Doing Things DifferentlyIf you want to achieve a different result, you have to do things differently. And that's what I'm trying to do.
My STBX is coming for 6 days to pack his stuff and say goodbye to friends and family here (including mine). When we spoke on Sunday, he said he wanted to spend time with me, to talk in person, even to spend Christmas together "for old time's sake!" OLD TIMES??? We weren't married 20 years ago, we're married NOW. He is living in some sort of fantasy world where everything is fine between us, even though he completely sabotaged our marriage and betrayed my trust by checking out emotionally. He didn't just refuse sex, he refused to fight for me or the marriage. For years...
In any case, after he has done exactly NOTHING to work on our marriage for the last 8 months, leaving me to take all the emotional risks and make the hard decisions about whether we should stay married, why would I want to spend time with him? It was me who decided we should separate, me who served him divorce papers. At no point has he fought me on it.
I realize, thanks to the good people here, how manipulative he is and how easily I've fallen for it in the past. NO MORE. I told him we could spend one morning making decisions about any household items that are still in question, and that's it. We aren't hanging out or talking or spending %$$%$@!! Christmas together. I need boundaries. I need to say goodbye and not have to worry about his emotional issues EVER AGAIN.
On another topic:
In the meantime, Señor Spanish Sex God suddenly freaked out completely about the growing seriousness of our love affair. Up until now we've been in a bubble of hurricanes and vacations etc, and now that we are back in real life, we will have to see if this romance has potential for more, or not. After weeks of being madly in love and sharing mutual fantasies about marriage and babies etc---in other words, all the stuff you are NOT supposed to talk about in a fling---suddenly he can't decide if he needs to be free to seduce lots of women (which would be appropriate for a guy his age), or if he wants to see what could happen with me. My feeling is, if he needs to be single right now, he should be. And maybe I should too. Who knows?
SSSG is 11 years younger than me, and still reacting to his own (very ugly) divorce last year. Really, both of us are in divorce freakouts, which has been nice in a way because we understand each other. The main difference, beyond where we are in it, is that I have so much more life experience and that in reality, I have to start seriously deciding if I want to have kids before it's too late.
Within 24 hours, he went from "can we have an open relationship?" to "I can't have a relationship with you right now but I love you and want to be there for you through your divorce" to "OMG I am so stupid and young and confused! I really want to be with you but I freaked out and I expressed it the wrong way and destroyed this amazing thing we had. I am in love with you and this is the first real relationship since my divorce and I freaked out."
The ball is in my court. And honestly, I may just be too tired to play ball until this visit from the STBX is over. I totally understand the freak out, all men seem to freak out when things start getting serious (in my experience, anyway). But is this a red flag that should send me running in the other direction?? It was fun, but do I really have the emotional bandwidth to invest in a real relationship while I'm in the middle of a divorce? Especially with someone who might not be ready for a real relationship at this point in his life?
All this sudden drama helped me realize the following:
1. I can't be on anyone else's post-divorce or other rollercoaster right now. I'm on my own rollercoaster and that's all I can handle. I'm a tough cookie, but after the worst year of my life, I need to put MYSELF and MY feelings first---for once!!!
2. The end of a 5 week relationship is nothing compared to the end of a 10 year one where we were married.
3. I'm deeply heartbroken about my STBX not fighting for me at all.
I don't want to make the same mistakes, or waste emotional energy I don't have to spare. So I'm trying to do things differently. One step at a time...