I first started to listen to WAPL (the Apple in Appleton), Lazer 103 and 93Q and their mixes of classic and new rock because I thought it was Phil’s kind of music, and I kind of liked it. (93Q was the best mix, playing songs the others didn’t.)
Now that I was all into that stuff, Phil said, “The only reason I can handle your music is because of a certain friend I have who’s into that stuff.” And he said that otherwise, he might have broken up with me because of it!!!!
Breaking up because of music, when you are with the person you’re meant to be with???? It made me feel bad to think that he would’ve broken up with me if it weren’t for that one friend.
The Whiteheart concert was on March 4. Phil agreed to drive us. He was not a good driver; for example, once Mike, Pearl and/or others told him to turn at a certain spot. They told him as we neared it, and again as we got to it, but he kept on going. Then they got annoyed, and said he was supposed to turn back there!
I believe that nearly all my InterVarsity friends were in the minivan with us, and at some point they began singing various hymns, some old and some new. (I didn’t join in because I didn’t like singing.)
Phil recognized none of the hymns, and tried to start a song he knew from his church. Nobody knew it, so nobody sung along.
He took this personally, even though it had nothing to do with how they felt about him: They just didn’t know the songs. Protestants and Catholics sing different hymns.
We stayed in the room of one or two of Pearl’s friends, in a Whitewater dorm. We were amazed and impressed by the numerical keypads on the locks. Instead of always having to remember your key, you just memorized your number and punched it in to unlock the door. No more worry about locking yourself out of your room or dorm! No more lost key cards!
We slept on the floor, Phil and I next to each other. We were happy in love and a cute couple, probably gag-cute to our friends.
We got to the concert. Shawn was there with another group, probably his youth group. Pearl had not been able to get Phil and me tickets for seats with the rest of our group (though now I wonder if she did this on purpose because people in the group didn’t like Phil).
Soon after we found our seats, Shawn found us. He talked with me for a few minutes, and I introduced him to Phil. He shook Phil’s hand. He laughed and smiled, but I wasn’t sure how much he wanted to talk to me. Then Shawn said he wanted to go find Pearl, and left.
I had told Phil about Shawn. I had felt that when I got engaged, I should tell my future husband about Shawn.
You see, in the Christian Evangelical/Fundamentalist world, we are taught as teenagers that our bodies belong to our future spouses, not to ourselves. Even if we have not met them yet, if we allow ourselves to be touched sexually before marriage, we are betraying our future spouse.
For us, it is irrelevant that we had not even met yet if we were sexually active with someone else beforehand: It is still a betrayal that we must repent of, the same as if we were married at the time.
So even though we’re the ones currently dating our girlfriend/boyfriend, if we touch them sexually, we are, as Christian pop singer Eric Champion put it in the song “Don’t Touch That Temple,” touching the temple of the Lord. As the song goes, when you’re with your date, “What would you do if you knew that somebody had their hands on the temple God made for you?”
So when an Evangelical feels guilt when confessing his sexual history to his fiancée, this is why. And when a friend advises the fiancée, who is now upset that they won’t be giving their purity to each other on their wedding night as she has dreamed of since childhood, “But he slept with those girls before he even met you,” the friend’s words have no meaning or consolation to her.
Of course, as it turned out, Phil had had oral sex with his exes, so he’d gone farther than I did. But in any case, he was disgusted because Shawn would touch me but then say he didn’t want me.
So now, after Shawn shook his hand and left, Phil turned to me and made sure I saw him wipe his hand on his pants, like he’d touched something gross and wanted to wipe it off.
He later asked if I’d known Shawn would be there, and why didn’t I tell him? (Pearl had told me, but I didn’t think it was important enough to mention. Shawn was going to be with another group, after all, not ours.) Did I not tell him because I was afraid he wouldn’t drive us to the concert? He said if he had known, he might not have gone to the concert.
WHAT? Would he have really left us all without a ride just because of one person he might see but who wasn’t even near us during the whole concert? (I believe Shawn was somewhere way in the back, while Phil and I were near the middle, in the same row as my friends.)
Would he really have disregarded my longtime desire to see a Whiteheart concert? I’d been a big fan since 1986, but had never been able to go to one of their concerts before!
