Tuesday, July 24, 2012


I waited in the hospital while my wife had the abortion, and kept my son company. When my wife walked out of the operating room, it hit me all at once: our child had died in the last hour.

I wondered what they did with our baby. Flushed down a drain? Tossed into a medical waste bag? Ripped into pieces and thrown into the garbage? By now, the baby should have started to look like a baby. And I still don't know if it was a boy or a girl.

We all went to get something to eat on doctor's orders. It was surreal, like we had just watched a movie, and were just going out to get lunch. I was in mild shock the whole time; the whole world kept fading in and out, and it was difficult for me to focus on anything. Soon enough, it was time to go to work, so I went home first. The entire trip home, and to work, was a blur; I felt so ashamed and guilty.

I called my wife later to see how she was doing, and she told me her grandma died last week, too. She didn't know until today, either. When I asked her how she felt about the baby, she said it bothered her, but not as much as her grandma, because she wasn't that attached to the baby. She said if she had felt the baby kick, she would probably be crying now. I was dumbstruck at her honesty, even moreso when I came home and she seemed happier than she has in months.

I'm not having another child with her:

- She's got a heart condition and I don't want to abort another baby, even if she seems to think that she's getting better, or that abortion is not a problem.
- Her reaction to all of this makes me physically ill.
- She's spent the last several months responding to every attempt I've made to prove that I have the money to take care of two kids with "Really? Are you sure?" and a skeptical face, even though I'm the one who's saved her dog twice, paid off her mother's $7000 bank debt, and never once missed a $1000+ monthly payment to her. So we'll do it her way.
- Her mother and sister don't want her to have another baby, and since my wife only yells at people that don't fight back (me and our son), I can expect a reign of terror from her family, one that she won't stop, if we conceive again.
- Last and certainly least, I can get my life back sooner.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Our child

My wife went to the doctor while I was working, and found out that a genetic heart problem that was present in her family is affecting her, too. Her retaining water, having difficulty breathing and her accelerated heartbeat were all signs of the problem, and her getting pregnant just brought all of this to the surface. She started crying, scared that she was going to die and sad that we had to abort the baby for this. I held her hand and comforted her.

I didn't cry at all this night. It isn't because I don't care about how our child will die in less than a week, or because I wasn't worried about my wife. I want both of them to live. I don't really know why I just felt resigned, but I can hazard a guess:

This kind of situation has been present with me for nearly my entire life. My desires, my wishes, my hopes for myself and everyone around me, have been almost universally chained to something else: my parents' chaos, my depression, my marriage, I've scarcely had a choice regarding how anything unfolds. When she told me what would happen, I felt scared for my wife and the baby, but those feelings were couched in absolute powerlessness.

I've lived so long with these feelings of helplessness and being carried along by the overbearing, unbreakable control of the circumstances of life and the people around me, that I guess I felt this was just another in a long string of situations where I was allowed to do nothing more than sit down and watch events unfold. I wanted to find a way to save everybody, to work harder at my job to make the money needed for an operation, anything.

But, as ever, I'm a slave to circumstances: I can't fight genetics, I can't place an ectopically impregnanted child in the right place, and I can't ask my wife to put her life on the line to try to bring our child into the world. Our son needs her, and it's impossible for her to have our child anyway. Even if the baby shows up on the sonogram in the next few days, it changes nothing; Peanut and my wife would both die on the operating table next year.

It would be misleading to say that I would trade my life for my wife, or Peanut's. Death carries hugely negative consequences, like never seeing my family as they are now, ever again, leaving my son without his father, and leaving everyone with debts they can't pay off. But at least it's a terribly dark cloud with a small silver lining: I wouldn't be married anymore.

Rather, I would live another hundred years as a married man, if it meant I could give Peanut a single day of life. In a way, Peanut has done this for us by saving my wife's life, revealing the nature of my wife's serious illness before it became terminal.

But I can't do anything for our child. The choice is out of my hands. Come next Tuesday, if nothing improves, the baby will die. And I'm powerless to do anything about it.

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Child tantrum

I've shown how my wife starts fights with me on many, many occasions, and in every instance, she is almost completely wrong in how she acts. These fights generally fall under one of three categories:

- She blows little things out out of proportion, then flips out.
- Her family does something stupid, then she takes it out on me.
- She's just mad for no reason.

