Beliefnet
The Queen of My Self

Here is a response to my request for empowerment stories. Thank you, Mambo Queen, for your candor and your courage. Good for you!
 
I Just Stood Up for Myself…And It Feels Good
By Mambo Queen
 
My ex-husband has been putting the full-court press on me to get back with him ever since he went to rehab. Since he’s been out, he’s been living in a sober house, and has about 90 days sober today. It’s always been more difficult for me to deal with him in times like this though, because I feel like I have to be “encouraging” and “supportive” and it sometimes causes me to not be as firm with my boundaries.

I’ve had to talk with him sometimes regarding business, and sometimes I have returned calls just to “be nice” or to “be a friend to him while he’s trying.” Frankly, I shouldn’t even put that last in quotes, because I would like to just be A FRIEND to him, but I’ve known for a while that he always misconstrues my niceness, and never seems to listen to me when I tell him that I’m in a relationship and don’t want to get back together with him.

Well, today he told me in no uncertain terms that since he can’t seem to find a job, he’s going to “go homeless” after two weeks, in a last ditch effort to prove to me that he can’t live without me. So he will do this to test me and see how much I do or do not care about him. He also said that he could tell I didn’t care if he lived or died, so maybe he would just die.

I told him I refused to be his prisoner any longer. I told him he has continued to make me feel trapped and like I am not free to live my life or choose who I am romantically involved with, because I have been so afraid that he would do something stupid, but that I wasn’t going to be a victim of that behavior anymore.

I told him that I did care about him and what happened to him, but that if he was foolish enough to choose homelessness or death because he couldn’t be with me, that I refused to believe for a second longer that that was in any way my fault.

When he asked how I knew for sure I would never want to be with him again, even if he continued to change, I told him that sometimes love dies, and that while I couldn’t predict the future, the fact that my love had not revived in over two years should be a sign to him that it wasn’t coming back, as it was to me.

I told him that one thing I have learned about myself in all of this is that when someone punches me in the face, it does tend to make me lose romantic love for them. He said he can’t believe I can’t forgive him for that. I said I have forgiven you. That is why I want to be your friend. That is why I will allow you around our daughter, because you are sober. That does not mean I want to be your wife or your girlfriend.

He said our daughter needs us to raise her together. I said if you continue to stay sober, I would be happy to be a co-parent with you, but you have never seemed to want that, only me. So that part is up to you.

I feel a little bit scared, a little bit sad. But mainly, I feel GOOD.

* Please send me your thoughts about power. Also stories of your own empowerment. When shared, these ideas and examples are extremely inspiring to others. Thanks.
   
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The Queen welcomes questions concerning all issues of interest to women in their mature years. Send your inquiries to thequeenofmyself@aol.com.

CONSULT THE MIDLIFE MIDWIFE™
Queen Mama Donna offers upbeat, practical and ceremonial guidance for individual women and groups who want to enjoy the fruits of an enriching, influential, purposeful, passionate, and powerful maturity.

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