The marriage was painful enough and every time I read an email from you, it only hurts all over again. It was painful to try to fit in with his family when they really didn't approve of me from the beginning. Knowing that I was unable to make him happy for all of those years was heart wrenching.
And to you Mark, I have this to say;
I wanted to make you happy Mark. You must know that. You saw how hard I tried.
We weren't right for each other. I see it so clearly now.
You wanted your family's approval and you would never be able to get that with me around. And I was the only person that had ever come into your life that loved you, appreciated you, valued you and wanted you, so giving me up was impossible. You found yourself caught in between what you always needed and almost had. But my love and approval wasn't enough and it left you always wanting, always aching, resenting me for not being quite enough. I could never be nearly enough, because I couldn't be them.
I promised you I would never cheat on you and the truth is, I never did. I left you before I started my new relationship. I did the right thing, because I honored my commitment to you. To this day I still care about you. Turning away from my feelings doesn't make me a superior nor stronger human being. I am not weak because I feel something. But I know you would never say the same.
"She means nothing to me now. She's dead to me."
How many times did you say that about your first wife? How many times have you said that about me?
Don't you see? Shutting yourself off from those emotions is what kept you from ever really having a relationship with me. All of those years I tried to reach out to you, but remaining isolated was your choice. Perhaps that made you feel safe, but it also made you feel alone. Sadly, you weren't alone, except by your own choice.
I made so many mistakes, but the worst was trying to fit in with your family. Trying to be someone you wanted me to be, trying to hide away all of the undesirable parts of who I am and be this ideal you had created, it was all doomed, and a horrible mistake. I lied to myself about who I was and what I could be to please you. I wanted acceptance as much as you did. Perhaps in many ways I still do. But what I learned about acceptance in our marriage was a pivotal, life-changing lesson.
I will never conform to please another to my own detriment again.
And while it means no more to you now than it ever did, I wish you well.