I got a surprise tonight from OnlySon.
The ex is dating someone.
And he went to a birthday party for one of the new girlfriend’s sons with his dad, tonight.
Kinda threw me for a loop.
Basically, because the ex was always so anti-social, and almost rabidly, anti-teenager. I wasn’t sure that he’d date again, much less someone with 2 teenagers, and a pre-teen, all boys.
My first reaction, understandably, was a sort of numb shock.
Of course, I had a million questions, none of which I felt comfortable asking OnlySon. I don’t want to put him in the middle between his father and I, and I don’t want him to feel like some sort of “spy” for one side or the other.
And of course, I had to ask at least a couple of questions. I found out that his dad has only been seeing her for a “couple of days”, according to OS. She has 3 boys, ages 15, 13 and 12, and she was nice to OS.
Then I had a talk with EldestDaughter. We went out tonight to pick up some baby shower invitations for her big day a couple of weeks from now, and we both had to hash out how we felt about this. ED and the ex had a rocky relationship, especially towards the end before she moved out.
And me? Well, I told her that I wished him well, and wished the new girlfriend good luck. I think she’s going to need it.
On the way home, ED told me something, that she “didn’t want the other person to be happy after a breakup”. She wanted them to hurt, like she did.
Understandable. I totally get it. I’ve had those feelings in the past, too, but I came to some realizations tonight after talking to A, and having him ask me how I felt about the ex dating.
“Are you hurt? Jealous, angry, upset?”
Nope. Mostly what I feel is relief.
I know, that might sound strange. Most breakups are painful, my divorce was painful in many ways. Not because I wanted him back, I hadn’t really had him for a long time, as I told a friend. The marriage had died long before we formally ended it in court.
I felt relief, because this meant that I didn’t have to worry about the ex’s feelings for me anymore. I didn’t have to worry that he might be “stalking” me, like my first ex-husband did for a while after our divorce, until I threatened him with calling the police on him in his own hometown… with the proof of his actions clearly dug into my front lawn, and my landlord aware that it had been him doing it.
But then, after I got off the phone with A, I started thinking again.
Do I really wish the ex well? Do I really want him to be happy?
See, here’s the thing – I don’t want him to be happy, but I don’t want him to be unhappy, either.
I just don’t care about his feelings at all.
Because the opposite of love isn’t hate.
The same indifference I lived through while we were still legally married.
And so I can close that chapter. Finally.
And that’s a huge relief.