Here’s Where It All Falls Apart

Bennett was looking into spending a week away. His primary excuse was his mother in law was up for two weeks around the holidays and he couldn’t stand to be at home.  He owns a timeshare and was looking to find a week right before the Christmas holiday.

When I questioned why he would go away alone, he said he figured I would join him for a week in the sun.

Initially I said no because of two reasons, one I thought it was immediately following a long overseas business trip for me and two because I didn’t think spending a week with him immediately prior to a holiday I couldn’t spend with him was a healthy idea.

But, if you know me well enough, once that seed was planted, of course I wanted to go away with him.  Why wouldn’t I?  I try to highlight all the practical reasons why I shouldn’t but my heart interferes every time.  Par for the course with me.

As we discussed this I believe I said spending New Years together was a non-negotiable for me.

Did I mean it?  Maybe. Probably not.

But even I’m sick of listening to my own empty threats.

We were due to spend and overnight together because it would probably be our last for several weeks due to overlapping business trips.  We agreed to talk more about the vacation then.

During dinner we had our serious discussion.  We didn’t get too far because I held to my original statement that I didn’t think I could get through the holidays while he remained in his pretend family/husband role.  There was nothing more that could be said, in truth, so we both dropped the subject u til we arrived back at my home.

Several times after a serious discussion, even on Cialis or Viagra, Bennett is unable to maintain an erection because he is so lost in his own head.  This time was no different.  The night wouldn’t continue unless the talk resolved in some fashion.  We gave it another shot.

This time he begged me not to give up on him and to wait. I explained that this was the second time he was asking this of me and that the entire idea of our relationship hinging on his mother’s death was weighing on me.  He said he had a firm timeline in mind, regardless of the status of his mother. Bennett said he would have the conversation with his wife and begin discussing an exit strategy from his marriage by the first week in January.

Ok, that was new news.

The long and short of the conversation was he wanted his kids to have a happy Christmas and he also wanted them home from college when he told his wife. I accepted the olive branch.  I would wait until after he New Year.

I also agreed to take a few days off and go away with him somewhere fun.  We could have 4 nights together leading up to Christmas.  He would also find quality time over the Thanksgiving and Christmas breaks to spend with me.

The evening passed as most evenings with us do, full of love, laughter and lack of sleep because of all the sex and the fact that we are physically entangled.  The morning was also pretty wonderful.

Our weekend apart was also good as we have both learned to ask the other communications expectations.   He had a music gig Saturday that overlapped with a movie for me so we set aside a time to speak.  Same for Sunday when I had an event with my son.  Small things like this help us both to be able to depend on the other when a communication style is so heavy, as ours is.

We began to make plans for our time away. It was to be a small artistic city, low-key and warmer weather than our home. We both began to get excited.

We were due to book the tickets on Monday when some worrisome news came through….Bennett was being called into his bosses office.  His company is undergoing a merger, so meetings that suddenly pop up can scare the wits out of any corporate executive worried about redundancy.  The meeting wasn’t exactly what he was worried about, but it was in relation to the merger.  They had to prep his boss to speak to the combined boards on Dec 21.  Smack in the middle of our vacation.

I actually didn’t think twice. Work is important and our trip wasn’t necessary. I asked him if we could still work something out locally to be together and he answered “absolutely.”  I should have realized his state of mind at that moment was frenetic at best and perhaps my request was not aligned with what he was thinking.

Later during the day, we began to text about the week we would now be home and we seemed to be on different pages when he asked me if the night of Dec 21 was ok and could I still take the next day off?

Hmmmm….. that was not what I was expecting.  Perhaps I knew it couldn’t be the whole week, but at least a few nights/days….

Here is the out-take of our conversation:

M: I was thinking we could spend nights of 12/19-20 in city and 12/21-22 at home.  I will still take off 12/22-23 but now work on 12/20-21.  

B: For consecutive nights in a row it’s tough

M: why? Can’t you say you are somewhere else?

B: that’s where it can get a little sloppy

M: why?

B: if I say I’m in another city and someone I know sees me, it gets complicated 

M:  ok so our week just became one overnight.  I’m having a hard time digesting this

B:  I can manage lying as long as I don’t set myself up for failure 

B: m/t that week will be long rough days prepping

B: I guess your still digesting 

M: no, it’s digested.  If we can’t work out that week or New Years, I can’t move forward.  I admit I don’t have that much resilience.  

M: we are together in the open every day and night in the city in public and now you are suddenly worried about being seen?

B: telling someone I’m somewhere out-of-state gets risky

M: I will leave you to think about what you can accomplish 

B: I think I did earlier but it doesn’t appear to be well received 

M: ok, I’m saying one night won’t work. You are worried about the failure of what – your dead marriage?  If that’s your priority then I am much more clear about where I stand on your priority list 

B: not really sure how to answer that

B: my priority is not having this blow up to the point where it impairs my ability to make an efficient transition

B: ok I’m leaving work now

M: ok safe travels home 

The last text was 5:41pm in the evening.  I heard from him again at 10pm to say goodnight, and I replied immediately.  He also sent his good morning text and I also replied.

We had some light traffic conversation this morning.

We were due to have lunch, but neither of us mentioned it.

After taking a long hard look at previous times we fell out, I believe most times, if not all, I reached out with an olive branch because it wasn’t worth the tension.

This time I have nothing more to offer.

When I think about the words in the message above, there’s a bit in there that doesn’t sit right with me:

– his use of the word failure

– using the words “blow up”

– it gets complicated

– it’s risky

All of those phrases sound to me like someone who isn’t ready to tell his wife he’s leaving two weeks later.  It sounds like someone who is still trying to protect his marriage.

He says this is because he doesn’t want to be caught and make his wife a victim, him the bad-guy and me the home wrecker.  He wants me to start off on the right foot with his kids.

Now, the other side of that coin is perhaps that’s true – it’s two weeks before he tells her so why ruin everyone’s holiday with a big fat lie if he’s caught?

Generally speaking I always believe the good in people. I want to believe him.

Seems we are in a dead heat. Stuck.

I would compromise if he offered more than one night and day, some time we can just be alone together, unbroken.  This is the rarest commodity for us, time.  I admit, I did start to get so excited and feel like I could make it through the holidays if we had some quality time together before.  But that rug was pulled out from under me.

Should be interesting how this one resolves when I don’t raise the white flag first.

We haven’t spoken and only have gone back and forth in text today, which is not good, but we are both jammed.

