All the Single Ladies, Divorce

Second Verse, Same as the First

I’m waiting for LP, who is at an extracurricular, and I’m sitting in a downtown coffee shop in City By the Sea. (Have I called it that lately? I loved the days of the nicknames.) I’m drinking a Milky Way Latte (decaf), which is almost indescribably delicious. This is a coffee shop that used to be further down the block. I remember sitting on similar furniture worrying aloud with a friend I never see anymore about how the price of heating oil had hit — gasp! — $1.25. When was that? 2000? 2001? A long time ago.

I’ve lived here a long time. I’m starting to re-recognize people. And I’m living out a repeat of an unpleasant chapter. No matter how good an idea it is to get divorced in a particular situation, even if you wanted it, it’s not fun to know your ex is out there meeting people via the personals. When Ex1 (The Father of My Children) and I divorced in 1997, all the personals that were personals were in the back of a weekly newspaper that doesn’t exist anymore. You recorded a message, and people could call up and leave you a message in a mailbox. I never ran an ad, but I did leave a few messages, and to my horror, one time, I called to listen to a recording and recognized my recently former husband’s voice. Ack!!!

Now this time I’m not looking myself, but I’ve had the rather hilarious post-marriage experience of having my first ex run into my second ex at a well-known local walking path, where they discussed the health and welfare of my children, after which my second ex thought it appropriate to mention that he had met a woman known to my first ex (they are both contra dancers), and my first ex decided to tell me about it. He theorized that the meeting of his friend and my second ex probably took place courtesy of that new hotbed of personal interaction, Craigslist.

Given that Ex2 had been finding rooms to rent while away at work via Craigslist for the past few years, this all added up.

Although I knew Ex2 was back in the area, I hadn’t let myself think about his social activities. But now I am on the lookout. And today it occurs to me that it’s a happy thing he doesn’t drink coffee, because there’s a very low chance that he’ll make a Craigslist personals date in a coffee shop. So I feel free to drink my Milky Way Latte in peace.

9 thoughts on “Second Verse, Same as the First”

  1. My ex-husband remarried while our children were still relatively young, and one day I was asked something like, "Mom, what are you to daddy's wife's ex-husband?" Nothing, thank goodness! My child used "daddy's wife's" name, but there's still that confusion of relationships for which we have no names. I decided to call "daddy's wife" my wife-in-law. She and I double-dated way back in high school, so I shared that "wife-in-law" idea with her and we both had a good laugh.

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  2. I don't know that 'hilarious' would be how I'd feel under those circumstances, but I admire your equanimity for sure! I had the good fortune to leave all my exes behind when we moved this last time. I was dating someone else (very casually, lest you think I'm a heartless wench) when I met my now-husband and I totally just never called Other Dude back (wimpy way to ditch someone! I'm ashamed of myself) and then they met at a dinner party a few months later and I had to say "Hi, Other Dude, meet Dr. S, my fiance." AWKWARD.

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  3. Jenny F, that is super-awkward, yet meets my definition of hilarious. :-)Bonnie, well-played. We have a similar complex relationship to explain. My children have one living grandparent, their father's father. After TFoMC and I divorced, my mother-in-law died and that grandfather married a very dear lady who has been incredibly sweet to me. But what is our relationship? She is the stepgrandmother of my children. Or, just Judy. RDM, yes, way small.And Deb, definitely not what this former Southern Baptist girl imagined for her life. But it's okay.

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