Breaking guitars

Sigh. I’m very, very tired. I don’t know what to do anymore. I’m irritated with disappointed in the hubs, I guess. And I can’t seem to shake it off like I normally would. For the first time in a long time, I don’t want to talk to him. I don’t really want to be around him. I can’t explain why. It doesn’t feel good; it doesn’t feel natural and I don’t like myself for it.

I don’t like that I’m held to a higher standard than his father. I don’t like that I get yelled at for being callous and cold and mean when his father has been this way for decades. A father isn’t supposed to treat their child this way. A wife isn’t supposed to treat their husband that way either – I’m aware – but what makes it so easy to jump down my throat and not his?

[Because he won’t change, Alice. Hubs has tried. The man has an untreated severe mental illness, more severe than you.]

I uninvited my own mother from our wedding for him. My mother – who’s been my rock and best friend all my life, not at the most important event in my life because she disapproved of my now-husband. His father disinherits him because he hates me, says we need to divorce because I’m mentally unstable (pot meet effing kettle), tried to fuck my mother and hubs meets with him for lunch every fucking week like nothing’s the matter. What. The. Fuck.

[Don’t do that. Don’t make him choose because you chose. He never asked you to choose between him and your mother; you just did it. His mother’s gone. He’s probably clinging to the hope that one day his father will come around. Plus, hubs said there was no indication the man wasn’t going to disinherit him for just existing. The man has always resented hubs for merely breathing. You’re more than likely the scapegoat – even your father, Alice, said as much. The man is trying his damnedest to split you apart. Don’t let him succeed.]

Sigh. Why can’t I accept that he’s not like me? We know what I would have done well before now in this situation.

[Not many people are like you, dear. And you’re not like him. It took decades for you to forgive your father, decades for you to see your grandmother as she really was and decades for you to accept and respect your mother. Don’t expect to forget the man and what he’s trying to do to your family in 48 hours. But remember hubs is doing what he can for you and your family today.]

…God. Damn. I’m right.

I’m right. He’s doing his best. It’s not my way, but that’s okay. It has to be. What else can I do? None of this is within my control. I think that’s why I’m so angry about it.

I was telling my new psychologist (yeah, I went back to therapy. Mistakes in the process of being made I’m sure) that that’s why I’m such a perfectionist. I need to have control over everything. I don’t have control – a lot of the time – over my mood swings, libido, etc. so I overcompensate by attempting to control the situations – and sometimes people – around me. A lot of the time it works. Some of the time it doesn’t but by trying to control my environment I can control the trajectory of my life (or so I think). When someone or something comes around and is resistant to my ideas or the environment doesn’t adapt to my comfort zone it throws me for a loop. I get anxious, depressed, despondent followed by irritable and indignant.

Selfish, right? Not when you consider my background. It comes from a lifetime of unreliable behavior demonstrated by my superiors. Now that I’m older, if I can exercise any amount of control it eliminates the need for others entirely, thus ensuring there is someone I can always depend on: me. Who else is there but me? I rarely let me down.

In this particular situation I felt let down by the hubs. I felt like he wasn’t defending me. Like the only way to defend/stick up for me was my way. He says he always stands up for me, tries to explain my situation to the man however the man doesn’t believe in mental illness. (Yeah, that explains a whole lot. Explains why someone with a clear alcohol problem and obvious sxs of schizophrenia isn’t seeking treatment but that’s not my fucking problem. Whatever. I digress.). I don’t care if the man believes in fairies, okay? I cared that hubs doesn’t care enough to say, “Hey, believe what you want. I know the truth. Stay ignorant. You don’t like her? Fine. She’s tried to make peace with you but you’re too stubborn to care. So we’re gonna drop it entirely. Leave her name out of your mouth because we’re all over this shit. We’re staying together and plan on having kids. You can be a part of that or not. Having nothing to do with her precludes you from having anything to do with our children however so think long and hard about how long you want to keep this up. It’s a shame that you can’t let go [of something that never actually happened] out of a sense of pride or principle. Grow up.”

