Tonight I had dinner with my parents. I knew there would be certain subjects that would come up. One of course is my dad’s health. He is dying, and although he looks pretty good, we all know that his time is limited. Its a strange conversation to have to have with him, but I suppose it is easier than being surprised by his death.
The other is church. My mom is upset that I stopped going to church. She keeps talking about it as a base for me and the kids. The problem is, that isn’t what the church has been for me. It felt like it, until I had troubles. Then I felt like an iceberg that everyone avoids running into. Afraid I might sink their ship. My pastor during my split with my wife was a big help. The rest of the church slowly moved away from me. I remember when my wife cheated on me and admitted it, being made to feel like it was in part my fault, and that her dissatisfaction was something I could fix. It wasn’t mine to fix. The church made me feel not like a failure in my marriage. The church made me feel trapped in my marriage with no escape. I see the church everyday justify how women break up families, while they torment the man with his shortcomings. I don’t have a the patience for the church, nor to find one that is different. All these things, I told her. She thinks I am a bit nuts on the subject, and maybe I am.
The part I didn’t say is this. It is also because of the church I was made to feel dirty because I was upset about the lack of sex in my marriage. That I needed to be a better husband, and she would come around. That I felt trapped in a shell that was supposed to be something rich, but it wasn’t. I don’t plan on living a sexually pure life. I know that it goes against my christian doctrines, but the beauty of sex in marriage simply did not exist for me. I have had much better experiences than any I had in marriage, since. I would be run out of most churches after sleeping with a few of the single princesses that left their previous husbands. I would be a pariah by their standards, and maybe they would be right.
My mom started to tell me about how I would meet someone, and have the love I deserved, I shut her down. One, I don’t deserve anything. Two, it is so unlikely that I will find a woman who can handle the reality of me and my four kids, and an ex that I see almost everyday. If that woman exists, the likelihood that with my limited time will meet her is very small. I am destined to a few months of fun here and there for the next 10 years. Then after a few months the woman will get frustrated and walk away. If I am lucky, when the kids are grown, I will have the financial resources to attract some young ladies to keep my life exciting for a while at a time.
I struggle with being angry. I don’t know how I can’t be angry. I wasn’t supposed to have to make the choice about dating or being single ever again. I wasn’t supposed to have a broken marriage. Now that my marriage is over, I still have to face the person who has forced this on me almost every day. I have to smile and be nice because of the kids. In any other relationship, if things go south, you just walk away. Its done. Time takes care of the rest, and if you happen to see each other again, you can smile and be kind. It doesn’t hurt.
I finally have to face that I allowed all of this. I was in love and failed to see the truth in my face. I was reminded by my parents that before I got married she said the words “I love him, but am not in love with him” My best man and my father knew that these were not the words she should be saying. They tried to convince me to end the engagement. I wouldn’t accept the truth. So much so, that I hadn’t remembered the incident at all. If ever your best friend tells you to not marry someone, then listen very carefully. Men don’t be stupid. I married a woman who made it clear that she was just looking for a wedding. She proved her words to be true every chance she got, and I wondered what I did wrong. The answer is simple. I married her anyway.