Chapter 12: Half truths and lies.
As we battled the emotional hardships of infidelity, alcoholism and the person he became when he drank a few things happened. I learned a lot about my husband. I learned a lot about his insecurities, the red flags I missed that I should have seen, and that through it all he was an incredible father. I also learned that he didn’t like me very much when he was drunk, which made me wonder if he liked me when he was sober. He said he did, in fact he said he loved me and didn’t believe me when I would tell him the things he said to me. He didn’t think there was anyway those words would come out of his mouth… I needed to believe that..
I learned a lot about myself too. I never thought I would let this happen to me. I never thought I would marry a man who would soon fall in love with another woman, get drunk nearly every day, treat me like a doormat and mother he wish he never had, and wonder if my husband even loved me. IF he was with me because he loved me or if he was with me because he was stuck. We had a daughter and his one out left him. So where was he gonna go now? What was he gonna do now? Guess he might as well stay. It felt like crap. Feeling like an obligation was my least favorite thing. Then I was jealous of the relationship he had with our daughter that I didn’t. Yeah she loved me, but not like she loved him. I felt like an outsider… Like a doting and beloved aunt. It was not a good feeling.
I always worried when Jake was going out of town for a performance. Particularly with Dustin. Remember the creepy 40 something year old who was divorced and wanted to get down with any girl who would give him a shot? Yeah him. They always traveled to Denver together to perform for the same ballet company. As guest artists, they had some freedom, got paid and were highly sought after by everyone… The young boys wanted to learn from Jake, and the young girls wanted to be his friends. The young teens wanted to partner with him and I am sure had crushes on him, but the women of legal age… they were trouble. They made me nervous. They were brasin and flaunted and taunted. They ALL knew he was married and had a daughter. He talked about her all the time.. not us… but her.
Even his director out there, who was once a prima ballerina in a renowned company, told him being married would ruin his ballet career. She encouraged him not to be married. She told him he would be happier if he were single and traveling was easier and less messy… Now let me interject here that I NEVER told him not to go, I never said no, I always encouraged him to say yes to any role, I always said I would move anywhere he needed to. I was very supportive even though I knew what these girls were up to, and knew his dalliances with some of them. Also let me add that this woman had never met me and I am not sure where she got off assuming I was holding him back. Trust me, he did whatever and whomever he wanted. Nothing I said or felt made a difference to him, in my opinion.
One time he was out there performing a Nutcracker, which he did every year. He was unusually hard to get ahold of and wasn’t really answering my texts.. He answered one call and told me he was dealing with some drama and he would call me later. He briefly explained that this woman in his show was being harassed by her husband. Let’s call her…. Shay. Shay claimed her husband had been pimping her out to his friends and co workers for rent money. He had made her sleep with them for money and she was tired of it… So she had come to stay at the directors house for the night, which is where the guest artists stayed when they came… Jake had given her his room for the night and he was taking the couch. That was all I got. He had called me back but only spoke to me for 2 minutes to tell me he was exhausted and needed to get to bed because they had dress rehearsal the next day. So I told him I loved him and let him go.
The next day while I was at work I got a facebook message request from some guy… I was about to delete it because typically these are guys looking to talk dirty online. But when I read “ Your husband kissed my wife last night, I just thought you would like to know.”…… That caught my eye and stopped my heart. I accepted the message and said A:“Hello to you too… What a greeting. Hi who is this?” G:“My name is [Greg] and I saw my wife and your husband kissing last night.” A:“Are you sure it was my husband? He is in Denver… Who is your wife?” G:“Yeah we LIVE in Denver. My wife is Shay. They are ballet partners in the Nutcracker.” ....oh I know who Shay is… He just told me about her pimping husband last night… what’s the story here….? A: “Oh, Greg, Jake called me last night and told me you two were having a fight, I just wanna make sure you mean this and you are not trying drag another marriage down because you are mad at your wife. Can you tell me what happened?” G: “ I wouldn’t do that. But your husband is destroying MY marriage, so I thought you would wanna know. We were fighting, and Shay told me she was going to [Leah’s] house” (the director) “So I went to go talk to her and out on the street by her car I saw your husband kissing my wife and hugging her. I got out of the car to have a conversation with them and he was a complete dick. She started screaming at me for stalking her and they told me to leave. We fought a little more and they went inside Leah’s house so I left and kept calling… We have a son and she clearly wasn’t coming home to be a good mother, so I had to go be his father.”