Too much? He could word it much nicer than that! I would have been much meaner, actually. He said if he tried to be more direct with him, it would probably end with them severing their relationship. If being direct and upfront about your feelings with your parent causes them to cut you off, it’s their loss and not yours. Holding all of that inside out of fear of losing the [tenuous] connection with your parent is sad. Having to walk on eggshells just to maintain a relationship with an unstable parent because they’re your only surviving parent is tragic.

[The same could be said for having to walk on eggshells to maintain a relationship with an unstable wife.]

Ouch. Touché.

Yes, both of my parents are living.
No, I don’t understand what it’s like, clearly, to lose a parent.
No, if my mother leaves this Earth first I will not cling to my emotionally unavailable father for parent-ship. He’s not available at the moment. I’ll leave a message and he’ll get back to me like he always has. And that’s the truth of it. And that’s okay. I have other family to lean on – namely my hubs (if he hasn’t divorced me for his goddamned father by then), our possible kids and a plethora of friends I deem close enough to be considered my family.

…Once I leave inpatient psychiatric treatment because losing her will send me off the reservation.

Same if I lose him. #codependent

Sigh. In the words of my father – the wise man that he is: fuck it.

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I’m meaner than my demons/I’m bigger than these bones

It’s been such a long while since I’ve written in here.  I don’t know if it’s avoidance or forgetfulness at this point.  What I do know is that I’ve backslid and I’m slithering around on my belly like a tongueless snake.

I had the surgery and I’ve lost about 50 pounds.  I honestly think, for once, I’m returning to my baseline physical self.  I never saw myself as this fat, huge overweight thing. Body dysmorphia is quite common for people after the surgery; my mother struggles with it daily.  I wasn’t always fat – I was a skinny kid.  I see myself losing weight and – don’t tell anyone – but I feel fucking awesome.  I think I look fucking hot.  Aside from the loose skin I’ve acquired, I feel my confidence going up.  People at work keep commenting on how great I look, and while I don’t particularly enjoy that, I do like the looks I give myself.  Pretty narcissistic sounding, huh?  It’s not like that, though.  I used to look at myself and glare.  I’d give myself a once-over in the mirror, gazing at each body part with hatred and disgust.  Each body part was subject to ridicule and hazing by me, every day.  There were some days I couldn’t bear to look at myself at all.  I’m fucking done with that.  I look at myself – loose skin and all – and see someone who struggled with a lot of shit, but won’t give up.  I see a woman who is not just a fighter, but gorgeous inside and out.  Not just because she has a sexy husband that wants to fuck her every minute of every day (God he’s seriously relentless), but because she believes it now.  She doesn’t need his validation or anyone else’s.  Who knew it would only take a $40,000 surgery to get to this point?  Oy vey.

So I just got out of the psych ward.  Ha!  Didn’t see that coming, did you?  Alice: always full of surprises.  It had been over a decade since I last graced their halls with my presence.  The staff remembered me.  I’m still trying to decide if that’s good or bad.  My schedule affected my medication schedule and then I stopped taking it all together.  Then I slipped into a manic phase.  I told my family that I wasn’t taking that “poison” anymore, I was “normal” without it.  I was also unable to concentrate on anything, I was the best at everything ever in life, I was getting 4 hours of sleep at night, and couldn’t sit still worth a damn.

Then I fell.  Hard.

I couldn’t get out of bed.  I wouldn’t shower for days.  I would cry at nothing.  Or something, anything.  I’d get frustrated at little things.  I just couldn’t function worth shit.  So I called my psychiatrist.  He told me he was having me admitted to the psych ward.  I was there for a week.  He put me on FMLA and here I sit, at home, taking my meds… ish.

I told him I’m fucking trained.  I know better than to not take them.  I know that the incidence of bipolar patients not taking their meds is higher than any other mental illness because we think we’re getting better, stop taking them and fall on our faces.  I said I know the stats, I’ve read the studies, I know this shit and did it anyway.

