Saturday, October 22, 2016

Exercising my demons

Sadly, NOT exorcising them...Could it be I'm haunted?

My ex-husband is getting married tonight.  I want to be happy for him, excited that he's moved on and found true joy.  We can debate the merits on how good of a guy he is, but ultimately he's the father of my children and his happiness is key to theirs.  

But, he's not marrying just anybody.  He's marrying that girl who abused my little boy.

There are a lot of other things I could detail about her past, Things she's done to try to hurt me intentionally or to try to destroy my family, but those things really only speak to her character and as she has been unsuccessful in destroying my family, the things she does to me don't matter.  I'm an adult.  My little boy isn't...wasn't.  Even my older boy isn't....wasn't...

The common consensus of people in their life is that I'm "over-reacting" and refusing to "let it go" or "forgive".  To this I say the following: "Is there a way to over-react to child abuse?".  Also, "damned right I'm refusing to let go and forgive".  Isn't that normal of people who have children that were abused by other people?  Y'know, you watch Dr Phil and he says all the time: "I never like to put a victim together with their abuser in a situation, ever".  Yet, I'm expected to accept this girl into my kids' lives, dutifully send them over there every other weekend and hope they're safe.  Yes, hope, because I have no way of knowing they're safe.

Could it be I'm haunted, why can't I let it go?  I've been in therapy since my ex and I split and my counselor and I have worked a long time on my healing from this.  We finally got to the point where I don't have nightmares, every night, and I don't have a full blown anxiety attack when I send the boys over there.  But there are some things I can't turn loose of.  The images, that hand print and bruising on my son's face.  I know it's a trick my brain plays, but at least once a day I see my son's sweet, cherub face the way it looked that night.  I hear him tripping over the words of the made-up story, hear him tell me how he apologized, hear what the doctor said, remember all the trips to the crisis center, see the horrible findings of the forensic physician, hear the county attorney tell me she'd never really be punished, try to make a decision between probation and diversion, deciding, finally, with a troubled soul, to make the best decision I could for her kids because I have a mama's heart and that's what I do.  AT LEAST ONCE A DAY all this comes flooding back to me and washes over me.  It takes a minute, maybe two and then I snap out of it.  But it's there, every day.  I don't have them nightly anymore, but there are still nightmares.  Both boys still occasionally have nightmares.

Oh yes, and let's not forget the guilt, because I sure can't.  For the rest of my life, I will wonder if I made the wrong decision about probation v. diversion.  Especially in light of how the system flat out lied about what would occur and how long my son would be safe from her, etc.  Some days, when the boys have had nightmares, or I've had several of them, on those days, the guilt bubbles up around my heart and throat until my chest feels tight and I feel like I'm going to be sick every time I take a step, or a breath, or my heart dares to beat.  I wonder, in those moments, if my oldest son still blames me for not protecting his brother from her.  I wonder if one day my baby will blame me for the way this all turned out. I hope one day this will go away.  But there's no way to tell.  We're doing the best we can.

Yes, I must be haunted. 


  1. *hugs* You made the choices you felt you had to make, as difficult as it may have been at the time. Eri, you know that even though we don't talk much anymore, I've always been in your corner and have always had a love for you. You made the choice you did because you didn't want to punish her kids even though she punished your kids. I'm so sorry this still haunts you; it's something a mother should never have to worry about. I guess the consolation prize is knowing that if she does it again, you can change your decision and your boys are older now and will most likely not stumble over some made-up story, but rather tell you the actual truth.

    Always here for you, Eri.

    1. Thank you so much, Joshua. I know you're always there if I need you and sometimes it's been so refreshing to talk to someone who doesn't expect me to just forgive and forget. You are an amazing friend and I'm glad that my children can call you "Uncle". Thank you for being there for my family. --xoxoxo Eri--

  2. You are not going to 'get over it' nor should you. We are mothers, we are awesome mothers at that, and we will always feel responsible for what happens to our babies. I think you have absolutely done the best with a bad situation. I think your vigilance is highly warranted. I think you are a damn fine Mother, Woman, Sister, and Friend. She is evil. When the time comes, Auntie BoBeary will have the copies of every single letter we wrote to every office throughout that damned state and my nephews will have no doubt that their mother and Aunties fought like hell against a broken system. I have your back. Always.