A friend of mine is dealing with some stuff re; her ex husband; and her thoughts about it made me examine some of my own feelings about my wasband, and the feelings that surround that relationship:
Anger that he got away with abandoning his children, with having no responsibilities. Pity that all those behaviors I thought were because I was doing something wrong was because of the SMS. Sadness because he has no clue what he lost, how much pain he caused. Frustration because I'll never be able to get it across to him. Fear & revulsion when the past creeps up on me in unexpected ways.
Sometimes I still get so frustrated at having lost those 10 years of my life (and in some cases it is really lost, I have lots of memory gaps from the early years.), that I spent 10 years being treated with contempt and devalued. What happened to me that I thought that was acceptable for a relationship, let alone a marriage?
Scott and I will have been together for 15 years this summer... even with the sheer amount of whatthefuckatude that gets thrown at us on a near-daily basis, we've lasted longer than my first marriage did. When he first moved in with us, I spent a lot of time telling myself how poly people 'aren't supposed to compare their partners', and that the difference wasn't as drastic as it felt. It was my inability to recognize that Scott treated me with love & respect, that he valued me as a partner and individual and my ex...didn't, my inability to make that break, that lead to several years of drama and suffering that _didn't need to happen_.
Fear, misplaced stubornness, a deeply ingrained feeling that I wasn't doing my part, wasn't doing _enough_ (I still struggle with that constant feeling of inadequacy), that my wants and needs had little to no value, that my opinions were the product of a 'damaged perspective'. Sometimes it hits me hard just how much I was ground down.
It has been a long, hard road back up- and I'll never be all the way 'recovered'. What happened then shapes who I am now. Although sometimes I wish with all my heart I could send my past self a letter, saying who and what not to do, and who and what I should do instead. Would save a lot of people a whole lot of misery.