Still Skanky After All These Years

0D5C4FFD-9531-4250-A81D-81D40476E4E5

Today Will went to work as usual. But, mid-morning he showed up at home. I was a bit alarmed. I thought maybe someone died or he got fired or…worst of all…he had some relapse or was about to disclose something new.  He came and sat beside me and said simply, “Skank is in town.”  If you remember, Skank is the slut that Will worked with at a branch of his company in another state. She was one of three whores at work with which he had affairs. She was, by far, the longest at about four months. At that time, Will traveled “for work” a lot. 🙄 She is also the one who had several posts in the online shaming site, Homewreckers dot com. One was from me. She is the one who attacked me and blamed me for her own slutty behavior and cyber bullied me when she found out I knew about her.

So, when Will says she is in town, well, that’s a pretty big trigger. He was unaware that she was coming here for work and only caught sight of her in the office out of the corner of his eye. He did not take a second look, he did not engage.  What he did do, was go to his office, get his keys, duck out of the building and drive home. To tell me. In person. And to sit with me as I absorbed the information and begin to process. We discussed what he would do if she approached him. We discussed what he would do if she was in any meetings he was required to attend. We discussed what he felt when he caught that sight of her.  I asked him to go back to work and let me process. This post is part of my processing.

Of the many women Will has been with, this particular person disgusts me more than I have words for. I generally don’t hate anyone, but Skank is the one person I feel rage for whenever the thought of her or discussion about her comes up. Maybe it is because she was the one who dared to come into my home and into my bed and screw my husband. Maybe because she demanded that Will tell her he had feelings for her…which he did because he didn’t want to lose his free and easy access to sex. Maybe it’s the very fact that he is forced to refer any work related emails or phone calls from her to his tech to handle because she is too stupid to realize he can’t stand even the sight of her name coming across his computer screen.  Maybe it is simply the fact that she stole what is mine. My husbands time, his body, his interest, his attention.  Particularly at a time when I was in need of his support and help in our lives.

Will no longer visits prostitutes or massage parlors. He does not have any contact whatsoever with any former affair partners. But, Skank? She just keeps intruding in our lives. She will have a problem that she can’t resolve and will try to call Will directly. She shows up from out of town on Will’s floor where she has no need to be. I don’t want her to be a part of our lives and I have such anger at Will for bringing her into our marriage. I just want her to disappear from our memories. I don’t want her to have the power to trigger me. I am tired of letting her have that power.

Turning the page, the positives are obvious. Will did not engage and came home because he wanted to be with me when I got the information that she was here. He was concerned for me and knew it was a trigger so stepped up to tell me himself…in person. He said his initial reaction to seeing her was disgust. And shame. He now questions himself like I questioned him years ago… How could he lower himself to have sex with someone like that? He posted on Facebook this afternoon about gratitude. He had a paragraph about me:

“ I’m grateful for Leigh. Words can’t properly express my feelings towards her. She is loving, persistent, caring, protective, kind, humble, beautiful, witty, resourceful, intelligent, authentic, passionate, and courageous. I am learning that marriage and love are action words, and I’m grateful she is also patient as I continue to learn how to effectively and lovingly provide, protect, and pursue her heart.”

I am choosing to put this day behind me, where it belongs. I am choosing to see Skank for what she is…a sad, pathetic, needy person who is “less than” in every way. I am refusing to give her any more power in my thoughts, in my life or in my marriage.  I am choosing to be grateful that I am not the type of person she is. I am grateful that Will has progressed enough to see her for what she is and to appreciate all that I am. I am grateful that, after all this time, Will and I are different people…better people. And Skank? She’s still Skanky after all these years and that’s her problem.

Leigh ❤️

Advertisements

The Physical Legacy of Betrayal

7DC4338D-3D1F-4753-A8EE-49EF448CBE33

As I write this, I am sitting in bed past my bedtime because I cannot seem to sleep. I can’t sleep because I am in some pain. I am in some pain because I just had a major surgery. I just had a major surgery, because my emotional trauma literally “broke” my body’s ability to function normally.

I have learned more than I ever cared to in the last three years about CPTSD, fight or flight, Stockholm Syndrome, gaslighting, meditation, emotional support systems, etc…etc…etc… What took some deep diving and demand for answers was information about the physical aspects of severe betrayal trauma.

