Eye-Opening Moments are real-life stories of adversity, encounters, and perspectives intertwined. In this episode you will hear about The Ugly Truth About Two Nice Guys and Beds I've Slept On..
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Hello and welcome to episode #61 of Eye-Opening Moments where you’ll hear real-life stories of adversity, encounters, and perspectives intertwined. They are moments that can lift your spirits, give you some food for thought, or move you. For the introspective mind that likes to reflect, discover, and find solutions or meaning in a complex life, this is for you. I’m your host Emily Kay Tan. In this episode, you will hear about The Ugly Truth about Two Nice Guys and Beds I’ve Slept On.
The Ugly Truth About Two Nice Guys
If you didn't live with Anson, you'd say he was a nice guy. I met him on a blind date set up by a good friend who had every good intention. Anson came to pick me up and opened the passenger door of his car like a gentleman. Before we met, we had spoken on the phone, discussing what we would do. He wanted to do something I liked. He was most agreeable to anything I suggested.
I told Anson I liked bike riding, but I didn't ride much since I didn't have a bike. He decided to take me to a bike shop. I chose the one I liked, and he bought it. I couldn't believe it. We had only known each other for a month, and he bought me an expensive bike. And we went on bike rides together and with his social club.
Anson took me to fancy and expensive restaurants. One restaurant had beautiful tablecloths, chandeliers, and polished wooden tables. The steaks were over a hundred dollars for one large slice. I didn't know how one steak could cost so much. Anyway, it was juicy and delicious. It was so filling I couldn't even finish it in one sitting.
Anson and I planned our weekends together. We did almost everything I wanted, and he had a social club of friends to do many activities, too. He lavished me with gifts and trips. We had fun together.
He seemed too good to be true because he was agreeable, generous, gentlemanly, humorous, and friendly to others. He treated me like a princess and told me I was special. In six months, we were engaged, and in a year, we were married.
After we were married, Anson was instantly no longer Mr. Nice Guy. He was no longer agreeable with anything. Before marriage, Anson said it was okay with him for me to keep my surname and keep my own bank account. After marriage, he totally changed his mind. Before marriage, we took short and long trips as I liked to travel. After marriage, he didn't want to go anywhere and said it was a waste of money. Of course, before marriage, I could do whatever I wanted. Still, I didn't know that after marriage, he wanted me to ask permission when I invited friends to our house and when I wanted to buy something even though I was earning money and could buy things myself.
What I didn't see before marriage was his explosive temper. He would get upset at the slightest thing and scream about it for two hours. And there was no stopping him when he was on his rampage. Mr. Nice Guy turned into a monster I didn't know. He never behaved that way before we got married. Also, after marriage, I found him nit-picking, anal, controlling, and most self-righteous. Only he had the correct opinion about things, the whole world was in the wrong, and he wanted to make sure I understood and agreed with him by screaming at me for an average of two hours.
I didn't know one person could be so different before and after marriage. Then I saw crime stories of husbands murdering wives or vice versa. It was great before they married, and the controlling evil behaviors would emerge after marriage. Fortunately, Anson never physically abused me, but there was emotional abuse. After I got married, I never saw Mr. Nice Guy again. The ugly truth was that he was only nice on the surface until he got what he wanted. He once said I was his greatest accomplishment. It made me feel like once he got what he wanted by marriage, he felt he could treat me any way he wanted. Scary to know this monster deceived me.
What could I learn from my experience with Mr. Nice Guy? Indeed, people do behave differently in different situations. There is always more than one side to a person. Sometimes, you could still get blindsided even if you look carefully, as I thought I did.
I survived walking on eggshells, divorced him, learned lessons, and strengthened myself through the experience.
My nice guy number two is Devin. If you hadn't known Devin for a long time, you'd say he was nice. All his friends and business associates said he was a nice guy. I thought he was a nice guy too. He was there for you if you needed help learning new information or doing business. He was there to advise you if you needed encouragement to keep motivated in the sales business. You could call him anytime, day or night, and he'd answer the call to help anyone. He'd frequently have a flock of people surrounding him because he was so generous with his knowledge and advice. He was one of those people who did not know how to say no to anyone asking for help of any kind. I even thought him to be too kind to others.
Everyone loved to have lunch or dinner with him because he was charismatic and generous by footing the bill for everyone, and often it would be a dozen people or so.
Devin became my boyfriend. He called me every day, checking in on me and romancing me. With so many people needing his kindness and generosity, Devin still squeezed in time to be with me. It took me a long time to discover that he was not such a nice guy and was not as generous as I thought. The monster in him was very subtle.
I realized that he needed to help others to make himself feel good. He needed to feel needed to fill his ego. Though I would be one of the recipients of his generosity in hundreds of meals, I told him I was not the kind of girl for him because I was not the needy kind. He needed the needy type. And I refused to be that type. I didn't think we were a match, but we stayed together, getting along very well for years.
As I examined more about his kindness and generosity, I found it was only when they filled his selfish needs. He spent time with me when he wanted to; he called the shots in terms of time. He didn't consider my availability; I had to adjust to fit his time. Everything was around his schedule.
When I had fibroid pains and needed to go to the hospital, I waited two hours for him to pick me up. When I got a flat tire, I waited hours before he came. He was busy, and he only came when it was at his convenience. When an associate made a pass at me, he said nothing to the other guy. He didn't stand up for me when I was accused of stealing a sale. He called me his best friend, but I could never say he was mine. Time and time again, he didn't stand up for me. Of course, the ugliest truth was when he cheated on me. There was no consideration for my feelings, the years spent together, and the promises he gave me about wanting to marry me. Mr. Nice Guy was not so nice after all.