Missing lunch today was a passive-aggressive move on both our parts.  We are also due to see each other Friday, but if I don’t ask him, he will not suggest it either.  This is where two like-minded personalities don’t work well together.

I will say, I don’t feel good about any of this.

His words consistently say he will do what’s necessary after the holidays…so the thoughts cross my mind that I am being stubborn on insisting on his time before the holiday if it’s going to be just weeks before things may change.

Or maybe I don’t believe things will change?

Or maybe I really just need some real reinforcement that he will turn the world upside down for me just a little, if I am willing to wait for him.

I want him to come up with a compromise that is viable for both of us to help me through this holiday.  I’m not spending any time alone – my days and nights are booked with friends and family, but it doesn’t prevent the pictures from forming in my mind that he is acting all “happy family.”  It bothers me, period.

I have an awful feeling we are at a stalemate this time.

I leave this weekend for a long business trip that is critical to my new role and I need all my energies positively focused here.  I know how my mind works and I won’t let Bennett disrupt what must be done in my career/life.  I also worry that this comes at a cost for both of us, once I begin to let go, I am not sure I can come back.

Will I always wonder why he let me get away should he really leave his wife?  Will I always resent him for not “figuring something out” before the holiday?  Probably.  This worries me the most.

In the meantime, who knows what happens.

Talk, Talk

I have been so busy, overwhelmed and confused the past few weeks.

Life is good, just full, so this isn’t a complaint but more a note that I don’t have the time and energy to be unhappy or distracted by anything.  I can only focus on the things I must do and things that will make me happy.

My job and kids are the priorities, time with friends, and Bennett.

Oh, but Bennett is my conundrum.

In the past week or so, I felt a sort of sadness of things ending with Bennett even though there’s been no discussion or indication of such. Something in me was saying “let this go and run its course”.  I had no idea why. I tried to pinpoint it, determine where the feeling was coming from and I couldn’t.

I think because his “time” had run out.  In my head I was allotting him a month after he asked me to wait.  Although I didn’t give it enough clarity of thought, here’s what I had proposed to myself: if Bennett doesn’t do anything (meaning at least have the conversation with his wife) prior to Thanksgiving, then I need to end this relationship.

I noticed in the run-up the Thanksgiving that this weird sort of sadness was surfacing and I finally put two-and-tw0 together and knew it was time for a more serious discussion with him.

Another trigger was Bennett asking me to take a vacation with him the week before Christmas.  He had been hinting about a week alone with me and I wasn’t picking up on the cues (which is pretty rare for me, but I was so oblivious to him being able to find that kind of time that I just didn’t guess that’s what he was hinting at).  Perhaps he was thinking the week alone with me would be enough to get me through the holidays while he remained married.

Eventually, we had a short conversation about his leaving his marriage and he said one of his biggest fears is that  I won’t like “transitional Bennett”. That sort of stopped me in my tracks to think how difficult it would be to go through and end of marriage with someone.  It’s probably pretty difficult to build a happy relationship on the back of what he considers to be a failure.

I’m also dealing with complete and utter exhaustion.   Last year I had a near fatal reaction to a medication and my body hasn’t ever quite balanced out since then. I have anemia so badly that I require iron infusions.  Perhaps if I could predict when the exhaustion sets in, or identify it as simply related to anemia (very stress or poor sleep) maybe I could catch it sooner.  But it starts out as feeling normally tired and then suddenly takes a turn where all my body wants to do is sleep and it’s very hard for me to function.  This started to happen last weekend and I knew it wasn’t normal exhaustion so I went and had the lab tests which identify the anemia.  The iron infusion still takes about a week or more to kick in so I’m facing a touch week ahead yet in terms of exhaustion.

This situation mixed with the exhaustion and a job ramping up full speed is a lot on my plate at once.  Small things Bennett may do are irritating more than they should – and this is exactly what he is pouring out may happen to him during transition.  He says he does not like transitions like that, being somewhat of a nomad, unsettled.  How would I manage that time with him, and who knows how long that transition goes on.  It seems a long road before we would be on a path to a clear and healthy relationship.

There is such a mix of things going on right now that it’s super hard to identify any appropriate feelings.

I worry if I go on vacation with him that it might be even more upsetting to be without him over the holidays.  I fear that if I end it, I will be more unhappy without him than with him.  There is no perfect answer,  but there is a right answer, which is to end it before he leaves his marriage so that he can leave his marriage with a clear conscious.

I’m in a loop-de-loop with this.  I am not unhappy with Bennett, he brings me more happiness and peace than the times I am upset over minor or silly things.  I’m in a situation that is unhealthy, probably for both of us, and possibly to the ultimate demise of the relationship.  I want to have the strength to say goodbye for now, but I haven’t found it.

I’m due to be with him later this week, hopefully we will be able to agree on our next steps, together.

 

How to Control Anger (Text a Friend!)

I’ve been doing pretty good for the past 3 weeks being quiet about Bennett’s marriage and just enjoying our time together.

While I didn’t bring up his marriage the other day, I did make something out of virtually nothing and ultimately apologized to him.  I really don’t do well with conflict.  What I have finally realized is I go from zero to really mad immediately, with no hesitation in between. A classic characteristic of how I handled conflict with my x.

When I was married, I would scream and yell as would my then husband.  Our conflicts were ugly, mean and very disrespectful.

While I was dating Bobby I had very little, if any conflict (excluding the end of the relationship – any conflict that happened then shouldn’t have because I should have let go instead).  Bobby taught me there was peaceful resolution to everything as long as we could discuss it and speak about it to one another.

Bennett is more volatile and emotional than Bobby was, this is taking me to a whole other place of learning conflict resolution.  As much as I hate to admit it, I know I am passive-aggressive and it’s something I need to challenge myself to be aware of ALL the time.

I’ve learned how to control myself at work.  My tone of voice, my body language, demonstrate an innate sense of calm.  In fact, anyone who knows my tells will know that when I am most upset or in serious disagreement at work, I move into almost a state of stasis.  I go into a hyper-calm mode, keep people around me almost unable to escalate because I refuse to allow myself to be drawn in.  This still takes all my energy but it also prevents another terrible aspect of my personality which is when the confidence turns to cockiness.  I have learned to turn sticky situations around with some humor as well, but this is a fine line in conflict and you need to know your audience is ready to move into a relief space.   If I chose any two things to eliminate from my personality it would be the ability to get angry so quickly and the cockiness that comes from knowing how well I am doing in any given scenario.

