I have stated on more than one occasion that I believe things would have been better in my first marriage, had I known then what I know now. That theory has changed, though. I now believe that it would have also taken a big difference in my ex-wife, Tara, to have had a successful marriage. I couldn’t have avoided a divorce simply by being a good husband. This doesn’t change the fact that I wasn’t a good husband, because I really wasn’t. However, it does lessen the culpability of the breakup a bit from my conscience. It does take two to tango, but it also takes two to un-tango. (I know. That wasn’t very clever.)
I came to this realization after hearing a coworker read his chat log to me from an online typed conversation that he had had with his ex-wife. Shortly into the conversation, it was obvious to me where it was headed. His comments were upbeat and positive, while hers were depressing and negative. She seemed to come out of nowhere with accusations toward him that had nothing to do with the subject matter being discussed. This brought about memories I had with my own ex-wife, and the many parallels there. She, my ex-wife, had a knack for pointing out all the negatives about me. In her mind, I was doomed for failure. This occurred shortly after we were married, due in her mind to my many weaknesses.
What should have taken place, accentuating the positive with words of praise and encouragement, didn’t. Instead, Tara chose to emotionally abuse me with words of a derogatory nature, constantly dwelling on my shortcomings. And when she couldn’t think of anything that I was doing badly, she would make something up. I was very immature in my reaction to her abuse. I lashed back at her with hurtful words, pointing out her many flaws. This is something that I should have never done and I take full responsibility for it. However, had I not done so, had I taken the high road and handled the situation in a calm and collected manner, with a positive demeanor, I am pretty certain things wouldn’t have turned out any different.
You see, some people are just going to believe what they want to believe, no matter how hysterically insane it is. There is nothing we can do or say that will change that. They have to change because they want to. And sometimes, they never want to. I know that – now. It is important for me to remind myself of this constantly. I cannot change those about me, I can only change myself.
To date, Tara has not changed. She still has a chip on her shoulder against me, one that she herself put there from years of making mountains out of molehills. Her latest escapade has shown me this. There was absolutely no reason on her part to get her phone disconnected and her email address closed… because of me! It is ludicrous and it is the same song and dance she has performed from the beginning. I hope that she will see the truth and break out of that shell she has put herself in. I only wish for the best for her, and I certainly hope that someday that truism will be revealed to her.
In times of need, I often turn to prayer and ask Our Heavenly Father for assistance. This time is no different. I sought His wisdom in this matter. It is one of those times in my life where I am confused as to what I should or shouldn’t do. Through prayer, I am comforted with the belief that all will work itself out. The relationship I have wanted with my son, Cameron, will have to wait. There have been things beyond my control for several years now which prohibit it. Hopefully, now that he is reaching a maturity where he takes control over his own life, he will seek out the truth. That is why I must continue saying these things, trying to help him sort out the chaos that his mother has undoubtedly created around him.
It must have been difficult for Cameron, being raised amidst an atmosphere of lies and deceit. That may have been the real reason why his mother kept him from me, not wanting me to help Cameron see her as she really is. The funny thing is, though, that I never said anything derogatory about her when he was around. I don’t look at this as lying to him, so much as trying to bring stability to his life. He was the child of two people who couldn’t stand one another. If that wasn’t hard enough, he was made to choose between these people (by his mother) which one he would trust, even though he loved both of them. It is tragic.
I believed then as I do now, that parents of divorced children should handle themselves with the utmost maturity and act in a sober manner when dealing with their children. It is important that a child spend time with both parents and that the parents only speak kind words about one another in the presence of the child. I lived by that credo then, as I do now. Sadly, Tara did not. The one that was hurt by it the most was our son, Cameron. I didn’t understand what was happening then, but now I’m starting to realize it.
He is now an adult and I have started to backtrack through the past, painting a true picture for Cameron of what transpired. I suspect he won’t believe my words at first. He may even implore me to stop them altogether. But, my duty is not to give him what he wants, but what he needs. It is my hope and prayer that Cameron will someday read these words and come to a better understanding of who I am, that the big wrongdoing in his life did not come from anything I did (or did not do, for that matter). Yes, I could have, should have, and would have done a lot of things differently, but it wasn’t me that alienated him from me. Nothing I did caused this estrangement. I am certain of that.
Again, it is my hope and prayer that he is doing well. I wish him all the happiness in the world and hope that he holds true to that which is good and lets go of the evil. There are so many temptations in this world and I know, from personal experience, that they can sometimes seem too appealing to pass by. However, we must make the effort to do that which is right. We must persevere and get back up every time we fall down. I could see from early on that Cam had great potential. I believe that, despite his raucous upbringing, he will become a great individual. It all starts from the heart, and his is a very kind and loving one. I wish him well.