So, I've been sitting on this for a while, because it truly angers me, and I'm not sure exactly the best way to express that exactly WHY. Beyond rage gifs. Please feel free to post those here.

When I told Wedded Asshole that the Nanobots and I were moving out as soon as we got back from vacation, he was, well, nasty. And manipulative. And all kinds of other things that I expected. And then he tried to come back and be all sweet and understanding and it was all just more manipulation, I know, which made it all the more rage-inducing. And then he says, "If you want, I'll even put this in the separation agreement, but, well, you're allowed to date if you want to."

OK. Let's break down all the things that are wrong wrong wrong with that statement, shall we?

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1) I am ALLOWED? No. You have no further say in anything I do. You don't get to ALLOW me to date, any more than you get to ALLOW me to eat frozen yogurt for dinner. MY FUCKING DECISION, ASSHAT. And let's be clear, here. The fact that you think you can ALLOW me to do anything, that you could EVER allow me to do anything, is a huge part of what is wrong with this relationship. I AM MY OWN PERSON AND I CALL MY OWN SHOTS.

Sadly, this is just proof that all of your ranting about women's rights is bullshit. The fact that you think you can tell another grown adult human that she is ALLOWED to do ANYTHING shows that you look at me as less than you. As someone to take care of because she can't be trusted to take care of herself.

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And if that is the way you view me, view women, how can I or any woman expect to have a true partnership with you? One does not ALLOW a partner to do something. One may support a partner or not in a decision, but ALLOWing doesn't enter into it.

2) Um, no thanks. Really. I'm good.

As much as I may fantasize about a certain piano playing sweetie, I'm perfectly aware that I'm not ready for any kind of relationship yet. Let's be honest: I WOULD SERIOUSLY FUCK SOMEONE ELSE UP RIGHT NOW. I would take my sweet, funny, steady Schroeder and hurt him so badly he would never be able to talk to any woman ever again in a romantic way (and since clearly he has already been beyond hurt by his ex-wife, I'm not keen on adding to that, thanks). And why would I hurt this hypothetical person? Because I need to work through all the lovely issues I've been left with by Wedded Asshole. I have no idea how to be in a healthy relationship right now, and I'm not about to try until I think I've figured it out, or at least until I am emotionally capable.

Now, that doesn't mean I wouldn't be open to a little high-school type dating. Ie, dinner and a movie, drinks, a few laughs, blow off some steam, a hug at the door. But I'm pretty sure I'm not anywhere close to emotionally ready to take a roll in the hay, not even for pure funsies. I've never worked that way before, and now isn't really the time to start. See above, re: ISSUES. That fact that I realize all of this is probably a good indication that I'm working through said issues, growing up, healing, blah blah blah, whatever, man.

So, the bottom line is that, someday, yes, I will be all kinds of excited to embark upon the great and wonderful world known as dating, but at the moment that someday looks as far away from me as the center of the galaxy. So bringing it up, right now, as some kind of appeasement for all the shit he has put me through, is a major dick move.

3) WHO FUCKING SAYS THAT?

Seriously. What kind of shit-wad, toad-licking, dick SAYS that? Why is that even in his head? Why is that even a possibility of something that he should be thinking about?

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I'll tell you why. Because HE wants to date. He already has someone lined up and wants to feel less guilty about going for it, assuming that he hasn't gone for it already.

And yet, all of this is MY fault. And he's being oh so magnanimous by saying that I'm allowed to date because it shows how he has forgiven me for all of the horrible things I have done to him, like calling him out on stealing my identity, and refusing to let him have unlimited access to my paychecks so he can buy drugs, and being upset that my children missed 15 days of school last year simply because he couldn't be bothered to get out of bed and take them. Man, I'm a bitch. How did he put up with me for so long?

ETA: I'm really very proud of myself. All that, and not one pity-party moment declaring that it's a moot point anyway because no other adult human will ever find me attractive in a non-platonic way. Y'all. I must be making progress. Or becoming delusional. I've heard it both ways.