He said, “That’s how you know it’s the disease, Alice.  Not you.”

Being in the psych ward as a mental health professional was a nightmare.  You think they treat you any better?  Nope.  Still just a fucking nut in a ward full o’ nuts.  I didn’t expect to be treated better than anyone else but I think I’ve become more aware of the stigma than I had in years past. I never remember the staff being so dismissive and cold. Even the social workers, who claim to help even the playing field between the professionals and the patients were at times condescending and patronizing.  I reminded them that we shared the same credentials, same degree and performed the same functions in our profession as a way of humanizing myself however I doubt it did much good as I was still cast aside when asking for simple things like respect.  During a group session, one social worker stated part of their job is to educate the other staff members, including the doctors, about mental health.  I actually fell out laughing.  I said that, as noble as that may be, the worst stigma against mental illness I have ever seen has been in the medical community.  I explained that I am terrified my co-workers will find out that I am in the psych ward, as I was in my own employer’s medical system and in our computer system it will show that I was there.  I further explained that none of the doctors I work with have any interest or desire to work with psych patients; they actually express disdain for the entire population.   The nurses at my hospital are mostly impatient and rude when treating a psych patient and want nothing more than for my department to hurry up and get them out of the hospital.  I have social workers who actually said to me they hate working with “bipolars” because they are constantly going off their meds and have wild mood swings.  So, excuse my skepticism when discussing “educating” the medical staff – I’m sure it’s going well.

The nurses and nurse’s aides were a fucking nightmare.  It didn’t help that they’d rather surf Facebook and Instagram than do their fucking jobs. Aside for a select few, they treated me like I didn’t know my own body.  And, not to sound like a dick, but like they knew more about psych than I did.  As someone who’s been on both sides – a patient and a professional – I can safely say that’s bullshit.  And as an employee at that hospital I knew corporate policy, so they couldn’t fuck me around when it came to that either.  Plus, this isn’t my first rodeo.  I’ve been hospitalized about 7 times.  Go fuck yourself; I know how this goes.  I wasn’t in the mood to be fucked with.  Not to mention the fact that my psychiatrist is on staff and we’ve been working together for over a decade.  I know that he always has my best interests at heart and will go to bat for me (and did) when I need him to.

So.  You’re caught up.  Time for my meds.

Never be the 1st to believe/never be the last 2 deceive

Aggravated is the best word to use.

Just aggravated.

I’m getting my stomach stapled.
Literally stapled.
They are gonna cut me open, fiddle about, find it in there somewhere, cut it off and staple it.

Let’s flashback for just a second. Husband says he wants me to be more active, worries about my health and wants me to be healthy and care about myself.

In other words, put down the fork.

No, no it’s cool. He was right to say something. I would have just kept going and going until he found himself in someone else’s bed like my father did. So no, this was good. …I cried like a bitch that day. I couldn’t believe he called me fat. [Let’s be fair, he didn’t use those words.
Fuck off! It was insinuated!] Anyway.

Right now, he’s in a transition period. He’s changing careers from computers to law enforcement.

Uh-huh. That’s what I said, too.

He was training for the physical exams and blew out his knee. I told him to go to the doctor; he won’t go.

He’s been working midnights since he was 19. That’s almost half his lifetime. Now he’s starting to have memory problems. I told him to go to the doctor.

He. Won’t. Go.

[sigh] I fail to understand this. This whole “men don’t go to the doctor” shit is not an excuse. Lemme ‘splain – FAST FORWARD:

I’M HAVING MY STOMACH CUT OFF AND STAPLED. Why? So I can be more active and more healthy, as requested. So I won’t die of a diabetes-related illness or a heart attack. So I can hang around with his fine yet frustrating ass longer. So I can bear our children without making them motherless or him a widow in the process. Son of a bitch.

