Living with but not sleeping with the enemy

Working different schedules will kill even a healthy marriage, but it is perfect for a guy like me who wants to see as little as possible of his ex wife. If I loved someone, I would want to spend some quality time with them every day. Working different schedules, with different days off, I rarely see my ex wife. If I did love her, I would be tortured by rarely seeing her.

I tell the married women that I work with that their husbands must not love them as much as I would, because I would not send them out to work all night with me. The person who works the night shift is the one that is shortening their life with every night that they work. It is unhealthy. It is better to be the day time worker.

If I did want to spend time with my wife, it would only be enjoyable when one of us took off from one of our jobs. Otherwise, our time together is limited and can only be increased by how much sleep we are willing to give up. Do any of you think that my ex wife ever stayed up late to spend time with me? I was always the one who had to make the sacrifices.

When I get home from work, my ex and our son are leaving for their daily lives. We are in the house together for 30 minutes, on the average. If I wished to see them, I would wake up early for work. I would sacrifice how many hours of sleep that I wished to exchange for spending time with them. In the past, this is what I would do. I would wake up when they got home from their daily routine. I stopped doing that several years ago because as much as I wanted to spend time with my son, it was tainted by the presence of his mother. Now, I wake up and leave for work. Most days, I do not even speak to my ex and when I do, it is short bursts of necessary communication. We are not even friendly room mates.

I work on their weekend, and I spend both of those days watching the fights that were televised the night before. They sleep late and basically ignore me when they do wake up, just waiting for me to go to sleep. In the past, I would sacrifice my sleep and spend time with them in their afternoon. They could never understand that I might be tired and grumpy after the time that I would normally go to bed. Their afternoon is my midnight hours. Again, I stopped doing this several years ago when it became apparent that they did not want to spend time with me anyway. I was sacrificing my sleep just to become aggravated.

It is on these two days, Saturday and Sunday that I have to tolerate the noxious atmosphere that my ex creates with her hatred of me. When he was younger, my son used to wake up and watch the fights with me, but that stopped a few years ago because now he would rather stay awake late at night playing Xbox with his friends. I suspect that he often has just gone to bed as I am on my way into our house.

My ex and I share a bed but we are never in it at the same time, and we both sleep on our separate sides of the bed even though we are alone in it. On the infrequent occasions when we both are going to want to sleep at the same time, the person who is not working that day sleeps on the couch. I will sometimes fall asleep on the couch on my nights off, if I have been drinking alcohol. She will often nap on that couch during the afternoons when she is off from work.

On the nights that I do not work, I will usually have already left to go and see live music before my ex gets home from work. If I am not going out, I will sleep until it is time for her to go to bed, just to avoid her. Many times, I have woken up, realized that she was out there, outside of the bedroom, and I have chosen to go back to sleep rather than endure being around her. On the nights when I want to watch a live sporting event, they treat me just like they wish that I was not there. They are not exactly enjoying each others company either. They will be ignoring one another, or arguing.  Instead of enjoying what I wanted to watch on television, I become the referee in their contest.

There is no way that I would have been able to tolerate living with someone that hates me for the past 16 years if I was not working the night shift, and I never chose to work the night shift. I was almost forced to. The Lord works in mysterious ways.

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