23 years of parenting
26 years of marriage
26 years of abuse
26 years of infidelity
1 married couple
In September 2018, I stood before the judge for the first time.
At the time, I was struggling to figure out how to support my youngest son, my college age son and daughter, and myself.
I was working part-time making $15/hour, while also taking classes to become a certified teacher. This was logical and practical to me.
My husband, although officially “unemployed,” was consulting at $30,000/month.
The majority of our assets had been blown on a lawsuit my husband was (and still is) pursuing.
My future was in the hands of a white male judge.
A judge’s job is to provide an objective perspective on each case.
As I sat in the witness box, I was fighting for sole custody of our youngest child and for freedom from the man I had married.
I testified about the things my husband had done:
-sex with teenage boys
-the friends of our own kids
-the children of my friends
-the coercion and bribery with money, cigarettes, and marijuana.
Yet, when it was my husband’s turn on the stand, he could not recall any of those things.
And because he was temporarily in therapy for sex addiction, his therapist had shredded the paperwork proving it. **I should add that sex addiction therapists would report clients they believe have broken the law. My husband didn’t know the actual ages of some of his sexual partners; I did because I knew who they were.**
He knew that I was trapped.
He knew that I was more afraid of him than any judge. He knew that I would eventually comply.
As he created stories of me being suicidal, I watched as he lied time and time again to protect himself.
I watched as his lawyer attempted to discredit the testimony of our son’s therapist.
As the judge began to announce his ruling, I realized that I had never truly believed in the social construct of white male privilege and the subjective nature of a judge’s ruling.
I was harshly reprimanded because our children knew about my husband’s indiscretions, even though, it was they who told me.
My husband kept the majority of his money. My husband received graduated visitation rights with our son.
I want to believe that the judge felt he did the right thing.
But I don’t.
I believe that wealthy white me can be excused of almost every behavior.
This was the speech I gave for a final in one of my classes. I was nervous about giving it, although most of my classmates had already heard portions of my story. It consolidated and summarized my life, preparing for it was both awkward and beneficial.
As I walked to the front of the class, I asked that they not record it. If it were recorded and somehow got out, I could be sued. I am supposed to prevent my youngest son from hearing anything negative about his dad. (I find that a bit difficult since his dad’s actions are a regular topic of conversation in our home.) But I do agree. I shouldn’t speak negatively about his dad; however, I will not lie to him, and I will not allow him to be unprepared when visiting with him. Does that make the truth negative? (That’s a question for another day…it’s not what I want to write about today!)
The minute I finished this speech, I felt the strangest sense of relief. It felt almost as if it the words of Jesus, “It is finished.” were speaking to me. Before you get carried away, do NOT consider for a minute that I am comparing my life to Jesus’s! I’m just borrowing His words. Honestly, I finally have peace regarding my story. It doesn’t occupy my mind 90% of a day. I am free from the mental chaos of searching for understanding.
I cannot understand what Code Red did. And I do not think that I ever will be able to. I cannot understand why he isn’t afraid that one of these boys might come forward. I cannot appreciate his boldness in his quest for promoting how much he cares for mankind. I cannot understand why he developed a “Poor me. I was gay and trapped in marriage and family” life.
But I don’t have to understand. I don’t have to spend hours wondering why.
I am free. I am free, and I can move on.
It took 22 months of overwhelming emotions to get here, but I am finally free.
Disclaimer: I do not know what will happen in the future, and if Code Red will begin to harass me again, especially since we still have a minor son to somewhat parent together. So, if I forget this feeling of freedom, bear with me and know that there isn’t one of us that knows which direction our paths will take at any given moment in time.