Let me be clear, he didn’t ask me to have the surgery. But it would be nice to know that his hypertensive (yep, has high blood pressure – doesn’t follow doc’s orders and I don’t think he’s fully med compliant) behind was at least taking care of himself as much as I’m trying to take care of myself. If I’m willing to go to this length to be healthy, he can make a fucking doctor’s appointment.

I can’t destroy what isn’t there

TRIGGER WARNING – RAPE

I met with my psychologist this past Monday. Aside from reminiscing about all my psychiatrists of the past (and their behind-the-scene proclivities), we talked about the moment I went nuts …no I was right. Went nuts is totally appropriate here.

She said that age five, I tried to kill myself. I know; I was there. I don’t remember the circumstances, only the where, the when and how. I remember my disappointment in it not working and my becoming even more depressed. I tried a few times. As a child that size, your resources and vocabulary are limited. I felt this deep overwhelming panic, anxiety, sadness, loneliness, hopelessness, anger, fear and helplessness and felt I had nowhere to turn and didn’t have the right words to express any of it.  So it appears, according to my psychologist’s theory, that my brain’s chemistry changed the first time. My body’s arousal system and my neurotransmitters went nuts.

I was majorly depressed and disordered by age 6 with at least 2 suicide attempts under my belt.  By age 16 I was full-scale self-injuring on the daily; it looked my dermatologist was Edward Scissorhands.  My mood was all over the place due to my hormones and my outright refusal to take medication until the next year when I was almost hospitalized for suicidal threats and increasingly intensive self-injury of which I still carry the scars.

I went to college at age 17, fully medicated for my safety and for those around me but it had little effect.  I went to a very large, very competitive, pseudo-Ivy League school.  I had very little social support and many of those I met didn’t fail to remind me of my social and racial status.  Yes, I was a part of the 49% of the students receiving financial aid and yes, I’m black.  (No, asshole – I got here on merit, not affirmative action.  In between slicing and dicing I managed to pull a 3.9 GPA out of my ass in high school.  I actually had people make comments in class about this shit to my face.  Unbelievable.)

Anyway, let me back up a bit.  Welcome Week, freshman year.  Exciting for kid fresh out of high school – getting to party in college!  I had arrived.  I was grown as far as I was concerned.  I could stay out late, meet guys, new people – have a blast!  My best friends from high school, now attending the rival college, were coming down for the weekend and we were going partying together so I was excited.  The four of us get some food at a local hangout near my dorm and start walking around campus to find a party that looks cool.  One of my friends, Tom, was a sophomore so he knew everything about frat parties since he was a frat member at Alpha Chi What-The-Fuck-Ever so we followed his lead.  We walk into this relatively jumping party – just wall to wall people, a DJ, jungle juice, the whole shebang.  Jim and Raquel start dancing (they were dating) and vanish into the mist of the crowd.  Maya, a sophomore at our school, fucks off somewhere, probably trying to find a rich white guy (she has a type – has since high school) and leaves me dancing by my lonesome.

At a frat party.
My first night on campus.
Awesome.
Well, this is the start of a Lifetime movie.

Boy did I call it.  This fucking guy comes up to me, introduces himself as “[inaudible due to the loud music played by the DJ]” and points toward the center of the dance floor.  I nod “okay.”  There’s 60 goddamn people on this dance floor.  I can’t be abducted in the middle of a crowd of 60 people.  It’ll be fine.  So we start dancing; no big deal.  He then moves behind me and puts his hands around my waist.  I can tell he’s drunk; I’m not having a good time anymore.  I need to find my crew and get the fuck out of here.  I’m looking for my crew so we can di di mao.  Before I get a chance to break away, he puts his hands down my underwear and ::ding-dong:: WELCOME TO COLLEGE.  Unwanted sexual contact.  I grab his hand and pull it out of my pants and walk away.  Of course NOW my friends are ready to leave and find another party.

Right before we go, this asshole gives me his number.  He wouldn’t leave me alone until he could put it in my phone.  He was too drunk to spell his name right.  Unless he was actually named after a tennis shoe.  I never told my friends – he was drunk, right?  No one’s fault – blame it on the alcohol…  I never told anyone.  Just buried it along with everything else.