On a few rare occasions, she actually has a point, and I'm the one who caused trouble. It never keeps her from pressing her advantage and treating me like garbage, of course (i.e. the fight where my son fell down in my Fights post). But I'm not the one who deserves the bulk of the blame when most of these fights start, because it's my wife who always escalates.

Recently, I've come to understand another of my wife's methods of starting, then winning, fights that shouldn't have even occurred in the first place, much less have her bashing me for inane reasons. These are her basic tactics:

Step 1 - I do something completely innocuous that upsets her.
Step 2 - She goes silent, or explodes.
Step 3 - I ask her what's wrong.
Step 4 - She provides the very barest of explanations.
Step 5 - Using the very little information she's provided me, I rebut what she's said.
Step 6 - She dumps a truckload of unknowable information that she was keeping to herself the entire time, then uses that as a club to berate me for how stubborn, selfish, uncaring and stupid I am.
Step 7 - I apologize, or try to find a compromise.
Step 8 - She goes into martyr mode, and yells at me to do whatever I want.
Step 9 - I insist that I'll do what she wants.
Step 10 - We repeat Steps 8 and 9 until she's had enough.
Step 11 - She goes silent and seethes.
Step 12 - I play with my son, and she takes a nap.

This actually happened a few nights ago, but I didn't mention it because the tiff started and ended in just thirty seconds:

Step 1 - Our son jumped on her in the bedroom, then she stormed out to sit on the chair in the living room and seethe.
Step 2 - She went silent.
Step 3 - I asked her what was wrong.
Step 4 - She told me, "Our son jumped on me."
Step 5 - I said it was ok; he jumps on me all the time.
Step 6 - She got mad, thrust her hand at her belly, and snarled, "HERE!"
Step 7 - I apologized.
We skipped Steps 8 - 10.
Step 11 - She seethed.
Step 12 - I told my son not to do that, then played with him. She went to sleep later.

She usually sleeps on her side, and I assumed she would have added that extra word to be more clear ("Our son jumped on my belly"), but she didn't. She just wanted to start a fight. So that brings us to today.

Step 1 - My wife told me that the doctor couldn't find our baby on the sonogram, even after a month and a half had gone by. She told me that she needed me to sign a piece of paper that said if the doctor couldn't find it this Saturday, that they had to assume it was in the "wrong room," and they had to "take it out." I told her that I didn't want to sign any papers that said our baby would die until we were absolutely sure that there was nothing we could do. I asked her if she could just give the baby another two weeks to show up on the sonogram, and if there was still nothing, I would sign the paper.

Step 2 - She started to get upset, and said that the doctor said that there was a 50% chance that mothers come down with this, and we couldn't do anything about it. I knew that statistic was complete crap; I've never heard of an epidemic so widespread as that among pregnant women.

Her first doctor, when she was pregnant with our son, told her about the same condition. But because I'm smarter than my wife is, I know he was just telling her about a magical problem that could fix her surprise pregnancy through a no-choice abortion, and by the time a few months had gone by and she realized that the baby was truly coming, she would have come to terms with delivering our son. It was just a way of soothing her mind with an outside chance of going back to her old life, until she got used to the idea of being a mother.

Step 3 - I asked her what the condition was.

Step 4 - She looked up the local word on the internet and showed me: ectopic pregnancy, a term I've never even heard of before. Without even looking at the definition, I knew it would be something that affected less than 5% of women worldwide. And when I read it, I saw that it was actually only 1%.

Step 5 - I told her what the site said, that it was very unlikely that this was her case. She said she knew that, than I asked her why she said it was 50%. She tried to dodge the question until I repeated it, then she transparently lied that her English wasn't so good, so she misspoke.

At this point, I only had a few pieces of information to go on:

- Her family may or may not have been pressuring her to have an abortion.
- She talked about abortion just a few nights before, and was evasive when I asked her if she wanted to kill our child.
- She was here, again, talking about abortion because of a problem that affects only 1% of women, one that she claimed she had.

