I don’t think I can do this…n

crying eyes

Many things happened over the next few days, including: Rich having to go to hospital, the Police calling our house to make sure that I had not hurt him! – All stories that are in my book, all things that I am sure a lot of people will recognise, including realising that a lot of people you thought you knew you never knew at all!

Neither Rich or I had returned to work after Rich had come home,  we were both just shell shocked at where we were and neither of us could think straight, let alone work.

Despite changing Rich’s mobile phone ‘She’ then made contact with us by bombarding our home with phone calls morning, noon and night. We knew when it was ‘Her’ because if I answered there would be silence and then the phone would go dead, Rich was too frightened to answer the phone, he just seemed terrified of ‘her’. So Tom and his friends started to answer the phone and if ‘she’ asked to speak to Rich Tom would hurl abuse at her; because he had been hurt as much as I had and I knew he one of the biggist things that was hurting him was that he had watced me be almost destroyed.

The mess we weave in situations such as this; with so many people that are affected; and none of us realise just how much.

After two days of constant bombardment, culminating in a phone call from her teenage child asking to speak to Rich, we knew that we had to change our home number to an ex-directory number. Just another thing in our lives that we were going to have to change because of what Rich had done!

Because of the constant intrusion from the phone calls and the police, who had also called at our house at the insistence of Rich’s family;  Jess and Matt suggested we get out of the house and away from all the turmoil and drama.

So we found ourselves in a small village just off the coast, a village we had never visited before ‘The War’. It was something new, something that had not been contaminated by the past. The village had a windmill, and we found ourselves in the coffee shop sitting opposite each other in silence. I thought to myself that we must have looked like a couple who had just met and were not comfortable with each other, or a couple on the verge of splitting up; you could tell from the glances we were getting from the staff that they knew that there was something very wrong with us. They were right, we didn’t know each other at all, there was that distance between us, and I felt as if we were strangers.

Rich was different, more confident in how attractive he was; after all why wouldn’t he be he’d had two people who wanted him, and one was making it much clearer than the other that ‘She’ wanted him around.

I was not sure that I even liked this Rich that was with me; I wanted the gentle and loving man who I had married, not the arrogant fucking twat that was standing with me now!

We ended up a pub called the Crown Inn. It was a beautiful thirteenth century inn with wood pannelling and oak beams; it was so pretty and it should have been somewhere where we could enjoy the ambience and relax. Instead we sat at the bar, and  I watched Rich holding court with the barmaids, appearing to be full of himself. I did not recognise this man anymore, I toyed with going out to my car and driving off without him; instead I went to the toilet to get away from this swaggering arsehole that I was with. I had no idea where my husband had gone, but I was pretty sure that this man with me now was not a man I liked.

The toilets had a bank of mirrors across one wall and  I will always remember coming out of the cubicle and catching sight a woman in the mirrors; she looked like me, but was a much thinner version, and she had clearly been crying a lot recently. My eyes brimmed with tears as I looked at her, I was full of sadness for her, that she had come to this, and she seemed to be looking at me as if to say “Are you going to stay with that idiot outside?”

I remember so clearly looking at her and saying   “I don’t think I can do this.” She looked back at me, with tears in her eyes and said “But you have to try to know if you will be doing the right thing if  you leave. You have to give it time.”

I still don’t know to this day how I found the strength to overcome my pride and go back into that bar. It is as if people can pick up when someone is wounded emotionally, in the same way that animals can pick up when an animal is wounded physically, they smell that the person is easy prey.

The barmaids knew that I was desperately holding onto something and by Rich’s behaviour it looked as if he didn’t give a shit about me either way, so the barmaids played up to it. But I knew one day the tables would turn, because Rich did not seem to realise that they were turning every second, and they were turning in my favour.

Don’t feel pity for me, as you read this book you will become to understand why that person I was at that time did not need your pity, because she was stronger than even I knew at the time.

