Man #29, The Kept Man…The Aftermath

4 08 2012

You may find it shocking to know that I don’t spend every Friday and Saturday night out on a date. In fact, I usually reserve those nights for time with my good friends or family. Last night was no different. My friend, Sam invited me over to hang out with her and her boyfriend, Really Really Nice Guy.

She offered up vino and time in her hot tub in exchange for a helping of my sage chips. This is a typical thing for me. I get invited to places, all expenses paid, in exchange for my cooking. Most people have to sing for their supper. For me, it’s the other way around.

Really Really Nice Guy had gathered fresh sage from Sam’s garden, and she had a craving. When I arrived, I was quickly handed a glass of wine and got to work in her kitchen. As I was standing over hot oil flipping sage leaves with tongs, we started talking about my recent adventures in dating. I started telling her about The Kept Man and how promising emails had quickly devolved into the discovery that the man was a slob and a sponge.

“You mean you broke up with him because of his landscaping,” Sam asked, incredulous.

“No, correction, I did not break up with him. We were never together. You can’t break up with someone if you were never together.”

“Ok, so you stopped seeing him because of his landscaping?”

“You can’t call what he had landscaping, and, no, it wasn’t just because of that.”

Sam happens to be one of the people who has been giving me a hard time about being too picky. She says I should define three deal breakers, and if a man passes those three things, I should consider him a solid dating prospect. I happen to think Sam is full of shit.

Besides, what does she know? She has Really Really Nice Guy. Really Really Nice Guy does really, really nice things for her. She couldn’t possibly know my pain.

“You should pick three things, like Rhonda, and stick to them,” Sam said.

Rhonda is another friend of ours. She has three deal breakers. One is that a guy has to be okay with her bush. She’s not shaving for anyone. The second is they have to be okay with her porn. What can I say? Girlfriend likes her porn. I can’t remember what the other one is, but anyway, Sam thinks this is the approach I should take.

Of course, that means I would have to define my three deal breakers. Believe it or not, one of them is not, “You must be at least this tall to ride this ride.” However, these are relationship deal breakers, not dating deal breaker. I’m not having relationships yet, and I don’t think I’m going to talk about bush or no bush on a first date.

I don’t know what my deal breakers would be. I’ll have to get back to you on that.

So, anyway…where were we?

Oh yeah, so Sam was giving me a hard time about dropping The Kept Man like a hot potato.

“Ok, for the record, I did not stop talking to him just because his house was a mess. The guy was a mooch. He’s sponging off of his ex-wife and then he can’t even get off his ass long enough to make sure that people can get to his front door.”

I couldn’t tell for sure, but I think Really Really Nice Guy agreed with me on this. From what I could tell, he’s been doing a great job keeping things together at their place. In addition to fixing things around the house, he cooks.

Sam was still looking at me in disbelief, and it was starting to piss me off so I continued.

“Besides, what do you know? You always meet guys who want to fix things,” I say, waving the tongs in Really Really Nice Guy’s direction, “I always meet men who break things, and I’m sick of it! I’ve had that argument before. When STBex and I were together one of the STUPID things we fought about all the time was the yard. It was ridiculous! Anytime I asked him to mow the grass it ended up in a big fight.”

I’m a tall woman, almost six feet, and I’ve always had a big voice, probably from all those years of using my diaphragm to project my voice in choir. Then when I get upset, I get louder. I continued on my diatribe.

“Do you know that one time when we were fighting over the yard, I asked STBex, if since he didn’t want to mow the lawn, if he would be ok hiring someone? Do you know what he said?? He told me he wasn’t going to hire anyone, but I could. He was totally fine to let our house look like we were the white trash neighbors on the street, and if I wanted it to look any differently, it was up to me to pay for it. Believe me, fighting over taking care of our home is not something I’m willing to fight about again. It’s a stupid argument to have! Stupid!”

Phew! I was spent. I took a big swig of my wine.

“I’m not doing that again,” I said, putting my glass down, “I would rather be alone than argue about something as stupid as taking care of my home. The next man who gets to share a home with me is going to care about himself, his home, his family, and ME goddamnit.”

And just like that I had my first deal breaker.





