Monday, March 7, 2016

The Truth

They say that the truth will set you free. I don't know that this is necessarily accurate, but I do know that I am absolutely sick and tired of being lied about. Especially when I have spent the last 3 years covering for and defending someone who SO.VERY.CLEARLY did not deserve my loyalty or respect.

So here it is: The complete truth. Sorry if this bursts your bubble about the person you think you know, but he is a master manipulator and I'm pretty convinced he's also a compulsive liar. So welcome to reality.

When I met my husband, he was a waiter. He told me he was a pilot of course, but really he only held a license, but didn't actually work as a pilot. He lived in a condo that was owned and paid for by his father. (But of course he told me it was his) Basically, he just had to make enough money every week to live on and support his partying. I fell crazy hard in love with this man. And, despite what he tells me now, I really think at one point he honestly loved me too.

He moved in with me after about a month. He would sleep all day or hang out watching TV while I went to work. He never offered to help with the bills. He worked in the restaurant a couple nights a week. After a couple of months of this, we sat and had a serious talk about where he saw his future. He said he wanted to be a pilot, but that hadn't been able to pass his CFIs in order to teach and build necessary hours to be qualified to fly either commerical or corporate planes. I believed in this man, and wanted him to succeed, so I told him I'd help him study and do whatever I could to support him while he went through this process.

And I did. I helped him make a study plan, and a timeline for completing various milestones. I worked 50-60 hours a week and STILL spent my nights going over flash cards, letting him teach me about airplanes, and whatever else ne needed to pass his written tests and checkrides to become a flight instructor. I was SO proud of him when he got it done.

He started working at the airport as a flight instructor, and spent most of his days up there. I was still completely supporting us, paying all the bills, paying for groceries or dinners when we went out, because flight instructors don't make crap. I got that, but it would really suck sometimes that he had no problem going out to lunch every day with the people he worked or flew with, while I was struggling to make sure all the bills were paid.

When we started talking about marriage, he said he absolutely wanted to marry me as soon as possible but couldn't afford a ring. I loved this man, I believed he truly loved me, and I REALLY REALLY believed that we were going to be a team and support each other. So I dug out one of my rings from my jewelry box, and that became my wedding ring. I paid for the entire wedding, the wedding trip to Maui, and all the expenses for both him and I. By myself.

Less than 3 weeks after we got married, he came home drunk one night after disappearing and not telling me where he was or who he was with, Because I had locked the BEDROOM door (he was able to get in the house just fine, but would've had to sleep in the guest room) he kicked the bedroom door in at 2 in the morning, and was drunkenly screaming at me. I tried to leave the bedroom, and he punched me, closed fist, in the face. The roommate we had at the time heard all of the commotion and called the police. My husband said he wouldn't go to jail and would tell them I hit him, so he slammed his head repeatedly into the door jam, causing a huge gash that was bleeding everywhere. I KNEW that something like this could end his flying career, so the first thing I did was call his father for help.

Even while I was on the phone with his dad trying to tell him what was happening, Mike was screaming at me. I went outside to get away, and he followed me out, punched the window in my truck, and when I told him he wasn't going to destroy my property, began hitting me again. The roommate literally had to pull him off of me. The cops showed up, took one look at me, and immediately took my husband to jail. He kept trying to tell them that I had hit him, but fortunately the roommate had seen him throw his head into the doorjam, and the 911 call the roommate had also picked up most of what was happening, so they knew he was lying.

I REFUSED to give the cops a statement other than to say I did not touch him, since he was trying to say that I did. I also refused to allow them to take pictures of my injuries. I called my attorney and made sure I did everything I could to protect my husband, despite the fact that he had just drunkenly attacked me and then tried to have my thrown in jail with his lies.

Why? Because I love him. Because I'm stupid. Because I had never EVER seen any indication of him being capable of anything like this and thought there had to be a logical explanation. Because I couldn't bring myself to believe that I had just made a huge mistake marrying someone who would put his hands on me.