Like most partners of cheaters or SA’s, when I discovered Will’s secret life, I went into a sort of shock and could not make sense of my world any longer. I involuntarily lost over 50 lbs. in less than 3 weeks. My heart rate was erratic, I began having anxiety attacks, I would get lost in a fog and “lose time” for hours or even days. I had instances of waking blackouts where I would go places, do things, meet people…and have no recollection of whatsoever. Some of that time is still inextricably lost in my memories. I am hoping that’s a tender mercy. About a year after D-day, my physical symptoms began to dissipate little by little. I was able to gain a little weight back, the anxiety virtually stopped, my heart rate stabilized and the blackouts stopped. I was under medication that kept my HSV under control and my doctor was diligent in treating my HPV with constant screenings and biopsies.  But then, I realized, I was NOT “returning to normal” as I thought. New, more dangerous and insidious health issues began to arise. Which brings me to this point in my journey.

As I began to gain some weight back, I became increasing fatigued. I began having pain in my joints and in my back. The eczema that infrequently showed up on my palms, was becoming impossible to manage and I would often have multiple cracks all over my hands and fingers which would bleed and were so painful. I began a medication for that which controlled it somewhat, but did not stop it. I was given a bone scan and found to have osteoporosis and osteopenia. I was put on yet another medication for that. No matter what I did for that next year, I gained weight. My cholesterol shot up dangerously and I was put on a statin medication. My hair began to thin dramatically and my feet, ankles and hips began to hurt so badly that even walking was difficult. I had to begin yet another medication for high blood pressure and was living on Motrin to get through the pain of each day.

Tests were done. Then more testing. I had more blood drawn during this time than a Red Cross drive. And peeing in cups. And X-rays and CAT scans and stress tests. My thyroid was broken and they couldn’t fix it. My adrenal glands stopped functioning properly and they didn’t know why. The weight kept coming, the pain increased, my hormones got so out of whack that I will be working with an endocrinologist for a long time to come. I had a minor surgery on my wrist to remove a cyst and have my carpel tunnel released. Because of the breakdown of my body and a compromised immune system due to the STDs, of course my incision site got infected and then infected my blood. A second surgery, an implanted drain and a pic line for IV antibiotics followed. That was in December of last year. I had a whole medical team to include a gynecologist, dietician, nutritionist, wellness coach, bariatric specialist, cardiologist, endocrinologist, and trauma doctors working on my health issues.

After nearly 18 months of rapidly deteriorating health, with no solutions, it was discovered that severity of trauma I had gone through, had worn down then broken my body’s ability to physically regulate normal function. The most dangerous was my endocrine systems inability to produce necessary hormones to facilitate any type of regulated metabolism. The hormones in my gut had gone rogue and there is no medicine that can repair them. I became pre-diabetic, high risk for heart disease, stroke and heart attack. Even thyroid medication was too dangerous for me to take because the way my systems were reacting to “normal” remedies was erratic and unstable. I was nearly 100 lbs. overweight, couldn’t sleep, had shortness of breath and my quality of life was degraded.

The bariatric docs referred me to a surgeon. My team believed that a surgery like bariatric bypass would be the best option. The thinking was not that I had an eating problem (the closely monitored 650-700 calorie diet produced a 10 lb weight gain in 8 days) nor did I have an exercise problem. I walked everywhere, albeit painfully, and kept as active as I could. The problem, they believed, was one of irreversible shock to my physical body. How to fix it? Shock the body again…in reverse. Instead of traumatizing my endocrine system by tapping into the hormones that were broken beyond repair, they instead decided to eliminate the home of those by removing the part of my stomach which was feeding the out of control hormones into the rest of my body.

Thus, here I sit, late at night, one day released from the hospital and unable to sleep because I have staple stitches in my belly and an open wound. The surgery was laparoscopic and successful and after three days, I went home. After a day and a half at home, my wound became red and hot and I could not stand. Although they had done everything they could to compensate for my weak immune system, a large abscess had formed and I had to have a second procedure to drain it. Another few days of IV antibiotics and blessed, merciful pain meds, and I am again home.

I have great hope, because even with the pain and discomfort and annoying-ness of a clear liquid diet, I feel better. My joints don’t hurt when I stand up from sitting. My back is pain-free. My outlook is optimistic.

I should clarify something. I didn’t post this to whine or bemoan my circumstances. I posted this, really, for two reasons.

1) I know others have had the same trauma and may be experiencing some of the same physical difficulties. Sometimes we neglect to remember that our emotional, mental and physical health are enmeshed and intertwined. It sounds like a long road from betrayal trauma to major surgery, but it is not. I assure you, that road is clear and unobstructed.

