The First Downslide

It wouldn’t be a Madeline story without a serious dash of crazy seasoning. But I promised honesty.

I saw Tony last in April. I don’t recall if we spoke on phone subsequently or not, probably. But the last text was mid-August. Full stop. My last text said:

“I am having surgery on Sept 7th that I don’t expect to recover from and since you have decided to be such a jerk and I won’t recover you can expect my letter to you and your wife then.” I was furious at him for being a douche when I was dropping my son at college after I supported him through dropping off two kids to college. He could have been kinder. I should have been less crazy, but that sets the scene.

And I blocked him for a while until I went to Mexico, hoping I would hear from him because he knew the surgery date and my birthday were around the corner.

Needless to say, while fighting for my life, I finally stopped focusing on Tony.

Until I started to feel better and talk about it in therapy.

As my body healed and the new meds kicked in, the desperate addiction I felt towards him increased. I knew myself well enough to know trouble was brewing.

But I did all the right things. I called friends. I diverted myself. I even went on a couple great dates (those stories will follow and were therapy approved dates). I finally felt happiness, real and true, outside my home with my family the day after Thanksgiving.

Thanksgiving day and the subsequent party took all the life out of me. I slept for 2 days following. My cousins hire professional photographers and post literally hundreds of party photos.

To step back to provide context: my x never enjoyed these family parties. He didn’t want to play football with the cousins (boys and girls) he didn’t like to socialize and every year became a struggle. I love this family and would do anything to be included and they always were inclusive to The x and my boys. But towards the end of marriage I gave up on being included. I’m still surprised at all the times I said no and they asked again.

So when the guy I met asked me to a strange second date I quickly said “I will trade you for a football game!” The whole story will follow but, god bless his heart, he was so excited to be included.

My cousins are short – the girls are under 5′ and the boys under 5’8″. So I made a joke to my very serious boy cousins that I was bringing a 6’4″ athlete who could be QB (knowing full well I would never live it down). Everyone he met said “oh! Your Mads 6’4″!” And that’s all they called him all day. 6’4″. He loved it.

He was the star of the game so my cousins loved him. He’s gregarious and wonderful so it was super easy.

I was really happy that day.

So what happened to being out Trixie?

I admit I check often if Tony and I are friends in FB. It was the only social media we remained connected on. He shut it down for months but opened it last week sometime.

My social media stopped when I went in the hospital. But now I had a reason to open it because the photos from the party were fabulous. My cousin tagged me in all of them and they post to my wall.

There is a beautiful photo of 6’4″ and I together. We look like a couple. There’s photos like that with my cousins too, but I know they are my cousins. My cousin also tagged all of 6’4″s football hilights with my name. And they made comments under the photos about 6’4″ doing me proud on the field.

Today I saw Tony had unfriended me on FB. I went into shock. I couldn’t think and my reaction was to reach out. But he has been deleted from my phone for so long I truly could not recall his phone number. So I sent a text to his two emails and they didn’t come back with “delivered”. I scoured the internet with phone combinations for 40 mins until I hit it. I really couldn’t recall it. I called from my phone and it went straight to VM. I called from the house phone and it went straight to VM. I was blocked.

I called where I thought he was working and got as far as reception and hung up and called my friends and admitted my cray.

An hour later he replied that he was flying home, couldn’t text or talk now, and I was never blocked. I apologized and said I overreacted and he asked what prompted it. I didn’t answer.

Will he text me tmrw? I don’t know.

I made it through 7 months of not seeing him and 3 full months or more of no contact and I lost my shit the instant I felt rejection.

My friends say it’s because I have the photos with the guy up and he doesn’t want to see things like that. I interpret that as he doesn’t want me happy. I get confused. Why now? What’s the big deal of FB friends when we don’t communicate any longer?

But it hurt and flipped the Trixie switch.

My call with my therapist is at 10am tmrw. But what can she say that I don’t already know? Why do I keep doing this to myself with a man who clearly doesn’t want me. Or any connection with me.

I have to get to the bottom why rejection causes Trixie to trigger. And I want it to stop. I want to stop thinking about him and wanting him. I can believe he gave me the world and it was lovely but I have to also believe it’s gone for good.

I am angry and embarrassed at myself. And worried about him reaching out to me soon.

I was doing well. But my little child, Trixie, stomped her feet and wanted to know WHY now….why take me off FB now. It was a small and innocuous connection. But it was something to me. And now I’m hurt all over again.

