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Hiding The Fighting

Marriage isn't all photoshopped domestic bliss

I’ve been blogging for six years. It’s been a long, winding, pothole-riddled road, to say the least.

There was that bizarre and completely mind blowing online back-and-forth (that lasted for years) with my husband’s ex-girlfriend – who I have never met.

There’ve been all the exes that contacted me after I wrote about them but before I was smart enough to use pseudonyms. How was I to know they’d track me down to my small corner of the internet?

There was the time I realized by boss reads my blog regularly. And, of course, there have been a lot of creepy strangers who have decided they absolutely hate my guts and must tell me about it.

Take, for example, this latest comment in reference to a somewhat sarcastic post I wrote about being exhausted by my newborn who is up most of the night:

…Monica & Serge have been having serious trouble in their marriage for a while now. It’s only going to get worse. They have no foundation.

If you get divorced now, they kids won’t even remember you two together and they won’t even miss the family they never really had.

Monica can go back and investigate her bisexual urges and try and find someone who makes her life comeplete (although I must crack your bubble here and let you know that crap ain’t even real. No one ever does it for you. You’ll just spend your life looking for someone else to make you happy when to be happy was within you all along.)

And Serge can go find a decent job, get a decent girl he’ll meet down at the bowling alley who loves his music and adores him and truly loves him mentally and physically and wants to be a wife, not the man in the relationship. And Serge can thrive as the leader and husband he was meant to be. He’s have some new kids with this uber sweet wife and they’ll love Violet and Henry, and everyone will life happy ever after with no needless shreeching drama from Monica being unhappy because she’s stuck with Serge when she ain’t got that old time feeling no more.

Come again?

That’s some seriously freaky anger right there.  I hope it’s misplaced aggression from somebody who just got dumped, otherwise I need to hire a bodyguard, ASAP.

YEESH.

It’s comments like this that make it hard to be honest when my marriage isn’t doing so well. Why give some unhappy, ham-fisted buttface ammunition? I’ll tell you why. I guess because there are so many people out there pretending. Pretending their marriage is amazing, pretending they’re happier than Charlie Sheen after a brick of coke and a hooker, pretending they have more money than they do. I hate that. I want you to know my marriage sucks sometimes. I want you to know that I’ve gone in the bathroom, turned on the shower and scream-cried into a towel. And I want to know that about you too. Because it helps us all feel a little less lonely in an increasingly isolating world.

So, in a way, it’s hateful comments like the above that let me know I’m doing something right. I’m shining a flashlight on my marriage and saying, hey, it ain’t all photoshopped pictures up in here, y’all.

Maybe there are some people, a lot of people, who never argue, who never feel like punching their husband in the face. If that’s you, fantastic! If that’s the kind of stuff you want to read about I can politely direct you to a million blogs that showcase alleged domestic bliss. However, I am not one of those people. Maybe the Bielankos are dysfunctional (we totally are), maybe it’s me personally (it probably is) but who knows, I haven’t been to enough therapy to figure it out.

I do know that if I didn’t write honestly about my marriage I might as well not be writing at all. Disagreeing, arguing, fighting, whatever you want to call it, is a part of my marriage.  But, as much as I want to be honest to complete strangers about the ups and, more specifically, the downs of my relationship, it’s the part I desperately struggle to hide from my daughter, and eventually, when he’s old enough, my son too.

Both my husband and myself grew up in houses with single moms who yelled. Before they were single they fought with our dads. A lot. We had no positive role models for relationships, hell, we had no dad role models at all. That’s no excuse, but it can seriously hamstring a person trying their hardest to make it through the latest lap of the marriage marathon. Each lap is SO different. You can be cruising along on one lap and gasping for breath the next.

I don’t want to put on a show, I don’t want to pretend to be something I’m not. I wrote the story of how we met , and it’s as romantic a love story as there ever was. But it doesn’t define our relationship, it was just the first few months. Over the course of seven years we’ve had some highs and lows, all of which define our relationship, and quite honestly, it’s coming out on the other side of the lows that are the most defining of all.

It’s hiding the drama from the kids that is most difficult, the impatient exchange of words that Violet so carefully listens to now. Parents are built to want more for their children than they had and I would consider myself an abject failure as a mother if Violet ever looks back and remembers me arguing with her dad like I remember with my parents.

That’s why it’s the aspect of parenthood I find the most challenging. Hiding when I’m upset, controlling my acid tongue and moving forward without saying what I really want to say. Because, in the end, my children are so much more important than proving I’m right in whatever ridiculous argument we find ourselves having in front of our children.

Read about the personal struggles 6 other parents try to hide from their kids.

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