I immediately picked up my phone to call Jake… He didn’t answer me…. I sent him a text that said “ YOU SURE AS HELL BETTER ANSWER YOUR PHONE… I JUST HAD A LOVELY CHAT WITH GREG. CALL ME, NOW!”
Pretty quick he called me. Which worried me. I said to Jake…. A:“Do you have something you wanna tell me about why they were REALLY fighting last night?” J:“I told you, she was upset because he had been pimping her out.” A:“oh… really. Did you pay for her last night?” (not my best moment… ) J: “What does that mean?” A:“Well he said he came to talk to her and you were kissing her. SO… were you?” J:“Alli, NO! I was not kissing her… He is pissed that she wouldn’t come home and he is making this up. Babe, I swear.. Nothing happened with us. I didn’t kiss Shay. She stayed in my room and I slept on the couch. After he was a dick, we went inside, ate, got ready for bed and we all just got up and are eating breakfast.. we have call time in 3 hours.” With my voice shaking with fury and heartbreak I said “Jake… do you swear? Because his story sounds legit. I know how you get.” J: “Baby, no I promise! I didn’t cheat on you last night. Babe, I am done with that. She was so upset and tired of being pimped out, you really think she would want to sleep with someone? It was a night away from all that. I promise I didn’t do anything. I wasn’t kissing her. I did hug her. She was crying and I was hugging her when he pulled up. But I never kissed her! I promise.”
He was calm, consistent and sincere. So I went to his defense. I reached out to Greg and I said “Greg, I realize things are hard right now with your marriage, and I am really sorry about that… Shay told Jake and he told me. He swears they were just hugging as he comforted her. He wouldn’t lie. He has cheated on me before and we are past that. He has come clean and won’t lie to me about it. We made a deal. Honesty always, even if he messes up. So I am really sorry if you are hurt, but I am going to block you now. Take care of your son, be a good husband and work it out with Shay or don't. But don’t drag other people in your mess. I wish you the best. I really do. Take care.”
That was it. I blocked Greg and went about my day… But something was bugging me… Dustin and Shay were in the background of my call with Jake confronting the situation… I couldn’t hear them, which at the time felt normal… But if nothing happened wouldn’t they all be like “Are you serious? Oh my gosh I can't believe he would do this… why would he drag her into it?” Right? I mean if my crazy husband reached out to someone’s wife and accused me of cheating with their husband and I was there- I would ask to get on the phone and assure the wife that nothing happened. I wouldn’t sit whispering on the other end. So it wasn’t sitting well, but what I said to Greg was true… Jake and I had made the pact to be honest and open even if he messed up. So. I was trusting him. I went about my day. He was hard to reach the rest of his trip but he would be home Sunday night which was 3 days. It would all be fine.
What a lie. It was not all fine. When he came home he couldn’t keep his story straight when I asked him about it. Details had changed… I confronted the changes and I said to him “ What did you do? Clearly you are and have been lying to me, so what happened? Was Greg right? Did you kiss his wife?” “…..Alli. I… okay yeah I did.” He started talking really fast “I was kissing her outside when he pulled up. But I didn’t intend to. It wasn’t like a plan. She really was being pimped out by him, and she was really upset and crying and talking about how she felt so hideous and like a whore and a piece of shit, I let go of hugging her and I looked into her eyes and told her she wasn’t trash and it was on him, he was the garbage human and she was beautiful and a good mother… I wiped her tears and it just happened. She leaned in and I didn’t stop her or move. I kissed her back but that was it! He pulled up at the wrong time and blew up!” “JAKE! I defended you! I practically called him a liar and told him to quit dragging people into their mess! YOU promised me! You told me NOTHING happened! I could have just apologized that you were such a jack ass! Are you kidding me?!?!” Anger tears were streaming from my face!