I’ve been at the same SCA event as a woman who I knew had once slept with Cugan. I also knew that she had been like Shawn, playing with Cugan’s mind and doing all these things with him, but it was all fun and games for her, no love, no desire for a relationship. I even danced along with her, taking her hand during the jigs and reels. It was rough, and jealousy did flare up.
But I still went to these events, knowing she would be there. It was comforting and validating that Phil found Shawn’s actions disgusting. But for Phil to behave in such a fashion, to not even want to go if he knew Shawn was there, to even refuse to drive us all there if he had known–What does that say about him? I think it’s more evidence of a desire for control.
During the concert, I didn’t clap during the whole thing like other people did and like I used to do as a teenager at Christian rock concerts. But then, I was getting older and not as into clapping anymore. Phil thought I wasn’t that into the concert, but I loved it. It was heaven.
I loved the setup on stage (a Scottish castle); to begin, a guy (dressed as on the album cover) came out and played the bagpipes. I wasn’t expecting him, and then all of a sudden, he was there with the spotlight on him.
The tour was for the Highlander album, and this Scottish theme made me, the descendant of Scots, even happier than I was already.
I hadn’t had enough time to get emotionally attached to the songs on the new album, as I told Phil, but they did play a few older songs. One was “Fly Eagle Fly,” which Rick Florian barely even remembered. It was the first Whiteheart song I ever heard, back in 1986, a gorgeous, ethereal ballad.
I whispered to Phil that I loved that song, so he paid close attention to it. I wasn’t sure if he was impressed with Whiteheart or not, but at least he wanted to know what was important to me.
Florian also told something I didn’t know, that there were albums before Don’t Wait for the Movie, and that there was another lead singer then, a guy who left because of a scandal involving him and two underage girls. This was a shock. I didn’t want to hear the pre-Florian songs after that.
After the show, I got myself a concert T-shirt with the album cover on it. This T-shirt became one of my favorites, a reminder of the wonderful time when I finally got to see Whiteheart in concert. Yet because of one person, Phil would not have taken me there.
I tried to tell Phil about the time I went to Mammoth Cave, and even offered to show him the copy of the letter I wrote about it to my Luxemburg pen pal, but he refused to see it.
He didn’t like hearing about people’s lives that were more interesting than his, since, as he said, his was just sad and nothing ever happened to him.
I wanted the man I was to marry to know about my experiences, the weird and unusual as well as the merely mundane. They were a part of me, and knowing me fully meant knowing about my experiences. I couldn’t see how a person could love someone and not want to know everything about her.
Phil told me he wanted to read my diaries, and everything I’d ever written. So I pulled out my first diary (started at age 9) and let him read it. However, he soon complained, saying he didn’t want to read things like “A spider crawled across the ground,” but more important things.
This hurt me, because I wrote those things when I was a child, and they were important to me then. I thought my first diary was cute and interesting, but he thought it was boring. He said he wanted to read everything I’d written, but when I showed it to him, he didn’t want to read it.
Table of Contents
- Meet the Suite
- Meeting Shawn–and a Ninja
- Campus Stories, Wisconsin, Campus Radio Station
- Campus, People, First College Boyfriend
- Dating a Ninja
March 1992: Shawn: Just Friends or Dating?
April 1992: Pledging, Prayer Group–and Peter’s Smear Campaign
October 1992–Shawn’s Exasperating Ambivalence:
Summer 1993: Music, Storm and Prophetic Dreams
- Classmate a stand-in for “Rudy”; Jigging at College Dance
- Library Tales
- Happiness Returns
- Living with Friends in Krueger
- Funny Library Stories
- Shawn Calls
- Psycho Roommates and Bug Wars
- Return of Rick
- Adjusting to New Dorm
- Spitball-Throwing Teacher
- Rat-Obsessed Teacher and Doctor Zhivago
- A Teacher Dated a Student; InterVarsity Fun
- Charlie Peacock Concert
- Random Stories
- Letter to Shawn
- Erotic Vampire Dream (Inspiration for Alexander Boa)
- I Ask Out James
- Peter Calls!