So, I’ve pretty clearly identified how to manage myself in a corporate environment which is why I think I am finally capable of doing the job I have ultimately rose to now.  But I can’t figure out how to keep the lid on the personal side, though I am trying, sincerely trying.

Last night Bennett told me something he knew would upset me.  He waited until the right time to have the conversation, didn’t try to slip it in when we wouldn’t have time to discuss and we were both in good moods.  I sort of knew something had been bothering him a couple of hours prior but couldn’t put my finger on it and wrote it off to his dog not feeling well and him feeling a little guilty not to be home to take care of the dog.  When he did tell me, he was calm, preceded it with “I know this isn’t good news and you won’t be happy” and then said his friend needed a place to stay Saturday into Sunday prior to a memorial service they were both attending.

I got mad immediately but kept my mouth shut.  He asked me if I wanted to talk or process it and I asked to process it.  We were driving and a few minutes later he grabbed my hand and his hand was sweaty so I could tell how upset he was about delivering the news in the first place.

The truth was that I was mad that our one full weekend in 5 months was going to be cut short.  First it was the dog, then it was the memorial service on Sunday, then he had to play a gig and now I was losing an entire night and day because his childhood best friend had an argument with his sister and no longer wanted to sleep at his sisters place.  Argh.

Regardless that I felt deep down there was no conversation to be had, he (of course) had to allow his friend to stay with him, I still felt anger.  The anger wasn’t sitting well with me so I sent a text to Ann who replied immediately something like “you’re not angry, you’re frustrated and of course his friend has to stay, you’re being irrational.”  I am paraphrasing but that was the gist of our conversation and I knew she was right.  Somehow reading that from someone else pulled the anger from my belly and replaced it with the right feeling of disappointment, which I could communicate to him.

By the time we arrived to his gig I was calmer and told him I wasn’t really mad just terribly disappointed and sad I was losing the night and day.  He said he knew and was glad I took the time to think through it.  Poor Bennett was visibly relieved.

Regardless of my situation with Bennett, these are traits and behaviors I want to improve and one day eliminate.  I knew in my gut that if the tables were turned, of course I would allow my friend to come to my home and stay….but I might have offered a compromise somehow or some way to included Bennett.   I also know Bennett doesn’t think like I do entirely, I can see a scene beginning to end when I want and problem solve quickly by offering alternatives.  Bennett is more straight and narrow or black and white (sort of like when I asked him if he could care for the dog late, sleep with me, then go home in the morning and he readily agreed because he hadn’t thought of it – thanks to uninhibited life for highlighting that fact)….he’s never been in an affair and has no idea how to manage it.

Ultimately, I watched Bennett play a gig for the first time and loved it.  It was a short Happy Hour gig in a local bar and I really enjoyed myself.  He sang several songs just for me and he is a pleasure to listen to.  I even got hear American Pie which is one of my all time favorites that brings me back to childhood.

After the gig, Bennett put me in a Uber and sent me home so he could drop his gear and care for the dog, then return to my home.  By the time he arrived I had two major crisis and cracked another bottle of wine (the washing machine hose busted and water was all over the floor and leaking into the basement and my son posted a photo of weed on snap chat – thank goodness my sister saw it and called me immediately).  I was relatively intoxicated and already exhausted when he arrived about an hour later.

I opened my mouth in bed about what he would talk to his wife about and promptly fell asleep mid-conversation.  I suppose it’s not really all that important to me anyway (or I was that exhausted?).  The last thing I recall him saying was “please, please wait for me.  Please tell me you will be mine forever because I no longer see a life without you in it.”  I know I also heard him clearly articulate that he knows if he doesn’t do something soon he will lose me.  I’m pretty certain I said that doesn’t mean forever, but he said he can’t live a day, ever again, without me.

Perhaps subconsciously it was all I needed to stop me from asking more questions, or caring what the answers were.  Perhaps I was just too tired and liquored up.  Perhaps I know that I won’t make it much longer without a real argument happening about his lack of moving forward.  I don’t know.  I do know I don’t drown in those words as much as I would like to.  Of course they are amazing to hear, but I imagine a day when I hear those words from a man who is unencumbered that I can trust fully. As much as Bennett makes my knees weak, it seems my heart still has some protective covering that refuses to be unwrapped completely and allow myself faith.

I would like to believe him, it feels like I could.  But I truly don’t know what I feel as it’s so split down the middle.  As much as I love him, part of me remains closed to him, as if I cannot give him every piece of me for fear of losing myself again.  I know I can’t afford to allow that to ever happen to me again.  I just won’t allow myself to ever be debilitated by a man again.

Upon waking after our night together I felt nothing but love, peace and safety lying next to Bennett.   We spent a day doing much of nothing as he puttered around doing chores for me, and spoiling me in small ways I’m not used to – like cleaning up the kitchen after breakfast and running the dishwasher.

We ultimately ended up having a conversation about his marriage that was short, and really shed no light.  The one good thing that did come out of it was he has decided that when he tells his wife and family, he will not include me.  I have to admit that gives me a large sigh of relief.  If it means we take a break so he can do this without lying, I would consider suggesting this to him at another time, though he will doubtfully be open to it.

Bennett has a little more time, I don’t have some “date” in mind, but it’s soon in my mind.  This upcoming weekend will be one month that he asked me for a “little more time to make changes.”  I know the looming holidays weigh on his mind and he is afraid he will ruin his kids holidays forever if his parents break up around the holidays.   I get it, I understand every reasons (excuse) he gives me.  But nothing he says is what convinces me to stay with him, it’s his behaviors that keep me tied to him.  His actions towards me and the depth of his love for me are what makes me starry-eyed and filled with butterflies.

As much as I have butterflies and love, I can see I will start conflict if I stay in this situation much longer, and I have committed myself to not allowing that to happen.  Neither of us deserve it and I have already experienced a poor outcome once before from my bad behavior that I don’t wish to repeat.

I know I am writing all of these posts as a way to process my letting go or holding on.  I don’t have any of the desperation I felt last year while doing the same thing, I have more sadness – or at least that’s the best word I can arrive at.

Hairline Cracks

I rarely write top of mind any longer since I don’t have the time.  In the past, it was my style and I do find it useful for unloading sometimes.  So here goes…..

 

 

In terms of porcelain, hairline cracks devalue a piece just as much as a real crack.  Sometimes you don’t discover these hairline cracks until you bring the piece home.  Some sellers might try to tell you that hairline cracks are not real cracks, but they are, perhaps just given time.

