I’ve gone back and forth for a while now whether I should write this post– whether I should be upfront and have recent thoughts, feelings, and actions be openly public. This blog is very much a day to day blog of happy pictures and recent events— it is this way, because this is my life. I have always made sure that any decision I have made, I can be open and honest about– with my self, my family, with everyone. I have no hidden backstories, no hidden motives, nothing to hide… it’s just me. This may anger people, I may lose respect from people, I may gain respect for my honesty– but really, I don’t know. What I do know is: with me, it always has been and it always will be: what you see is what you get. 


That being said, let me say this before I get into the core of this letter: Eric knows everything, none of this will come as a surprise to him. Eric and I have broken up. He is still very much a part of my (and Marlowe’s) daily life. He no longer spends the night and I no longer see him on the day to day, but he is still my friend and he is still the most amazing man to me and my daughter that I have ever met. I stand behind everything I’ve ever said about him. He has been perfect to me and has been the most important man (besides the men in my family) in Marlowe’s life, even before she was born. He understood coming into this relationship that it would be complicated. He understood that in life, it is hard enough to get over and ex and feelings often times linger, he understood that this would be even more difficult with an ex I share a child with. He’s not stupid. He is a grown man– a respectable and mature man. I don’t know what the future holds for Eric and I, neither does he, but we agree that maybe down the line, when the timing is better and my problems are resolved something can work out. I need to work out everything in my life first, before him and I can move forward. I love him and I care for him and I cherish the fact that he still respects me after everything. I wish it could be different, I wish I could give him more of what he deserves, I want it, Marlowe needs it, but I can’t— not now.

There are a million open letters I want to write to and about Marlowe’s father. There are a million things I would like to call him out on or make aware for people to know some of the truth, but I don’t and I wont, because most of everything has already taken place and it is in the past. It will not come out to open ground it will stay buried. Marlowe’s father has come in and out of my life many times. He left me many times at the most inconvenient moments long before Marlowe came into existence. In his defense, I did the same to him. Never knowing if someone is going to have a change of heart the following week will create a lot of insecurity and distrust. I feared getting hurt, I feared being lied to, I feared the lack of commitment and stability… and I too, ran. The holiday season before I got pregnant I gave up and I gave in and decided to put all fear aside, and stop running. I wouldn’t be afraid anymore. I would trust that he loved me, I would trust that I love him and I would see where it would take me. This went well, until I found out I was pregnant. Seeing the positive sign on the pregnancy test was shocking and overwhelming…I knew I could be a good mother, but more than anything that original fear returned, all I could think was: “he is going to leave me again.” &Just like I feared he would, he did. He left.

While being pregnant, he came back into my life three times. Three times he came back with I love you’s. I find a comfort in you. Let’s make this work. And after each return, he would leave me shortly after. Sometimes it would be days, sometimes not. He took the train from Miami to visit me. He told no one, he didn’t want his family to know he still had intentions to be with me (imagine that?). He wanted to see me. He missed me. He found comfort with me. He wanted to see if we could make it work (who knows what he was telling other’s while speaking these words to me). He stays the night. He tells me he is going to look for work in Florida. Days later he moves back in with his mother just 30 minutes north of me (not for me, but in general). Days later a phone call happens, I call him &he tells me how happy he is with me, he tells me he loves me. He say’s he has to go, his mother is yelling. Four hours later, he leaves me again. Three time’s he came back in my life when I was pregnant. Three times he left me. I begged him to stop. I begged him to stay or leave. I was angry at the stress he was putting my heart and body through while I was trying to do and be my best, for my baby. I begged him each time that if he cared at all it would stop, and he would understand I had to stay healthy and happy. That would be the last time during my pregnancy that he would leave me. I blocked his calls and I painfully moved forward.

