One of the heaviest things I have carried about my unhealthy relationship was how it affected my kids. The common belief is that you and your partner teach your children how to treat their partners or what to expect as treatment from their partners. Well on the first day of school, my 10 year old girl was asked "out". She came home and told me this boy wanted to be her boyfriend. I took a deep cleansing breath and asked:
"What did you say?"
"I said I'd think about it tonight and tell him tomorrow."
That was promising.
"Do you like him?" I asked.
"Yeah, he's kind and compassionate. He showed me around, introduced me to his friends and played with me at recess."
I liked her criteria for liking him.
"Well, what do you think you are going to say?"
"I think I'll say 'yes'. "
And so it begins, I thought.
I walked into the kitchen tonight and she was writing a letter. It was a break up letter. I asked her why she wanted to break up with him. She described a scenario where she felt her personal boundaries were violated. She said:
"I didn't feel like he respected me."
"Do you want to talk to him about it, and see if it gets better?" I asked.
"No. I want to break up with him. I don't want to hurt his feelings because I know he really likes me... but..." She looked lost for words.
"...But your boundaries are important and you need to do what you know is right for you." I answered.
She nodded emphatically.
I told her I was proud of her and managed to hold back the tears of relief until I got into my room.
Tonight I was going to click "publish" on my first sex blog and toast myself with a glass of wine.
Instead, I shall raise a glass to myself as a mother and woman. She did learn how a relationship should be, the relationship with herself. She learned that her boundaries are to be respected and how to uphold them even when it's tough and the amazing thing is...
She learned it from me.
She's going to be alright. I didn't fuck her up.
I think I'll be sleeping a lot easier now.