The other day I was talking with several co-workers—a couple of whom I know pretty well, and also a couple I had just met (they work in a different program). For some reason the topic of traffic in a certain southern California city came up, and I threw in my two cents as I had lived there with Mr. X two different times, for a total of about a year and a half.
The logical question came up, why had I lived there? I answered honestly and said that my ex-husband had been studying there.
I don’t know if the weirdness was only inside me or if anyone else felt it, but I felt a strange ripple go through the air. I know there should be no shame in what I have been through, but it felt like I was shouting out a headline, all the while wanting to explain my whole story. And also not wanting to say a word.
I have decided that should this type of thing come up again, I want to say, “I went there for a guy,” or something of that nature. Not for anyone else, but because I think I will be left with less surplus feeling about what should be a light moment complaining about traffic.