When we got home we took a selfie of us both together, Rich was grey, he looked ill in it. I looked sad, thinner, and younger than him!! Even then I can remember looking at it and thinking ‘this is killing him.’

As usual we turned to music and alcohol ,the two things that would pull us together over time.

Addendum: A little note from eleven years on…

I have writen and edited these passages so often, I do still feel the emotion at times of what I felt during this time; but it as if it is the emotion of someone else, another strong woman who got me to where we are today. 

Always have yourself – if you don’t have yourself you have nothing- remember that as my story goes on. 

This one bought a tear to my eye….

I have had comments from people already to say that this blog is helping them – and I haven’t even got to my journal yet! So please if you think this will help others please share.

Thanks for staying with me.

Whoa it tears me up
I try to hold on, but it hurts too much
I try to forgive, but it’s not enough to make it all okay
You can’t play on broken strings
You can’t feel anything that your heart don’t want to feel
I can’t tell you something that ain’t real
Oh the truth hurts
And lies worse
How can I give anymore
When I love you a little less than before
Broken Strings.James Morrison and Nelly Furtado.

Image result for quotes about strength

May 2007 – Fighting for everything including for my dignity..

broken mobile phone

May 2007 

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


Dignity quote

A background story – I didn’t think you would come…

Heart new love

The courtship 1998 – 1999

I first met Rich when my mum was gravely ill. I was in a nightclub with my friend and she knew Rich; he came over to chat to us and as the night wore on he kept kneeling on the floor and singing to me; I was just ignoring him. I didn’t even know if I fancied him at the time; but I gave him my number and he called me on exactly the night I had asked him to.

When Rich called I explained that I was a single parent and that my mum had cancer and was gravely ill; he seemed to understand and was  really easy to talk to, and although I was still not sure if I fancied him, I agreed to go out with him the following Sunday night. Although I wasn’t sure about the attraction I needed a distraction from all of the pain and sadness that I was going through at the time.

But when the Sunday arrived Rich didn’t phone when he said he would. I was a bit surprised and pissed off really, I thought that he was really keen. So instead I decided to spend some time with my mum and sister; little did I know that it was the last time that I would go out to the pub with my mum, and the last time I would spend quality time with her because she died just weeks after.

A year later virtually to the day  I met Rich again in the same nightclub; it seemed as if it was destined because I was out with the same friend! This time I did find him attractive and  we spent the whole night together kissing and cuddling; and although I refused to give him my number again  Rich called my friend for my number and  rang me the next day. We agreed to go on a date the following week, and on the day of the date Rich called ‘just to check’  that I still wanted to go. I found that really sweet, that he liked me that much he was worried I would not go.

We went to a pub near to where I lived and as we chatted  I asked Rich why he had not called the year before; he said that he felt I had too much going on to take him on as well, and that he was not sure if I really fancied him or not. It urprised me that he had obviously picked up that vibe from me; and I liked that. He made me laugh all night and came back to my house for coffee, and, yes, he stayed. But now, looking back, he could not perform he was so nervous.

By now I had left my career because there had been so much shit in my life over the last year: my dear dad having had numerous strokes and now in a care home, and my beloved mum dying wihtin months of my dad’s first stroke; life had been really hard for all of us.  I knew that I  needed to spend more time with Tom, my son from a previous marriage,  so I took the redundancy that was being offered from a job I had been working in since my teens, and it seemed that so much had changed in my life in such a short space of time.

From our first date I felt that Rich would never let me down. I needed someone who would be there for me and support me. I was sick of trying to support myself and Tom, sick of all of the crap that had happened in my life; so when I met Rich I found what was a kind, caring man, who obviously really liked me. I was very careful who I introduced to Tom,  but I  knew that this time I wanted to introduce Rich to him, it all just felt so right.

Tom loved Rich’s fun loving ways and the fact that he liked computer games; and Rich and I became inseparable with Rich staying most nights and going to work from my house. Within weeks  we  had decided  that we wanted to live together, and Rich moved in six weeks after our first date. We were engaged four months later. “All I want is my ring on your finger” he said. “I love you so much.”

