Monday, November 2, 2009

oversharing

Yesterday I went to a jewelry party, hosted by one of the moms from my daughter's summer co-op, featuring jewelry made by the mom I like. The one that shared with me this summer what a lousy year + she's been having, with cancer, miscarriage, financial troubles, marital troubles, infertility due to the cancer, etc. I told her a little of my troubles, over e-mail, and said I thought life was easier when you were able to share more that life can be really, really tough.

Well, I was there at the end of the party, so for a few minutes we were alone and she again mentioned some of her worries, but said she thoght it was finally getting better. And I sympathized with her, and said it was so hard when you're in the shitstorm to see a way out of it, but that way would come. She told me our exchange this summer had meant a lot ot her and she was really touched we had connected, and how much she appreciated it. We continued to talk, and her marriage is tough right now, because her husband, who had been the breadwinner, is having a lot trouble finding work (he is a consultant) and money is tight and he is depressed and talks about how much better off she'd be if he left, or even if he died and they had the insurance money. So we talked about husbands and their weaknesses and somehow I ended up saying that what I had not told her was that my marital problems included my husband having an affair. She was shocked, genuinely shocked.

I walked home thinking I had overshared. That it was too much, and we weren't really that good of friends, and it wasn't entirely my secret to share - that I had somehow betrayed my husband's trust by sharing. Women's friendships, right, are built on sharing. And men can spend all day with each other and come away not knowing anything about the other guy's life. But is this too much? Is it my secret to share? If she feels very strongly, she might not want anything to do with my husband, so even though we haven't socialized much, any thought of us getting together is gone?

My husband viciously betrayed my trust 2 years ago. He knows I've shared with friends and knows I've needed the support from friends. He probably does not think I still share. And I rarely do. And I know he thinks it's in the past and done. He does not know how present it sometimes is.

7 comments:

nixy said...

I believe that it's definitely "your" secret to share. It happened to you, as well, and it wasn't your fault.

Maybe if it was more out in the open your husband would realize how present it still is. I'm not saying to shout it from the roof tops, but you should be able to share and connect with people about this because it's obviously very healing to you.

San said...

First of all, I'd like to introduce myself. I am San and I found your blog through the NaBloPoMo-randomizer. I've went through a couple of your posts and it seems like you have a lot going on in your life, esp. with your in-laws. I can somewhat relate - what with the passive aggressiveness (my FIL has that side to him).

Anyway, I wanted to let you know that I don't think you overshared by telling that your husband cheated on you two years ago. I mean, sometimes it's good to be honest about these things and maybe it puts things in perspective for her. I am looking forward to reading more from you.

Take care.

CLC said...

I don't think you betrayed him. It's your secret too. His actions had a profound effect on you and your marriage. It's not like you are writing it on FB. And finally, like it or not, it's part of your story now and probably helps other people (not the masses, but a chosen few) understand who you these days and why. And that's not a bad thing.

Janette105 said...

I know what you mean when you walk away from a conversation feeling like you overshared. And then you cringe every time you think about it. I say "Fuck it". What can you do? You've already told her. And obviously she really felt a connection to you. How nice of her to tell you that your first conversation was equally important to her as it was to you. Take it for what it is. You said it, it's yours to tell, you didn't cheat, you didn't make yourself feel like crap for however long his affair went on, you didn't ask to be cheated on. I know a lot of people hate this expression, but it is what it is. Say whatever the hell you want to say. If it gets you through this life and makes it a little bit easier, do it.

Sorry to be so blunt. I'm in a blunt sorta mood lately.

Jo said...

Maybe you did overshare. But if that's the only thing your hubby has to worry about, he's damn lucky. I'm one of those who often keeps her mouth shut in order to "protect" stories that "aren't mine" to tell. What I'm slowly learning is that if they affect me, they ARE mine and my right to have friends/connect/DEAL with my issues are not superceded by my husband's right to privacy.

Sorry, I'm feeling kinda blunt, too it seems!

Lala said...

sometimes, almost always, the things you say hit so close to home I can barely breathe. I used to spout the betrayal at every turn and now I've started to quiet down because it makes us both look bad, him for doing it and me for staying and only true friends can understand it, or maybe only you......

Tash said...

I *always* feel like I overshare, and I have relatively little comparatively speaking, perhaps. I think that mostly stems from me being a big fat chickenshit, and expecting the worst from people (see: my in-laws. I know you can relate). I'd like to think she'll appreciate that you did in fact trust her enough to spill this information, and perhaps it will even help her understand the many nuances of a problem marriage and help her keep things in perspective.

And like others said, this isn't exactly his secret to keep. Certainly not any more.