Therapy Thursday

2 08 2012

I’m sitting in the waiting room at my therapist’s office. There’s this bubbling, gurgling Japanese water fountain in the corner. I think it’s supposed to make me feel more peaceful. On the end table, between two of the waiting room chairs, there’s a miniature Japanese Zen garden. You know the ones, those little square sandboxes with the miniature rake. It’s supposed to be calming to rake the sand around in different patterns. All I can think is that I want to draw obscene pictures. Maybe it’s some sort of Asian Rorschach test and my therapist will realize that I’m some kind of twisted. I decide to leave it alone.

I settle for the latest New Yorker instead. I don’t know why I always make this choice. I can never get through an entire article before my therapist calls me into  his office, but I always choose The New Yorker. What can I say? I like the writing.

My therapist is funny, and by funny, I mean funny weird. You can have your shoes on in the waiting area, but you have to take them off before you enter his office. The other thing that he does is he always asks me, “what’s new and good?” It pisses me off. Every time I go to see him I have to figure out what’s new and good. I figure it’s just one of his methods for making the weight of his job a little less dreary. I mean imagine having to listen to everybody’s problems all day long. It irritates me though, because sometimes, like today, it’s a real struggle for me to come up with something.

The angry couple I heard behind the wall leaves and it’s my turn. My Jewish doctor/Zen master calls me into his office. I slip off my sandals at the door and take my spot on the sofa.

“So, what’s new and good,” he asks.

Here we go.

“Um, I wore slip-on shoes today?”

“No, there must be something. Come on. What’s new and good?” he says. He’ll embrace my inner child but not my inner smart ass.

I don’t fucking know. I’d been wracking my brain all the way over to his office in my car, and I couldn’t come up with anything. Now, he waits. He sits there and waits. He’ll wait at $120 an hour until I come up with something, which is why I usually try to come up with something acceptable in the car.

Oh for fuck sake.

“Um, I’ve made it to all of my personal training appointments, three times a week, for the past three months?”

“Great! How does that make you feel?”

“Strong. Strong and still fat.”

“Strong is good.”

I can tell he’s trying to work with me here.

“I’m stronger than I was in my twenties.”

“That’s good, especially considering where you were last year.”

It’s true. A year ago, I was still broken, physically broken from a bicycling accident and emotionally broken from my divorce. I had done the right thing. I got a trainer for my body and a therapist for my mind. Things were looking up.

“What else is going on?”

“Well, I think I’m obsessing.”

“About what?”

“Well, there’s this guy I’ve been corresponding with through email…”

I start to tell him about My Stalker/Super Fan. I tell him how he’s charming, funny, intelligent, and…a complete mystery.

“He says he’s #100.”

“Do YOU think he’s #100? What does #100 mean for you at this point?”

“I don’t know. I don’t know anything about him. He could turn out to be a hairy troll beating off in a basement for all I know. The scary part is that I find myself looking forward to his emails and thinking about him during the day…and I don’t even know what he looks like! It’s ridiculous!”

“What is it that you like about him?”

“He’s hilarious. I laugh out load when I read his emails, and there’s this, sort of, in charge, kind of charisma that seems to come through in his emails. For the most part though, I feel like the rest of it is just one big Cinderella fantasy that I’m making up in my head, like he’s going to come sweeping in at the end of this and whisk me away to live happily ever after or some shit…Mr. 100. Whoo hoo! That shit NEVER happens to me. My life is never a fairy tale. It’s more like tragedy and comedy…or a horror story.”

“I hear a couple of things going on here. First, you need to base your decisions and feelings on reality, not fantasy.”

“I know. I know. I know. I need to reign it in. I know I’m falling into that fairy tale bullshit I was sold as a little girl. You know, the prince comes and saves the princess and they live happily ever after. I have a business degree for crying out loud. I can choose between two separate investments based on their net present value, but I can’t seem to evaluate a good guy from a bad guy. It’s like I’m hoping this guy will be my knight in shining armor or something and it’s bullshit! I know it’s bullshit!”

I can hear myself getting louder, ranting and rambling, and I stop and look at my therapist.

“I’ve just had really rotten luck with men,” I finally admit in defeat.

“I know. You deserve a man who loves you, but that love has to be based on fact, not fiction. Just like any of your other dates, if you’re really interested in this guy, you need to take the time to get to know him. Ask him questions. You’ll have to ask a lot of questions and meet face to face before you decide if what you’re feeling is real or not.”

“Yeah, I know,” I sigh and look out the window.

“But, that brings me to the other thing I was going to say, which is, do you think you could believe that something good could happen to you?”