And I loved him too, so much….

What have you done to me
I can’t eat, I cannot sleep
And I’m not the same anymore, no, no
I don’t know what to do
‘Cause all of me wants all of you
Do I stand alone at the shore
Now once I could turn away
From everything I feel today
But now I wanna walk through your door

But I’ve got to know, oh, body and soul
That you’ve got no doubt, inside and out

Body and soul, soul Written by Rick Knowles and Ellen Shipley Performed by Anita Baker


The Surrender Part 2……

Image result for images for surrendering

Day 22 – Tuesday 1st May 

After speaking to Rich on the phone ( Day 22 The Surrender Part 1  ) I had called Mary; she had been with me through all of this, listening to my never ending tears and madness whilst I tried to make sense of what had happened. At the time she was  over an hours drive away but she made the journey back and arrived at my home that evening, just to give me moral support.

We chatted as I got ready to meet Rich; I  knew that I look good, I have lost over two stone and am more  toned  than I have been in years, thanks to all of the hours I have spent on the stepper.

Mary says that she always knew that Rich would come back, because things just did not add up, that you only had to look at his face when he looked at me to know that he loved me. It made me think back to the evening I was told what was going on; of Rich’s face as he was watching ‘Her’ partner whispering in my ear. That is an image I have constantly thought of in the last three weeks, because it was the thing that gave me the most hope. The first shot is fired….

After Mary leaves I wander around the house trying to occupy my mind. I cannot even have a drink because I have to drive; I can hear my  heart beating in my chest again, that terrible feeling that my heart is going to burst is back. It is nearly an hour before I am due to meet Rich but I just cannot stay in the house a minute longer so I go to Mary’s house, for more moral support because I know that this is it, if this meeting does not work out then we are lost forever.

When I get to the car park where we have arranged to meet, Rich is already there, and I am surprised to see that he has lost as much weight as me. I refuse to get into Rich’s car, it is contaminated by ‘Her’ now, so Rich gets in my car and after a long silence I ask him what he wants to tell me and he starts to tell me what had happened over the last few months:

It had started in July the previous year when they had kissed at one of ‘Her’ parties, the very party where I had pulled Rich away from her when I found them dancing together on the dance floor. After that Rich had looked for her number on my phone and had made contact with her, supposedly to say that the kiss should not have happened and he wanted to forget it all. The Background story – Making a new life and there are clouds on the horizon 

I didn’t for one minute this is why Rich had contacted her, by doing that she had his number and he knew that she would pursue him; and that is exactly what she did: bombarding him with texts and calling him as he drove to work.

Rich then went on to tell me that he had met ‘her’ at her brother’s house in Essex in the October of the year before,  in the month leading up to our Halloween party. Rich was supposed to be on a nights overtime but instead he signed out of work and went to meet ‘her.’ I feel sick as he tells me that they had a fumble but that he could not perform and that they did not have sex. All that time they had been laughing at me, lying to me; I think of the Halloween party and how I found ‘her’ sitting on Rich’s lap, of how upset I was, and of how Rich did not follow me when I walked out.  Now I know why, because he had already fucked ‘her’! The fact that he could not get ‘it’ up is neither here nor there.

Rich tells me that after their meeting he had stopped at a service station on the way home and thrown up, because he knew that if I ever found out he would lose me forever. ‘She’ had him trapped now,  because ‘She’ had something that could be used to blackmail him; and that is what ‘She’ did. If ‘She’ text him and he did not reply ‘She’ would make a pretense to come to our house and then threaten him saying that ‘She’ was going to tell me. (This was unlikely because I would have fucking punched ‘Her’ in the face!) But Rich believed her.

The whole time he is telling me his story I am just sitting there looking out to sea with my eyes brimming with tears struggling to understand how my life has changed. We are sitting in a car park, by the beach, people are walking past with their dogs, something we used to do; people are on the beach because it is a hot sunny evening, people are going to the pub behind us, these are all things we used to do; and now? Now we’re sitting here in a car surrounded by the debris of our lives, and I am wondering what the fuck has happened.