2) Although the psychology community has made great strides in recognizing the damage of betrayal trauma due to sex addiction, they are no experts when it comes to physical manifestations of that trauma. It is so important to be aware of all that is going on with one’s body and to be an advocate for one’s own health. I would have never found answers and would never have known how ravaged my body had become had I not pushed and persisted. Indeed, the weight would have killed me had I continued to try to diet and exercise and believe that I could fix me. I would have gained weight until my heart gave out.

Lastly, I am eternally grateful to a couple of compassionate Air Force doctors and a slew of battle hardened Army medical specialists and surgeons who understand PTSD and depression and the physical effects of emotional/mental health. In my opinion, heroes don’t wear capes. They wear scrubs and lab coats and surgical masks. They wear concerned faces, compassionate smiles and combat boots. I am blessed and humbled and grateful to know such heroes. ❤️

 

 

Thirty-Nine YEARS

1BFFC9A5-5E60-4D4E-AA14-BA299F518648

June 30th was our anniversary. Our 39th anniversary. It’s a long time to be married. It’s an even longer time to be married to a sex addict. 😏

When we were married in 1979 (yikes!), the world was a different place. Men were different and women were different. All I wanted was to be married to someone who loved me like crazy and would be my friend, my lover, my protector and the father of my children. I was committed and meant every word of our wedding vows…to love, honor and cherish. Thru thick and thin, in sickness and in health. I MEANT those words. I think those words were completely foreign to Will. He did not comprehend, let alone mean any of them. And, let’s face it, he’s not a quick study.

Many, many times in the past 39 years, we have come close to calling it quits. When he cheated, when he lied, when he ruined us financially (over and over), when he was demoted in the military (twice), when they courts martialled him, when he confessed “everything” in 1996 and pretended to turn over a new leaf…and then of course, D-day. Never in that time, was I truly happy. Never in that time did I feel loved and protected. As puzzled by the words love, honor and cherish Will was, I was equally puzzled as to why my marriage was always so difficult and why was there something missing? I did not know what it meant to be loved, honored or cherished. I thought what we had, was as good as I deserved. Will often told me, in so many ways, that I was not good enough, I was difficult, I was the cause of everything that HE had done. And I believed it. Only really special women were loved and cherished…and I was not special. When D-day and the aftermath of slow mini disclosures came about, I had complete confirmation that I was not special…not to Will, not to my girls, not to my mother or sister. I had always felt alone…after D-day, I realized I had always been alone. It was the hardest time of my life. And I tried to end it. I thank God that I failed. That was three years ago when we had been “married” for a mere 36 years. Times have changed.

Looking back, I can’t honestly say why we are still together. We don’t have an epic, overwhelming love story. We aren’t the beautiful, wealthy, accomplished people who seem to have it all together. Currently, we don’t have the passion for one another that we hope to have when we get to that point in our recovery. But, I think there is much to be said for commitment. But, like I said, 39 years ago, men and women were different. When you married, you stayed married.  Even through all of Will’s infidelities, when his addiction was at its peak times, the thought of divorce never crossed his mind. When we married, I committed to Will…heart and soul. I took our vows seriously and I lived them. Will took what he understood, seriously…it’s just that he never understood them. He just knew that somewhere within him, he didn’t want to be without me. It has taken him 39 long years to start figuring it all out. But, we both look back now, and understand commitment differently. We treasure our history, our shared memories, our family, our experiences, our laughter and our sorrows. I think this is all why we are still together and willing to keep working for our marriage.

Today I can say that I am not alone. I do still get lonely and I am working on that. I am no longer puzzled by the past because I have my eyes wide open now and the confusing signals I got then, make sense knowing what I now know. I have discovered that Will is not the key to me feeling special or “enough.” I now know that his addictions were born largely out of his own feelings that he was not special or enough. I am still learning what it is to feel loved. Will is still learning how to love. We still have much to learn…but the difference now is that we are learning together. Finally, after nearly four decades, we are on the same path. We are living our lives differently now and it feels so much better and healthier. We see little changes in one another that are making big differences. Life is good. I am blessed and grateful.

Leigh ❤️

The Pergola Project

ED820D59-1898-4A54-988A-80429B693C53

Summer! Finally! I love this time of year when the warmth of the sun seeps deep into my bones and the pace of life seems to slow down. I am an outdoor kind of girl and love to putter around the yard, so it was no surprise to Will that I wanted to put up a pergola over our patio this year. After getting quotes and searching online for a ready-made pergola, we came to the conclusion that the only way to get exactly what we wanted, was to build it ourselves. This alone was slightly triggering. Let me explain.

