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Can't get no sleep...

Nothing was ever her fault.

This is very important to remember. Almost everything hinges on this principle.

I have never really told the tale of what happened during my two and a half years in New Hampshire. I've tossed out a nugget here and a nugget there, mostly shrouded in mystical language. The truth of the matter is that I was drawn to New Hampshire under false pretenses. I was drawn there by someone I had known and deeply loved for twenty years, someone who had disappeared from my life nine years earlier who now resurfaced and claimed to have decided that the time had come, that we had both evolved and matured to the point where the idea of us being together was something that needed to be explored.

To do so required that I come to where she was. This should have been my first clue, but she could talk a wolf into letting a cow devour its head. There is a much greater danger in a genius losing their mind than your average person going nuts. The genius is capable of plotting and planning and reinterpreting everything that happens in such a way that it reinforces what they think and believe.

Life was a little slice of paradise for the first few months I was there, but The Muse is not a creature who can accept bliss as anything other than a painful condition that must be overcome. The bliss must be overcome and it must be overcome in such a way that she becomes the victim so that she can have what she most desires, the support and sympathy of others. The way in which she lives her life involves keeping a deck of cards that symbolizes her friends and those who she can call on. At any given time she will turn on, betray or otherwise attack, in a passive-aggressive way, anyone in that deck of cards, but only when she keeps a number of cards face-up and on call to pick up the pieces.

You see, the method of her genius was to make it always appear that her misery was caused by someone else, in such a way that she can call others to her side to support and reinforce her in what becomes a battle against those who have done her wrong.

Can't get no sleep...

She attempted suicide in July of 2005. By my standards it was a rather lame attempt, but I have rather high standards when it comes to suicide. If there is anything I am an expert on, that is where I would plant my flag. There was a deviousness in her suicide attempt. It involved calling a suicide hotline after she had taken a fairly large number of sleeping pills and then pretending she had no idea they would call the local police after she told them what she had done.

I divide suicide cases into three categories. The first is the cry for attention, a moderate exposition of the need to express deep pain and an inability to both express it and find someone who understands. Most suicide cases fall into this category and they don't become critical very often, unless there is no one to listen who understands and isn't just giving the bullshit party line of "toughen up, soldier." The second category is dramatic exposition, which usually involves the situation reaching a point where intervention of some kind is required on a professional level. This was The Muse's category, she wanted the police to show up, she wanted to be taken away in an ambulance, she wanted to spend the night in the hospital, but she did not want to die. She just wanted it to look that way because that was known to bring greater sympathy and support her way. The third category is intent, and while it may involve exposition, it usually works to avoid any situation where intervention is possible or will stop the intent. Pretend there is a gun. In the first category, the person waves a gun around and say, "I'm going to shoot myself in the head with this gun," while making certain you will have no real trouble taking the gun away from them. In the second category, the person points the gun at themselves and says they are going to kill themselves, pulls the trigger, but makes sure they don't shoot themselves in any way that will end their life, maybe a bullet in the leg or the arm will do. In the third category, well, they have the gun and you will never be close enough to stop them from pulling the trigger when they put it in their mouth.

The second category is the most difficult to deal with. I know there are those who will argue the third case is the worst, and I have lost someone to suicide, so I know where you are coming from, but someone who continues to injure themselves and cause themselves harm and works to physically, mentally and emotionally wound and handicap themselves over time is a demon of a much different color.

Can't get no sleep...

The Muse was a cutter, but to say that is to make a gross understatement. It was something she was proud of, something she felt gave her meaning and value within the warped sense of values she held onto. How many cuts could she make on her body? How deeply could she cut without requiring stitches? How nasty, or in her words, "how exquisite" could her scars become? By the time I finally wrangled her into the locked ward at a psychiatric hospital they managed to count well over five hundred.

The Muse was extremely obsessed with becoming the most accompished self-mutilator known to man. She worked in an environment teenaged girls who were cutters. The computer I now use, the one she threw out, contains her journal entries from over a three year period of time. She rated who impressed her and who was lame in their cutting. She managed to fool an entire legion of counseling professionals and hid her activities from them for nearly four years. All she wanted was to be around people who did what she did so that she could prove to herself that she did it better than they did.

Thankfully there aren't any awards for such things.

The truth? I've seen things you people wouldn't believe, if I may quote Roy Batty. I would come home from working third shift, in the morning, and lead her out of bed so that I could wring the blood out of her sheets. I came home on a Saturday night when she expected me to be away for the entire weekend to find her in the tub, the water so dark with blood you could not see the bottom, and I got into the tub with her to make her stop, to take her razor blades away, while she wrote, in blood, on the shower wall, "Love is lies" and then broke down and cried, screaming, "Why can't I cut my wrists? Why can't I cut my wrists? I can cut everything else but I don't have the balls to cut my wrists!"

Can't get no sleep...

She deconstructed me.

I was once... well, maybe hundreds of times... told by my angel that any effort I made to "reclaim" those things that mattered to me in my life before June 6, 1994 would result in great misery. And yet I pushed for this. The Muse was there for me in ways others were not for many years, and while we dated when we were in our teens, I had the most invasive crush on her for the rest of my life, even as I dated and slept with scores of beautiful and remarkable women. The image and the memory of her never left me and I always believed that somehow we would come back together again.