Rich says that he tried to stop things, had stopped texting ‘Her’ or answering ‘Her’ texts for months, and that it had only started up again in March of this year. I think back to that month, I had been really ill with a chest infection, in fact I could not shake it and they were worried that I was going to develop pneumonia. As I sit there I realise why I had become so ill, because I had been ignoring the very things that were under my nose. More than anything I could not understand why Rich had gone back to texting ‘Her’ again, Why? For fucks sake why!!

After that they had then started to meet up in the next town along the coast. a pretty small seaside town called Tankerton. They would both drive there separately and sit in Rich’s car kissing. I could not understand how he had been able to  meet ‘Her’  when he was always at work, and I ask him how and when because he would always call me when he was leaving work. Rich said that it was when I was at work, he would meet ‘Her’  before leaving for his shift, or after his shift had finished and he would lie to me and tell me he had been held up.

It all seems to make sense now, the text to our house in March, the times ‘She’ came over to see us because ‘She’ needed someone to speak to, the time when ‘She’ told me that one day I would hate her.

I asked Rich what he wants to do, does he want to come home?  I cannot believe it when Rich says he is not sure that he can do that to ‘Her’, that he cannot leave her in a mess!

I could have punched him in the mouth!  I started to shout at him so he got out of the car, then I got out of the car, all of the people enjoying the sunny evening are looking at us now and  I don’t care! I am so fucking angry with him, he left Tom and I without a second thought and now, after the conversation that we had that morning on the phone when he said that he had never loved ‘Her’ and had always loved me, now he is saying that he is concerned for ‘Her’.  I lose it and  I punch him round the head, forgetting that I have the car keys in my hand, I punched him four or five times, with everyone watching, and I didn’t  fucking care! Rich just stood there and let me.

I’d  had enough, really had enough of being in a soap opera with a bunch of skanks, Rich included! I walked back to my car and get in and just before I drive away I open the window and say “if you’re not back home before midnight tonight, don’t ever fucking contact me again.” With that I drove away.

I went straight back to Mary’s and as I talk to her I realise that I am worth more than the treatment that I have received, worth more than Rich for what he has put me through; when I say that to her she agrees with me.

I am suddenly no longer afraid to go home, it is my house now, I no longer see it as a home that belonged to Rich and I. When I got in I opened a bottle of wine and call my sister; I tell her what has happened and that I really feel that I never knew Rich at all, and that he was beneath me, the Counsellor was right.

At that moment in time I have decided that actually I don’t want Rich back. My sister then calmly asked me “So what will you do if he walks down the path later? You have asked him to come back, and give up his home I think you should consider that, because although he did not consider you, that does not mean that you have to stoop to his level.” That stopped me in my tracks and I have to think about it. I have given him an ultimatum so  I decide that I will have to let him sleep in the spare bedroom until he finds somewhere.

For the first time in a long time I was tired and go to bed at ten, I am not thinking about Rich anymore, neither am I going to wait up for to see if he calls or comes back; I have done too much waiting for him already and I am  not doing any more.  I need sleep, and for the first time in three weeks  I fall asleep quickly.

At ten past eleven my mobile rings and it is Rich calling. When I answered the phone he explains that he has left ‘Her’ and wants to come home. He has parked in the next road and when I ask   why he has parked his car around the corner and he says that he does not want it to be seen.

So I get up and wait for him to arrive, he has no key now, I had the locks changed within three days of him leaving;  he has to ring the doorbell – how apt!  I am in my pyjamas and I don’t care how I look, because I don’t care about Rich any more. I know that even though he is standing on the doorstep I am still on my own.

When Rich walked in it all seemed really strange because he looks uncomfortable in what was his home. It is as if we are two strangers, Rich sitting on the edge of the sofa and me sitting comfortably in my pyjamas on the other sofa, as far away from him as I can get.

