A couple of conversations over the weekend confirmed that I am not misreading Mrs. Hold. For those of you who think I misrepresent her thoughts and feelings, listen up.

Saturday night we dropped D13 at a party. We saw some adults we knew who had been invited to the party. We were not. Mrs. Hold expressed disappointment that we were not invited. I validated that it feels bad not to be invited. I then pointed out that we don't socialize much, and you can't expect to be invited places if you don't socialize much. Mrs. Hold, S15 and I had a long conversation over dinner about socializing and the opportunities it provides to "expand one's circle".

In the end, Mrs. Hold admitted that she would like to socialize more, but she is embarrassed by our house. She thinks people in town (including the ladies at the gym) would think less of us if they saw how small and old and unfashionable our houise is. S15 pointed out that at least one of the couples invited to the party has a house that is even more run down than ours. Mrs. Hold said she didn't care. She thinks many of her friends imagine we are rich since her husband is a well-educated lawyer at a well-known firm, and she does not want them to learn the truth. So she is not comfortable expanding her social circle.

S15 and I confirmed she was correct. Some people would think less of us. So we wouldn't be friends with those people. But others wouldn't care and it would enrich our lives to spend time with them. She said she doesn't want anyone who doesn't know to find out because the women at the gym gossip and once one of them discovered we were not rich she would tell the others and Mrs. Hold's status at the gym would plummet.

So I guess we won't be socializing much in the future.

Yesterday, we visited my sister and nephew. When the kids went out to play, we were discussing our kids (not hers, her son is younger) being teenagers and Mrs. Hold being worried about them doing drugs. We had a nice conversation about the risks and about our kids and that you have to remain on the lookout but you can drive yourself nuts worrying about bad things that might happen.

Mrs. Hold said she worries because "I have an addicitive personality and anything that feels good and I enjoy I can't get enough of. That is how I gained weight, because I could not resist food".

Later we took the kids out to get ice cream cones. Mrs. Hold and I hung back a little. She said "it hurt you to hear what I said, didn't it." I agreed it did. Because it is obvious she doesn't find it difficult to resist me, so it obviously can't feel good. She agreed. It doesn't.

When we got home and the kids were settled elsewhere, we resumed the conversation. I asked her why she lied to the counsellors and therapists about our sex life. At first she claimed it wasn't a lie, she simply told them that she felt safer and less threatened by me than by other guys, and the MCs and therapists assumed that meant the sex was good. I told her she knows what she said was misleading. She admitted it was. I asked her how she could waste all that time and all that money if she had no intention of actually working on our marriage. She said "if we discussed those topics truthfully, the MCs might have drawn the conclusion that we were incompatible, and I (Mrs. Hold) might have agreed with them, and I didn't want anyone putting that on the table, so I refused to go in that direction." She said that if she decided we were incompatible, she might have felt obliged to leave me. So she refused to allow herself to admit the truth to herself, much less the MCs. She said "it was denial, just denial".

I thanked her for finally being honest with me. She said she enjoys our marriage. It is not perfect and it involves disappointments. But it works for her and she wants it to continue. But she is not interested in working on the sex part.

So we know where we stand. It is pretty much where I thought we were. And now she has confirmed that she truly does feel what I have consistently reported were her likely thoughts and feelings.

I don't feel as bad as I expected. I always suspected this is how she feels. And how she behaved during MC. So it is not shocking to learn I was correct. It hurts. But it is not shocking.

I think the ball is now in my court to be more open. To reassure her that I won't be leaving while the kids are living with us. So she can be truthful with me without fearing it would cause me to walk out the door. But also to say that "hiding the ball" won't keep her safe in the long run. Because I can't promise her I will stay after the kids leave.

When you can see it coming, duck!