That was the card she played. And she perverted the very nature of unconditional love in order to control and manipulate me into accepting and even condoning her behavior.

"If you leave me, you were my last hope, and if you leave me then I can never believe in anyone again and I can never believe in love again."

Bullshit. Wrong answer.

Want to know why?

You want to know how much unconditional love has to do with being with someone, as in being with someone in a partnership that is akin to being husband and wife? Absolute zero. The Muse had my unconditional love as a friend, but once you enter into a close partnership, the equation changes. There has to be mutual respect and trust, and to violate that respect or that trust leads down a very dark road. Once you no longer have that mutual respect and trust, all bets are off.

Over and over, as if testing the limits of my love for her, The Muse pushed the envelope. Actually, she tore the envelope open and pissed in it, but that is besides the point. She expected me to cover for her, to lie for her, to support her no matter what depths of madness she descended to. Her abuse of a mixture of alcohol and pills reached the point where she was no longer capable of rational thought. One night when we had invited a female friend over for a visit, she had been out drinking with several men from the neighborhood. These men were so disturbed by her behavior they later avoided her like the plague. She had been popping pills while slugging back wine and not only offered to have sex with all of them, she offered our guest to them for similar purposes, all before even bothering to come back to the house to greet our guest. And then, when she did manage to show up, she stumbled in incoherently and went on to our guest about how she was in love with her and that she was a lesbian and that our relationship was "just for show."

Can't get no sleep...

It was not long after that I first made plans to leave. Through a convoluted series of rationalizations, The Muse had convinced me to continue sharing a home with her while she went on with a very openly explicit relationship with a woman. You know that old saying about how a man would love to watch his girlfriend get it on with another woman? Theory is better than practice. It starts out kind of interesting, but it gets dull and annoying very quickly. It wasn't until months later that I realized this other woman was getting screwed over as badly as I was. I would say, "No pun intended," if it were not such a terribly cliche thing to say, but, oh well.

When I attempted to leave, I found myself faced with self-depreciating soliliquys about how she had done me wrong and needed another chance to prove herself, to show me that she loved me and needed me and wanted us to stay together forever. The nature of her speeches and her pervasiveness convinced me that yes, I needed to give her this opportunity.

As much for myself as for her. If I walked away at that point I would have been held in the grasp of "the pain of never knowing." Due to the nature of things and what we had meant to each other for two decades, I needed an absolute answer, even if it killed me. If it gives you a clue to understanding why, I am an Eagle Scorpio.

And it very nearly did kill me.

I insisted she needed to reveal the nature of her disorders to her employers, who were mental health care professionals, and were my employers as well. I also insisted that her weekly visits to the therapist and her current prescriptions were not enough to stabilize her and allow her to live a normal life. I insisted she needed to go in-patient at a mental health care facility and stay there until they could study her and figure out some way by which she could learn to overcome her self-destructive behavior because I was no longer willing to stand by her while she destroyed herself piece by piece.

And it took another suicide attempt, this time by taking a shitload of aspirin, since I had made her more potent "fun pills" disappear, and making a call to 911 after she called me at work to ask me to call 911 for her, something I refused to do (making a 911 call from a facility that is part of the justice system isn't something you want to do if you want to keep your job), before she finally went into a locked facility for evaluation. And when I visited her there she was still hooked on her ultimate addiction, proving she is crazier than everyone else around her. In fact, it is my strong belief that she feeds off the issues of others, not only for justification of her actions, but for benchmarks by which she can figure out how to demonstrate she is willing to be even crazier.

Her two weeks in the hospital were my only vacation, and even though I visited her twice, all I got were telephone messages about how horrible I was for not visiting more often. And then I got screamed at for telling her social worker that alcohol was a large part of her problem, and for telling her that The Muse was abusing prescription pills she had gotten from friends, and for telling the social worker she had serious sexual issues, including having slept with a convicted child molester more than once while working at a shelter for troubled teen girls. I had only learned about this after contacting friends of hers and sharing with them the negative and horrific things she told us about each other as part of her ongoing game with trying to corner the market on sympathy and support.

I told someone tonight I was fairly desensitized to most things as she showed me how she had cut her hand while washing dishes. Try having a girlfriend who walks into your room, pulls up her shirt and says, "Look, it is just like a grapefruit!" excitedly as she shows you the deep cut in her stomach and how it has cut well into the fatty tissue so that it... well, it looks like the inside of a grapefruit. I've been covered in her blood, her urine and her vomit. Hell, I've practically bathed in it.

And then, as I find out she has been continuing her affair with another woman while singing to me about dedication and devotion to her recovery plan and wanting to marry me, she looks me dead in the eye and says, "I guess it is better I find out now that you never really loved me than to have found out after I married you."

Can't get no sleep...

For me, excommunication is at the soul level. My own philosophy supports a belief in an external soul that acts through us as physical beings. I did not simply remove The Muse from my life, I removed her at a deeper level, and for me there is nothing left when it comes to "us." There is no "us." There never will be again.

While she cheated on me, sliced herself open this way and that, lied to me, manipulated me and emotionally abused me, and I was lying in bed wishing I could just die so it would all go away, do you know what she said to me?

"You don't love me enough."

We won't see each other again. This means something to me.