Anyway, when he got out of jail 2 days later (his father bailed him out, but I went with him to pick my husband up) he was horrified and apologetic and swore he loved me and it would never happen again. But even then, his biggest concern was what we needed to do to make sure he didn't have his life ruined. My best friend's husband is an incredible criminal defense attorney, so I called him and asked him to please take the case and make sure my husband didn't end up with a domestic violence on his record. My friend agreed, warning me that if he took this case, he wouldn't be able to represent me in a divorce if that ever happened. I didn't care, because I wanted my husband protected by the best, and I never for a second believed that we could get divorced.

When the DA and the "victim's assistance" people called to try to get me to testify against my husband, I refused. They were downright mean at one point, telling me how stupid I was to defend the man who had done this to me and that he would just do it again and it would be my fault for allowing it. But I didn't cooperate with them, and told them they didn't understand because this situationw as different and my husband was NOT that person. I believed that. I did refuse however, to actually go to court with him or to help him pay the court fees, etc. associated with this. I told him he was on his own for that.

Long story short, he ended up getting a first time offenders deal because I wouldn't testify, and had to do a year of probation. As long as he was successful in that, he wouldn't have a record. However his monthly probation meetings and court ordered "victims assitance" payments added up quick, so what little money he did make flying went to that, again leaving me to pay all of the bills on my own.

My husband said he would stop drinking as a result of all of this, and that lasted about a month. (He wasn't supposed to drink while on probation at all - but that was quickly ignored) It started with a drink at dinner, then a beer after work, then before I knew it he was back to drinking as much or more as he had before. I told him multiple times that the amount that he drank concerned me, because I couldn't trust him when he was drunk. That just started fights every time about how I was trying to control him, or take away his fun, or how it was my fault that he was on probation to begin with.

Please don't misunderstand me... I love this man. We had a LOT of incredible, amazing times. Most of the time, he treated me with love and respect, and was everything I wanted. But that isn't what this is about. This isn't about all the good. It isn't about how much I adore him. It isn't about how committed to this man I am. That's all true. But this is about setting people straight on the lies that have been told about me. It's about getting my side of this story out. It's about how we got from there to here. And lot of it was because of alcohol. It became a huge problem.

He got so drunk one night we found him passed out in the drivers seat of his car after looking for him for 2 hours. Had a cop happened to see him, he wouldn've been in jail, no questions asked.

Another time, he got so drunk and mixed it with pills to the point where I found him unconscious on the floor, having lost all control of bodily functions and barely breathing. I had to call 911 and have him taken by ambulance to the hospital. I was terrified. I didn't even know until we were at the hospital that it was alcohol and pills, not a medical problem, that was the issue.

There are plenty of other examples, a lot of which his friends and family were witness to. The drinking was a problem. I thought so, other people thought so, our freaking marriage counselor thought so. But my husband didn't, so he kept right on drinking. I never knew exactly what I was going to get when alcohol was involved. Sometimes, things were fine. Sometimes, he would be irritable and moody. Sometimes, he would be downright awful. Verbally abusive, mean, and crossing physical boundaries. I learned the more he drank, the less I should. But even that didn't help when he was on a roll. If I tried to reason with him, it was pointless. If I tried to walk away, he would follow. If I tried to stand up for myself and tell him he wasn't going to treat me like that, he would freak out saying that I was calling the cops on him to have him arrested and he would get in his car and drive away drunk and I wouldn't hear from him until he sobered up and decided he wasn't mad at me anymore. (Hours, days, it's been up to a week of no contact. I never knew. It's part of the insanity.)

