This month has been full of ups and downs with the Bio and there will probably be more. I’m not silly in the head. I know that when he is unstable that it takes a while for him to rebound from that and come back around. In the past, I’ve made sure that I gave him enough room to be off his game if he needed to be and that always meant sacrificing something of me for him. Now that we have the Monkey, he’s old enough to express himself I just can’t allow it.
The wedge that drove us apart was one that we made ourselves. Making excuses and growing further and further apart until there was no more ‘us’ and just me and him. Two people sharing a house. Crossing paths during the day and sleeping in different houses if not rooms when he was at the house we planned to make our own. It was over before it was over and that is the truth.
Five years later and I have found a strength that I had put to rest because I thought I had a co-parent partner. Why? Because once again the unstable behavior of the addict has reared it’s ugly head and I can’t let it run my life again. The terrible thing is that I know people in recovery who are fully functioning grown-ups who have taken responsibility for their actions and moved away from that behavior. But seven years into his recovery and he continues to relapse without the use of substances. It bewilders me.
Today when chatting with Mr. C at lunch he posed the question to me…“Did you think you’d every really be with him forever like you do the Boyfriend? Did you ever have that kind of faith in him?”
And sadly, the answer is no. I never had faith in him or his ability to be responsible for himself. And now with the Monkey in tow, I doubt him even more when he’s like this. But the thing is that I enabled his inability to be productive just like his family has always done and every woman who came after or before me. It is sad but it is the truth. Faced with the reality of a functioning relationship, I have to be honest with myself yet again and break the bad news to 24-year old me. It was never forever with him, it was always good enough for right now.
I see relationships ending all around me and I see perfectly good ex-spouses who try their hardest to keep things working even after they know it’s over and I see my struggle there. A struggle to make the other parent understand how much their dysfunction is hurting everyone around them. And it never fails that most of the time they don’t hear the words or choose to do nothing about the pain they are causing.
Standing up in the face of adversity has always been my thing. But usually when the adversity is harming the ability of others to have a good life. Today I got advice. Today I stood up (or sat listened) to my options. This Friday I will be standing firm for my kiddo and not taking questions. I’m so thankful for the Boyfriend today and the encouragement he gives me everyday when it comes to standing up to the Bio. We have created this wicked fantastic unit that has taken my strength and double it with his involvement. Together we are tackling this and the other night when I cried and felt beaten and defeated even though I had held up my end of the convo with the Bio and hadn’t backed down, he kissed me and told me he was proud of me for what I had just done. I’m proud of me too.
Three years ago I wouldn’t have bothered to hold my ground on the phone. I would have hid behind fear and excuses. I was broken down and sad. F*ck broken and sad can go to hell. The work I have done hasn’t been just to be in a relationship with someone but is has been to protect my Monkey from a future filled with resentment and self-doubt. I have fought the good fight.
And with the Boyfriend’s help I will keep it rolling…and I will not back down ever again…So with that here is his favorite quote from The Wire:
“You come at the King, you best not miss” – Omar (the Wire)
The Bio can keep coming at me if he wants…bring it.