If I don’t want to bring up past events and previous wrong doings, then why am I bringing all this up? Because it’s happening now and it has to stop. It started a little over a month ago (almost a year later), the same I miss you’s, I’ve been thinking about you, I just want to talk to you. A month ago when he came to visit he told me he could see himself doing it everyday— being a family– with me and Marlowe. The first night he was here: he kissed me and I kissed him back. It stopped there, but it had already gone too far… I betrayed Eric. Marlowe’s father left. What could I do next? I broke up with Eric. Not for Marlowe’s father, but because, Eric deserved more. My heart was confused and even knowing: I wouldn’t be with Marlowe’s father, I knew I couldn’t be with Eric either.
Marlowe’s father and I spoke a lot since then— maybe everyday. Everyday he would call or text. He would email me songs describing how he felt. He would continue to tell me he missed me and was trying to make me happy and trying to prove himself to me. He would admit in an email that he still loves me. He asked me what I want. I tell him: “More than anything, I want a happy and secure family to raise my daughter, with someone I love.” Again I told him, he would have to step up or back down. I deserve more than an insecure grey area. If he loves me, fine. If he misses me, fine. If he still thinks about all the ‘what ifs’, then fine, but if he wasn’t going to be able to commit then he would have to step back from me (not Marlowe) and keep his feelings for me separate. He didn’t step back, but he wouldn’t commit either. Despite my requests, he still talked about the possibility of a future family together. This past friday when he arrived to Florida, four days ago, he tells me: “What I want is a great weekend with MY girls and hopefully if you ever allow it, a happy family to raise our beautiful daughter.” He tells me: “Let’s do this”, he wants us to try, “We might have to make it long distance for a little before you move up here”. I tell him “I’m not a fool”.
The weekend together, I bring up nothing of this conversation, because I am smarter now, and I know in a few short days everything he said wont matter. He doesn’t bring it up either. Why? Because, just like every other time, it doesn’t matter.  


Mediation happened. I cried. Yes, because I am going to miss my child. Yes, because I don’t want to give her formula. But more than anything because: I’m tired of the possibility of one family for Marlowe being dangled in front of my face and quickly pulled away.

This is my letter to you, Alex, Marlowe’s father. This is not a threat. I have nothing to threaten you with, but I am telling you: It needs to stop. Your back and forth, your insecurities, your uncertainty with me: IT NEEDS TO STOP. I am no longer your girlfriend that you can push away and pull close as you please. I am no longer your pregnant ex partner that you can test the waters with when you feel brave, and again, leave as you please with little regard to how it could affect my health and the growing baby inside my body. I am now a mother. I am raising a child– OUR CHILD to very best of my abilities, and I am doing a damn good job of it WITHOUT YOU. Do not tell me stories of her ‘mommy and daddy’ being together if you wont make them happen. I understand you’re scared, you’ve always been scared, but saying you want to make it work and changing your mind the next day will not be tolerated. This is no longer just my life, this is now: my life with my child, and I refuse– REFUSE, to let your insecurities come in the way of our stability, our happiness, and our home. I do believe you love your daughter. I also believe you love me. But if you really care for me– and especially for her, you will make a mature decision in stopping with the empty promises of a family for the three of us. If your feelings still linger: fine, mine do too. If you still ask yourself all the ‘what ifs’: fine, I have questioned some of them too, but keep those thoughts to yourself. I cried when I realized I was having a daughter. I was scared of you and the effect your insecurities would have on her. I don’t cry anymore. I rejoice in the fact that she will see how strong I have been and how much I’ve done and given up to raise her everyday without you. I will not let you create hopes and dreams of one united family for her and take them away. I will not let your empty promises affect her, like the once affected me. The truth is, as stupid as it may be, I still care about you. But from here on out, I will not let you get in the way, I will keep you separate. You will always be her father, but if you can’t give us the one family you keep telling me you want with me, then stop lying. Because, I have always and will always deserve the truth. Publicly, here and now: for me and for her, I’m telling you: your instability stops now.

love,
drea

A recently found note in a bag full of manuals, receipts, and scrap papers. Just like everything else in the bag, a piece of paper, that means and stands for nothing. 
P1160642
Drea,
This is a promise, a promise to fight, to try, to desire, to never quit for you. I love you and will always love you. This has been an amazing first year. Happy anniversary babe, with many more to come.
Love always,
Alex



59 Comments

  1. You are amazing. I hope life has gotten easier since then, I felt this same pain over the past two years, it definitely takes time, a whole lot of it, but it makes us stronger in the end and happier.

