Oct. 28, 2011 _ Today my attorney told me “we have a settlement.” It isn’t signed yet, so I am taking a chance as I write this that the settlement agreement could suddenly crumble, but my attorney assures me that that will not happen.
For those who know me personally, let me first say to you “Thank YOU!” You have all provided so much support and understanding. I have spoken to so many of you again and again for the last 7 months and you have all provided a supportive ear and a kind voice. You have been there to listen to me cry and you have been there to offer advice. You have been there again and again, sometimes when you weren’t in the mood or even available. But the your efforts got me through this horrible time.
For those who don’t know me, my ex-husband, a very abusive man, opened a suit against me six years after our marriage asking for a new custody agreement, reduction of child support, and a host of other issues that gave him sole authority in many decisions over our two teenage boys.
Today, he is suppose to sign a settlement agreement that is much less .. he has to pay for my attorney fees ($17,500), he gets just two extra nights a month with the boys and we have to agree in writing to any major decision about the boys. In the end, I came out in a place that is better than before because he can’t easily do this again and he can’t just take the kids anytime he wants.
But it hardly seems like a victory. Instead, it seems like a waste … of time, money and emotion. This action has also made my very tricky relationship with the father of my children even more difficult. It fact it is now destroyed. My friends and family don’t see that as a loss. They think the more distance I place between me and my ex is a very good thing. Afterall, he is very abusive and one may say even emotionally disturbed. But, I do morn the loss of the family my children once had and I am sad that my fantasy of having a good relationship with the father of my children is forever and finally over.
I am the chronic enabler. I struggle with the desire to comfort my ex despite his horrible actions. I am amazed at myself that I would even entertain such thoughts. He has done so much damage to me and my boys. He has caused so much pain. He is so selfish and self-centered. Google “narcissist” and that describes my ex. He has lied to me, his work, our friends, his wife, his mother and one day, he will likely lie to the boys. He has caused me pain solely because he got himself stuck in a narrative that was based on half truths and lies. Yet, I know that what happened is likely more about he got in over his head in some growing situation with his wife and had no way out that he could see. He backed himself into a corner and couldn’t find a way out that he thought wouldn’t require that he come clean.
Nevertheless, this chapter is about to closed and that is the best part of the story. I need to move on and spend my energy on my children.