- The Fateful First Meeting of Phil
- The Birth of Dolphin Philosophy
- Our Group of Friends Splits Apart
- Spring Classes
- Big Red Flag: Phil’s Dysfunctional Family Life
- The Drunken Stork (Phil’s Controlling Nature Manifests)
- Idealizing Phase and Early Sign of Control
- Phil Tries to Control my Friendships, Unfair Accusations from his Dad and Brother
- Phil Gaslights Me with Fake Dreams, Ridicule and Psychological Abuse
- Another Pre-Engagement
June 1994–Bits of Abuse Here and There:
- The Abuse Worsens in the Summer of Hell
- Phil rapes me anally
- Phil tries to control me through refusing everything I want–even proper hygiene
- Phil’s cruel hoax on me: his “subconscious” coming out to be with me
- Phil’s “subconscious” explains why he’s coming out to talk to me
- The lies unravel as Phil admits to conning me; also, fright as my periods turn wacky
- How Phil’s behavior fit the signs of abuse
- Phil Mindscrews Me: changes history, blames me for things that were not my fault, treats me like an idiot during games
- Phil says if he abuses me, it takes two people to sign the divorce papers
- Pearl reveals that Phil is costing me social invitations
- Hints that Phil is checking out of the marriage
September 1994–Divorce: The Long, Dark, Painful Tunnel:
- Phil picks fights and avoids responsibilities to make me feel like a shrew
- My husband Phil, Dave and Pearl call me a party pooper for getting a Grade II concussion
- I’m ecstatic to be back with my friends (the ones Phil hates); I meet Charles
- Phil vanishes without a word of why
- Phil wants a divorce
- My friends tells me that Phil is controlling and possessive
- My first Pentecostal church service: They speak in tongues
- Phil refuses to accept responsibility for the divorce
- Phil cuts off contact
- Attack of Phil’s Flying Monkey and Sycophant: Dirk
- Phil the narcissist admits to manipulating people and using them as pawns in his game with me
- Phil comes crawling back to me–and we put our marriage on paper
- Phil demands my complete submission and forces me into oral sex–and my will is broken, for fear he’ll divorce me again
- Phil walks away from me again–because I dare to have my own mind, opinions and needs–and because he’s a sociopath
- Fierce anger against Phil and PTSD from the abuse
- My friends tell me Phil is psychotic
- “Soul Ties”
- I return Phil’s things and he skewers me; consolation from friends
- My letter to Phil
- Phil shows my letter to his friends; I’m triggered by reminder of forced oral sex
- I start dating Charles
- Friends tell me Phil is controlling
- I feel stalked by Phil
- Poem about being stalked by Phil
- Fury at Phil stalking me and rubbing my face in his new relationship
- A Date with the Vampire
- Celtic Class: Knotwork, Tin Whistles, SCA–and Drinking from a Skull
- The Teddy-O Incident; Birth of These Memoirs
- We Hook Up to the Internet–and Shawn Fixates on My Sex Life
- New Guy Begging at My Feet
- Life on TCB
- Meeting Cugan (Hubby)
- Learning my ex Peter was a love-fraud; New Men
- Before Tracy, There Was the Avenger (Sociopathic Female Bullies Pt 1)
- Torn between three men as Catherine pushes me toward Cugan
- The Love Rectangle
- Torn between FIVE men! Me?
- Persephone’s Own Outrageous Stories of Phil’s Abuse
- College-style living
- Online Shenanigans
- Phil Finds TCB; Meeting a Hit Man
- Gypsy’s Party: Healed friendship with Peter
- The Avenger Starts a Flame War (Sociopathic Female Bullies Pt 2)
- Meeting the elusive Speaker
- First Date with Future Hubby Cugan
- On Breaking Up with Kindness
- Loony Roommies and Flying Gargoyles
- The Goddess of Pleasure and Salt
- A Conversation with Oscar Wilde
- My First SCA Event
- Cugan: a vast improvement over Phil
- Easter with Cugan’s family and SCA
- Cugan breaks up with me
- After breakup: Phil’s return and trolls
- Cugan comes back
- SCA hippies; college senioritis: anxiety!
- Or should I move back in with my parents?
- Peace with Phil
- Defending my Thesis; Graduating with Honors
- Graduation: Trapped at school
- Epilogue and Apology from Phil