Ah sophomore year.  This one’s gonna be tougher to talk about.  I met this gem on the back stoop of my dorm at the beginning of the school year.  We went on 1 or 2 dates.  He dropped me off at my dorm room and when he hinted that he wanted to take things further than a kiss goodnight, I told him I had a rule: 6 months of monogamy before sex.  He seemed outraged.  I made it clear I didn’t care – those are my rules.  Next date, we decided to stay in, were watching “Law and Order” when he said he had to tell me something: he was on parole for armed robbery.

Uhhh.  He knows where I live.  He knows where my family lives.  He’s 6’2”, 245 lbs – all muscle.  I was 5’4”, 145 lbs.  I was fucking terrified.

Someone tell me please: When an armed robber comes to your living quarters every few nights for several MONTHS, what do you do?  When you feel like you’re not given many options considering their size and tendencies to be ARMED?  Fucking terrified.  This went on for 3 months.  During that time, I isolated from my friends and family, I was “stealthed” countless times which resulted in a case of (CURED!) chlamydia.

When I finally broke down and spoke to the only person who I thought would listen, my ex-boyfriend Anthony, he helped give me the strength to leave.  I left and the man stalked me in my dorm room for a few months.  It took a key card to get into the building but somehow he would get in and leave messages on my door calling me “bitch,” “slut,” and “fuck you.”  I reported it to campus security but it was useless.  I moved out of the dorms into an apartment with Anthony the next year; we got back together after this.

Anthony is a story for another time.

So the intimidation-rape is trauma #2.  Trauma #1 was whatever happened at age 5 that triggered my suicide attempt – that is a mystery to me as of yet.  I’ve told my psychologist I’m considering going to a hypnotist because I’m tired of this Swiss cheese stuff – this holey memory of mine is ridiculous.  We either figure this out or we don’t.  My psychologist said something that has been weighing heavy on my mind all week.  She said that her theory is the chemical imbalances that have been caused by trauma can be reversed by re-training the brain.

…Excuse me?  If I’m understanding this correctly, bipolar disorder can be reversed through behavioral or cognitive behavioral therapy.  Are you shitting me?  

I’ve just been in limbo all fucking week, letting that sink in.  Think about it: if that is true, I’ve been able to fix myself this whole time.  I’m like Dorothy at the end of Wizard of Oz.  She had the shoes throughout her whole walk through Oz — the bullshit with the Witch, the Monkeys, the talking head of the Wizard, all of it — and she could have gone right home.  Unreal!  While I understand in Wizard it’s a little different – she needed to understand how good she had it in Kansas.  Someone tell me the point of walking this shit-brick road?  Where’s the fun in french kissing death?  There is none!

If this is true – what if I don’t get better?  It’ll be just something else I’ve failed at.  Can’t kill myself right* and can’t heal myself, so I’m stuck in the middle.  Fucking perfect.

*Ok, I may have lost a few of you there.  As a mental health professional, that’s a horrible thing to say and hear.  However, as a someone with a mental health disorder I can say that I may speak for a few people out there who have felt this way. when they wake up in the hospital, alive.  I did – I was pissed off.  You feel like a failure because you didn’t complete a “goal,” however this isn’t a goal – long term – you want, even if your depression says otherwise.  When I say I didn’t do it right, I mean that I failed and there’s no escape from this disease on either end – through death or living.  It’s fucking maddening and it makes me feel hopeless for a painless life.  While I appreciate the empathy I have gained for others like me, I wish for a life like anyone else’s.  I wish for happiness.  I’ve never known what that’s like because even what I’m happy I’m always wondering when the feeling is going to end.

these final hours. 

Last night I was scared. I had the lights off; the halls were dark and I couldn’t see. Usually my husband is there, but he was working.  I just kept thinking about how much I wanted to curl into his arms and sleep – it’s where I feel the most safe. 