In the past, Will would begin to argue, complain, attack, withdraw etc, the minute a project was proposed. What I know now, that I didn’t know then, was that he resented spending time on projects which he felt could be better spent practicing his addictive behaviors. All I saw was him telling me how my idea was stupid, that we couldn’t manage it, that it was too expensive, that it would take too much time…blah, blah, blah. He was completely unwilling to work with me and intentionally put up obstacles and resistance to thwart my plans. This made for a hellish experience when renovating our first home from pillar to post. Much of the work on that house was done by me…and my kids when I could recruit them.

So, when it became clear that building a pergola together was the best option for our plans and our bank account, I immediately bounced back to days when Will would disappear to make a Home Depot run…and didn’t come back for a couple of hours.  I thought of the many, many times when he promised to take care of some aspect of a project I couldn’t do on my own…and he never followed through. I remembered how he told me the kitchen renovation was not gonna happen unless I could do it on my own with a $500.00 budget. (I did and came in under budget at $380.00!) I know now that as we were building storage in our garage, Will was coordinating with the Skank for her trip to MY home, to sleep in MY bed and have sex with MY husband.  So…yeah, a building project with Will was an event that I both dreaded and needed to confront.

After receiving the lumber and spending a week staining and setting the footings for the posts, Saturday morning was the day. We started out okay…and then things quickly went downhill. See, Will is inflexible. He gets an agenda or method in his mind and if something doesn’t go as planned, he loses it. This is something he has been working n, but has much more work to do. So, he had in his mind a certain way to begin the pergola, and without going into the weeds here, it wasn’t a viable plan. I suggested we do it a different way and “Old Will” quickly emerged. He discounted what I was saying, began to be short and abrupt, interrupted me or spoke over me. It was not going well. But then…something amazing happened. He was on the ladder, I was on the patio holding the drill and lag bolts. He was on his way up the ladder and our spat had grown into an argument. We were sniping at each other and it was painful and ugly. He stopped going up the ladder and came down to where I was. He looked at me and said, “This is not us anymore. Let’s start over.” And we did. We spoke to one another instead of at each other. We calmly discussed our views about the best way to accomplish our goal. We apologized to one another and hugged.

Now, for some people, this is their normal. For Will and I, this was nothing short of miraculous. We worked together the entire day. From 8:30 am to our finished project at 9:30 pm. We have never, ever finished a project, even a much simpler, smaller one, in a single day. Ever. This was such a valuable lesson for us both. I learned that Will is truly changing and is trying to be present. Will learned that projects get done when he is here and present.

And we have a beautiful new 16’ x 18’ pergola that we have been enjoying every day.

Progress, people. Progress.

FA5876B6-B7A3-4D1F-904E-13A6CAF9EF4A

Three

8394FFDF-8EF3-4E5A-82C8-3D7817A8695F

 

Today is my D-day anniversary. Three years. Three years ago, May 17th was a Sunday. Will and I had gone to church, come home and had Sunday dinner and then our son and his wife called us as they usually did on Sunday afternoon. Will and I had returned a few days earlier from a trip to Florida. A work trip for him. Time to relax in the sun for me. Time “together” in the evenings for us as a couple. Only….it didn’t really work out like that. For some reason, Will had meetings late in the afternoon and early evening. I spent each night on my own (table for one please) and he was wrapped up in “work stuff” on his phone and IPad.

Well, that Sunday evening, after returning home, it all became clear. Those distant too-busy-with-work-to-spend-time-with-the-wife moments were spent with “The Ho’” planning their next encounter when he would travel to her state ostensibly to work, but actually to have sex. Disgusting, can’t-vocalize-the-words kind of sex. That trip never happened because that narcissistic Ho couldn’t resist sending selfies of herself to Will’s phone…while it was on speaker…while having our Sunday evening convo with our son and daughter in law and grandson. He was busted and my heart was broken out that day.

So, yes. It has been three years since that day. Guess where we are. Florida. Same business conference. Same state. Same time of year. But…different. I am OK. Will is OK. He went to a golf meeting today with a client and unlike last year, I stayed at the resort. I spent time with myself. I read, I watched T.V., I took myself out to dinner and had alone time. I was alone like that trip three years ago, but I wasn’t lonely. We have come a long way. He checked in throughout the day…not to be accountable, but to connect. To say he loved me. To tell me how his golf game went. To tell me what he was having for dinner. It was nice. It was comfortable. It was healthy.

