The day after Rich’s return I woke early I hadn’t slept that well, but at least I had slept! The first thing I did was go into our spare bedroom, where I had left Rich’s phone (I couldn’t bear to have it near me, even though I had turned it off!) As I turned it back on it just started to ping constantly,; as if it is broken and the notifications button was stuck.
I smiled to myself when I saw how many missed calls and texts there were – over three hundred – all from ‘her’ (we’re going with a small capital now!) I smile because it is ‘her’ turn now to be on the receiving end of Rich not answering his phone or responding to texts. In fact I have the phone now so the only person she will contact is me!
As I look at all the messages I realise that the woman really is delusional. The texts are all asking Rich where he was, who was he with, when was he coming home. I knew from our conversations that Rich had told ‘her’ that he was coming back to me, and it was clear that ‘she’ was in total denial. I started to think that ‘She’ was a fucking lunatic, but little did I know at the time quite how much!
As I sat looking at the phone she called, I could feel my heart beating and the anger build up inside me so I composed myself before I answered, although I could not keep the smugness out of my voice. ‘She’ sounded shocked that I had answered, shocked that I had Rich’s phone; but it did not stop her having the audacity to ask to speak to Rich; as if I was going to say ‘Oh okay, of course’ and pass the phone over!
Instead I told ‘her’ that Rich did not want to speak to ‘her’; Rich was sitting on the side of the bed shaking his head, he did not want to deal with ‘her’ in any way.
I took great delight in saying that Rich didn’t want to have anything do do with ‘her’ and had asked me to speak to ‘her’ and deal with ‘her’. ‘Her’ response was:
“You know he has had sex with me don’t you?”
“Yes” I said “I know.”
“Then how can you have him back knowing he has had sex with someone else?” ‘She’ said.
It was clear that this was her trump card, ‘she’ thought that if ‘she’ rammed home to me that Rich had fucked her then I could never stay. – LIttle did she know that her doing this just made me all the more determined to stay just to fuck up ‘her’ biggest weapon. I took a deep breath and said:
“Because sex is not love and you don’t seem to realise that. You can have sex with anyone it does not necessarily mean anything. But you would never understand that, because you think that when you have sex with people it means that they love you, that is why you sleep around so much! Look at you, nothing but a fucking slag, who still has nobody, because Rich is not with you now is he?
I hung up and turned the phone off!
Rich looked at me and said he was worried about going back to the house he had rented with ‘her’ to collect his belongings; that he needed me to go with him because he was afraid of what ‘she’ would do! He said that ‘she’ would not leave him alone and would follow him about and go on and on at him, as she had over the past six months; and I could see at that moment just how weak Rich was.
I started to realise that this woman was a fucking maniac, and that a lot of what had happened was because ‘she’ hated me and all that I had; things that ‘she’ had never had and would never have; so ‘she’ had set out to destroy me. ‘she’ had played the game well, but clearly not well enough; ‘she’ had underestimated love; but perhaps more importantly ‘she’ had underestimated me!
I was in disbelief that despite all the shit Rich had put me through I was going to have to go with him to collect his stuff; and help him extricate himself from the quagmire he had got himself into. So I found myself taking control of a situation that I had not created and taking Rich to collect his things.
I took my car; I could never get in Rich’s car again. It was the place that he had met ‘her’, had made a fool of me, and had kissed ‘her’. Whilst they had been together ‘She’ had driven it and it was contaminated with everything about Rich’s time with ‘her’.
I can’t explain how I felt on that drive. How had my life changed so much in less than a month? And it was all Rich’s fault. Here I was, two stone slimmer from the last time ‘she’ had seen me (all hail the divorce diet), driving down the motorway to the house that Rich had rented with ‘her’. Adrenalin was seriously getting me through at this moment in time and I could hear the blood pounding in my ears.
When we arrived at the house, a tiny little two up two down terraced with a front door opening directly onto the street, it just compounded my feelings of confusion; how could Rich have left our beautiful home to come and live here? How could he have thought this was a better option, that he would be happy?
Rich used his key to open the door and as we walked into the house I could hear ‘her’ calling the police and asking them to come and remove me from the house. ‘She’ had the audacity to shout down the stairs to me and ask me to leave, and I immediately thought of all the times ‘she’ had been in my house, and invaded my personal space! I cannot tell you how much I hated this woman at this moment in time, I wanted to fucking kill her. I told her to “Fuck off and make me!”
Rich began collecting his things and I went to the CD player; I could see all of the CD’s that had been in Rich’s car, CD’s I had bought. I looked through the window and saw Rich’s shirts blowing on the washing line and knew that ‘she’ did not believe that he would leave ‘her’; and it reinforced my gut feeling that ‘She’ was seriously deluded, and that it was not going to be easy to get ‘her’ our of our lives. I felt completely out of place in this house, I did not belong there’ I was, quite simply, too good for it.
Moving between rooms collecting clothes was surreal: Rich’s dressing gown where it was hung in a ‘his and her’ fashion on the back of a door, aftershaves from the dressing table, scooping up clothes out of drawers, shoes from under the bed; all the fucking things I had packed up three weeks earlier! I remember feeling as if it was happening to someone else. I looked at the bed that they had been in together, had sex in, and it made me feel sick, it really was like being in a bad dream.
All the time the sun was shining outside, and a light breeze was blowing, and the summer was on it’s way; everyone seemed happy and here I was in a house that my husband had rented with someone else. I was so fucking angry I was shaking and I just wanted to get out of there before I killed ‘her’.
