The art of dating when you are in your 40’s is a perilous, soul destroying mission. I blame my misfortune with men on the 'fairy tale factor'... That never ending belief that love conquers all and that one day a prince will come.
Reality isn't even close to the fairy tale. Especially when the prince doesn’t just come with baggage – he comes with a bitter, money grubbing ex-wife clinging to his back like a hump.
I have absolutely no problem in admitting that I am a clean
freak. I’m pedantic about some things;
but hey, I have a weak stomach. I can be
talked into vomiting and dry reach over the smallest guy comments. The guys at work think it’s a scream.
Imagine my swirling stomach when I stumble out of bed and
shuffle to the toilet, only to lift the lid and discover a yellow pool and the
particularly unpleasant aroma of pee first thing in the morning. My stress levels hit the roof and I seriously
want to kick something; or someone.
I just don’t get it. How hard is it to understand? And what the Hell does that woman's house look like; and even worse, just how damned gag worthy is the smell? Does this stupid woman not see the correlation between the fact that she has created a child that is socially inept - who can't use cutlery or push a toilet button and the fact that he has no friends? I mean does she really just not get it??
Why do I have to have this argument time and time again? Hell, I had it last weekend. There is no drought. There is no shortage of water. Press the bloody toilet button! I suck up a lot of weird with the Squeeze and the Kid. For example, this morning the Squeeze instructed the kid to have a shower while I cooked breakfast. When the bathroom door opened and he came to the table, he was wearing yesterday's smelly school uniform. The fact that he would leap into stinking clothes is weird enough. The reality that he would throw on a school uniform - on a Saturday - just moves into weirdo land. Still, he can wear a school uniform all weekend for all I care (as long as it's clean) but press the bloody toilet button!
Sheesh, aside from
increased susceptibility to infection produced by mould spores feeding on
stagnant human waste, some diseases are directly caused by human sewage.
Exposure to human sewage can lead to diseases such as gastroenteritis,
hepatitis, occupational asthma and even Weil's disease, which is characterized
by jaundice, cramps and severe headaches – FYI I got that from a website;
personally, I just don’t want to smell it or look at someone else’s pee!
So this morning, I created a sign and shoved it on the toilet next to the
button – and I’ll be putting it up every second weekend!
One question… Why the
Frick am I toilet training a 15.5 year old boy?
Over the years, I’ve had several (million) conversations with the Squeeze
regarding his inability to shut down the previous relationship and limit the
Harridan to required contact only. I don’t believe I’m being
unreasonable. Yes, he has children and of course there must be some level
of contact but it is the sheer volume of calls, texts and emails and even more
specifically, the tone of them that I object to.
Mostly, they come in the form of demands, money requests or
insults. I’m seriously no good at faking things where she is
concerned. At the piano gig last week I didn’t even look at her or her
hippy sister, let alone even acknowledge their existence. Why
should I? If we ask to change a date, she will invariably say no with
some snide comment. Therefore, I assume it should be obvious that
if she puts in a request, I’m going to say no before the Squeeze has even
finished the sentence.
There have been times, including yesterday, when I have
talked to the Squeeze about it using even, controlled tones – patiently
explaining how the constant contact affects me and therefore our relationship
(admittedly, mostly I’m shouting about it); but in the face of my calm, he will
sometimes nod his head and say ‘okay; I’ll fix it.’ And for the briefest of
moments, I think he actually gets it.
Now days, I roll my eyes and walk away because we both know
that he won’t fix it. He doesn’t get it; doesn’t see the need to fix
it. Last night he tried to argue with me that it wasn’t 67 contacts –
of course I see a six email to and fro as exactly that; six emails. He
counts that as one. Either way, there remains a barrage of unnecessary
contact… right? Wrong according to the Squeeze – all that contact was
actually required! It was about sport and music and forwarding on stuff –
each and every bit was vital to keep the planet spinning, right? Even her
whining about having to pay a tax bill - plant... spinning.
