Is it different being on the internet after divorce? Let’s plunge into the Deeper Waters and find out.
In January, I left Georgia and moved back in with my parents. It wasn’t until September that I let the news out in a situation where I thought it had to be done. That meant for that for eight months, the majority of people had no idea. There were a few who knew and one private group that I shared in, but most people knew nothing about it.
That can be a sting in itself. Sometimes, people would tag her and I in something and I would get that reminder. It wasn’t that I really forgot, but it just made it more real. I remember seeing at one point that she had changed her name back to Allie Licona. I had hoped some people might ask me what was going on, but no one did, at least no one that I recall. I understand that a lot of people want to mind their own business, but sometimes, it would be nice if they didn’t.
I used to watch her page regularly and turn on notifications of her posts to make sure no one was mistreating her. After she announced the divorce, I stopped immediately. She has thought that I had people spying on her and checking in on her. Not a bit. Sometimes, some friends would come to me who knew what was going on and tell me things that were happening, but for the most part, nothing was told.
I have been told she made posts saying that I was abusive. I do not have firsthand evidence of this, but I trust what was told me. I had a number of friends when they found out say, “Do you care if I unfriend and/or block her?” I always told them it was their decision. They didn’t owe me anything.
There was also one friend who told me that he unfriended her after he saw what she posted in August for her birthday. She had a fundraiser set for victims of domestic violence. He knew that was a charge against me and he wanted nothing to do with it. If anyone wants to know about the charges, feel free to ask, but I can assure anyone as can several others that I never abused Allie. I certainly wasn’t perfect and certainly made mistakes, but nothing that equalled abuse.
Facebook memories can be painful to look at. Yesterday at work I heard Kryptonite being played by Three Doors Down. I used to like that song. For me, it was just painful this time. “Will you still call me Superman?” That was her name for me. I can show you posts on Facebook where she refers to me as her Superman.
I look back at old posts where we interact and wonder what was the truth and what was a lie. It’s painful to see someone say how blessed they are with you and how much they love you and what a great man you are for them and then have them divorce you. You could say to not check your Facebook memories, but I want to see what’s going on in the past in other areas and I don’t want fear to hold me back.
I understand she has a YouTube channel from others. I have never watched a video. In this case, I don’t think I could. Seeing someone is very different. The visualization brings back the memories.
I remember seeing a picture of her recently in my memories after she won the Miss Shining Star Beauty Pageant here in Knoxville. It was put on by Joni and Friends and every girl in it had to be disabled. It was the first one ever and we went all out to get her a good dress and my sister came in from Nashville to do her make-up.
When she won, I cried more than she did. It was one of the happiest moments I’d had. I remember seeing it and thinking, “In your face” to all the bullies of the past. I remember coming home and going next door to see my parents first and opening the door and introducing them to Miss Shining Star.
It’s sad when that which brought you joy now brings you sorrow.
You look at this and wonder why it was all thrown away. That’s exactly what it was. Ten years of marriage with nearly a year of dating prior and then it was just tossed out. You can say abuse, but again, whenever the police came to our apartment, it wasn’t because of abuse. It was to stop her in another suicidal phase.
There’s also the other side that you can see other couples happy together and you wonder why it can’t be you. This is still something I long for and so far in the world of trying to get out there and date again, I haven’t had much luck. I am working on getting out there and meeting more people. I am trying to interact even with people I don’t know and just ask questions. It’s never the generic “How are you?” It’s always about something.
It’s also been awkward asking for donations from people. I hate having to do it and yet I have to do it. When I get a new one, it reminds me that someone actually cares. Believe it or not, sometimes, you wonder if anyone really does or not. I have been thankful for friends who have called me or contacted me and asked how I am doing. Sometimes I can’t talk, but when I can, I usually try. I am also working on getting together with a friend from Knoxville I met back in third grade. He’s the friend I have that I have maintained a working friendship with the longest.
On the more positive side, there has been a whole lot more interaction with people on social media for me and a lot of people visiting my blog. I have been told that people appreciate how candid and real I am. With these blogs, I honestly don’t have scripts. I just prefer to sit down and write out and let the thoughts flow.
Usually on social media, we post our best, but I have been posting some of my worst states of mind. I have been posting from places of agony. The downside of this is different people give different advice and sometimes contradictory pieces of advice at that. I do have a therapist I work with who knows all about the situation and was our marriage therapist for some time. He has been guiding me through every step.
Overall though, for now, interactions are very different on social media and there is still a loneliness there. That’s another reason I hope to earn enough soon to move out. I want to go out and get a place to live in the city where I will be near people and near events that I can go to. Even where I am, it takes me half an hour to drive to work and of course, to drive back.
Thanks though to all my friends on social media who I have not yet met, but who have stood by my side. Thanks for any support you give prayerfully, relationally, and financially. I also thank all the men I have spoken to who are or who have been fellow travelers on this journey.
(And I affirm the virgin birth)