Piecing it all together, I got a pretty crystal clear picture that she had either fallen under her family's influence, or decided herself, to abort the baby. I asked again if we could just wait two weeks to give the baby a chance, and said that that would be the best for it.

She went silent.

I asked again.

She stayed silent.

I had had enough of this stupidity, so I said, "Hello?"

"Yeah, fine, we'll do that," she replied snottily.

I went out to smoke, then came back in to talk with her. She was sitting in the same chair she always sits in when she's mad, reading something. I guess I should start calling it the Angry Chair. I asked her what day of the week she would be ok to check.

Step 6 - She flipped the ever-loving hell out, and started shouting at me.

"You really made me angry!"

"Why are you angry?"

"Don't you know that I could bleed because of this?! If we have to take the baby out at three months, I might get really hurt! I'm retaining water and can hardly breathe now, but you don't care about me at all, do you?!"

I wish I had thought of the following things at the time:

First of all, waiting two weeks would put the date at two months, not three. That's just a lie.

Second, she says I don't care, when I've asked every night that I've known she's pregnant about how "Peanut" and her are doing.

This means one of two things: either she's lying about me not caring for her in an effort to slander me and win a fight, because she knew that I always check up on her... or it confirms suspicions that I've had about her for some time now: namely, she ignores me because I barely register on her radar. I'm nothing more to her than a sack of meat that she feeds once a day, who gives her over $1000 every month, and who cleans up the house while she sits and lies around.

I'm suspecting the latter, because I've had to explain myself to her about many, many things, over and over, just so she could ignore me every time. For example:

- Why I couldn't fix my glasses.
- Why it's ok to take our son out.
- What she should do if she's depressed.
- What she should do about her mother and sister.

And much more.

Third, she's probably having health problems because she's very overweight: pushing 200 pounds. It's just another thing I've shown her how to fix, just to have her ignore me every time.

Back to the fight:

"I had to go to the hospital alone when I was pregnant before!! You weren't even there for me, and I had to learn about all the ways our son could have died, or how I could have died!! You think I want to kill the baby?!"

"..." (Actually, based on the evidence, I did).

"But whatever!! You think you're smarter than the doctor, fine!! We'll do it your way!!"

Step 7 - "Ok, we can go this Saturday. Hopefully, the baby will be ok."

Step 8 - "NO! We'll do it your way! We ALWAYS do it your way!!"

Step 9 -

"Is this Saturday ok? What time is..."
"I don't care, do whatever you want!! I'll do exactly as you ask!!"
"I can cancel my tutor classes that..."
"Whatever! I don't matter to you anyway!! We'll just go in two weeks!!"
"So would you prefer in two weeks, one, or this weekend?"
"It doesn't matter what I think!! It NEVER matters what I think! We'll go in two weeks!!"
"But this weekend would be best for you?"

Step 10 -

"Like the doctor said!! I TOLD you that already!!"
"I didn't know anything about the problem until you told me later."
"You should have known! I had to know it because I delivered our son four years ago!! But maybe you don't know because men don't care about that stuff!!"
"Now I know."

Step 11 and 12 - I don't remember all the other stuff she screamed about. I just sat there next to her until she got up to walk to the couch and take a nap, while I stayed awake and did the things a husband and father does, as I always do.

This is one of the first times in a solid year that I attempted to solidly push back against my wife's drama and demands, because me losing this fight might be signing our child's death warrant. And I think my wife, selfish, domineering, lazy, power-tripping, control freak bully that she often is, was just surprised that I decided to grow a spine and ask her to do something important, like exploring all options before our child is killed.

I can't stop thinking of the ridiculous point she made during the fight: she asked me how I only cared about the baby, and not about her health. I want to know why she doesn't seem concerned at all about our child.

She did offer one final nugget of information, though, while she was trying to convince me about the dangers of having our child: she told me that it's dangerous for a woman over 35 to have a child, and she's almost there. I'll take that as tacit permission to get a vasectomy in the next few months. I'm not even going to tell her. I don't want to have another child with her; I want to spend as little time as possible with this woman. Marriage devoured my girlfriend and vomited up the monster that now lives in my house.

