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03272023 Dear Diary,

My stupid-drunk-self made a TikTok Friday night of me crying and begging my cheating ex to please return you, my precisions diary, and my father’s bible. There were many more very important sentimental things in that box of books but loosing you and my father’s bible hurt the most... I feel so stupid looking back. My ex was never the man for me. From the very beginning he was gaslighting me, manipulating me, and grooming me for cheating. What kind of man does that? Excuse me, what kind of person? I remember when I would notice something, a red flag, and I would say it to him, “that seems suspicious.” He would respond with, “that's your past trauma. Your ex cheated on you that's why you feel that way. Its not me, its your past trauma and it's OK babe I'm gonna work through it with you. We will get through this together. I'm here for you, I understand.” That’s how he would talk to me, like if that's not grooming, what is? I can't believe I was stupid enough to be groomed for cheating. He cheated for nearly a year before I found out and yet, I never suspected him once. How stupid am I?

Pretty stupid because he also never did his fair share. I kept begging him and asking him and pleading with him to please do his fair share. The fair share of the house upkeep and HIS children but also the fair share of the bills because he never paid his half. I came up with the money when he didn't have his half, every month. And vacations, I paid everything, every time. How stupid am I? Very stupid. The very first trip we ever took together was Vegas. We were supposed to pay $600 each to cover the cost of the hotel room and the travel expense to get there. He didn't pay any of it; I paid the entire 1200. Mostly because he had small kids and I assumed he was broke. I didn’t want to judge him superficially. I didn't complain about it but while we were in Vegas he bought a $200 pair of Jordans. I thought that was pretty rude and inconsiderate considering how much money I paid for us to just be in Vegas. He never even offered one cent towards the cost, he just let me pay it. Want to know what I bought for myself in Vegas? Nothing. I got nothing.

And this continued our entire relationship. I just don't know what I was thinking. I feel so stupid. I fell for the lies. I fell for the gaslighting. I fell for the manipulation. I paid all the bills. I carried all the burdens. I cried so many times in the garage or the closet or the bathroom. Being with him was so hard, so draining, and yet I still stayed. I was faithful, honest, and hard working. He still cheated. He still left. And he still somehow felt I deserved the spitefulness of stealing my most prized possessions. I miss you dearly Diary, wish I could have you back…

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