We went to Amsterdam for Easter, just the two of us. We ended up meeting up with a couple of girls stationed in Germany, and spent the evening exploring Amsterdam and drinking at a local pub. Everything seemed fine until it was time to go. On the walk back, Mike got pissed off because we somehow lost the other girls in the crowded street. He sat down and refused to move. I told him to give me my credit card and subway pass and I'd meet him back at the hotel when he was done pouting. He threw he wallet at me, and when I took it and started walking to the station, he attacked me. He punched me so hard that I lost consciousness. When I came to, he was standing over me screaming. I got up and ran to a taxi down the street, begging him to lock the doors. Mike tried to punch the window out of the cab to get to me, and the driver drove off with me inside. I didn't even have any money to pay for the ride to the hotel, but the driver was sympathetic and, after encouraging me to go to the police (which I refused - again) he took me back to the hotel.

I made up a story to the hotel clerk about being robbed, got a new room key from him, and locked myself in the room, and a short time later my husband showed up, demanding to be let in. I told him I wasn't going to let him back into the hotel until he was sober, and he started screaming about how I was stealing his passport and holding it hostage and other nonsense. The hotel clerk made him leave by threatening to call the police. I found out later that he called his dad, went to the airport, and somehow managed to get on a plane and back to the states by telling everyone that I had stolen his passport.

Then, whlie I was stranded in Amsterdam trying to figure out what to do, he and his father rented a U-haul and proceeded to go to the house and move out, taking both his stuff and mine. No apology. No concern for me. Nothing. He hit me. He left me in Amsterdam. And he took everything and put in his dad's hanger.

I should've been done then. I know I should've. He was still on probation at the time, so I should have gone to his probation officer, showed her the pictures, told her the truth, and finally let my husband suffer the consequences of his actions. But I didn't. I covered for him again. I defended him again. And I worked it out with him again. Because I loved him.

He said the problem was that the house we lived in was "mine" not ours, since I lived there before him. So, to make him happy, we bought a new house that was "ours". He got off probation in August. In September he decided he was taking a job with an airline that would put him in St Louis. No discussion. No "how do you feel about this for our family?" Nothing. I mean, I knew that a pilot was the goal. For God sake, I'd been literally supporting him to get him there. But when you have a spouse, you have to talk about major decisions like, oh, I don't know, taking a job across the country. But he didn't. It was, once again, all about what he wanted.

I was hurt and pissed that he thought it was okay to make a choice like that without his wife. But he wasn't going to change it, and after many arguements about it, including one where he literally said to me "I love flying more than you", I knew I wasn't going to win and if I wanted it to work I had to get on board.

I'd been telling him for months we needed a vacation to reconnect. He would tell me okay and then turn around and say he couldn't make plans, because he didn't know what was happening with the airline start date and that came first, always. Finally, I told him I was going to Europe for a week (I had to go for work anyway, so I took an extra week for vacation) and that I wanted him to make it a priority to come. He said he would. He didn't. He told me the NIGHT BEFORE we were supposed to leave that he wasn't coming. And yes, I got pissed. I was so hurt that once again, I wasn't a priority. That once again, it was all about him. That once again, I didn't matter. I told him I wasn't doing this and to leave.

He went to the lake house, and I went to Europe. I BEGGED him for the first 4 days to come meet me there, because it was all I wanted. It had been all I wanted the whole time. He kept telling me he would get on a plane the next day, he never did. When I got back from Europe, he was headed to St Louis for school the next week. He refused to see me and talk, saying that I had kicked him out and it was done and on and on. I begged. Again. I apologized. Again. He never did. But he "came back" in that he would stay the night at the house when he was in town from St. Louis - about 1-2 nights a week.

I tried to be as supportive as possible, but seeing your husband a total of 8 days in 2 months is REALLY hard, especially when you had no say in the decision. He kept promising it would get better as soon as he was done, and kept telling me it would only be a few more weeks. But it was always something, it was always longer, he was always frustrated and stressed, and I was always alone. It all sucked.