There isn't a single part of me that wants to see this baby die, even if it means getting my life back three or four years sooner. But if we have no choice, then I'm getting snipped. It probably isn't even necessary, because I have no interest whatsoever in sleeping with my wife for the duration of our marriage. I don't find her borderline obese body attractive anymore, and more importantly, I can't count the number of times I've thought her name in my mind and called her "mom."

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Lost times

I went to the train station to pick up my bud, who I haven't seen in several years. We went back to my place and ate pizza and some other stuff my wife got, played with my son a little, remembered fun days from our youth, joked around and talked about recent news for about six hours.

Near the end, he shared some stories of traveling and getting into scrapes abroad. He got detained by the police over a mistake, and was attracting crazy people to him like flies to honey, several of whom were women who wanted to sleep with him. Getting drunk, exploring new countries, talking with new friends, and the excitement of living a bit on the edge, he had quite a few stories to tell, and they all happened in a few isolated months of travel in the last few years.

I didn't feel jealous because I keep those feelings under wraps, and I more importantly respect my bud, but I still felt a clenching in my stomach for the time before I married as he talked, especially since my wife has started several fits of drama recently, and was in a slightly sour mood tonight. It wasn't really the booze, crazy women and scrapes with the law I was interested in re-living, but the newness, the excitement and the unabashed freedom that my bud experienced that I dearly miss in my married life.

Over the course of the night, when my wife was out, I told my bud several times not to get married. He seems to want to, and it seems the only reason he desires it is because he feels without aim or purpose. But I know from personal experience that those things come from acting well, not from dashing all of your potential against the rocks by marrying. I hope he listens.

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Then and Now 41 - My Apartment

Then and Now 41 - My Apartment
Time: Before I got married.

As I mentioned before, my new boss helped me to find my apartment, but it wasn't the only option. She had another place possibly lined up for me, which was a bit cheaper and a bit smaller than the one I eventually got. I had only one real condition regarding where I would live: that it would be possible for me to be a little loud without disturbing the neighbors. I planned to throw a party or two at my new place, and of course, I ended up having two, which I wrote about in Then and Now 4 and 8. I also wanted to rock out a bit with Guitar Hero after work, and I wanted to do so without getting broom handles thumped into ceilings or cops at my place.

My boss talked with the first landlady about my situation, and she said that she would not only be happy to have a foreigner living in her building, but that she had a rooftop where I could play guitar. Taking that as a tacit admission that the only place I could make real noise was not in my apartment, I waited for my boss to research the other choice in town.

The second place was the place I ended up renting, and it was still a steal at $300 a month. It was that low because when I lived there, the city hadn't been fully developed yet. The building was very humble: six floors tall with two apartments on each of the first five floors, and a single one on top, which was the one I rented. The bottom ten apartments were on either side of the central cement stairs that led me to the top, and to my pad.

Outside the building and one door north of the entrance to my apartment building, there was a little local convenience store which sold everything from candy and chips, to gallon-sized water bottles and soda. Farther north were some more apartment buildings, and the road burst out from between them to head into a bustling downtown area with coffee shops, shoe and bedding stores, restaurants and much more. Directly to the south, there was a mechanic's garage that I never really got to know about. Beyond it, the narrow street ran between more apartment buildings, and there was a supermarket located very conveniently just two minutes' walk from the entrance to my new apartment building. Finally, across the street was a little church sandwiched between some more apartment buildings, but I never went in. Nate and Annie's apartment was on the north side of the fifth floor of the building, and I lived on the sixth floor right above them.

I can't describe just how lucky I was that I got the place up there. First, the apartment had just been built a few months before, so it was the only residence on the roof of the building. That meant that not only was I free to be as loud as I wanted when I threw parties or played Guitar Hero, but I also had the entire rooftop to myself. It included a spectacular, miles-wide view of my new city to the east, with hundreds of buildings rising up there. I also had not one, but two gardens. One was outside of my apartment on the roof, and it held on tenaciously without me caring for it because of ample rain and sunshine. The other was on my balcony in the apartment, but every plant I ever put there and watered daily ended up dying.

My front door faced south, outside, towards the hutch that housed the stairs leading down and out of the building, and directly inside my door and apartment was the balcony. Looking into my place from the front door and to my left, my garden was a patch of dirt on a raised rectangle of brick and mortar, and above it were horizontal iron bars that ran along the balcony and kept my place secure. On the right, to the east, were two entrances into my place. The first on the right was the door that led to my bedroom, and the one beyond it (also on the right) was a pair of sliding glass doors that led into the living room. At the far end of the balcony was my washer, which only saw use once a week.