Yeah. Right. Even my calmly stated “so
that you say to me before we arrive at the funeral, not to be surprised if she
is there…” you think that is right? That this is how our relationship is
supposed to work; with her turning up uninvited to “our” family events?
He said ‘well she did know him...’ I mean I want clarification, but
even more so, I want him to say it out loud and hear how utterly ridiculous it
sounds. I hear the absurdity; he does not.
Neither of them have any concept of what the term “divorced”
actually means and she will never relinquish control.
Okay; so I’m a slow learner. But finally, I get
it. It’s time to face the ugly truth. You can’t teach an old dog,
new tricks. The Squeeze doesn’t want to cut ties. In some weird
masochistic way, he actually needs her to control his world.
What the Hell that means to me and our relationship, I’ve no
idea yet, but it doesn’t bode well.
Today I woke up early with a stress headache. Yeah.
Yesterday, I kept all forms of communication to a minimum
and spoke only when spoken to. Not easy
when I had a road trip to my nieces house, which is over an hour away; the girl
sitting beside me focusing on her phone.
By the time I got out of the car my nerves were screaming.
And I'm biting my tongue all over the place; like when he purchased my $5 migraine tablets and handed me the box and the receipt! The Harridan drops the kid's saxophone and not only does he pay the $300 repair bill, he actually drives over to pick it up, get it fixed and deliver it back. But oh no, here I am; scamming him for $5.
And now, these two fools that I have the misfortune of
loving, have adopted a pack mentality. So
here I am; silently packing boxes with this creepy Lord of the Flies vibe
floating around. I just know any minute
now, one of them is going to start yelling “Kill the pig! Cut his throat! Kill
the pig! Bash him in!” And we all know
who is Piggy in this scenario.
Usually, I would attempt to bridge the gap. But to be perfectly honest, I don’t want to
speak to either of them. I don’t even
like them at the moment and it is getting worse as the minutes tick by. Then, over breakfast, the Squeeze made mention of my blog.
Ahhh, so this has what had transformed him into a sullen
creature sitting in the corner of the sofa with headphones on; ignoring the
world. My blog has created this
gargoyle! I feel somewhat buoyed by
that. And do you see how I did that? I literally took ownership of ‘gargoyle boy’. It was my words; my emotions and pain that
created this unlikeable fellow.
However, my glimmer of joy is dashed as he mutters the words
‘made up’ and I realise that as per everything else that is ugly in his world,
he will just ignore the truth of my words, choosing instead to direct a silent
judgement towards me.
How is it possible that he cannot see the direct correlation
between the ruling authority that is the Harridan and my all-consuming
It is quite simple arithmetic to me.
A + B = C.
And if he wants the world to be C, keep things as they are. But if he wants life to be A, remove B from
the damned equation!!!! (For the record,
my thoughts are B = Bitch (he he), C = Catastrophe
and A = Armistice).
In short grasshopper, you don’t have to snatch the pebble
from my bloody hand; nothing that difficult required… Just cease enabling the Harridan control
Seems easy, doesn’t it?
But it isn’t for him I’m afraid.
Making excuses for it only enables her psychotic behaviour. And that he won’t correct it, does that mean
that he is addicted to his role of enabler?
Is there some perverse madness on his side of the fence, as well as her psychosis
to contend with?
Friday, on our way to the funeral, he turned to me in the
car and said “don’t be surprised if she turns up to the funeral. That’s just the sort of thing she’d pull…” -
They had been separated for 4 years prior to our
relationship. We have been together for
4 years. She treats him like horrendously
and his family knows this. Why would
anyone want to turn up uninvited at a place you where everyone thinks you are vile..? And yet he is right; after all, she turned up
here with our house full of Boxing Day merriment and demanded he go out the
front, dragging the kids behind him so that they could all watch the wrath of
the Harridan meting out justice for him daring to try to eliminate her leash.
At the suggestion of us moving house so that we could have
the kid fifty per cent of the time; I realised that meant that I’d be dealing
with not one, but two fifteen year olds for about half of my life; at least for
a few years. That is how the Squeeze deals with the fact that
the Kid is friendless. He morphs into a mate and suddenly the
television is roaring at 3pm on a Saturday afternoon with some teenage humour
that involves poo or sport; usually both.
