Originally posted privately on October 27, 2009. Marked Public July 8, 2010.
***The Pilot is not happy with my posting this post, so I won’t post it…publicly.***
I’ve been sitting on a little story for a couple of months now, waiting for the heat to die so I could relate the tale rationally and calmly. You know the saying, “Revenge is a dish best served cold?” Well, my tale isn’t about revenge, so I guess that’s not the best analogy. I suppose I should compare it more to an argument. You know, you’re supposed to count to ten, in order to avoid saying something rash in the heat of the moment. So I’ve counted to ten. And I would like to say that the whole thing is more humorous than anything else at this point, but that wouldn’t be the full truth. It’s still upsetting. I’m still hurt. The Pilot, I think, is still hurt by it. But, it’s over, we’re through it, and life goes on.
A few months ago, The Pilot got a call from a friend “Shirley.” This is the story I got from The Pilot, who heard it from Shirley: One of my friends found out that her friend “Helen” worked with a woman that knows The Pilot (Shirley). So Friend called Helen, asked for Shirley’s number, and called Shirley. Started asking Shirley about The Pilot, what’s his deal, kind of a “What are his intentions” sort of talk, including questions like Does he really work for the airline, Did he really get transferred to a different city, and (my favorite) Does he really exist. This friend knew enough about me, The Pilot, and our relationship to be someone in my inner circle, so to speak. However, she gave Shirley a fake name, so I don’t know who made the phone call.
This left me feeling extremely betrayed. While I understood that this friend, whoever she was, was more than likely doing this out of love for me, I still found it very invasive, a betrayal of my confidence. Yes, The Pilot and I have had issues in the past, but we’ve done really well over the last six or eight months. I’m happy with him. This friend probably felt she was protecting me, making sure The Pilot was good enough for me. But that’s not her place to do so.
Although I didn’t realize who Helen was in the beginning, I soon figured it out – I had actually met her recently, she was a friend of a friend. I went on Facebook to confirm that the connection was there, between my friend “Rhonda” and Helen. But when I went to my friends list, Rhonda wasn’t there. At some point in time, she has removed me as a friend.
I began to wonder if perhaps Rhonda didn’t like me very much. Certainly, all evidence was pointing to that. As we are in the same circle of friends, I felt it was important to confront the issue directly, so that there would be no awkwardness within our group. I emailed Rhonda, let her know that I had noticed we were no longer Facebook friends, and asked if perhaps it was a mistake, or if there was something that she wanted to talk to me about. I also mentioned that I had heard that her friend Helen knew a friend of The Pilot, and that it’s a small world. I left it at that.
Rhonda and I talked, because she felt there was something she needed to tell me about The Pilot. She wanted me to understand that her friend Helen hadn’t been digging, that it was just a coincidence that there was a mutual friend, but that Shirley had said some things to Helen that bothered Rhonda, and she had been trying to decide if she should tell me. According to Rhonda, Shirley had told Helen that The Pilot said he didn’t have a girlfriend in Charlotte, and she said that she thought he had a long term girlfriend in Atlanta. Rhonda made a point of acknowledging that this could all be a boatload of crap, but then it also could all be true, and she would feel bad if it ended up being true, and she hadn’t said anything about it.
You’ll notice that in Rhonda’s version of events, only Helen and Shirley spoke – there was not third person phone call. So, now I’m dealing with a “He said, She said” scenario, which is never fun. Who do you believe?
The Pilot and I talked things over. I don’t believe he has a girlfriend in Atlanta. I believe that he told me what his friend Shirley told him. Was she lying? I have no way of knowing. And I likely never will.
In the past, I’ve doubted his feelings for me, and I’ve doubted his affection for me, but I’ve never doubted his faithfulness. I don’t believe that he’s lied to me, or cheated on me. Now, today, I don’t doubt his feelings, his affection, or his faithfulness. I’m sure of his love for me. He may not be able to express it as candidly or as fervently as I would like, but I know it’s there.
As far as my friend Rhonda, we are still not friends on FB. She doesn’t feel that we ever truly connected, and she had un-friended me simply because she never read my page or status updates, and she didn’t have any time to devote to those who weren’t her good friends. I agreed with her that we had never really connected, but that my definition of “friend” varied from hers, especially in regards to Facebook “friends.” I told her, honestly, that I had simply wanted to clear things up with us in order to make sure our mutual friends were not affected by any ill feelings between us. And now that I understood where she was coming from, that I was fine with it – I had just wanted to make sure there wasn’t something deeper that would boil up later.
Overall, I think I was very mature about the whole thing, and I was definitely very level-headed. I think (and I’ve heard from other Pilot Wives/Girlfriends) that it’s very hard for some people to accept and understand a relationship with a pilot. He’s gone a lot. There’s a stereotype of pilots being players, of having a different girlfriend in every city, of being unfaithful and untrustworthy. But I don’t see a lot of difference between the traveling a pilot does and the traveling a businessman does. People travel all the time for work. Some people commute four out of seven days. When my friend B first moved here, her husband left Monday morning and came back Friday afternoon, because his job was still out of state. No one raised an eyebrow, but everyone understood that it must be hard on both of them. The Pilot and I are really no different, except that he may leave Thursday and come back Tuesday. That, of course, raises a different set of issues, because (as I’ve mentioned before) he doesn’t get to do things with me and my friends on weekends, which is when we normally get together. So they haven’t spent much time with him, most have only met him once for 5 minutes, and so I think they may equate that to how much he cares about me. That’s not the case.
I really wanted to post this story, but I understand that some of my friends may take this as further reason not to like The Pilot. To those friends, I want you to respect my intelligence enough to trust my judgment. I want you to be happy that I am happy and in love. And should the day come that I am proven wrong in my trust, I hope that you will be there for me without saying, “I told you so.” While I understand and appreciate your concern for me and my well-being, and I get that you just want what’s best for me, please express that through support, and not through doubt. Because, in all honesty, that’s the main source of my unhappiness right now.
***Update: This post was originally posted as a private post. I’ve reposted it publicly to go along with This Post.***