I think it is safe to say a lot of people were hopeful, but not expecting a lot when Alex came back into the picture. In general, people want to believe that there is good in all people… that people make mistakes, they grow, they change, they learn, and they are capable of becoming better people. Me, my family, my friends, and my readers hoped for the best, but he left once, twice, multiple times before, so what would stop him from leaving again? Well… nothing. He didn’t want to be the bad guy anymore. He was the bad guy when he left me during my pregnancy. He was the bad guy when he was popping in and out of my life. He was the bad guy when I was raising my daughter alone… he didn’t want to be that guy anymore… so one would think the simple solution to this would be to… you know… change? Stop? Something? I don’t know… but in my eyes, leaving again doesn’t seem like the solution to becoming the good guy. It makes you not only a bad guy again, but an even worse guy.
He had an opportunity that not many men would have. Not only did I allow him back in my life after all the harm he had cause me and our daughter, but my family and I embraced him with open arms, forgiving all his past mistakes. We were all ready to move forward and believed he was ready too. The only thing expected of him was the promises he made. He had a second chance, the second chance he asked for– the chance to be the man he promised he could be. Instead of taking the opportunity to right his wrong and fix the family he had broken, he chose to take advantage of his second (undeserving opportunity) and continue to lie to everyone. It angers me how simple a family for us could have been. I moved past the previous pain, I let go of past anger, and I moved forward, knowing it would have been the only way for us to work. All we expected in return was an honest man. So simple and so painfully wasted. I guess when he told me and my family he was offering: “My love, true undying love, the willingness to make it work, to take any measure necessary to stay a team, to fight together, to parent together, to raise our daughter together, to support, to encourage, to support, and to bring back together the family we started so long ago”… he forgot to leave a disclaimer mentioning his efforts would only last four months. I wanted to believe it was for real this time, that he would fight and not run, but like every time before, it was just words and just for show. 
But this isn’t a victim/villain story. I’m not a victim. I had a choice. I knew his past and I still chose to believe that he wanted a life and a family with me. He was offering me and my daughter a life that we not only deserve, but that I wanted. I wanted to believe it was real. While, I wouldn’t have made my choice if I had known his efforts would be so incredibly short-lived, I don’t regret my choice. I needed to try. Yes, he was undeserving, but I needed to know I was doing everything possible to give my daughter a life she deserved. Again, I am here knowing I have no regrets. I am a good mother, a good woman, and a good partner. I stayed when others would have left, I fought through his family, and I fought through his lies. And I stayed through my insecurity. Through the pain, I stayed for my family— for our family. And he left, for himself… breaking not only a promise to me, but to his own daughter.
Many of my readers of reached out to me, telling me my writing had changed when Alex came into the picture— that there was tension behind my words. I think they are correct. I lived in fear and insecurity. I knew Alex lied… he always lied. The very first day I stepped into his home, 4 years ago, he lied to me. I hoped his time in New York had done some good. I hoped he had seen the error in his ways. That he was no longer one to hide behind lies or run whenever a problem, responsibility, or real life was in front of him. I hoped and believed his efforts to have me and Marlowe back in his life, as a family, were a starting point to prove not only his personal growth, but also, his readiness to be a real parter, a father, and also, a man. I was undoubtably wrong. In his little time back in our lives and in my home, his lies were not only consistent, but growing. As happy as I was with my daughter, my friends, and my family, I was also living a life I did not enjoy. I spent my days fearful that he was going to leave, again. I spent my time wondering what words of his were true. I spent my nights questioning how much he could really care about me, my daughter, our happiness, and our home, when he spent so much time causing pain with his lies.
I came home from our Miami staycation feeling renewed… I felt that our time spent away from everything would set a new mood in our home. The next day, nothing had changed. The next night, I uncovered more lies. A secret “friendship” that he had been hiding for weeks…. a way to escape. Instead of taking action, fixing wrongs, and facing the real problems at home, he spent his time at work, laughing, being friendly, and using all his free time, communicating with a new friend. The hurt inside me was unbearable. So many times I wanted to leave because of the lies. So many times I wanted to leave because of all the problems Alex brought into the household, but I stayed. I always stayed. I stayed for my love for Alex. I stayed for my daughter. And I stayed for the idea of our life and family together. Anyone else would have left for a multitude of reasons, on a million different occasions, but I stayed and I fought for our home.
Each day was a new opportunity to create change, to create a better future, to and to fix and move past the wrongs of the previous days. Instead of moving in the right direction, Alex checked out. The next morning, things got worse. More lies uncovered and a heated argument. Alex had a choice— he always had a choice: Stop the lies, stop creating problems, and move forward… or… do what he’s done so many times before in the past: run and avoid. He went to work and didn’t come home. A relationship takes work. A home takes work. A child takes work. A family takes work— and not just a little work, but a lot— a never-ending amount. Why would he choose responsibility when it’s so much easier to be a child, living at home, answering and caring to and for no one, with zero commitments other than work? He chose the only thing he has ever cared for the only thing he has ever worked for or protected: himself. He went out until 5 am with the bartender friend and didn’t come home. This was two weeks ago. How he feels that it is okay to pick up and leave with a daughter at home is beyond me. I could never fathom this. I could never do this. This home, this life, my daughter is my responsibility. I don’t get to break my commitments. I don’t have a choice to pick up and leave. He shouldn’t allow himself to have that choice either, but like he’s proven so many times before: he likes to play the bad guy. He chooses that role. Even with his attempts to hide behind his lies, he still lives and breathes that role. To his family, to me, and to his daughter: He makes his choices— he chooses to be the bad guy and instead of putting in a real effort, he is chooses to disappoint.
I break down and cry from time to time. I feel numb often and I feel pain even more. I feel anger at times, resentment in others, but overall it’s a feeling of sadness. I mourn the loss of our future together. I mourn the loss of one home for Marlowe. I mourn the loss of the man I loved, the man hiding under the lies. These feelings will come and go for a while, it is a process— one that I have been through before.

