And another thing…

My DIL sent a photo of me with my son while I was on my visit to CA, but I can’t see it because something bad is going on with my computer.  I am in the “Maybe it will get better or go away” phase of dealing with this problem.

Above: My 49-year old son Richard with his youngest son Sean (age 7) standing on the shore near Encinitis CA.  

Over fifty years ago, I arrived just north of Encinitis in Ocenside CA on a train from LA.  I had spent the previous three days crossing the country, coming from NC to CA to meet my Marine boyfriend and marry him. 

He retrieved me from the train station in Escondido and drove me to Twenty-nine Palms where we were married by a Justice of the Peace.  It was the biggest mistake of my young life (I was barely 17).


I have traveled to San Diego many times over the years, but the memory of that disastrous relationship remains.  The marriage lasted 16 years, but finally, I couldn’t take it anymore. The womanizing and drinking were too much.

I don’t think of these bad memories very often, having overlaid them with really good memories over the years.  However, my DIL wanted to know what happened to the grandfather of their children, so I told her. Love was never part of my miserable experience. I desperately wanted to get away from my abusive family of origin, Fleeing to CA and marrying a relative stranger seemed like a good idea at the time. I suppose something worse could have happened, but I can’t imagine what.

Over the years, I have discovered many of my female friends did similar things.  After all, what opportunities existed for most girls back in the 1950s?  Life was pretty tough for those of us who came from abusive homes and had few choices but marriage to the first yahoo who came along. That’s pathetic I know, but that was then.  Thank goodness that era is behind us and girls have many more options today.         

11 thoughts on “And another thing…

  1. I’m so sorry you had such a terrible start. It’s sad that you had so few choices to escape a hard family life. I guess it makes you appreciate all you were able to do later. Has your son been able to see his father since then?


  2. The landscape for men and women has changed so dramatically since I got married in 68 that I barely recognize it. There are no longer “roles”, which is both a good and bad thing. It frees up each partner to grow and expand, but at the same time causes confusion. The young women have embraced the new society, but It’s a big reason that young men today are so perplexed and unable to find their way. Oh well, just glad it’s not me.


  3. I am humbled and amazed by your journey into health, wholeness and triumphal living. My own journey into marriage began a decade later when opportunities for women were a lot broader. And my journey was launched from a caring set of parents who drilled me about the necessity of making conscious decisions in choosing a mate and also lived a model of a loving, respectful partnership.

    I am not sure I would have emerged with the strength of character you have if I had been walking in your shoes.


  4. I guess back then there was no such thing as shacking up. But, marriage is better because of the legal protection it provides, especially where children and property are concerned.


    • There weren’t many legal protections back then. I did not get half of his military retirement, for example. In fact to opt out of the marriage, I never got any alimony at all. That was the only way I could get away from him. Today military spouses are entitled to half of their divorced partner’s retirement pay.


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