Rich then suddenly asked me if I had an affair with my old boss, James. I am incredulous where the hell did that came from!  Rich explains that ‘She’ told him that I had confessed to ‘Her’ that I had an affair with James all those years ago. I just looked at Rich in disbelief, as if he had grown another head, and said ‘No’, and with that  Rich started to cry; because he  realised that he may have lost everything because of  all he has done over the past three weeks, actions that had taken place because of his own insecurities and this lie.

I asked Rich to be honest with me and tell me  if it was him that had called me the night he left, and he said it was.  He explained that they had been in a crummy bed and breakfast place with a payphone in the hall, and when ‘She’ had fallen asleep he had crept down and tried to call me from the payphone. I asked him why he had not called from his mobile, and he said he was afraid to because ‘She’ checked it all the time and would have noticed if he had taken it.

I asked him why he had called and  he said it was because he was worried about me, had found himself in an awful place and just wanted to come home; but when I didn’t answer he thought that he had lost me and  that ‘She’ had been right when ‘She’ had told him that  I had not wanted him all along

I just didn’t know whether to believe him; if Rich felt that way why did he not just get in the car and come home? Why did he put me through three weeks of hell? Why did he let us get to this place we were in now? I just didn’t understand none of it made any sense.

I don’t ask him if he had sex with her, he had already told me he had in one of our conversations we had when he was being a cunt.

I tell Rich that if he wants to be with me there are two conditions, he has to step up to the plate and face his fears about whether he is good enough for me, and he has to change his phone, number, everything.  Rich gives me his mobile and says that he knows she will just keep sending him texts  until he answers, because this is what she always did. I turned the phone off because that will fuck ‘Her’ right up!!

I told Rich that he had to sleep in the spare room; but really I don’t want him to, I want him to sleep with me and I feel so exhausted, as if all of the fight has gone out of me so I  decide to just let him.

As we lay in bed we just talked and talkedand suddenly Rich kissed me, not a full on kiss, a tentative kiss as if he was waiting for me to smash him in the face! But do you know what it told me so much: of  how much he has missed me; and how much he has wanted to do that,  and it tells me he is afraid of me. I kissed him back because I was too exhausted to feel angry.

We then started to kiss passionately and was clear that Rich had an erection; but I just can’t do it, I can’t have sex with him. I have worked too hard to get my self-respect back and I am not giving myself away again that easily.

I pushed Rich away and started to cry, I cannot do it and he understood.

I think for the first time in a long time we both slept.

In the day
In the night
Say it right
Say it all
You either got it
Or you don’t
You either stand or you fall
When your will is broken
When it slips from your hand
When there’s no time for joking
There’s a hole in the plan

Oh, you don’t mean nothing at all to me
No, you don’t mean nothing at all to me
But you got what it takes to set me free
Oh, you could mean everything to me

Say It Right –Nelly Furtado

Written by Nelly Furtado, Nate Hills, Timothy Mosley


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A background story – You need to be careful….

holding hands

Building our idyllic life. 2000 – 2007

My mum had died a year before Rich and I became a couple and I had given up my career of nearly twenty years to spend time with Tom, who was seven at the time; death and illness tend to be the biggest lessons that life sends us – reminding us that material things are not everything – if only we would all listen sometimes.

Despite the fact that Rich was a courier and on a low wage , or that I did not work, we worked so well together as a team.

We had been living in my home that I had from my previous marriage, but now that I had married Rich I had to sell it as part of the divorce settlement and move into a rental property.  Although we struggled for money, as all people do, we were invincible, we always pulled together.

Rich wanted to support Tom and I; it was important to him to provide for us.  But it was important to me to own my own house again, and to do this I had to return to work. Rich worried that he could not give me what I wanted, “I don’t think I’ll ever be able to give you your dream” he had once said, but I was not prepared to give up; six months after we married I went back to work full-time in a very stressful job, and Rich got a different more reliable and stable job in a factory where he worked so hard there that he was promoted and taught to drive fork lift trucks, enabling him to earn more money.

