This one is hard for me. I fucked up. I trusted myself to make the right decisions based on my very poor judgement of people and it of course failed. Not only did it fail but I am still shocked and disgusted with the person I am writing this about. I met someone, it had only been a couple of months but he seemed genuine, there were mutual friends that gave him a good reference and on paper he fit the bill of what a good man should be. He is tall (as we know, a usual requirement of mine), has a good job, loves his dog, seemed very caring toward me. Early on he mentioned he is an empath an feels everything and is very concerned when someone he cares for is hurt or unwell (it really affects him). I think he was saying this because he believed I would like this or that's what women want to hear because recently he proved this to be untrue (maybe we are looking at someone who puts on an act of emotion because they lack empathy and know others need it....who are the people who do this?....oh right...sociopaths). Also, fairly quickly, I was starting to realize he had drinks a lot and often he drank heavily. He told me an ex had accused him of drinking too much but dismissed it as ridiculous (hello, red flag!). Once he drank so much he passed out on his floor and his mom found him there because he didn't make it over to her place for dinner (people make these mistakes occasionally so I ignored yet another red flag). I know what you may be thinking, what is wrong with this girl?? She has been writing this blog for years with understanding of red flags and not to ignore them and still does?! Yes, I am yet another imperfect human. I am hopeful, this time, it sticks.
So my kids and I, my daughters friend and a couple other family members were going to a cabin at a lake for a small vacation (a week away after my two dogs had died weeks apart and Covid and stalkers etc. This was definitely needed). Minors wanted Matt (this will make sense eventually) has a large pontoon party boat so in a moment of complete lunacy after only 2 months of dating I decided to introduce him to my kids so he could come along to the cabin with his boat. In my defense, I thought with teens it is less necessary to shelter them like crazy (wrong!). We went for lunch before the trip, the kids liked him and I thought this would be fine. Besides, we got along like friends so even if we weren't dating I assumed I'd invite a friend with a boat up (Oh, how I rationalize).
So the trip started, he went up on his own and I had the three teens in my car. My other family members came up the next day. Things were going well, the kids told me many times that they liked him, he was way better than my last longer term boyfriend and we were all having a good time. That is until evening number 3.
I had been on antibiotics for a large stress related rosacea reaction that was plaguing me. I was warned I could be sun sensitive and really focused on protecting my face with a very large sun hat. Somehow though I got a terrible sunburn on my hands and a bit on my toes. The evening of the third night the red hands started to get severe pins and needles (after some google sleuthing this was determined to be some horrifying rare thing called Hell's Itch and I can assure you it is hell). The pins an needles were incessant and I could not get it to stop or get relief, was enough to make a person crazy, so I went to bed early. Matt didn't seem too concerned for me (I was in agony and this whole he feels empathy thing wasn't clear anymore). At some point I was hot and got up to open the window, now my toes had this pins and needless thing too, so as I opened the window, there was a bit of a nerve shock to my toes and I fell knocking over my wine glass full of wine that I had sitting in my room. After I fell, the pins and needles were really bad in my foot and I decided to lay there for a bit, where I fell asleep for another hour or two. When I woke up Matt's dog was whining at my room door but no-one had come to check on me even though they knew why I had gone to bed. Finally Matt drunkenly bursts into the room and jumps on the bed to jump on me (thank goodness I was not in there, how did he think that would be helpful), he sees me on the floor laughs at me and asks why I am there. I was so angry that he laughed at me, I told him I had spilled my wine and asked if he could get me something to clean it. Instead of doing so, he's like 'where, there's nothing here, where?' and I snapped at him. He leaves the room complaining to my children that he doesn't have to clean the wine I spilled so my daughter comes to check on me. She understands what happened, helped me into bed and tucked me in (she is wonderful).
While I am asleep, the teens and my two adult family members and Matt are playing cards and having drinks. Matt drinks an entire 26 oz bottle of Scotch (who binge drinks scotch?!). At some point after vomiting heavily he goes to bed and the night is over. The next morning my daughter's 16 year old friend asks if I would take a walk with her to the lake to talk. This is strange so of course I go. This is where she tells me that this man was telling her over and over relentlessly to move in with him, that he would treat here like a queen, money is no object (her mom said she was kicking her out at the beginning of the trip which is where this may have started). He kept telling this 16 year old girl how amazing she is and offering to take her in and she was increasingly uncomfortable. In my head, I cannot think of one good reason a 45 year old man would offer to take in a 16 year old girl he doesn't have any relation to and then continue to offer to treat her like a queen (earlier in the night I heard him say this too but I thought he caught himself saying something stupid and moved on from it, I did register it as weird and to be talked about the next day sober).
He goes out on the boat, sees me and invites me to go along. I say no, so that I could talk to my daughter and son who witnessed the night without him around to hear us. My daughter tells me she thinks he's a perv, all the stuff her friend was saying and more (like he followed her everywhere she went in the house that evening to the point they were trying to sneak away from him) and my son confirms this as well. One of my adult family members actually said to me that after one too many drinks she 'could see the devil in his eyes'. The kids continued to say that they really liked him until this and he maybe has a drinking problem. Sorry kids, if a grown man ever hits on a 16 year old girl drunk or sober, drinking isn't his only problem. The more I think about it, the worse it is. My daughter told me she couldn't understand why he was giving her friend more attention than he was giving his girlfriend (me!). I am a mom before I am anything, I instantly felt guilt and was angry with myself. I had to confront Matt and get him to leave.
Getting him to leave was easy as it turns out. I told him what the kids were telling me and that it is inappropriate and to explain himself. He didn't offer an explanation an just said "I'm just going to leave then'. I told him it would be better if he discussed this with me and offered an explanation of some kind instead of just walking away from me. No, he walked away, got his boat out of the water, and went to leave. He was escorted by a male adult family member to our cabin to get his stuff and went on his way. Never said bye to me, offered an apology or an explanation and I am grateful I have not heard from him since. He did leave a couple things behind so I sent a text that he did not respond to saying I could arrange for him to get his stuff.
I am plagued with regret and guilt, I may have to remain single for a few more years so that I am not dumb enough to do this to my children again. There were red flags and of course now they seem obvious...
mom found him passed out on the floor from drinking
no concern for me even though he says that's his thing
stories of exes seem unbelievable and one sided
Anyway, never in my life did I think I would date someone that would hit on my daughter's teen aged friend when I went to sleep. That doesn't happen to people in my world, it seems outrageous but it did happen. I am obviously a terrible judge of character and will have to be far more diligent in the future. I am horrified and disgusted at the coward that this man is to run away with no explanation.
This could have ended in murder and most likely it would not be me who gets murdered here. He is lucky he only used his words or myself or another adult in the house may have reacted poorly. A few scenarios...
I got up, caught him hitting on this child and hit him with the closest thing to me, a fire poker
He murdered us all in a rage after confronted
Killed me and dumped me in the lake while boating to get me out of the picture (I actually thought of this when I turned him down the morning after when he offered for me to come along on the boat)
I am stopping here because it really is too close to home, this could have been way worse and more than anything I need to be more careful. It takes a really long time for you to really know someone. Take my advice and do not introduce your kids (even teens) too soon.