By Brigitte Ryan
When my husband and I got married, we came up with a plan of attack for the next couple years. Being that I was from New York City and he was from Paris, we'd start out with a year in NYC, then a year in Paris after we got married, and the visa situation would be easier to handle.
We decided on how much money each of us needed to make in order to live comfortably, travel, and be able to jump back and forth between the two countries to visit friends and family. Granted, it wasn't a five-year-plan, as some couples do, but our two-year-plan made sense for us.
And although we knew it wouldn't be easy, because of logistics and someone would always have to be compromising, we moved forward. I actually dared to believe in a happily-ever-after.
But then tension grew between us. While I worked toward our ultimate goal, he decided to take a back seat. Instead of working more, both at his current (part-time, mind you) job and on his music, he sort of -- as much as I hate to say this -- gave up.
He'd never been an exceptionally ambitious person, but believing I had enough ambition for both of us, I let it slide at first. However, as time went on, I realized that this man that I loved had no interest in holding up his end of the bargain.
Instead, while I worked and made plans, he napped, and when I ran something by him, he nodded, as if he was just along for the ride and had zero interest in looking at the map.
Before I left Paris in July, I told him we needed to take some time to work on ourselves, separate from each other. Since he wasn't going to be coming to NYC until early October, I thought it would give us time to sort of regroup on our own terms.
I could focus on what I needed to do for me, as well as for our relationship, and he could do the same. Again, he nodded, as he'd been doing for months, so I thought we had made the decision together.
I was wrong.
I wasn't back in the States for more than a couple of weeks when he decided to call and tell me that he didn't want to change. He had no interest in bettering himself, his life, or sticking to the promises he'd originally made.
He said that he thought it would be better if we divorced because he had no intention of being the man I want or deserve. I couldn't believe what I was hearing, but it wasn't up for debate.
After that phone call, he was gone.
At first, I thought he needed time, so it made sense that my calls, texts, and emails went unanswered. But it still didn't stop me from reaching out.
Then it came to my attention that he had blocked all my friends on Facebook (always the mature thing to do), as well as me. So I decided to take the endearing route by singing into his voicemail, texting him our personal jokes, and sending cute photos of us via Viber. Still nothing.
Day after day went by, and I never heard a peep. He was just gone.
Simply, I was being ghosted by my husband.
Ghosting is, as its name suggests, a disappearing act one pulls on someone they're dating. I'd heard of people being ghosted by those they had casually dated or even people they were in a relationship with, but just weren't all that invested in. But I'd never heard of a husband ghosting his wife.
I mean, that's just crazy talk. But, thanks to the ocean between us, that's what was happening; actually, that is what's happening. I haven't heard from my husband since August 22nd, to be exact.
Having broken up with people before and having been dumped a few times in my life, too, I already know that breaking up is never easy. No matter who decides to end it, it's painful, it's always a loss. Even if it takes you a while to see it, and in order to move on, there has to be a closure.
Most breakups provide a level of closure. Maybe it's not your dream closure, in which everything is wrapped up neatly in a little package with a bow, but it's at least something. When you're being ghosted, there's NOTHING. There's no closure, there's no discussion, it's just ... gone.
While I'd briefly given up on trying to contact him, when my birthday came and went and he didn't show up at my door apologizing for his cruelty (as I had daydreamed he would), I've since gone back to trying to contact him with a renewed sense of, "You're going to ghost me? Well, watch me annoy the hell out of you" instead.
I don't know if he's blocked my number, if my email has been set to spam, or if it all goes through, he sees it, and just actively chooses not to respond. And that's definitely the worst part about all of this: the not knowing.
And it's in all this not knowing that I'm forced to realize that maybe I never knew this man at all. The man I met and fell in love with and married in December of 2013 isn't the man who would do this.
Yes, the man I loved (and still love) was never one for confrontation, but this isn't some high school love affair; this is a marriage and you have to work at it.
As I sit here, once again hoping to hear back from my husband, I guess all I can do is move forward. I may love him with everything I have, but I can't wait around to see if he's going to call, text, or even email.
All I can do is realize that what he told me that night, the part about him not ever going to be the man I want or deserve, is very accurate. The man I want to be with and the man I deserve wouldn't just bail when things get rocky; the man I want and deserve is going to stand his ground, with me, fight for us, and work things out.
To the best of my knowledge, that's what a marriage is supposed to be. Sadly, I don't think my ghosting husband got that memo.
This article originally appeared on YourTango.
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