  2. Hello! I discovered your blog today while checking out the nominees for BEST FAMILY BLOG at: http://www.apartmenttherapy.com/best-family-blog-nominations-the-homies-2012-166617
    I was reading your posts and looking at your pictures when I was intrigued by the little thumbnail button at the bottom of a post entitled "The Truth – An Open Letter." I clicked on it and read about an amazing young woman and mother who is smack damn in the middle of living her life. Some of the other comments said "raw, honest, brave, strong" … yes and then some!
    Although this is not the type of post we usually see in blog land it surely has resonated with a lot of women! And now they are all invested, interested and rooting for you.
    It seems that you have decided to live an active life rather than a reactive life. All of us that have commented here admire you for that. I don't know much about you, but I do know that like for all the rest of us, there is no guaranteed happy ending … but we sure do want one for you and your baby! You deserve it!
    Remember that the you that you are right now at this moment is enough, you've always been and will always be enough. And God sees you, little sparrow and he loves you.

  3. Thank you thank you thank you for this post. I found your blog today and am grateful for your honesty and willingness to share. I'm in a similiar situation with my husband. I have been since we first came together. He left me when I first became pregnant, before we knew. He came back before we knew. He's left me in the lurch many times, when I felt I needed him. For me the situation is shameful, I do not tell many people what is going on. From the outside our marriage looks perfect. Our family looks perfect. I don't know what will happen with us but I do know that reading a post like this helps me to feel not so alone. So thank you from the bottom of my heart.

  4. Very weird how I stumbled across your blog through other blogs. I figured I would leave you a comment. This is a very ballsy post that probably wasn't easy for you to leave. Despite our own drama from years ago, it's nice to see you're doing well Drea. Congratulations on having a beautiful daughter (and a cute house!)

  5. My heart breaks for you Drea, I know I'm a lurker on here, but I just bawled for you. My thoughts are with you, and you know you WILL get through this.
    -Rachel

  6. Darling, you are so incredibly strong, I am in absolute awe of how amazing you are! Marlowe is so incredibly lucky to have a Mama like you, you are one to respect and look upto. I really hope everything works out for you both, for the best.

    Lots of Love
    Momma B & Babyboy
    Xxx

  7. Hi Drea,
    i hope you are holding in there.
    i just want you to know that i have been thinking a lot about you and your situation.
    i want to tell you about my first love.
    he would always just disappear and leave me. we lived together and several times i would come home and he along with all of his stuff would be gone. he would then call me a week (or 2) later from a different state to tell me that he loved me and missed me and blah, blah, blah.
    it was a long and tumultuous relationship and at times long distance that i finally had to close the door on myself because otherwise it would probably still be going on (2 decades later).
    what i want to also tell you is that he couldn't really help it because he was mentally unstable and sick.
    he was schizophrenic, had depressions and so on.
    yes, he could have taken meds but refused to.
    anyway, sometimes people do things because they cannot help themselves to.
    it's a shame and sad but they do not make for very stable and healthy relationships.
    you however, are stable and can make the right decision. it's hard but you are strong.
    much love,
    Claudia

  8. Your so brave to post this. Will keep you and little one in my thoughts this week – you inspire me !

  9. *GIANT HUG* You are a strong woman! Marlowe is so lucky to have you as a mother. 😉

  10. LOVE that you shared this and got this out. I just recently started reading your blog and really appreciate how REAL you are. I'm sorry you're going through this, but I'm so happy that you are strong enough to see past all the promises and the I love you's. Good for you for standing your ground when it's just so easy to give in. We're here for you, love. <3

  11. i love your honesty and i hope one day my childs biological father does not pull this stunt on me. you are such a strong woman and your daughter will see that one day if not already.

    <3

  12. Ugh I'm sorry you have to go through that. I was in a relationship very similar before I had Roweyn and it was so hard. I can't imagine how much harder it would be if he had been her father and doing the same thing that Marlowe's dad is doing to you. My heart goes out to you and all the pain you have had to deal with lately. You are very strong though and don't ever doubt that you aren't doing what's best for your daughter because no one knows better than her Mother. Keep your head up and do your best to get through it, one day things may get better or they may not, but remember, you have a beautiful daughter and the two of you together are invincible.