The cracks have started to show with Bennett and I.

I am aware that much of this comes from me and my ability to maintain this relationship while he is married.  But, some of it is simply our differences.

I have learned, quickly, Bennett doesn’t like to be called out on anything.  Especially as it relates to his character.  I am the same way, so I feel that I saw this about him quite quickly.  I wonder if we handle it the same way from an outsiders perspective?  I can only give you my view of how I feel when these small eruptions happen between us.

Over the years I realize politics is not something I can discuss with people.  There’s a lot of reasons for that, but the two most important are that I respect others opinions and don’t like to debate them if I am to disagree because I don’t value politics as highly as others do.  The second reason is that I am relatively uneducated in regards to politics because I am not interested, and I don’t follow the news.  Some years my x used to need to tell me who was elected president the morning after since I was so disinterested.    These two reasons cover most of the reasons I just don’t discuss politics.

Well, I made the mistake of discussing politics with Bennett.  I should have known this could potentially lead to a rift between us because he does get polarized by ideals, where I don’t.

Here’s my version of what happened.  We were amicably discussing the vote, which I stayed up to almost 1am to watch before I passed out.  By that point I had gotten a good does of all the “other” information so I was in a better position to have a discussion about the states that voted in which direction.  Then the following conversation happened:

B: He hasn’t demonstrated any gender bias but he is a cad.

M: He’s a mans man for sure

B: Not this man

M: You voted for him!

B: Strictly business, as a person I don’t care for him.

M: Listen, I am going to say something you will disagree with, if you are saying he’s a cad because of the way he treats women, you and your friends are no different

B: Really?

And there it started….we went down the wrong path because I said something that he felt was “character assassination.”

I went on to explain how having raunchy bachelor parties, going to strip clubs and cheating in obvious situations is just as bad as anything Trump has done to demoralize women.  His point is that the women he did those things with “made a choice.”  Now I am going to irritate a lot of you feminists out there but Miss Universe made a choice too…she chose to be the face of a very expensive franchise, and he treated her like crap for it which I don’t agree with, however, she was paid quite well to be objectified.  Now, those two things don’t go in the same bucket for Bennett but they do for me.  All of it is objectifys women in one way or another so where is it you draw a line and say it’s acceptable?

I don’t get on the side of right or wrong…I tend to say that if a woman puts herself into a position like that and gets objectified, well, then suck it up buttercup or don’t do it, you have a choice.

I’m not here to debate your politics with you, I am simply telling you my point of view which led me to another statement I made to Bennett which probably pushed him over the edge this morning.

I feel that he has an idealized version of himself and sees himself as the good guy.  I have debated this many times because he doesn’t (or didn’t) even see himself as a cheat until we had sex…it didn’t matter that he had had several liaisons over many years which included sexual activity, but not intercourse…and there was no emotional involvement so it “didn’t count” in his head.  I have said this to him before and he has a very hard time accepting that he isn’t a good guy and just as much as a douche who cheats over and over on his wife in any fashion.

He hates when I do this.  It makes him nuts.

He wants to have this upstanding citizen appearance when, frankly, he’s not.  Yes, it’s probably not my place to tell him, but today when I mentioned it, I also said that the grit he has underneath all his “good guy” stuff is the nuance that I love most about him.

So he exited the conversation and took a break, without telling me.  (we were texting)

I knew I had made him mad based on his lack of response.  I suggested we table the conversation and speak in person because he was misinterpreting what I was saying in text and it was better to talk about.

For the next 50 minutes, I heard nothing in response to my several messages.  Finally the exchange became:

B: Sorry I needed a break from my character assassination

M: Then you can say that instead of disappearance. I wasn’t assassinating you at all.  It makes me upset when you do that to me.  Enjoy your morning.

I had really had enough.  He has done that more than once, promised he wouldn’t do it again (exit the conversation with no warning) and it does make me partly upset and angry.

His reply later was:

B: I get a little tired of “you think you’re the good guy when you’re not” exchanges.  It happens more often than you think.

And, just like that, the crack widened.

No phone calls this morning which never happens.

No further text from either of us.

I have a pit in my stomach, but unlike past events, I am not immobilized by this.  Maybe because I am angry that he’s throwing a temper tantrum so I am throwing one of my own.    I have a busy day ahead and can’t truly focus on this type of nonsense.  If he didn’t like what I was saying he could say that to me and he could suggest speaking about it later.

He hates to think he is the bad guy.  He doesn’t see himself in the light others would see him in if they don’t know him or his circumstances.  But the fact remains that his actions do define him in some way, just as mine do.  And those actions speak to our characters, for better or worse.

Just like the political candidates, no one is whiter than white and no one is perfect.  We all have our human flaws and make grave errors in judgement along the way.  We make our own decisions based on the situations we are in.    I don’t judge Bennett for his actions, I am simply calling a spade a spade and he doesn’t like it…he wants to see himself as the man who is a good upstanding citizen, moral role model, family man, husband and father.  And sure, he is those things, even to the extent that his husbandly duties include providing for his family and he is an excellent provider.

Maybe I am wrong for saying it more than once…and maybe this is just another example of where I need to keep my mouth shut.

In typical Virgo fashion I am hyper-critical of those I love the most.

I just don’t know if I give in to this…it’s not really important to me to make a stand.  I don’t like how I feel – so can I let my gut decide that it’s better to be passive and let him believe what he would like to believe….as I believe, maybe one day he can be that idealistic man he so desperately wants to believe he is.  Maybe he can match the values he believed his father upheld.

So, here it is 11am on the eve of the 4 nights we are supposed to spend together and I am stuck in the mud.  I don’t even know what to say in responsive to his last message because I already offered to table the conversation for later.

I have back-to-back meetings for most of the day and there will be no opportunity to speak to him before he drops his family at the airport after 2 pm today.

The crack itself is not a surprise to me, I have already seen how our personalities could clash with my critical side and his need to be right side.  Neither of us like being called out or wrong, and he never does it to me….I have never heard him utter a critical word about me…..unless I am criticizing him.  As I write this, I feel like I must be in the wrong.  But just because he sees me in a love-haze doesn’t mean I have to see him the same way.

But maybe I just have to shut my mouth in this respect as well.

I don’t know.  I don’t like the standstill we are in.

 

 

 

How To Stay Quiet

I have to say, my hardest accomplishment to date is staying quiet with Bennett when something eats at me.  But, I promised myself that my mouth stays shut about his marriage for a month while he supposedly makes some changes.