So I just kept holding my breath and waiting for him to get through the commercial pilot training school so that we could FINALLY be where we wanted to be. He would have a stable job and be able to help with the bills that I'd been paying. He would have his dream job, and maybe the dedication to that would be enough to curb the drinking and make him more willing to settle down, grow up, and be a family. I was even getting excited about a move to Raleigh, where he would be based, because it meant getting away from the negative influences here, starting a new life there, and building something together as a team. I was willing to leave my friends, my job, and everything I have here to follow him to Raleigh so that he could have his dream. And I was doing it happily because I LOVE him and WANTED to be with my husband, more than anything in this world.

Well, guess what? He finished school a week ago. And he left me. In the same week.

He failed a checkride, came home for a couple days, got insanely drunk, lost his shit when I confronted him about it, packed his shit and left. I didn't hear from him for a week, not one word. I finally met him at the airport to confront him, to talk to him, and to try to work it out. I had a lot of time to think, and the ONE thing I needed from him was for him to stop leaving. And I told him that. I told him I would follow him to the ends of the earth, that I would (and HAD) do anything for him. I just needed to know we were in it together. We were a team. That he was as committed as I was. And that we were going to make it work. I told him the leaving'moving out things had to stop, immediately and permantely. He said he loved me, said he would find a way to stop leaving, and then said he had to go fly a trip.

Which turned out to be a lie. Apparently it was all a lie. Because he called me yesterday, and told that he didn't love me. He told me that his goal had been to become a commerical pilot, and now that he had that, that's all he wanted and nothing else mattered. He told me he didn't care, he wasn't coming home, and he didn't want to be married.

So guess what? I got used.

I spent 3 years literally taking care of a man, supporting him, and helping him follow his dream only to be dropped the second he got what he wanted. But even better? He's upset that I'm no longer keeping his dirty little secrets. I'm done lying for him. I'm done defending him. I'm done pretending the things that he is doing are ok. They are not. And it pisses him off to no end that I refuse to play his game anymore. Apparently, he has lost some friends because of the way he has acted. But he blames me. He has never once taken responsibility for his actions. Everything is someone else's fault. Hitting me, drinking too much, leaving. All of those things he can justify by placing the blame elsewhere.

Am I perfect? Absolutely not. Have I been wrong? Yes. And I've apologized and tried to do better. I've taken a hard look at things that he tells me were problems, and tried to fix them. He told me that because I'm a perfectionist, nothing he does is ever good enough. So I tried to be more encouraging and less critical. He told me that I'm controlling. I can be. I tried to let some of that go for him, and let him figure more stuff out for himself. Those are his complaints about me. Basically that I was pushing him too hard, and controlling too much. Maybe it's wrong, but it was because I saw his potential. I saw the incredible man I thought he could be. I saw what he was capable of, and wanted him to want it to. And I was, and am, willing to change to make us better. Willing to fight for us. I believe in the commitment I made when I married him.

I wanted his time and attention. To be considered. To be included in decisions that would affect both of our lives.

This, my friends, according to him, is why being married to me is unbearable, and why he just used me to get what he wanted and then left. Because I wanted a partnership instead of a child. A man I could depend on. And to be with the man that I love. Safely. Completely. Happily.
What I'm asking for is pretty terrible, right?

I love this man with all of my heart. I did then. I do now. And the stupid thing is, I would probably still be defending him and lying for him and letting him use me, if he hadn't given me any choice. I want him to succeed. I want him to get help. I want him to be the man I know that he can be. But I can't make his choices for him.

But now, the truth is out there. Do with it as you will. Check it out for youself, a lot of it is public record. Choose to believe it or not. That doesn't make it any less true.

I love him. I will probably always love him. But I won't be treated like this by him anymore. And I sure as hell won't let him lie to everyone about what really happened to get us to this point.

1 comment:

  1. Sounds like we were married to the same man. But unlike you, I hated my ex-husband with a passion. He was a user and never cared about anyone except himself. I finally left him when he got drunk on the very first day that he was supposed to watch our three-month old baby. Once the dust settles and you are free from him and when you look back, you will see that he never deserved even one day of your life. Love is a gift that you gave him, and instead of treasuring it, it sounds like he exploited it. People like him look for people like us who are generous with our love.