We both worked hard to save our deposit and get our feet back on the property ladder. It was only thanks to a close friend of my mum’s that we were able to achieve this because she allowed us to buy her house at a lower price than market value, and live in it rent free for five months to help us save; and I will always be grateful to her.

In 2001 I  changed my job, and worked closely with my boss James; there was only he and I in a small office and because of this I would talk about him often when I came home. I can remember my friend saying  “You need to be careful you talk about James a lot”.

“It’s only because I work so closely with him” I said.

“Yes, but you sing his praises all the time, and you are making Rich feel insecure.” She said.

I laughed. “Don’t be stupid, I love Rich, he knows that.” I said. And I did love Rich more than I could ever say. What I didn’t realise was that Rich couldn’t believe that.


How do I get through one night without you
If I had to live without you
What kinda life would that be
Oh I need you in my arms, need you to hold
You are my world, my heart, my soul

If you ever leave
Baby you would take away
Everything good in my life
And tell me now

How do I live without you?
I want to know
How do I breathe without you?
If you ever go

Songwriters: Diane Warren

How Do I Live lyrics © Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC, Universal Music Publishing Group, Realsongs

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Day 22 The Surrender Part 1

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Day 22 – Tuesday 1st May

When I got up I did not know if I wanted to respond to the text Rich had sent the night before.  I was tired of it all now, I needed to move forward and extract myself from this ‘daytime soap opera’ that Rich had dragged me into. I was worth more than this!

I had booked a day’s leave from work to clean up the house after the repairs made by the plasterer. It is starting to feel like just my house now, and I feel that things are changing, I am starting to feel that I am now able to make it on my own. I notice that I don’t tend to hear the echo of my own footsteps following me anymore, it is as if the house has quietened the floorboards and allowed me to come to terms with being there on my own; it has become my ally.

But as I start to make my first cup of tea of the morning my eyes start to well with tears; this time because I know that it won’t be long before it is too late for Rich to come back. I have always been the type of person who seems to have an internal switch; it is not something that I can control it just ‘flips’ where my feelings are concerned and once it has ‘flipped’ I cannot get those feelings back, even if I want to. I know that it is starting to happen where Rich is concerned. I think of things that have happened over the past few days: when I visited Auntie Edie in Essex at the weekend and she told me that I could stop crying if I wanted to, and that I was worth more than Rich. I did stop crying! Perhaps because Sunday had been the tenth anniversary of my mum’s death it marked a turning point for me, because after that I forgot my phone and didn’t cry right through my counselling session. I knew that these were all signs of me moving on, and I was crying because I didn’t really want to.

I still felt this inexplainable feeling that Rich was crying somewhere; that no matter what he had said to me really he was heartbroken. I could not get that look on his face when ‘her’ partner was telling me what had been going on, that look of pure pain on his face, and I knew that if I moved on it would be such a terrible waste of something. (The first shot is fired….)

As if she could read my mind Jess came round and when  I opened the door I was crying. I explain to Jess that I am afraid that I will respond to Rich’s text and that he will not reply; all those memories of three weeks ago when I called and called him and he just did not answer are back in the forefront of my mind.  I cannot bear the thought that he will do that to me again. But I am angry that Rich seems to think that he is entitled to anything else from the house, and I am sick of checking my phone waiting for him to call or send me a message.

Jess suggests that I text Rich back and ask him what stuff he thinks he should have out of the house and then delete his number from my phone book completely so that I cannot look for his name, or ‘The Arsehole’ on my screen. So that’s what I do, I send a text and then Jess deleted Rich’s number. But Rich immediately replied with a text saying that he wants a stereo, his tools, a telly, some furniture and his bike! That made me laugh, as there was no fucking bike, it had paid for the start of divorce proceedings against him!! (Day nine (Wednesday) I started to fall out of love with you….)

