It’s the least I can do to end things cleanly and without question, right?  It’s what I would want.  (You listening Karma?  I’m doing the right thing over here.  Throw some good shit my way you bitch!  Just kidding.  I love you).

Now, if you’ll excuse me I have to repeat this wretched process 2 or 3 more times before I lose my nerve!


There’ll Be Sad Songs

One of the most annoying things about going through a breakup has to be the come-out-of-nowhere, totally inconvenient crying jags.  As a single mom, I don’t get a lot of time by myself .  Let’s face it, I barely get enough time by myself to use the bathroom, let alone cry.  It’s a luxury I cannot afford.  So I often find myself alone only in the car during my hellish hour-long commute (both ways).  While NPR is usually what I listen to, sometimes I get sick of listening to the debt ceiling, Afghanistan, Wall Street and how the world is generally fucked conversation and just want to listen to music.  Normally, this is a fine and sensible proposition, as listening to too much NPR can turn you into an insufferable, depressed and cynical human being that can only talk about organic yurts or Afro-Cuban music.  But when one’s heart is banged up, bruised or even partially broken and held together by duct tape, pop radio is fraught with landmines.

Oh Billy how I curse thee

There you are, minding your own business, just driving along bumper-to-bumper, trying your best not to be nosy and check out what everyone else is doing in their car when it hits you out of nowhere.  A song comes on the radio, about love, or loss or even about nothing but it reminds you of that person because you heard it once coming out of a restaurant when you walked by it last year.  Then the tears come, slowly at first.  Just a few fat shimmering ones that get caught in the folds on the side of your nose and tickle like hell followed by a couple more at a steady clip. And now you are praying that nobody besides you notices because you have to drive next to these people for the next 20 minutes and damn – there go your Banana Republic slacks fresh from the dry cleaners, (which took you two months to pick up) all wet with tears.  With the proverbial floodgates opened, the tears are now streaming and you are fumbling to change the station and grope around for tissues or old and hopefully only slightly-used McDonald’s napkins all while trying to steer and work the brake so you don’t rear-end the person in front of you.

You tried your hardest to avoid this.  You didn’t put on the oldies station, or the Top-40 station that’s been the soundtrack to your relationship.  God forbid you put in your iPod and put it on shuffle.  No telling what THAT would turn up.  You listen to a station that’s as inoffensive as possible, one that maybe you haven’t listened to in a while and used to enjoy.  You don’t think that you’ll hear anything that will trigger the tears. The truth is you can turn that radio to any station and I guarantee you will hear something that will make you cry.  You will hear some song where just a phrase, or part of a chorus or even the way the artist is singing will turn you into a sad, hot mess.  You will find yourself connecting to the most ridiculous shit, nodding your head to bullshit like this because it SO captures exactly how you’re feeling!

My advice, if you care to take it is this – don’t put on a country station and just give in.  Cry your little eyes out for the entire song. Soak yourself in it and roll around in it and just feel it.  Indulge the inner teenage girl within.  Let yourself think that this song was written just for you.  And when it’s over, wipe the tears away and laugh at how ridiculous you are.  You, capable woman that juggles a million things at all times was reduced to weepiness by a trite and quite stupid love song.  And remind yourself that you are not  Wonder Woman, at least not all the time.  Nor do you have to be.  And if you’re crying that means your heart still works and just like any other muscle, the more you flex it and use it, the stronger it will be the next time.