Wednesday, September 29, 2004

Stubborn. Obstinate. Contradictory. Ornery.

Good words, all. Makes me think of Amanda's MWOTD.

But actually, these are the words I would use to describe myself today.

You see, a certain friend who shall remain nameless but whose identity you can guess if you've been reading this since the beginning has been incommunicado for the last few days, and it's pissing me off (ornery).

And so I'm returning the favor (stubborn, obstinate), even though it's killing me. Childish? Perhaps. Necessary? Probably.

See, the person I'm referring to is a married man. Someone who I care for very deeply, but who doesn't care for me with the same depth of feeling. He's in the process of trying to negotiate a separation agreement with his wife, and it's been a long, difficult process. She told him a year ago that she wanted a separation, but she expected him to move out. He tried to work on the relationship (that one last desperate, futile effort) and then when he finally said, enough's enough, I want out, she did a 360.

What? You want to divorce me? Oh, boo-hoo! I'm not ready to be divorced. Now give me half of everything including your future earnings.

So, you see, it's been a difficult road. But I thought they were coming to the end of the line, and that maybe we could start to socialize with each other outside of the work day. That was my hope, and it was dashed when he told me that he couldn't come to the party on Saturday. I understand, but you know what? I'm disappointed.

And if this were a real relationship, I should be able to tell him that. But no, I'm like most other women out there - I'm thinking about his feelings and making excuses for him like "He's got so much going on, he doesn't need me giving him a guilt trip about not coming to the party."

As much as I tell myself I'm not waiting around for him, I am (contradictory). Every time I see the new mail icon flash on my desktop I wonder if it's from him. He sent a video file around to several folks at the end of the day yesterday and I didn't acknowledge it. I heard nothing from him last night and nothing today (here I go rationalizing things for him again - I know he told me that he has to be careful about sending email from home; he told his wife that he didn't have email access so he can't let her catch him sending email because she wants to look at his mail file).

You know, I just wish I knew what was going on. Wednesdays are their couples therapy/divorce mediation days, and I'd like to know if any progress has been made. There's a part of me that says it's none of my business and a part of me (contradictory) that says, yes, it is my business and he made it my business when he asked for my advice and when he copied me on the draft of his separation agreement and when he over the course of the last three years has asked me to lunch on a weekly basis and when he confessed to me that yes, he is indeed having a long-distance love affair. Yes, like it or not, I'm part of his marriage.

I'm just at the point where I feel like I've given so much more than I've received from this relationship. And yet I don't want to let it go (stubborn). I've invested too much - too much time and energy and emotion.

I've often said that the one thing I wished I'd learned earlier in life was how to let go. How do you let go of a relationship that isn't working for you anymore? It took me five years to leave my marriage. Maybe I should cut my losses on this one before I get in any deeper than I already am. It's just so damn hard, because it's a basic human need - to be needed. And I'd like to think he needs me.

But maybe the better question is - do I need him?

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