  13. i feel with you drea! but you have to make a final decision, not him! don't leave it up to him, if he wants to be with marlowe and you as family. you can decide and you are stong, it's not his say!

  14. Marlowe has the most admirable role model possible for a mama. You are an amazing lady, Drea. Chin up and stay strong <3

  15. Your strength is empowering. I was raised in a split home and I have found that I am more flexible, self-assured and outspoken because I was raised in two very different households. Marlowe will be strong and secure in herself-no matter what-because she has you as a loving example. keep fighting!

  16. Thank you for your honesty. I needed to read that. You are strong… your baby girl has a tough mama (even if you don't feel like it sometimes).

    I, too, desire one family for my daughter… but I'm living with the decisions that I made (that I do not regret) that will tear her life in two.

    I believe, however, that in the midst of everything being torn apart… her love, life, and happiness will be multiplied. Two families, two celebrations, two deep loves: it can work.

    Keep staying true to yourself.

  17. Long time lurker, first time commenter. I cried reading this. You will make the best decisions for your little girl. After that, nothing else matters. Stay strong. This too shall pass.

  18. 🙁 This hurts my heart. I can't even begin to understand your pain. I'm sorry for the trials life has brought you. You can get through this, you will get through this for yourself and Marlowe.

  19. You're a good Mama and as long as she has you she is in good hands. He's missing out big time and you deserve someone that respects you enough to make a decision. Stay strong and follow your heart. 🙂

    Thinking of you.

  20. You're a brave and genuine momma and I pray the best for you and your gorgeous girl, in whatever package it comes in.

  21. Hey lady-pants. I pretty much wrote you a novel in an email. Please take it easy.

  22. my heart breaks for all the pain in your life, but i can tell you are a strong and capable woman, and that motherhood is only strengthening you. keep empowering yourself. your voice matters. and as terrible a partner as this man may have been to you, fatherhood/daughterhood is an entirely different relationship- one that i pray he realizes the value of. i hope you don't mind my advice. i know this is all going to be okay one day. it's just so tough right now.

  23. I respect you so much more. I'm sorry for your heartache:( but I think you did the right thing, ending things with Eric. If things are meant to be, you will be with him:) You a beautiful strong women, and no matter what happens you will find happiness! I know it sounds so corny… You truly are a woman that I look up too.

  24. I've been saying it, you're a super strong lady and your baby girl is to show for that. <3

    I hope everything works out for the best lady.

  25. you are so strong. i know that if i was in your situation i wouldn't be able to see things as clearly as you do, while your mind and heart must be completely confused you've at least recognized the pattern and hopefully can put an end to it without too many emotional strings attached. oh drea, seriously this post is one of my favorites. you know people always talk about "trusting your gut" when it comes to raising a baby. while they're talking about diaper rash, sleep methods, and feedings you are demonstrating this is a new way. your mama bear instincts are keeping you two safe this time around. i hope things start looking up.

  26. she is as amazing in person as all of you get to get a glimpse of on the internet – go lgad i have been blessed to become her friend:)

  27. <3 hugs. you deserve to be happy, good for you for sticking strong.

  28. Poor Eric. He seemed so lovely, so giving, so open. Although I've never met either of you, he really seemed like the good guy who can never catch a break. I did this with my ex – I chased the memory of something I had and while doing so, I let go of the best thing I've ever known. Don't realize how good something is after its gone. And be wary of expecting people to change. Babies benefit from stability and love, not just genetics and something that is forced. Love shouldn't be so hard.

  29. Oh Drea, you are the strong one and he the weak one. If you want it to stop, you will have to make it stop by not letting him through. You have the power, not him.
    Once you make that decision permanently, it will all be donw.

  30. I couldn't read the directed at him, felt like I was dropping in on a private conversation.

    I am sorry you have had to deal with this

    xoxo

  31. You are an amazing lady I hope you know 🙂 I've been reading your blog for a while and sorry I don't comment often…
    Reading this hits close to home in a lot of ways. I'm about to see what being a single parent is like, and i'm TERRIFIED of having to share the baby I grew inside ME.