Change doesn’t just happen. Change happens because of want and desire, but more often than not: change happens out of need. Alex didn’t want to change, and he certainly didn’t feel the need to change. Not for his friends, work, family… not for me, our family, and not for our daughter. You won’t be hearing much about Alex on here anymore. He’s been in and he’s been out. He’s proven unstable, unnecessary, and to be a bad guy. In time, the blog will be more of the positive and inspirational place it once was before. All in all, life is changing, again. Not because I wanted it to, but because it needs to. With Alex gone, and with the expenses that come along with a growing child, I’m looking for new ways of income. I’m sad to think I won’t be able to spend my days, at home, raising my daughter, but I am happy to know that I have big plans to do the things I love and I am able to create opportunities I’ve always wanted. I’ve had a few big plans working through my head in the past couple months, and now because of these (and other) changes…. I not only want them to happen, but need them to happen. While the waves of sadness will continue to hit me from time to time, I am still hopeful and thankful of the positive things the universe is not only placing in front of me, but throwing directly at me. This wont be my first time being a single mom. Marlowe and I have lived this life before, and will live it again, but I am certain: it will only get better this time around. It’s my time.


  1. Drea,
    I was once the "bad guy", I chose to escape instead of dealing with my problems, I broke my engagement and lied, I regreted as soon as he broke up with me and I realized I couldn't live without him, I didn't know I was pregnant of my now 5 months baby, once we found out about it, he decided to give me a second chance and through my pregnancy I tried to rebuild my relationship, it was the worst time of my life emotionally, but I held to to that chance as if my life depended on it. We are ok now,still trying, like you said everything takes a lot of work but I feel ready. In the end, everything will be ok and Im absolutely sure a special someone that really deserves you will show up at the right time. It's so awesome you don't play the perfect life like a lot of blogs. Love,

  2. Hi Drea,
    I read this post and couldn't help but feel an incredibly heavy weight on my heart for you & your precious daughter.
    I follow you on IG & on a whim decided to check your blog and scrolled down and read this.
    I can just tell that you are such an amazing mother to your little girl and have done so much to be the family for her from the very beginning. I am so sorry that things have turned out the way they have & I wish you strength of heart as you go through this trying time. Here's to better days.

  3. Hi Drea,

    So sorry that you had to go through this bad experience again. I admire you for your strength and compassion to forgive and give a chance. But it is his loss, not yours and M's. He will be old and miserable and regret about his decision.

    Be strong, this year is the year of the dragon, you'll find your success and happiness (even tho ure not chinese hehe).

    It's always darkest before dawn 🙂

    sending my thoughts from 12000km away…


  4. @KC: hahaha this made me laugh out loud… even if I am attracted to him 😉

  5. Girl, you are way too pretty for him anyways. I always thought it was a "really, that guy?" situation.

  6. I just discovered your lovely blog at around 2 am during a feeding for my little munchkin that lasted until 5am! I just now went back to bed! Had to rock her to sleep. So, thank you for keeping me company the past couple of hours! 🙂 I am so sorry to read your heartbreaking story about Alex. I wish you and beautiful Marlowe the absolute best. There WILL be a light at the end of the tunnel. God bless.

  7. I'm not going to say much since it isn't my place, So, here it is: You love your daughter so much, and she is very lucky to have such a brave, thoughtful and loving mother as you.

    Keep your head up, I'm praying for you and Miss. Marlowe.


  8. So sorry to hear about the recent disappointments! Just know that you have a ton of readers who really enjoy your blog! Including myself of course! You have inspired me to start a baby blog of my own and I have kept it up throughout my pregnancy and now, my early days of mommy hood! Please tell me if you have any useful tips or just want to check it out! http://www.birminghambell.wordpress.com

  9. here's to your time. i know, i truly know, that you will make it happen. it's in your soul and in your bones. i'm proud of you drea!

    @lil muse lily @drea i'm sorry to hear about the circumstances. i have seen this happen so often in the restaurant industry and even in our family (not jon and i but his dad and mom)

  10. Drea-
    I love the honesty that you shared here and my heart is aching for you. This post reminded me a similar one that I read back in the summer from Nat the Fat Rat "Mormon mommy blog" I know that is maybe not your normal read, but she was coping with the loss of re-homing her dogs and this comment really resonated with me: "People are always saying that change is a good thing. but all they're really saying is that something you didn't want to happen at all… has happened." And I think it's true and it's all in how you handle the aftermath of what has happened. I wish you strength and I'm sending all my good vibes your way.


  11. Like all of these other people who have left comments, guess what, I've been in your shoes. And it really sucks. But it will get better.

    Eventually, you learn to think with your head instead of your heart.

    Eventually, you will meet someone who loves you, who loves your daughter, and that you love back.