He tried to hug me, but I was furious! Now I felt like I had to apologize to Greg.
I unblocked him and sent him a message that said “Hey Greg. I am really sorry for how I spoke to you last we talked… Jake just told me you were right… That he did kiss her.. I feel like an idiot. I thought he wouldn’t lie to me and I am so sorry.” “Thanks I appreciate that… Did he also tell you he f***** her? She told me last night. She told me she chose someone to sleep with, someone I didn’t approve of. I’m not proud of what we are doing to make ends meet, but I want you to know it was HER idea. It was hard for me to accept that option but we were gonna get evicted.” “Greg you don’t owe me an explanation… it’s your life. I don’t approve of your choice as there are a lot of other options. But if they did sleep together I am sorry. He hasn’t told me that, so I can't say if it’s true or not. But thank you for bringing it to my attention. I stand by wishing you the best… I don’t think I can handle any more news, so… I’m gonna block you again.. I hope you understand.” “I do. Bye.”
My head was reeling. He did kiss her and lie about it….. so… It could definitely be possible…. I walked back to my bedroom where Jake was waiting…. He didn’t seem too concerned. I bit my top lip and furrowed my brow…. fighting the urge to throw something at him, I said “ Really? You screwed her?”
His face dropped. Right then I knew it was true. I turned and pressed my back against the wall and sunk to the floor… sobbing… He jumped off our bed and came to me… he wrapped me in his arms and just kept saying “I’m so sorry. I know, I’m sorry. Shh, I’m so sorry.” When I could speak and move I stood up and moved away from him. I asked him how he could lie to me so easily and how he could sleep with her. He proceeded to tell me the story. He told me, after Greg left he had gone in and he started drinking with Dustin and Shay as they talked about what jerk Greg was for whoring her out. He went to shower and get ready for bed like he said. His stuff was still in his room so he showered in the bathroom attached and would let Shay take it after he was cleaned up. He got out of the shower, got dressed, brushed his teeth and got Shay to show her where everything was… He was a little drunk still, and when she started to cry he sat on the bed next to her. She leaned on his shoulder and they just sat in the quiet… as it got later they moved to a lying down cuddling position and eventually she kissed his neck. This was his weak spot. He turned his face to hers and they started to kiss. She lowered herself to perform oral sex on him and it turned into sex. He felt guilty and crappy so he lied. Shay was supposed to keep it to herself as well. It was supposed to be like it never happened. Their dirty little secret. They finished their performances and didn’t see each other the rest of the trip other than during the show. …. Not sure how that was supposed to make me feel better. Even worse… Dustin knew, Dustin didn’t care and Dustin didn’t try to stop anything or intervene. Some friend. Really looking out for Jake’s best interests… But I’m not really sure what you can expect from a guy who often asked Jake over to drink and be his wingman. One time he even asked Jake to be his wingman with a 16 year old neighbor of his… He never let anything happen between them because he knew the law, but he had conversations and fantasized about it for years until she was 18. Not sure if anything ever finally happened or if she just liked teasing him. But the point is, he is scum. Not a fan of his at all. Or the drinking he encouraged, and the cheating, and the coverups.
Jake was at his house so often he may as well have been his roommate. I would have to pick
Jake up drunk as a skunk and bring him home, or he would ride his bicycle home drunk at 3 am. He would come home and belittle me. Make me feel like all his shortcomings were my fault… I knew they weren’t, but I sure felt crappy hearing how they were. I was alone. I had no friends like I used to, I hated telling my family about his drunkenness because it was embarrassing. When we had to move in with my parents for a short while because our rent was raised and we couldn’t afford it, I couldn’t keep it from them. They found out in the worst ways. He would fight with me over nothing, he would repeat stories over and over again, he was overly nice to my parents… They knew something was up. We got to a point where Jake started a job working overnight at a water plant, and any night he didn’t work, he was at Dustin’s getting wasted and berating me for anything he possibly could.