I am incensed that he thinks that he is entitled to anything  and call him, this time he answers immediately. I know, I just know that this is not a happy man, from the tone of his voice and I can here that he has been crying,  and I am so fucking glad. I ask him, “Are you still in love with ‘Her’ Rich?’ He starts to cry.

I’m on a roll now!

“Are you still really happy Rich?” His answers clearly “No”.

“Have you realised what a terrible fucking mistake you have made now Rich? How you have lost everything, me, Tom, the animals, this house, and now you are living in a little terrace I hear, with a door that leads straight out onto the street, you must be so fucking happy!!”

Rich says that he is not happy, that he knows he has made a terrible mistake, that he does not want anything he just used it as a way of getting in touch with me because he thousht that I would just tell him to ‘Fuck Off’. I tell him that all of the TV’s and Stereos now belong to Tom and he cannot touch any of them, and that his bike has been stolen!

I ask Rich why he had wanted to talk to me, what does he actually want. He says that he just wants to talk to me face to face, that he knows that he has treated me so badly and that he feels really ashamed of the way that he has behaved; and he asks if we can meet up that night to talk about what has happened; how we came to be where we are today. Rich says that he has been afraid to come back and approach me because he thought that I would do back to him what he had done to me, that he thought that ‘She’ was the easier option; through it all Rich just keeps saying how sorry he is about all he has done.

I ask him if he is still in love with her and Rich says no,that he was never in love with her, that he had always been in love with me; so I asked him why he told me he was in love with her and I cannot believe it when he tells me that he was trying to  make it easier for me to move on! I say to him that I cannot believe for one minute that he was thinking of my welfare when he said that, even thought I knew in my heart of hearts that he always been in love with me I struggled to believe that he was so cruel to make me feel better. What a load of bullshit!

I ask Rich to come home if he is so unhappy and we can try and work it out;  and he says he does not know if he can!  I just don’t understand why Rich still does not know where he wants to be. One minute he says he is unhappy and not in love with her; that he has always been in love with me and then he says that he doesn’t know if he wants to  come home! Surely it is simple, your unhappy so come home! All Rich keeps saying is that he is afraid; afraid that if he comes back to me I will just throw him out once I know that he has no-where to go.

I agree to meet him that evening to have a face to face talk. Rich will not come to the house, he tells me that he knows that it is being watched by ‘her’ partner so we arrange to meet  in a car park by the beach away from anyone who may know us. It appears that ‘She’ has arranged for him to collect a chair they have bought, and that ‘She’ does not know that he has contacted me; that if she knew she would not let him out of her site.  I am dumbfounded when  Rich tells me that he is afraid of ‘Her’ because has started to realise how much trouble she has caused and how he should not have listened to her; that he has been so stupid to listen to the things that she has told him, and that he knows that now. As I suspected, and as Beth rightly predicted, she had been checking his phone constantly;  and when he did go to work  (which has not been often because he has been so stressed)  ‘She’ had started to ring him to make sure he is there. I am starting to realise that I may well be dealing with a ‘Bunny Boiler’!

All the time I am talking to Rich I am pacing back and forth across my living room. I feel a mixture of anger, relief. elation, satisfaction and fear. Anger because I could still just punch Rich for what he has put me through; relief because I was right all the time when I said that Rich was not happy and that something did not add up; elation because we may get back together, and because Rich is now hiding things from ‘Her’; satisfaction because the happy little home that she clearly thinks she is building with Rich (buying a chair!) is actually starting to crash down around her fucking ears and she does not even know; and I feel fear, in case Rich let’s me down again.