I remind myself that being in a relationship with a married man is my choice.  I shouldn’t penalize him for what I was fully aware of when I entered into this relationship and fell in love.  I am sticking to that commitment. No good comes of sticking needles in his eyes.

This weekend we have our first long stretch of time together. We have spoken about the time in an ambiguous way and I realize this was partially about my assumption we would spend the entire time together except for the times when he would drive home and care for his dog.

Bad assumption.

He wasn’t planning to stay overnight with me.  He felt he needed to go home because his neighbors would know he wasn’t home.

Nor could I go home with him. He said he lives in an open development, his neighbors are hyper aware of comings and goings and he would never be comfortable with me in his home.  He felt it was one line he couldn’t cross.   He said that his kids are going to have enough trouble absorbing the fact that their parents will divorce and I was in the picture that he didn’t think it fair to make them uncomfortable in their own home.

Personally that last piece doesn’t ring true to me…..why would anyone need to know I was there is beyond me – unless he just assumes we get caught.

It made me think about how I hate the fact he would feel the need to tell his wife about me at all.  And reminds me that I shouldn’t be part of the end of his marriage. Or so I think.

At first it bothered me that he was over thinking me going to his house and how often his neighbors would “see” him over the weekend to keep up appearances.  Instead of addressing it with him I wrote to Ann to tell her. I was calmer telling her than had I spoken to him about it. The sick feeling I got in the out of my stomach passed.

The bottom line is I am mad that we don’t have normal time together.   Maybe mad is too strong a word,  but in the moment it felt like anger.  I realize we won’t have anything normal until he tells his wife.

I made a poor assumption that he would spend the nights with me – going home for the dog late then going back in the morning.  I didn’t even think about him being at home for appearances sake.  It definitely caught me off guard.

I can tell he is flustered by the fact it upset me.  I am trying to be as normal as possible and not address it but I think he knows.  There really is not point in talking about it.  I shouldn’t want to be in his family home because it would be like sticking hot pokers in my eyes.  If her Facebook posts show a happy family, I have no doubt the home feels that way.

I keep thinking they should be like me and my x and dislike one another. But, they don’t and they have never had a contentious relationship.  It’s just dead. Nothing more or less.  I have a hard time understanding that based on the few divorces I have first hand experience with, including my own.

In any case, once I kept my mouth shut and let some time pass and didn’t raise the issue again, my negative emotion subsided.  I noticed last night and today he is particularly sensitive and loving and my guess is that he hates to see me upset and is gauging how much it was really bothering me.  But, it truly wasn’t bothering me enough to raise it again.  I tend to think that over the weekend I will make a comment, but the fact that I am already aware that I could make a comment should be enough to also help me be aware enough NOT to make any negative comments.

This is my choice, regardless of Bennett having his cake and eating it.  As long as I choose to stay here with him, I do believe I have learned that put up or shut up is pretty much what I have to do.

Surprisingly, after seeing him after work, sleeping on it and then having lunch with him today, I do feel fine.  I can see him looking for signs of conflict, but there are none and I meant that, which is good to feel right now.

My life is going in a direction I am not only proud of, but fulfilled with.  Of course this situation is not ideal and, believe it or not, I am having a sense of guilt this time being the other woman (perhaps because I believe I may be in his life in the future).  Many things have happened in the later half of this year that just keep fueling me towards a positive way of living, and I want to keep feeling this sense of peace, accomplishment and pride.

Arguing with someone I love is not a way to continue feeling like that.  Making smarter choices for my life will be.

Jealousy, Selfishness or Something Else?

Friday night was fun.  I had a long dinner with an old friend and advisor and some great conversation.  She’s one of those people who I admire so deeply that I hang on her every thought.  Amazingly, to me, she said the same about me in a text this morning.  Women supporting women is a fantastic thing to be a part of.

Bennett sent a text after his dinner to let me know he was finished and I replied soon after that we were heading out also. I asked him if he would be awake when I got home and his reply was “yes.”

I was pretty frisky when I returned home and we were chatting a bit by text and he told me how much he wished he was with me when I was so frisky.  I teased a little back and forth and then sent him a sexy little photo or three as I was changing for bed.  Before I sent the photos I asked him if it was ok.

He told me how beautiful I was and then suddenly the conversation halted.

Where did he go?

Here’s how the conversation went, though you can’t see the time stamps. Previous texts were mostly immediate back and forth, then suddenly there were long stops between text:




So that was he extent of it.  I didn’t want to talk about it because I promised myself not to start arguments with him over his marriage when I am choosing to stay in this relationship.  Being here with him is my choice.

But it doesn’t change the fact it sucks once in a while.

And I don’t know how to manage these feelings.  Is this jealousy still?  Or is this selfishness? Or something else entirely?

While I know my feelings are valid, I am committed to getting through the next few weeks without making any waves over his marriage.  I could see where my emotions were heading and it would cause fruitless frustration.

But something cracked with this. I felt the fissure deep inside. I can feel I’m starting to prepare to make changes if necessary.  I didn’t cry.  I just felt resolved.

That’s a new feeling.

When I woke the next morning, I didn’t feel badly, the feeling was in the moment and hadn’t lasted long.  Bennett called and we spoke for a long time and didn’t much address it other than to acknowledge he shouldn’t’ have said “yes, send photos” or continued to chat when he really couldn’t.

We didn’t speak much on Saturday as my friend was over and we had dinner and went to a costume party.   On Sunday morning when we recapped our evening to one another, I got the same twinge of something when he describes hanging out with the other families in the hotel for the parents weekend.  I definitely don’t have a feeling like I should be there with him, I think I must just be upset over the fact that he behaves like the married couple they are (duh).   It just gets me to the point of believing he won’t be doing anything about it any time soon.

I don’t feel any anger, or grief.  Just acceptance this time because I know I am the only one to blame for getting involved with a married man again when I said I wouldn’t.

We have quite a bit of time together over the next two weeks, more than usual….and I am curious how this will play out for me.  In my head I am getting close to the end if he doesn’t hold to his comment about changing something within a few weeks.  I have some imaginary line ahead, although I don’t really know where it is, I can feel its up there.

 

Jelly Girl

While I love to write, I don’t find that I can write much unless I have a very specific thought to address.  I admire those of you who can write fiction and poetry, or talk about generalized subjects.    I question the validity of real writing skills when all I can actually do is write about myself.  A friend showed me a great quote the other night “Write drunk, edit sober.”  Maybe I need to take that advice because I certainly drink enough and have some crazy thoughts coming to me!