When I woke up, he was there next to me, asleep. I just rubbed his shoulder for a few minutes before I decided it was time to get up and start getting my day going. When the bed shifted, he woke up, asked me the standard “how are you,” “how was work” questions. He could see I was still depressed and detached from our conversation the other day, which spiraled into yet another conversation about my inability to be intimate with him and my shutting down. This spawned a whole other line of conversation about how he’s spent 10 years waiting for things to get better and nothing’s changed; now we’re older and he physically feels himself changing which has him upset because his youth was wasted waiting for me to screw my head on straight. 

I admit: I shut down. I get depressed. I withdraw into myself and attempt to “fix” the problem alone. I see now how well that’s been working. But my question is to myself is “now what?” 

Now what do you do?  Withdrawing doesn’t work but it’s automatic.  Being  depressed doesn’t help but it’s automatic.  Being angry doesn’t help but it’s automatic. What else do I have?  Be open, honest, and vulnerable?  

I am terrified.  After 10 years, you’d think I’d have let my own spouse in. I thought I had. It was a smoke screen I put up to fool everyone – including myself.  

I don’t want to lose my husband. But I don’t know how to let anyone in.  It used to be safer with everyone out there, but now it’s becoming just as dangerous. 

the contents of my head. 

This is how I feel.  

My husband and I got into an argument the other day.  I know, by the looks of this page, that’s all we do, but that’s not the case.  We’ve been doing really well, but I’m not always sure if that’s because we work such odd hours or we’re just too tired to start a conversation that most likely will end in an argument.

Anyway, the argument.  It was about petty shit, really – the dog threw up on the carpet.  I saw something in the (by this time) dried bile that was alarming – several little plastic tubes that looked like the refills for a Bic pen.  I flipped.  I was not happy that – one – I’d started eating my breakfast and didn’t notice the dog had thrown up until I smelled something foul, then saw a pile of yarn trimmings, plastic tubes things (still unidentified), and dog hair next to the table.  And two, became more pissed that when I woke him up to talk about the spew, he looked at me as though this was a non-issue, would not speak to me at all, and wasn’t going to do shit about it.  In hindsight, I overreacted.  I shouldn’t have woken him up.  I should have picked up the bulk and gone to sleep, cleaned the rest when I woke up.

It was 9am.  I’d just worked a 12 hour shift in the emergency room.  I was tired.  I was hungry.  I had received a shitty email from my supervisor at the beginning of my shift.  I had embarrassed myself in front of the Chief of Medicine at 3am.  The EMR went down for 4 hours and we were forced to paperchart everything – my full assessments included; then transcribe them onto the EMR when the system went back up.  I was not in the mood for a fucking thing except to eat my french toast and crawl into bed.  Instead, I carefully set the stage for an argument that has forced me on a long, emotional existential journey that I wish was over.

After storming around the house looking for some vinegar and baking soda – and finding neither, he says to me “hey, quit yelling – I already cleaned it up, stop freaking out.”

Really?  After staring at me like an indignant 16-year-old with his arms folded for 5 minutes as if to say, “I’m not doing shit,” while I attempt to choke down my breakfast with the scent of vomit in the air, it took him less than 10 minutes to clean up.  I was livid.

That’s when the fun started.  That’s when he unleashed.  Overall, he was quite calm, but his words were more honest and lacked any inhibition.   He told me that my anger is out of control for a person my age, insinuating that despite my membership in the 30 and over club, my behavior, when angry, resembles that of a person who isn’t old enough to vote. 

Next, I was told that my anger is not healthy for the children we plan to have. My husband, having had similar experiences with his father, said he did not want our children growing up in the same type of environment. 

Yet all I heard was him comparing me to his father and almost repeating the same thing my mother has said about my anger over and over again after I blow up on her – “you’d better control that before you have kids.”  

Ugh.  The conversation takes another turn. Instead of blowing up more, I decide I’m too bloody tired and I start talking. 