My bedroom was very comfortable. It was about fifteen feet wide and twenty five feet long, and on the northeast side was a door leading to the rest of the apartment. I spent most of my time at my apartment in this little room, despite the apartment being a three bedroom place. I guess I could have moved my stuff into the living room, which was twenty five by twenty five, but I didn't have curtains for the sliding doors or A/C in there. I didn't want people looking into my apartment and seeing me sitting there in my shorts, sweating like a dog while I watched TV or something. So in my bedroom, I placed my bed in the northeast corner right in front of the door that led to the rest of the apartment, and put it atop a giant wooden box that Nate gave me.

On the western wall of my bedroom, next to the door leading out to the balcony, was a rolling TV cabinet with all of my entertainment on it. On the top shelf was a decent TV that Nate got me, under that was my PS2, and my Guitar Hero controllers were on the shelf beneath that. On the bottom was a collection of random gadgets, like a VCR Tim and Jessie gave me, and a Neo-Geo style joystick that my co-worker Natalie bought for my birthday. Whenever I had a party going on at my apartment, it was a very simple matter to just roll that thing into the living room to get a game or movie set up for everyone.

Behind me in the southeast corner of the room was my mini-fridge. I honestly hardly used it and left it unplugged most of the time. I was on a constant diet, and the best way to fail at a diet is to have food around the house, so I usually kept it empty. Besides, there were at least two stores in walking distance, so I was free to get dinner at any time. I sometimes kept some shredded cheese in there to make burritos, though.

Going through the door at the end of my room on the northeast wall, there was a small hallway that led into three different rooms:

To the west/northwest of the hallway, and north of my bedroom, was the living room, which I never really used. Aside from the two parties I threw, I just placed all the furniture Nate gave me there: a sofa, some cushions and a few footstools. They served as seats for the parties, but later, they never did anything more than hold my wet laundry to dry as the sun blasted through the sliding glass doors.

To the northeast of my bedroom, and east of the living room, was the guest bedroom, which was on a raised wooden floor. In the back were several cabinets with sliding doors, where I stored all of the assorted trinkets, souvenirs, gifts and stuff that I acquired while I was abroad. I also stored my video game folder, a box full of old birthday cards and letters from friends, and my laptop in its case when I wasn't using or reading any of them.

Finally, opposite the guest bedroom and east of my bedroom, was the bathroom. Not much to say about it: it was small, clean, and had a single barred window on the wall to allow another great look at the city. A toilet, a sink, your typical bathroom.

I lived here, alone, for one year, only four months of which had no baby coming. But I wasn't lonely, of course not. I worked a lot at my job with lots of people, and any time I wanted to be with people outside of work, I either went downstairs to hang with Nate, or out to the city to be with my friends. It was a spartan place to be sure, but to have a place so free of needless distractions is a blessing that I can't recommend enough for others to try.

It was a dream to live there. And it wasn't because it was a great price, relatively spacious, free from noise or anything like that, no. It was a dream place because nobody ever stepped foot in that place without me wanting them to be there. In fact, I can give you a list of every person who ever came into my house before I got married:

- My girlfriend (wife)
- Ken
- Vicki
- Nell
- Sammi
- Natalie
- Jenny
- Nate
- Annie
- Leena and two of her friends from her church
- My boss and her sister
- One of my friends from America and his girlfriend

All of them were welcomed and entertained, and not one of them caused me any trouble. When I needed to be alone and wanted to waste hours sitting around and relaxing, I did it. When I wanted friends over, I called them. I never, not ever, not once, came home to that apartment to see messes I didn't make, to hear nagging to do something, or to be greeted with someone's folded arms, scowling face or furious eyes.

