A very good question.

by mssinglemama on January 10, 2011

Had to pull out this fantastic comment from Sara to my last post.

“Does it bother you that John is probably reading all this right now? That’s the first thing I thought of when I read your post about the break up. Do you sometimes find yourself writing things in these past few posts for his benefit at all? Like so he sees how well Benjamin is doing or how “crazy” you are at the moment by things like checking out his facebook?”

When I first met John one of the things I loved about him was his understanding and appreciation of this blog and the audience. When a topic was in question, as to whether or not I should blog about it, he always asked, “Will it help them?” Them being, all of the other single moms.

If my answer was “yes”, I could write about whatever I wanted.

The thing I hold the most sacred about this blog is our relationship. You trust what I tell here is as accurate as I perceive it to be. Without that trust, if I were to use this blog to “get back” at someone or to make John’s skin crawl I would be losing your respect and his and Benjamin’s (eventually).

I would be guilty of manipulating the content to my own advantage and to spite or hurt someone. And, to me, that is the cardinal sin of blogging. Especially on this blog.

With that said, there are pieces to stories I have kept from you. John and I’s brief 12-hour break up in May, as an example. There are more stories you still don’t know about or will ever know about (many have to do with Benjamin’s father or our immediate family).

They’re just too personal and could, if told here, affect the outcome of the relationship.

Benjamin is doing well. If he were having issues during this break up, I would tell you. But he’s not. Quite the opposite, which, I believe is absolutely eye opening. And there’s nothing like seeing your child flourishing to reinforce the fact that this is the best outcome for all of us.

Makes getting over a break up a lot easier, too. This is a first for me. But happy kid trumps all else.

I was petrified of how Benjamin would react if John and I didn’t work out. That fear may have been influencing some of my decisions about the relationship, and maybe John’s. Perhaps we both injected too much pressure on the situation.

After Friday’s post–my anger post (that’s about as angry as you’ll see me). I called John to tell him I would be un-friending him on Facebook. And when he asked ‘why’, I let it all spill out. I went on a tangent that included topics like ‘walking away and starting over like nothing happened’, ‘getting to move on Scott-free’ and a bunch of other unnecessary and mean comments, but warranted.

As soon as it was out, I felt better. And in true John fashion he accepted it all and didn’t lash back. He reminded me that this is just as painful for him as it is for me and that this was about our relationship, not my being a single mom. And then I realized that no matter how hard I may try, I can’t hate John. Because he’s John. He’s a good guy. By the end we were talking to each other like old friends and agreed that it sucks for both of us but is clearly for the best.

I haven’t checked his Facebook status since, but I haven’t un-friended him either.

I hope that answers your question. Just know that I would never manipulate this blog’s content for my own good because this is for all of you, for us. The fact that some of my posts may help some of you conquer a few of life’s trials and tribulations is far more important that what John (or any other man) thinks of Benjamin and I.

And did I mention that I am feeling better and better every day? Now that the anger has been vanquished I feel calm and content again. A bit shaken up, but content. Turns out I also don’t need a man to be happy, but I do need my friends–and John (along with all of you) will continue to be among them.

Related posts:

  1. From Break Up Land
  2. Something Missing
  3. Must Read, Must Link, Must Play
  4. MySpace and Facebook Ex Purge
  5. And then we break up.

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{ 21 comments… read them below or add one }

Soccer Mom January 10, 2011 at 9:35 pm

good to know. I agree that I try to keep my posts as real as possible…to help others. My hubby doesn’t care what i write (I don’t think) and so far I haven’t heard if The Ex has found it or cares much about it. Recently my 12 year old daughter found it…time to make sure I’m as accurate as possible b/c you KNOW she’ll keep me honest!

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soon2bsinglemom January 10, 2011 at 9:44 pm

Hugs, hugs, and more hugs. I believe it’s important to keep parts of your life private and separate from blogging as long as the rest of the content of one’s blog is truthful…and I have always felt that yours is.

Glad to know Benjamin is doing well. :)

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Glenda January 10, 2011 at 9:50 pm

Well said. I don’t think you need to explain any of what you are going through, but you do to help others in the same situation. I’m happy that you and John can be friends and you can continue to be as open as you wish without having to worry what John would think of you. Best of happiness for you, John and B.

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lmt January 10, 2011 at 10:11 pm

Your honesty shines through in this post. I imagine if JOhn had a problem with you blogging about your life the relationship would have never have progressed to the point it did. It is good to hear Benjamin is doing so well.