    Eventually, when you have a regular bad day, or someone pisses you off, you will know that you can get through it because you have been through worse.

    *Big hug*

    You can do this.

  12. I'll be ten thousanth to praise you for your candor and honesty. I also feel the need to say something to a few questionably (and outright) negative comments you got:

    1.) Yes, there are definitely three sides to every story. And Alex is not on this blog to defend himself. But I do think that most reasonable people who read this (or any) blog can understand that it's probably somewhat biased–but its a personal blog, aka inherently biased. It's not supposed to be objective journalism with facts checked, etc. Of course, blogs should not result in slander but it seems like Drea keeps things pretty real. If you've read her blog long enough, you can discern what aspects might be viewed through her own personal perspective based on the personality that comes through in all her writings.

    2.) Why would Alex not being ready for a family (though proposing and explicitly saying he wanted to get his family back kind of puts the kabosh on this theory) even have any bearing on this situation? It was really shitty. Not coming home to your child and the mother of your child–who is also, by the way, just as important in terms of needs as he is–is irresponsible and, for lack of a better term, sucks. It is motherloving hard to raise a baby, even with a supportive partner, and putting yourself last to care for another human who relies on you for everything is actually the epitome of an adult.

    I think people can change, and your effort wasn't wasted. To quote a previous comment: Upward. Onward. For everyone–you, Alex and Marlowe–just not as a couple.

  13. My heart goes out to you. I'm in the same kind of situation. My husband divorced me and then came back and I took him in. He told my daughter we'd be together forever…and then he left to be with another girl. It sucks, but as my dad told me, you are so much more as a mother, that his shortcomings won't matter. She has you and you are what she needs. Luckily, Marlowe is still very young. But you two have an amazing future together. Thank you for sharing your life with us. It has brought a lot of strength to me, knowing I'm not alone in this kind of situation. You are an amazing mom and your daughter will always know that you love her more than anything.

  14. You are so strong and such a lovely soul! The fact that you are able to see the big picture from outside of the situation and 'still' see the good in everything..amazing. You are amazing.
    Things will get better, they always do. And it sounds like it's only downhill from here! I think down hill is better, you roll down and laugh and it's easy. Up is hard, it's a struggle and you sweat alot! (so when I say downhill I mean it's only awesome form here)

  15. Goodness Drea this is absolutely heartbreaking to hear. I am so sorry that you have been through this again. I admire your strength and your hope, as well as your honesty. You are one heck of a warrior woman!

    You don't need to worry about this blog being a place of whatever WE need – it's your space and if you need to talk more about this aloud we're all here to listen and encourage. Take the time you need to grieve and vent and mourn this loss. We are all rooting for you and Marlowe and believe that the best is yet to come.


  16. I was skeptical about Alex coming back in the picture, but since I felt like it was what you wanted (a family with the father of your daughter), I was supportive & even excited for you. I guess there was doubt in my mind, but it was worth a shot (or two) for a chance at the life you wished for your daughter.

    I believe that love needs risk, chance and choice… but without trust, effort and communication you have nothing. It seems like Alex simply did not have the effort it takes to commit to even his own choices. It's going to be hard, but the best you can do is remain civil with him enough to provide Marlowe a stable environment to grow up in. I know you will.

    Done & done. Onward & upward.

    As far as the restaurant buisness goes, it's hard. I know as a waitress that most of the people I work with are really only friends with each other. I have friends outside of work because when I get off my shift, I don't sit at the bar and take shots, I don't sit and stay for drinks, I go home or to the people I've made plans with. I make an extra effort to be there when I can. But I can see how some people get sucked into that life. I'm so lucky to be dating someone who does freelance and works from home, otherwise, it would be nearly impossible to date someone that wasn't in the industry. I've done it before. It sucks.

    Best of luck to you, wherever your new path leads you. I would still like to visit! 🙂

    As for Alex…I'll let Tom Robbins tell it to you…
    “When we're incomplete, we're always searching for somebody to complete us. When, after a few years or a few months of a relationship, we find that we're still unfulfilled, we blame our partners and take up with somebody more promising. This can go on and on–series polygamy–until we admit that while a partner can add sweet dimensions to our lives, we, each of us, are responsible for our own fulfillment. Nobody else can provide it for us, and to believe otherwise is to delude ourselves dangerously and to program for eventual failure every relationship we enter.”

    I love you doctor dre,
    <3 katie

  17. It is brave to give someone another chance and brave to be so honest about it when they squander that chance. Sometimes you need to take that risk to know, for sure, whether something is going to work or not – regardless of the outcome. Thinking of you and M as you adjust. You will be just fine – and in time you will have the kind of love you deserve.

