Oh, the shame!

One of the worst things about being cheated on and left for the other woman is the shame. There is no denying that I feel shame in this situation. It’s like I have been marked by the black spot. It’s self shame. I consider myself to be a strong independent woman and I try not to let this feeling break to the surface to often, but I can completely understand how women lose years wondering; why me? Just when I think I have broken through and I will never feel shame or embarrassment about the situation again, something happens.

This week my friend, stay-at-home mum, happily married with two children, told me she was pregnant again. She will have three children under three. I was overjoyed for her. Later that day, after our playdate at the park, she sent me a message saying she hoped she hadn’t upset me but she didn’t want to keep it from me. I was really surprised by this. I was surprised because she thought I was so unhappy that she was scared to tell me. I reassured her that she can tell me anything and I am truly happy for her and not upset. But it made me become more aware of how people view me. I should  be happily married, and have another child by now. That was the plan. That is what all my friends are doing. They are planning new babies, bigger houses, promotions etc, and I am back at square one. It’s embarrassing that I couldn’t keep a husband, that he cheated on me for so long. I suppose people will expect me to feel like this all the time but I don’t. The truth is that most of the time I feel grateful that I had a lucky escape. Thank God I didn’t discover who he was when I was 60, after working my whole life to support him while working as a full time teacher trying to be a good mum.

However, you can’t get away from people bringing up the past. Didn’t you ever suspect? Did your family like him? Remember that time when he did this? So while you were doing this he was doing that? I can always count on my mum to bring him into the conversation. When I have good news and I’m really happy and not thinking about him at all she tactlessly brings him up; See, you’re better off without him. Thanks mum.

Or there is the other response of pity: Don’t worry, your time will come (my time for what exactly?) He’ll get his comeuppance (to be honest I don’t really care, I’m just concentrating on my life) One day you’ll meet a lovely man and you’ll be fine and he’ll be so jealous (I’m really not interested in jumping into another relationship, or making him jealous).

I really don’t want to sound ungrateful, I couldn’t have survived these past couple of years without the support of my friends and family, and I love them dearly. But I don’t want to be reminded of him all time. I just want my own life, I don’t want to look back or be reminded of the past all the time. I only have one life and I plan to make it a good one, without the shackles of shame holding me back.