My (ex) Best Friend’s Ex

19 Aug

One of the things that social networking sites have done is make it so that any idiot with little or no writing ability and a computer can reveal their innermost thoughts to the world. This post would be about that person.

I met one of my best friends “J” on match.com almost a year ago. She was married to the same guy for 20+ years. They divorced about five years ago. She has never had a bad word to say about the man except his penchant, in recent years, for wearing kilts. Every day.

So last night I was at home surfing Facebook. I start with my friends and then move on to their friends. I am friends with J on Facebook and she is friends with her ex and her kids. So I have a look at her ex’s page. Oh. My. God. Look at that main profile picture.


How Cool Am I!?

He’d be a prime candidate for Hot Chicks With Douchebags. if there was a hot chick in the picture with him.

After you stop laughing, look carefully at the picture. Notice that the wind is not blowing the kilt open, he has stuffed one end of it into his belt.

Hoping that his writing is as bad as his choice of clothing I start reading. He doesn’t disappoint. Starting with the selection of “interesting” quotes. They’re hack, cliched and just not funny. The kind of thing your aunt who just got email forwards to you every week.

Reading farther I get to his “notes.” Facebook’s profile blog. The first entry, only a few days old, catches my eye, “Before You Divorce a Good Father.”

“Oh god, I hope J hasn’t seen this yet.”

And after reading this bit of electronic offal I really hope she has not seen it. Really dude, you’ve been divorced for five years and you are still this angry? And you choose to air it in a public forum in front of your closest friends? Not to mention anybody with a Facebook account? Currently about half the internet?

Wow.

So let’s have a closer look at a few selected passages from this 3800 word essay and see if we can figure out what is going on here.

“Though we celebrate our supposed God given right to the pursuit of happiness only the most naive of people do not realize that the pursuit of happiness through divorce leaves a long, long trail of loss to all those involved … this essay is one such Father’s testimony as to what is lost and why.”

First off, his ex-wife was a teacher, didn’t he bother learning proper sentence structure or even basic punctuation? Secondly, god did not give him the right to “the pursuit of happiness”. There is this little thing called The Declaration of Independence that put forth that particular claim. Let’s invite him to have a look a look through his favorite religious text. I don’t think that the Big Invisible Wizard in the sky (or even the Flying Spaghetti Monster) ever gave him, or anyone else, that particular right. But do, please, correct me if I am wrong.

“To begin, the Good Father that you are divorcing will in all likelihood be snatched up post haste by a Good Mother”[…]

Now he is getting really annoying. Talking about himself in the third person is a sure sign of a narcissistic personality. Go ahead click that last link and read the first part. Either that or he has his head up his ass.

We now learn that in his attempt to be oblique, clever and snarky he has merely managed to show that, five years later, he is still deeply angry about the divorce and wants his ex to pay. And he is going to illustrate her “betrayal” for all the world to see.

As I read on, I begin to realize the author’s writing implement of choice is a crayon.

There are a couple more paragraphs just like that before he ups the ante: bringing his kids and his girlfriend’s kids into his argument. No really.

“Like all Good Fathers, will continue to be a Good Father, but not just to your children, but to the children of the woman who now claims him as her own.”

Dude, give it up with the third person already. And I really love that last part which is pretty much, “neener neener neener! I’m on her team now! Aren’t you jealous!?”

“but your children are now sharing the Father that they were never supposed to have to share. Just how this sits with them largely depends on a combination of how giving their hearts are and how confident they are in their Father’s love for them. But under the best of circumstances they will eventually be aware, and possibly disappointed and hurt, when they see the love that would have been wholly theirs being shared with others.

I am trying to conceive the thought process that led him to those particular words. Lets try to guess shall we?

  • Let me question the love in the hearts of my (mostly grown) children
  • I’ll finish that thought with something that makes them the bad guy instead of me.
  • Now I’ll throw in a dash of doubt
  • I will end with fact that I love someone’s else’s kids as much as my own.
  • Perfect, I am such a genius.

 

Undoubtedly he thinks this is good advice for Good Fathers everywhere. Unfortunately he is just sticking the knife into his ex and twisting it. And in doing so comes off as a petulant twelve year old still mad that he never got that pony he wanted on his 5th birthday.

A man much wiser than myself once wrote that “Shared pain is divided, shared love is multiplied.” But our author is not really talking about love for his kids. Instead he is saying to his ex-wife, “you are to blame for the divorce. You forced me to replace you with another woman. You forced me to spend less time with our children.”

Curiously enough he pretty much comes right out and says just that a couple of paragraphs later.

“So, for whatever reason you are considering getting rid of the man who is being a Good Father to your children try hard to see past yourself and your own happiness just long enough to know that though you may find joy in getting rid of him completely you are also likely taking him halfway away from your own children as well.”

What he doesn’t seem to realize is that his ex-wife is not considering anything. She dumped his kilt-wearing ass five years ago and has long since moved on.

I have rarely seen a woman who is so dedicated to her kids (the youngest who is 19). She has used her summer off to spend a large part of most weekends and some weekdays with her kids. Cheering them on, supporting them, being a part of their lives and loving them as fiercely as any mom ever has loved their kids.

I totally get that he was deeply hurt by the divorce. Hell, I’ve been there myself. And there are at least a couple of women that I loved deeply and remember fondly. But I have moved on.

His ex-wife is the kind of woman that no man in his right mind would ever willingly walk away from. I totally get that. And because of the kids, J and her ex end up spending time near each other from time to time. Oh well that is, as they say, the consequence of ending a marriage with kids: you still gotta see the old ball and chain at family gatherings. And having one of the sweetest, kindest and most loving ladies you have ever known within arms reach but still miles away has gotta hurt.

But still there is really no excuse for dragging his kids and ex-wife through the mud one more time just because he is in pain. Be a man, suck it up and move on with your life. Wish this brilliant shining star that gifted you with three wonderful children all the happiness that life can bring. Love your children with all your heart and without condition. And do the same for the new lady in your life and her kids and I think you will find, just as Robert Heinlein once said, “Shared pain is divided, shared love is multiplied.”

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