  18. @lil muse lily: Wow! I had NO idea. Your situation sounds very similar to mine…. easier in some ways.. and much much harder in others. With Alex working 12, 13, 14+ long days I was just supposed to "trust" him. But with all his lies…. trust was growing more and more thin… especially towards the end when he was coming home later at night… smelling like alcohol more frequently, and then in the last few weeks making a huge effort to hide every message from the bartender…. One of the biggest red flags was the fact that he never even stored her name in the phone. If she was such a good friend.. you would think he would mention her…. introduce her when I would stop by work…. or you know PUT HER NAME IN HIS PHONE. Some men like to escape. And some men need attention (women too obviously…. not saying "men are evil") and bartenders are very good at flattery, listening, and giving attention. He gobbled it up and neither cared about the effects of what they were doing. Avoid avoid avoid. Push away Push away push away. I do believe it's hard to date people in that industry, but not impossible— they just have to be trustworthy people… and obviously neither of these two men were. Alex's restaurant is more of a nightclub than restaurant… while they do make good food… most of their business comes from the girls and bartenders dancing on the bar. I've been there late at night and it's not a good environment for anyone who doesn't have a stable and trust-worthy home. It was something I looked away from and didn't think much of because I believed with Alex if there was ONE thing I could trust him with it would be females… obviously I was wrong. I only knew about the other girl for about two weeks and it absolutely killed me inside…. always having to wonder what else could be going on between them when he's not coming home at night and getting drunk with her til 5 am… and then lying about that to not only me, but his own family. I am so incredibly happy for the life you have now. You, Will, and Lily seems not only very stable, but very happy. I really had no idea you had been married before… so happy for how far you've come after such a terrible situation.

    @Emily: oh dear. In his (or my defense) I believed Alex's "asshole-ness" was more nurture rather than nature and I believed he had really made an effort to fix that. I was wrong. And about Eric… we are still friends! We didn't spend that much time together when I first got back with Alex.. you know.. it was tricky and hard… but we do talk pretty regularly… he helps me with guy things around the house sometimes (drilling holes in wooden fences) in exchange for beer and dinner… and he comes by to see M from time to time. We wont be dating again, but he is a good friend.. and a good guy to me and better yet: to marlowe… even if he's not pictured on the blog so much anymore 🙂

  19. You are smart, brave and beautiful – inside and out. He is clearly an idiot.

    My own mother did this back and forth thing with my father for 16 years (he was very manic). By the time they finally divorced, there was so much hurt and hate between them that my sister and I were both telling my mom that she needed to leave. All that time she spent trying to keep her family together was a waste. And truthfully, it did more bad than good. I never really got to see what a good relationship looks like. And now, more than ten years later, I still cannot even talk about my father with my mother, or vice versa. It's sad and uncomfortable.

    Anyway, I'm sorry- didn't mean to share my life story there. All that was just to say that I think you are doing the right thing – it is better to get away from this now before any more damage can be inflicted. You and Marlowe both deserve better.

  20. :(! I hope you find the strenght to stand up again soon, and find a new man – a good one this time – you and your daughter truly deserve. My mum once told me, that even love does not really change a man (she was disappointed), so make sure you find someone you love just like he is next time around!

  21. Drea, you are such a strong and inspiring momma. You are so brave and you will get through this. M is so lucky to have you. You deserve so much better and you will find it someday. Follow your dreams and I know you and M are gonna be fine. Good luck with the new path you are taking Chef Drea

    Hugs, Claire (kawaiigirl79) xxxx

  22. alex suuuucks! i was so disappointed when you wrote you were getting back together – once an asshole, always an asshole. but i of course understood your reasons for trying. i hope youll never give him the chance again. i really liked eric. i hope you can mend your relationship with him, if nothing else than just a friend. he seemed to be a great guy/role model in marlowe's life.

  23. I commend you on working to be the very best mama you know how to be.

    And from someone who knows the pain of a toxic relationship – I hope you can find the strength and wholeness to move forward and away from the gravitational pull of Alex.

  24. you probably don't know this cause i never talk about it on my blog cause it's the past and i have a new life now but, i was married before. i was in a 7 year relationship, married 5 out of those 7.
    it was not a great marriage at the end. it hadn't been for a while. my ex was a restaurant manager at night. we worked total opposite schedules with only 1 day off together to run errands, fight, whatever.
    he started staying later and later at work. started leaving his phone in the car over night. the signs were all there but because i was so in love with him still, i didn't see them.
    he was cheating on me with a bartender.
    he broke off our marriage. it killed me. for a long time.
    the one thing i learned out of many of course is to (as silly as it may be) never date anyone in that business and only date someone with pretty much the same schedule as me.
    and just like everything a relationship is work, not impossible work but obviously he was done working with ours. which is fine cause look at me now! 🙂

  25. You are a wonderful mum and I know you will continue growing and raising a beautiful, wonderful daughter. I love how inspirational you are everytime I read about your life.
    I'm sorry things are hard and I know you have the strength to continue being an amazing woman. 🙂 xx

  26. wow. i am really incredibly sorry for you.
    two things:
    1: people are not born to suffer, but to love. and you loved! big time! and i think that it's just your time to love some more!

    2: children up until the age of 3 are sponges. which not only means that they can learn a lot, but also that memories can be changed! for example: marlowe needs to get over her loss, but she will, because happy memories will "cover" the bad ones.
    i think that's a comfortable thought…and i can promise you it works! my 2nd born had to "paint over" those bad memories and she did! and she's a happy child now!

    sending you just as much strength as you need!


  27. @charissa: I think it's quite funny when people don't realize that even if it says "unknown" or there is a made up username there is a million different ways to know exactly who the commenter is. It doesn't happen often, but when it does its very very obvious. Besides, is the internet, if it's not obvious, then there are a zillion and half ways to track it if you want to. I think it's much easier to be direct in your opinion and not pretend to be someone else, right? I mean come on! Isn't this a blog (and post) based on realness and honesty. pft. 🙂

  28. I know you've gotten a lot of comments and emails in support (and some not so supportive) of everything that's going on. You have HONESTLY been on my heart this past week and I've prayed for you and Marlow (and will continue to). If I could, I'd beg you to trust God. He is the way. Try and lean on him for understanding. Just take him for a 'test drive' if you will. I'm not some crazy person, I promise.. lol

    ..but I just feel this huge emotional tug when I imagine you going through this (again.) I am so sorry it's happening, but with the risk of sounding cheesy, I believe in you.

