So, last I left you with a vision on the home life of The Player. Like I said, the parents took very good care of The Player. They provided nicely and weren’t abusive by today’s standards. People would even say he was raised well.
There was, I believe, resentment against him by his father probably for the love and attention his mother bestowed on him. It’s one of the reasons he wasn’t called by his family name but by a name that was his father’s favorite hunting dog. Never the mind that the dog happened to also be a gift given by the father’s last girlfriend before he married The Player’s mother.
I bet you’re thinking, “Hey Played, WHAT THE FUCK DID YOU JUST SAY? Did you say The Player was named after his father’s favorite hunting dog given to him by his last girlfriend before marriage?” I would say yes, yes he was. So as The Player has relayed this story over the years, it’s been with laughs much to my horrified looks.
So, let’s recap. The Player was the last surprise child born to an older couple and youngest of an all sister family. Dotted on by his mother, treated a little more than a field hand by his father, not given a bedroom growing up in a large house with enough space for a bedroom for their only son. When given private space at probably age 14 it was like a prison cell. Named after his father’s favorite hunting dog, he grew up equating Providing with Love.
There are a few key phrases his parents said that The Player has repeated all these years and one is “If you don’t do ______, you’ll grow up to pump gas at a gas station.” His parents also never supported any sporting endeavors. If The Player could figure out how to go to and from practice several miles away, then he could play whatever sport he wanted. When he did, they didn’t come to any games. None. Nada.
I would talk about these things, the dog naming, the lack of support for activities, and no bedroom as a child when there was plenty of room and he would say, “I knew they loved me, that’s all that matters.” He was so closed off to the possibility of these things impacting him negatively he never connected his lack of confidence (that he tried to never show or even feel) to how he was raised.
When he was through college that they paid for in full – remember, Provider = Love, he moved to the city nearby to begin a career. Over the 10 or so years he lived in the city his parents didn’t visit him once. Not once. They visited his sister who lived in the same city, less than 10 miles from The Player, but not him. He would tell you they were a close family back then, celebrating all of the holidays together and birthdays. He’d always travel home instead of the other way around. Imagine The Players surprise (and hurt) when we ran into his parents at a local mall with his sister during the holidays.
So, you can see the resentment building.
When The Player made investments they would often tell him it was wrong. They wanted him to invest in the security of a bank, just like his father. They wanted him to tuck away his money for safety instead of look at aggressive investments or property. Luckily he didn’t follow their “advice” because he has been successful in those endeavors. As an example, he and his sisters ended up with an inheritance of about $100,000 each in shares of a bank and he immediately transferred the money to a trading account with our financial planner. He was ridiculed for making that choice. Much to our satisfaction (and we felt bad too), the bank stock went down and the stock was worthless three months later. Validation.
There’s more in there, like the time his teacher in 8 or 9th grade, in front of everyone in class, said he needed to learn how to read, that he was horrible at it. When he was a teenager, crushing on a girl, she knew it and told him he should try to ask So and So out because they might go out with him, that he could get that girl and not her. When he was in college he was a bit of a player and it’s when he had his first success with attracting women and having them pine after him. He especially loved it when there were other men involved with the women that he would “win” over. By then the fun was over and he’d move on to the next woman. This cycle of fun (and making him feel confident) in getting the woman and having her dangle there for him in the future began in college. It continued through our marriage, obviously. It was covered in a cloak of “friends” just like during our marriage. He just left out – or maybe didn’t even realize it – that he was getting fed by these women with attention.
The sex he had with them was just a by product to get and keep the attention from them. Sometimes it was to keep them interested, sometimes because he felt he couldn’t back out after they got to a certain point towards sex for fear of what they would think of him and most importantly, for fear they would lose interest in him, he kept doing it. There are also those times he couldn’t perform, so he felt he had to have sex with them to show them he could. I know this because he didn’t have sex each time they could have because just seeing them and having their attention and focus was enough. In fact, most of the sex with these women happened in the last 7 years before dday and the sex relationships had started to overlap. In a few cases the sex fizzled out but he remained friends with them with the same flirting intensity because for him the attention was the drug. Hence the reason Sex and Love Addict Anonymous speaks to him for his journey.
It’s also why I had heard of and met many of these women, because they were “friends.” I’ve met several of them, the ones he fucked and the ones that were in the queue to maybe, hopefully be fucked, or at least to feed the attention he “needed.” It’s why he’s ended a few “friendships” he originally said were not a risk to him and his sexual sobriety.
He had some fucking brokenness during this time and now as he analyzes his life and his choices. When I think of how he became like his is, I have compassion, like I would for any human because shit, that a lot of what happened to him is really sad. Then I think, what an asshole who was also bold as fuck mutherfucker.