I learned something about myself this week, which is always nice when the lesson is enlightening and not painful, as many of mine tend to be.

When I realized I had upset Bennett earlier in the week, I made a vow to myself to try and assess what feelings or actions arise that cause me angst, and then turn into something more, seemingly  frustration, over an unidentifiable thing.  If I am going to stay with Bennett for the time being, I needed to take a better look at what was eating at me.

As I mentioned before, I can’t control his actions, but I can control mine.

So as the week wore on and our communication resumed to it’s normal pace, I began to realize one of the underlying things that eats at me and it’s the same thing that ultimately bugged me about being in an affair before: the times were communication is not free and easy because he is otherwise engaged.  

So I sat with this for a while and took a good look at what it really went and why it bends me out of shape.

I speak to Bennett every day just about all day.  I would say most days don’t go with much more than 2 hours between communication, either by text or phone.  I’m totally spoiled by his communication style.

Not only does he communicate frequently, he communicates pretty clearly.  Tells me where he is, what he’s doing, etc.  Talks about who he speaks to during a day and so on.  I feel pretty engaged in his world.  We talk about work and the kids (his and mine).  If he’s at his sons baseball game, he tells me the score and how his son is playing.  He checks in on my kids activities or whatever I have communicated to him.  If I tell him about going to a dinner with a friend, he checks the menu for me and we talk about what I will eat or drink (of course he always checks for oysters and prosecco!).  I’m sure this might be too much communication for some of you, but it mirrors my own style and sets me at ease.  I don’t think much about where he is or what he’s doing because I pretty much know.

I know when he gets home, what he eats for dinner, what his after dinner and bedtime routine are.  He just tells me everything.

It finally occurred to me what bothered me so much last weekend and had started to settle in again for this weekend: my old friend jealousy.

Jelly girl is not welcome here.  I don’t want her and she is pretty much a nuisance.

Now, Bennett is an admittedly jealous man and I nicked named his jealous side as Jelly Man.  So when Jelly Man comes out, we try to laugh about it.  I am also admittedly a jealous woman, but it really hasn’t come out in many, many years and I didn’t feel it so much while dating last year.   I think that when Bennett gets a little jealous, I tease back, so it sounds like I might be jealous too, but I’m really not.  Due to my teasing, he nick named my jealous side as JGirl.  Yea, I know, we are ridiculous.

Last week Bennett was at a high school reunion and I think I was a bit jealous of all the time he was able to spend with his friends.  He met them on a Friday morning for golf, spent two nights in a hotel, and came home early Sunday.  Of course, he was in constant contact with me throughout both days and nights….perhaps less than usual, but still in contact. I think he thought I was jealous that there were women there he may be attracted to, and yes, I probably insinuated that on some level, but not with any sincerity.

But I really couldn’t put my finger on that last week.  It has actually remained cloudy to me until the feelings started to arise this weekend, again, and I began to question what was driving them.

This weekend Bennett is off to his daughters college for family weekend with his wife and some other family members and friends.   Of course he will be sharing a room with his wife.  Yes, that freaks me out on some level, but I know that’s not the real problem because I lived through that with Bobby while  knowing Bobby was still having relations with his wife.

This time I took a breather and tried to analyze what I was truly feeling and causing my discontent.  I realize that any significant time that Bennett gives to others tends to irk me.  Now, it doesn’t mean I don’t get enough time with Bennett, but I think it means I feel like I could have more if he wasn’t in the situation he was in.

For instance, after he had his college reunion or visited his daughter, in a traditional relationship he would be free to come visit me on the Sunday of his return.

It’s always worse when I don’t have my kids for the weekend and I have free time.  So, last night when I came home to an empty house and I couldn’t see Bennett, it irked me.  I spoke to him via text or phone almost the entire evening, so it’s not about being disconnected (like I was with Bobby for the most part when he was home), it’s about physical time.

The thing is….do I want more time, well, of course.  But, is it just about wanting the time I can’t have BECACAUSE I can’t have it ??  – I think that’s the problem here.

I was perfectly fine last night at home washing my hair, eating a late dinner and catching up on a series with an early bed time to be well-rested for important meetings this morning.  I could have seen Bennett, but it was wiser not to.  It’s just that he couldn’t.

Bennett was with me overnight the Thursday before his two day reunion outing and then for lunch with me the following Monday.  I could have seen Bennett on that Sunday he came home early, but I had meals to cook and the kids with me.  Again, it was wiser not to see him.  It’s just that he couldn’t.

This weekend, while he is away I have every day and night planned with fun events with friends, including a very cool costume party.  By Sunday I will be hung-over, have to make meals for the week and need a rest.  I could see Bennett, but he couldn’t.

I think I found my theme.

I’m getting upset that he can’t or doesn’t  offer me every minute of his free time.  I might consider giving him a lot of my extra minutes…which is totally unfair to bench him against.  What I would choose to do with my free time is my decision in any situation, and should/would have no bearing on a partners choice to spend their free time….unless they were not giving me enough.

Bennett does give me a whole hell of a lot of attention and a decent balance of time.  He has already made plans for lunch dates and an overnight this week coming as well as the following.   I don’t have so much free time on my hands that I’m bored or without things to do.  

I am penalizing him for something he’s not doing because of some weird idea I have gotten into my head. 

An entirely irrational thought in fact.  

I know this is all related to the Underlying frustration of him being married.  But seriously, this man called me from the college campus to let me know they are in a two bedroom suite and he’s so thrilled to be sleeping in the other room.  Ok, one can argue that’s not true because how would I know.  Fine, be dissenters.  I believe him.  

His wife took his daughter shopping and I got the blow by blow of the dresses she’s trying on.  He spoke to me the entire time.  I was the one to exit the conversation, it’s really not about his lack of communication or connection to me.  

I was glad I realized my irrational thoughts before they get out of hand.  

Friday night and I was meeting an old friend for a lovely night out.  Bennett was out with his family to dinner andwe didn’t expect to connect until later in the evening.  

I felt pretty good heading out. I felt like I had my head in the right place about Bennetts weekendaway with his wife at his daughters college.  

Or, so I thought.  

 

 

 

 

 

 

Lessons Learned

Yesterday I struggled with a small conflict between Bennett and I.  I do know that I don’t have great conflict resolution skills, I certainly didn’t learn them from my family growing up or from my failed marriage.  I have gotten better when at work, but generally speaking, I tend to avoid all conflict as I know I don’t manage it very well.