  29. @drea:

    i find it quite funny that you know exactly who that "unknown" person is. thats cute. hahahaha.


  30. Drea.

    I've been reading your blog for a few months now. I have a daughter, Lily, who is 15 months and see so many similarities between her and what you say about Marlowe (specifically the gymnastic breastfeeding…OH MAN…except I haven't had the guts to wean yet! Well done, you!).

    I am a single mom, dealing with a dad who is not a bad guy but who is just not…just not a grown up. Immature (why do so many 30 year olds act like 18 year olds). Selfish. Insensitive. Etc!

    My heart hurts for you, reading this post. I can feel the pain (it looks like my pain!) behind your words. But you also give me hope – your words are strong and brave, and make me feel like i can be so, too.

    Thank you for sharing your beautiful life. It is beautiful – SO beautiful, regardless of whether you have a 'perfect' family or not. From the outside – your family of two sure looks perfect to me.

    You are a wonderful mama to lovely Marlowe. You will be in my prayers.

    Tara xx

  31. You will get back on the highway of all the things good in life. The "Alex Periods" were the sidesteps along your way to creating a new life of love and hope for you and your daughter. Don't give up, ever. I admire your tenacity, and heart for overcoming such great pain in the past, and now as well. You have amazing strength, and I am sending your way many, many 'bestest' wishes. (Only wished I could do something to help!) You deserve so much more goodness, and so does your innocent, darling of a daughter. Time to let go, and keep moving on to new days of dawn and promise. Love and prayers from a reader across continents. xx

  32. @mommy minty: as painful as it can be, there is something very satisfying about being the only one responsible for my daughter for 24/7. I found myself saying today: "Hold on Marlowe, mama will be right back, she has to be the man of the house and take the trash out". I smiled to myself.

    @mckenzie: My email box has been put on hold. I plan on getting to each email this week… I have many many many. Sorry dear <3

    AND THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU to everyone's kind, caring, and generous words. Seriously, I'm lucky to have such great support <3 And to all the women and mamas out there that have been or are in similar situations: I'm sorry. Let make a pact to stick together and move past other peoples bullshit, K? 😉

  33. @thelongbonds: It always drives me mad when people put themselves in a negative box like that. It's just a pathetic was to excuse their actions and not better themselves.

    @marjorie: My friends and I are actually having a new- new year party soon. A little re-do to a lot of negative shit that's been going around. I am looking forward to it! As far as I know there was nothing physical (yet) between Alex and his "friend"…. emotional? I don't know. I guess it really doesn't matter anymore. All I know is that she was a great escape to not think about any of the serious stuff… you know…. I'm sure she is a wonderful, empathic, and caring person that only cares about other people -_-

    @Erin: love is funny… and also blind. waugh waugh. Should have ran from the very beginning.

    @Erika: honestly, I don't even think about any of that, it sounds nice though! I'm on a mission to push away men for quite a while…. but one day that will be nice to be with a man I not only love, but one that is willing to honestly give, love, and care. <3

    @Sarah: Eric says that quote a lot… and I think about it from time to time. It's so very true.

    @Unknown: Well, Amy, I would consider any man who makes a million false promises, moves into my home, back into my life… and then continues to lie, and break every single one of those promises to not only me, but to my daughter…. with no regard for the effects of his actions on the people around him or the house his daughter calls home, a bad man. If you actually read my blog, and not read only what you wanted to see and hear, you would see how much I truly love and care for Alex… it's been that way long before Marlowe or the thoughts of a family came into existence. Trust me, there are a million ways I can (and want to) trash talk Alex, but I'd rather just leave my life (and my blog) to the real facts and situations that he has created instead.

  34. You are awesome, as I've told you so many times before.
    I know it's cheesy, but it's true. You're a really strong lady and however things go, I know I'm behind you 100% as a sponsor, friend, etc. You can do anything and know what's best for you and Marlowe.

  35. My heart breaks for what you've been through, but you are making the right decision and you know it. Just for the record — I am willing to pay more for things like sponsorship on the blog just so it might help you & Marlowe. <3

  36. @amanda blair: it's funny (ok it's not funny) but as scared as I was in the beginning I wasn't that fearful. The fear started coming when I realized the lies never stopped. So hard with a child involved! You love the man and can't ever fully escape them! Thanks <3<3

    @charissa: You're probably right. It sucks, but you're probably right.

    @mama mandolin: I go back and forth about change. I think many times it varies on person to person. It also depends if the flaw or trait is a matter of nature vs nature. I believe (or believed— not sure anymore) in Alex it was never in his nature to lie and hide, but more in nurture that he developed these traits. Thats why I believed and hoped so wholeheartedly he was capable of change. I do think you're right about the single mom thing… is some ways. It helped to have him more physically present— even if it was just an hour a day, and financially there is no doubt that it made things a bit easier, but yeah, he was never emotionally here. Oh well.
    Thank you <3

    @Kara Athena: I don't believe it was or is a matter of growing up. I was raised to believe people are capable of change and to give second (and third) chances. While my daughter and my effects on her will always be huge, especially when she is older and aware of situations, she is only 14 months and hardly notices Alex is missing. The wonderful thing about blogs is that it is so easy to stop reading. Takes no effort at all 😉

    @Emsie: "some people will waste however many "last chances" they are given" so sad. so true. well said.

