Part II: Dear Ben

Dear Ben,

I’ve taken the last few months to process and heal. I gave you five + years of my life and two children even though I only got to hold one. I’ve been faithful, I’ve supported you, encouraged you, kept your darkest secrets, stood by you through your darkest hours, endless struggles and forgave you over and over. Never in my wildest dream would I ever think that I meant absolutely nothing to you. My world came crashing down in August when I saw who you really were for the very first time. I finally saw that you didn’t want to be better, you were okay with you were and it hit me like a ton of bricks.

The cheating was enough to leave but on top of that was the way you spoke about me and the boys which is the part a lot of people don’t know. I saw you refer to me as the “colored girl you knocked up” or a bitch as I was literally giving birth to your son. You said you hated me. You said you literally never had any good intention with me which blew my mind. You bragged about how long you’ve been doing this to me and others and how good you are at it. You said that you could do whatever to me because I was so nice and you didn’t have to worry because “even if she finds out everything she will still take care of Ezra and I won’t have to worry.” That was the hardest pill to swallow because although you’ve made mistakes as everyone does, I didn’t think it was intentional. I genuinely thought you were trying.

Earlier this year is the best example. In February while looking for houses, you cheated and I shouldn’t have gone through with it. I take responsibility for that decision but you begged and cried because you said you wanted your family and loved me BUT in the same breath texted those women to not worry about me and bragged again how you manipulated the people around you. I mean as you are melting down in front of your mother and pregnant girlfriend you sent those text. I have endless examples like that. 

You take pride in manipulating people especially woman and for some reason some people who love you make excuses for you. Just because you had a bad experience in high school or lost someone does NOT give you the right to mistreat people and be a bad person. You have a security blanket of excuses and somehow get away with playing off your bad character. You do just enough to keep your tight circle trusting that you want to do better. I can’t believe I never saw it. Your entire reputation even a decade before you met me is who you are today but worse. It broke my heart even more to know that people who know you and your closest friends just expect this behavior from you. Is this the legacy you want to leave for your son?

You are not sorry. You have not apologized to me once but only to the people you think you can continue to fool. I was already shocked but i was even more caught off guard at your reaction and how you treated me after the fact. You were rude, didn’t care, blamed ME,  insisted we all get our “shit”, not scratch your “fucking floors” and literally threw all my belongings out for me to pick up off the ground. Even now it’s hard typing that after giving so much to you. What hit me the most is when you said, with us gone you could finally focus on yourself and what you wanted to do. You even went out that night and continue to live without responsibility.

I put up with emotional and physical abuse, cheating, controlling behavior, alcoholism, and so much more but never again.

I want you to know that you did not break me. I am strong. I am beautiful. I am an amazing mother and I deserve better than what you gave me. My boys deserve better than what you showed them. I’m free from pouring love into someone who never loved me. I have not let you affect how hard I love but you have made me be even more intentional with my love. I am also more intentional with the boys. Someone told me to be careful about what I tell and put out there for the boys but I decided lying and sheltering then will not help them. I will be honest with them and they will know how you have behaved and treat people is not okay. History will not repeat itself. Out of darkness, can come light.

The light is that even with over a decade of being who you are, you CAN change but you have to be the one who wants it. I pray every day that your heart will soften and you’ll face who you are. I pray that you become the man you pretend to be.

In love,

Shaina