I met with John this morning. I first talked to him about how torn I felt between the 'Lovely John' who I remember being in love with, and "Malevolent John" and "Paranoid John" who seemed to be very destructive and have no filter or inner brakes. They stop at nothing and go out and destroy, regardless of the consequences.
I said that he had left me no choice but to respond to his 'gauntlet' about the fact that he sees himself as still employed. And I said I really thought he was being unfair to attack me like this when I have been so very generous and supportive of him. And that we had parted in good faith 5 months ago - it wasn't cool of him to now punish me for giving him the benefit of the doubt.
He didn't rage. He didn't go into charm or self pity space. Maybe a bit of charm: he 'congratulated' me on seeking legal advice 'because I'm not going to be able to take this on by myself'. So the veiled threat of imminent attack is very much there. He kept reminding me how important it is that I disclose his issue to my new buyers. Again that veiled threat that he's coming. He mentioned a CCMA case (our local name for a sort of Labour Court tribunal), and then retracted the word saying "I'm not threatening you, but..."
I then sent him the actual letter: and then he started getting angry. Says I don't have all the facts. Asking if I'd investigated properly. Shaking his head as if I have been very naive in taking the "you paid yourself a pile of money without my approval" angle. Said I clearly didn't know all the facts and implicated my accountant. Made me doubt myself for a moment.
Then I came to the office and checked. I am still correct, thank goodness.
But now I wait. I have no idea what's going to come at me next. I think it's part of the abusive cycle. The inconsistency of response: I feel like a child who is 'waiting for your father to come home'.
I came into the office after that to finally take my place at the helm again after being away for almost 7 weeks now. He is not allowed on site. Will he come?
He went to therapy this afternoon. Either he is calm and accepting and about to bow out gracefully, or he has another nasty trick up his sleeve. I wish I could be able to relax, just for a moment, and enjoy the process of working with my company buyers to sell the company. Instead, I'm actually stressing deep in my soul. What explosion will come at me next? From which quarter?
I'm reminded of that funny saying by Mark Twain:
I've been through some terrible things in my life, some of which actually happened.
Shew. This is tough!