In fact, there was a point in time where someone asked to room with me: it was one of my co-workers at a different school branch of my company which asked me to sub for a while. I sized him up really quickly the first time we met: foreigner, very short fauxhawk, popped collar, constantly talking about the girls he dated and broke up with and the clubs he went to, I knew he would be bad news. He had to commute from the main city to our city every day to go to work, but I had no intention whatsoever of letting him into my apartment:

My first roommate in college was a pig who never cleaned up after himself, who argued with his girlfriend from 1:00 to 3:00 every morning on the phone, and who once locked me out of the room for an entire weekend when she came over to visit. I came back in to find used condoms on the floor.

My second roommate was a social butterfly who came home at 3:00 in the morning every Saturday or Sunday night to do his homework on a very loud keyboard, often practiced playing guitar with his amp turned all the way up and pointing at me, and who also locked me out of the room at least once to mess around with his girlfriend.

My third roommate took an oath of silence while pledging for a frat, and ignored every attempt I made to talk with him, even to explain what he was doing.

My fourth roommate was a really good guy, but was also incredibly messy, and piled up dirty clothes and junk knee-high in the entire room.

So when this playboy asked me to let him room with me, I could only think, Yeah, I come home after ten hours of work to catch you in bed with your girl of the week (when you let me in my own house at all), have things stolen out of my room, have you "forget" to pay your share of the rent, have you throw parties or get stinking drunk at all hours of the night... and you want me to go open the door for you? I ended up lying and saying that my "roommate" wouldn't approve, and I never had to deal with that guy living with me at all.

I loved that apartment. A quiet part of a rather big town, within an hour's subway ride to the main city, surrounded by good people, clean and free of drama, and always waiting to welcome me back after a hard day of work, or a long day of travel, with a hot shower and relaxing entertainment. And I can tell you everything that I had in that apartment, from top to bottom: just everything I mentioned, plus the towel, disposable razors, soap, hair gel and shaving cream in the bathroom. Everything I needed was there.

Today, I pay for almost everything this apartment has and needs, but I don't call the shots about most anything. I never know if I'm going to come home to fights and chores, or just chores. The apartment is roughly the same size as my old one, maybe a little smaller, but it's cluttered to all hell with my wife's stuff all over the apartment. To get some idea of how much stuff is in here (and how much of my money was spent getting these things), I went ahead and counted up all my wife's bottles, boxes and tubes of soaps, lotions, potions, powders, creams, medications and other assorted beauty and health nonsense in this apartment:


And that was just a surface look, without digging around or including things in the kitchen. And this also doesn't include the stacks upon stacks of clothes, papers, books and other stuff that isn't mine here.

My wife's behavior as a girlfriend in my apartment was also markedly different to how she acts today. Back then, I once washed my bedsheets for the week before my wife came over, and they didn't quite dry by the time she arrived to see me. I put them on the bed anyway, slightly moist, and after I let her into my room, I motioned for her to join me on the bed.

"Come here!" I said.
"...Huh? They're wet!"
"Sorry, they didn't dry in time. But don't worry, just snuggle up with me and they'll be dry in no time."
"Ok! ...Brrr, it's cold!" she laughed, then held me tight.

My Fights post featured a piece of drama that started in this exact same way, but ended up someplace different:


My wife woke up and was in a bad mood. She asked why I washed my big blanket in our little washing machine, then let it hang up all night with a fan on it to dry it off. I told her it was because she said it was ok (and besides, I did the same at my apartment for a year, and it was fine there).

Eyes wide and head shaking violently, she snapped, "No, no, no! I said you could wash the outside sheet, not the comforter inside!!"

I stared at her, expressionless and uncaring.

"Mommy, where are you going?" my son cried from the bedroom.

"I'm going to the bathroom!!" she shouted. "Can I go to the bathroom?!"

She stormed inside, and I watched the closed door for a few seconds. Then, I just popped my earbud headphone back in, and played some more computer.


What I wouldn't give to go back to my single life, when going home meant healing, relaxation, parties and fun, not chores, fights, routine and tunnel vision.

Sunday, July 1, 2012

Second child

My wife's pregnant again. The night she got pregnant (it's not hard to figure out the date because of how little we have sex), the last thing she did when we were done was push me and say, "Could you get off me?"