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Lesli January 10, 2011 at 10:40 pm

I hope you don’t mind me posing the question (I knew you way before John)….but would the relationship have “fared better” (for lack of a better way of saying it) if the whole blogging thing had not been a component? I mean, living day-to-day is one thing, but knowing that parts may end up “out there” might affect someoene’s psyche?

I guess the answer is neither here-or-there…..I just want you & B to be happy. And I know you are still recovering. Give yourself time–you are strong and will be okay–more than okay. Love you.

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Misty January 10, 2011 at 10:48 pm

I left my daughters father 7yrs ago and a couple yrs after that had a 2yr live in relationship(since decided won’t live with dude till we are married in the future) and i wonldn’t say that Benjamin being happy is a sign that its right for your family. I’m sure it is right for your family because you believe it to be and that is what matters. When i left her father she missed him very much because she was 2 at that time, and even though she loves her stepmom and 4 yr old half brother now at 9 yrs old she still asks from time to time why i couldn’t stay with daddy. When i left the guy i lived with she was slightly attached but has moved on. Point is with being an only child with a single parent household i think my daughter would rather have me to herself than share me(though she does tell me often i should get a boyfriend i don’t think she would like it if i did) and maybe Benjamin is the same. Maybe your little man doesn’t want to share you with another man more than he wants a male figure in the house. Just a thought:) PS Please keep posting weekly because i’m using your blog for my Technical Communication class.

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Rachel January 11, 2011 at 8:04 am

I tend to agree with you. My daughter isn’t the same kid that she was when it was just her and I (now fiancee is living with us). She’s had to adjust to someone taking my time away from her and it hasn’t always gone well. I don’t equate her feelings/behavior with something wrong with the relationship – just growing pains.

I could imagine that without J there, “normalcy” is back in B’s mind. Above all, obviously, you know B best and you knew the relationship best. I could imagine the relief to seeing him happy and adjusted again.

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Ricci January 10, 2011 at 11:38 pm

One thing to me is kids are honest. I been on both sides, where I was the child that saw a split, and now a parent of kids splitting up. When they are happy, it is a sign regardless of what anyone thinks. They feel anything that may or may not be going on. Blogging actually helped me get a perspective on me personally. What I would tolerate, and etc. I go back and see how lost, confused, and angry I was for the abuse. Now, I’m at peace, and happy. You’re on the right track, trust me. At least he’s being decent about it……..lol

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Misty January 11, 2011 at 12:54 pm

Of course it is a sign i’m not saying its not a sign but what is a sign of is not always what we think it is. If my daughter was sad about a break up i won’t think oh maybe i should be with dude. i would think oh she misses him but i know our relationship isn’t good for our family. If my daughther was happy about a break up i wouldn’t think oh she knew he wasn’t right. i would think oh she likes the attention that is directed sololy on her now. My daughter and i have a very open relationship and talk about everything that is appropriate for a child, but the details of a relationship are too complex for a child to fully understand and rationalize.i’m just replying to a blog that wants to hear opinions please don’t discount my opinion because you disagree.This is of course responds to your “what anyone thinks” comment.

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Terri January 11, 2011 at 12:27 am

Your integrity is what makes you so delightful. I am tickled that you are all thriving!
;) t

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hot rockin' sassy single mama!!! January 11, 2011 at 1:31 am

Yep, you’re life is going down the sewer. And I get to watch. Oh yeah, Kristin is engaged! I think her and Cory are going to make it. Sucks to be you, though. Heh.

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you're not as hot rockin' as you think you are January 11, 2011 at 7:05 am

Get a life you troll!

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Momma Sunshine January 11, 2011 at 5:56 am

It’s tough to keep blog posts honest when you know that the subject of those posts is reading…I experience the same thing with CBG. So I applaud your efforts.

Just remember to give yourse (and Benjamin) all the time that you need to heal from all of this. It’s going to take a good long while to truly be “there”. Don’t worry about how long it’s going to take….it’ll happen when it happens.

*hugs*

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debbie January 11, 2011 at 6:48 am

I , too, blog openly! But, carefully! I have blogged about the main relationships in my life..but not much about the dating ones…Those are with people known by some reading my blog! I am careful. I dated a guy who blogged..and he blogged our break up and his heart ache A LOT! and I hated it! LOL..sort of a good lesson for me!!!!:) on the other hand, a blog is healing for us and others~! good for you for finding that balance!

