Ladies: The Ex Is Not (Usually) Your Enemy
by Lizzy Smith
October 03, 2014
Some lessons are learned the (very) hard way. Such is the story of my (now ex) husband, his ex-wife, and me.
When I first met Rob, he told me about his horrible ex-wife, “Tina.” She was crazy, jealous that he met me, didn’t want to work (though she did work fulltime), wanted all his money, was using the children just to get more child support, was a screamer and, well, I could go on and on. I felt so sorry for him and after we got married, I grew to really dislike Tina. After all, I believed everything Rob said about her and those first (strong) initial impressions took a long time to slowly wither away and die, but I digress.
Once Rob and I married, Tina became my mortal enemy. When Rob’s explosive personality began to appear (he hid this side of him completely when we were dating), he blamed it squarely on Tina. She taught him those communication skills. If it wasn’t for Tina, he would manage conflict better (sure, no doubt! I cannot believe I accepted that line of bullshit). When I discovered his alcoholism, Rob blamed that, too, on her. Tina was his trigger (always had been). If only he had never been married that horrible woman, I thought, Rob never had turned to alcohol to cope. Every time Rob and Tina went back to court, it was all her fault, she just wanted money and to punish him for moving on. Everything bad in our marriage was because of Tina, Tina, Tina.
A few years into our marriage, I had an epiphany: maybe everything Rob said about Tina was a lie. Or, maybe, just maybe, there was another side to this story. Maybe all this “it’s Tina’s fault” wasn’t exactly true. Instead of hating Tina, maybe I should feel sorry for her. Hmmm…