So, yeah….three years. Time has not flown by. It has been rough. It has been painful and we still have our moments. But it is better. Better than deceit. Better than loneliness. Better than neglect. Better than the insanity of addiction.

Just…Better.

Leigh ❤️

Still Here. Still Trying.

F18B384F-3F1F-4E50-8719-C6FC3BD96230

The saying, “Time flies when you’re having fun” is not what comes to mind when describing my little six months + hiatus from blogging. It has been a rough half-year.

Nothing catastrophic or life changing. Just. . .life. Will and I have had the least healthy period in our lives. From flu, to bronchitis, to pneumonia to surgeries and infections…well…we are both currently healthy and looking forward to a warm active summer. But, I gotta say, it’s been a long, cold winter of discontent.

We had an odd Thanksgiving. No family this year…just the two of us. I had a minor surgery on my wrist in early November which got infected, then became critical requiring a second procedure and a pic line of antibiotics. It put a damper on the day for sure. This was the beginning of our (insert ominous music here) season of sickness. We had a quick trip to see daughter number 2 and her family, then had a lovely time decorating this new home for Christmas and enjoyed shopping for family. We had a peace and contentment with the season until about a week before Christmas, we both came down with the flu. The I-wish-God-would-just-end-my-misery-with-merciful-death kind of flu. We struggled through Christmas Eve dinner and then a short visit to daughter 1 on Christmas Day. Then quarantined ourselves for the next week and a half. We delayed our annual New Year’s Day feast for a full week as we just couldn’t manage. A series of disturbing laboratory results for me was followed by the same wrist surgery for Will. By February, we were both suffering from medical fatigue. Too many trips to doctor appointments, hospital visits and consultations. In March, our beloved canine child began failing and we lost him to pneumonia among other old age maladies. Then, bronchitis and pneumonia laid us out for a couple of weeks. Thankfully, we have a different doctor than our dog and we were not put down. 😏 Anyway, we are both now feeling better and still working hard on our marriage and recovery.

All of this illness has been such a harsh reminder of our mortality and our very human frailty. In the midst of some of our worst days over the last few months, it was impossible not to think about the what if’s. What if one of us did not survive the flu from hell? What if that infection had paralyzed or disabled me? What if that pneumonia was so severe that Will could not be cured? And, what if I was alone throughout this season of sickness?

The words, “in sickness and in health,” keep coming into my mind. In our, now nearly 39 years, of marriage, we have had more sickness (emotionally, physically and psychologically) than health. And yet, here we are. Still working on full health. Still recovering. Still here…together. Still trying.

I am heartened by this wonderful quote from Jeffrey R. Holland-

“Don’t you quit. You keep walking. You keep trying. There is help and happiness ahead. Some blessings come soon, some come late, and some don’t come until heaven; but for those who embrace the gospel of Jesus Christ, they come. It will be all right in the end. Trust God and believe in good things to come.”

There ARE good things to come.

Leigh ❤️

On Being Lonely

IMG_0509

Will and I used to have such a “great” social life…back in the day. Lots of friends, lots of parties, fun times out, friends over for dinners and holidays. We really were a go to couple for social gatherings and good times. What I didn’t know was that Will was more than social with more than a few of those so-called friends at the time. In 1995, I had had enough of Will’s drinking and abuse. He had ruined us financially with his gambling and finally disclosed his serial cheating. (I thought completely at the time..he was still lying) I was leaving. I went back to my faith and began making plans for divorce. Will seemed resigned at first but then had a change of heart. He, too, began to attend church and we reconciled. He seemed to be a new man. I never saw him drink, he cleaned up his language and never laid a hand on me in anger again. Because he dutifully served in the church, I believed his sexual acting out and gambling had stopped too. Our social life changed. We had a few close couple friends who knew our story and were with us through our life changing conversion from party people to a solid family committed to our marriage and to God. Then we got orders and moved.

It is always difficult in a new place in the military lifestyle. It takes a little while to find one’s niche…one’s posse…one’s crew. But this move was a little harder. At church we felt at odds telling anyone about Will’s past…at least Will did. he didn’t want me to give anyone details…so I didn’t. He didn’t go out drinking with anyone at work and didn’t really like anyone he now worked with. I had friends at my job and tried to go on double date nights with Will and my friends and their hubby’s.Nothing ever clicked. We had several good friends thru church and had an active enough social life in that respect…just no one we felt really close to. I felt like we were hiding the big secret that was Will’s “former” life.

