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What happens when your married, dearest friends, stop speaking the same language
yet the giggling of their small children silence them into frozen statues?
I saw her heart being injured again, looking familiar, from the last time, but a little less severe.
Why? Because she knew this feeling already, the first time was an abomination a cruel, nasty, unforgivable hurt that stabbed her heart raw, blood gushing out, out, out.
As her friend I tried to help but I knew I couldn’t.
Did she want to break up her marriage for one cruel and very hurtful remark. He had never laid a hand on her, except that time he pushed her once when they were engaged.
She would not accept that, ever. This was emotional abuse.
For all the years that he was kind, for the children, for the companionship, she stayed.
I knew, she thought, he always kept a secret, sensing something but not the darkness and emotional cruelty underneath all the pleasantries to the public. “A nice guy. ”
He did not like confrontation, so he sabotaged their joy.
Now he is nasty and passive-aggressive, is it his age or
depression or a later mid-life crisis?
Yes, all of the above.
I had to ask her: Is he simply stupid with all-things emotional?
She nodded yes. Silently. She nodded yes.
Power attracts her, as it always did, romance too.
He had neither.
We had discussed this topic many times.
I saw her put her head in her thin, translucent hands
rocking back and forth, back and forth
too weary for tears.
Had she finally given up?
I could not hear their whispers anymore
Twenty years are a long time
Knowing them, she thought, they will stay together
and accept mediocrity.
I will ask her one last time and never again: do you realize how little he Hears you,
“The roses” I say, are the perfect example”
Yes, she says. I know.
I don’t ever want him to bring me those cheap gas station roses again.
We have children, she said.
I will not hurt them, we will not hurt them, those precious, light souls.
We do not hate each other, we will be companions.
It’s not always about just us, too many people think that way.
We will stay a family. For us. For them.