Sometimes, I have to remind myself to not be so nice. Sure, I can seem mean at times, but under the sometimes rough exterior there is kindness in my heart. I was daydreaming about what it would be like to be with someone new that I loved in a mutually happy relationship (no, there’s isn’t anyone new yet). I thought about the holidays. Most holidays we were alone, but what if it’s not like that with the new love of my life? How nice it would be…
Then I found myself thinking about my husband, would be ex by that time in the future. I wouldn’t want him to be alone. I thought about what I’d say to the new man in my life and how I’d make it up to him. I recited the story of what holidays were like for us and how depressing the holidays can be when you’re alone. I can’t do that to him, it’s not right. He doesn’t have family anywhere close enough to visit. I didn’t like imagining a happy holiday with him being alone and sad. It broke my heart.
After talking to my best friend, he reminded me that he already had abandoned me on Valentine’s Day, to go be with another woman less than a month of leaving me, and after telling me we would hang out for Valentine’s Day as friends. I was reminded that when I brought up the topic of the holidays previously, he said “We’ll see where I am around that time.” I’m 100% sure that he meant if he had someone to spend the holidays with, he’d abandon me again.
I had ordered a Superman shirt and mug. The ex had ordered the same thing, but he also ordered the Batman shirt and mug as a set. He received his Superman shirt and mug, but his Batman stuff didn’t seem to come. My Superman stuff was long over due, so I checked the tracking number and it was delivered to his apartment (our addresses are one digit off). So when he found out that those were mine, he looked up his order and couldn’t find it. He was very upset that he didn’t order the set because he really liked it. That nice part of me felt really bad and I wanted to tell him to keep it, because I didn’t like seeing him so disappointed. I felt bad and even guilty for having been the one to get it.
Then I reminded myself that he bought a really cool Captain America shirt that I really liked and was very bummed out about not having money for it, and he didn’t bat an eyelash. He was very proud of his shirt and didn’t seem all that sorry for me. He didn’t offer for me to have it or to get me one, nor should I expect such a thing. By that same token, why would I be so generous with someone who doesn’t feel the same sense of generosity towards me? If he had done this cool thing for me, I’d have done this cool thing for him.
When he runs out of money and needs to borrow cash, I have to keep on him to remind him to pay me back. He’s known for “forgetting” and never paying back what he owes. I feel like when I am out of money and need to borrow cash, he wouldn’t have any to lend even if he wanted to. I don’t like being his backup plan. If I thought he’d be reliable as a backup for me, or could trust him to pay me back, it’d be a different story. However, it feels very one sided. There are some exceptions, such as gas money. He reliably takes and to and from work and grocery shopping, and therefore I am reliably going to fill the tank for my part of gas use.
There is a concert that we both wanted to go to, but he doesn’t want to go with me. He wants to go with his new friends. I get it and I can’t be upset about that, right? If he wants to go without me and that means I can’t go, that’s my problem. I wasn’t angry, but it did make it clear that my happiness and desires are not a consideration for him. This concert hasn’t happened yet (it’s next week).
So a few weeks ago, he had screwed up his pay check and asked to borrow money for groceries and gas. I agreed to fill up the gas tank and to purchase groceries while I also needed to go shopping. He was a little dramatic and barked that he’d figure it out himself. Seeing as how I just offered to get him what he needed, I found it suspicious that he was so upset that I didn’t agree to just hand over cash. He apologized and said he was just really upset. I told him that after he calmed down, we could go shopping. When we went, he didn’t want to go shopping. So I got what I needed and filled the gas tank. Then the next day he told me that he was very upset about not being able to go to a concert that was really important to him (which is not the same concert that I’m wanting to go to next week). It’s quite clear that he didn’t need money for groceries, he just wanted to go to that concert.
Why should I be generous? Not only does he have zero concern for my desire to go to a concert next week, but he was trying to manipulate me into giving him money to see another concert. These are all concerts he wants to go to without me. It’s not that I’m trying to be vindictive, it’s that I don’t appreciate being used and excluded. Even when I feel used and manipulated, or feel like he doesn’t deserve sympathy, I often find myself concerned with his feelings and enjoyment of life. I worry that he’ll be depressed, alone for the holidays, or can’t have the things he wants, or have fun doing what he wants to do. That kind and generous part of me wants to give him those things and make him happy… but who’s going to do those things for me? Who’s paying for my happiness when my money goes towards his? What kind of friendship is this when I’m actively excluded from the fun?
I like being kind and generous, but I often have to remind myself not to be too nice. I have to remind myself that I deserve to spend my money on making myself happy.