This blog is my therapist

I’ve never done therapy sessions, and kind of find the idea of sitting down and talking things through with a therapist a bit weird. But I seem to have no problem doing something similar — sitting here and typing things down, the kinds of things I might tell at therapist — and I find that not weird at all. Maybe it’s just me that’s weird.

I’m sitting here, it’s Friday night, my wife is somewhere else, I don’t know what she’s doing, and I’m home alone. It’s times like this when I really do miss her. I mean, I miss her every day, but right now I really miss her. She has been my constant companion for over eight years. I just thought of this, even — we started dating a bit over 8 years ago, and it was in April 2004 that I realized that I’d spend the rest of my life with her.

Now that’s weird. I never would have thought back then that 8 years later I’d be facing a crisis with the woman whom at that time I’d decided I would spend the rest of my life with. That thought never crossed my mind. It never occurred to me that she would be unfaithful to me. The guy she dated previous to me had been unfaithful to her, and so maybe I thought she was inoculated against that somehow. Then again, it never occurred to me that marriage would be hard. I remember all sorts of people telling me it would be, but I just had no frame of reference, and kind of thought that maybe they were joking. I remember one guy at a party coming up to congratulate me, saying, “the first 31-1/2 years are the hardest; I should know, I’ve been married 31-1/2 years!”

Looking back on that time, those heady, early days, one thing has not changed for me. I still intend to spend the rest of my life with her. That intention was briefly derailed when I discovered her infidelity, but then it blew over in a day or two. She, on the other hand, is still stuck in the mire of the adulterous situation. It clouds everything she says, does, thinks about, plans, and dreams. I can imaging that it must get tiring, living in such an unreal world — a world beyond problems, beyond daily concerns, beyond the actual trials and tribulations of life. It’s a narcissistic world, where the adulterous partners see exactly what they want to see in each other, and ignore everything else. They avoid all of their insecurities of their own imperfections by making the adulterous partner out to be perfect, and this person does the same for them. The real insecurities that manifest get projected onto others, like the betrayed spouse. You see how it goes?

I know it’s tiring for me. Very, very tiring. This whole mess is so totally unnecessary. And so utterly childish. We are back to the incommunicado game again. That will persist until next week, most likely. I keep hoping for some sort of divine or mundane intervention (or both) that will put this nonsense to a stop.

There is at least one person who could do this, actually: her father. He seems to be hanging back and watching from afar. I’m not sure what to think of this. Perhaps he feels humiliated by his daughter’s behavior. None of the members of my wife’s family have reached out to me, although they have reached out to my parents and to my sister. I’m not sure what to think of that, either.

So here we are. I just did the calculation. It’s day 200. Two hundred days since all of this madness began. Two hundred days is a long time to be living a fantasy life. It’s a very long time to have been suffering the juvenile impetuousness of a wayward spouse. But, that’s my karma, and I just have to take it, for now.

Before I wrap up here, let me just explain the featured photo for this post. There is a tulip festival not too far from here, and we’ve been a couple of times. We didn’t make it last year, but two years ago we did go, and that’s where this picture was taken. My wife loves tulips, and has planted a number of them all over the place. They are all pretty much in full bloom right now. I know she would love them if she saw them, but she just doesn’t come around here these days. I occasionally snap a photo with my cell phone and send it to her.

And now, as I wrap up this post, reminding myself that this blog is my therapist, I hear the words of my marriage coach echoing in my ears: “Her path is crumbling… Over the next couple to three weeks [the adulterer] will tire of her antics and will reject her.” I know he’s right. I know he’s right. I know he’s right.

Communicado

The unexpected happened today. I called my wife just to make my presence felt in her life. Nothing important to say, just some sort of silly, frivolous message, basically what I’ve been doing for months now. Each time these go straight to voice mail. Not today. When I called this morning, she answered. I was gobsmacked. I delivered my silly little message, she chuckled and basically had no idea why I called. Then I said, “Talk to you later, sweetheart. Bye.”

I honestly have no idea why today of all days she decided to answer the phone. There has only been one other occasion in the past 3 months that she has answered the phone when I called like this. Every other time I have spoken with her on the phone had to do with some sort of logistical issue. Yes, this is childish behavior: I’m going to pretend not to hear the phone ring, and just ignore you in the hopes that you’ll go away. Now, when someone keeps ringing you faithfully, day in and day out, months on end, do you thing that’s going to stop? Seriously.

Later in the afternoon I called her as I was arriving at the office. Again, I had nothing important to say, just a silly message about the person who served me at the coffee shop. And once again, she picked up. I delivered my silly message, she chuckled, and then I said “bye” and hung up. Honestly, this is unprecedented. She does have caller ID on her cell phone, and could easily tell it was me.

Now I know you might be thinking that calling someone every day for months on end is pestering, especially if you do it several times a day like I do. Or maybe you might think it’s some sort of weird, obsessive behavior. I have come to know these strategic communications as “talk charges”. They really are strategic communications. The obstinate spouse simply wants you to play by their rules, and this means that you should just go away. They’ll do all sorts of things to get you to stop, too. One of the most childish methods is to ignore you by not answering the phone. But it is this kind of persistence, phoning every day, regardless of the response (or lack thereof) that actually does change the momentum in a troubled relationship.

I remember the early days, before my wife and I were even dating. She was going through a difficult break-up, and she was leaning on me as a friend. The only problem was that I lived over 100 miles away. So she would call. Or she would text. This would happen pretty much every day, and sometimes several times a day. Did I find this annoying? Sometimes, like when she would text me around midnight as I was trying to get to sleep. But most of the time I just found it endearing, and not a little bit flattering, too. I figured that this girl must really like me or something if she keeps calling me over and over — especially when I live nearly two hours away.

So what now? Oh, I don’t know. I called one final time tonight, and it predictably went straight to voice mail. I say “predictably,” because she is back at Camp You-Know-What. I know she’s back there, even though I have no proof. I’d bet you dollars to donuts that, if I drove up there (which I won’t do, of course) I’d find her there. She won’t be back in town again until next Wednesday, so I can probably expect the rest of my calls to go straight to voice mail. After all, she’s not going to want the adulterer to know she’s talking to me, right?

One thing I do know is that these repeated calls, along with every thing else I’m doing, is eroding her walls of resistance. My attitude is simple: she’s my wife, and I’m going to behave toward her in a way that is consistent with that fact.

I guess I’ll just have to be patient to see how things evolve.