At the same time, in the past six months, I was considering getting a secret vasectomy between droughts of sex, because I knew she wouldn't notice. Now it's too late, and I'm going to be a glorified slave for the next 19 years. After my wife told her mother and sister, they got immediately angry. My sister-in-law said that she was quitting her job soon, and had to move back in with her mother, and my mother-in-law got mad because she was expecting more money because of it. It's not like I can't afford everything; they're just worried about losing their free money.

Now this is entirely conjecture, but on the same day that my wife told her family the news, she alluded to having an abortion while we were in bed that night, like her family either inferred or outright asked her to do it. I asked very clearly, "You want to kill our child?" She got silent, waited a few seconds, then changed the subject. I didn't let that go, though, and eventually got a "No" out of her.

So basically, it seems that her family would choose having new clothes, restaurant trips, and the ability to not work for years or decades on end (my wife's sister and mother, respectively), over the life of my child. I swear on all that's holy, that if my wife does indeed get an abortion for this, I will divorce her the next day. I can't trust her if she murders our child, whether or not our son is still with us. Maybe it's just me rationalizing, but I think he'll be ok if his mother and I divorce. I didn't have any support growing up, emotional, financial or otherwise, but he will.

For right now, I'm still in this marriage for the long haul, just because the chance my son will succeed as a child of married parents is higher than if my wife and I split up, simply for the stability he gets now. But an abortion will change everything. I don't have the ability to force my wife not to do it, but I can control what happens afterwards.

I started thinking about how a discussion about this would go, and took stock over who really has the power in this relationship. Right now, my wife runs everything, because she steams or gets silent if I disobey any of her commands, but really, it's me who has all the leverage:

- I work 7 days a week from four to fourteen hours a day.
- I give all but fifty dollars of my monthly salary to my wife, our son, her mother, and sometimes her sister.
- My wife uses this money to buy herself purses, shoes, clothes, massages and other luxuries (just a few times a month, but still), while I still haven't bought anything for myself in three and a half years.
- I do all the chores every Monday to Friday night while she's working.
- I do all the chores every Saturday and Sunday night while she sits in front of the computer or TV, and she doesn't lift a finger to help me, even if I just worked for twelve straight hours or thirty straight days.
- She starts the majority of drama between us.
- She lets her mother run wild in our lives, despite me having asked her to do something about it dozens of times.
- I spend vastly more time with our son than she does.
- She hardly lets me go anywhere or do anything with him because of the weather, time, her feelings, or what have you.
- She talks to me and orders me around like a dog.
- She spends 90% of her free time, every day without fail, either on her butt in front of the computer or TV, or on her back while she's napping or sleeping; I can't count the number of times I've come home from work to see my son playing cars by himself while she was sitting on the computer.
- She uses the computer every day for hours while my son and I are awake, the same thing she called me out for a year and a half ago.
- She's gained about seventy pounds in the last four years and kept it all, while I've lost over twenty of the fourty I gained.
- I give her perfect advice on how to fix her problems almost every month, and she ignores me every time.
- I do all this without complaint.

She, on the other hand, cooks lunch for me, and dribbles sex my way once or twice a month. For the former, I can go to the convenience store; wouldn't bother me. For the latter, her slothful lifestyle has ballooned her weight from 115 when we were dating, to almost about 180 now. I just don't find her attractive anymore, so the lack of sex is bothering me less and less.

She has absolutely no power over me anymore, except for when she flips out over something minor and puts our son in the middle of it. Hopefully I can use this leverage to keep her from considering killing our second child, but even more, I hope she was just speaking from fear at being pregnant again.

When she first broke the news, I wondered how this pregnancy would change my life, and almost immediately knew that it wouldn't do much. Other than having another good kid to raise, everything else remains the same. I'm still going to do all the chores in the house. There's not much more I can give than the 98% of my money that everyone takes from me. I still won't travel or have many, if any, friends, and my sex life will still be in the gutter.

The first time she told me she was pregnant, I watched the entire world turn grey when I realized how I had just ruined my life. This time, I was so underwhelmed by the potential change to my life, that all I can remember was using Gangas to beat up Reni in Dragon Force 2 while my wife told me the news.

At least I know for sure when my married life will be done, but honestly, almost 7000 days of this is difficult to wrap my mind around. How many more bouts of drama, sexless months because I lack a good and willing partner, hours of chores, and seven day work weeks are in my future?