So my boyfriend is divorced. I knew this when we met on that dating website. It didn’t scare me off, because he didn’t have any kids with her so there was no drama, right? Well…kind of.
I basically live at his house on the weekends in order to spend time with him after school all week (I told him I won’t officially move in until we’re engaged), and as I’ve been helping him clean out his closets and spare rooms, it’s occurred to me that he’s not a very big fan of throwing things away. I’m not saying he’s a hoarder but for example, his ex-wife left her wedding dress in the one closet and he just never threw it out or reminded her about it (among other odd items she left behind).
Just like any new relationship starting out we exchanged stories of why our previous ones had failed. I had learned that he married her in 2008 and shortly after that things started to change so that she basically alienated him from his family and everyone he knew. As our relationship has progressed and hearing from his family and friends, I’ve learned that she basically used him and like he’s admitted she was only with him for her own personal gain.
Russell had met his ex-wife in Rehobeth, DE when he was working there one summer. She’s Russian and was only there on some sort of work visa to work in the beach town that summer along with some other Russian friends he knew. She came back the following summer and that’s where they seem to have started. They were married in 2008 and divorced by October 2012. This marriage was long enough to guarantee that she received her green card. When we first started dating I really wanted to thank her because I didn’t know how you could just leave someone like Russell. He put up with so much in his marriage with her, and I don’t know how she couldn’t have seen how lucky she was to have married a man like him.
As said before, she was here to work in the one beach town when they met. She ended up getting a job at another (closer) beach town, Ocean CIty, MD that is about 30 minutes from Salisbury. From what he told me, at one point she was waiting tables at the one restaurant down there and didn’t like having to take a bus late at night (since she didn’t have a driver’s license nor a car) so she somehow made him get an apartment and move in down there just to save her from having to take public transport. Did I mention he already had a house and a mortgage back in Salsibury? So he said he tried to pacify her and rented an apartment in addition to paying his house mortgage…that he paid alone because she never offered to pay bills (or cook or clean…but that is another story).
Eventually she got a job at a restaurant near his house and she still wasn’t driving and there was still an issue with getting home. His parents live a couple streets down and they offered to pick her up so that she wouldn’t have to walk or take the bus home yet she flipped out on him when he offered that she let his parents help him.
He told me that one Christmas he was going over to his parents’ house for the day and when he was leaving she said she didn’t want to go so she stayed home. He got home later that night and she flipped out on him for leaving her all by herself all day when she doesn’t have family here. When he first told me this story I was appalled…but then when we celebrated our first Christmas just this past December, we got home that night and I turned to him “Why did you leave me here all day by myself? I was so alone since I don’t have anyone here” jokingly and we both burst into laughter.
According to Russell, his ex-wife hated Salisbury; she wanted to live in the big city where there was more things to do and buy in order to feed into her superficial lifestyle. He was told by someone who worked with her that all she talked about was wanting to move to a big city like NYC. She didn’t pay any bills from what he said other than her car (when she bought one) and her personal credit cards but that she was too busy buying brand name clothes items to keep up appearances.
I won’t list every thing she did, but it’s come to mine and others’ opinions that she used him in order to get her citizenship and better herself. He basically bent over backwards to try to make her happy and from what everyone has told me about her, it was never good enough. She tried to change him and picked fights and ultimately left him when she decided she wanted to move to Alexandria, VA with another Russian friend of hers so that they could go live in “the big city”. As mentioned before, she hated where he lived and she often got mad at him because he wouldn’t move. So she moved without him. He filed for divorce but he was recently informed that even though she made the move she was still upset when he signed the divorce papers.
Just like his habit of not throwing things away, he was still “friends” with her on Facebook up until recently. (I had to show him how to delete his wedding album off of his profile. People said I shouldn’t worry about that but quite frankly it bothered me. I’m not saying to throw all the memories out, but I don’t want to look at them. It turns out he just never knew how to delete it so he never bothered with removing pictures of her.) When I asked him about this, it was very similar to his response about why he never threw out her wedding gown
Well, I just didn’t think about it. It’s not hurting anyone.
Which I guess was true. They didn’t communicate online, so it wasn’t like they were sending secret scandalous messages to each other. But it was just weird to me. Why keep that as an open line for communication? She hurt you after everything you did for her and you still want to be reminded that she left to go to the city rather than work on her marriage?
Well, I guess she was using their friendship online to creep on his new life. I don’t know how she would miss it. I’m told I post a lot on there with pictures and checking into places so he must have popped up in her timeline more than once from when I tagged him in a picture or status. It wasn’t until a recent picture I posted of him cooking in the kitchen when she finally showed how she had been keeping an eye on him. I posted this picture with the caption of getting lucky about having a boyfriend that cooks. Some of his friends chimed in joking asking what we ended up ordering after he burned the kitchen down. I stated that he had learned how to cook pretty well since he said he had to do all the cooking in his marriage since his wife was lazy and wouldn’t.
Well that certainly got her attention. There was no way she could have seen that unless she was actively looking on his page. Her response? Something along the lines of she must not be too lazy because she’s a size 0 (like really, what the fuck that has to do with anything? I’m incredibly busy studying for my PharmD, working when I barely can and I’m curvy. Attractive, curvy and educated vs. a superficial Russian gold-digging airhead, yeah I didn’t think so) and that she just doesn’t like cooking. But I loved when she told me to make sure if I talk about her to make sure it’s not somewhere she can read it.
If only she didn’t stalk her ex-husband online. I held back all the things I wanted to say.
But what I really wanted to tell her was that I forgot how much work it was to use someone. It must have been such a hard life attracting an American man to marry you so that you could become a US citizen. It must have been so hard to complain when your husband bent over backwards continually for you. I can’t imagine how hard it was to be married to man as caring as Russell-he’s considerate and puts everyone else’s needs ahead of his own. You’re right, you were so busy in your marriage by alienating your new family once you didn’t get your way. But I have to thank you for enduring such “hardship” because without your divorce I would have never met the husband that you’d rather give up for the city life.
So thank you, and you’re welcome for your green card.
This was us from July 6, 2013. Don’t be fooled by thinking it’s just lighting, but we both are really glowing from happiness. I would have posted a more recent picture from today of us when he came to visit me on my lunch break, but I’ve mentioned before that we kind of suck at taking couple selfies so that didn’t happen.