“Oh,…well,…I don’t know.”

The question floods my mind with thoughts of how in love I had been with STBex and I have to fight back tears. Look how that turned out. How was I going to love again and be able to trust those feelings after I had been so betrayed?

“I hear you building this guy up to be a prince and then, just as quickly, writing him off because you don’t think he’s going to come through for you. What if you took time to get to know him, and he actually turned out to be a good guy?”

“That would be nice for a change.”

“And, that would be a good thing, right?”

“Yeah, it would.”

My therapist goes on to suggest exercises to refocus my attention when my fantasizing about My Stalker/Super Fan gets out of control, and, again, he reminds me to slowly figure out what’s real and what’s fantasy. I realize that waiting to meet My Stalker/Super Fan until date #100 is probably a good thing. You gotta admit: it’s slow. If Man #100 is really going to wait to date me, at the rate my dating is going, it could be another two years before we meet face to face. If My Stalker/Super Fan really believes he’s Man #100, he either has incredible perseverance, is unusually goal driven, or maybe he’s the one who’s fantasizing. There are long odds on Man #100.

I slip my shoes on as I leave my therapist’s office and exit into the sunlight to head to my car. My mind feels more clear…at least for now.

Photo here.





Man #29, The Kept Man, Part 1

30 07 2012

As much as I found myself fantasizing about who My Stalker/Super Fan might be, I tried to balance my daydreams with the search for a real-life, flesh and blood date. Despite my earlier resistance to OkCupid, I actually found I was getting emails from more intelligent men through this online dating site than I had from match.com or Plentyoffish.

After several rather long emails with a divorced father of two, I scheduled a date to meet Man #29 in Pioneer Square for a beer and a peanut butter bacon burger at McCoy’s Firehouse. I found him in a booth and he won brownie points right away by telling me that the pictures in my online dating profile didn’t do me justice. Considering how many times men have complained to me that the women they met didn’t look as good in person as they did in their online profile photos, I took this as a huge compliment.

We had a great conversation. He happened to be one of my favorite types, the well-read, intelligent, technology geek. He also happened to live in a very nice zip code. He told me all about his days with a local software company, how he had worked on a couple of business start-ups, and how he had thrown million dollar fundraisers. It was all very impressive. I found myself feeling slightly inadequate.

He elaborated on his divorce. He had been married to an executive at another local technology company, and when they had children, he quit his job to stay home with them. At this point, it had been ten years since he had worked outside the home. He had won a large child support and alimony settlement in the divorce, which allowed him to continue to stay home and care for his children.

I told him I was working on my legacy project. (Believe it or not, it’s not a dating blog.) I covered the major project details as well as some other things I had in the hopper. Man #29 and I got along great, and ended up talking over our beers until 11 o’clock at night. Toward the end of the evening, in a very awkward, stuttering, bumbling fashion, he asked if I would go out with him again.

I found it rather charming in an “oh my god, I’m rendering him almost speechless” kind of way, and, smiling, I said, “I would love that.”

He walked me to my car, gave me an awkward kiss, and we parted.

The next day I received an email thanking me for the date. Most men forget to say thank you, maybe they don’t think it’s necessary, or maybe they don’t have any manners, but this guy was doing everything right. I responded in kind.

A few days later, I had an email from Man #29 asking me if I would accompany him to dinner at Metropolitan Grill. He had seen an article about some free-range wild boar from Spain they were serving, wanted a date, and worried that I would think him less environmentally conscious because of it. This is how I responded,

“Wild boar is one of my favorite things. If this is even remotely related in taste and texture to the cinghiale I had in Italy, I will look forward to having an orgasm in the restaurant, with moaning and eye rolling included, like Sally, in When Harry Met Sally, only I won’t have to fake it. In recent years, I have tried everything that has popped up in the news claiming a resemblance to wild boar and usually been disappointed, but I don’t want to prejudge. I assume the chef at the Met knows what he’s doing.

So, in my quest for amazing pork, my answer would be yes, yes,…YES!

Instead of thinking that it’s not green, think about the fact that it’s free-range.

Ciao and chow!”

I had to say yes. I mean the damn thing spent its days wandering around the European forest eating fresh acorns for fuck sake. How could I say no? We set a date for our porkfest and I eagerly awaited my foodgasm.