I see this as an inability to fix the issue, so let’s just
pretend there is no issue. He has a friend. Yay! Fixed! Umm
no. He has a 15 year old father.
If you are thinking that having no friends means the kid is
suicidal, dressed in black, worshiping the devil and plotting my death –
don’t. Frankly, he’s not that cool. I’d
almost enjoy seeing one single sign that there is a kid in there. And
he’s not outwardly unhappy about his life. Last weekend all
members of the band that are travelling to France were invited to a celebration
BBQ. Yay. Kid. Out on a Saturday night at a
school thing; which meant some date time for the Squeeze and I who planned to
go to the movies over that side of town, then swing back and get the kid on the
Good plan hey? Yeah, I thought so too… But
when they get back from cricket, the Squeeze tells me the Kid is sick; yes,
that old phlegm gurgling, chest rattling cough that he gets that lasts for
weeks on end and school days start to fall like wickets because the poor little poppet
is too sick to go to school. Well enough to go play cricket of
course, but not school. And those evil antibiotics that could fix
it, won’t pass his lips because they’ll destroy the “good bacteria” in his
body. Stuff everyone else’s body – because we work, so we’ll be killing off that good bacteria
quicker than you can poke a stick at it.
So he doesn't want to go to the BBQ. Hey, he's been at cricket all day and is going tomorrow! He can damn well go to that party and I don't care if he sits on a rock by himself all night! So the Squeeze moodles over the the sofa the kid has laid himself out on and tells him that he is going the party; we are going the movies and will grab him after.
And the kid immediately says "I'd rather go to the movies too!" Yeah kid. That he would rather go on a date with daddy and daddy's girlfriend is kind of moving into "creepyville" and it sure as hell wasn't going to happen on my watch!
But I regress…
I thought hey, let’s get a big house and I’ll have the girl
move with us. She’s twenty five, a clean-ish person; not exactly
‘serial killer precision’ as I am, but at least she flushes the toilet button!
Besides; she is mine so therefore, I’ll have an ally. How could I have gotten it so wrong!
appears that the girl and the Squeeze have become allies, which I didn’t
anticipate. During a shouting match last night, suddenly I had a
third person pipping in over the top to mention that I should cease to yell and
then going one step further to actually have an opinion on the snippets of
conversation that she had actually overheard. This seriously
unimpressed me. I guess that is obvious since I’m up at 8 am on a
Saturday morning firing off 1500 words.
In short, since last week and the 67 contacts, the Squeeze has sat on the edge of a sword, sometimes agreeing it was “excessive”
(really? You reckon?), but at other times demanding I cease to look
at his phone.
Now that gives it a spying vibe which was actually not the
case, since I looked at it while he was sitting two feet away in the car;
counting out loud the many times the Harridan’s name flashed past me in the
What he actually means is that fixing the problem is too
difficult for him. The simple fix would be for me to just not notice
Good idea; but that probably won't work. I mean he forgets to mention that she has emailed
eight times, called four times and text 12 times throughout any given day - even when I actually ask if he has heard from her; but
when we both have a day off – she continues contact at the same rate which then causes us to argue.
We can’t go anywhere or do anything without the Harridan
sitting on the centre console of the car between us; pipping over the top with
calls and texts; ordering him around and demanding money while telling him what a useless father he is.
Yesterday, while we were getting ready for a funeral, the
first call came. He didn’t answer but we all know this was for
my benefit. He is loath to just ignore her, or even go one step
further and tell her to cease and desist. Did I say loath to? I
meant he seems addicted to that contact and I'm sure his fingers actually twitched a few times. I mentioned if it was
important, she’d leave a message, but she is smarter than that – she leaves only the queenly command of “call me” so he has to talk to her if he wants to know what it is
I had already bound and gagged my temper and attempted to
shove it in a box. You would probably rightly assume that gagging it is difficult for me at the best of times. But the night before we’d been to a Kid 1 gig in the
city and when I had specifically asked if the Harrdain would be there – given
the same gig last year, I’d been dead on my feet with a migraine and she and
her Ho sister had been rude to me and then laughed about it; all while the Squeeze had stood in their little circle happily chatting while I tried to force
the migraine vomit back down my throat. No… she wouldn't be
there I was told, she went to another of the sessions. Really..? So who is
that middle aged lesbianish looking woman in velvet I see when we arrive then?
