Emotional Soup

19 May

I met my daughter a few weeks ago.  Unfortunately, AW hijacked our meeting and manipulated the occasion with scant disregard for our daughter’s feelings or well-being.  It all began with one of his random emails which thudded into my in-box with all the finesse of a drunk at a wedding.

Announcing that he was ‘having a clear out’, he wondered if I might like some of our children’s baby stuff as keepsakes, and he also added that as they would both be staying with him over Easter it would be nice for us all to get together.  Even though I recognised that this was just another excuse for him to contact me and a chance for him to remind me that he could still poke about in my life if and when he chose to, I couldn’t pass up the chance to get some mementos or to see the children.  Bypassing his email I responded directly to the kids saying how amazing it would be to meet up with them. During the emails which followed it soon became obvious that I would not be able to meet with them alone, and whilst the thought of being anywhere near AW didn’t exactly fill me with joy, I was not going to pass up the chance of meeting the children.

Arrangements were made to meet in a city centre pub and with a group of friends positioned at a nearby table for both emotional and physical support (I also wanted witnesses if things got ugly), my daughter, (to protect her anonymity I will call her D) her boyfriend and AW walked in. Within the first couple of minutes it became clear that the meeting was all about him and his needs.  He made it perfectly clear that D was there to support him and was the bait to ensure that I turned up. Producing an A4 piece of paper he then started with a whole string of questions from the agenda that he had prepared.  The first one was about why I had left him and the family and subsequent ones questioned my activities during our time apart as he attempted to build up a picture of how my life was progressing without him in it.

That meeting was possibly one of the hardest things that I had to do.  I couldn’t take my eyes off D who had matured into a young woman since I had last seen her, but it distressed me to see her in such obvious discomfort.  She was obviously finding it very painful to sit and listen to AW accuse me of all sorts of things,  and his overbearing body language towards her made it quite clear that he was not going to tolerate her opening up and communicating with me.  In fact, every time either one of us got any sort of a dialogue going, he would interrupt, spitting accusations at me and calling me choice names or grabbing her knee or shoulder and insisting that she should stop talking and getting herself upset.  I wanted to sit and look at her forever, however as her mum it was far more important to me that she felt comfortable and so several times I gave her the option to leave rather than be distressed – however AW insisted that she should stay and listen to what I had to say for myself!

They stayed for more than an hour and as each minute ticked by it took all my strength to restrain myself verbally.  I wanted to grab D and hug her and beg at her to open her eyes and ears and listen to me and see what was in front of her – to notice the body language and to acknowledge that I was avoiding her father’s barrage of questions because some of the responses that he was searching for may not be appropriate in front of her.  I reminded her that it was the relationship with me and her dad which had broken down and that when I left the marriage I never dreamed that I would have to go so long without seeing her or her brother.

In front of our daughter AW accused me of being a slut  (yet he had had an affair ten years previously) and he accused me of leaving him for somebody else (he was in a relationship with TFO within the first three months of me leaving) but then he totally floored me when he asked when I would be going back to him. Apparently in his world our marriage would never be dissolved with a piece of paper from the courts and we would always be bound together. What fucking planet is he on??

He tried to justify why I should meet up with him for a meal or even to spend Christmas with him, yet he would not tolerate myself and D  talking uninterrupted and he would certainly not acknowledge that the court order and subsequent injunction meant anything at all.  He refused to leave me and D alone – it was plain that he was terrified that we might find some common ground.

I can hear many of you wondering why I didn’t tell him a few home truths whilst I had the chance, but I knew that was what he was waiting for – so that he could hold my behaviour up in front of D as an example of why I was so obviously not rational, either now or when I left him and so that he could continue to portray himself as the sad victim who was still struggling to understand why his marriage broke up.

Eventually AW called a halt to the meeting, and after reinforcing his message that I may never see either of my children again, they walked out.  I sat and watched my daughter walk across the street, an emotional storm whirling around in my head.  I knew that I had done the right thing by not telling AW exactly what I thought of him in front of D but it had been so tempting and so hard not to fling the truth in his face.   I have to take comfort from the fact that I could see with my own eyes how D had grown up and was making her own way in the world and I have to cling on to a glimmer of hope because she had turned up and remained, despite her very obvious discomfort, but my heart felt as if it were being ripped out as she walked away.

A month on, I still can’t decide whether AW is simply stupid and delusional and believed in all the things he was saying to me, or if he were still being manipulative and trying to exert control over me, D and  the situation although  I suspect it was a bit of both.  I don’t know nor care whether he is still with TFO but I wonder, if I were to agree to meet him or heaven forbid, re-establish a relationship with him (yes, he did say that things could work out between us and we could get back together), would he discard TFO and welcome me back or just turn around and dump me – finally gaining control of the situation and me?

I leave you  with three more things.

Firstly, I hope that D’s boyfriend who was sat at a nearby table will support, cherish and care for her.  He is a journalist so is hopefully observational and a good judge of character and may have noticed the body language and how AW manipulated the situation.  Maybe he will be able to persuade D that there are two sides to every story.

Secondly, I will NEVER return to AW.  I have no desire nor need to see or communicate with him.  I do not encourage  his attentions nor feel any need for him to know what I am doing with my life.  I am not interested in his life, other than to wish that he would get on with it and stop trying to interfere in mine.

Finally, in rejecting AW I am NOT rejecting the children from my life.  I never have and I never will.  I will always be there for them when they decide that the time is right in their lives to contact me


4 Responses to “Emotional Soup”

  1. Terri Nixon May 20, 2013 at 5:46 am #

    What an amazing post – and what a total snotrag AW is. The good thing I can see coming out of all this, is that D will have seen all. She will have heard all. She will have understood more than you think, and any doubts she may have will be put to rest by the things her boyfriend will have seen and heard. AW might be a colossal asshat, but he’s done you a MASSIVE favour, and shot himself in the nuts by bringing along D to witness it. D might not have said anything there and then but you can bet she’ll have gone away and had a bloody good think about it all, and when she does that she can only reach one conclusion. xx

    • Scarlet Jones June 2, 2013 at 7:37 am #

      I can only hope that one day it will all come right again. I have just been reading through my solicitor’s file and his personal notes and the transcripts in there simply prove that AW is lying to the children. I even wonder if he has convinced himself that the lies are the truth and has genuinely blocked the facts from his mind. No matter. I have them in black and white

  2. Emma Hellingsworth May 20, 2013 at 8:04 am #

    Woah – that’s a hard hitter!

  3. Elaine Perry May 20, 2013 at 6:39 pm #

    That must have taken an enormous amount of control on your part, you are far braver than me I would have lashed out I’m sure. Good on yer xxx

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