Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Another Letter

Dear STBEW:

I'm sorry you're in such a shitty situation. I truly am. But I can't help you. And despite what you might think, none of this is my fault.

It's not my fault that you became addicted to alcohol. In fact, I repeatedly warned/cajoled/threatened you about how much you drank. I now know that this was a futile and stupid thing to do, but at the time I thought I could help you.

It's not my fault that you became addicted to pot. You know I never liked the fact that you smoked it. And smoking it with Puddle's friends in our back yard? What were you thinking?

Oh, yeah. You weren't thinking.

It's not my fault that you became addicted to crack. I only found out about your addiction the day after you wrecked the car. Remember that day? You went to your outpatient addiction treatement program, and were supposed to be home at nine. At eleven, I called your friend's house. Her husband told me that she had gone out to help you, because you had been in an accident. After you told me what you were doing in that part of town, I felt very foolish. I thought about all of those times you were sitting in the basement because you wanted to 'meditate' and 'journal' in private. How many of them were you getting high?

It's not my fault that you took the tax return money that year to pay off your drug debts instead of buying a decent car. It's not my fault that I had to open my own checking account in order to protect my income. It is my fault, however, that I did not hide my checks from you.

But that mistake of mine had no impact on where you are now.

It's not my fault that you took the money from those checks to go and buy crack.

It's not my fault, after taking you to an inpatient drug facility, visiting you every weekend, bringing you every thing that you asked for that was allowed, that we didn't get back together. You were the one who told me you weren't coming back. It wasn't my decision.

In retrospect, it was one of the best decisions you ever made. For me, at least.

It's not my fault that, after getting an apartment through a rehabilitation program that was going to send you to school and help you get a job, you blew it by a) fucking a kid younger than your oldest son, and b) lying about it. It's not my fault that they kicked you out of that program. You had it relatively easy. You found another program that paid for a studio apartment. That kid was in the program as an alternative to jail time. He ended up behind bars.

It's not my fault that you chose a possessive, misogyinistic guy for a boyfriend after that. I'm not sure why you had to have a boyfriend at all--especially since we were still technically married. It's not my fault that he and your next boyfriend hate each other. I just set my own boundaries and let you live your life.

It's not my fault that, even knowing in November, a full four months before your agreement ran out (if not sooner), you couldn't find a place to live when your agreement ran out. I allowed you into my house to use my computer to help you search for a new place. More often than not you just played games on it.

It's not my fault that when the day came to move out you were somehow woefully unprepared for moving. I let you borrow my van that day so that you could get things moved out. It's not my fault that you didn't know how to remove the back seat. It was your van too for several years. Especially after you totalled the one car on your crack run.

It's not my fault that you asked your two boyfriends to help you move, even though they hate each other.

It's not my fault that you didn't stay with the one you agreed to stay with.

It's not my fault that you decided to pick up a bottle that night.

It's not my fault that the other guy dumped all your stuff on the curb.

It is my fault, however, that I let you watch the kids here at my house. I thought it was a good way of helping us both out--you could see the kids on a daily basis, and I had someone whom I thought was, despite her troubles, trustworthy enough to watch the kids after school.

It's not my fault that you stole the checks from where they were hidden in my sock drawer.

It's not my fault that you--on four separate occasions--decided to forge my name on those checks in order to buy drugs.

It is my fault, however--because of inattention on my part--that we do not have any sort of formalized separation or divorce proceedings started. I'm working to rectify that right now. I admit that my efforts are hindered somewhat by a sudden lack of funds, but that part is not my fault.

So, when you called me this evening, and begged me to let you stay at my house, I said no. When you promised you wouldn't steal anything else from my house, I still said no. It amazed me that you were amazed to realize that I'm not letting you back into my house. You asked me for how long, and I don't honestly know how long, but I'm pretty sure it's close to forever. You can't understand this, of course, because you're an addict, and you're desparate, but there are consequences to our actions. You can only see the desparate situation that you're in--you can't see the actions that brought you there. You can't see that, from the moment you decided to fuck that boy, you pointed yourself in this direction. You can't see that you've used up all of my good will--far more good will, I might add, than most people in my situation would offer--and there's none left for me to give.

You can't see that I'm doing the only thing that I can in this situation.

Because if I did anything else, it would be my fault.

Yeharr

10 Comments:

Blogger terry said...

oh god.

i just want to hug you.

you're doing the right thing, though i'm sure it's extraordinarily difficult.

damn.

1:15 AM  
Blogger cadbury_vw said...

i am so sorry

it must be hard to believe that the person you loved (love) is now where she is

who she is

doing what she does

you must have prayed for every miracle you could imagine. i cannot imagine the engulfing sense of loss that must go with this situation. loss of spouse and partner, loss of life - the life you had and the life you planned. loss of your children's mother. and the loss of the person you married - and the transformation into someone you have to protect yourself and your children from

it must be so hard

i said a prayer, and i cried for you as i write this

i stand with you ...and stand as your witness in this time

5:41 PM  
Blogger Miss 1999 said...

*Sending you BIG HUGS* My heart is truly breaking for you, but I'm so glad you're able to get this out. Watching someone you love and/or care about battling an addiction is heartwrenching- but you've done all you can, and I'm glad you realize that. *hugs*

1:03 AM  
Blogger Åsa said...

A big hug for you Balloon Pirate! Cause I don’t know what I could say to make it better. Awful to see someone close to you do this to herself and to YOU! You are strong. There is hope for you. You are in my thoughts.

10:02 AM  
Blogger Colleen said...

you are doing the right thing, and you are staying strong. i'm proud of you

11:43 AM  
Blogger Dear Lovey Heart said...

keep on trekkin
i am praying for ya

4:01 PM  
Blogger Lara said...

Your situation reminds me too much of my brother and HIS ex wife. It has to be so hard to watch someone you care about self-destruct and know you can't do a thing about it, and that you have to cut them out of your life even though you really just wanted them well so they can be in it. You ARE doing the right thing.... what you have to do for yourself and your kids.

*hugs*

11:12 AM  
Blogger Notsocranky Yankee said...

Hang in there. You are doing the right thing. With any luck it will also help her get back on track.

7:57 AM  
Blogger Rowena said...

Oh dear. This is terrible BP. I didn't realise she was quite that fucked up.

8:22 AM  
Blogger Biddie said...

I have been lurking lately, and reading with awe the posts about your STBEW. You have shown more compassion and understanding than many other people ever would have. You have been helpfull, and accomadating, and gone out of your way for her.
You are doing the right thing now for you, your kids, and even for STBEW, even if she doesn't know it. Addiction has ruined lives, torn families apart, and turned loving parents into monsters.I have watched it happen in my own family.
I hope that the kids come out alright, and that you are able to recover from this as a family.
My thoughts are with you.

6:04 PM  

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