All the while ‘she’ followed me saying how Rich loved ‘her’ and not me, how I was not enough for him, goading me. I knew that I could really hurt ‘her’ so I tried to ignore her, but in the end it got the better of me and I pointed out to ‘her’ that he would never have loved ‘her’ in the way he loved me, because she was too fucking ugly!
‘Look at my face’ I said, ‘and then look at your face, there really is no comparison.’
Clearly I had touched a nerve, and ‘she’ flew at me scratching the front of my chest and face, which was not a good idea, given how I felt! I cannot remember what I did but suddenly I had her by ‘her’ hair, it was wound tightly round my hand and she could not move ‘her’ head which I had, by now, shoved into the carpet on the floor; and she’ was screaming that I was hurting ‘her’. Hurting ‘her’! I hadn’t even fucking started! As I lifted ‘her’ head I had every intention of elbowing her in the face until she had no face left. At that point Rich pulled me off ‘her’ and pleaded with me to let go because I would be the one who was arrested. As I let go ‘she’ ran to the bathroom and locked herself in.
Howeverm ‘she’ had not finished and whilst I contemplated the steep stairs, with my arms full of clothes, ‘She’ came up behind me and punched me hard in the back and pushed me down the stairs. (I had the bruise between my shoulder blades for over six weeks after the incident.) It was only Rich’s quick thinking, that saved me from breaking my neck; because he caught me, stopping me hitting my head on the wall at the bottom of the stairs, his hand taking the full force. I made for the stairs planning to go back after her, but Rich grabbed me, he knew that I would have kicked the bathroom door in this time, and he was right.
I couldn’t believe my life had come to this; fighting with someone for the person I thought really loved me, who would never let me down. I really was in an episode of Jerry Springer!!
The police arrived and ‘she’ accused me of assault, until I showed them the large red and black weal on my back where she had punched me. Ironically the policeman then asked me if I wanted to press charges! But I said no. I could not bear the whole situation: I could see the policeman looking at me with pity in his eyes and I could see that he was looking at Rich with contempt. I needed to take myself out of this situation, I needed to hold on to the dignity that I maintained throughout the last three weeks.
I asked the policemen if we could just get the rest of Rich’s stuff and took great joy in the fact that they escorted ‘her’ out into the garden and would not let ‘her’ in the house again. After another two trips I couldn’t bear it any longer and I said to Rich that I wanted to go and ‘fuck what is left behind.’
Our world was burning around us and the things in that house just did not matter. So we left behind the shirts that we had chosen when we were on honeymoon in Turkey, the CD’s that we had danced to over the years; but most importantly we had left behind Rich’s Filofax that had all his future shifts for work written in it, his email address and his work phone numbers. Leaving that behind would be something that we would come to regret.
As we made our way back home in the car ‘she’ was constantly sending texts to Rich, asking him to come back, telling him that I would not stay with him, that I would make him pay, would leave him for someone else. ‘She’ really knew how to tap into all of the things that he was afraid of, as ‘she’ had done so many times before; manipulating the situation so that he would consider leaving me for ‘her’.
I could see from the look on Rich’s face that he was starting to wonder if she was right so I pulled over and got out of the car. I looked at Rich, this man in turmoil, and asked him to send ‘her’ a text and tell ‘her’ to “Fuck Off!”. But Rich just looked at me and said “I can’t, I don’t want to hurt her!” I started to cry and said that he had best walk back to ‘her’ then, but Rich just stood there looking at me; he clearly did not know what to do and said “I don’t want ‘her’, I want you!’ So why he would not just tell ‘her’ to fuck off, why could he not treat ‘her’ like he had treated me? If he loved me why did he not want to hurt ‘her’? He had hurt me enough!! I thought of all the times that Rich had laughed at me, told me he didn’t love me. told me that he loved ‘her’, I thought about the fact that my husband had fucked someone else; of all the things he had done to me, the worst things in the world, and here he was telling me that he could not do the same to the person who had been the main instigator of all this trouble.
But I was not prepared to give ‘her’ what she wanted this time. I didn’t know if I wanted him but I was pretty fucking sure that ‘she’ wasn’t having him either. This time I would play ‘The Game’. So I told Rich to get back in the car and I carried on driving away.
All the way home ‘She’ continued to send texts every ten seconds which just confirmed to me that the woman was a psychopath, and wonder what the hell had Rich got me into.
As I had told Rich when he came back: giving up his phone was one of the main things that he had to do if he wanted to stay with me. It was a done deal, he changed his phone or his fucked off! I drove straight from that house to a phone shop and bought a new phone.
There we sat in the phone shop, with the young salesman giving Rich the ‘spin’ about the latest phones available when in fact we didn’t give a shit what phone it was, as long as it was not the phone Rich had been using to cheat on me.
When we got back to our house Rich passed his old phone chip to me and I took great pleasure in snapping it in half.
Somebody’s gotta win
Somebody’s gotta lose
Somebody’s got to play the fool
Somebody’s gotta laugh
Somebody’s gotta cry
Somebody’s got to almost die
I’ve asked myself so many times
Why do I always lose this heart of mine
And get nothing in return
Except the clown’s reputation
A broken heart and much humiliation
I’ve asked this question again and again
And the answer’s the same
Somebody’s gotta win
Somebody’s gotta lose
Somebody’s got to play the fool
Somebody’s gotta win Performed by The Controllers – The Written by David Camon