Though it was not a happily ever after ending with the two Mr. Nice Guys who turned out to be not-so-nice, lessons were learned. Everybody has their nice and not-so-nice side. Everyone has positive and negative qualities. The challenge is to find the balance that will work for you.
Beds I've Slept On
I slept on the bottom bunk of a bunk bed. It felt cozy with the stuffed hippopotamus I made in a home economics class in fifth grade. It was checkered black and red with a dark green background. I sewed it together, and it was mine. At the head of my bed was a window that shed light on my dark bed. My bed felt like the only place in the world that was mine; it was my space, and no one else would occupy it. That was the only good memory about my bunk bed.
I was sleeping soundly on a Saturday morning when Grandma Sandy (my mother's mother) woke me up to tell me that my grandfather on my father's side of the family had died. I loved sleeping and hated being awakened. Grandma Sandy did not wake Uncle Holden, who was sleeping on the top bunk. She didn't wake Uncle Ray, who was on another bed. She didn't even wake Auntie Cassie or Auntie Tessa.
I was the only one she pulled and grabbed to wake up and tell the news. She told me as if I had done something wrong because her voice sounded accusatory. She said, "Did you know your grandfather died, and you didn't even know?" I didn't know what she expected me to say, and I said nothing. I lived with Grandma Sandy's family and hardly knew the grandpa on my father's side of the family because he lived in another state. The scene of Grandma Sandy waking me up to break the news left me with bad memories of sleeping in that bunk bed as a child from age five to twelve. I couldn't comprehend her accusatory stance, leaving me feeling chilly in my bed.
As a preteen or early teenager, my aunties decided I should sleep in their cramped room instead of my uncles' spacious room since I was a growing girl. They squeezed a folding cot into the bedroom, and you'd have to walk sideways to get out of the room since there was no walkway. The bed was not firm like my bunk bed. Though it wasn't a comfortable bed, I have pleasant memories of chatting with my two aunties or listening to them talking with each other before bed.
By age fifteen, I had slept on a full-size bed. It was nice to have a bigger bed where I could roll on. As a teenager, I enjoyed reading romance novels late into the night as it would be hard to put a book down before finding out what happened next. My bed was my place to read and daydream about love. It was the only place where I enjoyed myself while living with my parents for two years. My bed was my only place of comfort in a house where I was miserable and didn't feel like I belonged.
At seventeen, I was back sleeping on a twin bed or the bottom bunk bed I used to sleep on when I lived with Grandma Sandy. Now I was back to living with Grandma Sandy by choice; I hated living with my parents since I didn't grow up with them. This time though, the top bunk was not attached to it, and Uncle Holden slept on it in another room. With my bottom bunk bed/twin bed positioned in the corner of my auntie's bedroom, I felt cozy with my bed once again. Most memorable was secretly chatting with my long-distance boyfriend on the phone under my blanket covers when my auntie was away at college and I was alone in the bedroom. I was under the covers, fearing anyone else in the house could hear us whispering sweet words. Next to my bed was a table where I could do my homework and write in my diary. I sat on my bed but faced the table and put my book on the table to write my diary. My bed was an enjoyable place to do the things I wanted.
Soon I was in college and sleeping on another twin bed each year. I have no stories to tell. I was a studious student engaging in no vice. As a new college graduate, I got a new twin bed at a Goodwill store. Having to be frugal all my life, I slept on a twin-size bed until I got married.
Once married, I slept on a queen-sized bed. Though I was now a grown woman, I thought the bed to be huge when I first sprawled on it to feel its enormity. However, when I went to sleep at night and had to share it with my husband, the bed didn't feel so big anymore. This was the first time I had to share my bed, and I wouldn't say I liked it. If I moved a bit, my husband wouldn't like it. And, of course, when I snored, it bothered him. My movements became limited; I could no longer move freely. Worse, I had to go to bed at 10 PM when my husband wanted to sleep; I couldn't go to bed whenever I wanted. I couldn't read or write in bed; I had bed restrictions. My bed was no longer a place of comfort or enjoyment after I got married.
After I got a divorce, I bought my first queen-sized bed. Now the bed was all my own, and I spread my arms and legs to feel its spaciousness. I enjoyed going to sleep whenever I wanted and doing whatever I wanted. Many intimate meetings followed, and I never felt limited or restricted to what I could do on my bed anymore.
While a bed is just another piece of furniture, it is vital in a person's daily life. The size of it, what we do on it, what we can't or don't do on it, and when we use it all combine to affect us in some way.
For me, I moved from a twin bed to a queen-sized bed. I moved from having a bed as my own place to a place of comfort. Then I moved from my bed being a place of discomfort to a place of freedom. Regaining the treasure that is freedom with a bed makes me stop to look at the bed that I sleep on daily. Appreciate the comfort and freedom a simple piece of furniture such as a bed can give you.
Key Takeaways: Though I met two nice guys who turned out to be not-so-nice guys, I learned some lessons, and they reminded me that each person has more than one side to them.
Though I have slept on different beds over the years, I have learned that a simple piece of furniture could significantly impact a person.
Next week, you will hear two new real-life stories called The Invisible Garbage I Carry and The Worry Bug. If you enjoyed this episode of Eye-Opening Moments, please share it with others, subscribe, support the show by clicking on the link in the description, or go to www.inspiremereads.com and leave a message. Thank you for listening!