Is there a bigger asshole in the entire world than John Edwards? The answer is yes.
John Edwards is a major prick. He was a former presidential and vice presidential candidate. His wife, Elizabeth, was fighting breast cancer and eventually died from the disease. It came out prior to her death that he had an affair with Reille Hunter and had fathered a child. He claims the affair and pregnancy happened while Elizabeth was in remission. At least John stood by Elizabeth during her horrible treatments and supported her through the end. Does that make him a good guy? Of course not-- pretty much everyone agrees that he's a complete and total asshole.
But Rob the Great (Alcoholic) is worse
But "Rob" the Great (Alcoholic) can run circles around John Edwards when it comes to the asshole factor. When I was diagnosed with my illness, Rob did not stand by me. Actually, he threatened me that if I left him, he would cancel my health insurance. Let's see... I have a life threatening illness. I am terrified (who wouldn't be?). I need to enter treatment immediately. And Rob wanted to cancel my health insurance so... what... I could not get treatment and die? And he repeated that threat for weeks until I filed for a legal separation in February, which prevented him from canceling my insurance. Rob immediately switched the separation to a divorce. I got that news as I was at the clinic strapped to an IV getting blood transfusions, platelets, and chemo pumped into my veins.
I was officially diagnosed on January 6, 2012. The time leading up to that diagnosis was a Hell I can't adequately describe. I couldn't eat or sleep. I would have panic attacks at random times and couldn't breathe. My parents were with me at that appointment. Dr. Raja came in and, full of positive energy, gave me my diagnosis and said that I was highly treatable but the treatments weren't fun, would take a very long time (maybe the rest of my life), and I needed to enter treatment immediately. My parents and I cried.
After a few hours of grappling with this news, I realized that I was leaving Rob and taking with me our two daughters, Morgan and Siena. I was going to move to Utah to heal and get well-- physically and emotionally. After four years of being belittled and screamed at by Rob-- a mean alcoholic, there was no way I could heal in his presence. I couldn't even think divorce or anything else. All I could wrap my head around was: 1) I was sick. 2) I had to get away from Rob. And Rob's response? He screamed at me, called me a loser, lazy (because I went out on medical disability), stupid, a liar and a thief. Somehow, I doubt John Edwards said any of those things to Elizabeth.
When I received my official diagnosis and texted Rob to let him know, he wanted a copy of a letter from my doctor so he could use it to go out on FMLA from his job-- NOT to help take care of me or the children, but to have time for HIMSELF. He said it was to go to treatment for his alcoholism. But after hearing his promises of getting alcohol treatment for four solid years (and knowing that he had promised his last wife, Terri, to do the same for years), there was NO WAY I was going to let him use MY illness to get free vacation time so he could drink more, sleep more, watch movies, and fish. So I refused.
We moved from San Diego on January 13, 2012. I packed up as many clothes as possible in trash bags and we drove to Utah. I entered treatment at the Huntsman Center at the University of Utah in Salt Lake City just weeks later. My treatment plan would include two stem cell transplants and massive chemotherapy in the hopes of getting me into remission. Because of the aggressive nature of my particular disease, I had about a 35 percent chance of getting into remission, or even partial remission.
In addition to my diagnosis, I was in physical pain. Just weeks prior, Rob had grabbed me too hard around my waist and had broken one of my ribs. It hurt to do anything-- stand, sleep, shower, walk, breathe... And I was dangerously anemic to the point that they wanted to hospitalize me. When one is that anemic, the brain doesn't get enough oxygen and one's cognitive reasoning and retention skills are greatly compromised. I was getting blood transfusions and platelets every few days in an attempt to keep me out of the hospital.
But that's not all... I had two young children that I needed to get into new schools and get situated in a new state. Morgan, who was not quite 12 years old at the time, struggled the most. She missed her dad. Even though she knew Rob was mean and volatile, she still loved him. She missed her friends, her dogs, her room, San Diego... I mean, this was not a pretty move. I had no time to prep the girls for moving and having their entire lives disrupted. And they were so afraid for their mom. They saw me not feeling well and oftentimes I would have to reassure them that I wouldn't die, that things would be OK, and they cried a lot. Looking back, the first many months of 2012 were a Hell like few can imagine. My parents were angels-- they made room for three new tenants, helped pitch in with the caring of two young children, and made countless trips to Salt Lake to sit with me while I received treatment. I felt so inadequate, hopeless, scared, grateful... and ANGER at Bob-- anger that he could not be a support system for me. In fact, just the opposite. The text messages I received from him got worse and worse as he called me every name under the sun and screamed at me whenever he called.
...And, he started dating again IMMEDIATELY after we moved. And he taunted me with one woman he met. She was a former JD, she had MONEY, she had MONEY MONEY MONEY. And she wasn't lazy like me. She was Jewish and had MONEY MONEY MONEY MONEY. He went on and on and on. WTF. So I did something really mature right back-- I told him I had had an affair while we were married. It wasn't true. I wanted to. I had every opportunity to do it. And I wish I had. But I didn't.
Back to John Edwards/Rob the Great (Alcoholic) comparison
So while John Edwards is a dick, Rob is meaner because:
1. Rob made fun of me during my illness.
2. Rob found a new girlfriend while he was still emailing/texting me that he wanted to support me.
3. Rob promised me and his family that he would get treatment for alcoholism. He didn't. Instead, he got a new girlfriend.
4. Rob called me a thief, liar, stupid and lazy.
5. He dropped the kids entirely. He has no contact with them at all because they are "too stressful" for him.
6. Rob threatened to cancel my health insurance.
7. Rob screamed at me that if I didn't send him money from my disability checks that he would throw all my belongings in the front yard.
8. Rob contacted his entire family and asked them not to have any contact with me (this during a time that I really needed all the love and support I could muster from anyone!). I'll get into this one later but one of his adult blood relatives (not one of his children) actually called and told me this and also told me how they all felt about Rob. That's a post all of its own.
At least John Edwards had the dignity to try and keep his affair with Elizabeth from her and he did support her through her treatments.
Where was Rob? Screwing a new girlfriend, drinking, and screaming at me.
Yep, Rob is a monster.