In the meantime, I got bored one evening and asked Man #29 if he could step out for an impromptu date. He agreed, and we again found ourselves conversing over beers and bar food. During this date, he started to tell me more about how his wife had been a runaway wife, how he had continual drama with his ex, and some discipline problems with his teenage son. I listened attentively, and injected comments and questions where it seemed appropriate. He complained that he was still very much at his ex’s beck and call.

“Why don’t you set some boundaries?”

“Well, she pays me a lot of money, so I try not to rock the boat,” he said.

Oh dear, I thought. He got the kids, but his wife still had custody of his balls. I wanted to see the good things about him, but I don’t deal well with other people’s drama, especially when it’s coming from an out of control ex. This second date was merely ok, since it mostly consisted of talk of his home drama. I’m all for letting a man vent, but at the end of the night, I felt emotionally fatigued.

I was enjoying our exchange of intelligent emails, and I wasn’t ready to write him off over a dominating ex just yet. I kept my date for porkfest.

Photo here.





My 30 Minutes of Fame

16 07 2012

Flora M. Brown, PhD.

It has come to pass. I am a dating expert. I go to parties, people find out that I write a dating blog, and I spend the rest of the night talking about dating.

I am also a Wizpert.  You can find the Wizpert button in the sidebar of this blog.

Now, I’m doing Blog Talk Radio interviews.  Dr. Flora M. Brown of Color Your Life Happy interviewed me this morning.  Check out “A Dating Prescription May be Just What the Doctor Ordered.”  I’d love to get your comments and questions, and as usual, feel free to tell me that you think I’m full of shit if the mood strikes you.

Alternatively, this will make a great drinking game.  Get a group of friends together; listen to my radio interview; and drink every time I say the word, “um.”  You should be plastered in no time.

Cheers!

Flora’s photo is here.

Listen to internet radio with Flora M Brown PhD on Blog Talk Radio





Someone Chose You

16 06 2012

Just when I thought my dating life was going along fine…well, maybe not fine, I’ve ended up dating a lot of losers over the past year, so not fine. But dating was going along okay.  I’m getting back out there, spreading my wings, meeting new people.  Just when I was getting back out there, meeting new people, I got an email from OkCupid.  It was one of those automated emails that happens when someone rates your profile above mediocre.

I opened the email, and knew immediately that I should not open the link to OkCupid.  The picture of the Ok Rater did not download, but I could tell by the username that I knew who it was.  The email said, “Someone chose you!  He’s totally into you! Go send him a message. You got this email because he rated you 4 or 5 stars.”

But the picture didn’t download, and I’m curious like that, so I clicked the link.

Stupid, stupid me.

It was STBex.

There he was smiling at my from his online dating profile…and I started to cry.  I’ve known that he was dating for a long time, but I didn’t have to see it.  Seeing his picture made me sick to my stomache.

I’m not exactly sure where the tears came from.  I don’t want him back.  I don’t.  In fact, I think it’s the opposite.  You see, he keeps doing this kind of thing.  He keeps popping up at inopportune times, saying or doing things, nice things, but I know they’re not really nice and they don’t mean anything.  In fact, the things he says, the things he does aren’t really nice at all.  In fact, they’re cruel.  They’re meant to string me along and they’re his disgusting attempts to try to maintain some form of fucked up control or attachment to me.

I hate him for it.

He doesn’t want me back and I know it, so why the hell can’t he just leave me alone?

How dare he rate me 4 out of 5 stars!  He’s not allowed to say or do anything to me anymore, because all of it, all of it, is a pack of lies.  It’s just the suave, Latino bullshit he uses to try to get what he wants.  It’s just the shit he says to make a woman believe she’s special so he can fuck her over and be on his merry way.

Who the fuck does he think he is?  Every chance he gets he tries to pretend he’s a nice guy when, really, he’s anything but that.  He’s a cruel, sadistic bastard, and I want him to leave me alone.  He wanted the divorce; now he needs to stay the fuck away from me.

LEAVE ME ALONE YOU FUCKED IN THE HEAD PRICK!

He does not get to fuck with my mind anymore.  He doesn’t.  I’m pissed that I’m even having this reaction, but I think I’m really crying because I’m angry.  That’s what it is.  I’m angry, and I’m trying hard to hold it in.

But why?  Because it’s more lady-like to cry?

Fuck that.  I deserve to be angry.