  37. It's your time, is right. As hard as this single mama thing is (so hard!), it's often for the best. I hope it's onwards and upwards from here.

  38. Someday you will look back on this and think it was worth going though all of it to end up where you're supposed to be–with the right guy, with no insecurity, with happiness in your life.

    Your writing really did change when he came back into your life. I often thought you were defending him, defending your relationship, defending your choice. But you're right, you would have regretted not giving him that chance because he is the father of your child and you obviously do (or did) love him.

    I know you will find the right person for you. I love reading about your life with Marlowe, and I wish you nothing but happiness in the future because you certainly deserve it.

  39. i remember when alex first started trying to win you back. i said to you, "alex scares me, I think he's bad for your health." just listen to me from now on, k? 🙂

    i've got some happiness coming your way via mail. hope they don't melt before they reach you.

    and someday. someday, i'm coming to florida and giving you a hug <3 chin up, buttercup. lemme know if you need anything at all.

  40. I was in a very similar situation for many years. I promise you that once you make up your mind that you are done with all this B.S. things will turn around. There are so many men out there who would never treat you (or your daughter) so badly. You both deserve so much. Keep your head up doll!
    Best of luck,

  41. First of all, I love your blog! Secondly, I do not have a child, but I was in a very similar relationship for many years, and I just wanted to tell you to keep your head up, and say strong. You are a beautiful, smart, talented woman, and there a re so many men out there who would love you as well as your daughter, and treat you the way you DESERVE to be treated. Best of luck doll!

  42. I'm so sorry for this stress you're dealing with right now. It's not fun to read about, and I'm sure it's MUCH less fun to go through. If there's one positive that comes from this though is that your daughter will know you are forgiving, strong, realistic, and full of love. So many parents give up these days out of selfishness. At least you can tell Marlowe that you tried for her sake.

    By the way, I sent you an email a little over a week ago. Don't feel obligated to respond anytime soon. I know how it feels to not have the energy or time to respond to emails, so don't worry.

    Things will come together for you. Just try hard to stay optimistic. 🙂

  43. I, like many others, have been down this road before. I am wishing you fast healing, happiness, and success at whatever you choose to do in order to financially support your family. I was a single mama for many years. I know it's tough but I also found it to be the most rewarding experience too. I loved the satisfaction that came with supporting me and my daughter on my own. I also didn't mind not having to answer to anybody. 😉


    P.S…I hope you at least stick it to him in the child support department. =P

  44. This post exudes so much strength that can't be easy to muster. Well Done. I've no doubt Marlowe will be so very proud of the brilliant role model you are to her. in years to come.
    Chin up, we're all rooting for you.


  45. I'm so sorry you are going through this. You and Marlowe deserve more. Hold onto that inner strength that has gotten you this far. Sometimes, you have to truly let one door shut in order for another to open…

  46. Very proud of you, Drea. Marlowe is the same age as my daughter… What a lucky little girl to have you as her mama.

  47. Drea,

    Maybe he isn't such a bad guy. Maybe he just wasn't ready for the whole family thing. I've been reading your blog for awhile now but not commenting. I do know there are always 3 sides to a story – yours, his and the truth. You have always made it abundantly clear you wanted a family, you wanted a family. DId you ever want the man? The relationship has to come first and be strong before the family thing. Otherwise it will never work out in the end. Seems like you kind of approached things backward. If you both love her, and how could you both not?, it'll all be OK. If you are OK, she will be OK so long as you don't trash talk each other.

  48. please don't take this the wrong way because it is a harsh sentiment but i don't mean it to be but as it goes: fool me once, shame on you. fool me twice, shame on me. but you know what? you had to give him the chance, he may not have deserved it, but there would be so many what-ifs if you didn't and regret is a terrible thing to live with. at least now there will (hopefully) be some sort of closure between you two as a couple and this opens doors to allow a new, more deserving, man to come into your life. there is someone out there who will treat you as you should be treated. you deserve all the happiness in the world.

  49. Not a lot of women are strong enough to do this, but you are informed by past experience and are doing the right thing. I feel proud of you (even though I have never met you) and I am sure you are giving a lot of strength to many out there. And the benefits to your daughter will outweigh the negatives by far.


  50. I've been an avid reader of your blog for a little under a year now, and I just want to say my heart feels for you. I am going through a similar situation right now, and it's not easy. Keep your head held high and show him what he's missing out on. Men never learn until it's too late.. I have all the faith in the world you and Marlowe will be just fine. <3

  51. oh drea, way to make me cry at my desk. I can relate in so mamy ways to you and your story…I believe that you change when you HAVE to, and that you now feel the need to make that change. Can you imagaine being in a relationship with an adoring, loving, honest partner? Someone who constantly builds you up? Who doesn't bring drama? Allow yourself to dream and to KNOW that next time you're ready, you can set the bar unbelievably high and that you and Marlowe deserve the best. you both deserve to be happy all the time. To feel like the relationship and the family dynamic is more happy than work work work. Relationships DO take work, but there should be more good than bad. More happy times than sad, more laughter than tension, etc. I wish you nothing but success in your next endeavor!