He was mad and hurt by Shauna, and I think he still was.. He often said we shouldn’t have gotten married so young, and any time his friends were engaged he would tell them not to do it. To keep dating and not get tied down… ouch. It got tiring and I was so frustrated. I felt like i meant nothing to him, and he honestly didn’t care about me.
Our sex life was minuscule and I started gaining weight and felt hideous. What he said made me feel so insignificant, and so worthless, I didn’t know what would happen. I felt lost and alone. I had my beautiful daughter that was still so sweet, smart and just special! She was incredible! She was holding us together. One day we had gone as a family to Dustin’s pool and the subject of Jake’s dalliances had come up. Dustin of course defended and explained how it was normal and natural for Jake to not be monogamous and that I should fool around if I wanted to. I looked at Jake and laughed. I said “If I ever did what you have done to me, we would be over so fast… It wouldn’t matter that you have hurt and stepped out on me however many times it is now… If I ever even spoke to someone about the possibility- you would lose it. You would kill me and the dude I talked to.”
He shook his head no, and said he wouldn’t care. I laughed!.... Hard…. But he insisted he wouldn’t care. Which was a lie, and also hurt that he thought he wouldn’t care if I were unfaithful. Dustin basically said I told you so and insinuated that I should step out.. Get even.. Not with him of course… But just that it wouldn’t matter and might even make up for the crap Jake had put me through…. I was fuming… I could not believe that had come up… I assume they had talked about it at length, and Jake trying to be cool made Dustin believe he wouldn’t care. But I knew if I ever even hinted at it, he would never let it go, and he would beat the crap out of anyone who fit the bill.
I learned after Shay, Jake suffers from what I call White-Knight syndrome. If someone seems like a damsel in distress and he is attracted to them, he feels a pull to rescue them… Look back… His ex he was pining over when I told him my secret… she needed him to live… in her mind life wasn’t worth living without him… Then I came along, and he has already been attracted to me… I had a secret that no one knew I was suffering with. I was a rape survivor and I needed to be saved and feel loved and safe. He was there. Shauna… he was attracted to her. Her marriage was in trouble.She felt suffocated and lost. He was there and drawn in like a moth to the flame. Many of his cheating companions were in emotional distress when he became their White Knight that led to sex…. Shay included. I called him my White-Knight because that is what he was for me… But I learned he needed to be the "White Knight"… I was healed from my trauma and didn’t need a White Knight anymore… Maybe I was boring now. He felt useless and needed that sense of power. I don’t know..
It was becoming a lot to deal with on my own. I was in need of a friend. I needed someone to build me up, I was so broken. I had driven all my friends away with being so consumed by my relationship with Jake before we got married. I had no one. My sister and I were not on the best of terms, so I wasn’t talking to her. My brother was a return missionary, trying to get his life in order…. My baby sister was like 8, so.... I didn’t want my parents to know everything I had allowed myself to take. But I knew I was dwindling… my light was nearly out…. I was so dark and lost and felt so incredibly worthless… I needed to get out of that.
As I close this chapter I want to offer a little plug for next week’s My Story chapter. I am scared to write this next chapter… It exposes me in a way. It is my prayer, that in my honesty and transparency, I will keep your trust and love and I fear the opposite may transpire. My story is not meant to be a tell all on Jake, and to villainize him. He is not a villain. He is an amazing human being. I pray in telling MY story, I can also share and express his greatness as well; there is more to this story. Parts I am scared to share and just pray someone out there needs, learns from and/or heals from my story. I share these tales, why? Because Mama, YOU are worth it! Together we will heal and rise from our pasts. We will come out the other side new and renewed like the Phoenix. Until next week. Stay Safe!