I’ve mocked my therapist for prescribing this crazy dating thing many times, but it’s only because of the work I’ve been doing with him that I’m able to recognize my anger right now at all.  We’ve been working on this thing I do, where I cry when I’m really angry.  And, that’s what this is.  If I was in a session right now, my therapist would make me hit something.  He says the crying is repressing the rage, and that it’s better to get to the real emotion than to repress it.

That’s what this is. It’s rage.

I could go curl up in my bed and cry because STBex is dating again, and he obviously wanted to make sure I knew it.  But I won’t.  That’s not what I’m going to do.  I’m going to go beat something.  That’s what will release the rage, and that, not my tears, is what he deserves.

Photo here.





My First “Quarterly” Reflection

15 06 2012

I suppose throughout the course of any epic journey one should stop, take a moment, and reflect.  After dates with twenty-five different men, this is one of my moments.

I still remember THE moment, the moment minutes after my husband and I had returned from the airport.  My husband had been gone for three weeks, one week in Mexico for work, another two in Colombia with family.  We had just arrived home, and suddenly, I realized he wasn’t wearing his wedding ring.  I still remember where I was standing, where he was sitting, what he said when I asked him where his ring was.

“Yeah, we need to talk about that,” he said casually.

It only took a second for a heavy feeling of dread to lodge in the pit of my stomach.

“While I was gone I was telling my family that I was getting a divorce.”

Funny how he had not mentioned it to me.

I don’t think I really heard the words.  I mean, I guess I did, but my mind felt like it was swirling, and I was trying to grasp the meaning of the situation.  It was almost midnight, my husband and I had been getting along lately, talking on the phone frequently while he was in Colombia.  I had gone and picked him up from the airport.  I had driven forty minutes out there and back at eleven o’clock at night, and now he was saying he was getting a divorce.  From whom? Me?

I was in shock.

A strange thing had happened while he was away on his trip.  My wedding ring had cracked.  The underside of the ring, the palm side, where it wears more heavily from daily wear and use, one day suddenly cracked all the way through.  I won’t lie.  I thought it was a sign.  I didn’t want to believe it, but all the signs were there.  This one, however, the cracking of my wedding ring, that seemed like certainty.  I knew it was over.

There I was, standing next to our entertainment center. He was sitting on the couch, telling me he was getting a divorce.  Not that he was thinking about it, not that he was planning it, he was just doing it.  Period.

I felt betrayed.  I suddenly pulled my wedding ring off of my finger. I had continued to wear it despite the crack.  I suddenly pulled it off, shook it at him and said, “my ring cracked while you were gone.  It’s probably not even metal. It’s probably a fraud, just like our marriage.”

I slammed it down, hard, on the top of the DVR as he shrugged off my statement.  I felt mocked.  I turned around and fled to the bedroom.  I cried all night.

The next day, I twisted my cracked wedding ring into a serpentine shape and threw it in the garbage.

They say that divorce is like a death and that the first stages of grief are shock and denial.  I had been in denial a long time despite the cracks in my marriage.  Although I lived with them on a daily basis, I didn’t want to see them.  I wanted to cover them with spackle and pretend they weren’t there.  I am not a quitter.  I was a wife, and I was going to be the best damn wife I could be.  I would not quit.  There was absolutely no way I was going to be the quitter.  No way.  We would go to counseling; we would evolve as a couple; but we would not quit.

Denial.  I thought I had enough fight in me for both of us, but that’s not how relationships work.

The truth was, deep down, I knew he hadn’t loved me for a long time.  In fact, I didn’t think he had ever loved me. That was painful.  It’s painful still.  Things had been said, cruel, hurtful things, meant to sting and torture.  I had chosen to deny their meaning.  I cloaked my sorrow in red wine and swore that I would not be the one to give up.

So, when my husband decided to quit, it really pissed me off.

Fucking quitter!

That was about a year and a half ago.  The shock and denial have been replaced by other emotions, sometimes anger, sometimes sadness.  I’m no longer in shock, and there’s no longer any denial that my marriage is over.  It’s over.  Dead.  No going back.

So, regarding these first twenty-five men I’ve dated, what have I learned?

Well, I’ve learned that denial is a dangerous thing.  The denial didn’t start when I said “I do.”  No, it was there all along.  Yeah, STBex had been charming, but there were always signs that I might be making a mistake.  I had chosen not to see them.  I just wanted to be married so badly.  If I had any words of wisdom for young women out there, it would be that things don’t get better just because a man decides to put a ring on it.  I had made excuses for my husband’s bad behavior because I loved him.  I’m not willing to do that at the expense of my health and sanity again.