  52. So sorry to read this! I was hoping for a happy ending this time around, but you are so right. He is a child, he wants to be a child and have no care in the world and that won't change.

    I wish nothing but the best for you and your daughter. You are an amazing mother…and a strong one at that!

  53. Don't mourn the loss of the man you loved, the man hiding under lies. That was the man, lies. I know you don't love THAT man. That's who THAT man is, Alex.

    If someone shows you who they are, believe them the first time.

  54. Alex sounds just like my son's father. The only difference is he became an alcoholic after I got pregnant. I'm sorry you and Marlowe have to go through all of this, I truly know how hard it is. Good luck with everything.

  55. oh dear Drea, he is not playing a role of the bad guy. he is the bad guy. the wrong guy for you and Marlowe after all.

    i'm sorry that the two of you have to go through this again but like you said, it's not like you haven't been there before. never easy though.

    i am happy for your positivity. it's a new year and there are nothing but good things coming your way.
    you are smart, you are beautiful, you are kind.
    many blessings to you and Marlowe. xo

  56. No one deserves that type of pain and living with uncertainty. I find you uplifting and positive and just fun- that's why I look forward to checking your blog every day!
    I hope that you are able to move forward (again) and find something for you that makes you happy and renewed. You have a gorgeous baby girl and all she needs from you is the love and fabulous mothering you've been doing.
    hugs to you and Miss Marlowe 🙂

  57. New year, new start. No regrets. I don't blame you wanting to make it work. When you said he lies, I thought ok…but from inferences I make from this post it seems like he's lying about cheating on you. Whoa, that's a horse of a whole new, serious color. You deserve better than that, are better than that case closed. You can do it without him!

  58. It kills me to know that there is a soul on this planet who wouldn't want to care for their beautiful, healthy baby girl.

    That a man has the capacity to act like this – to make such hurtful, cliched, "bad boy" cheese-ball choices is mind boggling… a lifetime of careful compartmentalizing, I guess.

    So sorry for this unnecessary BS, but as someone else said, "you got this."

  59. Drea,
    You radiate strength. Your daughter is so lucky to have a mom like you. As a long-time reader of your blog, I was also skeptical when Alex came back into the picture but I completely understand why you needed to try. You seem like such a compassionate & understanding person.
    Also, I can't wait to see what creative ideas you'll come up with for the blog & for your career. I'll be reading along…

    xo Janelle

  60. Love this. I look forward to seeing where you go on your journey, it's going to be splendid.

    You have balls, girl. You show your innards like no other. Not a lot of people can do that. Exposing yourself and not feeling vulnerable is a hefty undertaking. Especially if you have exposed your soft underbelly in the past and someone has marred it with a selfish knife.

    I admire your strength. I have a feeling as they days pass your strength will just grow and grow.

    Watch out, world. That’s all I have to say.

  61. I'm glad you are doing ok through this. I wish you all the best.

  62. I am so sorry. But take solace in the face that you tried, you can look back with no regrets or what ifs. You and Marlowe deserve better. Better is the two of you, with no lies or tension. Lots of strength and peace for you.

  63. So heartbreaking to read….You're an awesome mum & woman so I know you'll bounce back from this & be stronger than ever. Just don't give that bad guy a third chance!

  64. Stay hopeful. Take care of yourself and your daughter. Going through a smiliar situation right now your strength is inspiring to me. I enjoy reading your blog and look forward to reading about the good things to come!

  65. You are positive and inspirational, Drea. You are such a good mom and champion for your daughter. I know you are mourning one future you had imagined for Marlowe, but together the two of you have a very bright future, buoyed by those who love and care for you. Best of luck with the opportunities you're working on right now. xoxo

  66. The prayer Cyndy said above has so often held true. This post was heartwrenching to read and i cant think of what it is for you. But stay strong

  67. From reading back on your posts it did seem like he was more caught up in work than raising his child and being there for you. I know that happens and it is life…like today my husband was working non-stop but as soon as he was done he took over completely. I'm sad to say I didn't see this reflected in your posts – I could be totally off base here but it's how it came across at least.

    I was really rooting for you and Alex to have a shot at married happiness, so that you could heal the wounds he'd caused completely and so that he could grow up. I know that probably sounds weird as I don't actually 'know' you…but yeah, that's what I think.

    I also had an ex I was in a 5 yr relationship and every day I am thankful I don't have a child with him. He was controlling and obsessive…but cheated all the time, treated me like dirt and didn't give me an ounce of respect. Yeah I chose that (again and again! UGH!) but again, when my husband came along I really understood how it should be and didn't have to go on wishing for it to be a certain way.

    I know all kinds of stories where people lie, cheat, steal etc from their partners and still make successful marriages and relationships out of the pain, but that's usually when one side of the party has grown up and taken a seriously hard look at how their actions truly effect the other. I don't know what will happen in your relationship future but you've got the strength to go on, without Alex as he is now and raise that beautiful girl of yours – you, your family, people around you…these good influences are the type of strength and love she needs.

