As best I can tell, late last year when I was focused on work, and Yayoi was stressed with school and life, she began to confide her frustrations in a friend. This friend, while smart, knows little about love, and made Yayoi feel better by reinforcing whatever negative feelings she might have felt about her husband. While she felt that “Colin is like my girlfriend Tetty” back in Chicago, her friend was not lending emotional support so much as taking advantage of an increasingly emotionally distraught woman in order to fill his own life with something he must think of as “love.”
In time, I began to feel uncomfortable. As she spent more time with her “girlfriend” I began to complain about the lack of attention, affection, and respect. In the weeks before she initially left her eyes turned black and she would spend most of even the weekends with Colin. This hurt me, and I complained more, and asked what she needed from me. I was unhappy with our relationship. I wanted better.
But she left. For Spring Break. She finally had sex with him “because I felt so lonely.” After a week, she was ready to come back. But after what I assume was intense emotional manipulation she showed up 90 minutes late only to tell me she had changed her mind, and was going to stay with Colin.
This broke my heart, and ripped my soul in two. I bawled harder than I had ever done in my life. But as I lay in bed, I could feel the pieces of my soul drifting back towards me. I rose again, to express my love, my willingness to change. Please, remove yourself to a neutral environment! After the encouragement of Colin’s mother, she did just this, and spent some weeks with a mutual friend from church. She said that she had not meant to shut me out, and I continued to express my desire for reconciliation. We attended some counseling together.
But she did not want to sacrifice her friendship with Colin. I assume he became increasingly desperate because Yayoi became increasingly irrational and hostile. She said many irrationally hurtful things, and it took a great deal of strength to fight for my love for her and our marriage through that. I perservered. Some days were better than others.
When I left for Colorado, I invited her to stay at our place. Take some time to figure things out. Some space to think. Don’t do anything awful that you will regret, and remember that we have had a good life together. When I returned, I went to stay at my friend’s place. An hour and a half commute in exchange for some time and space for my wife to know her heart seemed worthwhile. She wanted time to finish finals and think things over.
But I came home one day, to pick up some underwear, and when I left her a note I turned the note over to find the outlines of a trip to Canada, where shitface is from, immediately after finals. I confronted her and she said that by “taking time” she just wanted to double-check her assumptions to leave with him. She felt it “would be mean” of her not to give me “a second chance.”
I gave her an ultimatum: she had to stop hurting me and choose her path in life. I returned home and we spent a tender night together. The next morning at school Colin focused his intensity back upon her. She came home at night and once again said she wanted a divorce. I talked through everything with her, and she admitted that I might be right about everything, but that she had to leave, she didn’t know why. Colin came and picked her up, for the last time.
Since that night, last Thursday, I have been sleeping well. Vik and Becky took me to Napa with another couple for the weekend. Friends, family, coworkers, and my employer have all been wonderfully supportive through this ordeal. Now it is down to paperwork, and a six month waiting period. So far, we have managed to avoid lawyers.
This has happened to women and men before. This will happen to others again. I have learned a lot and through the pain I have emerged stronger. I know the path ahead will not be easy, but I’m glad to at least know that I am moving ahead. I wish the confused, damaged woman that is my ex-wife well, and I know that Colin Rhodes, Canadian-American, night-shift security guard, Diablo Valley student, aspiring technology professional, and comically self-righteous prick, will face his own karma in time.
To those that have supported me in these dark times, I love you. You have my deepest gratitude. For those just reeling from the blow of reading these words, I am sorry that you did not hear from me in person. I have retold this story a thousand times lately, and I need to put it behind me. And to any of my people who feel that it has been awhile, or they want to renew our friendship, or would enjoy seeing me again, do get in touch. I’ll be doing what I can, introverted though I am, to be better at reaching out to my friends, but I am kind of shy.
I feel blessed. I am lucky. Bad things have happened, and they break my heart, and test my strength. But I have the strength, and I have it in me to learn from this experience and some day it will be to my advantage to have lived this trial. I wish everyone the best in their own relationships, and if you can use an ear in overcoming some darkness, I may have something useful to share.
“This too, shall pass.”