What it has meant for me in dating these first twenty-five men is that I’m not willing to make excuses for a man anymore.  Barring some catastrophic life crisis, it is rare that people change, and my pre-marriage naiveté has been replaced by the wisdom that marriage is hard work, not a fairy tale.  The problems that exist in a relationship before marriage will only intensify once you depart the wedding ceremony.  Marriage has to be a partnership or it will never work.  You can’t drag the quitter along with you.  Life is hard enough without dead weight.

I’ve questioned the sanity of my therapist many times over.  It seems like a dangerous prescription in some ways, telling a person to get out there and date, not knowing for certain what she will encounter.  However, each new date has been a chance for reflection.  Although I’m reflecting on where I’m at today, after these first twenty-five, I realize I’ve been reflecting all along.  I’m still learning what I want, but, now, what I know I want, what I know I need, is to just continue dating.  I don’t want a boyfriend.  I don’t want a relationship.  I don’t want anything serious.  I just want to go on the occasional date.

Most of my friends have a dating rule that they will not have a relationship with a someone who is divorced for less than one year.  Just speaking from my experience, I now believe this is a good rule.  Sure. Everyone is different.  I’m sure one’s mental state is deeply impacted by whether he or she is the person leaving or the one being left, but divorce is a drawn-out process, both legally and emotionally.  It doesn’t seem fair to drag a new person into that mess before I’m really ready.

I don’t think I feel bitter.  Uncompromising maybe, or even a little bitchy sometimes, but not bitter.  A couple of my friends have started to encourage me to keep my dates around after I’ve written about them, but I don’t really see the point.  Besides, maintaining my blog fodder was never supposed to be part of the deal.  One of my friends warned that if I don’t watch my tone in my blog posts, there’s a chance future men won’t want to date me.  I’m okay with that too.  I don’t write to be mean or spiteful.  I simply write what I feel in my core.  My theory is that someday, when I am ready to really date again, maybe when I’m 80, there will be a guy who really gets me.  He’ll have a job (or a retirement account).  He won’t be a compulsive texter.  He won’t be emotionally or physically abusive.  He’ll understand my sense of humor.   He won’t be a quitter.  But most importantly, I won’t have to make excuses for him.  I won’t have to be in denial about our relationship, and I won’t have to tell myself stories to spackle over the cracks.  If cracks form, they will be like the ones found in the glaze of antique porcelain or in the skin on the back of an old person’s hand, formed by time, wisdom, and endurance, the cracks of someone, or something, that hasn’t quit.

Photo here.





Divorce is Immature and Selfish According to Penelope

28 02 2012

I’ve subscribed to Penelope Trunk’s blog for about a year now, and, today, this post entitled, Divorce is Immature and Selfish. Don’t Do It., caught my attention. The title was probably more impactful today, because of some recent developments in my own divorce. I can happily say there appears to be a light at the end of the tunnel.

I can’t say I entirely agree or disagree with Penelope. Overall, it’s a good post with a lot of well-made points.

Do I think STBex was selfish in his decision to want a divorce? Absolutely YES! In fact, I’m still a little angry at how deceitful and self-centered I feel he was about the whole thing. Will I ultimately be better off by him leaving? Definitely. The big difference, however, to my marriage and PT’s arguments on marriage is that STBex and I had no children together.

My kids were already teenagers by the time STBex came into our lives, and they never really developed any deep relationships or respect for him.

In fact, last night, I asked K2 if he was angry that STBex left. His response was, “Where did that come from? I don’t give a shit about STBex. STBex was an asshole!”

So, will my kids be better off now that I’m getting a divorce? Yes, probably.

Which brings me to the part of Penelope’s post that I don’t agree with…the idea that people in abusive marriages should just stick it out for the kids.

I say BULLSHIT!

I can happily say that I have never been in a physically abusive relationship, and I owe a great deal to my mother for that fact. If my mother had not had the courage and the audacity to risk her life and the lives of her children to escape her marriage, thereby ending the cycle of violence, I would not be the woman I am today.

The destruction caused by violent marriages is rarely, if ever, isolated to the two spouses involved.

What about the children in violent marriages? Do you think they don’t end up abused too?

On that point, shame on you, Penelope Trunk.








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