If that wasn't enough, then there is the repeat texts coming in for the $500 music
weekend he "needs" to go to; and all I can think of is how the Squeeze hasn’t even paid for France yet. And
he’ll pay it. Of course he will. He always pays.
And with each time the Harridan yells cha-ching and the Squeeze opens his wallet; I realise that us
getting a house is just not achievable. I’ll never get a house if I stay in
And the call..? In the end, she emailed him to
say she had made them an appointment to go to parent teacher; since he hadn’t
answered the phone, she made the time without consultation. Hmmm why change normal programming? I mean she moved him to that school without consultation, so why bother asking about parent teacher interviews?
The idiot was somewhat triumphant to advise that “there was
a reason for the call!!!” At least he was until I asked why the school that he
is paying half the fees for, feels the need to go via the Harridan instead of
contacting him directly to make his own time for parent interview times; and
okay, I may have gone one step further to ask scathingly if mummy was going to
make his next dental appointment too.
Instead of working it out in his head that this is her usual
control mechanism, he stupidly lies to my face to say that they have to go
together to parent teacher interviews, that is the only way that the school
will do it – and at 3pm on a workday. So it didn't make a difference if she organised it.
Ummmm yeah, sure. I guess it has been
at least five years since my kids finished school, but I’d figure the rate of
marriage breakdown has substantially increased since then. In saying
that, if we estimate that at least 50% of the class are from blended families;
and then let's just say that 50% of those, have an ex husband or wife that is as toxic as the
Harridan – then I’m tipping at least 25% of those students would not be able to
go play happy family - even for the brief moment of parent teacher. Therefore, common sense
makes it obvious that his words were a lie to cover the fact that he is incapable of removing her as the crutch to his life.
That is about the time I started shouting. Because
I hate being lied to yes, but more importantly, I hate being treated as though
I’m utterly stupid; and I'd have to be to just swallow that.
So I blew my top. The Squeeze, like a deer
trapped in the headlights, concentrated on the television, hoping that I'd forget
how much I hate him at that moment and become as mesmerized by it as he was. Getting any answers at all, let alone ones that make
sense or are not insults about me being neurotic, is impossible. So I shout louder (okay, that obviously
doesn’t work but it’s better than throwing something at his stupid head – like
I wanted to…)
I'll admit that during my temper tantrum there was a world of yelling and door slamming. I know it doesn't help but he's not a stupid person so I figure he must be hard of hearing! And this is when the girl butts in to tell me to stop shouting and
agreeing who cares re the school interviews and I snap at her (she is still
getting the silent treatment) because neither of these utter morons can get it through their thick heads that I
couldn’t care less if he wants to skip into the classroom holding hands with the
Harridan whistling show tunes!!!!! I just don’t want to be LIED to
about it and I want him to remove the leash from his neck and organise
The other day I mentioned that the Squeeze had purchased a
ticket and taken a seat on the train to “dead to me” land.
Every so often I get a great email that let's me know I'm not alone; and more importantly, not insane.
It's not just me who finds the things I endure, over the top, utterly maddening and quite frankly, unbelievable. It's not just me who shakes her head in amazement.
Yes... The Harridan really is a raving vicious nutcase.
No... The idiot that I live with, really is a moron; who I oft-times wonder if he is really mine - or just killing time while trapped in the past and dreaming of the "happy family" he never actually had, but remembers. Hell, I can't imagine why anyone would put up with the constant kick downs, insults, screaming abuse, vicious demands and the wallet snatching robbing him blind - without returning a good bitch-slap. It doesn't make sense to me to just keep enduring it - unless there is a tiny little frizzle of left over longing.