After I hang up from Rich ‘Her’ partner comes over, and he knows from my behaviour that something is different. He asks me if I blame him for any of this and I tell him that I do. I blame him for some of it, him and her; the more I thought about the games they had played the more angry I got and the more I raised my voice: telling him how  I blame them for the games that they have played; I blame him for knowing about it long before he told me; about I blame him because he had waited to tell me, waitied until I was drunk to ensure that he could cause as much chaos as possible. I point out how he didn’t consider me in any of this; in fact how none of them did, and how that was the mistake that they all made; that they have all grossly underestimated me and now I will make them all pay.  Then I tell him to get the fuck out of my house. …………

I thought I told ya, hey
(What goes around comes back around)
I thought I told ya, hey
(What goes around comes back around)
I thought I told ya, hey
(What goes around comes back around)
I thought I told ya, hey

What goes around comes around part 2. Performed by Justin Timberlake



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Day 21- Repairing the ramparts

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Day 21 – Monday 30th April 

We have had a hole in our kitchen ceiling for nearly a year. Our shower and bath had leaked and in the process rotted the ceiling. Tom had been going on and on about how it seemed to represent a ‘wound’ in our house, and I realised that it had happened just as we had become friends with ‘her’.  I made a resolve to get it fixed and called a plasterer and arranged for him to come to repair it;  this is my house now and it is time that I took control of it. Tom’s right it’s like a festering sore and it needs to go.

Because of the plasterer coming I had to move some furniture and arrange things before I left for work and in my haste to get everything ready I forgot my phone. But the important thing is I did not even know I had forgotten it until I was at work for over half an hour!! My phone had been with me all the time ever since ‘The war’ began; and yet here I am without it. I know it is a sign that I am moving on and, in a way, I am glad.

I have another appointment with the Counsellor after work and when I explain about my phone she confirms that it is a step forward. I notice that I didn’t cry all the way through this session and when I leave I feel better than I have for a long time, I know that I am definitely starting to move on.

When I get home it is past seven o clock and Tom advises me that my phone has been driving him nuts because it has been beeping since ten that morning and I know, I just know, that it is going to be a message from Rich.

I check the phone and Rich (or ‘The Arsehole’ as he is now saved as in my phone book!) has sent me a text. It says: ‘I thought that I would text you as I need to collect some stuff. Hope you’re okay, I am worried about you.’

My response was to say out loud “Yes! You fucking bastard! I knew that you would come crawling back. I knew it!!” Followed by “What stuff?!”

I did not text Rich back, he could fucking wait for all the times he had ignored me. I knew that they had moved into their rental property only the day before,  the Sunday before he sent this text on the Monday! He  had been in that house with ‘Her’ one day and now he was sending me texts me! Clearly things had gone shit shaped in paradise!

Instead I called my sister, Beth,  who said she knew he would come crawling back, that it was only a matter of time.  My sister asked what time Rich  had sent the text and when I tell it was at round ten inthe morning she told me not to reply to it; she had guessed that when Rich had sent the text ‘She’ had probably been at work, and he had did not want her to know that he had contacted me. I thought about the time I had sent Rich a text and he had not replied, of  the times that he had rung me in the past two weeks, and it was always when he was not with ‘her’. I knew Beth was right, she has always been an astute cow my sister!

I was so happy, not because Rich might be coming back but because I knew that he had realised that he had made a massive fucking mistake, meaning it was my turn to make people eat shit now!

I put some music on and danced in the kitchen for over an hour, like a mad woman. Then I drank a bottle of wine, and it was only  then that I realised that the ‘wound’ in the house had been fixed, the hole in the ceiling had gone; and that Tom was right it was a sign of bad things that had been in our house and now I had finally started to get rid of them.


Let me paint this picture for you, baby

You spend your nights alone
And he never comes home
And every time you call him
All you gets a busy tone
I heard you found out
That he’s doing to you
What you did to me
Ain’t that the way it goes

When you cheated girl
My heart bleeded girl
So it goes without saying that you left me feeling hurt
Just a classic case
A scenario
Tale as old as time
Girl you got what you deserved

And now you want somebody
To cure the lonely nights
You wish you had somebody
That could come and make it right

But girl I ain’t somebody with a lot of sympathy
You’ll see

I thought I told ya, hey
(What goes around comes back around)

What goes around comes around part 2. Performed by Justin Timberlake

Written by Nathaniel Hills, Justin Timberlake, Timothy Mosley