That Hurts* Ch 2 & 3 april

Chapter 2. A stroll down memory lane

We have been together for about a year. His name is Bob. This is not his real name. I know this because he is from Argentina; Argentineans don’t have names like Bob. I wanted to be the perfect partner for him, hopefully, his bride. However, our relationship turned into a friends-with-benefits arrangement within 5 months. Because of the active promotion of this temporary lifestyle from movies and such, during my twenties, I talked myself into accepting that this lifestyle was favorable.
I reminded myself regularly: Once he sees my value, he’ll reconsider our relationship.
It all started in the usual way. We met online and then had a meeting at a bar in China. I am an attractive woman from Ukraine. He is a six-foot athlete from Central America. He must have read some good self-help books and watched some self-help videos because he had his scripts. He knew his lines. Since his native tongue is Spanish, his broken English sounded almost musical to me. We were both fluent in English, although it was not our native language, so listening to each other dismember English was half the turn-on.
I had made the choice to begin a new relationship with a man who was interested in companionship first and sex second. Since I was approaching my thirties, I really didn’t think I was asking too much. I didn’t want to be alone when I came home because of the painful memories attached to my childhood and early teen years. The word companionship meant a long-term relationship — a family.

may need editing

I heard myself saying “This will all work out” even as my unconscious sent that subtle sick gut feeling that “something is wrong.” I lied to myself a lot during that time and he was also a good liar, so it worked very well. I especially liked how he made comments about marriage in the future — the unknown distant future, so I got starry-eyed and began dreaming about a family. I know that I am worthy of love because I am a natural nurturer. However, my thinking was kind of backward: if I find the right guy, I can change him.

Chapter 3 I was abandoned.

!! timeline

Why was I so gullible?
My mother abandoned me when I was about 13 years old. Perhaps the word abandon is the wrong word because I still had a house to live in, clothing to wear, and food to eat. However, around this age, I knew my life was about to change because she remarried. She knew I didn’t trust her almost-new-husband and that her actions would lead me to feel further abandoned, but that didn’t matter. In her eyes, having a man was an essential part of life for a woman with a daughter.
Since my birth father abandoned us when I was about three months old, I developed the belief that he left because I had been a bad girl. When speaking of my birth father, the word abandoned was the best choice. My new dad, or step-dad, didn’t much care for me either. He saw me as part of the package when he married my mom. He wanted companionship and sex, or maybe it would be more accurate to say, he wanted sex and maybe companionship.
The depression that filled our lives was common in our community. We were part of the middle class, and I was taught to act that way. We had enough money to pay our bills and look normal; people saw a father, mother, and daughter all living civilly in the same house and we wore our smiley faces when we came and went. Given that domestic violence and police visits were common in our neighborhood, one could argue that we were a model family. Everyone in the community wore smiles and offered waves when walking on the sidewalks and hallways near our community. I understood why my mother wanted a man in our lives. It did offer a family-like stability. The facade worked. We felt like we fit into our community.

!! new addition — dec29

To keep up with the bills, mom and step-dad worked a lot. As I look back at the events, you could say I was raised by my grandparents. I have fond memories of them.
!! sex issues but not abuse
The vibe my step dad gave was eerie, so staying away from him and watching the TV was the most obvious option. I tried to understand how I had developed the power to make him uncomfortable around me. I was a little heavy during my preteen and early teen years. I was cute but pudgy. I felt secure for being less than desirable from a sexual perspective. Often I would look in the mirror and think, I’m safe. The red curly hair and freckles reminded me of the possibilities for sexual appeal. But my gut said be safe.
I do remember thinking during this same period, They tell me I’m smart. Why doesn’t this man, my new dad, even like me? I really would make the perfect step-daughter, he only needs to give me a chance.
I gave myself this pep talk many times — I stopped counting how often. However, his behavior towards me did not change noticeably. Since I never felt threatening physically or sexually, I considered myself lucky.
I felt unwanted, and therefore, not lovable.

!! timeline trance explained ?? question for ira

One day it hit me, while I was staring at the TV screen, how naturally I fell in and out of trance states. I didn’t know at that age there was a name for this natural phenomenon but I knew it was real because I felt it. How did it work? I stared at the tv or sometimes just lay in bed. Time would pass and I would not know where I went. I never learned much while watching tv, but I enjoyed zoning out as I watched whatever. I would often ask myself a peculiar question on several occasions: I wonder if I can use this trance state in a more powerful way?
I did not get an answer to that question during those years, but I made a vow to myself while staring at that screen: I will do a better job than my mother by finding a more suitable partner — and finding happiness. The goal was to find a man that would be excited about commitment and companionship, and I wanted him to be the proud father of our child. I wasn’t religious, so I didn’t call it a prayer.
Fully intending to find a new path, I made one big mistake. Unknowingly, I had already spent years modeling my mother. The only question was “When would I start to lure guys in?”
!! verify the alluring comments fit

!! may not be true

She was alluring, so I mastered this one fast. I learned to wear the right clothing, lie a lot, and speak with my sexy voice when the right guy started to hit on me. My favorite was my sexy voice. I loved how I sounded when I started to perform. I added gestures, like blinking eyes and leaning just the right amount towards whoever.
The act worked well but it was exhausting. By the time my early twenties arrived, I was even more confused. By a miracle, I was married, and my husband was a good man. The problem was the relationship felt wrong. I had mastered watching my mother, so when my husband treated me well, it felt wrong — as though I was betraying her. As my husband tried to get too close to me, I panicked and prepared for the divorce.
After my divorce, choosing a man who would love and respect me more than my ex-husband was at the top of my list. He hadn’t done anything wrong, except create feelings in me that I had somehow disappointed my mother.