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Star January 11, 2011 at 6:50 am

It’s interesting…I’m a no holds barred honesty kind of person in my life too and when my BF asked how many people new about our last relationship issues I said, “Everybody.” That’s how I am. I talk to people about my problems. Anyways, when I asked him if he was angry, he said, “No…it’s the truth. I’m ok with that.” When he found me online, it was through a blog post that I had posted to my dating profile…when we first dated, he read my blog…and he was interested and fine with all of it. I don’t think he would have been the right fit for me if he hadn’t been ok with my full disclosure. It’s part of who I am. It’s how I relate to other people authentically in my every day life as well as virtually. I’m more stressed about my ex and his family reading it because they are so immature they have in the past used the information to wreak havoc in my life. I’m hoping they grow out of it so that I may continue to be honest and open even virtually ;) I’m proud of you for being strong and getting through it. Focus on doing what makes you happy. That’s where you need to be right now. Happy. No matter what that takes. :)

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cait January 11, 2011 at 10:56 am

One of my favorite things about this blog is how incredibly real you are. Yes, I’m sure a lot of relationship bloggers wouldn’t write the things you’ve written since the break, but would they feel them? Absolutely. Admitting that you’re checking your ex’s facebook profile is real, it is what every woman (or atleast every woman that I know) would do and it’s a little embarassing. Still, you choose to tell a whole community of people that you’re doing it.

I’m not a single mom but I check your blog every week because I admire your honesty with yourself and with everyone else, about who you are. That sort of honestly is incredibly hard to come to, especially for women. You inspire me to get to that point with myself and if you hesitated to write about ugly things like anger and jealousy, that might not be the case.

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LK January 11, 2011 at 12:15 pm

All I have to say is you (both) are a better person than I would have been in this situation with my son.

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Annnan January 11, 2011 at 3:37 pm

Re-read your blog entry from Dec 7, titled “DAD”. To assume Benjamin isn’t having “issues” due to you and John Bears break because he isn’t acting out is absurd. Sometimes being good, or perfect, and NOT acting out is just as harmful as acting out. Pushing feelings aside isn’t healthy either. In a few short months Benjamin has moved into a new home; he has had to figure out the dynamics of a new family unit AND decide if he should call John Bear “dad” or not. Just as he was probably finally figuring it all out and feeling comfortable the rug was pulled out from underneath him. Have you ever stopped to think that maybe Benjamin is protecting you and being good because he knows you’re sad? When my Dad left our family I remember feeling very scared. I was good as gold because I was afraid that if I was bad my dad would never come back….and I didn’t want my Mom to have to deal with a naughty kid because she was working hard and had enough stuff to deal with. Everybody was surprised at how well I had adjusted too. I didn’t adjust well, I just became a perfectionist. IF I could only be perfect then…..my Dad might come home…..my Mom wouldn’t be sad…..

Look, I don’t think you’re a bad parent at all. In fact I get the feeling that you love Benjamin with everything you’ve got — but don’t assume that Ben is adjusting well because he isn’t acting out. He just lost something he always wanted: A Mom and Dad; an intact family unit. I do not think that you’re break up was the wrong thing to do, not at all. I just remember being the kid that everyone assumed was “adjusting so well” after the break up of my own parental unit. I wasn’t adjusting well at all. I was being “good” because I didn’t want to upset my Mom and bring her more sadness and I thought if I was good then my Dad would surely come back home. WRONG. I was 5 years old. Those feeling stuck with me a very long time and probably the reason I’m a perfectionist today.
Not a horrible thing, but I wish that people would have realized that my “adjusting well” to losing my parental unit was my attempt at not rocking the boat for all the wrong reasons. I was sad, very sad, and very confused. I remember those feelings like they just happened yesterday and I’m 35 years old.

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Misty January 11, 2011 at 8:12 pm

I agree with that 100%. Positive reaction is sometimes worse than a negative. Every child is different though. They are their own little person and just as complex as an adult sometimes. Best wishes for you both:)

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sofia January 18, 2011 at 8:38 am

thank you for sharing your experiences with us, because as a single mom I also share fears, hope and dreams, and it´s great when you find that, that you are not alone.

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Jellie Bean March 18, 2011 at 10:20 am

I stumbled upon your blog and chanced on this post. I admire your honesty, and more of your ability to see past your anger and the situation. Keep pushing forward, you’re doing great :)

When I became a single mother, a good friend once quoted a line from American feminist Gloria Steinem which went: A woman without a man is like a fish without a bicycle.

Hugs. You inspire me!

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