    Stay strong, you sound like an amazing momma who will do what's best for you daughter no matter what. Keep us updated 🙂

  32. i'm a recently new reader of your blog…i admire your courage, your strength, your honesty and your resolve. your daughter is so lucky to have you as her mom and will be a better person for it. <3

  33. Oh, Drea….I sob as I read this. We are not that different after all. I've been reading your blog for a long time…and always with a little pain in my heart…Thinking about all of the things you have said…about having ONE family for my beautiful little girl. Her father and I have a very similar story…accept he never tells me he will change. He tells me he loves me, but "hey, I'll always love you. You are my daughter's mother." He lies to me, but mostly he lies to himself…A man very much like your Alex…I want to call them cowards, but usually, there is something deep in their past that causes such a paralysis…and it must be pretty bad for them to WANT to commit to their "girls" so badly…but to completely LACK the ability to do so. I don't think my daughter's father will ever commit to anyone, when all is said and done. If he had a choice, I know he would choose us, his "girls." But I understand more than you know…There are other concerns and issues with my daughter's father…and I've had to cut myself off from him, against his will–but for my own physical and psychological well-being…so I can do the job I need to do…raise OUR daughter ALONE! Letting him go has been one of the most difficult things I've had to do. Gosh, I so hear you…the anger, the frustration…on and on. I, too have a blog and you don't know how many times I've wanted to publish my story about my daughter's father…to put it all out there, because I was so tired of carrying the burden of our relationship…our story–our painful history. I am sure you are feeling empowered and a lot lighter after writing this. I admire and respect you so much for this one. You have written it for me, in a sense, and I just want to say thank you, Drea…Thank you for being the brave soul you are. There are good things to come. Noone knows the future. We don't get to write the ending of our story…but I do believe there are good things to come for those who LOVE sincerely, completely, and honestly. Sending you a lot of love and blessings today. Big Hug, Friend. xoxo

  34. What a privileged little girl Marlowe is to have you for a parent.

  35. A leopard never changes it's spots. Good on you for saying no and putting your foot down. My Mother never did, she always thought that I deserved to have my Father in my life and that he deserved a relationship with me. He would come and go, only hurting her and I. I would wait by the door for promised outings, he would never come most of the time. You're such a strong woman and I'm 100% sure Marlowe will thank you when she's older. <3

  36. Good for you for being so raw! I wish so badly I could write a letter like this to r and z's bd. I could tell everyone about the emotional torture almost physical that he used to put me through, but he would never let me forget it.
    I totally admire you and I hope he gets the message!

  37. You are a strong woman and deserve all the best to come out of life for you and your offspring. You have a divine animal right to protect you and your young from those who could and can potentially hurt you. From a far reader, I am very PROUD of you for ending all of this pain. Eric will always be there I am sure just focus on what matters most and enjoy what you have.

    -Mandy

  38. Stay strong girl-don't put up with any more shit. It looks like you've reflected and grown throughout this entire experience for the better. I wish my mother did the same. When I was 4 she had an affair, when I was 5 she married a different man, when I was 6 she got divorced and dated another man, age 7 she gave my father full custody and moved away with another man. Now multiply that-because it didn't stop there. There's quite a few women in my family who had babies alone-my cousin has never even seen her father. But if the mother stays strong-that's all the child needs! 🙂

  39. This makes me so sad, I question how you could love someone who does this but that's none of my business & I don't know your relationship. However, I do know that you're an awesome mum & you'll do whatever it takes to provide marlowe with the best life possible despite the visitation rights. And, I read your blog daily BECAUSE of your honesty, so don't ever stop that!
    P.S I love the advice Mama Mandolin has given you…nice work!

  40. ugh, you are KILLING me! bawling through this whole thing. I hate it. I had to stop many times to share with steve, and to catch my breath. again, i'm sure my words won't come out right here, so bear with me.