I have three ex-husbands. In fact mentioning this started it's own amusing conversation in our house the other night. I mentioned that I have three ex-husbands; none of which I need to hear from unless it is an emergency. The Squeeze, in an attempt to deflect the conversation, asked "what do they call a collective of ex-husbands? Would you say that is a plethora of ex-husbands?" I said "no; I suspect it's more like a flock, or a herd." My daughter piped up with "I'd say it's more like a murder of ex-husbands..." Ahh that girl does me proud... Anyway, when I reach a certain stage; that 'you are dead to me' stage; there is no turning back. It can't be repaired then. It's already over. And let's face it; we can all see that is where the Squeeze is going. He is on the express train to "dead to me" land - He may not have steamed out of the station yet, but he's sure as hell bought the ticket and taken a seat! So although he tries to twist and turn and make out the problem is all about me and my penchant to "rubik's cube" everything in my head... It is refreshing when someone I don't know, reads my blog and writes to say "wtf? are you out of you mind putting up with that???"
So I thought I would randomly highlight the odd great comments in the right hand bar. Mainly because I can't work out how to have them appear expanded and as they are only a tiny marker down the bottom; and I'm sure they get missed :-) Anyway, I'm not sure if I display them for random readers, or if I display them to remind myself that I'm sane (at least sane enough not to be an ax murderer)
Here is one I received tonight regarding the non stop communication from the Harridan. And it is non stop. In fact it's relentless. Hell, a text just came in while I was typing this! She wanted to know if the kid's saxophone was covered on MY contents insurance! Pffffttttt In a pig's eye! Sure - but if he loses it, the insurance money is mine and I'm shopping on it! Dumb woman. So, here is the comment I received:
"67 times! That is not only ridiculous but someone needs to cut the cord. Why haven't you actually fronted this moron! I cannot believe that you are 'still' actually putting up with this, after all this time. Honestly, give him an ultimatum!"
The Squeeze and I were friends for ten years prior to dating…
My girlfriend Amanda and I would laugh uproariously as the Harridan would kick his arse to the kerb, thinking there was something better out there; only to drag him back to the relationship time and time again.
Usually, that was if he dared to find someone to date. If he paused before rushing back, she would go with his greatest fear; citing “you are just like your father…” So he would go back, only to be banished to the granny flat within weeks; from there it was a short leap to be out for drinks with Amanda and I, bemoaning his world while we laughed and mentioned what a moron he was.
That was funny then; but he was someone else’s Moodle. Someone else’s problem. These days, her reign over the Squeeze doesn’t seem quite so funny. It is relentless. It’s all consuming and never ending.
Oh Hell; trust me. I’ve tried so many times to end the stranglehold thisWitch has on my man. Its four years into our relationship. We have lived together for two of those years. On Friday, I posed a simple question during a discussion.
“How many time have you and theHarridan communicated this week...?”
It’s a reasonable question considering we argue about it constantly. I mean I’m not unsympathetic. I have three kids, so you’d imagine my world is as difficult. In fact, I haven’t heard a peep from my ex this year. That’s reasonable. I don’t call them and they don’t call me unless there is an absolute death-to-the-world crisis. And let’s face it; mostly, it’s not death to the world.
So in answer to my question on how many times he has heard from the Harridan this week, I received a shrug and a quick thought before he answered “two”.
Yesterday while he was driving, I decided to divvy up the total myself.
Actually, the answer was not 2.
It was 67. And that doesn't count the 3 calls we are up today.
67 fricking times that horrible woman has figured there was a need for communication. This included such drivel as “the tax place called me to say if I don’t pay my tax bill; they’ll start adding interest…”
The idiot that I live with replies “tell them you need additional time or claim hardship…” and this is what sends myblood boiling. I mean what’s wrong with “don’t email me with this crap. I don’t’care. You have treated me like a dog and continue to. If they sue your arse to death – I DON’T CARE!”
Is that harsh..?
I’m sorry; if you need 67communiques in one week – it ain’t over!!! Am I focusing on this too much..?