I go from zero to sixty much too fast, without thought.

So, on Saturday night when something started to bug me, I allowed that to fester and affect my actions and communication with Bennett on Sunday.

I mad him mad.  He wrote a text that said he was tired of the small conflicts we were having and when we spoke about it he said he was worried it was an indicator of something bigger.  If we have conflicts over small things, what happens when there is a bigger problem to resolve?

He has a good point.

I threw my toys out of the pram, I did and boy do I hate to say I’m sorry when I do something wrong.  I hate to be called out.

But here’s where the blog and my friends help me.  At least, I am honest and own my behavior, I don’t sugarcoat bad behaviors in an effort to shed a better light on myself. Yesterday I wrote about the conflict as well as spoke to a few close friends and pretty much the feedback was the same….I was in the wrong and let nothing turn into something for no good reason.

And, most likely due to the underlying frustration I have regarding the fact that I am in another affair.

I knew I wasn’t feeling well in relation to the exchange early in the morning and I sought Bennett to resolve it and apologize.  I knew enough to do that.  But the blog comments and discourse with friends helped me to solidify exactly what I needed to say to Bennett along with the apology.  I was able to meet him after work and we talked some more and set things to rights.

Bennett tried to get me to talk about what was bothering me and I was clear with him I couldn’t articulate what/why it bothered me and I knew it was minor.  He tried to sing to me to smoothe things over. I realize I acted childish and I am accountable for that.  He was frustrated by my behavior and just needed the space not to send his regular text and open conversation.  We agreed go forward that the days shouldn’t start and end on no communication again.

The comments about taking Bennett’s adoration for granted are spot on, after I gave it some thought.  I am so used to him doing anything and everything for me that I guess I suspected he should tolerate any bad behaviors as well.  Bad judgement call and he doesn’t deserve it.

I have decided, firmly, for the next month to shut my trap regarding his marriage and stop getting frustrated over it.  He has specifically asked me for a few weeks to determine what’s going to happen over the holidays (or not) and I need to give him this time.  After that (and some time before Thanksgiving) it’s my own responsibly to stay or go.   I don’t believe in crying wolf.  If I stay with a married man, frankly, I don’t deserve to complain about it.  Bottom line, I can leave and I need the balls to do that.

I am certain that all the comments relating to my outburst as a reflection of my frustration are pretty accurate.  I made the choice to stay for now, so I need to buck up.

Questions about if or when Bennett changes his situation are fair, but I don’t have that answer and clearly he doesn’t either.  I am hopeful but not entirely stupid that the wind can blow and a situation can change.

I am writing a post about how I plan to approach the next month or so in my head…how I can potentially manage my thoughts and control my behavior in order to focus on the positives of my situation rather than the negatives.

Will he leave his marriage?  I don’t know, I truly don’t.  I don’t even allow myself the luxury of dreaming of a future with him and I am sure that drives frustration to limit myself to a short-term plan when I see him as a potential long-term partner.

How long will I wait?  I don’t know.

All I can say is that he feels right to me.  He doesn’t waiver in his belief that we will be together, nor does he have me fully convinced that he is able to make a move.  Only time will tell and I have chosen to accept the time with him as a blessing.

 

 

 

 

 

Romper Room

Something happened during a conversation with Bennett on Saturday night that gave me pause.

I would say it’s something like a trigger.  He says something that doesn’t sit well with me and it raises negative feelings.

I wish I could articulate exactly why it bothered me or how, but it did. And it sat with me into the next day.

Worse yet, it came out in my behavior in perhaps less than what I perceived as subtle ways.  Bennett noticed and immediately called me on it. I refused to talk about it.

I was stomping my foot.

I didn’t want to talk about it because it was like a mist shrouded around something intangible. I couldn’t identify what was bugging me but it was there.

I couldn’t understand the point of discussing something ambiguous with him because I believe that just leads down paths not meant to be explored. Perhaps in some way my unconscious isn’t ready to talk about whatever it is that bugging me.

Or, more likely, it really wasn’t a big enough deal to make something of it…but I can see how my response reads like a negative behavior…which isn’t good.   I have done this more than once with him lately and I partially feel like I am creating something out of nothing.

The result was a disjointed conversation that perhaps picked up midstream when he started singing my favorite song (yes, my knees go weak when he does this, and he sings often but this one song is special).  After the song I suppose whatever was eating at me loosened its grip enough for normal conversation to flow and he soon remarked “now I feel like you love me again.”  I took pause and qualified that I love him ALL the time, even if  something was bugging me.  He said he was joking but I called him on it saying there was some truth in there.

I should have paused and acknowledged that he knew singing to me would make me feel calm and he is perceptive enough of my behaviors that he picked up on the nuance of my being unhappy about “something.”

We spoke normally for a bit and then I asked him something about something else that was on my mind and he gently teased, but it pushed my buttons and I abruptly ended the conversation.  I heard in his voice he wasn’t happy.  I slowed down and said I love you and goodnight with an appropriate tone of voice.  I don’t  like to ever end on a bad note, but I was clearly fussed about something.

Last night was the Walking Dead premiere (holy fucking God!) so I put down the phone during that time and looked after the show was over expecting my typical goodnight text. There was none.

I sent one with a note preceding:

“Hmmmm. I know I was upset when I hung up but no goodnight text from you is out of order.  I love you, Bennett. Goodnight ❤️⚡️❤️”

The hearts and lightning are our sort of signature.

He sends a goodnight every night and every morning. Almost without fail.

But I know he withheld because I ended a phone conversation.

It just has me thinking.

Thinking more on top of thinking about whatever nugget spurred me from the night before.

Something’s bugging me and I can’t quite put my finger on it and I think it made him mad (?) that I couldn’t share it with him and then ended a conversation.  I think he is retaliating.  Like tit for tat.

I did behave poorly, but it’s not a license for him to behave poorly as well, is it?

It’s not sitting well with me.

You know how some puzzle pieces fall into place and you suddenly see something more clearly.  Perhaps that’s why my image is still misty.  I feel that I am about to have a moment of clarity about Bennett that I may not like.

I suppose we shall see what the morning brings.

I have a strong feeling things are unraveling.  I don’t know why and some bad moments are normal, but something doesn’t feel right to me.

………..

8am this morning and no good morning text.  Rare.

My thoughts spiral, am I mad or upset?  Is he doing it on purpose or is he simply late to work this morning?  Is he mad or upset?  And, over what, really?