    I can't say that i know exactly what you're going through, but steve and i have definitely had our ups and downs. 6 years will do that to you. but to make a really long story short; i have thought many times "can i do this on my own? what would i do without him? where would i be? how could i survive?" and then i always fall back to "but my child needs a dad. i can't leave because oliver needs a family". which isn't fair to me, or to him. What you are doing for your perfect little lady… is amazing. I know that currently, i am not strong enough. Sure, if steve dumped my ass tomorrow, i'd figure it all out. but right now, i know i am not as strong as you, at all. (nor is my situation even comparable to what you're going through). but i do know that you ARE doing it. you HAVE BEEN doing it. and i can't imagine what that's like for you.

    i've kind of hit a wall now, trying to put my feelings into words. so i may be back later to ramble some more. or i may creep into your life via email or twitter.. but just know this; I am proud of you.
    Sure, it doesn't mean much coming from a stranger, but at least i mean it. I am extremely proud of you for being a fantastic mother. an honest and decent human being. i like that you're real and honest. i get that you want to make it work with babydaddy… what woman wouldn't want a family? i really truly hope that everything works out the way that you want it to, deep down. no matter who you end up with (not that it's a love game, but you know what i mean, hopefully) and don't go back over and over again, or make the same mistakes that were made on everyone's part in the past.
    and again; i am here if you need to vent. if there's things you need to get out that you'd rather not have everyone see… just a third party with an open ear 🙂

  41. I'll be your boyfraaannnddd. 😉

    Serious. You are strong. And all Marlowe needs to grow into a strong, independent, happy woman is you. Because you are all of those things.

  42. I am a lurker, whom you do not know, but I have come to love the glimpse you give us into your lovely little world of you and Marlowe. Forgive me if I speak out of turn and without knowing all the facts but I just feel so strongly that the role he should have in your life is of co-parent and nothing else. Like a previous commenter said, men don't change. He sounds as if he likes the IDEA of a happy family unit with you, but if he hasn't stepped up to the plate and really done by now, will he ever?

    You deserve a wonderful man, who will put you and Marlowe first, who will appreciate that Marlowe will always get top billing with you and who respects you each and every day of your life. I don't know if you feel you had that with Eric, but from what came across in your writing and pictures, you had something amazing. I understand you taking time and hope very much, if this is your path, you get back to him.

    Either way you are incredibly brave to put this out there and you have gained nothing but respect and awe from me, an anonymous blog commenter who is also a mother of an amazing two year old, and appreciates the love and wonder you feel for your daughter, as I do mine.

    Take care.
    xxxx

  43. I guess you could say I don't know the 'real' Drea… what it is like to hang out or talk to you on a daily basis. But through your blog, through your honest, from the heart writing, I feel that I sort of do 'know' you. I see that you are an amazing mother to a beautiful baby girl, and that you want to do anything you can to give her the happiest life she can possibly have. And I see now that you are hurting, and although I'm not an actual friend, my heart honestly does hurt for you.

    You can't control what your heart does, it's not your fault, and you are not any less of a person because you opened your heart up to someone that didn't deserve it.

  44. Am I the only one brave enough to comment or simply the first?

    No matter. Drea, you rock. For being real, for being brave enough to share your side of things with us, for standing up for yourself, for standing up for your daughter, for standing up for love… the real kind… the kind one has to let go of (temporarily) in order to do it justice.

    *bows to you

  45. I have two pieces of advice to send into your universe, things to remember that my mom and aunt (both amazing mothers and have been through divorces) have told me about men:

    My mom told me once to never wait for a man to change. Men do not change. They may change temporarily when you see little glimmers of the "old him" shine through. But these changes are not permanent. We are who we are and our personalities do not change. She stayed married to my dad for 13 years hoping he would change, and he did not.

    And my aunt told me once to "never be with anyone who won't go out of their way to make you happy." especially if you do the same in return. This doesn't mean huge gestures of romance, but small things that mean you are the first priority.

    Just something to think about. I like to keep those in the back of my head and remind my husband of those things when it doesn't feel like things are right.

  46. I have been reading your blog for awhile. Although we are strangers, I believe you are a strong, beatiful, and creative woman. A great mother and a good person. Believe in yourself and stay strong. This too shall pass.

  47. d- you are worth your weight in gold. anyone who treats you otherwise isn't worth it. stay strong mama.