Author: Madeline Harper

My journey through divorce and an emotional and sexual reawakening. Love, laughter, friendships, family and heartbreak included. And there is sex, lots of it, so close your eyes and turn the page if that's not for you! While I started this blog as an endeavor to journal my thoughts and feelings in an attempt to better understand myself, it has become an amazing platform from which I have met some of the most interesting and wonderful people in my life. My path is often crooked, but I hope you will share in the journey with me.

10 thoughts on “The First Downslide”

  1. FB is toxic all by itself. You are better off having no contact with him via FB or anywhere else.

    You can not truly start to heal and move on, until you completely cut the rope with him.

    Believe me, BTDT…

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Perhaps you need to think about RE-framing this. You rejected him with 6’4 so he unfriended you to avoid photos of you moving forward with your dating life. It’s a good thing that he did it. I’m interested in what your therapist has to say. Let Tony go, he’s part of your Hell and you deserve a man who can be 100% yours.

    Liked by 4 people

  3. It’s entirely possible that with his having shut down Facebook and you having been quiet on it, he may well have forgot there was still that connection and just unfriended you once he saw your name popping up in his news feed. Be careful of the line of thinking of him “not wanting to see you with another man”. I worry that if you feel he has any inkling of affection for you, you will grasp that as a reason to hold on. Don’t make assumptions in your mind about the cause of the unfriending, don’t live in a made up scenario in your head. Live in the present and what is real, and what is real right now is that 1) you and Tony are not friends and you don’t need to be
    2) you are still hurt and healing emotionally (as well as physically) and a way that we try to avoid pain is by making it go away. Reaching out to him the way you did was a desperate attempt to get rid of the pain of rejection. You didn’t want to sit with the pain and work through it, it is easier to just reach out to the person, make them respond so it feels like there is still a connection and it momentarily takes the pain of rejection away. Unfortunately you are going to need to just sit with it, work through it, and stop going towards Tony if you want to heal emotionally.
    3) you deserve better than Tony. You deserve a man who is yours in reality. Tony was yours in the made up version in your mind that you and he created. You have to realize the future you planned with him was not the reality of what was going on. You are grieving the loss of the life you thought you would have with him, when in reality what you have lost is a relationship with a man cheating on his wife.

    Sorry to put it all out there like that. It is all just my opinion of having watched all this unfold since following you for years and also I feel like you and I often have similar reactions and behaviours, so a lot of what I have written is coming from a place of projection lol. I do feel that it all applies to your situation with Tony.

    I sincerely wish healing for you. And I want to hear more about 6’4”. Lol

    Liked by 4 people

  4. While Trixie did seem to make a comeback, it seems like M has a more balanced grasp of what is going on, of what *should* go on. It used to be that when Trixie came out, while you weren’t pleased with her, you were powerless to control her, almost resigned. Now, it seems like you have this sense that maybe there’s another path through life where Trixie / Shiva the Destroyer can’t raise it’s head and run rampant, that there are other options. If you haven’t meaningfully interacted with Tony since April, then whatever hook you have remaining into him has nothing to do with him, and more with the fear you have of evolving away from the person you used to be, a person, who (to be fair) like many of us, got some kind of addictive kick out of being in intense (but unsustainable) romances where we were superficially adulated by another person. Tony hit your dopamine centers hard, completely draining them, to the point that you couldn’t regulate your own dopamine delivery system. I hope its ok I am using the word “addictive” because you did, yourself, but you know that the work that lies ahead is much like the work an alcoholic has to do to recover. Please be self-forgiving when you have set-backs. Each time, its less about Tony (or whomever) and more about how you hurt and long, and how this hurt and longing have been there for decades, perhaps, before Tony. Acknowledge that pain and give lots of hugs to that person. If Tony does follow through, I am hoping that there is a way you can kindly say to him, “Thanks for reaching out. I had a bad moment. I am coming out of it. It’s good to know you care. I think that the most caring thing we can do for each other is re-establish no-contact. If one of us does falter from time to time, to understand (as long as the reaction doesn’t hurt or damage others), and gently go back to no-contact.”

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Just a note: blocking didn’t work for me because the number is saved in your blocked contacts list. So, when I kept doing that I ultimately had to just delete.

      I truly almost forgot his number. Had I taken the pause, called my life lines and thought it through, I may have forgotten entirely in another month or so.


  5. Those setbacks are normal. You realize your mistake. Reasons don’t matter (I think it was 6’4) he deleted you on fb and though that sudden realization made you have a setback, it’s also a step forward to no contact.

    Liked by 1 person

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