Do I also send a good morning text?

I’m not sure what this is turning into, but it seems that because I was unwilling to discuss what had been bothering me and also because I ended a conversation abruptly that I am being penalized but not receiving my goodnight and good mornings.

Maybe that’s not what it is.

If he is upset with me, withholding my favorite things isn’t good behavior.

Truth be told, I feel a bit sick waiting on him this morning, like I know something is about to happen.

………………………………..

By 9am, still with no Good Morning text, Bennett sends a message full of frustration that he is growing tired of the small conflicts we have been having lately because he feels they are over minor things.

My stomach turned when I read the message and I didn’t know how to reply.

I now knew he was frustrated and withheld his good night and good morning.

I called him when I arrived to the office, again unusual as he always calls me, and we spoke about it.  While he said his love for me isn’t any less, he is concerned that we seems to have a behavior between us of these “triggers” that set us both off in the wrong direction.

He’s not wrong in saying that, but I don’t know how we fix this.

I wonder how much of this is created from my mind being more frustrated with the situation that I allow myself to properly think about.

I don’t have good conflict resolution skills and I am unsure that he does either as it seems his marriage is quite sedate.  I didn’t find myself frustrated with Bobby the way I seem to get with Bennett over minor things.

I still can’t get over the feeling of unraveling, like things coming apart at the seams, though there is no true indication of that.

…………………………………………………..

I’m left with a feeling of immaturity, and not on Bennett’s behalf but on mine.  The sick feeling in the pit of my stomach is fear that I have done something wrong, maybe unforgivable, and he will leave me.  That’s utterly ridiculous. I know how he loves me, so why I am acting like this?

Maybe I feel sick because I realize I am acting immaturely and I don’t know how to fix this behavior exactly.  I need to grow up and I’m not so sure how to do this.

I need to explore what triggered me and why on Saturday night, and then why I allowed it to continue into Sunday.  Why was I acting like something is a big deal when it isn’t?  Why am I needling?  And what am I so scared of …. him leaving me?  Yes, sure.  But, why?

Does this all go back to “I’m not good enough?”

 

 

 

Bedroom Conversations

Thursday night Bennett and I planned to leave the city together after work, have an early dinner out and then spend the rest of the evening in my bed.  I found myself getting butterflies during the day as I thought about him, which is sweet after almost 4 months.  I like that I am still so excited by the thought of being with him.

One thing I love about being with Bennett is the immense focus he has one me.  Everything is about my comfort or pleasure.  Do I have the right drink, is my  seat comfortable, what would I like to eat, how does it taste, do I need water and on and on.  I know some people don’t like that, but I do.  I feel cared for.  I know how closely he pays attention to me.  And I feel how much he loves me and wants to do for me.

We had a lovely ride home together, chatting about our busy days.  He has a particular restaurant that we have been to once before that he likes to think of as “our spot” so we went there for dinner and were seated at a table next to the fireplace.  The evening was cozy and easy.  There is always so much to talk about and share with Bennett.

Bennett has an unusual memory.  He can recall dates and events down to very specific details.  If you asked him where he was on August 3, 1980, he would be able to recall exactly what he was doing.  It’s truly uncanny.  I have never met a person with a memory like this.  He can walk through every single moment since we met and describe in detail the time, date, place, scene, and even my clothes or some random event that went on around us.  There’s little use debating with his memory as he truly doesn’t forget.He likes to tell our love story over and over and reminisce about the small details of each event.  It’s very endearing.

When we arrived home we showered together after a long day.  It’s one of his favorite things to do, he had never taken a shower with a woman until me.  As we were playing around in the shower he became very frisky, and then suddenly, wasn’t.  I know him well enough to know that something crossed his mind and he would be unable to get it out of his head until we spoke about it.  I also knew he had taken a little blue pill so his anxiety must really be full tilt.  We crawled into bed to snuggle and I asked what was wrong.

I wasn’t expecting what came next, he started to talk about how out of sorts he had been since our conversation the week before and it was giving him some anxiety.  He felt that I was rejecting him by saying we had no future together because I don’t truly know what action he will take and when and he believes we will be together.   He say it feels like a rejection to him that I don’t want to acknowledge the possibility and talk about our future.    He spoke for a long while and I listened.  I didn’t engage other than acknowledgement because I had my soap box last week and promised myself I wasn’t going to be saying anything more until it was time for action.  He did ask a few times why I wasn’t saying anything and I replied that I had already told him everything I had to tell him in relation to this subject, I had said all I needed to say.  He was very emotional when he asked “what’s going to happen to us.”  I replied, softly, that I didn’t think anything was going to happen with us and that our time was coming to a close as I didn’t believe he was leaving his marriage.  I reinstated the same phrase I used last week and nothing further.

He was very upset.  He lie with me held tightly and thought for a long while.

He asked again what he needed to do to ensure I was still around over the holidays and beyond.  I asked him to start the conversation with his wife.  Beyond that, I didn’t want to be any more specific.  He feels he needs to tell his wife about me and I feel terribly unsure about that.

So much for our early evening of lovemaking.

Bennett needed the time to talk.  He processes things differently and more slowly than I do.  He is an amazing listener and admittedly has trouble sharing his feelings.  He tells me he has never had an outlet or an empathetic ear before and doesn’t like to burden anyone with his problems.    I don’t mind listening to his thought process.

He told me at the end he will never leave me, never let me go and he was going to resolve something within the next few weeks.  He asked for my patience for a few weeks longer.  As you know, this sort of fits into my own timeline that I would give him some time to process what I had said last week before taking any action.

I hope I remain committed to my internal deadline around mid-November.

Once the conversation heaviness was over, I grabbed a few bottles of my favorite bubbles and we relaxed in my bed finishing the conversation and drinking and canoodling.   Eventually, the emotional tension turned into sexual tension and we still had many hours of fun ahead.  Bennett is a perfect match for me in bed and, although he has performance anxiety, once he’s over it, he can go all night to meet my mostly insatiable demands.

This conversation didn’t change how I felt.  I was pleased Bennett was able to get to a place where he could talk to me about his fears.  I do feel like we were meant for one another, but not at the expense of having an honest relationship.  I do realize I can’t do it much longer.

I wrote to Ann and said “we shall see.”  Until then, I maintain my shroud of silence to Bennett around the subject, there will be no nagging.

Life is ok, I feel at ease and peace, and time will tell us what needs to happen between us.