Future: August 23, 2020
Before this all happened, we were just about to lawyer up. Who would have guessed the world as we know it would end…at least for the time being.
In a matter of days, I went from planing my future without you to suffering in place with you.
And what really breaks my heart is that our kids have a ringside seat to watch us..watch us do what? I don’t even know.
My girlfriend Shirley and I skyped last night. She and Steve are enjoying the changes in their routines.
She’s homeschooling Crystal, and they’re all playing board-games like Risk and Sorry.
She says she’s grateful not to be rushing through her day and savoring the time to leisurely enjoy meals together and spend together time as a family. I cried when we hung up. I didn’t realize how much I missed that.
The idea of being cooped up with you is unbearable. What will we do with ourselves? With each other? My resentment and fear for my future are only worse now. And I can’t imagine us getting through this…and yet we have no choice.
When I found out about your emotional affair with Nora, you said you were “confused,” and that you needed space. You said I was “suffocating” you. How ironic. You haven’t been able to see Nora for nearly 5 months, and now out of the blue, you tell me that Nora said she is apparently “done.”
So now we’re both suffering in place.
I don’t love you anymore, but I can see your sadness, and it irritates me that it makes me sad too.
There’s aren’t enough square feet in our house to me escape my pain and frustration. You’re not talking about divorce any more… And it really annoys me when you hover over me asking me to consider “another option.” I always shut you down because I can’t imagine what that even looks like.
Joe, you know what makes me really sad?
The way you are with the boys now.
I never realized how loving and gentle you could be. You were always such a hard-charging take no prisoners kind of guy.
I guess I always loved that about you too. I used to feel safe with you. I don’t anymore. I feel like such a hot mess.
But when I see you with Charlie and Jimmy…I feel grateful that at least they’re safe because of you.
I want the old world to come back, Joe.
I want you back to working 12 hour days, So I can complain about you. I want you to lie about being with Nora so I can catch you in that lie. I want you back missing our kids the baseball games so you could be with her. I want you to tell me again how confused you are, so I can rage at you with all my heart.
But you’re not working 12 hour days. And you’re not with Nora. I know you’re not even in contact with her because I still spy on your social media… so I know you lied to me once again.
Nora didn’t end it with you…you ended it with her.
So I really don’t know what you mean by “other options.” I’m scared, and hurt and angry. The past few months have been an epic hell. I can’t deal with such overwhelming loss, day after day. When Sarah, Paul, and Michaela died, I couldn’t bear to see your grief. I cried in the bathroom so you wouldn’t see me.
So Joe, Here we are… suffering in place. We can’t go anywhere. What’s this other option you keep talking about?
I refuse to get my hopes up. But you’re still here…and I’m still here. And when I look into Charlie and Jimmy’s little faces, I can see that they’re expecting something from me…from us. And I just don’t know what to tell them. Do you?
Daniel is a Marriage and Family Therapist. He currently sees couples at Couples Therapy Inc. in Boston, Massachusetts, three seasons in Cummington (at the foothills of the Berkshires...) and in Miami during joint retreats with his wife, Dr. Kathy McMahon. He uses EFT, Gottman Method, Solution-focused and the Developmental Model in his approaches.