  68. I've been thinking of you these past few days… weird to be thinking of a stranger, I know, but I also know that pain and heartache. You're doing the right thing mama and though I'm sure you have times of clouded thoughts, it sounds like deep down you know what you have to do. Do it girl! All your readers, friends, and family believe in you. Stay strong. But allow for those moments of tears, they're important too.

    ashley @ http://www.thestorkandthebeanstalk.com

  69. I've been reading your blog for a few weeks, having clicked through from another blog (don't remember which one), and I feel like I know you. I so appreciate your honesty and willingness to say things that are hard to say. I'm really sorry about things with Alex…I know that feeling of hoping that someone has made changes that they NEEDED to make, and the insecurity that goes along with that hope, the feeling of knowing deep down that things are probably still the same. I understand not wanting to let go of the hope, too, even when others might think you should. I hope that you will soon experience the freedom of not always being bogged down with worry and nagging thoughts and insecurities and someone else's baggage that never really goes away, and will know that that freedom is more valuable and precious than having a partner to love and raise your daughter with, when he is someone who you can't rely on and fully trust. I agree that it is "your time." You seem to have a great support system in your family, friends and virtual friends…even in your baby girl who looks up to you.

    Don't doubt that you are doing right by yourself and your daughter, or that some people will waste however many "last chances" they are given.

    Take care,


  70. Drea,

    You need to grow up and move on from this man. If not already, Marlowe will begin feeling the effects of this, and I can promise it will stay with her forever. I promise you that if you continue this childish back and forth, your daughter will have issues with men/trusting/ relationships. You need to protect you daughter, and not just provide damage control. I have followed your blog for some time, but can longer take part in this soap opera you call your life.

  71. Two things come to mind here…The Serenity Prayer: "God, grant me the serenity, to accept the things I can not change (another person) courage to change the things I can (myself) and the wisdom to know the difference." It is also said that we will finally stop what we are doing and WE will change…when we are "sick and tired of being sick and tired." Sounds like you are in that place and although painful, is a very positive place to be. YOU must be the change you want to create in your life.

    Also, I left my daughter's father for good (as I've told you before) a few years ago after similar things you have been through with Alex and other "issues." No one wants to raise a child in two homes. I know I didn't. I wanted a family with a person I loved. I wanted that with everything in me. But it was not meant to be. And I would rather raise my daughter in a healthy, stable home…than with an unstable person..Just to keep her from being raised in "two homes." She will be raised in your home…and have visits with him. Unless the laws are different in Florida than in NY. Also, getting a life of your own, a job, etc…will open doors for you, you never thought possible. You have so much to offer. Seems like the universe is telling you to give yourself a chance and make the changes you need to. You will be better for it and Marlowe will have a strong, independent, loving, talented mother who is one heck of a role model for a little girl. I'm wishing you all good things. -Cyndy

  72. My mom stayed married to my dad for 13 years hoping he would change. She told me once in college (when I was having relationship problems) that the bad things in people never change. Sometimes they can be hidden but never changed.

    And the only other piece of advice came from my aunt once divorced and then married to my uncle-told me she had no idea what love was until she married my uncle. Love doesn't hurt. And she told me "never be with someone who won't go out of their way to make you happy." Seems pretty simple but oh so important.

    I think even when you were with Alex you were still a single mom. His mind was never there. You do just fine yourself, thank you 🙂

    You are strong. You are brave. You are a great mother. One day Marlowe will know all of this. And one day Alex, when he's old and gray, will have to live with the decisions he made when he was young.

  73. Drea, I post as the "child" (the Marlowe) in this situation long ago. Because my mother choose no more… a few years later we were alloted a wonderful life. Because of her hard (but easy) choice. Cheers to you and Marlowe! Cheers to the day she is an adult, looking backing thankful or the choice you have made.

    Carry on…

  74. Dear Drea,

    I can just say I wish you all the strenght you need!
    Take your time and heal..

    A big virtual hug for you and Marlowe,

  75. Drea,
    I once felt what you do. I felt it for 5 years, and then one day, did exactly what you're talking about here: stopping.

    & since that day, I've never physically looked back. Yeah, my mind goes back and forth. Ponders what was before, ponders if I can go back. It plays tag you're it with my heart, & the two battle each other like a civil war, but I don't ever go back. & speaking from this experience, you shouldn't either.

    No matter what you do, what you say, what you feel, you will never truly have Alex. Maybe physically, for a little while, but never wholy. Never in his entirety. Never his heart, his mind, his soul, his being. & if you won't, neither will your daughter.

    I hope you find the splice that you need.
    & I hope you can live life for you & yr daughter,
    doing what makes you happy, to in turn, make her happy.

    Best wishes
    & all the love in the world.


  76. I feel like your life is mirroring mine in so many ways right now. I'm sorry for your pain. He is scum.

  77. I've been in a similar situation just without a child to make things that much harder. I too gave a bad guy a second chance, after begging me to do so, and just like Alex he was different for maybe a week? And then it was just the same bad behavior, the lies, the cheating and everything all over again. It's always worst the second time around because though the first time they break your heart, it feels as if life won't go on, you find a way to survive. You learn how to fold into yourself and build up a barrier around your heart so that even though it feels like it might actually explode of sadness, that little barrier holds it up when you can't. But the second time around, you know all of this and are constantly waiting for them to do it again. The fear, anxiety and stress that comes with the second chance is almost more unbearable then the original heartache. I know I was driven nearly crazy by my ex and his bad behavior and it was quite the relief when I finally got out from under him. I ran far, far away from him and never looked back. I know for you this is much more complicated because of your daughter but it's probably the best thing for her too. I'm sending you lots of love and strength during this trying time. Now, you know that your life is better off without him and you can finally make room in your heart for a real man, ready to love you! xx