Grief

Get off the pedestal: you’re a fucking bitch, wife.

Something was triggered when wife died.  Brought up in a Baptist family where forgiveness is a cornerstone of our beliefs, I never let much stuff bother me or held grudges for long growing up.  I always reigned anger in and processed it – at least I thought I processed it. Now, I feel resentment towards my wife because I never stood up to her, looking back at it.  Did I just totally waste half a decade on a woman who smothered me, who was supposed to bring out the best in me?

What a horrible thing to think,” I hear you cry – but such is grief.  “How can you call your wife a bitch in the title of this post?!“. Well, news alert – grief is unpredictable and can make you feel the oddest of things. If I hadn’t met my wife, I wouldn’t have felt this pain and I’d be merrily rolling along, dating without being petrified of being outed as a widow and the other woman running for the hills. I’d be having liberating, wild sex without worrying if the day will come when I have to tell someone that I once had a wife who hung herself half a metre from where we just fucked.

They say that we shouldn’t speak ill of the dead, but I don’t subscribe to that.  My wife was never on a pedestal when she was alive (apart from her parents’) so why should she be in death? She was amazing, obsessed with me, a complete angry shit sometimes, an attention hogger, judgemental hypocrite, total softy, vicious, adoring girlfriend, possessive freak, and gorgeous company.  She gave the best kisses but boy could she be angry: a multiplicity of identities, and holder of a heck of a lot of secrets.

When my wife was alive, we had very few arguments.  Now, we have lots of one sided ones where I shout into thin air at her.  I regret that we rarely argued because one of the consequences of holding the anger in was a destructive affair.  They say that in healthy relationships, couples argue but then work with one another to resolve conflict.  It forms a strong connection.  The way of resolving conflict for us was for me to give into wife’s point of view and buy her something expensive or just to stay silent. A Bottega Veneta purse.  A Paul Smith scarf. A dog.  She was such a stroppy bitch sometimes (wife, not the dog) who blew everything out of proportion.  A loveable bitch, of course, else I wouldn’t have put up with it, but she did have a way of manipulating and sometimes being downright cruel towards others.  She once fell out with a friend permanently over a clash of opinion on the quickest public transport route to Bermondsey and banned the rest of us from talking to her.  The handful of times where I did put my foot down with my wife, she’d say “fine, I’ll call [our lawyer] in the morning“, take off her engagement ring and hand it back to me.  I was terrified she’d leave so figured being submissive housewife in her shadow was the best solution. I admit now to resenting her a little (sometimes a lot) for playing me like that because, when I did it to her, she died. I do recognise though that a lot of her behaviour stemmed from her younger years and the monster that is depression. Still, I put up with her flirting, her passwords being names of people she’d fucked, her cheating the expenses system at her company, her bitching about my friends.

We are taught from a young age that anger is a negative emotion.  Surely, there’s a happy medium?  I think I am entitled to be angry, at myself and at my wife, for not expressing emotion more.  I think I am also entitled to feel angry for the way she could be when she was alive.  The key is to not let it eat me up inside and turn me into a bitter, sour recluse. I am going to live and learn.

My circumstances have forced me to reconnect with who I truly am, the values that are important to me as an individual, and to live them authentically.  On one hand it’s great and on the other, it’s shitty because I shouldn’t be in this place so young.   But trying to live as I was as a wife is where some widows and widowers go wrong.  They try to cling onto their identity as part of a couple.  They want to play that role.  I get it – I totally understand why you’d want to do that – but the fact is, I’m not in a couple anymore.  My wife and I aren’t a team.   She has no decision making power over my life but I will always carry my ex teammate in my heart.

My body and mind recall now that I really am not a submissive – I’m a total bossy boots.  I love being the centre of attention.  I’m funny.  I am the one who will grab the microphone, stand on the piano and belt out Defying Gravity, Adele Dazeem style. I live for the applause, like Gaga.  I am such a good flirt and am great at talking to strangers. I’m a pretty fearless adventurer.  These parts of me didn’t get any oxygen when I was with my wife.  Letting them breathe again has also brought me back to life and given me something true and familiar to feel – exactly what I need (beyond wife doing a Lazarus) to feel in control again. But I’m angry at my wife for moulding me into trophy wife so that the bits she wanted to see were most obvious (boobs, mainly).

Feeling anger and resentment is difficult because I am years behind in techniques for managing them healthily. Also, the expectation of widows is that we think our late spouses were God’s gift and totally flawless and we miss them all the time. I fear judgement for saying that I don’t conform. Well, perhaps writing this is one of the healthy techniques. What about you, other wids?

When I get angry, my natural reaction is to cry.  It’s not good for the neighbours.  They probably think it’s rather strange that nobody is shouting back to my “You were such a fucking bitch for turning everyone against me!”  exclamations and the “ go and sort your fucking family out, woman?!” pleasI’m working on not letting it totally consume me when the anger bursts rear their head.  Thus far, my best outlet is throwing ice cubes at my fridge door.  It doesn’t dent and the shattering effect of the ice is enough to make me feel like I’m destroying something.  It’s also surprisingly physically exerting.  Even better, the ice just melts – widow cleaning!

I’m interested to know, how do you all cope with the anger?

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5 thoughts on “Get off the pedestal: you’re a fucking bitch, wife.

  1. Your honesty is so refreshing. Thank you for sharing really vulnerable things. I try to embrace every feeling as it comes and really engage, not to filter anything (emphasis on TRY). I admire you a lot for embracing really difficult thoughts and feelings. I definitely feel the pull now of growing into my own person again- I guess everyone bends a little bit in relationships. I’m finding my own voice and feel empowered. I hope you will as well. Also- GENIUS with the ice cubes!!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I wrote. I wrote a lot. I wrote a blog post that was something like “FUCK YOU FOR DYING”

    Yeah. I was mad.

    I took a baseball bat to the punching bag until I hit it so much it just bounced off the ceiling (punching bag, not the bat)

    I yell. I do this primal, scream while I’m driving that leaves my throat raw.

    I want to have lots of sex – but I have 2 boys who are entirely too freaking observant and I’m not willing to leave them alone overnight.

    So yeah.

    I get being mad. I get being mad for changing who I was for someone who ultimately left me alone to figure out who I am now.

    Like

  3. Pingback: I should be the one to die by suicide – not my wife. | Eerily Cheerily

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