My anger is my shield. It’s the only thing that’s worked for me.  I don’t know how to function without it.  I’ve been angry at so much for so long, I don’t know what it’s like to not be angry.  

I’m not sad, I’m irritated.
I’m not depressed, I’m agitated.
I’m not hurt, I’m pissed.

I purposely push everyone away. I get unnecessarily angry, I cuss – anything to drive people away. Why?  

Less Christmas presents. 

No, really – it’s easier than letting people in, letting them leave their mark, and them leaving anyway. This is not just men – this is everyone. My best friend sent me the sweetest email earlier this week telling me how much she appreciates my friendship and how much I mean to her. I have been praying that she and I would become close again after so much time apart (which was my fault).  

Guess what Alice did?  Guess. Haven’t checked my email in a week to confirm plans for us to hang out. Why? Because now she’s too close and I’m terrified. This is where I screw everything up.  This is it. Right here. I asked for it and now I’m going to screw it all up – again.  And I have no idea why and don’t know how to fix it. 

Same with the husband. How do I salvage 10 years of lost youth? How? And how does Linus give up his blanket? Can he? Can I? How do I lay down my sword during peacetime when I’ve got shell shock? 

Men were deceivers ever

I went to my doctor the other day, mentioned the whole thing with my mom and my FIL. He, like so many before him, told me not to “be so vocal about it,” and it’s none of my business.  Gee, thanks doc.  Now I’m definitely questioning if I’m right or wrong here.  I’m not telling my mother who she can and can’t be with – she went on a date earlier this week; I told her to have fun and don’t come home and spoil the new Star Wars flick for me.  I honestly just think it’s disgusting to date a family member!  I think it’s disgusting to sleep with a family member!  I don’t give a shit if they’re related by blood or marriage; in my case, once children happen – they would be related by blood which makes it worse.  

It doesn’t help that I generally don’t like the doddering old bastard and never really have.  He makes my inner anger look like chewed gum on a sidewalk.  He goes on rants – over and over again – about the state of the world; he would have made a great op-Ed columnist for The Saturday Evening Post.  These tirades continue for tens of minutes at loud and unnecessary decibels spanning important topics such as the obstructed views of Muslim women who wear hijabs and how this affects their driving, women and their cellphone usage and why they should be raped because of it, and how anyone who can turn on a television has the capability to work and should not be allowed to file for government benefits.  …You know, re-reading that, I don’t know how I sat there and listened to all that repugnant shit all these years and didn’t walk away earlier; I could have saved a lot of brain cells.  

I don’t know why I’m reacting to my doctor’s comments the  way I did.  I just sank into this depression.  I feel like I’m the one who should have stayed quiet and let my mother speak for herself for once.  

I’m always doing all the fucking talking; this is why we have the relationship we do and I have the trust issues I do.  I’m always the heavy, I’m the mom until someone is able to take the reins every once in a while.  That’s how I was trained as a young child; that’s my resentment.

Why am I paying for a crime I didn’t commit?  I didn’t cuss anyone out or get touchy-feely at dinner after I hoisted back a bottle of Maker’s Mark. Where are his consequences for his fucky behavior (aside from losing my Netflix)?  My husband is still talking to him. He hasn’t stopped going to the house and spending time with him. So much for solidarity. 

I’m not saying he should choose, but I specifically remember a time when I felt I had to make the choice. My mother objected to our marriage; she didn’t want me marrying him and didn’t want me getting married without a fancy wedding that she planned. She threatened to object if I went against her wishes. 

I told her she was not welcome at our tiny, tiny wedding. To this day, I have to hold back the tears because a bride should always have her mother if she can. But I made the choice to stick by my convictions and stand with my future husband. 

I feel cast aside. Betrayed. Less than. Because I remember taking vows that bound us as one, and we’re split in two. I stood, yet again, by my convictions – but I stand alone. That is not what family is. That is not what marriage is. And this time of year is about family and togetherness and I’m not feeling it in the slightest.