I forgot that I chose to be with James, my character disordered ex, because we got on, had the same goals, enjoyed each other’s company and were in sync in many ways. My 16 year old son reminded me of that today.
He wants to go to Europe for 3 months when he finishes High School and we were talking about travelling companions.
‘It is really important that you get on with the person you travel with. You spend 24/7 together and if you don’t have the same habits and preferences it’s really hard.’
‘What do you mean Mum?’
‘Well, say you’re happy buying food in supermarkets and cooking in the youth hostel and the other person wants to eat out every night. You’re gonna have a problem.’
‘Oh, I see what you mean.’
‘Take me and your step dad when we travelled to Asia last year – he doesn’t care where he eats when we go out because normally he is hungry and just wants to eat. I like to browse first. I look at the menu and prefer to find one with a nice atmosphere and a menu I like. I am happy to walk round for ages before deciding.’
‘Mum, that’s just like Dad and Susan (his partner). Susan always goes in the first one we come to, whatever it is like, and Dad prefers to take his time.’
I laughed. Seems like partner #2 for me and my ex are more suited to each other than us in this instance!
‘You know something love, your Dad and I got on best when we were travelling together. We never argued about where to go, where to eat, what to do. We were always completely in agreement. It was one of the things that was best about our relationship.’
It got me thinking. Despite the years of abuse, infidelity and high conflict divorce, I realised that I had been with this man because we DID have lots in common, we DID have good times. I wasn’t just a fool choosing the wrong man for the wrong reasons. I had enjoyed being with him and travelling together, which we did a lot often and it was the source of many of my happiest memories.
I was also glad that I could tell my son something positive about my relationship with his father.
It was a timely reminder that despite everything that has occurred, there were good times and they were what kept me there in the first place.