Wednesday 8 May 2019. Day 117: So I seem to be a part of the modern social media phenomenon and I got dumped by Instagram. Not the actual social media site, but by my partner of 7 years. Call me old fashioned, but an actual conversation would have been the decent move.
So who do I blame for this sad state of affairs?
Let’s start with him.
Seven years ago I’d thought I’d met the man I was going to grow old with. He was tall (I’m 6 foot in heels and he was still four inches taller!), single (well sort of – he still lived with his wife, separately, as she had found solace in a male friend who listened to her, so the marriage had obviously ended), attractive (I’m a sucker for a red head) and kind (he bought me bags of food shopping so we could make homemade pizza).
He moved in 6 months after we met and we were happy for a while. The cracks starting showing early on but I loved him and he would learn to support and comfort me when I struggled with what I now know was the perimenopause, and the other myriad of work, life and parenting issues. We went to counselling in the hope that I would own up to being the fuck up but that just made me more angry. He just became more confused by me and convinced himself that he was okay and I was the problem.
So onto the next thing to blame. The menopause.
Life as you know it is completely turned upside down. If I had actually been aware that I was peri-menopausal, I would have taken myself to see my GP and demanded I got help. Embarrassingly, I was (un)blissfully unaware that this was the case. Okay, so I’m not the easiest person to live with, but who is once you’ve built a home and a family only for your husband and father of your child to abandon you leaving you to pick up the pieces and try to carry on? Starting a relationship with baggage is not without its issues but you do it in the hope that it will all work out and you’ll get your happy ending. Adding the menopause to this situation is only adding fuel to an already slow burning fire. Unfortunately, in a new relationship, you only have maybe months of knowing someone intimately giving the new partner no frame of reference to who you used to be before the menopausal fire ignited. They therefore think you are some crazy, stressed and anxious person who just needs some time (and ‘medication’) to sort herself out.
The menopause is a bitch and she bites hard.
So, next to blame. Social media.
People lie and the best forum in which to do it is online. Whatever age you are, there is always someone posting images of their perfect life. From teenagers pouting their enhanced faces and new mum’s announcing that they slept for the whole night through to middle aged women exercising the menopause away. How many of them are being honest? The pressure on those that aren’t picture perfect is crushing.
It’s so easy to post or say something that you wouldn’t confess to in the real world. You’re removed from seeing the implications of your actions and as long as you feel good about publishing that clever post, then who cares if it hurts someone?
And onto the last culprit. Me.
I should have been honest. I should have told him I was struggling. I should have told him early on that although I loved him, I wasn’t the person he wanted me to be; I am not placid; I am not consistent; I am not happy with one holiday every five years. I am an enigma; I’m equally giddy and quiet; I can laugh hard and cry with force; I can be the life and soul but I also crave my own company.
I am me, and to many people, that’s enough. I work hard and I work hard at being a good mum and daughter. Okay, so I can be a show off and say the wrong thing at the wrong time, but that’s part of my charm. Just not so charming to him I guess.
So, who to blame? The modern world? Men? Menopause? Me? I think it’s possibly a collection, but ultimately it’s me. I am in charge of my happiness and I allowed others to take control. I will accept this loss because after all, I initially instigated it by being distant and sad. It would have been kind of my partner to have at least had the conversation with me where we agreed to stop battling and to end our relationship, instead of publicly flaunting his new found happiness.
I will be okay. I am okay. The bruises will heal and I will blossom again.
Until next time, be true to yourself.
50 year old mum and grandma juggling children, grandchildren, love, work, and the menopause!