Will retired from the military and got a great job. I thought maybe this would lead to some new social opportunities. But, no. A couple of great company trips and hanging out at resorts with his co-workers…but that’s it. He moved within the company to a new division and, well, he didn’t really seem interested in making good friends or introducing me to anyone. I retreated into myself. I began to find it harder and harder to make friends. I dreaded questions about Will and I. How long we had been married. Where we had lived. Why had we fallen from our faith and what had brought us back. It became easier to just rely on my family, my kids, who knew our history.  I would find a group of girlfriends at work, but when talk of the past or of personal stuff came up, the friendships became scary for me and I would just sort of let them go. I know now that I was suffering from unresolved trauma but did not know what it was. All I knew was I felt much like I always had…there was something shameful and embarrassing in our past and I shouldn’t talk about it. So I didn’t.

I felt myself slowly diminish into a shadow of myself for 20 years. 20 long years. I was so alone. I had my children…and then my grandchildren. I took care of my home, my husband, my family, my job, was a dutiful daughter and sister. A faithful church member and friendly neighbor. But I was so very lonely. My oldest daughter had never been able to stand me. I think she loved me, but it was somewhere very deep within her. She admits to hating me for a very long time. My son was away on a mission for two years and my younger daughter lived out-of-state.  I had my two dogs…which Will did NOT want to get but allowed and did love eventually. Still, I was alone. Will began to travel a lot. I was lonelier still.

In 2013, an amazing thing happened. My younger daughter moved home! Her husband had been stationed at our nearby base and they bought a home less than 5 mins from me. I was ecstatic! My four grandkids and my best-friend-daughter-that-never-hated-me was home! I wasn’t lonely for the first time in decades! They would go to the zoo and invite me. I wanted to go out to lunch and would call them. They needed someone to help with Halloween costumes…I was there! It was glorious! I was happy! Will would go out-of-town and it was ok…I would go over for movie night.

Then D-day. My daughters were the first people I called. They came over. My oldest preferred to call Will before getting to the house. In the meantime, my sweet daughter who shared everything with me and me with her, did not take the news that I had asked Will to leave the house because I caught him having an affair. She screamed. And then said simply, “I can’t be here.” And left. My older daughter came in and told me that Will was staying at her house and she already knew what had happened…she had just gotten off the phone with him. She offered to stay with me for a few minutes. My son called and all he could say was, “Oh my Gosh.” He just kept repeating that. His sweet wife texted me 30 minutes later saying she loved me, came stay with them out-of-state for awhile if I needed to.

And then. . .nothing. I was left to myself. My oldest called to make sure I was “okay.” My younger daughter did not call. My son texted, “I love you, mom.” None of the kids could or would talk to me. I foolishly thought that after protecting them and nurturing them their whole lives, they would be there for me when I was so very alone. I was wrong.

Later when I found out the full extent of the betrayal from Will, I called and told my mother. I told her about Will and my sister. She took my sister’s side. My sister attacked me via text with such vile and disgusting language I had to block her.  I no longer have a mom or a sister. My older sister died just after this incident two years ago and I was threatened if I came home for the funeral. Tomorrow, my older sister would have been 58. Again, I was a fool to think that after supporting my mother, bailing her out financially, protecting my sister and being there for here time and time again…there would be comfort or support for me. Again, I was wrong. Neither of them are part of my life anymore.

Now, over two years after D-day, I am again alone. We have moved again. Our new church does not know our history or the trauma. They do not know us. I am afraid of the questions. Why did you move? (Because my husband screwed a nasty herpes infested whore in every room of my old house and it reeked of skank and deceit.) Yeah…not the best way to gain new friends.

My younger daughter and her family have moved again too…out of state. But, that relationship has never been the same. I no longer have a best friend. My older daughter is still here and she no longer hates me, so that is good. But we are not best friends. I don’t have friends. I am so very, very alone.

Will works farther away from home now, twice the drive to and from, so is home with me less. I am physically alone most of my day…every day. I talk to my dog…and the robot vacuum. I don’t like who I am becoming. And I haven’t got the first clue how to change it. It is exhausting even thinking about trying to make friends. I am terrified that somehow, someone will *gasp* find out! That we will be looked at as “those” people. The pressure of living an isolated, hidden, shameful life is slowly killing me. How? How do I get past this, blogger friends? What do I do? Please help!

Leigh ❤️