It took me a long time to come to terms with my divorce and even longer to finally feel whole.

When my ex left he wasn’t an ass about it – he was calm and methodical and he promised to take care of me – he just wasn’t in love anymore and even the year of therapy couldn’t incite those feelings. It was hard to hate him when he was so careful and concerned about my well-being. But it was even harder to reconcile the rejection I felt knowing he didn’t want me anymore.

We settled amicably. He was literally amenable to everything… well, everything but the dog. We got Oscar together only two year prior to our split and we both adored that dog. Unlike our roles with our children, we shared in responsibilities for Oscar and equally took pride in his care. We both wanted him full time and we just couldn’t come to a mutual agreement. It took hours of arguing and we finally agreed that whomever had the kids would also get to take the dog. I was never happy with this arrangement but knew it was in the best interest of the kids so I relented.

My ex went on to date quickly after we finalized our settlement. He found a girlfriend a bit too soon and seemed to be insanely happy. I found myself sinking into despair as the dating pool was bleak and I was frustrated.

It was hard to occupy the weekends without the kids and our dog. It took a long time to find hobbies and a social life for myself. Now, almost two years later, I am feeling like myself – positive and excited for a life I let slip away from me.

But I recently had a setback. I pulled up to the grocery store and found Oscar tied up outside. Excited to see my pooch, I instinctively ran over to give him a tummy rub. I figured my ex and the boys would be out in a minute but to my surprise my ex’s girlfriend came striding out of the store. She awkwardly smiled at me, untied Oscar, and made an excuse that she had to get the groceries back home so she could make lunch for the boys.

Just as I had started to feel comfortable with another woman spending time with my children, I didn’t imagine she was also spending time with my dog. And alone time at that! I just couldn’t come to. Oscar was MY dog and if anyone needed to be with him it would be me!

I spend the day in bed under the covers…. Knowing I was being irrational and overly emotionally I couldn’t cope.

Today I have resurfaced but am still feeling off. Is it the dog or is it the girlfriend living my life?
Not sure….

LK, 49

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