One of the responses I frequently get to my story is, “What an idiot for getting caught.” He wasn’t an idiot, but he certainly underestimated me.
In my former life, I had a tendency to want to turn away from anything scary or ugly. My ex obviously knew this, and he exploited it towards the end of the marriage. I believe that he thought I would be so shocked and devastated by the “good-bye” text, that I would be paralyzed with fear. He thought wrong. Instead of hiding, instead of turning away, I was driven to find out what happened.
First, let me clarify. The text was abrupt. Sudden. The marriage that I knew, that he led me to see, was good. He refused to respond to any calls or texts after he left. He took all but one of the computers (mine), all of the financial documents, and strange things (like the discs that held the papers I wrote for grad school). The passwords on all of the accounts had been changed. It made no sense.
So, I immediately went into detective mode. By getting into the financial accounts, I learned of an affair and financial deceptions going back years. I also learned where he currently was staying (a few states over). It gave some answers. The emails gave the rest. Because of the way our accounts were linked, I was able to see the messages sent to his junk folder, which included those that were carbon copied.
It only took a few days for the first interesting email to come through. This one indicated plans for a visa for an upcoming trip to Uganda with the mistress. Interesting. Seemed like he was running.
The big shocker came three days after that. A message I had to read several times to grasp the meaning of. It initiated from a band in the town where he was staying. It seems they were looking for payment for a wedding they had recently performed at. His wedding.
That started the chain that led to his arrest and bigamy charge.
Lesson 1: Don’t underestimate yourself; you are capable of more than you ever know.
Lesson 2: Don’t run away from your fears; they grow more powerful when ignored.
Lesson 3: If you’re going to get married illegally, be sure to pay the band.